When you've gotta go, you've gotta go.
|I wanted to keep playing. Jeez, I was two for three at the plate already, blocked about a million wild pitches from that crazy Kulisek, who shouldn’t even be allowed on the mound, he’s going to kill somebody, I swear. But my mom said to be home by three, write the thank-you note to my grandmother, it’s so overdue it’s embarrassing, blah blah blah. Don’t you get a year or something? I heard my mom and dad say once that you get a year for wedding presents. Why not the same for birthdays?
I nail some idiot at the plate to end the inning. Trying to score from third when he thought one of Kulisek’s fancy curve balls was heading for Mars. Sorry, pal. Holding the ball, I plant my bare hand on his trunk as he starts to slide under me. Close, but out. Out, out, out.
“I’ve gotta go,” I tell Kulisek as we head off the field.
“What’re you talkin’ about? Go where?”
“My mom wants me home by three.”
Kulisek is pissed. “You can’t go. Last inning, down by a run, you’re up third. You’re hot. We get somebody on ahead of you and you poke one out, we win. You gotta stay.” Kulisek is so mad his face is on fire. Who cares? He’s always mad. That’s why I never hit against him. He’d probably kill me.
I pull off my catcher’s mask, dump it with the mitts and bats in the dust by the bench. “I’ve gotta go,” I tell everyone.
“’Whaddya have to catch up on your beauty sleep?” sneers Kulisek. What a jerk.
“I’m outta here,” I tell him.
As I leave, I hear Kulisek say, “Forget it. Somebody else can catch.”
I hear Freck say, “Not like she can.”
(Word count: 298)