Dennis The Messiah


(Photo Credit: Susan Spaulding)

The orphanage was urgently in need of funds. With a thousand other institutions actively competing for both deserved attention and desperate funding, it was only unfortunately logical that some organisations would be left behind both in terms of structure and substance.

They say that hope springs forth from sources unforeseen. The harbinger of hope for this dedicated non-profit organisation was one of its youngest inmates. Dennis was brought into this facility as a seriously ill one-year old abandoned to his cold fate in a secluded alley. Amidst torrential downpour the wailings of the child were almost lost to the world but for the uncanny aural sense of the janitor of the orphanage, who coincidentally was on his way home.

Six years and a diagnosis of autism later, Dennis began to paint. Colourful images of animals in repose and frolic. His latest was that of a donkey against a striking background with a sunflower clasped between its teeth.

The secretary of the orphanage, pursuant to a public appeal arranged for a public exhibition. Connoisseurs hailed Dennis as the next Albrecht Düre.

The children had found their savior. The small messiah had ensured that the orphanage would never face a resource crunch!

(Word Count: 200)

This story was written for Sunday Photo Fiction hosted by Susan Spaulding. For more details visit Here.  To read more of the stories based on this week’s prompt, visit Here.

A world in need of healing

(Photo Credit: Dale Rogerson)

Stubbornly disregarding the recommendations of the sincere real estate agent, Venky moved into the semidetached property which was in crying need of repair. Come to think of it, the whole world seemed as if it required some prompt and urgent fixing. Instead of dismantling barriers between nations, walls were proposed to be erected; instead of respecting green canopies that breathe life, holes were being punched into the ozone layer.

Venky latched the door closed and observed that the panel of glass was splintered and taped over in an unprofessional and hasty manner.

Splintered hopes, shattered glass!

(Word Count: 96)

This story was written as part of the FRIDAY FICTIONEERS challenge, more about which may be found HERE

 For the complete list of entries, please click HERE

Milk Bundt Cake

(Photo Credit: Yinglan)

The windows afforded a clear view of the ‘pseudo-park-cum-makeshift-football-ground’ that was in need of some tenanting. A few scraggly trees with their slender branches and withered leaves stood as silent witnesses to the goings on in the park. What was once a jogging track was now obscured by the undisturbed growth of grass.

Joanne used the back of her hand to wipe away the beads of sweat streaming down her forehead. With her flowing locks of hair combed back and tied into a bun; a knee length apron preventing an assortment of ingredients from sullying her attire, Joanne looked out the window for a fleeting second before returning to the cake batter spread upon the table.

Her two young sons, her heartbeats, Victor & Richard were engrossed in kicking a ball with their trusted friend Francis for company. A luxuriant smile broke over Joanne’s face. The kids were in for a surprise. They had no idea that they would be welcomed back with the tempting aroma and delectable taste of their favourite Milk Bundt Cake!

(Word Count: 175)

This story has been written as part of the FLASH FICTION FOR ASPIRING WRITERS – FFfAW Challenge #200, more details about which may be found HERE

For reading similar entries submitted in response to the FFfAW Challenge #200 please click HERE

Thank You Yinglan for the photograph!

Mission Gandalf

(Photo Credit: Stefan Keller)

19 tired but determined souls weightily trudged along the barren land. A cold wind that cut like a knife blew right into their faces. Faces that were protected by fibre glass helmets that released a steady flow of Oxygen via ultralight cylinders ensconced within even lighter back packs. The howling wind whistled away like troubled wolves predicting a pattern of doom. The perfectly circular orb that was the moon shone in milky white splendor.

Venky’s concentration however was on the magnificently regal and natural formation of mountain made of ice. The indentations and cutting edges remarkably represented the image of a Socratic elder squatting on the ground and intently examining a patch of land with what seemed like an exquisitely sculpted arm. This jaw dropping spectacle reminded Venky of the mythical Gandalf. Gandalf, J.R.R. Tolkien’s immortal creation who in the blink of an eye could transform lament into laughter.

It was exactly such a messiah that Venky was in dire need of. He had plunged into what seemed like a reckless and suicidal mission just because it was – well reckless and suicidal. The first phase of colonization of the Planet was announced with spectacular pomp and shameless proclamations. The Joint Declaration by the 19 Presidents coming together under the aegis of “A New Eternal World” (“ANEW”), a lofty euphemism for crony capitalism, was welcomed not just with fanfare but with funds.

Venky could care less about either the advantages of living on the moon or the anxiety of losing one’s way on Earth. Since the time his Ash had left him in a huff, carrying along with her not a shred of material possessions but his very soul, Johnny Walker had become his confidante and John Steinbeck his comrade. Books and bottle occupied him during the daytime. The arrival of nightfall just had the order reversed. Hence when a call came from the Altruistic World Publishers Association asking for a volunteer to chronicle what was being hailed as a path breaking expedition involving Nuclear Physicists, Particle Physicists, Chemical Experts, Microbiologists and Botanists, Venky jumped at the chance like a drowning man clutching at a straw. He was not looking for either a resuscitation or a resurrection of his career. He just wanted closure, a closure that would finally bring him peace, quiet and fulfillment.

Taking out his all-weather stylus and electronic keypad, he paused went down on his haunches and wrote, “We all need a Gandalf in our lives. We might not find him if we consciously set out seeking him. We just need to be unconsciously aware of his presence when he finds us.”

This is a piece of fiction piece written for D. Wallace Peach’s monthly Speculative Fiction Writing Prompt. 

Jay Gatsby & Daisy Buchanan

spf 12-9-18 fandango 3

(Photo Credit: Fandango)

A clear blue sky afforded an unsullied view of the skyline across the blue brooding expanse of water. The undulating and uneven line of skyscrapers bore mute testimony to power, wealth and an uber coolness that was characteristic of 21st Century capitalism. But does prosperity also mean peace? Venky could care less.

The skyline and the expanse of water separating it made him the modern day Jay Gatsby. A Gatsby who knew the exact location of his Daisy, the Daisy Buchanan who made him laugh and lament, cry and celebrate. His Daisy who did not even know about his unblinking focus on the gray steel and glass structures one of whose confines represented her home. Well, given her obdurate nature she couldn’t care less either.

Venky was the Jay Gatsby of facade, fun and frolic. Dispensing cheer, camaraderie, cordiality and cocktails he was an epitome of effervescence and enthusiasm.  But very few knew that these were a futile attempt at escapism. A feeble effort at coming to grips with the absence of Daisy.  A hope which would never materialize and an event that was sure not to manifest.

Didn’t matter she was named Ash. She would always be his Daisy.

(Word Count: 200)

This story was written for Sunday Photo Fiction hosted by Susan Spaulding. For more details visit Here.  To read more of the stories based on this week’s prompt, visit Here.

A Symphony Of Scars

(Photo Credit: Sue Vincent)

Honor the very badge he sacrificed at the altar of love

Paying scant heed to pleas fervent and threats forceful;

The obstinate heart that ignored every why, what and how

The soul that felt with such abdication, so light and delightful.


Dignity and valour metamorphosed into concepts remarkably trivial

Self-esteem and standing eviscerated by a radiant and dazzling smile;

A twirl, a curtsy and a bow for him were spectacles singularly surreal

To catch just a glimpse of her bewitching eyes, he was ready to walk the last mile


Now he wallows in misery known to none since he is a recluse

Racked by pain and remorse, he watches the setting sun and the shining stars;

The Faustian bargain which he unwittingly made offers but no truce

Only time will be the unbiased healer, even though he will be left with his scars.

This is a response to the #writephoto Prompt – Honour curated over at Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo. Click on the link to read other stories inspired by the image.

Professor Quah Hock Gin

(Photo Credit: Priya Bajpal)

It was yet another variant of the famous “Marshmallow” Test. The topical question of instant versus delayed gratification had become the Holy Grail of Behavioural Psychology and Economics. The 4 year olds trooping in were instructed to pick a straw a clip and 2 conch shells. If they could restrain themselves from picking more of any of the assembled objects for five minutes, their share would be doubled. Their reactions and restraints were secretly observed by Quah Hock Gin the greatest living psychologist of his time.

Dr. Gin’s report when completed would topple received wisdom on its head!

(Word Count: 98)

This story was written as part of the FRIDAY FICTIONEERS challenge, more about which may be found HERE

 For the complete list of entries, please click HERE