Category Archives: novelette

On Math, Variables And Constants

He sidled up from behind and peered over my shoulder as I busily scribbled at my desk.

“You are doing Math?”

“You gave me a fright. Yes, I am. Why?”

His grin quickly changed into a look of seriousness when I turned around with a scrutiny of evaluation. He let out a cough at my gaze of suspicion before continuing.

“Well. ‘Y’ is indeed the question.”

“Ehm.. why?”

It was starting to feel like we were pulling neverending puns on each other.

“You know how there are variables in Math equations, represented by letters like ‘y’ and ‘x’ and et cetera?”

“Uh… yeah…?”

“And how usually the value of ‘y’ changes with the value of ‘x’ or vice versa?”

“Umm, yea?”

Was it going to be a revision of calculus? He let out a chortle, as if reading my thoughts at that moment.

“Now, you would say these variables are affected by each other, won’t you? In whatever way they are related.“

“Yes, that’s correct.”

“Now, consider the constant in a relation, sometimes abbreviated endearingly as ‘c’. It is an important part of it, but yet it remains unchanged, regardless what happens to either or both variables.”

“Yes, that’s right.”

I was getting more and more perplexed. He must have noticed, and thus let out a reassuring grin before continuing.

“So, assuming both the variable and the constant in a relationship could take on positive values only. The variable could still result in a negative result, but the constant always positively amplifies the outcome. That right?”

He continued, looking at me, still smiling.

“My Math question for you today is: assuming you are a positive value. Would you choose to be a variable, subjected to the fluctuations of other variables, or would you choose to be an unwavering constant?”

He gave me a bright grin, then sauntered away, whistling.

I think I know my answer.

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Serendipity for Christmas

The train doors slid open with a mechanical sweep and she stepped in amongst the other passengers.

Always, she is plugged into her earphones and always, she prefers to lean against the glass panel at the doorway.

The doors remained gaping as the last human trickles filtered in, as he did, through the very doorway she had entered.

Like her, he chose to lean against the glass panel at the doorway, right across from her.

Instinctively, she looked up in the same instance that he did.

Their eyes met.
And they held each other for a few moments.

And in those few moments, her mind was darting through her memories to recognise his face, as he too seemed to be doing.

A sense of wonderment surged through and made her hold up a hand to her mouth in delighted astonishment; across from her, amazement shone from his eyes as a smile crept onto his face, and he came towards her.

To quote him, a serendipitous encounter as such is a magnificent Christmas gift.

And it is. 🙂

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Chivalry Never Grows Old

A rainy evening it was as I made my way towards the exit of the establishment with my lady friend. Within stranger’s proximity, he too was walking in the same direction with his companions.

Our separate quiet chatters seemed to entwine in the cool evening air as we convened towards the door, and with passer-by’s intuition we slowed down to allow his group to pass.

While they did, he stopped a distance behind them, doing the same thing we did.

“Thank you.”

I glanced in his direction and gave him a smile.

He gave a nod as a grin upturned his wrinkled mouth and his eyes caught mine and twinkled in his aged face.

”You’re welcome, madam.”

Chivalry never grows old.

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The Bachata – Part Three

As the music began, she drew him in, feeling his breath on her cheek.

“Come closer a little.”

His hand was travelling down her body, coming to rest at the small concave low at her back. She gasped at the sensation of his fingers on her skin; it brought back memories from so long ago that she thought she had left behind.

And as they danced, each move was a step back in time, each gaze a stronger stirring in their souls, and each turn closer to sweet destruction.

That dance filled the whole room, so much that everything had to melt away. All she could hear was the poignant beauty of the song in her blood; all she could feel were his hands on her skin and his breath on her lips.

He had that look in his eyes, that same desirous look of fever and wild that she remembered. The rhythm was pounding in her ears now, and all she knew was how perfectly their movements connected her to him and him her.

It was as if they had never parted, and the bachata plays, timeless.

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The Bachata – Part Two

She stood before him and he caught the scent of her perfume in her hair. Leaning in with his lips close at her ear, he spoke in a low voice.

“Do you know that you are the most beautiful here?”

“What do you mean?”

She could feel her face flushing and his intent gaze on her.

“Simply that you are the most interesting, elegant and beautiful woman.”

“Do you want to dance with me now?”

Before she could answer, he had taken her hand in his and wrapped his other arm around her waist. Still blushing, she draped hers around his neck. An upbeat percussion rhythm began and the musicians took the cue.

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The Bachata – Part One

Something I promised a friend; part one first while the rest writes itself, in due time. 😉

Dimly lit and cosy, the interior of the bar contrasted sharply with the summer sidewalks and idyllic outdoors.

She made her way casually, yet not undeliberately down the hallway. The men glanced up and stared; they always do. But she was not distracted.

And there he was.

Tailored blue jacket thrown over white linen shirt and fitted blue jeans, accompanied by the usual glass of red and an air of relaxed elegance, at the far table beside the curtained windows.

She turned and walked in his direction, a slight smile turning up the corners of her mouth as he looked up that instance and saw her. He smiled, then got up as she arrived at the table.

“It’s been a while.”

“Indeed; how have you been?”

“Well, life goes on.”

“Like a bachata.”

“Yes, we dance – sad words to beautiful melodies – and that makes life more bearable.”

A smile in his eyes, and she could not help smiling back. Linking her arm in his, they walked down together to the dance floor.

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For Your Eyes Only

He turned around and lay on his back, shifting his weight a little to make himself more comfy. “Too bad assassination is not my forté,” he mused, his eyes staring towards the ceiling in audible contemplation.

“It’s that I don’t like gambling and have no licence to kill…”

She turned onto her side and watched him intently.

“They can die another day.”

“… and planes. Then again I can learn, I mean diamonds are forever, and tomorrow never dies.”

“Well you only live twice…”

“I’d like to tell you how much I love you though… but the world is not enough.”

“… and with a view to a kill, you would, the living daylights out of me.”

He leaned over and looked into her eyes gazing into his.

“You’re like the man with the golden gun with these puns.”

“Well, they won’t live and let die.”

“No, they won’t.”

Her eyes flickered, a hint of a smile on her lips.

“And I, for your eyes only.”

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