This has simply not been my deer gun season.
I took yesterday off work for opening day, and didn't see anything but turkey's and squirrels. Then I drove home, and took my dog out to do his business, and as we are standing right next to my apartment building, three deer are prancing and frolicking in the tiny strip of woods between my building and the subdivision behind me.
I had today off work too, and once again went out for deer. My deer gun for the past two years has been my Mossberg 930 SPX (no rifles in Ohio). I do have to plug the tube in order to meet Ohio law, but the sights are significantly better than the bead sights on the rest of my shotguns, and up until today it has been completely reliable.
Today as I was sitting in the stand, I heard a big ruckus coming down the ridge behind me, and sure enough, 4 deer were running down into the creek between that ridge and the ridge I was on. I turned flicked off the safety and settled the sights right where they needed to be on the lead deer, which was a good sized doe, and pulled the trigger. I was rewarded with an empty "click."
I immediately cycled the action, ejecting a perfectly good slug (Brennke K.O.'s), and loading a fresh one. The deer heard the noise, stopped for a minute, and looked at me. I now had a perfect shot on that first doe as she stood there looking at me, and "click."
Cycle it again, line up the sights on the now milling about deer below me "click."
Load two more from the sleeve on the buttstock, deer are finally starting to move away "click" rack "click".
Honestly, I have no idea what the issue is, but the 930 is out of HD/deer duty until I find out. I have shot plenty of Brennke slugs through it before without an issue. I had it out a month or so ago to make sure the sights were still on with slugs, and it worked fine then. It isn't an ammo issue, it didn't even dent any of the primers.
I was hunting on a friend's land, and he loaned me a gun after I told him the story, and I used one of those 5 slugs to take out a coyote, and it worked fine then. Hitting the coyote was the one redeeming aspect of this week's gun season so far.
Initial thought is that somehow the firing pin broke, but I have it apart in front of me, and the firing pin looks fine. The hammer was falling when the trigger was pulled.
The whole episode reminded me of nightmares that I have had, having a perfectly good gun and shot, and needing to shoot, and then the gun not working.
And I am pretty sure that I can still hear the deer laughing too...