Weekly Photo Challenge (DEPTH )

Weekly photo challenge -depth

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As I try to gauge  the depth 

of your  intense affections

I am overwhelmed

to learn that your

love for me

stretches upto

 infinity 

and

beyond

Picture 246

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THE TINY SOLDIER -PART 11

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This is part 11 of flash fiction chain #5 hosted by Pho Trablogger and inspired by the amazing picture above. This is a collaboration of bunch of writers/bloggers all over the world who create a fictional world with their imagination based on the picture given by host Jithin,Proud to be part of this team. Please visit his blog for previous four series.

To get the context of the story, please read the first ten parts
Part 1 by Abirami
Part 2  by Sona
Part 3  by Yinglan
Part 4  by Dr. KO
Part 5  by Austin
Part 6  by Pheena
Part 7  by Itchy Qiuil
Part 8  by Priceless Joy
Part 9 by Rashmi
Part 10 by Manvi

I am writing the Part 11  and the concluding part of the flash fiction chain .

Character List:

Rick-10yrs Old Jenna-Rick’s social worker

Mrs. Montgomery- Foster mother

Jake- Mrs. Montgomery’s son

Sun- The Monkey

***Elaborated Characters*** (The Other Kids Sorted By Tables)

Table 1- Mesa-Boy, 14 yrs old Toro-Boy, 12 yrs old Wheeze-Boy, 8 yrs old

Table 2-Danus-Boy, 11 yrs old Makaya & Kumba-Boys, Twins, 7 yrs old

Table 3- Marilyn-Girl, 11 yrs old  Britney-Girl, 8 yrs old Kanya-Girl, 6 yrs old

  PART 11

Jenna stared in utter shock as she saw him emerge from the bushes….while Sun the monkey and the other half human  , half animal looking creatures hailed to their Lord , welcoming him amidst them all .

‘Jack’ , exclaimed Jenna , unable to contain her disgust and disappointment . Jack was wearing a black cape and looked paler and more sinister than his old self .

There was something inhuman about him and his gait . Jack was leaning forward , and walking like a primate …on all fours , only his human body , was not permitting him to do this with ease .

Jenna stared at him agape .In the very next moment , Jack turned to look at her , and his poisonous glare , was enough to confirm her suspicions . The evil that lurked behind the human form , was not Jack . Jack was possessed .

As she was lost in her thoughts trying to  make sense of everything that was going on , she heard a thunderous roar , a voice so loud and threatening , that the children quivered from behind the cage bars . It was Jack (or whatever was possessing him ) that made that horrendous , spine tingling noise . And Jenna could hear her heart throb hard …

Rick stared at the Evil creature that possessed Jack , and looked around  with compassion , at his fellow mates . It was then that he noticed it… Danus and Moses…. The two were missing…

He ran his eyes all around the temple . No sign of them… But he remembered them tagging along , as he followed Sun…

Just then , a  devilish voice began to address them all ,  ‘Welcome , my little friends……. And thank you all for the great sacrifice you are about to make . From your tiny , precious souls , shall I harvest my new army … I will get back all that I lost ….My Kingdom ,my men , my powers and my ownership to the treasures of this enchanted forest !’

‘Centuries ago , my clan was wiped out by the forest guardians , whom we refer to as the Dark lords ! Honestly , the dark lords are not all that dark ‘ ,  bellowed Sun’s master , with a smirk on his face .

‘We were the true rulers of this forest….And everything here was our slave…the animals , the birds and even the humble caterpillar . And we would have continued to do so , had it not been for the Foolish owl , called  ‘Sapientus’ , who combined forces with the Dark lords and  provoked the forest creatures to rise up and  a rebel against our reign . ‘

As Rick , tried to concentrate on the story put forth by the master , he felt a poke from behind . Moses put a hand on Ricks mouth , trying to hush him .  He soon  untied Rick’s hands and quietly the two crept back into the bushes .

Danus was waiting for them , and he was not alone . Behind him stood two half human , half horse looking  Centaurs . Rick gazed at them in amazement . He felt as though he was inside his favorite fairy tale .

But this was real and the voice of the two centaurs confirmed it . ‘Hello , Rick we are the ‘Dark’ lords as you have been told . In reality , we are the guardians of this Enchanted forest , entrusted by the forest creatures and the forest God Aranyani,  to protect this forest from evil and to preserve its precious treasures . ‘

The second Centaur continued the story..’Rick , for millions of years we have preserved the flora and fauna of this Enchanted forest and lived a life of peace and harmony . Till , the Black era dawned . …

When the evil Ape ‘Zadicus’ attacked this forest , killing our people , plundering the woods and destroying the fauna , causing us to flee , in order to save our lives . Zadicus , had some evil powers handed to him by Lucifer  , himself , which helped him gain control over the forest and raise his own army of primates .’

Rick stared in disbelief as he heard them speak . And then , inquisitive , he asked  ‘But how did you oust them from the castle and end their rule ?  I remember ‘Sun’ talking about the castle killings !’

‘Ah , well..’ , replied one of two centaurs ,  ‘We raised a new army with the help of the forest God . Sapientus , the Wise owl , helped us in our endeavor , and soon we destroyed their whole clan , or so we thought . Zadicus , died but his evil soul escaped to return for vengeance.  We did not know about Sun , the monkey , until now….’

His speech was disrupted by a loud uproar from the Temple grounds. Rick could identify Jenna’s  helpless scream , while the ugly creatures jeered  in unison .

Tell me quickly , where is the boy..? . The roar of Zadicus caused Rick to freeze , as he felt scared for Jenna and his friends . He quickly made up his mind and was about to surrender (for the sake of Jenna and his family ) , when an intense humming noise came from the other side of the forest .

Sapientus is here with the army’ ,  exclaimed one of the centaurs . Before Rick could react , he felt the tremors on the ground  where he stood.

Just then an owl , much larger than the ones he had seen around ma’s house appeared in the sky ..

And then right before his eyes , a tornado of animals , of varied sizes , and colors  stampeded  past him , towards the temple , followed by birds , insects and the entire forest !

Rick had the queer sensation that  all the forest creatures bowed to him , in obeisance , before they dashed off to charge at the Evil Zadicus and his wicked army. But , he quickly dismissed this funny notion !

As the army of the forest Guardians fell upon the unsuspecting Zadicus and his   ugly gang members , including Sun  , the forest was filled with a cacophony of  roars , grunts , squeaks  and screams…

Rick watched as one by one ,the members of the evil ‘Zadicus’ clan , were destroyed by the forest creatures , led by the centaurs .

It was then he remembered Jenna , and his heart skipped a beat . As he maneuvered his way through the warring factions , feeling furry hands and legs all around ,  he saw Jenna , huddled in a corner , trying to protect his family members . Soon Danus and Moses joined in as they gradually freed all the captive members from behind the cages .

Their eyes now observed Mesa and Toro , who were standing chained , like zombies , sans expressions .

The two centaurs appeared at the scene , and understanding Rick’s predicament , touched the foreheads of the two boys and sprinkled some magic dust on them . Soon the two boys , were back in their senses.

As Rick and Jenna thanked the centaurs , they smiled generously and replied  , ‘Zadicus had used his evil powers to caste a spell on these boys so that they oblige to their commands’ .

Rick was confused , and just as he was about to pop a question , he felt a hairy , furry hand strangle his throat , as he gasped for breath . It was ‘Sun’ .

With a sudden instinctive gesture , Rick undid its clasp and using the pen in his pocket , poked hard into Sun’s eyes . As the monkey struggled to hold his ground , Rick kicked him hard on his chest , a kick so powerful that it sent ‘Sun’ flying to the other end of the forest . 

All of them including Jenna , stared in amazement , at Rick ,whose eyes were now twinkling , a silver glint in them .

The centaurs , spoke as if reading their minds , ‘Rick is no ordinary child Jenna . He is a demi god . A descendant of the Forest God Aranyani , sent to earth to preserve this forest and protect it from evil powers . He possesses extra ordinary powers which he will be able to harness to its full capacity once he is 18 years old..’

Rick heard the conversation and blurted out , ‘I guess that is why the magic dust didn’t really do its work on me !’ . ‘Yes , you are right..that is precisely so…’ ,agreed both the centaurs .

Then all of sudden , the screams of Moses and Danus reached Rick’s ears. Without wasting a moment he rushed to their aid .

He pushed his friends to the side and charged at Zadicus , with all his might . With a powerful thrust of his hand , he shoved Jack’s possessed body against the temple wall , punching him on the face . ‘Stop..’ , shouted the centaurs from behind .Rick walked away to the side.

The centaurs , then  sprinkled magic dust on James limp body , as sinister  soul of Zadicus , once again escaped  from James’s body , into the sky , and roared ..’This is not the end… I shall return my dear boy… I shall return to avenge myself !’ ...and with a puff of black smoke , disappeared into nothingness .’

***************************

The scent of freshly baked apple pie filled the house . All the kids were tapping their hands impatiently on the wooden surface of the dining table , as Ma appeared in front of them with a whole tray of goodies . Rick watched Jake , who smiled at him reassuringly . Rick heaved a sigh of relief , ‘So no more bickering . There is peace at  last’ …

Just then , once of the girls ,  Marilyn , remarked , ‘Oh ,Rick is such a hero . He saved all our lives… If we had left it to Jake , he would have probably let us all be killed‘ . The whole room burst out into peals of laughter , except one boy , whose ears were now red out of embarrassment ………

Ma , interrupted the laughter and spoke , ‘Yes…he is our tiny soldier ! Isn’t he ? ‘.

As Rick blushed at her comment ,  a shadow peered at them from behind the window  of the dining rooms ,digging at  the glass with its long nails…………

Trials and tribulations

Life is always so unpredictable ! Well , at least when you are a soldier’s wife all the more . Many of my friends have asked me how I handle being so far away from my better  half , so frequently , when they cannot  even imagine a day without their’s . Well I think life teaches you a lot of things the hard way…

When I was a newly wed army wife (or lady wife as referred to in the army ! ), I had similar opinions as them . I was a naive girl , who was afraid to stay all alone in  a house , or even travel by myself ! I was brought up in a metro city , yet I hadn’t really ventured out to far away places on my own …

Yet , today things have changed…I have traveled alone to far off places , even on International trips with a two year old toddler , dangling by my side . I have  now stayed alone , for nights in old , dilapidated bungalows (that belonged to the Nizam’s army ) and stayed without talking to my Husband for days (owing to poor mobile connectivity ! ).

I would be lying  , if I were to say I am not afraid anymore. I am still afraid , still jittery , but I have learnt to face my fears now .  One’s success is not in being ‘unafraid’ but in being aware of one’s fears and preparing to conquer them .

I guess , in the Army  life we do not have a choice . Sometimes if you want to be with your husband , even if it means only for a short while , you are willing to go that extra mile , just to see that smile on the face of your daughter /son  , when she/he meets her dad and vice versa .

Every time I go through a long , tiresome journey  to meet him , my heart is  filled with excitement and happiness , and in the face of these emotions , the weaker emotions like fear , nervousness and discomfort take a back seat .

Some of my friends belonging to a civilian life (as in non army background )  , call me brave , to have married an army officer . But honestly , I am not being brave , I am just adapting… and so will anybody else in my place.

Every human being had this innate instinct to adapt to his/her surroundings and this adaptability is essential for survival . So no matter what situation one is in , there is always a way out , if not , we can create it .

Most of modern day inventions and innovations today are a result of this adapation . It is the very life force that makes a drowning man , hold on to the next available thing to cling on to , so that he can keep afloat .

This life force is present in all of us , just that many of us do not realize it and give up on things quickly. It is when life gets tough , that we realize our true strengths , our capabilities. Of course it does depend from one person to another , as to how you emerge at the end of the hurricane . Some break down , while others grow stronger and more resilient .

Being an army officer’s wife it will , without doubt be the latter .

The other day I was watching the interview of an army wife , who lost her husband , in a military operation  an year ago . What I saw in her eyes were not , tears of a  dejected woman who was now a widow , rather a sense of immense pride  and fortitude that would have moved even the hardest of hearts . She was smiling and eloquent through out  and the nation salutes her stoicism.

She didn’t choose her destiny , especially when she had a four year old daughter by her side , yet she faced it with dignity. She rose from the ashes , much like the mythical Phoenix  , with a vengeance . 

From where does she draw her strength..? How did she manage to keep such a cheerful disposition ,in the face of such  heart wrenching  trauma . Now , that is what I call the life force . The inner strength , that guides all , yet only a few care to listen .

 Everyone has their fears , their problems , their anxieties , but do not let these conquer you , instead , learn to cheat them and be a winner . .. I am still on my way ..

Here is a link to that interview if you want to have a look . It is truly inspiring…….. :

 http://www.ndtv.com/video/player/the-buck-stops-here/india-should-see-the-man-mukund-was-not-my-sorrow-martyr-s-wife-to-ndtv/354130?pfrom=nri_videowidget_cat_5

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge (This land is my land… )

http://ceenphotography.com/2015/01/27/cees-fun-foto-challenge-this-land-is-my-land-2-verses/

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This week’s theme is the This Land Is My Land, 2 verses.So read the verses (in italic below) and see what you can come up with for a topic.  Have fun and remember to find a theme within the verse.

As I was walking that ribbon of highway, 
I saw above me that endless skyway: 
I saw below me that golden valley: 
This land was made for you and me.
 I’ve roamed and rambled and I followed my footsteps, 
To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts; 
And all around me a voice was sounding: 
This land was made for you and me.

The ribbon of a highway...
The ribbon of a highway…
The endless skyway......
The endless skyway…...
The golden valley...
The golden valley…
Sparkling sands....
Sparkling sands….
This land was made for you and me ....
This land was made for you and me ….

The ‘Beige & Beautiful’ ! (One Word Photo Challenge – beige )

http://jennifernicholewells.com/2015/01/27/one-word-photo-challenge-beige/

The 'Notre Dame Church' gardens ,  Paris

The ‘Notre Dame Church’ gardens , Paris

Inside the living rooms of the 'Taj Falaknuma Palace ' hotel , Hyderabad ,India

Inside the living room of the ‘Taj Falaknuma Palace ‘ hotel , Hyderabad ,India

Loved these painted beige walls of the the 'Egypt' stall of the Dubai Shopping Festival , Global Village , U.A.E

Loved these painted beige walls of the the ‘Egypt’ stall of the Dubai Shopping Festival , Global Village , U.A.E

Again at Global Village, Dubai , 'Africa' it is :)

Again at Global Village, Dubai , ‘Africa’ it is 🙂

Ahilyabais fortress in Maheshwar ,Madhya Pradesh,India

Ahilyabai’s fortress in Maheshwar ,Madhya Pradesh,India

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Handwritten……

Alright so this is in response to the Handwriting challenge by Jithin of PhoTrablogger .

Well we do live today in a world where the traditional handwriting has taken a backseat in favor of the typed Alphabet . But I have always been a conservative , when it comes to writing .

Although ,a few  of my poems have never seen a paper before they got published here on my blog , most of them have ! In fact all my short stories have been given birth by my loyal pen and have found their way in my diary …. ‘Penning down’ , is an important thing for me to express my thoughts and feelings ..

Whenever I write a story , I go with the flow of my thoughts..sometimes I have had to tear away pages of my diary if the work hasn’t been up to my satisfaction and sometimes they are filled with lots of scribbles , strikes and scribbles …And apart from the first few lines of my short story , the rest of it is one dirty mess …

So here is a picture I thought of finally putting up in response to this challenge , a page from my diary and the beginning of my new short story…although the final version may still end up with alterations. The story is still in the process of being written…But this can be a ‘Teaser’ of sorts ! (so much for my self promotion 😛 ) :

So when was the last time you wrote down something on paper …?

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The love story of a boat …

PHOTO CREDITS : https://trablogger.wordpress.com/

A lonely ark , sits by the edge of the stream

that shimmers , under the silver moon beam

 It sways to  the rhythm of the ripples soft

whispering sweet nothings , as it gently laughs

The majestic trees rustle in the breeze

urging the boat , the moment to seize

‘For this night shall not come again..

 Confess your love to the passing train’

The ark hesitates , just hems and haws

And then it speaks , after a pregnant pause

‘My friends I know , you mean well for me

But will the lofty train , stop to see ?’

‘The train is a beauty , I have adored her long

Her slender form , and her high pitched song

As I watch her meandering and gliding past

My heart begins to beat…ever so fast’

The trees weep as they hear his plight

Such pure love , needs to see daylight

‘Oh, you love her so , then do not let her go

Shout , scream,  wave or row !’

‘Oh I am just a   wobbly little boat’

so saying , he began to clear his throat ;

‘The train is exquisite, and deserves  far more

than a rickety , dreamy ark without an ore’

‘She travels far , to places unknown

while I have stayed on this stream ,all alone

She leads a life of thrill and adventure

But beyond this lake , I fear to venture’

‘Oh she is the moon and I am just a child

who wishes to own it , in my imaginations wild’

And I shall worship her till eternity

My first  love , she shall always be’

Just then the train came slithering by…

 puffing out smoke , as if to say goodbye

The little ark , beheld her , lovelorn

as she chugged past , her whistle blown…

‘All love stories do not end 

on a happy note , my dear friend’

said the boat to the  trees

who were still swaying with the breeze

(The above picture , which inspired this poetry , is shot by my friend and fellow blogger PHOTRABLOGGER .Please check his blog to provide your feedback on this picture and also for more pictures and travel stories . )