Chapter 13:

Dream and Dash

Would You Paint My Dunk


“Turnover! Now it’s Astro Jets’ turn.”

This is what the announcer said when the opposing team lost possession of the ball. Carlos swiped it from the opposing ball handler.

Without further ado, Sean and I charged down the opposing court like a gorilla and a rhino. Looking back, Carlos threw me a quick long pass.

At the moment, the only obstacle that is between us and the opponent’s rim is a defender who seems to be their Center player, around 6’9” tall.

“Wow! Carlos just gave a quick long pass to Keith in the front. It’s two-on-one on the fast break. Sean and Keith are storming into the opponent's field.”

Facing a big defender, I was contemplating how we could get past him. Suddenly, I got a solution: Fake a shot to an alley-oop.

Stopping at the three-point line, I jumped, pretending to shoot. However, as the defender dashed on me and tried to block my shot, I quickly lobbed it near the hoop, hoping that Sean would receive my pass.

“It looks like Keith missed, people… Oh, wait… That’s an alley-oop pass!”

Sean leaped like a rocket that just took off, receiving my lobbed pass with both of his hands.

“Here we go, the giant jumped!”

*BANG!*

That was the sound the giant Hulk made as he slams the ball down the rim. Even the ring shakes a bit as he holds the rim to slow himself down for the landing.

“And he scores an alley-oop jam. Two points for the Jets as Keith gets the assist.”

“Nice pass, Keith!” Sean gave me a thumbs-up.

“eith…”

“Keith…”

“Keith! Wake up!”

Following the sound of my mother. I opened my eyes in a flash. Apparently, it all was just a dream. Woke abruptly, my heart hurts.

“Ugh…”

With my head spinning after the limbo dream, I massaged my head with my hands, trying to get a grip on reality. As I gathered my consciousness, I scratched my eyes to get myself awake.

Looking around at my surroundings, my room was well-lit with the sun’s radiance. I could see some sun rays slipping through the gap between the edge of my room’s windows and their curtains. My mom sat beside me as she woke me up.

“Keith, I know that you have already grown up, I hope you don’t mind if your mother wakes you up. However, I believe you have your own responsibilities, and I think you should at least wake up for breakfast. Even if you don’t have a class today, or you don’t have a morning class, at least you should wake up already.”

“Mom, I have classes today. I think I have to get there by eight.”

“Well, you better off preparing yourself, then.”

Hold on, something is off.

Looking at the brightness in my room, it was too strong to be classified as early morning. Her reaction after she woke me up was quite suspicious. Curious, I grabbed my smartphone and looked at the screen to check the time.

As I looked at the screen, I hoped my eyes were deceiving me, but they weren’t. My smartphone screen reads 7:47 AM.

“What! Forty-seven past seven?”

This fact surprised me so much that I jumped out of bed and fell to the floor. I couldn’t believe I’d slept past three alarms, leaving me less than fifteen minutes to get to my class.

Oh shit! I’m going to be late to class at this point.

“Mom, thanks for waking me up. I’ll get ready as soon as I can.”

My mom stood up, walking her way out of the room as she talked.

“Okay, this is your responsibility. Before you go, make sure you eat your breakfast.”

“Ye! Ye! I’ll be right there!”

After I finished the sentence, she closed the door to my room.

I quickly got up and picked out my clothes to wear to the university, throwing them on my bed as I picked them up.

As I finished, I swept all the clothes in my bed. Not to forget, I took a towel from my wardrobe, putting them all on my right arm. I dashed out of the room like a roadrunner and went straight to the bathroom.

Under time pressure, I took a very quick shower. I wouldn’t be exaggerating if I said it was the fastest bath I’ve ever had. Swiftly wiping my body with the towel, I dried myself faster than ice evaporating in an oven. I quickly put on my clothes and went straight into the dining room at lightning speed.

As I reached the dining room, a couple of sandwiches were laid on the table. Like a ninja, I swiftly snatched a sandwich and gobbled it in no time. My parents looked at me with concern as I began eating like a madman.

“Oh, my goodness! Slow down, my son!” My mom tried calming me down.

“Iou doun haeve timoue, moum.” I replied with my mouth stuffed with the sandwich.

“Wait, what are you saying?”

“Ou saoud I dount haeve timoue, moum.”

“My son, I don’t understand what you are saying.”

“You said you don’t have time, Keith?” My dad asked.

My mom looked shocked as she looked at my dad.

“Darling, did you understand what he was saying?”

“Yes, I do. I could easily understand what he was saying.”

“Then would you please convince him to not eat too quickly? He needs to calm down and eat properly.”

My dad looked confused, he looked at me and asked, “Son, why are you eating so quickly? Is it because of the university?”

“Youes, claouss ious aot eouight.”

“Well, you should dash off now then…”

My dad and I turned our heads to look at the clock hung in the living room, which shows fifty-three minutes past seven.

Fuck! I only have seven minutes left… I have to be faster!!

“You still have seven minutes to run for it, you can make it, son!” My dad continued.

That sentence angered my mother. In anger, she looked my dad in the eyes.

“Honey! Don’t add more fuel to the fire! He could choke!”

“Hu-uh?” My dad snorted, closing his eyes as he shrugged in front of my mom. “Oh, it reminds me of my past, the moment I woke up late because I was practicing basketball until midnight. Ah, so nostalgic!”

“HONEY!”

My mother had a fiery gaze, glaring at my father in her anger. As I didn’t want to get into the crossfire of her wrath, I swallowed my stuffed sandwich in my mouth and quickly took a glass of water. The water gushed into my throat, drowning my food down my stomach like a waterfall.

Putting my glass on the table, I stood up and launched off my chair like a jet that just took off.

I have no time to waste.

“I’m off!”

Blasting through the door at high speed, I dashed my way to get into my class on time. The street was filled with pedestrians, but I avoided it as I treated the whole route as a slalom course.

Using my explosive feet, my speed was much faster than my usual ball-driving speed. No, I ran like I was chased by a pack of bulldogs.

Thankfully, my house is close to the university. Normally, it would take fifteen minutes to walk from home to the university. However, I don’t have the luxury of time here. I need to run twice as fast as I used to.

Maintaining my burst of speed, I swiftly arrived at my university. Sweating, I felt that this morning was hotter than yesterday as the sun gazed upon me. I took my phone to check the time, and the screen displayed 7:58 AM.

Shit! I have only two more minutes! Where is my fucking class?

I quickly logged in to my student account on the university website, looking at my schedule. My next class is located at C707, at eight o’clock.

Oh crap! It’s on the seventh floor! I need to take the stairs quickly!

With time ticking like a bomb that is about to explode, I sprinted as fast as I could to the C building. As I arrived at the building, I took the stairs quickly and checked my phone again. The screen showed 7:59 AM.

One minute left! I have to hurry up!

Arriving on the seventh floor, I quickly scrambled around, looking for my classroom. As I swiftly checked left and right, there was my door with my classroom number. I dashed off, opening the door to the room, only to be greeted by stares from other people.

Well, that is to be expected, considering the abomination I had become. Out of breath, my hair is a mess, and I reeked of sweat. Looking at the clock, it was pointing exactly at eight.

I just arrived in time. Well, at least I’m not late…

In front of me, there’s the lecturer sitting at the lecturer’s desk. The lecturer is a man with a casual denim outfit, organizing a few sheets of paper with numbers on them.

Looking at the classroom, there are a few empty seats, it seems that there are people running late.

Knowing myself in a wreck, I decided to commit myself not to repeat this again. I have to wake up early, whatever it takes.

Once is enough. I don’t want to repeat this, ever again!

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