by William G. Klett / WilliamKlett
Sureshot Sam sat at the edge of the crowded lounge. The rest of the dozen of the Riley Gang were gathered around on a typical mid-flight evening. Riley himself had Belle straddled across his lap as they kissed. Belle was wearing only her camisole and a petticoat. Sam smiled. There wasn't anyone or anything Belle wouldn't do when the mood struck her. Everyone had had their turn with her, more than once. Sam looked at the two tables snugged up against the galley. Five of the gang sat around with almost as many empty bottles in front of them. Four more sat at the poker table, Li Feng, whose ancestors must have never had Oriental blood from the looks of him, laying down his hand as he scooped up the pile of bills from the center of the table. James One and James Two, both escaped clones, engineered for size and manual labor. The fourth at the table was Håvard Skegge, long black hair, and unruly beard, his hairy chest bare under crossed ammunition belts, 150kg of muscle and mean. Rumor had it that one or maybe both of Håvard's parents had been a Grizzly bear. Sam sat alone at the Gunsmith table, a half-empty glass of some rotgut that pretended to be Earth whiskey in front of him, and the dense smoke from an Ecrivain curling up from a corner of his mouth.
Sam had his weapons arrayed before him. The pair of H&K 5mm pistols with their hypervelocity slugs were not the hardest hitting, not the fastest firing, but by far the most accurate guns to be found in human space, the somewhat bulky custom twenty-five round magazines giving him sustained fire. Disassembled, the UMP7 Selectfire with a 12x scope was spread out. He was carefully filing down the rough edge on the magazine selector. Lately, the gun had been jamming when he selected to the standard 10mm slug magazine. The explosive rounds and the tranquilizer rounds worked fine. Daily range practice, daily cleaning, weapons always kept at the peak of their condition, had earned him the name Sureshot. He could break down, clean and reassemble all of them in the dark. He knew because he had done it.
A sudden eruption of noise came from the poker table. Sam looked up to see Håvard grabbing Li Feng's arm and shaking it. A card came fluttering out of Li Feng's sleeve. With a roar of anger, Håvard's left hand came across and hit Li Feng in the face, knocking him from the card table to roll into the drinker's tables. More voices rose in anger as bottles spilled to the floor. Riley and Belle were still trying to reach each other's intestines with their tongues.
When the brawl threatened to reach Sam, he calmly grabbed the pair of pistols, magazines slamming home. He heard the sound of rounds chambering as he raised his guns to the room. And the brawl broke around him like a wave passing around a rock.
Only James One and James Two were not partaking in the fight, but standing by the door conversing as they gestured to the brawl that was winding down.
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Epic Tales from Beautiful Minds: An Ooorah AnthologyScience Fiction
Inspired by @rskovach's DECAMERON 2.0, EPIC TALES FROM BEAUTIFUL MINDS is a sci-fi anthology. Spread across multiple sub-genres, EPIC TALES features short stories from Wattpad's best sci-fi writers. The majority of these different sub-genres feature...