Freedom. It felt good. Finally, after three months of court sessions he was free, emancipated from his dead beat of a drunken father. Being sixteen he finally had enough of all the crap he had to go through, so he decided to file for emancipation. He got it and he would savor it for the rest of his life. Free from all those damn expectations that were holding him down. Of course being the age he was made it a bit hard to find a steady job without making it seem like child labor but he would do it. Because he had his hard earned freedom and he would keep it. Nothing would stop him.
2 years later
Kevin Smith was now eighteen years old and holding a steady job for one and a half years. He had his own apartment, his own car as well. While the car was not that great it was his. It was a huge accomplishment for him considering that he had paid for it with his hard earned money. Kevin was about a semester in college, majoring in physcology. He’d be lying if he said he didn’t find how the human mind perceived things interesting. He supposed that the interest first came when his mother died and his father became an alcoholic. Then his curiosity peaked when he met Echizen Ryoma, that stupid Japanese boy his father was talking about day in and day out. Yelling at Kevin, saying that he should beat him in a tennis game, all because Echizen’s dad beat him, it pissed him off. Echizen Ryoma a mystery, an intriguing mystery that only served to pique Kevin’s interest in the human mind. The “brat prince” was odd in his way of thinking, it angered Kevin but at the same time it interested him. This was why Kevin Smith was now majoring in physcology.
“Kevin! Come over and look at this!” Michelle yelled.
Kevin, who was going over his notes from today’s lecture, looked up with an annoyed look on his face. He snapped, “What in the damn world is so interesting that I have to get up and see Michelle?! Don’t tell me it’s another one of your stupid Korean boy bands!”
“No, it’s not actually. And I also happen to like Japanese boy bands as well Kev.” She said primly, rolling the V on her tongue.
“How many times have I told you never to call me that, otaku?” he said as he started to get up and walk toward her. “What in the world is this? A tennis magazine. Oh my god the world is ending Charlie, she’s reading sports magazine. Someone save us.”
He heard a snort from his friend Charlie before he opened his mouth to say, “Come on Kevin. It’s not the end of the world yet. She’s probably looking at it for some cute guys or something.”
Kevin laughed. He then felt a smack in the back of his head. Turning he glared at the girl who had jus hit him. She hmphed and proceeded to spout out a few long sentences. “As a matter of fact Charlie, no I’m not looking at this magazine just to look for cute guys. I’ve been thinking of actually taking up tennis. I even tried some of the basics too.” Turning to face Kevin she thrust the magazine in front of his face, “How do you do this Kevin?”
Looking at where her slender fingers were he asked “Do what otaku?” Feeling another smack coming his way he ducked and held his hands in front of his face. Hearing Michelle’s voice he straightened.
“I said how do you do this. See this serve they’re describing in this article this pro is doing. He’s cute. Hmm E-ch-i”
“Echizen Ryoma” Kevin said surprise tingeing his voice.
“Yeah. That’s the name. Anyway how do you do this serve.” She said pestering him. Kevin snapped out of his daze. Looking at the article he read a few words describing the serve and the name of it.
He replied, “How in the hell should I know, you crazy loony otaku?”
She hissed and flicked him in the forehead. “Oww! What the fuck woman? Don’t hit the face.”
Charlie snorted, “Yeah Michelle. You wouldn’t want to scar Kevin’s pretty face now would you? He’s the only one in this room without some sort of a girlfriend or boyfriend. You wouldn’t want to ruin his chances would you?”
Michelle giggled nodding her head in agreement. “About that matter Kev. Why don’t you have one? Even the most geekist student in this class has one.”
He growled at Charlie before rounding on Michelle and snapping, “Because I don’t want one.”
“Back to my question. How do I do this Kev?” Again rolling the V as she whined.
“I said I don’t know. Which obviously means I don’t fucking know. What makes you think I know how to play tennis anyhow?” he said suspiciously. He hadn’t told any of his friends that he used to play in junior high and the first two years in high school.
“Because I saw an old tennis racquet in your apartment once.” She quipped.
“You little liar. I didn’t leave my tennis racquet out in the living room. You must’ve gone into my room when I specifically told you not too.” Kevin said angrily. Once he finished his little rant he realized that he had just told his friends that he did play tennis once. ‘Fuck,’ he thought. ‘Caught.’
Charlie laughed. Michelle just said petulantly, “I didn’t go in. I was standing outside and the door just happened to be open. So I peeked in. I did not step one foot in your precious sanctuary.”
“Liar.” Kevin hissed. “I didn’t leave my tennis equipment somewhere in my room. I remember specifically stuffing it in the closet in a box marked in big bold letters don’t touch.”
“Fine. I went in. I was curious. You barred us from your room so I thought that you must have some incriminating stuff that you didn’t want us to see.” She said mouth forming a pout.
“Ever heard of the saying ‘Curiosity killed the cat’ Michelle. I suggest you don’t ever go into my room without my permission unless you want a painful, horrible death.” He said with venom.
She nodded, thoroughly afraid. Reminded of how pissed off Kevin could get, she thought of the club incident where someone groped his ass and how Kevin threw a punch straight to the guy’s face breaking his nose.
Kevin sighed. “Get that look off your face. I’m not going to hurt you. Just don’t do it again, understand.”
She nodded grateful that he was no longer angry. “So, since you have a tennis racquet and equipment. It’s safe to assume that you played or still play tennis correct.”
“I used to play tennis in junior high, and a few years in high school.” He replied.
“Why’d you quit?” Charlie said voicing the exact same question Michelle wanted to ask.
“I just wanted to. It didn’t really hold my interest.” Kevin said.
“You played before… so can you help me.” Michelle said, hoping he would say yes.
Sighing Kevin said, “All right. I’ll help. I’ll even play a few games with you. I’m not teaching you any so called pro serves or anything understand.” Seeing Michelle nod he sighed some more wishing he hadn’t come to class in the first place. ‘Great. Now I’m back to tennis. I thought I was free from that sport.’