Furious Fiction – November 2021

The brief of the AWC Furious Fiction—November 2021 short story competition was as follows:

  • Your story must include someone PACKING A SUITCASE.
  • Your story must include the phrase “ACROSS A CROWDED ROOM” (as dialogue or narrative).
  • Your story must include the words CHARM, CRUSH and FAINT. (Longer variations were accepted as long as original spelling was retained.)


Until Death Do Us Part

I never thought I’d be doing this. Where are the tissues?

I met Clancy fifteen years ago, it was totally romantic (and admittedly cliché). I was at an art gallery opening, talking to a friend of mine, when our eyes met across a crowded room. I immediately developed a crush on him, and once we actually spoke to each other, I was instantly won over by his charm.

Where are the tissues?

Our relationship bloomed, we got married, supported each other as our careers took off, bought and renovated a house, and travelled. But over time, with our long work hours and change over time, our marriage broke down, with our romantic (and admittedly cliché) first meeting and stages of our relationship becoming a distant and faint memory.

Where are the tissues?

We’ve been divorced for five years now. There was no blow up, no cheating, just a slow burn out. After the divorce was finalised, we didn’t speak for a year. When we ran into each other on the street, we were both awkward, but started a friendly conversation, which led to coffee, which led to us becoming friends again. We both moved on in the love department, we didn’t remarry but did find the people we were truly meant to spend our lives with.

Where are the tissues?

I started packing my suitcase, taking things in and out of it, moments after hanging up with his girlfriend, Abby. I know what to pack and what to wear, but if I finish and close the suitcase, then I have to leave.

How do I say goodbye to my first love…and where are the tissues?