Short Stories →
RolesAugust 9, 2023
“That’s not fair!” The little young voice is filled with a mix of annoyance and disappointment.
“Come on sweetie, it’s not like you can’t still be part of the team.”
The girl gives the green and yellow pompoms on the desk a disdainful side look.
“You know it’s not the same.”
“Oh, but you can wear makeup and a pretty dress instead of that baggy uniform. And you will be safe from all the boy’s rough play. Wouldn’t you like that better?” The teacher answers in a cheerful tone.
“Stand by the sidelines jumping up and down like an idiot while they kick the ball cluelessly around the field without any idea what they’re doing? Of course not! I want to play.”
“But it’s such a rough game, not a proper activity for a young lady. Besides, the school rules are very clear about it; soccer is a BOYS sport.”
“That’s bullshit.” The girl answers before thinking it better.
“SARAH!” Comes the livid teacher’s shocked answer.
“I’m sorry.” She says lowering her voice only for a moment. “But you know I’m right. I read the whole school rule book and there’s not a single place where it said girls can’t be on the soccer team.”
“We are only trying to protect you, we don’t want you to get hurt.”
“You know I’m the best player on the team. Just because some crybabies complained with their moms because they don’t like a girl playing better than them and becoming captain is no reason to try to kick me out.”
The teacher glances nervously at the other adult in the room. Her silent plea for help is met with a look of disapproval.
“Alright…” The teacher sighs, then makes a final desperate effort. “But we still need a signed letter from your parents, and the coach has to approve it.”
The man standing by the door answers calmly, obviously savoring every word. “They signed the letter the first day of training, and I approved it right away.”
The teacher looks helplessly at the man, then at the young girl staring at her from the other side of the desk.
“Very well then.” She finally says wearily. “You may go back to your practice.”
The girl jumps out of the chair, her smile beaming as she crosses the door, sharing a hi-five with her coach on the way out.
The man watches her run down the corridor and out the back door towards the field, then turns towards the silent teacher.
“You know, Emma… she really IS my best player. We need her on the team.” Then leaves, closing the door behind himself.
The teacher looks out the window towards the field. Deep within her heart, another long-forgotten little girl watches with envious eyes, and silently weeps.