Our lives depended on it, so we ran, through bushes, through hedges, through thorns, until our feet were more scar than flesh. We ran from the dogs’ barks, distant but closing in. If we looked back, we could probably see their foaming mouths. But look back we’d sworn we never would. Never again.
Ezekiel knew the way. He had fled before. Or tried. We’d have to reach the abandoned gate on the river bank. There we could swim to our freedom.
Between the withered trees the white stone gateway summoned us. We sprinted as fast our shackles would allow us. Every bone in our body, every muscle hurt. But we felt no pain. We could smell a long desired freedom. We could taste it.
Only when we walked through the gate, crying for joy, did we notice the dinghy on the river and Mister Boss, cocking his gun.
Freedom, while it lasted, would taste as sweet as freshly drawn blood.
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