Guitars, drums, trumpets, a salad of sound Rune felt in his teeth. Baseball Cap sitting on a metal chair, pointing at Double-J with his beer bottle. “member you telling me once, fencing was the only reason you stayed in school.”
Double-J drank from his bottle while shaking his head. Drew the bottle from his mouth, swallowed, stared back at Baseball Cap. “Listening to Jacobs’ nonsense, that served its purpose. But I don’t have any use for school, or his damn glee club.” Jezz looked at Rune, asked who Jacob was, Rune replied it was their coach, Dan Jacobs. Coach Dan.
“You know why Jacobs started the club, right?” Rune felt Double-J’s dark eyes penetrating him, like a cross-examining attorney.
“Yeah.” Rune sat upright in his metal chair, finally comfortable with the discussion. “His old college, coach, said — ”
“Bullshit.” Double-J waved the bottle across his body, the beer inside swishing both audibly and visibly. “Had his sights on competing nationally, until he blew his knees out. Never got over it, so he started that fencing club. We’re just living his dream.”
“No way.” Rune pointed with his plastic cup of cola, withdrawing it as soon as he realized how silly the gesture looked. “He’s not like Dr. Schmidt, he doesn’t pressure us — ”
“Because you have no talent.” There was only a hint of an apology in Double-J’s voice. “You didn’t see him with Myles, he was always pushing him.”
“That Glossoro guy?” Baseball Cap looked like he knew he was butchering the name. “That quarterback?”
Double-J drank, and Rune took advantage. “Yeah. He fenced too. Real competitive guy, hated losing.” Stared at Double-J, who for once seemed eager to hear what he said. “Coach Dan didn’t push him, Myles was always charging ahead. Coach was just holding — ” He stopped himself, too late.
“The reins?” Double-J seemed delighted. “Perhaps a leash? Some way of keeping control of his pet, making sure he didn’t ruin his dream?’