By: Emma Xing
I ran the fastest I had ever ran my whole life so far. Well, in my twelve years of life so far.
I felt the wind in my face and the breeze lifting my hair and enjoyed myself somehow. But right when I’m about to cross nearly the biggest track and field race setting me off into my career if I succeeded, I fell.
It all happened so fast and it was a blur. I started off great. My team qualified in the regional championships of track and field. My team’s coach was hyping us up, getting us ready and in our places. I was the fastest so I was the last person to run before the race finished.
But now, I’m lying on the ground, clutching my leg in pain. There was blood all over and all the racers ran past me.
“Are you okay?!”
“Someone get help for Violet!”
All my teammates were panicking and shouting my name.
The next thing I knew, I was in the hospital with the doctor checking up my leg and giving me stitches.
Everyone was smiling, because I was okay. But I wasn’t smiling at all. I was close to crying but covered it with tiny hiccups. I had never fallen ever in a race so far and the whole team lost because of me.
“So glad you’re alright!” Everyone was saying. But for some reason I felt they were also disappointed in me. I gritted my teeth in pain. What if they called me names and became mean to me? Silent tears dripped down my cheeks.
After everyone was gone, my coach stayed and looked at me worriedly. I was his favorite runner on the team since I was the fastest and had the most sportsmanship. His tiny eyes stared at me and he smiled his warm smile at me.
“I hate to break it to you Violet, but you’re going to be replaced for the months. Her name is Angela and she started running half a year after you, but she’s very fast and always on top of it!” he said. I tried to smile and made me lips go up a bit.
“You will be meeting her as soon as you get back on the track!” my coach patted my shoulder to reassure me and exited the room.
I breathed in the air of the track. A breeze lifted my dark brown hair and setted it down on my back. I had finally smiled after a long time of being in a cast. I had rested for four months and was finally back on the track. This was finally my first time meeting her. She was even better than me and made sure my team won almost every single race she attended.
But now our coach was unsure who should be the main runner. I bit my lip nervously and settled down, ready to run. This would be the race determining my position on the team.
Our coach created a tiny race for me against Angela. We had to run 100 meters. As I stood at the starting line, re-tying me laces. Angela looked at me with a smile. Her reddish orangish curly hair bounced up and down her neck as she stretched.
“Good luck!” I said to her, turning my head and shooting her a small smile.
“Whatever! We both know that I’m gonna win this. You’ll see,” she snickered and poised herself in position. I wanted to growl at her but I reminded myself to be nice. This was my competitor after all.
The tension was on as both of us stood unmoving, almost like statues as we waited for the gunshot signaling the start of the race.
We both were off. My ankle was still a little weak but I powered through it. But Angela was far ahead of me and the finishing line was coming up. I felt like I had already given up, watching her cross the finishing line.
Again, I was about to cry, but instead I hiccuped multiple times, looking at the coach.
My position was given to Angela completely and I was just one of the regular runners, where the run is much shorter and not many people care if you are fast or slow so I wasn’t paid much attention to, because everyone was cheering for whoever was last.
However, one week later, when I was attending the first race since my fall, Angela became very ill and I had to replace her.
“Come on Violet!” my coach yelled from the bleachers. I could see everyone worried that I would fall again, but I was determined to prove them wrong.
Running and panting, I realized this must be how Angela felt every time. The pressure under you, trying to make sure you don’t fail everyone.
Then I saw Angela. As I whisked past the crowd, Angela and I locked eyes. She wasn’t ill. She was just pretending and hiding in the bleachers.
For one second, nothing was moving. Angela looked at me nervously and cautiously put a finger to her lip signaling me to keep it a secret.
Then the next second, my hair slapped into my face and I won. The crowd went wild, for it was our team’s fifth win in a row. But all I could think about was how Angela lied.
But for the next few races, Angela always said she was ill and let me take over until finally her spot was given to me. And on the third race she didn’t attend was when she finally talked to me.
She walked up to me when I warming up prepared for my turn without her sinister face she had when she had taken my spot. Her face was more…sad.
“Look. I’m sorry I was mean to you. I never knew how it felt to be bullied but I know that now. I’m sorry I didn’t have sportsmanship so I backed off for you to run. I’m moving to a different team so I won’t bother you anymore,” she tilted her head nervously to the side and her deep blue eyes sank sadly.
I wanted to reassure her, but before I could, she ran back to her parents.
I never saw her again.