For Sale

It is believed the worst kind of suffering to be uncertainty. Humans prefer a bitter truth to having to face the fear of not knowing. The emotional roller coaster, so to speak. People want to know, even if it means breaking their own hearts, over and over again, with the inevitability of their fate. They want to know.

This is why people called Taissa and asked for an appointment. She’d tell them she was busy until the end of the year. They’d beg and promise and… she’d finally agree to half an hour just before dawn or a lunch break in a shopping mall. They knew she knew. They wanted to know what she knew.

Taissa could predict the future.

Sort of. Continue reading

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Dome: Episode One

A heartbreaking portrayal of ambition, betrayal, and intrigue, Dome is a serialized Science-Fiction Thriller that tells the story of a small group of people who try to figure out the reason behind the construction of this dome-city in the center of the world’s harshest continent.

Prologue

For a man who knows that our worst nightmares are about to come true, Jack Riddell has no trouble sleeping at night. “It is said that Caesar wept when he found out about Pompey’s death.”

“What’s that got to do with anything?” the host of the show, a woman in her mid-thirties, asks. For the last hour or so, the richest man in the world has avoided giving her a straight answer.

Jack laughs. “A man’s character is determined by how he reacts in the face of adversity. By how strong his enemies are.” Ignoring the dumbfounded expression of the host, he adds, “I believe people should realize Dome is a simple reminder that we can fight against insurmountable odds and win.” Continue reading

Lucky You

The odds of being born in any given day are about 0,27%. Of course, certain days are different than others, due to religious, cultural, or practical reasons. That’s why the odds of being born on Christmas Day are 0.0022%.

I was born on Christmas Day.

***

You ever hear the expression: “Karma’s a bitch?”

I know, I know. Such a terrible cliche. But it’s kind of true. I never met her, but I can tell you that “bitch” is the best possible definition of karma.

Fate. Destiny.

Fate fortunes the bold, the Romans would say.

It does. But she also screws them over, in ways no one could ever possibly imagine.

Like the ancient gods of Greece.

Like the way Zeus screwed mortal men and especially women for centuries.

You know, in that witty and cruel manner that makes you wonder if gods were ever on our side. Continue reading

The Sea

Beautiful butterfly. So precious, so fragile. Its wings colored in orange, red, white and black. With a determination worthy of heroes, the little creature kept flapping its wings, flying with the strong wind that blew from the sea.

Charaxes brutus natalensis. A species that didn’t belong on that continent. But that was a miracle no one noticed. How it got there, a question no one bothered to ask.

Ships were coming to port. The sky had turned grey, covered with a curtain of angry clouds and a bizarre tension hovered in the air, making the sailors nervous. It was going to start raining soon. The old ones could feel it in their rattling bones. Continue reading

Crossroads

His chest felt heavy, his legs tired. Dead leaves rustled under his feet. Nailed to the sky, the moon’s sardonic smile quivered among a cluster of cold stars. His body just a coffin for his soul, Robert seemed to take every footstep with infinite precaution, as if fearing that the dirt road would swallow his feet.

On each side, pine trees stood tall. Ancient guardians.

“Though I walk through the Valley of the Shadow of-” he tried to recite, but was interrupted by hounds barking somewhere in the distance. Long, reverberating shivers of sounds that seemed to had spawned from hell itself bashed against his ears. His black skin glistened with sweat; droplets shuddered down from his hairline to his eyebrows, down his temples. The skin of his neck burned, hot. His eyes glimmered in the dark void, hopelessly trying to peer through that endless ocean of fear and agony. He pressed the guitar to his chest, his long arms forming a desperate embrace around the black wood. The sharp smell of lacquer flooded his nose.

Robert was so young. He would have liked to believe that all this was just the terrible lethargy of a nightmare, but it wasn’t because he could smell the fresh and clean scent the trees around him emanated.

 

When he reached the spot where the road that led to Dockery Plantation and the one that led to Clarksdale met, he sighed. A small lamp hung from a wooden street sign, and a bench overlooked both roads. He turned around – a sinuous and dark pathway slowly dissolved into the night.

He stood there for a long time. Then he began to stagger his way toward the bench.

With his guitar resting in his lap, he took a deep breath, the cool air making its way down his throat with a prolonged hiss, and then he began to sing a lullaby, his hands drumming on the guitar. Above, a comet was cutting through the black sky like a knife, its bluish tail shining bright.

His singing was cut short by hounds barking. He gulped. His heart throbbing inside his chest, he rummaged through his mind for a bit of clarity, for a bit of strength, but couldn’t find any. It was as if someone was walking toward him, a vague perception hinted by the shadows that danced on the ground around him. His body froze as he could now clearly hear footsteps, growing stronger and stronger. A gust of wind rattled all the ghosts that resided inside his soul. Twigs fluttered spasmodically and screeched as if possessed by a demon.

“Where are the others?” A deep voice killed the silence and shattered into a million pieces inside his head. Robert closed his eyes. His shoulders shuddered. This was all just a dream.

When he opened them, he saw a puny man sitting beside him on the bench. The man’s eyes were a strange grey, a color he had seen many times before in his nightmare. He wore a black trench coat that came all the way down to his knees.

“Where are the others?” the man repeated, staring intensely back at Robert.

“What others?”

A frown flickered across the man’s pale face. “Others. Like you. There should have been more tonight.”

Robert rubbed the sweat off his eyebrows and forehead.

The man leaned forward and fixed his gaze on Robert’s eyes. Deep wrinkles traversed his forehead. He caressed his chin with his tiny fingers.

“Can you see my soul?” Words struggled to come out of Robert’s mouth.

The man didn’t bother to answer. He pointed toward the guitar. “This is what you want?”

Robert nodded.

The man took the guitar from his shaking hands and placed it on his lap. A lifetime of agony passed between two heartbeats. The man tuned the guitar with care, and then he began to play. His hands were performing such an intricate choreography, making the chords cry underneath his small, white as bone fingers that a tear formed in the corner of Robert’s eye and lingered there for a moment.

As the painful melody sent ripples through the night, the man stared hollowly at the dirt road that stretched toward Clarksdale. A long time passed, with Robert hopelessly rubbing life back into his arms and shoulders.

Then the song stopped. The man glanced at Robert with his ash colored eyes and smiled.

“Thank you,” Robert whispered as the man handed him the guitar back. “How’s this going to…” he muttered, his fingers caressing the chords. A sharp pain pierced through his fingers and travelled upward through every fiber of his body. His soul fell into a deep abyss, and his heart began to boil inside his chest. He felt that he couldn’t breathe, that air couldn’t make its way down to his lungs. He closed his eyes and began to play vividly, his hands shaking in despair. Soon the fire in his body and limps dissolved, and he opened his eyes, his eyes as black as tar – they were void of any light. Empty and cold.

The other man stood on the street a few feet away from him, with his hands tucked in his pockets. “What’s your name?” he asked and grinned, revealing yellow, crooked teeth. His grey eyes shone bright.

A faint breeze quivered around their bodies. The two dirt roads that collided underneath their feet glowed in the shy light of the lamp. A weak heartbeat tried to keep an empty body alive.

And the black man said, “Robert, sir. Robert Johnson.”

***

This short story is a part of The Writer. Find out more here.

Love at first sight

He enters the waiting room, sees all the other patients eagerly waiting to be called into the doctor’s office. They all nod in that peculiar manner; they are here because of necessity, rather than choice. He sits on the only available chair and takes out his cell phone. It’s so warm inside that he has to struggle not to yawn.

But then he looks up and sees her.

It’s always such a shock to see someone beautiful in places you wouldn’t expect to see anything of importance. Continue reading

Que sera, sera

It is said that when God glued the stars to the heavens, He already knew man would be His ultimate creation. To be created in His image. So God chose to write man’s fate in the stars. All that would happen, all the forces that would build or crush man’s dreams, all the moments of doubt, joy, or sorrow. All the tears, of all kinds. Everything, written in the stars. Everything, to be guarded by the most beautiful of angels.Que sera, sera.

Whatever will be, will be. What’s meant to happen, will happen. Whether we want to or not.

The strange coincidences that shape the course of our lives are drawn against the night sky. You can almost decipher everything in the coldest and darkest nights. You can almost see your future, glued against the dark silence.
Whatever will be, will be.

And no man can ever do anything about it.
The planets align themselves.

The Universe serves you. Or does anything in its powers to crush you.

What is meant to happen, will happen.
Every single thing happens for a reason.
There’s no chaos, only order. One we don’t understand; one we sometimes don’t even desire. One that we despise.

But eventually we’ll see all that is written in the stars, and we’ll understand.

And, yet, it is also said that after He made man, in His image, God wasn’t pleased. Something was missing. His Adam seemed to be empty on the inside.
And then God, in His infinite wisdom and power, gave man the freedom of choice.

Adam was allowed to be the master of his fate, the creator of his destiny.

Whatever will be, will be.

Or maybe not.