Alternate title: The Tea Kettle Story, Part II
This is the second part in a multi-part guest post from SCI-FI. The first post can be found here.
Since this is rather long, I'll forgo my normal indent-and-blue-text style for words that are not my own. SCI-FI is the author of the following, between the lines.
This followup is long overdue.
It took very little prodding from JayG to bring my bete-noir back to the range for a proper disintegration.
The tea kettle, that G*dd*amned tea kettle, still existed after the Third Annual Northeast Bloggershoot. Thanks to the hospitality of Mr and Mrs. DoubleTrouble, and the generosity of JayG, I got private range time and unlimited access to JayG’s arsenal.
I hang the bullet-riddled remains of the tea kettle on the backstop, and JayG and I set up firepower. A shotgun, a mammoth revolver, an AK, a .45 - they all get starring roles in my ballistic catharsis.
JayG loads, and I “unload,” in the loudest manner possible, and quite often while shouting invectives. I rotate through the guns, hoping some-shot-some-how will end in a cinematic cloud of shiny charged particles. But despite the gunpowder hailstorm, the tea kettle remains hanging, a shredded latticework of bulletholes and webbed stainless steel.
In a fit of anger, I yanked the tea kettle off the backstop, slicing my hand in the process. I couldn’t care less. This thing has a date with fire.DoubleTrouble has a forge.
DoubleTrouble generously spins fire and injected air into a exceptional heat, and hands me a hammer. The unrecognizable lace mess is now literally infused with my blood, sweat, and tears. I drop it onto the anvil and smash for all I’m worth. But after 30 minutes of troubling deaf heaven with my bootless clangs, it still remains. The silver lace has been compressed into a black brick, but the G*dd*amned tea kettle remains.
The bullets tore holes, or knocked out small disks (or I just plain missed), but they didn’t do enough damage. The vaporization point of stainless is far hotter than I could ever reach in a backyard forge - heck, I can’t even reach the melting temp. No doubt if I buried it in tannerite, I’d see it flying across the sky, and spend the next hour yanking it out of a tree.
No matter how much I hit this nightmare, it remains.
Very little in this life has pained me more than the horror that haunts SCI-FI. Words cannot describe the mix of horror, helplessness, and abject anger I felt - feel - that something this bad has happened to someone so good. In the karmic scheme of things, something really freakin' good had better happen to SCI-FI, because this man does not deserve this. No one does, but especially not SCI-FI.
The feeling of powerlessness. That's what I remember. If this had been caused by someone; a drunk driver, a goblin, anything; I would put my freedom and my good name on the line to enact vengeance. But there's no one responsible, no person to hold to the fire as it were. Just a big gaping hole, and questions that will never be answered. At least not in this life.
I've known SCI-FI for 30 years. He is one of my oldest and certainly my dearest friend, the closest thing I have to a brother. He is, without a doubt, one of the nicest, most honorable people I know; a kind, generous soul that doesn't deserve a hangnail, let alone this horror.
They say everything happens for a reason. There had better be a DAMN good reason for this.
That is all.