The Point by Juliette
I feel the cool crisp water as it dribbles down my throat every swallow I take. I finish the water and then slowly crush the funnel shaped cup slowly with my hand. As I crush the cup my hands slowly shake and shiver like their cold. That’s really weird considering I’m sweating from the lack of air conditioning in this building. I savor every moment of my break because when I walk back out on that court for that final point it’s game on.
She’s beat me before badly and the score was 5-0. Can you guess who won? Her. I’m going to walk out there and take back my court. I peek out of the curtain and see her sitting on the bench slowly drinking ice cold water from her blue springs branded water bottle. Thats the really fancy water. While she has fancy water I’m drinking warm water from a big water jug sitting behind the courts. I’ve noticed something different about her. I can tell she’s confident. Really confident. I can tell by the way she laughs quietly to herself. I’m going to wipe that grin of herself. Oh, and did I mention she’s one of my best friends? Yeah isn’t that awkward? I walk out there and put a smile on my face.
“ Hey Shirley,” I mumble as I try to keep my breathing under control. As i’m also trying not to pass out from nautiousness.
“ Hey, you ready to play?” she asked.
“ I guess so. What about you?”
“ Yeah sure.You want to do the racquet spin?”
“ Sure.” I spin the racquet on the ground and cover the bottom with the palm of my hand
“ P or D?” I asked.
I reveal the bottom of the racquet and It’s D.
“ It’s D. I’ll serve”
We walk to our sides of the court and get in our stances. I’m going to kick her butt, but in a friendly way.
It’s been about thirty minutes and the score is dead tied. I look like I just went swimming in a pool full of smelly hot water. This is it, the last point. The score is 2-2 40-40 and it’s best of five. I slowly turn my racquet over and over in my hand going over in my head, continental grip for vollies, standard for forehand, use inside out and inside in shots as much as possible, go for blood and win . In other words I’m hesitating and stalling. Thats how nervous I am. I step up on the deuce side of the court and line my feet up with the smooth white line. I put my grip in continental and I stare up at my opponent. I throw the ball up in the air, take a deep breath and serve a curve ball across the net right next to the ally. She moves quick and returns a backhand down the line. I move and hit a forehand inside out cross court. She returns a lob and I smash it with an overhead but not as hard as I would have liked to. I forgot to change my grip. That’s why it was weak. I can see the bright green and yellow ball as It travels through the air above me like a failing jet. I get out of no mans land and back pedal to the baseline. She hit’s a drop shot but I’m too quick and I run and hit a backhand cross court by the baseline. She runs around the ball and hits a forehand down the line past and in front of me.
“ AH,” I grunted after I run to the singles line on my right side as she run’s backward.
I hit it over and she hits a short ball. I run to the vollie changing my racquet grip to continental. She returns the ball and I hit a soft vollie and she doesn’t return it.
“ I win, I win, I win!” I run around. I feel overjoyed.
“ Nice job Juliette, you earned it,” my opponent said with a slight frown on her face but still happy for me.
I literally collapse to the ground with exhaustion. I take big deep breaths and stand up. Hard work does pay off, well a lot of hard work, and I mean a lot. All those times I’ve missed family trips and events, birthday parties, and pretty much an entire twelve year old life. Sometimes it is worth it when I win 1st place. Second helps sometimes because It proves I was meant to come to the tournament.
I sprint up to her and shake her hand. She looks pretty upset but it’s worth it.
“ Hey Juliette, I got a new sudoku book. Wanna solve a puzzle with me?
“ Would I? I’d love to! Sudoku’s my favorite game. Let’s go, those puzzles aren’t going to solve themselves,” I gladly say as we sprint up the stairs laughing about how ridiculous we looked when we returned the balls back to each other grunting. I am a hard worker, I am a victor, I am a winner, I am an accomplisher,I am a champion, I am lover of sudoku. I am the marvelous fighter Juliette.