At Beyond the Box, we are constantly thinking of ideas to give something unique, refreshing as well as challenging to our community of writers. Two to Tango was one such endeavour to encourage the participants to work along with another writer as a team and bring about a creative synergy. 66 teams participated in this one-of-its-kind contest and the winners were chosen by an eclectic jury panel comprising of prolific authors Ramendra Kumar, Shilpa Suraj and Apeksha Rao. Below prompt was given to the writers and they were asked to narrate the same story from two different points of view.
Prompt – Write a fictional story in which a character’s life undergoes some kind of major change due to a lost mobile. Feel free to creatively interpret this concept in any genre of your choice.
The Special Mentions in the kids’ category were Akshita Sundeep Singh and Harshita Sundeep Singh (Team 35). Enjoy their story!
Story Title: GONE WITH A FLICK
Point of View #1
By Harshita Sundeep Singh
Coco rushes towards me and hops onto my bed, licking my face until I wake up. Another nightmare.
I freshen up with Coco running at my heels. Calm down, we’re going walking soon!
As I stroll around the park with Coco’s leash around my wrist, my mind wanders, and I try to recollect my nightmare. Unlike other days, I remember my dream – a strange man in overalls with a red truck parked beside him and a strange cabin in the distance. Huh… strange.
As I continue to wonder, Coco’s leash slips off my wrist and she scampers off towards the park’s exit gate.
Why isn’t she slowing down!?
Soon, I find myself behind an old, rundown building. A thought nags at my brain, something’s off, but I shut it out, focused on finding Coco first.
“There you are! What spooked you this bad that you had to run off so far, bud!?”
I reach towards my pocket to grab my phone, hoping to locate myself before we get lost.
“Wait… where’s my phone? Did it fall off when I ran after Coco!?” I wonder out loud. As I continue to hunt for my phone, Coco’s bark switches my attention to something more important than me losing my phone.
Under a broken bench, is an old Kodak photograph, fluttering among the cobwebs.
Picking up the photograph, a million thoughts race through my brain – where have I seen this man? Why does he look so familiar? Is this an old photograph? No one uses Kodak anymore…
Then, a strange noise brings me back to reality. Or not.
…Sounds like a page being flipped.
I take one last look at the photograph before the world around me goes pitch dark; and when it brightens, I find myself in a completely different place.
Slowly peering at the wilderness around me, I start to recognize the strange neighborhood. Before me stands a cabin made of wood, and a red pickup truck.
Thi-This place… I’ve seen it before!
In my dream, I think.
And the photograph!?
I’m in the photograph.
Point of View #2
By Akshita Sundeep Singh
Her hazel orbs focus on mine as I stare back. Who is she and how did she find me?
My eyes fill with hope when she touches the photograph. Please. Help me, please. Get me out of here.
She stares and stares as if I’m a puzzle and she’s trying to figure me out. Please. I look at her, my eyes begging for help. And before I know it, flick!
The sound of a page flip sounds through and her eyes widen. What’s going on? They scream at me, What’s happening?
I take one last look at her before everything goes black.
Suddenly, the darkness fades and I feel alive all over again. My brain overloads with questions, yet I can’t seem to get any answers. What just happened? Where am I? Why do I feel like this?
As my eyes adjust to the surroundings, I try to figure out where I am.
The first thing I hear is barking. I try to open my mouth, but it feels like my throat has closed off.
A dog licks at my shoes. I crouch down to it and try to speak. “H-he- hello…”
It sounds like a whisper and it feels like I’m speaking through sandpaper. I look at my surroundings – it’s a park. There are trees, benches, roads and vehicles. The world seems to keep spinning. Fixing my eyes on a certain object, the spinning comes to a stop. Why doesn’t this seem like the world I knew? Everything looks strange.
I feel a tap on my shoulder. “Excuse me, um, you seem confused, everything alright?”
My throat shut off again and I couldn’t speak.
“Err… yes. Wh-where am I? I- what… What year is this?” The questions come tumbling out before I can stop them. The woman looks back at me, puzzled. “2019… are you sure-” What?
Her voice drowns out, sounding like she’s speaking from under water. Isn’t it 1980?
I look down at my hands, and all of a sudden, reality finally hits me like a ton of bricks. Tiny wrinkles and marks cover my hands.