Off late, I’ve been obsessed with experimental flash fiction, and wanted to give it a go. This is the piece I liked the best among all my drafts, and although not entirely experimental or ‘nueve’, I still wanted to give it a shot. Here it is:

It’s funny how quiet the mind gets when it is serenaded by greenery all around. I was walking down Strawthorn Road today morning as I saw what seemed to be a glinting piece of silver on the floor. I was getting late for my lecture on ‘Literature and Race’, and wanted to just stray away from the silvery white thing that was gleaming at my face. Muttering under my breath, I looked at my watch and with a few quick calculations, was convinced that I could make it to the class on time if I skipped the drill of my third coffee. Skipping coffee. That’s work by itself. “This following silver reflection better be good,” my head told me.

The Avenue was so calm and a sudden rush of cold breeze lit up my cheeks. I bent down to get a closer look at the shiny object, that seemed to have effortlessly got my attention. With a twig, I poked around. What I saw, shook the shins out of me. If it was a coin, I was going to turn it into the police and ask them to report it under ‘Lost and Found’, but this was no coin or piece of silver. It was this slithery vicious-looking baby animal, that looked scared to wits’ end, slinking away from me as fast as it could. It was no bigger than my palm, and had eyes that were blue beaded and still. The stillness of its pupils shook me, but it was soon replaced by an excited chill down the spine. I don’t know how I found the courage, but I moved my hand towards it. It was a big beetle. I was no whatever-ologist. I didn’t know what species this was, but it mimicked me. I cocked my head to the right, and so did it. It was bizarre, and scary. I wanted to drop it, but I couldn’t. I just couldn’t. It held on to me for dear life. Somehow, this inspired a tranquility, a sense of protection. I wondered why it stuck to me. What did it possibly see in me? Did it want me around? Was I supposed to be its companion? I wanted to throw it away, why is it not letting me go? I soon realised that these were not questions I had to ask the beetle. It was meant for something else. I mean, someone else.


26 thoughts on “Shiny

  1. I will be so shat-scared (lol!) and I would have been gone in a flash. Fantastic writing, as always. I’m also experimenting with flash and micro fiction. They can be fun but also frustrating. I had written one quickly for a weekly flash fiction competition but it was probably awful. I’ve struggled with the revision and I have no idea how it is. Hubby says it’s exactly the same as the original. Haha!

    1. Heya Anne! It’s always wonderful to see you comment 🙂 Ah yes. Me too! I’ve always found flash fiction and micro fiction to be so hard to write. Most of the time I can easily drone on and on for pages but giving a story an arc in 300 words is horribly challenging 😀 I’m sure you aced your entry for the contest, you’re just being your usual modest self 🙂

      1. I’m a bit random these days; old age catching up. Lol!
        Haha, I doubt it’s modesty. 😂 I will post revised and longer version on Friday. I’m gonna ask friends other read it first. I may have gone to uncharted territories with sci-fi. 😃
        I guess you missed our Cinderella Challenge. You would have written an amazing short story for our anthology.

      2. Haha, random is always good! 🙂 Honestly (and not attempting at flattering you), I’m sure you’ve written way better than what you think you have. Aww, I love challenges, do let me know next time, Anne 🙂

      3. We can’t have some boring routine every day for sure. Thank you for the encouragement. I keep on… 🙂 I will definitely let you know next time. Much love and hugs xxx

      4. Oh that’s true. We must never have the same day. Apologies for the delay in my response, Anne. Been working on a few assignments and new pieces and disappointed at their end results 😦 Another week of editing, sigh!

      5. Not a problem at all. I think February and March seem more challenging than other months because we’ve just come out of energized and enthused January; they’re like late afternoon that calls for coffee. They’re probably not as disappointing as you think. 🙂 Otherwise, you’ll have a boring routine. *smiley wink*

      6. How true! Also, winter is wearing off and with spring here, I realise I do actually need to work. Lol. So much to do, so little time. 😦

  2. Lovely. I didn’t think it’d end this early. But clearly this one has had a lot of work behind it. Kudos to you. The language is so stylish and rich. You should write more of this.
    And also, where are you these days? Your appearances are rarer than the Eid ka Chaand. 🙄

    1. Thank you so much, buddy! Ah! I didn’t think it would end this either, the way I envisaged it. But, it seemed the most fitting, justifying the 500 odd words I chopped off in my draft that should have followed this ending. Haha I’m just toggling between assignments and regular pleasurable writing. Finding the latter quite hard to catch up though. I’ve been reading a lot mostly. That’s where most of my time goes 🙂 Thanks again for dropping by. Your comments always motivate me when I need it the most. 🙂

      1. You are the author so you must know better. And this is a fine ending, all the same. You do know that flash fiction has a word limit of a 1000 words, right?

        Well, at least you are making good use of your time. Reading a lot, hmm. Read my posts too? 😝
        I’m glad that I am able to cheer you up. Happy blogging. 😁

      2. Haha. I’ve been writing 149 word challenges all the same. I’ve a huge backlog of your posts. I’ve been meaning to catch up, sorry. I’ve read at least 5 short story collections this month and it’s all swimming in my head 😮 Like Dory says, “just keep swimming. Just keep swimming”. 😂

      3. 140 word challenges? Ewww. That must be super tough.
        Backlogs aren’t a good thing for any student. 😝😝
        5 collections is a lot of reading. #keepreading.
        Good day.

      4. Haha, yes. So imagine writing a story with an arc in less than 150 words. That’s quite horrendously difficult! Aww don’t make me feel more bad than I already am 😦

      5. Ah I’m just not at my optimal output level. Hence the ‘being hard on oneself’ adage playing itself out. I swear I’m not being modest; just trying to up the game 🙂

  3. Love it!! I was going to ask if you ever found out what kind of beetle it was then I remembered it was “flash fiction” lol. Have you seen the film “Life”? Me neither but I immediately thought of it when I was reading this.

    1. I suppose I would have loved to have a more engaging conversation with the beetle 😀 Oh, I’ve never watched the film. I probably will try watching it soon now that you’ve mentioned it. Thaank youu x

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