The shootout was organized, five members from each team would take a shot. Whoever's team scored the most points would win. If it was tied after that, they would go until one team scored more. Beth was up first. It was just her and the goalie. No defenders, no rush for time. She had this in the bag. Smiling, she ran up to the ball, just as she had done so many times before, and kicked it. The ball sailed up, over the goalie's hands, and into the net. She scored. "Yesss!" She said softly, and walked back to her team, and high-fived them. Sarah proceeded to score as well, but Micah and Sam missed. Tori almost made it, but the goalie made a good guess, and stopped the shot.
The other team was up. Their first shooter scored, it was a beautifully placed shot, in the top right corner of the net. The tension mounted as the next kicker took her shot. Sam blocked the shot, knocking it away. Three more to go. She blocked the next shot as well. The fourth shot got by her. The pressure was on. If she let this goal in, they would lose. If she blocked it, they'd go to a sixth round. As the ball flew towards the goal, Sam blocked it easily. Grinning, Beth took her place at the line. She ran up, kicked the ball, and scored. The pressure was on the other team now. As the ball sailed towards the goal, Sam reached out, and blocked the shot! They had won! Their team ran out on the field, everyone celebrating. After a few minutes, Beth looked around at the stands. They were free to go, they'd have a meeting on the game on Monday, but today was Saturday, they had the rest of the weekend off. Beth wanted to do something with Ethan, but she didn't know what. She headed towards the stands where she was sure she'd find Ethan.
Ethan watched all the shots being taken. The goalies were doing great jobs in defending their goals. Ethan knew he probably wouldn't have been able to block any of those shots.
As Beth scored the winning goal, Ethan was on his feet with a huge smile. He grabbed his bag and jogged down to the field to congratulate his sister.
She had won them the game.
When Ethan made it to his twin he pulled her into a hug. "Congratulations, Beth," he said and latter her on the back. He pushed away and held her shoulders. "You did great out there. Jeans had to go but she was cheering for you." He looked over her shoulder in search of her bag. "Where's your water bottle?" he asked. "I'm thirsty and I didn't bring mine." He smirked and turned to start towards the car. "I'm kidding. Drink something though. You're sweating out all your liquids. How should we celebrate your victory?"
"Thanks, Ethan. But it wasn't my doing alone. I'm part of a team... I may have contributed to our win, but it wasn't because of me alone." She told him with a smile on. She didn't notice that their coach was behind them until she spoke.
"That's the attitude I like to see, Beth. Good job out there. I'll see you on Monday."
"See ya, Coach!" Beth and Ethan turned towards the parking lot, Beth pulled out her water bottle, took a drink, and handed it to Ethan. "Here, it's still cold if you want some." Beth stepped into the car, tossed her stuff in the back, and relaxed. It was the weekend. They were free for a few days. She didn't have any homework to work on, she had had several tests the past week. "I'm looking foreword to doing something with you, Ethan. Maybe you can show me your new watercolor set? I dunno. Is there anything you wanted to do?"
Ethan rolled his eyes at his twin but smiled all the same. "It doesn't matter if you're on a team," he said, "you were still the best." He made his way to the car and started it. "Maybe we should go to McDonald's for a celebration meal," he suggested. He stilled a bit when Beth suggested showing him new colors. He thought of the drawing he did and figured he could show Beth.
"So I've been thinking about Mom a lot," Ethan admitted. He reached in the back for his bag that he had tossed aside. "She keeps coming up in my art. Earlier she was in the waterfall I drew and when I was trying to draw you playing soccer her face came up." He pulled his sketch pad out and flipped to the picture of a soccer player. "She's been dead for so long," he said slowly. "Maybe it's a sign. Maybe one of us will join her soon."
As he said it, he was only joking. He was trying to just scare Beth; never did it even cross his mind that either of them could die.
Ethan pushed his bag to Beth so she could look at his drawing. He started driving and after a few minutes he pulled into a McDonald's Drive-Thru. "What do you want?" Ethan asked. "We could get the twenty piece Chicken McNuggets. They're still having that sale, right?"
"Well, thank you, Ethan." Beth said with a smile. "You always know what to say." As they pulled into the McDonalds, Beth looked at the board, thinking. "Yeah, I think so. How about we share the chicken? I'll get an iced tea as well." She pulled out her purse, and pulled out a ten dollar bill. "This should be enough to cover it."
Ethan had mentioned their mother. She flinched a little bit, thinking about it was painful. Even now, she still hurt when she thought about it. It wasn't easy to lose you mom. "Shut up, Ethan. Don't even joke about dying. It's not gonna happen. So why even joke about it?" She was a little bit cross, but softened up a little. "I'm sorry, bro. I didn't mean to sound so sharp. I... it just hurts to think about. That's all. I think about her all the time as well, you're not alone...."
"You're art is amazing, Ethan. It's so pretty. You have a real gift, never give it up. Promise me that." Beth said with an admiring glance at the art. It truly was beautiful. Ethan was the best artist she knew. "So, did you have anything you wanted to do this weekend?"
Ethan smiled at Beth's compliment. He stopped at the Drive-Thru window and ordered the nuggets, an iced tea, and a Sprite. When it came time to pay, Ethan looked at the bill Beth was offering. He shook his head and reached into his pocket for his wallet. He payed with his own money and accepted their food. He passed the bag to Beth so she could have her food before himself.
Ethan froze a bit when Beth went on about their mother's death. He hadn't meant any offense by his comment but he could understand where she was coming from. Even so, he bit his lip and remained silent. It just wasn't worth saying anything more. He would only make things worse.
They drove into the McDonald's parking lot and Ethan suggested eating there. The sun was setting and the sky was streaked with beautiful hues. He turned back to his pictures and shrugged. "I don't really think you choose to give up gifts. Sometimes I find myself unable to draw simple things like apples." Ethan flexed the fingers on his left hand. He was ambidexterous, but he always drew with his left hand. Even if the pencil did smudge more easily when his left hand was rubbing against it he had always been a lefty. It was just easier for him. "But sure. I'll promise."
He closed his book and put it back in his bag so he wouldn't get anything dirty. Then he reached for a nugget and sipped his soda. "They have an art show tomorrow at City Hall," Ethan said. "It's a bit of a drive but if you want to go we can." He watched the streaks of red fade into pink and orange. When he got home, he would draw a sunset.
"But only if you want to," Ethan added. He sighed and reached for another piece of chicken.
Beth smiled. They did this sort of thing all the time. "Sounds good to me, Ethan." Politely, she waited for them to stop. When they did, she opened the lid, and set it in between them. "I'm not that hungry, have as much as you want." Beth said, admiring the sunset. "Have you seen a sunset like this one before? It's really pretty... Peaceful too. And yeah, I'd love to go to the art convention. Will they have any paintings by Terry Redlin? I really like his work, he usually does winter scenes, they're so pretty."
Beth wanted to impress Ethan with her knowledge of her favorite art, she hadn't told him this little fact before. "I'm tired after today. I'll sleep well tonight, I think." Beth was trying to forget about their little discussion about their mother, it was one of the only things they couldn't talk about. Still, it appeared as if the strained conversation had been put behind them. The chicken was tasty, and it made Beth a little sleepy. Yawning, she smiled. "Thanks for taking me, Ethan. It means a lot to me that you are willing to come to watch me."
Ethan admired the sunset with his sister. He smiled when she said she would like to go to the art convention. Ethan was taken by surprise when Beth asked if they'd display anything by Redlin.
"How do you know Redlin?" Ethan asked, a bit of surprise tinting his question. It's not that the American artist wasn't famous, he just wasn't as well-known as a lot of other artists. Not even Ethan knew much about him. Terry Redlin won eight consecutive awards, but that was all Ethan knew. Could Beth have learned of Redlin from one of Ethan's rambles?
That was impossible.
Ethan was impressed.
Ethan nodded when Beth said she'd sleep well that night. He wasn't sure if he could say the same. He would probably keep awake thinking of his paintings.
How can a face accidentally creep between the lines of a waterfall?
He'll stay up wondering why he kept thinking of his mother. Was it the anniversary of her death?
He was brought out of his thoughts by Beth. "You're welcome," he said. "I'll always be willing to come and watch you. Remember that, okay?"
"How do I know Redlin? Well, I had a notebook with one of his drawings on the front. I liked it so much, I investigated a little bit. And I found out more about him. I really like his art, he has a knack for capturing peaceful moments, usually in the wintertime." Beth said quietly, enjoying the moment. She finished eating, and sat back in the seat, content.
"I'll remember that. I promise." Beth said. The car started up with a soft hum, and they drove home. It was a few minutes later that they drove up the gravelly driveway to their house. It was a little larger than the average house, but with the two of them, it sometimes felt a little empty. Still, it was a cozy home, and Beth loved it, especially her room. They pulled up into the driveway, and Elizabeth stepped out, and grabbed her stuff. Ethan was already ahead of her, and she hurried up a little to catch up with him.
"See you tomorrow, bro." Beth said cheerfully to him, and they parted, going to their rooms on the opposite side of the hall. Beth entered her room, tossed her stuff down, and collapsed on her bed. She'd have to shower in the morning. She was feeling to lazy to do it at the moment. So, she changed into her pajamas, and turned on some music while she tried to go to sleep. It was a few moments before she did, but they were peaceful moments. Beth fell asleep, her music gently washing over her.
Ethan was surprised that Beth would research a picture on a notebook. Then again, he was probably guilty of that too. Ethan would love for Redlin's work to be at City Hall. He would love to spend that bond with his sister. Staring at his artwork, they'd both feel at ease.
They arrived home in just a few minutes. Ethan grabbed his bag and gathered the trash in his hands. He headed into the house and after throwing away all of the trash he headed to his room.
"See you tomorrow," Ethan replied to his sister and jogged up the rest of the stairs. He closed his door after he was in his room and fell onto his bed. He slipped out of his clothes and put on sweatpants to sleep in. They were charcoal grey with splashes of paint he had added unintentionally. Ethan laid in bed for a few minutes. He knew it would be a restless night. He wasn't falling asleep.
The clock read half past one in the morning. Ethan was still wide awake. He walked downstairs to grab some milk from the fridge. He drank right from the carton knowing if his father or sister had been watching he would have been scolded. He wondered if his father was home, or if he was working on one of his big cases.
After he finished the milk he threw the carton away and walked back upstairs. He began drawing on his canvas and once the guidelines were done he added paint.
Ethan wished he could be sleeping as soundly as Beth must have been.