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Thomas James 1: The Confrontation
*Editor's Note: This is part 1 of a series of fiction we at Quail Bell are pleased to present to you. Keep an eye out in the upcoming weeks for the next chapters!
As he approached his nemesis waiting for him on the sandy shore, Thomas James pondered what to say to him. All he could do was look straight into his eyes as he felt the moist sand crushed between his own toes with every step he took. His enemy, Milton Kinkade, stood before him with crossed arms, pondering his every move, trying to decide whether to beat Thomas or allow him to explain himself.
As he stood there grappling with his own conscience, Milton Kinkade could feel fire burning within his own soul, with the thought of Thomas James ruining his dreams of being a pro ball player in the major leagues.
Thomas James has just left a party that night with his girlfriend. They were both intoxicated. Milton Kinkade walked across the street toward his own car, when Thomas James came out of nowhere and crashed his car into that of Milton’s, whose crushed leg had to be amputated.
There were no excuses for what happened, and Thomas James knew that. He faced jail time in the upcoming months. He had to report to his hearing soon, and that would determine restitution for Milton Kinkade. But nothing could give Milton back what he lost.
Milton lost more than his leg that day. He lost his baseball career before it started. He also lost his sister, who was a passenger in Thomas James’ car. Facing the prospect of so many life changing events that could alter his whole future in a matter of seconds, he glared into Thomas James’ soul that had a sense of disturbance. There was an inner turmoil Milton Kinkade could sense in Thomas James that went deeper than the car accident, costing Milton Kinkade everything he held dear. Even through his anger and rage, Milton Kinkade felt a deep sadness, realizing that 17 years of friendship were flushed away by Thomas James doing something stupid.
Waves of the deep blue ocean crashed against the shore with their rustling breaths.
Up above, melodic voices of seagulls could be heard in the background, which became the soundtrack for the tale unfolding before the eyes of both young men. However, Thomas James knew he couldn’t avoid Milton Kinkade any longer. It was time to face his shame and do the honorable thing. It was not enough to do jail time that was quickly approaching. He had to make amends for what he did by owning up to his mistakes…admitting fault to his former best friend, who was now the enemy standing before him.
With a trembling heart, Thomas James called out to Milton Kinkade. “I know you don’t want me in your life. I can’t say that I blame you. Just know that I didn’t mean for any of this to happen. It just did.”
“It just did? Thomas, man, it happened because you did underage drinking. That wasn’t bad enough. You walked out of Parker’s house with my sister, and the two of you got into your car. I told you both, let me drive you home. But you wouldn’t have it. The two of you chose to get into that car anyway. Even after I told you both to wait for me on the porch while I brought my car around. I told you I’d be your designated driver, since I didn’t do any drinking. That’s how it always is. I never drink at parties. But you had to be a hotshot by defying me. You have no idea how badly I want to pound you to dust right now.” Milton Kinkade spat in disgust, with his chest heaving up and down.
Thomas James stopped a short distance away, not daring to move any closer to Milton Kinkade. The two of them stood staring into the other’s soul, trying to find answers for resolving the situation. However, there was no easy answer. There was no easy path to take.
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