seems it's strangling me now
The night Matthew first saw Alfred was as bright and hectic as a room where a bomb’s just gone off. Most nights in the circus are like that, so what really defines it for Matthew is the moment of clarity that descended when their eyes met: something clicked into place, like a camera coming into focus or the turn of a cell-door’s lock.
That moment lasted forever, and then it was over. The knife-thrower recalled his purpose and his incentive, and, with the desperation of the momentarily distracted, threw the next knife a little too soon. It struck slightly to the left of bulls-eye, and as the crowd cheered he hid a wince of fearful anticipation.
After the show, Alfred saw him in the shadow of the tent, the darkest corner, huddled quietly away from the tide of meandering customers. The knife-thrower was cleaning the tools of his trade with more reverence than caution, and Alfred watched him with the kind of intensity that means that something is going to happen no matter what tries to get in the way.