Upside Down

It is hard for some to keep a straight face but for Alair it was child’s play. She never had realised when she ended up cultivating the art; unconsciously and unaware. So much so, to this day she remains in oblivion.

School and work never seemed to leave her be. She was always hounded and surrounded. Be it her friends or family. However, do not confuse yourself, dear reader. Alair loved everyone around her and never once in her life wished ill upon anyone. But even in the crowd she felt left behind.

“Oh, are you going home already?”, they asked her with tears in their eyes. It was always a fun time sharing laughs and drinks together.

“Stay for a little while longer.” Another pleaded.

Alair simply smiled through her glossy eyes, the purpose began to mix. She shook her head and softly laughed.

“You’re no fun these days.” They complained. “Going home early, refusing to go out… It’s not like you.”

She laughed it off with a sparkle in her eyes and left with no other word said.

It’s not like you, they said.

She looked in the mirror, at the smile that was upside down.

It’s not like you.

Gemstone

The little boy giggled as he played with the dirt-covered stone. He tossed it from one hand to another, eyes following its pathway. It was a treasure he found, he believed. Something he had never had before. Something his.

“I’ll never lose this. I swear it. I will never ever lose it.” He shouted with glee, his hand clenched over the rock. His eyes sparkled almost as much as the rock did not.

Another boy older by maybe one or two years, approached him with wonder. The wonder of what it was that was making him so happy. He wanted to be happy too.

“Can we be friends?” He initiated with a tough front and cool aura. The little boy stared through his beady eyes and did not reply. He shoved his closed fist towards the boy and observed his eyes follow.

The boy did not understand what the gesture meant. He looked back, questionable.

The closed fist slowly began to open, unravel. The dirt-covered stone sat still on the palm of his little hand. He was waiting.

The older boy could not comprehend what he was meant to do. Then he had an epiphany. His hands attacked his pocket, fingers wriggling.

“Aha!”, he cried out. A shining, shimmering stone was exposed. The blue sparkled in the sunlight, out-sparkling the once sparkling eyes of the little boy. The older boy was beaming. He was sure that he would accomplish his goal of befriending the little boy. Little did he know, the little boy did not think the same.

The little boy’s lips quivered. His eyes drooped and head tilted. He gazed at the sparkling blue in the older boy’s hands and then towards his own dirty pebble.

“No.” He whimpered. Pulling his hand back and putting all his might, he threw the pebble as far as he could. With tears in his eyes, he looked at the older boy one last time before running in the opposite direction.

Tears ran down the older boy’s face as did blood drip down his hands.

The scratches forever engraved, hand and heart.

Spectator

 

The sun shone bright. The birds chirped. The trees swayed. And yet it felt like there had been a pause in time. Everything stayed still and stayed alive.

She sat there, on the ancient wood, waiting for something she herself did not recognise. Her mind commanded her to move and walk away but her heart convinced otherwise. Her legs moved with momentum and yet she stayed, sat in the middle of nowhere.

A man walked past by. He stopped in his tracks and gazed at the little girl who sat. Tipping his hat, he continued on his path.

Next came a little boy, maybe of her own age. He limped and huffed and limped and huffed. The girl called out to him.

“Do you need any help?”

The boy stared blankly. He shook his head and whispered.

“I need to go. Yes, I need to.”

And so he limped and huffed and limped and huffed.

Many people, old and young, men and women, crossed their paths with the girl. Most of them barely acknowledged her; but there were some who offered a smile. Never once did she ask them where they were going and neither did they ever ask her what she was doing. But she always wondered.

Did they have someone waiting for them? Maybe they were searching for something? Or maybe it was just because their heart told them to do so as did hers.

The path they took always changed. One to the left, the other to the right. They seemed to know which path led where. But never once did anyone divert from the laid out path. She wondered if the same road led to the same place. Or maybe the destination changed as the person did. She did not know. And maybe she never will.

She got tired of waiting. She wanted to leave the old bench and follow the path of all those who had passed her by. She wanted to see what was at the end of the line. What it was that lured so many to its vicinity. She wanted to walk away. But she could not. So she cried to herself that day. That day that never seemed to end.