C10H14N2, the sequel.

Prompt from here.
A recorded rant for those who are still in search for love in a hopeless place.


A man smokes a cigarette on the pavement outside his office in Paris

‘Your room reeks.’
‘I know, sorry.’
‘I thought you don’t smoke?’
‘I don’t.’
‘Ah. Must be your clothes. You met him, didn’t you?’
‘Yes, but this… this is not because of him.’
‘What? How do you know?’
‘I can only tolerate one type of cig. Not this one.’
‘That’s… romantic.’

The conversation rang like a fire drill inside my head ever since I had it.

Adults and kiddos, ladies and gents and everyone in between, let’s face this now: we live in an era where romance is not about whispering sweet words into someone’s ear, nor about throwing rocks at someone’s window in the middle of the night, and least of all about taking poisons just because you both come from families in dispute (oops).

Are we saying goodbye to good old chivalries?
I don’t think so. Not completely.

People still do that. It’s just that some people started to get different ideas of what romance is. Some think it’s about a simple good morning text. Some think it’s about sparing 20 minutes for a coffee in the middle of work. My friend, apparently, thinks the fact that I can only tolerate one type of cigarette a part of romance.

Me? I’m inexperienced. That was what he told me.

And no – we’re not talking about what you might think it is. It’s simply a matter of knowing if someone was right for you or not (yes, I can hear you clearly – you, the one who shouted “LAME!” by the back).

He said that I might like him because I don’t know what’s good for me and what’s not.
Personally speaking? I do. He just doesn’t know about how I refer to him as potato chips to my peers.

Why chips? you asked. Why not… cupcakes?
Well, it doesn’t have to be chips, really. It can be MSG. It can be a bucket of fried chicken. It can be that extra slice of cake. When I write I prefer to use the term LSD 25 – which is not 100% accurate but hey! Let’s not get technical here. If it’s too much for you, though, let’s get this straight. What do they have in common?

Potato chips. MSG. Fried chicken. Cake. LSD 25.
You know it’s not good for you, but once you discovered how good it tastes you just keep adding more and more of it to the suggested dose.
A bit of it? It’s recreational. A lot of it? It’s suicidal.

Well, what do you know – maybe taking in a lot of those chips is also considered as romance by that friend of mine. Isn’t it a bit like Shakespearean time? Slowly killing yourself for something you thought is love, all the while being plain stupid – because it’s voluntary.

One quick question before I end this pointless rant though.
The idea of romance: will you let this guilty pleasure kill you?

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Proud

In response of this prompt.

‘Aren’t you proud of what you’ve done?’

I looked down to the iced Americano on the table, not being able to answer. From my point of view nothing seemed to go well by that time. Chaos, mess, and disorder – much like the traffic outside the coffeeshop we were in – he had done an excellent job pointing them out in every single thing I have conducted so far. No reason to say yes here.

He waited.
I swallowed.

An honest reply almost rolled out of my tongue when he continued. ‘For me, I’m proud of you.’

I looked up instantly.
‘Really,’ he quickly added.

…well that’s a first.


True story.

A rather surprising moment if I thought about it, but it wasn’t really something you hear often from anyone (excluding family members who will probably say that even when you pour H2SO4 over their flowerbed in the name of science).

Have you had it?
The time when someone set aside your flaws for a second, recap all the efforts and changes you have made throughout the times, and take a moment to say it out loud?

For me, luckily enough, I have.
He was my mentor, so I’ve been telling myself it’s probably just for the sake of keeping me from quitting.

Never had the guts to ask whether he meant what he said.
Nope. Not ready for it.
Later, maybe, if I reached a day when I don’t have to see him regularly anymore. Or if I got drunk enough. But not now. Definitely not now.

For now, I’m just going to bask in this assumption and do what I can do with what I have.

PS. if you had said that to someone else before, bless you
PPS. if by any chance you’re my mentor who stumbled upon this page and somehow found out this is me, let’s pretend this post doesn’t exist

Nope.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Impossibility.”

A collection of re-written mini stories I heard / read from someone else / somewhere else. Feel free to claim if it’s originally yours. Unless the one I made. Feel free to guess which one is.

Will add more when I find a good one.
Especially the ones that makes you go “NOPE.”
…or just a “No. Way.”


1. Nightmare
‘I can’t sleep,’ she said, climbing into my bed.
I woke up the next morning holding the dress she’s buried in.


2. Doors
In the last 10 years I’ve lived in this house,
I have closed more doors than I’ve opened.


3. Monsters
Seek for the monsters.
Under your bed,
in the closet,
behind the bushes,
but never look up.
It doesn’t like to be seen.


4. Girl, Interrupted
My daughter couldn’t stop screaming every night.
Not even after I told her it was only a nightmare from the gravestone


5. First date
‘Don’t say that,’ he laughed, ‘I have the heart of a little boy.’
Little did she know that he kept it in a jar on his desk.

Silver Linings

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt.
A rather snippet-ish sequel to this just because.
May the 4th be with you!
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In many cases, this shouldn’t be fine.

The car reeked of cigarette smoke mixed with the sickening sweetness of perfume and bitter ether. I wasn’t sure what the worst part in this scene is – that, or the fact that I’ve gotten used to it (no idea about the drunkard who joined me in the back seat this time though).

I sighed, leaning on the pile of things that was my bag and a bunch of papers from work in the middle of the backseat. Those, and a laptop. Not really comfortable. Nevertheless it’s the second most huggable thing in the vehicle after the fluffy neck pillow was snatched by that person leaning on the opposite door. Glancing aside, there’s no telling if he really passed out or just too nauseous to even budge. Not my business – I decided so as I tried to ignore the road bumps testing my skill in holding back those bottles of 19%.

Wasn’t sure why I agreed on another night of senseless drinking either.

The first time gave me a hard time in the morning. The second and third, then fourth and fifth were total damage to what’s left of my dignity. I lost count – and memories – after the sixth but so far I hadn’t found another half-filled Jägermeister in my bag. Which is… good. I think. But let’s forget about the fact that I still couldn’t hold my liquor that well because it started to feel so… good. Good. Good. Good. There’s no other word for it.

Funny thoughts led me to a slumber – and they became good friends until the traffic noise roared all of sudden.
Somebody opened the window.
I might be hearing wrong but it might’ve been a retch following after.
What do you know? For once I wasn’t the only one with a weak stomach.

Slightly awake but not enough to sit up straight, an amused grin crept across my face as I shifted – my head bumping against… something. I peeked and looked up just to find his drowsy face looking straight ahead, his sleeve messing with my hair as the car hit another bump and shook its passengers. Rather rudely. Setting it aside, I closed my eyes and snuggled, for the umpteenth time feeling the week’s lasting doubts, fears, and haunting thoughts flew out the open window along with my consciousness.

In many cases, this shouldn’t be fine.
But for now… it is.

Daily Prompt: Happy Endings

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Happy Endings.”
I just finished watching FF7 and “For Paul” is giving me the feels. As Dom says, it’s never goodbye.

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Airports: people either love this place or hate it.

For some people, it’s a place filled with hope.
In a few hours, they will meet their long-expected events, places, and people they’ve been longing to see. Workers going on holidays. Family members visiting one another. Long-distance lovers and the planned reunion. Friends checking their bucket list one at a time. Colourful suitcases, sunglasses, gifts, expectations, hopes.

For some others, it’s a desperate place.
Business trips separating them from their beloved. Different timezones. Awful airline meals instead of home cookings. Jetlags. All the “goodbye”s and “good luck”s, sobbing and laughter in the crowd that gives absolutely no hoot. A place where they will last see their certain someone.

She could write a book out of the things she sees in this blasted hub, but let’s save the paperback plans for later because right now… there’s this one thing she had to take care of. That one thing is standing right next to her with a trolley of suitcases and a backpack on his shoulder, looking over the queue to see whether she had led him to the correct check-in counter.

Luckily, she had.

He stopped the trolley and dug into his bag as she silently watched, somehow amused at the time he took to try fishing out his ticket and resulting in pulling out a lot of random things instead.
At times like this usually there is at least one banter about how unorganized he is.
That day, there were none.
There were also enough goodbye tears and see-you hugs there to write an entire novel with – there’s no use adding any to it.
That was what she thought.
That was what he thought, too.

So once he found his ticket, he sighed and stared at the long queues at the counters as if bracing himself against the possible chaos ahead. She merely stand there glancing at him every 10 seconds.

One minute.
Two.
Three.
Four.
Five.

Three times she wanted to turn on her heels and leave after a friendly “bye”, but even after five minutes passed her whole consciousness root her on the spot. Until he decided to break the silence.

‘You’re going to be okay.’ He smiled, finally taking his eyes off the long lines to look at her.
She took a deep breath. ‘How are you so sure?’

‘Because you’ll find someone better.’
‘I probably will.’

‘So you’ll be okay, right?’
‘Not really.’

‘Why?’
‘You know what the funny thing is?’

He knew the answer. He just couldn’t hear it coming from her of all people.
So he didn’t reply.
Thus she continued.

‘I’ve never dreamt for someone better.’

Airports: people either love this place or hate it.
For him, it’s where he last wished her the best and depart to seek his.
For her, it’s where her best kissed her goodbye and leave her with none.

Stockholm Syndrome

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “With or Without You.”

From Wikipedia:
Stockholm syndrome, or capture-bonding, is a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with the captors.

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We desire things that are bad for us.
That is how human nature is.

‘It’s not good for you.’

I know. I’m not blind.
I just decided to close an eye.

There is never an explanation on how it works.
You don’t really know the exact reason.
You don’t really know the exact moment.
You just know how screwed you are
for craving something
that is
obviously,
obnoxiously,
ruining your life.

For some, it’s smoking.
For some, it’s drinking.
For some, it’s drug.
For some, it’s work.

For me, it’s you.

Déraciné

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Fearless Fantasies” and  “No Apologies”. “Read more” because kids roam the internet freely and this is a feeble attempt to keep them safe.

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‘Thanks for tonight.’

The woman picked up the scarlet stiletto off the concrete floor. There was a scratch on the side, an aftermath of the chaotic manner she was in when they were discarded. Pity – they were her favourite. Guess she would have to get the new ones later. After all, tonight’s deed should be enough to cover a proper pair.

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