Recently on Google+ I entered a just-for-fun writing competition where short stories and poetry could be entered based on a given prompt image. I was stoked to find that I won after receiving the most +1's on my short story titled 'The Package'!
Please have a read of said short story. I hope you enjoy! (I apologize for the cliff hanger at the end; there was a word limit)
I opened my eyes slowly as I heard the chatter around me rise, a buzz of quiet voices. With bleary vision I gazed to my right where people lined the side of the train carriage, all struggling to see out of the windows. I nudged Nathan beside me who had been sleeping with his head resting on my shoulder. He grunted and rubbed his eyes. His bright white hair was tousled and his young face was marked from where he had been resting.
"Are we nearly there, Cindy?" He asked sleepily.
"Not sure," I said, "But I wonder what's caused the fuss." Nathan looked when I nodded to the people who muttered to each other. Together we rose and bobbed about trying to see past the mass of people.
"Why didn't we stop back there?" I heard one man ask, "I'm on the correct train, right?"
"I don't know," Replied a woman, "Someone should go talk to the conductor."
The numerous voices were a babble of questions and complaints.
"SIT DOWN! We've taken charge of this train!" A man shouted from the front of the carriage. A lady screamed as she was thrown down in to the aisle. People gasped and sat down briskly, not caring where they sat. Two men wearing black balaclavas sauntered down the aisle, eyes flicking to every face, pistols held casually before them. One of the two men chuckled with pleasure as he gazed at a young woman. She huddled back in her seat in fear.
"No need to fear," Said the man who had shouted earlier, his voice gruff, "There is merely a… package… aboard this train. It's quite valuable. We're not about to let it get away from us so easily."
"Shit," I whispered, my eyes flicking at Nathan. I quickly pulled the hood of his jumper up hoping to cover his hair. If the men were after him then his white hair would be like a beacon. All we needed to do was reach the dock and he would be safe. We were so, so close. I looked around, we were sat close to the back of the carriage. If we moved quickly we could still escape. I felt at my sleeve under which lay my throwing knives. I had two left, just enough.
"Cindy," Nathan whispered shakily, "What do we do?"
"We leave," I replied. Swiftly I leap in to the aisle, the throwing knives slipping in to my hands with ease. One knife flew towards the man who now leant over the young woman lecherously. The blade buried itself in his neck. He fell with a yell, hand darting for his gushing neck. The woman screamed as he fell on to her, dead. As the other knife shot towards its target the first man ducked with a practiced motion, the knife flying through the air where he neck had been. I cursed and pushed Nathan towards the door at the rear of the cabin.
"You little bitch!" The man cursed. I hurried after Nathan as he scurried out of the door, standing on the ledge precariously as the ground wooshed by beneath him.
"Cross it, Nathan!" I shouted. Suddenly a thick hand was clutching my arm. I felt the nuzzle of the gun pressed to my head and all motion was lost. Just get to the dock Nathan, I thought desperately, You're my last hope. I then prepared myself to do the impossible. Survive.
I closed my eyes, trying to calm my breathing. Would the man shoot me here? I had to think, there had to be a way out. I heard the gun safety being flicked off. I couldn't dodge this.
"NO!" I heard Nathan shout.
The man pulled the trigger and merely a click emerged. The man cursed, his hand loosening on my arm. This was my chance. I Kicked backwards in to his knee, a sickening crunch emerging. The man yelled out as he fell to the ground. Nathan still stood on the platform staring at the gun. I ran to him and forced him to climb the ladder that lead to the carriage roof.
Once there I asked, "Was that you?"
Nathan nodded, trembling where he crouched atop the moving carriage.
"You really are the Lucky Boy, aren't you?" I muttered, "Thank you. You saved my life."
Shouting could be heard from below.
"Damn, there's more of them," I said. Looking ahead I could see the ocean, dark in the twilight hours. My hair streamed back from my face with the wind. The surrounding buildings were mostly made up of warehouses. In one of those warehouses was our hiding place, the safe house. Scrambling behind me made me turn and I saw a man climb the ladder, gun in hand. The man sneered.
"We have you cornered now, little rat," A deep voice said behind us. I spun to see a burly man climb atop the carriage at the other end.
"Cindy, we can't escape," Nathan whimpered.
Suddenly a loud bang erupted from the engine and the train slowly ran to a halt. I looked at Nathan, his eyes were glazed over with tears. Was this his doing again?
Bang! The man climbing atop the carriage dropped down to the ground with a thud. It was impossible for Nathan to shoot a guy from out of thin air, right? Bang! The second guy grunted and gripped his arm.
"I'll find you. Just you wait," he spat before swing down to the ground with his good arm and running into an alley.
I crouched by Nathan and looked into the shadows. Those gunshots had come from somewhere.
"Ho! That was lucky timing eh, babe?"
I peered in to the darkness and a form walked in to the light of a street lamp.
"Gavin!" I shouted with relief when I saw the tall man. Gavin held a sniper rifle casually resting on his shoulder, a worn trench coat swathing him in darkness.
I clamoured down the side of the train, helping Nathan down after me, then ran to Gavin. He chuckled as I tackled him with a hug.
"I missed you," I murmured emotionally.
"Cindy?" Nathan asked behind me. When I turned I could see him stand back by the train looking tense, eyes wide.
"What's wrong Nathan?" I asked cheerily, "We're safe now."
Nathan shook his head without taking his eyes from Gavin. "That's him. That's the guy who's after me. The Shadow Master."
Gavin's embrace went rigid and I looked up at him cautiously. "No, it can't be."
Scarlett Van Dijk
A Writer's Tale
Scarlett Van Dijk
Writer of young adult, fantasy series, the Sky Stone series, poetry and short stories.
Subscribe to my blog to receive email updates of my latest posts.