Coming of Age, by Kabntsig Xiong

The car stopped. John stepped out of the car towards the abandoned warehouse. His older twin brother followed after him. A gun weighed down in each of their pockets.

“Hurry so we can eat cake at home,” the younger sister, who was still sitting inside the car, said. John backed away from Scott as the car drove off.

“You are the defect,” he said and reached for the gun in his pocket, “Mom and dad always knew that I was stronger. I will be a better son to them than you will ever be.”

Scott dived through the open door into the darkness of the warehouse just as a shot hit the ground where he had been standing. He reached for his own gun as his eyes adjusted to the dark interior. Above the pounding of his heart in his ears, he could hear John’s confident footsteps approach.

“Scott, you were a good brother, you know, but there could only be one of us.”

Scott hid himself by the door and stretched his foot across the doorway right before John took a step in.

Hours after five shots rattled through the warehouse, Scott sat outside of the abandoned building as their family’s car pulled up.

“Get in,” the dad said. “I’ve called The Collector. They’ll be here shortly.”

Scott slid into the passenger seat as his dad asked, “Which one are you?”

“Scott,” he answered.

After a long pause, the dad said, “I’m proud of you. Happy fourteenth birthday.”

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