First year writing content: Special mention

“Mercy. mercy please!”, she shrieked, her body twisted horrendously. She knew she was too old and too drained to even resist. Her body was already caving in, begging to get it over with, to seek solace with the rest of her kin upon reaching the destination he had mapped for her. During her last moments, she thought about all the contented smiles of those she had been forced to serve and felt a rush of fulfillment. He used a final burst of strength, shattering her thoughts, and scarlet liquid splattered onto the platter.”RIP, my friend” he whispered, to the twisted, now empty ketchup bottle in his hand. Her time in the universe had come to an end. Despite being a super successful chef, he was a three-year-old at heart, bidding farewell to his secret ingredient. Later,”Bacalao con Tomate for table 3”, he announced triumphantly, tossing the ketchup bottle into the trash.The chef was very proud of his dish and couldn’t wait to make it a part of table 3’s special night.

He arrived at table 3 and saw the young couple seated. He listed the wine varieties available, slipping in his suggestion too. The lady nodded distractedly, and the gentleman said with an impish grin,“ that does have a nice ring to it. we will take that please”. The chef winked at him, remembering the lightning speed flashback of a ring transfer that would have put any Olympic baton pass to shame, something that the lady had missed due to her wardrobe malfunction woes.

When the dish arrived, paired with the rich, oaky wine that New World Chardonnay was, everyone but her noticed that the only two things more complimentary were the couple themselves. Right after she ate a huge spoonful from her plate, he sheepishly extended the new plate that came in holding the ring, and asked her, on his knees, “Will you be my wife?”. It was a phenomenal moment for both. She was moved to tears. He was terrified. She looked visibly shaken. He was overwhelmed by the extent of joy she was experiencing, which seemed potent enough to make her choke back words.He waited expectantly to hear her say the magic word. A plain old “yes” was all he wanted. The word that would get him his better half, the missing piece of the jigsaw puzzle that his life was. Except, she didn’t say it. She gagged, looked at her spoon, said, “I cod smell something fishy,” and died.

-Shwetha Sridharan

First year, NIT Trichy

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