Daily Prompt: Perplexed

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Perplexed


He was perplexed.

There was the old go-to needle and thread.  There was also the hole puncher.  Not forgetting the stapler.  But his hand hovered over the paperclip.  Paperclip it is, he thought.  Got to sharpen it first though.  

He picked up the metallic paperclip and used a sandpaper to taper the ends until it was sharp, capable of puncturing through most anything.  Finally satisfied, he turned to the woman on the chair at the far end of the room.  She was bound by her hands and legs with rope as tight as could be.  She tried to wiggle free but the knots were securely fasten.  This wasn’t his first rodeo.  Tears spilt down her cheeks.  Tape over her mouth.

He smirked as he approached her, modified paperclip in hand.  “Now, let’s see about keeping that mouth shut, shall we?”

Daily Prompt: Elegant

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily prompt: Elegant


Source: Wall Devil

She brushed lint off his dinner jacket and adjusted the tie that she’d picked out for him, it was cerulean and matched his eyes. She smoothed his hair off his face and gave him a tender smile. Pressing her cheek to his temple, she whispered, “I just want someone who will never stop choosing me.” She got up and left him seated on the bench in the park where they’d had their first date, when she knew that he’d be her forever after.

Fifteen minutes later, the law enforcement officers arrived after responding to an anonymous tip. They immediately spotted him on the bench, dressed to the nines with a silver letter opener sticking out from his chest. As they went about securing the scene of the crime, they all agreed that he was the most elegant-looking corpse they’d ever seen.

Daily Prompt: Cake (or Three Cakes at 19)

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Cake



Cake No. 1

It was my 19th birthday.  I was sitting on my bed; silently counting the minutes till I turn 19; an age that I thought was practically ancient at the time. One of my roommates had gone out of the room; she did it so stealthily that I didn’t even know she wasn’t there until I looked around and found her gone. Another roommate was sitting at her desk not doing much of anything while the third was on her bed across the room from mine.  She kept looking up at me from her add maths textbook, then at our roommate who was idling at her desk, then at the door, and finally back at me.  Something was up, I just wasn’t sure what it was.

It was 12 midnight when the idling roommate sprang up from her desk and skipped to the door.  I thought it odd at the time because I didn’t hear a knock at the door. The lights went out suddenly and I was just about to say, “Hey…” when the door swung open and Ninja Roommate, came in with a cake with all 19 candles lit, which made the cake look like it was on fire.  Behind my Ninja Roommate were the rest of the girls and they were singing Happy Birthday as they walked towards me.  I felt tears well in my eyes as I leaned down to blow out all the candles. So many candles. The girls and I ate cake and yakked.  They also tried to shove my face into the cake.  Cheeky.

Cake No. 2

It’s the evening of my birthday, and Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum brought me out for dinner at a Chinese coffeeshop on the way to our ‘favourite’ supermarket, Warta. Then after, they led me back to one of the classrooms in the academic block and this time, the guys had arranged a little get together where another cake was waiting. Yay! Cake! Predictably enough, I had another close encounter with the cake. Not much cake was eaten as everyone decided to get in on the action and smear everyone else with cake. Unfortunately, no photographic evidence exists of that messy activity. Darn.

Cake No. 3

It’s nearing the end of my 19th birthday. I returned to the hostel and found cake No. 3 waiting. I squealed in delight, beyond delirious to have so many cakes in one day.  My squeals soon turned into groans as I was faced with the dilemma of eating yet another cake. I looked at the cake and at my stomach and thought Nope, I don’t think anymore cake can fit in me tonight. In the end though, I cut the tiniest slice of cake ever known to mankind, had a taste and sent the cake on a tour of as many rooms as possible. Cake for everyone!

I went to sleep that night – happy, full of cake, 19.

Daily Prompt: Shiver

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Shiver



The hair prickled on the back of my neck. I fought to remain calm; continued walking.

An excruciatingly sweet scent assailed me. I battled the urge to vomit; refrained from looking behind.

The Pontianak, the spirit of a woman who died violently during childbirth, hovered behind me. I held my hands around my stomach in protection.

Harsh breathing pierced my ears. Sticky, warm on my skin. I recoiled.

I strode faster. The path dark and the winds cold. I shivered.

One more step towards light and safety, I smiled…

…then froze. Cold hands around my throat; extinguishing life.

Goodbye daughter.

Daily Prompt: Fierce

In response to the Daily Prompt’s Daily Post: Fierce



The sea was fierce the day we made the attempt but we were on a schedule. “Moderate waves with fairly frequent white horses,” the Offshore Installation Manager told us, “My guys will monitor the sea conditions. If it gets worse, I’ll instruct the boat to turn back.”

It was early morning, we stepped onto the transfer basket, our bags and safety helmets secured in the designated space in the centre. We clutched the ropes tightly, positioning ourselves on opposite sides for stabilisation. The bosun’s walkie-talkie crackled. He lifted it to his ear and gave us the thumbs up. The crane lifted us up above the platform, swung us out gently so that we hovered for a minute above the South China Sea. My hair tied into a ponytail was whipping back and forth. The smell of exhaust fumes from the crane seemed out of place here, far out at sea. The both of us looked across to one another and grinned as we savoured the view. Then we were lowered, the basket swaying slightly, to the tug boat waiting below which was bobbing a little too much for my liking.

The basket landed on the boat with a soft thud and I let out the breath I didn’t know I was holding. When we stepped off the basket and onto the deck of the tug boat, I asked her why she was grinning earlier while we dangled probably twenty stories above the rough water. I licked salt water from my lips while she re-arranged her tudung which had gone askew. “I looked at you, and then thought to myself how in the heck I ended up here!” She exclaimed, laughing. I joined her in laughter, nudged her shoulder and told her I was thinking the same thing.

Then we sat back, held tight and let the wind snatch away our fears and worries that day.

Daily Prompt: Ghost

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Ghost


Source: Getty Images

You find yourself outside, in the rain but you can’t remember how you got there. Did you walk along the broken sidewalk which had weeds erupting from the cracks? Or did you come out of the warmly lit building behind you? You feel cold seep through your wet garments. You glance down and see you’re wearing a pale yellow dress. You think it’s pretty.

Oh yes, you’re standing in the rain.

Somehow, you know that you should look for shelter before you catch a cold. Did your mother tell you that? You try to remember but all you encounter is wool and pain irradiates from deep within your skull. You stop trying to remember and the pain recedes.

You hear a noise to your left and turn. A large man is coming your way. He’s looking down at the phone he has in his right hand, his left hand is carrying a briefcase. If he doesn’t look up soon, he’ll barrel into you. You try to move out of his path but your movement is sluggish. Your feet feels like lead when you try to lift them off the pavement. You shout out but no sound emerges from your lips so you hold out your right arm to ward him off. He still doesn’t look up. You close your eyes and brace yourself.


He didn’t bump into you. Maybe he stopped. You open your eyes to look. Just in time to see his left foot leave the outline of your body.

Daily Prompt: Maybe

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Maybe



Maybe this time, he’ll be the one who arrives early and has to wait patiently, making uncomfortable small talk with the wait staff before she arrives. Hopefully this time, he’ll remember her name when he asks her for her number.

Maybe this time, during dinner, he’ll be able to stifle his yawns and not confess that the reason he’s tired was because he played Dance Revolution the entire day before their date. Maybe this time, she won’t forget his name when they say their goodbyes.

Maybe this time, he won’t spend the entire dinner talking about his obsession with protein shakes and the number of hours he spends at the gym. Perhaps he’ll also allow her to share a little about what she likes to do for fun. After all, she’s been told that she’s interesting and would like the opportunity to have her date think so too.

Maybe this time, her date won’t snigger at nothing in particular and mumble under his breath as he peruses the menu and suddenly exclaiming “This menu is different from the one I found online!” snigger snigger “Now, I don’t know what to order!” snigger snigger

Maybe this time, there’ll be sparks and a potentially happy ever after.

“Oh my God, this restaurant looks SO Japanese! I love it!” Her date says, waving his hands around.

“That’s because we’re in a Japanese restaurant,” she replies, counting the minutes till the end.

Or, maybe not.


Daily Prompt: Clock

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Clock


Banana Trees at Night, Melanie Peter

You look out the window and see her.

You’ve been seeing her everyday for the past 10 days. You pick up your notebook, write today’s date in a hastily designed spreadsheet, mark the next column with an ‘X’, turn to look at the clock on your nightstand and scribble ‘6:57pm’. In a dedicated column for Notes, you add “Standing next to banana tree, head down, clothing the same, hair the same”.

You want to talk to her but you don’t know if you should. Talking is harmless, you try to convince yourself, plus a window pane separates the both of you. Your mother would freak out though if she knew what was going through your mind.

“Stay indoors during sunrise and sunset. Don’t go out. In your state, you’ll attract all the unwanted things.” This was the first thing your mother said to you when you showed up at her house 6-months pregnant with two pieces of luggage, two angry cats and no husband. After that, she’d said “You stay in your old room.” Since then, the both of you hardly spoke.

On your first day, the silence was welcoming. On the second day, loneliness begin to overwhelm you. Your mother’s house is in the village she grew up in, 30 kilometers from Kuching. At the 17th mile mark. The house is surrounded by jungle and on a calm day, the only sounds you hear are the endless rustling of leaves and a cacophony of insect calls. You’re used to the sounds of traffic and the television, these are sounds you’re comfortable with. The sounds of nature feels completely alien.

It was the evening of the second day when you first saw her. Your old room is on the second floor and two of its four walls have windows, one facing the front of the house and the other to the right, overlooking the road that leads into the village. Next to that road, the plants and trees grow wild, the land not belonging to anyone from the village. Wild ferns propagate like grass and you’ve seen children from the village pick them, the basket they carry on their backs overflowing. Banana trees grow in abundance on that small tract of land too but the fruit are always left to rot. Even the banana hearts, which are a delicacy, were left undisturbed. You never thought to ask your mother why this was so. Even if you did, you’d probably not get an answer. So, you continue to contemplate the fate of the banana trees.

It was 6:15pm and the sun was setting, you still need to remind yourself that the sun rises and sets earlier here in East Malaysia compared to the West. You were looking out of your bedroom window and caught a flash of white among the banana trees. You focus, forcing yourself not to blink and you see it again. This time, the flash of white grew larger and larger until you can make out its shape – a person. A person with flowing, raven locks, dressed in white. Your heart beats faster and your eyes widen. You want to look away in case the figure looks up and catches you looking at it/ her/ him but you cannot move. You’re rooted at the window, your eyes looking down.

Don’t look up. Don’t look up. Don’t look up.

After 5 minutes (or maybe it was 30 seconds though you read somewhere that when someone is in the grip of fear, 1 second can feel like a minute), you realise that the figure was not doing anything, it/ she/ him did not look up. You feel your pulse slow down and fear recede. You continue looking though, just in case. In the next blink, the whiteness of its clothing, shimmered and shrunk until the person is no longer there. You put your hand to your belly and feel the baby kick. For those few minutes, while you’re transfixed by the figure in white, you’d forgotten that you had another life inside you. Strange. Sad. Relieved.

You want to tell your mother about what you saw but stop yourself. She wouldn’t understand. She wouldn’t understand that what you saw didn’t frighten you, even though it did at first. Instead, it/she/him left you curiously at peace.

Daily Prompt: #Carefree

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Carefree



She was fearless and carefree. Confidence and worldliness oozed from her pores, drawing all the boys toward her. She’s not like anyone you’ve ever known. She’s the you that you wish you could be. A little push, not quite a shove, as she stood too close to the edge of the roof and now you’re the carefree one.

Daily Prompt: Feast

In response to the Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Feast


Beatrice lounged in her private cabana by the hotel pool, her eyes concealed behind vintage Chanel sunglasses. She drank in the sight before her, of young men and women, their bodies firm and lithe, frolicking in the crystal clear water. Their heart beats thundered in her ear, their scent, a mingling of perfume, perspiration, desperation, entranced her olfactory glands. The plethora of stimuli caused her canines to elongate. It had been too long since her last feeding but now before her was a feast of flesh and blood. Beatrice caught the eye of one of the young men, dark-haired, strapping. Perfect. She crooked her finger and he strutted towards her. She was famished.