Gone Away ~ The journal of Clive Allen in America

Hitman's Sunday

He found the perfect vantage point in the bushes at the top of the bluff. Pushing himself carefully and noiselessly into the foliage he checked to see that he had a clear view of the house below. It was laid out like an architect's drawing beneath his position, everything detailed and clear and, most importantly, the front door plainly visible and without obstruction. He crouched down and opened the case.

The rifle was in several parts, set into foam inserts, each in its alloted space. His hands moved with the skill of long experience as he assembled it, barrel to stock, magazine, silencer and scope. The metal clicked and slid smoothly into place. In seconds it was done and he closed the case before moving it to one side. Now he changed his position, slowly, carefully, making sure that he could not be seen from the house while retaining a clear field of fire.

He was prone now and checking on his view of the front door through the scope. The cross hairs centered on the small window in the door, magnified to a bright sharpness in the cool morning air. He had already made adjustments for the distance from his position to the house; his preparations had been extensive and exact. There was little to do now but wait.

His eye left the scope long enough to glance at his watch, then returned to the cross hairs. Three minutes. The creature of habit should be at the door in three minutes. He relaxed, breathing easily, aware that tension could ruin the shot.

Time passed. Sunlight played with the shadows of the leaves around him, mingling with the drab camouflage of his sleeves. The silence of the morning held its breath in anticipation.

Then the door was opening and the man stepped out of the shadow behind it, out into the light. The dog pulled at the leash he held but he paused on the threshold, turning to close the door behind him. A finger tensed around the trigger as the watcher waited out these last few seconds. One shot was all that was needed, one shot to do the deed and leave unnoticed.

Down below, the man turned from the door and moved out into the full sunlight. The dog was straining to be away but the man stopped to adjust his hat, a Tyrolean fancy with a long feather emerging from the hatband and nodding as the man set himself for the walk. The trigger finger began to squeeze, the cross hairs unwavering upon the target.

Then, as the man looked up, about to set forth, there was a muffled thump up on the bluff and the rifle kicked back into the shoulder of the gunman. The man below heard nothing, the distance too great, and he began his walk with the dog. Behind him, unnoticed, the feather floated to the ground.

The gunman watched him go, a wry grin creasing across his face. That'll teach him, he thought. That'll spoil his swagger past my house, that stupid hat on his head and that vile dog fouling my pavement. Get yourself another feather and I'll shoot that out for you too, you stuck up idiot.

He moved back to the crouching position and began to dismantle the gun, pulling the case towards him and opening it. Suddenly, a chuckle escaped him as he wondered how long it would be before the missing feather was noticed.


Ah and for a moment I thought you had taken up the writing of suspense novels, contract killers and snipers, international intrigue with tyrolean hats... wonderful ending - made me smile.

Welcome back, btw.
Date Added: 19/03/2005

Gone Away
Thank you, Ned. A little nonsense to get me back into the swing of things. ;)
Date Added: 19/03/2005

Welcome back Dad
Date Added: 19/03/2005

Gone Away
Thanks Mad :)
Date Added: 19/03/2005

I already thought that walking dogs was a big waste of time; now I am convinced. Nice shot, btw. :D
Date Added: 20/03/2005

Gone Away
I think the point of walking dogs is that the human gets exercise. The dogs don't really need it since they run everywhere. :D
Date Added: 20/03/2005

re your comment: I think the point of walking dogs is that the human gets exercise. The dogs don't really need it since they run everywhere. :D Not my dog. I have to drag it. I will be sure to remove the feather from my hat though. It is a lot smaller than the one in the story. (:-)
Date Added: 20/03/2005

Gone Away
Hmmm, you're right, Prying; now you mention it, I do recall meeting a few dogs who that were more in favor of food than exercise. I am so used to the more active breeds that I had forgotten that. But you must admit that even when the dog is that lazy, it's still the human that gets the exercise. ;)
Date Added: 20/03/2005

It's all fun and games 'til someone loses an eye. '-)
Date Added: 20/03/2005

Gone Away
Agreed, Josh. No way can I recommend the actions of the hitman in this little tale. Still, there's no telling what extremes daily irritation can drive us to... ;)
Date Added: 20/03/2005

Like that stupid woman and the way she stands in front of her mailbox ten minutes before she opens it... a little bit of the UNABOMBER type stuff and I bet I could fix that problem... Welcome back Gone, sounds strange.
Date Added: 20/03/2005

Gone Away
Thanks, Rusty. Yes, to be back and yet still Gone is a bit strange. My psychiatrist is still working on it... ;)
Date Added: 20/03/2005

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