Saturday Short Stories: “Get Highpants” Part 5
R.C. Nutmeg tip-toed like Hamburglar down the hallway toward the bedroom, but stopped short before he got to the end. There was something there, placed conspicuously dead-center in the bedroom’s open doorway. Nutmeg’s heart started racing like mad. We’re talking a potential Culkin trap. Nutmeg looked over his shoulder hoping his boss, Styles, would be there to tell him what to do. No such luck. On his own. Nutmeg took a long breath to steady his thoughts. Okay, this is all me. I can handle this. I trained for this.
The potential Culkin trap in question? It was a He-Man action figure, circa 1987. Huge knotty pecs, washboard abs, Hollwood tan. It stood there as if guarding the room behind it from Skeletor’s minions. Playing to this point, the figure militantly brandished a grey, slightly bent plastic He-Man sword. The whole effect was as if mini Prince Adam had only moments before done his He-Man chant and FLASH! turned into He-Man. R.C. Nutmeg grimaced. No way is this a bonafide Jason Bourne death trap, thought Nutmeg. He noticed how the He-Man was not even connected to any wires or gadgets or anything.
Big breath. Then he delicately love-tapped the He-Man with the toe of his military-style boot. The plastic toy fell backwards with an impotent twip. No explosions. No Temple of Doom spikes. Holy crap, that was intense. Without exception, it was the longest two seconds of Nutmeg’s life. In fact, so caught up was he in the anticlimax of the He-Man figure, he failed to notice the wild-eyed old man rushing toward him from deep inside the bedroom. Before Nutmeg could properly react, Agent Edgar Plome (ret.), was repeatedly whapping him in the side of the head with a leather loafer. Whap whap whap. Plome was baring his wet greenish teeth, making cat-on-cat noises. His eyes were the eyes of a great-grandfather fighting off his first Civil War ghost.
It was a scary moment, no doubt, but once the initial shock wore off R.C. Nutmeg was able to see the situation for what it was: an uncomfortable but harmless loafer assault by a senile old man. Though the whapping continued, Nutmag calmly reached down for his sidearm (his carbine had fallen to the floor during the initial whapping). It was Nutmeg’s plan to slowly and cockily raise the pistol to belly-level and then give Plome two in the gut, one in the head.
But it didn’t pan out like that, and here’s why: all of this strenuous loafer whapping really got Plome’s heart pumping fast; loafer whapping, it turns out, is pretty awesome aerobic exercise. Really gets the blood circulating. Like jogging. And with the resulting swoosh of oxygen to the brain, Plome, right in the nick of time, became mega lucid. Again he had access to his particular set of skills. A half-second before R.C. Nutmeg pulled the trigger, Plome did a lightning-quick ninja hand grab and wrist snap and Nutmeg’s hand flopped limp and his pistol fell to the ground. And Oh, how he shrieked! Sounded like when you step on a cat’s tail. And the only reason he stopped was because Plome karate chopped him in the side of the neck. He crumbled to the ground, out cold.
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