Chess: Gambit

My attack was two-pronged and subtle. I had the demon’s King – my prize – backed into a corner. It was a brilliant, tactical solution. He could block check from one direction, only to open up a line of attack from another. Capture the threat, provide an avenue for a stronger attack. It was perfect, and the demon had played it exactly the way I had hoped. That should have been my first warning.

So confident was I that my strategy was flawless that I failed to realize that the entire thing hinged on one piece – a bishop. The demon moved his knight next to his King to block my Queen’s challenge. This did two things – opened his own bishop to threaten my Queen, and put his Knight into a position to challenge my lynch-pin bishop. I could choose to remove my Queen from danger and so lose my bishop, or spare the bishop and go down a Queen. Either way, my meticulously thought-out plan had just gone up in flames.

The demon laughed; my guts churned acid.

I had a choice to make, and I had no idea what to do.

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