Short Story 10: The Dysfunctional Family



Not every family laughs together, some even shouts together too !!

On a very important topic for the present generation, highlighting the internal issues within a family with no reason or logic behind those issues.

Presenting a crispy short story: The dysfunctional family.


The engine started to roar signalling the take off. The marriage in the family concluded happily with only few fights, misunderstanding and ego issues: nothing unusual. The elders came out to drop them to the car. Each one was wishing a safe and happy journey; deep inside hoping for the car to leave the very next second. The sister looped in car, as she did not have any hugs or kisses to share with her cousins. The brother helped the driver to adjust the luggage in the back of the car. The mother and father were still in conversation with the elders. The driver sat and signaled the others to leave. Finally for the very first and last moment all four sat in the car and waived their hands to the ones standing out there with a smiling face. The first gear was put on and with the very first turn towards the main road, all smiles in the car faded.

The suit buttons were opened and safety pins handling the blouse and Saree were removed to get more comfortable. The father brought out his tobacco leaves to chew. Seeing him chewing, the daughter signaled the mother.

Mother:  The moment you leave the house, all your nonsense activities start. Do you even understand what effect it will cause to your health and to your children watching you eat this?

Father:  Do you have a decent polite tone to speak to your husband? You first tell me what the kids will learn from this.

The father glared to the mother and she lowered her voice. The moment it seemed that now it will be a smooth ride, the sister started.

Sister:  You know mother, the aunt was again blaming me for bad behavior with her daughter in law.

Before the mother could answer, the father intervened,

Father:  You don’t know how to behave. You must have done something wrong again. I should have never brought you to the village again.

Sister (fuming with anger because of the words of the father):   Who are you to judge? You don’t even know the matter I am talking about. That is why I don’t like to travel with you, you spoil the mood every time. I was talking to mother, but no! You have to interfere

Father (responding to the mother):  Are you watching this? THIS is what she has learnt in your upbringing.

Sister was about to shout again when the mother stopped her.

Mother:  If I am the cause of her bad upbringing then who is responsible for your behavior?

Fighting and shouting in front of the driver.

They stared each other and the glares replaced the words.

The son on the other end saw the scene going in the car but focused on his mobile.

The car took a halt for tea. The family entered the restaurant and all silently had their food.

As they moved back to the car, the son carried a bottle of soft drink and some wafers for the journey.

The car started and so did the father

Father:  The boy only wants to eat junk food and nothing else. He just wants to do whatever he feels. Not respecting parents or the other family members. He is totally shameless.

Son:  But I did nothing now. I had these snacks because I was hungry.

Mother:  But here your father is right. You don’t respect your elders, nor do you obey their words. You just have to do what you feel is right. This is not a way a family works.

Sister:  He was not present even in the functions of the wedding.

Son:   You already know I hate weddings.

Father:  I should have never brought you here. It was my mistake

Mother:  If bringing everyone here is a mistake then you yourself shouldn’t have come here

Father:  This unnecessary intervention by you has spoiled the entire family. I seriously do not find any logic talking to you.

Sister:  As if my mother finds any logic with you.

Father:  Good. This is your respect for your father, of speaking to him on your mothers behalf. We talk about culture, customs and values and this is what we find in our home.

Son:  And look! Even you are not able to change family trait. What a shame!

Father:  Don’t you dare speak to me in that tone boy, or else I will give you a tight slap. You are getting on my nerves.

Son: I did nothing. I am just telling you.

Father:  I am telling you just stop.

Mother (speaking to Son): Why are you telling him, you be in your own world and live your life. You don’t care about us and so you don’t need to say anything. So just shut up

Sister: You people are mad, arguing and shouting like retards. Why don’t you just kill yourself?

Mother: These are your manners which you will show when you get married! Be quiet and stay out.

The shouting and argument continued. The sister cried a few tears in the corner and closed her eyes. The brother had his headphones on and ignored everything else. The mother and father continued their arguments and the driver listened.

They arrived at the destination. The children’s maternal grandfather was waiting at the gate. As the car turned towards their gate, the loosened buttons got tightened again .The safety pins were tugged. The tears were cleared by applying a layer of mascara beneath eyes. And the headphones were removed also making the hair style a better one.

The car stopped and the family came out, all with their smiling faces again. The driver laughed and the superficiality of life cried at the same time !!
@ramta jogi


Picture Courtesy: Google

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Short Story 8: Abeda Tailors



A woman finding happiness in a known world still treating her in unknown fashion.

Presenting short story 8: Abeda Tailors

Hope you will like it


 

She was clad in burkha, but her eyes showed dreams, desires and aspirations. Abeda Husan was covered in that single piece but the way of walking showed the confidence. She continued to walk down the market place where each shop was owned by a male, but she was more worried about the food, she had cooked for her mother-in-law, getting cold. The neighborhood eyes continued to watch her from both the sides as she made her way. Some well-wishers looked and smiled to her, inquired about her health, some perverts tried to have a glimpse of her body even in the fully clad attire from their side eyes. She smiled to all and moved. Finally, the first turn to the right she took and saw the small ten by ten shop with a board hanging “Abeda Tailors”.

She unwrapped her face, which was content at the sight of her shop. She opened the shutters and entered with four other men, her employees. The entire day passed in working on old orders and taking new ones. It was Diwali so the rush continued till late. Her team was instructed to work till late as the entire neighborhood was in an urgency regarding their orders. At 9 the shutters were down. She checked the phone and saw many messages and missed calls from her husband. She called him and informed him of the situation and made her way back to her home.

The mother-in-law was screaming in the background too and she understood that tonight as always will not be a good night. The door opened with her husband cursing her for the inappropriate timing of returning home giving the examples and teachings of community. She listened but focused on her way towards the kitchen as she knew that is what they have been waiting for. While cooking, she was subjected to the continuous taunts from her mother-in-law sitting in the hall. As soon as she cooked the food and gave it to them the banter discontinued.

Alas! She knew it will arise again the next evening. No one will ask her about her day, her struggles, her work or her happiness, what they will want is their satisfaction. The money she is earning is again spent in the same house only, but the aura and illusion of the society that the house is run by a man takes over her hard work. Her husband works but earns less than her and still gets love and appreciation from all.

It is 11:30 and she is thinking of waking at 6 the next morning to complete the daily chores and leave for work, when her husband suddenly tugs her in the arm. She understands what is about to transpire. She wants to signal her lack of interest but she knows a refusal at this moment will instigate his ego and create a scene again at late night. She gives in. With no emotions, love, feelings at that moment she surrenders her body to him. With her pain giving him pleasure, she accepts his arms.

It has been 20 minutes and undressed she is lying and he is on the other side sleeping in his own pleasure. She dresses, clears the tear drop from eyes and switches off her table light and sleeps.

Her surrounding, her husband, her mother-in-law or the society, none of it will matter tomorrow ,when she opens her shop.

@ramtajogi


Picture Courtesy: Ravi Upadhyay

For regular updates follow: https://www.facebook.com/ramtajogi2620/

Short story 7: The smile that cried


The flames got trapped in the enclosure at the crematorium. The body that went into the oval platform came out as a pot of ashes back to Arth’s father. All mourned and everyone cried even after the rituals got over. His mother was still squalling. The ladies gathered around her were trying to control her but somehow she had lost her senses that day. Arth’s uncles, his friends all lost their control and were bursting with tears. Each crying one was trying to console the other and failing at it. It was 23 year old Arth Shrivastav who had lost his life. An accident took place the night before when a truck lost its control and hit the divider crossing to the wrong side, hitting a bike driven by Arth’s friend. Arth was on the back seat and to the harsh tragedy of life, the truck hit the back side of the bike, saving his friend and crushing both his legs. His head hit the ground hard which lead to his death on the spot. His family rushed to the hospital with a hope, which got crushed the very moment they saw him. No one slept that night. By next morning all close relatives reached for the funeral rites.

Now, they all are moving back to their own world. But Shrivastav family will no longer be able to live the same life again. Arth’s dad; Alok Shrivastav is standing outside the crematorium. He has remained silent since the night. He saw the body of his child and went to a stage of numbness. He performed all the rituals without speaking a single word or giving out any emotions. Everyone has left now; the relatives are urging him to return home. He is taking small steps, slowly moving towards the car. Millions of emotions are going on in his mind. He has lost his support, his successor, his dream, his pride, all in his son. He don’t know what he will do in that house, which was made home because of Arth. He is not able to realise for whom he worked hard and earned all his life, for whose better future he saved. He is not able to believe what has happened. In 24 hours he has actually lost his entire life. He feels like a living corpse. His power of thinking is destroyed. Somehow, Arth died taking both his parent’s souls. The car reaches back to their house and each step towards that place is making him think more. His wife’s tears are still not stopping. The door opened and as he moved inside, found a smiling photo of him playing with Arth, in the hall. Staring the picture, he breaks down. He realised he lost himself in Arth.

What the flames and ashes could not do, was done by Arth’s smile.

@ramta jogi


Picture courtesy: Ravi Upadhyay

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Short Story 6: The Unheard Voices


Somewhere in the midst of the chaos what is missed, are the voices which smoothly flow down through our way without disturbing us or making their presence felt. The beauty of the life is to live these unheard voices and feel that living. In this generation of ours, the feeling is what we crave for as that is the thing being missed from our lives. We are able to see, observe and understand what is shown to us and we conclude. We miss understanding the feeling of the unseen part, the unknown truth, and the unheard voices.

The walk in the metro is clustered by the fights and laughter but what is seen yet ignored are the eyes of the guy sobbing for his lost job, the girl crying on the last seat for the fight she had with her boyfriend. The bargaining with the roadside vendors is something we notice but fail to observe the happiness in their eyes when they earn. The glare of our parents is taken as a sign of their anger but what is missed are the tears in those eyes when we achieve something in life. The father who gifted his son a new bike on his birthday, got his sons’ happiness but what the son failed to see was the money that he had to borrow from his neighbor for the bike. The school boy rejected the geometry box which his mother brought for his studies and asked her to replace it with the one his friend was carrying. What he failed to understand was the mother was suffering from asthma walked 2 km to get a new geometry box for her son and saved 5 Rupees of rickshaw.

These voices are loud and more painful than the laughter and fights. But they affect adversely. They impact deeply. They make us realize that apart from the thoughtless discussions, meaningless laughter and the aimless vision which we are chasing and going out for are not the only ones that define the living, the actual one lies in the unheard voices which we should look for but eventually fail to appreciate.

@ramta jogi


Picture Courtesy: Ravi Upadhyay

For more updates, follow us on Facebook @ https://www.facebook.com/ramtajogi2620/

@ramta jogi

Short Story 5 : The Old School Love



Some romance only words can define. In reality they cannot exist.

Presenting, the conversation of Adil, Aasna and their love.

Short story 5 from my “100 short stories” series,

“The Old School Love”

Hope you like it.

Image Credits: Ravi Upadhyay


Adil: “Maybe you are the reality to my illusion. You define my existence by confessing those words which I can only express on paper.

Aashna: Really!! Is it maybe or for sure?

Adil: For sure. “May be” was just a hesitation, sort of doubting my own truth.

Aashna: You need to do that.

Adil: I know. I also hope that you know, my emotions for you are not temporary.

Aashna: I know. And that is what scares me the most.

Adil: Scares? It should be something for you to be proud of. You are the one who is being treated with this pious emotion.

Aashna: Exactly!! I am the one you bestowed with this love and that’s what the reason of my fear. Emotions change, feelings vanish, grown-ups move on, time heals a man who loves.

Adil: If you are so sure that time heals everything, then why it still scares you?

Aashna: As I said, it heals a man who is in love, not a child. You are a lover of soul. You don’t act in love Adil, you react as your heart feels. Your love for me is no different than the laugh of a small child when you caress him taking in your arms. It is not necessary for the child to know you, but once he is comfortable in your arms, he trusts you as his own. He doesn’t doubt your intentions. That is your love. It is innocent, pious, true, pure and happy. It is unaffected of the worldly thoughts and explanations. And no one can even think of making that child cry. Neither can I.

Aashna: You define the old school of love, which has already been changed and adulterated by people.

Adil: So which love you believe in?

Aashna: I live in the society, where the schools have changed their syllabus. I belong to the new school of love. Here I wish to be loved by an old school romantic but altogether we fear of not hurting. him, if in case things don’t work out. And so we practically end up with the one whose emotions are not eternal and the one who accepts the thought that things change and we should move on with them …

Adil: Maybe then I am left with two options. Either not having you or be ready to get hurt if things spoil in a longer run.

I think, let me be happy by being with you, loving you and trying for you every day without any expectation of response. And you feel happy thinking that a guy loves you the old school way. Let the water of river flow the way it is going on and let its direction be decided once it meets the ocean.

That night, 8000 miles apart, both faces smiled seeing their phone screen.

@ramta jogi

Short Story 4: The spoiler


 


“Ayda, Adil and the Spoiler.”

In “100 short stories” section presenting a short story : The Spoiler

Hope you like it.


The random visits of Ayda to Adil’s place were a regular thing now. That day he had resigned from his job and was supposed to leave the city in a couple of days. So it was “for the last time to have chocolate together” reason for her to meet him. It had been just a couple of months that he shifted to this new city and new office and in a short span of time he decided to move out of it for a reason even unknown to him. Adil and Ayda became good friends in this short span of office time. She was not in love with Adil but somehow she got attached to him for his words. Adil too never had any such feeling but he didn’t mind being a comfort cushion to her as long as she was comfortable with it.

That day, as she entered his home she knew that it might be their last meeting. The building compound was rumbling with the festival choirs. Avoiding that sound, she started discussing her crush, ex-boyfriend and life in general again with him. Emotions reached its peak. The eyes spoke more than the lips. Adil saw it. A comforting hug happened became intimate in no time. That evening, what the background choirs also did was setting the solitude for the kiss that happened minutes later and continued.

What was it?

Why did that kiss happened and why the intimacy was there?

No one had an answer to it. It was the moment that lived its life fully. Neither anyone wanted to tag that emotion with any name and nor was it a time to stop and think where it was going. Nothing happened that night but still she left his place only the next morning. Both agreed to keep this night only in their memories and agreed not to discuss it with anyone.

As Ayda made her exit, Adil realized how the friendship that entered his house to offer him a chocolate was leaving his place by spoiling itself with the kiss and the night that passed by.

@ramta jogi


Picture Courtesy: Pinterest

Short Story 3: The Divorce



There comes a time in your life where you have to opt for one out of the two, Love or a relationship tag?

“The Divorce” brings a different perspective to this doubt. Don’t get trapped by the title, do read to know more.

Hope you will like it.


“I have never seen a more weird couple ever in my life…” thought Jacob Stoker. “And here they come again and now for the final time.”

Jacob, a judge preceding over divorces, never felt more useless when dealing with this particular couple. His task was very simple. This was a no-fault divorce.  The grounds were lack of affection and distance. He was confounded because the couple never showed that there was no affection. Jacob had given judgement to several divorce cases but this was one he will always remember. The couple did not get any lawyer because there was no splitting of assets. There was no custody battle because they were not going to live separately. They will stay together till Samantha (14) and Jaden (17) leave for college and they get on their own.

James Laurent and Sophia Marsden have been married for 5 years. They had been dating since the last 20. According to the couple they had reached a precipice in their marriage. The biggest problem was that they had become such good friends that the romance had fizzled out. Jacob couldn’t believe it at first. He tried to probe and question and acted counselor to the couple. He found that James held Sophia in high regard. He was very respectful of her. It was as if she was some benevolent queen of someplace. Jacob noticed that James’ respect was not completely out of place. She was a highly learned woman with a very calm yet authoritative demeanor.

Sophia in turn reciprocated the same. This was not a couple entering a divorce agreement; it was one that had come to start a new journey in their life. This divorce felt more like a marriage to Jacob. The couple’s explanation for such an event was this that it was not due to differences but acceptance of those differences that lead to their “holy separation.” They did start having arguments and quarrels but over time they came to a conscious realization that this was counter-productive. It was obvious that due to the distance that had built up lately there was bound to be some resentment. They both were expecting things from each other that neither was able to provide. They agreed that this was the classic example of how people change. They loved each other throughout their metamorphosis into what they are today. But this has stopped now.

The argument was that if they fight and end on a bad note now, it would be an insult to the memory of those twenty years. They had differences, “but who doesn’t?” said James. “I have accepted these changes in James but now I no longer want that in my life and he’s made me realized that I have changed too. Gosh we are completely someone else now.”

“And then there are the kids. We also agree that they should never have to suffer for this.”

Jacob, as astonished as he was, quickly approved what was to be approved. “So what now?” he asked.

“Nothing, it is my turn to cook today.” said Sophia.

by Anant Pillai


Picture courtesy:   pixabay.com

Short Story 2 :The Deal



Sometimes fate and happiness come together, holding hands. The decision of which one to go for , is on you.

On the same lines comes the second short story : The Deal written by a writer Anant Pillai.

Hope you like it.


 

It was a cold day on 23rd of December 2015. The atmosphere and the song coupled with the view outside his room filled a sense of euphoria and languish in him. Karthik feigned playing the guitar for the entire length of the song. He looked at the mountains visible from his windows and pretended they were his audience and that whatever he played would echo back to him like how sometimes people at concerts do. When Coldplay’s “fix you” was over, the next song that started playing was Carlos Santana’s “Europa”. Halfway through this song whatever euphoria was left had vanished. Karthik almost fell out of his window as he saw a cloaked figure in the reflection of the mirror of his cupboard. The figure was standing right near where his back was resting. “What the hell? How did you get in here? Mom!”

“Relax child. You forgot that you are alone right now. I am not here to hurt you boy. I am merely going to grant you your wish. Do you not wish to be a virtuoso?” said the cloaked figure. Karthik remained silent looking at the darkness where the face is supposed to be. “Lets us not waste any more time and I will tell you things as they are. I am the messenger of death. I am here to offer you a deal. I shall give you what you want. You will be able to play the instrument of your choice like a master. I shall give you that knowledge and the hands of a maestro. In return I want ten years from your life. You will die ten years early than you are destined to. I will not tell you how long you will live even though I know it exactly”. The figure took out its arm as if to shake hands. They were eerily human-like even though it wasn’t human. “What do you say boy? It’s now or never. I am just here to respond to your lament. Don’t you want to play music to these mountains?”

“I do” and he put out his hands to shake. The deal was made. Karthik ran out immediately to the instruments store and purchased the best guitar his pocket money could buy. He took a rickshaw to the nearest sunset point and hiked towards a secret cliff that only he knew the way to. He tuned his guitar and stood there playing songs from afternoon to the evening and right towards the night. He played with all the passion and teary eyed. He played till his fingers bled. At 12:30 AM, the mountains echoed no more.

By Anant Pillai


Picture Courtesy : howmachineworks.com

Short story -1: Ram Baba



A boy, a mother, a stranger and the simplest way of learning.

Short story -1: Ram Baba


The sun was setting down to give way to the wintry nights. Like every other evening, Mrs. Bhatia took Aarav to the garden to play and for her it was the evening walk with her friends, she had made there. Aarav got too engrossed in taking the first turn in every ride and started running to next ride completing the previous one.

Half hour passed and Mrs Bhatia, who had not missed a single opportunity to talk to every other woman whom she knew there, finally moved her eyes to look for Aarav. Quenching her thirst with water she looked, but was not able to find him. Search lead to curiosity, which in turn lead to anxiety. She started looking for him here and there; questioning his friends. Furiously looking, before her anxiety would turn into tension she found him. Deep west in the garden, adjusting his hair again and again, Aarav was sitting with a group of many young ten year olds’.

As she walked towards him, she saw an old man wearing kurta and pyjama sitting in the corner and addressing those young kids. He looked old enough to be seventy five. Moving closer she noticed each of those kids had a pen and paper in their hands and they were jotting something down. As she reached, she exchanged a smile with the old man and asked Aarav to stand up. As he turned up, Mrs Bhatia looked into his paper and found the word “Ram, Ram” being repeatedly written on the whole paper. She asked Aarav to continue and took a side seat. As the session got over, the old man took all the paper slips and left.

On her way back, she asked the security guard about the old man. He said, the old man was known as “Ram Baba” who stayed nearby and had retired from his work. He lived on his pension with no family and so spent his evening with kids to make them understand and realize the importance of the almighty God in life. Mrs Bhatia was deeply impressed. From the next day, Aarav went there again. She was happy to see that without any force from her end, Aarav started going to ram baba himself.

Sometimes what the parents, priest, or temples fail to teach, is taught by a random stranger on a random walk i.e. to believe in lord from heart.

@ramta jogi


Picture courtesy: Indian- Heritage.org