Escalaphobia  #FridayFictioneers

Escalaphobia #FridayFictioneers

Step on the moving ladder and hold the railing.  Sally watched as people zoomed towards the escalator and then stood at ease  till they reached the top.  It looked simple.  But, what if her feet did not find the firm step or if it moves when she is just putting her feet.  Should she hold the railing first? Sally could never time it right.  The image of her lying on the floor, her shopping strewn around and people staring was all she saw. She turned to leave when a staff told her, ‘Mam,  you can use the lift.’

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PHOTO PROMPT © Marie Gail Stratford

Friday Fictioneers is a weekly 100 word writing challenge inspired by a picture prompt. Click here to read other stories.

The morning after #writebravely

The morning after #writebravely

Chapter 1 , Chapter 2 , Chapter 3 , Chapter 4 , Chapter 5 , Chapter 6Chapter 7

Neil woke up to the smell of fresh coffee coming from the kitchen.  He took a deep breath,  felt like the good old days.  He could even hear faint radio chatter.  It was later than usual,  but he felt so much better.

He will never forget yesterday night.  It was like he saw the old Shruti again.  The beautiful, carefree Shruti.  He felt guilty that he had ignored Shruti for so long.  He had thought that she was sad and will come out of it.  But,  he never saw the downward spiral she or their relationship was in.

He could hear Arijit Singh crooning away ‘Tum hi ho.. kyonki Tum Hi Ho.. meri Aashiqui bus tum hi ho’.  Maybe, they should go for a movie today, he thought.

But first, he decided to sleep in a bit more,  this time with good memories and beautiful dreams.

Continue reading

Monster  #writebravely

Monster #writebravely

Chapter 1 , Chapter 2 , Chapter 3 , Chapter 4 , Chapter 5 , Chapter 6

Neil walked into the flat late in the night.  The office party was a disaster.  His thoughts kept going back to Shruti.  Shruti needs help, he thought.  He himself would like some support.  He thought of the one person who can set Shruti right.

He had dialed Niti’s number.  She had picked up immediately as if she was waiting for his call.

‘I was about to call you,’ she said. Continue reading

Out of comfort zone #writebravely

Out of comfort zone #writebravely

Chapter 1 , Chapter 2 , Chapter 3 , Chapter 4 , Chapter 5

‘So why do you keep calling Neil’s friends?  Why didn’t you talk to Neil?’ Niti asked.

‘No use.  He just denies it.  Says I am crazy and imagining things’,  she said as she wiped her nose.

‘Since, when do you think he is having an affair?’

‘Past few months.  On and off.  I just don’t know with whom or is it with all’

‘Any proof, signs?’

‘Erm.. No.  But I know.  His clothes smell of feminine perfume, some traces,’ Shruti affirmed.

‘Hmm.. And what is with the house?  It looks like you have not even put a wipe on it for ages,’ Niti said.

‘Why should I do it?  It is his house too.  Let him clean it.  But he is too busy having fun.’

‘Whatever it is.. I cannot think with so much clutter around.  I can give you a hand to help clear it.’  Shruti reluctantly agreed as she knew Didi will not leave her if she didn’t.

After two hours,  both of them sat exhausted with another cup of tea and some cookies to kill their hunger pangs.

‘So,  what do you plan to do?’ Niti asked.

‘I did not think about it.  I am waiting for him to initiate the divorce.  I see no future in this marriage.  I cannot trust him anymore.  With no children,  I think this is the best.  I will go back to stay with Mamma and Papa,  get a job maybe,’  she thought aloud.

‘Do you remember,  how much you had fought with Mamma and Papa to marry Neil?  In fact, both of you fought against your families to get married.  Why are you giving up so easily?’  asked Niti.

‘That was a different time.  Things are different now.  I am in no mood to fight,’ said Shruti resignedly.

‘You choose your courage or you can choose comfort but you cannot have both.’

‘Means?’ asked Shruti.

‘Shruti,  give it your best shot.  You are ready to divorce based on some perfume on his clothes.  Ridiculous.  Find the truth.  Talk to Neil,  not his colleagues,’  she said.

‘B..But’

‘And swallow that inflated ego. No ifs and buts.  You will talk to Neil,’ Niti said firmly.


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Disobedience  #writebravely

Disobedience #writebravely

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

The phone rang with Niti’s smiling face displayed.  Shruti picked up the phone immediately.

‘Didi,’  she said and started sobbing.

‘Shruti, what is it?  What happened?’ asked Niti full of concern thinking of all weird things that could have gone wrong.

‘It’s its N.. Neil..  He is leaving me .. for someone else …I was never good for him.  And now he d..doesn’t even look a…at m..mee.  I should have listened to Mamma and Papa.  I am being punished for my own a..actions.  F..First the b..baby.  Now this.  My life is finished,’  she sobbed through the phone.

‘Wait… don’t cry.  I am coming over,’  Niti said and hung the phone before Shruti could say no.

Shruti wiped her tears.  She looked around the house which looked like a mess.  Plants withered, dusty shelves, cobwebs.  In a half eaten plate at the table,  she saw ants making a straight line across the table to their secret hiding place.  She did not care but with Didi coming over,  she knew she will get an earful for the unkempt house.

She wanted to get up,  put things in order.  But her body disobeyed.  She will do it before she arrives anyway.

‘Why bother when life is itself a mess,’ she thought.  She pulled the covers over her head and fell into a dreamless sleep.

The insistent doorbell woke up Shruti.   She ignored it many times.  But,  this one rang non-stop.

She got up from the bed,  staggered in the darkened living room and opened the door.  It was Niti.  She barged into the flat.

‘What is all this,  Shruti?’  Niti pulled open the curtains and bright sunlight poured into the room.

Shruti stared back at Niti through sleepy eyes.  She felt the tears brimming up trying to escape.  She walked upto Niti and hugged her.  The sobs were uncontrollable.   She repeated their phone call conversation.  Seeing her little sister cry was distressing for Niti as she cried with her.

Niti went into the kitchen to make tea.  Tea always helped after a good sob.  As they sat on the now cleared couch to sip their tea,  Shruti started to tell about Neil.


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