This was written in response to a writing challenge on EditRed a couple of years ago, but I wanted to repost it here. It’s called “The Joker”.
The darkened room holds the game in its silent clutches. Flames crackle and dance like frenzied showgirls in the fireplace. The table creaks in time to the sighs of the players. Concentration hardens the faces that loom from the shadows, solemn and focused. A flicker of light caresses the edge of a silver blade. It splits the darkness, and meets its target. Cards are thrown into the air. A heavy chair falls back, spilling the player onto the cold stone floor. The cards scatter harmlessly across the heavily pocked surface of the table. Only one lands face up.