I am looking for the name of a short story that I read a long time ago - I remember the plot quite well but I don't know who wrote it and I can't find the title anywhere on Google.

So the story was set after a World War Three, people had understood that humankind couldn't do without violence, but in order to avoid any future global war, there was this kind of association to which people could subscribe. They were then allowed to use a gun and they had a target, another person, that they had to find and kill - at the same time, they could have been the target of someone else. Once they killed a "target" they would receive another one. Civilians that didn't want anything to do with it were left in peace, unharmed.The protagonist says he's very good and that he has killed many targets already; he gets a new one, a woman, of whom he eventually falls in love. He decides not to kill her, however at the end she is the one who kills him, since he was her target.

Any ideas?

1 Answer 1


Sounds like The Seventh Victim by Robert Sheckley.

Your description matches my memory of the short story.


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