The Night Was Still

The night was still, and so was she, standing stationary in amongst the trees, her dull clothes rendering her almost invisible, just another shadow. She’d been there for six hours, and could comfortably stay for six more, in a hyperaware state of tension and control.

It was a cold, crisp night, hinting at snow, but there were no clouds in the sky, and a half moon hung ominously in the obsidian blanket of the sky, stars speckled like drops of silver. It was beautiful, but she wasn’t looking up. Her eyes were fixed steadily on the road in front of the copse of trees. She was waiting.

And then, suddenly, movement, disrupting the silence of the night. She tensed almost imperceptibly, and her gaze became, if possible, even more focused. A man ran out from the bushes on the opposite side of the road, breath coming in short sharp gasps, movements panicky. He paused on the road, glancing behind him…

And she moved, for the first time in hours, and she drew her knife from her belt and threw it in one smooth motion. It was over in seconds. She stepped out from the cover of the trees and pulled her knife back from the lifeless body before her. The blood on the blade was a dark as the sky above her. She wiped it on the corpse’s clothes, and then melted into the trees once more. And she was gone.

-Maura Kenny


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