51 Sport

(Credit: Rania Maria Rönntoft, raniamaria.eu/blog)

(Credit: Rania Maria Rönntoft, raniamaria.eu/blog)

Theo and Loren made a sport out of stalking strangers. Reporting back to each other what people did, they quickly found out that most people in their town spent their time doing quite ordinary things like buying groceries, watching television and kissing. But the stalking was still exciting and the retelling of the deeds of the stalked could be spiced up when necessary. They soon knew the names of a lot of people who did not know Theo and Loren existed.

One day, Loren was watching Susanna Brooke feeding her cat Missy from behind a tree when a stranger walked by. It was a stranger with long dark dreadlocks, baggy trousers and a purple jacket which looked new, but which had probably been out of fashion for a hundred years. Deciding that Susanna Brooke was not a spy who had trained Missy to carry secret messages, Loren stepped away from the tree and strolled along a fair distance behind the stranger.

Loren hoped the woman was on her way home or to one of her favourite haunts, so it would be easy finding her again. When she stopped in front of a sweets shop, a little voice in the back of her head begged for the woman to go inside; Loren might be able to nick a few jelly beans from their mix section. The stranger lifted one hand to the glass and Loren felt a twinge of wanting to consume more than just a few lousy jelly beans. She stopped and shook her head to get rid of the weird feeling. Then continued walking as before, concerned that the woman might have seen her acting strange. She sighed when the stranger turned away from the shop and walked on down the street.

A short while later, the woman turned down an alley, and Loren frowned since as far as she knew that alley only contained an old shed with no longer usable spare parts behind a chain-link fence and a locked chain-link gate. She crept close to the corner and carefully lent out to see where her prey had gone.

The woman was in front of the gate with one hand on the handle. There was a locked padlock on it as usual, but when she pulled, the gate swung open and behind it there were brambles with shiny berries and thorns much longer than they should be with large purple flowers sprouting among them. Loren blinked and stepped closer, forgetting that she was trying not to be seen. This had probably failed already, because the woman then stepped through the doorway and looked directly at her. Some of her dreadlocks were antlers, and as the woman smiled at her, all the muscles in Loren’s body froze and something snagged her insides and pulled some of her with it into the brambles. Then the door snapped shut and something was cut off. As the severed tendrils drifted aimlessly in front of her, Loren stared through the gate with its rusty unbroken padlock at a worn car tire on the bare earth.

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  1. Excellent … would’ve been even better if Theo had been caught too. Nasty little creatures, both of them!


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