War of the Roses: Redux Edition

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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 13 Jul 2019, 23:16

Different Sides of the Tracks

Cicadas screeched in the Louisiana dawn as the sound of shoes slapping the pavement echoed through the quiet suburb. Trees rose on both sides of the street, shadowing well-manicured lawns that led to homes that would be a social media influencer’s wet dream.

The cadence of the runner’s strides beat a frantic, but consistent rhythm, only interrupted by the shifting plates on the weight vest he wore. The latest AirPods sat in his ears and provided the soundtrack for his run. A beep sounded from his smartwatch as it ticked over to his tenth mile just as he turned down a street ending in a cul-de-sac.

A lone house sat on the street. It rose above the trees on the sidewalk, the only link it had to the neighborhood’s other homes. Cars lined a long winding driveway, each one more expensive than the last.

The runner jogged to a stop at a side door and pressed his thumb to a keypad along the wall. He waited a spell before stepping into a kitchen that was bigger than some people’s houses. Inside, an older man held a plate out to him. The runner took his AirPods off and the rap music he’d been listening to was replaced by the man’s voice.

“Today, you eat quinoa honey and yogurt parfait,” the man said in a heavily accented voice. “I do not hear any talk of quinoa is for hipsters and yuppies, okay? You have water on the table. Your mother wants you at school on time today, Caesar.”

“I won’t tell her I was late if you won’t, Pierre,” Caesar nudged the man with his elbow and winked as he walked toward the dining area.

“No, no. I cook. I do not lie.” Pierre waved his hands and turned back into the kitchen and began cleaning the counter.



“Welcome back to the Bayou Sports podcast. We got the sports people don’t care about out the way already so that leaves one thing, Jeff.”

“Mais, I know you talkin’ football.”

“Yes, my friend, the holy grail of athletics. Football is king, baby. And down here on the bayous of Terrebonne Parish, some of the best of the very best have forged their careers and the semester starts this week which means the lights will be shining bright on Fridays once again. The story this season, in not only the parish and the area but the entire state, is the LHSAA decision to do away with the select non-select split and bring back the days when the private schools lined up against the public schools to decide who was really the best on the gridiron. What do you think about that, Jeff?”

“There’s only one thing to feel about that. We’re goin’ to finally see Deion Jenkins’ kid play against all the state’s best players. I can’t tell you how excited I am, me. They got they heads together and goin’ to give us what we all want. Is this kid the real deal or is he just ridin’ on his daddy coat?”

“That’s a good team they have done there at Vandebilt. They’re coming off a semi-final appearance last season and a state championship two seasons ago. The aforementioned son of Deion Jenkins, Caesar Jenkins, is coming into his second year of high school ball and if this growth spurt talk is right, the kid is standing 6’2” at 16. I just don’t see how high school corners are guarding a 6’2” receiver, Jeff! Especially one that was number one on the depth chart of a championship-caliber team as a freshman.”



“So, she’s looking at me, right? And I see her, but I’m trying to figure out if she sees me or is just looking in my direction. The cat comes out of nowhere and just jumps on my fucking pants. Claws out and all. Next thing you know, I’m screaming. She’s screaming. The cat’s screaming. It’s like a fucking war zone in there. I jet out there with Fluffy hanging on for dear life. Little shit stayed with me for at least six blocks. I don’t think I’m going back there again.”

A group of boys, all wearing the blue lettermen’s jackets of Vandebilt, burst into laughter.

“You’re lucky it was her mom who came home and not her dad,” Caesar said. He leaned on the hood of an expensive roadster behind him. While most of the cars in the school’s student parking lot were newer, his was by far the most luxurious. “Ron met pops and he pulled the shotgun out the closest for his ass.”

Ron cringed at the memory before shaking his head. “It’s not my fault that his daughter goes around looking for dick. I didn’t even ask her. She came onto you, too, B?”

“Sure did,” B, or Britton, nodded. “I was just sitting in the grocery store doing my shift and the next thing you know she asked me to swing by after practice the next day. I’m not swimming in it like Caesar, so I couldn’t turn it down even though I know she’s run down.”

“Look on the bright side,” Caesar said.

“What’s that?”

“You’re not Kaden when it comes to getting bitches.” Caesar pointed at the last of the four. “I don’t think he’s even gotten any from his hands recently.”

“Fuck you, man,” Kaden said. “That shit gets old.”

“I imagine so does jacking off. Jesus frowns upon that, you know? Puts hair on your palms like Sister Boudreaux says.”

The quip drew laughter from Ron and Britton. Kaden flipped Caesar off and stalked away toward the school, his hands shoved in his jacket.

“He’s going to kick your ass one day. You know that, right?” Ron asked as he reached into his pocket and pulled a bag of sunflower seeds out. He ripped the package open and dumped a handful into his mouth.

Caesar shook his head as he had to move his shoes out of the way of the seeds Ron spit out. “I’d like to see that day.” His eyes roamed the parking lot and he saw a leggy blonde getting out of a car a few rows over. He stood up with a smile. “But for now, gentlemen, I think I have some business to attend to. I need to get some help with Bible Studies I.”

-*****-

A teenager walked through dimmed halls, dodging between people who weren’t paying him any mind. At the end of the hall, a rotund sheriff’s deputy barked at the students to keep moving and get to class before the bell rung or they’d receive a write-up for being tardy.

He turned into a classroom that still had an old school smartboard and a projector that had seen better days. Dragging ass, he made his way to the back of the class and sat down in a desk with an easy view out of the window. Bayou Terrebonne wasn’t a great view, but it was better than listening to the teacher drone on about world history.

Pulling a pen from his pocket, he poked at the fake wood paneling on the desktop that had begun to peel away. Underneath, students had written everything from their ex-girlfriends’ phone numbers to what set they were claiming. He thought about adding something of his own, but that was too cliché – and too much of an acknowledgement of how shitty the desk really was.



“Continuing with our power rankings in the Bayou District, we have number ten. Bottom of the barrel. The worst of the worst. A school so bad that my dead grandmother could beat them by herself. Terrebonne High School.”

“Bo, I get the frissons for them boys. They have Vandebilt the sixth week of the season in a non-district game. They’re not goin’ to win any games, but it’s not goin’ to be nothin’ nice when those boys match up against that juggernaut.”

“Well, that’s something we see every year. The powers that be want us to believe that this is a rivalry because the two schools are down the street from one another and it is the case of the haves versus the have-nots, but it’s not a contest. It’s not even close.”

“Now, ya know they have a famous kid on their team, too. Don’t know much about him ‘cause I don’t follow junior high ball, but Devin King goes to Terrebonne now.”

“Devin King? How many of them are there? Five, six, seven? I’m not going to lie. I didn’t know about the kid.”

“I think he’s the fourth. Plays corner. We gon’ pray for his soul in a few weeks when he’s lined up across from Caesar Jenkins.”



Devin shuffled through the lunch line, tapping his fingers against the straps of his backpack. The vile smell of the food attacked his nose with a vengeance, but he needed to put something in his stomach before practice that afternoon. It didn’t help that he’d been in a rush to get to school and had forgotten to grab a Pop-Tart on his way out of the door.

“Pizza or chicken,” the lunch lady asked him when it was his turn in line.

“Pizza.”

The old woman reached into a warming container and pulled out a rectangular slice of bread with congealed cheese and triangle chunks of “meat” on top of it. She slapped it into a tray before tossing some French fries in along with the pizza before sliding it over the spit shield to Devin.

“This looks disgusting,” Devin mumbled, looking down at the pizza.

The lunch lady grumbled having heard him but didn’t say anything.

Grabbing a small carton of apple juice, he made his way to an empty table and plopped down on the chair. He stared at the food before him and struggled to figure out how he was going to convince his taste buds that it was worth choking down.

Just as he was able to delve into his first attempt to eat, two other students sat down at the table with him. He looked up at them, pizza still hanging perfectly straight in his hand. Both were teammates of his on the football team.

“Yes?” he asked.

“You know we play Vandebilt in a couple months, right?” Thaddeus, or Trigga as he was called, asked. “You sure you even want to keep playing until then?”

“Don’t know what you’re trying to get at here. Is playing Vandebilt now somehow different than any of the other times Terrebonne has played Vandebilt? We haven’t beaten them in what? 15 years?”

Bart, real name Shawntoine, ran his hand through his dreads and sighed. “We’re trying to save you, man. You’re not… good. And Caesar Jenkins… is. I’m not trying to see you get murdered out there on the field, man. We a family-friendly team.”
Trigga nodded. “Just quit now and save face. No one is going to call you a coward or nothing for not wanting to get embarrassed.”

“Is this supposed to be a pep talk or something, because I have to tell y’all that it’s not working. It actually might be the worst pep talk I’ve ever heard,” Devin said.

“Truth is, we just don’t like yo square ass. But real talk, we’re going to get smashed anyway, I’d rather make sure coach don’t got no choice but to put a better corner on Jenkins, so we only lose by 14, 15 instead of 30.” Bart shrugged before reaching across the table and grabbing a fry from Devin’s tray.

Devin dropped the pizza back into the tray. “That doesn’t even fucking make sense. If I’m starting over the guy you want to play, doesn’t that mean that the guy you want to play is worse than I am?”

“No, it means we like him unlike you,” Trigga said. “We ain’t winning shit no time soon. We might as well get some camaraderie going ‘round here so we can actually have fun.”

“Camaraderie, nigga?” Bart asked.

“Yes, motherfucker. I’m educated, nigga. Anyway, you ain’t never comin’ up PC with us. You don’t be on Morgan or Stovall. We can’t fuck with you ‘cause you don’t even belong here, my nigga,” Trigga said to Devin. “Just go on and quit.”

Devin paused for a moment before reaching back into the tray and picking up the pizza that had suddenly become a magnitude colder than it was when he was given it. He looked from Trigga to Bart and back to Trigga. “Y’all going to let me eat in peace or y’all going to sit there and watch me do it? Either way, I’m going to eat my lunch now.”

Trigga and Bart stood up from the table, both shaking their heads as they walked out of the cafeteria.
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 14 Jul 2019, 14:12

Home is Where You Make It

Devin fished his keys from his pocket and started to press the key into the lock but thought better of it. Letting the ring fall into his palm, he walked back down the sidewalk and circled around to the back of the house and climbed over the fence. He froze when the neighbor’s motion lights lit up the grass, heart in mouth for a few moments as he waited for a door to open.

He snuck underneath the windows behind the house to one on the opposite side of the yard. Prying the screen off the outside, he pushed the window open and climbed inside. Letting out a sigh of relief, he shut the window behind him and walked over to the bed.

Then the door opened.

“Thought you were going to sneak in, tonight, did you, boy?” his father asked as he stomped into the room. He tossed a tablet down on the bed. The screen showed Devin’s grades over the last quarter. “You thought this would be acceptable? Or do you just not care anymore? What did I tell you about your grades?”

Devin shoved the tablet aside and laid down. “It’s eleven at night. Surely, this conversation can wait until the damn morning.”

“Damn morning? Damn morning? I don’t know where you think you are, but you’re not going to curse at me like you do your little friends or like your grandfather lets you do at his house. Do it one more time and you better have an address of your own. What did I tell you about your grades?”

“I have a 2.9! You’re acting like I have a 1.9!”

Devin’s father laughed but it lacked humor. “I told you that you have to keep a 3.0 to continue this little fascination with football. I see you have a C in Algebra II so I’m going to help you. A 2.9 is lower than a 3.0.”

“Round it up.”

“Round it up? I see you’re getting a little too big for your birches running around with those other boys on that football team. This better be better at the end of the semester or the only football you’re going to be playing is on a video game.” The man snatched up his tablet and slammed the door behind him as he left the room.

Devin lay in bed until he heard the door to his parents’ room slam shut. He counted to thirty before he swung his feet back down to the floor. Crossing the room, he shoved the window open and went back out the way he’d come.

He pulled his phone out, opened the only text thread, and sent ‘can you meet me?’

The response was almost instant. ‘Yes’



Devin sat on a swing in a nearby park. Behind him, a dark-haired girl leaned against his back and draped her arms over his shoulders.

“You know he’s only trying to make sure that you can get into a good school when you graduate. There’s nothing wrong with planning that,” she said.

“I don’t know, Scar. I can get into UNO, Nicholls or UL with my GPA now. I’m not going to go to an Ivy League school or anything like that, so I don’t see why I need to have a 4.0 to get him off my case. It’s not like I’m ineligible for football.”

Scarlett sighed. She walked around Devin and sat on his lap, resting her head against his shoulder. He wrapped his arms around her. “Well, at least you only have two more years of it before you graduate and then you can go off and do your own thing.”

“Our thing. Go off and do our thing,” he corrected.

“I thought you would’ve been moving on from me by then. There’s a lot of temptation at Terrebonne for good looking guys, you know?”

Devin laughed, shaking his head. “What do you think? I want to be bringing my kid to the Tiny Tigers club, so I can read to them?”

“The guys don’t go to those meetings.”

“And you would know?”

“I’ve passed by once or twice. Seeing those girls in high school with kids makes me feel better about our decision. I couldn’t imagine dealing with that.”

“Me either,” Devin said. “But that’s depressing so we’re going to change the subject to something else. Are you coming to the game Friday?”

Scarlett nodded. “Of course, I am. Janelle’s boyfriend plays for Vandebilt so she’s tagging along with Tiff, Erin, and me.”

“And here I was thinking that Janelle wasn’t as annoying as Tiffany and Erin. You really need to find a way to find some new friends.”

“You really need to find some new friends,” she said, mimicking his voice. “Remember when we were in junior high—”

“That was last year.” He caught her off.

“I know, smartass. But I’m talking about eighth grade. Remember when you used to hang out with that guy Kyle who was always drinking energy drinks and breaking stuff. I didn’t tell you that you needed to find new friends then.”

“Well, yeah. Because no one needed to tell me that I needed to hang out with someone other than Kyle. That’s why I don’t hang out with him anymore.”

“Whatever, they aren’t that bad.”

“I guess.”

The couple lapsed into silence as Devin’s thoughts turned to the upcoming game.

The game that everyone had been talking about since summer was finally next up on the schedule. Everyone had been telling him that Caesar Jenkins was going to end his career. His grandfather, Devin King, Jr. reassured him that the Jenkins’ were pampered primadonnas who didn’t put in the work to hone their skill and talent.

He felt confident that a rich kid really couldn’t be as good as everyone made him out to be. He was just bigger than the players he come up against so far. It wasn’t as if Vandebilt played in a tough district now that the split had been done away with. Anyone with an iota of talent could beat E.D. White, Covenant Catholic, and Houma Christian

-*****-

Caesar’s feet dug into the grass, failing to find purchase on the slick turf. He fell forward and pulled himself on with his hands, feeling the waist harness dig into his shoulders as the sled he was attached to started to move once more. He passed the first of three cones and shouted in exertion as his legs powered him on.

“Thirty meters, kid! That’s all you have left! Don’t pussy out now! Don’t pussy out now!”

Sweat poured down his face as the last dregs of the Louisiana summer battered the Earth with a vengeance before it gave way to fall. His fingers burned where the skin had been pushed back from digging into the dirt but compared to the burning in his legs it was nothing.

“Twenty meters! That pain is temporary! Failure’s forever! I don’t want to see no failures today!”

Sunday morning was a time of rest for most high school students; their last day to sleep in before the school week started up once more. For Caesar, it was another day to train. It was his hardest day. The days that nearly broke him when he was younger.

“Push! Push! Final stretch!”

He passed the last cone and resisted the urge to turn around and pull the sled across the finish line. Lengthening his stride to almost a lunge, he took the last few steps needed to finish the drill.

“Good shit, kid!” DeMarcus, the personal trainer his father had gotten for him, slapped him on his back as he stood up to undo the harness. “One more year of that shit right there and you’re definitely going to be the number one recruit in your class.”

Caesar laughed, a breathy one as he tried to suck in oxygen to his burning lungs. “I think I already have that locked up.”

DeMarcus nodded, laughing as well, as he stepped out of the way and began unloading the sled, so he could move it without the effort.

Deion Jenkins walked onto the grass and handed his son a bottle of water. The man looked out of place on a field. The suit he wore fit perfectly, finely tailored and made of the best material. He pulled his sunglasses out of his inside pocket and slipped them over his eyes to shield them from the sun.

“Terrebonne this week,” he said.

Caesar nodded and took a long drag from the water bottle. He wiped at his brow with his arm. “They won their first game last week. Coach Thomas thinks that they’ll be coming into this one looking to cause an upset.”

“That man has been a pussy since he came out of one. If he’d just take the best players from the public schools, they wouldn’t have to worry about losing to the public schools,” Deion said. “You aren’t to lose this game though. Under any circumstances. Do whatever you need to to win it. Their offense isn’t good enough to trouble Vandebilt. You just need to make sure points go on the board.”

“Yeah, I know, dad. I know you don’t like the school from back in your high school days.”

“It’s more than that. King’s kid will be out there. Make him go the way of his punk ass daddy and became an educator.”

“How do you want me to do that?”

Deion laughed and patted his son on the shoulder. “Be creative, son. This game ain’t for nice men.”

“Got it. Are you going to be there?”

“No, I have some potential clients to meet with. Juniors are starting to decide if they want to come out this year for the draft, you know?”

Caesar hid his disappointment. “Yeah, I know.”

Deion placed his hand on the back of Caesar’s neck and pointed at him. “Remember what I said, son. Don’t just beat King’s kid. Crush him. Make him quit.”

“Yes, sir,” Caesar said.

“Good,” Deion said as he turned and walked back into the house. “I’ll be watching the highlights.” He threw over his shoulder before disappearing inside.

Caesar walked over to a table and picked up his phone. He had dozens of missed texts but swiped most of them away without answering. One caught his eye. A simple ‘hey.’

He smiled to himself and sent back ‘your parents at mass?’

Seconds later, the answer came back. ‘Yes. Coming over?’

‘Gimme 15 minutes’

‘hurry up.’



Caesar rolled to the edge of the bed, breathing heavily. He pulled the edge of the sheet from under the mattress and used it to wipe sweat from his chest and face – then used it to wipe other fluids from his crotch.

“Did you just clean your dick with my Egyptian cotton sheets?” Emma asked, looking over his shoulder. Her blonde hair was beyond disheveled and her flushed skin coated with sweat as well.

He laughed before kissing her. She wrapped her arms around him and tried to pull him back down, but he untangled himself from her grasp. Smiling, he said, “No time for round two. Mass should be over by now.”

He got up and started getting dressed, knowing the girl was watching him and likely still checking him out despite just experiencing it firsthand.

“How about tomorrow then?”

“Depends on what I’m doing,” Caesar said.

“Or who you’re doing.”

Caesar winked at her as he finished buttoning his shirt. “You wound me, Emma. I don’t plan my days around fucking. I’d never get anything done. See ya at school tomorrow.”

“You know your way out.” She rolled out of the bed and yanked the sheets off, throwing them into a pile in the corner before starting to get dressed herself.

Caesar left her to it and exited the room. There, he came face-to-face with a cross. A mirror hung underneath it. Running a hand through his hair, he reminded himself to get a haircut. Then, he glanced up at the image of Jesus and crossed himself. He wasn’t religious, but he figured he was better safe than sorry.
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 14 Jul 2019, 21:50

Vandy Candy

Caesar sat in the back of his religion course, staring out the window at the cars passing on the street below. He idly spun a pen on the desk with his fingers as the teacher droned on about one scripture or another. To him, being forced to take religion courses every year was by far the worst part of going to a Catholic school.

Sister Verdin rapped a ruler against her desk, silencing the class. “Mr. Jenkins, what are your thoughts on what I just said?”

He turned around to see the rest of the class staring at him as well. “I’m sorry, sister. I was so enthralled by God’s majesty outside that I was overtaken by the Holy Ghost and drawn to the creations that we’ve been blessed with. What was it you said?”

“Here in Mr. Jenkins’ words, class, we see two of the cardinal sins. He exhibits both pride and sloth in neglecting the teachings of the Bible and our Lord and Savior. If you turn to page—”

Caesar went back to ignoring the nun’s words. He glanced down at the tablet on his desk and saw that he had a handful of unread text messages. He sent back a few short answers to the more mundane ones, but one from Ron caught his attention.

‘We’re cutting. Meet us in the parking lot.’

Smiling to himself, Caesar raised his hand. While he waited for her to answer, he bit his tongue to draw blood. “Sister Verdin, I think I need to see the nurse. I’m feeling nauseous and light-headed.”

“Nice try, Mr. Jenkins. You seem fine—”

Abruptly, he stood up and pretended to retch before opening his mouth and letting blood drip from his tongue to the floor.

“Sister, I think he just threw up blood,” another student said.

“Oh my! Someone help him to the nurse!” the nun said, suddenly frantic.

“No, no! I can manage. I wouldn’t want anyone else to miss class for me,” Caesar said, speaking as if his tongue was swelling up in his mouth. He grabbed up all his stuff, waving off attempts by others to help him, and hobbled his way out into the hall.

He continued to hobble until he turned the corner. He shoved the tablet into his backpack and took off before the nun decided that it would probably be better to send someone with a student that was throwing up blood.



Caesar, Ron, Britton, Kaden, and two other of their teammates, Bentley and Anthony, sat around Britton’s family’s pool. They were joined by Emma, Hollie, Francesca, and Riley, all of whom had ditched their uniforms for their underwear and were swimming.

“Alright, Caesar, scale of one to ten,” Ron said, nodding in Emma’s direction. “I’m guessing she scores high if you didn’t tell her to kick rocks when she saw us in the parking lot.”

Caesar shrugged. “I’ll give her a solid 7.45. A real trooper in the sheets.”

“Do you all have to do that shit?” Kaden asked.

“Calm down, man,” Anthony said, handing the bong he was holding to Bentley who proceeded to take a rip. “It’s not like they’re talking about a chick who wasn’t with it. Right, Caesar?”

“Right. You won’t be finding me on a social media smear campaign.”

“Unless she says that your dick is small,” Bentley said as he let the smoke escape from his mouth. “That’d get social media buzzing.”

“Should we ask her? Maybe Caesar’s over here using a fake,” Ron laughed.

“Fuck the both of you. Worry about your own shit.” Caesar flipped them off. He leaned back in his chair and looked around the table. “So, I’m thinking party at Casa Jenkins Friday after the game. To celebrate us winning.”

“We’re playing fucking Terrebonne, bro. That’s not worth celebrating. We’ll probably hang 70 on them and bring out the JV,” Britton said. “Not that I’m against a party at your place, but if you’re going to give it a reason then that shouldn’t be it.”

Anthony nodded as he packed another bowl. “My girl goes to Terrebonne and she says even the football team knows that they are going to catch a beating. I wouldn’t be surprised if some dirty shit starts happening with those ghetto birds.”

“You know some of them are from the same neighborhoods that we are, right?” Kaden asked. “They aren’t any more or less ghetto than we are.”

“Speak for yourself. A few of them might be from Summerfield or Southdown West, but we’re not about to act like people from Deweyville, Prince Collins, Stovall or Morgan aren’t ghetto as fuck,” Bentley said.

“I’m with Bentley on this one, Kaden.” Ron agreed. “But I’m also with Caesar on having a party at his place. It’s been a while and I’m tired of having them at mine.”

“It’s been like a month,” Caesar said.

“A while, motherfucker,” Ron said.

“Anyway, we just have to make sure that we get the ‘W,’ because I’ll be in a sour mood if we lose to them of all teams,” Caesar said. He looked toward the pool and made eye contact with Emma. He raised an eyebrow and she nodded, swimming over to the side of the pool to get out. “Britton, can I use your guest room, man?”

Britton looked at him and then saw Emma walked toward them. “You aren’t fucking in my house.”

“We’re just going talk. It’s still downstairs by the garage, right?” He stood up and followed Emma into the house.

“Don’t forget we have practice, later!” Ron shouted behind him.



Ooh’s and laughter echoed around Vandebilt’s practice field as Caesar leapt up with one hand and snatched the ball out of the air, making Skylar, one of the team’s corners, look foolish. He kept his balance with his other hand as he came down and jogged into the endzone for a ‘touchdown.’ He gave an exaggerated bow before jogging back to the other side of the field.

“Cut the showboating, Jenkins,” Coach Neil Thomas said. His voice always came out in more of a grumble. “I don’t need that out here on my field.”

“All I did was catch the ball, coach.” Caesar shrugged. “Did you want me to let it go over my head and make Ron look bad?”

“I said cut it fucking out,” the coach said before walking away to speak with another player.

Ron and Caesar share a look and both snickered.

“He’s going to bench your ass if you keep getting on his nerves. There’s no better week to it with us playing Terrebonne.” Ron laughed.

“Cut the showboating, Ron,” Caesar said mocking the coach. “I don’t need that on my field.”

Practice was leisurely to put it bluntly. There was an air of confidence among the players. Standing at 5-0 and preparing to take on a 1-4 team did that to the best of teams. Even though the game was down the road at Terrebonne’s Thomas B. Stadium, the home field advantage would be negated by a full visitor’s side.

“Jenkins, back on the line! Stop lolly-gagging!” Coach Thomas shouted.

Caesar jogged to get set for the next run through of the skeleton drills. Skylar and Kaden had been swapped around after Skylar failed to cover Caesar. Unfortunately for Coach Thomas, Caesar knew Kaden couldn’t do much better.

“Seeeeet. Hut!”

Ron dropped back and the play was live. Caesar burst off the line, watching as Kaden tried to read his movements. He planted his foot and turned around, hands up for the curl. Ron faked in his direction but Kaden didn’t bite.

Caesar feinted to his right before exploding off his right foot to go left and around Kaden to streak up the field. The sudden movement left Kaden grasping at Caesar’s jersey as he flew by.

Ron lofted a simple pass up to Caesar which he brought in – one handed again. This time, he kept the ball held above his head as he high-stepped into the endzone.

“Jenkins! Laps, now!” Coach Thomas shouted.



“Man, fuck Thomas. How’s he going to tell me to run laps for making a catch and make me pick up all the shit after practice? What kind of world we live in when a man gets punished for doing well? This is un-American!” Caesar shouted as he and Ron walked into a Subway.

“Caesar, that was an hour ago. I’m going to need you to let it go before I leave your ass here and you can call a car to bring you back to campus.”

“You’re supposed to have my side, man. You’re my quarterback.”

“I’m only accepting that if you get on national TV and cry about it. If not, I don’t want it.” Ron laughed as he stepped up to make his order.

“What would you like?” the girl behind the counter asked.

Before he could answer, Ron’s phone started ringing. He answered it and stepped out of the line to take the call outside.

Caesar stepped forward instead. “Let me get the sweet onion teriyaki. Six inch.”

She nodded and started making the sandwich. Bored, Caesar watched her as she worked. He had to admit she was cute for a fast food employee. A bit too thin for his tastes, but cute all the same.

Figuring it was worth the shot, he leaned forward on the counter. “I’m sorry. I know people don’t like being hit on at work, but I just had to let you know that you might be the prettiest girl I’ve seen today. I apologize if that offends you, though.”

She ignored his comment. “You want this toasted?”

“Nah. Just throw some veggies on there.” He walked to the register and opened the card app on his smartwatch. “Do I know you from somewhere? You look familiar.”

“Houma isn’t that big. I’m sure you’ve come in here before. Plenty of ways you could’ve seen me around, but no you don’t know me,” she said as she dropped the sandwich into a bag and slid it to him. “You want the combo?”

Caesar shook his head. “Just add a drink so I can grab some water.”

“Water’s free.”

“I’d rather pay for it.” He waved his wrist in front of the scanner when the prompt appeared. He picked up his sandwich and turned away to leave, but stopped. “You sure I don’t know you from somewhere? Where do you go to school?”

“I go to Terrebonne and I’m 100 percent sure that you don’t know me.”

“Oh, okay. I go to Vandebilt, but I guess that’s quite obvious when I’m walking around like this, eh?” he asked, gesturing to the embroidered logo on his shirt. “What’s your name?”

“Do you think your friend is going to be back in here anytime soon to order so you can leave?”

“I’ll go ask him, but can I get your name first?”

“Scarlett. Are you going ask him?”

Caesar shrugged. “I’m sure he’s just talking to his mom or something. Well, Scarlett, I’m throwing a party this Friday and you’re welcome to come. Just ask a couple folks over at Terrebonne about me and I’m sure they’ll be able to point you in the right direction.”

She rolled her eyes. “I don’t think my boyfriend would like that.”

Caesar connected the dots and snapped, pointing at her. “Now, I know why I think I know you. You’re Britton’s girl, right?”

“Who is Britton?”

“No?”

“No, I don’t know anyone named Britton.”

“Hm. So your boyfriend is?”

“A guy named Devin.”

“King?”

A confused look grew on her face. “Yes, you know—”

Caesar turned on his heel before she could finish her question and stalked out of the Subway. He tossed the sandwich in a garbage can near the door, having lost his appetite.

Ron hung up his call and watched as Caesar walked toward his car. “Hey, man! Where are you going? Did she turn you down?”

“Get your fucking food and let’s go,” Caesar said.

Ron laughed. “I always try to tell you that you should leave these working class broads alone and stick to the Vandy candy, but you never listen.”
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Captain Canada » 15 Jul 2019, 03:45

Love that this shit is back
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 15 Jul 2019, 07:41

Captain Canada wrote:
15 Jul 2019, 03:45
Love that this shit is back
Back.
Bigger.
Blacker.
Better.

We rewriting the whole thang, fam. New chapters, new plot lines, same wild family feud.
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 15 Jul 2019, 17:48

Unequal Footing

Coach Detiveaux blew his whistle and sent Devin and Kenyatta, another cornerback on the team, backpedaling. He blew his whistle again and pointed to his right. They planted their feet and ran at an angle in the right direction as he blew his whistle again for them to resume their backpedal. He blew his whistle once more and pointed behind them to signal for them to turn and bail. Devin caught the ball that was thrown at him then tossed it to the waterboys serving as practice help.

“It’s hotter than a motherfucker out here, man,” Kenyatta said as the two of them waited for the rest of the defensive backs to run through the drill. “I thought the fall was supposed to be starting soon.”

“Starts next week.”

“And it’s still fucking hot.”

Devin nodded. “Still fucking hot.”

“Hey, man. You’re pretty quiet so I feel like I can trust you saying this shit,” the junior corner said. “But I’d gladly fake an injury to not play in this game Friday. We’ve taken some beatings this season, but Friday ain’t gonna be nothing nice.”

“At least, it’s not a district game. It won’t even matter come the end of the season,” Devin said.

Kenyatta laughed and adjusted his jersey. “It’ll matter to me when I’m telling my children how their daddy once got a beating at a football sock party.”



“Now, I need y’all to keep paying attention. I know Friday’s just around the corner, but we can’t let our concentration lapse now,” Coach Hill said as he walked between the players who were standing on the field. “We’ve been saying all week that Vandebilt likes to use their speed. They play like a River Parish school. It’s going to be tough for us to get pressure on their quarterback.”

“Coach, ain’t no white boy runnin’ out the pocket. He ain’t Carson Wentz and he ain’t me,” Trigga said, drawing laughter from some of the other players.

The coach ignored the quip and checked the play card in his hand before continuing. “We’re going to need to slow the game down and keep their offense off the field. Frustrate them, shut their fans up, and keep them from taking the game from us. Let’s get back to work. On the ball, Thaddeus.”

Devin clicked his chin strap into place as the offense jogged to the line of scrimmage. He hoped the coach would let Trigga throw the ball a bit before practice was over. A scrimmage that consisted of him being half-heartedly shoved by a receiver as the running backs took turns running ISOs had gotten boring faster than he’d expected it to.



“We really need to get our shit together for Homecoming. It’s only a few weeks from now and no one’s even talking about it. It’s not like we get many opportunities to do cliched high school movie bullshit at Terrebonne,” Tiffany said.

“At least you and Scarlett have dates. Well, I’m assuming you have a date, Scarlett,” Erin said.

Scarlett rolled her eyes and looked back at Devin who was following the three girls, more engrossed with his phone than their conversation. “Devin’s taking me. Right, Devin?”

He looked up and gave her a thumbs up.

“What’s so interesting that you’re ignoring us?” Erin asked.

“A lot of things are more interesting than you, Erin,” Devin said, looking back down at this phone.

“Well, damn. Someone’s pissy,” Tiffany said. She turned to Erin and Scarlett, suddenly excited. “Janelle was texting me earlier about a party after the game Friday.”

“A party where? I’m not going to Mulberry again. The last time, someone threw up on my car and I smelled puke for three weeks after.” Erin’s nose crinkled at the memory.

“No, it’s in Sugar Mill Point. Janelle’s boyfriend said it’s at Caesar Jenkins’ house. I’ve never seen the guy’s house, but I have to imagine that it’s fucking huge considering his family is fucking loaded. We have to go.”

“I met that guy the other day,” Scarlett said. “Seems kinda weird.”

“Where you met Caesar Jenkins?” Devin asked, now interested in the conversation.

She shrugged. “Just at work. He was hitting on me, but when I told him I was with you he just left. It was odd.”

Tiffany stopped and turned toward her friend. “Hold on, Caesar Jenkins was hitting on you and you turned him down?”

“What the fuck?” Devin asked.

“No offense, Devin, but if Caesar Jenkins was even slightly interested in me, I’d let him take whatever he wanted right there. I mean, have you seen the guy?” Tiffany asked.

Erin nodded in agreement. “The lives he does every so often. Working out without his shirt on and shit? I don’t know what they feed those boys at Vandebilt, but girl, I’m going to need someone to check his birth certificate because ain’t no way he’s 16 looking like that.”

“What the fuck happened to women’s liberation and shit? Shouldn’t we be looking at people for more than their bodies? Here, I was thinking we learned something from all that stuff 20 years ago,” Devin said.

“Honey, I’m all for women’s liberation. I’m going to liberate his dick from his pants and empower my orgasm,” Tiffany said, drawing a laugh from Erin.

“That’s a bit much,” Scarlett admitted.

“Motherfucker probably can’t even get it up,” Devin added. “Can we change the subject now?”

“Sure, as soon as we all agree that we’re going to go to that party that our friend Janelle so graciously informed us of,” Tiffany said.

“Y’all can go,” Devin said. “Scar and I have plans Friday night.”

“We do?” Scarlett asked.

“Sure do. I just made them. It’ll be anywhere other than Sugar Mill Point.”



Devin reached under a welcome mat to grab the key for the door and stepped into his grandfather’s house. Every time he was there, he felt like he was stepping back into time. On a shelf in the foyer was Devin King, Jr.’s lone NFL award – Comeback Player of the Year in 2019. It was his grandfather’s pride and joy. A sign of the career that could’ve been if someone had given him a chance all those years ago, he always said.

If it weren’t for the trophy, you’d never know that a former professional football player lived in the quaint house on the corner in a quiet neighborhood.

“Is that you, Four?” the man called from the living room.

Devin sighed, hating the nickname that his family had given him to differentiate him from the other Devin Kings. “Yeah, grandpa. I just came around to check on y’all before I head home.”

The old man stood from his recliner and shuffled over. His career had officially been ended by knee injuries in the Canadian Football League, years after it was actually over. “Bullshit, boy. You came over here because y’all got Vandebilt this week and you want to ask about the Jenkins’ again.”

“Everyone keeps talking about how good Caesar Jenkins is and how bad we’re going to get beat, but I don’t see how a sophomore receiver is having this kind of impact on the way people are seeing this game playing out,” Devin said.

“Come on and sit down. You know my knee doesn’t let me stand for long.” He shuffled back to his recliner and sat down. Devin followed him and sat on an itchy couch that was in style back when Devin King, Jr. was in college. His grandfather picked up a tumbler on a tray and took a sip of some dark liquor before speaking again. “So, what is it that you want to know? You want to know how you keep him quiet on Friday?”

“You’ve been around the game longer than me. I’ll take any tips I can get.”

“The referees are going to cheat for him. They cheated for Marcus Jenkins. They cheated for Deion Jenkins. They’re going to cheat for Caesar Jenkins. I don’t know why they all do, but they do. Maybe they got dirty on every ref in the world. Maybe people just like doing shit for rich people in hopes they’ll get a golden handshake, I don’t know.”

Devin ignored the fact that his family wasn’t exactly poor. “So, what am I supposed to do if the referees are going to cheat for him? I don’t even know how that helps him or Vandebilt. It’s not like they need extra yards.”

“Well, fuck, Four. If you have all the answers what are you talking to me for? I’m just an old man who don’t know shit.”

“Come on, grandpa.”

“What’s your coach planning to do? There’s no way y’all are going blow for blow with a school that handpicks its players.”

“No, the plan is to slow the game down.”

The old man laughed, hard enough that he started coughing and had to take a deep pull from his drink. “That shit ain’t going to work. They’re going to come out there, air that fucker out, and be off the field in a couple minutes. I’ve been watching them. That quarterback is going to be All-State with all the passing they do. I would’ve loved to play in that type of system.” He put his glass down and waved his hand for Devin to lean closer. “You want to know how you stop that spoiled punk?”

“Yeah, I thought we already established this.”

“Hurt him. Step on his hands. Give him a little extra when you bring him down. ‘Accidentally’ roll on his ankle after a tackle. That’s how you stop him.”

“I’m not doing that shit.”

“I don’t know why. He’d do it to you,” the old man said. “He probably will do it to you.”

Devin shook his head. “You’re exaggerating.”

“We’ll see Friday.”
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by djp73 » 16 Jul 2019, 01:25

This is the redux edition of the story we were missin
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 16 Jul 2019, 07:23

Hell’s Empty, All the Devils are Here

“It’s Friday and in a few hours the lights will be on around the Teche Region. The scouts are going to be out at Thomas B. Smith tonight in full force as the Vandebilt Terriers get what is essentially a mid-season exhibition game against Terrebonne’s Tigers. Gambling on high school sports is still frowned upon in this country, but if I was a betting man, I’d definitely take the over on this one. Records could fall.”

“Andrew, mais, you know I been thinkin’ about this. We’ve spent the whole week saying that Terrebonne got no chance in this game. The players been told they got no chance by their coaches, by their classmates, by their teachers. Hell, probably even by their parents. This might sound crazy, but maybe they do got a chance. Crazier things have happened.”

“I’d say there’s a better chance of your dead grandma rising up out the ground and cooking you a gumbo for when you get home.”

“Bo’, that’s my point. Listen at me. This how upsets happen. You take a five and oh team. All the talent in the world. You take a team comin’ off they first win in five. You slap them on the field together. Then, you only got to deal with the next 60 minutes. Injuries, poor games, whatever. On any given Friday, David could beat Goliath.”

“Jeff, this isn’t just David versus Goliath. This is David without a sling or hands and Goliath with a full suit of armor and a sledgehammer. I don’t mean to count kids out, but this is going to be over by halftime and Terrebonne will be wishing for a mercy rule to be implemented so they can have an early night.”



Devin’s leg bounced as he set in front of his locker. He took off his gloves, put them back on, readjusted them, took them off once more, put them back on, took them off, put them down, put them back on. A buzzing in his ears overtook the bustle of the locker room. He couldn’t hear the players going through their pre-game rituals, the coaches shouting encouragement or last-minute instructions, or the growing crowd filing into the stadium a short distance away.

The stands would be packed. More fans than ever came to Terrebonne games. There would be scouts in those masses. Here to watch players like Ron DeRossi, Britton Cazayoux, or a way too early chance to take notes on Caesar Jenkins.

The players sitting in this locker room, clad in crimson and gold, would end up on a highlight reel for college coaches to decide if they wanted to offer the other guys a scholarship.

He looked up at the clock and the buzzing in his ears stopped.

“Alright, boys. Bring it in,” Coach Hill said, walking into the middle of the locker room. “This is it. This is our championship game. This is our Super Bowl. When you walk out there on the field, I want you to forget about our record. Forget about all the games before this and all the ones after this. I want you to forget about everything you’ve been told for the last week about how good the other team is. On any given Friday, any given day, even the greatest team can be brought down. This is our stadium and I expect you to defend it with your lives. Every inch. Every blade of grass. They don’t gain anything without putting it all on the line. Protect your house. Let’s pray.”

The players knelt and locked hands.



Squeezed into Houma Junior High’s tiny locker room, which served as the temporary home of visiting teams to Thomas B. Smith, Vandebilt’s players knelt with bowed heads around a priest who held a Bible aloft.

“As Paul said, ‘Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.’” The priest paused and looked around the room. Well-trained Catholics, the boys remained quiet. “’Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore, I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I preached to others, I myself with not be disqualified for the prize.

“God look upon your humble sons tonight as they once again beat their bodies. Make their bodies their slave so they will not be disqualified for the prize for which they compete tonight. Watch over them, Lord, and protect them as they embark on this endeavor. Our Father…”

The team joined in. “Who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.”



“And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.”

“Win this fucking football game!” Coach Hill shouted as the Tigers jumped to their feet and ran out of the locker room to take the field.

..

“Ryan Naquin boots the ball downfield and we’re underway here in Thomas B. Smith. Kobe Johnson fields it in the endzone for Terrebonne and takes it out to the 10, the 15, the 20 and he’s brought down at the 23-yard line where Thaddeus Williams and the Tigers offense will set up for the first time tonight.”

“It’ll be interesting to see how John Hill comes out here on the first drive. Williams has a couple years of experience under his belt and you might want to take a shot to test just how good this Vandebilt defense is.”



“Michael Gil is brought down for no gain and Terrebonne will have to punt the ball away after going three and out on their first drive.”



Caesar jogged onto the field, adjusting his chin strap. He took a moment to scan the defense for Devin King before leaning into the huddle.

“Trips right 300 X screen on red!” Ron shouted over the din of the crowd and the steady cadence of the band’s drumline. “Trips right 300 X screen on red! Pad my stats, Caesar! Ready? Break!”

The crowd’s noise level ratcheted up an octave as Vandebilt’s offense headed to the line of scrimmage. The fans had waited all week for this very moment.

Terrebonne set up in a man look with Devin King lined up on the inside receiver. Caesar knew he’d have to improvise to initiate contact.

“Seeeeet. Red, red, red!”

Ron received the snap and turned to his right. Instead of stepping back to catch the ball, Caesar ran toward him, giving King a free opportunity to make a big tackle for a loss if he read the play properly. Caesar made the catch and tucked the ball under his arm, turning upfield.

King saw the opening and burst forward to make the tackle.

Caesar resisted the urge to juke or spin and instead lowered his shoulder. Moments later, he heard the satisfying crunch of pads against one another.



“Oh, sweet Jesus, Mary, and Joseph! Devin King just got destroyed and Caesar Jenkins is still on his feet without missing a stride! He’s got blockers in front of him! Cuts across the field! A last-ditch dive at his feet! And he’s taking this one to the house, ladies and gentlemen! One play, one 67-yard screen pass and it’s 6-0 Vandebilt just like that!”

“You don’t see to many high school receivers who lower the boom like that, Jim! But that’s Louisiana football for you! We love us some contact!”

“Devin King is still down on the field where the line of scrimmage used to be, but he looks like he’s getting to his feet.”



Devin grabbed at his chest, gasping for the oxygen that had been forced from his lungs. He was sure he’d made the play – then a Mac truck going 80 had hit him dead on and he found himself on his back staring up at the Louisiana night sky.

And his night was just beginning.



“Shawntoine Jackson is brought down in the backfield and the Tigers just can’t seem to get anything going here.”



“Britton Cazayoux up the middle for a gain of 13.”



“Jenkins hauls in another catch for a score and this game is already starting to get ugly.”



“Kaden Babin with the interception and it’s going back the other way. He’s at the 50, the 40, taken down at the Tigers’ 37 to give Vandebilt great field position.”

..

“Cazayoux dives into the endzone for the touchdown.”



“Caesar Jenkins with another catch and he finishes the run off with a powerful stiff arm to Devin King before going out of bounds.”

“Do you think King stole his girlfriend, Jim?”

“I don’t think that’s something our sponsors want to hear us talking about.”



“DeRossi drops back and finds Anthony Ledet for the easy touchdown and the Terriers go up 28-0 here in the early stages of the second quarter.”



“Derrick Thomas takes a huge hit from Andrew Pierce and the ball is loose. Vandebilt recovers and will take over at their own 15! Terrebonne were finally looking like they would put some points on the board and a big hit from Vandy’s strong safety changed that in a hurry.”



“You might get tired of hearing this tonight, but touchdown Vandebilt.”



“The kick is up and it’s good. The Terriers are in cruise control here and this game is playing out exactly how many expected it to.”



“Paul Songe flushes DeRossi out of the pocket. He isn’t known for his speed, but he keeps his head up as he avoids defenders. Directs traffic and flicks a short pass out to his safety valve, Jenkins, who picks up 7 on the play. For once, the tackle was made by Devin King. That’s going to be the end of the first half with Vandebilt winning 38-0.”

Devin debated becoming a bit more religious as he held onto Caesar’s legs at the bottom of the pile. As the referees were untangling the bodies, he rolled over and let go of his hold. Before he could get to his feet, the side of a foot caught him in the helmet knocking him back down.

Whistles blew as Kenyatta shoved Caesar back to the ground causing a melee to ensue. Yellow flags and hats flew as the referees struggled to regain control of the teams and send them to their respective locker rooms.



Coach Detiveaux walked over to Coach Hill in the locker room. “Hey, Coach. You think we should take the starters out? It doesn’t make sense for us to damage the morale of our main guys anymore with four more games to play this season.”

Terrebonne’s head coach shook his head. “I’m not going to quit after that bullshit at the end of the half.”



“Hey, Coach,” Coach Rodriguez called to Coach Thomas in the locker room. “You want to think about calling off the dogs and taking the starters out for the second half? Get some playing time into our younger guys’ legs and save the starters for the playoffs?”

Vandebilt’s head coach shook his head. “I’m not going to stop my own team from scoring. Especially after that thuggish bullshit at the end of the half.”



“Jenkins reels in his third touchdown of the night and Vandebilt just keeps on rolling along.”

“I have to say, Jim. I don’t agree with the starters still being in and even less with the fact they are celebrating every play.”

..

“Cazayoux into the endzone and it’s 52-0 Vandebilt.”



“DeRossi stumbles into the endzone for yet another Terrier touchdown.”



“Edgar Hidalgo’s kick just makes it over the crossbar and Terrebonne finally put some points on the board.”



“Williams picked off again. This time by Thomas Gautreaux and he’s got open field in front of him. He waltzes into the endzone and it’s 66-3 here in the beginning of the fourth quarter.”



“DeRossi connects with Cazayoux with a pass into the flats. He breaks into the open field. King in pursuit. Oh! Monster block from Jenkins on King and Cazayoux is brought down after a gain of 27.”

“The referee’s got to call a penalty on that one. Jenkins launched himself at King’s head.”

“The boos are coming down now as the referees confer.”

“Now, c’mon. The taunting is uncalled for!”



Caesar stood over King, glaring down at him. The block had knocked his helmet off and had him on his hands and knees after he rolled off his back. A Terrebonne player shoved him from behind and Caesar turned around with his arms held out.

As he backed away, he stepped on King’s fingers before booting away his helmet with his heel.

“What the fuck?!” A third Tiger shouted, shoving Caesar as well.

A second melee broke out, this time with players actually throwing punches at one another and the benches clearing. The cops who’d been assigned to the game ran onto the field while parents held back their kids in the stands to keep them from entering the fray to fight with their friends.

The rowdier students in the stands began throwing trash down onto the field.

Eventually, after the arrival of more police officers, the two teams were separated where the only thing being thrown between players were insults.

After a short conference with the coaches, the referee blew his whistle and signaled for the end of the game before he and the rest of the crew jogged off the field.



“Well, it looks like this game is ending early after that. So, with only 3:17 remaining in the fourth quarter, the referee has called the game and Vandebilt will add a sixth win to their record with a final score of Terriers, 66, Tigers, 3.”

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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Soapy » 16 Jul 2019, 14:27

Caesar wrote:
13 Jul 2019, 23:16
The old woman reached into a warming container and pulled out a rectangular slice of bread with congealed cheese and triangle chunks of “meat” on top of it. She slapped it into a tray before tossing some French fries in along with the pizza before sliding it over the spit shield to Devin.
brought me back lmao

them shits used to hit, devin bugging.
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Captain Canada » 16 Jul 2019, 15:36

Yikes, that shit was ugly. Keep it coming, Caesar
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 17 Jul 2019, 03:50

The Comedown

It hurt to breathe. It hurt to move. It hurt to think.

Devin had never gotten home from a football game and felt the way he did at that moment. Leaning against a wall in Scarlett’s bathroom, an icepack wrapped around his shoulder, another he held to his leg. It was a chore to take a piss without being able to stand upright. He was surprised that he wasn’t pissing blood.

Flushing the toilet, wincing when swollen fingers pushed on the lever, he hobbled over to the sink to wash his hands and then back out into Scarlett’s room. She rushed over to help him when he stepped into the room.

They made it to the bed and he laid down. Like an old man feeling the aches of a long, hard life. Bruises and cuts covered his body, pads having done nothing to lessen the beating that he’d taken at the hands of a wide receiver. An uneducated man would assume that Devin was the one getting tackled all night by an angry mike.

“Are you sure you don’t need to go to the doctor?” Scarlett asked, worry etched her face and her words. “I can ask my parents to bring you if you don’t want to drive.”

Devin shook his head. He closed his eyes trying to stop the pounding in his skull. “The trainers looked me over after. They told me if I still had a headache in the morning that I should go to the doctor, but I haven’t broken anything or something like that.”

“You haven’t broken anything?”

“Yeah, that’s—”

“No,” she said, cutting him off. “Of course, you didn’t break anything. Someone else tried to break you. I don’t know much about football, but why didn’t the referees do anything?”

“It wasn’t exactly illegal what he was doing up until that last block. As far as I remember anyway.”

The entire night had blurred into one, long episode of pain for him by the fourth quarter. Even when he wasn’t on the field, it felt like Caesar Jenkins was hitting him, elbowing him on his release, smacking him in the helmet, or a myriad of other ways it seemed like the Vandebilt wideout was out to inflict pain.

Devin’s grandfather had told him that would happen. He didn’t believe it. Call it naivety or willful ignorance, he figured that Caesar Jenkins would care as little about the Jenkins-King rivalry as he did. Boy, was he wrong.

Devin King, Jr. also told him that the referees wouldn’t do anything. They hadn’t even flagged him from the shot to the helmet at the end of the game – the early end to the game. He didn’t think it was a coincidence that the missed targeting penalty would’ve seen Caesar suspended for the next game.

“Well, I don’t think that someone who plays like that should be allowed on a football field. It’s dangerous enough. You don’t have to go out of your way to hurt the other players.”

Devin laughed then immediately regretted it as the pain in his chest and head flared up. He groaned and shook his head. “Most coaches would be praising someone for playing like that. Reckless abandon, playing at the edge, risking his body for the team. Especially a receiver. You expect them to shy away from contact.”

Being on the other end of the beating had somehow endeared Devin to his teammates. Many of them fought at the end of the game for him. Others, of course, just fought because they were embarrassed by the scoreline.

He was most surprised by Trigga and Bart inviting him to a party near the school. They admitted they didn’t expect him to come, but his refusal was more so for his inability to stand than any fear of the neighborhood that it was in.

“Those coaches are fucking assholes, too, then,” she said as she laid down next to Devin. Her phone buzzed, but she didn’t answer it knowing that it was her friends wondering where she was. “I hope wherever that kid is tonight that his conscience is eating at him and he can’t sleep.”

Devin found it hard to believe that Caesar’s conscience would be keeping him up that night.

-*****-

Caesar took a deep breath then ran toward the edge of the roof. Committing to what he was about to do, he planted his foot on the eaves and leapt into the air.

The illuminated pool seemed to rise to meet him as he broke the water and plunged into it. He sunk to inches from the pool floor. Adrenaline still pumping through his body, he kicked off the bottom and swam back up. The others around the pool cheered and raised their cups to him, likely happy he hadn’t killed himself.

Ron slapped a beer into his hand as soon as he’d pulled himself out of the pool. The quarterback shook his head then laughed and threw an arm around his friend. “You don’t need to literally dive into things to dive into pussy, man.”

“I needed a rush,” he said, putting the cap off the bottle and taking a swig of the beer. He looked around at the people who had shown up to the party. There were dozens of them who couldn’t turn the chance to party at the Jenkins’ mansion even though they were at the guest house. Music blaring, plenty of alcohol, plenty of opportunities to hook up with a willing young lady. He turned to Ron and asked, “Do you believe the guys who graduate and say shit like this gets old?”

“Yeah, if you fucking peak in high school. We don’t plan on peaking in fucking high school,” Ron said.

“Touché.”

The two of them walked into the guest house and up to the balcony that overlooked the pool. Their core group were all there; Britton, Kaden, Bentley, Anthony, Hollie, Francesca and Riley. Caesar had broken things off with Emma – for now.

Anthony and Bentley passed a bong between each other as Kaden spoke with Hollie and Riley. Francesca plastered herself to Ron as soon as he sat down. Caesar noticed two girls he’d never met hanging around with Britton’s girlfriend.

“Who are your friends, Britton?” Caesar asked, pouring himself a shot from one of the bottles of vodka on the table.

His girlfriend answered instead. “They’re my friends from school.”

“Can I invite random people to your house?” Caesar raised an eyebrow.

“Yo, chill, Caesar. You got plenty of people you’ve never met before down there. If Janelle says they’re cool people, they’re cool people,” Britton said, sticking up for his girl.

Caesar looked at Ron for help, but he was otherwise preoccupied. Shrugging, he stuck a hand to one of them, a decently pretty brunette, “I’m Caesar. Welcome to my home.”

She shook his hand, “My name’s Erin.” She nodded to her friend, a blonde. “That’s Tiffany.”

“Nice to meet you,” Tiffany said.

“So, y’all go to Terrebonne with Janelle?” They nodded. Caesar downed the shot before pouring another, then he nodded as well. “That’s good. I can always do with some welfare gash hanging around the place.”

Anthony and Bentley cracked up at the term “welfare gash.” Britton was none too happy, but Ron caught his attention and stopped him from saying anything.

Tiffany and Erin just looked between one another, silent.

“You have to say shit like that?” Kaden asked, interrupting his own conversation. “Not everyone who goes to Terrebonne is on welfare.”

“Shut the fuck up,” Caesar said. “You’re always asking fucking questions. Ruining my fucking buzz. I don’t even know why we hang out with you. Go back to your conversation and mind your damn business.”

Kaden shook his head and turned his back to the rest of them.

“Well, come on. Sit down,” Caesar said, pointing to either side of him on the lounger he sat on. The girls sat down, and he handed them each a beer. He opened a beer for himself then leaned back between them. He looked each of them over, mulling a decision. “Typically, I’m not this crass, believe me. But I’m just going to ask. Y’all want to fuck?”

The two girls looked confused. Tiffany spoke first. “Which one of us are you talking to?”

“Yeah, I’m not following,” Erin said.

Caesar laughed. “Y’all. You all. The plural pronoun which refers to more than one person. I’m talking to you all. Both of you.” He pointed them to make his point.

“Tell your friend to stop being disgusting, baby,” Janelle said to Britton.

“What? They can say no and still kick it with us,” Caesar said to her. He looked back to them. “No pressure. I’m just wondering. Y’all are free to say no.”

Neither of them said anything, just exchanging hesitant looks for a moment. Erin shrugged. “I’m down.”

“Why not?” Tiffany said.

“Wunderbar!” Caesar shouted, leaning forward and slamming down his beer. He turned around and looked back at them. “One more question before that though. Y’all ever hook up with each other?”

Ron choked on the swig of beer in his mouth as Anthony and Bentley started laughing again, their highs getting to them.

Caesar stood up, waving his hand when they didn’t answer. “No worries. There’s a first time for everything.”
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Captain Canada » 17 Jul 2019, 04:06

This guy said Wunderbar :drose:
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 17 Jul 2019, 16:18

Limping Along

Devin bit into the spicy chicken sandwich in his hands, savoring the one time every week that Terrebonne’s cafeteria actually had edible food that didn’t make you regret swallowing it.

“Have you noticed anything weird between Tiffany and Erin?” Scarlett asked from beside him.

“Other than their normal oddities?”

“I’m being serious!”

Devin held his hands up, palms out. “Alright, alright. No, I haven’t noticed anything weird between them, but I’ll admit that I don’t pay all that much attention to what to the two of them are doing when they’re around.”

“Well, you should pay attention,” she said. “For like two weeks, it’s like they can’t look at each other. I don’t know. It’s weird. They don’t seem mad at each other. Just, I don’t know, embarrassed?”

“Maybe they were fucking the same guy and found out that he had them both doing weird shit so now they’re embarrassed.”

“I seriously doubt they were with the same guy. We talk about those things so unless one of them was going behind the other’s back that wouldn’t happen.”

“Good to know y’all talk about those things.” Devin cringed.

“Oh, stop. They don’t care that we don’t—”

Another student interrupted her by standing next to the table. Devin looked up at him but didn’t recognize him.

“Sorry to bother y’all, but y’all mind if I sit here? Ain’t nowhere else to sit in here,” he said, nodding over his shoulder to the ever-filling cafeteria.

“Yeah, go ahead,” Devin said.

The guy nodded his thanks and sat down. “I didn’t expect there to be so many people in here. In this little town? Little school? Thought it would’ve been empty in here, you know?”

“It’s Spicy Chicken Wednesday.” Devin shrugged.

“Are you new here?” Scarlett asked.

“Yeah. It’s my second day. Name’s Hasan. Came from Miami,” he explained.

“I’m Scarlett and this is Devin.”

Hasan nodded again. “So, you’re that Devin?”

“That Devin?” Devin asked.

“The one everyone talks about around here. Didn’t you get a game-winning pick last week?”

“Oh, yeah. For big win number two. I’m just ready for this season to be over so we can hope to win some more damn games next year. You play?”

Hasan put down his chicken sandwich. “That shit isn’t all that good for a gang of motherfuckers to be in here.” He leaned back in his chair. “Yeah. Well, I did before I transferred here. If we stay, then I’ll go out for the team next spring.”

“Do you have a nickname?” Scarlett asked.

“A nickname?”

“She thinks all the guys on the team have a nickname,” Devin explained. “A lot of them do, but she seems to think all of them do. I mean, if my name was Thaddeus, I’d go by a nickname, too.”

“Makes sense, but no. No nicknames for me.” He gestured toward the two of them. “Y’all together?”

Devin nodded, suddenly feeling defensive. “Yeah.”

“Well, if you don’t mind introducing me to any of your friends then I’d appreciate it, Scarlett.” Hasan laughed.

“That’s going to be easy for her friends. They can’t look at each other so you can talk to all of them and they won’t be able to talk about it,” Devin said.

“Were they fucking the same guy and caught each other?”

Scarlett rolled her eyes as Devin burst into laughter.



“Alright, fellas. We’ve got two games left and we can still finish this season strong. H.L. is a rival and we need to string together a couple of good performances to go into the Hall of Fame Game with a head of steam behind us. Go home, get some rest and come back tomorrow ready to work,” Coach Hill said in his parting words to the team before he let them go home for the day.

Devin let his helmet hang from his fingers as he walked to the field house. The end of the season couldn’t come fast enough. His body was demanding time to recover from the toughest season of football he had so far in his life.

Hasan sat on the sidewalk near the locker room and waved Devin over when he saw him passing.

“Not trying to act like I’m some kind of football guru or anything like this, but y’all are trash even in practice,” Hasan said when Devin was out of earshot of the other players. “I thought Louisiana was supposed to be football mecca?”

“It might be, but it isn’t here unless you’re talking about the school down the street. That’s what happens when you can recruit though,” Devin said before shrugging. “What are you still doing here anyway?”

“Waiting for my ride. Not much of a fan of school buses. I figured I’d come out here and watch practice since it was that or go watch the band practice.”

“I don’t know, man. At least with the band, you get some entertainment.”

“There’s only so many times someone wants to hear Flight of the Bumble Bee.”

Devin scratched his chin, trying to decide if he knew how that sounded. “I think their most played song is some shit called El Fuego. It’s definitely not the fight song.”

“I’d think not looking at the schedule. Gotta score touchdowns to hear the fight song.”

“They play the fight song after every score. So, like ten times this season?”

“Y’all some defeatist motherfuckers around here. None of that rah-rah shit you see at other schools. Just ‘yeah, we gonna lose.’”

“Well, when you play for a school that hasn’t had a winning season in 20 years, it’s kinda hard to go around thinking that we’re going to win many games. 4-6, if we win out, is basically like winning State here.”

Hasan pointed behind him to where the basketball court was. “Y’all have never won State either though. Just the one runners-up banner hung up.”

“From the 1980s,” Devin added. “What’s your point? There are plenty of schools that have never won State. I mean, shit, Curtis has like 70 championships by themselves.”

“Don’t you want to have some kind of legacy from doing all this shit out on the field? Maybe get a scholarship from it?” he asked. His phone buzzed in his pocket and he pulled it out to take a quick glance at the screen. He stood up, brushing off his pants. “That’s my ride. I’ll talk to you tomorrow, man.”

Devin nodded, bumping his fist against the one Hasan proffered. He looked at the scratched and scarred helmet in his hand, thinking about Hasan’s words. It was a question that he’d never really thought about before.

What did he want from football?
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by djp73 » 17 Jul 2019, 18:46

great work so far Caesar
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 17 Jul 2019, 19:36

A Side, B Side

Candice Jenkins busied herself in the kitchen. It was rare that the woman did any cooking of her own, but from time to time she enjoyed doing things that were part of her life before she became Mrs. Deion Jenkins.

Pierre, the family’s personal cook, hadn’t been happy about being banished from the kitchen, but what Candice said went – especially when Deion wasn’t home. Ultra-conservative men would say her place was the kitchen so if anyone could decide who was and wasn’t allowed in the kitchen, it was her.

She turned to the counter, sliding another five pancakes off the skillet and onto a plate. Above her head, she could hear the soft thuds of feet on the floor upstairs. She paused and listened, then nodded to herself and turned back to the stove to pour more batter onto the skillet.

Reaching into a cabinet, she pulled out two glasses before turning to the fridge to fill them both with orange juice.

A heavy footfall sounded on the stairs and she paused again, waiting, but no further noise followed. Shrugging, she forked bacon and eggs onto plates as well. Altogether, she had to say she was proud of the fact she still had the ability to whip up a decent meal.

She heard footsteps again, and this time reached into her purse to pull out a pill bottle. She dumped one pill into her hand.

“Morning, ma,” Caesar said, stepping into the kitchen. He leaned over the counter and reached out to grab a pancake, but she smacked his hand. “What?”

“You’re not going to feed your friend hiding by the door there first?” she asked, an eyebrow raised, and her hand still clutched.

A girl, faced colored with her embarrassment, walked slowly into the kitchen. “Morning, Mrs. Jenkins.”

“Morning, honey,” Candice said, turning to the cabinet and retrieving two plates. She set them on the counter. “What’s your name?”

“Me—Meredith.” Her voice was quiet, clearly uncomfortable.

Candice walked around the counter and grabbed Meredith’s hand, turning it over so it was palm up. She dropped the pill in the girl’s hand.

“Oh, I don’t have a headache. I feel fine, ma’am,” she said, holding the pill back to Mrs. Jenkins.

The woman leaned down and rested her hand on Meredith’s shoulder. “It’s not ibuprofen, honey.” She turned to her son and waved. “Enjoy y’all’s breakfast, sweetie. I’ll be out today.”

“Thanks, ma,” Caesar said, putting pancakes onto his plate.

Candice poked her head back into the kitchen. “Oh, and Caesar, sweetie?”

“Yeah, ma?”

“Make sure you stop by the pharmacy when you are bringing Meredith home and pick her up whatever feminine products she prefers.” And then she left.

The girl’s eye grew wide when it clicked what the pill was for.



Caesar and Ron sat in the DeRossi’s living room as the quarterback reviewed game film for their next opponent. Since smashing Terrebonne, Vandebilt had gone on to rack up two more huge wins to extend their record to a perfect 8-0. Most people had chosen them as the favorites to win the first combined select/non-select state championship in over 30 years.

Now, they had two games left to finish the regular season without a blemish in the loss column.

“You know you’re wasting a Saturday watching film of fucking Ellender, right? Half of their team will probably be academically ineligible by next week,” Caesar said, staring at an almond he’d taken out of the bowl that was in his lap. “We won’t have a tough opponent for at least another month.”

Ron jotted down notes on a tablet he held. “That’d be the quarterfinals of the playoffs.”

“Are you saying that I’m wrong?”

“No, I’m just pointing it out, so you are aware. For all we know, we’ll get St. Augustine, Zachary, Catholic or UHigh in the first two rounds.”

“First of all, I’m not going to lose to an all-boys school, so we can just chop both St. Aug and Catholic High off there.”

Ron put the stylus down and looked at Caesar. “What does being an all-boys school have to do with playing football? It’s not like Vandebilt wouldn’t try to pull that if there was another Catholic school across the street.”

“It’s hard to play football if you are blind and have hairy palms. That’s what being an all-boys school has to do with that.”

Ron palmed his face and shook his head.

Caesar laughed. “Don’t be mad at me because I pay attention in class, man. Brother Fitch is adamant that sexual urges are controlled through wet dreams. Masturbation blinds men. You know it. I know it. Brother Fitch knows it.”

“Is that why you threw the pre-martial sex bit out of the window?”

“I’m a virgin. You can’t prove otherwise,” Caesar said, popping an almond into his mouth.

“Except for that girl, Diana, because I was there. And also, Shae because I was also there. Oh, and what about those two girls in New Orleans? What were their names?”

“So, you’re point is that you’re a heathen?”

“I’ll take that accusation, because a wise man once told me that you never turn down a blowjob when offered one unless you’re already getting a blowjob because you only have one dick.”

“What did that wise man say about offers of blowjobs while your friend is fucking the chick offering the blowjob?”

“Never turn down a blowjob.” Ron laughed and rewound the game film.

-*****-

Deion Jenkins cursed as he stepped into a puddle outside a dinghy apartment complex. The eyes of the tenants were on him and the two men with him, but mostly Deion as he wore the most expensive clothes and gave off the aura of wealth.

“Maybe you should have brought some of those shrimp boots with you from back home, Deion,” one of them, Ulysses Williams said.

“Maybe I should’ve told you to fuck off when you asked me to find you a safety who is graduating in 2052,” Deion shot back. “Just let you go recruit some bum from Kansas or Nebraska who is just tired of his mother and sister being the only women he saw.”

The other man, Yonni Williams, who bore no relation to Ulysses other than being college teammates with Deion, stepped in front of them and looked around the complex. “How exactly did you find this kid, Deion? I know he goes to Euless Trinity, but how did you know where he lived?”

“Didn’t I say not to ask too many questions? You two are already contacting the kid way too early. Let’s just limit the amount of violations that we have to worry about. Well, not me, because I’m not a college football coach.”

The three men climbed three flights of stairs to the top level of one of the buildings. Broken children’s toys littered the breezeway and a few people hanging outside gave them weird looks. Ulysses and Yonni were recruiters, they’d been to far worse places to speak to prospects. Deion had his reasons for not being uncomfortable.

Deion banged on the door of the last apartment. The door cracked open almost immediately.

“What the fuck do you want?” a voice asked from inside.

“Open the fucking door, Sydney. I told you I was coming here today.”

The door closed for a moment and was opened once more to reveal a woman standing in the doorway. She looked at the two men with Deion. “You didn’t say you were bringing random people to my house.”

“They’re here to talk to Erik. They’re recruiters at Oklahoma State. You want the kid to get a scholarship to go to college, don’t you?”

She sighed then stepped out of the way and let them in.

“Thank you for allowing us into your home, Mrs. – I’m sorry, I didn’t catch your name,” Yonni said.

“Sydney Miller.”

“Well, Mrs. Miller, you have a lovely home.”

Ulysses leaned over to Deion and lowered his voice. “You said the kid’s name was—”

Deion held up a hand. “Too many questions, Ulysses. Figure that out when he graduates, and he has to fill out financial aid.”
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Captain Canada » 17 Jul 2019, 20:09

The plot thickens :curtain:

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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Soapy » 18 Jul 2019, 21:03

Caesar wrote:
17 Jul 2019, 16:18
“Not trying to act like I’m some kind of football guru or anything like this, but y’all are trash even in practice,” Hasan said when Devin was out of earshot of the other players. “I thought Louisiana was supposed to be football mecca?”
bitch where.

to have a Miami guy saying that is trash.

fix it.

now.
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 21 Jul 2019, 23:19

Not in the Same League

“So, tell me again, why the fuck does Martin want us to come here first? Wouldn’t it be better for us to go to Terrebonne for the first half and come here for the second half?” a cameraman asked as he set up his camera on the sidelines of Vandebilt’s Bobby Guidry Stadium. “Besides, you’re trying to walk around that part of town at night? I’d rather not get robbed or shot tonight.”

“That part of town? What part of town? Terrebonne is five minutes down the fucking road. Just be happy this game isn’t in Patriot Point. Then we’d really have to worry about getting shot.”

The cameraman shook his head. “Five minutes down the road, but a whole different world. I just think we’d get better film if we’re doing this the opposite way around. It’s going to be a blowout there by the second half.”

“It’s going to be a blowout here by the second half. What’s your point? They paid Martin to be on TV. They’ll be on TV first.”

Vandebilt’s band cranked up the school’s fight song and their team, in their old gold and royal blue, ran out onto the field to the cheers of the home crowd.

-*****-

“J.D. Thibodaux in the gun for H.L. Bourgeois here. Two receivers split out to either side of him with his running back Reshard Garner in the backfield. The snap is high, but Thibodaux brings it down. He fires it out to Paul Boudreaux on the crossing pattern. He makes a man miss, gets a few key blocks, cuts across the field, and it’s a foot race to the endzone!”

Devin threw his hand down to keep himself from falling and took off behind the H.L. receiver, but it was all for naught. With a 20-yard head start on him, Devin was never going to catch the blue-clad wideout without the hands of God aiding him.

Nonetheless, he ran all the way to the endzone. Effort and all that.

On the sideline, Coach Hill shouted as his defense for blowing their coverage assignments and allowing a five-yard drag to go 75 yards for a touchdown.

-*****-

“Double reverse! A little trickeration for Vandebilt! Caesar Jenkins has the ball in the backfield and is heading for the edg—Wait! He’s set up to throw! He has his quarterback wide open down the field if he can hit him!”

Caesar channeled every early lesson on football he’d gotten from his father on how to throw a football. He stepped into the throw and launched it downfield toward Ron.

The stadium seemed to inhale all at once as the noise stopped for a split second while the ball was in the air. Then it came back like a tidal wave smashing buildings as the touchdown was signaled.

“Oh my, ladies and gentlemen! Touchdown Vandebilt! But you have to say it’s unfair when you star receiver can throw 65-yard bombs, but I guess that’s expected when he’s the son of a future Hall of Fame quarterback!”

-*****-

“The Braves come out in their patented full house look. Terrebonne matches them with eight defenders in the box. Thibodaux gets the snap, hands—no, it’s a fake! He’s dropping back.”

The Tigers’ sideline erupted with shouts of pass, pass, pass as both Devin and Kenyatta were suddenly trailing their receivers on opposite sides of the field. Willie, the lone deep safety, ran toward the line of scrimmage.

The H.L. receivers ran mirrored routes toward the center of the field. Thibodaux managed to get the ball to one of them just as they crossed paths. The three defenders were so bent on getting in place to make a play on the ball that they ran into each other as the receiver flew by.

Devin watched from the bottom of an embarrassing heap of “athlete” as the Braves went up 21-3.

-*****-

“DeRossi drops back and has all the time in the world as the Patriots drop eight men into coverage. The pocket holds. The pocket holds. He has room to run if he chooses to. He steps and fires a laser into the heart of the Ellender defense. Jenkins makes the grab, splits a couple defenders and is into the endzone to make it 48-0 here in the third quarter. DeRossi put some lagniappe on that throw!”

Caesar jogged to the sidelines, a grin on his face as he took his helmet. He met Ron on the sideline and the two of them shared a celebratory fist bump.

“How many scouts are in the stands?” Caesar asked.

Ron shrugged, taking a water bottle from one of the team’s managers. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“Oh, yeah. You just threw into prevent defense because you’re a dumbfuck not because you’re trying to show off your arm strength.”

“Just a few small schools. LSU, TCU, USC, Alabama, you know.” Ron said, a grin spreading across his face as well.

-*****-

Devin sat at his locker, his head in his hands. To say that the 38-10 beating they’d just endured at the hands of one of their most hated rivals was humbling would be an understatement, but for Terrebonne’s players the embarrassment hadn’t ended at the scoreline. Coach Hill pulled all the starters for backups and JV and freshmen who’d started dressing with the varsity now that their seasons were over.

The backups won their portion of the game 7-3.

Throughout the game, when the chants of “our house” died down from the H.L. student body during lulls in play, the faint explosions of cheers from the stadium down the road wafted across the city letting everyone know that Vandebilt was once again running riot over their opponent.

Coach Hill had seemingly ditched the tactic of yelling at the team following losses. Instead, he stood in the middle of the locker room, arms crossed, visor crunched in his hand, shaking his head at the team in silence.

He was as devoid of new ideas as they were.

With one game left to play, Devin was happy that his first season of varsity football would be ending soon. Perhaps in the offseason, he’d consider picking up basketball or baseball – at least those teams won games at Terrebonne.

-*****-

The celebrations were reaching a fever pitch in Vandebilt’s locker room. After their 77-0 demolition of Ellender, they’d been informed that they’d clinched a top two seed in the playoffs after Scotlandville pulled off an upset against Catholic High in Baton Rouge. One more win and some favorable nods from those in charge of seeding and they’d be heading into the playoffs as the top seed.

Caesar grabbed his phone from his locker and scrolled through the mass of congratulatory texts and social media messages and the invitations to various parties.

He glanced over his shoulder at Ron, who was talking with coaches from Division II and III schools looking to take advantage of their head start and being allowed to officially speak to players before the Division I powerhouses.

Ron would be polite and listen to what they had to say, but they all knew there wasn’t a snowball’s chance in hell that a soon-to-be All-State and state champion quarterback would be headed to any school beneath the Power 5.

Caesar was anxious to start the recruiting process himself even though he knew he’d be committing to Oklahoma State. He wanted to experience it.

“Hey! Hey!” Coach Thomas shouted over the din of the players. “Before you all go out and get into things I don’t want to know about remember that we have mass and breakfast in Thibodaux Sunday with E.D. White’s team!”

The team groaned.

“Stuff it! It’s tradition and you’ll be there! All of you! Suits and ties!”

Caesar sighed to himself and put his phone back in his locker as he pulled his jersey over his shoulder pads, ready to get to the playoffs.
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Captain Canada » 22 Jul 2019, 01:06

Not the best start for Devin. Wonder how he's going to turn it around.
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War of the Roses: Redux Edition

Post by Caesar » 22 Jul 2019, 21:03

Unholy One

Caesar resisted the urge to doze off as Father York, the archbishop of the Houma-Thibodaux diocese, continued his homily. For the past 15 years, it had been a tradition for Vandebilt and E.D. White’s football teams, the two biggest in the diocese, to come together for a shared mass on the Sunday prior to their meeting which was always the last game of the season.

The diocese’s other high school, Central Catholic, was also invited to attend but the first half of the large co-cathedral was filled by the blue coats of Vandebilt’s students on one side and the gray coats of E.D. White’s on the opposite side.

Ron nudged Caesar with his elbow and pointed to one of the players sitting across the aisle in gray. The guy glanced back at them, shook his head, then turned back.

“You think he’s still mad about his sister?” Caesar whispered.

Ron scoffed, drawing the ire of Coach Thomas. He raised his hand to his mouth and faked a cough until the coach looked away. “Yes, Caesar, I’d say he’s still mad about you fucking his sister in the Confessional. It is pretty much the only reason he’s even at E.D. White.”

“Nah, man. Their dad got a job in Vacherie and didn’t want to drive as far so he moved them all to Thibodaux.”

“They’re Catholics. Embarrassment and public shame are bigger drivers than jobs. He’s probably going to try to kick your ass.”

“I don’t think he’s mad. I wouldn’t be mad about that. It’s not like he got caught sucking a dude off in the Confessional. He used to hang with us. I think he’d let bygones be bygones.”

“Alright, man.” Ron snickered, earning another angry glare from Coach Thomas.



“Ron. Caesar. Fellas.”

Caesar looked at the hand extended toward him, leery as he shook the guy’s hand. “What’s up, Chip? How’s E.D. White treating you these days?”

“Not as many good looking girls as Vandebilt, unfortunately, but I’m sure you already know that,” Chip said, laughing as he shook Ron and the others’ hands. “It does hurt my heart that I’m going to have to take a top-seed from you guys though.”

“I don’t think a 3-6 team is going to be the one to do it, chief,” Ron said as he dug into the pancakes on the table in front of him. The breakfast after mass was the only good part of the tradition in his opinion.

“Scotlandville was 1-7 when they knocked off Catholic,” Chip said.

“They had a lucky number for their record, though.” Caesar pointed at himself.

Chip shook his head. “You do know if I was still at Vandebilt that you’d be on the other side of the field, maybe even in the slot, right?”

“It’s a good thing he fucked your sister then,” Bentley said through a mouthful of pancakes before Anthony joined in with laughter.

“C’mon, man. We’re in a church,” Kaden said.

“A church hall,” Britton corrected.

Caesar waved their comments off, feeling competitive. “Chip, you know that’s the biggest fucking lie you’ve ever told. I started ahead of you as a freshman. You were a junior.”

“I do have to say Caesar’s a better receiver, Chip,” Ron said.

“Fuck off, man. Y’all always sticking up for each other. Homosexuality is still blasphemous, you know?” Chip said.

“Getting bent over in the confessional booth and moaning out a few Hail Mary’s and Our Father’s is pretty blasphemous too,” Caesar shot back.

Chip went to lunge over the table, but a few of his teammates who were passing by stopped the ruckus before it could start. Apparently, they'd expected Chip to pop off. Pancakes and orange juice falling to the floor.

“We’ll see what happens Friday, bitch,” Chip said as the E.D. White coaches walked over to get a handle on the situation.

“You always gotta start shit, Caesar,” Kaden said as orange juice splattered on his shoes and trousers from the cups that’d been dropped.

Caesar leaned forward over the table. “You’re supposed to be on our side on this one, dumbass. Stop fucking being a bitch and ride for your teammates.”



Caesar, Ron, and Kaden sat in Britton’s SUV as he drove through the backroads of Thibodaux. Anthony and Bentley followed them in another car. As they moved along, the houses got a little less well-maintained and more people hung on the corners. Kids played in the streets as adults congregated in overgrown yards.

“Why are we here again?” Britton asked, clearly uncomfortable with the surroundings.

“Because Friday is the last regular season game. Ron’s throwing a big ass party. We need some favors for those who like to partake,” Caesar said.

“Who the fuck said I was throwing the party?” Ron asked from the passenger seat, not looking up from his phone.

“Process of elimination.”

Kaden rolled up his window and leaned away from it. “And you couldn’t have waited until we got back to Houma for this? At least you know the people in Houma you buy drugs from.”

“No, I don’t,” Caesar said. “I also don’t buy drugs from people. I’m buying party favors. Streamers, hats, zany cups and what not.”

“I just hope no cops show up,” Kaden said.

Ron laughed. “Cops don’t come to Marydale unless there’s been a shooting. I think we’re going to be safe back here from the boys in blue.”

“Now, all these sketchy ass fucking people is a different story,” Britton added.

Caesar tapped Britton on the shoulder and pointed to a group of four guys lingering by a corner. “Pull up by them.”

“Those random ass fucking dudes wearing hoodies and smoking Black N’ Milds?”

“Yes, those guys.” He looked over his shoulder at Kaden. “Try to keep your mouth shut so we don’t get fucking robbed, yeah?”

“Fuck you, man. There’s got to be an easier way to do this,” Kaden said.

Britton slowed the SUV to a stop where Caesar told him to. Andrew and Bentley kept going down the street. ‘Smart guys,’ Caesar thought to himself.

Caesar opened the door and hopped out of the SUV. The group all stared at him as if he was an alien, wearing a tailored suit in Marydale.

“What’s up? Y’all good?”

One of them, almost as tall as Caesar with dreads, stepped forward. “The fuck you mean? Better run on home before you wind up on a milk carton, cuh.”

“I just heard y’all got a yellow jacket problem on y’all totems out here. Sally D sent me.”

A short one at the back of the group laughed. “No yellow jacket problem here, but you can go skating.”

“I don’t fuck with skating. Just dealing with yellow jackets.”

The tall one looked Caesar over. “You a cop?”

He shook his head. “Just a rich kid with money.”

The tall one looked back at the others and pointed to Caesar. One of them walked up to him and shook his hand, pulling him in for a hug. He felt a bag get slipped in his pocket. A second one did the same and Caesar pressed a roll of money into his hand.

Caesar nodded and hopped back in the SUV. “Drive off slowly,” he told Britton which he did. Caesar pulled a bag filled with pills out of his pocket. Ron looked over his shoulder and grinned. Kaden cursed.

“Now, get the fuck out of here before they rob us for real.” Caesar laughed.

Britton turned the corner and hit the accelerator, flying by where Anthony and Bentley were waiting for them. He made it back to the main road back to Houma and slowed down.

But not enough.

As soon as they passed a tree in a curve, blue lights pulled up behind them.

“Oh, shit! We’re fucked, man,” Britton said, eyes darting between the rearview and the road.

“Eat that shit, Caesar,” Ron said.

“What the fuck you mean ‘eat that shit, Caesar’? This shit would kill a horse,” Caesar said, holding the bag up.

“Throw it out of the fucking window then,” Britton said.

“Good idea, genius. Just let the cop see drugs fly out of the window,” Ron said.

“We’re going to fucking jail,” Kaden groaned.

“Shut the fuck up and just be calm,” Caesar said. “Pull over before they have the whole troop behind you.”

“What the fuck are we going to do?” Britton asked.

“You’re going to give him your license and registration and tell him to have a nice day and shit,” Caesar said as he stuffed the bag into the inside pocket of his coat.

Britton pulled over on the side of the road as the state trooper’s cruiser pulled up behind him. The trooper got out of his car and pulled his hat on as he walked up to the car, speaking into his radio.

“Be fucking cool,” Ron said to Britton.

The cop tapped on the window and Britton rolled it down. “Morning, officer,” Britton said.

“What were you boys doing speeding out of Marydale?” the trooper asked, looking into the car. “Looks like y’all just came from church.”

“We did, sir,” Britton said. “We aren’t from here. We got lost and I got a little scared. I’m sorry for speeding.”

“License and registration, please.”

Britton handed over the paperwork as the trooper took one last glance in the car then headed back to his cruiser.

“I’m about to shit myself,” Britton said.

“Shut the fuck up.” Caesar kicked the seat then turned to Kaden. “You, too.”

“I didn’t even say shit,” Kaden said.

“Shut up, he’s coming back,” Ron said, glancing in the rearview.

The trooper put his hand on his weapon before stopping by the driver’s side door. “We got a call that there was a smell of marijuana coming from this vehicle. While it’s legal, it’s not legal to drive under the influence. I’m going to need you boys to step out of the car.”

“Fucking Anthony and Bentley,” Ron muttered as he shoved open the door.

“Slow now,” the trooper said.

Caesar slid across the seat and got out of the SUV on the same side as Kaden. Kaden was slow getting out of the vehicle and Caesar bundled into him. Grabbing his suit coat to right him before he fell, Caesar held him up and shoved him out of the way.

“Y’all go on and sit on the ground there,” the trooper said as two other cruisers pulled up.

Britton was the first one to get hauled to his feet and patted down. He was sweating bullets as he kept glancing at Caesar then the backup that was approaching. When they didn’t find anything on Britton, they handcuffed him and sat him down.

Ron was next, biting his lip to keep from spouting off insults at the cop who roughly pulled on his suit coat. They found nothing and handcuffed him as well.

Then they stood up Caesar. Britton hung his head.

“You ain’t got nothing that’s going to stick me, do you?” the cop asked.

“I have a pen in my coat pocket. On the inside.” Caesar held out his arm so the cop could grab the ballpoint pen from his coat.

“Don’t I know you boys from somewhere?” the officer patting down Caesar asked.

“Don’t know, officer. We’re just church boys trying to get on home,” Caesar said.

The trooper patted at his pockets then his pants and his ankles. “Nothing on this one either.”

Britton, Ron, and Kaden all looked up confused as Kaden was stood up for his turn being searched.

When Kaden raised his arms, he felt something hit his chest and his eyes grew wide. The cop sensed it and immediately reached into his coat pocket and pulled out the bag of pills.

“Looks like you’re having a little party, son,” the cop said, holding the bag in front of him.

“Th-- that’s not mine!” Kaden shouted.

“It was in your jacket. How did it get there if it isn’t yours?” the cops turned to the others. “Do y’all know anything about this?”

Caesar shook his head. “We don’t even really know him all that well. We all go to church together, but we were just giving him a ride.”

The cops looked to Britton, the driver, to confirm. He paused before a side-eyed glanced from Ron had him nodding in agreement.

“It’s not mine! It’s his!” Kaden shouted, pointing at Caesar. The cops grabbed his arms and yanked them behind his back, handcuffing him. He fought against them as they wrestled him to the ground, still cursing.

The first trooper looked at Britton, Ron and Caesar. “We’re going to search your car. We’ll see where we go from there.”

As Kaden was shoved into the back of one of the cruisers, still shouting his innocence, Britton, Ron, and Caesar watched as the cops turned the SUV upside down.

An hour or so later, they were on their way, each with a minor in possession summons for bottles of vodka found under the seats.

But they headed to Houma with one less person in the car and a warning to be more aware of who they let in the vehicle.
Last edited by Caesar on 31 Jul 2019, 00:12, edited 1 time in total.
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