three line tales, week 124: two colourful doors that lead to ...

By Neel Anil Panicker

There are two doors in front of me; one red and the blue; and both beckon me, equally__staring invitingly at me, attempting all  within  their powers, cajoling, coaxing, attracting, luring, even threatening me, using all manner of bait to get me to somehow bite the bullet.

I for one, though thoroughly bowled over by such passionate unrelenting prefer to bide my time, in the interim mulling things over while time races past the past, and rushes through the present, in a bid to be on time for its date with the future.

I wish I had more choices, that there were more doors to chose from__my misguided mind harbouring the impression that multiplicity of choices would lead to me taking better well informed decisions, but I guess that’s  a fallacy for since when have more choices translated to better outcomes?

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Three Line Tales, Week 124

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Three Line Tales, Week 124




Dog & Grave Headstone

By Neel Anil Panicker

‘It’s a miracle she’s alive. They almost broke open her skull. I know it’s police work. But still don’t trouble her much.’

Inspector Vincent Pala of Kozhikode Rural Police Station nodded his head as Dr John Abraham walked out of the third floor ICU room of Mary’s Hospital.

As the door closed behind him, the senior cop turned around and walked towards the hospital bed.

He knew he didn’t have much time.

He gingerly flicked open a pocket notebook and pen in hand, directed his gaze at the septuagenarian.

“Mrs. Sebastian, I know this is a very wrong time. But I hope you understand it’s a crime we’re dealing with here.  I will ask you some questions. Blink your eyes once if it’s a yes; twice, if it’s a no? Hope you understand?”

The elderly lady blinked her eyes once.

 “Mrs Sebastian, at the time of the attack you were at your house alongwith your paralytic husband, your eldest son Vinny, his wife Inglieas and their four-year-old child Esther, right?”

She blinked, once.

“Do you know who killed them?”

 She blinked, once more.

Inspector Vincent bolted upright.

“Ok, who’s it?”

“Spitz …”.

Inspector Vincent wondered how he would interrogate a family dog accused of murder.

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Sunday Photo Fiction – May 27, 2018



three line tales, week 121: together for yes

By Neel Anil Panicker

There was a time in Esther’s life when everything was a neat binary; all that life threw at her, be it in terms of myriad problems that needed to be tackled, choices to be made, relationships to hold onto or dump, or even everyday issues as hackneyed as should she have coffee or tea for breakfast, or instead should she simply settle for hard drinks, either whisky on the rocks or plain old rum with soda.

All that changed with the entry of Philip into her life.

Ever since she fell hook, line and sinker for her local church parishioner and eloped with him after a blink and you miss high octane dalliance, Esther only operated with one dictum to guide her life which was saying  a resounding affirmative ‘YES’ to every single thing that her “man” asked, demanded, even expected of her, for it was her firm unshakeable belief that he could do no wrong.


Three Line Tales, Week 121



three line tales week 119: colourful rocks in the desert

By Neel Anil Panicker

Come weekends and the beach was the go to place for the two as little Stella loved them, those stacks of coloured ball-sized stones, one on top of the other, that rose into the azure blue skies.

Making himself comfortable on the sands, her father Tom would keep an eye on his six year old as she played hide and seek in the sandy shores, frolicking around her ‘Five Uncles’,  laughing and screaming and shouting her lungs out as children of her age are wont to do.

After a while, when the sun came down, the two would head back home but not before Stella planted her customary kiss on each of her ‘Uncles’ blissfully unaware that under one of them lay buried her mother, a victim of the massive tsunami that blew away the coastal town a couple of years ago.

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Three Line Tales, Week 119




three line tales, week 118: a grey reef shark

By Neel Anil Panicker

Mr Principal Sir, I know that my daughter has been not been behaving well of late, and as you have informed, that she has been bunking her classes for the past one month, and also that of late she keeps to herself and that she seems slightly depressed, but pray, what’s the connection to all this with the picture of this fish that you are showing me?

Mrs Iyer, this fish that you see on the computer screen is a blue whale and that’s also the name of the notorious online game Blue Whale that netizens all over the world are insanely hooked onto and that which has already claimed the lives of over a thousand teenagers.

And quite unfortunately, your daughter and our student Ananya Iyer of Class X A is addicted to this game and if immediate steps are not taken to wean her away from this highly destructive game, she could end up taking her own life.

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Three Line Tales, Week 118

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Three Line Tales, Week 118



By Neel Anil Panicker

Are you single?
Beg your pardon, what is it that you just said?

I said what you just heard which is I asked whether a lady as beautiful and charming as you is taken, engaged, disengaged, or some other variation of the same that alludes to the same?
Hypothetically speaking if I am one or the other of these fanciful expressions that you use to so eloquently to establish my existent or non-existent marital and/or social credentials, then what, if may ask, is that you propose to do further?
Well, in that case, I intend to propose to you and as a first step towards that,  invite you to join me for a cup of coffee.
I am sorry but that is not my cup of tea.

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Six Sentence Story

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three line tales week 117: don't text and drive

By Neel Anil Panicker

Cyrus Beene lifted his hands off the steering wheel and picking up the phone that rested on the seat beside him read the message that came alive on the phone screen in big, black letters, “IT’S DONE. HE’S SHOT…THREE BULLETS”.

A spasmodic wave of sheer delight ran through his veins and travelled all through his body leaving him with a feeling so heady that he soon started to feel dizzy; dizzy and delirious at the sudden twist in the tale__a twist so cataclysmic and game changing that it could now in all likelihood catapult his boss to the highest office in the entire free world, the President of the United States of America.

He was too engrossed in his thoughts to notice the huge truck that was rushing in at a breakneck speed from the opposite direction and by the time realisation dawned, the truck had smashed into his car, instantly reducing the vehicle and its lone occupant to pulp.

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Three Line Tales, Week 117

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Three Line Tales, Week 117