by Michael Zerger
I shouldn't be out, but I have a date. A blind date, you might say, and I may already be late. The fog is thick here in the Hollow, and I shiver. It's not just because of the cold and wet. There are things out here scarier than a circus clown.
I wrap my cloak tightly about me and pull up my hood. I wish I had gloves. There are no lights to show my way or to reveal faces. The fog muffles and misdirects sound.
The stranger approaches as I climb the street. I see him only by the outline of his cloak, his top hat. My breath becomes halting. There are no clues to provide identification in the mist. The stranger is taller than I am and walks with an odd gait as though he is uncertain.
As we come nearer to passing each other I begin to sweat. The sweat is as cold as the fog. I prepare to run. My heart rate skyrockets in dread anticipation. My stomach is in a knot and I can taste the metallic tang of fear.
We come together. As he passes, he raises his left hand and tips his hat. I barely jostle him. And as my left elbow lifts his elbow slightly higher, I turn towards him and thrust my stiletto under his cloaked arm, neatly between his ribs, through his left lung, into his heart. He collapses to the ground trying to scream; my hand uses his muffler as a gag.
The blade is long and sharp and thin. When I withdraw it, the wound will close, leaving barely a trace of blood. It may be hours into the morning before his cause of death is known.
Playtime is over. I flee into the safety of darkness.
Copyright © 2008 by Michael Zerger