It was the fool's day and we tried to trick each other and one day I got him good. It was a baseball/softball/tennis/track complex with a pay phone which meant you put a quarter in it.
I got a quarter and took a friend. We walked the mile or so it was until we got there and called him.
"Papaw?" (heavy breathing as frantic as I could play)
"Shea. What's wrong?"
"I'm at the baseball complex. I think I broke my leg."
Let's pause for what a little shithead I was.
He was most likely at his kitchen table enjoying some peace and quiet and coffee.
It was his week off from work.
"Where I play softball." (I kept up the charade with my friend laughing in the background and me trying to turn my back to her because we thought this was funny)
"What do you need?"
"I need for you to come get me, Papaw. I think I need to go to the hospital."
"I'm on my way."
Oscar winning performance or jerk a knot up in that kid. You decide.
I placed myself at the bottom of the hill near the pavement. The complex was deserted other than my friend multi-tasking, laughing at my instructions and following them all at the same time.
He drove up and skidded to place right in front of me.
Got out of the silver streak and ran around that car like he was a trained EMT.
He and my friend carried me to the car and put me in it and I tried my very best to keep up with how I thought it was supposed to happen though I now remember less of that.
What I remember clearly is he put that car in D.
That's when I said, "Papaw," and he turned around.
His arm reached.
His hand gripping the back of the passenger seat.
"Are you okay?"
"April fools," I said.
Then my friend and me busted out laughing.
There was that moment, the choice in between when he could have whooped me and the option he took. I never even noticed it on his face, the split second of that decision.
"I knew it," he said.
I laughed as he told me he knew it was April Fools, and he knew it was my turn.
The day before, the week before, the year before, he always got me good.
I was and still am completely spoiled by the love of a man, and I won't ever apologize for that.