The Reluctant Hero Part III

In Case you missed the first two parts
The Reluctant Hero Part I
The Reluctant Hero Part II

I awoke the next morning to an empty bed, the smell of coffee and the sound of running water coming from the bathroom. I got out of bed and poured myself a cup of coffee just as Patti emerged from the bathroom again, wearing only a towel.

I smiled and said, “Hum.”

“Don’t even think about it,” she said.

“To late for the not thinking part,” I replied. “Care for some coffee?”

“Please,” she answered. “Louis brought the pot up just before I showered.”

“Good thing it was before, you would have given the old guy a heard attack,” I said with a laugh. I realized that I was standing drinking coffee naked .

“Oh well off to the shower,” I said, while handing Patti a cup.

We dressed casual as the last we had heard we were going boating. Maria had a pitcher of Bloody Mary’s waiting as we entered the patio, but there was no sign of either Nicki or Terrell. Maria must have sensed our curiosity and said,

“Senior Terrell is down getting the boat ready and Senora Nicki is just finishing getting ready.

About this time I saw Terrell coming out of the trees that were between the backyard and the ocean water.

“Boats fueled, coolers are packed so we are ready whenever you wish.

“Let them at least finish eating breakfast,” Nicki said appearing in the doorway.

“Bloody Mary’s are fine with us,” Patti replied, continuing, “With that big dinner we had last night and the fact it is mid morning we are not all that hungry.”

I concurred so we finished our drinks and off to the boat we went. The girls were dressed alike with a light dress like cover up over their bikinis both wearing a light weight short heal pool shoe.

When we emerged from the trees, the boat dock was directly on the path.

“Wow,” was all Patti could say when we say the boat.

No I am no stranger to boats owning a condo on the Lake of the Ozarks, however most of the boats I was accustomed to seeing were 50 foot or less in length. Terrell’s boat was at least an 80 footer. It had a great main cabin with galley and two bedrooms and a full size shower. The boat could be operated from the enclosed bridge above the main cabin or way up on top on the flying bridge. There was a sundeck on the back of the boat with a lounge area and a smaller sun deck on the front of the lower bridge.

Terrell began to tell me about the size of the engines and the boats top speed, however technical details such as this are lost on me.

Maria was already mixing cocktails as we boarded and stored our gear. Patti was drinking a Heineken and I, Nicki and Terrell were drinking a Coconut Water and Rum. I had never tried one of these drinks before but it was not half bad.

Terrell finished his last minute preparations and Maria bid us a bon voyage. It appeared we would be attending the duties of a bartender ourselves on this trip. I was an accomplished bartender myself as I held this position in a club where Patti and I had met years ago. (But that is a story for another day  ).

Terrell pulled the boat away from the dock and out to sea we went. I have to admit that I was a little nervous about leaving the site of land, however the weather was great and the ocean was smooth as glass. The girls moved to the forward sundeck to take in some sun and much to my surprise both girls were tanning au natural. Terrell was navigating from the flying bridge so we both had a great view of the sun goddesses while sipping our drinks.

“Do any fishing,” I asked.

“Well I do,” replied Terrell, “Just not on my boat, generally I go with some friends on their boat as they have all the gear.”

“What’s our destination,” I inquired.

“A very small island with a great beach about 40 miles out,” Terrell answered.

“Cool,’ I replied.

So I settled back to catch some sun enjoying the view of the calm waters.

A couple of hours and several drinks later we had arrived at our destination and dropped anchor. A beautiful stretch of sand, not really even big enough to be called an island as there were only about a half dozen palm trees in the background and some tall grass.

The girls had gathered their gear and were in the process of lowering one of the two Sea-Doos from the back of the boat into the water to go ashore to do some more sunbathing.

Terrell called me to the back of the boat and under the cushions of the bench seat was a locker secured by a padlock. Terrell opend the locker and removed a beautiful looking shotgun. I am not totally ignorant of firearms and the gun was a Remington 12 gauge pump shotgun. Terrell handed the gun to me and removed another from the locker. This one was a double barrel over under and also appeared to be a 12 gauge. He also removed a couple of boxes of shells.

“What are we going to do with these,” I asked, “shoot fish?”

“Watch,” he said as he rested his gun and the shells on one of the other seats. Terrell removed a device from one of the lockers on the back of the boad and began to mount it on a bracket also on the back of the boat.

“Grab a box of those clay pigeons,” he said.

Ok, now I understood we were going to shoot clay pigeons and the device was for throwing them.

Terrell put two pigeons in the throwing device and said,

“Ok, to cock it pull this arm back and to launch the pigeons pus this button, but not until I say pull.”

Terrell loaded the double barrel and I cocked the device and was at ready on the button. Terrell put the gun to his shoulder and yelled,


At which time I pushed the button and off of the deep blue water the clay objects flew. To loud shots rang out, almost at the same time and both of the pigeons disintegrated into small pieces into the water.

“Not bad,” I said, “Actually great shooting.”
“Well, I have had lots of practice,” Terrell replied. “Ok, your turn. Ever fire a shot gun, more accurately a 12 gage?”

I replied that as a youth I had fired several gages and calibers of firearms, however I did not divulge that it had been over 30 years since the last time.

“Ok,” said Terrell, “Let me give you a crash course in gun safety.”

He showed me how to load the six shells into the pump shot gun I would be using, how to shoulder the firearm, where the safety was and how to use the safety. (Which was a good

“Ok, the easy part is squeezing the trigger, and remember,” he said, “Squeeze, do not pull.”

Terrell loaded only one clay pigeon as I shouldered the gun while bracing my feet.

“Well I guess I am as ready as I will ever be, PULL!” I yelled.

The clay bird shot out over the water as I took careful aim and pulled the trigger. Hum nothing happened. The clay pigeon sailed out of the water and went splash as it entered the water. I had forgotten to take off the safety. Terrell smiled and said,

“Ok, let’s try it again and remember we are supposed to shoot the birds not drown them.”

I smiled and said,


The clay pigeon again shot from the back of the boat as I aimed and again pulled or squeezed or whatever the trigger.


Went the gun as I again watched another clay pigeon drown. You were a little behind that one. This went on and on with me either behind or leading the pigeons to much. Well I missed about 10 in a row when Terrell decided he needed another turn which results were the same as his first shots with two birds dead. We shot for abut and hour and Terrell decided we should quit before out shoulders became sore. I actually think he just wanted to keep me from being any more embarrassed, however my shoulder did feel a little stiff.

Terrell said, “Well with some practice I am sure you would get the hang of it.”

“I am not so sure,” I replied, “But it was fun.

”Well we are not finished yet,” he said, putting the shot guns away under the seat into the locker and removing two revolvers. Terrell showed both pieces to me and both were beautiful. Technically speaking only one was revolver and one was an automatic, The revolver was a 32 caliber Smith and Wesson and the automatic was a 9 MM Beretta.

Terrell pulled a large buoy from under another rear seat and attached to the buoy were several empty paint cans with their lids attached and secured with ropes. Terrell took notice of which way the light wind was blowing and tossed the buoy with cans attached over the right, or starboard side of his boat.

“Lets have a drink while the buoy drifts a little way from the boat,” Terrell said. “Do you want the same?”

“Works for me,” I replied.

“Whoa, it is a little more breezy than I thought,” Terrell said, handing me a drink and smooth as you please picked up a clip and slid it into the automatic and fired several times into one of the floating cans. The can slowly filled with water and sunk below the surface, but would be retrieved later attached to the large buoy. Terrell popped what he called a speed loader into the revolver and again showed me the safety and how to hold the gun. He said,

“Now just point and shoot.”

I squeezed off a round and missed and then another missing again.

“Line up the can in your sights and aim a little lower as you are shooting down”.

I did as instructed and heard a “plink.” Wow, I had actually hit the can!

“Good,” Terrell said, try another shot. Well I felt like a kid at a carnival shooting gallery, took aim and fired again, “plink” fined again and missed and fired two more times and actually hit the can twice. Not it was not that I had become an excellent marksman in twenty minutes or so, remember the cans attached to the buoy were not moving that much and were much closer than the clay pigeons ever were when we shot at them. Terrell popped in another clip into his automatic and fired multiple times sinking the remaining cans. Terrell stored all the firearms and ammunition away and dove into the water to retrieve the buoy and cans.

As he was swimming back I thought how fun this all was, not realizing how a crash course in firearms would come in handy before this vacation was over.

This was Part 3 of the Reluctant Hero, the continuing Adventures of the Professor and Central Patti. Look for Part 4 coming in September and do not forget to continue to follow MySideOfTheBar for more information on all things related to, well My Side of the Bar.



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