I kept my attention fixed straight ahead, ignoring the sweat that dripped down my face and the heat of the sun on my bare back, concentrating just on the ground, the knife in my hand, and the person in front of me. Derrick, I thought his name was. But that was irrelevant, a thought from the world outside the rough circle scratched in the sand. A dangerous thought. A distraction.
His feet shuffled towards me, a feint. I reacted instantly, leaned left, then springing to the right when he lunged. A feint to counter a feint. I leapt towards him but he had already turned and faced me, jumping aside just as I had done moments before. The sun was merciless. I shifted my weight, watching carefully for any sign of what my opponent would do next; a shift in his balance, a twitch of his eyes, anything that might give him away. Continue reading