I realize that the firearm safety rules used today are a somewhat more modern invention than the time period this book takes place in, but the first thought through my head when I saw that picture was “FINGER!”. The gun safety violation is actually rather distracting. It just jumps out at me every time I try to look at the picture. While anachronistic, having the booger picker properly indexed outside the trigger guard would be much nicer to look at. Maybe then I could pay some attention to what else is in there. :)
Given that one of Larry’s prior posts shows a flying creature, we can argue that these two have observed said creature and anticipate being attacked. Sullivan has his weapon on target (the creature is coming from 12 o’clock high, relative to Sullivan) but, given his sensitivity towards magic, has glanced down in response to the Lady in Red forming some kind of energy bolt. We just happened to catch him in mid glance before he can return his attention to the target and no violation of the rules occurred.