Weekly Photo Challenge: Up

Prompt from here.

Skyfall ©mk17design

Skyfall ©mk17design

Weekly Writing Challenge: Person, Place, Thing

Prompt from here.

He sat on the other side of the table, his tired face and pale skin matching his messy black hair. There were eye bags under his usually-glinting-with-mischief eyes that were staring at the laptop in front of him. Probably an aftereffect of last night’s two cups of espresso. I’ve told him how crazy he’d be to take on those at midnight, but all he did was roll his eyes and pull out another stick of cigarette. The dark blue blazer he was wearing now laid forgotten on the back of his chair, revealing his rolled-up shirt sleeve wrapping his skinny arms. He stopped for about three seconds, taking a deep breath as he pinched the bridge of his nose. Everything I saw in him screamed out the extreme pressure of his work. For such a young age, he was doing quite well.

The light in the next room flickered. I looked away from the young man just to realise how empty the office had become. There was only another girl from the marketing department sitting at the other table, all three of us producing the same sound of fingers dancing across the laptops’ keyboards madly. Nobody talked. It was some kind of unwritten rule to not talk while working. I have always disliked such stiff notions – if the white walls and ceiling and furnitures could talk, they would probably tell the same. Even the carpets, but they might speak in Persian so I wouldn’t understand even if they started ranting about how silent this office is.

As if it read my mind, my phone on the table rang. The young man only glanced up at me for less than a second, but there was an amused smile on his face. Apparently Bee Gees’ “Staying Alive” echoing in the almost-empty room alongside the tiny chimes of phone strap decoration bells sounded funny to his ears. Trying to hide the sheepish smile on my face, I looked back at my old Galaxy SII and saw a name across the heavily-scratched touchscreen. I sighed and slid my finger across the red square panel to reject the call. Again he looked up from his laptop and raised his eyebrows as if indirectly asking what that was all about. I merely glared back at him and stuck out my tongue. He snickered and shook his head before going back to his working mode.

Welcome to overtime party.

Daily Prompt: Unknown Caller

Prompt from here.

Staring out the window, she sighed.
Traffic jam – typical Jakarta. And if the sun wasn’t as warm as it was, then it wouldn’t be this particular city either. Even in the air-conned sedan it still made her skin prickle.

She glanced at the driver, her eyes half closed. Having no proper sleep for two nights in a row was starting to take its toll on her, but still she tried hard to stay awake at least until she reached the office – just because it would be another hell if her supervisor caught her sleeping on working hours.

Being quite helpful to the situation, her phone blared out out of the blue. Pulled out of daydream, she fumbled inside her bag and silently cursing the loud volume of The Rembrandt’s “I’ll Be There For You” ringtone. The driver looked up at her through the rare view mirror as she smiled apologetically at him. Now where is that little – ha!

Private Number
Calling…

Well that was weird. Who would be calling her from a private number… although she did have one like years before, but that was just a friend bragging about the new phone and provider’s service. Three seconds passed. Oh well.

‘Hello?’
Silence.

Her eyebrow raised.
She repeated the greeting.
This time, a clear voice answered.
The corner of her lips tugged up as soon as she heard her name being called.

She knew exactly who it was.

Daily Prompt: The Satisfaction of a List

Prompt from here.

Listing up some of the things I fancy in someone just because I’m in that kind of mood.

  1. smart
  2. artsy hobbies
  3. fluently speaks foreign language
  4. kind
  5. passionate in what he does
  6. about my age
  7. …not my nationality (what can I say…)
  8. fun
  9. dresses up nice
  10. treats me like a woman even when I don’t act like one

Daily Prompt: S/he Said

Prompt from here.

‘What are you thinking about?’
‘What?’

‘I said, “What are you thinking about?”‘
‘Report.’

‘…’
‘What?’

‘Nothing.’
‘My God, woman, go home already.’

When I asked the colleague sitting next to me, she was working overtime and I was about to go home.

We ended up with an impromptu dinner.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Change

Prompt from here.

Narita ©mk17design

Narita ©mk17design

Weekly Writing + Phoneography Challenge: Iconic

Prompt from here.

Vintage ©mk17design

Vintage ©mk17design


Fiction

The shop was never crowded.

The redheaded girl sighed and looked around at the tiny space she was supposed to look after. It might look full and well-stocked, but in her honest opinion it was a whole lot of used belongings she had to sell in the end.

Some people just brought them for measly petty cash and never return to buy their stuff back. Some others blatantly sell give them up for another thing they saw in the shop. There was no common sense she could think of regarding the reason her great-grandfather opened this shop in the first place, but after quite a few decades it had become some kind of legacy and there she found herself volunteering to look after it every summer.

To keep boredom away, she had made an agenda. A-shelf-a-day inspection. She would see every item she could get her hands on and write a story on each and every one of them.

Today’s schedule: the music shelf.

There.
The box filled with old cassettes.
She grinned mischievously, words running wild in her mind.

A boy used to own this.

He drove an old sedan that belonged to his dad.
Blue sedan, running along the street.
Then he spotted a pretty girl right in the corner.
He wanted to impress her.
There was a flower shop, but he didn’t have cash on him.
So he pulled over and hand his beloved box of music for some notes in this shop.
He then ran out, purchased a bouquet of roses.
He chased her.
Gave her the flowers.
She was flustered.
She –

The doorbell clanged, making her jump in surprise.

Quickly she shoved the box under the table and looked up. A pair of brown eyes stared back at her from the entrance. Ah, him.

‘Took you long enough,’ she sighed, taking out the box again and put it on the counter. ‘Here’s your precious box of weird music.’

Her customer laughed and took out some cash – enough to buy the whole box back. ‘You loved the roses more than these babies, I got it. You’ve told me that a thousand times, but I’m still buying them back.’

She could only roll her eyes as she gave his box back, bidding him goodbye.
He waved and left the shop.
She watched him go, one statement ringing in her head.

Truth is indeed stranger than fiction.


Truth

This…

This holy shoebox filled with cassettes.
As in CASSETTES.

Not CD, not mp3 player, not iPod, nothing but good old cassettes.

They keep me awake every time I drive. Every single person who had entered my car would know about this stack of music. I don’t think anyone else still listen to cassettes nowadays.

I’m not against technology but even if I had the money the techs can’t change my car’s audio to the one with USB jack ’cause apparently my car is ancient and there’s no port/cable/techy thingy that will fit into the original slot (love it though).

Any album you recognize and/or once listened to from the pile?
Bonus cookie if you knew the blue one in the middle.