Velvet Rain - A Dark Thriller

Velvet Rain - A Dark Thriller by David C. Cassidy Read Free Book Online Page A

Book: Velvet Rain - A Dark Thriller by David C. Cassidy Read Free Book Online
Authors: David C. Cassidy
Tags: thriller, Novel, writer, author, photographer, David C. Cassidy, Blogger, Velvet Rain, David Cassidy
on the Tigers bench had groaned it, and when Kain looked over, saw it was the starting pitcher. The tall teen, a senior on the team, was unmistakably Indian—a Sioux. He’d been pulled in the fourth after surrendering that home run, but from what Kain had seen prior, the kid was definitely a pitcher. Smooth delivery. Great control.
    Jones took his time, dragging it out as to be insufferable. He was a Hollywood, a jock who thought he’d look great on a baseball card. The umpire told him to step it up, and he offered the same smart smirk he had given the pitcher. He dug his spikes in at the plate and served up one short swing. Served up the Swirl.
    Twenty-three started into his wind-up. The ball came blazing, an uncontrolled rocket that barely made it into the strike zone. There was a solid poomp from the catcher’s mitt, capped by that animated Steeeeerrrrike!
    Jones hadn’t swung, had let it rip by, ball or strike. He stepped back with that knowing sneer.
    “ Don’t be stupid, Jones! ” the Madness coach bellowed.
    The batter waved him off. “Just funnin’ around, Coach.”
    “Yeah? You won’t think it’s so funny when you’re watchin’ the next three games from the bench.”
    “Don’t blow it, Willie.” This had come from someone on the Madness side.
    “Eat me, Hudson. And your mother.”
    “That’s enough, Jones,” the Madness coach told him. The umpire agreed and directed the batter to the plate. Jones grimaced and spat out his gum. He took up his spot, then readied his weapon with that mesmerizing twirl.
    “Come on, Rye,” the second baseman, Ricky McKay, said supportively. “Get this jerk out.”
    The pitcher stood with his head down. He was mumbling. His eyes were burning. The ball rolled in his fingers as he waited for the sign, and when the one he wanted came, he stepped hard into the pitch. He held nothing back; he was lucky he didn’t blow his arm out of its socket. The ball was low, a bullet into the dirt a foot ahead of the plate. It bounced up high, just missing Jones in the shoulder as he backed off with a twist of his torso. It shot past the catcher’s extended arm, struck the cage and bounded about. The catcher, a second-year teen named Rudy Burridge who couldn’t bunt if his life depended on it, nailed it with his throwing hand. He tried to throw some reassurance his pitcher’s way, rambling, It’s okay, no problem, all right, but it wasn’t all right, none of it was. The kid on the mound was sinking like a stone.
    Ryan Bishop raised his head on the mound. Just enough to let his helpless stare shift to the Madness bench. Some of the boys there were chuckling, some snickering, a few of them doing a pretty poor job of pretending they weren’t. One even mocked his mumbling.
    Jones tapped his shoes and settled in with a swing. His eyes never left the pitcher. He was dead serious now, no clowning around. He readied the bat and gave it some swirl.
    Twenty-three raised his glove, eased into his wind-up, paused—and fired a cannon. He stumbled on his follow-through, slipping on the mound, but he’d managed to put the ball low and away. He kept his eye on it. Everyone did.
    Jones stepped into the pitch, unleashing a cannon of his own. There was a moment, as if the breath of everyone there had been stolen by some great ghost, where time stood still as he brought the bat down and then up in a perfect arc, a swing that God had bestowed upon him at birth. It held the classic grace of a Bobby Jones tee shot. A thing of beauty.
    Still … time stands for no hardball; waits for no bat. When contact was made, and Good Lord it was, the sound—the explosive crakkkk —sent the Madness bench into, well, madness. The ball took off like a streak of light, a test for the best eyes to follow. Lost in the sun’s glare as the crowd rose, it must have been a good five seconds before someone yelled, Holy, it’s gone, it’s freakin’ gone, no wait, there it is, before the ball sailed past the

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