Snowflake Method (cont.)
by Adam Huddleston
This week continues Step 5 of the snowflake method for writing created by Randy Ingermanson. For more details, see my previously submitted blogs.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been in love with the game of baseball. My father made sure I had a bat (crochet) in my hand as I lay babbling in the crib. Once I turned three, I was pushed into a toddler’s league where the coach was thrilled just to have one of his players not stagger away with the ball in his mouth.
I played every year, watching as my skills improved to the point where I was eventually offered a scholarship to play at Louisiana State University. From there I was drafted by the Cleveland Indians and placed in their farm system. Although my time in the majors was short, I made a strong enough impression that the White Sox gave me an assistant coaching job once my playing career was over.
The first time I met Dwight Lara, I was skipping the Amarillo Yellow Jackets, a small but talented semi-pro team in the Texas Panhandle. I remember him being a tall, lanky kid. From the Bahamas with skin as dark as midnight. Not a bad outfielder and the kid could hit.
We were at the halfway point of the season, the time of year the majors play their all-star game. The Jax weren’t even sniffing contention. We brought Lara in and our season turned around immediately. We didn’t win every game, but most of them. Week by week, the boys began creeping up the standings.
Something pretty morbid was starting to happen though; folks were dying at our games. I mean, actually dying. It was just a handful of fans, but the crazy thing was, they only passed during the games that we won. The police never got involved with the team, because the causes of death were always outside of our influence. Some had health-related issues, some choked on food, a couple were due to stadium security. It was sad, but…we were winning.
Before a game one night, I remember it was the last part of a homestand, I couldn’t find a clipboard to attach the lineup sheet to. When I checked the seldom-used room at the back of the locker room, I saw something I later wished I hadn’t. Lara was kneeling on the floor, facing away from me. In front of him was this…idol, I guess is the closest term. He was whispering something over and over, kind of a chant. The kid must have heard me behind him, but when he turned around, he didn’t look startled in the least. Just calmly nodded at me then turned back to what he was doing.
I put two and two together and figured he was responsible for the deaths somehow. I felt bad about it, but I let him keep doing his thing.
Winning is addictive.
Well, we made it to the championship series, and one night Lara comes to me and tells me that he’s suddenly grown a conscience. Says he can’t perform his spells anymore. I told him real quick that unless he wanted me to rain down destruction upon him (and his family), he better keep it up. He refuses so I contact a man I knew from my days in Chicago. He knows a guy who knows a guy, and such. The next thing I know, this goon is knocking on my front door at home and offers to “take care” of Lara’s son. It was my final mistake in a history of bad mistakes.
The last game of the series, I get word that this guy has offed Lara’s kid somewhere in the stadium. We end up winning the game, but before the confetti has even had a chance to set in the outfield grass, Lara finds me and takes me out. The kid separates my melon from my shoulders. After that, everything is dark.