Publishing Hotline: +60 3-9212 9401

Notion Press Singapore Short Story Contest 2017


By Santini Pathinathan in General Literary


Each morning I wake up with my Mama on my mind and pain in my heart. The first few days was a complete confusion, he was worried, then a few weeks later, the cries began, then the arguments over the phone and then finally here I am. In a cold, small grey cell that looks more like a prison. Every day people come to take a look at me, they feed me, but that’s about it. Every day, I wish someone will take me home, but, it all seems like a wishful thinking. I close my eyes again, and I see Mama…

“Hi there, it’s alright, don’t worry, I won’t hurt you. We’re friends now, you’re going to be just fine,” said the young lady with big dark brown eyes, long straight red hair. She was wearing a blue t-shirt, and a pair of blue jeans. I was hiding under an old abandoned car. It was my home for what seemed ages. Then suddenly this young lady came and started calling out to me. I felt scared at first, normally people kept away from me, some even threw stones at me. I really didn’t understand why they hated me so much. I thought I was born to be despised, maybe that’s why my family left me here. It was worse when it rained, I would get scared of the loud noise the sky made as if professing its disdain towards me, as if threatening to struck me with its powerful flash of lightning. “Hey there, don’t be afraid, here you go, do you like that, I’m sure it’s delicious,” said the young lady. I couldn’t help myself, the piece of meat she offered me smelt too good to reject. After all, it has been ages since I ate anything that was not from the rubbish bin. As I came out from under the rusty old car, and started to eat the meat, the young lady started to pat me gently and carefully. She was probably afraid that I might turn and take a bite at her; after being so lonely out in the street, she was the first person to even speak so gently, how could I bite her?

The next thing I remember, was being in a cozy little home, after a nice warm bath and I was lying on what felt like a bed. I had my own bed!

“Looks like he’s awake, Fey” I heard a man’s voice this time. I was confused at first. I started looking for the beautiful young lady who fed me a while ago. To my relief, she walked in from another room with the most beautiful smile, I thought even the moon would melt.

“We shall name you Yoda,” the man said. And that is how I found my new family, my Papa Zack and Mama Fey. Apparently Yoda is a fictional character in Star Wars. I’ve never seen stars having any war before. I know for sure, because I used to sleep under the stars as my blanket and the moon as my only light at night. Only later, I found out that it was just a title of a movie, which we watched one lazy Sunday afternoon. While we were watching, Papa Zack introduced me to the origin of my name- Grand Jedi Master Yoda. I definitely don’t look like the Yoda in the movie. I’m obviously more handsome!

They would usually go out to work in the morning and be home only in the evening. I would eagerly wait for them both. I would spend my time looking out of the sliding door in the living room. I would greet them home with the happiest bark and hug them and kiss their faces. Then, we would go to the park. I used to see all the children with their parents, some running for no apparent reason, and some crying for an ice-cream, some for mere attention. I’ve heard some of the people in the park praise me for being such a good dog. I was proud of just walking along side my human parents. I was not just their dog, I was their child! There was one Saturday morning, when we went for a picnic near the lake, the sun was up and smiling, its rays shone through the gaps in the trees and onto my brownish fur that for a moment, my fur looked golden… I was in the seventh heaven! Papa Zack and I would play fetch as Mama Fey watched me run for the ball with the same smile that could melt the coldest ice mountain in an instant. Looking back now, I would give up anything to see that smile again. I’d give up anything (not that I have much) to feel her soft hand patting me or giving me a belly rub which felt so heavenly.

“Yoda, Mama will be away for a couple of days at China, okay, you be a good boy to Papa.” I was anxious, but Papa always had his way of making me feel calm. Papa and I drove Mama to the airport, it was magnificent. It was huge. As we were nearing the airport, I could see through the window of Papa Zack’s SUV, huge airplanes taking off. They went really high and into the night sky. I remember feeling scared for Mama. As she got out of the SUV, she said she would wave at us- Papa and me- when the plane takes off. I remember barking at every plane that flew in the sky over our home for the next couple of hours. Mama walked into the airport after kissing Papa and me. That was the last we saw her.

Early next morning, Papa received a call. I’ve never seen Papa more anxious. He quickly called someone and explained that the flight that Mama Fey was in has disappeared. I couldn’t believe my ears and my canine senses felt something more than just anxious. I was restless, I wanted to help find Mama Fey. I saw Papa Zack leave the house in a hurry. He spent so many days out, and when he came home, his eyes would be glued to the news channel on TV. I started to feel even more uneasy when Papa started to become really sad, there were days when he never ate anything, and he forgot to feed me. I found him crying himself to sleep one night. Then I found him arguing on the phone, yelling at whoever it was on the other end, to make sure they find Mama Fey.

There were days he would not even look at me. Then one day, he took me in his SUV. He brought me to where I am now and said, “I can’t do this anymore, Yoda. I’m so sorry. Fey is not coming back, ever. And I can’t do this…” His voice was breaking between sobs, and he just broke down and cried. I tried to kiss his tears away, but he got on his feet, took me into a building, filled up a few papers, and paid the lady at the counter. “We will find him a good home, sir. I promise,” said the lady. Papa Zack then left me with the lady and walked out the door. I barked, I begged him to come back and take me home. I would not bother him, I would wait for Mama Fey very quietly at the door. But he left. That was the last I saw him.

Every now and then, a few people would come to see me, and my caretaker would explain how Mama Fey was one of the people who was on that fateful plane that went missing on 8th March 2014 and how Papa Zack could not cope with the loss of his wife and was neglecting me due to his depression; which is why he sent me here, so I could find a better family that could shower me with the love and attention that I deserve. Most people usually feel sorry for me, they give me a sad smile, and then they leave.

Each morning I wake up with my Mama on my mind and pain in my heart…

The End

Originally written by,


1378 Words (excluding the Title)

Copyright Santini Pathinathan
Please Wait ...