By Any Means

He had picked a spot up on a butte that overlooked the scrubland below. Besides him sat his Sharps rifle. It was outfitted with a brass telescope and set of cross hairs at the end of the barrel. Next to the rifle was three bullets, their brass casing shining in the sun.

He took a swig from his canteen and waited. His target was supposed to cross the dry creek bed when the shadow cast by a spire of rock crossed the same creek. He didn’t know who it was, he just knew that his employer paid him in solid gold twenty dollar coins.

He adjusted the brim of his hat. He really didn’t care who he was paid to kill, just as long as the money was good.

Checking the shadow, he saw that it was crossing the creek. He got into position and sighted along the stage coach road that paralleled the creek. He waited for a few minutes till he saw a figure riding along the road. He adjusted the focus on the telescope and saw who he was aiming at.

His brother.

He swallowed, took aim and fired.

“The money was too good,” he said.

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