The Alarm

Excerpt: This job was going to be hers for sure. It would change everything for her. Change everything for all of them. Forever! “I feel a new beginning coming towards me and it’s running towards me with open arms.” (Reads: 213)



Social Short Story – The Alarm

Sarah opened her eyes, pushing her eyelids open like an old wooden door that was stuck because of the freezing cold outside. She rubbed her eyes with her tightened fists as she forced them to open. Crisp golden sunshine invaded her eyelids. Waiting to stare at the ceiling for a moment longer, she looked up at the creamy white paint. But before she could dwell on it, the same jarring noise pierced through her ears again. It was the scream of the alarm that woke her up. Feeling her warm breath under her nose, she sighed.  She fumbled among the lavender sheets smelling of tide detergent, desperate to find her phone and turn the alarm off.  Her fingers gripped her cell phone like an accused being arrested for a crime. She slid her index finger across the screen and made the alarm finally stop! She could still hear the sound. She shut her ears with her palms, her manicured fingers shining with bright red nail paint. There was no sound, maybe it was still ringing in her head.

The fading grey clock on her wall was looking grumpy to her this morning. She was running late!
Her head felt as heavy as the sea. She had to speed up like a rocket. She could not miss this interview. It was far too important. A single mother of two beautiful children was far from beautiful when you actually lived the life of one. She lost her previous job a week ago. She was desperate for a better one. But she wasn’t sure she would make it for the interview. She was terribly, horribly late.

Rushing to the bathroom and racing into the shower, she was trying to draw energy from the water streaming through the metal holes. She needed the job as badly as a hungry man needed food to eat. She was well prepared, but she still rehearsed the possible questions for the interview in her mind. “You are going to make it Sarah, you really are” she chanted to herself as she stepped out of the shower and dried herself with her daughter’s candy pink towel. Well, she had been too upset to even do the laundry last week. But it doesn’t matter.  This job was going to be hers for sure. It would change everything for her. Change everything for all of them. Forever!
“I feel a new beginning coming towards me and it’s running towards me with open arms.”

She looked at herself in the mirror. “Life is like a mirror. Smile at it and it smiles back at you.”
Sarah smiled. Her eyes gleaming with apprehension, heart pounding with nervousness and mouth dry as a desert. This was certainly not her best smile but it was all that she had. Walking to her closet, she pulled out her black trousers and her formal peach shirt. Once she was dressed, she looked once again at the mirror, before stepping into her shoes. Hope her make- up was not too much, was her hair looking good? Pressing a smile into her grim face, she picked up her blue file and thick leather handbag to go…

“Mom wake up, wake up, you are going to be late.” Her daughter Betty was holding her shoulders shaking her violently like a boat stuck in a storm.  “Mom, wake up. It’s interview time!”

Betty was saying in her sing-song voice. Sarah could hear the clash of cymbals in her head. Betty’s voice was flowing through her mind like a sparkling river. Her eyes opened with the same suddenness that her dream ended. Pushing back her silky blonde hair away from her face, she grabbed Betty and hugged her tight.


About the Author

Surabhi Kaushik

I had been working as a copywriter in advertising agencies in India for the past 10 years. I also love to write fiction and my stories have been published in Woman’s Era magazines in India. After moving to the U.S. rmy poetry has been published in www.writer’ and short stories in and

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  1. Surabhi Kaushik says

    Thanks so much Girijia. Well, it was a dream, so it had to end. But I will be writing more stories….thanks for taking the time to read

  2. Girija Natarajan says

    Surabhi, your story is replete with appropriate and significant similes! Very innovative and interesting way to express. The flow of the narration is good and appealing.
    Yes, the description of the dream is emphatic and vivid. Wish you could have written more. Congratulations! Keep writing.

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