Mark Ethridge’s Picture Choice: Two
Title: I See Angry People (Part 7)
I left before the sun arrived, I placed a thank you note on the front porch of Tommy’s house before I headed south, back toward the fence. There were things about the fence, and the people living inside the fence I needed to learn. And a lesson I needed to teach them.
It took a while, but I retraced my steps to my tent. I kept thinking, “I don’t remember the walk. I don’t remember anything but following the eagle.” But, I’d learned from experience in the woods, and let myself feel my way back. “It’s a straight line.”
I’d been injured on the way north, and hadn’t realized how much of a trail I’d left. Between the disturbances I’d left in the brush, and the knowledge I’d walked in a straight line, I was able to find my tent, and my pack.
My bow and arrows were where I’d left them. I would need them. I’d need more arrows. I checked the area for good tree branches I could use, but found nothing that would work. I headed east, slowly, checking the trees and the ground. With time I found a dozen good branches. I set up camp for the night, then pulled out my knife.
It took several hours, but I added a dozen arrows to my quiver. I planned to use them soon. I was angry, and someone needed to be taught a less in humility.
The next day, I rose before the sun, and headed south, to the fence. once more, I saw the ten foot wide clearing between the fence and the trees. I stayed hidden in the trees, and moved with the stealth I’d learned from the wolves. I headed east and found my way back to the guardhouse where Mr. Trigger Happy had shot up the trees. For no reason.
The fence wouldn’t be much protection for him. It was chain link. I could see the links, and I knew how to shoot arrows through them. I picked a spot in the brush, set an arrow, and waited.
I was rewarded shortly after sunrise with the sound of an alarm clock, the incessant ringing of a metal bell. There was movement in the cabin. I waited. I watched. And when the guard exited his dwelling, carrying his assault weapon, I was ready for him.
He didn’t say anything, just looked through the fence at the trees, then pulled his gun up, aimed at nothing, and prepared to fire.
He got an arrow in his leg.
He screamed, of course, and fell to the ground. The idiot tried to pull his gun around, so he could shoot back. But he had no idea where I was. He sprayed the trees with his weapon. I wasn’t in the trees. I was flat on the ground. I set a second arrow and shot the guard in the shoulder. “Put the damn gun down, and I won’t have to kill you.”
I set a third arrow.
The crazy guy with the gun screamed nonsense, put a fresh clip in his gun, and resumed firing. So, I shot him in the chest, which stopped the gunfire.
The way I figured it, he wouldn’t check in, so they’d send someone to check on him. Maybe several someones. Of course, they’d find him dead, with three home made arrows stuck in him. I figured that would cause the people inside the fence to react badly. I figured they’d come outside the fence to track me down, and shoot me.
I figured they didn’t stand a chance outside the fence. I was in my element. The wild. I moved silently through the brush and trees. The wolves taught me to leave no trail. To be invisible. I moved away from the fence, further into the brush, waited, and watched.
It took until dusk for anyone to show up. Two men, both well armed, walked into view from the south, headed toward the guards dwelling. Their guns were drawn. As they got closer, they saw their dead comrade. One took out a radio, and spoke into it.
“Gunner dead. Three arrows.”
The radio answered back, “Arrows?”
“Well. That’s something new.”
“We’ll stay here tonight, secure the area.” He motioned the other man to check the guards home. “Send a team. We’ll check the area outside in the morning.”
“They’ll be there at dawn.”
I smiled. The hunt was about to begin. “A lesson in humility.” I also knew it was my chance to learn about the people inside the fence. They types of guns and tools they had. The way they behaved in a group.
I retreated to my tent, to grab a few hours sleep. I was going to need it.
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Mark woke up in 2010, and has been exploring life since then. All his doctors agree. He needs to write.