Tennis Is The Game
"I really hate having a strange name," Antigone said, tossing up a tennis ball and smacking it down. It got caught in the net.
"You don’t have a strange name. It’s the name of a great Greek heroin," Heather said, picking up another ball out of the hopper.
"When people say Anti-Gone Jacobs," Antigone started.
"A.J.," Heather whine.
Heather Timor and Antigone Jacobs had been best friends since they had been in fifth grade. They did almost everything together, even if one of them really stunk at it. They had both just graduated from high school.
"You’ve got a normal name, Heather," Antigone whined.
"Just drop it and work on your serve. The charity game is in a week. You’ve been hitting them into the net since the season ended," Heather told her.
"Shut up. It’s not like I’m going to college to play tennis," Antigone shot back.
"A.J., you are just as good as me," Heather said.
"Yeah, and that’s why they interview you and why Rosie O’ Donald called you. You are gonna be the next Venus Williams when you go pro," Antigone said, hitting another ball into the net.
Heather shook her head. She picked up the hopper and began to pick up the balls Antigone had hit into the net. She spotted two hot guys lingering on the other side. They both had rackets in hand, and looked lost. Heather looked to see if Antigone had seen them. Antigone was busy hitting balls at the ground as hard as she could. Heather set down the hopper near Antigone and headed over to the lost looking guys.
"Can I help you?" Heather asked.
The guys looked at one anther. One had blonde hair while the other had light brown. The blonde was the first to speak.
"Yeah, we’re playing at a charity game and need to practice. Can we use the far court?"
"Sure. What charity game?"
"The Save the Music one for VH1. It’s next week," the blonde explained.
He smiled and stepped into the courts. The other guy stepped in and headed over to the far court. The blonde followed after he smiled at Heather. Heather smiled back and watched them walk over. By now Antigone had noticed them. She watched them with her mouth open.
"Heather, do they look filmier?" she asked.
"No, just pretty darn good-looking."
"Oh, my God," Antigone breathed, "they’re not playing in the same game are they?"
Antigone tossed her racket into the air. She stalked out of the courts as the racket hit the ground. The two guys stopped what they were doing at watched as Antigone slammed the door. Heather smiled nervously and ran after Antigone.
"A.J., what is up with you?" Heather called after her.
"I have a strange name and I’m not going to make a fool out of myself in front of them," Antigone said.
"So?! SO?! So, they’re only… only…" Antigone struggled.
"Two hot guys?"
"NO!" Antigone said, stalking off.
"Heather, you live in a world of tennis. I bet you don’t even know what album won Record of the Year at the Grammies!" Antigone paused to see if she had been right. Heather remained silent. "See! That’s why Nick Carter and Justin Timberlake mean nothing to you! André and Venus mean more!"
"Run that by me again?" Heather asked.
"Those hot guys were Nick Carter and Brian Littrell of the Backstreet Boys!" Antigone yelled, letting the door of the club slam behind her.
"But I thought it was black?"
"That’s Blackstreet!" Antigone yelled from inside.
Heather shrugged figuring Antigone was making something out of nothing.
New Part 9/00
Heather walked back into the tennis courts. The two guys had resumed practicing their game. Heather took the hopper and began to pick up the balls she and Antigone had hit. She kept taking sideways peeks at the two guys. They did look like two guys she had met when she had been on the Rosie Show last month. She had won the state three years and was on her way to fourth. Rosie thought she was a great person and tennis player. Antigone had sent a tape of them playing tennis into the show. Antigone was a faithful watcher. Heather had no clue who the woman was.
Heather looked up to see the blonde one standing next to her.
“Yes?” Heather asked.
“You look really filmier. Have we met?”
“I don’t think so. My friend, Antigone, thought
she knew you two from some group. Blackstreet? Or
was it Backstreet?” Heather asked, letting her stupidity show.
The blonde laughed. Heather allowed herself to slowly turn red.
“Yeah, Brian, it’s her. She still can’t remember if we’re from Blackstreet or Backstreet!” he called over to the other one.
Heather stood dumbfounded for a moment. She
then decided they had been backstage on the Rosie
Show when she had appeared on it. Had she talked to them? She couldn’t remember. She was so nervous about being on a show that her whole school was watching.
“I’m Nick,” the blonde said. “We met backstage on the Rosie Show last month. You do remember being on the show?”
“Yeah,” Heather mumbled. “I was just so nervous. The whole school was watching and state was the next morning. I’m sorry, generally I wouldn’t forget a face like yours.”
Heather almost could have slapped herself. What she had just said was so cheesy! She watched Nick closely as he just smiled.
“Well, that is a first. Someone forgot my face. Yes!” he exclaimed, throwing a fist up in the air.
Heather looked at him in question. His friend came over and dragged him away.
“Nicky, I bet she had somewhere to be and you need to practice.”
“Brian, this is her! You know that tennis girl from Rosie? Heather Timor?” Nick asked. “I bet she could help our game. So we can beat the shorts off Justin and JC!”
Brian looked Heather and then Nick.
“Okay,” Brian said.
“Okay what? What do you want from me?” Heather asked.
She knew she was coming off really stupid to these two guys, but she couldn’t help it.
“Would you mind giving us some pointers? You know, how to serve better. And hit the ball so it goes over the net? Just for a couple afternoons. Antigone can help too if she wants,” Nick suggested.
“Antigone!” Heather cried. “I need to say sorry! Sure I’ll help you two. Be here tomorrow at nine. In the morning. I know it’s early, but Antigone and I just finish lessons and will be all warmed up at nine.”
Heather left the hopper for them and took off to the country club house. She ran down to the locker room to see if Antigone was still in there. She was. She was sitting on a bench. When ever they had a fight at the tennis club, Antigone would come to the locker room to sulk till Heather came in.
“You were right,” Heather said.
“See I told you they were Nick Carter and Brian Littrell,” Antigone said.
“Yeah, and we’ll giving them lessons and pointers till the game,” Heather said with a great smile. She really thought Antigone would be happy. Antigone instead stood up with a look of anger on her face.
“What?! You what? I’m not playing tennis in front of them! I am not making a fool out of myself in front of them! Why did you say I’d do it!” Antigone yelled.
“Nick suggested it. If you don’t want to do it, then go home after practice tomorrow. I’ll stay.”
“Okay, I like that better. I’m going home.”
Antigone gathered her stuff and stalked out of the locker room. Heather sunk onto a bench and looked at her bag. She remembered she had left Antigone and her rackets on the courts. She showered and changed. She got her bag and went off down the hall to get the rackets. Nick and Brian were busy trying to serve the ball over the net. Heather stood a moment outside the gates and watched them.
“And Antigone is worried about looking bad,” Heather mumbled, opening the gate and walking in. She picked up the rackets and put them in her bag.
“Back so soon?” Nick called.
“Yeah, I missed you so badly,” Heather said sarcastically, threw him a smile, and walked out of the courts.
Brian looked at Nick.
“You are getting in over your head,” Brian
told him and hit a tennis ball at Nick. Unlike the other hopper of balls
Brian had hit, this one went where he wanted it to.