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The Big Game

Posted on Sun 11th Feb, 2024 @ 9:32pm by Kya Adtanis

1,490 words; about a 7 minute read

Mission: O' the Cardiff Rose
Location: Community Resource Center


{Community Resource Center}

Hasskin was old enough to hold his own drink. It had a sports theme, radical colors and iridescent tiling kaleidescoping in a pleasant active energy. The Ion Mallet was the central totem, the court was wrapped around the drinkcup with handle and there were sixteen collectibles, eight from each team playing today. The raised ridge sigil along the logos was proof they were handcast and not replicated. The smallest details mattered to the young one who had never been to such an event yet in his life. Today was his first mega sports party.

The party had taken all day to set up for. Kya and a few other parents for some reason delighted in decorating and the food without mentoning the game once. They were having a party. Lexxy didnt even know the names of the team splaying but had woken up at 0400 to start making cakes with Mama. Then there was a crowd who only discussed the sport and game all day, there was no other topic. The air had taken hold of a live feeling and the chatter was joyous. Plate after Plate, serving trays overloaded, a table sagging under the weight of delicious ripaste.

Two of the community staple members, Jaka and Tannis had begun setting up the furniture and moving the room into place for some fifty odd expected people. Their back and forth had caught his attention.

"The Academy team might not even make the final match-"

"The Academy, or Starfleets million ship and starbase teams always makes the final fours!"

"Right?! We call it the final three, cuz they always gotta get that last-"

"Or maybe the trained military brats have the best training and equipment, selection from an elite field-"

"Planetary team draft selection prohibits outliers, even Humans with enhancements can be disqualified."

"Like Minsk in ‘96 using bionic materials grafted into their tendons got the whole team medically DQ'd."

The conversation went on, before the game started, it was watching clips of older games, and commentary and talking heads discussing the clips so Hasskin was soon bored.

"M'Kota R'Cho was the only Klingon national that played parrises squares professionally for an Earth Team!”

“Sure. But, he was an Antaak descendant within Human parameters-"

"And murdered a guy!"

"Jalise Tegan was leaping off the ramp, he didnt push her, she fell, thats not murder-"

Kya whistled loudly, "Keep it fun fellas, or we move the celebration elsewhere."

Tannis nodded in reply, lowering his voice to say, "She flew off the thing, he hit her mid-air and hard, you tell me what that is and isn't."

They were both suddenly aware of the young boy sucking on a ice lolly.

"Hi there, sorry buddy didnt see ya." The Barolian Ex Borg was a father and knew the routine. Jaka was a small elephant walking on its hind legs with less eperience so he simly continued working.

"Hi Missur Tanith." The lisp of his early youth was strongly in place, but therapies had brought out more enunication over the last months. He had noticed people actually talking to him, instead of just making cooing noises and ignoring.

"Missur Tanith... Is parsey sqwars umm is it big?" He was really trying to keep the adult talk going and felt this was his best contribution. His intent was to ask how big is thee vent as inhow many people would be watching it.

Tannis got it though, smiling as he set chairs down. "Well let's count how many chairs. Ive got three rows, each with six, nine, and fifteen chairs. The benches hold about eight, and there are three of them in here, and five more over there. The party is going to be big I think, don't you?!"

The numbers dazzled his young brain, he remembered the holiday meal well enough, "Like Cewbrration Day?"

Jaka had sung lounge holiday songs from old Earth, his favorite music from any species on record. He had fond memories of those days too, "Yeah Kid, but Championship Finals is a Federation wide event. The Whole Federation, and you bet some outside the Federation to have their holo's tuned in. Billions of people all around, but I bet we have …. Wow like …. hundreds in here today."

The young mans eyes went wide, and his very first thought at what to do was, "I better learn this game."

The Cain Blades of Key West had earth-tone green and brown with a brilliant red racing stripe. The Cowabunga Hang-10 team had orange and yellow in a flame pattern. The Hang 10's lost resoundingly and many of their fans left the pit to go eat food and... the word eluded , he had heard it many times today… he went with "ko-miz-rate."

Men could in fact cry without it being unmanly. This was an update, Hasskin knew well enough and had gotten that programming memo to "be a man" with the subsequent addendum, "Men don't cry." The men today however cried with happiness, and didn't hide or wipe their tears. It was wondrous to see the usually self confined stoic types in full emotional displays. Still curious still with no idea how the game was played, he looked around to find Tannis, who had answered all of his questions today. Mama had explained many times, he answers had turned to curt replies by this point.

He recognized the room had split into two sides, the holo display offered equal vantage from any direction, but the sides were based on teams. Light teasing earlier had blossomed over the course of the game into an education of shady comments and half uttered curse words. Guilty glances at the kids always followed those moments, another mystery young Hasskin added to the days lessons.

Everyone arrived at the “Big Game” moment, when the tournament to announce the two teams about play in the championships was announced. Jellies Hasskin wasn’t allowed to eat were set out, and the people who sat down had a loopy childlike but deadly serious energy. As the two teams selected their players for the Championship Match cheers and jeers sounded at each side.

The game itself seemed interesting to Hasskin but the people around him proved too distracting. There was a lot of arguing and yelling, and nobody was scoring points owing to unusual tactics. Listening wasn’t enough and nobody had yet to solidify the concepts of ball motion and goals in his mind so he just assumed this was how the game was always played.

At the halfway point everyone stood up and paced around as a pretty lady Hasskin had never seen before sang a song. A dancing shark in a costume made him giggle and he watched the whole show for the silly little shark. It was a disappointment when the grumbly people returned with fresh stains on the front of their shirts from dribbled sauces and drink. The boring people with poking sticks were back.

"GO GO GOOOOO!" The sudden outburst from Jaka was enormous. A defender had made a stop with an ion mallet lifting their opposition off of the ground and repelling them backwards into their ally felling both. A sudden gap in an airtight game of defense announced the blood in the water of a first score. Jellico's Juggernauts, a Starfleet legacy team did the unthinkable and drove a point home in the third quarter.

A whole game of "near misses" and "almost there's" had been stressful, and the release was astronomical as Ensign Chaefer blitzed the two square alley with impossible speed. The Starfleet in the room had come for the real alcohol, they had stayed for cornbread muffins, and now, drunk and happy they cheered along with everyone else. A point given right back really stirred the pot.

Lexy had her friend over in the kitchen and wasn’t even watching the game, Kya was yelling at two men thrusting paper at her, “No new bets!”

Jellicos Juggernauts maintained a lead, and the game ended without upset. The Earth based team was on stage with someone giving a trophy. The singer from the half way show ran up and kissed one of the players but Hasskin was more focused on the falling confetti, the holo display allowed for limited interaction and he ran inside of it to nobody’s chagrin.

In time, as everyone left Hasskin wound up with his head on Mamas lap. Kya ran her hands through his hair and let him dream as she had a chat with anyone who stopped by. His mind raced with the colors and pageantry, the emotions and candied nuts with cheese balls and sausage bites. He loved it when the people cheered, and wanted to stamp the ground with them when they got mad. Everyone was happy, everyone was angry. While he had no idea what most of it meant, he knew he couldn’t wait until it happened again.



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