61 comments

Jul 30, 2020

Mystery Funny Thriller

Poison rain descended from the canopy of azure. A force so slow yet unforgiving of the endless fields that thrived from its vivifying nutrients. It was deserted at first glance, a distorted illusion of a once-promised land merely saturated with acres of suspiciously upright flowers, ivory-tinted yet blinding like burning magnesium.


I wandered barefoot, feeling every sharp pinch of those pebbles piercing my skin. A trail of red freckled along the wavering cobblestone, its eroded curves sinking into the earth beneath. Tendrils of sea-green vines meandered around each slab, besmirching their discrete beige hue.


It all felt familiar. A reality architectured to the finest detail. Carved from delirious thoughts with a touch of intimacy embedded into every single element yet the fabled fantasy trickled from my grasp like falling sand, whisked away by autumn winds - a memory that drowned in my mind.


My palms brushed along the delicately shaded leaves, their towering stems sagging towards the middle - just as encompassing as a cavern. They were unique in behaviour, possessing quirks that fascinated me since their discovery. Kneeling, I reached forward to pluck the little one, its white petals swaying against the breeze before tenderly coiling around my finger. Fierce baby fangs anchored into my flesh, stuttering a miniature waterfall of ichor that stained it a pale taffy.


It didn't pain.


I continued on my journey. The once-distant mirage of the snug cottage ahead gradually morphed into a solid structure with each footstep. Cracked concrete painted with a golden yellow that resembled an egg yolk - contrasting the hushed cerulean streaks gliding across the sky. It seemed too animated, too naive and absurd like ones found in picture books.


The brass doorknob, grainy in texture, creaked as I twisted it - droplets of my blood seeped into the hardwood door frame, cascading into the darkened ridges. Dust particles trembled at the swing of the entrance, slipping into the stream of sunshine flooding the house. A pastel yellow wallpaper with a hypnotising pattern surfaced the entirety of the interior - almost meant to bewitch intrusive visitors.


A desolate single seater sofa slumbered in the living room. Tarnished and lined with faded black stripes that ran till its edges. The television was frozen, mumbling white noise through the antique speakers. The dust had accumulated in its crevices becoming a second layer of skin overlaying the plastic. Ironically, a pristine welcome mat lay near the door, not a single sign of usage in its appearance, unlike other the artefacts that existed in the room.


A barely-there hint of sweetness lingered in the air, capturing my senses for just a second. I followed the candied trail to the kitchen - a room more barren than the previous. Empty, damaged shelves. Faulty refrigerator. Missing utensils. Nothing. Nothing but a serving of chillies perched right in the centre of the table - a knife positioned an innocent distance from them. As I walked closer, the sugary aroma amplified, taunting me to savour the oxymoron.


And I did. Alarmingly red in colour, yet an explosion of bliss charred my throat as I bit one. A burning aftertaste that strangely reminded me of roasted marshmallows on a childhood camping trip. Smoke slithered out my mouth, curling in the air - a rapturous vanilla fragrance that left me wanting more. 


The television screeched, adjusting to a plain white display. I stiffened as the pixels transformed into colour, forming an image of a knight clad in armour. The knight raised his free hand, aiming his gloved finger straight at me. A floorboard from behind squeaked, I spun on my feet nearly tripping when the same knight stood at the end of the hallway, shifting to an aggressive stance - his silver sword three strokes away from slicing my neck.


He charged forward, footsteps thundering with each move. I seized the knife from the table, holding it dangerously close to my own body. He propelled his sword forwards, penetrating the wall like a dart nailing a bullseye. My knife slashed the air in hopes of defence, but he deflected it with ease. I dove to catch the blade before it grazed the ground, shoving it into his chest. He staggered back, but with one swift manoeuvre, the razored edges sliced through his arm like butter - clean and smooth.


Rage howled from upstairs. An army. Roars of fierce, monstrous knights clashed their weapons, dropping to the floor one by one with a bang of pure might that rocked the roof. I stared at the ceiling, wounded fingers quivering, anticipating a sound - a mistake so I could be ready with the knife. But only silence screamed.


A crimson helmet touched my feet, rust sheathing the insides a rugged bronze. My eyes flickered to his face, something about struck a chord in my mind. He seemed familiar. Liquid copper leaked from his bruises, translucent as syrup. It diffused across a rustic kitchen mat, soaking each thread with its dense richness. And that's when I realised.


He's my friend.


The sunlight bounced off the surface of the blade, turning the deep amber seeping from his chest a joyful coral - the outline of my disfigured reflection seared into my mind. I yelled his name, but all I heard was -


"Hey, you alright?"


I blinked foolishly at his question. He had been stabbed in the chest just seconds ago by a weapon that was no longer caged in my hand. With a deep exhale, I nodded my head, glancing at my perfectly normal finger.


"Got everything you need?" he asked, words laced with a freshly-adopted tinge of optimism. He leaned into the car's backseat, recklessly throwing the groceries. A smile washed over his features as he took the bag from my grip, "Doc said it's gonna take a while, remember? The mind palace will help with your memory."


A mother exited the supermarket behind, followed by the shrilling siren of her infant wailing in the stroller. She rummaged through her purse, hands tensed with concern till she wiggled a baby bottle in her son's line of sight, sighing when he quietened down in seconds.


"I forgot milk."


He laughed, "We can't have pancakes without milk, now can we?"

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61 comments

Amogh Kasat
04:29 Aug 10, 2020

It's really good story. You have included a disease that's really good.

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Arya Preston
05:01 Aug 10, 2020

Thank you very much!

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11:19 Jul 31, 2020

You asked me to read your story, so here I am. At first, I didn't really understand the whole concept. I had to read it again to understand it. Here's what I think you're trying to say: The main character has a memory problem, so the doctors made a crazy mind palace to help her. Am I right? You described your scenes beautifully, but I didn't really get the ending. Please be so kind and explain it to me. I enjoyed reading your story, and I am waiting for more! Keep writing! Score: 4.5 out of 5

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Arya Preston
13:01 Jul 31, 2020

Thank you for reading, Akshat! Essentially, the main character suffers from amnesia, and in order to start remembering things again, the doctor had suggested to create mind palaces. As mind palaces are usually used for remembering lists, tasks and etc by associating a specific object with a very distinct visual - the more random, the better you can recall them. In this case, they're trying to recall ingredients to make pancakes. For example, the egg yolk coloured wallpaper was supposed to resemble eggs, the knight's blood seemed like syrup -...

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13:52 Jul 31, 2020

You're welcome!

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Pragya Rathore
09:42 Aug 18, 2020

Your imagery is captivatingly beautiful! The first lines were so vividly descriptive, and the rest of the story, too was filled with fantastic descriptions. I felt the lovely impact of your prose and you've carried out this one with great expertise. I loved it! The last line, too, was amazing. Awesome one, keep it up! :) Please check out my stories too :)

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Arya Preston
10:16 Aug 18, 2020

Thank you so much for reading, Pragya! Your comment is very appreciated especially coming from a wonderful writer like you. I'll definitely read your stories in a little while :)

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Pragya Rathore
10:28 Aug 18, 2020

You're most welcome, Arya! :) It was truly my pleasure.

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Aditya Pillai
17:29 Aug 04, 2020

Wow, now this is what I call unconventional- and in a really good way! The descriptions and metaphors are so well done and clever. The fact that this was all for pancakes makes it even batter (heh)! Had to go through it a second time to catch all the analogies :) A gem of a story indeed, made even more delicious by your buttery smooth writing style! (ok I will stop now) Seriously an awesome read. Would love it if you could check out mine too :)

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Arya Preston
17:40 Aug 04, 2020

Thank you so much, Aditya! I appreciate your puns as well XD Will check out your story right now

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Jonathan Blaauw
17:43 Aug 01, 2020

I found your story very interesting, because it's different. And to me, different means brave, that you're confident enough in your own ability to experiment, and from what I can see of your writing, that confidence is justified. I'm trying to match your comment on my story for eloquence and... not succeeding. What I'm trying to say is - great story. I can see you weren't going for plot-driven, focussing more on descriptions. I've encountered a few well-known authors who do that, and it works only if the descriptive stuff is good enough t...

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Arya Preston
04:49 Aug 02, 2020

This is absolutely amazing! Thank you very very much for your reflection, Jonathan. It means a lot! And you're right, this was meant to be more on the descriptive side and I'm glad it was fascinating enough to continue reading. I always appreciate a good plot twist - though, executing one myself isn't that easy - it's the distinct vagueness of those stories that really capture my attention. Thank you again! Now I'm blessed with the knowledge that if I'm ever stuck in an apocalyptic situation, I'm always one step closer to making pancakes...

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Jonathan Blaauw
13:57 Aug 02, 2020

Twists are so tricky. I have a whole theory on how/when/where/why to use them. I won’t bore you with it now. Maybe I’ll write a how-to book. And the twist will be – the author has no idea what he’s actually talking about. Bestseller, right there! You’ve got it though. As long as you don’t leave the reader feeling cheated, it’s usually okay. I just read another of your stories with an even better twist than this one (I’ll comment there separately) so your execution is spot on. You could even co-author that book with me!

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Arya Preston
03:34 Aug 03, 2020

A how-to book with that twist? I've never read anything like it 😂

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08:15 Sep 23, 2020

Hey, Arya would you be kind to watch the first video it's on Harry potter. https://youtu.be/KxfnREWgN14 Sorry for asking your time, I would ready your story

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Arya Preston
15:49 Sep 23, 2020

No problem! It was a really nice edit, went along with the music quite well :)

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Velma Darnell
20:09 Aug 12, 2020

Your vocabulary choice made this story sound great and smooth. The descriptions are remarkable and the concept of mind palaces makes it captivating. I truly enjoyed reading it, Arya! p.s. I would appreciate if you could read my story "A Lifelong Journey" when you aren't busy, thank you!

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Arya Preston
03:50 Aug 13, 2020

Thank you, Velma, I really appreciate your comments! And I'd love to check it out :)

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Keerththan 😀
07:09 Aug 12, 2020

Very different nd interesting story. Great job. Keep writing. Would you mind checking out my stories too?

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Arya Preston
03:45 Aug 13, 2020

Thank you very much! I'll have a read in a little while :)

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Shruti Saxena
09:27 Aug 08, 2020

Such a unique and wonderful story. I love that you incorporated the concept of mind palaces, definitely an interesting concept. Really awesome and vivid!!

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Arya Preston
10:34 Aug 08, 2020

Thank you very much, Shruti! :D

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Kristin Neubauer
19:42 Aug 06, 2020

This is a super-interesting twist on the prompt! I never considered that the person thought to be dead could be one from history. Very imaginative - I enjoyed reading it and look forward to more!

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Arya Preston
04:00 Aug 07, 2020

Thank you, Kristin! I appreciate your comment :)

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Sue Marsh
15:55 Aug 06, 2020

I really enjoyed your story it had a very interesting twist at the end. Sue

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Arya Preston
15:59 Aug 06, 2020

Thank you so much, Sue :)

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L. J. Holmes
12:35 Aug 06, 2020

Interesting story. I was really confused at first, but I liked the mind palace idea and how that was revealed at the end. The descriptions were beautiful, though I was thinking as I read that there was a bit too much detail. I guess with shorter stories I always worry that there isn't enough time to get bogged down in little details or elaborate descriptions, and I have read stories before where it feels like a huge effort was put into descriptions at the expense of other aspects of the story. However in this story, the little details are ...

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Arya Preston
12:43 Aug 06, 2020

Thank you very much! And I completely understand your perspective on description-heavy stories. Personally, I prefer writing descriptive ones since that's my strong suit, but I will venture into narrative plots in the future :)

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L. J. Holmes
13:45 Aug 06, 2020

Lucky, I always struggle with description. I should practise more. I look forward to seeing you branch out more.

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Deborah Angevin
11:02 Aug 06, 2020

Your description is amazing, Arya! I thoroughly enjoyed reading the story! Would you mind reading my recent story out, "(Pink)y Promise"? Thank you :D

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Arya Preston
12:21 Aug 06, 2020

Thank you very much, Deborah! Definitely check it out now :)

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Alexi Delavigne
19:44 Aug 05, 2020

I really enjoyed reading this! I could picture the setting, it had a sort of dream-like fairytale feel to it for me as I was reading it. Really well written, great work :)

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Arya Preston
07:22 Aug 06, 2020

Thank you for reading, Alexi! Glad I was able to evoke that sort of feeling :D

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Shivani Manocha
17:12 Aug 05, 2020

Loved it! You have a great command over language, its a very polished and creative diction. I loved the following paragraph in particular. "Carved from delirious thoughts with a touch of intimacy embedded into every single element yet the fabled fantasy trickled from my grasp like falling sand, whisked away by autumn winds - a memory that drowned in my mind." If you don't mind, could you please check out my story?

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Arya Preston
07:21 Aug 06, 2020

Thank you very much, Shivani! Will check it out in a bit :)

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Corey Melin
01:06 Aug 05, 2020

I tend to be plain and simple in my stories which your story here is absolutely superb in description. You were on the edge of too much description but you never fell off the edge. In fact, I thought of the writers of old which hopefully you take as a compliment. The more you can picture a story the more I would say perfection is in play. Well done!

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Arya Preston
04:36 Aug 05, 2020

Thank you very much, Corey and I'll definitely take that compliment! :D

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Rayhan Hidayat
00:20 Aug 04, 2020

“As I walked closer, the sugary aroma amplified, taunting me to savour the oxymoron.” Good god, there were some word combos here that I would never for the life of me think to use in any sentence, ever. Vocab is your weapon and you wield it like a knight! 😁 Honestly I’m not a fan of stories that are too description-heavy, but it makes sense in context because mind palaces can be really hectic places and the big words made it feel that way. So good job! And keep writing! 😊

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Arya Preston
17:02 Aug 04, 2020

Thank you very much, Rayhan! And I agree, a mind palace is packed with very random things and one would definitely experience a sensory overload which is why I went completely descriptive :)

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Rayhan Hidayat
17:30 Aug 04, 2020

No problem! If it's not too much to ask for, I'd love to hear your thoughts on my latest submission :)

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Raquel Rodriguez
05:54 Aug 01, 2020

Oh my gosh! Arya, I love this! The descriptions are clear and your choice of vocabulary makes this even better. Could you please check out my new story, 'Separate Neighborhoods' if you get the chance and tell me what you think?

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Arya Preston
08:04 Aug 01, 2020

Thank you so much, Raquel! And yes, I'll have a look at it soon :)

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Raquel Rodriguez
17:02 Aug 01, 2020

Thank you, Arya! :)

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Becky Holland
18:59 Jul 31, 2020

Hi! First of all, I think this is a very lovely story. It took me a few minutes to grab on to it, but after I did, it was fine. There might be some little spots that need tweaking but overall I enjoyed it. Hey, would you be willing to check out my story "Big Daddy Comes Back" and give some feedback? (Or any of my stuff!) Thanks.

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Arya Preston
03:41 Aug 01, 2020

Thank you very much, Rebecca! I'll definitely check it out :)

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Adhi Das
08:19 Jul 31, 2020

Good read 😊

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Arya Preston
09:34 Jul 31, 2020

Thank you for reading, Adhi!

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