Monday, July 17, 2017

Embrace


I have seen the light of night and the darkness of the sun.
I have heard the scream of silence and the quiet of the crowd.
I have felt the embrace of a warm summer breeze and strangled by the bitter cold of winter.
Life is an empty void that is full of thought.
Embrace what is obvious and relish what is not.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Ninety Nine Dreams I Have Had (Based on the song ‘99 Red Balloons’ by Nina) A short story by William DeSouza (c)2017

I promised more short stories and I will deliver more in the coming weeks. This first one is titled 'Ninety Nine Dreams I Have Had' and is based on the song ‘99 Red Balloons’ by Nina.

--------------------



Summer was in full swing, and in the little section of Berlin near the Volkspark, on the tiny street Senegalstra├če, the sun was high in the blue cloudless sky. Song birds competed with each other and a slight breeze caused the grass and trees to sway only slightly.

The toy shop was practically empty, only a couple of other young people with their parents, and the shop owner. Henry and his younger sister, Brigitte, stood at the shop window looking in; each one having their hands pressed against the glass peering inside at all the toys.

Toy sail boats, wooden and metal trains sitting on their tracks, kites hung from the ceiling flowing slowly by the breeze from the fan. You could not miss the dolls, stuffed animals and a stand with boxes of puzzles with bright pictures on the covers.

It was all too much for the two youngsters to hold back their excitement. Brigitte turned to her brother, “You know mom and dad will not give us more money, but I see so many things that would look wonderful in my room.” She beamed.

“I agree. We should just go and see what we can get with the money we have. It’s not much, but I’m sure we can have some fun with it.”

Their parents were visiting friends nearby, only a couple of houses down the tree lined street; and this left Henry, ten years, and his eight year old sister time to wonder. They pushed open the large red door and went inside the little toy shop, one of the only stores on the narrow street of mostly single homes. A tiny brass bell above the door rang to announce their entry.

Inside they passed shelve after shelve of handmade toys, dolls and stuffed teddy bears. There were of course the factory built toys but for Henry and Brigitte, the handmade items held their interest. With only five marks to spend, they settled on a bag of red balloons. They had just enough to also get a can of helium and intended to set all of the balloons free to float in the summer sky.

“We’ll have to wait till tomorrow morning though, Mom and Dad wanted us to get back for dinner soon.” The two young children thanked the shop owner and went on their way, only slightly disappointed they would have to wait to play their game.

In the morning the two youngsters woke early, and with their bag of balloons and little can of helium set themselves up in the back yard. One by one the two kids blew up the red balloons. Brigitte blew them up and Henry tied each one, making sure that there were no leaks.

It was finally time to set them free one by one, to float in the summer breeze. And in time they were gone; to the delight and joy of the two children.

Henry and Brigitte watched together as the ninety nine red balloons floated away; first clumping together then spreading out as they rose higher in the summer sky.

Back at the nearby air force base, in a back room deep in the underground bunkers, technicians worked on the early warning computer system. Three technicians, dressed in their work uniforms and wearing white lab jackets, attempted to diagnose a bug in the programing. At first they thought it was a virus but after several verification checks, realized it may be part of the original coding in the program itself.

An officer opened the door slowly, peaking inside from the main Command and Control room, “How long are you boys going to be with this thing? We need access as soon as possible.”

The lead tech, a flight Sargent, spoke up, “Sir, I think we can let you have access to the main sensor and radar data. I don’t think the issues are with that. I’ll release the lock out and you can power up the early warning terminal.”

It was all very normal for the men and women on duty in the early warning station at the base. They were considered a back up to the main radar network that would alert the West of any aggression by the Eastern Block. Something that was not likely to happen anytime soon.

At least that’s what Captain Sommer, the officer in charge, believed.

A senior sergeant at the computer terminal called Sommer over, “Sir! I think you need to see this.”
“What is it sergeant?”

“The system just flashed the message that there is something out there.”

“What do you mean something is out there? What is out there?”

Trying to remain calm, the sergeant adjusted the radar to a wider field. He typed in commands to the computer and it came back with the same alert. “Sir! The computer still says that there is something there; but just a few minutes ago there was nothing,” he paused and turned to face his captain directly. “Whatever it is, its moving south toward us.”

“Right, no need to panic lads!” the Captain seemed to be doing all the panic for everyone in the early warning room.

“Alert condition Red. Focus all assets on the sky. I want to know what’s out there.”

The base sprang to life as the red alert signal ran out. Ninety nine decisions needed to be made and every facet of base life stopped to focus the war machine's eager eye on what was seen as clear threat. War Ministers had to meet, scurrying around trying to decide if they needed to call the troops out in a hurry.

Captain Sommer paced back and forth waiting for confirmation when the sergeant shouted, “Sir! The President is on the line and we’re getting confirmation that there are multiple contacts heading this way.”

“This is what we’ve been waiting for; this is it boys, this is war!” Sommer straightened to attention, pulled his tunic down on both sides, and walked toward the handset with the waiting President.
After a few minutes on the line with the President, Sommer hung up and shouted, “Scramble all jet fighters!”

Back at the air base, ninety nine super high-tech jet fighters were readied for takeoff. Ninety nine jet pilots, everyone a Captain Kirk, ran toward their waiting chariots to take these ninety nine knights of the air on their mission. With orders to identify and to clarify, they scrambled into the summer sky; chasing down ninety nine red balloons as they floated by.

On the other side of the ‘wall’, ninety nine other pilots scrambled, not knowing why. It was said that they also saw something out there, but that didn’t matter, for in the end, they had to stop the threat. Each plane was armed and loaded with bombs, and each pilot released there bombs where they were told.

Life changed that day for everyone. No one was innocent and no one was spared as the carnage swept around the world. No one would know why it happened, when ninety nine red balloons floated by.
Its been years since that faithful day, when Henry and his younger sister, Brigitte, stood at the shop window. Henry stood alone now, in the dust that was a city. Not knowing what happened, he looked over the rubble, missing his sister.

In the years since they played in the park, he has had ninety nine dreams; and in each dream everyone had a red balloon. They were happy, content and alive.

The wind blew dust around him now, loose paper flew by along with ripped up clothing and anything light enough to get carried away. Dark clouds hung low in the summer sky, an orange glow off in the distant horizon and a chill in the air.

“I miss you Brigitte, and mom and dad. If I could find just a souvenir, something to prove that the world was ever here…”

As he turned to walk away, he spotted something. It was round, red, handing just above the ground and caught on a string. There it was; there was the sign, a red balloon. In all this death and despair, he found his dream.

Henry walked over, lifted the rock from the string and held the balloon in close to him. “I see this red balloon and think of you, pretty Brigitte.”

Then he let it go, watching the tiny red balloon float off in the summer sky, never to be seen again.


Thursday, July 6, 2017

Thursday, October 27, 2016

“The Writer is the Tool” (William DeSouza ©2016)



A writer can set the scene for the reader. At the waters’ edge, a narrow window ledge, a cavernous vessel, or a brave new world of fire and ice.

A writer can create life from the imagination where dreams and fantasy merge and become real. Characters’ flow from the page; a blank canvas for heroes and villains, new born to aged; living a life from inception to the final hours of existence.

A writer can convey a feeling out of nothing. A blank stare to passion and lust, anger and loathing, fear and dread. The soft caress of a lover’s character brought to life in one chapter can become jealous and loathing in another.

A writer can create or destroy whole worlds. A soft, sun drenched park where shimmering shadows dance across two lovers entwined in passionate love; or where children play one moment, can become a battle scarred and scorched theatre of war.

The writer is the tool of the readers’ imagination where the interplay of words dance and blend together. Writers incite visions in the mind of readers, allowing an escape from reality.


Saturday, September 3, 2016

Update on the sci-fi novel 'Home World'

2,500 words completed on the sci-fi novel 'Home World' today.

To-date, just over 64,000 words and 364 pages and I'm only half way.

Friday, September 2, 2016

September 6th is 'Read a Book Day'


September 6th is 'Read a Book Day'

Take time out of your busy life, and relax with a good book. Cozy up on a chair, indoors or out. It doesn't matter where you read, as long as you're comfortable.

If you doze off along the way, I won't tell anyone.

Reading is a great lifetime hobby. It offers us so many positive attributes. It's relaxing and therapeutic, educational, and entertaining.

It's a way to escape reality and visit strange new world's and meet fascinating people.

Get started today and pick out your books for September 6th 'Read a Book Day'