‘Think about it, my butt. If any chance existed for Logan to not be in my life, I’d take it.’ Alex fumed in her room.
She sat crossed legged on her bed, thinking of how to get the phone back, to get the whole fiasco over with and to put a seal on it, never opening it again.
Alex sighed in frustration and ruffled her hair, falling back to lie on her bed.
In no time, Friday came. The whole school buzzed about the basketball game in the afternoon. The cheerleaders had arranged a pep rally the day before. Its success brought out more interest from the students since their team was up for a twice-to-beat game. Both competing teams had a perfect victory streak and to advance to the finals, they both need to win two games against each other.
One student looked particularly gloomy in comparison.
“Hey, best bud” Logan greeted Alex, a teasing smile on his face. He had come to love the sour look on Alex’ face whenever he did this, much to Alex’ dismay.
Alex closed her locker and started to walk away, “I’m not going.”
Logan walked next to her, “Aw, come on, Alex. Didn’t you hear me call you, best bud? You have to come. You are my lucky charm.”
“Isn’t your lucky charm an old pair of socks you’ve never washed since the winning you had after joining the team?”
“Hey! That is just a rumor!”
Alex looked at him pointedly.
“Based on what I said when I was young and naïve” He explained but Alex didn’t drop the look, “Okay, fine! I wear the same pair of socks but I do wash them you know!”
Alex chuckled, “Just teasing you, Logan. No need to be so defensive.”
Logan groaned, “Will you please come to my game?”
“How about this? I have something to do after school but I will try to see if I can be there. Is that good enough?”
“Hmmm…” Logan thought for a while, “How about this instead? You do your best to come but when we win this game, you promise to come to the championship?”
“What makes you so sure you’ll win?”
“Because I have motivation!” He exclaimed, “For you to watch me play!”
Alex blinked, “You gotta stop flirting with me, moron.”
“Who says I’m flirting?”
Alex nodded her head towards the other side of the hallway where a group of fujoshis were looking at them and talking to each other.
“Ugh” Logan turned around and banged his head on a locker. Alex patted his shoulder.
“See ya, Parker” she said and left Logan to his demise.
The gym was packed. Both schools had filled the place to every seat possible and both schools had their eyes on the prize—plus faith in their teams.
The Woodlands Academy mascot, a chipmunk, came out to the court. It held a sign board that said, “Chipmunks for the win!”
Behind it stood the school’s cheerleading team, executing their dance and stunts while the mascot spun the sign much to the crowds delight.
Then, the chipmunk raised the board over its head, jumping up and down, and pointed towards the locker entrance.
Jae Parker led the Woodlands team to the court. Logan and Max one step behind him on his left and on his right. Their supporters cheered. Several of them even had blow horns, aiming to shake the roof.
A few seconds later, the opposing team came out from the other side and their supporters began cheering as well. A loud percussion drum made steady beats to guide the others’ chant.
“I love you all, my lovelies!” Max shouted and waved at the crowd, blowing air kisses.
Jae focused on the opposing team, checking out the new players and if any of them would be playing. He had yet to assess their capabilities.
Logan’s eyes trailed the bleachers and searched for a face but the referee blew his whistle before he could finish.
“Alright! Time to shine, boys!” Max clapped as the front players took their places in the court.
He stood at the center with the referee and the opposing team’s captain. They shook hands. Then, the ball was tossed and…
Max passed it to Woodlands’s team captain, Jae, and the game officially began.
Alex stopped at the doorway and held her breath. The locker room stank like wet dog. The smell hit her nose as soon as she entered it.
She rethought her plan and reassessed if this had been the best way to achieve her goal.
The phone had to be here somewhere? Right? She mulled to herself. Whatever. I had to try at least.
Alex lifted up the hem of her shirt to cover her nose and closed the door. She took a tiptoed forward. She took a step. Then, another… and soon she saw the lockers around the corner. They surrounded the room and had all their backs against the wall. She scanned each of them, thinking,
Now… where was Logan’s?
10 minutes left in the game, Woodlands’ team was in the lead by 2 points and they wanted to keep it that way. The newcomers had some diamonds in the rough, breaking their initial powerplay, but the chipmunks had no intentions to go easy on them.
Jae passed the ball to the outer lines. The ball flew high, fast and hard, seemingly about to hit outside the court, so the opposing team halted…but then, Logan ran and caught the ball in the nick of time.
He dribbled the ball back into play as their opponents sprung into action, Max blocking anyone who aimed for Logan.
Logan tossed the ball to Max and Max pushed the ball to ground. It passed between his legs and the opponent’s legs behind him, landing in Jae Parker’s hands passing by.
The crowd cheered at the spectacle before them. Max smirked at the sound of it and wiped his sweaty forehead.
Alex’s mission had been hard. Most of the lockers had no label or any indication of who owned it. She could faintly hear the game and it seemed to still be ongoing but the room had too many lockers for her to go through and the slippery floor did little to help.
What the hell happened here? Alex wondered. Did the team took a bath? She decided to do a process of elimination—particularly the ones that actually had labels but that only removed 25% from the equation.
“Damn it,” she fumed softly.
Alex brought out her phone and turned on the flashlight to peek at the holes, hoping to spot Logan’s backpack.
At the 20th locker she looked at, the light reflected on a bright blue backpack.
“Gotcha!” Alex beamed.