Julie sat on a rock at the edge of the lake. The moon was almost full. She could clearly make out most of the surrounding area without using the flashlight she had used to travel through the wooded area to get here. The moonlight glistened off the ripples in the lake. The gentle lapping of the waves against the shore was normally a soothing sound to Julie but it did nothing to calm her nerves tonight. She was here to buy a gun.
She visibly shook as she recalled the brutal beatings she had suffered at the hands of her ex-husband. She thought she was finally safe until she had spotted him hanging around the office where she worked and her apartment. He’s an FBI Agent. I should have known it would be hard to hide from him.
She had made arrangements through a friend of a friend of a friend to buy a gun off the grid for protection. If she had gone through normal channels, she feared her ex-husband would have ways to find out.
Julie checked her watch. The seller was late. Fog began to roll in off the lake and soon she could barely see anything. She switched on her flashlight but in the thick fog, the light really didn’t help much. She was turning and shining the light around when she thought she saw a figure in the fog. It looked like a man but it had a peculiarly shaped head with eyes that protruded out of its head. Then it disappeared. I’m starting to imagine monsters. This was a bad idea. It’s time to get out of here.
She was trying to get her bearings when she felt something slide around her neck and start to tighten. Her left hand flew to her throat and she felt a small rope. Her metal flashlight was still firmly grasped in her right hand. She could hear the man behind her breathing so with every bit of strength she had, she swung the flashlight over her left shoulder aiming for his head. She heard a very satisfying crack as the flashlight made contact. The rope loosened and she turned and kneed her attacker in the groin.
As he collapsed on the ground, she saw her attacker was wearing night vision goggles. She placed the heel of her boot firmly on a very sensitive part of his body. He groaned and clutched at her foot. She shined the flashlight directly into his goggles. He shrieked and ripped them off. Julie pressed down even harder with her boot heel.
“I suppose you didn’t even bring a gun,” Julie stood over him clutching the flashlight like a club.
He shook his head no as he continued to moan.
“So you were just going to kill a woman for a few hundred dollars?”
He just gave a loud groan as she pressed down even harder with her boot.
“If you want to leave with all your body parts intact, I suggest you get the hell out of here now.” She lifted her boot and listened to him run, tripping repeatedly, and yelping as he made his way back through the woods without a light. She heard a car door slam, a car engine roar to life, and the noise of tires squealing as he peeled out of the parking lot.
Julie sighed with relief and then chuckled softly as she picked up the night vision goggles that were left behind. She threw them in the bag with her money and twirled her flashlight like a gunslinger would twirl his gun. I don’t need a gun. All I need is a good sturdy flashlight.
As Julie made her way back to her car, she smiled and whispered to herself, “I am a survivor.”
The debate over gun control issues still rages on in the US. It’s a difficult topic to resolve for a multitude of reasons. I grew up on a ranch in rural Texas and guns were a necessary part of that life. As small children, my siblings and I got into all sorts of crazy situations like running through the woods barefoot and hopping over rattlesnakes. We learned to escape raging bulls by becoming experts at sliding through barbed wire fences. I could go on but you’ve got the picture.
We never touched the guns that were always around. Never. Until we were deemed old enough that my Dad taught us how to shoot and have a very healthy respect for the damage they could cause.
As an adult, I didn’t own a gun for years but I was given one by a relative for self-protection. A few years later I found myself staring down the barrel of that loaded gun. It was was in the hands of a man that I trusted. I managed to get away and call the police. I handed that gun over to the police and told them I wanted it destroyed.
I now have two new techniques for self-protection. A steaming hot cup of coffee thrown in the face of an attacker can buy you time to get to safety. The next weapon in my arsenal is my trusty 9 iron golf club. It’s far superior to a baseball bat based on physics.
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