For Children

Logan Fleissig

Don't Count Me Out

3rd & 4th Grade Prose Winner

In a very small town called Castle Rock, there lived twins, a brother and a sister, named Robert and Rachel. They were both fifteen years old, but Robert was older by 60 seconds. Robert was a wide-receiver on his high school football team, and Rachel really wanted to play football. She loved it so much, whenever she could, she would go to the park and Rachel and Robert would have a long, long catch until they reached 100 without ever dropping the ball. (To be honest, she could probably throw a better spiral than he could.) But her parents and the team’s coach said, “Girls can’t play.” She didn’t understand, but she had to stick to the rules. Or did she?

One morning, Robert told Rachel that he was sick and couldn’t play football or go to school. He was going to miss the championship game. But Rachel on the other hand had an idea. She was going to steal her brother’s uniform and wear it to the game and pretend to be him. She thought she might get in trouble, but she did it anyway. She waited until he said he needed to go to the bathroom to check his temperature, and then she ran into his room to get his gym bag with his uniform, helmet, cleats and pads.

Then she left the house and headed to the bus stop. Before she left though, she told her brother that she hoped he would feel better. Robert said, from behind the bathroom door, “oh, I’ll probably feel a lot better later today.” Rachel said worriedly, “so you think you’ll be able to go to your game?” Robert replied, “no way, I’m way too sick.” And then he gave a really big cough.

When she arrived at school, she was nervous and excited at the same time. Three o’clock couldn’t come fast enough before she raced into an empty classroom to change into her uniform. With her helmet on, no one could tell her apart from her brother. She walked into the gym and the coach clapped her on the back. “Robbie, ready for the game?” Afraid to speak, she gave a thumb’s up and nodded her head.

Soon enough she was on the bus to the field with the team. When they arrived, her brother usually spent the first three quarters on the bench just watching and cheering for his team, so Rachel was ok. But then the coach said, “Robbie, come on the field and play wide-receiver, you’re gonna get a Hail Mary.”

So Rachel went on the field and her heart was racing so fast but she knew this is what she had to do. As soon as she heard the quarterback say, “Hike,” she was off like a flash. Rachel ran all the way to the end zone and had her eye on the ball. It was coming her way. She reached up, took a big jump, grabbed the football and started running.

Four players on the other team tried to tackle her but Rachel outran all of them. With only seconds on the clock, she ran and ran until she scored the winning touchdown!

Everyone cheered, “Robert, Robert, Robert, Robert!”

But when they were announcing the winner, Rachel took off her helmet and revealed herself to the crowd.

The crowd went completely silent and the coach approached her and said, “Wow, I really doubted you, but was I wrong! The team could really use someone like you. From now on, all girls are allowed to try out for the team. I am now naming you most the valuable player.”

Hearing this, Rachel felt awesome. Then she felt a hand on her shoulder and turned around. It was Robert!

“Hi sis,” he said, “Great game out there you played.”

With a surprised face Rachel asked, “What are you doing here? I thought you were sick in bed.”

“Yeah, well, I kinda . . . sorta . . . faked being sick just so that you could play. I knew you would steal my uniform and play if you thought I’d miss the game, so I wanted to see you win just like the little sis by one minute that you are.”

Rachel was in shock. “Wow, I never thought you would do something like that for me! Thank you so much.”

The coach interrupted, saying, “Ok, I think that’s a good way to end today. Goodbye everyone, see you tomorrow!”