by Kate Ward ’23
The girl looked up and smiled. His blood ran cold. She shouldn’t be able to see him. The girl unbuckled the hatchet at her waist and brought her arm back to throw it. Isaiah pressed the small button on the inside of his uniform and phased back into his body, leaping down from his perch, narrowly avoiding the oncoming weapon. Her hatchet dematerialized with a wave of her hand and was already back in throwing position. He hadn’t seen anything like it before over the course of his training sessions. He had to find a way to disarm her and get to that button on the other side of the room.
He could tell he was losing energy by the way his breathing staggered and shuddered. He was beginning to panic, and his facade was beginning to slip. Isaiah normally had no problem keeping his cool during training, but the fact that she could see him really unnerved him. He couldn’t keep dodging her and eventually caught the hatchet in the bicep.
Isaiah cried out, looking down at it in shock as the weapon disappeared with a spurt of blood coming from his arm. He shook his head and began to sprint for the exit, hurtling over the various boxes and platforms the training center had set up. The hatchet whistled past his ear once more, and it seemed that the button grew farther and farther away with each frenzied step he took. Isaiah dared to glance backward, and she just stood about six feet away, staring at him with a small smile, a predator hunting its prey.
She knew she had him; all she had to do was finish it. If he hit that button, he would win this round and she would be sent to the gallows. She couldn’t let that happen. As desperate as she was, she wanted him to feel that sweet relief of his fingers brushing the button but the crushing doom of not quite hitting it. So she threw her axe and watched it hit him directly in the spine.