by Paul Purday
Peter Freeman was running furiously, breathlessly. Fifty metres behind, a bunch of young thugs appeared to be closing in on him; he was not a coward but he knew the odds of six to one were not positive.
With his sense, sharpened in the adrenalin rush of the hunted, he found himself thinking clearly – in fact not unlike someone who is drowning – his mind was as crystal and his life flashed before him. Like a gazelle side-stepping a cheetah he ducked through gates; swerved down side-turnings and then thought – Whitefoot Lane! Quiet and hedge-lined with no entrance from the road he was on. A large oak planted nearby concealed a gap in a garden hedge. He was able to squeeze one-side of the oak and nearly fall through the narrow gap that he had observed there in the past. Hopefully his pursuers (who were not reviewing their lives) would pass the oak on the easy side and would not realize his short, diagonal cut across a well-manicured lawn into Whitefoot Lane. Frantically, wrecking another hedge he fell into the lane and listened to the satisfactory diminishing of his pursuers’ cries.