Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Gun

Prompt: Why would a trader own a gun?


Response: The Gun

The stars could barely be seen, glimmering behind wisps of clouds that shifted in winds that could not be felt in the valley. Canaan shifted on the hard earth. He was exhausted and he ached, but that was ordinary and expected. The strangest part of the situation was his inability to sleep - he walked all day, almost every day and he usually fell asleep instantly after he let his pack settle to the ground.

Canaan turned on his side and the icy metal of the gun dug into his hip. He thought about moving to alleviate the discomfort, but he could not quite convince himself to make the effort.

The metal felt acidic against his skin, as if it was eating away at him. It felt evil, gouging into him, and he wanted nothing more than to bury it in the earth. But he remembered why he had purchased it, trading some expensive little trinket for the cruel weapon, and he had been glad of it the day before when they had finally caught up to him.

He saw once again the red explosions of human flesh being split by bullets and the solemn emptiness of dead men's eyes.

Canaan shifted against the gun in his belt again and its hard edges cut into his flesh. A tear slipped from under his closed eyelid and trickled down into his scraggly beard.


  1. watching a man carry a gun every morning and take it off every night...I see a technical difficulty: if a man wears pants and a belt, his gun would not be next to his skin. a gun at waist level would slide down his britches continuously. so "the gun inside his belt" must have a clip. in which case he would wear it either between pants and belt or clipped on the belt itself, or not so impressively, in a pocket.

  2. OK, and if an American, why wouldn't a trader own a gun? Right to bear arms and all that!

  3. Thanks - I obviously didn't think about that :) This was meant to take place in an unspecified time period and place, though. My idea was that in this setting it is rare to have a gun (that perhaps they are a realitively new weapon, or a really expensive one) and I kind of just went on with that original thought.