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He still couldn’t believe it. The emotional joy in his heart was causing a very physical rush of excitement, starting in his chest and stemming straight down to his balls. How did he, William Preston McLintok III, manage to get a position like this? Call it luck, charm, good karma from previous lives that somehow wasn’t used up during his previous three years in Delta — he’d figure out which denomination to thank later. This is fucking legit, Will thought. Here he stood mere feet away from the stage on which hundreds of dreams would be realized. Here he stood…at the NFL Draft.
Trying to recall just how crazy of circumstances had put him here, Will realized that even his fraternity brothers who had been there when he got the call still weren’t 100% sure. It all started when Will had been tasked on beer duty after a Kappa kegger had gone off the rails in early December. Drawing the short straw, Will was sent with his buddy Francis “Frank the Tank” Hearly in Frank’s truck to pick up several flats of Bud Light from the local Circle K. Just when I was making my move on Becca, damn it, Will grimaced. He and Frank walked into the K, grabbing the wheelbarrow from the truck bed.
“What?” Frank slurred. “Couldn’t find the fucking wagon and the JIs scattered like roaches once we drew straws.”
Will shook his head. Once they began loading the flats into the wheel barrow, a glint caught his eye. There, on the Bud Light can, sat a label Will had seen a thousand times before. A slight difference, however, was easy to see: a silver frame on the bottle promoting an NFL draft contest. Will’s interest was immediately piqued.
“Can you help me or what?!? I’m sweating more than I did after formal when I took those ‘shrooms,” bellowed Frank.
“Chill the fuck out!” Will shot back. His eyes diverted from Frank back to the bottle, reading on. One lucky person can earn one free ticket to Philadelphia and deliver the first selection card for the 2017 NFL Draft! Enter the promo code below to qualify!
Will froze. He wanted this. He needed this. What better way to justify his sports administration major in future interviews and happy hours than to stand center stage, feet planted, and hear just feet away from him those immortal words: “With the first pick in the 2017 NFL draft…”
“I know what to do…” Will whispered, determined to see his dream be realized.
After 24 hours of sleep deprivation, a cache of Monsters, and some questionable “encouragement” to continue, Will and his team of JIs worked into the night following the party, feverishly entering the promo code under Will’s name. It was three months later in the chapter TV room when Will received the call. Like an Alabama player with a rage problem, Will barreled past the Tri Delts coming down the stairs, knocking the wind out of one.
“Hey!” shouted the pudgier, shorter Tri Delt.
Will ignored her. The only reason why she was even in the house was because Hunter “The Hunter” Godfrey had lost a bet and had to bag a whale last night. The chances of seeing her ever again were as slim as the dream waistline the Tri Delt had written as her Jenny Craig diet goal: unlikely and depressingly sad. Will rounded the door to his room when he answered, “Hello?”
“Congratulations! You have been chosen to present the number one pick in the 2017 NFL Draft on behalf of Bud Light! A representative will take your information down shortly and will instruct you on your flight and trip info…”
The bellow of excitement that came from Will’s gut shook the house. Brothers who rushed in and heard the news only added to the furor of noise and exhilaration. What began as a normal Thursday night ended in a whirlwind of celebration for Will that included a stop at every bar in town with a round of drinks for him. Thrilling chaos was the only name of the game that night…
Will choked back tears as he returned from his daydream and looked at the stage. Crewmen were working to put the finishing touches on the arena outside the Philadelphia Museum of Art. I am going to be a part of history, he thought. He had already been briefed and given his cues. All that was left was for him to visit the Bud Light VIP bar and try his luck at chatting away the cute vixens that were the bartenders.
As he strolled over to the bar, Will was struck by the image before him. A curvy, strawberry blonde with a pair of melons that would make a gay man return to the closet sat quietly nursing her vodka tonic. Will, discreetly pulling the ‘ole headband trick for his rapidly growing erection, sat to her right and put out his hand.
“Hi, I’m Will. How’s it going?”
The blonde smiled. “Hannah. Going great. Waiting the last 10 minutes before the draft starts and I have to escort out the first pick.”
The crotch area of the pants of Will’s olive suit got slightly tighter. “Really now? It just so happens that I am in charge of delivering the first pick tonight. Wish it were for my home team, the New Orleans Saints, but I can’t complain, even if it is for the Browns.”
Hannah smiled as she put her hand on top of his. “My it seems like you’re quite the important man tonight. Tell me, how does someone like you get put into such a position?”
Will thought for a second before answering coolly, “I could explain, but let me show you exactly what kind of position I can put you into.” Hannah answered his smirk with one of her own. “Sounds great.”
Just as he began to move to bring Hannah to whatever bathroom stall was closest, a tall executive with Browns credentials walked to Will. “Good evening, Mr. McLintok. My name is John Reynolds and I am the Assistant GM for the Browns.” He handed Will an envelope. “Here is the selection you will hand Mr. Goodell. Once we are put on the clock, please wait until 30 seconds before our time is up to deliver.”
“Sure,” Will mumbled. “Any chance you could tell me who it might be?”
Reynolds laughed. “I think the answer is obvious, don’t you? We believe Mr. Garrett will finally turn around the fortunes of this team. He is unquestionably our pick.”
And with that, he walked away.
“It looks like we only have about 15 minutes before you do your job,” Hannah whispered in Will’s ear seductively.
That’s ten more minutes more than I need, Will smiled to himself.
As Will pulled up his boxers over his quickly subsiding willy, he could not plan a better day even if he were the winner of a Make-A-Wish surprise. He began to straighten his tie while Hannah fixed her bra straps. He reached into his jacket pocket for the Browns’ pick but did not feel the slick cardboard feel of the selection envelope. A panic overtook him.
“Where the FUCK is the envelope?!?” Will cried. He began to look frantically around the bathroom stall, hoping this was all some cruel joke.
“Relax!” said Hannah, gripping the envelope in her hand. “It’s right here. I put it in my purse when it fell out. I was already down there anyway when it fell,” she winked.
Will breathed a relaxing sigh. “Thanks. Well I have to get this out there in the next five minutes. Maybe we can meet up later tonight? I promise I’ll give consideration to your tight end.”
Hannah giggled. “Football puns? You are cute.” She placed her purse over her shoulder. “If you wanna find me later, I’ll be sitting in the Patriots suite.” And with that, she was out the bathroom door.
Will was confused. Wasn’t she supposed to escort him on the stage? The thought tossed around Will’s head even as he walked up to the main stage to present the Brown’s selection. Mr. Goodell himself took the card and signaled to the camera crew to switch off of the analysis upstairs and back onto the stage. Something didn’t sit right in his head as Will was escorted off the main floor and back to the viewing room, until…
A single thought ran through his head. Like the ending of Ocean’s 11, Will imagined the darkest of possibilities. Could it be? Could she have been a…? Will never got to finish the thought as the familiar bell rang across the cavernous hall.
“Good evening, with the first pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns…have elected to trade the first pick to the New England Patriots. With the first pick, the Patriots select Myles Garrett…”
The end of the sentence was never heard as a cascade of boos erupted in the venue place. General managers frantically scrambled around their team tables as the Patriots table sat calmly and quietly, a sly grin on the face of both team reps. Will froze as his insane conspiracy theory had become realized.
“That crafty bitch…” Will muttered. Hannah must have switched the cards! Was she hired by the Pats? Did Brady know? How will Belichick and Co. explain arguably the biggest steal in the history of the Draft?
A wave of emotion swept over him. Partially respect for the craftiness of the Patriots, partially joy for being the one that had to be seduced by Hannah the minx, and partially panic as he realized that eventually the fingers will point to him. All these thoughts swirled as Will raced to escape the room before the Browns executives returned to demand an explanation. As he sped out of the viewing room, he wondered aloud, “Not the worst thing I’ve ever done. Doesn’t matter. Time to find that Hannah chick for my second round pick.”