Game of Phoenix

In the not so far of future, a new form of sport just called 'the game' is made. My name is Meril. I am a 17 year old student, but I am also the world-famous player called Phoenix. What I am best at: winning the game. Worst at: losing. (PS. Comments are appreciated 😸)


8. Seriously?


As soon as Callia has went back inside, people just seem to come out of their houses everywhere, some walking their dog, others just walking around. I try to transform to full phoenix, but I can’t hold it for long. I have to get away to some place where people won’t see me change. I think about changing here, but someone has already seen me.
“Hey, look over there! Isn’t that Phoenix?”
“Yeah I think you’re right! Let’s go over there”
In panic, I set off from the ground in full phoenix form. Then everyone spots me.
“Hey, look up there!”
“It’s Phoenix!”
“I wonder what he is doing here”
“Is he going to change?”
“Let’s follow him and see!”
They all seem to gather in a flock and start following me. Some of them are shouting to me, telling me to stop. I don’t see why I would do that. They look a lot like my fans at school, which scares me a lot. I must not get caught again.
I look around for somewhere where they can’t reach me. I can feel my time is running out fast. Why? Why is this happening again? God! Lately everything has just gone wrong. First I got spotted (though just by Callia I later found out), then I ported directly to my classroom and got jumped by a bunch of brutal fans and now this! Someone up there must really hate me.
I look down to see if I have gotten any further ahead of the crowd, but no. the crowd is still growing and some of them are even filming. If I changed here, it would mean disaster!
I feel the reverting, and I have no other choice but to crash-land on the roof of a large villa. The crowd is getting exited, and they stumble into the garden trampling the flowers and hedge down.
I spot a familiar face in the crowd –someone from class! One of the boys who agreed to start a hunt on me! Or, my identity, that is. He is holding a phone up towards me, filming my every move.
Suddenly I realize I am reverting. I have already gone back to my second form, and now I am reverting to my human form.
“Oh sh-“my voice is my own. I cover for my mouth. What do I do? I am in deep shit, pardon the language, right now.
I look around for a quick escape. A window is open! I lay flat on my stomach. They must not see me.
“Hey look! He flew to the next house! Let’s hurry!” I shout with my own voice. No one seem to notice where it comes from, and they all storm the next house. I roll in the window just as my reverting completes. That was a close call. As I told before, I have been getting a lot of these lately, but you know already.
I can’t stay here for long. Even though my fans are stupid, they’re not that dumb. They’ll eventually figure out that I am not there. I look around. It looks like a girls room. The walls are decorated with… do I dare say it? They are covered in phoenix posters. Everything is. Even the bed have sheets with me on them! This is an obsession, I can’t say it any other way. I take a quick look around, but nothing I find haven’t gotten my picture on it. It is somewhat creepy.
I shake it out of my head. I have to find out how to get out without being discovered by those who live here… then I slap myself. Stupid! They are not here right now. If they are such big fans, they are most likely out there trying to break into some innocent man’s house.
I hurry out of the room and down a hallway, down a staircase and out the front door. I hope no one has seen me. I sneak outside and follow the broken hedge until I am outside the garden.
“Phew” I say to myself. So far so good. Now I just have to blend in and act like nothing. It is not that hard, I just have to go into the crowd and act like a crazy fan hammering on the door and filming everything around me.
“Phoenix! Are you there?” I shout.
“No he is not!” someone says.
A huge man turns around and stares at me.
“Can I he-help you with anything?” I stammer.
“Aren’t you the guy who led us here? I recognize your voice…”
“Yeah! It was him! Because of him Phoenix got away from us without giving autographs!” another bit in. They all close up on me. Looks like I got myself another situation.
“I-I’ll just be going now” I say quietly and start running for the gate. They pick up on my running and storm after me. I sprint down the pavement as quick as I can. I can feel my eyes drying, then they fill up with tears. I can’t see much ahead of me, but I can hear everything behind me, so I just keep running at full speed.
“Whyyyyyy iisss thies hapenining?!?” I say to myself, leaving me with no breath at all. If someone heard it, they probably wouldn’t understand a word. But not a soul hears it.
I run around a corner in a try to shake them off. When that does not work, I jump into a hedge. They storm past me without blinking.
“This is just not my lucky day…” I say to myself while catching my breath. Maybe I shouldn’t have done that, because in less than a second someone pulls me out onto the pavement.
Oh god, you must really hate me! In front of me three persons are standing. But not just any three, it is the schools most ruthless bastards, the threesome trio, the terror trio and whatnot. My bullies, you could call them too. One of them grab me by the arm and steps on my back. It really hurts.
“Heeey guys, lookie what we got here” they lean closer with wide evil smiles.
One of them steps back looking at me weirdly, rubbing his chin with his fingertips.
“Don’t you guys think the dweeb needs a little decorating?”
“I do think that is a marvelous idea!” the boy stepping on me grabs my other arm and steps off my back. He holds me up so I sit on my knees. I have already given up. I can’t fight them anyway, I’ll just end up all beaten up like the last guy did. This really isn’t my day.
One of them starts smearing mud or something on my face. Only it isn’t mud, but a white substance. I look around. One of them is standing with a make-up kid in his hands.
“Wyouvre gwonna bwe swo pwetty!” he says laughing in a weird voice.
They keep smearing weird stuff onto my face until nothing is left in the kid. Two of them – the ones not holding me – stands back to look at their work. I sigh inside. Will they be merciful?
“Something is missing, don’t you think guys?”
“Yeah, she forgot her perfume!” they start laughing and unzipping their pants. I close my eyes, hoping they will not hit me in the face, when suddenly something comes out of the bushes. It hits the person holding me so hard he falls over.
“What the-“ the other two gets blown over by the thing. I quickly discover that the ‘thing’ is a character, or a player. It has shape as a dog, a large one, but not large enough to be an arena character. It is most likely someone not professional, or it could be-
“Hurry! Get away now!” I sigh. Or it could be Callia’s second character. I pick up on her words and rush to my feet. I run away, away from the shame of being seen, of being saved by a tiny girl.

Only when I get home, I realize my mistake. It is not shameful to be rescued, it is shameful not to stand up for oneself, just look at poor Callia. She had to go through all that parent stuff, and never once she pitied herself. She even told me size and build doesn’t matter, that I am not a total failure.
I slowly go to the bathroom to wash off the make-up. Before I do, I look at myself in the mirror, past the get-up. I only see a scared individual, too weak to do anything for himself. I look away as I have done so many times before. But then I force myself to look at myself again. At my eyes, at my nose, at my mouth. How many times have I looked away? Way too many by now, and it is time for me to change this! I wont let myself tear me down any further. I have been my own enemy for too long, fighting the inevitable fact that I am who I am.
At that exact moment I feel the electric pulse from my ankle.
What? I think and sit down on a stool to take it. I close my eyes.
Well, that explains it partly. And for the whole both parties have to answer thing, we don’t have to talk together, we just say if we’re in or not separately. I quickly send my answer. Of course I say yes, not that the Cotelatio tournament is anything special, but as you already know, I love playing.
I am pretty sure Cami agrees too, he does have a fan-base, even though it is smaller than mine. It is next Wednesday, so I only have to wait a few days. I start getting overly exited when I remember Callia and the incident from earlier. I bow my head down in shame, but it is time for me to change! I stand up in front of the mirror with my eyes closed.
“I hereby swear to do my best to stand up for myself and become a greater person!” I say. I open my eyes and fall backwards landing on my butt. There are two reasons. First, I forgot all about my ‘make-up’, second, there was someone in the window behind me. I quickly wash it off before checking the window, just in case it is someone I know. As I stick my head out of the window, I see a shadow quickly disappearing around the corner of the house.
“Hey! Wait a second!” I shout, but the person is already gone. I do not think it was Callia, because she has a more, let’s go with ‘outgoing’ way of coming to my house. But then who was it?
Seriously, this day is getting a bit out of hand. First all the stuff with Callias parents, the the fans, then the bullies and now this. This is one of those days where you wish you had just stayed in bed.
But then again, my bed was invaded by Callia, no place is safe anymore. Not even my closet.
I sigh as I close the window before drying my face. Did whoever was there hear me? Well, it is not that big of a deal, I tell myself. The more I think about it, the less sense it makes, so I decide to leave it be for now.
Then I remember the upcoming tournament. You know that feeling you have on Christmas day? That is pretty much how I am feeling right now. I am laughing within from excitement. But there’s school tomorrow, so it quickly withdraws. I look at myself in the mirror again, this time just to check if everything is gone, and it is.
I go to my room with a new state of mind. I have made an oath, and someone heard it, not that it matters that much. I have to keep it. I have to change, and I am starting now.
I go to my computer corner with a plastic bag. I clear the shelves of videogames and take down all the posters on the walls. Everything is going. Not in the trash, but in the closet so I can consider what to do with it till later. I know it is not that big of a change at all. I find my old books in the closet and put them onto the shelves. It is mostly fact books, history books, biology, geography and stuff like that. Of course, I have fiction books too, but I am what you might call a nerd at some points. When I was younger I loved to read all of these books over and over, and this led to my now large area of knowledge about the most random things. This is part of the reason I am bullied. Then I found videogames. They were mostly attractive because they led my thoughts onto other things than the real world. But they kept me from changing my view, from socializing. It ended up with me only having the few friends I made at the early grades, and they are not even really my friends. But as told before, I will change now. Not drastically, like showing the world everything and all, but small bits at a time. I will try to gain more friends, and focus more on my life. This part of it, anyway. I smile to myself as I close the closet behind me.
Suddenly someone opens the front door. Must be mom. She has been shopping.
I go out to greet her, but find the entry hall empty. I scratch my head. That’s weird, I think before closing the door. The car is not there, so it is not mom, plus dad’s bike isn’t there either. Maybe it is my little sister. But wait, she is staying with her friends until Tuesday. I stop. Then who is it?
God! This day just keeps getting weirder, DOESEN’T IT? I hear a sound coming from the living room. Someone is here.

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