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Pistolita

“It was love at first sight, at last sight, at ever and ever sight.”
– Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita, Part Two, Ch. 29

Bang. ..
Bang. ..
Bang. ..
Bang. ..
Bang. ..
Bang. ..

6 counts. 6 shots. Always know how many bullets you have left in your barrel. Warm, orange fog settles in a grainy classic western, John Wayne knows he has exactly one bullet left. Graying smoke dissolves in a climatic drug run, our heroine is acutely aware of how many shots rang out. And as the echos slip farther away from a local gun range, a trigger-unhappy, gun-loving girl, counts slowly 1. .. 2. .. 3. .. 4. .. 5. .. 6. ..

Tonight she has met her match, a construction of such caliber that it will take her higher, deeper, louder into her widening and slinging affair with firearms. The Ruger GP-100 357 Mag. It is heavy. It is barely manageable. It is a challenge. 1. .. 2. .. 3. .. 4. .. 5. .. 6. ..

Hot in the hand, she counts. Round 1, round 2, round 3, until a box of 50 lies vacant like her mind. The count is a control she doesn’t get in life. Family is disintegrating, friends are evermore reckless, the world is amiss. Any glimpse of direction once had is wilting with her hardening skin. 1. .. 2. .. 3. .. 4. .. 5. .. 6. ..

She uses the long pull. The double action makes seconds longer, stretching into minutes, slowing time steadily with every shot. There is no cocking for her. There hasn’t been in months and even Red can see that as he watches her from the corner. She ignores the hammer while firmly wrapping around the grip. 1. .. 2. .. 3. .. 4. .. 5. .. 6. ..

Her petite hands shove finger-like 357 slugs into the cylinder. Snap.

The cylinder is in place. She takes her stance, strong. Leaned into the shot, breaths begin to pick up, but never break the count, the beat, the track. Bang. .. Bang. .. Bang. .. Bang. .. Bang. .. Bang. ..

The muzzle releases the final cap. It is all she can do to keep a lid on her own trap.

Bang. ..

Bang. ..

Bang. ..

Bang. ..

Bang. ..

Bang. ..

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