‘Gore Street’ by Sanjhbati Chakraborty, Year 11, Altrincham Grammar School for Girls

Although night was falling, the city was still awake. The square was buzzing, the streets filled with
the voices of countless people and the rumble of cars and buses. It had been raining throughout the
day and the roads were now a shining blur of colours from the reflections of the lights from shop
windows and street lamps. Against the darkening sky, the bright lights stood out like jewels. Outside
a shop, a group of friends stood chatting and laughing.

Along one particular street walked a figure wearing a dark hooded jacket – a teenager, with curly
hair covering his forehead, his face lit up by the harsh glare of light from the screen of the phone in
his hand. Cutting past the entrance to a cinema, the boy made his way out of the hustle and bustle
of the city centre. His gait was sure and certain, yet something was off; he seemed to be walking
faster and faster and once or twice, he looked over his shoulder.
By now, the boy had entered a different part of the city. Here, the streets were darker and narrower;
most of the street lamps were flickering, their light casting a greenish glow on the pavement. Some
were broken, leaving pools of darkness below them. The light from one lamp illuminated the
peeling, dilapidated street sign below: Gore Street. Pausing for a moment, the boy leaned against a

Somewhere in the darkness of the alleyway, there was a flash of movement, almost imperceptible;
the boy stepped forward, immediately alert. Out of the shadows came a figure; like the boy, he had
his hood pulled over his head, covering most of his face. For a moment, neither of them moved.
Then, with an unexpected burst of speed, the hooded figure suddenly sprinted forward. Eyes
widening in shock, the boy tried to turn around but he was too slow. Too late. The hooded figure
slammed into the boy, knocking him to the ground; as he fell, his flailing arms hitting a rubbish bin,
sending it crashing into the wall, somewhere a dog started barking. Out of a pocket, the hooded
figure pulled out a knife, the silver blade glinting. The hooded figure brought the knife down fast in a
stabbing motion and the boy on the ground started to scream.


Later that night, when the activity in the square had died down, a young man was making his way
home. The rain had started again and he walked quickly, taking shortcuts through back alleys, his
footsteps on the concrete pavement kicking up small sprays of water. Soon, the streets became
darker, the lamps getting more and more flickery, and the man turned a corner into that same street
– Gore Street. The ground was wetter here, not only with the rain but also with the blood of the
teenager, who had been alive just a few hours ago. But no more – yet once again, the fragile border
between life and death had been crossed