They Say You Should Always Test Drive Before You Buy


“Try this baby out,” Murphy said handing a deep walnut stocked shotgun across the counter to Edelstein whose arms were weighed down by its heft.

“Fits you like a glove,” Murphy said barely able to keep a smile from erupting on his map-of-Ireland face. “I’ll be right back, gotta take care of the lady at the register.”

In quick-time Edelstein broke open the shotgun and pulled out two shells from his pocket inserting them smoothly as if he’d been using the shotgun for years.

He stepped out from behind the rack of camouflage clothes just as Murphy and Edelstein’s wife separated from a passionate kiss.

They both looked at Edelstein a nanosecond before he pulled the trigger.

When the police came Edelstein explained in his mock-nervous voice that the salesman told him to try it out and he didn’t know it was loaded when he pulled the trigger and blew a hole in the ceiling showering debris down on the pair of cuckolds.

“Thank god no one was hurt,” Edelstein said, “I’m going to re-think buying a weapon—I really am. Something horrible could have happened. Maybe this was some kind of message—don’t you think?”

~ fin ~


Paul Beckman writes everywhere and lives in Connecticut. Stories published or upcoming in The Raleigh Review, Boston Literary Review, The Brooklyner,
Web Del Sol, Pure Slush, Connotation Press, Playboy, Ascent Aspirations, Yellow Mama, Shotgun Honey, Full of Crow Quarterly, Metazen, Connotation
Press and My Audio Universe. Soundzine, 5 Trope, Word Riot and other wonderful venues in print, on line & via audio. His published story website: