Rainsford hefted his shaking body out of the ocean, each limb weighing a thousand pounds. He collapsed onto the beach, the sharp rocks around him dug into the small of his back. One long shuddering breath was uttered before he stood slowly. Physical exhaustion couldn’t beat him, or the General would surely find him there, helpless and weak.
A chorus of howls echoed maliciously from the tree line. The air was dense with night and the humidity dulled Rainsford’s senses. Wolves, or any other manner of beast could be lurking within the shrubbery, their fangs dripping with blood. He jogged to the nearest tree and shimmied up its thick trunk. A rustle came from his left. “Hoo, Hoo!” Rainsford yelped in surprise as the owl took flight.
“Over there!” A voice said. “We have to drive him out.” This time the voice the voice was so close, Rainsford could hear the hoarse whisper, “Come on boy, and keep your voice down. Ah! Your useless thing!” It hissed. Then an abrupt silence fell, so complete that Rainsford’s breath seemed like canon fire. He slowly turned his head to look below him.
“Got him!” A two pairs of eyes gazed up at Rainsford along with the muzzle of a gun. A shot fired off right next to his head and he scrambled frantically down the opposite side of the tree, the branches cutting gouges into his hands. More shots fired around his head, and he came to the conclusion that they were trying to drive him toward something even more horrendous. His feet doubled back onto a deer trail and Rainsford hid himself quite effectively hidden in between two rotting logs. There he waited, certain that the men would find him again.
“Rainsford, where are you? Come out, come out wherever you are. I didn’t lure you to this island so the general could play hide and seek.” The voice said in a singsong fashion. It was there, staring out of log and waiting, that Rainsford realized who the voice belonged to. No wonder it sounded familiar. But how could Whitney be in league with General Zaroff?
Rainsford crept behind a low lying bush and watched for another sign of Whitney and the...