“Our power is growing. I can feel it,” said Luke Babbitt, seemingly talking to an empty locker room.
“It is as I told you. The longer I get, the better you shoot,” replied Luke’s hair. “Monty, the vile minutes-reducer, will pay dearly for his insolence. When you were benched, I could feel the anger glowing inside you like red-hot coals. Now he must be punished.”
Luke furrowed his eyebrows. “I wouldn’t go that far. He made a mistake, but he’s fixed it, and now, with your help, I can make two-point field goals in addition to three-pointers.”
“He must suffer for the pain he has brought us, Luke. You cannot hide your true feelings from me. Your fury was greater than the mightiest hurricane, and had you unleashed it, its destructive force would have been greater as well.”
Running a comb through the freshly-showered locks, Luke answered, “Okay, I admit I was a little ticked, but he’s the one who looks stupid in the national media for not realizing my potential to score fifteen on a nightly basis.”
“Do not try to appease me with the comb, Luke. I am steadfast in my position. Monty Williams must be made to feel pain tenfold the pain that you felt when you got the DNP-CD. Hurt him.”
Luke started to feel a little worried. His hair had been a wholly good-natured influence up until this point. “I told you, I don’t want to hurt coach. He knows he screwed up.”
Suddenly, in front of his widened eyes flashed gory visions of a dismembered, bloody body. In his ears rang the words, “Kill Monty Williams. Punish him. Hurt him. Maim him. Kill him. Kill him! KILL HIM!” Falling to the floor, Luke clapped his hands over his ears and shouted out in agony.
“Hey Luke, something wrong man?” came a voice from the door.
With the same abruptness that they arrived with, the violent visions departed Luke’s eyes, and he could see Anthony Davis looking at him with a mildly concerned expression. “Uh, no, just practicing for my, uh, acting class. Yeah.”
Anthony raised his singular eyebrow. “Oh. You sure?”
Luke picked himself off the floor. In his ears, he could hear his hair continuing to issue murderous commands in a softer voice. “Yeah. I try to do it away from all the guys since they’d just make fun. You won’t tell anybody, will you?”
“Nah, for sure. Well, see you,” said Anthony, turning to leave.
When his teammate was out of earshot, Luke addressed his hair. “I’m not going to hurt anybody, okay? Your only job is to make me a better shooter, remember that.”
The silence that greeted Luke filled him with an immense unease. To what hidden corner of his mind had his hair retreated, and what was it doing there?