Little League

Daniel was in the play-offs. Pitching. He wanted me to see him. I wanted to explain to him that I moved to L.A. so I wouldn't have to see Mom and Dad all the time. I wanted to explain to him that you couldn't buy a plane ticket five days in advance. But it had been only a week since Mom told him if he didn't get money from Dad the house would be repossessed. It had been only a week since Dad told him if he didn't get Mom to buy him new gym shoes Dad would take her to court.

I used the frequent-flier ticket I'd been saving for if my grandma died. I showed up the day of the game so I didn't have any extra time to spend with my parents. I met Mom at her house and we drove to the playing field. Mom said, "Daniel is on the purple team."

There was a red team and a blue team. I had no idea which team Mom thought was purple.

Daniel was not there. Dad was supposed to bring him to the game. Mom thought Dad kidnapped Daniel. I sat in the bleachers watching third-graders turn singles into home runs.

Dad arrived with Daniel in the bottom of the third. I sat with Mom in the fourth. Dad in the fifth. Etc. Daniel got a hit. Mom screamed, Go go go. Run run run. Good hit. Good hit. Good hit. She clapped. She whistled. Dad didn't realize Daniel was at bat. The single turned into a double because the first baseman forgot to put his foot on the bag. The second baseman missed the throw from first, so Daniel ran to third. The coach gave Daniel the sign to go home, but Daniel paused between third and home to see where the ball was, and he got thrown out.

After the game, Mom said, "Why did you stop to check where the ball was?"

Daniel said, "I'm not used to being able to trust someone."

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