The moment the rope around Adam’s hands was cut, he took off running into the cornfield that sat behind the large fire in front of him and the other captives. He looked to his left and saw the rest of them doing the same thing. This sparked an idea in his mind: he would run a different direction from everyone else and go around the town, his destination being his car. While the rest of the group ran through the cornfield, he took off to the left, running across Jim Ranger’s land towards the town.
He ran and ran until he felt he was far enough inwards that he could cut across. He stopped and was right next to a large brick building. He began walking up the lawn next to the building but heard voices coming from ahead. Not wanting to find out if the voices he was hearing belonged to people participating in the hunt, he climbed through the only open window he saw, which was back a few feet.
Upon landing on the carpeted ground beneath the window, he realized he was in a library. He began walking through the library, being quiet so as not to alert the people outside to his whereabouts. He stepped into the main area of the library and saw a number of children laying on the ground, some watching a movie on a television, and an older woman sitting behind a desk.
“Hey!” yelled the woman, who was indeed the librarian, Miss Lebitan.
Adam didn’t respond, but ran towards the back of the library. Meanwhile, Miss Lebitan began screaming her head off that someone was in the library. She ran to the front doors and unlocked them, then stepped outside and began screaming to get anyone who was listening’s attention. Meanwhile, Adam looked for another way out, when suddenly, a door he was walking past flew open at the same time there was a deafening BANG.
It was a gunshot. Alex and Mike emerged from the basement stairwell armed to the teeth, with weapons they found in the hidden room behind the bookshelf. The issue was that the blast from the shotgun had grazed Adam in the hip. He had landed on the floor and was writhing in pain, his hands covering his bleeding wound, which was thankfully not life-threatening.
“Dude, that’s the guy from before.” said Alex.
“Who gives a shit let’s get out of here.” replied Mike, less empathetic than his friend.
“We can’t just leave him here, you heard Lebitan, he’s obviously a sacrifice.”
“I’m not worried about the sacrifices. I didn’t get all these guns to save the world. I got them to save me. So you and me can hold our fucking ground and tell everyone that we’re not gonna be fucking killed without a fight.” said Mike, with a vindication that his friend somewhat admired.
But the seriousness in his friend’s voice didn’t dissuade Alex from wanting to do the right thing.
“Do whatever you want. If I can save one person from the bullshit the people here do, I’m going to.” he said.
“Fuck that, I’m going home.” selfishly replied Mike.
Mike ran through the library, past the scared children and approached Miss Lebitan. He pointed the pistol he was holding directly at her and told her to get out of his way or he would get her out of his way. Naturally, she abided. Meanwhile, Alex helped Adam up from the floor, and had him remove his shirt to tie around his wound.
Alex set down his shotgun and retrieved a pistol for Adam from his waistband. The limping 27-year-old readied the gun and followed Alex towards the entrance to the library, who made a pitstop to cut the telephone wire to Miss Lebitan’s desk phone while pointing his shotgun directly at her. The children in the library were horrified, and the librarian quickly turned her attention to them once the armed men started past the doors.
“Wait.” said Adam, wincing in pain. “There were people out here. I don’t know if they were looking for people to kill or not.”
“Trust me, if they were out in the streets tonight, that’s exactly what they’re looking to do. The hunt usually takes place in the fields, but a small group always patrols the streets just in case. And they definitely heard that gunshot and that old bitch yelling.” replied Alex. “Let’s go out the back.”
The two ran past the librarian and the children towards the back exit of the library, while the librarian, as soon as they passed, made her way to the library doors to open them and continue yelling. Alex opened the back door just a crack and peered out, looking for anyone in the back parking lot. While looking, they heard Miss Lebitan’s shrill voice from the front of the building.
“They ran that way!” shouted Miss Lebitan to the three hunters that had arrived at the sound of the gunshot.
Alex and Adam quickly ran out the back door of the library into the darkness of the night. They ran through the shadows to the building next to the library, in the direction of Adam’s “hidden” car.
“I parked in some trees at the hill on Highway A.” said Adam.
“If they found you, that means they saw you come in. Nobody would’ve been out before the hunt, nobody in the hunt anyways. You need a different car. We’ll make it to my house and I’ll get my parent’s spare keys, we can take one of their cars and get the fuck out of here. We have to tell everybody what goes on here though. We can’t stop until we’re at least four towns over, and then we have to get the cops from there to come here, and with backup. The cleanup goes quickly after the hunt.” replied Alex, genuinely wanting to help the innocent people that fall victim to the Glarus birthday celebration each year, a stark contrast from his normal persona, which was one of carelessness and selfishness.
Alex and Adam made their way behind the buildings of the business area of Glarus towards the residential area, where Alex lived on the far end on the first block. There comes a point where the residential area and the business area meet, with only a small wall of trees separating them. They reached this spot and looked down the street, not seeing anyone. They crossed the street and used the cover of darkness to run through the backyards until they reached Alex’s.
“Wait here.” Alex ordered.
The 16-year-old ran inside his house and puttered around, looking in all the places his parent’s spare keys could possibly be, but had no success in locating them. He walked back outside with his head hanging.
“I can’t find them. They must have taken them so I wouldn’t take the cars out while they were gone. And we can’t even go anywhere without a car now because I’m sure they have the exit road under watch.” said Alex in a sorrowful tone.
“We have to at least try.” replied Adam, still hopeful that he might yet escape this nightmare with his life.
With no further words, the two ran back towards the main road, and heard a loud engine roar behind them before their path was flooded with light. They jumped off to the side of the road and looked behind them, finding there to be a large semi truck driving towards them from the third residential block.
“They only allow cars on the farm during the celebration. This has to be someone escaping. What should we do?” asked Alex.
“I guess we have to take a leap of faith. What’s the alternative? We die anyways.” justified Adam, who then jumped into the road and painfully waved his arms, his hip in incredible pain.
The truck came to a screeching halt in front of him, and it felt like an eternity for Adam to learn what the intentions of its driver were. Suddenly, a voice rang out from within the cab of the truck.
“Get in!” said the driver.
Adam looked at Alex and gave him a nod to trust his instincts, which he did. The two ran to the passenger’s side of the truck and climbed in, the driver getting the truck moving again before their door was even closed. The driver introduced himself as Paul, and explained that he was an undercover police officer sent to investigate the activities that take place in Glarus.
Relief washed over Alex and Adam as the truck sped up the hill that leads out of Glarus, realizing they had successfully escaped the nightmare. Even though the people guarding the exit tried to stop them, the massive moving truck had far too much momentum to be halted by simple bladed weapons. The three men drove out of Glarus, not once looking back.