Welcome Back

Batu shoved the door in to his apartment. The setting was familiar and the smell that had settled in his nostrils was also familiar; unpleasant, but familiar. Batu waded through the misaligned furniture that had been pushed around and not placed in their proper spots.

He muscled his way towards the kitchen and a new smell hit him. Was it mildew? He covered his mouth and nose at all the glasses and dishes with standing water inside all of them. Batu was horrified and reluctant to leave his bags unattended. He journeyed to living room and found a heap of blankets piled into the corner of the couch. Batu dropped his luggage on to the floor and the blanket mountain moved.

It had only taken a moment for a finger to peak out to tear at the fabric of the cocoon blanket, then a hand, then an arm. The arm retreated and the peeled back a layer and out popped a squinty eyed man in the opposite direction with the worst bed head that Batu had ever seen: Julian.

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Maturity Return Void

“Why are we here,” Tyler asked.

“It’s therapeutic, honey.”

Tyler looked around the abandoned school grounds. The wear had shown and time wasn’t kind to the decrepit building of learning. Tyler stood holding himself together, hoping not to scrape against something sharp, deadly and would cost him a very expensive trip to the emergency room.

“Would you relax,” Toni asked, breaking Tyler’s concentration.

“This is as relaxed as you’re gonna get.”

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Leaps of Freedom

“What are you doing,” Alicia said with her eyes half closed to her husband. Savian, sat with his knees to the floor, surrounded by crumpled pieces of paper and folders. Alicia was exhausted after a long day of student orientation. She was responsible for counseling students into the right path for their careers and the beginning was always difficult getting into the flow.

“Trying to find… something,” Savian said, mumbling to himself.

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Collectible

Harris pressed softly against the half opened door.

“Mitchell,” he called softly into the dark. Harris had streaked across the lawn of his friend and struggled to calm his breath. He received fourteen voicemails from Mitchell that night. He stopped listening after the third one. 

“Mitchell,” he called out again. “It’s me. You okay in there?”

Harris ducked when he heard a loud metallic bang fall to the floor. He crept to the back room, unsure if there was a home invader in Mitchell’s house. Between the crack of the door, he saw Mitchell. But he was bumping into the shelves and furniture in the room. He appeared distant. 

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Skipped

“I can’t do it, Dad,” Max said with his massive blue helmet on his head. Max looked sideways away from his dad. His eyes were focused on all the other passersby. He gave a sharp exhale the way any 8 year old would to his parents.

“Yes you can,” Pedro, Max’s dad said. 

Max sighed again and rolled his eyes in secret.

“I’m gonna be right behind you. I’m not going to let you go,” Pedro said from behind him.

Max looked across the field and saw his wife, Maxine, preparing burgers at the picnic table. Pedro could tell Max was distracted. “You looking at your mom. Don’t look at her. Keep your eyes focused on the path in front of you.”

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Empty

I feel this… disconnection. It’s maddening and there’s no end in sight. You pick things up and know how objects feel and behave. They are constant and it’s crucial for any man to survive. But not me… not me.

I’m Jake. 27 years old. I know this because my driver’s identification said so. If I didn’t have this one small piece of my identity, my anchor, I would be lost in this sea of chaos.

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Lover’s Leap

“Good afternoon,” the older gentleman stranger said to the man with his back facing him. Before them lay forest as far as the eye could see.

The older silver-haired mustachioed gentleman name was Martin. Martin strode forward and looked down into the ravine. It was difficult to see the bottom. The other man stood facing outward in silence, not answering the older man.  He could see a folded piece of paper with a name on it. Corey it read very neatly.

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