Highly commended


Evan Stuart
Year 10+ Elizabeth College

The ballroom’s chandelier spun silently along with the majestic glides of the dancing couples. Few lasting relationships tend to sprout from a community such as this. Alter glanced across the landscape of the room, scanning over the masquerade masks and the bejewelled garments around the necks of men and women alike. It was moments like these he wished he had a nerd with a van like in the movies.

He extended an arm to the passing waiter and picked up a glass of champagne and began to patrol through the middle of the room. Hiding in plain sight, he thought, was the secret to finding this target. Reaching the end of the room he looked down the corridor that continued either side of him and was met with the glisten of chrome that stuck out from the back of a woman’s open back dress ahead of him. She turned, as Alter was about to take his first step, and looked him up and down, letting a small portion of her perfect white teeth show. Even through the mask her beauty was visible. She carried on and turned out of sight; Alter pursued quickly.

As he turned the corner, he was met with the butt of a gun that cracked his mask. Luckily the reinforcements he had made took the blow, but he was knocked back. In his daze, he saw the woman step towards him, leaning in with a chop to the neck, one that he swiftly countered into a leg swipe, taking her off her feet. He leaned over her, pinning her down and preparing to make a cunning remark, but with a sharp pain in the ankle, he fell to the ground, his vision waning. She stood up, the needle retracting back into the heel of her shoe.

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