Going for the Gold

Carson is a 17 year old that has only been surrounded by gymnastics. With the Olympics coming up, she is pressured into perfecting each routine for trials. One day, when her mom couldn't pick her up, she was forced into taking the subway. In the one cart she decided to sit in, she met someone that would change her life forever. Will Carson go to the Olympics and get the gold she has been practicing years for with that special someone by her side?


17. The Trials


My breath was taken away as I stepped into the huge arena. Things just became even more real. My group of supports kept me going into the building. If it was my choice, I would have been down the block by now.

“Okay honey, I can’t go into the locker room with you. Just do your best okay? I’m here for you and supporting you. Your Dad would be so proud,” my mom began to choke. Her eyes started to water. The boys watch me and mom cry.

“I’m sorry he can’t be here Carson but I know he’s watching. Whatever happens, happens. I’ll be proud no matter what.”

I wiped the few tears that fell and hugged my mom. Zayn came over and hugged both my mom and I and the other boys followed. I began to laugh at all the love. People stared at us and girls shouted things at the boys but we all hugged each other tight.

The boys and my mom went up the stairs to find their seats leaving Niall and I alone.

“Are you ready, love?” he asked.

“Nope.” I laughed drying the puddles that rested under my eyes.

“You’ll be fine” he kissed me and picked me up and swung me around.

“Try not to be too noticeable” I winked.

He kissed me one more time and made his way to the stairs to get to his seat. I went into the locker room and removed all my clothes and put my bag in my assigned locker. The other girls greeted me as they walked by. I quickly put my stuff away and followed them and we stretched.

We all talked about how nervous we were. Only 5 of us girls were going to make it and there would be 3 replacements. I would be just fine being a replacement. After minutes of stretching and flips they got us in order for the walk out. I just wanted to be with Phil where I felt comfortable.

All the girls were jumping around trying to rid all their nerves. I kept still, biting my lip. I could hear someone talking over the speaker and my body tensed up. The man in charge waved the first girl on and we all followed. Instantly I was blinded by flashing cameras and fans yelling. I just smiled as big as I could. There wasn’t must else I could do. We stood in the center of the floor and faced a row of judges.

“Welcome to the 2012 Olympics Women’s Gymnastics Trials” the announcer roared with enthusiasm into the microphone. The crowed was loud and jumping and going crazy. I looked around but couldn’t find my mom or the boys.

“Starting off we have Gabby Douglas”

She saluted the crowed and everyone cheered for her. It finally came to my turn,

“Carson Johnson”

I stood on my tip toes and saluted the crowed and waved. I smiled big showing all my teeth. I swore the crowd was louder but I figured it was my adrenalin rush.

The announcer also yelled, “We also want to thank our guests One Direction for coming and watching our trials.” All the girls screamed which hurt my ears. I should probably get used to it…

We went to find our coach and began to warm up for our first event.

“Carson! Did you hear them?” he smiled and hugged me when I got to him.

“I thought I was imaging that” I laughed.

He handed me my grips and I chalked up. Bars were first. He helped me stretch my arms out and get my head focused.

“This is one of your best events Carson. Just do your best and watch your second release”

I nodded my head and warmed up a little but my time was up before I knew it.

I walked up to the mat and waited.

“Carson Johnson on bars” the announcer said and I saluted the judges.

I walked up to the bar and took a deep breath. I forgot about everything in the past. About losing all my friends, my dad’s death, and even meeting Niall.

I jumped on and began to flip around. I made sure to be tight and hit all my points. I nailed my second release perfectly. The only major flaw was my foot hit one of the bars. I stuck my landing and saluted the judges. The crowd cheered afterward which made me feel amazing.

I couldn’t look to see my score. I immediately got a drink and waited for Phil to tell me.

“You missed three points not to bad” he said patting my back.

Next was vault. I stretched and warmed up and before I knew it I was at the end of the lane. The announcer said my name and I saluted the judge.

I took a deep breath and sprinted down the lane. I did my usual back-handspring and two twists with my blind landing, sticking it perfectly like always. I crowd stood up and all yelled in unison. Phil came over and picked me up but I was panting so hard.

“Go get water I’ll watch your score”

I quickly walked to my water bottle and got a drink. I watched Gabby Douglas do her bars routine, which looked absolutely perfect. A camera came up close to me and I blew it a kiss. By now I was used to the cameras following me.

I ran back to Phil who was red in the face.

“Somehow they found a mistake in your vault but it was still an outstanding score.”

“Oh well.”

And hour and a half had passed since the events started. There was a hold up on the beam so I sat down and waited for them to finish up. I looked all around and still couldn’t find them. I looked around again when I spotted Nialls spiky blonde hair. They all held up posters with my name on it. My mom looked like a wreck, probably stressed. I waved at them and they held their posters up high and smiled at me. Louis gave me a thumbs up and my mom blew me a kiss.

“Carson go practice”

I looked away from them and jumped on the beam. Beam was my least favorite event. My routine wasn’t too hard but hard enough.

I stood and waited until the announcer called my name.

I did a flip onto the beam and began the nerve-wracking routine. Before I knew it I was finishing up, doing a flip off of it and landing. It definitely wasn’t my best but I was happy with it. I drank more water and waited for my score. It brought my All Around down but not too much. I was now in fourth place which was unbelievable.

I stood and stared at the floor. This was the routine Phil and I were most worried about. I made sure to really stretch my leg during practice.

“One last rotation for Carson Johnson”

The music began and I let my body move too it. All my stunts were going perfectly, even though I took a little step after landing one. It came to my biggest tumble and I ran full force and did my cartwheel and I instantly felt the sharp pain in the back of my knee. I ignored it and finished the tumble pass, sticking it perfect. The crowd yelled so loud my ears were ringing. I saluted the judges one last time in America. If I didn’t make it now I was done with gymnastics forever. I limped off the floor and Phil ran to me. The crowed was making “ohh” sounds and I watched my mom stand up covering her mouth. Niall looked so worried. I gave them a faint smile but that still wasn’t enough for them. Phil laid me down and stretched my leg. I overheard one announcers say,

“It looks like favorite Carson Johnson had hurt her knee. Is this going to ruin her chances?”

Phil kept stretching it but it didn’t feel better like last time. It hurt so bad tears came to my eyes.

“Phil I bent my leg. I did everything right!” I cried getting frustrated. I wasn’t going to blow it here.

“Carson its fine. Keep calm. I swear you’re in. Just be strong and they’ll let you in” he whispered to me as a camera came up to us.

*2 hours later

All of us gymnasts sat by our coach and waited for Marta Karolyi to decide who would be on the team. I knew that my chances were slim because of my leg. But to tell you the truth, it felt tons better. If I made it, Phil would modify the routine to keep me from doing this a third time.

Suddenly, Marta came out and thousands of flashes emerged from the crowed. My heart was pounding out of my chest. Phil grabbed my hand and we waited for the names.

“I’m proud to have chosen the USA Gymnastics team for the 2012 Olympics. I thought hard and these are the girls I felt were well rounded and the perfect fit for our team.”

The crowd cheered.

“To start off, Gabby Douglas”

She jumped up and ran to stand by Marta, giving her a big hug.

“Jordan Wieber”

She did the same exact thing.

“Aly Raisman”

I watched her walk up, and my dreams were crushed. My all around was higher than Aly’s and my name wasn’t called.

“McKayla Maroney”

I sighed. My score was higher than hers too.

“I’m glad I could have experienced this” I whispered to Phil hugged him.

He knew that I didn’t make it too. I was his first girl to even get this opportunity and I knew he was proud of me. I knew my dad was watching and was proud. I knew my Mom was more than proud.

“Carson Johnson”

I shot my head up and Phil jumped up and swung me around. Tears began to flow; the more came the louder the crowd got. I ran up and hugged Marta and the girls. We all cried with excitement. We were the 2012 Women’s gymnastics. We were representing the U.S.

We all ran to the locker room after the performances and all of the competitors congratulated each other. Each time I thought about London, I would cry. It was unreal. I was still limping around but not as bad.

“Your vault was flawless” Aly said walking by me.

I smiled to myself.

I was the last one out of the locker room and when I opened the door Niall ran and grabbed me, placing kissed on my lips and cheek. All the boys hollered and ran up and gave me hugs, even Harry. Finally my mom, with her eyes full of tears kissed my cheek and gave me the biggest hug ever.

“I love you Carson,” she whispered.

“Love you too” I whispered back.

When we left the building a black limo was waiting for us. Paparazzi was outside the door and snapped photos of us and yelling things at us.

I was still in shock that I was going to London.

“Carson, your Mom was a wreck,” Liam laughed.

“Shut it Liam” she snapped slapping his leg.

All the other guys laughed. We finally got back to the hotel and I was relieved. I was so exhausted from today.

My mom ran up to the room to get an ice bath ready and I stayed in the hallway with Niall. The other boys thought it would be best to give us “Alone Time.”

“You did great you don’t understand how proud I am” he beamed at me.

His hand found mine, and we laced our fingers together.

“Thank you” I smiled.

“How’s your leg?” he asked concerned.

“Oh its fine. This ice bath should fix it”

Niall leaned in to kiss me, but my mom opened the door.

“Okay Car, the bath is ready.”

“Can I join?” Niall laughed, he knew my mom wasn’t going to take that likely.

“That’s not even funny,” she scolded, hitting him in the leg.

These boys made her young again.

“I’ll see you soon alright?”

“Okay babe”

I quickly kissed him and began resting my body.


**Only one more chapter after this!!

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