Then, you start altering your routine, leaving for work early, taking lunch at 3 p.m. Over the next few days, you get jumpier, stealing glances over your shoulder. You start seeing menacing figures in every shadow and your nerves begin to show as you unconsciously grip the weapon at your side.
Then, it happens. You drop your guard for an instant, and a form appears from behind a corner, brandishing a neon green and orange super soaker. Before your brain can register what's happening, you're left wet in the street.
But such is the life of an assassin—a watergun assassin, that is.
Playing the game takes nerves and strategic thinking, and not everyone is ready for the challenge. They'll be the first to fall.
So, what's going to determine who is the ultimate watergun assassin in Boise? He or she will be the one left dry.
That's the goal for every participant in the watergun assassination tournament, a three-week-long event that will send roughly 100 watergun-packing would-be assassins into the streets of the valley with a list of targets in hand.
The tournament is part of a growing trend in cities across the country, where the elimination-style game has an increasing number of converts. Here's how it works: Everyone who signs up provides certain basic information: name, phone number, address, a current picture, location of employment, etc. Players are then given a dossier with the profile of his or her first target. It's up to them to squirt the target before whoever is hunting them gets the job done first.
Once a target is squirted, the successful assassin takes that person's target, and the game continues until there's just one left standing, or dry. If there's no clear winner at the end of the three weeks, a sudden death period kicks in. To the victor goes $500.
Of course, it's not a completely lawless hunt for the weak: No one can be shot within one block of their place of work; every assassin must make at least one kill within two weeks; there is no killing in designated safety zones; participants must live and work in Boise, Meridian or Eagle; and only brightly colored waterguns and water balloons can be used, nothing that resembles a real gun is allowed. Oh, and no law breaking allowed. Anyone who breaks the rules is immediately out of the tournament.
Want the full debriefing on the game? Check out squirtgunassassin.com to get the facts and video links to tournaments in other cities.
Registration is $20 per person if done before Dec. 1, and $30 through Jan. 10. The squirting starts on Jan. 18 and continues until there's just one assassin, or for three weeks.
For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Good luck.