Chapter 1 Part II A gathering of forces copyright Esteban Erik Stipnieks words and photo all rights reserved
June 7 1993 New Braunfels High School
Noel Scott found the building. The directions were direct and easy. Stephen had told him much. He parked at the field house parking lot and went in to the office as described by Dr. King. She was waiting. Bob Hansen had seen her and decided to see what was going on. Noel Scott respected Dr. King's position though the two years of his coaching her son had shown her dark side. He was maturing into a man and Coach Scott felt the need to aid him in this adventure.
Dr. King introduced the two men. Noel Scott quickly asked, "Would you like an assistant for the cross-country team?" Bob Hansen did a quick assessment: Tom six years down the road. Bob too had heard much of Noel from Stephen King. The question was asking him if he wanted someone to hand him 2 20 dollar bills. The next line out Noel's mouth was something he almost hated himself for. He felt as if he was talking behind a person's back in her presence, "I would like to aid in the transition."
It was all Coach Bob could do to keep a straight face. The man who wanted to be his assistant just slid one right under the radar of Dr. King. "I will take all the help I can get," came Coach Bob's response.
Dr. King had narrowly gotten the superintendent's position based upon a lobby including her older sister in the counseling office and a local doctor from the west end. Dr. King was a compromise choice between factions in the city. Her background in the mid to late 1970s was radical but in practice as administrator of secondary education had struck a moderate tone. Her expertise as a bilingual educator was noted. She was white enough to be accepted by the new crowd that had transformed the city. In practice from the early 1980s, onward though she had flirted with the La Raza Unida crowd. Her value system was very acceptable. Her background though poor had in its core the elements of Spanish upper crust culture. She melded well.
Coach Bob was surprised to hear the double meaning in close quarters it was a bold move speaking about a boss’s son in her presence. Dr. King was clearly unaware of what had just happened. She smiled "Thank you for being understanding Coach Scott." Dr. King informed Coach Scott she would allow the coach to give him a tour of the building and talk then he would meet with the principal face to face.
Coach Bob was intrigued and said, "Let me give you my number so we can talk about your role helping the team." Coach Bob was surprised at the balls he had just seen displayed with the complete matter of fact coolness. Noel Scott got the tour and building. He got the feel of his new boss. As it unfolded he was keenly aware that the building and the boss was as described accurately by Stephen King. Principal Wallace was old school southern Baptist the times. Coach Noel Scott saw the flaws Stephen's mother was sent to fix. Stephen's commentary about real events and the discussion with Wallace painted a picture that defined Stephen King who had earned the nickname Ace. Principal Wallace lived in world half a step removed from reality choosing to believe a heritige that echoed through the halls rather then facing a changing reality. Stephen King's mother had spoken orders and they were to be followed. The great irony was her son could be a loyal follower of the real task. Noel Scott hoped Stephen would reclaim the title Ace Noel Scott feared at his heart Ace (Stephen King) would revert to the person he was in New Braunfels. The tremendous fireball of emotions that was ace Scott had seen a couple times could either be a great help or great detriment to a common cause. Noel Scott marveled on the surface the secularist had more in common in seeing the problem then the believer did. Noel Scott would have hard row to hoe with the new boss and awfully little wiggle room.
With the new Principal Wallace Noel Scott kept his manners knowing he was addressing a brother in Christ older brother but in his heart realized he was now in a situation Stephen had just been in two months before with Coach P. The younger man had to show gently the error of the older man's ways by action. He left with a smile on his face thinking to himself "Sense of humor God good sense of humor." Coach Noel Scott was now keenly aware he was being obedient to the God he worshipped and he was aware of the role he would have ahead. He had an application for a summer job at Schlitterbahn to fill out and then he would quickly have a meeting with Coach Bob.
The application process at Schlitterbahn was simple and straightforward. Schlitterbahn knew of the new soccer coach and was in dire need of staff easy hire. He was quickly given an orientation date as his I-9 was filled out. He was a proven quantity and the park needed people. Coach Scott called Coach Bob and was given directions to his house.
Burning some spare time Coach Noel discovered a section of park as he did he realized he was surrounded by the fabled district course. It was pretty and he walked around getting a feel and learning.
Noel Scott found the place overlooking the river with a few drunken tourists. He was offered a drink by Coach Bob and the two sat on small deck. Coach Bob was feeling him out and realized how much Stephen had remained in both worlds. Amanda has been accurately described along with Bo and Tom. Linda had been talked about as well. Noel Scott had heard the stories and while Stephen’s initial hostile response to his new team had been intense he had learned the strengths of Denton. Coach Bob had found the man described well by Stephen his attributes and his vices. Stephen had quietly yearned to have Noel run with him. Coach Bob saw that the place Noel was seeking out. The situation as outlined was simple two very strong personalities were about to join his team which his assistant had an uncanny understanding of. Coach Bob could see his new assistant happily second fiddle and he would help set the tone for 2 of his runners 1 reintegrating one integrating with a new team. As the two parted "Thanks for your help."
North Lakes Park Denton Texas
Tara walked out. The air was still and a thin layer of clouds hung three thousand feet in the air. Her father told her to run. In 4 weeks, they would be moving to this strange place called New Braunfels. She needed credibility on the team and she could not be the coach's daughter. She needed her own merit as part of change that she sensed Stephen so wanted to happen. It was her first stepping out on a sense of mission as a Christian. She needed to follow his lead. She made the decision to run the guys course at a slower pace but it was a mileage base.
Then she started running it was the guys course after she walked about half a mile the legs muscles slowly loosening up the warm humid air. It had been a couple weeks and her legs protested but her heart drove her forward. She started out with a long loop around the football field below the flood control dam and then up above it through the serpentine course and around the small lake passed the flying field for the model airplanes another huge s turn then on the dam itself the last mile of the course. Obligation she felt Stephen was a slightly messed up older brother but her father to some extent trusted him. She left tired but happy.
Tara had been running. Kuk was a sports camp and long distance running had been an activity she was not going to be cheerleading for a year. She was with her youth group getting the camp one last session with friends. She was with the wife of her youth minister one night Kali Chance. The two talked about New Braunfels the town. Kali only knew about the town from former residents. The move to Tara would be a trial. That would mean she would be forced to grow up. Tara had been away from the year of agony at Denton Ryan. Denton Bible’s youth group had already became a force for good. The result was a world Tara had a degree of security Stephen King did not enjoy his second year in Denton. Steven was about outreach to the lost. Tara was only dimly aware why. Youth group had become rigorous and prepped her and to some extent had been a security blanket that was about to be removed. Kali did not like what had happened so fast. The Tamsters kept the quality of the youth goup. Prosperity was already poisoning things. It was a pep talk Tara was told she was going to face trials but it would make her better. Some college sophmores who had been at Ryan Stephen's sophmore year and Stephen King were complaining. There was the realization Tara would avoid prosperity's poison. She told Tara it was time to learn and grow in her own faith.
Unicorn Stadium June 1993
Coach Bob had informally running with Amanda Cook, Bo, Tom and others. Stephen King's parents had moved in he was still at LLYC he would drive in two weeks. He announced to Bo and Amanda Cook that Stephen King would be back and their would be two Coach's daughters on the team. Coach Bob had gathered that Tara was a bit like glam version of Kathrine Whe. She had yet to arrive. He also said the new soccer coach would be helping him that season. What Coach Bob did not know about the murder. Amanda seemed curious. Coach Bob announced "I am giving him his letter he earned his freshman year." Bo and Amanda had limited contact with Stephen King and were feeling a bit uneasy. Coach Bob knew Stephen while liking him did not respect him. The letter for the jacket would he hoped anchor Stephen to the team. Coach Bob sensed it and said “I am getting an assistant the new soccer coach has volunteered to help he has coached Stephen and Tara for the last 2 seasons. Leisha arrived her brother had been she said "Publications photographer, favored by sports teams active in a lot embarrassed himself couple pep rallies yelling too loud." Amanda giggled. Bo smiled "That's Stephen." Kimber would get to run her senior year as a Unicorn though her dad was at Judson as the head football coach. She could see Coach Bob's nervousness at the dynamic of 2 football coaches daughters who on surface appeared to be rivals.. She looked at him making a vow to make the newcomer welcome. Leisha was happy familiar faces. Tom was happy for Stephen King knowing he loved New Braunfels. It meant that Stephen King's final season would be where he loved. Tom was happy for his friend and sensed that some deep desires of Stephen King were about to be fulfilled. The official start of workouts would occur in a couple weeks. When it did Stephen King and Tara who had been running and would be ready ready to join what would be a team in the making.
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