I do gotta admit that I had a talk with Keaton about the Parrots’ new pitcher Ryan and his story. Keaton’s the person I know who comes closest to Ryan’s kind of experience – although Keaton’s had this fun, adventurous life, and Ryan’s has been like a nightmare from the sound of it.
“Why are you asking me? Because we both had sex for money?,” Keaton asked, with something of his usual smirk.
“Because nothing in my life prepared me for a story like Ryan’s.”
“Yeah, you have been pretty sheltered. But it’s not a bad thing. You don’t need to experience being a gay sex slave to grow up.”
“Do you think it’s true?”
“Bubba, if half of what he told us is true it’s a fuckin terrible life he’s led so far. But he’s still young, and that’ll give him plenty of time to recover. He seems like a pretty strong kid; he’ll get his shit together again, you’ll see. I know the place he’s living…”
“You work in a bar, you meet people. Even sober ones. There’s this dude who comes to the Volcano who lives there.”
“What’s he doing in a bar if he’s in a sober living?”
“He’s a friend of Ron’s and likes to hang out…early, before people get too fucked up and stupid. You usually come in long after he’s gone. He lives where Ryan does and says it’s a nice place where he feels safe.”
“That’s good.” I wasn’t entirely sure what ‘safe’ meant in this context, but I certainly wanted Ryan to be safe. He’s certainly earned it.
“It’s one hell of a fuckin story,” said Keaton, the least likely person I know to become anyone’s sex slave. “Although there’s one thing I don’t get.”
“The same thing I don’t get, I reckon,” I said.
“Why he didn’t beat the fuck outta his ‘master’ and lock the fucker up in the closet?”
“Exactly. I mean, it’s what you would have done…and it’s what I would have done…but maybe we’re not understanding about the mind control shit. Maybe anyone can be turned into a slave if you’re evil enough to want to do it.”
“Yeah, bubba. Just let someone try. He’d be lucky to come out of it alive.”
“Yeah, but that’s you and you’re not 20 anymore.”
“Bubba, I was beatin guys up for money when I was 20. And I don’t think anyone could have fucked with you like that either, even at that age.”
I didn’t think so. But you never know. We never met Ryan’s ex-‘master’…although, if we did, me and Keaton would probably beat the shit outta him for what he did to Ryan…and to stop him from pulling his fucked up slave shit on another kid.
“The important part is that he got away from that sick fuck, got himself clean, and is working hard at staying that way. And now he’s got his wish come true and he’s playing softball again. I hope he likes being a Parrot.”
“He’s probably a better pitcher than what he showed us today. You don’t get 3 strikes past me unless you’ve got some dang good stuff.”
“I’d say you’re being conceited, but it’s true. One thing you can do, bubba, and that’s hit a ball.”
“Think we’re ready for another gay Parrot?”
“Why the fuck not? He doesn’t act gay from what he showed us, and we get along fine with Adam. This just proves you wrong, and not all gay ball players are catchers.”
“I never said that,” I corrected. “I said that all catchers I’ve played with are gay. Not that every gay dude I’ve played with was a catcher. I know of at least one gay pitcher…”
But that’s another story.