Funny Short Stories: “Get Highpants” Part 6
As he dragged the wounded T. Bennet into the living room—where the remaining three Exterminators had sort of taken it upon themselves to set up base camp—Styles heard R. C. Nutmeg’s scream down the hallway. Alarmed, he dropped T. Bennet like a sack of manure and trained his carbine on the dark hallway. He motioned for his men to do the same.
“When he pops out, smoke him,” said Styles. Tough talk, but if you listened closely you could hear a waver in his voice. You really could. Styles was actually debating calling in for backup. The problem was, he knew, calling for backup at this point could do catastrophic damage to his reputation as a team leader. Seven trained-ass assassins, under his heralded leadership, and they couldn’t grease a single half-senile ex-agent? Time to break out the old resume.
Somewhere deeper in the house the floorboards creaked. A total of four .50 caliber carbines eyeballed the mouth of the dingy hallway, yet somehow Styles felt his team didn’t quite have enough firepower. True, each of these carbines could take down a rhino in two shots or less, but here’s the thing: to accomplish said accomplishment, the Rhino hunter would have to be steady of hand and pure of heart. Like Ernest Hemingway on the hunt. You couldn’t bring down a rhino holding your weapon all shaky-handed and you being all sweaty foreheaded; you had to be mega confident and cool. This was true of none of the four remaining Exterminators, and Styles knew it. Their hearts were totally impure and their carbines shook in their hands like maracas, and more so with each passing moment. The doorway that led into the hallway remained empty of senile men, and the anticipation was starting to be just too much. A lot of foot shuffling and nervous twitching. And then this happened: V. Bastid, the rookie, lost command of his finger-muscles. His trigger-finger unexpectedly spasmed and he blasted a hole through a slice of week-old pizza that had been stapled (?) to the wall.
“Bastid!” howled Styles. For a moment, everybody stared reproachfully at Bastid, who was turning bright bright red and kicking at an imaginary pebble on the floor. It was all pretty embarrasing. And when the exterminators finally directed their collective attention back at the doorway, Agent Edgar Plome (ret.) was standing right there as if he’d been there the whole time, his jaw hanging slack and him looking all lost and confused. So bold and abrupt was his arrival, each of the Exterminators entered a sort of mental “safe mode” where they refrained from making any major decisions. They just stood there.
Styles, as usual, was the first to reboot. He took a breath, raised his weapon, found Plome’s forehead in his sights and then—
Experience this spy story from the very beginning.
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