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 Post subject: Bells, Part I
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:35 am 
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Triple-A
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Location: Pyeongtaek, South Korea
Bells, Part I

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“I go and it is done. The bell invites me.”

–William Shakespeare, Macbeth



He stood in the musty concourse of Duluth International, scratching at his stubble, blinking away the vestige of an imbibed night spent studying the rain over Lake Superior. He wore a dark green polo with the Warriors W, tucked carefully into slacks above polished brown loafers.

“You’re nervous,” Tania noted coolly, tapping at her phone, looking once again to her watch. She frowned, scrolling through her newsfeed, shaking her head at another trade notification.

“I’m not nervous,” Ricky McCoy grumbled, taking the final pull of Americano from his paper cup and tossing it in the waste bin by their side.

The airport’s intercom came alive, erupting with automated bells that heralded an arrival to the airport. They both looked up at the arrivals screen.

“You shift your feet when you’re nervous,” Tania answered without looking at Ricky. “And you haven’t worn a polo since the offseason.”

Ricky frowned. “And what the hell is that supposed to mean?”

“You’re nervous,” Tania replied with a shrug. “It’s natural, when you haven’t seen your dad in years.”

“Tania,” Ricky said, squinting, turning to face his assistant. “What did you study at Vanderbilt, again?”

“Business Management,” Tania replied with a smile. She locked the screen on her phone and slid it in her back pocket.

“So what the fuck do you know about anything?”

“You get really mean when you’re nervous, Ricky.”

He sighed, relaxing his shoulders adjusting the collar on his forest-green polo. “Sorry. It’s just—I’m—”

“I know,” she replied with a soft expression to Ricky, leaning her hands against the seats in front of them and watching the arrival gate. “This will cheer you up—Iwao Muruyama’s headed to Shin Seiki.”

Ricky nodded. “Price?”

Tania shrugged. “Meh.”

“They’ll still be buying.”

“If you say so.” Tania sighed, crossing her arms and looking around the concourse. “More messages from Jason York, by the way. He wants you to call him back.”

“York will be fine,” Ricky answered. “I have the weekend off.”

Tania shrugged, looking around the concourse. The bells rang again over the intercom, signaling another arrival. “I hate airports.”

“Silly thing to hate.”

“We put people on the moon in 1969,” Tania said with an ironic flavor, “and sixty years later, you have to pay extra to have a backrest on the connection to LaGuardia.”

“Fair point.” Ricky checked his own watch. The plane landed over twenty minutes ago. He sighed. To him, airports were always about life. Always about death. Arrivals and departures. Stuck waiting to go somewhere else–somewhere better. And the baggage claim–he hated the conveyor belts since he was a child. Monstrous black rivers of things we’re made to care about–lurching, moving, vomiting material from the unknown–If Edgar Allen Poe lived to 2029, he would have died in an airport near baggage claim.

“Are you sure about this?” Tania asked, shaking away Ricky’s thoughts.

“About picking my dad up from the airport?”

“No,” Tania said with a frown. “You know what I mean, Ricky. The rebuild. We’ve spent weeks drafting it up…I don’t think the Board is going to like it. Not at all.”

“Plenty of time before the deadline,” Ricky answered. He shifted his weight and sniffed.

“Good picks will be moved way before that,” Tania answered tersely. “You’re the one with all the military experience…aren’t you supposed to take initiative in a battle?”

“I was just a Lieutenant Colonel,” Ricky answered flatly. “And a logistics officer. Maybe you can ask my dad.”

Tania smiled. “Retired General, right? Rich, connected, failed state senate bid…quite the dossier.”

“Congratulations on your googling abilities,” Ricky answered. “You learn that at Vanderbilt?”

“Just saying,” Tania answered innocently, looking up at the arrivals marquee, “big shoes to fill, must not have been easy.”

“Was even harder for him,” Ricky replied. “His dad was General James McCoy.”

“Who?”

Ricky turned, and almost laughed. He shook his head. “James McCoy. Battle of Castle Ridge?”

Tania blinked. “I was more of a math and science girl in High School.”

Ricky chuckled. “How do you think I got this job? Jason Bong’s grandpa and my gramps were in the same squadron in World War II. Philippines. Richard Bong won the Congressional Medal of Honor.”

Tania crooked her head. “They made you the GM of the Duluth Warriors because the owner’s grandpa and your grandpa were pals at the Officers Club?”

“More or less.”

“And they say nepotism is dead.”

“Nobody says that.”

Tania smiled. “So your gramps was a general. Your dad was a general. And you’re the Manager of a baseball team that’s south of .400.”

“The American dream.”

“Certainly explains your taste in scotch.” Tania smiled.

“I don’t drink, Tania.”

“Sure you don’t.”

Ricky looked to the empty arrivals gate, then back up at the sign. “Maybe there’s some sort of delay,” he said, adjusting his collar again.

“Nope,” Tania replied, pointing. “Here they come.”

Sure enough, a crowd shuffled out of the departure doors, carry-ons rolling across the linoleum. A voice heralded their entrance over a loudspeaker.

He arrived in immaculate loafers, recently shined, with beige slacks and a silver polo. He wore a “Gulf War Veteran” hat that clashed offensively with his clean, modern look—aviators hanging from the crease in his collar. A Rollex dazzled on his left wrist.

He looked around a moment, found Ricky, and nodded firmly. While on in years, he was clearly well-groomed, with a full head of silver hair and a cleanly-shaved face. He had a high brow, like Ricky, with defined cheekbones and shifting blue eyes. Despite his age, he demonstrated significant liveliness in his gait—which was more deliberate and quicker than Rickly’s. He wheeled his small suitcase to the two, stopping just short.

“Richard.”

Tania looked with a loaded brow from Ricky to Mr. James McCoy, Jr., her arms folded in front of her.

“Dad.” Ricky extended his hand, which Mr. McCoy, Sr., took and shook firmly, dropping it as quickly as he had seized it. He looked to Tania, top to bottom.

“New fling?”

“My assistant,” Ricky answered, clearing his throat. “Tania.”

“Thank god,” the old man said with a hoarse laugh. He handed Ricky his suitcase. He wagged a finger at Tania. “You keep on your toes, pretty lady. McCoy men have always had a taste for younger women.” He smiled warmly and extended a hand. “James McCoy, a true pleasure, Tania.”

Wincing, Tania took the old man’s hand and nodded. “Sure,” she answered, looking at an apologetic Ricky.

“I’m joking, I’m joking.” James pushed his son on the shoulder and laughed again. “Jesus, it’s good to see you son. Been ages. What, five years? You should see the island—you wouldn’t even recognize it. Shit, you and Tania here can come out anytime, my treat.”

Collecting himself, Ricky took a deep breath and took the suitcase. “How was the flight?”

“Fucking miserable,” James answered. “This country’s gone to complete shit. Cram you in those things like sardines, even in First Class. All corporate bullshit. There was a time in this glorious nation’s history when flying was a luxury. A god damn privilege!” He wagged a finger at a slightly amused Tania. “Now, it’s like rush hour in Hong Kong. Insects, Tania, that’s what they’ve made us. Fucking insects!”

James McCoy looked beyond the pair to the airport bar with a smile. “You wait for my bags, Rick. I’m gonna chase that gin and tonic I cozied up with on the way in…looks like a rich widow at twelve o’ clock. Doesn’t look a day over seventy-five!” He laughed again and made his way toward the bar.

Ricky sighed again, setting the suitcase down.

“That was…unexpected.” Tania noted with a small smile.

“Sorry,” Ricky said quietly. “My dad’s…”

“He seems nice,” Tania said. “Twentieth Century chauvinism aside…I’m surprised, really.”

“Surprised?” Ricky furrowed.

“Well…I mean, I always figured Ricky McCoy’s dad would be more…gloomy. Like, a tragic poet. Or maybe an undertaker.” She shrugged, grinning, watching Ricky’s dad pantomime to a couple of old ladies at the bar, who were laughing hysterically. He ordered them both a round of drinks, and one for himself as well–waving back with a white smile at Ricky and Tania. “he seems fun.”

“Yeah,” Ricky replied, watching his dad with a grim expression. “Fun.”

The bells cracked over the intercom once more, and the conveyor belts at baggage claim lurched reluctantly back to life.

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Drew (GM Ricky McCoy)
Duluth Warriors

WARRIOR NATION


Last edited by Warriors on Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Bells, Part I
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 12:37 pm 
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I love the insights into Ricky's character. Pop's will keep him on his toes!!

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Michael Topham, President Golden Entertainment & President-CEO of the Aurora Borealis
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 Post subject: Re: Bells, Part I
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:27 pm 
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Great piece of writing. I loved the description of luggage claim. If it’s not too much trouble, I’d like to have a drink with James sometime.

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Doug Olmsted
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 Post subject: Re: Bells, Part I
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:50 pm 
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So, Drew ... I’m curious.

Ricky seems like such a fully-realized character, have you done any sort of bio or outline or cheat sheet on him, or do you sit down fresh for each piece? Do you have a story arc in mind, or are you just following where the stories lead you?

Either way is totally valid - but I’m just fascinated and deeply impressed by what you’ve created in Ricky, I want to know more!

I do know this - whatever you’re doing, don’t change it!

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Vic Caleca
Scottish Claymores


Last edited by Claymores on Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Bells, Part I
PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:15 pm 
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Triple-A
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Thanks guys!

Great question Vic! I have some ideas and storylines jotted down, but it's very exploratory and tied to what's going on with the team.

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Drew (GM Ricky McCoy)
Duluth Warriors

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