Bonfire of the Vanities #prompt #microfiction #shortstory

Jane d burning_angel


Bonfire of the Vanities

‘Forgive me?’ Patrick sipped his beer, eyeing Pauline


‘It was a mistake. I’m so sorry.’

The frontdoor bell went. ‘Later,’ she repeated.

Mike and Michelle stepped inside. ‘We brought fireworks. How’s the bonfire?’

Pauline shrugged. ‘Poor.’ As Mike went to find a beer, Michelle mouthed, ‘You OK?’

Pauline smiled.

Later, ten couples huddled around the feeble fire. Patrick, now drunk, said, ‘The fire’s shit. We need more to burn.’

She waved at the garage. ‘There’s some stuff I’ve packed for the charity. It’ll burn.’

Patrick threw the parcels onto the fire, each one going up in a rush to encouraging cheers.

Later still, Patrick draped himself over Pauline as she cleaned her teeth. ‘Have you forgiven me?’

‘You might want to forgive me first.’


She smiled through her toothpaste. ‘The stuff you burnt?’

Horror crossed his face; he yanked open his wardrobe, his shoulders relaxing as he saw the lines of cashmere and silk suits in their usual spot.

Pauline reached past him, pulling one to one side. It had been neatly cut in half. ‘Just like how I felt when you told me,’ she said.

This short story is in response to Jane Dougherty’s prompt, here. The word count is 188

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published four books - Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle, My Father and Other Liars, Salisbury Square and Buster & Moo. In addition I have published three anthologies of short stories and a memoir of my mother. More will appear soon. I will try and continue to blog regularly at about whatever takes my fancy. I hope it does yours too. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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17 Responses to Bonfire of the Vanities #prompt #microfiction #shortstory

  1. Late as usual, but I forgive you. For retribution, that was some retribution!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Microfiction challenge Burning Angel: the entries – Jane Dougherty Writes

  3. Oh nice. Just cutting the legs and sleeves off wouldn’t have had so much of an impact!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Al Lane says:

    A dish best served cold… then burnt on the fire!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ritu says:

    Never cross a woman. ..!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Made me laugh! Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Nasty, but a great read. What we don’t do to each other and tingle in fiendish pleasure. 😀 😀 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Erika Kind says:

    YES!!!! LOVE THAT!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Charli Mills says:

    Let it burn! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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