Friday, 13 September 2013

The Winds of Change

          For a long time I wished to become a writer and to produce work that I could call my own. School papers didn't count because I dreamed of making something original; something that came from me; my words and my ideas. Needless to say, I came across that all-too-familiar bump of self-doubt when you think that you don't have any original ideas and nothing you have to say is of importance to anyone but yourself. But years later, I managed to cross over that bump. I'm still not sure if what I have to say is of importance to anyone but myself but I decided to make it heard anyway and people can judge for themselves.

      At first I thought I would never, ever, be able to write fiction. Non-fiction, maybe. But fiction seemed like too high a peak to attempt to climb. Mind you, I was not thinking of writing a novel. Just the idea of writing fiction was too daunting. Maybe it was just a childhood fear or something. (Note to self: check with therapist about this)

     Now that I am writing my first novel (I will leave it to you to judge if I can write fiction), I thought it might be a good idea to share with you the very first effort I made to write fiction. It was a short story titled The Winds of Change. Leave your comments below and let us know what were you're first attempts at writing. If you would like, you could also let me know if you want to read my novel. i might just send you a free copy.

The Winds of Change

     Waking up suddenly in the middle of the night, the young man was drenched in sweat, hyperventilating. He thought it was just a bad dream, but there was this nagging feeling itching at the back of his mind that something was wrong; something real was wrong. Not a dream.

     Then he heard it. The winds. The low distant whistle of the winds; those winds from the south that his father so often told him about; so often warned him about.

     He ran out of his bed to his brother’s room, not bothering to turn on the lights. His father was keen to train him to roam these corridors in the dark, for when the winds of the south were to come; they would take away the light.

     He called out his brother’s name. His brother was sound asleep, unaware of the impending danger, believing that the distant whistles were no more than the trees whispering as they have always done in the late hours of the night. No matter how many times he tried to explain to his brother he never believed.
     The young man sensing the winds closing in rushed his sleepy, unsuspecting brother out of bed. Stumbling in the dark, the brother insisted to take his time to turn on the lights, which he tried to do, but The Winds of The South were now no longer whispering, they were howling, ever so closely. And they had taken away the lights.
     Realizing the danger was drawing closer, the brother struggled to recall his father’s wisdom, but the howling of the wind drowned out the voice of his father in his head. He took a second to breathe and regain his thoughts and as he looked up, he could not help but admire the steadiness of the young man's steps, the purpose by which he marched forward and the skill by which he maneuvered through the darkened pathways of the house. At that moment he realized his survival meant to follow the leader through the screams of the wind. For the leader carried the wisdom of the father.
     The howling turned into screams and the weakest parts of the house’s outer frame began to tear away and as time passed; the more the wind came closer, the more it took away from the house. The more it gained speed, the more the inhabitants of the neighboring houses screamed louder and the more the winds sounded as if they are laughing; claiming their victims from among the unsuspecting inhabitants as, one by one, they became victims of The Winds of The South.
     Finally, they found the door. The door their father had always told them about; the door to the bunker that was designed to withstand the most powerful assault of The Winds of The South. Needless to say, the young man who was leading the way had always known by heart what to type in order to open the door to safety. It was his father’s golden rule: “Luck favors those who are prepared”.
     As the door opened and they entered into safety, they could hear the laughter of the wind rising at their heels and they could see that the frame of the house that was built by their great grandfather still stood fast against the winds.
     That’s when the laughter faded. That’s when the wind retreated. And that’s when they knew that they are safe. Their house was not lost. All it will take is to add some parts to the enduring strong frame and their house will be as good as new.
     So as they each imagined how they will rebuild their house again, they pictured a vision of an even stronger house; a house without the weaknesses of the past. That's when they looked at each other, finally understanding, why in their father’s story, The Winds of The South were always called…The Winds of Change.

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