Flying High – (Story)

A single trickle rolled down his cheek and landed on the back of his hand.

Despite his noiseless attempt of trying and failing to be quiet; a lot of people were looking at him. But did he care? No. Everyone seated was facing the similar grief; the loss of someone they knew and loved. Thinking about what everyone else was thinking, was probably the last thing on his mind.

To be honest, he should have known. Or at least expected it one time or another. It wasn’t morbid thinking; just a reality. When you are in the army, life expectancy is numbered. You’re going to war, and saving your country. Casualties are expected.

But even though, it hurts to lose someone close to you.

Dad. The very thought brought a fresh wave of tears. He no longer had his buddy. No longer someone he could share his problems with. His mum had left him and his little sister a long time ago; so it was just the three of them. But that was enough.

His little sister didn’t know. She was alone at home and this wouldn’t be a way he would choose to let her know.

He often spoke about it. Both of them did. You can’t help but think about the last time you get to see your loved ones and hold them and talk to them; right before leaving.

“If I go, I want you to take me back home. Whatever you can find of me. Any piece, doesn’t matter. I want to be taken home and then cremated”. He was adamant. “And you tell your little sister personally. No telephone calls. My last time, I would like to be with my family. I want to be home”. His words seem oddly far away now.

They had a day before going back home. Everything was fine. Then suddenly, one shot, one life; all gone. With some courage, he glanced up towards the people resting around the coffin. Many were his dad’s friends. His brothers in arms. They had lost their brother; and the grief etched on their face was unbearable to watch. But, somehow it reminded him that he was not the only one suffering.

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Sparing a glance at the box, a rush of memories hit him. They were gliding, and his dad seemed intent on making it a special day for the three of them. He was only twelve years old as he and his sister screeched with happiness seeing their dad high
up soaring in the air. He was going to work the next day, and somehow he needed his children to have a good time.

“If I don’t come back, I don’t want you to feel any regret. I did what I had to. Someday you will understand. But always remember, I’ll be flying over your heads looking after you two. Okay?” he had said looking at them directly. They were far too young to understand, but always knew. He mind flashed to his sister.

She will be devastated. She idolized him. She would be heartbroken. But she would accept and understand. Just like he did.

A sharp ray of sunlight got him straight in the eye. He adjusted the his position of seating, avoiding the gazes of everyone in the vicinity, as he looked outside. “Almost home” he thought to himself as he looked at the horizon line.

Just as he thought it, the clouds cleared; he was twelve again seeing his dad gliding beside the plane, now carrying his body.

Sparing no thought around, he broke down in the sorrow of losing his only parent and his best friend.

For my last post click Hand Made – The Best Kind of Gift

For my last Storytime post click A New Start – (Story)


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Relapse – (Story)

A distant shuffle was heard behind her as she was folding up clothes in the room. Glancing back she saw her husband folding the chair and taking it downstairs.

“I’ll be downstairs if you’re alright here?”

It seemed more of a statement than a question to her. But she didn’t mind. In fact, they were both comfortable being separate at the moment; they needed their space. As she nodded she went back to what she was doing before. Folding clothes. A menial job, but something about the monotony kept her hands busy while her mind was free to wander.

It had been an amazing day in Florida with her family. Her son and her husband; exact replicas of one another were dragging her along everywhere. Despite telling them both not to spend more money than required they ended the day buying every possible thing related to Hogwarts.

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Her son, was a Harry Potter fanatic. Her husband would often joke that reading him the series was probably the worst mistake they made. He was obsessed with anything related to it. Hence, the trip to Universal Studios in Orlando.

She picked up the Gryffindor tie lying on the floor and kept it with the robes and the Quidditch set. Out of everyone in the book, Sirius Black was the most strong character her son identified with from the very beginning. He was a fighter. He had survived hell and came back. And that made him nothing short of a hero in her son’s eyes. Unfortunately, it was that particular trait that they both had shared.

Her son was diagnosed with cancer at an early age. And despite what the doctors had told them, he fought through. His love for the world of Hogwarts grew in the hospital where they would read to him. He would often spout quotations and ask them to identify who said it to ease the tension of the test results from the doctors. They would pretend to play duelling games during his chemotherapy, only so that he could have something to look forward to. And he got better. He had beaten the odds. All was well.

“One day mum and dad, you are going to miss me because I shall be gone studying Potions and fighting dragons while you are stuck here without the flying brooms!” he had said before riding the roller coaster there.It was probably the happiest times of their lives; she recalled.

She sat beside the mound of clothes on the bed recalling all the jokes and secrets they had shared that day; probably the last time they were all smiling. Shaking her head she decided to check the drawers for any snitches and wands that she might have missed in the cleaning.

There she saw it. A sleek, brown paper wrapped package with her and her husband’s name written in her son’s handwriting. With trembling hands, she half ran downstairs and the two of them opened the package, not knowing what to expect.

Her husband let out a hysterical laugh and looking at him she could see his eyes brimming with tears. She didn’t seem to notice her own sobs until he pulled her close to him. They didn’t quite understand.

“Did he know?” he whispered to her. Had he known his fate all along? The couple looked into each other’s eyes before sobbing into each other’s arms crying over their lost son.

There on the table was a picture of the three of the them at Hogwarts. And, in his untidy scrawl he had written words of strength and love for his parents which he had known they would need; after his relapse and ultimately after his demise.

“The one’s we love never truly leave us. They are always there in our hearts.

I’ll see you at Hogwarts mum and dad. Make sure you get me a new broom when we meet!”

For my last post click Positivity and Love – A Light in the Darkness

For my last Storytime post click The Gift – (Story)


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Moonlight – (Story)

It was the dead of the night and nothing could be heard except the rustling of leaves in the park. Not even the footsteps of a willowy figure walking through.

Crunch. crunch. crunch.

As he stepped over a particular area filled with the fallen leaves of the trees; the sound echoed. He was startled by it. The noise seemed strangely loud and close, and the thoughts which had plagued his mind; now a distant but tormented memory.

As he paused to adjust the strap of his bag which was digging his shoulder he looked around. It was dark. Not dark in a harrowing way. It was the kind of darkness he welcomed. Darkness and peace to help him sort out his thoughts.

He squinted his eyes trying to decipher the outline of a bench nearby. And as he eased himself on it, he gasped in pain that shot out through his ribs.

“Good old Dad” he thought before grimacing and adjusting to a more suitable position. He let go of the bag which was almost overflowing with stuff and got out a piece of paper from his jacket. It had seen better days.

The paper was crumpled to the point of being torn. As the boy unfolded it gently he was greeted with a large stain. A stain that largely resembled blood. Dried blood.

Unknowingly, his hand went to check his nose as he re-read the letter. It was from his mum. Written for him to be opened on his 18th birthday. He checked his damaged watch to remind himself that he was an adult now, and soon enough after the bus arrived he would also be free.

He had been accepted into one of the top institutions for ballet training. On full scholarship. A prestige to learn with the best of the best.  An honor is what his teachers had told him.

Unfortunately, no one told that to his Dad.

“You Gay?!” is what he roared after hearing the news. He father was a free thinker and for him to use the term in a derogatory way made him gape. Did it matter? To his father it did.

“Dancing is for girls” is what he had kept saying ever since his mum had passed away and the money from the ballet performances she did stopped coming home. His father had spiraled into an alcoholic and violent state. But his mum had given him hope. And talent.

Despite being beaten to the point of unconsciousness he made sure to read her letter at midnight on his 18th birthday for some support. She knew that her son was talented and she had left some money for him to follow his dreams. Away from the eyes of her squandering husband.

The honk of the bus slowly brought him back to the present. The driver was looking at him expectantly. He got up slowly, fighting back tears of sadness and pain as he walked over.

But he felt alone. So lonely. He missed his mum.

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And as a sign, just as he was about to step on inside the bus; the skies cleared away for a bright moon to shine on through the darkness. And he smiled. Just as she had said in her last letter to him.

He wasn’t alone. His mum was going on this journey with him. He was going to experience new things, for her.

It was like he was 9 years old again and she was sitting beside him saying, “I got your back Buddy”

For my last post click Ready. Set. GO! – Chase your Dreams

For my last Storytime post click Food for Thought – (Story)


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