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The Stone Throwers:
A Man-Hunt For Vietnam War Draft Evaders


DCon

David and I decided to attend a scifi con in Dallas, Texas one year, called DCon. It was back in the very beginning days of what came to be called larping, or Live Action Roleplaying. Neither he nor I had any idea such a thing existed, of course. The year was roughly 1985, I do not recall precisely.

Paying our entry dues, we boarded the elevator down to the con level. The only other person on the elevator at the time being a young, very overweight Trekkie (Star Trek fan). I took up a position along the elevator wall behind the Trekkie, who literally took up half the elevator by himself.

As the elevator descended, we began to hear a commotion and shouting below us. Becoming discernable, were the words, "Vampire! Werewolf!" shouted repeatedly. David and I exchanged glances. Neither of us had a clue that a larp was in progress, and new con members were being recruited by both opposing sides.

The elevator came to a halt, the doors sprang open. Outside was a pack of people, totally blocking the exit. As the elevator door opened, they surged forward, shouting "GET THEM!"

Well, we had no clue what was happening here, but were not in the mood to be "gotten" whatever it might be. Bracing my back against the elevator wall, I stuck one foot in the Trekkies rear, and shoved. With a strangled bleat of terror he stumbled forward, arms outstretched. Four of the crowd were knocked down, opening a hole.
Once more David and I exchanged glances, both uttering a line from the movie "Dawn of the Dead"....."Hit and run?" "Hit and run!"

Now David was suffering pain from a recent hernia surgery. This was further complicated by the surgery becoming infected. His way of dealing with the pain was chugging Jack Daniels. He happened to have a half full bottle with him.

Charging out, I shoulder slammed a couple of guys, knocking them down, and took off. David followed, swinging the bottle like a club. Racing away, I heard an outraged howl behind me. Glancing back, I saw at least a dozen figures in hot pursuit.

Well enough, I needed to keep them focused on me, David was in no shape to properly defend himself. Charging up a winding staircase, I came to a landing with a marble bust on a pedestal. Using my momentum, I grabbed the bust, whirled around and launched it at my pursuers. It caught one flush in the chest, knocking him over the railing and to the floor.

The others pursuing me shouted excitedly and surged forward. Racing up and down stairs, sometimes leaping over the side halfway down, charging in and out of rooms, I lead them on a merry chase, pausing only long enough to snatch something, or sometimes someone, and hurl it or them at my pursuers. I had long since lost track of David.

As I found out later, a heavy metal band named GWAR (google them) was there, promoting a film they had made. With his shoulder length hair, wearing leathers and swinging a bottle of Jack Daniels, David blended in perfectly with them, and was happily accepted by the band, hanging with them the rest of the day.

Meanwhile, I had managed to gain some slight separation from my pursuers. Racing upstairs, I hit the elevator button, and boarded. The doors shut just as the howling mob piled up outside. Exiting on a higher level, I looked over the railing and saw a swarm of police piling into the convention level floor. Huh, I wonder what THAT might be about. One of my pursuers glanced up as police were pulling him away, and spotted me. I waved bye as he ranted and raved. Nothing like a little sprint through a crowd of people to get the ol' adrenaline pumping, right?

It wasn't until the next day that I heard about the new game Vampire vs. Werewolf, and how some convention members had gotten totally carried away with it. Apparently it had gotten so out of hand, police were called and arrests were made.

Well, the remainder of the con was relatively uneventful, though I heard they had to move the convention to a different location the next year, due to the damage some "vandals" did while running amuck....



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