“We should go play airsoft,” Jake suggested.
“What is airsoft?” Lucy asked him.
“I think I had come across it online before,” I started excitedly. “Is it not this combat game where two teams shot at each other? Kind of similar to paintball?”
Jake went on to explain the game as best as he could to us, as he hadn’t played it before but heard about it from his brother. He didn’t know much about the rules, but we were interested enough to want to make the one and a half hour journey to Laurel Hill to play the game. It promised fun and fun was the only thing that we were all looking for.
We got to the airsoft field early on a Saturday morning, and we met a bunch of people already at the site getting set for the game.
Luckily there was just about six of them, and we were six ourselves.
We decided to play against them, and the Marshal who oversees the game read us the rules.
“This a game based on sincerity,” he started. “When you are hit, say you are hit and raise your gun with your two hands holding from the barrel up. Do not curse for not claiming a hit; report to me instead. Do not shoot anyone at 3 meters range to avoid injury, say BANG instead. Do not aim for the head. Go for the body and legs.”
I could already feel the excitement building in me as the Marshal stated all the rules.
“I can’t wait to get on the battlefield and shoot some people,” I whispered to Rob.
“Me too,” he whispered back.
The Marshal talked about re-spawning and saying ‘Dead man walking’ whenever any one of us found self at a crossfire, so as not to be shot at.
We moved into the battlefield.
The field is a heavy tree space and a clear area. There were lots of spaces to dodge and take targets. I immediately switched to my experience from playing some of the best war games. I dictated how we at going to manage our positions so that they wouldn’t press us down or ambush us.
“Jake and Rob, go 80 degrees south. Fred and Lucy take 80 north. Pat and I will head into the battle. Make sure to cover your perimeter and us.”
I know they didn’t understand most of the things I said, and I was not even sure that I did myself. But it was just a game, and they were impressed anyway.
Just as when we were setting up our perimeter, I saw one of the opponents make a move toward us. I did a two finger thing to everyone. Pointed the two fingers at my eyes and to the direction where I had seen the person.
We moved in on him, not knowing it was just a bait to lure us towards them. They had been playing this game for a while, and they could smell a novice, I guess by the way they carried their weapons. One of them told us this after the game had ended.
A few steps forward and the enemy started shooting at us. They hit Jake and Rob even before we could take our first shot.
“I’m hit,” they both shouted.
I saw a gun pointing at Pat and me, and I dived instinctively at Pat to pull him away before he got hit.
“I’m hit,” I heard Pat say beneath me.
I scrambled away behind a fallen tree and rolled towards another tree to get me a target. Luckily for me, the guy I was targeting wasn’t looking at my direction. I shot at him, and he shouted. “I’m hit.”
My team yelled with excitement, and this inspired the rest of us.
Fred and Lucy teamed up and got another of the opponents. At that moment the rest of the opponents disappeared into the shrub. I didn’t know what my friends were thinking about, but I believed that the opponents were cowering in fear.
When they appeared again, they had us surrounded, and they opened fire on the rest of us. I only managed to get away just in time to shoot one of them, only to find myself directly in front of another one.
“BANG!” He said.