|BHWW - 2018-02-03 |
I thought of the weapons from the "The Great French Duel" chapter of Mark Twain's A Tramp Abroad, where he agrees to act a second to one duelist - the instruments suggested are all rejected for their violating of the code for dueling - but the other duellist's second has just the firearms for the job.
"Well, I am at the end of my string, now. Perhaps you would be good enough to suggest a weapon? Perhaps you have even had one in your mind all the time?"
His countenance brightened, and he said with alacrity:
"Oh, without doubt, monsieur!"
So he fell to hunting in his pockets--pocket after pocket, and he had plenty of them--muttering all the while, "Now, what could I have done with them?"
At last he was successful. He fished out of his vest pocket a couple of little things which I carried to the light and ascertained to be pistols. They were single-barreled and silver-mounted, and very dainty and pretty. I was not able to speak for emotion. I silently hung one of them on my watch-chain, and returned the other. My companion in crime now unrolled a postage-stamp containing several cartridges, and gave me one of them. I asked if he meant to signify by this that our men were to be allowed but one shot apiece. He replied that the French code permitted no more. I then begged him to go and suggest a distance, for my mind was growing weak and confused under the strain which had been put upon it. He named sixty-five yards. I nearly lost my patience."