Vasant 2023 Stories - Mehreen Ahmed



By Mehreen Ahmed


“For a moment there, I became you and you me, my love. I expressed the words you wished all your life, and you whispered what I believed to be the holy grail.”

“Then why can’t we do what we are meant to do?”

“We can’t because we are not in the one bubble. In the spirit we are. You were kindred in that moment, but in that moment, only.”

“What happened at that moment?”

“In that moment, we clashed into each other and found ourselves in oneness; we metamorphosed into one ball of emotions. We ceased to be individuals.”
“What’s wrong with that?”

“Everything. When we stop being what we are. We become non-entities. We lose our sense of judgment, our sense of morality and identity.”

“Isn’t that what we are in that moment, this craving to be one? The desire to defuse and fuse to find a new entity as one into a single bubble of passion instead of being two identities, instead of being two ships passing—two bubbles floating abreast?”

“That’s exactly who we are. Two ships passing closely enough for a touch perhaps, but never to become a whole.”

“What’s the point of living then?”

“The whole point of living is to be in a paradox—we live only because we die. All marching in a procession where our ancestors had been at the forefront of that march once. Who goes first and who goes last is determined by time and time alone. Albeit, we must all be in that destined journey of life and death.”

“In the bubble of oneness, one of us can extricate from this procession, no? As we go together whenever our time is prime.”

“Ah but can we?”

“Why not?”

“Cause, my love, time will cut a wedge between us even within that bubble of oneness we shall lose, and time and time again, time shall win, as though there were no tomorrows, no yesterdays and no today’s. In this oneness, we couldn’t reach out to the stars together. Perhaps, in time, we shall become infinite like time itself. In its capacity to hold us and see us through to eternity. Even eternal love, who knows, but not as the way you wish, my love.”

“Yet, I want to be in that bubble; the bubble of oneness. So be it, until time removes one of us, capricious it may be because who could tell who would drop out of this precession first. Who could tell? I could still love you, even if I lost you; it would still be worth it.

“Maybe, until my clothes size becomes smaller and smaller. I start to wear my children’s clothes, while they wear mine in reversed order like Benjamin Button. Until I dissolve in those clothes and disappear. Cause’ that’s when I drop out of the procession, and from the bubble of oneness too. Can you live without me then, without love, as an insider of the bubble of love?”

“That was the moot wasn’t it? I whispered to you, to be in separate bubbles.”

“I voiced your wish to be inside that bubble with you.”

“Why aren’t we then, my love?”

Silence fell after that; a moment of pure enchantment in the bubble of love.


Mehreen Ahmed was born in Bangladesh and lives in Australia. She has won prizes in many short fiction competetions. Her historical fiction The Pacifist is an audible book bestseller. Included in The Best Asian Speculative Fiction Anthology, her works have also been acclaimed by Midwest Book Review, DD Magazine to name a few. She is a featured writer on Flash Fiction North and Connotation Press, a reader for The Welkin Prize, Five Minutes, a juror for KM Anthru International Prize. Her works have been translated into German, Greek and Bangla, reprinted, anthologised and have made it to the top 10 read on Impspired Magazine multiple times. Her works have appeared in books published by Cambridge University Press, University of Hawaii Press, Michigan State University Press, ISTE,Call-ej, University of Kent Press,The Sheaf: University of Saskatoon,Writer's Digest: Six Sentences, IceFloe Press, Litro Magazine, Otoliths, RogueAgent: Sundress Publication affiliated and many more.


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