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Hitmen Triumph

176 pages
Left winger Nolan Andrews thinks it's great that he can play hockey in Calgary, where his older brother, Nathan, is a star center for the Hitmen. When Nolan finds out that a lot of things about Nate's new life in Calgary don't make sense -- or might not even be legal -- Nolan has to make some difficult choices that will affect him and his brother for the rest of their lives.
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Hitmen Tr iumph
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Hitmen Tr iumph
S i g m u n d B r o u w e r
Orca Book Publishers
Copyright © 2007 Sigmund Brouwer
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system now known or to be invented, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication
Brouwer, Sigmund, 1959 Hitmen triumph / written by Sigmund Brouwer.
(Orca sports) ISBN 9781551438733 I. Title. II. Series.
PS8553.R68467H59 2007 jC813’.54 C20079031587
Summary: Left winger Nolan Andrews has to make some difficult choices that will affect him and his brother for the rest of their lives.
First published in the United States, 2007 Library of Congress Control Number:2007928616
Orca Book Publishers gratefully acknowledges the support for its publishing programs provided by the following agencies: the Government of Canada through the Book Publishing Industry Development Program and the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Province of British Columbia through the BC Arts Council and the Book Publishing Tax Credit.
Cover design: Teresa Bubela Cover photography: Getty Images Author photo: Bill Bilsley
Orca Book Publishers PO Box 5626, Stn. B Victoria, BC Canada V8R 6S4
Orca Book Publishers PO Box 468 Custer, WA USA 982400468
www.orcabook.com Printed and bound in Canada. Printed on 100% PCW recycled paper.
 010 09 08 07 • 4 3 2 1
To the Lonn brothersthanks for the inspiration!
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c h a p t e r o n e
I stood in the dark on the first tee box at a country club so expensive I couldn’t afford to work there as a dishwasher. I had a driver in my hand, ready to hit a golf ball down the fairway. If I hit the ball anywhere but straight, it would cost me twentyfive hundred dollars. Earlier that day, I had golfed the same hole during a charity golf tournament for the Calgary Hitmen hockey team. So I knew how difficult it was. Water on both sides.
S i g m u n d B r o u w e r
Trees in the worst places. That was during the day—and I’d taken two shots, plus two penalty strokes for going into the water, just to get the ball on the green. Then three more putts to drop it in the hole. A big fat seven on the scorecard. Now it was night. As in dark sky, bright stars, a crescent moon and the outlines of trees around me. As in no sunlight to help me see the ball on the little white tee. No sunlight to see where the ball went after I hit it. My twin brother, Nathan, stood across from me, pointing the beam of a flashlight at the ball he had just handed me. Nate had drawn a circle around the Nike swoosh using a blue felt marker. There would be no mis taking that it was my ball. If we found it after I hit it. Otherwise twentyfive hundred dollars were gone. It had been a very stupid bet. A tiny beetle crawled across the top of the ball. My focus was so strong that I saw the bug’s shadow etched across the white of the golf ball. There were probably a hundred other people around the tee box to watch me hit the ball.
H i t m e n T r i u m p h
Among them was a girl named Mercedes. Most of them—except for Mercedes—were hoping Nate and I would lose our bet. The center of the green was 514 yards away. If I took four shots or less to get the ball in the hole, we would win. If I took five strokes—which was par on this hole—nobody would win, and nobody would lose. But if I took more than five shots, the way I had earlier in the day, we would lose. A lot. I had bet a thousand dollars. Nate had put another fifteen hundred on me. Yeah. Twentyfive hundred dollars. Nate and I were seventeen and played on the same line for the Calgary Hitmen. Maybe someday we’d make it to the next level, into theNHL, where players could afford to lose that kind of cash. But even after working all summer, we didn’t have that much money saved up between the two of us. Not only that, I wondered if we would both get sus pended before the first exhibition game of the season if our coach found out about this stunt. “Rip it, Radar,” Nate said. My name is