Mind Games

I have roamed these empty, dark stone walls for weeks, months, maybe even years. I am the only living soul inside this dreary underworld, yet I hear disembodied, taunting voices calling out to me. They are everywhere, but nowhere. Every day, I follow those strangely familiar voices, hoping to escape, but alas, it is always the same: a dead end. But I don’t give up. I hear a noise. Whispers? Yes, there they are. They are begging me to follow. Instinctively, I walk once again through the maze.

It is almost impossible to see in the labyrinth; whether by darkness or excess of light, I’m not sure. As I feel my way through, my hands slide against the cold surface of the grey stone walls. They are smooth, but the cold is sharp. The ground juts out in the most unexpected places, the abnormal rises only revealing themselves at the last moment. I look up to the sky, but there isn’t one. Just infinite, inky blackness. Infinite, just like this death-trap of a maze.

It gets even darker as I venture on, but those whispers do not fade. I fear that I will trip in this darkness, and end up lying on the ground, concussed, bleeding, alone. I now crawl on the dirty, gritty floor like a hound out of fear. I am so wrapped up in my thoughts that I completely forget about the voices. I have not been paying attention to where I have been going. Am I lost? I feel for a wall, but there are none. I look behind me. It is brighter, only slightly, but just enough for me to make out the outline of a long, high wall far behind me. I stop in my tracks: am I out of the labyrinth?

I feel like jumping for joy, but I stop myself. So I’ve escaped the twists and turns of that maze, but now I’ve got to figure out where I am. I look ahead of me. Nothing. Just perpetual darkness. One side of me wants to go forth and explore, but the other side is not so sure. Pushing my doubts aside, I reluctantly put one foot forward, expecting to touch solid ground, but instead, I fall.

The wind is bitterly cold and the noise makes my eardrums sore. I am falling through some kind of tunnel of light and colour. The voices are still there, calling my name. Some are happy, some angry, some sad, some just a mere whisper. Ahead of me, I see that I am approaching ground. As I get closer, I brace myself for a landing…

“…Attention, passengers, this is our last stop. Please exit…”

I’ve finally landed. I’m sitting in some kind of bus. Somehow. I glance out of the window. There’s a city with lots of tall skyscrapers and all sorts of vehicles in the streets. It all seems very familiar.

My attention is turned to a great looming shadow that emerges from the dusty grey clouds in the sky. It’s an airship of some sort. A hatch in its underside opens up and a huge flaming ball descends upon the city. It sends people screaming as the buildings are engulfed by the flames.

My surroundings fade into darkness and yet again, I am travelling through the tunnel of light. The strong wind makes my eyes water. And there it is again, an opening before me, brighter than ever. Streaks of light whizz past me like bullets. My surroundings morph into another world, and it gets brighter still..

The mud in the trench makes my feet damp and numb. Rats and lice are virtually everywhere. The little devils lurk in every dark corner, scared by the exploding shells surrounding us. Bullets are whizzing overhead. I then notice the other men around me. They’re all soldiers in khaki uniforms, barking orders at each other and shooting at the enemy. But who is the enemy? I get up and I notice I am also wearing a uniform. Strange. Peering over the wall of the trench, I can make out the outline of some people. Germans? No, that can’t be it. Judging by their clunky shape, they look more like…robots? I scramble down. My eyes must be playing tricks on me.

Boom! There’s a huge explosion right behind me. Our gunfire ceases. But the enemy’s carries on. We are losing the battle. All the soldiers are retreating into their dark little holes in the trench, just like the rats. All of them, except one. A lone soldier stands in front of me, shooting his limited supply of bullets at the enemy until he runs out. Now, he can do nothing but cower behind the trench wall. Panting, he looks at me. I sense his friendly warmth, but I can see the despair in his eyes. I study his face closely. I know him, but from where?

Bang! Before I can think any further, a shot is fired. The bullet hits the soldier squarely in the chest. I cry out, but nothing can be done. He lies on the ground, slowly bleeding to death. I whip around and see two menacing humanoid figures standing in front of me, rifles in hands. An airship flies behind them, the very same one that destroyed the city. And once again, the great fiery weapon is released, this time heading towards me.

Soon, roaring flames surround me, and their tongues of fire leap out to me, wanting to singe my skin. The voices are louder than ever, screaming for help. Then, all at once, the fire disappears. The voices stop. I’m back in the labyrinth. How? Was it all a dream? A stupid hallucination? My head is spinning. There’s a loud ringing in my ears. I grow dizzier, until I collapse on the floor.

I wake up. It’s bright and warm, and I’m in some kind of incubator, with multicoloured wires snaking out of it. I try to turn my head to see where I am. The room I’m in has all sorts of devices lying around. There’s a man sitting a few metres away from me. He’s noticed that I’m stirring. He seems surprised.

“Hey! He’s moving! He’s out of limbo!”

Limbo? What is that supposed to mean? So the labyrinth was really just inside my head? Suddenly, I am surrounded by many men and women. They’re all whispering things like, “By God, he’s really alive…” and “This can’t be happening!” The crowd parts to give way to a bald old man in a pristine lab coat. He looks down at me, squinting. Finally, he speaks: “Hello there, Sergeant.”

Sergeant? Am I a sergeant? Does that have anything to do with the trench vision? Or was it really a memory? Were they all memories, the ‘visions’ and the ghostly voices I chased after? I’m confused. “Where am I?” I ask. “And who are you?”

He replies in his croaky voice, “You are in the London Institute of Biological Research, and I,” he says, his lip curling into a smile, one that seemed to betray innocence, “I am the scientist who just brought you back to life.”

BELATED SURPRISE…

once upon a time book

Once upon a time, there lived a Prince Charming from the kingdom of The Blissful Abode. He was widely known for his good looks and lovable character. He was also a man of many talents.

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As he grew older, he felt that something was missing from his life. So, one day, he told his father, the king of The Blissful Abode, about it. But, unfortunately, the king did not have any answers to his problems.

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A few days went by until the prince realised what he was missing from his life, a princess! So, the prince went back to see the king. Then, the king asked his court of advisors to throw a royal ball in order to find the perfect wife.

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Many willing admirers and hundreds of young maidens from near and far attended the royal ball. However, Prince Charming became disheartened of his failure to find a suitable wife. The king tried to comfort him as best as he could. He went to bed feeling frustrated.

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That night, he had a peculiar dream. In his dream, he saw an old man carrying a sack full of gold and diamonds which he gave to the prince. He then told the prince to travel to the Kingdom of Diamonds where he would find his true love. Then, without another word, he disappeared into thin air.

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The next day, Prince Charming rushed to talk to the king and tell him about his dream. The king suggested that he should take someone to accompany him for his safety. But, the prince refused and said that he wanted to go as a common man so no one knew that he was a prince. Then, as soon as possible, he planned out his trip to the Kingdom of Diamonds and set off immediately.

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On his journey, he had to dodge several obstacles such as thunderstorms, mountains, wide rivers, misty jungles and so on. After a few months time, he finally arrived at the Kingdom of Diamonds. Upon his arrival, the smell of frangipani greeted him and his nose. He then followed the smell until he found the sight of white, blooming frangipani on a tree. He decided to take a rest under the shade of the tree because he was worn out from the long journey and a while later, he dozed off.

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Suddenly, the prince was woken up by the sound of a sweet, beautiful singing voice. He turned his head to and fro whilst rubbing his eyes thinking that he was dreaming. Then, he caught sight of a gorgeous maiden with long hair just like Rapunzel. But, unlike Rapunzel, her hair colour was a glossy, shiny type of black. Little did he know that the fair damsel was Princess Leelowadee of the Kingdom of Diamonds.

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As soon as both of their eyes met, they fell in love at first sight! Without any delay, Prince Charming proposed to her,

“Here’s my love, take it. Here’s my soul, use it. Here’s my heart, don’t break it. Here’s my hand, hold it and together we will make it together. Be mine?”

Princess Leelowadee blushed and nodded her head in a gesture of accepting his proposal. The romantic moment turned sorrowful when Prince Charming had to leave so that he could make appropriate arrangements to take his beautiful bride back to his kingdom. As he was leaving, he turned to Princess Leelowadee and said,

“I’ll return soon with hundreds of horses and elephants to take you, my dearest princess, away.”

Then, the prince left and journeyed off to his far, far away kingdom.

♥ ♥ ♥

The long-awaited day finally came when the prince arrived at the Kingdom of Diamonds with hundreds of horses and elephants, as promised. He brought along with him his wedding entourage and 1001 gifts for his beloved bride. He then took Princess Leelowadee and helped her inside the golden wedding carriage and marched back to The Blissful Abode. 

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When they reached their destination, the people of The Blissful Abode welcomed the newlyweds with a grand celebration. There were singers, dancers, fireworks, peacocks and a large banquet on behalf of Prince Charming and Princess Leelowadee.

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Although the prince and princess came from different backgrounds and spoke different languages, they both tried their best to love one another until the end of their lifetime.

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Many years have passed and their marriage was blessed with 3 beautiful princesses and 2 handsome princes. Their life is now complete with the arrival of 4 charming grandsons and 3 gorgeous granddaughters. Everyone adores King Charming and Queen Leelowadee for their never-ending love. And they lived happily ever after…

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life is a fairy tale

Life is a fairy tale! We will come across many Cinderellas, Snow Whites, Rapunzels, Prince Charmings and Princess Leelowadees! We will also meet fairy godmothers and wicked witches too! No matter how high the mountains are, how low the valleys are or how wide the rivers are, it is up to us how we will spin our stories into GOLD!

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As for me, I am lucky to be part of Prince Charming’s and Princess Leelowadee’s fairytale. I am especially blessed to inherit Prince Charming’s (Dadajee) good looks! (#vain)

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As their first grandson, I can’t wait to pass on their great love story to my future children. One thing that I will never forget is when the newlyweds were going out for their first date! Since both of them couldn’t speak each other’s language, Dadajee had to search every magazine in the house just to find a picture of corn so he could ask Khun Yai Thi Rak Khong Phom if she wanted to go out with him and have some grilled corn! How romantic, huh? 😀

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If you’ve seen my Pawsome Dates page, then you would have noticed that other than Little Miss Diva’s birthday, Dadajee’s birthday is another important date in January. His birthday falls on the 7th of every January. This date is like a sacred date for our family!

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On his birthday, I always like to surprise him by calling him on FaceTime call and singing Happy Birthday to him. Even though I can’t give Dadajee any presents because he lives all the way in Malaysia, I always keep him in my prayers every day! But I’m sure that my Auntie Kawaii will bake him a special birthday cake and Mr OCD Uncle will never forget to treat him with something special! And Khun Yai Thi Rak Khong Phom will definitely cook a special birthday feast. No doubt about that! 😉

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My Dadajee is my best friend! He is handsome, charming, loving and a man of many talents. He is also a great, funny grandpa with creativity and PAWSOME personality! He is one of the most lovable characters you could ever meet! Dadajee is a man that can do anything. He can speak many languages, he is very skilled when it comes to gardening and he is a good cook too. He can make delicious Biryani and the best Milo in the world! He is the best husband, father and grandfather!!!

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At a very young age, he travelled all over Malaysia to seek more knowledge and experience! He was only 15 years old at the time. He had made lots of friends during his expedition which he still keeps in touch with until today. He also travelled to many other countries for business purposes.

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Once, he did something that I was grateful for the rest of my life! I was only 2 & 1/2 years old at the time. I was out in the garden, playing, running like any normal kid would do. As I was playing, I was running back and forth to get fruit to treat myself. Suddenly, I put a grape in my mouth and I don’t know how it got stuck in my throat! I was choking and my face turned blue according to Mrs Mom. Thankfully, Dadajee managed to get the grape out of my throat! What a miracle!!! I owe my life to you, Dadajee!

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The greatest memories were when we travelled all around the UK together. We went to London, Portsmouth, Southampton, Bournemouth, Liverpool, Manchester, Blackpool, Lake District, Glasgow, Edinburgh and many other places too. I wish that we could do it again in the near future!

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Some other times, he will tell me the stories of how great my forefathers were. He taught me lots of things too. I enjoyed sitting down with him exchanging stories. I love listening to him because he is very funny and I love it when he sings! He is also a good listener. He will always show excitement every time when I tell him my stories. I always look forward to his visit every year. I can’t imagine to live without seeing him in a year!

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One thing for sure is that Dadajee is very generous, romantic, charming, super duper protective, supportive and ROARSOME!!! He is also a very hard-working man. He will never sit still. He will always find something to keep him occupied. Dadajee is a YES man too! You can ask him anything and he will always say yes. He will never say no to your requests! All these great qualities make Dadajee a PAWSOME grandpa!

Thank_you

Last but not least, I would like to take this golden opportunity to thank my Dadajee for all the extraordinary skills and knowledge which he has passed onto all his children. Mrs Mom and Dr Auntie always share with me all the tips and techniques that Dadajee used in the past when they were young. I have to say, the communication technique that Dadajee used with his children is phenomenal! Both Mrs Mom and Dr Auntie have proven that practicing their communication skills in front of a mirror really helps! I too will use the same old technique to brush up on my communication skills. Many kudos to Dadajee for all the time that he sacrificed to help all of his children to excel in their studies! Now I know where Mrs Mom got all her skills from. Perhaps one day, I will write a book about all of Dadajee’s skills and techniques so that the whole world could benefit from it! I am honoured to be one of his descendants! For me, my Dadajee is definitely the best grandpa in the whole wide world!!!!!

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Happy 66th Birthday, Dadajee!

(A poem by: The Pawsome Lion)

You’re one of a kind,

Dadajee, the best grandpa in the world,

You could take me round Earth 66 times, with great, big wings unfurled!

I walk with you

All the time,

Smelling the fresh scent of the thyme

You tell me tales

From far and wide,

From the states of Malaysia to the first aeroplanes that flied

You show me books and pictures

From the olden days,

You showed me when you were at school

And was making lots of friends

My wonderful Dadajee,

You always wear a smile,

You did that for very long, I reckon that’s your style

You’re a jolly grandpa,

There’s no chance you’re not!

You have happiness inside you, that is what you’ve got!

My greatest Dadajee,

I’ve learnt so much from you,

Although my favourite colour’s purple and yours is yellow, we still make the perfect crew!

Dadajee oh Dadajee,

You’re the most supportive person on Earth,

All of your hard work is really really worth!

Dadajee, you’re extra helpful,

You’re a grandpa with good looks,

You’re also filled with lots of knowledge, that makes you a walking book!

My dear Dadajee,

You have many talents,

You should share them with the world!

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p/s: God doesn’t count the candles on your cake or the money in the bank, but the love in your soul. Fortunately, He can count really high! May God grant you a long blessed life and give you the desires of your heart. May God make you the richest man in Heaven! May God remove all troubles from you. May He give you peace and abundance. May God make you victorious. May He neutralise your enemies and make your friends closer…

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p/p/s: Dear God, please do not take my Dadajee away from me…forever…..

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*Media Source: Google Images*