Monica Byrne offers a romance in her story “Alexandria,” which was published in the January 2017 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Aside from being set in the future, there is very little about the story that reads as science fiction.
Beth Miyake is coming to terms with the death of her husband, Keiji. Through her memories of him, the reader learns that while they had a deep love for each other, it manifested itself in ways which were not obvious to outsiders. Beth’s family never understood their relationship and Keiji tended to be quiet when the two of them weren’t alone.
When they were along, they understood each other perfectly, although Beth could never understand why Keiji insisted that she memorize and then destroy the love poems that he wrote for her, refusing to allow her to discuss them with anyone else. They were emblematic of their love for each other.
Aside from one disappointing trip they took for their honeymoon, the two didn’t leave Kansas. Upon arriving in Alexandria, Egypt on that trip, they discovered that the Lighthouse of Alexandria had been destroyed seven centuries earlier. It had never occurred to them that it was no longer standing. Since then, their travels had been done virtually through reading books about the places they would never physically visit.