Missionary lunged aside as the next shot cracked, missing him altogether. He gritted his teeth, sprinting for the road as feet pounded after him again. In mid stride, he dropped over the edge of the road as a round zipped just above his head.
A few seconds reprieve at most he told himself.
He spun with daggers in his hands, realising he stood in front of a culvert. A storm water pipe, as tall as himself, trickled water by his feet. It had a grid partially rusted away, possibly big enough for him to slip through. Removing his pack, he squirmed into the jagged gap, leaving painful scrapes in his flesh. He managed to get to his feet and run a few steps into the lightless passage, feeling along its walls, finding an offshoot.
Looking back, he saw the hunter appear in the grid and bringing his rifle to bear. Missionary pulled back into the juncture as a shot thundered down the pipe, leaving a ringing in his ears.
“You missed!” Missionary said. “I must be real annoying for you!”
The hunter laughed. “My ego isn’t that big, human. On the contrary, I’ve never had anyone challenge me like you before. Humans are so inadequate, they rely on their eyesight too much; makes it too easy for me! Not you though! What’s your name?!”
“Missionary; and you?!”
“I didn’t know that was your name! I just thought it was your title!”
Another shot thundered down the pipe. Missionary cursed, as he hadn’t anticipated the random act. A pause followed as he activated his night vision lenses. He could see down hundreds of metres of his section of pipe until it turned out of his sight.
“I’ve got your book here! Do you want it back?”
“No, that’s alright! You keep it! Do you know how to read?”
“I do! As the Hunter; it’s my right!”
Another shot rang out, causing Missionary to pound the wall at his lack of foresight.
“It’s also my right to use the weapons of the old world! For anyone else, it’s forbidden!”
“Why are you trying to kill the men of the old world?!”
“Because men destroyed the earth! And now we live in the ruins you left behind!”
“So you’re going to kill all of us?!”
“And then what will you do?!”
“Then we’re going to tear down everything you’ve ever made! We’re going to wipe out any memory that man ever existed, then we’re going to rebuild! This time we’ll do things right, and then we’ll live in peace!”
“What’s funny?!” Hunter demanded.
“No faction can bring peace; not man, manine, or even manog! The first two people in the world were Adam and Eve! Did you know the world was perfect then?! Look around you, Hunter! This ruined world you know now was still the end result!”
“Sin; it’s the evil people do! Have you ever done the wrong thing, Hunter! Have you ever lied?!”
“Of course I have! Are you going to tell me you haven’t?!”
“No; I’ve done it. But that’s the point, no one is able to stop sinning, even if they wanted to! That’s what corrupted the world; the sin in people’s hearts! Even if you succeed, your evil nature is going to bring you to this point again!”