Hired Assasin

How far are you willing to go to make a little extra cash? I have already talked about the very talented Thai girls who seem to be OK with (or are forced) to make some serious social and moral adjustments. I struggle to imagine the sums of money that would be needed for me to join those entertainers. But I am sure we can all think of some time when we have done something that we know we shouldn’t have done but since we had enough money pushed in our face, we went against our best judgement. I would love to hear your examples of doing just this but for now, it is my turn. This is the story of how I killed my best friends hamster for $5.

It was a summer during my junior high school years. I miss those times. The only things I had to think about during this time were playing soccer and building bigger and better bicycle jumps. I woke up with the sun and slept as I needed. I ate when I was hungry and I did not have any temptations like alcohol or woman to slow me down. One day I got a call from my best friend Len’s mom. This was very peculiar since usually the mom’s of the friends had no reason to butt into our carefree lifestyle. But since Mindy was the neighborhood “hot mom” I was happy to fit her call into my busy schedule.

“Luke, I was hoping you could help me with something. It shouldn’t take too long and you can earn $5. No. No Len isn’t around and this is something I do not want him to be apart of. Great! See you soon.” click.

So what would you be thinking at this point? I had read the Penthouse stories. I knew how they went down. Pshh. Squirted the cologne on, got on the old BMX bike, and sprinted up the road to see how my services could be of use to some helpless neighborhood mom.

My bubble was burst upon arrival. Mindy was in the garage looking into Len’s hamster cage. I cannot remember the name of the hamster but lets just call him Lemmiwinks. Lemmiwinks was not a very interesting pet. He liked to hide from the world in his saw dust and occasionally he would make a lot of noise running around on his wheel which struggled to spin freely. We couldn’t let Lemmiwinks out because there were many ravenous dogs that might slurp him up. Len seemed to be particularly fond of Lemmiwinks for no reason other than it was his. But over the last few preceding months, Lemmiwinks had developed some sort of advanced form of cancer that looked to be eating him from the inside out. He started to lose his hair and gave up trying to struggle his way into his exercise wheel. When I joined Mindy at the cage, Lemmiwinks was laying upside down in a corner doing very slow revolutions on his back. He would convulse every now and then which put him on his feet but he would keep trying his circle ballet and quickly Lemmiwinks would lose his balance and end up on his back again. There was no humor watching this and we both just stood there for a few minutes taking it in.

“Luke, I need you to kill Lemmiwinks and burry him before Len gets home. I can’t do it. Do you think you can do this?”

I knew what I had to do and this time, the story would not be found in the pages of Penthouse.

Mindy gave me a pellet gun and a single pellet. Not to enhance the meaning of that one pellet, but there was only one we could find. So I loaded the gun, put on some gardening gloves, and grabbed Lemmiwinks and headed outside. Mindy did not want to watch so I was on my own for this one. In the backyard there was a waist high wall with a sloped hillside behind it. Perfect for absorbing any hamster shards and making sure no windows would be broken. I placed Lemmiwinks on top of the wall and stepped back five paces to ready myself for the kill shot. When I turned around, Lemmiwinks had fallen on the ground and was feabily spinning in circles on the grass. Annoyed, I slammed him back on the wall and ran back to the gun to make sure I could get him before he adventured else where. Ready, Aim, FIRE!

FUCK! I missed and that was the only pellet. Lemmiwinks fell on the grass again. I joined him and started looking for the pellet which was probably one of the more futile things I have ever attempted in my life. I am sure Lemmiwinks was snickering in his own sort of half retarded animal way. Ignoring his laughter, I put him back in the cage and considered the situation.

Whilst pondering, Len came home and entered the back yard with me sitting on the wall, a pellet gun over my shoulder, and Lemmiwinks and his cage next to me. He demanded to know what was going on and I told him. He was not amused and we argued for a bit until his mom came outside and basically told Len to shut up and accept that his hamster had a contagious form of cancer that could spread to the rest of the wildlife in the surrounding eco-system. Begrudgingly he obliged and decided to join me in the death squad effort. I made sure I would get the full $5 and we set off to find another means of killing a hamster.

We considered a knife but that would require too much hands on effort. We considered a knife and a vice but decided that might get the vice dirty and Len’s dad may not approve of possible ebola strains of blood on his vice. We considered putting him half way through a doorway and slamming a door on little Lemmiwinks but decided that the effort to clean up the carpet would be too much. We thought about using the doorway method with Lemmiwinks wrapped in a plastic bag but decided that he should go with honor and not be in a confusing plastic bag. This naturally led us to think about putting him in a bag, swinging him around over our heads, and slamming him down on the ground, but we didn’t want him to be sick in the bag before he died, thus dying without honor. Maybe a pillow sack instead but we did not want to ruin a pillow sack. In the end we decided that we would place him on a very large rock at a particularly inspirational point of the hill behind our houses so he could gaze out to the world he never knew during his final moments. We would then crush him with another large rock accurately smashed on top of him. This would keep the house and ourselves clean and take away the feeling of a “hands on kill.”

It was a slow walk to the inspirational point and I let Len and Lemmiwinks have some time alone. I do not know what it is that one says to a hamster that struggles to breath and makes funny gurgle sounds as it desperately spins in circles to see its own ass, only Len could answer that one. Len could not do the smashing even though I offered, he said if I wanted the $5, I had to do the dirty work. So down went Lemmiwinks onto a large rock the size of a coffee table that had a very level surface. It had plenty of room for Lemmiwinks to perform his circular tango of death with out him falling off. We performed some military-esque salute for him and Len backed away. I grabbed a near by rock and held it high over my bowl haircut I always sported and with all my strength, crushed Lemmiwinks. I followed through with my crushing blow which shattered the rock I was holding. This proved to be the worst thing we could have imagined because underneath the rock rubble was a still spinning Lemmiwinks. He had either summoned all his remaining strength to raise an animal spirit shield that broke the rock I used, or he was only half crushed and the shattering of the rock released the necessary pressure required to ensure a fatal crushing.

I freaked out, especially when I looked at Len who was watching all this happen in horror. Before he could say anything, I grabbed another rock and began slamming it down repetitively on Lemmiwinks. There were no doubts about the result of this secondary effort. Lemmiwinks had met his maker.

We cleaned up the area and gave the remains of Lemmiwinks a formal burial underneath a magnificent pine tree. We walked back to the house without saying a word, both looking at the ground the whole time. When we got to the house, we both turned around to give Lemmiwinks one final farewell. But the dogs had decided to say it themselves. They had dug up the grave, and with the sunset behind, it was just possible to see a flailing Lemmiwinks being tossed into the air and then caught by a jumping rotweiler. We hoped Lemmiwinks would understand our concern and care that we had given him prior to this moment.