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Crosshairs

Updated on August 28, 2013
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He’s out there in the bush.

I know he’s out there, and he’s just waiting for me to show myself…waiting for me to give him a clear shot.

I lean closer to the boulder that is my shield, ignoring the jagged edges gouging into my back. His last shot nearly took me out, but my dive saved me. I know I’ll pay for that dive later though as I look down at my torn khakis. There is a tear at the knee where I took the brunt of the landing, and I can see a spot of blood starting to spread across the fabric.

I block the throbbing pain in my leg from my mind and refocus my thoughts back to my adversary.

I have one round left…only one, so I have to make it count. This guy is good, but I think I’m better. And I’ve got a pretty good strategy that I believe will work. It has to work! It’s not like I have a lot of options; especially knowing that surrender is out of the question. There will be no mercy shown here today.

If I counted correctly, he has three rounds left; not that that makes any difference. If my plan fails, he may as well have a full arsenal.

I look over at the boulder to my left. From my vantage point, I can make out a crevice in the giant rock from which I believe I can make my one shot. If I can distract him, he won’t know I’m setting sights right between his eyes. I am an expert marksman, so the only obstacle for me is just getting to that other boulder. One more dive…one more chance!

Not as easy as it sounds though; I know he’s got his crosshairs set on this boulder just waiting for me to give him a target. But that’s okay; knowing that he is waiting for a shot will play right in to the first part of my strategy. If I can coax him into squeezing off a round, it will make him a little more hesitant to waste a second one.

I pick up a small twig next to my thigh and then slowly extend it from behind the boulder. A round zings past, taking the twig out of my hand just beyond the fingers.

My, God! He’s faster and more accurate than I had anticipated. I had been tempted to peek around the boulder earlier and now was glad I didn’t, because that could have been my nose instead of a twig.

Now the question is; will he catch on to my trick, or will he hesitate before firing again? He’s probably onto me now, but he can’t afford to waste another shot.

I put the questions out of my mind. It’s now or never. I wipe the sweat off by brow, take two deep breaths, and then with cat-like agility and all the strength I can muster I vault for the next boulder.

He never even fired. Ha! My plan worked. He had been pondering the same questions and I had acted too fast for him. Now it was time to end it.

Once again I wiped the heavy perspiration from my face and took two deep breaths. I checked the round in my weapon and then peeked up through the crack in the rock.

Oh, God! He had been waiting on me. I could actually see his eye…enlarged…staring through the scope. He fired and the round grazed my temple, sending me sprawling backward. It had not been a kill shot, but I was in the open now…and my weapon was fallen from my hands.

I heard footsteps running in my direction. I swallowed hard and then relaxed; it was over!

As he ran up on me, he kicked my weapon away. He put one foot on my chest and pointed his barrel in my face.

Just as I expected; I could see in his eyes…there would be no mercy.

“Ha!” He shouted. “I got you, Grandpa!”

And then he sent his last foam rubber dart straight into my forehead.



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    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Jose. It's a grandfathers worst fear! : )

    • PHILLYDREAMER profile image

      Jose Velasquez 

      5 years ago from Lodi, New Jersey

      LOL. You had me going.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Marlin. I'll be seeing that little rascal in a bit, so it's time to get my game on. : )

    • Marlin 55 profile image

      Marlin 55 

      5 years ago from USA

      Great job building the suspense and what a twist! I loved it.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Yeah and I'm sure he would show me no mercy!

    • embarrett91 profile image

      Erika 

      5 years ago

      I pictured it as Gavin at the end too Lol. Totally something I could see you guys doing.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thanks darli'n. I was actually envisioning Gavin and Dominic when he is a few years older.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you sweety. I thought you might enjoy this one.

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 

      5 years ago from Maine

      LOL so glad I took five mins to read this today. I was all picturing like Hunger Games in my head and then I suddenly just saw Gavin shooting you, Grandpa LOL. Voted up as always!!

    • April Cote profile image

      April Cote 

      5 years ago

      Loved it Dad! Very funny!

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, sweety. I figured you girls would get a kick out of it.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      I'm glad you enjoyed it, Audrey. A pleasure to have your visit as always!

    • embarrett91 profile image

      Erika 

      5 years ago

      Hahaha. This is so great! I was very into it, and even wondered if it was going to end leaving me with a completely different image than I originally had. It left me with laughter!

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      5 years ago from California

      Hokey Smokes! Ya got me! Loved this Wayne!

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      :-) lol. Thank you, Leslie. So glad I was able to string you along! Thank you for the support and the share sweety.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 

      5 years ago

      Jesus H Christ!

      i think i'm actually PISSED with you - i was sweating right along with you!

      Grrrrrrrr....

      on the other hand - absolutely engrossed can't be a bad thing, eh, Wayno?

      And that's what i was...

      voting/sharing

      (still pissed tho...lol..)

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Very kind of you, Deb. Thank you very much.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Wayne, that was perfect. The suspense was adrenaline rushing, and I thought that you were a goner for sure. The timing was great, and the scenario was not expected. From a vantage point of creative writing, this deserves the awesome and up.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Tom! Its good to see you here.

    • thost profile image

      thost 

      5 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      That was very exciting Wayne. Thank you.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Rasma.

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 

      5 years ago from New York

      Wayne,

      ...Luckily I thought twice about bringing the laptop into the bathroom! :-)

      Cat

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up. Absolutely delightful story. Poor grandpa he lost.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thanks Cat. I'm glad I could have you on the edge of your seat...I just hope you weren't reading on the toilet =-O

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Hi, Jim. Thanks for the visit my friend.

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 

      5 years ago from New York

      Wayne,

      How dare you toy with a girl's emotions like that ;-)

      Gee, I was reading it like a child waiting for the next circus act... "yeah, yeah... and then...", sitting on the edge of my seat, sure you were in for. Rubber darts, agh!

      Seriously, this was super cute, super creative, loved it!

      Up and Awesome!

      Cat (... and it's about time ;-)

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 

      5 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Great build up of suspense, then you knocked the pens out. Very well done!

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      :-) thank you Bravewarrior.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      5 years ago from Central Florida

      Wayne, you had me going there! I had to chuckle at the end. What a superb display of tension, drama and humor! Great job!

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, James.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Shanders, and I saw your second comment. No problemo. I use swipe and I run into that problem all the time.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Frank :-) and thanks for the share.

    • Shanders profile image

      Shannon Anders 

      5 years ago from Port Huron, Michigan

      Lol..ok, feeling silly, but i commented from my mobile and apparently my auto thought Wayne should be Frank...anyway, sorry Wayne, not intentional, and again, great story!!

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thanks for the share, Martin!

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Deb. :-)

    • James-wolve profile image

      Tijani Achamlal 

      5 years ago from Morocco

      Haha Hilarious! young people always are better than old ones in games.They depend on their speed and sharp minds..on games only hahaha

    • Shanders profile image

      Shannon Anders 

      5 years ago from Port Huron, Michigan

      Wow, Frank, just Wow. Such a great short! Definitely sharing!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      5 years ago from Shelton

      LOL you crazy son of a Beep! I thought and expected the kill...Grandpa...LOL yeah you got me chasing my tail with this short :)

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Like in his last story, Rebirth! Great ending.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 

      5 years ago from San Francisco

      More people got to read this!

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 

      5 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Oh no..you had me going. Lol. I was holding my breath. So funny..

      Deb

    • Becky Katz profile image

      Becky Katz 

      5 years ago from Hereford, AZ

      I think you missed the point, twists are his specialty. Hahaha

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thanks for the visit, Becky, and yes I have read Wills work. He is very good.

    • wayne barrett profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Barrett 

      5 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Linda!

    • Becky Katz profile image

      Becky Katz 

      5 years ago from Hereford, AZ

      Hey Grandpa, I got a few more for you to play with. I am just too slow for the little monsters. If I get hold of them though, the tickle monster gets them. Fun story, nicely worked twist. Have you been reading WillStarr?

    • Linda Compton profile image

      Linda Compton 

      5 years ago from The Land of Enchantment

      Holy Smokes, Grandpa, you got me! Wonderful read. Glad you're still around to have written it :)

      L.

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