Chances – 1

Ms. Lindsay looked at me with a critical eye, “I don’t know if…” she trailed off then nodded decidedly, “glissade, turn on your left foot and sweep your arms back as you face me” she said as she turned the cd player back to the beginning of the song that she had chosen for my solo at the spring recital. I nodded and adjusted the straps on my ballet slippers before taking my place at the far left of the long studio. As Kelly Clarkson’s “All I ever wanted” started blaring through the speakers I lunged slowly and gracefully forward on my right foot then développéd and turned with a precision I wouldn’t have been capable of just four months ago, but before I could move into a series of piqué turns, the door to the studio banged open and an angry-looking man walked briskly in and completely ignoring me, he strode up to Ms. Lindsay and began talking in a low voice and trying to show her something held loosely in his hand. To say that I’m not entirely sure what happened next would be an understatement, there was some sort of odd flash and suddenly we were all coughing and choking and I distinctly remember the angry man hurrying past me dragging Ms. Lindsay with him but after that I’m a blank until I woke up in the hospital, thankfully they didn’t keep me long and when my Dad came to get me he offered to take me to my favorite restaurant, Joey’s Hamburgers which ironically enough didn’t have very good hamburgers but the hotdogs were to die for.
The dark green vinyl seat was cool and comfortable as I slid into my favorite booth underneath the signed poster of Mariano Rivera, Dad smiled at Liz the
red-haired lady that manned the register and I smirked at him, “What?” he asked blushing slightly.
I shook my head but didn’t say anything, he wouldn’t listen anyway but all the flirting was starting to get annoying and I wished he would just ask her out already.
I pushed the menu away and looked up at the antique/relic/trash covered green walls and dark wood ceilings, you couldn’t say Joey’s didn’t have a great atmosphere but I wasn’t to interested in that and waited for Dad to say something about what had happened, he bided his time until the little waitress Jenny had taken our orders then he leaned back against the seat and looked towards the giant screen above the bar that was of course showing the latest Yankee’s Spring training news, without taking his eyes off the screen he began to question me as throughly as the police had at the hospital but much like the police he didn’t get many answers, no I didn’t know who the angry man was or what he wanted, and no, I wasn’t sure if Ms. Lindsay had known him or not, and seriously, I’m barely passing 11th grade chemistry! How would I know what that nasty smelling smoke was?! He finally stopped the interrogation when our food arrived and I slumped over my steaming Chicago-style hotdog with the crispy seasoned fries with relief. We ate in companionable silence, then as he went to pay the bill and flirt with Liz some more, I walked down the claustrophobic hall that led to the restroom. As I was washing my hands I noticed a scratch over my eye and I decided to cover it up so I grabbed my make-up case from the messenger bag that served as my dance bag and smeared some concealer and foundation on the scratch before returning the case to my bag, I was lucky nothing had happened to my pointe shoes because my Dad has fits every time we have to spend $80.00 on a pair of shoes, as I fingered the ribbon on my shoe I heard a clink and looked around thinking I’d dropped a bobby pin on the hard tile floor but instead I saw a large silver ring with a square cut green stone in the center, I couldn’t help but gasp at the beauty of the piece but then my eyes widened and I remembered how the angry man had shown Ms. Lindsay something small that he had cupped in his hand, perhaps it was jumping to conclusions to think that’s where the ring had come from but I knew without a doubt that the only place the ring could have fallen from was me, it had probably gotten tangled in my french braid and with all the colorful jewel-colored bobby pins I wear it would be impossible for anyone to tell just by looking at it.
The question now…. what do I do with it?

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