201 comments

Fiction Inspirational

She couldn’t do it anymore, she couldn’t drink them, rate them or comment on them. She couldn’t go to their cafes; she couldn’t have biscuits with them and she couldn’t do her job. Why? Because of this imprudent pandemic

As her arm wheeled back, she ran forward and threw the rock as far as possible. Gliding across the bed, the rock skids forward and gets pulled down by his friends into the foam laced waters. No amount of throwing could diminish the pain felt by Emily Gilmore; the overwhelming emotion was excruciating but essential. Her heart has been lost; first Richard and now her job, her world was slowly falling apart.

Memories. These were the sole things she had left; and even these were not adequate for her to regenerate. Memories of her running on the farm; through the plants. The intoxicating smell would submerge her mind and whisper secrets, stories and schemes. Yorkshire: this is the place of her childhood, this is her abode; this is where her dream came from; but that dream is no longer real, it has evaporated just like her ecstasy.

She longed for it: Tea. She craved the relishing aroma bouncing in her mouth; going into the tip of her tongue causing her to salivate; she missed all of it and longed for it to come back, she wanted to go to cafes and review their infusions but she couldn’t.

***

Going past the café she saw it: the sign that said ‘Tea Town’; this was her 50th café of the year. She remembered that day like the back of her hand.

“Can I have one strawberry bubble tea” asked Emily; she knew it was their speciality because this used to be her café; before she became a Tea Taster; and gave it away to Sookie, the Tea Sommelier.  

Penetrating her body, a peculiar brown herb-brew scent engulfed her mind and swarmed her nostrils. Dainty cups and saucers of egg-shell china were grouped about it, cream pots and souvenir spoons held up the sugar, but something wasn’t right, something was unfitting. But this was Sookie; nothing could be improper.

Sipping the tea, she gently took in the hot PUTRID taste; this was appalling. They had made it too sweet; this wasn’t like Sookie to do such a thing. The strawberry taste was saccharine and devastatingly disgusting.

“Where is the Tea Sommelier” demanded Emily.

“At the back” replied the waiter.

“I would like to speak to them” ordered Emily.

“Do they know you?” questioned the waiter.

“Yes, tell them I am the Tea Taster Queen” she answered; just as she said that the waiter looked flabbergasted. “I think you know me as well, be fast I don’t have all day.”

Crashing into the table, the waiter ran at full speed leaving a massive grin on Emily’s face. Well, he definitely knew who I was thought Emily.

Coming out from the back, a ginger haired man appeared; his curled-up moustache made him resemble the Go Compare guy; but this wasn’t Sookie. So, who was it then?

“Good Afternoon, I was wishing to speak to Sookie St. James” questioned Emily.

“Miss, I am afraid to tell you that Sookie is now in London; she is the head chef at a restaurant, I am Mark, the Tea Sommelier.”

Emily was baffled, yes, she was. Her biggest mistake was that she thought people cared for her as much as she does for them; no one likes her, yes NO-ONE; even though she loves them they don’t love her. Sookie didn’t call or even tell her that she was going away and that hurt Emily; that hurt Emily a lot. It hurt her because Sookie mattered to her.

“Can I help you with anything” asked Mark.

“Yes, I have some complains about this tea; first of all, it is too sweet; too sweet is an understatement; because this bubble tea is sickly sweet...”

“Yes ma’am, I will get that sorted out for you” replied Mark.

“I WASN’T FINISHED!” roared Emily “you should’ve done it better the first time; furthermore, when I got it, it was room temperature and you should know that bubble tea should be either piping hot or ice cold.”

“Sorry, I will get you a replacement right away.”

“There will be no need for that; I shall go and give my review” said Emily.

“Everyone makes mistakes and everyone deserves a second chance. Please stay…” replied Mark.

Without even hearing his words she left the café; she couldn’t remain there; it reminds her too much of Sookie. She knew that she had been too harsh but she couldn’t do anything about it now; in her defence the bubble tea was absolutely atrocious.

***

Looking into the café she saw the sign:

Closed due to lockdown

Even though she was seeing this every day in different cafes it still managed to wound her somehow. Throbbing with pain, her heart started beating but with every alternate thump it knocked over a chunk of her cheerfulness.

***

As she walked down the road into an alleyway; she remembered the conversation that she had with her daughter

Whispering in her ear Lorelai – her daughter – was telling her the solution to her problem of not being able to go and test teas; and Emily thought that it was a fabulous idea. 

***

Walking through the alleyway; Emily was overwhelmed with joy. The alleyway of softly reflecting sunbeams forever in the golden hour, be it dawn, noon or evening light. A hug of houses stands as if sentries to the alleyway.

Coming out of the alleyway, her heart skipped a beat and she saw them: yes, she did, she saw all of them all holding pots of tea for her to test; all wearing masks and standing 2 meters away from each other. There was Mark holding a new recipe of bubble tea for Emily to try. Sipping the bubble tea from the plastic cup, it flowed down her throat tremendously, it was sweet but not too sweet and was piping hot; in fact, it was the best bubble tea she ever tasted.

There she was: Sookie: her best friend, with speckles of tears glistening in her eyes.

“I’m so sorry Emily” said Sookie “I should’ve told you, but I thought that you wouldn’t care.”

“I do care; I always care about you” said Emily and hugged Sookie.  

Acknowledging everyone, Emily rated their teas; some were Ginger teas, Chamomiles, Mint teas, and her favourite: Earl Grey Tea; which is also drank by the Royal Family.

Even though it’s not as good as being in the café it was a good compromise. Tea testing is art and art is something to be able to compromise for.

After all tomorrow is another day and who knows what tomorrow will bring.

March 12, 2021 18:11

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201 comments

Akshaya Sutrave
12:39 Mar 15, 2021

Hi Palak! I really like this story!! The concepts and the descriptions are really well written and I enjoyed reading it!! Also, I know these characters! Is your story based off on a TV Show? That's a cool idea! :)

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Palak Shah
16:50 Mar 15, 2021

Thank you so much for your feedback Yes, the names are based off Gilmore Girls (my favourite show!!).

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Akshaya Sutrave
03:04 Mar 16, 2021

No problem! That's so awesome!! I love that show, too!! Especially all the characters and witty dialogue that goes on there!! You're the very first person I'm seeing who likes the show too!

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Palak Shah
18:21 Mar 16, 2021

I am obsessed with the show. I love Lorelai and Rory; they are the best duo ever. Yeah same, you are also one of the first people who I know who likes the show :))

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Akshaya Sutrave
10:16 Mar 17, 2021

I'm too! Have you watched all the episodes? I'm still somewhere in season 6. Yess!! I love their unity! :))

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Palak Shah
16:48 Mar 17, 2021

No I haven't, I am somewhere at around episode 5 on Season 6. I really want Rory to go back to Yale; ugggggg its soooooo annoying !!!! I also love Lorelai and Luke; they are the best couple ever :))

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Palak Shah
14:35 Apr 18, 2021

Yh I haven't watched it in around 2 weeks as I have some exams going on but I think I might watch it today lol :)) I have near,y finished the series as but I have taken so long on it :))

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Akshaya Sutrave
10:42 Apr 20, 2021

Awesome! It's been a long time for me too! And all the best on your exams! :)) But it isn't as long as me lol. I've been watching since July I think! I rushed through 5 seasons in two months but then it kinda went downhill :) XD

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Palak Shah
19:10 Apr 20, 2021

Thank you so much :)) Yeah same, for the first few seasons I watched them really fast, and then I can't even finish one season in a month.

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Akshaya Sutrave
14:33 May 16, 2021

Np! How did they go? Me too! I'm still in season 6 and I need to catch up!

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Palak Shah
14:59 May 16, 2021

I am on a year in life now and I have watched around 2 episodes so I am nearly finished. Btw something amazing happens at the end of season 7 and you will have conflicted feelings about Rory's decision :))

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16:00 Mar 14, 2021

wow- this felt very realistic in the sense that it seems like such a simple task but you portrayed Emily's struggles very well. It was beautifully written and an interesting read to follow Emily's struggles, right to the very end. Great story Palak, and I intend on reading more of your stories soon!!! <3

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Palak Shah
16:48 Mar 15, 2021

Thank you so much Luna, this means a lot and this comment has just made my day :))

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17:10 Mar 15, 2021

:)<3

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Arya ...
03:08 Mar 14, 2021

It's such a sweet story. A struggling sommelier during lockdown. Damn! I'd have never thought of this subject. Great story! ❤

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Palak Shah
15:51 Mar 14, 2021

Thanks for your feedback and thanks for reading my story :))

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19:24 Mar 13, 2021

Really nice and heart felt story! The ending was very sweet! Gj!

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Palak Shah
02:54 Mar 14, 2021

Thanks Starry for your feedback :))

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03:23 Mar 14, 2021

Np! :D

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Lucia :)
18:28 Mar 13, 2021

This. Is. So. Cooooool!!! I love the detail and the characterssssss ps is the riddle answer "an apple a day keeps the doctor away"

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Palak Shah
02:57 Mar 14, 2021

Thank you so much Timber. I have given you a shoutout in my bio :))

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Lucia :)
19:39 Mar 14, 2021

Ahh I'll check it out!! :)

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Wow, great take on this prompt Palak. I really enjoyed this and how the character develops throughout the story. Tea tasting is such a simple thing, and yet the way you wrote it and connected it to the pandemic was very well done. I also love the Gilmore girl names, if that was an intended reference:) Amazing job, you should be proud. ~Alainna

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Palak Shah
17:38 Mar 13, 2021

Thanks you so much Alainna for your feedback. It is wonderful. Well done for spotting the names; you are the first one to have spotted them. That was an intended reference because I absolutely love the show. :)) Who is your favourite character ??

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Of course, You did a great job, I love the show too:) Im not sure, all the characters are so good, but probably Luke, but it's so hard to pick cause I love Jess, Rory, and Loralie as well. What about you, who is your favorite? ~Alainna

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Palak Shah
18:23 Mar 13, 2021

Thanks Yeah my favourites are of course Rory, Luke, Lorelei, Jess (maybe), Logan (maybe), Lane and so many more I can't think of the top of my head :))

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Oh yes, those are all great choices:) ~Alainna

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Palak Shah
16:48 Mar 17, 2021

How about you, who are your favourite characters ?

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Adventurous Mihi
14:40 Mar 13, 2021

Awesome

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Palak Shah
14:51 Mar 13, 2021

Thank you :))

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Pratik Bhandari
13:45 Mar 13, 2021

Superb as always

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Palak Shah
14:13 Mar 13, 2021

Thank you so much :))

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Zahra Daya
04:04 Mar 13, 2021

Alsooo..from your bio...an apple a day keeps the doctor away lol - Z

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Palak Shah
13:29 Mar 13, 2021

Yay, well done. I have given you a shoutout in my bio :))

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Zahra Daya
04:03 Mar 13, 2021

Oo, I really liked this story, well done Palak! I love how we could really see your background knowledge of teas coming forth in this story, you definitely know your stuff - well done! - Z

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Palak Shah
13:30 Mar 13, 2021

Thank you so much Zahra. I am so glad that you liked it.

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Palak Shah
22:34 Mar 12, 2021

Aww thanks Carolina I will definitely pass it on

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Arwen Dove
21:25 Apr 26, 2021

This is brilliant!

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Palak Shah
15:16 Apr 27, 2021

Thank you so much :))

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Arwen Dove
20:21 Apr 27, 2021

:)

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Mazie Gray
12:45 Apr 24, 2021

Hey, Palak! The way that the whole story revolved around tea was an interesting and amazing way to write a story. I feel that you've encompassed Emily's emotions so well that the reader (AKA me) could feel the way she felt. Everyone has lost something during the lockdown, so it was wonderful that you incorporated that into your writing. There is only one critique that I have: At the end of dialogue, always end with a comma. For example, "'I do care; I always care about you' said Emily and hugged Sookie." After "you", there should be a comma...

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Palak Shah
13:29 Apr 24, 2021

Thank you so much Brooke for your wonderful feedback and I will make sure of that :))

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Mazie Gray
15:31 Apr 24, 2021

My pleasure! ^^

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Palak Shah
17:39 Apr 24, 2021

:)) How are you?

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Mazie Gray
22:05 Apr 24, 2021

Great! How are you?

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Palak Shah
09:58 Apr 25, 2021

I am good. Read anything interesting lately ??

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Mazie Gray
22:07 Apr 24, 2021

Also, would you mind leaving feedback on Brooke D.'s most recent story, "The House That Built Me"? It is a wonderful story. :)

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Palak Shah
09:58 Apr 25, 2021

Yh I will, thanks for letting me know !!!

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Samantha Langley
12:32 Apr 14, 2021

The answer to the riddle is piano if I'm not too late!

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Palak Shah
14:37 Apr 14, 2021

Yep that is right, I have given you a shoutout in my bio !!!

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Samantha Langley
14:56 Apr 14, 2021

Thanks!

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Palak Shah
15:01 Apr 14, 2021

:))

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Samantha Langley
15:16 Apr 14, 2021

:)

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Zahra Daya
00:19 Apr 10, 2021

Hey Palak! Congrats on 50+ likes on this story! If you are available, would you mind checking out a recent story I just posted? Thanks!!

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Palak Shah
11:29 Apr 10, 2021

Thank you so much Zahra :)) I am going there right now !!!

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09:48 Apr 08, 2021

Great story well done

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Palak Shah
10:03 Apr 08, 2021

Thanks :))

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21:12 Apr 02, 2021

Very good story, thank you for sharing.

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Palak Shah
12:17 Apr 04, 2021

Thank you so much for your feedback :))

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18:43 Apr 02, 2021

hello! In answer to your riddle: since it's a one story house, there is no stairs. ;)

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Palak Shah
12:16 Apr 04, 2021

Yay well done !!! I have given you a shoutout in my bio :))

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21:09 Apr 04, 2021

thanks!!! thank youuuuu :)

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Palak Shah
11:53 Apr 05, 2021

:))

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22:30 Apr 05, 2021

:D

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Mazie Gray
14:48 Apr 02, 2021

Answer to your riddle: It's a one-story house, so there's no stairs.

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Palak Shah
15:46 Apr 02, 2021

Yh well done. I have given you a shoutout in my bio !!!

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Mazie Gray
16:07 Apr 02, 2021

Yay! Thank you!

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Palak Shah
12:12 Apr 04, 2021

:))

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Cathryn V
17:09 Apr 01, 2021

Hi Palak You have some good lines in this story : with every alternate thump it knocked over a chunk of her cheerfulness. I see you have beaucoup comments already, so I’ll just say keep writing!

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Palak Shah
17:11 Apr 01, 2021

Thank you so much for your feedback Cathryn :))

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