Welcoming change

Spencer considered. He could accept his gay son’s donation and endure shame forever. Or uphold his faith—and die as he lived.

He had lived his days arguing, demeaning, and devaluing anyone who challenged his belief. He was the nasty old man everyone avoided.

He hadn’t lived much, though.

As the gates of his heart valves opened to accept blood from the son he’d condemned sinner, Spencer imagined his fellas’ reaction.

“Lord’s gates would close on you!”

But Spencer no longer cared. Despite everything he had done, his son had forgiven him, and Spencer had seen nothing more god like.

Towards nature

Karl hadn’t seen food or sunlight in over a week. His insides curled up in hunger, and the rainforest grew wetter each day, forcing him to stay put.

He’d seen Nature’s darkest side: green. He’d endured dense forests, creepy crawlers, and sleepless nights contemplating if the violet mushrooms scattered on the ground were edible.

He’d wanted to get closer to nature—away from the scorching streets and dehydrating fast food of civilisation. Now he’d give anything to go back, to end it all.

When he couldn’t take it anymore, he ate a mushroom. He lived to regret his life’s decisions.

Inevitable change

“You know I’m right, Beth. This is the only we earn. We won’t survive otherwise. Look around.”

Bethany did. One by one, cubicles emptied every day. Her colleagues were leaving either by choice or by force. It didn’t matter how they left; they left because they had nothing left to do at work.

The Beacon had been glorious once. People woke up excited to read what they had to say about the world. Their opinions were legend, and guest columns envied.

That was before emagazines.

“It’s fine to tailor the facts. That’s what media does.” Mark convinced lead editor, Beth.

Childhood

sheep

“How dare you do such a thing? You irresponsible, senseless, goat!”

She hung her head in silence, listening to her mother’s tirade. It wasn’t the first time, and wouldn’t be the last. She had done the unforgivable. Again. And her mother would teach her a lesson, again. Despite the many punishments for her carelessness, the little shepherdess couldn’t contain the family sheep. She’d try to steal a quick read from her poetry collection, and the sheep would caper, making her the scapegoat.

— — — — —

“Oh, childhood experience,” she reminisced, when her interviewer asked what had inspired her Pulitzer-winning novel, Black Sheep.

A story

He crouched over the parchment, fingers, enveloping a phoenix quill, quivering in agitated uncertainty. A thousand thoughts flooded his mind, creeping doubt attempting to clamber onto his bony frame.

He cleared his throat to help clear his mind. Characters had walked in and out as remnants of a shady past. He’d animated them, but ended up eliminating them altogether. He’d fallen in love with some and out with others, spending days staring at the sky, his mind wandering.

Throat clearing hadn’t helped. Heaving, instead, he dipped his quill in the ink bottle and scribbled, “It was the best of times,”