This month the task set by the writing group I attend is to write a short story, max 500 words, including four sentences picked at random from four different fiction novels. The four sentences are:
If you saw everything when your eye flicked from one point to another you'd feel giddy.
Rounding a bend in the path they'd met a group of girls on their way to school.
A vague memory flashed into his mind.
They arrived at Stoichev's gate the next afternoon.
Here is my offering....
He was watching the early morning news when the first stone hit his window with a resounding crack. Quickly followed by a second, then a third. His heart jolted and stuttered painfully in his chest, making him feel curiously light-headed, and as he grabbed at the arms of the comfy chair he was sitting in, his gnarled arthritic fingers groaned in unison. He stumbled to his feet, fumbled for his zimmer frame and began lurching his body across the room towards the window.
Buggering kids. He'd show them. Old he might be, feeble-minded he was not.
Another stone hit the pane, this time with enough force to chip the glass.
A red mist clouded his vision.
He'd had enough. He changed course. Turned his back on the window and headed for his bedroom.
...if you saw everything when your eye flicked from one point to another you'd feel giddy. That's what they told you at basic training. You must concentrate instead on one thing: your target. Focus your soul. Focus your mind. Focus your eye. Aim. Shoot. Kill. And he did. Relentlessly. His weapon - his MP 43 - became more than his friend. The heavy combination of wood and steel became an extension of his own body. He was revered. A respected member of the SS. A true Nazi...
It had been the boys idea to throw stones at Hitler's window. Of course his name wasn't really Hitler; that's just what they'd nicknamed him, the stupid old German bastard. The boys had stuffed their pockets with stones and big pebbles from the bit of a beach just down the road, and rounding the bend in the path they'd met a group of girls on their way to school. It hadn't taken much persuasion for the two groups to join forces.
He stood in front of his mirror: a skinny, stoop-shouldered, white-haired old man - eleven days away from his eigthy-ninth birthday - yet the grey uniform made him stand that little bit straighter. Made him lift his shoulders that little bit squarer. Made him push out his chest that little bit further. He grinned and brought the peak of his cap down until it almost touched the bridge of his nose. He clicked his heels together, then grabbed at the zimmer frame as he stumbled backwards, unbalanced. He gave the Nazi salute. A vague memory flashed into his mind...
...they arrived at Stoichev's gate the next afternoon, promptly at 1.30. A band of eager young Nazi's. Ready for orders. Ready to defend. Ready to kill. Ready to die for their Fuhrer. And many did...
He hoisted the gun up - all twelve pounds of it - he'd forgotten just how heavy and unyielding it was. He fumbled a magazine into his hand and clicked it into position. 30 rounds. That should be enough; he slipped another magazine into the deep pocket of his jacket. Just in case.
The MP 43 was set for single fire. Without hesitation he flicked the lever into automatic. He place the rifle with infinite care down on the tray attached to his zimmer frame.
With tight-lipped concentration he shuffled along the narrow hallway. His soul, his mind, and his eye, were focussed on what lay beyond the front door.
Aim. Shoot. Kill.