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The A4 Shortlist -
Summer '24

After we had amassed them all, you tied your silvering hair in a topknot and  issued an instruction, ‘We are going to fix this. Bring me your mother’s box.’


At the wedding breakfast, your place name card is next to mine. You are wearing a black satin dress and a matching hat. ‘I know,’ you say, as if you can read my mind, ‘but the groom’s a right twat.’


Kai was a drug dealer who wore hearing aids. He mostly sold pills, a bit of coke, and he was usually in The Prince of Thieves on weekend nights.


Burning blood turns the boy’s ears red. Hot blood rushes in the boy’s ears. The Catherine Wheel that his life has become is screaming in his ears.


Thomas Paris, north London dad, sits in a Ford Fiesta atop Butcher’s Hill, calculating vectors. A Ford Fiesta has one tonne of mass.


It was a chat, a beer and a chat. A pre-interview at most. My friend Jungle Dave had recommended me to his employers, and so I was chatting.

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