A FLASH FROM THE PAST

Submitted into Contest #51 in response to: Write a story about someone who's haunted by their past.... view prompt

36 comments

Creative Nonfiction

I was always very childish. Never knew the bad side of anything. To me everything around me was beautiful and was just perfect until one day, something happened, something that just changed my perspective of looking things. . A photograph is like a memory from the past. It can capture almost every little detail you forgot during the moment. I couldn’t have been more right.


It all started on a snowy winter morning. I just love taking pictures and was planning to make it my profession. I woke up with a start and then opened my window. “Yeah, this is what I wanted”, I spoke to myself. The cold winter breeze hit my face and that was my wake up call. I ran downstairs with my trusted camera, gobbled up the food and then ran outside to click some pictures. I kept walking for a long time and then suddenly I realized I was lost. I tried to search for my phone in my saggy old pouch and then remembered leaving it on the table. My leg ached but with was there in front me no pain mattered. There were so many lush green trees which were buried under the snow, right next to those trees the sun was slowly waking up to show his bubbly face . It looked so beautiful. I immediately took my cam and clicked a few shots.


I was searching for a place to rest. Then it captured me. There was a deserted skating rink close by which was left unattended for years. Snow was on every place. All I could see was white except a bench. Surprisingly it was clean and had no snow on it. I rushed and sat down there. As I wanted to pass away time, I started looking at all my pictures in the camera and was smiling. All I didn’t know that there was a pair of eyes looking at me. An old man hobbled towards me and asked, “Do you mind if I sit next to you”. “Oh not at all, please have a seat. He sat next me and was shivering. I offered him my jacket and then continued looking at my pictures.

He then took out something from his pocket and was looking at it gloomily. Suddenly even before I realized he started weeping silently. I couldn’t see anyone cry so I caught his sodden and wrinkled hands and asked, “Dear grandpa, why are you crying?” He sighed. “You are a child, my dear, unfortunately you won’t understand. I tried to ignore it and sat very eagerly looking at his wrinkled face. He patted my hair and sighed, “Dear child, no matter what happens in life never commit the nonpunishable crime I made. God is being kind to me. I just don’t deserve this love.” I looked very keenly at his sullen face and caught his puckered and soft hands reassuringly. He had some pain in him and I wanted was to know because I believe that the world has no pain. He then showed a picture. It was rather a feast to my eyes and for that matter for anyone. It was a picture of a beautiful autumn landscape. Few trees still had the snow on their tops. Little bits of warm sunshine filled the place with beauty. The road was crimson red with the fall from the trees and no one bother to disturb the beauty of it. There was also a small spring close by with birds sitting close by. It was the most beautiful picture I had seen. I gave a wide grin like a small boy given chocolate. But then the old man started crying again. He wiped his tears and looked at me and asked, “Shall I tell you a little secret?” I looked at him as a yes and nodded my head lightly.


He started, “I had once a beautiful and innocent little boy, and all he wanted was my love and care. But I couldn’t show him that I really loved and cared for him. Yes I did but I couldn’t. I had always feared that I would grow up and become like my dad and I actually did. I never spent time with him nor did I pay attention to him. But still he used to pop out of nowhere and keep smiling at me, waiting for me to smile back. “He sighed. Tears rolled down his cheeks and wiped them away quickly and continued.


“But one day, I had decided to make a change about myself. As I came home from work there was a small piece of handwritten note from my son, “Dear father, wishing you a very happy birthday from the bottom of my hearts. Me and mom have gone out just a while ago to johns bakers to get your surprise. Love you loads xoxo” “Then when I slid my hand in the envelope there it was. It        was this picture. This picture that had told too much about my life”

Paused again, I held his hand and said it was okay. It must have been hard for him to hold on for quite a long time. “This picture is from Scotland, the place I was born. It was extremely beautiful. Mornings used to be bird chirping everywhere. The delicious breeze in the morning was the first thing to fill our lungs with. All you could see was beautiful patches of green. The nights used to be filled with noisy yet peaceful crickets. My family was almost the only lived quite there. But then one day both my parents passed away. I and my brothers and sisters were shifted from here to an orphanage in the city. From a beautiful green place to a dark gloomy one, it was hard on us. But when I got this picture I became extremely nostalgic as my mom always used to say, “Love your children selflessly because they need it. Then it had struck me of how lonely I had felt in the orphanage. I placed the picture on the table, promised god to make amends and rushed on my heels to the bakery with my son’s favorite book”


“As I rushed to the bakery, for some strange reason there was a huge crowd over there. I nudged everyone to make way and then there it was. My son and my wife lay lifeless right in front of me. Our car had toppled over and was right next to them. Just when I wanted to make amends my son and wife had passed away. They lied there in their pool of blood and their hands looked like it had been run over. I sat down there and held my boy and my wife asking them to come back. I was wailing like a little boy and said sorry a million times for not giving back the love they needed. But still I told them I love you and my fine new coat was stained in their blood. It didn’t bother me at all.” He stopped for a while and sobbed like a baby for quite a while. I was patting his back saying him that it was OK and human tendency was to make mistakes.

He looked into my eyes and said, “Do you promise me to never neglect your family no matter what?” “Y…y.ye..yes I do.” He smiled. “Child you don’t see it but every person has some or the other sadness in their life. Always love people as that love will help them move on from their sorrow. You never know when someone might go to the almighty but it’s better to love them every second of your life till then. I sobbed for a while and just when I wanted to say something, my brother popped up and screamed at me, “Where have you been for three hours, the whole family is searching for you.” My heart panged at the word family. I had just fought with my parents a day ago and didn’t talk to them. Now I had made up my mind to go talk it out. There was a woman dressed beautifully walking down the street greeting everyone with a smile. I still could see the sorrow in her face. It felt like an awakening. I could see both happiness and sadness in a person and not only the good. I went back home and hugged my mom and dad tight apologizing for how stupid I had been acting lately. I went back to my room and sobbed. I had learnt the lesson of life……..


PEOPLE ARE NEVER PERMANENT, AND THE ONES WHO ARE SHOULD BE KEPT THAT WAY AND LOVE THEM SELFLESSLY. ……..


-       DAINE RODRIGUEZ

July 18, 2020 03:34

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36 comments

Jade Young
08:01 Jul 27, 2020

I love how you turned this prompt into a life lesson we can learn from🙌🏽 This story was truly sweet and heartwarming to read❤ When you get the time, check out my story "Fragments of the Past" and let me know what you think. I'd appreciate the feedback :)

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Daine Rodriguez
09:43 Jul 27, 2020

thanks a lot Jade , happy to have brought a smile on your face as you read this. sure i would love to check your story

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Nirosha P
07:43 Jul 27, 2020

l love how you put a moral at the end of the story. It's very true and i support it fully. A touching story. :) PS: Could you check out my story 'Make a decision now'? I would really appreciate feedback :)

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Daine Rodriguez
09:44 Jul 27, 2020

glad that you liked my story . extremely happy and pumped up now to write more . sure i would love to check your story , thanks a lot

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Nandan Prasad
03:35 Jul 26, 2020

Beautiful story! The concept is extremely sweet and heartwarming. The narration is great too. There were a few grammatical mistakes but nothing that cannot be corrected by quick editing. Overall, a wonderful story! Also, would you mind checking out my story if it is not too much trouble? Thanks and good luck!

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Daine Rodriguez
06:34 Jul 26, 2020

thanks a ton !!! oh sure i will and wish you the same

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. .
05:07 Sep 01, 2020

This made me smile

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Daine Rodriguez
00:05 Sep 04, 2020

i am glad that it put a smile on your face

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Maya Reynolds
14:34 Aug 03, 2020

Beautiful story! What a great reminder to always cherish the people in your life. I loved how the man repented of his behavior but then was crushed when he lost his family. There were a few minor grammatical errors, but overall you did a great job!

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Daine Rodriguez
03:29 Aug 04, 2020

glad that you understood the message and enjoyed my story .... i will make sure to check for grammatical errors the next time before posting . thanks a lot for your positive feedback

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Arvi Krish
05:10 Jul 31, 2020

Really nice story! Enjoyed reading it. What you have written is true in real life. Keep on writing :-)

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Daine Rodriguez
09:51 Jul 31, 2020

glad that you enjoyed my story Arvi , yes and it is happening too frequently these days . i want this to set an example for other girls out there ..

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Y N
03:03 Jul 30, 2020

I loved the morals in both of your short stories...Especially this one. Keep writing! Thank you so much for writing such meaningful stories :)))

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Daine Rodriguez
03:29 Jul 30, 2020

happy to know that you liked it and yes i love writing stories like this . i should be the one thanking you for showing your love and support

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Alexi Delavigne
17:45 Jul 27, 2020

Really sweet story with a powerful message. A few places needed some minor edits but the meaning behind the story still shone through :)

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Daine Rodriguez
00:16 Jul 28, 2020

thank you, glad that you liked my stories and yes i will keep in mind to edit my story for a few times before posting it o(* ̄︶ ̄*)o

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PAMELA ABWAO
13:37 Jul 27, 2020

A story with a life lesso Good job

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Daine Rodriguez
15:13 Jul 27, 2020

thanks a lot pamela

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Tvisha Yerra
03:06 Jul 27, 2020

Amazing story, really loved it! As Nandan said, it has a few grammatical errors, so just wanted to point one out for future refernce. This sentence: “Yeah, this is what I wanted”, I spoke to myself. The comma is supposed to be inside the quotes like this: "... wanted," I spoke to myself. Hope this helped!

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Daine Rodriguez
03:59 Jul 27, 2020

okay understood thanks a lot . wont repeat this mistake again

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06:28 Sep 21, 2020

Hey, Daine 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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Daine Rodriguez
03:35 Sep 22, 2020

oh sure Prathamesh i love harry potter and i will check. oh please i am more than happy to check out the video. and thanks hope you enjoyed my story

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08:16 Sep 22, 2020

Yes absolutely thanks

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Deborah Angevin
07:19 Jul 31, 2020

A heartwarming story with powerful message... well-written one, Daine! Would you mind checking my recent story out, "A Very, Very Dark Green"? Thank you!

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Daine Rodriguez
09:52 Jul 31, 2020

glad you liked it Deborah, and sure i will check your story

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16:23 Jul 29, 2020

This was awesome! Oh, and would you mind checking out my story ‘Rebel Prince’? Thanks! Again, nice work!

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Daine Rodriguez
00:17 Jul 30, 2020

glad that you enjoyed sure i would love to check your story

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00:18 Jul 30, 2020

Thanks!

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Sarah Demary
20:32 Jul 28, 2020

This was really good! Thanks for the good read!

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Daine Rodriguez
00:54 Jul 29, 2020

your welcome and thanks for enjoying my story ....

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Daniela D.
01:17 Jul 28, 2020

The overall story gave me a fuzzy feeling. The imagery is amazing and I love how you made it into a life lesson that pulls the emotions. It hits close to home. Well done! ❤

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Daine Rodriguez
03:32 Jul 28, 2020

thanks a lot Daniela , it means a lot to me .....

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Anjali Malik
08:09 Jul 27, 2020

Hey,Daine,hope you are doing good. I read your story and I found it extremely intersting . It was quite good story and just loved it. Hope to see more of your works. Stay blessed😇😇 🖤🖤🖤

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Daine Rodriguez
09:41 Jul 27, 2020

thanks a lot anjali , i am good and hope the same from you . glad that you enjoyed my story . thanks again :)

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Anjali Malik
09:52 Jul 27, 2020

No need😊😊

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Prathamesh Chavan
13:45 Nov 10, 2020

Hii, Daine Sorry to intervene, in this brutal manner, I have a request for you would be kind to give a single glance over the vehicle which my team had been working over months. https://www.instagram.com/p/CHX5VUPBJOp/?igshid=5f72nb3cgg30 Sorry to take your time and If possible like the post.Because this would help team to win

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