Damn snow. Yes, I’ve said it. It’s April 4th and it’s snowing out to beat the band. If I’m to believe the weatherman, it’ll let up around half-past ten, so for once in his life, I hope he’s right. I have a dozen things to do today to get ready for tomorrow.
Welcome to Day 4 of the A to Z Challenge. Thanks for stopping by. I’m so enjoying reading the comments I receive as well as the posts from new bloggers. I’ve read everything from book highlights to haiku, from books promos to reviews.
Today’s letter of the day is D. Taking my cue from another blog, I’ll tell you a bit about Dustin, one of the characters in my novella, Grand Slam, co-written with Misty Cail, under the pseudonym, Misty Matthews. It’s a short short story, around 20K words, so it’s quick to read. The funny thing is some of those who read it complained about its length–what don’t they understand about short story?
Dustin is Brittany’s son who loves all things baseball. He plays catcher on his little league team, just like his hero, Justin Harris of the New Orleans Ravens. Brit can give him everything he wants but a dad. When he has the opportunity to see his hero play the hometown team, Brittany is faced with a dilemma. Can she make her son happy without courting disaster?
Here’s a taste of the story:
Brittney gave Dustin a quick kiss on the head and released him. He seemed to be growing up so fast. She crossed to the stove.
“Okay. Now, tell me what’s got you so wound up.”
She donned the oven mitts she’d removed earlier and pulled the lasagna out of the oven. Dustin danced around the kitchen unable to contain his excitement. She smiled. His enthusiasm was contagious.
“The Nashville Tornados are playing the New Orleans Ravens in two weeks. It’s the only time they’ll play this season unless both teams make the playoffs, and that’s never going to happen. The whole team is going to the game. Can I go, Mom? Please?” His huge amber, puppy dog eyes pleaded with her.
Her heart stopped, and she almost dropped the lasagna. The moment she’d dreaded for over ten years had arrived. Her hands shook. She placed the hot dish on the trivet on the counter, swallowed the lump of fear in her throat, and hoped Dustin didn’t notice her agitation.
“Do parents have to accompany their children?” She tried to keep her voice steady and prayed the answer was no.
“Nope. The coach is going to take the team.” Dustin pulled another chocolate chip cookie out of the cookie jar.
He took a big bite of the cookie and turned to look at her, all innocence, as if he hadn’t heard her. She smiled and released some of the tension in her shoulders. He could always get around her with that look, the same ‘devil may care’ look his father had used.
“So, can I go?”
Though the thought of him in the same ballpark as the New Orleans Ravens made her sick, the chances were good that, if he went with his team, the life she’d built for them wouldn’t be at risk. He’d just be one of the fans. Somewhat relieved, she smiled warmly at him.
“If Coach Brian is willing to take the team, I don’t see why not. It sounds like a great opportunity. Let me know how much you need for the ticket. I can give you extra money for food and perhaps a souvenir or two.”
She walked over to the fridge to collect the ingredients for the Caesar salad. Dustin’s silence made her pause. She thought he’d be over the moon about being allowed to go to the game and see his favorite team play. He’d certainly been excited enough a few minutes earlier. What had changed?
“I don’t want to go with the team. They’ll all be cheering for Nashville.” He made a face that clearly showed his distaste. “I already get teased about being a Ravens’ fan. I want to go with you, Mom. You’re as big a fan as I am. We can wear the jerseys you bought us last Christmas. It’ll be epic!” The pleading in his voice tore at her heart.
Brittney wished she could share his enthusiasm, but all she felt was terror as her carefully orchestrated world seemed about to come crashing down around her. There was no way she could explain any of this to him—not yet—not ever.
Grand Slam is on sale for only 99 cents this month on Amazon.com.
The price has been reduced to this amount on other sites, bearing in mind the money exchange against the American dollar.
Now drop over and read a few more blogs about the letter D.
I highly recommend: