When Regan signed her lease for the townhouse, her father had come to her student apartment with a very serious look on his face. It had reminded her of the talk she had gotten before her first date with a boy, repeated before her first date where she was picked up from the house, and a third time when she moved into her freshman dorm. This last time, however, he did not ask her to sit down.
“If you’re going to live alone, we need to go shopping. Please get in the car.”
He was never a man of many words. In fact, Regan would usually describe him as distant, or removed. He did work a lot, never talked about retirement, and when he wasn’t buried in a spreadsheet he was holed up in the basement tying fishing flies. At least her mother had signed him up for a perpetual online art fair and had managed to move some of the stock of flies out of the house.
He had not said where they were headed. Her first assumption was up to the sporting good store to buy some pepper spray or something. Instead he turned off the highway near Woodward, and brought the car to a stop in front of a gun shop and indoor firing range. The clerks had been profoundly helpful and set her up with eye protection and ear muffs. Her dad went through all the basics of loading and firing his 22-bolt action, and she squeezed off several rounds into the paper target. She had actually been within a few inches of where she was aiming.
To her father’s disappointment, however, she had refused to purchase a gun. One of the clerks, a rather cute guy actually, had offered to let her test fire a handgun of some kind. She had declined and promised to come back in a week or two to try one and maybe change her mind.
There were probably a dozen reasons she regretted never going back to the range, and all of them, it seemed, were armed with assault rifles.