K for Catcher

By: Talyn Gray


Thank you.

Alex tucked her dark hair behind her ears as she picked up a cardboard box to her chest and began to lug it into the house. She started to walk up the cement steps to her new house and tried to navigate to the unfamiliar door without having to peer over the box.

"Ki wo tsukete!" (be careful) came the voice of her mother. Alex rolled her eyes and nearly stumbled in doing so.

"Daijoubu yo!" (I'm fine) she called back, perhaps a bit more testily than she intended. Alex managed to bump into the door frame before taking a step back and entering. She gave another huff as she let the box fall to the wooden floors and looked around. It was a lot different from her house back in Forester; bigger, that's for sure. At least her father hadn't been transferred to another state or back to Japan. Alex had long lost touch with her friends back in Tokyo.

"You really should mind your mother," her dad said to her playfully as he ruffled her hair dark hair affectionately. In turn, she reached up on her tippy toes to muss his sandy blond locks. He smoothed it with a large hand while the other entered his side pocket. He held out a key. "Why don't you see if we have any mail?"

"Already?" she asked doubtfully. "We're just barely moved in. You can get Rei to do it."

Ronald Matherson winked down at his daughter before exiting the house to help his wife with the rest of the boxes. Alex stared at her father's retreating back before shrugging and walking back out the front door and down the cement steps with a hop before heading for the community mailbox waiting at the street corner. She sang an old song to herself as she watched the shadows of the trees hanging above her head. It was February, almost halfway through the school year. She wondered what Bailey High would offer her, and what kind of baseball team they had.

Alex dully remembered Forester going up against Bailey. Being the former pitcher of said school, she could remember all the exemplary teams they had faced, Bailey was one of them. Though if she recalled correctly, her home team Forester would have lost if Bailey's relief pitcher hadn't lost the game.

Being so lost in thought, Alex didn't notice that the mailbox was only three inches in front of her, and gave a gasp of surprise when she walked right into it. There was a rather loud snicker to her left and she immediately flushed and snapped to the side where the noise was coming from.

Her eyes immediately landed on a tall boy around her age with the most commanding bluish gray eyes she'd ever seen. Her gaze then drifted to the slightly shorter blond next to him. The one with the blue eyes was smirking, the blond's expression was halfway frozen between rolling his eyes and smiling.

"Sorry about my friend here," the blond haired, brown eyed said. "Are you okay?"

"Fine," she replied distractedly embarrassed. Alex stuffed the key into the mailbox and twisted it.

"Are you just moving in?" the blue eyed one asked.

"Yeah," Alex replied shortly, looking in and cursing her father. She had been right. There was no mail.

"My name's B.G. Zimmer, or Benji," the blond one introduced and held out a hand. She noticed it was slightly callused hand, the callusing that came from a swinging a baseball bat.

"BG? Benji?" she questioned with a risen eyebrow as she took his hand and gave it a firm shake.

"Benjamin Gilbert," B.G. replied with a light embarrassed flush. "This is Bryce," he gestured towards the taller boy who'd snickered at her earlier. "Are you moving in?"

"Yeah." Alex nodded. "Do you guys live on this street?" She gave a small glance at the one named Bryce and noticed he was staring at her in a funky way, and had been staring at her in a weird way since he'd seen her.

"Bryce lives about two doors down from you," B.G. replied with a grin. "I'm about three houses down on the other side." Alex could feel Bryce's eyes boring into her face and she finally turned to him, frustrated, and opened her mouth.

"What are you-"


Upset that her tirade had been stolen from her by her five year old brother, she turned around to glare at him small form. "Nani?" (What?) she asked in an annoyed voice. She could still feel a pair of eyes leering at her.

"Mou," Rei said in an equally annoyed voice. He crossed his arms and stuck out his tongue. "Boku to Okaa-chan to Papa wa hirugohan wo tabetai…Hayaku!" (Me and Mom and Papa want to eat lunch. Hurry up!)

"Jaa, tabeni ikeba," (Go ahead and eat) she answered. "I'll be there in a minute."

Rei tapped his small foot on the floor, glanced at B.G. and Bryce before grumbling something under his breath that sounded oddly like "Baka…" (idiot). Alex rolled her eyes again and turned back to the boys, one of which who was still staring rather rudely at her.

"What are you looking at?" she snapped finally at him. He rose an eyebrow and shook his head. Doesn't he say anything? she wondered to herself.

"I was just thinking that you don't look full white," he replied snidely and B.G. slapped him hard in the arm. Alex regarded him with a glacial glare. "And now I figured out that you're probably part Asian."

"Gee, ya think?" she asked him dryly. "Is there something wrong that I'm part Asian?"

"No, not at all."

B.G. had a rather humorous look on his face, something crossed between amusement and horror. Alex gave a sigh and let her frustration ebb away.

"It was nice meeting you," she told him, ignoring the auburn headed, blue-gray-eyed moron before saying, "I'll see you later."


Thank you.

"Nice going there Einstein," B.G. commented as they walked back to Bryce's house. "You managed to sound like a racist, I applaud you for making friends with our new neighbors." Bryce was silent and kicked a rock across the sidewalk. It skidded a couple of feet away, and Benji kicked it once it was in front of him. "You know, she wasn't that bad looking for an Asian," he said sarcastically. "I'm sure once she tells her family of you, they'll be so happy to have wonderful neighbors who come off as racists."

"Shut-up, Benjamin Gilbert Zimmer II," Bryce said finally, kicking the rock with the inside of his shoe so it hit B.G. on the shoe. "And you know I'm not racist."

"Yeah, yeah," his friend replied with a wave of his hand. "You just came off as one which is so much better than actually being one."

Bryce rolled his bluish eyes. "You know how my Mom and Dad are. They'll make a jell-o mold to greet them either today or tomorrow. And so will yours, but your parents, Benj, will make baklava and sing a song as our new neighbors open their front door--"

"Hey, hey, hey," Benji said, pretending to take offense. "My parents own a pastry shop, and when we met you, dear Bryce, my parents were tipsy from--"

"--drinking too much?"

"Obviously since my parents can only get drunk offa drinking too much, ya moron. They were drunk from the punch I spiked at the Christmas party," he informed airily. "Remember?"

"And you were only seven at the time, I wonder how you'll come out ten years from now," Bryce added, raking his messy golden-brown hair with a callused hand. "Even now you're putting frogs in teachers' desks."

Benji gave a loud snort and said, "Yeah, I wonder."



Subject: Here in the new town…

Hey mark, I see that you aren't online. D:

I'm so bored here. We just finished moving all our stuff in. My room is a little bigger than it was back in Forester, but it seems empty since I haven't ever lived in it. Rei is still annoying. I met two of our neighbors today. One seemed kind of nice, the other was an ass-hole. Their hands kind of looked callused, like they were baseball players. I hope the nice one is (his name was Benji… or BG I think), the other one seemed a little racist. I think tomorrow I'll check out and see if I can try out for the baseball team.

We played Bailey High before, right? We'd almost lost that one, remember? Hehe, but then Yuka managed to get a single. -sigh- I wish we'd never moved. Even if we're closer to Nii-san (Older Brother). I love him, but I never get to see him anymore since they're on away games. D":

Geh, sorry, I must be boring you with my self pity Dx

How are things back there? How's Coach Orel doing? Haha, did he cry? He said he would if I moved away. Even though I'm only a couple hours away, it seems so looooong.

Anyway, I better go to sleep, Pops'll kill me if he discovers that I'm still up and there's my first day of school tomorrow! Eeeeee… I'm so terrified. Anyway, I wish you'd sign on so I can talk with you along with Yuka and the rest of the team, but you guys are at that banquet thing, huh?

Well, Oyasumi,(Goodnight) Mark.



PS: Tell Yuka I said Hi, oh wait, sorry, I mean KAREN. ;D haha.

Alex paused before clicking "send" and shutting down her laptop. She set it down on the floor since she didn't have her desk set up and crawled into her bed. She yawned and stared up at the ceiling, seeing the shadows from her window dance as a breeze played with the branches of a tree outside.

There were boxes still piled up against the walls, but she had her clothes laid out on them for the next day. She had had the first day of school before back in Japan, then the first day of school in Forester a few years after that, then the first day of middle school, then the first day of high school, and now she was repeating the first day of high school except for the fact that she knew no one to help her along or feel stupid with her like Mark or Yuka.

Alex squeezed her eyes shut and heaved a sigh. She could hear Rei sleeping in the room next to hers; his snoring was loud, even for a nine-year-old. The little brat. She smiled to herself and shook her head before rolling over on her stomach and burying her head in her pillow.

She had never been good with first days. On her first day in Japan, she'd tripped and had fallen face first in mud. On her first day in Forester Elementary, she tripped and fell on chicken feathers (don't ask). First day in middle school, she'd fallen on a sharp rock and got a cut on her side, and the first day in high school she'd tripped and fallen on a senior girl… that hadn't been happy.

Dully, Alex wondered if she should wear knee pads and elbow pads before going to school.

5.30.2010 READ THIS!!!!!

A/N: I have received a couple reviews lately concerning my use of Japanese in this story (also an issue when I was writing it).

Yes I know it's in excess and it will be changed in the edited version. There is no need to remind me that I make use of Japanese in this story. DO NOT SEND ME A REVIEW ABOUT HOW THE JAPANESE BOTHERS YOU. I GET IT.

I welcome corrections, since I wrote this when my Japanese wasn't that good. But since then I have taken 4 college semesters (and counting) of Japanese and been to Japan twice. Please know what you're talking about when you correct me because I'll know if it's a load of bull and you're just someone trying to showoff.

I would appreciate it if you have criticism (on any subject) to LEAVE AN EMAIL ADDRESS OR SIGN IN. I will not flame you. I will probably ask you why you thought what you thought and use input to improve the story.

On the up side. I've seriously begun to edit this. :D

Thank you. Arigatou gozaimasu.

(And yes, that is the correct romaji.)

(And yes, romaji is spelled without an n)