They moved into an overhang on the side of my balcony out back a few months ago, and announced their presence by opening hostilities. I was out painting one evening, and one of the hornets stung me on the back of the arm. A half-hour later, I'd received one sting, and the offending hornet lay in the bottom of my shop-vac, after being shot down with spray adhesive, sucked through the vacuum, and finally bludgeoned to death with a board.
I called the leasing office soon after and requested that they get rid of the offending insectile neighbors, and thought that was that.
The exterminators never came.
Meanwhile, the nest had doubled in size and population. I was unable to use the patio, my usual area for spray-painting. I checked once every week or so, to see if they'd been removed, but it was not to be.
Today, I looked out back and noticed that the hornets hadn't changed positions in a while. Thinking that perhaps the cooler weather had finally taken care of them, I opened the sliding glass doors to get a closer look - and one of them twitched his antennae and fixed me with a withering glare.
No bug tries to intimidate me and lives.
I got my paintball gun out of the closet, loaded up, and opened the glass doors again. Taking my time, I sighted the gun at the center mass of the nest and shot a single round. I scored a direct hit, and the nest fell to the ground, taking most of the hornet population with it. Two soldiers were spared, and after hovering around the area for a few seconds, flew away. I shot the nest again, and it flipped off to the side of the patio. I closed the door and waited.
Meanwhile, a middle-aged woman sat in the second floor balcony of the nearby apartment complex, knitting and minding her own business, oblivious to the war going on.
The two surviving hornets returned, and landed in the blue-spattered area that once contained the nest. One tried to pick up what appeared to be an egg sac or maggot, covered in paint and dripping down the wall, but gave up and took flight before I could get a good bead on her. Another landed nearby on a nail, and narrowly escaped the impact of another round. Just a few seconds later, she landed again, and died in a spectacular explosion of blue paint.
The woman kept knitting.
I shot the nest again and it disappeared.
The last remaining hornet surveyed the area, and approached the glass doors, twitching her antennae, as if to say "I'll be back," and flew away.
Bring it on, bugs. I'll be waiting.