Category Archives: Micro-Fiction

A Little Pressure

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“Bailey’s in there right now.”

I don’t know what to say. My mouth is dry and it feels like I am choking on cotton. Thoughts race frantically through my pounding temple as I pace back and forth in the cold hospital bathroom. I can’t believe she’s here. I have contemplated this very moment: what I would look like, what I would say, who I would be.

“I thought I’d be older; more mature… I thought she’d be older, but she’s not. She’s sick and they—I’m supposed to meet her!”

My hands wring the cheap toilet paper trapped in my trembling hands. Tears threaten to spill down my cheek anew as I glance over to Sonia. She’s looking at me with that look—the “I wish I could help you” look; the pity look. She doesn’t mean to wear it, but she wears it so well.

“I don’t know what to do—tell me what to do; I don’t know what to do!” My voice is an octave higher than it should be. Funny that this is what my mind would choose to think about while all of this is happening, while I am losing grip of my reality. The room shifts as my breathing becomes short; I’m becoming light headed. Shit, I’m about to have a panic attack in a smelly cold, cramped restroom while—warm arms wrap firmly around me halting my mental rant.

Minutes sluggishly trickle by, and I find that a little bit of the monstrous pressure weighing on my shoulders has traded places with another. This one however, is one which I will always welcome.

“Thank you.”

Commitments

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We surprise ourselves with the commitments we make.

We are surprised at what commitments we let slip through our own fingers. We learn to decide our commitments carefully. They torturously stretch and push us, and can turn us inside out. Commitments draw lines in our dirt—becoming clear boundaries for our next move on the chess board, the playing field of our lives; which is why we need to make sure that what commitments we do choose to follow are the ones that we are ready to take. Because once we do make that leap and choose, there really is no going back.

A key is thrust into an ignition, and an engine roars to life as dust and memory are left in the wake of turning wheels down a tattered road on a typical Tuesday morning. No one looks back.

We surprise ourselves with the commitments we make.

Missing

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Grappling past the dictatorial manager, I burst through the limp, catawampus door. The whole household was in mangled disarray. My eyes scanned the living room, which I quickly noted, was just like him: pompous. Every tendril in this place reminded me of the derelict—urging me frantically to find her.

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The Challenge:
1) Fifty words or less
2) Must use the words: dictatorial, catawampus, pompous, tendril, and derelict

New Girl

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“Virrrrrrgin!” they shouted tauntingly at the transfer student. She shifted back awkwardly; new classmates were always like a crisp slap in the face and relocating every few months, a double-edged sword. No matter the hype parents spun on the nomadic ventures, moving around like a renegade was far from bliss.

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The challenge:
1) Fifty words or less
2) Must use the words: virgin, crisp, renegade, bliss, and sword

Nursing Home

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The stench of urine and soiled clothing permeated the air around us. Intermittent howls and screeches from those who cannot control their vocals anymore erupt periodically from the rooms we pass by.

God I hate it here.

Every time we visit, I swear to Sonia that I will never end up in a place like this; I’d rather off myself than be reduced to a vegetable in a diaper being waited on by cranky negro women who silently wish I’d drop dead than ask them for more tatter-tots or heaven forbid, a shower. Around this point in the conversation, I’d receive a solid smack on the arm for my crude opinions being—insensitive, or something. But as the familiar banter crept up my throat once again, a haughty middle-aged nurse briskly pushed past dear Sonia, nearly knocking her over. The huffing woman paused momentarily to glance irritatingly over her shoulder, scoffed at the two of us, and continued down the bright cerulean hall without a word.

Sonia’s eyes make direct contact with mine; she knows I am about to say something she’ll consider to be indecent, and I can’t seem to hide the smirk pulling at my lips.

“Nice.”