Quiet Distress | #AtoZChallenge

“I cannot believe I told you that. Any of that. I didn’t mean to, I’m so sorry.”

The lights on the dashboard were still hazy around the edges, too sharp in the centre. But I was not as lightheaded now, which meant I was awash with regret and embarrassment at having shared so much about myself with someone I barely knew, someone I only texted once in a while, and sometimes shared a few drinks with after work.

About the side I kept hidden. The other face. The uncovered one.

“It’s all right. I had no idea.”

That quiet pity in your voice stung. I didn’t need it. I said so.

“It’s not pity,” you said, “I’m angry. Angry that you had to go through all of this alone. Have you ever talked to anyone about this?”

My hand was already yanking the car door open, “I should go. This was a bad idea. I shouldn’t have burdened you.” My house wasn’t too far. I was tired and dizzy, but I could walk. Or so I thought.

“Don’t worry about it. This conversation never happened, if it makes you feel better.”

You started the car again. Why had we stopped in the first place? I can no longer remember. I was quiet after that. We weren’t close and now you knew more about me than those who were. Strange how things change. In a day.

We were at my gate when you asked me to stay for one more song. “Another time.” I said as I stepped out.

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!



54 thoughts on “Quiet Distress | #AtoZChallenge

  1. Lata Sunil April 20, 2017 / 9:18 AM

    The way you twist your words is amazing. “We weren’t close and now you knew more about me than those who were” – excellent.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. lifestyleproblog April 20, 2017 / 10:29 AM

    I am just amazed at how well this is coming along. Please publish this as a book… Brilliant really! I love how you transport us back abnd forth, giving glimpses of life of that relationship and making us wonder what really happened!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 21, 2017 / 8:43 AM

      Thanks, Ankita 🙂 I just might; thinking about it 🙂


  3. Mayuri Nidigallu April 20, 2017 / 11:21 AM

    You have a way with words, you use them to get us taut and tense, sigh in relief and curious about what is next!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 21, 2017 / 8:44 AM

      🙂 You can fill in your own version of the story about what she might have told him.
      Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Lalita April 20, 2017 / 2:59 PM

    ‘Stay for just one more song’. Bluesy AF. Can picture it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 21, 2017 / 8:46 AM

      Hehe, originally I planned to link the chapters in sequence based on the song reference, but I changed the story so drastically that it didn’t work. This was the first post I wrote, so the line is still there (which was originally a pointer to the next chapter)

      Liked by 1 person

  5. adodani April 20, 2017 / 4:06 PM

    Stories like this is why we embrace the want for more. Nicely penned 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Neha April 20, 2017 / 4:54 PM

    Excellent! This is so realistic, you aren’t very close and yet you pour your heart out. Blame it to the mood or the drinks or anything else later, but you can’t really point at a satisfactory reason as to why you acted the way you did.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 21, 2017 / 8:47 AM

      Yes, Neha, exactly! Amazing to have people like this in our lives, isn’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

  7. deepagandhi April 20, 2017 / 6:00 PM

    This is a very interesting story and the way you are writing these make us look forward to the next one.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Kaddu April 20, 2017 / 7:50 PM

    “Don’t worry about it. This conversation never happened, if it makes you feel better.”
    That was a very gentlemanly thing to say.

    Sometimes, it is easier to share things with strangers that we don’t with our closed ones.

    Happy AtoZing!
    Chicky @ http://www.mysteriouskaddu.com

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Shubhangi Srikanth April 20, 2017 / 8:12 PM

    It can be discomforting to share details with someone we don’t know much about, but they look like a good match, maybe the opening up might be a blessing in disguise.

    Shubhangi @ The Little Princess

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 21, 2017 / 8:49 AM

      😀 Yeah, I guess they were…

      Thanks for reading, Titli 🙂


  10. Shailaja V April 20, 2017 / 9:16 PM

    What did she share with him, I wonder. What terrible pain must she have faced and not shared with her closest friends? Yet that does happen. You find yourself opening up to strangers under the most unexpected circumstances.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 21, 2017 / 8:51 AM

      Might as well tell you this: This is the first chapter of the story 🙂 (If going in sequence). Initially, I did plan on writing about what she went through, but that made the story wayyyyy too convoluted. So I guess the reader can fill in the prologue 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. inquisitivegeet April 20, 2017 / 10:29 PM

    I like the way you narrate the minutest of the details, making your readers go through those exact same feelings and emotions!


    Liked by 1 person

  12. reemamichelle April 20, 2017 / 10:33 PM

    Sometimes it is good to speak your heart out but yeah it is scary when it is someone who isn’t close. But destiny has its own ways! Lovely narration once again.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Geethica April 20, 2017 / 10:46 PM

    It feels like a miracle. Your life changes in a moment and that one stranger becomes a partner in crime for you. Nicely weaved.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Pikakshi April 21, 2017 / 3:18 PM

    You really do know how to weave a web of words and leave us hanging here!
    we are all a happy entrapped audience in this web (does that sound so creepy? I mean it in a good way 😀 )

    It was a lovely read. You really use words to the best of your advantage. Im hooked 🙂

    Have a look at the character review of this amazing woman Mary, Queen of Scots who lived to fight for her rights!

    Readers of the Night

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Menaka Bharathi April 21, 2017 / 3:42 PM

    Sometimes we open up to strangers that we don’t realize that we have shared a lot of our secrets with them.But again sometimes i feel opening up with strangers are better than known people.There is a kind of comfort level . Lovely weaved story

    Launching SIM Organics This April
    *Menaka Bharathi *

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 24, 2017 / 9:55 AM

      A lot of people find it easier to open up to strangers – sometimes therapists or even people you meet at a park.

      Thanks, Menaka 🙂


    • Sreesha Divakaran April 24, 2017 / 9:56 AM

      She was embarrassed, so she left. On the other hand, something does happen – this is the first chapter 😀


  16. Louise April 22, 2017 / 9:00 PM

    I once had a friend’s boyfriend – who I didn’t know too well – do this to me. I think sometimes people need to unburden and have that moment of honesty with someone who isn’t so close to them. Hence: bartenders 🙂 You capture this beautifully here.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 24, 2017 / 9:57 AM

      Yes, bartenders, therapists, even random strangers you meet in the park. It makes us feel these people aren’t gonna judge us, and even if they do, we probably will never see them again.
      Thank you, Louise 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  17. swathishenoy April 23, 2017 / 7:20 AM

    What secrets did she share? Tell me na! I am happy now I am getting to read all the posts together 😀 little less wait than others. But after S, the wait continues. Sigh!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 24, 2017 / 9:57 AM

      🙂 Listen to the song; it has a clue about what she tells him. It’s not a part of the story though, cos it’s the first chapter.


  18. Vidya Sury April 25, 2017 / 10:20 PM

    Hmm. Yes, It makes a good beginning. But I am glad you wrote it at this point, because some back and forth always makes for intrigue and brings the story together. I know how she felt.

    Hugs! (I read the posts in the right order but am commenting backwards)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 27, 2017 / 8:28 AM

      A story shouldn’t give away all its secrets at once 😀 😀 (and yet, you figured it out, wow :P)

      Hugs, V!


  19. sanchwrites May 1, 2017 / 5:53 PM

    Isn’t that the case — it’s easier to sometimes tell our deepest and darkest secrets to those who barely know us. After all, they are less likely to hurt us or let us down I suppose. Loved the vulnerability in this one.

    Liked by 1 person

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