Breath measured, regular, inaudible. Expression tense, taut, concentrated, but muscles relaxed, waiting to be called upon. Body still, blending into the undergrowth. Eyes scanning the treeline, anticipating telltale movements.
Any minute now.
It is sound that provides the first hint of their presence. Foolishly squawking their arrival, inanely chattering at eachother; they have the arrogant haughtiness of predators themselves, and believe themselves invulnerable in this, their private domain.
He is in the perfect position, having meticulously planned this meeting, so he needs only to slightly, ever so slightly, track his scope towards the noise and – voilá! Once the unwitting marauders emerge, he will require mere milliseconds to account for each and every one of them.
Get the Alpha.
As the hubbub inches ever-closer, he reminds himself one last time to ensure that all of the hunting party must be clear of the wooded sanctuary before he engages. It is not in his nature to be hasty – how could it be, as a highly-trained, hugely-experienced killer? – but he is nothing if not methodical. His method always involves a final check.
Isolate and annihilate.
The hoots and wails of the revelry are so loud now as to indicate intoxication. That was neither here nor there for him, it merely made it easier to identify how many targets there were.
Alpha… Mate… Two heavies… Pater familias… Mater familias…
No problem. The sextet finally hove into view, almost as one, and he exhales for the last time before pulling the trigger. Mechanically, he dispatches his prey before they even have a chance to realise what is taking place. With total conviction and relentless dedication, he speedily accounts for the cackling crew. He takes a moment to settle down, to let his heart-rate return to normal, before slowly rising from his firing position.
God save the King.
In his poacher’s garb, he will not raise any suspicion as he exits the Sandringham woodlands. He is, after all, a member of this prestigious private estate. Once the alarm is raised, he will be far away, smoking a Romeo y Julieta and serenely celebrating a successful hunt. The assassin whistles a tune as he packs up his gear and ambles away from the carnage.
Goodbye to the King of Nothing really,
Wave of a hand and a Life of Riley,
Part-Nazi, Part-King Billy,
Goodbye to the Crown.
Solidarity, brothers & sisters…