It’s time to part but not for too long

I have been writing short, short stories for the longest time.

The idea of fromthefluffycloud came from the need to ensure that I write more and more.

However, I have not been able to keep up the tempo.

And as a blogger, I think it is unfair to continue a blog without putting out something regularly.

An even harsher thing would be to leave the blog hanging with no conclusion.

So here I conclude this journey of fromthefluffycloud.

It was great to hear from so many people about my stories. Thank you for bearing with me all along.

I will be back soon with a stronger, committed project.

If there is anything in the meanwhile that you want to say, drop me a line on Sanali.lotankar@gmail.com.

Adieu!

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The Sorcerer’s Story

The sorcerer’s magic had befallen him. He had one last chance to resurrect his status.

Closed eyes. Tight fists. Deep breathes.

He opened his arms to the audience. Held himself proudly.

“As I open my eyes, I’ll tell you the secret of immortality.”

A round of applause followed. And then silence prevailed over the room.

He slowly opened his eyes, slowly murmuring a phrase in a mystic language.

“Drin Drin Tada Lene Likt Ka’ah”

White light emanated from inside his soul and spread across the room. He rose above the ground as white light covered the room. Everyone rubbed their eyes but all they saw was the sorcerer rising above the ground.

Higher and higher and higher.

And then he fell, as if pushed by a force unknown. He hit the ground. A loud sound silenced the murmur of the room. The light disappeared making everything all too clear.

On the stage laid the sorcerer’s robe, his shoes and cap. But he was nowhere to be seen. It seemed as if no one ever stood on the stage.

People screamed and searched for the disappeared. They continued to speculate and gossip, for the sorcerer was never to be seen again but his magic lived on. Revered for years and years.

Chasing the Chase

She stood still in the middle of the lobby. People passing by were obvilious to her. Lost in a world of her own, she tried to put together the fragments of the dream she once had.

She felt trapped. The chase was like a rat running on a wheel in a science lab. It made one run endlessly, never satisfying, never gratifying. But once one was on it, there was no where to go, and she was not even an inch closer to the dream.

The dream to explore, the dream to fly, the dream to dream; the freedom of her soul, the vastness of her mind and the hope of life.

A sudden push from a passerby brought her back. And for the very first time, she saw another path. A path less explored, less travelled. The path leading to the dream. But the chase awaited her.

And as the wheel rolled on and picked up pace, she was running, running far away from it, on the path just realised.

“Just A Wish”: My entry for the Get Published contest

The Idea

Are fairy tales confined to the world of Cindrellas and Snow Whites? Are princesses always damsels-in-distress waiting for a prince charming to take them away from miseries of life?

Zoya’s life is a fairy tale*. But she is no damsel-in-distress. Rather, she is fierce and strong, smiling and willful. What, however, she did want (secretly though) was a handsome prince to complete the fairy tale her life was. But she feared. Not an evil stepmother but the consequences of all that she wished for.

After all, the result of Zoya’s wishes always turned tables on her. In class eight, she wished to take up Sanskrit and ended up failing her first few tests. When she first went to college, she wished to participate in a dance fest. The result: she spent the next few weeks in a hospital ward. And when she first joined an organization after quite a long wait, it turned out to be her worst nightmare, ever. So much so that she threw her idea for a perfect life out the window.

There was a small wish, nonetheless, which she slipped neatly into a drawer long forgotten. Her secret wish for a boyfriend who would take her to the ball; someone she could talk fearlessly to; and someone who would hold her hand while they drank coffee on the terrace under bright, shiny stars.

And suddenly, it seemed as if her wish was coming true. Every obstacle in the way of a perfect love life suddenly vanished, opening new doors and windows in her life. Was this wish, ultimately, a final success in Zoya’s long list of failures?

*Zoya’s definition of fairy tale is an upside down world where nothing every seemed to be going her way. Yet, it was miraculously perfect.

What Makes This Story ‘Real’

The story is a personal collection of experiences on a special journey. It glimpses into people, places and situations of everyday life, a leaf out of memories and epiphany.

This is my entry for the HarperCollins–IndiBlogger Get Published contest, which is run with inputs from Yashodhara Lal andHarperCollins India.

Of the Living and Dead

On some days, I am a nobody
living in the shadows of
a life I’ve never had.
The crashing of a dream that never died of its misfortune
can’t do me any bad.
And yet at night when I lay
staring at a dull, dry sky,
sway in those memories
that don’t even belong.
Just like the life never lived and
dead dreams that refused to die.

The Falling Star

He sat watching the star fall. The stroke of the silver glittering on the dark surface left no other memory alive in his young mind. Almost as if the sparkle had touched the depth of a valley never explored. The stream of his thoughts couldn’t gather enough steam to form an articulate sentence. It was a moment of joy for all that was lost and desperation in a moment’s uneasiness which had never ceased to exist.

“Do you plan to sit like that all night now?” said a voice in a monotonous tone.

“Do you really think my parents left me for the stars?” he asked calmly.

A moment of silence.

A ruffled response. “I don’t know. You should be sleeping now. None of the boys are allowed to stay up this late in this orphanage.”

A big thud of the door shutting behind him. But he didn’t seem to have heard it.

“Because if they did, they sure do live in a beautiful place up there.”

He was smiling at the beauty of what he had seen and the pain of what he had said.

Need and Indeed

She walked ahead of it. Nothing seemed to bother her. Neither the rubble of the downtrodden roads nor the dust whizzing past them. They had walked together for hours. She was busy loving the freedom.

A car rushed past her. She was stunned. Lost in a world of her own, she had reached the main street. Suddenly, reality gripped her. The car speeding ahead sowed fear into her little mind.

Before she made a movement to turn around, he held her hand lightly and started walking alongside, crossing the road. As the school bell rang, she rushed into the campus. He walked silently with no qualms.

First Day At School

She stood by the car, holding onto her brown bag. She felt a bit caught by the people walking by. They had a glint in their eyes. A spark of enthusiasm, she thought.

She walked a few steps away from the car. Someone honked from behind. A pause in her movement. She turned back swiftly.

“You seem more nervous than the kids.”

“I am,” she gushed.

She ran back to her mother to hug her. “They’ll like me, right?” she whispered slowly.

“Of course! You’ll make a wonderful teacher,” replied Mrs. Karnik.

Midnight Chuckles

He wrapped his palm around her finger. It was time for bed but he simply wouldn’t  let her go. He was wide awake, lying flat on his bed. Looking into his tiny, curious eyes, she whispered, “Mumma needs to sleep and so do you. It will soon be morning. We can’t sit like this all night, now can we?”

He chuckled and held her finger firmly as if he’d understood what she meant.

“Such a smart lad he is,” said Amma from the back of his bed. “Who would believe that a 5 month old is so mischievous?”