Part one is here
As Tomas was contemplating all of this, his cell phone rang. It was Francois Beauchemin, who was also meeting with Coach Ron Wilson later that same day. “Tomas, Tomas…” he asked, “ Is everything ok? It is now noon. Do you need any help to be on your way?” At that moment, Tomas wanted nothing more than to tell him every detail, but he confined himself to not do so. Tomas was started at the sound of his own voice, which was tinnier and squeakier than normal, but still his own. “I am fine, Francois. I just had a little trouble with my alarm clock plus a bit of a late night last night. I am fine.” Tomas hung up the phone and his quiet was interrupted again, this time by an unexpected visit from Mike Van Ryn. Mike knocked on the door, weakly, but with his bandaged wrist. “Tomas, Tomas” he called out, “What’s going on?” After a short while, he urged in a deeper voice, “Tomas. Tomas. Are you alright? Do you need anything?” Tomas directed Mike away with “I’ll be ready right away.” Mike whispered “Tomas, I beg you—ah, crap, there goes my wrist again. I think I broke it clean off this time.I have to go get some Tylenol, and maybe a doctor.” Tomas ignored Mike’s cries and was glad that he had locked the door so tightly.
First, Tomas wanted to get up, get dressed and get breakfast, since he had reached the conclusion that lying in bed was not going to solve any problems. It was easy to throw off the covers, however, standing on the floor proved a challenge. He knees felt weak and he felt as though his whole body was spinning, starting with his head and moving all the way down to his feet. It was a truly odd sensation, since Tomas was not a man who was not easily injured or afflicted with illness. He felt as though every step was tentative, as though he wasn’t sure if he could even walk anymore, let alone be an elite defenseman. No matter how he felt, Tomas told himself, “I must not stay in bed uselessly.” However, his lack of equilibrium took a hold of the Czech, and he sat back down on the edge of the bed. He thought about how much easier it would be if he had someone to help him out—maybe John Mitchell or Jeff finger, since they were not usually so occupied—surely people as study as they were would be able to help Tomas get around. Alas, he was home by himself, so no help could be found.
There was another ring at the door. Tomas recognized the study step and the firm greeting of Ron Wilson. Why was Tomas the only one condemned to a team where the slightest lapse commanded attention? Did this mean that every member of this team was a scoundrel and a slacker? Among them was there then no truly devoted person who, if he failed to use just a couple of hours in the morning for defensive planning would become abnormal from pangs of conscience and really be in no state to get out of bed? Must Ron Wilson himself come, and in the process must it be demonstrated to the entire innocent Leaf Nation that the investigation of this suspicious circumstance could be entrusted only to the intelligence of the coach? With his head spinning with questions, Tomas fell onto the floor with a loud crash.
“Something has fallen in here”, said Ron Wilson with his usual gruffness. Tomas tried to think of any situation he had been in that was at all similar to this, and he could find none. He could find no possible way to justify his current state. Tomas heard the creak of Ron’s shoes on his floor as the coach stated “Tomas, it’s me, Coach Wilson. I’m here for you.” “I know”, said Tomas, but not loud enough for anyone but him to hear it.