Thursday, March 28, 2013

Balancing The Equation

Jase had no need for his scope to see the puff of dust kick up.  He groaned softly as he watched the rabbit scamper away, vanishing into the rocky landscape below. He wasn’t sure what irritated him most: the loss of much-needed protein, the expenditure ammunition or the fact Cale didn’t seem capable of hitting a damned thing he aimed at. 

Not for the first time, the old drifter wondered if he’d made the right choice taking the kid in. In the apocalyptic wasteland the world had become, resources were few and diminishing rapidly. Finding enough to get by alone was a challenge. Adding an unknown variable into the equation for survival was foolhardy at best.

In this case, he’d decided with his heart and not his head. Leaving the boy alone and dying amongst the rotting remains of his family had simply not been something Jase could allow.

After two months, though, the boy had proven no help whatsoever and a more telling drain than Jase could any longer allow. He knew what had to be done and steeled himself before lying down next to the scruffy boy.

Placing a broad hand on the back of the Cale’s neck he adjusted the angle of his head slightly. “If we’re gonna eat any time soon you gotta learn to shoot better, lad. Aim…like this. See?”

Before any reply came, Jase bore down at an angle, snapping the urchin’s thin neck like a twig. Nothing personal kid, he muttered to himself.

This story was written for the weekly Thursday Threads flash fiction prompt phrase: " this."

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