You Let Her Go

She laughed even when she didn’t want to. She didn’t cry even if she wanted to.

She decided to give everything up for you. Her plans, her preferences, her loyalties. She could be happy any which way. So why not be happy for making you happy.

She didn’t ask for much. But then again, it never occurred to her to do so. She didn’t want things to be different. She didn’t want you to be different.

But you decided it wasn’t enough. She was exactly what you had dreamed of, but she had to be exactly like you had dreamed. To sculpt her into that goddess of your dreams, that was all you wanted. Without realizing that dreams flit away the moment once you awaken from your slumber; but by then, it was too late.

You had let her go.

And she, the creature of sacrifice, the goddess from your dreams, decided you were right. Once again.

So she didn’t even look back once. And you – you let her go.

Inspired by the lyrics of “You Let Her Go – Passenger”


He looked out the window, mesmerized as always.

The moon was right where it always was: nestled between the two mountains as it cascaded down as a waterfall right into the river below.

The river which was the lifeblood of his people. Without the moon and its light and its magic river, they were nothing.

And mesmerized by this glorious sight, he suddenly began wondering. Where does the moon get its power from? What is the…- no, no! He looked away and drew the curtains, shutting off the glow.

His heart thudded loudly in his chest and his breathe became shortened.

What had he almost done? He must not think this. Not at all!

Memories of stories came back to him now. Told in whispers in the shadows. Horrific tales of how fiercely such matters were dealt with.

These kinds of thoughts were not tolerated and they always found out. That was their sole job, to protect the lifeblood of this people. At all costs. With their lives if necessary and anyone else’s when required. And they were good at it.

Too good.

He closed his eyes and sank to his knees, leaning against the wall for support. There was a sudden metallic taste in his mouth – there was no place to hide.

From either the thoughts or them.

Guardian Angel

Sometimes, all she had to do was wish for it. Wish for it and think about it and it would happen.

Just look at Billy sprawled on the pavement near her. Thank you my guardian angel, she thought. Now he’d obviously think twice about yanking any little girl’s pigtails. If he ever got up again, that is.

For some reason, it looked to her as if Billy would now forever be asleep.

Oh, well. Good riddance. He had begun to annoy her a lot.

With that, she skipped on towards home, looking forward to her spaghetti supper that her mom had promised her.

The Princess and The Pea

Princess Amelia lay down to sleep, savoring the day.

She recalled the details with delight. And why wouldn’t she? It wasn’t everyday that one was crowned a princess!

She had been unable to sleep the night before. The small rectangle of light coming from the slightly-ajar door was comforting. As were the shadows that flitted across it a few times. She knew she was safe.

Yet, something disturbed her and she had kept tossing and turning all night.

The next morning, Madame Orth had loudly bustled into the room at the first hint of dawn, followed closely by the dainty Monsieur Befort. They both seemed very pleased as they called out to her to rise and shine. She could barely open her eyes and wasn’t able to suppress a yawn.

Both the adults beamed at her and told her all about how she was a princess!

They were sorry for her lack of rest but the night had been a small test. Her restlessness proved that she was the lost princess. They had been searching for her for years and now they had finally found her. They were so, so happy. What a good turn of fate! The gods were smiling on them for returning the true princess of the kingdom to them!

But they mustn’t dally. Oh no, there was no time. They had so much to do! Come on, up, up, up!

And before she could take another breathe, she was whisked off for a tour and an introduction to everyone and to bathe and have her hair done and her face made up and dress. She went up the stairs and she went down the stairs. She shook hands and she curtsied (after Madame showed her how it’s done). She held in her stomach as they tightened a corset around her waist. The soles of her feet hurt as she was made to try on dress after dress after dress and walk in heels as high as she was herself!

Madame finalized a mauve dress for her, offset with lots of pearls and diamonds. The clothes felt luxuriant against her skin and made up for how uncomfortable her hairdo and shoes were and the jewelry scratched her.

She was really grateful once the feast was underway. Now all she had to do was sit in the high chair in the middle of the room and observe the festivities.

Everything around her twinkled immaculately, including the guests. As Madame introduced them, they deferentially bowed to her. Raised their glasses and toasted the return of their princess.

Her heart had thudded really loudly in her chest when the time came for the crowning. The ceremony otherwise was boring, with lots of chanting. She barely heard a word; her eyes were riveted on the tiara sparkling in front of her.

Oh, that was her favorite part, the way it twinkled in the light! And she was sure she shone with it!

She sighed contentedly and settled deep into her soft bed, trying to find the perfect position.

First she turned to her right. No. It doesn’t feel right. So she shifted to her left. Nope.

Hmm. Maybe she should try lying straight on her back. Arms crossed on her chest. Or maybe arms up behind her head? She could just tilt her head a little. Okay, what about on her stomach?

But no matter what she did, Princess Amelia could not settle in.

She had been unable to sleep the night before. The door was closed today and no “comforting” rectangle of light reached her. No shadows flitted across the room. She knew she was safe.

At least, she felt safe.

But in her heart, she knew.

Tonight was also a test and something disturbed her but it was not the pea.

It was not the pea and she didn’t know what to do. It was simple, she had thought.

Only now she realized it wasn’t as simple as that. And now, it was too late…

So she kept tossing and turning all night.

The Princess and the Pea

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She turned away and went inside the kitchen, muttering. Banged a pot on the counter and started chopping up some carrots, her anger still bubbling.

One of these days, he would be the death of her. Chop. A good for nothing burden. Chop. How much longer will I have to suffer?

Tears blurred her vision. She slammed the knife down and tried to regain her composure.

She knew she shouldn’t have but she had lost control. Broken her vow. Only this time, she hadn’t used her hands. She had just thrown a plate at him. It had hit him squarely on the forehead, leaving a welt, and then clanged dully to the floor.

He didn’t say anything or cry out. He just looked at her and his eyes said it all. Her anger burned away her concern though. Yeah, you’re hurt. Pssh. So she had turned away.

Now in the quiet, she heard the door closing.


In two steps, she was at the door. The street was very dark and very empty. Right and left.

The world began spinning. He had left? Her legs felt weak and she tasted bile; she had to lean against the doorpost for support.

And then she heard a rustle behind her.

“Amma…,” he said.

He was right behind her. Right here! Not out on the streets somewhere. Or lost or dead.

The welt and his eyes both shone red.

With tears in her eyes, she rushed towards him, kissed his welt; held him in a death grip so that the smell of his sweat enveloped her.

Never. Never! Oh God, forgive me!

He was a retard but he was her retard.

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