Strong leg muscles, born of a lifetime of rigorous competition, launch her blades high into the air where they spin tightly – once, twice, three times – before coming apart, flailing to catch a landing and sending her tumbling across the unforgiving ice.
“Again!” her coach yells, making no attempt to hide his impatience.
She knows she needs that fourth revolution to secure her spot on the team, and that others wait in the wings eager for her to fail.
Looking over at her parents watching from the stands, she sees the years of hope and sacrifice on their faces, and wonders at what point it had stopped being her dream and become theirs.
Ignoring the pain now throbbing in her shoulder, she sets off across the ice once more, building speed and momentum, hurdling herself upward – ONE – TWO – THREE –
From the prompt “Blades” at Five Sentence Fiction.