Chapter 53: Funny Things, Numbers

Copyright© 2017 by Scriptorius

Tom: Good morning, Jim and Dan. We all know why we’re here. You’re relative newcomers to rifle shooting and you’ve asked me to set up a little contest for the two of you. I’m happy to do that. I want you to fire for two fifteen-minute periods, with a break of half an hour between them. You can each fire as many rounds as you wish on both occasions. The only thing that matters is your total number of shots, divided by the bulls you score, giving you an average of shots per bull. The decisive factor will be your scores over the two rounds, taken in total.

You have one target each for the first round and I’ll put up fresh ones for the second. Bear in mind your inexperience and don’t be surprised if you get very few bulls. They’re quite a long way off and those circles in the middle are pretty small. To put things in perspective, I had a short session yesterday, using an identical target to the ones you have, at the same distance. I’m considered a pretty fair shot but I got only ten bulls with thirty-five rounds.

Your magazines hold five bullets, so you’ll most likely need to reload a few times. For that purpose you each have a box of replacements. You’ll also see that I’m providing you with a spare rifle apiece, in case of jamming or overheating.

I’d like you to take up your positions, Jim facing the right-hand target for the first round, then you’ll swap places for the second. When both of you have called out that you’re ready, you’ll hear a buzzer to give you the start and finish signals. I’ll keep score. Let me remind you that the prize is a bottle of brandy.

One hour later.

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