Friday, January 28, 2011

Hot Shot

By Harry B. Sanderford
 
 
A small ruby brooch dots her tailored lapel. She clutches at her breast and then holds her hand out as if feeling for rain. She staggers a step, unable to comprehend the sudden rose blooming in her palm. There is just no time for this, she worries. Begging apologies into her headset, she excuses herself, so hoping to reschedule. He lets out his breath as she crumples on the curb.

17 comments:

John Wiswell said...

Reach out and touch somebody? Very weird in very little space, Harry. Almost surreal.

theothersideofdeanna said...

Wow Harry, there seems to be so many possibilities here, I read it three times and saw something different with each read. Incredible job of getting so much in such a small space!

Cathy Webster (Olliffe) said...

I like it when you write about women. You have an admiration for them that shines through in your writing. Even in this case, where she's dying, this shows in her tailored lapel, the ruby brooch, the sudden rose, her apologies. All of those words make her seem beautiful and nice, and makes the fact of her dying sad even in so short a story. You really remind me of John D MacDonald in this respect. But maybe that's just my cold meds talking...
Who is he? The shooter? Letting out his breath that he held as he pressed the trigger?
Does it matter? No. This is very nice; the mystery is a bonus.

Gita Smith said...

This is star quality Harry. I have fired a rifle and I know that exhalation after the shot. Love the surprise of the sudden rose brooch. Tight writing master, you are.

Steve Green said...

A sniper breathes in, half out, then holds, then shoots.

Awesome Harry.

~Tim said...

Okay, I'll say it. This one is right on target.

Sugar said...

Succinct and every word placed just so. Outstanding!

Laurita said...

The imagery in this is spectacular. Nicely done, Harry.

Eric J. Krause said...

Death is so inconsiderate. Doesn't he know we have a schedule to keep in this busy world? Good story!

Karen from Mentor said...

I know I hate it when I get killed on a day that I'm overscheduled. Loved the tone of this Harry. Fast and gut punching.

Laura Eno said...

Wow! Breathtaking imagery in such a short span.

Stephen said...

I love how she tries to excuse herself into her headset. Sometimes, death comes so quick that we don't have a clue it's here. Well done, Harry.

Mike Handley said...

Whoa, dude ... You sure know how to pack a punch!

ABSOLUTELY*KATE said...

Killer piece Har, bloody good. Imagery be You in the red to dead Verizon ad, "Can you hear me now?"

Last line still gets to me.
{soft applause} ~ Absolutely*Kate

Harry said...

Thanks alot everyone! A round of shots on the house!

Stephen said...

Hi there Harry - I like the slow uncomprehending collapse, complete with vague 'no time for this'. Also like the fact that there's somebody else there. And of course the ruby broach is very striking - you know what it means when it's paired with that little word 'appears'. I like it. Once again, very well told in a very small space ;) St.

flyingscribbler said...

Expertly crafted. Enough said.