January 1, 2010 Off By Child Guest

An expression of anger can be liberation.

When Mike Wool was a young boy, he was called ‘Springs’. Not for nothing. He could leap and run and shoot in the basketball court like he had spring on his soles.

They also called him shy, but they weren’t too correct in that. Mike was quiet, but the great NBA star was famous in the tabloids for sudden violent outbursts. A glimpse of the faint scar on his neck and it would all come rushing back to him; his father pushing him to practice, thrashing him when he didn’t want to. He built that anger in him to such a mountain that peace became a flimsy, elusive word. Now sitting on the benches for the game to begin, he hated the kids in the stands for their childhood, for being able to watch the game without being expected to learn from it to be the best.

Peter Maxwell was, of course, was not like those kids. He was in the VIP section of the audience. He hadn’t wanted to come. He wanted to practice his piano lessons. His teacher said he was a prodigy to be able to play Tchaikovsky at 10. His friends laughed but he didn’t care. He felt connected to music so deeply that he breathed and lived through those melodies. If only his father would stop forcing him to play basketball….

He hated his father for bringing him to meet to Mike.

Eventually Peter’s father introduced him to Mike.

Peter went up to Mike and whispered in his ear… “I hate you.”

Mike looked up. Peter’s expression was strange, of dread and victory, and something. He didn’t know why he did that, he whispered back, “I hate you, too.”

Mike understood that something for he felt it too. It was Solace.

Sneha Khound
Class X
Carmel School
Cinnamora, Jorhat

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