Having successfully dodged the Hunters up until this point, Byron and Tanase had fallen into a false sense of security, feeling like there was no way to track them to where they were hiding out.
Completely unaware of the wanted posters that had been dotted around the nearby town, or that the Hunters were tracking their burner phone, Byron and Tanase had been dealing with the usual pressures of the Fugitive lifestyle, but on Tuesday night it all came crashing down.
As they made plans to move on from a house they had stayed at overnight, Tanase heard Hunters begin to surround the property. Soon, Hunters had made their way in and were checking every room, finding the pair hiding out in a cupboard.
“It was extremely emotional,” Tanase told 10 Play, “Byron and I both cried. We cried a lot. I think we were trying to make sense of why we were so upset. “It’s more of a release,” she explained. “You’re releasing all this stress, emotion, tension, disappointment, everything at that moment in time — and the shock too! We didn’t even know that they were around, it’s the shock that affected us too.”
“We’ve replayed that moment so many times in our heads,” Byron added, “because at that point we weren’t together. I was in the bathroom… they just knocked on the door and we went into panic mode.
“If we had the opportunity to run away I think we would have outrun them to be honest,” he added. “I wish we could have that moment again.”
Describing it as “a moment of weakness”, Tanase went on to say that the vibes were definitely off in the hours leading up to their eventual capture.
“We were probably a bit complacent,” she said, “we had come back from the alpaca farm, a little bit rested, and Byron and I had an argument so the energy was a little bit off. We weren’t on the ball like we normally were. You let the ball drop even a little bit and that’s what happens… you’re done.
“It was really terrifying and emotional [and] extremely disappointing,” Tanase continued. “It affected us quite a lot, even though it’s a TV show and it’s a game, you’re really, really involved and it’s your world for however long you’re in it. It’s all you know for 24 hours a day.”
While the pair had managed to outrun the Hunters up to this point, they admitted that — unlike many other teams — part of their strategy came down to “ignorance is bliss”.
“We’ve seen other teams told helpers to change their profile pictures, or they had phone calls if the Hunters had been by,” Byron said. “We didn’t do anything like that, we just did our own thing and kept soldiering on. We never really knew how close they were or weren’t to us.”
“I think that kind of backfired,” Tanase added, “because for me, personally, I got a bit confident like… okay, they haven’t caught us. We hadn’t had any official sightings, I kind of felt like we were a bit ahead.”
But that didn’t mean that the pair had the signature Hunted paranoia from the get-go, in fact Byron admitted that they were paranoid before they had even gotten on the boat in the very beginning.
Once they saw the helicopter above them, it all became too real.
“When we started on the run we had this paranoia that the helicopter was following us but then we thought, probably not!” Byron said. “Watching it back… it actually was following us in those first 20 minutes!
“I think if we actually had known it was, we would have freaked out even more than we already did!”
The siblings also revealed they had one close call with a Hunter that wasn’t exactly what it appeared at first.
“We thought one person was a Hunter,” Tanase said, “but it turned out it was just like a school mum coming back from the run and she was dressed in black. We screamed, ‘It’s a Hunter!’ That changed our plans for the rest of the day, then we turned on each other because we were starting to get a bit paranoid and you start to argue and bicker.
“There’s no hard evidence, it’s more the paranoia takes over and everyone look like a Hunter.”
For Tanase, part of the motivation to go on the run was to show her son that anything’s possible when you push yourself out of your comfort zone.
“He’s really proud that his mum and uncle are a part of such a big series,” she said, “and he’s been able to see them on the screen, on promos. It’s something exciting for everyone, especially for him.
“I went to his school the other day to pick him up and all his friends came running up like, ‘Are you on Hunted? What’s it like! What are the Hunters like, are they scary!?’”
Byron and Tanase also had their fair share of sibling clashes throughout their time on the run, but as their emotional final moments showed, the experience of being fugitives together only brought them closer.
“Part of the reason for going on the run was for our relationship,” Byron said. “We used to be quite close and drifted a bit. This was a real bonding experience and it was such a special, beautiful thing.”
The pair even got matching tattoos to commemorate their time on the run, as well as the time they spent together.
“Each team has codenames before you go on the run so you don’t know anyone’s name,” Byron explained. “We were Team Orange, so we ended up getting an orange with the number two inside it to represent Season 2, as well as the two of us together.
“It’s hard to imagine doing this with anyone but Tanase, it’s been good for us.”
Hunted continues Sunday - Tuesday at 7.30 on 10 and 10 Play