Story:Monthly Check up

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Monthly Check up
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“You know why I brought you in here right, Andi?” Hector said staring across the desk at the skunk.  

Andi nodded handing the rat a binder. He knew that the Lone Star general manager had literally dug him out of bankruptcy. Being in the office face to face with the rat reminded him of when he offered him a new chance.

Andi Sekforde had just arrived at the office of his new team in Austin Texas. The skunk wore baggy clothes to cover his almost furles body after the incident a few months ago. He was still in recovering emotionally from the incident, but with the season rapidly approaching, The texas General manager insisted on a meeting. He knocked on the office door and heard a voice call back “Come in” The skunk walked into the office and there was the Texas General manager, Hector Louis sitting behind his desk. The rat sat with his arms folded seriously although his expression seemed more welcoming than serriouse.

“Have a seat” Hector said motioning to an empty seat. Andi nodded and took a seat.

“Where’s your agent?” The rat asked.

The skunk took a breath. “He….erm...discontinued his services as my agent after he collected what I owed him”

“I see.” Hector nodded. “Well, it’ll make this meeting a lot more shorter and more to the point.”

“Oh shit.” Andi said in his head as he shuffled in his seat uncomfortably. The skunk felt as if he were a cub in the principal's office about to be heavily punished. Although he knew this wasn’t the case, his shattered confidence made it hard for him to relax. Hector took notice of his and offered a friendly smile. “Don’t worry Andi, this is all informal. No need to be nervous.”

“Sorry….er….I mean sorry sir” Andi replied with a half fake smile.

“No worries” Hector said holding up a stack of papers. “Well Andi first of all, I have to tell you this is a biggest gamble I’ve ever made. Eighty-thousand in debt, constant lateness to practices, and meetings with management, and according to some sources that shall remain between us, someone whos is a ladies man with a lady a day…”

Hector paused for a clear sigh of disapproval before continuing.

“I’ll be  brutally honest with you, you would have been lucky if you made the d-league. Even more, it would have been a miracle if some other team picked you up for a restricted free agent contract. I could not begin to tell you how many general managers and sports news reporters have called and asked what I was thinking of offering you this contract.”

Andi looked like he was about to break down and cry in the middle of Hector’s office. He new he had made some mistakes and was suffering mentally because of them. Being reminded of those mistakes made those open wounds feel like a box of salt was being poured on them. Hector saw this and offered him a tissue. The skunk took it and blew his nose hard  

“I’m sorry” Andi said with a sniff as his voice broken up.

“It’s alright” Hector said understandingly before continuing.  “As I was saying though Andi, despite all bad stuff in the minus column, I believe there is a good skunk and a star player deep down inside you.” Andi looked at him after wiping the tears from his eyes  “R-really?”

Hector nodded and indicated Andi’s shaven body. “I trust you’re aware that what happened there was more then a freak accident. It was a message from the fates-that-be, that this is your chance to rebuild your life and yourself from scratch, and I am gonna help you out where I can and see fit to do so.”

The rat paused and set aside a paper from the stack in front of him and handed Andi a binder with note paper in it. He took it and and looked at  the manager with a curious look.

“That is yours. As part of your contract terms and agreement, you and I will meet in this office once a month over the next three seasons in this office and go over your finances. I want you to use that binder to log any purchases you make over the next three seasons and how much they cost, whether it be rent, bill’s, food, necessaries, or anything. Log it down here and bring it with you to our monthly meetings, and we’ll go over it together to make sure you don’t end up in the hole again.”

Andi Listened closely as hector explained the binder and what it was for. The idea of keeping a log of how much he spent and where he spent it was so foreign to him. Up until he went bankrupt he was so frivolous with his spendings he didn’t take the time to really appreciate the value of a dollar or the value of anything he had. The skunk ran a hand down the front of the binder with teary eyed smile. He had trouble forming the right words so he nodded his head understandingly.

Hector smiled. “Lastly, unless we have a dire need, don’t expect to see a lot of playing time this season. We’ll give you only a few games on bench and one on starting if coch and I decide you earned a chance. Rest of the time I want you to be there to support your teammates through the good and the bad. You understand?”

“Yes, I understand sir.” Andi said softly. He was fine taking a back of the buss seat for a majority of the season, but still wanted to be a part of the team, and play

“Very good.  Now that we’re on the same page…” Hector stood up and walked over to the skunk. “...Welcome to the Lone Stars”

Andi stood up and gave the rat a hug. Hector was taken aback a moment but returned the hug as The skunk heaved a dry sob. “Thank you Hector! I’ll do my best not to disappoint you”

The rat smiled and patted his back. “I have a lot of confidence in you. Just don;t fuck up.”

“I won’t!” Andi said trying to regain his composure as the two separated from the hug.

Hector nodded. And placed a paw on his shoulder “let’s go meet the team shall we?”

That was two months ago. Right now, Hector was opening the binder he gave Andi to where they last had their meeting. The skunk since then has been improving himself. He still has a little mental instability, but has come a long way in two months. His fur was almost all the way back, save for a few small patches. Last month, Andi’s financial review went really well. His account matched what he had spent, there were no outstanding expenditures, and he was on time for practice and appointments.   

Hector looked at the point where they left off and started looking at the numbers and what they were labeled as “Hmmm….everything looks good so far, paid your part of the rent and your half in bills?”

“Yes, Stefani and Piper are contributing to the monthly expenses” Andi Explained. The other girls were scared off by Andi’s incident. But Piper and Stefani continue to remain supportive of him even during the darker times.   

Hector nodded with a smile. “Good, lets see grocery bill looks good, eat out food looks good too, few small things here and there but  within reason looks like.”

“I had to get that new e-book book by Sammi Zahara, I love his work” Andi said  with a smile.

Hector smiled at him with  another nod. “He does some good work. .speaking of good work…” Hector closed the binder and handed it back to the skink with a smile. “You’re doing alright so far Andi. keep doing what you’re doing and don’t get to spend crazy during the holidays and you’ll be alright.”

“Thanks Hector.” Andi said with a genuine smile as he put the binder back in his bag.

“Just one more thing.” Hector said suddenly.

“What is it?” Andi asked curiously.

Hector opened one of his desk drawers, pulled out an envelope, and handed it to Andi. “This is for you, and early Christmas present.”

“Thanks Hector” the skunk opened. the unsealed envelope and pulled out what looked like a bank card. “Uh boss, this is nice and all, but I already have a bank account”

Hector grinned. “I’m well aware of that, That card however is for your new savings account”

Andi stared at him his mouth a gape in shock. “”

“I have connections in certain places with my girlfriend” he said with a wink. “I also I even made a generous deposit of 500 dollars. To help get it going”

“I-I don’t know what to say….”Andi said trying to hold back the floodgates.

“Just say you will make it grow and access it only if you extremly desperately need it.”  Hector said calmly. Andi nodded. “Could I give you a hug sir?”

Andi wondered, how could he ever pay back such generosity? If he could win them a championship that’d be a nice start After everything that happened, only to be given a second chance, he figured the best way to start would be to keep up his good work and keep improving himself a little each day. Andi couldn’t help but shed a few tears of happiness as he hugged hector. He felt truly blessed.

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