Edit – Geez. Like shooting, writing gets better with practice. And after 10 months and over a 100,000 words later, I see all sorts of stuff I’d improve on a re-write. But it’s worth keeping AS IS, for a basis to compare my new stuff against.
It was 100% intentional.
The day prior, he managed to throw me under the proverbial bus in front of the majority of our management crew. I expected better from a teammate, and someone I considered a friend. And a reader of this site…
So I killed him, and what better way to do that, than by immortalizing his death in a short story based off my novel?
Besides, no one will really miss him.
I fired the Winchester over the water trough, as the arrows rained down around me. The large .45-70 cartridge did its work, sending the 500 grain lead bullet through an inch thick oak board that made up the siding of the General Store.
The guttural scream was satisfying as the bullet and wood splintered shrapnel found its mark. Never one to leave an ape alive, I fired again, this time at the bottom of the wall above where the boardwalk met the store. Another hit and the screaming stopped.
An arrow flew by and I felt the wind part my hair as it thudded into the porch rail behind me. Ducking down lower, I took stock of our increasingly hopeless looking situation.
Our defenses were being overwhelmed, and several wooden buildings and tents had caught fire. The smoke added chaos to the confusion of gun shots, screams, and roars of rage. The sights and sounds was overwhelming to the senses.
Perhaps it was battle rage, or pure foolhardiness, but the blacksmith’s courage was unequaled.
The big man charged out into the middle of Main Street. Clothed in denim overalls with a sweat stained red bandana tied around his neck, wild black hair plastered across his brow, he clenched his large forging hammer in one massive fist and an old Colt Dragoon revolver in the other. Stopping in the center, arms spread wide, he screamed in challenge. His face turned red, veins throbbed, and the scar that stretched from his right eye to temple showed white.
At the end of the street a rider turned his triceratops to face him. It stomped around, bellowing in protest at the tugging of the reins.
The ape raised his stone club and roared.
The trike reared on its hind legs, three horns shaking back and forth menacingly before dropping and sprinting forward. Each heavy stomp sending small showers of mud spraying as it picked up speed. Behind the sloped bone shield, the ape stood tall and brave, screaming a battle cry.
Even then, the blacksmith didn’t move. He stood his ground, not giving an inch in fear, and raised the heavy four pound revolver, carefully aligning the sights.
The hand cannon fired, throwing out a massive blast of white gun smoke as flame belched from the barrel.
It was a magnificent shot at an impressive distance.
The .44 caliber ball hit the ape with devastating effect. Splitting its head open like a watermelon, bits of blood, brain, and bone spraying. Its limp body left a bloody smear along the trikes flank as it tumbled like a rag doll off the side and into the blood soaked mud of the street.
I cheered, then stopped.
Because it wasn’t over.
The Triceratops kept running.
It didn’t waver, it didn’t turn, it simply charged onward towards the blacksmith.
He fired again, and again, and again. The heavy lead balls pounding the trike about its face, bone shield, and shattering its center horn.
The beast shook its head, bellowing, and charged on. Pure animalistic rage radiated from the beast. Twice the size of a wagon, it ran towards the blacksmith like an unstoppable freight train.
It was a frightening sight to behold.
The blacksmith, dropped his empty revolver and raised his hammer.
As the beast bore down on him, the blacksmith stepped to the side and swung his hammer.
The trike shifted its horns and ran him through.
He screamed in mortal agony as the horn penetrated his belly and jutted out his back. The trike slowed and turned, prancing while shaking its horns back and forth to dislodge the man. Even under what must have been immense pain, the blacksmith still held onto his hammer. He swung it, screaming obscenities, over and over against the face of the trike. The solid forged hammer breaking the hide and bone between the top two horns. In desperation the trike dug its horns into the ground, but the blacksmith grabbed a horn and held tight.
Screaming in pain and agony, as blueish white loops of his intestines began to fall and drape over the trikes head, he swung frantically as his own death drew near. The thick bone skull gave way, shattering and exposing the pulpy gray brain matter beneath. The trike took a step and staggered. He swung again, and the trike dropped to a knee.
Rearing back to swing again, the trike stopped then toppled over onto its side. Pinning him with the horn into the ground.
The blacksmith dropped his hammer, grasping at his intestines and the horn that filled him, and screamed wretchedly.
I turned away and closed my eyes as his screams turned into a gurgle than silence.
There was a battle to be won, and I wasn’t about to let some fragile pansy blacksmith ruin my mood.
Breathing deep, I gripped the heavy rifle tightly.
A hero’s work is never done.
Yes, I RED SHIRTED him.
Red Shirts are from Star Trek. While all the main characters wear blue/green/yellow, the ‘crew’ wears red shirts are always expendable and always die. So when you intentionally add a character in who will die… They are a Red Shirt.
I hammered this out in about 20 minutes, emailed it to him, then cleaned it up a little after I tickled him to death with it.
He demanded one of the first copies when it goes to print, and I agreed.
I’ll even draw a stick figure of him dying like in the story, right above my ‘You Suck, Josh!’ message and autograph.
Since I had been meaning to start putting up some excerpts of what I’m working on, what better way than getting sweet fictional revenge.
My novel includes, Winchester rifles, Confederates, Colt Peacemakers, Triceratops, Tyrannosaurs, Injuns, Railroad Tycoons, and blood thirsty Apes.
Because if it’s not entertaining, then who cares.
EDIT – So, apparently a coworker of mine actually had a heart attack this weekend. My bad, I didn’t find out til after I posted this. But he’s alive, and should recover quickly. My prayers are with you!
(Geez – what horrible timing)
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