Tuesday, August 30, 2016

September Novel Essential Information

Novel Title: Treachery
Time Setting: 1897
Genre: Historical
Minimum Word Goal: 90,000
Timespan: May–July
Location: various towns in central Texas
Main Characters: Edward Thorne, Adeline Welling
Background Information:
Edward was born the third son and twelfth child of fourteen to a farmer in central Texas. He was the only son his mother, who was his father's second wife, bore to his father, out of the five children she gave him. When Edward was four years old she died in childbirth, the child also dying not that long afterwards. His father never remarried.
His older siblings, especially his sisters, helped care for him and his other younger siblings as they grew up on the farm, where Edward had plans to stay and help his father, if not start a farm of his own someday.
He was sweet on one of the local girls in town and eventually they were engaged, with the whole town looking forward to the marriage. However, on a trip to Corpus Christi with her mother to visit her aunt who'd volunteered to make the wedding dress, his fiancée met the fiancé of one of her cousins and the two found they loved each other. They thus called off their engagements and married each other on the day she and Edward had been planning to marry.
Heartbroken and angry, Edward left his hometown, not wanting to be reminded of her in any way, and headed southward, where he got a job at a ranch near San Antonio and fell in love with one of the foreman's daughters. Soon they were making plans to marry.
One night, however, he returned to the ranch intoxicated after a night of drinking with his fellow hands. His fiancée, following in her mother's footsteps as a bastion of the temperance movement, was appalled and broke off the engagement despite his pleas and promises that he would control himself.
Furious at being rejected again, Edward quit his job promptly and has given San Antonio a wide berth since then as he travels around Texas, mostly working with people's problem horses because he's become renowned in his horsemanship skills, compared to his youth. He has no plans whatsoever to get married.

Born the youngest child to a wainwright and his wife in West Virginia, Adeline lived a normal childhood for the first six years of her life. Tragedy struck her family in her seventh year when her father and brothers were caught out in a blizzard while hunting and ended up freezing to death.
Her mother, distraught and heartbroken, moved with Adeline and her older sister to the town that her sister lived in. They lived there for a year before Adeline's mother fell ill and her aunt declared that sea air would aid the recovery, promptly moving them all to Indianola, Texas.
There Adeline's mother met a beguiling man who had extensive knowledge of Native medicines and they were married in rather short order. Adeline's mother was convinced she married an angel, Adeline and her sister, however, believed their mother married the Devil incarnate.
As nice as their stepfather was nice to their mother, he was unkind to them. For even the things that looked like they may have turned into mistakes he beat them both savagely, and it didn't matter how profusely they apologised.
At this time they were living in Victoria, Texas, and as they'd been brought up, Adeline and her sister attended the local church, doing their best not to let their stepfather's abuses be known. However, one day the pastor's wife asked Adeline's sister why her face was bruised and her sister tearfully confessed the abuses.
Their stepfather quickly uprooted the family to San Antonio, where Adeline and her sister were forbidden to attend church. However, Adeline's sister went to the police for help, but their stepfather again moved the family — this time by cover of night — to Del Rio.
There their stepfather forced himself upon Adeline's sister, who conceived and bore a child their stepfather paid the midwife to murder. Overcome with guilt, however, the midwife confessed to the police, who eventually tried and executed her while Adeline's stepfather moved the family into Mexico before going northward to El Paso.
Their stepfather then tried to sell Adeline's sister to a house of ill repute, but her sister ran away. Their stepfather, enraged, found Adeline's sister and bludgeoned her to death while Adeline was forced to watch — in hopes of dissuading her from running.
Adeline didn't try initially, but she couldn't bring herself to remain either, and so enlisted the help of a young man, but he tried to take advantage of her. She managed to escape him and is now determined to go alone and finally get free of this terrible man who has so deluded her mother, as well as murdered her beloved sister.

Next post will be on September 5 due to computer maintenance procedures required.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 15

Word Total: 90,025

Year to Date: 780,110

Summary of Events:
Lane thought about the media sensation the championship final had become because Kannapolis had made it as they got set to play game one against the best team in the league, the Augusta GreenJackets, he then went out batting and scored a home run against Augusta. After winning game one and suffering a rally by Augusta to win game two, the Intimidators returned to Kannapolis and played well, which pleased Lane. Before game four Lane went to apologise to Mr. Quilley, who would have none of Lane's apology, instead himself apologising for his poor treatment of Lane. After winning game three and dropping game four, the series shifted back to Augusta, where Lane was nearly tagged out until it was discovered a fan's autographed ball had been used for the tag. Despite winning game five, Kannapolis dropped game six at home in extra innings, leading to game seven, a scoreless tie at the top of the sixth with Lane up to bat and the bases loaded . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"Lane didn't move for the first two pitches, both relatively strong, but too far off to the left for him to get a solid hit. He either wanted a solid hit or no hit at all.
The pitcher swore at him and threw a hard pitch that struck Lane right in the middle of his upper arm.
Throwing his bat to the ground, Lane swore and grabbed his arm. The umpire stepped out from his place and walked over to the pitcher, who went into a profanity-laden rant that Lane clearly understood to be his frustration that Lane couldn't be fooled.
To the infuriation of the Augusta crowd their pitcher was ejected from the game for intent to injure and a replacement pitcher was to come up and throw.
Lane flexed his arm and rubbed at the sore spot. It would probably ache more after the game, but he didn't care. The relief pitcher threw a weak pitch and Lane got a walk.
Even though Mr. Quilley was worried, Lane told Mr. Quilley it was fine, and it was his right arm anyways, he used his left arm more. He could ice it after the game and deal with it during the offseason.
Lane pitched the bottom of the sixth scoreless, walked again — unable to bring another run home — in the top of the seventh, whose bottom he held scoreless as well. The eighth and the top of the ninth also went scoreless for respective teams.
Now Lane needed a perfect inning to win the game, and that was something he desperately wanted to do, for Kannapolis as a city, and for Kannapolis as a team. They needed this, and he kind of needed it too.
His entire body trembling, his heart pounding to drown out the crowd, Lane went out and threw pitch after pitch, striking out GreenJacket after GreenJacket while the crowd slowly got quieter, their chances shrinking as each successive player returned to the dugout.
Lane shifted his hand on the ball as the last batter, Augusta's last chance, stepped into the batter's box. He, like Lane, had made it on base every single inning of every single game, naturally their best player.
Even though his getting a walk wouldn't be risky, Lane wanted a strikeout. He threw the first pitch, a good deceiver that got the batter to swing and miss. The crowd cried out in horror.
Lane come off that pitch fast with another one that the batter swung and missed, causing the crowd alarm again. 
For the next three the batter didn't dare move. To get his strikeout Lane needed one more swing.
He threw what, regardless, would be the last pitch of the season. The batter watched it, swung at the last second, and missed.
Lane dropped to his knees, the sound of his exuberant teammates filling his ears. He, and Kannapolis, had succeeded. They'd faced a lot of trials, but had succeeded in intimidating adversity."

The next post will be on August 30.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 14

Word Count: 84,014

Summary of Events:
Lane watched Spencer pitch a strong game against the West Virginia Power, their second round opponents, and thought about how his relations with Spencer had improved. Lane was then visited by Spencer, who apologised and explained himself, Lane accepted the apology. Lane then watched Spencer pitch some more, before himself pitching the fourth game against West Virginia, which sent them into a fifth game with the opportunity to eliminate West Virginia from the playoffs and become Division champions . . . 

Excerpt of the Day:
"Spencer successfully held off the second last Power onslaught. Lane could feel his pulse acutely almost everywhere in his body. It was like his entire body was throbbing. He was totally focused on the game. They had to win.
Glancing over at Mr. Quilley, Lane wondered if he would say anything about trying for some more runs to get a bigger margin and stave off extra innings — or a loss — but Mr. Quilley remained silent, his face drawn and intense.
One by one each of the Intimidators' batters went up. Several got hits, but all were tagged out before they could make it to home plate. The rest got struck out — although Lane was proud to note that more got on base than were struck out.
The score was still two to one for Kannapolis, but West Virginia was up to bat last; they could tie, if not win the game. The crowd, unsurprisingly, knew this, and cheered all the louder, Lane could barely hear the psyching message Mr. Quilley delivered in tense monotone to his players.
Lane watched as they hurried out onto the field to a raucous chorus of boos. When the Power batter came out, however, the boos instantly changed to loud cheers of the batter's name.
Still, though, the right fielder up hitting first hadn't gotten onto base, and despite the backing of his home crowd, once again, he failed. In his frustration he smashed his bat on the ground, breaking it, and stormed off to the dugout.
Successively each batter went up. Several got onto base, but none of them got very far thanks to aggressive fielding — and one spin-move by Spencer that tagged out a batter getting ready to steal a base as soon as the pitch was thrown.
The last batter came up. The fans desperately chanted his name. The bases were empty. He needed a home run to tie the game. Spencer needed to strike him out our walk him to win the game.
Spencer wound up and pitched. The batter didn't move. He didn't move for the second pitch either, and the third one he swung and missed. The fourth one he didn't move on either. One more and he walked.
He swung and missed on the fifth one. One more strike and the game was done. Lane desperately clutched the rail, his body trembling as he waited for Spencer to throw the sixth pitch, which, more than likely, would be the final pitch.
Pulling back, Spencer threw the sixth ball. The batter didn't move. It was a walk, but instead of walking to first base, the batter just walked straight to the Power dugout.
Lane, on the other hand, vaulted out of the dugout screaming and joined the mob that'd jumped onto Spencer. They had, in five games, eliminated the third best team in the league, one less game than it'd taken to get the fourth out."

Monday, August 15, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 13

Word Count: 78,026

Summary of Events:
The city of Kannapolis had a parade sendoff to celebrate the Intimidators making the playoffs, which Lane was surprised by. Their first opponent, the Hagerstown Suns, came out shaky, and Lane and the Intimidators capitalised. The series was tied at one game apiece when it returned to Kannapolis, where the fans nearly rioted because Spencer was starting; Lane calmed them and got into a confrontation with Spencer. There was a slight improvement in Lane and Spencer's relationship, and Lane encouraged Spencer after he ended up giving up two out of a possible four runs with the bases loaded allowing Hagerstown to force another game and keep their playoff hopes alive. At home in Kannapolis the Intimidators were being held scoreless in a 1-0 game and getting frustrated . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"Campbell swore and threw his batting gloves down as he stalked into the dugout, having again been struck out.
"You can tell who's the better team," Frasier said quietly.
And Lane hated it. He clutched the rail. He wanted to do something to throw the Suns off their game, but there was nothing he could do. He knew there wasn't anything other than to hold the Suns scoreless so that they could come back.
Once again Hagerstown held them scoreless. Lane swore in frustration. He was madder than ever and he didn't know what to do about it.
A hand settled on his shoulder, both calm and firm.
"Settle down Rookie," Spencer said. "You can do this, but no murder charges, alright?"
Lane took a trembling deep breath and let it out with just as much tremor from the raging tension in his shoulders.
Spencer slapped his shoulder. "Let's do this."
Lane led the way out onto the field and pitched strong, holding the Suns scoreless; Spencer was standing, watching them as they came in from fielding.
"Good job, now let's take risks those grannies aren't willing to," Spencer said. "Steal those bases. The risk takers win. Let's go out and show them the grannies they are."
Everyone nodded and they went out batting aggressively, running aggressively and they got a run home against the aggressive fielding of the Suns. The game was tied and the fans' cheering rose to a fever pitch.
Two innings. One run. Then the second round was theirs to play.
Lane went out and pitched strong, holding the Suns scoreless, although the Suns — despite the continued aggressive play of the Intimidators — held the Intimidators scoreless in the bottom.
Pitching the top of the inning, Lane was strong again and held the Suns scoreless.
"Alright," Spencer said when they returned. "One run. Let's get it done."
"Hashimoto sit," Mr. Quilley said. "Get your batting gloves Sheenan."
"But the doctors said–"
"To heck with them," Mr. Quilley said. "Your jaw's fine."
Lane hurried to the dressing room and fetched his gloves. He watched his teammates go out and bat and run for their lives. The Suns, unfortunately, tagged them all out. Lane could feel the tension rising. He hadn't batted in a long time, he'd be coming in cold.
It was his turn. Lane stepped out of the dugout to a near-deafening roar of the crowd who instantly took to chanting his name.
Lane swung the bat around a bit to get used to its weight. He then stood in the batter's box and waited. He let the first three go by without swinging, which caused the crowd to chant all the louder. Lane surveyed the loaded bases. He put the bat over his shoulder.
The pitcher readied. Lane swung the bat and connected with the ball. Releasing the bat instantly, Lane ran with all his might while the crowd roared. The ball was hopelessly out of reach for Hagerstown's fielders, and the Suns' season was over."

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 12

Word Count: 72,022

Summary of Events:
Lane was feeling stressed before the game in which he could tie the franchise record for most consecutive individual wins, and so called Erv. After winning that game, Lane was looking for the win to break the record and nearly thought he'd lost it until a four-run play for the opposition turned into a foul ball that outed all four runners. Lane and Campbell then went out for ice cream and Lane saw a kid wearing a jersey with his name on it — something he'd never seen before — which Campbell talked him into signing. Having broken the league record for most consecutive individual wins, Lane was watching Spencer pitch the game that would clinch a playoff spot for Kannapolis, unfortunately the pressure was too much for Spencer and he was pulled, Kannapolis with a five-run deficit . . . 

Excerpt of the Day:
"As Spencer walked past him, Lane wished he could say something to pick Spencer up, but it hadn't  been a good game for Spencer, so he knew saying that wouldn't be a good idea, and that was the only idea he had, so he said nothing.
The Intimidators were held to one run at the bottom of the seventh. They headed out to field for the top of the eighth.
"Am I in?" Lane asked. He didn't want to go crossing Mr. Quilley, even though he felt he should be in.
Mr. Quilley gave no answer. 
It didn't take long for the umpire to come over and ask Mr. Quilley where his pitcher was.
"There," Mr. Quilley muttered, pointing at Lane.
Lane got his glove and walked out with the umpire to an exuberant cheer from the crowd.
"I didn't want to cross him and he didn't say I was in, otherwise I would've come out right away," Lane said to the umpire, who nodded as they parted ways.
Meeting the eyes of the batter, Lane stared him down until the batter looked away, then he pitched and the batter missed.
With relative ease — although it felt odd coming in mid-game — Lane managed to hold the Power scoreless for an inning. The deficit thus remained four runs.
"You know what we need to do to clinch a playoff spot," Lane said as they all switched catching gloves for batting ones. "Go and do it. For yourselves as much as for the fans. We all need this."
They all nodded.
"We want to get arrested for robbery tonight," Lane said. "Base robbery."
Campbell smiled and winked and everyone else, after getting it, smiled as well.
Lane rolled his lips between his teeth and pressed down on them as he watched his teammates go out there and hit. They managed to half the lead to two runs by getting two home — very much by the base robbery technique, which did prompt West Virginia to put up a bit of a fuss.
Finally it was the top of the ninth. Lane went out to hold the Power scoreless and leave the rest of it up to his teammates. He succeeded in holding them scoreless, although he did let some onto bases.
The crowd was slightly excited, but mostly tense, waiting.
"The game's in your hands guys," Lane said. "I can't do any more. Bring it home."
His teammates nodded and went out. Lane watched as they again went vigilante base-robbing, getting one run in early, heightening the tension in the crowd.
They got a second run later on. The crowd was even more tense and excited. Lane clutched the edge of the dugout fence.
Ozuru, the last batter, went up. The bases were loaded with Rolando, Dainon, and Campbell. To get even one home would win the game.
The pitch was thrown. Ozuru connected. The ball went high. The crowd roared. All four runners made it home. Kannapolis was in the playoffs."

Friday, August 12, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 11

Word Count: 66,015

Summary of Events:
Lane went on a date with Serena that ended in an argument Lane thought was honestly unreasonable, being as it'd been about pedicures. Lane pitched another game while feeling slightly bothered about the argument, but not sure what to do about it. Lane was called by Mr. Borys, who told him the White Sox General Manager would be stopping by for a visit and wanted to meet him. Lane went to meet with the White Sox GM and was quite flattered by the commendation he received. Lane was pitching another game — which the White Sox GM was watching — and struck out the first batter of the game . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"The Kannapolis faithful roared their approval as the second batter came out. He and the third batter were struck out, but the fourth succeeded in getting a hit. His bat flew out of his hands before he even left the plate.
Lane threw himself to the mound and winced as part of the bat struck his ankle.
Quickly he popped to his feet to catch the ball at his face from Ozuru. The batter was approaching Campbell.
"Camp!" Lane screamed.
Campbell looked at him and he released the ball. Just as the batter left his feet to jump for the plate Campbell caught the ball and tagged him out before promptly dropping the ball, taking off his glove, shaking his hand, and kissing his fingers.
Lane bit his lip and jogged over. "You okay?"
"You served that one with a little Frank's Red Hot and Peruvian death peppers," Campbell replied, shaking his hand again.
"Sorry," Lane said. "I wanted to get it here before he passed."
"Next time I'll borrow Gresh's glove," Campbell said, smiling.
"You'll be okay?" Lane asked.
"Yeah, I'll be fine," Campbell replied. "It's more stinging than anything else."
"Are you sure?" Lane asked.
"Yes mother," Campbell replied. "Here's your ball."
"Sorry," Lane said, smiling slightly before jogging back to the mound.
The next batter was ready and Lane managed to strike him out. A couple of other batters got onto base, but nobody made it completely to home plate. The crowd roared and Lane thought he even heard a group chanting his name.
It didn't take long before that suspicion was confirmed as he soon heard the entire crowd chanting: "Shee-nan! Shee-nan! Shee-nan!"
Lane waved his hand as he headed for the dugout and the crowd roared before settling down to watch as his teammates sought to get some runs off of the Grasshoppers.
Mr. Quilley glared at Lane severely as he stepped into the dugout, but said nothing; Lane had a feeling it was his acknowledgement of the crowd that'd upset him. He sighed and sat down.
"So that bat was coming at your head or something?" Frasier asked.
"Yeah," Lane replied. "And the doctor doesn't want me taking hits, so I dropped. It nicked my ankle too."
"I saw that," Rolando said. "You okay there?"
"It's kind of throbbing a bit, but it's alright," Lane said, rubbing it with his other foot, although it hurt when he did that.
He pulled up his pants and rolled his sock down to look. Already there was a deep red mark that looked rather bruise-like.
"Ooh," Frasier said. "Should I get you some ice?"
"Well it's not that big," Lane said. "But probably better safe than sorry."
Lane rubbed at his ankle and winced. It'd been hit a lot harder than he'd initially thought. Gently he rolled his sock back up and let his pant leg go back down."

Ozuru: awzooroo

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 10

Word Count: 60,018

Summary of Events:
Lane pitched his first home game and got an enthusiastic welcome from the crowd, which he really appreciated. Lane went on a local radio station to be interviewed by the morning show personalities who opened things up to the fans once their interview was done . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"Now we've got our first caller here, Dave," Jason said. "How're things going Dave?"
"Good," Dave replied, from wherever he was, Lane wasn't sure.
"So what do you have for Lane?" Jason asked.
"Well, I was wondering, what's the best thing that's happened to you this season?" Dave asked.
"Hmm," Lane said. "Probably getting to pitch, and getting a shutout. I mean, I was totally freaked out the whole game, paranoid they were going to get a hit off me, but I wanted to shut them out. I wanted to absolutely smoke the Legends and get revenge for all the beating they've done of us, and getting that done, once the realisation that I had actually done it hit me, that was the greatest thing. And, I mean, even though my stepdad got me totally mad before the game, that's what I needed, the best encouragement I've ever been given was to be called a coward by the man I trust the most, as weird as it sounds."
"Alright, now we've got . . . um, Queenie-Lee?" Jason said.
"Yeah," a very black female voice replied.
"Okay, what do you have for Lane?" Jason asked.
"Well, I was wonderin' what your favourite thing 'bout bein' in Kannapolis was," Queenie-Lee replied.
"I mean, aside from the baseball stuff, probably the people, well, aside from that one old lady, she was a little bit freaky, but everyone else has been great," Lane replied. "The fan support is fantastic, because I came off a really bad finish to my season in Montana, and Mr. Quilley and I didn't get off the best in our relationship — as evidenced by the fact that he considers this string of wins all flukes — having the fan support has been great, having you guys all get behind me has really been great."
"Now we've got Harlem," Jason said. "What's your question Harlem?"
"My question is, what do those drag chute things do for you?" Harlem asked.
"Well, you strap them on and then run and they build up resistance, and so then you have to build muscles by fighting against the drag, and then, when you go in-game, without the chutes, you run faster because you've built up the strength," Lane replied.
"That's cool," Harlem said.
"You've got to be careful with them, though," Lane said. "This winter I'd put mine on and was going to run laps in my stepdad's one barn and I didn't have them properly secured shut, and it was a miserable, windy day, and the wind caught all my chutes and just about I was airborne and flying hard for Saskatchewan. That was kind of freaky, and yet hilarious at the same time. I definitely tested my strength there.""

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 9

Word Count: 54,013

Summary of Events:
Lane called Erving and worried about failing against the Lexington Legends until Erving called him a coward and made him mad. Lane went out and succeeded in pitching a shutout against the Legends while his teammates scored seven runs to with the game. The next day it was Spencer's turn to start as they continued their series against the Legends . . . 

Excerpt of the Day:
"His teammates did a good job in hitting, but Spencer's pitching wasn't near as strong as it'd been in other games — such as against the Tourists — it was like he was trying to pitch the way Lane pitched, when that wasn't the way he needed to pitch to be a good pitcher.
Lane remained silent during the top of the second, even though he felt like he should tell Spencer to pitch his way, and not a different way. He'd succeeded in not getting that many players on base, and the ones on base hadn't gotten back home thanks to the stellar fielding job of the guys around him, but still, Lane could tell it wasn't natural.
In the second Spencer's pitching job was just as poor, and this time the Legends got a couple of runs off of it, which brought renewed vigour and enthusiasm to the Lexington faithful — not the sort of thing Lane thought was good.
The Legends, he was sure, had been shell-shocked by his shutout the day before; they'd been stunned that they could actually get beat by such a poor team, and now Spencer was giving them new life.
When Spencer came in, angry and frustrated, as everyone went to hit for the top of the third, Lane moved close to him. Spencer noticed and moved away. Lane tried throughout the half to get close to Spencer, but Spencer would have none of it.
Eventually the bottom of the third began and Lane watched with a pained expression as Spencer let a homer get hit, that really got the crowd roaring, they even started a chant of the team's name.
Spencer swore and threw his glove to the floor as he strode in. He sat down away from Lane and despite Lane's best efforts to get close to him once again, he moved away every time.
When it was time for the bottom of the fourth Spencer stormed out.
"Wait guys," Lane said before the fielders could join him. "I want to talk to Spencer, so when it's the top of the fifth, don't leave him any place to sit other than beside me."
Everyone nodded and headed out. Spencer swore at them profusely, upset that they hadn't followed him out right away. Lane watched as the bottom of the fourth saw the score become five runs to two for the Legends, which really got the crowd going.
Lane sat down before the last hitter went up, and waited as everyone hurried into the dugout and sat down, leaving only one space for Spencer, right beside Lane.
Spencer stormed down into the dugout and spotted the only space available beside Lane. He walked further down the line and asked Frasier and Normie to separate.
"Why?" Frasier asked. "You're not part of the batting rotation."
"It's not like we didn't leave you room," Campbell added.
Spencer glared at them all and swore before sitting down heavily beside Lane."

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 8

Word Count: 48,041

Summary of Events:
Lane got ready for the wedding and took Devynne to get a better outfit, and a rather emasculate haircut. After the ceremony he got into an argument with his mom over Devynne's haircut, among many other things. Lane skipped out on most of the reception to get his younger siblings home, but managed to have a bit of a party by himself. The next morning he found out from his mom that she'd expected him to babysit his siblings while they were on their honeymoon, but he got out of it. Back in Kannapolis, he was getting closer to ready, and was working by himself in the weight room while waiting for news of if he'd pitch or not . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
""I need to talk to you Sheenan."
Lane startled and turned around to see Mr. Quilley looking at him like he wasn't that happy — then again, it'd sounded like he'd been talking through his teeth.
"Go ahead," Lane said, sitting down on the bench press.
"I've been told that you're not allowed to bat for the rest of the season for the sake of your jaw's recovery," Mr. Quilley said.
"That's what they've told me," Lane replied.
"That means that you're a waste on this team," Mr. Quilley said. "Being as you wouldn't really be allowed to pinch run until the last inning because otherwise you'd have to be replaced and then be useless, if you aren't to bat."
Lane said nothing. He felt like all of his hope and morale had been stripped out from underneath him.
"At least, that's as far as I think," Mr. Quilley said.
Lane wasn't sure if he should let his hopes get up again.
"Mr. Borys, however, has other ideas," Mr. Quilley said. "And being as he's the whole reason you're still on the team, and he's the one who can decide whether I stay or go, I've been put under pressure to go with his idea."
Lane restrained his facial muscles. No smiling, no giving away that he knew what Mr. Quilley was going to have to say next.
"Mr. Borys' idea is that you pitch, because that was what you were brought here for," Mr. Quilley said. "Because, apparently, in his alternate reality, you're some kind of ridiculously good pitcher, even though I have convincing proof in those last seven games that you're the worst pitcher ever to disgrace baseball."
Lane wasn't sure if he could be happy now. He was being belittled, and yet being told he was going to pitch.
"Being as I have two weeks to pitch you or I lose my job, you'll be pitching," Mr. Quilley said.
Lane kept the smile off his face. He wasn't sure if Mr. Quilley was finished or not.
"Being, however, as I am free to choose whatever team I should like to play you against in that period," Mr. Quilley said. "I have taken the liberty of making the best selection."
Being as a smile was bringing up the corners of Mr. Quilley's mouth, Lane had a bad feeling he knew what he was going to be hearing next.
"You will start next Friday," Mr. Quilley said. "Against the Lexington Legends."
Lane watched as Mr. Quilley turned and walked away before closing his eyes and putting his face in his hands. They'd been swept in the season series against Lexington for the last four seasons, and before that they'd lost the season series for some five seasons too!
Lexington walked all over Kannapolis like they were an MLB team playing a kiddie league team comprised of five year olds who didn't even know what the rules of baseball even were, much less the concept behind it.
After pitching the worst seven games of his career over six months ago he was going to be put in for his first game against them? Maybe he should quit pitching."

Monday, August 08, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 7

Word Count: 42,069

Summary of Events:
Lane was called to a meeting with Mr. Borys in which he learned his mom had contacted the team to get him to the wedding, so he made plans to go, and also learned the doctors didn't want him batting for the rest of the season. Lane was driven to the airport by Campbell, and at the other end didn't end up getting noticed by his mom right away, although Devynne, Erving's daughter, noticed him and visited with him before his mom and the rest of them finally noticed him.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Lane sighed. He wasn't honestly surprised that Erv gave up most of the custody rights to his mom, although he had a feeling Erv had done so because Dev was a girl, and therefore he thought it would be better for her to live with her mother as opposed to living with a widower, a divorcé, and a committed bachelor — all men.
"Next time I go to Dad's I'm going to hide so he can't find me until I miss my flight back," Dev said.
"He can still book another flight," Lane said.
"Then I'll wreck his computer," Dev said.
"He can do it over the phone too," Lane said.
"So I'll wreck his phone too," Dev said.
"And he can go to the airport and do it in person," Lane said.
"I'll wreck all the cars then," Dev said. "And the tractors even."
"I'd like to know how you're going to do that," Lane said.
"I'll cut all the wires and take out all the gas," Dev replied. "And I'll cut the tires like happened to Geoff's car."
"You're going to completely strand him out in the open prairie?" Lane asked.
"Yeah," Dev replied.
"How're you going to eat?" Lane asked.
"We'll go hunting," Dev replied.
"You're not old enough to do that yet," Lane said.
"Well they can hunt too," Dev replied. "And we'd have the garden."
"What about bringing the harvest in?" Lane asked. "And feeding the cows?"
Dev looked contemplative. "Well, he'll get everything fixed, once I'm allowed to stay forever."
Lane nodded. "Do you think Mom'll appreciate that?"
"I don't care," Dev replied. "I hate her."
Lane sighed.
"And if I can't get to see Dad soon I'm going to run away from home," Dev said.
"Don't do that," Lane said. 
"Why not?" Dev demanded.
"You've got to not just think about how much you hate Mom," Lane replied. "You have to think about how dangerous that could be, you never know if a stranger might think you're pretty, kidnap you, and kill you. And besides, Erv and I wouldn't know where you are, and we'd be worried sick about you."
Dev looked down at the floor ashamedly.
"Look," Lane said, squatting down to be closer to her eye level. "Next time you see Erv, discuss it with him. Tell him how unhappy you are with Mom, and ask him if he'd be willing to look into getting fuller custody of you, as opposed to Mom."
"He won't," Dev said.
"And why do you think he won't?" Lane asked.
"Because I'm a girl," Dev replied. "He'll want me to stay with Mom because I'm a girl."
"Erv won't want you to be unhappy," Lane said. "He's your dad, and, thankfully, he loves you, and if you prove to him that you're genuinely unhappy, he'll probably do something about it. And if you want I'll even discuss it with him and try and pry him open for you."
"You will?" Dev asked, looking at him with probably the most feminine expression he'd seen on her face in a few months.
"Yeah," Lane replied. "Because you're my sister, and I want you to be happy.""

Geoff = Jeff

Saturday, August 06, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 6

Word Count: 36,013

Summary of Events:
Gresham invited his girlfriend over and Lane and Campbell had dinner with the couple before going out to do their own thing. The Intimidators were drubbing the Asheville Tourists terribly when a pitch hit Lane in the jaw, putting him out of competition six to eight weeks which meant, unfortunately, that he would be able to attend his mom's third wedding in his lifetime — fifth total — after all.

Excerpt of the Day:
"The top half of the inning passed by quickly, although the Tourists managed to scrape up two runs and lessen the lead to seven runs, both of their runners were greeted by resounding boos from the Kannapolis faithful.
Lane didn't know if that was quite necessary, but he couldn't do anything about it at the moment, so he didn't. He just watched as the sides were changed and Merlino and Campbell got runs. Frasier had gotten close, but was not quite successful.
Once again, it was Lane's turn. The crowd cheered. Lane knew they were ready to see another home run. He had a feeling he had to be approaching some kind of record with all of these runs.
Standing in the batter's box, he held his bat over his shoulder and waited as the pitcher slowly pulled back, looking savage and enraged, and also like he was muttering profanities under his breath.
Lane waited for the ball to come his way. The pitcher began to move into the release.
Suddenly searing pain shrieked through Lane's jaw and he dropped the bat, crying out in pain.
He closed his mouth and dropped to his knees, which jarred his jaw and caused him to cry out again. He felt liquid leave his mouth, and all he could taste was blood. He could hear people talking with urgent voices, and the fans murmuring din behind it all.
"Oh my goodness," Lane heard someone say.
A finger touched his jaw at the sore spot and he swatted it away violently. Someone shoved a towel to his mouth and he swatted them away too, but managed to hang onto the towel and lighten it's pressure against his jaw.
Soon hands grabbed his arms and hauled him to his feet. He walked briskly to match the pace of the medics flanking him, he barely saw them through the terrible pain. They sat him down and removed the towel.
Lane whimpered as they moved his head around, he guessed they were looking at his jaw from all sorts of different angles, not that he was sure why. He just knew it hurt and wanted them to get him to the hospital as fast as possible.
Soon he heard more voices and then he was manoeuvred into a laying position before beginning to find the pain wasn't so strong as it had been. In fact, all of his senses seemed to be dulling. Finally, everything was washed over by a wave of inky darkness."

Friday, August 05, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 5

Word Count: 30,020

Summary of Events:
Lane watched yet another game, and texted Serena to alleviate his boredom before talking with the GM. Campbell took Lane out to play with some neighbourhood kids, one of whom hit a home run into an elderly woman's pond that led to Lane nearly being arrested on allegations of robbery. Lane was then put in as designated hitter for Spencer against the Charleston RiverDogs . . . 

Excerpt of the Day:
"Standing in the batter's box, Lane settled his bat over his shoulder and waited for the pitch. He let it go by, it wouldn't have been a solid hit.
He let the second one go by too, then watched as the pitcher slowly pulled back, focused his gaze, and then threw.
Lane made hard contact with the ball and took off. Rolando ran for home and Dainon ran for dear life. Lane kept after Dainon and the two of them crossed home plate nearly at the same time.
The crowd was roaring its approval, after having been silent and demoralised when the second half of the inning had begun.
Lane noticed the catcher was standing up in the umpire's face and the RiverDogs' manager was halfway to them screaming his head off. Sighing, Lane rolled his eyes and jogged back to the dugout to sit, instead of pitch.
It took awhile, but the umpires were able to settle the RiverDogs down and sides were changed. Charleston roared back to a four-run lead and unfortunately Lane only got a walk because the pitches were all too far to his left for him to get any sort of good hit, which he felt had been a deliberate measure. They'd scored two runs, aside from him, though.
Charleston regained a four-run lead in the third, and the Intimidators countered with three, making it a one-run game.
Unfortunately, Charleston got two runs to make it a three-run lead in the fourth, but Kannapolis managed to get two back. It was frustrating to watch his team play from behind, and being as the pitcher had figured out the lesser of two evils was to throw the pitches as close to the other edge of the pitching zone as he could all Lane had done was walk since the first inning.
Spencer managed to hold the RiverDogs to one run in the fifth, making their lead two innings. Merlino and Normie were batted in by Campbell, who got tagged out, tying the game. The left fielder struck out, Rolando got to third and was batted in by Dainon, who got to third as well.
Lane went out again. Finally they had a lead, and if he could bat Dainon in and get himself in it would be them with the three-run lead, with Spencer charged to hold the game for them.
Three balls flew past Lane, who didn't move. One more and he'd walk. Again. It would get Dainon home, but he wanted to get home too. He wanted more than a two-run lead.
The ball came past him and Lane swung hard, making a connection again, and ran with all he had. He flew past first and second, dodged around the third baseman, stomped on third, and charged for home, where he jumped for home plate and landed hard.
"Safe!" the umpire called."

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 4

Word Count: 24,021

Summary of Events:
Campbell got suspended five games for a prank Mr. Quilley didn't like and for reasons Lane didn't know he was put in at third base in replacement. In a later game filling in for Campbell Lane got a home run that started a brawl and led to the opponents getting Lane to do a drug test because they didn't think he should've been able to run the bases as fast as he did without the help of drugs. Lane and Campbell went to a party Campbell had been invited to while Gresham went out with his girlfriend, and it didn't take long for a girl to find Lane at the party.

Excerpt of the Day:
""You sound very driven," she said. "I do hope all that desire for hard work won't keep you from partying, though."
"And why should it?" Lane asked. "I need to engage in recreational activity sometime, otherwise I'll burn myself out."
"Although, if you are a fit and trim guy like you sound," she said. "And feel; then I would think you must look pretty sharp under these clothes."
"I should hope so," Lane replied. "I wouldn't want to put all that work in for nothing."
"I would love to see," she said.
"When I haven't even gotten to know you or your name?" Lane asked.
"Oh," she said, daintily covering her deep red lips with her white and silver-glitter polished fingernails. "I guess I haven't introduced myself, have I?"
"No, my darling, you haven't," Lane replied.
"Oh, well, my name is Serena Beruma," she said. "And I've lived here in Kannapolis since two years ago. I was born in South California and lived there until I was twelve, when my parents divorced. Mom and I moved to Raleigh, where my grandparents live, and Mom found a job there that transferred her here two years ago."
"Wow," Lane said. "And do you have much to do with your dad?"
"I go visit him every August," Serena replied.
"Do you like your mom better, though?" Lane asked.
"Yeah," Serena replied. "I think she was right to leave Dad, being as he didn't seem to care for her anymore anyways."
Lane nodded. "Have either of your parents marred since the split?"
"Mom's dated a couple of guys since, but nothing serious," Serena replied. "Dad's married and divorced twice."
"And how old are you, anyways?" Lane asked.
"Eighteen," Serena replied. "And you?"
"A year older," Lane replied.
Serena nodded. "And where in Canada are you from?"
"I was born in Victoria, British Columbia, which is just a little north of Washington State, I think Seattle's the major city right nearby there," Lane replied. "On the far west coast of Canada there's a really big island just above the US border, and Victoria's on the south end of that."
"Mm," Serena said. "You don't live there now?"
"No," Lane replied. "I've lived in several different places in Canada, but now that I'm old enough to live on my own I live just south of Calgary, Alberta, which is east of the Rocky Mountains, and about three hours north of the Montana border."
"Why did you move around so much?" Serena asked.
"Following my mom's latest husbands," Lane replied, beginning to manoeuvre toward the kitchen to get a drink.
"She goes through them quickly?" Serena asked.
"Yeah, she'll be marrying her fifth in August," Lane replied.
"Oh my gosh," Serena said, startling. "What does she do to them?"
"Spends all their money," Lane replied. "Or at least gets close enough for them to get uncomfortable and kick her out. None of her kids have a full sibling.""

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 3

Word Count: 18,023

Summary of Events:
Lane managed to get to the field early and throw some pitches, but Mr. Quilley found him and they got into an argument that led to Lane damaging Mr. Quilley's SUV with a baseball bat. Mr. Borys had a meeting with Lane and told him he'd be paying for the repair of Mr. Quilley's SUV. Lane tried to get a hold of Erving during the season opener he was sitting out, but ended up having a fruitless conversation with Erving's dad Tom. Campbell gave Lane the bill for Mr. Quilley's repair and Lane tried again to get a hold of Erving, but failed to reach him. Erving called Lane finally while he was in the middle of breakfast, so he got Erving to call back once he'd finished . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"Soon his phone rang again, and again, it was Erv's number.
"Thanks, I'm done now," Lane answered.
"Sorry about that," Erv said. "It should be about eight there, right?"
"Yeah," Lane replied. "That's about when we usually have breakfast."
"Oh, okay, know that for next time," Erv said. "So what did you want to talk to me about?"
"Well, I've got a problem," Lane replied. "It's my own fault, and I know you won't be happy."
"Oh," Erv said, sounding dubious.
"The fact that I'm not pitching is frustrating," Lane said, fiddling with the bill. "And I've gotten mad at the Manager a couple of times. First he condemned me for being a pitcher after I hit a home run in Spring Training and I got mad and beat up the dressing room a bit with a bat."
"Mm," Erv said, an unimpressed tone to his voice.
"I got reprimanded for that and sat for a bit," Lane said. "Now last Wednesday I decided to go to the field early and get some pitching practise in. The Manager found me and watched me throw sixty pitches before tearing a strip out of me, telling me I'm not a pitcher and banning me from the team for a week due to gross insubordination, which apparently entails showing up for practise too early, playing out of my position — which I wasn't — and arguing with him."
"Hm," Erv said, sounding puzzled.
"I was mad, so I took a bat from the dugout and found his SUV in the parking lot," Lane continued.
"Oh dear," Erv said.
"Yeah," Lane said. "I busted his head and taillights, beat up his hood, broke his rear window, and threw the bat into his console, then I used an X-acto knife and cut up his seat."
"That's a little much Lane," Erv said.
Lane sighed. "I know. Before the day was out the GM called me to have a meeting with him and he left the week banning in place because he felt I needed time away from the Manager, and he told me it's my responsibility to pay for the repairs to the Manager's SUV."
"Ah," Erv said. "And you can't pay it."
"It overdraws me about five hundred and fifty bucks," Lane said.
"Mm," Erv said.
"And I owe the catcher six hundred in rent on the fifteenth too," Lane added.
"Don't you get paid then?" Erv asked.
"Yeah, but I don't know how far I'm allowed to overdraft, and if things might be worse factoring in exchange rates because I haven't accounted for that, and I doubt the Manager or the auto-body place would appreciate being kept waiting with the money," Lane replied.
"Hm, I guess that's true," Erv said.
"I know I'll probably be paid then and I can pay Gresh, but it's the rest of it," Lane said. "I'm cemented onto the Manager's bad side enough as it is, and I don't want to make it any worse than I have to.""

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 2

Word Count: 12,021

Summary of Events:
Lane, having not pitched since Mr. Quilley, the Manager, berated him for being in the bullpen, went out and hit another home run that led to Mr. Quilley berating him again, leading him to, in frustration, damage the dressing room with his baseball bat. Having been banished by Mr. Quilley for a couple of days, Lane watched the annual intrasquad game and talked with the General Manager, Mr. Borys about what happened. Lane got called by his mom on the way to training and asked for $2,000 for wedding flowers, which he refused to give her. Lane sat in the dressing room, anxiously waiting for the last cuts to be announced, especially anxious because Mr. Quilley and Mr. Borys were getting upset at each other . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"Finally Mr. Borys took Mr. Quilley by the arm and the two of them stalked behind a door. Lane shifted uncomfortably as he could tell their voices were raised now, but they were still not loud enough to be heard. He didn't seem to be causing anything but trouble here.
A nervous murmur rippled around the room as other players speculated on what had caused their discussion to go south, and many expressing nervousness at the idea that they might be cut from the team.
The last of the cuts were going to be announced to the team today, several days before the end of Spring Training. The cut players would then leave and the team that, barring major injuries and trades, Mr. Quilley would have all season would work together and get ready for the beginning of the regular season, which would start for them within the first few days of April, with a home opener against what Lane had been told was a fellow bottom feeder team in the Asheville Tourists.
Lane, having signed a contract with the Intimidators, was pretty sure he'd be staying with the team — and if it was in doubt wether he would or not, he dearly, desperately hoped so.
Finally, Mr. Borys looking satisfied, and Mr. Quilley looking highly aggravated, the two men emerged from the door they'd gone behind and Mr. Quilley began announcing the cuts, with reasons given as to why each player was cut.
As soon as their name was announced, the respective players started undressing out of their gear and back into their clothes. The more names were listed, the more Lane became unsettled, fearing that his own name would be added to the list.
"And, finally," Mr. Quilley said, looking Lane in the eye. "Being as I cannot cut the player I want to cut, I am cutting number seventy six, Jared Youngsberg."
Lane waited for Mr. Quilley to say why — and also to stop staring at him — but Mr. Quilley remained silent, staring at Lane, his light eyes deep and penetrating in their gaze.
Uncomfortably Lane shifted under the piercing gaze as one by one each of the cut players packed up their gear bags and left, including the incredibly disheartened Jared. Once the room was emptied of the cuts Mr. Quilley broke gaze with Lane.
"And I do hope that the player I wanted to cut knows who he is, and that he will be removed from this team and the first available opportunity," Mr. Quilley said. "Unless, maybe, he proves himself."
Lane set his jaw, meeting Mr. Quilley's gaze, which had returned to him. He was ready for a fight, and he was ready to throw everything he could into it, if that was what Mr. Quilley wanted.
He would prove to Mr. Quilley that he was a pitcher, and that he was a pitcher that was at least equal to the likes of Spencer, if not better."

Borys = Boris

Monday, August 01, 2016

Intimidating Adversity: Day 1

Word Count: 6,011

Summary of Events:
Lane arrived in North Carolina and got acquainted with the team's catcher, Gresham, and third baseman, Campbell — the team's silly man — with whom he was welcomed to live. Lane went with Gresham and Campbell to the first day of Spring Training and was introduced by Campbell to all the returning players, including the number one pitcher Spencer, and manager Mr. Quilley. Lane called his stepdad, Erving, and talked about how exhausting the Spring Training was turning out to be.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Lane waited as Campbell got ready, but before he wound up, he noticed someone was standing beside him. He turned to see Spencer staring at him with the most emotionless face ever.
"Excuse me please," Spencer said.
"But I'm pitching," Lane replied, confused.
"I know," Spencer replied, looking straight into his eyes. "But I don't care. I want to pitch."
"You can wait until I've finished," Lane said.
"You don't have any seniority here," Spencer replied. "I do."
Lane opened his mouth to challenge Spencer's haughtiness, but then he saw Mr. Quilley was approaching them. Mr. Quilley stopped when Lane noticed him and indicated with his thumb for Lane to get off.
Sighing, a swell of anger surging through him, Lane turned to where Campbell was standing, not at all ready for a pitch, pulled back, and fired anyways. Gresham leapt out of the way of the ball, which bounced off of the back wall hard and flew out all the way to centre field where Normie picked it up, tossing it to Spencer as Lane stepped off of the mound.
"Over here Sheenan," Mr. Quilley said.
Lane stared at third base for a few seconds before turning around and walking behind Spencer and the mound to the first base side, where Mr. Quilley was standing.
"I want to see your hitting and running," Mr. Quilley said.
The crack of a bat hitting a ball sounded and Lane turned to watch as Campbell powered down the dirt, over first base, around to second, and to third before the ball caught up with him.
"Now go," Mr. Quilley said.
"So I'm supposed to hit balls with my glove?" Lane asked dryly.
"No," Mr. Quilley replied, looking perturbed.
Lane took off his glove and gave it to Mr. Quilley. He then pulled his batting gloves out of his pocket and put them on as he walked over to home plate. The batboy ran out with a bat for him. Lane took it and doffed his cap, putting it on top of the batboy's before he could get too far away.
"Batting helmet for number twenty three!" Mr. Quilley shouted.
Soon the batboy returned — still wearing both caps — with a helmet. Lane put it on, got into position, and waited for Spencer to pitch.
Slowly Spencer set his feet in place, and then, with equal slowness, looked toward Lane. His every movement was like he was really in slow motion. As he pulled back into a pitching stance, the glove hand covering the ball hand. He held the pulled back pose for a few seconds, then dropped his glove hand and threw.
Lane met the ball with the bat, causing a loud and resounding crack to echo across the field, which was still ringing in Lane's ears as the bat left his hands and he ran for first, second, third, and finally making it to home plate without having to slide."