James’s Note: There are a lot of no win situations in the apocalypse. This one was a really close vote, and I can see why. A shoot out among the pine trees may have been the best call. Let’s hope your wood craft is up to it.
Sitting here and getting shot at sounds like a stupid plan. Besides, maybe you can draw fire away from your Jeep.
You get low and peak under your Jeep as shots fall around you. You think you make out four guys, armed with handguns as far as you can tell.
You decide you’d rather fight the men in the woods than out here in the open. Crouching low against your Jeep, you get ready to dash to the treeline. You hear the gunfire stop and hope to God they’re reloading.
Rifle pulled tight against your body, you run. Your heart is pounding in your ears and you find yourself praying these guys aren’t crack shots. Just as you reach the woods edge and dive behind a pine tree, you hear a bullet crack into the wood.
You take a minute to steady your breathing and calm down. The men are shouting in the distance and you hear them crashing through the trees. They’re definitely coming for you.
You get low and stay quiet. You try to tell yourself that it’s just like deer hunting with your dad, but a part of your brain reminds you the whitetails weren’t carrying Glocks.
You move a little deeper into the woods, trying to get away from the spot they saw you enter. Getting off the X is the first rule of a fire fight.
You catch sight of a big man carrying an even bigger revolver. He’s shouting at one of the men over his shoulder. He never sees you as you bring the rifle up to your shoulder. Your hand starts to shake, just like it did when you shot your first buck. You breathe deep and squeeze the trigger.
You were aiming for his center body mass, but the bullet goes high and you catch him in the throat. Blood starts spraying, splattering the foliage with red.
You keep moving. You know they heard that gunshot. You circle around, keeping the dying man in your sight. Your great-uncle always told you that in Vietnam the enemy prefered to wound a soldier rather than kill him, because that means his buddies would have to come help him.
I’ll be damned, you think to yourself, Uncle Jack was right.
A man with a black bandana runs straight for the one you just shot. He crouches down beside him, trying to stop the bleeding. You take another breath. You take another shot. The bullet takes off the top of his head.
You move around, quietly as you can, listening. Back towards the road, you hear someone cursing. You see a man in a black trench coat, a Glock in each hand, running full speed towards the shouts of his friends. Your shot takes him square in the chest and he goes down hard.
You try to stay quiet, but your breathing is ragged. You rake your eyes over the woods. You know there’s one more of them.
Suddenly you feel like there’s a rock in the bottom of your stomach. Someone is behind you. You spin as fast as you can, barely in time to stop the knife from plunging into your neck. Instead, you catch it in the upper bicep.
Damn, this guy was quiet.
Before he can pull out the blade and stab you again, you ram your knee into his groin. He doubles over in pain and you grab the hatchet out of your belt. You realize almost too late that he’s going for a boot knife. Luckily, he never gets it out. You sink the hatchet into the top of his skull. His bloody knife gets dislodged in the struggle and falls to the forest floor.
You pull a bandana out of your pocket and tie it around the wound in your arm. Exhausted, you stumble back towards the road. You see the woman rifling through your Jeep. When she notices you, she screams and takes off running.
What do you do?