February 13, 2014
"Hey." Max said, clapping me on the shoulder. "You got this."
I smiled at him, then turned back to the ice. Tyler and Max were waiting ahead of me, brooms at the ready. Bryan was waiting down at the end of the ice, showing me where I needed to throw. It was the final stone, the last shot.
I nodded to all three of them. They nodded back. I knelt down and grasped the handle of the stone.
I looked up to the British team on the other side of the ice. Matt was standing there, watching me while one of his friends talked at him.
He was watching me. Why?
I looked back to the ice and tried to clear my head.
I took a deep breath in.
I breathed out and pushed off the ice.
The stone and I slid forward, gliding on the smooth ice. I gritted my teeth, trying to keep my path steady and straight.
I let go of the stone.
Max and Tyler started to sleep as I stopped, helpless to what would happen. Bryan shouted to them, telling them when to sweep and when to stop.
I took a sharp, harsh breath as they finally peeled away from the ice. Two stone resounded with a loud CLACK as they stopped in the target.
I sighed and turned back to the scoreboard.
One point. Nowhere near enough to win. I looked back to see Matt and his team cheering, celebrating.
I picked myself up off the ice as my team joined me. We all walked over to the Brits and shook hands.
"Great match." Matt said, pulling me into a bear hug.
"Same to you." I said, rubbing my arm where he squeezed me.
We walked out of that arena together.