Kashmir | #AtoZChallenge

As the hours passed, I began to grow afraid – that you would hurt yourself and there would be no one to help. Panicking, I called you what felt like a hundred times, and each time it rang, the heavy riff of that Zeppelin song, your ringtone that I hated so much, played in my mind as if you were sitting in the next room.


People turned into habits – habits you could not break. Like opium. Opium destroys us because of our need for it. It leads us to wreck ourselves and each other. Much like love.

Or so I believed. It was another demon I carried within me – one that raised its ugly head at that moment and made me disconnect from you in an instant.

At first I thought you were joking. I thought you were as against marriage as I was and that you would never change your mind. 

I could say none of this to you. I couldn’t hurt you nor could I explain. With that one question, you broke something – like the hand of a clock. The balance was lost, the ticking was off. So I made excuses. I lied. For the first time since we’d been together.

Ironic, isn’t it, how we think a lie is less hurtful than the truth? Even when the damages last longer? Foolish, really.

But that’s what I did, right before I walked out your door, your life, stomping on all the dreams you had built for us.

Maybe you were right; the man had jinxed us after all. I adopted your superstition and made it mine. Things go wrong when they’ve been going right for a while.


I didn’t believe even for a second that you would ever forgive me. But I kept trying. That song was what filled my nightmares. My nightmares of a call that was never answered. My nightmares of how I butchered what we had – the one thing that had felt right in a world that was forever wrong.

That Zeppelin song played on loop for one year, seven months and twenty six nights.


Hi everyone! I’m working on a minimalist fiction project for this year’s #AtoZChallenge. The story will be shared in snippets, and the events occur non-sequentially. It is for the reader to interpret and form the “whole”. You can read all the posts here. Join me, and do share links to your AtoZ posts as well!



46 thoughts on “Kashmir | #AtoZChallenge

  1. Ravish Mani April 13, 2017 / 6:45 AM

    Your line ‘I thought you were against marriage as I was’ reminds me again of Gulzar’s: “haath se chhu ke ise riston ka ilzam na do. Sirf ehsaas hai ye rooh se mehsus karo. Pyar ko pyar hi rehne do koi naam na do.” I don’t know why but your pieces remind me of the Gulzar’s song from the movie Khamoshi, “Humne dekhi hai….” In a previous post also, it reminded me different lines of the same song.

    Loved this line of yours very much: “how we think a lie is less hurtful than the truth?”


  2. Rajlakshmi April 13, 2017 / 10:00 AM

    Did he DIE!!!! did he!!! Am I imagining the worst!! It reminded me of that scene from PS I love you when she would keep calling his phone to hear his voice.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 13, 2017 / 2:40 PM

      I’m struggling to give you an answer here because whatever I say will be a lie at this point 😛 (Interpret what you will from that) 😀


  3. lifestyleproblog April 13, 2017 / 11:55 AM

    I had goosebumps as I read this… you have such power in your pen… (technically keyboard but let us not go there!) This was brilliant…. the art of saying something without saying it is something I observe in Jeffrey Archer’s books. You have that too… amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Vidya Sury April 13, 2017 / 12:41 PM

    What did he say? She was upset enough to walk away.
    You know, the thing that comes across to me in your writing is the sensitivity.
    Thanks for the story/stories in my head.

    (Your related posts under your post read “B I D”)


    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 13, 2017 / 3:05 PM

      And I’m yet to hear the stories in your head!

      He asks her to marry him, which she isn’t ready for. So she walks away (but regrets it, which is why she keeps calling him)


  5. aslifehappens60 April 13, 2017 / 12:51 PM

    This is beyond beautiful, Sreesha. I admire your beautiful mind. It’s painful how we destroy something so precious with the trivial . But then again , there are the woes of mismatch of wants and expectations . I , kind of, get your protagonist. Or , do I ?
    Best wishes

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 13, 2017 / 3:19 PM

      Yes, it’s better to let go than let those mismatched expectations weigh you down later…


  6. Shailaja V April 13, 2017 / 1:27 PM

    This made me shiver in sadness. So much we anticipate from a relationship and so much we carry with us in terms of expectations. Intriguing, to put it mildly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 13, 2017 / 3:21 PM

      Yes, and sometimes what we expect in a relationship isn’t what the other person expects…


    • Sreesha Divakaran April 13, 2017 / 3:21 PM

      Haha, will put up my reasoning in the Reflections post.


  7. Louise April 13, 2017 / 3:51 PM

    Oh – and the story turns again. Very well done. As for Kashmir – I found the ukulele cover of it a few years ago and now all I hear is that when I think of it. I suppose that’s a bit better than a ring tone (nice description there btw) but there you have it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 14, 2017 / 10:21 AM

      Will check it out! It’s funny how many times a cover ends up being better than the original. I heard a violin cover of Smells Like Teen Spirit once and it was such a beautiful rendition. Sadly didn’t catch the name of the singer and even YouTube wasn’t of much help…


  8. Namratha Varadharajan April 13, 2017 / 4:16 PM

    You do have a gift of turning emotions into words. Impressed!
    Don’t want to say much on today’s episode, the die-hard romantic in me just wants to enjoy it while it lasts.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Shilpa Garg April 13, 2017 / 5:50 PM

    Oh! What really happened?? They had something really beautiful going on between them. What changed it? I am curious as a cat, but I know, you will reveal eventually…. SIGH

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 14, 2017 / 10:28 AM

      What happened is that, as we saw in the J post, out of insecurity or whatever, he asked for more than she was ready for (i.e, the third italicized line about marriage). So she left. That’s the “what”. As to the “why”, we’ll go back to zigzagging 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  10. inquisitivegeet April 13, 2017 / 6:38 PM

    I’m so touched! So much so that I had goosebumps reading it!


    Liked by 1 person

  11. Lalita April 13, 2017 / 7:39 PM

    And you had to go and put Led Zeppelin in to make it even more heart-crushing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 14, 2017 / 10:29 AM

      Hahah, yeah I can be evil that way 😀
      Speaking of Led Zep, did you check out the new Thor trailer? ❤


    • Lalita April 14, 2017 / 10:33 AM

      Did I? I had been waiting for it to drop since many million years! Its a great year already na….


    • Sreesha Divakaran April 14, 2017 / 10:34 AM

      YES! I was gushing and clapping when I saw it 😀 😀


    • Lalita April 14, 2017 / 10:39 AM

      Did you know Hiddleston’s sister lives in Chennai? Reason enough to camp out at the airport, I sometimes think, in my more coherent moments.


    • Sreesha Divakaran April 14, 2017 / 10:42 AM

      OMG! Fellow Hiddleston fan? Come here, hug it out!!! And yes, I did know that his sister lives in Chennai. The temptation to stalk is so strong……….. Call me for the next camp out 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Shubhangi Srikanth April 13, 2017 / 8:10 PM

    You know what’s more powerful here? The way you weave those words. That desperation is so beautifully narrated. That count of how many times the protagonist called…mind blowing!

    Shubhangi @ The Little Princess

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 14, 2017 / 10:31 AM

      Thank you, Titli 🙂 I felt like it had an ominous ring to it 🙂


    • Sreesha Divakaran April 14, 2017 / 10:32 AM

      I wonder if it’s in our minds cos we know the jinx is there (like placebo) or do they really work? Yes or no, terrible thing, these jinxes.


  13. reemamichelle April 13, 2017 / 11:22 PM

    What did happen after all! Hope everything is fine soon. And everyday your stories just keep getting better!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. sanchwrites April 15, 2017 / 6:02 PM

    I hope by the end of this series, the questions in my head will be answered! Loving your stories every day Sreesha {even if I catch up late on them!}

    Kyrielle – Home

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Modern Gypsy April 17, 2017 / 11:42 PM

    Noooo! Damn woman! Please tell me he did not die! And thank Goodness I have a couple of these to catch up on. The suspense is killing me! Not that there is a huge chance that you will put me out of my misery, is there??

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 18, 2017 / 12:40 PM

      I wanna be evil and tell you to wait for “one year, seven months and twenty six nights” to find out, but nah, you’ll find out sooner than that 😀


  16. Anmol Rawat April 20, 2017 / 10:55 PM

    I understand how you must be enjoying the fate of others because we have no clue and you know everything in your mind.
    A good one again!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. swathishenoy April 23, 2017 / 7:00 AM

    Ahh!! How good they were in the last episode and now they have fallen apart! Why, oh why? Having fun, aren’t you? With all the Confusions?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 24, 2017 / 9:40 AM

      This one is a continuation of the last one. And yes, sometimes, one wrong statement, or one wrong expectation is all it takes for a relationship to end.


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