Ananya · Black, White Noise, Dust & Onion

Black and white by Ananya

The topic of this month was to write something utilizing at least 3 of the following words: White Noise, Black, Dust, Onion.

All you hear is a mixture of odd echoes. One sounds like an intense screech, one like nails scraping a wall, one like a clash of metal on metal, another reverberates like a drum, one sounds like steady thuds, one a jingle of wind chimes, one sounds like a clatter of porcelain platters, then there’s that steady hum in the background. It’s too distracting, you think, covering your ears with your palms. You’re trying to concentrate, but all you hear is white noise.

This is what its come to, you assume. You can’t even focus anymore. Even if it is something you love doing, you can’t seem to do it. Unknowingly, you release your hands from over your ears, and shut your eyes tightly. You have to do this; you must be able to do it. You decide to go out for a walk; the fresh air will do you good; you convince yourself.

You sit on the porch, holding your fleece jacket, while tying your shoelaces, and end up just sitting there. You keep thinking, you should make a move and go walk, but you don’t. Something is pulling you back. Maybe it’s the noises you keep hearing, constantly buzzing around your head. You close your eyes, see the world go black, and lie down slowly. Maybe this would help in cancelling out the noises.

You open your eyes to see that you’re surrounded by the most random things; some stone sculptures, wooden crates, granite blocks, marble tiles, cement slabs; a collection of misfits, really; just like the noises in your head. You walk through these piles of insignificant things, when you notice that they all look a bit hazy.

You wave your hand to touch the stack of wooden crates, and your hand passes right through. You remove your hand quickly, as if scorched by immense heat, and rub it with your other hand. You try to touch it again, but it passes through once more. You move away from there and walk along the street. Looking down at your black boots crunching the dried leaves below, you smile at the colours of autumn. Your smile fades as you realize that you weren’t wearing boots earlier.

You blink, maybe this is a dream? You breathe in the crisp air one last time; this is all too good to be true. You are now able to pinpoint why this isn’t real- it isn’t autumn, it’s winter; your street looks nothing like this; the colours are too faded; and the white noise is gone. You hear a crack, and you see that everything around you is crumbling.

All the trunks, the sculptures, the blocks; everything is disintegrating into dust.

There’s a sudden gust of wind that blows the dust onto you; you cover your face, and unconsciously, form a fist, trapping some of it in your hand. When you open your eyes, your vision is still black for a few seconds. You open them widely to get a good look of where you are; you’re back on your porch. You shake your head, trying to get rid of the noises, when you see your hand is clenched into a fist. You open it, and its full of grey specks.

Ananya · Maps

Maps by Ananya

Z rummaged through her shelf drawers. Her friend had sent her a message telling her that she wanted something back. It was an envelope that she had given Z for safekeeping. At the time, she didn’t want her friends to see it, but now she wanted it back. It had been more than two weeks now; Z had no idea where it was. She was ashamed to admit how quickly her memory failed her. She had kept it safely on the day, but now…

She sighed as she made an impulsive decision to upturn her drawers on the bedroom floor. Might be easier to find, she thought. Trust her friend to make her do something like this on her own birthday.

An hour later, she realized how highly unnecessary that action was; she still hadn’t found it. Exhausted, she flopped onto her back on the floor. Her eyes wandered as they landed on a shoebox under the bed. She picked it up and went through its contents while thinking of excuses to tell her friend about not finding the envelope.

She found a blue sealed envelope in the box, at the bottom. On top, it said ‘for your eyes only’. Ah, she had found it at last. She called her friend and told her. She was strangely curious about its contents, so she asked her friend. She told Z to open it, she didn’t mind, and that she’d come for it in a few hours.

Z ripped it open, not very gently, and found a map. It wasn’t a world map, or a school map; it was a map of her library in the drawing room. She marveled at how accurate the picture was. Her friend had made a solid picture of the 300 plus books with the names and colours. Z was happy but so confused. She turned the ‘map’ over to find numbers, seemingly randomly placed. ‘1,7’; ‘2,9’; ‘6,18’.

She frowned in concentration before coming to a vague conclusion. She went to the shelf and picked up the seventh book on the first rack. Turns out she was right, it had a note.

‘I worked hard on this, don’t you dare give up.’

Z grinned and moved on until she got to the last note. They were all a bunch of sappy, cheesy, sarcastic notes, the last one told her to meet her friend in her house. She gathered the notes, put them in a bag, took it and drove to her friend’s house.

Without a word, she led Z to her own room. Z was hyperventilating, she couldn’t believe her eyes; it was a typewriter with one final note taped to it.

‘I hope you go places. Find where your mind wants to go, convince your heart it’s a good idea, and move your feet to get there.’