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The Hunter

He crouched quietly in the cool shadows of the evening, observing her gentle and precise movements as she began to make her way home. He watched, noticing the careful manner in which she chose her path, cautiously and slowly contemplating each step she made. He took note of how deliberate she was in her actions. A lifetime of pursuit by others had resulted in extreme and wary vigilance on her part. She was always monitoring and inspecting her surroundings. Listening ... waiting ... for the next attempt to be made

He’d already been tracking her for some times, patiently scrutinizing her and learning her patterns. He was aware that necessity had taught her the value of seeking out the heavy cover provided by the wetlands, how to hold tight, to be still and unmoving. She knew how to use her natural color and stealth to avoid even the most experienced of hunters. He also knew she was an excellent swimmer and could easily forge a major river or lake if required for her survival. Therefore, the location and his timing needed to be perfect.

There had been others in the herd, so many options for him to choose from: some older, some younger, some prettier, some wiser and some more docile. She ... she though was different. There was something intangible about her. Her soft, sparkling brown eyes had captured his attention. The easy way about her and her casual and confident interactions with the rest of the herd was obvious to even the most un-astute observer. He, however, had discerned something more. He also saw that there was also something flawed, something not so perfect in her manner - it intrigued him. She was unique, like a different animal, perhaps even a new species. She was going to be a trophy, his trophy, one worthy and deserving of a place on his wall. He wanted, no he needed, to posses her.

He knew though that he would not be able to claim his prize by employing the same standard techniques used by other hunters. She was special and required him to adjust his hunting methods accordingly, to think outside-of -the-box so to speak. He wouldn’t need any new, fancy or flashy equipment. The latest tech worth hundreds or thousands of dollars was un-necessary. No. Simple, traditional, methods and tools would work best. All he needed was to employ his brain. It would require him to be disciplined in his pursuit, to be patient and to be mindful of changes in weather and other factors that could “put her on the run”.

So he had begun the chase, his stalking of her: HIS prey and now he was being rewarded for his diligence and patience. He’d trailed behind, following her to a remote and more isolated area. She was separated from the rest of the herd and he from the constant threat of competition. Now, watching from the shadows, he had spotted his opportunity.

It necessitated a shot of great precision, but he was confident in his abilities. After all, his painstaking surveillance had uncovered her weaknesses. And so, he un-sheathed his weapon and rising from the crouched position he took his stance. Raising the weapon he took aim, deliberately fixing her in his sights. Taking a slow, deep, deliberate breath ... in and out, waiting for the brief pause, that silent moment in between his heart beats.

He fired!

His aim had been perfectly tuned. She stumbled, and un-able to recover, she collapsed. Pleased with himself the word-smith walked over to claim his prize.
Hongruilin Hongruilin 31-35, F 7 Responses Dec 12, 2012

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Very, very nicely done.
Was I the only one that saw it coming?

I doubt it, but the ending was created specifically to surprise one person.

Oh, and thank you!

You're welcome, and aha - that explains a little more about your choice of words for the punchline.

Indeed! :-)

1 More Response

Great story, I'm sure it's only me but I would have liked the male female roles reversed, but ya I loved it !

Lol ... as a male you would prefer to have been hunted by the female? ;-) Thank you for taking the time to read it and comment. I'm glad you "loved it".

well it's not really that, I get tired of the male always being the evil one. I just think it would be a breath of fresh air to have that switched up every once in a while.

I understand. Funny, your the second man today to tell me that they thought the hunter was either evil or cruel and calculating. Whereas I did not think of him in that regard at all. He was actually held captive by her, by what he wanted and valued/desired her enough to put in the extra effort to learn about her. It's interesting the different view or feelings that people get when reading the same thing ...

Speechless, come to Louisiana and with me. I enjoyd the, tension of the hunt, publish this to a sportsman magazine.

Thank you. I'm pleased you enjoyed it. The tension ... it was what "inspired" me to write this.

I swear,I need a jigger of brandy to thaw my blood now.One minute I was crouched down ,eyeing up the prey,and confusing the hunter's heart beat with that of my own,and suddenly I was transported out of the safety of the bushes,and was instead walking side by side,with the soon to be hapless victim,feeling chased,while slipping and falling on a stranger's icy stare. I n other words...I like this a lot.:)

*laughs* ... Thank you, thank you so much. I liked your response - a lot.

Wow tremendous story! That was a real thriller so to speak, and I certainly didn't see that ending coming. You have some serious skills:)

Thank you my friend. If the end caught you somewhat by surprise then my writing skills have satisfied me. *hugs*

Most excellent. Thank you. You have real talent.

*blushes* Thank you for your most kind and generous compliment.

You are welcome. It is the truth as I do not lie.

Then I again thank you for your sincerity and honesty, for those are of utmost value to me.

Very well written and very clever! I like :-)

Thanks sweetie. I'm surprised it was at all co-herent given the time of day/night. LOL.