A game of football may reaveal some intense feelings about one another, and Cammy may find her laughter after all the times she's felt betrayed or depressed. Who's team will Cammy end up on?
“Come on guys…My number was six,” Andy let them know.
I had to chuckle to myself. There was no winner if they were both the same distance away.
“Rock, paper, scissors, shoot! Best two out of three wins!” Brendon suggested.
Pete and Ryan were immediately fighting in a game of rock, paper, scissors to have me on their team. I felt horrible to tear everybody apart like that, but I guess in order to play the game I needed to be on somebody’s team.
Pete and Ryan had both won a game, the third determining who won. And Pete had beaten him. I smiled weakly and walked to his side of Ryan’s lawn. By the end, our team consisted of Pete, me, Joe, Moony, Brendon and Spencer. Ryan got everybody else; Keltie, Addi, Jon, Patrick and himself. We took the football and huddled up, laughing as we stepped on each other’s toes.
“We need a quarterback,” Pete announced.
“I vote you, Pete,” I said, quickly saving myself from having to do it. I wasn’t ever terribly talented at football, and had a tendency to get scared when I played. I was always afraid I would get tackled too hard.
“Yeah, that sounds good,” Brendon agreed. I wasn’t sure if he was agreeing just to be nice or if he was really agreeing.
“Okay,” Pete said. He told us our play and we got into our positions. “Guys, those trees are our end zone, and those ones over there are yours,” He told the other team.
Moony hiked the ball to Pete and the game began. I watched in horror as Ryan sacked Pete before he could throw the ball to Joe. They were on the ground on top of each other, and I couldn’t help but see a small flame of anger in their eyes.
“Where the Hell did that come from?” Brendon questioned Ryan as they removed themselves from the ground.
Ryan smiled. “I don’t know,” He said bluntly. But I did.
Just because they had an argument over me. I knew they hadn’t gotten over it yet, and wasn’t sure if they would be mature enough to just let it go after today.
The game continued like that for several plays; either Pete or Ryan was tackling the other. We weren’t getting anywhere, and it was getting annoying. “Huddle up!” I called from the other end of the field. They all did so obediently.
“This isn’t working. We can’t have Pete be quarterback with Ry on the other team. Seriously, guys, think about it,” I explained.
“Yeah,” Brendon said. “Moony, you be quarterback.”
“You’re cute enough that they’ll feel bad that they tackle you,” Pete put in. Moony blushed profusely, and beamed at me. I smiled back, with not half as much glee as she had. We got back in our new positions, finally able to return to the game. Keltie was hiking the ball to Ryan now, and I tried my hardest not to let my irritation get the best of me. I truly hated her; I knew she had never done a single thing to me, never said one offensive word or given me a dirty look, but no matter how much I willed myself not to, I resented her. Nothing could tell my feelings otherwise. Not even myself.
I watched as Moony, still smiling in all her glory and happiness that Pete had supplied her with, threw the ball to Spencer. He ran down the field, only to get tackled by Jon. He had made it quite a way down, and we were all proud to finally have gotten somewhere.
The football game was just another thing I recognized as a living metaphor. If you changed things, took another route to what you wanted to achieve, then they would come easier. There will always be obstacles; in this case, it would be Ry and Pete, and there would always be a safe route, which was Moony and Spencer. I was glad I could see so many things that others just looked over.
Our game was tied in the end. Ryan’s team had decided they would pull something unexpected as well, and made Keltie run all the way up the side of the field. She made a touchdown all by herself after Patrick had thrown her the ball as quarterback, and squealed in all her amazement. She was so proud of herself; she ran over to Ryan and started jumping up and down in happiness. He gave her a meaningful smile and a peck on the cheek, watching his giddy girlfriend make a big deal out of a small accomplishment. I had noticed she had a tendency to over exaggerate things.
We all sat back down on Ryan’s huge porch, laughing and conversing with one another as dusk set in. It had been a long day, an even longer one for Ry. He had been through so much in his life, I couldn’t help but feel blameworthy for his crying today. I was the reason for many things that could haunt him for life.
I had caused an argument between him and Pete. I had caused him to cry. I had caused him to have a guilty conscience after knowing he had torn my heart to pieces. I had made him recall upon memories that everybody tried desperately to forget. I hadn’t been there for him in all of his times in need. And worst of all, I had made him promise that if I got over him, he would never put me through anything like my love again, when in reality, I enjoyed every second of loving him.
“Patty, do you want to hang out tomorrow? I feel bad that I haven’t kept my promises that I made to you,” I suggested, watching as Addi talked with Ryan, Brendon and Keltie.
“Yeah, sure, Cams. That would be awesome,” He agreed, his eyes lighting up. I let my face turn to a huge grin; his blue eyes could always dig deep inside my heart and pull out something I had never known existed. It never failed, and it always put me in awe.
“And then I was like, ‘What the fuck?’” I heard Brendon saying. I chuckled to myself.
Ryan, Keltie, Addi and Brendon all burst out in lively, heartfelt laughter. Envy crept up my spine, threatening to turn my face green.
“Spence,” I giggled. “What are you doing?” I wondered, as he stroked Jon’s hair.
“His hair is fluffy,” He pointed out. “I like it.”
Finally, I found some of that well waited for laughter that everybody seemed to find with ease except me. And the one ironic thing was, the laughter had nothing to do with Ryan.
He had been the reason I hadn’t laughed in such a long time.
Don’t put that on him, I thought to myself quickly. He didn’t ever do anything that horrible. He was just telling me his honest opinion. Everybody has a right to it, I reminded myself.
Mine just happened to be different than everybody else’s.