TITLE: Hangman - The Guesser
GENRE: YA Romance, adventure
The Executioner pulls the metal structure from the brick wall. It’s morning. I hope this is the only hanging today. The sun hits the dangling rope noose, shimmering the gold and yellow in the thick braid. The wind moves it like an invisible mouth is exhaling. I blink and look away. Shift my attention to the digital timer built into the structure’s top arm. At the ready, it reads 00:00.
On a bench near the structure, I sit and open my notebook to write the date and time. I’ve been keeping track of every hanging I’ve been to since I was ten. My dad always told me how important it is to know how the hangings work. I’ve been studying by watching and making notes.
A burst of laughter floats over my shoulder. I turn and look. It’s a few students from my school. My spine immediately straightens, bracing for a barrage of insults. I can’t wait to graduate from high school and get away from everyone. A guy points his finger at me, then spins it in a small circle beside his temple. Justin Ryman. Athlete asshole with a head full of nothing.
“Coo-coo, Jason!” he yelps. The others follow suit - bunch of lemmings.
Every town has a square with a gallows in it. Our square is also an open market. Blooming flowers, ripe fruit and fresh-cut meat, sharing space with the hangings. I don’t know, lately it’s feeling…not right.