#33. Write A Scene That Begins: “It Was The First Time I Killed A Man.”

It was the first time I killed a man. It was something I had been preparing for ever since I was a young child, and yet it was nothing like I expected. I’d run the scenario over a thousand times in my head, ever since I had received the news of my target. Planned how I wanted to do it, and then planned back ups as well because It was almost guaranteed that something would go wrong.

The place we lived in was harsh, war was an almost constant part of most people’s lives. Orphans were common across the country, so many lost their parents to the war. The state would take in the orphans, and train them up to be warriors. Any who showed the right aptitude to be an assassin were put into special training, harsher, more rigorous, and more brutal than the typical warrior training.

I was one of those that had been trained to be an assassin, and I was one of the best in my class. Then again, I also had more training than most. The state had picked me up when I was six, and despite the fact their ways were brutal they had a strict code that no child should ever take a life. That meant up until the day we turned eighteen all we did was train.

I was taught everything they could teach me. I had been taught all the necessary skills, how to blend in, how to get past almost every conceivable security system, how to fight. Most importantly I had been taught how to kill.

I’d been taught hundreds, maybe thousands of ways to kill someone. How to use what you had on hand, and what to do if you had nothing to hand. They taught us that death was messy and unpleasant. They taught us what to expect.

Despite all that training the first time I killed a man was nothing like I expected. I had expected to feel something. Anything. I was taking a life. Killing another human being. I felt nothing. It was just like brushing my teeth or tying my shoe laces. It’s one of the things that made me such a good assassin.

I’m never sure if they made me that way, or if it was always in me. That’s what scares me.


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