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Craig Slatterly has been on fire so far this season. He’s been an indomitable force from the second he stepped out of the bullpen.

Molly stared at her reflection in the mirror. She brushed her highlighted hair back and focused on the fresh new bloom around her eyes. She sighed and licked her lips, breathing the contempt in deeply.

She had an agreement with him, one that they had never broken in thirteen years. She kept up appearances so long as he made it possible.

He’s looking good on the mound today. Four straight innings of strike-outs. Folks, I think we’re witnessing a little bit of history today.

Over the years, she learned to handle him being on the road. She learned to handle is long, strange hours of training, charity, press releases. She learned what days she needed to sit behind the plate. She learned what she had to say to the ladies at church and how to pray correctly to hope for a big win.

She could write the book on being a professional athlete’s wife.

Slatterly has looked great since training. His new trainer, Davis Hammond, has clearly shown old Slats some new moves.

She even got on board when her husband came home and told her about Davis’s plan to use “special tactics.” She wasn’t stupid – she had read the Mitchell Report – and knew that they were clearly referring to Slats, her beloved and famous husband, using either anabolic steroids or HGH.

She kept up her role. She bought him ProActiv when the acne kicked in. She helped keep his hair trimmed short so the baldness wasn’t obvious. And, as always, when he got a little out of control, she made sure no one saw it, heard it, or knew about it.

She made sure no one knew his dirty little secrets.

Bottom of the seventh and Slats is still on the mound.

But how she struggled with the lies. As a God-fearing woman, she knew it was wrong to lie, but she couldn’t dishonor her husband. So she learned: how to lie to the children, how to lie to her mother, how to let everyone know she was fine when she gritted her teeth when someone hugged her too tight, pressing against her healing ribs.

The old dog looks like he’s got something to prove today.

She could even put up with the whores. He never brought them home so she never had to smell the stink of his infidelity. But it was when her MiMi saw Slats with that tramp. And her MiMi asked her about it quietly after church.

But now…

And now Enganos steps up to the plate. Another player who’s had a great start this season. His stats are looking pretty impeccable.

Molly broke protocol that evening. She mentioned the latest tramp to Slats, something that they agreed would never be spoken of in their house.

Strike one against Enganos.

Slats broke protocol that evening. They agreed the bruises would never show.

Strike two against Enganos. Slatterly is well on his way to his seventh no-hitter, tying him with Ryan’s record.

But now… Now she was waiting for Davis to come over. They had their weekly meeting to go over Slatterly’s “training schedule.” As Molly was the keeper of the timetables, timelines and schedules, they had all agreed early on that Molly would be in on it.

But today, Molly had a different plan, one she had all mapped out.

Slatterly’s eyeing the plate, making sure Enganos can’t hit the next one.

She would cut Davis a deal. Instead of smearing Davis’s name in the mud and dragging him through the press, she would offer him salvation. All he had to do was hold a press conference. He would look like the hero, who was forced to inject her husband. Davis was under duress and couldn’t say no.

Davis was going to help her ruin her husband.

And here’s the wind up…

The doorbell rang. Molly looked at her watch and knew it was Davis.

“And there’s the pitch,” she murmured.

This entry is for the topic Winding Up over at therealljidol.



( 32 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 7th, 2010 01:40 am (UTC)
Oh, wow. My jaw was on the floor reading this. I enjoyed it, though it's so sad.
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:31 pm (UTC)
Thanks for reading. This was the reaction I was hoping for.
Nov. 7th, 2010 03:20 am (UTC)
Wow. Great story!
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:31 pm (UTC)
Nov. 7th, 2010 03:25 am (UTC)
This should be longer. Maybe 250-300 pages longer. And with a nifty cover. And selling for $7.99 at the bookstore. Because I would read this book in a heartbeat.
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:31 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! That's exceptionally kind of you. :)
Nov. 7th, 2010 04:07 am (UTC)
Very well done!

I was wondering how this situation would play out, and what kind of character Molly would turn out to be.

I'd love to read more of this story.
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:04 pm (UTC)
We'll see if there's more rumbling around upstairs...

Thanks for reading. :)
Nov. 7th, 2010 04:19 am (UTC)
Excellent entry, with great writing, style, and content.

It hits, and it really hits home (sorry, bad pun) as it wraps up, with only a hit or two what's happening beforehand. The pacing is very well done.
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:04 pm (UTC)
Thank you muchly... and thanks for the feedback!
Nov. 7th, 2010 01:44 pm (UTC)
This is great! Love it!
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:04 pm (UTC)
Thanks! Glad you liked it.
Nov. 7th, 2010 02:26 pm (UTC)
Fantastic storytelling! =D
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:04 pm (UTC)
This is such high praise coming from you! Thanks. :)
Nov. 7th, 2010 03:26 pm (UTC)
Good job!
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:03 pm (UTC)
Nov. 7th, 2010 05:23 pm (UTC)
Yow! Very well done. That hits hard (er, with absolutely no pun intended). Love it.
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:03 pm (UTC)
Gracias. While no puns intended, I was hoping to hit hard/come out swinging/other terrible jokes this season.
Nov. 7th, 2010 07:17 pm (UTC)
Excellently told tale. :D
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:03 pm (UTC)
Thank you muchly. :)
Nov. 7th, 2010 07:30 pm (UTC)
great entry.
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:03 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Nov. 8th, 2010 01:58 am (UTC)
Wow. This was great. I really enjoyed this piece.

I was sort of hoping she would somehow get her revenge ;)
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:02 pm (UTC)
Thanks. I figured she would... :P
Nov. 8th, 2010 06:35 am (UTC)
Holy.... You are definitely someone to watch out for this season!
Nov. 8th, 2010 04:02 pm (UTC)
Thank you! You are too sweet. :)
Nov. 9th, 2010 02:26 am (UTC)
Wow! I loved this! Excellent take on the topic.
Nov. 9th, 2010 02:43 am (UTC)
Nov. 9th, 2010 01:45 pm (UTC)
I enjoyed reading this and now want to know what happens next!
Nov. 9th, 2010 06:36 pm (UTC)
This has got to be one of the best baseball themed responses to the prompt. Very well done.
Nov. 9th, 2010 11:26 pm (UTC)
Wow, so intense! I was on the edge of my seat all the way through!
Nov. 9th, 2010 11:47 pm (UTC)
Topical and very well done.
( 32 comments — Leave a comment )