Furious Fiction – October 2019

The brief of the AWC Furious Fiction—October 2019 short story competition was as follows:

  • Each story had to take place in a LIBRARY or BOOKSTORE
  • Each story had to include AT LEAST SIX of the following 20 words– each taken from the openings of the previous 20 Furious Fiction winning stories:
    • BROKEN; MUSIC; AROUND; MECHANICAL; SMELT; GRUBBY; GAME; COFFEE; BEIGE; HANDS; TWELVE; LETTERS; BACKPACK; NAMELESS; COWBOY; OPERATE; CUPID; TRAIN; PUNGENT; UNTOUCHED.

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A Witch, A Cupid & A Valentine’s Day Arrangement

I’m not sure whether to love or hate Valentine’s Day.

I use to love it when I was young, before I started living the life I have now and when I was more optimistic about love. I’m no man-hating cynic, but after a failed marriage and not to mention age, I’m not as much of a romantic as I use to be.

There’s a part of me that hates it due to the same routine that I have to endure with the day—the speed dating event at my bookstore café, Zahra’s Book Shop and Coffee Heaven. Sure, I’m the business owner, I could always cancel it, except I can’t due to my magical nature and the magical creature who always lingers around…Cupid.

Every year my café hosts the event not only to bring in some great income but also to help out the Cupid assigned to my town. Valentine’s Day is the busiest day of the year for Cupids and they have to match at least fourteen couples by the end of the night (or midnight or twelve, when I close the café). The speed dating event makes it easier for him.

Although it’s easier for him it’s also not a complete walk in the park either. There’s always grubby people who sit around the tables drinking coffee with, let’s just say, not-the-best intentions. That being said I’m not too worried, who needs a bouncer when you’re a witch with the power of aerokinesis and can throw a mini-tornado out of your hand (big enough to make an impact, not too big to risk exposure of magic, I usually only have to do it once or twice)!

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I don’t know whether it was the better selection I made of romantic music, or the heatwave this year, but Cupid met his quota surprisingly quickly, and I only had to hit one person with a mini-tornado, while blowing a small gust of wind on others to “cool them off”.

As usual I turned off the music, the lights, put the dishes in the dishwasher and used my powers to sweep the floors. Cupid stopped by the closed front door, his shadow visible by the street light outside and nodded his head, in thanks. I nodded back to subtly say “see you again next year.”

 

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