The Championship

May 11, 2017
By , Shawnee, KS

As I walked to Lexi’s house I took a shortcut through the woods which led right behind her house, I approached a fallen tree and  I tried to jump over it, but I clipped my feet on the top of it and tumbled over the other side. I scraped my knee on the side of the tree trunk and my knee started to bleed. I sat up and held my knee and let out a groan. “Smooth move Bailey” I said to myself. My knee looked worse than it actually was. I stood up and put my hand on the log. I waited for a moment, then took my hand off the log and started to walk forward. I stumbled a little bit and had to limp because my knee hurt so bad. I continued on my journey towards lexi’s house. It took me a little longer than I hoped for but I got there. I walked towards the front of the house and up the stairs leading to her front door. I raised my hand up to the doorbell, but the door opened just before I rang it. Lexi was there.
“Where have you been Bailey?!?” she asked quickly. I was supposed to be at Lexi’s ten minutes ago to have dinner with her parents.
“Who is it? Lexi’s father asked.
“It’s just alex.” Lexi replied.
“I kinda fell.”  I said. I pointed towards my knee, which was still bleeding, but now there was blood all down my leg.
“S*** Bailey what did you do?” she put her arm around me and helped me into the bathroom.
I sat down on the toilet and put my leg out so the blood wouldn’t drip so much. She squatted down below the sink and opened the cabinet under the sink. She rifled through all the rummage and pulled out a medical kit. Lexi stood up and set it on the counter. She opened it and pulled out a gauze pad and some antibacterial spray.
“This might sting a little bit.” She said. She raised the spray up to my leg and sprayed 2 spurts of it onto my leg. I winced a little bit.
“Sorry.” Lexi said. She ripped open the gauze pad and wiped up all the blood on my leg. Lexi’s father knocked on the bathroom door.
“Lex what’s going on in there?” He said. Lexi’s father opened the bathroom door and looked at me then at my leg.
“That’s quite the cut you got there son.” 
“Yeah.” I responded.
Lexi put the bandage onto my knee. “There. All patched up.” Lexi said.
“Thanks Lexi.” I replied.
“Well Dinner’s ready, so don't take too long.” He walked out of the bathroom and into the dining room.  Lexi stood up and I did as well. I looked into her eyes and she looked back into mine. I leaned in closer to her, but she backed away.
“We’d better not keep my parents waiting.” She said quickly.
“Right, Let’s go have dinner.” I motioned her out the door and we walked to the dining room. I sat down at the table across from Lexi’s father.
“It’s good to see you again Bailey.” Lexi’s father said. “How’s school going?” he asked me.
“Same old same old. The team is coming together really nicely so I think we might have a chance at the championship.” I said.
“You’re a Quarterback, correct?” he asked.
“Yes sir.” I replied. “Pass the salt please.”
Lexi’s mother grabbed the salt and handed it to me. “Thank you Mrs. Harris.”
“Sure thing.” She said.
“So tell me about your folks.” Lexi’s father said. He lifted his glass to his mouth and took a drink of his water.
“Well, my mother, she works full time at Saint Mary’s Hospital, So I never really get to see her that often. I mostly see her on Sunday’s.” I said.
“What about your dad?” He asked.
I hesitated at first. “ My real dad, he died in Cancer a few years ago, but my step-father He works from home and he and I spend lots of time together.” I said. “It’s been hard, ever since I lost my real dad to cancer, but, me and my mom are fighting.” I stopped, and took a drink out of my water cup.
“I’m sorry to hear that.” He said.
We finished dinner and watched a movie together  “Alive.”  once the movie was over, Lexi’s father stood up from the couch and stretched.
“Don’t stay up too late.” He said, and he walked up the stairs to his bedroom. I sat on the couch next to Lexi. she was leaning her head onto my shoulder and had her arm around me, and my arm was outstretched behind her. She lifted up her head and looked at me. I looked back at her. Finally she spoke, “ You hit it off really well tonight, I think my parents like you.” Lexi said.
“Oh yeah?” I said.
“Yeah.” Lexi said. She laid her head back down on my shoulder and scooted in closer. We sat there for a moment in silence, and before I knew it, Lexi was asleep, and so was I. I opened my eyes and shut them again. It was bright. I waited a moment, then opened them again. It was morning. The birds were chirping and I could hear a lawn mower. I looked over the my right and saw Lexi still lying beside me, except she was mumbling and I saw a tear fall down her face. I started to rub her arm with my hand. She opened her eyes and looked at me.
“You mumble in your sleep.” I said.
“It was just a bad dream.” Lexi said. She rubbed her eyes and sat up.
“ I got an idea.” I said.
“Hmm and what’s that?” Lexi asked.
“Alright let me go get my shoes.” Lexi said.
Mr. and Mrs. Harris were both still asleep, but they wouldn’t mind if we went and got breakfast. I grabbed Lexi’s keys and walked outside and got into the car. A few minutes later, Lexi walked out and got into the passenger side of the car. She closed her door. Clicked in her seat belt and looked at me.
“You ready Lex?”
“Yep. Let's go get some breakfast.” She said. I put the car into reverse and backed out of the driveway. We pulled into the parking lot and I turned the car off. Lexi and I walked into waffle house and ordered. We got back into the car and drove back to the house.
“I’d better get home. I’m sure my mom is freaking out right now.” I said.
“Let me give you a ride then.” Lexi said.
“No it’s okay, I want to take a walk through the woods.” I said. I gave Lexi a hug and kissed her.
“See you at school tomorrow.” I said
“Be careful Bailey.” Lexi said.
“I’ll try my best.” I laughed. I turned around and started to walk towards the woods. I walked through the woods slowly, listening the the birds chirp and the squirrels run across the branches. It was peaceful. I turned a corner, walked up my driveway. Mom’s car wasn't in it so she must still be at work. I opened the front door and walked inside. Winston started barking as soon as he heard me coming up the driveway. I walked over to his cage and let him out. He jumped onto me and started licking my face.
“Hey Winston.” “Who’s a good boy?” I asked him, even though I knew he couldn’t answer me, I knew he could understand me. I let him outside so he could do his business and decided to clean up the house a little bit. Mom was always happier when she came home to a clean house. After I finished cleaning up the house and feeding Winston, I looked at the clock. It was only 1 O’clock. James, my step-dad was downstairs in his office. I’m assuming he’s on another one of those calls. I walked into the pantry and grabbed the dog leash out of the dog basket. I put on my running shoes and put the leash on Winston.
“Wanna go for a run boy?” I asked. Winston started wagging his tail and he started smiling, and running in a circle.
“Alright don’t get too excited.” I said. I started my timer and set off. I only ran a mile. I stopped my timer and looked at it. 5 minutes and 15 seconds. A new personal best! Winston walked right inside and laid down on his bed. He fell asleep fast. I grabbed a towel from the hallway closet and turned on the shower. My phone was ringing when I got out of the shower. I picked it up and answered it.
“Hello?” I said.
“Yo wassup.”
It was Marcus, my best friend since the 3rd grade. He was also the best Linebacker on the team
“Are you doing anything right now? He said.
“Nah I’m not doing anything right now.” I said.
“Want to hang out?” He said.
“Sure why not, I’ll be over in 10.” I said. I hung up the phone and walked into my room to go put some clothes on. I walked downstairs to James office and knocked on the office door.
“Come in.” James said.
I opened his door and walked in.
‘Hey, how did the dinner go?” James said. He leaned back in his chair and folded his hands.
“It went well.”  I said.  “Marcus wanted to know if we could hang out. Is that alright?” I asked.
“Yeah. Sure, Where are you going.” James asked.
“Just over to his house, we might go to the park and play football, but i’m not entirely sure.” I said.
“Be home in time for dinner and you can go.” James said.
“Alright.” I said. I closed his office door and walked back up the stairs. I grabbed my keys off of the counter and walked outside the door. I got into my truck and turned the ignition over. The radio turned on automatically. I turned it up a little bit and put the car in reverse and backed out of the driveway.

I pulled into Marcus’s driveway and parked my car. I walked up his porch steps and opened his door. Nobody was home except for him.
“Hey you’re here.” Marcus said.
“Yeah, Where are your parents?” I asked.
“My mom went to the store and my dad is on a business trip, so I got the house to myself for the afternoon.” he said. He was cleaning up the kitchen and loading dishes into the dishwasher.
“Wanna go play basketball?” he asked.
“Yeah sure.”
We walked over to the lot which was just across the street from where he lived. It’s was just a square of cement with one basket set to the regulation height.
“First to 21?” I asked.
“You can try to beat me.” Marcus said in a serious but joking way. “You get a ball first.”
“Check” I said. I bounced the ball to him and he bounced it back to me. I started to dribble the ball and faked a shot which Marcus fell for. I dribbled the ball to the left and made a lay-up.
“1 to nothing.” I said. I passed the ball to him and he grabbed it.
“Check” He bounced the ball to me and I bounced it back to him. He dribbled to the right and I followed him. Then he faked a left and dribbled the ball in between his legs and went left. He shot the ball, it hit the backboard and rolled off the rim.
“Dammit.” He said. I grabbed the ball and ran back to the 3-point line and shot the ball.
“Swish.” I said. “ That’s 4-0 Marcus. You’re going to need to step up your game if you wanna beat me.” I always get really c***y and competitive when I play a sport. I don’t mean to be c***y, but I guess that is what happens when I get competitive.
“You ready for this game tomorrow?” I asked Marcus. I stopped dribbling and I looked at him.
“You know it. We’re going against the cougars right?” He asked.
“Yep.”
“Yeah we are definitely going to win.” Marcus said.

The stands are full of people shouting and screaming. I see Lexi in the stands holding a sign that says “Let’s go Vipers!” the game is tied and it’s fourth down, and there is 7 seconds left in the game. The team is huddled together and I am talking to all of them.
“Alright look guys all we have to do it make it to the Endzone and we win. Jones you’re going to run from my left to my right. I’m going to fake a pass to you. Marcus I’m going to throw the ball to you and you run down the left side.”
“Break” I said. Everyone clapped and we got into formation.
“Down... Set… HUT.”  The center threw the ball to me and I caught it.”  Jones ran behind me and I faked the pass to him then threw the ball to Marcus, who was wide open. He grabbed it and ran. Then I felt the wind knocked out of me, and everything went black.






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