Hawaii Five-O belongs to CBS. No copyright infringement is intended.
Danny was more than a bit startled when he saw the sign, big red letters declaring "TURKEY SHOOT." Smaller black ones gave the date, time, and place. He gulped as concern shadowed his bright blue eyes. "Aunt Clara!" he gasped. "They're not really gonna shoot turkeys, are they?" Eating a turkey for dinner was one thing, but shooting them?
Clara Williams' eyes twinkled as she reassured her nephew. "It's a target shooting contest, using shotguns" the elderly actress laughed. "It's a tradition in some parts of New England. You're a sharpshooter - why don't you enter? And no, live turkeys aren't the target! Not now, anyway. I did hear that the winner gets a gift certificate to a local restaurant for Thanksgiving." She smiled sweetly and squeezed the young man's arm as she added, "Wouldn't you rather have someone else do the dishes after dinner that day?"
"You win!" Dan responded with a grin. "But I'll need to get in some practice first!"
"Now where am I going to get a shotgun?" the young cop wondered. "I haven't used one of those things in years." He thought longingly of his Browning, an excellent sharpshooter's rifle, but off limits for this contest. And he'd heard there were some great target shooters in the area. "They probably do a lot of hunting, too! I definitely need to practice!" The best sharpshooter in the Islands and he was worried about a little target-shooting contest. He wondered what Steve would say.
Where to get a shotgun? As usual, Aunt Clara had a solution, an old one that had belonged to her father. "And maybe her grandfather!" Danny shook his head. He'd better get to work and get the antique cleaned up. Then he'd head for the local shooting range to practice. He didn't want to disgrace Five-O!
"The competition is gonna be stiffer than I thought," Danny ruminated as he checked in with the judges and watched some of the local guys taking practice turns at the targets. One big guy – Bigger than Kono! – was especially good. He seemed to be the favorite.
"Better go buy a turkey, kiddo!" One of the other men slapped Danny on the back, practically knocking the much smaller Williams over. "Ol' Jack Gillson there wins every time. He's already planning on taking his girl out for Thanksgiving. He's the best shot on the Cape!"
Gillson mimicked a bow, then snickered, "That antique of yours doesn't look to have enough power to even fire a shell. Where'd you find it? Someone's attic?"
Danny blushed at the sound of the men's laughter. He'd better do well in this contest, for his own sake and the honor of Five-O.
Targets were placed at the regulation 25 yards from the firing line. At the judge's signal, each contestant let lose three volleys; the five best shots would advance to the next round. Danny was relieved to find himself among them. Gillson, as expected, was also. "Not bad for an amateur," the big man smirked. "Must have been beginner's luck."
Round two: targets at 30 yards; one shot with the two best advancing to the final round. Again, Danny and Gillson.
Dan's cop instincts kicked in as he read his opponent's body language. The man was angry. And anger could lead to violence or careless mistakes. "Better be careful," he considered.
The targets now stood at 35 yards. It would be some tricky shooting to better his opponent, but Danny figured he could do it, even with an unfamiliar weapon. Best two out of three shots!
Gillson's growing anger led to an unsteady aim: one bull's-eye, two peripheral hits, the last one nearly off the target. Dan's aim was better: two bulls-eyes and one in the next ring. He'd won, but he didn't feel good about it. One look at Gillson told him why. The man's rage and embarrassment at the loss was palpable.
"Good shooting," Danny offered as he attempted to shake the other man's hand. Gillson's response was unexpected as he aimed a heavy punch at the young officer. Dan ducked; Gillson overbalanced and wound up on the ground, red in the face as he heard the laughter of the other contestants.
"He beat you fair and square, Jack!" one of the judges called out. "Even with that antique shop gun from Miss Clara's attic!" He grinned at Danny. "Where'd you learn to shoot like that, young man?" He handed Dan an envelope. "Here, Kiddo," this time with good humor, "You and Miss Clara enjoy a great dinner!"
Danny winked at his aunt. She could read his mind almost as well as Steve did and nodded with a slight smile. Dan, always generous, turned to Gillson and handed him the envelope. "Wouldn't be right to keep you and your girl from having a special Thanksgiving dinner. You earned this – you're a great shot!"
This time, Gillson reached for Danny's hand and shook it whole-heartedly. "We both earned it. Why don't we make it a foursome? We'll treat the girls. Deal?"
"Deal," Danny laughed.