Brodie sighed as he trudged from the bench to the locker room. One arm was full of hockey sticks poking out every which way. The other was dragged down by the weight of six half empty water bottles. The rest of the team had already hurried to the locker room for the post-game celebration.
He opened the door, catching his foot in the bottom and prying it open with his elbow. The coaches were already talking.
Coach Jim held up a shiny puck painted gold and extolled, “Trevor gets the game puck today. His three goals put us on top against the Wolves!”
“It’s my third hat trick!” Trevor boasted. “I am unstoppable.”
“And you never pass to anyone,” thought Brodie.
He propped the sticks in the corner near the door and slunk to his spot at the end of the far bench. Silently he wished no one would notice him doing the team chores. He bent over and set the water bottles on the floor in front of his bag. Brodie sat meekly while the room erupted in cheers for Trevor.
Coach grinned as the team congratulated his son. Eventually he raised his hands for quiet. “Okay, okay boys. Coach Jay has something to announce.”
The assistant coach for the defense held up a Lego wall that had been glued together and painted gold. “It probably won’t come as a shock to any of you who today’s defensive player of the game is,” Jay boomed. “Once again, Tanner has posted a shut out!”
“It’s the third one in that many weeks!” Tanner chirped. “I’m impenetrable. We don’t even need a defense when I’m in the net.”
The team hooted and hollered again.
Brodie tried to hide his irritation. Another game. Another pair of awards for a pair of selfish bullies. Didn’t anyone else notice how Trevor hogged the puck, stealing it off their sticks during games? Didn’t anyone remember how Tanner made excuses and blamed the defense any time a shot got through to him? And the coaches just encouraged them. All the while Brodie was made to sit out so Trevor could play extra shifts. Those two skipped practices half the time–which was actually what made practices half bearable. All the while Brodie skated his hardest at every practice, carried the team gear at games, and cleaned up after everyone. How exactly was that fair?
Brodie quietly shed his gear and packed up his bag. The others had wandered out as they finished changing into their sweats or jeans. He nodded to the last player out besides himself. Ben nodded back and pushed out the door.
I never knew there was a National Tell a Fairy Tale Day until I saw it this morning. Just so happens I started writing my own fairy tale adaptation last night. Tell your own story today!