Maybe this Time
by Amin Motin
Surrounded by trees on high mountain ridges, I knew that I couldn’t travel far that night. The moon was full and I must have been visible for miles. I was weary and frightened. By now, they must have realised that I’d gone. They’d soon be looking for me with the dogs, rabid beasts used to terrorise us and tame us into submission.
I was one of the lucky ones. I’d escaped the ovens and now I’d escaped the camp. God willing I’d escape with my life this time. I pressed on, unsure really where I was headed and whether it was to safety, or suffering. Floating gently upon the breeze came the sound of yapping, barking, shouting. So, it had begun.
I ran as fast as my emaciated legs could carry me, but I was no longer the athlete I once was. Years of starvation had seen to it that I was little more than skin and bones – a bag of mostly water, in fact. For a brief moment I thought I heard my pursuers change direction, but that was never meant to be. Inexorably they closed in on me, hunting me down like a dog. That’s what I was – a dog. My purpose in life now to be hunted.
When they caught me the Major looked at me with contempt.
“This one is too old to play the quarry anymore. There’s no challenge left. Shoot him.”
They were the final words I ever heard. My death sentence.