From Rockybado 4: Running Up a Hill
It was David’s senior year in high school, and Brody’s junior year. They were both on the tennis team, and so was Adam Levistad. With this in mind, it was right in the middle of tennis season, and the boys’ tennis team had a tournament today. This was the fourth tournament in this season, and the boys were excited about hopefully doing well today.
Except for Brody.
David’s younger brother had been sick for a little over a week, causing him to miss this past Tuesday and Wednesday and come back to school on Thursday. Because Brody didn’t miss school on Friday, he was allowed to participate in today’s tennis tournament. However, what he thought he had did not just go away. As a matter of fact, he started feeling worse after he woke up this morning.
“Wake up, Brody,” Mrs. Ingram said as she came into the room to wake up Brody.
Thank goodness Brett was not at home at the time. He was at a university on the north side of Indianapolis. Because Brett was not at home, this meant that Brody did not have to deal with any pranks whatsoever.
“Do I have to get up?” Brody asked sleepily.
“Do you want to play tennis today?” Mrs. Ingram asked.
“I don’t know.”
“Aren’t you feeling better?”
“No, I’m not,” Brody replied even more sleepily.
“Well, what should I do?” Mrs. Ingram asked.
“I want to play, but I feel like I’m going to throw up.”
“Oh no. Let me check your temperature.”
Mrs. Ingram ran out of the bedroom and got the thermometer in the hall closet. When she returned with it, she noticed Brody lying on his back on the futon with his hands behind his head. To her, this might not have been a good sign. Mrs. Ingram gave Brody the thermometer to put under his tongue. After a minute or two of waiting, it was time to see the results.
“Would you like to know if you have a fever or not?” Mrs. Ingram asked her son.
“Sure. Go ahead and tell me,” Brody answered.
“So, I don’t have a fever?”
“No. It’s about what it’s supposed to be,” Mrs. Ingram replied.
“I think I’ll try practicing and see how I am after that,” Brody remarked.
“Sounds like a plan. If you’re at the point where you feel really sick, let me know.”
“Now, I’ll need to take you, David, and Adam to practice today since Adam’s mom is at the hospital visiting her friend who just had a baby.”
Brody slowly got out of bed. He was still feeling nauseous, but he thought that it would be a good idea to at least show up to practice and see how he felt during the day. He put on some clothes and tried to make himself look at least a little presentable. Five minutes later, Brody threw up, but he thought he was going to feel better throughout the day.
He sat inside the bathroom for about ten minutes because he wanted to be close to the heater. Also, Brody was waiting to feel a little better so that he could still play today. He then came downstairs and ate a few saltine crackers, but he didn’t feel like eating much else. Brody did not talk to anyone at the table; he was only hoping that he wouldn’t throw up again today.
“You’re really not feeling well at all today, are you?” Mr. Ingram asked his fourth son.
Brody slowly shook his head.
“Should he stay home today, Marsha?”
“We both agreed that he would call me if he gets really sick,” Mrs. Ingram answered her husband.
“Whatever you say. He does not look well to me.”
“I seriously think he should stay home,” Mr. Ingram remarked in his somewhat thick British accent.
“This has happened to him before, and he was able to pull through,” Mrs. Ingram said.
“I’ll be fine,” Brody finally stated.
“You sure, hon?”
“I think so.”
“If you say so.”
David was feeling fine; he actually wasn’t sick at all this week. And neither was anyone else. For some very odd reason, Brody was the only one in the family who had actually gotten sick. And he was really sick this time around. Of course, Mr. Ingram wasn’t sure if Brody would be able to make it through practice. And Mrs. Ingram believed that he could get better throughout the day.
Let’s see how today goes.
Mrs. Ingram picked up Adam from his house, since he doesn’t live too far away from the Ingram’s house on Garfield Court. Adam and David, of course, started talking. Brody, however, did not feel like conversing with anyone. He just stared out the window and hoped to the Good Man that this would all pass.
Fifteen minutes later, due to random and unnecessary traffic, David, Brody, and Adam were at the high school, ready to play tennis. The two older boys walked over to some fellow tennis players and started conversing with them. Brody, on the other hand, did not talk to anyone, since he was not feeling well at all.
Normally, he would be talking a mile a minute with everyone on the tennis team. But, at the moment, Brody’s stomach hurt, and he didn’t know why he was at the high school today.
Brody decided that he should at least try to practice with the team. The practice time seemed like a complete blur, as in the fact that it had gone by so quickly. But, at the same time, it seemed like forever that Brody’s match was going to end. He played against one of his teammates for about an hour.
When he just finished his practice match with one of his teammates, Colin Nichols, Brody started feeling sick again. He was afraid to run to the bathroom because he didn’t want to risk throwing up in front of the Good Man and everyone else. Instead, he slowly walked to the school and headed toward the men's bathroom.
There was no one in the men’s bathroom, so Brody made himself as comfortable as possible. He entered a stall, closed the door behind him, and sat on the floor. Brody really did not want to throw up, but he didn’t think that he had any choice whatsoever. For fifteen long minutes, he just sat there thinking about everything, but nothing at the same time. He didn’t know what to do. He didn’t want to get sick today, but he also didn’t want to get any sicker than he already was.
Brody started throwing up all of a sudden.
Between bouts that lasted about two minutes, he rested his head in his arms, which lay comfortably on top of the seat. Brody thought that it would be good for him to come home, but he didn’t want to miss this tournament. Since he loves to play tennis so much, and missing one tournament could mean the end of the world.
Well, not really.
A few minutes later, during a bout of throwing up, two football players came into the men's bathroom. The first thing that they heard was the sound of Brody throwing up. The two football players, named Javon Peterson and DeShaun Golding, wanted to help the poor guy out, but at first they weren’t quite sure who was in the closed stall “worshipping the porcelain idol.”
But then they knew.
“Brody?” Javon called the boy’s name.
“Hello?” Brody replied quietly.
“You okay in there?”
“No. I’m puking my guts out, and I feel like I’m going to die.”
“Oh dude. Would you like us to get you something? Like a drink or something?” Javon offered.
“Can you get a drink from a vending machine? I don’t care what it is,” Brody replied, even more quietly than before.
“And how did you know it was me in the stall?”
“Your hoodie’s on the floor, and it says B. Ingram on it.”
“I have some money that I could give you.”
“Don’t worry, bro. It’s on us.”
Then, Javon and DeShaun ran out of the bathroom toward the cafeteria, where the vending machines were. Brody heard the two football players making crazy high-pitched noises as they were running toward the cafeteria. After laughing to himself for a few seconds, he was hoping that this would all be over as soon as possible.
Of course, Brody threw up again.
Javon and DeShaun were running as fast as they could to the vending machine, they continued to make crazy high-pitched noises. In the cafeteria, there was another group sitting at the tables, listening “intently” to the advisors as they were describing to their group what to expect when out and about. Apparently, the group was leaving campus as well.
“WE HAVE A SICK DUDE TO TAKE CARE OF!” Javon shouted as loudly as he could.
“WOOOOOOOOOO!” DeShaun shouted louder than Javon.
The group, of course, stopped everything they were doing and gave the two football players weird looks. There must have been some understanding that Javon and DeShaun had good intentions, but why did they have to announce their intentions to the whole world? What were the advisors of the one group going to do?
Javon and DeShaun chose a light soda from the vending machine for Brody, and then they returned to the bathroom where Brody was most likely still throwing up.
“Sup, Brody?” DeShaun said after they came back.
“Sup,” Brody answered.
“Here’s your drink. Hope you like light soda.”
“Are you still gonna stay out of tennis today?” DeShaun asked.
“Probably,” Brody replied. “I already called my mom, and she’s picking me up.”
“I know. I was looking forward to tonight.”
“I hope there are more tourneys.”
“There are. I really wanted to play in this one.”
Brody didn’t feel as if he could play tennis, given the circumstances. He had already arranged for his mom to pick him up from the high school within fifteen minutes. While waiting for her, Brody stayed in the bathroom and sipped on his soda. Once his mom let him know that she had arrived, he left the bathroom and headed out of the school toward the car. After Brody and his mom would arrive home, Brody was probably going to sleep for as long as possible.
A couple hours later, David and Adam left with the rest of the tennis team for the tournament. Everyone had to have felt bad for Brody because he couldn’t participate today. While some team members formed their own conversation groups and talked about random subjects, David and Adam listened to David’s music and conversed amongst themselves.
“Sucks about Brody,” Adam said to David.
“I know. We all thought that he was getting better,” David remarked.
“Didn’t he miss a couple days of school last week?”
“Tuesday and Wednesday.”
“What was he sick with?” Adam asked.
“He had a cold, but now I guess it’s the flu,” David answered.
“Sounds like it.”
“He didn’t look well at all today.”
“No, he didn’t.”
“I’m amazed that he was able to pull a great match with Colin Nichols.”
“I am, too.”
The high school tennis teams were already at their destination. The boys got ready for today’s tournament, which, of course, was a complete blur. Then, it was time for the tournament, and everyone on the team had to get mentally ready for it.
An hour later, the tournament began.
From Rockybado 2: A Run in the Game
Brett Ingram looked at his electric guitar with complete admiration. David looked at Brett’s science formula posters with complete admiration. And Brody was looking at both of his brothers with a look of confusion on his face. David and Brody are Brett's younger brothers.
“Hey, Brett?” Brody tried to get his older brother’s attention.
“Yays?” Brett answered, suddenly taking his eyes off his guitar.
“How are you after a couple days ago?”
“What do you mean?”
“You thought a girl was cute.”
“Oh. I did?”
“….I thought you said that.”
“Oh. I did.”
Brody knew how extremely sarcastic his older brother was being right now. Of course, Brett probably still had that girl on his mind. He just didn’t want to say it. And Brody probably did not understand the whole story about what happened when Brett laid eyes on the pretty girl for the first time. Basically because Brett was not at all open about it with him.
“Yeah. She’s cute,” Brett blurted out.
“Her name?” David asked.
“It’s a Serbian name, and I can’t remember it offhand. But I do have it in my phone. She wanted me to call her back.”
“Did you?” Brody questioned.
“Can I be honest with you?”
All three boys laughed pretty hard. It has always been in Brett’s nature to forget something simple as that. He can remember the hardest math equations, the most complicated chemical bonds, and the physiology of the breathing apparatus. But he often forgets to call people who ask him to.
Oh well. It happens.
While Brett, David, and Brody were still sitting in Brett’s room, Brett went back to looking at his electric guitar with complete admiration. David went back to looking at Brett’s science formula posters with complete admiration. And Brody went back to looking at both of his brothers with a look of confusion on his face.
He didn’t want to say anything now because, really, he didn’t know what to say at this point. Brody couldn’t think of anything else to talk about. David couldn’t think of anything else to talk about. And Brett wanted to pull out his electric guitar and practice.
And then it occurred to Brody.
“Oh, Brett?” Brody tried getting his older brother’s attention.
“Yays?” Brett answered.
“You will see her at bowling practice, won’t you?”
It took a little while for Brett to answer Brody’s question. Simply because he had thought about avoiding it. But why, though? This really had nothing to do with either David or Brody. The youngest brother in the room was just curious, and he just wanted to ask a curious question. Simple enough.
After two minutes of complete thought….
“Yes, Brody. I will see her today,” Brett answered reluctantly.
“We will let you practice on your guitar,” David said.
And Brody and David left Brett’s room, so he could practice a little bit on his guitar skills. The two boys then went into their bedroom and made their beds. And then, they decided to play classic video games together until further notice. Probably for only an hour, though. Because it was already 10:30 in the morning.
January 6, 2019
Levi Cranston (The Magic Video Game), Jack Andrews, Asad Prejesh, Mike Wong, Kevin Maggliardi, and Jing Hao spent an afternoon in downtown Boston. Kevin left early because he was really not feeling well. Once he got back to his apartment in Cambridge, he fell asleep on his bed. He didn’t even bother pulling his covers over him, he was so out of it.
Around 4 pm, he heard a knock on his door in his subconscious, but he didn’t wake up. It was his roommate, John Harold, who slowly opened the door. Kevin was sleeping on his stomach, with his head buried in his pillow. When John knew that he was still sleeping, he closed the door and let Kevin sleep a little longer.
A couple hours later, Jing came home from an afternoon in downtown Cambridge with everyone else. He needed to get ready for the week, and he was hoping that Kevin could come with him to get his groceries. But he wasn’t sure if he would be up for it.
Jing slowly opened the door into Kevin’s room and noticed that he was still sleeping. He walked up to him and gently shook him.
After a few minutes, Kevin slowly stirred in his bed. His eyes were still closed, and he slowly waved at Jing.
“Good morning, sleepyhead,” Jing said to his friend and roommate.
“Good morning,” Kevin replied quietly. “What time is it?”
“It’s six o’clock.”
“AM or PM?”
“Your ma,” Jing replied.
“Very nice,” Kevin remarked even more quietly, pulling his pillow over his head. He could hear his heartbeat in his ears.
“How do you feel?”
“So I take it you don’t want to go back out tonight?”
Kevin decided to take the next day off work to recover from his cold. He actually started to feel a burning sensation in his chest, most likely from coughing so much. It didn’t hurt for him to breathe, but he was at least mindful of it. His nose was really stuffed up, and he felt worse now than he did when we was out and about with everyone else.
January 6, 2019
Jack Andrews, Levi Cranston (The Magic Video Game), Asad Prejesh, Jing Hao, Kevin Maggliardi, and Mike Wong all ventured out to downtown Boston to hang out for a few hours. Levi’s girlfriend, Mackenzie Burbanks, was having a girls’ day in with a couple of her friends to watch movies.
The six boys were at their favorite coffee shop during the middle of the day. They all went out for pizza, and now they felt like getting themselves a cup of coffee. It was about 2 o’clock in the afternoon, and all six boys were sitting inside the coffee shop talking about nothing other than tennis.
Jack looked over at Kevin and realized that he wasn’t nearly as talkative as he normally is. Kevin had dark spots under his eyes, which Jack noticed earlier today, but now he didn’t look well at all. His nose was very red now.
“You alright, Kevin?” Jack questioned.
“Yeah, I’ve got a really bad cold. I thought I could do more than what I really could do,” Kevin replied.
“Yeah, take it easy.”
“I think I’m gonna head back to Cambridge soon.”
“Yeah, you probably should,” Jack said.
“I’m like really tired all of a sudden,” Kevin responded.
“Alright. Let us know when you get back.”
“I will. I just started getting a pounding headache. Didn’t hit me in the chest like it usually does.”
“Well, that’s good.”
“Yeah, I think I’m gonna head out now. I really don’t feel well at all.”
Kevin picked up his backpack off the floor and said goodbye to everyone. He headed toward the door toward the common, where he was going to pick up the red line to take him back to his apartment in Cambridge. Once he got back home, he was very likely going to fall asleep as soon as he could.
The other five boys were going to stay out until about 5 or 6 in the evening, and then they were all going to get ready for the week ahead of them.
“Kevin’s been really sick for the past couple days,” Jing said.
“He sounded really stuffed up when we all met,” Jack replied.
“Yeah, he has a bad cold. He told me that he might take tomorrow off from work to recover.”
“Yeah, hopefully he will consider that.”
“The only other time I saw him really sick was when he had the flu in college. Then, he got me sick with it,” Jing remarked.
“That’s nice of him to give you the flu!” Jack chuckled.
“I mean, I’ve seen him when he’s had a cold, but it didn’t hit him as hard as this one has. Or I might be wrong.”
“The flu sucks worse.”
“Yes, it does.”
Jack was at their table with Mike and Jing. Kevin had made it home, and by the time he took off his shoes and lay on his bed, he was passed out. Chances were pretty good that once Jing came home, Kevin would still be sleeping. Their two other roommates went to New York City for the weekend, and they were likely not coming back until at least 9 pm tonight.
Levi and Asad were at the counter looking at what desserts to get. Asad wasn’t sure what he was going to get, but Levi wanted to get something for Mackenzie.
“I’m thinking about getting Mackenzie the fruit tart. What do you think?” Levi asked Asad.
“She like strawberries, doesn’t she?” Asad responded.
“Yes, that’s her favorite fruit.”
“Are you getting sick, too? You sound really stuffed up.”
“I think so. I hope Kevin didn’t give me his cooties,” Levi said.
“He probably did,” Asad remarked.
“I took a sick day on Friday because I was really not feeling well. I feel better now, but I hate my nose right now.”
“Get Mackenzie the fruit tart!” Mike greeted Asad and Levi.
“That’s what I’m thinking about getting her!” Levi exclaimed.
“What do you guys want to do after this?”
October 13, 2018
Kevin Nathaniel Maggliardi, one of Levi Cranston’s (The Magic Video Game) friends whom he met in Boston, was spending the mid-day on the phone with his older brother, who lives in London.
Kevin's older brother, Sheridan Charles Maggliardi, who is 32 years old, just recently had his tonsils removed after several bouts of strep throat. At the age of 32 years old, no one would or should expect that to happen. Kevin felt that it was his job to walk him through the recovery stage, since he himself had to have his tonsils taken out at the age of 12, and that was in 2006.
Kevin is now 25 years old.
"Dude, I feel like shit," Sheridan spoke quietly on the phone.
"How's your throat?" Kevin asked.
"It hurts like hell. I want ice cream."
"Then, get someone to give you some."
"My girlfriend is out, and my other friends are playing a show. I really don't want to get up," Sheridan remarked.
"That was me when I had mine out. My throat really hurt for the first three to four days, and then I started feeling better," Kevin said.
"This is Day 7. I should be getting over this by now."
"Isn't it worse when you get your tonsils removed as an adult?"
"I don't know, I don't care."
"So, what are you doing to keep you busy?"
"Watching TV. What are you up to, aside from talking to me?"
"Not much. Taking it easy today, I think."
Kevin was lying on his stomach on his bed, with his laptop facing him, since he was talking to Sheridan that way. He hadn't really planned anything with his friends today, since he wanted to get his laundry done, and he felt that today was a good today to not do anything extravagant.
His friends, Levi Cranston, Mackenzie Burbanks, Jack Andrews, Jing Hao, Asad Prejesh, and Mike Wong, were spending an afternoon playing board games and card games at Levi's, Mackenzie's, Jack's, and Asad's apartment in the Allston neighborhood of Boston, but Kevin declined. He wanted to take today to spend talking to Sheridan and helping him through recovering from his tonsillectomy.
Kevin had not left the apartment at all today, and he was perfectly okay with that. It was now 1 o'clock in the afternoon Boston time. He woke up at 10 am, showered, and started on his laundry. Today was his day, and he was going to make the most out of it.
Although Sheridan and Kevin were still online, they were silent for about five minutes. Sheridan looked totally out of it. His eyes were half-way open, he had an ice pack around his neck, and his hair looked pretty unkempt. In May, Sheridan decided to cut his hair to match Kevin's hairstyle.
Kevin couldn't remember if he had brushed his hair this morning. Either way, it didn't look horrible.
"What are you watching right now, Charles?" Kevin asked his older brother. Sheridan has always gone by "Charles" or "Charlie" to his family and friends. Kevin has always gone by "Kid" to his family.
"Some rubbish I can't understand, given my state," Sheridan remarked.
"What TV shows have you gotten into?"
"I'm putting some on, once we end our call," Kevin remarked.
"You're literally doing nothing today?" Sheridan questioned his younger brother.
"Nope, and it feels wonderful. Haven't left the apartment at all today."
"My friends and I hung out at our place last night. So I think it's a good idea to take a day off. Jing, Wong, and I are doing something tomorrow for sure."
"That sounds fun."
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