Beneath the press box…

Page 58… in a fiction series

Tiller slowly drove the perimeter drive of the old football stadium.  There was a security entrance and a guard gate where credentials were checked by a sleepy teenager with acne.  Tiller rolled his eyes, Miranda made a note.  After parking and securing the car, they crossed a fenced in lot, and passed through a long concrete tunnel.  The air on the other side smelled like damp cellar and old food.  

A deep echo and the click-clicking of her heels led them into a shadowy space, the sprawling famous field not yet in view.  They were met by a man in a suit named McDevitt.  He flashed a badge, a gun, then extended his hand to Tiller, acknowledging that they had met before.  Miranda, curious, made a note.

They followed him up, up, up a steep spiral pathway.  Tiller said the guests on graduation day would be packed together like cattle, given the popularity of the First Lady who was slated to speak.  A terrorist, foreign or otherwise, could easily infiltrate the crowd with IEDs, Anthrax, or other deadly weapons, causing panic and mass destruction at an otherwise pleasant event.

Miranda lagged behind for a moment hoping to catch a glimpse of the field. While this wasn’t exactly a vacation, she was happy to be out of Charlevoix for a few days, glad to be away from the ubiquitous Neil Lipman, lingering like a bad winter virus with no cure in sight.   

While Tiller made a call to the office,  Miranda dashed into a nearby ladies room.  The absence of Neil’s prying eyes was refreshing.  They continued the preliminary walk around the upper deck, past a row of seasonal hot dog and T-shirt vendors, and up to the press box.  It was secured only by lock and key.  A biometric signature ID system would be a far better choice.  Miranda was glad her boss made her study so hard.

As Tiller walked and talked, she followed his eyes from one section to the next… from the bleacher seats, to a crew of masons repairing an ancient pillar, and onto the monstrous scoreboard.  Its size was impressive and intimidating, and so was the guy in baggy jeans supervising a work crew.   

Tiller said, “Make a note and stay focussed.”  She wrote it down and also noted that she was becoming boy crazy.

Moving down to ground level, the sun came out, the field looking as bright as game day.  Before Tiller turned to see the press box, Miranda spotted a fat man leaning back in his seat, feet up, smoking and enjoying the view.  She froze.  His name growled like a beast in her throat, a cigarette waiting to be snuffed out forever. 


Miranda had been a fool to think his presence in her life was a mere coincidence.  Tiller had driven most of the day to reach the stadium, up I-75 and through the U.P.  Neil Lipman could not have been far behind.  She decided a stop at Tommy’s Gotcha in Traverse City was in order.  One of the regulars would know something.  And it was time to ask Emerson James Tiller for his help.

McDevitt led them toward the end zone.  Tiller gestured for her to stay close, sensing her unease.  She took one last look over her shoulder at the press box.  Lipman was gone.

To be continued…

*This story is based on some true events, however, has been fictionalized and all persons appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real people, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

© 2012, Shoes for an Imaginary Life. All rights reserved.

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18 Responses to Beneath the press box…

  1. Jan says:

    This gives me shivers. Lipman is bad news, and I certainly hope Tiller is going to give him his walking papers.

    • Linda says:

      Miranda is really getting concerned, but Linda is still not so sure. A clue will soon be revealed as to his real purpose. ; )

  2. Linda, I thought I had it figured out that Lipman had been hired by Tiller, but I guess I was wrong. And the more I learn of Tiller the more I realize he would never hire someone like Lipman to do anything for him. I’m liking Tiller more and more, and Lipman less and less. ;) Looking forward to the next installment! Peace, Linda

    • Linda says:

      You’re right about Tiller. He is a man of such high character that Lipman’s employ would be out of the question.

      And don’t make me change the ending for readers who have to keep peeking.

  3. Larry Who says:

    This Lipman guy is starting to make me think of Neuman on Seifeld. I draw out his name the same way Jerry did for Neuuuuuuuuuuuuu-man.

    Good action scene.

    Okay, I’m ready. Let’s turn the page.

    • Linda says:

      I would have bet that you’d be the one to catch that, Larry. I created his name with that Neuuuuuuuuuuu-man touch in mind. Finally got a chance to use it!

      • Jim Travis says:

        Hello Neuuumannnnnnn,
        Hello Lippppmannnnnnn,
        Yep, works pretty good, are we going to see a tall, quirky, frazzle haired sidekick for Lipman enter the scene soon? Will Miranda come home to her boat to find them making sausages to polka music in her galley? Will there be fleas and empty “chunky” wrappers in her couch? these and many more answers await in the coming installments of “before the pirates came”. So Please do not keep us waiting so long between chapters to find out what happens to Melinda, I mean Miranda, Okay Linda? ;-)

        • Linda says:

          Hey Jim… YOU are the one that is too funny! Yes, the Neuman thing had occured to me, but for now it’s in the same way that Jerry bears his teeth, squints his eyes, and hisses, “NEUMAN.”

          Thanks for following along. Hope all is well with you… : )

  4. .endtransmission. says:

    This job/adventure with Tiller sounds pretty amazing and fun. I’m hoping Tiller gives Lipman his walking papers soon, and sends him running. Either that or Tiller mops the floor with him. Everyone is in agreement that Lipman is a nasty character. That’s a credit to your writing prowess, Linda. You’ve created so many great characters here. Hat’s off to you!

    • Linda says:

      Yes, my friend… Tiller would be the man to finish the job. Who knows what the future holds… ; l

  5. Debbie says:

    Oh that was creepy, for Miranda to look up and see him there! Definite security problem with that guy lurking around. haha! So well written, Linda . . .just love it! I liked all the “Miranda made a note.” I need to do that all day long! God bless you as you keep us reading and learning! love and prayers!

    • Linda says:

      “Made a note…” You’re too funny.

      I think everyone can relate to at least one unwanted creepy person hiding beneath the press box of life. Even my mom’s starting to get a little worried! ; )

  6. Theresa says:

    Do you remember that old game show called “Concentration” where you had to make matches in order to get to see a part of the puzzle and try to solve it? Here is a clip:

    You write so well. You give us just enough to hint at what might be in store, but never so much that we lose our intrigue. I can’t wait to find out how these puzzle pieces fit together!

    I am so glad that you write the way that you do. You remind me of some very important things that being an awful lot of much needed comfort.


    • Theresa says:

      I meant to say “bring”…not “being”. Sorry.

    • Linda says:

      How true… Yes, we all need comfort, like oxygen! And being encouraged helps alot, too. I think the very bad things that are about to happen in the story will be a challenge to both, inspite of Tiller’s positive infuence on Miranda’s life. Too bad, but that’s the way life goes sometimes.. : l

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