THE Desert Camels of Quitalia returned with high spirits that night to their hotel in Mailora City.
They had just solidified their stand in the tournament by winning their first two matches and securing six good points in the tournament altogether.
Even if the team lost in their next match, they knew they’d still be qualified for the round of sixteen. That is, the quarter finals.
The victory was really worth celebrating. Down at the five star Planetario Hotels, the boys were ready to party all night.
But then, Coach Alhi was still containing the trouble caused by VeShadd the last time the boys threw a party. And he wouldn’t want to risk having another accident happen.
Yet knowing the boys were independent adults themselves, Alhi didn’t want to appear rude and controlling by restricting them from throwing their usual party.
He decided to be the players’ watchman and keep an eye on everyone, so as to ensure everything was safe.
The chief coach avoided alcohol so he could stay awake through the party.
The boys filled up an executive bar of the hotel that night. And there was expensive liquor and exotic wine in surplus.
Alhi didn’t have to worry so much over the troublemaker as the young dude came to him first after a glass of wine.
‘You don’t have to worry about me tonight,’ VeShadd said to Alhi.
The chief coach stared at him.
‘How could he catch on so fast?’ he wondered. ‘How did he know I’m keeping an eye on him?’
VeShadd read Alhi’s mind. He smiled and went on in a bit.
‘I’ve got a lot going on in my head as I assume you know too. And I’m sure the headaches won’t give room for causing another trouble.’
He flashed a half grin at Alhi as he finished. ‘So you can put your mind at rest and watch over the other boys, sir. Good night!’
VeShadd left the party scene and went to the swimming pool, his usual thinking station.
Seated at the poolside, he thought about the evening match and his highly celebrated goal.
He smiled to himself.
A thought popped up in his mind.
That epic moment would’ve been captured by Beya. It’d have been really something for the fan club!
And that Beya thought suddenly wiped out the happy smile in VeShadd face.
Beya was the president of his fan club. And now, the girl was the Achilles heel of the successful sportsman.
VeShadd remembered the first day he met that young, radiant sunshine.
It was at Mailora’s biggest theme park. The Wilde Adventures®.
VeShadd had chosen the park only because he was there at the time on an appointment.
The football star had taken time to sincerely explain to Beya, so the girl wouldn’t think he was simply taking advantage of the situation to send an amorous message.
He’d urged her not to get the wrong idea about the situation and think he was intending the meeting as a date.
Beya wasn’t upset, especially as VeShadd’s explanation was very polite and courteous.
But she even admired him more for being a sincere and honest gentleman.
And even now, Beya threw her herself in a moment’s fantasies of the wild adventures of being a true, happy fan girl!
That sunny day, Beya had bumped into VeShadd while she looked around for him, while also calling him on phone.
For there were so many people in the park.
And the two – rather than exchange pleasantries, or otherwise give or get a tender apology, the two burst into a sudden laughter when they got to recognise each other.
Beya was a lively girl and was quite real. A girl anyone cannot get tired of talking with. So, the two had a good conversation.
And the meeting was everything Beya had imagine in her daydream.
The chat was a breath of fresh air to VeShadd, too. For he was getting suffocated of the media’s attention at the time.
And here he was talking with Beya as though they’d known each other since the beginning of time.
Beya was the first person among members of the public that would show concern and interest in VeShadd’s life apart from his football career.
The two talked about social life, interests, desires, backgrounds and even unfulfilled dreams.
It was after the meeting that the two realised they hadn’t really talked about the fan club.
So, they fixed another day to discuss that.
And VeShadd was delighted he was going to see Beya yet again.
VeShadd remembered everything where he sat.
And for the first time since Beya lay in coma in his former hotel room, he stopped thinking about himself and began to think about the victim of his weakness.
He was now curious to see how the lovely nineteen-year-old girl was doing.
VeShadd couldn’t believe how he turned out so bad that he could be angry at the fact that he hurt someone; rather than being really sorry for it.
His conscience began to nail him to the cross. He felt so bad for the lovely dove whose only fault was trusting him so really much.
The twenty-year-old decided to check on the girl at the instance.
He knew if he asked Coach Alhi about what had being going on with Beya since he vacated his hotel suite, the chief coach wouldn’t give him the details.
Alhi would continue to keep VeShadd from knowing the situation with Beya, in order to keep his mental state intact for their matches in the ongoing World Cup.
But VeShadd was fed up with running away.
Knowing the whole team was still partying that night, he decided to seize the opportunity to sniff around and find out whatever needed to be.
He decided to visit the crime scene first of all.
His hotel suite.
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