Joanie’s flag was bright, multi-coloured, and altogether terrible for hiding.
It’s not that she often needed to hide with it. But in the midst of a game of capture of the flag, where everyone was trying to steal everyone else’s flags – some 23 flags total – she needed something to keep it in disguise.
The rules were simple: no burying it, no altering it, and no traps around it. The flag had to fly at hand level, and be easily removable. The person who collected the most flags would win, regardless of whether theirs was still theirs or not. And you could only carry one flag at a time – the rest had to be stored in a container at your base, which could be hidden.
Joanie had collected six flags, but with hers drawing others in, she knew it was only a matter of time before her container was found. She tagged people out of her territory as much as possible, maintaining a distance from her container to throw them off, but still, she worried.
As Ada came running in, barreling to the left of Joanie’s position, Joanie knew she would be undone. She ran for the intruder, but just as she reached Ada, Curt came in from the other side to nab her container. Joanie tried, but Ada slipped away. Joanie turned, and made for Curt, but it was too late. He had already emptied her container – the one time a person was allowed to carry more than one flag – and was making his way out of her territory. She could see him splitting the loot to share with Ada.
Joanie frowned, unaware that such alliances were allowed. She looked around, and saw LeShawn looking bereft, his own cache having just been raided. The met eyes. LeShawn nodded. Joanie nodded back. The two jogged toward each other to begin planning their heists.