The Arrow

by Carl Santoro

The hot summer's day practice session was over.

Devin raced past the targets to retrieve the stray arrows from the woods. 

The camp Counselor had instructed him not to linger so the next class could get started. The shouts from the field became muffled as he searched deeper into the woods.

 He thought, as the atmosphere became quieter, darker and thicker that maybe, just maybe, he had a flash of a sensation denoting that he might be scared.

He had been down dark alleyways back near home, even at night. But this felt different.

He spotted the yellow shaft up ahead on the ground. As he came up to it, it began to rock like a see saw. Squatting for a closer look he discovered it was teetering atop a turtles back.

He gently plucked it off and saw the turtle begin to lumber away.

A branch behind him snapped loudly, startling him. Turning slowly, he was confronted with the the sight of a large figure walking briskly towards him.

"C'mon Dev, you stupid shit, what's takin' so long?" It was Jack Nolan, otherwise known as, The Bully from Jackson Heights. "Hey, what's that?" Jack bent down and grabbed the turtle. "Here, give me that arrow, dick head," he said. Devin spun around holding the arrow close to his chest and away from Jack. Jack lunged forward, pulling at Devin's t-shirt. "Give it to me I said, you dip! Fork it over!"
Devin only held on tighter. He really didn't know why. 
Still holding the turtle with one hand, Jack suddenly smacked Devin hard across the face. The arrow fell to the ground and Jack snatched it up.
"Watch this asshole," Jack laughed out. He held the turtle above his head and slowly began to insert the arrow up the anus. The turtle's legs moved rapidly as though swimming in the air.

"Ha, this will make him move faster I bet, huh?" Jack said, looking down at Devin who was trying to reach up to extract the arrow. Jack began swirling the shaft like those circus performers who dangle spinning plates on a stick, and with one last wide rotation, he launched the turtle, arrow and all, way into the woods.

Devin began crying. "You bastard! You cruel sonovabitch!"

"You'll be next, shithead," Jack responded. They both began to race back out. Devin had full intentions of telling the Counselor. "And you better not say a word, you little puke, or you will pay severely!"

As they ran, the shouts from the field became louder. They looked at each other, seeing who would reach the clearing first. Jack leaping several feet ahead. The Counselor's voice, now began becoming the prominent shouter.
Devin pushed on harder and as he gained on Jack, Jack turned his head and spit at him. He ducked to avoid it, then looked again just as an arrow pierced Jack's throat, stopping him cold.

"Don't come out! We're shooting again!" screamed the Counselor.