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Pen Your Pride

Chapter Six

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The next day my mother woke me up and asked me if I wanted to go to training today. I told her I wasn’t sure yet and would tell her in five minutes.

I contemplated my choices. I could either go, not do as well as I usually would, but perhaps get a little distracted, or I could stay at home, weeping and not play train which would kind of spoil my chances to stay on the team even more than doing my thing would. That’s why I decided to go with the former.

I got up and walked to the bathroom, where I washed my face. I walked downstairs and asked my dad if he would be able to bring me and pick me up. He said he could so I dressed up and ate breakfast.

I arrived at training early, changed into my training clothes and grabbed a ball. My trainer walked up to me and asked me how I was doing. “I’m fine,” I answered. “Kind of nervous for my granddad his test results, but I’m glad I came.” The coach nodded and told me who were coming. “It’s only a small group, which is good. I can just give you all some more feedback. Dana, a girl from my team walked in. She greeted us and also grabbed a ball. She and I dribbled to the other basket and we both did a lay-up, me after her. We both scored and started laughing. When everybody else came, we did a warming up and then did some exercises. It was great. It was going pretty well for me, surprisingly, and I’d learned a lot. We trained for an hour and 45 minutes, and after that the coach took me apart for a second, telling me I did good and telling me to stay strong, whatever was going to happen. It was sweet of him so say, but I didn’t really need to be reminded of it all yet, right after forgetting about it a little. I took a shower and blow-dried my hair, then called my dad to pick me up. It had started raining, so I was glad he could pick me up.

I heard a girl from another team, Madison, call her parents or something, asking if she could be picked up. I saw the disappointment in her face, so I figured she couldn’t get a ride home.

“Uhm, do you need a ride?” I asked.

“You think you can get me one? That’d be amazing. You’re Jenna right?”

“Right. My dad is picking me up and I can ask if he wants to bring you home. How’d you get here?”

“By bus, but my brother said he was going to be able to pick me up, but he ditched me. I don’t have change left and my buscard is at home because I’m an idiot” She let out a sigh.

“Ahw, it’s not that dumb, I mean, you can blame your brother soo.. anyways, where do you live?”

“West side of Columbus. Is that on the route?”

“Ah, okay. I live kind of south I guess, so it’s not really, but it’s alright. It’s not like I really want to be home right now.”

“If it’s too much you don’t have to bring me, don’t worry. But what’s wrong?” she asked, sounding genuinely worried. I doubted for a second but decided I could tell Madison. She seemed like a nice person. “My grandfather is in the hospital, he’s feeling sick and all that, so he’s going to get some tests today. We’ll probably get test results around 4, so my mom is stressed out, which is already bad, my brother and I are obviously nervous for his results and so is my dad. So yeah, being at home is rather stressful today. Plus I have three thousand and eight things to do for school so yeah. You know.”

“Aw I’m sorry. I hope your granddad’s okay.”

“Thanks.” I smiled, “I think my dad’s there, are you coming?” We walked to the car. We greeted my dad and I asked him if he was able to bring Madison home. She stretched out her hand and introduced herself. “I’m Madison, I’m on a lower team than Jenna and we just had training together.” “Hi, I’m Jenna’s father. You wanted a ride home?” “If possible, please. I do live on the west of Columbus though, so I understand if it’s too much.” She answered politely. My dad chuckled. “you must be from a polite family,” he said. “But it’s totally okay, we’ll get you home. It would not be human to leave you waiting to find a way back home in this weather.” My dad said. I added: “Or any weather, honestly.” I saw Madison smile. My dad started the car and we drove to the west side of town. When we got closer to her house, Madison started giving my father the directions. The car ride was kind of fun, we all talked so I got to know Madison a bit. She was really nice and cool, even though she was 3 years younger than I was. After about 20 minutes, we arrived at her place. It was quite big and I thought it looked really nice and cozy. She invited us in, but it was almost noon so my dad wanted to go home. Madison thanked us for bringing her home and said goodbye.

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