All Quiet on the Duck Pond Lawn (Author’s Note 6th edn)

Callum B. Downes


A stiff wind agitates the reeds, compelling the enemy to reposition in unnatural, wary spasms, the glassy surface distorting in their wake. All quiet on the duck pond lawn.

A lone student perches upon a bench top in an unusually precarious fashion and unhinges the lid off his steaming lunch. Hot chips and gravy, for the third time that week… A high-risk decision. He shifts his gaze from side to side, hyperaware of the unnerving silence. A vague shadow interrupts his scanning vision momentarily and he jerks his head back violently to rekindle the now veiled obscurity. Ears pricked, a disturbance amongst the reeds shoots fear up his spine, inducing him into death-like motionless.

Under the cover of swirling fog, the enemy scrambles over the embankment and proceeds to stalk their target, arching their figure, butt high to the sky, remembering the slightest details of their covert training.

Slowly placing…

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