#FridayFiction – Clarissa: Chapter 4

“What does not bend must break.” – A story about Clarissa Williams. Chapter 4 of 12 in this #FridayFiction series.

Clarissa was shocked to see this brusque, burly neanderthal who hit children for mere slights. She wasn’t about to bear silent witness to that. Calling out to him, she stormed over to give this modern-day ogre a piece of her mind. He didn’t look very intimidating physically, but she was sure to the child, he was a monstrous, mountain of a man. Continue reading “#FridayFiction – Clarissa: Chapter 4”

#FridayFiction – Clarissa: Chapter 3

“What does not bend must break.” – A story about Clarissa Williams. Chapter 3 of 12 in this #FridayFiction series.

Clarissa bounded lightly forward as she smiled wide to herself. Her meeting request with the publisher had been approved handily. She was to go in tomorrow with a presentation and pitch for her book. Today was free though – she decided to freely enjoy herself in the park. Continue reading “#FridayFiction – Clarissa: Chapter 3”

#FridayFiction – Clarissa: Chapter 2

“What does not bend must break.” – A story about Clarissa Williams | #FridayFiction

Hi, this is chapter 2 of a 12 chapter story about a girl named Clarissa. You can read the previous chapter –> Clarissa: Chapter 1 here!


The Publisher was a creature of habit. He’d often be deemed boring by others. There was nothing untoward about him. A set of principles kept him disciplined and tart. He preferred his arms crossed behind him. He was lean, tall, and greying. He wore rectangular, rimless glasses.

His office was an expanse of brown. His chair had a straight wooden back, and a large table in front was neatly organized. Calendar, scheduler, telephone, casual notepad, pencils, pens, all sat neatly within the semi-circle of arm’s reach. Erasers in the stationary box lay unused.

The Publisher was used to uncomfortable people. Years of experience let him ignore unpleasantness. Despite being a family man, he needed no one. He took his company to new heights, with a knack for identifying successes and trailblazers.

He was crisp and precise. He knew who would succeed. He denied those who wouldn’t. It was cold and calculated. His ruthlessness led to success. He didn’t write anything himself. That part of him died long ago.

Just today, he’d spoken with fifteen hopefuls, all of them pitching their worthless millennial prose and grade school poetry. None passed. He didn’t hire a junior editor to wade through the riff-raff – one never knew what would bring in more money for the company. His instinct in all pitches was necessary for continued success. As such, he felt no disdain for the unworthy, although he beleaguered them until cracks and strains and plot-holes revealed themselves, and always left the young writer wondering whether he had been helped or hindered.

This was what he did. He was disciplined, not callous. Giving advice and tough love to writers was standard fare. That is how successes are made. However, his altruism generated no pride in him. It was just another day to the Publisher.


You’ve now been introduced to the two major characters. Leave a comment below about what you thought about The Publisher, and what you think will happen in the following chapters. If you like, share this out with #FridayFiction.

Chapter 3 has been released and you can see it –> Right Here.

#FridayFiction – Clarissa: Chapter 1

“What does not bend must break.” – A story about Clarissa Williams | #FridayFiction

Clarissa Williams was comfortable with her adverbs and adjectives, thank you very much. She loved lovingly, laughed wonderfully, enjoyed herself thoroughly and smiled prettily. She liked wearing dramatically bright clothes and playing horrifyingly gory video games. Her workouts were painfully thorough and quite strictly planned.

What she was uncomfortable with though, were self-sufficient nouns and verbs. She hated motioning and pointing, and couldn’t idle on a chair. She couldn’t stand being engrossed in a book or engorged on food, and would table any discourse, diatribe, dialogue or discussion. It maddened and aggravated her to saunter into such conversation, and, finding herself rightfully pissed off at the sheer indignity of it all, she would prefer to storm off, but only if she could manage to do so angrily.

As a writer of sorts, she liked to imagine a stark blank canvas that she filled in with colours. The nouns were important, they were the dark blacks and the light whites and the subtle greys that gave depth and definition to her art, but the true colours – the bright, expressive, and delightful ones – were the descriptives – the adjectives and adverbs. With those she could paint angry reds and sultry maroons, aloof blues and cool teals. She could portray envious greens and greedy emeralds, while sneaking in some silly yellows and lustrous golds.

She liked to be sparing with her time, and didn’t have much patience for pleasantries and droll formalities. She wanted to be productive and enterprising, and as such she decided to approach a publisher with an idea. Now this publisher was a character of his own sort, and his muted eccentricities and unyielding approach made him a trouble to work with. But he was a legend in the business, so Clarissa decided to try her luck, and scheduled an appointment.


Hi, this is chapter 1 of a 12 chapter story about a girl named Clarissa, and I’m playing around with some ideas. Leave a comment below about how this chapter made you feel, and what you expect to see in the following chapters.

Chapter 2 has been released and you can see it –> Right Here!

A Barrage of Salt Water

Patrick could not be happier. It was a beautiful day and he was strolling through the park, holding hands with a beautiful woman… He could feel the tears well up in his eyes, but he was too distracted to check them before they fell. Slow at first, he burst quietly like a beaver’s dam, a quiet stream of tears falling down his face.

A Barrage of Salt Water

AKA Not Alone in the Park

PATRICK

Patrick could not be happier. It was a beautiful day and he was strolling through the park, holding hands with a beautiful woman. They had just had a rather charming picnic, and were now whiling their time away, without a care in the world. His string of misfortunes had ended, and in just eight months, his life had changed. He was now engaged to a former Miss Austria, his income was steady again, and he rarely found himself uninterested or bored.

Life was improving Continue reading “A Barrage of Salt Water”

Cascader Wednesdays: Permission

“But mom!”, Kaley screamed. It was an important party that she wasn’t being allowed to go to. Why could mom never understand?!

Hi,

It’s been a week but whatever – Like I’ve stated earlier, I’m working on big ideas for the blog and today I begin to execute them. Every Wednesday will be the release of a new Cascader. Enjoy.

Note: Still experimenting with the new form. Now trying without indicating the different headings, and establishing a literal connection between each form.

“But mom!”, Kaley screamed. It was an important party that she wasn’t being allowed to go to. Why could mom never understand?! “If she could have her way,” Kaley thought, “I would sit at home forever. Ugh!” Continue reading “Cascader Wednesdays: Permission”

The Pointlessness of Waiting

I AM really uncomfortable right now. This story took me a week of blockages and story changes, and I’m sick right now. -.-‘
Therefore, please enjoy because I’m proud of how it turned out! 😀


“I’m really uncomfortable right now.”

“It’s a nice full day today,” Maice observed. “All right everyone, I want to see enthusiasm! Let’s go.” The staff spread out as customers started filing in. Duvairé had always been a popular restaurant, and it would be a rare day if you didn’t see at least three sets of customers waiting in the lounge for seats. They craved the highly acclaimed food, but they thronged the restaurant doors day and night for the high quality of service and welcoming nature of the staff.

The restaurant was quite large and well-lit. It had been quite fortuitous that they had been able to acquire that kind of land space for this, and they had made the best of it. The restaurant catered to the finest customers, and it definitely looked the part – with beautiful set pieces on every table and flowing curtains over the long windows. The square tables had been arranged in a loose grid, with each alternate column slightly offset for that perfect “arranged mess” look.

“I have to do well today. The old man is expecting it,” thought Maice, who had been left in charge that day. The regular manager was on a rare leave, and it was the first time Maice had been left in charge. Doing well would prove his chops, and improve his standing with his seniors and colleagues at the restaurant. He had a battle plan in place. Having been at the restaurant a couple of years now, he knew how the manager liked to handle his team, and how he approached the steady line of customers, making sure waiting times were low, and clients were happy. Maice had his own modifications ready, but he wanted to go by the book at first.

Continue reading “The Pointlessness of Waiting”

Red

Red began fidgeting with the collar, when Kevin moved, and Red’s eyes grew wide. His arms slowed, moving down to the lapels as he admired himself.
“It’s… nice…” began Red.

Hi Readers,

So I wrote Red originally as a short – just the first chapter, but a few friends expressed interest in the story, so I extended it to what you see here.

I would REALLY appreciate feedback on the style of writing and all the different elements, especially mood setting. Please be freely critical with me in the comments.

Regards,

Vaibhav.

WordPress – GrammarMantis

Facebook – Vaibhav Gupta

Twitter – Vaibhavshaali


Chapter 1: Preparation

As he stood in front of the mirror, he fidgeted with his cuffs, pulling them over his wrist, then all the way back again.

“Leave it be. You look fabulous.” said Ronnie. Ronnie had been his best friend for years now, and he always consulted Ronnie on everything – what books to read, what food to eat, whether that new movie was worth a watch. But he really didn’t feel like being dismissed by Ronnie today. He needed to look his absolute best.

Ronnie’s boyfriend, Kevin sidled over and put his arm around Ronnie’s waist. “Trust me Red, you look great. Have a little more confidence in yourself.”

He really didn’t like being called Red, but everyone seemed to have adopted the little moniker. He would get used to it eventually, he thought.

“Oh, just one last touch.” said Ronnie, as he deliberately and slowly took out a coat bag from his wardrobe.

“Aww, come on Ronnie. No blazers – It’ll be way too formal.” Red said with exasperation.

“Just shut up, and try it on.” Ronnie said, smirking and pulling out a beautiful black blazer from the coat bag. He handed it to Red with utmost care. Red hesitated, but let Ronnie help him put it on, as Kevin blocked Red’s view of the mirror.

Red began fidgeting with the collar, when Kevin moved, and Red’s eyes grew wide. His arms slowed, moving down to the lapels as he admired himself.

“It’s… nice…” began Red.

“Feel the power of the Blazer.” breathed Ronnie, slowly sliding his arms up to Red’s shoulders and giving him a squeeze. They smiled and Kevin said, “You’re ready. Go get her!”

Chapter 2: Meeting

Red was a nervous wreck. All through the taxi ride, he was distracted by the thought of things to come.

Cars and trucks floated past the corner of his vision; a handcart-puller was blocking traffic. Gasoline vapours permeated the air as the clarion call of automobiles assaulted the ears, yet he was oblivious.

He barely noticed when the cab pulled in to the curb. The cab driver cleared his throat twice before blowing the horn, which jerked him back to the real world. Taking a moment to gather his wits, he gingerly deboarded and paid the cab fare, finally turning to face what was looming in front of him – Duvairé, the new big thing in restaurants.

Stepping in, he checked in at the front desk for his reservation. He was a half-hour early, but the kindly looking well dressed man seemed to grasp the situation, and smiling, escorted Red to a table towards a cosy corner away from the front and kitchen doors.

So far so good; one of the things that could have gone wrong hadn’t.

And thus began what felt like the longest hour of Red’s life. He was so antsy that he had to peruse the menu a dozen times to calm him down. The soft music in the air didn’t help.

He kept going over scenarios in his head, what he would say, what he would avoid saying. What if there was a lull? He imagined the horror of her being polite not to mention it, but being bored.

He juggled a hundred thoughts of her, but she never showed up.

The kindly gentleman came up and asked, “Will your guest be coming, sir?”

“Apparently not.” Red sighed. Whether it was a sigh of relief or disappointed, he would never be able to tell.

Chapter 3: Rescue

Dejected, Red got up to leave, but tripped and scraped his knee through his jeans. “Great” he thought, embarrassed. The patron helped him up and dusted him off, and sent him on his way. Red appreciated his help, but he couldn’t understand for the life of him why she chose to ignore his feelings in this manner, and it erased everything else he was thinking of at that time. It ate away at the very fibre of his being. Why would she? How could she?

And then his phone buzzed. He pulled it out and checked the text message – “Hey im rly sry. I gt called away & cudnt cal bak. Can we do dinner instd? Same plc.”

His chest heaved… and relaxed. He hadn’t been stood up. He would still see her today. He loosened his collar, and being a little more comfortable, went back to Duvairé to rebook a table.

He was met again by the patron, who smiled genially and said, “So what brings sir back?”

Red smiled back, and asked for a table later in the evening.

“Ah if you’d like to wait, I’ll arrange for coffee and a light snack?”

“No thank you. Is there a place nearby where I could spend my time?” Red asked.

“There is a reading café just down the road, sir. I believe that would be an excellent use of the evening.”

“Thank you.” smiled Red, and left. As he walked down to the café, he thought of the old patron. He felt comfortable with him. The patron felt genuine and warm. Red breathed in the feeling of solace he felt. The patron felt like the father he never had, and he found what he sensed was a feeling of family, so many years, after the death of his father.

Chapter 4: Take Two

It was time. Red drank the last of his ice tea as he proceeded to back to the restaurant. He hadn’t read much in the café; he felt fear too nervous.

As he walked back up the road, he felt a chill from the evening wind and he was glad for Ronnie’s blazer. He made a note to thank Ronnie.

Trepidation filled him. She had wanted to meet him, but it had taken him everything he had to ask her to dinner. Given their history, he was shattered when she left, so long ago. Communication between them had been scarce since, but she was always there at the back of his mind, a constant presence, like a fly buzzing around at night. You couldn’t get rid of it.

He entered the restaurant once again, and he didn’t want to leave without what he wanted. The first time had cleared his head – he wanted to meet her. He craved it.

The patron met him at the entrance, and Red smiled. He knew what was coming. “I believe your guest has arrived, sir.” He said, with the broadest smile he had given Red all day.

Red readied himself. He slowly walked in and looked towards the table indicated by the host.

Sitting there was a middle-aged woman in a tight grey tee and camo pants, wearing combat boots. Her muscled arms were bare. Her hair had been tied back to a tight bun and she sat straight-backed, an indication of her years of military training. She turned to him, and looked down.

“What did you do to your knee?!” she exclaimed.

“Hi mom.” said Red, a slow smile spreading across his face.