All Nonfiction Bullying Books Academic Author Interviews Celebrity interviews College Articles College Essays Educator of the Year Heroes Interviews Memoir Personal Experience Sports Travel & CultureAll Opinions Bullying Current Events / Politics Discrimination Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking Entertainment / Celebrities Environment Love / Relationships Movies / Music / TV Pop Culture / Trends School / College Social Issues / Civics Spirituality / Religion Sports / Hobbies
- Summer Guide
- College Guide
- Author Interviews
- Celebrity interviews
- College Articles
- College Essays
- Educator of the Year
- Personal Experience
- Travel & Culture
- Current Events / Politics
- Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking
- Entertainment / Celebrities
- Love / Relationships
- Movies / Music / TV
- Pop Culture / Trends
- School / College
- Social Issues / Civics
- Spirituality / Religion
- Sports / Hobbies
- Community Service
- Letters to the Editor
- Pride & Prejudice
- What Matters
Just As He Imagined It
Author's note: I am in love with sports. When my teacher told us to write a story involving the love triangle, I came up with this story. I thought it had potential but not this much.
“Hey, you comin’ to my party?”
“I don’t know man. I got practice after school.” Steven West is the starting quarterback for the Foley Rangers. He was the second person in school history to become an all American in their freshman year. The only other person to do so was his father.
“Steve, when are you gonna have some fun in your life?” Joe always looked out for Steve and led his life in the right direction. He realized that Steve will easily get his scholarship to Texas University, but he wanted Steve to put football to the side every now and then and have some fun.
“Joe, football is my life. I don’t care about anything else. I wanna play for the Longhorns. How am I supposed to get a scholarship if I don’t bust my butt to be an All-American?”
“You’ve been one the last three years! How many kids become All-Americans their freshman year?”
“My dad said colleges don’t worry bout freshman year cuz it’s to easy. He was an All-American his freshman year, and he didn’t play a single game in college. He always tells me to do what he couldn’t do.” Every child has their hero. Steven’s hero happened to be his father and has been since he was baby. Steven lived his life based on his father’s mistakes and tried to be better than his dad.
“Alright man. But seriously, you needa find somethin’ besides football to care about. Sure football’s gonna get you the fame and fortune, but what about the other things in life?”
“Come on Steve, you know what I’m talking about. What about your friends or the love of a beautiful girl. You don’t think about any of that?”
“I’m not gonna need a girl, Joe, I’ll be rich and famous and the girls will come to me.”
“Whatever you say, Steve. I’ll see you later.”
After Steven finished practice, he stopped at his locker to grab his books, and then he headed to his car. Steve didn’t have the best car. It was just a cheap Dodge Charger that he and his dad had worked on for a while. They stopped working on the car once his dad got his new job as college football coach for Texas Tech. His dad always said that one day they would finish the car and it would be the most beautiful thing on the face of the Earth. Steve had somewhat of a routine that he did every time he went to the parking lot to get his car. The lot was located next to the football field. Steve always parked right at the entrance of the field. He sat on the hood of the car and just stared at the field. Every time something on the field moved it caught his attention and triggered a flashback.
He saw the heat waves rising from the turf and disappearing into the sky. He thought about his first practice of his high school career. And he spoke aloud, “Four years ago, on this very field, I threw my first pass for this school, and still to this day, it the greatest feeling I’ve ever had. It was a feeling of pride, leadership, and power.” The glare shining off the stadium stands caught his eyes and made him realize that the sun was setting on the field. As the stadium lights flipped on section by section, Steven closed his eyes and let the feeling of his love for the game run through his veins. He opened his eyes and again he spoke aloud, “And, in a few months, I will throw my last pass for this high school, right here on this field.”
Steven hopped off the hood, turned around and walked to the door of the car. He backed out the lot and headed home to see his family. He opened the door to his house, walked in, and threw his bags on the floor at the foot of the steps.
“What’s up, Steve?” said his little brother Chris as Steve walked through the living room to the kitchen. Steve’s mom was standing over the marble countertop preparing dinner. Steve never got to spend much time with his dad after school because his dad had to go run a practice at the university. Daily Steve would try to tell his dad how practice went but his dad was always rushing out the house.
“Steve, I need the keys so I can head on out to the field.”
Steve tried to rush in his sentence about practice. “Here you go dad. Oh, hey dad, today at practice coach…”
“Not now Steve. Tell me later I really gotta go.” The door slammed behind his dad as he walked into the garage. Steve heard the engine of the Charger roar, and then he knew his dad was gone when the tires peeled out in the street.
Steve sighed and stared at the door with an upset look on his face. “You alright there, Steve?” asked his mom.
Steven took a deep breath turned to his mom and replied, “One of these days I’ll squeeze that sentence in there.” Then he laughed and headed up the stairs to go get ready for the party. Steve wasn’t much of a partier. He had a more laid back personality. Most of the guys at the parties were trying to hit on the girls, but Steve sat around and talked to his teammates about practices and games.
About an hour later Joe showed up at Steve’s to pick him up. Steve told his mom he was leaving then walked out the house to Joe’s car. Rain was pouring down onto the car. The boys arrived at the party a little later than expected due to the weather.
“Steve!!” yelled Curtis Johnson, the middle linebacker on the football team. “What took you so long Steve?”
“The weather is horrible, man. Plus I had this idiot driving,” Replied Steve with a smirk.
Joe laughed, “Shut up.” Joe and Steve had always cracked jokes about each other. It was really what made their friendship so unique.
Joe and Curtis went off and hit on all the girls. Curtis tended to get more girls than Joe, who was more of a pig. Steven got the most girls out of them all, but he turned them all down because he believed they would distract him from football. So, Steve relaxed on the couch with a few of his buddies, and they had a few drinks. Steve wasn’t much of drinker; he usually just had a few.
Joe, on the other hand, loved to drink. However, he had the habit of getting ridiculously drunk and driving home. So, as the party grew on, Joe got more and more wasted. About two hours later the party was finally over and everyone was leaving. Joe had trouble walking to the car. He was stumbling and falling on people left and right. He was obviously too drunk to drive, but Steve never paid any attention to Joe’s condition because he was too busy cutting up with Curtis. They both told Curtis bye and got into the car.
The weather was worse than it was before. The raindrops that were hitting the roof sounded like bullets bouncing off of a steel pole. Water ran down from the roof and flooded the front windshield. Joe’s vision was already extremely blurry and the windshield was all fogged up, therefore, seeing was very difficult. They got onto the main highway when Steve finally realized how Joe was driving.
“Hey Joe, you wanna’ stay in one lane, bro?”
Joe thought that Steve was kidding around. “I’m fine. Hey Steve, I got something to tell you. I love you man.” Steve chuckled. “No I’m being serious. I just want you to know that once you make it to the pros, I don’t want you to forget about me.”
“I won’t forget you.” Although Steve knew that Joe didn’t know what he was saying, he knew deep down he meant it.
“Good, cuz when you play I’m gonna’ be right there on the 50-yard line…” He stared over at Steve.
“Joe, pay attention to the road.”
“I’m gonna’ be running down that sideline with you while I’m in the bleachers and when you score, I’m gonna’ yell for you. I’ll yell, ‘touchdown!!!!!’ at the top of my lungs.” At that point, Joe took both of his hands and threw them in the air.
The car swerved hard left as Steve yelled, “Joe, grab the wheel!” Then the car spun out on the slippery streets and slammed head on into an oncoming vehicle.
Steven was blinded by the headlights of the oncoming car. Then, as the cars collided, Steven’s head slammed into the dashboard of Joe’s car. His airbag didn’t deploy. Joe had passed out before the cars hit each other.
Steven woke up about 15 minutes later to the sounds of sirens and bright red and blue lights. It took him a minute to regain full consciousness. He looked to his left and saw that Joe was still unconscious and bleeding from a cut on his left shoulder. He had large pieces of glass lodged in his arm. Then suddenly, Steve noticed there was something wrong with the situation, and the car they had hit caught his attention. The vehicle was torn apart. Then he recognized the car. It was a black Dodge Charger. Steven panicked. He unbuckled his seatbelt and jumped out the front windshield of the car since his door was jammed. He slid down the hood through the pouring rain and across pieces of the shattered windshield. Steven left behind trails of blood across the hood and in the puddles he ran through on his way to car. He had cut his head open when it hit the dashboard.
Water flew as Steven’s feet slammed into the puddles. The paramedics tried to stop Steven from running towards the car, but he shoved them all out of his way. Next to the car lay a body covered with a tarp. Steven stood over the tarp and stared down at it. Paramedics ran toward Steven. “Son, you have to leave.”
“Let me see him.” said Steven. Steven was holding in all his emotions, however, his eyes began to water. At this point, Joe had managed to awaken and find a way out of the car. He was standing next to one of the paramedics and he knew exactly what had happened.
“You can’t see the body, son”
“I have to see the body!” yelled Steven in anger toward the paramedic.
“I can’t…” He was interrupted by Steven’s pleading voice.
“Please sir, it’s my dad.” Steven bit his bottom lip and glanced over at Joe. Joe’s hand was already placed over his mouth and he was trembling.
The paramedic folded the tarp down to the waist of the victim. Steven turned back to look at the body. He began to shake. Then he fell to his knees and tears rolled down his face.
“Why?! Why God?!” And he got on all fours and began to punch the ground that he was kneeling on. Through the water on the road you could still see traces of both Steven’s and his father’s blood. And as Steven looked at the ground, he saw where his tears were falling.
He screamed at the top of his lungs, and then he rested his head on his father’s shoulder. Steven’s arms were wrapped around his dad, one at the waist the other behind his neck. He cried on his dad’s shoulder for a good while. By then his mother had arrived at the scene of the crash. She had run over to where Steven was kneeling. She held an umbrella over his head, but he didn’t notice because his tears were still falling off his face like raindrops. His mother dropped the umbrella and knelt down next to Steven, wrapped him in her arms, and told him they had to go.
“Steve, we have to leave.”
“Dad! Dad, wake up! Wake up, Dad!”
“Steve, come on.” Tears were rolling down his mother’s face as well as his little brother’s, who was standing next to Joe hugging him around the waist. Steve’s mom pulled him away from the body. She gave her husband a final kiss on the cheek and said, “I love you.”
As Steven was being pulled away, he said, “I love you, Dad.” Then, the next five words out his mouth were, “Dad, today at practice coach…” and his mom yelled at him again to come on.
Steven, Joe, his mother, and his little brother all rode back to Steven’s house in tears. When they arrived at the house they sat down and attempted to discuss what had happened.
“Mrs. West, this was my fault I drove home, and I was drinking, and I…I’m sorry. It was an accident.” Joe was sitting on the couch, and he put his face in his hands and leaned over onto his knees.
“It’s not your fault, Joe. It’s okay. Just calm down.” After she paused for a moment, she looked over at Steven who was leaning against the wall still balling. The only word his mother was able to get out was, “Steven.”
“I shouldn’t have let him drive home! I knew you were too drunk to drive! This is my fault.” He turned toward the wall and banged his fist into it three times. Each time was a little bit softer. However, as the strikes at the wall got softer, the tears came down harder on Steven’s face. He looked upward toward the sky then ran up the steps to his room. His mother jumped up to catch him but instead let him go. She heard him slam the door, lock it, than she heard him say very softly, “Daddy, I love u”
For the next two months, Steven was very antisocial. He didn’t go to any parties. He never called, texted, or even answered the door for any of his friends. He didn’t even speak to Joe or his brother. The two of them were now the people he was closest too and he neglected them. He never even showed up to football practice.
Towards the end of the second month the family had began to go into debt. Their father had made all the money for the family. So, Steven’s mom called her mother in California and spoke to her about the situation, and two weeks later the family was packed up and ready to leave for San Diego.
Steven took a last glance in his father’s bedroom, and then he turned to Joe and gave him a friendly hug. As he was hugging his best friend, he whispered to him, “I love you, Joe. None of this is your fault. I’ll never forget about you. Goodbye bro.” They both walked out the house to the car. Joe helped Steve load the rest of his suitcases in the trunk. Steve got in the car and Joe stood on the front lawn of the house.
When Steven’s mom started the car, he called Joe over to the window, “Joe! Come here for a second.”
Joe leaned onto the window of the car, “Yeah?”
“One more thing. Remember when you told me if I went to the pros you would run along the sideline with me? Well, I expect to see you there yellin’ when I look up at the crowd. Ok?”
“Will do.” He leaned back off the window and waved to Steve’s brother and mom, and then they were off to California.
Once the family was settled in California, Steven’s mom registered him at West Coast High School. On his first day, Steven met with the principle and athletic director of the school.
“So Steven, where are you here from?” said Principle Mcquarters.
“Foley, Texas” replied Steven without much emotion.
“You play any sports down there?” asked the athletic director.
“I played football, Sir. I was a three time All-American quarterback.” Steven hesitated to answer the question asked by the director. He thought about telling the man that he didn’t play any sports, however, at that moment, something came across his mind. He asked himself, “What would Dad want you to do?” Then he noticed someone standing in the corner. It was a tall brown haired girl. She was absolutely beautiful. The girl glanced at Steve and smiled. He smiled back.
“I expect you to be at practice this afternoon, son. I won’t guarantee you a starting spot, but I can promise you will be on the team and will have a fair tryout for the position.”
“Yes Sir. I’ll be there.”
“This is Kristy Maywether.” said the principle. “She will show you around the campus and to your classes. If you have any questions feel free to ask her.” The principle dismissed the both of them.
“Hi, I’m Kristy.”
“So, you’re from Texas right?” Kristy led Steve out the office and down the hallway that led to his first classroom.
“Yeah. My father died in a car accident, my mom, my little brother, and I had to move down here to live with my grandma.”
“Wow. I’m sorry. I have family that lives in Texas.”
“Don’t be sorry. It’s not your fault.” Steven looked at his schedule and saw that they were getting close to his first class. It came to Steven as shock, but he wanted to keep talking to this girl. “Hey, do you have time to show me where the football field is?”
“Yea sure, just follow me.” Kristy led Steven to the field. When they got there she asked, “So, three time All-American quarterback?”
“That’s right,” Said Steven unenthusiastically.
“That’s amazing! I wonder why Drew can’t do that.” Kristy laughed aloud, then looked at Steven and noticed he was lost. “Oh, Drew is my boyfriend. He is the starting quarterback for the varsity team.”
“Oh okay. I see. So is he any good?”
“He’s alright. He’s not an All-American, but he’s decent.” Right as Kristy finished her sentence, Drew walked up and stood next to her.
“Who’s this guy Kris?” asked Drew with a little bit of anger in his voice.
“Oh hey, Drew. This is Steven West. He just moved here from Texas. He’s going to be playing football this year.” Steven had his eyes locked on Drew. He knew that he was going to ask what position he played, and when he would say quarterback, he knew something would start to heat up between the two of them.
“Really? So what position do you play, huh playboy?” Drew called Steven “Playboy” because he figured that Steven would be all hype, and because he seemed like a ladies’ man.
“Playboy, huh? That’s cute,” said Steven sarcastically. Steven realized by now, that there was something about Kristy that he liked, but there were a few things about Drew he didn’t like. “I play quarterback.”
“He’s a three time All-American Drew!” said Kristy with excitement
Drew stared at Kristy and she almost instantly, stopped smiling. “Well good luck having that fourth All-American year, punk.” Drew was trying to intimidate Steven.
“From what I hear, there’s no one here to stop me.” Steven continued to stare at Drew with a smirk on his face.
Drew got angry quick and got right in Steven’s face and said, “I’ll stop you! My dad was a quarterback coach at USC. What about your dad? He ever did anything useful for you?” Steven wiped the smirk off his face. Drew had gotten personal with him about the wrong subject. So, Steven slowly turned the ring on his finger over without Drew noticing. However, right when Steven was about to hit Drew, the thought about what his father would want him to do crossed his mind again. Steven turned the ring back over and held his hand up in Drew’s face.
“He was the head coach at Texas Tech. Here’s his national championship ring.” The ring shined in the sun. On the side of the ring was the year of the championship written out in diamonds. Steven pulled out a necklace from under his shirt. “And these three rings here? These are my state championship rings. Where’s yours?”
Drew suddenly took a swing at Steven’s head, but Steven ducked and the momentum behind Drew’s punch made him fall to the ground.
“Drew! What are you doing? Get out of here! I’ll talk to you about this later,” yelled Kristy. Drew stared down Steven then walked away. “I’m sorry. He can be a real jerk.”
“Yeah I noticed. I didn’t really like the look he gave you when you told him I was an All-American. I knew right after that somethin’ was gonna’ happen.” Steven decided that he was going to take a shot at Kristy and maybe get her to agree to go out with him sometime.
“So, you can just read peoples’ faces like that?” They started walking back to the classes.
“I guess if you want to put it that way.” Steven smiled.
“What am I thinking right now? Just look at my face and tell me.” Steve pretended to study her face. He knew what he was going to say no matter what face she made.
“You’re thinking that maybe you’d like to hang out with this real hansom guy sometime,” Steven studied her face after he said that. Her bright smile turned into somewhat of a frown. “Never mind, I know that look. I have to get to class. I’ll talk to you later Kristy. Nice meeting you.”
Kristy and Steven went their separate ways to their classes. On the way back to his class, Steven didn’t feel any kind of upset feeling. In fact, he felt relieved. The relief came from just being able to talk to Kristy the way he did. He told himself that he knew he could win Kristy over Drew.
After school, Steven arrived at football practice. He took a look at the field and the stadium and realized how different everything was. The grass field was gone; it was now turf. The bleachers in the stands were now individual seats. However, he noticed that the lights were bigger, which meant they were brighter. He said out loud, “Brighter lights means more fans which means more people to impress.” Then out of nowhere he heard a voice.
“You dreaming, Playboy? It’s ok. We all do it. My name is Jerome White. I play Strong Safety. I saw what you did to Drew earlier. You gained my respect for not hitting him. It takes a real man to hold back on that especially when the talk about your dad. By the way, I heard that your old man died not long ago; I’m sorry to hear that.” Jerome was a huge kid. He was 6 foot 5 and 190 pounds of muscle. He was built from steel, but he had a good heart.
Jerome showed Steven through the locker room and the weight room and then they went to the field to practice. Steven put his hatred for Drew aside and focused on the game he loved. Then he noticed that Kristy was watching from the stands. He knew he had the perfect chance to impress her. So, he came out and played his game. He put every pass right where it needed to be. However, Drew also had a perfect practice. Throughout the practice, huddles would gather around Steve and the other around Drew. Of course Drew attracted more people to his huddle by trash talking Steven, but all the team leaders surrounded Steven. Each one of them explained to him how they would always have his back.
As the weeks went by each of the quarterbacks progressed evenly on the field skill wise. However, off the field, Steven seemed to be gaining a bit more respect than Drew. For example, Kristy was the newspaper editor for the school paper and she wrote an article on the battle between the two quarterbacks. The title of the article was “Out with the old, in with the new?” and the article went on to explain the progress of each quarterback on and off the field.
Steven was searching for a table to sit at one day for lunch when Kristy called him over. “Hey, Steve! Come sit over here.” She hadn’t talked to him since his first day. After he mentioned going out some time, she acted like she didn’t want anything to do with him. Steven walked over to the table and sat across from her. “I haven’t spoken to you in a while. I’ve been meaning to ask you something.”
“Go ahead,” said Steven.
“Well you said your father died in a car accident. What exactly happened in the car accident?” Kristy noticed Steven was trying to avoid the question. He was looking down at table and had his hands on the back of his head.
“I don’t wanna’ talk about it.”
“Please Steven. I know it’s tough for you, but I want to know. I want to know everything about you.” Steven looked up into her eyes. “Please.”
“I was at a party and my friend Joe was drinking. He just kept drinking. He wouldn’t stop. But then again, I didn’t try to stop him. We left the party, and I let him drive me back to my house, and…” Steven’s eyes began to tear up. He looked down at the table again. “I shouldn’t have let him drive. I should’ve taken his keys. He was swerving left and right. Then, he threw his hands in the air and the only thing I remember is kneeling next to my dad’s body.” Kristy wiped her eyes, and grabbed his hands.
“Steven, I’m sorry. I didn’t know, but it’s not your fault. You weren’t behind the wheel.”
Steve got a little angry. He generally got upset when talking about that night. “You can’t make me feel any better. I had to leave all my friends and come here. I don’t know anybody. My life is horrible right now. There’s nothing that can turn my life around.” Steven looked up and stared into Kristy’s beautiful blue eyes.
“Why don’t we hang out some time?” She noticed that Steven had suddenly gotten the biggest smile on his face. She realized what he needed in his life. Steven remembered Joe’s words about how he would eventually need a girlfriend. He knew what Joe had said was right.
Drew had walked quietly pass the table a few times listening to Steven’s story. Neither Kristy nor Steve noticed him. Drew saw that Kristy was beginning to fall for Steve. Drew made the decision to get back at Steven for embarrassing him in front of her that day.
“You know, Steve, I really like that you were able to control yourself when Drew spoke about your dad.” Drew walked over to the table grunting with each step he took. When he reached the table, he slammed his hand down and swiped Steve’s tray across the cafeteria floor.
“Why you talkin’ to my girl, Playboy?”
Kristy stood up and wrapped her arms around him and tried to calm him down. “Drew, calm down. Just leave.”
“Shut up, Kristy!” he exclaimed. Then, he shoved her to the ground and started walking towards her. Drew was on a maniacal rage, so no one knew what he was going to do to her. Kristy was scared out of her mind and she screamed bloody murder.
Steve shot up out his seat and stormed over to Drew. He pushed Drew away from Kristy. “If you touch her, I’ll break your neck.” Steve and Drew stared each other down. Everyone in the cafeteria surrounded the two of them. There was silence for about five seconds.
Drew whispered in Steve’s ear, “She’s mine. I will treat her how I want to. You understand you fatherless…” Before he even finished his sentence Drew was on top of him beating his face like a drum. A few of Steve’s friends saw what was happening and pulled him off of Drew. Drew was balled up kneeling on the floor with blood coming from places where Steve has busted his head open. The principle had arranged to meet with Steve and his mom one day after school.
He explained to his mom that the school did not need to see this kind of violence. He said that he would send a request to the school board about having Steven expelled from school. Kristy, who was sitting in the next room, heard what the principle was saying and went into his office to defend Steve.
“I’m sorry to interrupt, Sir, but you can’t have him expelled.” Kristy hadn’t prepared what she was going to say. “Steven is a really good kid. Drew had shoved me on the ground and was about to attack me. Steven was just defending me.” The principle knew that Kristy would never lie to him about something like this, so, he took her word for it. He decided to not expel Steve but to have Drew suspended. Steven was relieved to hear that he would not be expelled. If he would have been expelled then his football career would have been over, and he felt that he would have let down his dad.
About a week later when Drew returned from his suspension he saw Kristy and Steven talking in the hall. “Drew what do you want?” asked Kristy. Steve pulled Kristy behind him. He was ready to defend himself if need be.
“Relax. I wanted to tell you both that I was sorry. Steve, I know how much your father meant to you and I should have never said anything about him. I deserved what you did to me.” He offered his hand out in apology. Steven didn’t care how many times Drew apologized. He told him he would never forgive him for what he’d said. Steve walked away and left Kristy and Drew to talk. Kristy avoided making eye contact with Drew. He put his hand gently under her chin and lifted her head up. Kristy faced him. He had scars all over his face as well a swollen right eye and busted lip. He tried to apologize to Kristy for what he had done to her, but she didn’t want to hear what he had to say and she walked away crying.
Steve saw that she crying and tried to comfort her. He asked her what was wrong. She told him that her and Drew had broken up. Steven knew that he should be upset for her, but deep down he was happy. He knew this was a sign. “Well why don’t we hang out tonight so we can talk about it.”
“Steve, I don’t want to go out with you. You need to settle down and get your life straight. You don’t know what you want in life. Once you settle down then we’ll talk.” Steve felt like he had just been stabbed in the back. He thought the two of them had made a connection. He watched her leave him behind as she walked down the hall.
About a month went by and there wasn’t a single day when Steven didn’t think about Kristy. What she had said to him had affected everything he did in life, especially at practice. Steven had lost his starting spot to Drew due to the fight and his performance lately. The coach told him that whatever was on his mind, he needed to forget about and focus on the game because the season was around the corner. Steven felt that he had to make a decision about the two things in life he truly loved, football and Kristy. He understood that it was two different loves that were affecting each other. So Steven made his decision. He decided to let Drew have the starting quarterback position, because he knew that he himself didn’t deserve it. Steven continued to practice well enough to maintain his second string position. He thought that it was meant for him to not start this season. However, Steven didn’t put all his focus on football, and he didn’t put it all on Kristy either.
Kristy began to notice the change in Steven throughout the season. She began to fell for him a little more each day. There was still something missing, however. She thought about the change Steve was going through. She noticed that he was caring less about the game he loved. He had played the game for his dad and now he was almost giving up on the game. When he played, his head was there, but his heart wasn’t. Kristy loved the passion that Steve had always shown for the game and now that he was losing that passion, she knew she had to do something about it.
“Steve, can we talk?” Steve sat in the seat next to Kristy and paid full attention to what she had to say. “I noticed that ever since I told you needed to figure your life out, you’ve changed. Now for the most part, I like the change. But, I don’t like that you’re losing your passion for football. You said you played the game for your dad but now you’re not caring about it. I know I told you figure out what you wanted, but I don’t want to see you throw your skills down the drain. Think about what your dad would want you to do. He would want nothing more than to see his son win a fourth state championship and go on to play college and professional football. So, keep that in mind when the championship rolls around next weekend.” Kristy put her hand on Steve’s shoulder as she walked away from the table. Steven took in everything she said. He knew exactly what he had to do.
Steven walked into his coach’s office the next day. “Coach, I wanted to apologize to you for my actions recently.” Drew heard that Steven was talking to the coach about their and decided to listen. “I take full responsibility for my behavior. My life was scattered all over the place coach. But, I know now that I’m ready to step up and play in this game. All I ever wanted to do with my life was show my dad that I could make it to this level and beyond.” He went on to tell the coach that all he wanted was one play in the game. So the coach granted him that wish, however, after Steve left drew walked into the office and told the coach to let Steve play the entire game. The coach understood that Drew felt that Steve was the better quarterback and deserved the position more than he did.
Steve walked out on to the field for warm ups on game night and got the best feeling he had ever felt. He felt the passion for the game once again. Before the game started, Drew went speak to Steven about the situation. “Steve, I came to tell you that I want you to play the entire game tonight. Don’t argue with me about this. Just do two things for me. Go out there, win the game, and more importantly make your dad a proud father.” Drew walked off the sideline as Steven stayed on the field to take the first snap of the game.
It was the fourth quarter and the Rangers were down by three points. They had taken a beating all night. They were lined up on the 20 yard line, which was easy field goal range to tie the game. However, Steve wouldn’t settle for the tie and overtime. He told the coach that this wasn’t about who was the better team anymore. It was about who had more love for the game and Steven knew he loved the game more than anyone else in the stadium. Coach allowed him to go for the win. Steven told Drew to get in the game because he would need him to be a part of the play. Steve got in the huddle and called the play but he also gave the team a speech. “I want all of you to know that I love all ya’ll. Any differences we had with each other are now gone forever. This is our last game as high school players. We’ve been put through Hell tonight, but God will take you through Hell just to get you to Heaven. Heaven is in that end zone so let’s make this play work and get to Heaven together.” They broke the huddle and lined up. Steve lined up at quarterback with Drew at running back. He tossed the ball out to Drew than ran up the sidelines toward the end zone. Drew caught the ball and sprinted forward like he was going to run the ball, but at the last second he pulled up and threw the ball into the end zone. As the ball was flying through the air, the entire crowd rose to their feet. When the ball came down in the end zone Steven was right there to catch it and win the game for the Rangers.
The students stormed the field. Kristy ran over to Steven. “You did it! You did it!” She stopped screaming and stared into Steven’s eyes. “Your dad would be very proud of you.” She smiled and then she leaned in and kissed Steven. The two of them stood there together in each other’s arms for what seemed like forever. Steven felt love being shared in that moment. It was a moment he never wanted to end.
He looked at Kristy and said, “I love you.” Then he kissed her again. After the kiss, he walked over to Drew. He offered his hand out to Drew. Drew grabbed Steven’s hand and pulled him in close and whispered, “Take care of her.” Steve nodded and the two of them went their separate ways.
About fifteen years later, Steve went to the cemetery to visit his dad. He stood over the grave for a while, than he laid some flowers at the foot bottom of the tombstone. Attached the flowers was a Super Bowl ring, and a picture of Joe, and Kristy, who was now Steve’s wife, and their two kids running through the stands at the Super Bowl. There was also a note that read, “Hey Dad, its Steve. I wanted to give my Super Bowl ring I won this year. It would look good on you I bet. Well I have to go take care the family so I’ll talk to you later Dad. Oh Dad, by the way, today at practice coach told me I was voted into the hall of fame. Love Steven.”