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The Scars Left from Sunshine Paint
“Get down or you’re going to be hit!” Gemma and Holden were crouched behind the barrels in front of me, but I hardly paid Gemma’s warning the attention it deserved. I looked down at the gun in my hand, loaded with around a hundred balls of paint sunshine.
“I could see myself accidently shooting myself with this.” They both laughed and I threw up my hand, “Have we started yet?” I knew the answer by the lack of stinging on my skin and ran to reposition myself behind another group of barrels.
It was the last round of the day, and I wanted so badly to remain in the game until the end. The barrels I had moved to were significantly shorter. I turned back to where my friends had stayed. It may have not been the smartest move but I needed to have a better vantage point.
I never heard the beginning of the game announced, but took notice of the shower of shots that rained down around me. Considering about five rounds had already been played and I had reached the other end of the course in most of them, I guess this was to be expected. I couldn’t exactly be counted out anymore.
I was almost directly across from three people from the opposing team, so I figured my best bet would be to make them try and fire a large amount of their paintballs and then try for an attack.
I pressed my body against the barrel and listened to the shots being fired. I looked inside at my yellow ammo; I seemed to still be in pretty good shape. I started firing off blindly-unable to peek my head around long enough to line up a shot.
“Ashley! Ashley!” Holden called from the cover he and Gemma had continued to fire from, “Give me your gun when you die, okay? I’m out of CO2.”
I realized he was probably right. I didn’t play the game safe enough, but it was more fun that way. I popped my head up to look around the field. Only about half of the people who had originally played hadn’t yet been hit.
Wrapping my gun around the blockade, I fired more balls. I bit down on my lip hard to keep from calling out as my trigger hand was hit. The way our rules were set, if your feet were hit you couldn’t move; if your hand was hit you couldn’t use it anymore.
Realizing I wouldn’t be able to help the game much with my left hand, I shot up like a Jack-in-the-Box and attempted to blast anyone in my sight. Of course, I failed epically, but that’s beside the point.
Defeated I threw my hands up in the air as a sign of surrender. Funny enough I was wearing a white long sleeved shirt-so it was comparable to raising the white flag.
Almost outside the course and ready to breathe clean air, I realized I could still help my team. I sighed when I realized I would probably get pelted again, but decided it really didn’t matter anyway. I was probably already bruised.
I ran back and gave Holden my gun. Then I heard Brice call out for more paint and ran to bring him some. Of course, helping out my friends didn’t make me a superhero. I was still clumsy ole’ me, so yes; I did spill all the paintballs onto the ground.
I was squirming around on the ground trying to pick up all the dropped balls in plain sight. Becoming conscious of this I flung my hand up-cringing as I imagined getting hit square in the stomach again. By the time I got to Brice, I really only had around seven paintballs. I tried. I promise.
I finally ran off the paintball course and ripped the mask off my face. It was practically eighty degrees out, and I had multiple layers on. Can you say scorching?
I ran to the area where everyone who had lost the round waited. It was kind of funny to watch the expressions on the faces of those in extreme danger of being hit. I tried to warn as many of the people still left on our team as I could, but sadly we lost that round. As the last people left the course, one of them joked calling me the Molly Pitcher of paintball. It was a silly comparison-I had just left my guns and extra paint, but it made me smile all the same.
We started to get ready to leave, and as I changed I looked down at my stomach. Three welts from paintball hits had formed. They were mostly red but had a mixture of purple dabbed in. The skin was raised and they were tender to the touch. They didn’t hurt too badly though, and they felt almost like battle scars. Battle scars that were prove of the risks taken, paint splattered, and fun had that day.