The Ball that Disappeared – Part 2


If you missed Part 1, click HERE

Hugo and the rest of the kids stared at the busted fence. His baseball was on the other side, and the only way to get it back was to set foot on Old Man Semos’ property.

“You have to forget about it!” said Measles. “Go over there and you’ll get killed!”

“Of course he’s not going over there!” Shouted Pudgy, with a laugh. “He’s too big of a wuss.”

Hugo took a step forward, then stopped and gulped. That baseball was the only thing he had left to remember his dad by – it was more important to him than all the pop in the world.

“Don’t do it, Hugo,” said Measles. “I don’t want you to die. Not yet at least.”

Hugo continued his slow trudge forward.

The only kid who walked with him was Measles, who adjusted his glasses then said, “Old Man Semos puts bags of candy on his front porch for Halloween every year, and still nobody goes over there. You wanna know why?”

“Why?” said Hugo. The two of them were now well afar from the rest of the gang, and only feet away from the fence.

“Because the one kid who ever took some of that candy swears on his life that it was human flesh, mixed with sugar!”

Measles stopped, but Hugo kept going.

“Don’t do it, Hugo. It’s not worth it.”

“I know,” said Hugo, before peaking through the hole in the fence. No sign of any dog, and no sign of Old Man Semos. The baseball, however, just sat there, in plain sight.

“It was good knowing you,” said Measles.

Hugo turned, then watched Measles walk back to the other kids, hanging his head like Hugo had already been mauled to death. Hugo didn’t have time to worry about that now – if he acted quickly, maybe he’d be able to live and get his baseball back.

He ripped the rest of the broken plank away. The opening was narrow, but Hugo was skinny enough to slide through. For the first time in his life he was grateful for being such a rail. By the time he spotted it, he was in too deep.

The gargantuan hound. It really was the size of a horse! Sitting in its dog house, Hugo heard it growl once his shoe touched down on the burnt-out lawn. Hugo looked over at the ball, then back at the hound.

It growled again.

Hugo took one last breath, then booked it.

As he bolted after the baseball he could hear the hound’s chain dragging through the dry brown grass. The hound ferociously barked as it raced along the ground.

It wasn’t charging at Hugo – it was charging after the ball!

Hugo couldn’t afford to lose focus now – his eyes stayed trained on the baseball the entire time. As he neared it, Hugo realized he’d have to pick it up and keep running without losing a step – this hound’s chain was nowhere close to being taught.

The hound opened its jaw and Hugo swore he saw fangs in its mouth. Hugo returned his eyes to the ground, right where the baseball sat, and swiped it up then kept going.

The giant dog still chased after him; slobber splashed up and soaked Hugo’s elbow.

He was running out of room to escape – Hugo headed straight for the screen door to Old Man Semos’ house. He busted through and tore it down, landing in a rough dive that knocked the ball out of his hand. He barely escaped the Hound, whose chain tugged the collar on his neck and cut-off his pursuit.

Hugo stayed on his stomach for a bit, breathing heavily until he caught his breath. When he finally worked up the courage, he took his eyes forward to figure out where his baseball had rolled to. Sitting on the couch, tossing it up and down in the air with one hand and holding a rifle in his other was the scariest person Hugo had ever laid eyes on – Old Man Semos.

Hugo gulped.

To be continued…

  • Thomas M. Watt

El Watto News Alert – Aug. 19th

El Guapo – Hola amigos, buenos dias. We have just been informed, that mister McWatty9 is very sad, he is very depressed, his blog is doing very very poorly. We have live footage of heem, and he is not looking very good. Not good at all. We turn now to Carmen, who is a very nice lady, and she is live at the scene. Carmen? Can you hear me?

(Camera cuts to Carmen, who is holding an ear piece in her ear. Behind her, there is a man lying on the sidewalk, his back to the ground. There is a beer in his hand and he is staring somberly into the sky straight above)

Carmen – Thanks El Guapo. If you look behind me, you might think you are staring at a homeless person, or some sort of pathetic life form trying to garner attention. It is, in fact neither. Let’s take a closer look.

(Carmen waves inwardly, and the camera zooms in for a close up. It is a Fosters brew in the sad man’s hand. Camera pans out, returns to Carmen.)

Carmen – It is this evidence which leads us to believe this piece of garbage behind me is actually once rising star blogger McWatty9. In some of his earlier news briefings, he discussed his disdain for Fosters beer. For this reason, we can only assume he has plunged into such a dismal depression he could think himself to be so low as to stoop to the worst most distasteful brew distributed throughout the modern world. Now, zoom in for another look, and this time take notice of his face.

(Camera zooms in, the trashy man’s eyes are blood red. Camera zooms out)

Carmen – That’s right folks, did you see his eyes? Clearly the result of either heavy drinking, or pussy tears.

(The live feed switches back to El Guapo at the main station)

El Guapo – Carmen? You alluded to ‘pussy tears’? Could you please describe that for our viewers at home please?

(Camera shifts back to Carmen, who is smiling pleasantly as she nods)

Carmen – Certainly. Here in the real world, when a grown man cries it’s typically considered what’s known as, ‘being a pussy’. The common remedies include…

(Carmen pauses as she lifts a piece of paper up into the camera shot, then reads from it)

Carmen – Okay, typical remedies include such events as ‘having real problems’ and ‘dealing with it’. Also highly suggested, is what’s known on the streets here as, and I quote,  ‘growing the fuck up’, as well as ‘grow a fuckin’ sack’.

(View shifts back to El Guapo, who is shuffling through papers and smiling politely.)

El Guappo – Very good stuff Carmen, thank you for reporting.

(View returns to Carmen)

Carmen – Certainly. Back to you, El Guapo.

(Feed ends)