Threats

D|inquent

Anthony, soaked in his own perspiration after a friendly soccer match, barged through his classroom door angrily, with his soccer ball within his arm. He sat down, disposing his gear- grassy socks with its stink, goalkeeper?s gloves ? into an NTUC Fairprice plastic bag. The thirteen-year-old then lay back in his chair, deep in thoughts, unaware of the quietness of an empty classroom late in the afternoon.


?Boy, what an idiot you are! If you do not turn up for the next soccer practice, I?ll replace you with that boy from 1C, that Weixiang!? ? The sight of his soccer match, Mr. Anderson, yelling into his face kept flashing within Anthony?s mind. The pot-bellied English man had a reputation for deafening his students with his voice, not much difference from using a loud hailer. Anthony is proud of his position, as goalkeeper of the C? Division soccer team of the school. Never could he imagine Weixiang, that scrawny egg-shaped spectacles-rimmed nerdy homo-sapien replacing that post due to missing a few soccer practices for the sake of competing at Counterstrike games with his long-timed rivals at the cybercafe nearby. It is a hard-earned achievement for Anthony Tan, previous top-scorer in his lowly unheard Primary School; he has intentions of converting from his library-dwelling old self, to the sporty, sociable stud of Bukit Timah Secondary School.


The ?stud? packed his school bag. His eyes felt dry. ?Darn. I have been wearing these contact lenses since six this morning,? he thought, rubbing his left eye with the back of his hand. All he wanted to do was to shoot his way home to remove the irritating focuses. Anthony swung the bag across his back in a fashionable manner ? similar to those American kids on TV hanging out at their school lockers. He dribbled his favorite ball ? most desired 13th birthday gift, indication of start to teenage-hood. Out of the dark classroom, along the dimly lit corridors, attempting to make his way out of the school compound while showing himself as a well-inspired fan of Paolo Maldini. Dribbling on, with pillars in place as his defenders.


He stopped. Slowly, in a dramatic manner, our hero ascended his right leg to a certain level. Anthony gave the soccer ball a hard deserving kick. How he wished it was the head of his Mathematics teacher. Our friend then discovered ? venging anger on non-living objects with the hint of cruel imagination does cure vengeance within the heart.


He was unaware of where the launched ?head? went, until the deafening sound of something breaking. ?Oh no,? Anthony grumbled.


He found his way in front of the school?s display gallery, where they had the works from the art enthusiasts of the school to show off. Anthony stared at his soccer ball, currently lying beside one of the bougainvillea flowerpots that were meant to beautify the entrance of the gallery. The clay pot, holding the plant root upright, was in several pieces. Soil was spilled all over the floor.


The devil arrived at the scene. Running his fingers through the silkiness of his hair, Brandon Lee looked like a teenage model for shampoo advertisement. He is, too, the soccer team?s star attacker who makes pubescent girls swoon at him at his knees. His reputation has earned him popularity and an overworked ego.


?Hey goalkeeper!? he taunted. ?That?s a good shot!?


Brandon, in his fresh clothes and smell of expensive cologne, bent over and helped picked up the pieces of clay slowly. Anthony joined him, rather grateful. Yet the other stopped his kind action, standing up to leave.


?Right, I should not be doing this!? he laughed. ?You better clear up this mess quick. Perhaps the school authorities will overlook the plant,?


?Brandon? Will you keep mum about this?? Anthony was practically begging.


?It depends,? Brandon grinned virulently, turning to leave the quiet school compounds.


Anthony could sense something was not right, yet he had more things to worry about, continuing to clear up the mayhem of spilled soil and broken clay as the evening gloom filled the school compound.




Back at home, Anthony?s hands were cleaned from all that soil. He sat at his study table, struggling with Shakespeare?s language in his text of Julius Caesar.


The irritating loud ring of his telephone sounded. Anthony jumped from his seat, rushing to pick it up, with high hopes that it was Maria, his current infatuation.


?Hello?? he said