click to return homeDenny, Ranasha and nephew Sage Boone Chittick
library: fiction

I Hate it When The Power Goes Out
Author: Kyle Chittick
Date: 04.30.2008

For a moment time stood still. There she was; the object of my search. The mind-numbing mental gardening spike that splits my cranium in two; or ‘obsession’ as it’s normally referred to. Had she seen me? Damn it, I cursed as I ducked behind my dashboard. Sure that works, I mocked to myself, surely she won’t notice the car that drives itself.


Time no longer stood still as evidenced by the new bump on the top of my head from the roof of my car and a sudden newfound tightness to my sphincter. After giving the requisite ‘honk-ee’ head-turn back towards the ‘honk-er’, my right foot drifted heavily towards the floor board, barely impeded at all by the pesky gas pedal, and I lurched out into the intersection.

I successfully caught a long enough glance at my target to notice that she was otherwise distracted which made me feel relieved… for about half a second. Lazily, I glanced back left and noticed I narrowly avoided running over a quickly scurrying bedraggled ‘human’, complete with extended middle finger. Clearly this man has no respect for our jay-walking laws. The question on my mind was how the hell did I miss him?

Since the car I was driving continued rolling forward, undoubtedly responding to all the gas I was giving it, I thought I should re-focus on the road ahead. I needed to turn around anyway or the girl might escape. Spying an empty parking garage on my right, I convinced my foot to slide over six inches from the gas to the break and pulled hard clock-wise on the steering wheel.

As rubber painted the etch-a-sketch pavement another shade of black and gravity pulled the vehicle’s back-end behind me, my progress came to an immediate halt as I slammed into the ill-placed dumpster. Now, who put that there? I sat for a minute lamenting my poor navigation skills and thought to myself how odd it was that I could practically smell the burning rubber.

No time to dally though. My target was now a block away and my vehicle was damaged. Sigh, it was apparent to me that I was only going to have time to bring the shotgun. The gun felt powerful. I felt powerful. Simply loading, cocking and feeling the weight of the gun was an exhilarating experience. A heavy metal song came to mind and I felt my encouragement within the pounding of the music. I exited the vehicle and dashed towards an alleyway darkened by afternoon shade. I didn’t want to waste any time because people sure look at you oddly when you run around brandishing a shotgun, but I had to steal a quick glance at my GPS again so I could find the girl.

She was close by, just across from the alley I was now crouched in. I knew from previous experience that if I didn’t have the element of surprise, this was going to get complicated. If her body guards were alerted to my presence, I’d have to kill everybody. You might already know that such an elevated goal would not only be messy, it would certainly lead to even higher police activity. I might not even survive the experience using ‘just’ a shotgun. It’s a shame that I had already used all of that rocket launcher ammunition. Still, I didn’t want to come this far and then not give it a try.

Now, now, don’t think of me as a thoughtless monster. I’m not just a sociopath who wanders through the city without any conscience whatsoever blasting away at poor innocents with reckless abandon for my own self importance. Actually, that’s one definition, but I like to think of myself as more of a murder-stylist. Yes, Jimmy the Cricket passed away. Rest in peace you pesky bug that just couldn’t stop rattling on about morals and ethics. Yeah, I killed him too.

My crisis of conscience over, I crouched low and swung myself and the barrel of the shotgun street-ward aiming about 10 yards in front of my target. The trick now was focus. You narrow your vision to include only your target in relation to the trajectory of the shotgun. As I had practiced and exercised hundreds of times before, I slowly let out half of air within my lungs and counted my targets footsteps in stride.

Three… Two… and at the apex of hearing the mental ‘One’ in my head while gently holding the remaining air in my lungs, I fired. Boom, a head shot! Blood splattered on the wall behind my target and there was simply an empty place where her head used to be. Her lifeless hand dropped the briefcase that she had been carrying onto the bloody sidewalk.

My shotgun was auto-loading of course, which was a good thing because before my buckshot sheared off even one dab of her skin, both bodyguards had turned towards me with weapons drawn. I fired quickly towards the knee-area of the closest one and dashed madly out into the street. Shots rang out around me as I threw my body towards a parked car for cover. The familiar cadence of police sirens could now be heard in my not-so-distant future.

Suddenly my world went black. It was as if someone just turned out the lights on the planet. I felt like I was pulled out of a warm safe womb into a cold sterile reality. Sigh. It was around the same time that I heard the low hum of the fan on my XBOX oscillate to a stand-still, that I realized that I was going to have to restart this level from scratch. I hate it when the power goes out.

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