The Hunted

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Darts is a game of luck for most, but for Kenny and me, it’s a game of precision. One must put themselves in the moment, focusing only on the target at hand, blurring the rest of what surrounds or distracts. In our case, dignity is the wager. Each vile, manhandled miniature arrow must be wiped down, erasing any remnants of the previous holder. Like I said before, luck isn’t a factor, and nothing can interfere with the process. I watch as Kenny polishes the metallic blue stems to perfection, ensuring it meets both our standards.

Kenny raises his knobby, scarred-up fingers to his mouth, breathing out a long, silent sigh. He lines the dart up with his lips, and then extends his arm straight in front of him, never letting go of the arrow. He stays there, frozen in time like a nimble statue. Neither of us waver. Over the years, we’ve become surprisingly steady, like a soldier at war. In a way, we kind of were.

My greasy, unkempt black hair falls in solid chunks onto my face, blocking my vision. I quickly clear it away, revealing the target when I do. “Ready?” I say, so quietly I can’t almost hear myself, but Kenny nods, completely engrossed with his aim.

I snatch the dart from his extended hand, replacing it, fast as ever, with a loaded pipe. He blows, hard, and the weapon shoots out, lodging itself directly into our target’s temple. He drops to the ground, not realising what hit him. Like a machine, I reload the pipe before the other target notices, placing it back in Kenny’s hands, exactly as before. He blows again, releasing all the air in his lungs, and the second target drops just as furiously as the first.

We sit in silence for a moment, only for the briefest of time, collecting our thoughts, relishing our victory.

We’d played the their way for far too long, and today, muddied, broken, but still clinging to our honour, we won. We hunted the hunters. We killed our captors with precision, not luck. And now we’re free.


Author Notes

7 Comments for “The Hunted”

Mary Cooney-Glazer

says:

Riveting portraits of characters, weapons, preparation. There isn’t an extra word here. Your taut writing creates intensity. Twist at the end makes the story. Nice work. Mary

says:

Beautiful, Anisa! Excellent story – way to drop that ending on us! You MC and Kenny are a pair of characters I’d like to see again.

A coupla nits:

“He drops to the ground, not realising (realizing) what hit him.”

“We’d played the (delete) their way for far too long, ”

Minor nits… keep up the good writes!

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