Facing Reality by Anusuya Kashi

Prompt: Coming Undone l  Word Count: 1200 words l Genre: Drama

Smita bit hard on the end of her pencil, and fixed her gaze on some vague point near the bougainvillea tree. She had seen people doing that when trying to concentrate, as if the mere act of looking pointedly at something would provide an answer.

Smita was due to meet Dr. Asha in an hour. But her poem wasn’t ready yet because her mind refused to cooperate. Of course, she could string together a few sentences with the last words rhyming and technically, it would be poetry. And anyway, Dr. Asha never criticized her, so it was okay. Yet, Smita wanted to try and give expression to at least some of the thoughts that felt so beautiful when they moved around her head.

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Coming Undone by Zita Fogarty

Prompt: Coming Undone | Word count: 1200 | Genre: Adult Fiction

Someone is holding my hand.

I wake up moaning. I haven’t heard that sound before. It seems far away, yet I can feel it forming in my throat.

I struggle to open my eyes. They are stuck together. The lights are bright. My lips are swollen, my mouth dry.

My neck is stiff so I can’t turn to see who it is. But I know it’s Mum. I can smell the gardenia perfume she likes. I sense her stand up, then kiss me on the cheek. She moves around the bed so that her face is directly in front of mine, with a worried look.

You’re awake. She says it more like a question than a statement. Her familiar voice anchors me amidst the foreign surroundings.

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Honesty by Irina Maks

Prompt: Coming undone | Word count: 1200 | Genre: Drama

It’s a cold winter night in a small town. Next to the shore of a beautiful lake in a small wooden house live Chris and Mary. They have been together since college and are married for two years now but they still haven’t got any children. Mary is working as a therapist and Chris is a teacher at the local high school. They have had great days in their marriage but tonight is going to be one of those bad nights that can happen ones in a while.

Chris and Mary are talking quite loudly on the kitchen table. They are both very upset and they have been crying and discussing for a while.

“Please go away, okay?” – says Mary. “This time it’s over. I cannot go through this again. It is too much to bear. Do you understand?”

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Missing moments by Riham Gharib

Prompt: coming undone | Word count: 1200 words | Genre: romantic drama

I didn’t fall apart when my graduation project was deleted a day before due date. I didn’t panic the day I left my seventh job broke and in debt. I kept my head throughout the dreadful fire that broke out in my building. I still go stiff whenever I smell burned wood, but that day I did what I had to do, and when the fire was contained, I resumed studying, there was an important exam the day after and I couldn’t let myself be sidetracked. I didn’t shed a tear when you left me and your son with nothing at all, I actually went to a wedding that day, it was my first assignment, and believe it or not, I handed my clients an amazing album of their memories.

I remember these things now because I am not that person anymore. Today I came undone.

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Scrapyard Sunset by Michael Reyneke

Prompt: Coming undone | Wordcount: 1200 | Genre: Murder Mystery

Gavin Beck adjusted the focus and settings on his tripod mounted camera. Satisfied, he took three photographs of the full moon. He’d done this every half hour from sunset for the last nine hours. He was building a moon rotation for his grandson.

“Damn, it’s cold out here,” he muttered to himself. He unscrewed the camera from the tripod and headed across the darkened garden to the back door.
He got the feeling someone or something watched him. The hairs on the back of his neck and arms bristled. Once or twice since sunset, he felt this sensation. This time it felt violent.

He switched the camera on and changed the setting to automatic with a flash. Beck swung round and took a picture. Or, rather, tried to take a picture. He forgot the delay in the flash, the focus, and the shutter.

In the light of the flash, he saw nothing.

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Escape From GARU by JM Barrie

Prompt: Coming Undone |  Word Count: 1200 | Genre: Memoir

’So, which gulag are you shipping me off to this time?’

My nurse smiled. ‘Not gulag. GARU. It’s the only ward that has a spare bed tonight.’

‘GARU? What’s that?’

‘The Geriatric And Rehabilitation Unit.’

‘You trying to tell me something?’

‘Never.’ She flashed me another brilliant smile. ‘Besides, you know us nurses. We wouldn’t let you go anywhere if we thought you needed to be here. And we wouldn’t ask you to do this if we didn’t need the bed urgently.’

‘I understand, no problems.’

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A New Born Baby by Mia Botha

Prompt: Coming undone | Word count: 1200 words | Genre: Drama, with a dash of crazy

I take off my coat, the room is stifling. “May I?” I ask again, holding my coat up to the hook behind the door.

She is absolutely absorbed, but spares me a glance. “Of course, sorry. It’s better for the baby if it is warm.”

They’re both bundled up in the bed. I move the flower arrangements on the dresser to make some space. My small arrangement looks cheap in all its airport-gift store glory. I smack a helium balloon declaring ‘It’s a girl’ out of the way and shuffle past the bed to the nearest chair. Sweat beads on my brow.

“You look well.” I mumble.

“Thank you, I think motherhood is going to agree with me.” She adjusts the blankets and makes coochy-coo noises at the baby. “How was your flight?”

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Undone on Street by Sarah Muzaffar

Prompt: Coming Undone | Word Count: 1199 | Genre: Drama

He returned again, empty-handed, not as much as a cent in his hand. After an hour’s wait, he showed up nonchalantly.

“I didn’t get anything….nobody gave me anything”, he stammered to her raging glare. “They all shoo me away, what can I do….”

A tight slap across his cheek stopped him. Tears streamed their way on his smoky face.

“You lazy bum, you don’t move your ass around as much, do you! Just that damned traffic signal. That is where you linger about all the time. Who will give you anything there? They are already so hot and angry, waiting at the signal. You think they will even look at you. You have no sense.”

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To Have and To Hold by Kimberley Cooper

Prompt: Coming undone | Word count: 1200 | Genre: Women’s Fiction

“Ready, Dad?”

I look down at my daughter. At that little button nose, those almond shaped eyes, that very special look that told me as soon as she was born that she had Down’s Syndrome. But more than anything I see her ivory satin dress, the lace train, and a perky tiara set on top of her dark curls.

Ready? Is any father ever ready to give his little girl away on her wedding day?

While she waits patiently for my answer, a sob crawls out of my throat. This is a day that twenty five years ago, I never thought would come. I never thought she’d go to college, get a paying job and move out and live independently. And I certainly never thought she’d find the sort of love that led to St Mary’s church.

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MindShift by Annalie Kleinloog

Prompt 6 : Coming Undone | Word Count : 1200 (exactly!) | Genre : Travel Memoir

I should have listened to that little voice.  

I squint into the setting sun. They’re true; those movies depicting deserts as a golden blended haze of sun and sand. My reveling evaporates with the hollow sound of my water bottle. Empty.
“Have you guys got water?”

My croaky question sends a few lizards scrambling. I stare at my two silent friends, realizing the meaning of their non-commitment. Shit!
“We have to turn around,” I say as casually as I can, “we cannot spend the night with no water.”

The rising panic is palpable. But we know. There is only one way, and that is back to the river.

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