This article is the second part of The True Canadian series. You can read Part I here. Part III will come when the author has figured out what will happen next.
Every morning, I awake drenched in sweat from the latest edition of the same dream. For nearly three months, every night has been the same. The visions do not depart as the sun arises, however; no, each and every time I close my eyes I see him guzzling eight-month old milk, insisting that I partake in his repugnant routine to draw strength from within. Each day presents the same wave of feelings I will never escape, even if I did manage to escape the source of these terrors.
After seven long years of waiting to interview Robert Sacre for a sports feature in my Secondary School’s newspaper, Sacre finally invited me to sit down with him as he would answer my unrelenting inquiry. You can say this visit didn’t go as planned, as Sacre’s eerie behaviours threatened my life before Joel Anthony swooped in to save the day, as any True Canadian would be more than happy to do. I saw the hulking Los Angeles Laker down on the floor with busted ribs and a crushed skull, but that didn’t stop him from returning to the court, where is still out there getting garbage time rebounds for a floundering franchise, or from his inhuman tendencies that bring me relentless nightmares.
My invariable angst was realized one fateful morning as I woke up with five red marks on my left ankle. Upon close examination, the outline of these marks appeared to layout the print of a hand, a giant hand that I am all too familiar with, for Sacre visited me as I dreamt and a left a print he knew I will never forget. I originally believed that he wanted me to know he was there just to strike fear in my soul, but I discovered his direct intentions after a trip to the pantry: The maple syrup was absent, a warning of future horrors.
I fear Sacre is back with a vengeance and he’s targeting all the True Canadians, an honour the Louisiana-born behemoth will always cease to behold. I must warn them all of Sacre’s insidious plans before it’s too late. I must find Joel.
I should truly follow the NBA more. I flew all the way down to Miami to find that Joel had been shipped off to Boston in the infamous Jordan Crawford megatrade of 2014. My trip up Boston mirrored my Miami stay as I learned soon after my arrival that Joel was traded for the one and only Will Bynum during the offseason. To my ever-withstanding fervour in journalism, I discovered Joel would be in town with his Detroit Pistons in two days time for their December 3rd matchup with the Celtics.
During the afternoon of the 2nd, I managed to get ahold of the Detroit Pistons front office, posing as a Grantland intern seeking an interview from rookie Spencer Dinwiddie. After a couple quick questions about Dinwiddie’s surgically repaired knee and his transition to life as an NBA player, I checked in about Joel’s availability for an interview. Dinwiddie’s voice cracked into a slightly lower tone among a pausing speak as his mustache gloomed of irreconcilable clairvoyance, for Joel hadn’t been seen since the team’s charter flight touched down at Logan and it appeared as though his disappearance was forceful.
Soon enough, I discover Celtic Canadians Dwight Powell and Kelly Olynyk are also missing under congruent circumstances. Airing in the corner of my eye on a distant lobby flat-screen, SportsCenter is breaking the news that myriad players across the NBA are missing. The names roll across the screen’s bottom panel: Joel Anthony, Anthony Bennett, Samuel Dalembert, Tyler Ennis, Cory Joseph, Steve Nash, Andrew Nicholson, Kelly Olynyk, Dwight Powell, Nik Stauskas, Tristan Thompson, Andrew Wiggins. Every player is Canadian; in fact, every single Canadian NBA player is on that rolling list besides the mysterious Laker.
Struggling to come to my senses and temper my racing heart, my phone hums a familiar tune as a call from a blocked number is received. I contemplate answering, but there’s no use, for there can only be one person on the other end of that call: Bobert.