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Titel: Abacus
Autoren: Josh Burton
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    “I hope you guys appreciate the thought I have put into this, it is true theatre,” Randall announced, casually swinging his legs from the fork of the huge gum tree. “You really need to know how this all works to appreciate how ingenious it is.”
    The drowsy p resident looked down from his swinging position in the tree to his companion who was counterbalanced hanging just above ground level.
    “See the pulley up there,” Randall said , pointing to a wheel wedged in a fork of the tree higher up. “Well, that joins you both, you are both connected to the same rope a little like an umbilical cord, I suppose. Only this umbilical cord will not sustain life, it will end it.”
    The president struggled to move his limp harnessed body to no avail. He couldn’t even manage to get a swing going.
    “Oh yeah and don’t try to move, there is no point,” Randall said, cleaning his fingernails with a sharp twig.
    “Rodney, sorry, President… which do you prefer?”
    There was no response.
    “Rodney, you should be able to feel a little pain at the top of your neck ’cause you have both been injected with an epidural, and because it is injected so high up, your arms and legs are totally paralysed.”
    The p resident panicked, jerking his head back and forth, which made his legs and arms move ever so slightly, as if he were being blown by a light breeze. “You are bloody crazy, you will regret this. I will make sure you are fucking dead when I get out of here, dead.”
    Randall looked down a t him with an amused expression. “Are you seriously going to threaten me? You have no idea of what you have done, and the person you have crossed. You are certainly not in a position to intimidate anyone.” Randall stretched down with his leg and pushed the forehead of the president with the underside of his boot, causing him to swing back and forth. “Now, smart-ass, you are the ones who crossed the line. You should have known better than to involve my family. Shooting me is fine, but leave my family out of it. So now you and Pete down there will pay the price for your stupidity. The last thing you will see before you die will be me, and I will be grinning.”
    He looked across the peaceful panorama of the large expansive billabong before him. Water birds busily submerged their beaks as they fished in the shallows, cheered on by cackling kookaburras high in the native treetops. Randall squinted as the afternoon sun danced and glistened on the water. It was a scene any artist would die for.
    “El Presidente , there are two people who you don’t fuck with. One is God, if he does in fact exist. The other is the Abacus, and quite frankly God might have been a better option as you will soon find out.”
    “What’s this bull shit about the Abacus, never heard of him.”
    Randall looked out onto the mudflats on the opposite side of the billabong. He could see the telltale signs in the form of deep, wide drag marks leading from the mangroves to the water’s edge. “Never mind who the Abacus is… when the Abacus wants you dead, you die.”
    “You don’t scare me , you copper cunt. Once I get out of here you are fucked.”
    Randall chuckled. “El Presidente, you may think you are a tough guy now, and I don’t care whether I scare you or not. I don’t need to. But our guests sure as hell will.”
    “Yeah , right,” he sneered disrespectfully.
    “ My large friends will change your attitude very quickly. They will reduce you and your mate down there to the blubbering cowards you really are.”
    His face became expressionless. He now looked a little concerned.
    “ Enough bullshit then, let’s get the presentation started, shall we? As you can see, you and your friend down there are harnessed to the same rope. It worked out quite well, ’cause your mate down there is more portly in stature than you, so I have only had to add a little weight on the rope above him to get the balance just right. So as a result you can see he is swinging just above ground level and you are much higher up the tree.”
    The p resident followed the rope and looked down at his comrade, obviously still not sure what the contraption was designed for.
    “As it is early afternoon, we will soon be joined by our large hungry friends. Saltwater crocodiles are absolutely fucking famished this time of year, they will eat anything, you know buffalo, kangaroo, humans and even shit bag bikies.”
    “There are
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