How did Michael decide what should stay and what should go?
They’d picked the sofa together, the stereo, the dining table. Every item discussed, fought over, every choice a compromise so that nothing in the flat was really Michael’s taste or Con’s, but that of “Michael ‘n’ Con”, an entity murdered by boredom and a million tiny irritations.
Some things he would dispose of – the yoga mat, the hand-knit throw, the rose bought for their anniversary but never given. All red, the symbol of love and danger.
Con’s favourite colour.
Was that another warning sign Michael had ignored?
Written for Rochelle Wisoff-Field’s Friday Fictioneers, the best writing prompt around.
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15 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers: Red for danger”
Always tricky when the individual identity is lost in the relationship. You captured it well. I hope Michael takes this as a chance to rediscover himself. Excellent as always.
I think this is something many make the mistake of doing. They forget or put aside their identities to “become one” and lose themselves in the process.
I like the scattering of clues that suggest Michael killed Con. An entity murdered; Michael disposing of the few things that are obviously Con’s and not the couple’s; the rose never given.
Of course, Con could just have walked out…
Beautifully done, Lynn. That faint afterhint of regret
And the two shall become one doesn’t necessarily mean they stop being individuals, does it? And those million tiny irritations are part of the territory. 😉 And you leave us with a bit of mystery. Well done.
I guess for most, boredom and tiny irritations would kill the marriage.
The eternal compromise. You captured it well.
The dilemma of ‘uncoupling’. I wonder where Con is though. He wouldn’t have… or would he? Great story, Lynn.
Lynn, you’ve built up quite a mystery here. Well done. I am also wondering where Con is, and in this instance, there are no clues.
It is difficult to know quite how to juggle your identity within a couple, but probably even more so when you add children to the mix. While compromising on issues of décor can involve considerable selling out, matters of faith are in a whole other league. Can you also your partner to give up or compromise their particular faith for the sake of the couple or the family? It sounds like too big an ask, and yet it happens.
Oh boy, you’ve nailed it there 😊
Michael and Con compromised until they no longer existed as individuals. Also, a relationship killed “by boredom and a million tiny irritations.” Well said, excellently told.
Hindsight’s good at showing us the danger signs. Why is that? I really like how you tell the story through the practicalities of the situation – disposing of shared possessions, leaving the emotions and pain for the reader to imagine.
Back in the old days when people only lived to age 30, they didn’t have time to worry about such things. We now have the luxury of unhappy relationships. I hope they both learn from the experience.
Sounds like maybe it’s too late for Michael’s introspection, but if there’s a next-time-around, maybe he’ll have learned thew important principle of knowing who he is.
Romance is not my genre, but it would be fascinating to consider what each individual would have purchased if single…