Mehreen Ahmed

Mehreen Ahmed is an Australian novelist. Her historical fiction, The Pacifist, is a Drunken Druid’s Editor’s Choice. Gatherings, is nominated for the James Tait Black Prize for fiction. Her short and flash fiction have won in The Waterloo Short Story Festival, Cabinet-of-Heed stream-of-consciousness Challenge, shortlisted by Cogito Literary Journal Contest, shortlisted by Litteratuer RW for Litt Prize, finalist in the Fourth Adelaide Literary Award Contest. A Best of Cafelit 8,three-time nominated for The Best of the Net Awards, nominated for the Pushcart Prize Award. Also, critically acclaimed by Midwest Book Review, DD Magazine, The Wild Atlantic Book Club to name a few. She is contributing editor and jury to the KM Anthru International Prize of the Litterateur Redefining World Magazine and a featured writer for Flash Fiction North and Connotation Press. Her Toads on Lily Pads was curated by Cambridge Press on Muck Rack. She is widely published online and in anthologies. She has published eight books, and her works have been translated in German, Greek and Bangla. 

Her recent works are forthcoming in Litro Magazine and The Antonym.

Nacre

An irritant entered the body, Queen Nacre secreted aragonite and conchiolin in her castle’s bedchamber of the deep seas which the Queen produced as a protective shield against invaders, she gave birth to the Mother-of Pearls and embedded it on its lucent pods within its hard shells, a defence mechanism, an impregnable wall, not understanding though, that this prized possession, was also the much-coveted object for the Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts–the rulers on the land, who would go to any lengths to extract it by violating Nacre’s fragile shells— the Trojan wall would fall at their feet, to bejewel an already existing ornamental neck of the Queen, more pearls for the Hatter’s jewel in the crown, the Mother-of-Pearl the most precious survival mechanism taken and crushed for their pleasure, paradoxically an existential crisis, a double-edged sword—the very wall of protection was also Queen Nacre’s nemesis, for her oyster subjects cried a rising death toll in the Garden of Pearls, however, who could not even conch, a sound off to the mermaids of the far seas whose aid of ancient callings could have frustrated the Queen of Heart’s sea soldiers — raiders of the Oyster Kingdom had this wayward annihilation on their conscious, but, one pearl made its way back to Queen Nacre’s court and told her a story of obsession that a Queen on the land dissolved one of them, pearls, mixed it in wine or vinegar and drank it to impress her King–beautiful but idiosyncratic, thought Queen Nacre in a moment of truth.

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