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Flash Fiction Special: Dual Birthdays

I just want to say that yesterday (May 14th) was my birthday, but there's something that is special about it that I will never forget the date of my birthday. My brother's birthday is the day after (May 15th), and from as early as I can remember, we have always celebrated our birthdays together since it made logical sense. If I think of when my birthday is, I can't forget his and vice versa. It makes sense to me in my opinion. I just want to do a short fictional writing about this... Hope you enjoy =)


"What should I get for his birthday?" Tom began to walk down another aisle in the department store, exhausted. "Kim, please suggest some ideas. I don't know what to get for him."

Kim had been looking at her smart phone as they walked through the store, playing games to distract her from her boredom. In any other circumstances, she would be up for shopping but Tom had woke her up in the wee hours in the morning to get to the shopping mall. Her irritation and annoyance showed in her messy, uncombed hair, lack of make-up, and her sulking. "Anything will do. You two are brothers, so you should know what he likes best." She complained, "I still can't believe you woke me up for this, after you had said something was really important. I had a late shift last night, and I had planned to sleep in a bit longer."

"I'm sorry. You're the only one I trust when it comes to gifts." Tom turned to face her and pleaded. "Is there anything you see that may be good?"

She scanned the shelves in the aisle that they were in, and pointed to one item. "What about that?"

"He already has a mp3 player, so that doesn't help. Try harder, Kim." Tom said and continued look on the shelves.

Kim raised her eyebrows, and rolled her eyes. You wanted my help, but you're making things really difficult. When you told me you had something important to show me, other things came to mind so I followed you. But, it was for this... I can't say that I'm disappointed.

Tom peered up from one of the shelves, and saw something in a different aisle. He immediately ran for it to get a closer look, and called out, "Kim! Come over here! Hurry!"

She sneaked towards Tom like a sloth and looked down at the glass display. She asked, "What are we looking at?"

"Over there." He pointed at a particular watch in the glass display. "He always wanted a new watch ever since he broke his old one a couple of months ago. This is perfect."

Kim nodded. "I think it has a nice design. Let's get it."

"I think so too, but you're going to have to help me on this one as well." He said, hopeful.

She stood a step back from the counter with confused eyes. "What do you mean?" Then Kim saw his nervous grin and tapping his index fingers together before saying, "Really? You're going to split the cost with me for your brother's birthday?"

"Please, Kim!" Tom begged her, holding onto her shoulders. "I almost maxed out my credit card for this month. If you could do me this favour, then I'll make it up to you with anything you want after today!"

I can't believe it, but let's get it over with." She shook her head while chuckling. "Let's ask for the price, but you better tell your brother we split the cost for his present though. If I hear that you took full credit for this, then I'm going to be so angry at you."

"Thank you so much, Kim! You're a life saver! I love you!" Tom hugged her, sobbing and wiping his tears with the back of his hand.

Kim sighed, then smiled. "Excuse me, miss! We want to know the price for this watch!"

Meanwhile, Jim was walking through a different shopping mall with Karen. She asked, "Did you come up with ideas for Tom's present?"

"I came up with a short list, but I really should have did this last week." He took out a folded piece of paper to read from it. "It would save me from this last minute panic right now."

"Well, I'm sure he will understand if you're late on his present. You've been busy with work." Karen said, "It's not the first time you guys haven't gotten each other presents for your birthdays. No need to be stress over it."

"I know, but I want to have a reason to get this for Tom. He's been going on and on about it to me for a couple of months now. He must really want it." Jim replied.

"I'm sure he'll love it." She laughed. "I hope it is easy to find, and available."

"I hope so too." Throughout most of their day, they walked through many stores and after each one, they began to lose hope of finding it. Jim thought he wasn't going to get it for Tom on the same day, and would have to settle for later in the week. After browsing through the most recent store, Karen spotted it in a glass display and called Jim over to look at it. Jim immediately bought it without a single hesitation, and walked out of the store with the bag beaming and whistling a victory tune. Then he stopped as he looked into the bag. "Maybe I should have asked the sales person to wrap it for me. Hold on, Karen."

"What are you talking about?" She yanked his arm and walked in a hurry to the exit. "We're going to be late if we stay here any longer. Never mind the wrapping, and let's go now."

Jim looked at his watch and saw the time with wide eyes. "Let's get the hell out of here!" He started to pick up the pace with Karen on their way out to his car.

At the restaurant, Tom and Kim were waiting at the table for 4. They had only gotten there five minutes before Jim and Karen entered the restaurant. The two couples waved, and greeted one another when each of them made eye contact. After Jim and Tom shook hands, they looked down at their presents for one another. Jim quickly said, "I'm sorry for not wrapping it. I was in a hurry today, and we literally came from the store just now."

Jim glanced at Karen for back-up, and she added, "I can vouch for that."

Tom shook his head while smiling. "It's no problem. I don't have your present wrapped either. I was also in a hurry."

"Let's exchange gifts right now. Tom, I can't wait to see the expression on your face." Jim said, excited.

Just before Tom gave Jim's gift, Kim elbowed him in the back with a stern look. Then Tom added in a rush, "Kim also contributed to the present as well. I hope you'll like it."

"Same here as well, but from Karen and I." Jim replied.

All four people sat down at the table. Karen and Kim both looked nervous at the two brothers about to open their presents for one another. "Should we do a countdown and open it together?" Tom suggested.

"Sure." Jim nodded in agreement, and took a deep breath before both brothers said, "Three. Two. One. Open!"

Karen's and Kim's mouths had hung open at the bizarre coincidence. Tom and Jim looked down at each of their presents, then looked up at each other before facing their girlfriends. A couple of seconds passed before all four of them burst out laughing. Tom and Jim got up from their seats, and hugged each other as they continued to laugh. "Happy Birthday, Jim. Thanks for the gift."

"You too, and thank you. Hope this year will be well for you."

The two brothers opened up the product packages, and wore the same watch on their wrists.


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