A summer of a Lifetime

Julie Daniels had a perfect life. She had it all. She was popular and pretty and had the best of friends. But then it all turned around. Her boyfriend broke up with her and started a terrible rumor about her. Her friend all bailed and she started getting bullied regularly. Finally it became too much. She nearly killed herself and after a long stay at a specialized hospital her parents took her and her little brother on a long vacation. Little did she know that this vacation would lead her to meet James.


8. Game

The day of the tournament had come. The last few days had passed with perfecting James' technique. A week had already passed away, and it left me with only two left. James and I were playing a game in five minutes.
"And tell me again what you'll do if the ball is headed out of the court?" I asked him for the hundred and seventh time this morning.
"I won''t move! Jesus! Why did I even tell you about this tournament?" He said and shoved my side lightly. The people from the hotel who had organized all this called out to us and said that we were on. I took off my off the shoulder shirt standing only in my black training bra and denim shorts. I put down my water bottle and stuck my hair in a messy ponytail while placing myself in front of the net. The whistle was blown and the game started.

After the first set we were well ahead of the others. We ended up winning the game and every other game we played the whole day. We were invincible. 

The final was scheduled for 20:35 so we had time to eat first. Joey and I had played around whenever James and I weren't up for a game, so he was exhausted. His tiny little body wasn't very strong, and he got tired very easily. He fell asleep in my fathers lap and I kissed his forehead and went to find James. Other than in the games we had hardly spoken all day.
I found him by the water bottles. Shirtless. He hadn't seen me yet, so I took the opportunity to get a good look at his upper body. I leaned against the shack beside me and just stood there.
"I can see you you know." He laughed and turned around. 
"Damn!" I said with a southern american accent, but I didn't take my eyes off him. He walked over and stood in front of me with spread arms and raised eyebrows.
"Like what you see?" He asked. 
I put both hands on his bare chest and tiptoed to peck his lips. 
"I think I do." 
"Wanna go get something to eat?" He smiled.
"Yeah I was about to ask you the same thing. Where do you want to go?" 
"I was just thinking the mermaid. I know the food sucks but it's close." 
"Ok. I'll go make my dad pay up." I said and turned to walk away. He grabbed my wrist and spun me back around.
"You don't have to I'll pay." He said and started dragging me towards the restaurant. 
"No you always pay! It's not fair! Just let me this once!" I said as he tugged on my arm.
He sighed. "If I let you pay this time do you promise to let me pay every other time in the future?" 
"Yes now let go!" I chuckled. He did and I ran back to my dad. 
"Dad I need some money for food. Please?" I asked him.
"For you alone or you and your friend?" He asked as he carefully got out his wallet so he didn't wake Joey.
"The both of us."
"Ok here you go." He said and handed me a few bills. It was more than enough. 
"Thanks daddy." I said and kissed his cheek. I ran back to James and he took my hand again. We got a table and fooled around until our food got there.
"How come you never eat meat?" He asked suddenly.
"Why do you think? I'm a vegetarian." I said with a mouth half full of veggie spring roll.
"But you ate lobster that night."
"You'd gone to so much trouble to arrange it. I didn't want to ruin the mood." I laughed.
"Ah so you're not a strict vegetarian?"
"Not seriously. I can eat meat if I want to. I just don't. I have absolutely no idea why." 

The time go closer and closer to 20:35 and we needed to warm up again. Our limbs and muscles had gone cold. I paid and we went back to court. They were playing for third place at the moment. While they played we warmed up and shot a ball back and forth to get our mind in the game. Our names were called and we got into places. 

"Yes!" I screamed and highfived James. We won! He put his hands on my waist and lifted me up. He spun us both around and put me down. Joey came running over. He had woken up during the last part of the game.
"That was so cool!" He yelled and jumped into my arms. He was still small enough for me to carry if I put an effort into it.
"Thanks buddy." I said into his hair. James and I were handed a little trophy thingie with the hotels name on it. I laughed at how ridiculously hideous it was.
"Do you want it?" He asked.
"No you can have it." I laughed and gave it to him. He put it in a shoulder bag he had brought to the court his morning. My family came over and told me that they were taking Joey back to bed. When my mother left, dad handed me a few extra bills and whispered "Go celebrate. And don't tell your mom." I laughed and hugged him. 
"Goodnight daddy." I said. I got my own bag with normal clothes and went to the womens showers on the beach. They were little shielded shower cabins that you locked from the inside. I washed all the sand and sweat from the tournament off myself and bent down to pull in my bag under the door. I got changed in there as well and put on a fresh coat of eyeliner and mascara. That was all I needed. I stepped out of the shower and checked my reflection one last time in the iron pole holding up the roof. 
James was waiting outside all showered and nicelooking. He had even attempted to tame his ginger hair. Or... not really ginger. But kind of red. 
"Come on. Let's celebrate." He said and took my hand. The sun was just setting. We got some shakes to go and sat down at the end of the pier. 
We sat very close to each other and I swung my legs over his and laid down on my back. We saw the sun set and he started absentmindedly stroking my ankle. I had put down my shoes beside us, so it tickled my bare feet. I giggled and moved them a little bit. He smiled gently and put his hand down. 
There weren't a lot of words said that night. Just a nice, comfortable tension. 

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