Microfiction 22: Hobo

For Muslims across the world, Ramadhan is a special opportunity to turn a corner and adopt desirable virtues recommended by our Prophet (p.b.u.h), among other things.

This Ramadhan am challening myself to accurately depict at least five of these virtues, through the most expressive creative way I can think of. In my case I chose microfiction.

The singular rule of the challenge being that particular virtue to be depicted should be hidden in the subtext and left to the reader to guess which one it is, meaning neither the title nor the dialogue of the characters should explicitly reveal the virtue in question.

Though I’ve started very late I do hope my fellow writers will join in with their own particular genre and flair that they prefer.

 

He lay down under a canvas of black and silver dots, a sky mindless of him and his condition, contemplating a truth he had just stumbled upon.

He remembered a bed of roses that could fit twenty, now traded in for a cardboard that did just enough to keep the cold at bay.

Earlier in the morning, he’d seen his own reflection on the bonnet of a car. He had struggled to identify both the model and himself.

He wondered about those mornings spent in boardrooms and afternoons spent in courtrooms and evenings spent in ballrooms, in the search for consequence, now exchanged for days spent dodging municipal officers.

He’d been everywhere, seen everyone, done everything. He’d belonged to everyone and everyone had been his.

And now he’d discovered a truth that belonged to him and him alone.

The truth that he regretted not trading his billions for the happiness of people he’d never met, much earlier.

Advertisements

Microfiction 21: Doctor

For Muslims across the world, Ramadhan is a special opportunity to turn a corner and adopt desirable virtues recommended by our Prophet (p.b.u.h), among other things.

This Ramadhan am challening myself to accurately depict at least five of these virtues, through the most expressive creative way I can think of. In my case I chose microfiction.

The singular rule of the challenge being that particular virtue to be depicted should be hidden in the subtext and left to the reader to guess which one it is, meaning neither the title nor the dialogue of the characters should explicitly reveal the virtue in question.

Though I’ve started very late I do hope my fellow writers will join in with their own particular genre and flair that they prefer.

 

If there was anything that offered him distraction from the terrifying fire in her eyes it was probably the unbearable pain he experienced in his forearms from her iron grip.

There was pain in her eyes too, though he only caught glimpses of it when she would occasionally let her guard down, like a flash of lightning on a dark night sky. He knew only too well why it was there, the pain, and he was not proud of it. The guilt of it made him feel small.

She was shouting. Screaming. Not the incoherent mindless babble of a madwoman, but the damning curse of a pained mother, each word a carefully hurled scimitar delivering a wound two-fold as punishing as that of the previous one.

‘You killed her. You killed my daughter. Daktari aina gani wewe? You should not call yourself a doctor!’

On the occasion when we didn’t question his qualifications for his practice he wondered how long he would have to spend in a psychiatric ward to recover from this incident. And prosthetic arms? Those felt like an inevitable future for him, he could barely feel his fingers anymore.

Then, as if having spent all her energy and will to mourn and scorn, he felt her grip on his arms weaken, the expression on her face soften, and he worried she might drop to the floor from exhaustion. In stead she pulled him closer and embraced him.

There she cried for a minute.

‘The best doctor in the world would have made the same mistake…it was meant to be.’

Microfiction #17: The Curious Beast

…wherein confounding events threaten everything…

Edonis was understandably irritated when his junior commissioner burst into the room and with bated breath gasped the words, ‘Well, sir, I don’t know how to explain this…’

His irritation turned to consternation when his junior escorted him to the courtyard right outside the royal palace, where a gathering crowd poked uncomprehending gazes at an awkward beast that commanded attention as much as it repulsed. It was unimaginably flat and bulky looking, with no discernible limbs but for snaky coil or belt that rattled underneath it and all around its sides.

For Edonis, the creature’s appearance presented a complication. Having been charged with outthinking the filthy Greeks, who right now were busy building some infernal contraption outside the city walls, his failure to predict this event and worse, his inability to recognize the puzzling creature exposed an embarrassing weakness in his leadership.

‘Where…’ he began to ask.

‘From nowhere sir. It just appeared.’ Came the rehearsed response.

Presently, the creature’s snout swung from end to end and like puppets the crowd cleared away at least two paces from the direction it pointed with each swing. Then something remarkable happened. A most unsettling hiss emanated from the creature, and a bright light blinded everyone within the courtyard. The guard post fifteen yards away was, as if through sorcery, reduced to a pile of rubble along with the guard who had been inside it.

It took a while for relative calm to return to the courtyard after that, but with reasonable efficiency and speed the civilians had been cleared and Edonis’ charges had formed a half-hearted perimeter around the beast, and right then a hatch swung open on top of the beast’s back (or head?) and to the ire of the soldiers around, who should step out from in there but an ordinary mortal man?