Friday, March 25, 2011

The Game #3

From what I understand, this is a similar scene as from the movie The Deer Hunter. I'm not sure how similar they are, since I've never seen it, but I wanted to at least acknowledge it.

I’d lost track of how many times I’d put the barrel of a revolver up to my head and pulled the trigger. Some people would say I’m lucky, but truth be told, I just want there to be a bullet in the chamber.

Surrounding us were our captors. They didn’t point any guns at us, they didn’t need to. We all knew what would happen if we tried to shoot at them or refused to play. Ten others would be mercilessly tortured and we would have to watch. Aside from the revolver, there was no way out.

Tonight, there were three of us left, and it was my turn again. My hands knew what to do; they had done it so many times before. I pulled back the hammer and squeezed the trigger. *click* I tilted my head back and groaned as some of the captors cheered.

I tossed the gun into the lap of the man sitting in front of me. No. He wasn’t a man. He was still a boy. The poor kid, this was his first game, and five empty chambers had already been fired.

I would have given anything to trade places.

He wanted nothing more than to live, I wanted nothing more than to die.

The spectators stood up and cheered, eager for the blood while I turned my head away. I didn’t need to see this again. I heard him pull the hammer back, then the loud explosion and thump his body made as it hit the floor. Another corpse on the ground to add to the growing stench of rotting flesh.

One of the captors came over to us and grabbed the gun. Out of one of the pockets in his shirt, he pulled out a single bullet. He popped open the cylinder, put in the bullet, spun the cylinder, and put it back in place. Before leaving, he threw it at the feet of the only other man left.

He had won one other game, but nobody had the kind of record I did, and he was still nervous. But still, compared to most others, he was a veteran. He put the gun to his temple and pulled the trigger *click*

We both smiled at each other as he handed me the gun. I automatically pulled back the hammer and fired. *click*

I sighed and tossed the gun back at the man then looked up into the crowd. A couple of the men were standing up, hoping to see if their ‘horse’ would win. I shook my head. When I looked back, the man had the gun up to his head; his hands shook as his eyes darted about the room. *click*

Again I felt a small flutter in my heart. Fourth time, that’s when it usually happens. I reached out to grab the gun. I put it in position and took a deep, cleansing breath. I could feel that this was it. It had to be. *click*

I swore, quietly. It was drowned out by the cheers and curses hurled down from the captors. I just wanted it to be over.

I handed the weapon to the man across from me. He just stared at me with those large eyes of his. I shook my head and turned away. Please no. Not again. The cheering got so loud that I couldn’t hear the man cock the gun or fire, but I knew from the hush that blanketed the crowd that my time had come.

I reached out and snatched the gun. I could see that the man was trying to hold back his smile for my sake, but that was fine with me. I wanted out.

I caressed the cold, steel revolver and kissed it. As I looked up into the crowd; money was already changing hands. It used to anger me, but I didn’t care right now. I was done. I put the barrel right up to my temple and squeezed the trigger *click*

I pulled the gun down from  my head and looked at the cylinder. The bullet didn’t fire. It was a dud. “No!” I shouted. “No! No! No!”

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Almost Time to Submit

It's been a while since I've updated everybody on the status of my novel, and there might even be some people reading this blog that have not even heard about it yet.

Anyways, the working title is called Bleed Well. It's about a man, Fredrick, who recently moved back to his native village up in the mountains. Then, when he is walking about one morning, a deer, possessed by one of the gods, walks up to him and he starts hearing the voices of his dead parents. Fredrick freaks out and bashes the deer's skull in with a rock. This unleashes a fury of events that complicate Fredrick's life, and he must struggle to put the pieces back together.

That's a pretty crappy little blurb, but I didn't quite want to just post what I have for my query letter. Perhaps later.

So where I'm at right now is I'm finishing up the second-to-last revisions, while I do the final polish on some of the earlier chapters. (I do my edits in waves that allows me to work on 3 or 4 different parts of the novel at the same time) At the rate I'm going, I should be done with everything by the middle of April (dependent on the beta readers) and then I'll start submitting to agents.

I already have my afore mentioned query letter mostly done, and I've got a pretty large chapter by chapter summary that I'm eventually going to work into a 5, 3, and 1 page synopsis.

That's what's going on with my novel. Hopefully it is well received once it goes out, and I'll try to blog more on the status as I get closer to this exciting time!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Game #2

I'm posting this a little bit early since I'm heading out of town for a couple days.

    I once heard a story of a guy who bet ten million dollars on a game of roulette. My game won’t have beautiful women in cocktail dresses watching me or any casino manager biting his nails as the wheel spins, waiting for the ball to stop.

    The man bet on black; I heard he won.

    Me, I don’t have all that much to loose; I don’t have all that much to gain. I’m still not sure if the odds are with or against me. I know it’s one to five. I’m just not sure what outcome I want. But that’s why I’m leaving it up to fate.

    Although I thought about evening the odds -- it didn’t seem fair to the lower probability option -- I concluded long ago that three to three just doesn’t sound right. Plus, that’s not how this game is played.

    I put in the ball, spin the wheel, and I’m playing my own game of roulette. I’m betting everything I have. As the wheel makes it’s last click, I pull the trigger to see if I won.

    It was black.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Game #1

I've been inspired to do a couple Friday Flash stories on a certain theme...

This story is rated R.

    On the coffee table, surrounded by the empty bottles of beer, Scott’s single-action revolver begged me to follow through with my boasts. I reached for the gun; Scott tossed a bullet my way.

    It was strange how the weight of the gun felt in my hand. It was heavier than I expected, but it still seemed light for something with that much power. Scott watched me stare at his gun until he cleared his throat and I looked up. He nodded at me and I put the bullet into one of the chambers.

    “I can’t believe you’re doing this.” he said.

    “Of course I am. I’m not going to let some little bitch like you play the ‘but I was in Iraq so I’ve got balls’ card and get away with it.”

    “It’s not because I was in Iraq that I have balls. It’s the other way around dude. If you had any, you’ve been--”

    “Shut up and just let me fuckin do this.” I spun the chamber, the tiny gears whirred away until I slapped the cylinder back into place.

    Scott rolled back on the couch and started laughing. “I never expected you to take this so far. Just put it away--”

    “No, man. No.” I pointed the gun straight down onto my thigh, pulled back the hammer, and squeezed the trigger. I heard a click, and I pulled the gun up; my leg was shaking. “Dude. Oh my god, what a rush. You have to try this.”

    “No fucking way. No.”

    “You pussy.”

    “There’s no way I’m putting a gun--”

    “You fucking pussy.”

    Scott shook his head, leaned forward, grabbed one of the near-empty bottles of warm, cheap beer, and drank it. “Give it to me.” He took the gun and stared at it in his hand. “I’ll show you how to fucking do this.”

    He cleaned off the table with one swipe, knocking the bottles to the floor, and slapped his left  palm onto the water-stained wood. “Leg’s nothin. This takes real balls.” He pointed the barrel on the top of his hand, cocked, and fired.

    “Whew!” Scott jumped up and down, shaking his hand. I didn’t hear anything and his hand looked fine. “Yea man! Fuck yea! That was one hell of a rush.”

    He tossed the gun back to me.

    “We’re going more than once?”

    “Oh hell yea. All the way baby. All the way. Once you start, you can’t stop.”

    “Fuck it.” I put my right hand on the table, like Scott did with his left. “I write with this one bitch. Left hand’s nothin.” I fumbled with the hammer, but once it was back I pulled the trigger. I again heard the soft click, and when I looked down, my hand was fine.

    “Back to you.”

    “Gimmie that shit.” Scott took the gun from me and pointed it at his abdomen. “Hand’s nothin. This shit will fuck you up.”

    “Dude, that’s just stupid.”

    “I’m not afraid.”

    He pulled the trigger.

    I heard it that time. It was unmistakable. I fell off my chair and the gun tumbled across the floor. I looked up at Scott as his eyes rolled back into his head.

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