Janice walked across the grass slowly. The blades crunched beneath her pink sneakers noisily. The heat wave had effected the grass as much as the spectators. What should have been a glowing green battlefield was now a wilted brown plain. The crowd was so quiet everyone could hear her walking.
In the center of the field was “The Hag” a.k.a. Karen Crockett. She had scared and dominated the inhabitants of the suburban cul-de-sacs hereabouts forever. She was a gangly eleven-year-old whose jagged elbows were feared by every kid for miles. No one stood up to her. Ever.
Janice had just done the unthinkable. She had stood up to The Hag. The result had been inevitable. She was walking away with blood on her lower lip. But she was walking away slowly and her eyes were clear as she stared ahead of her.
No one remembers who started it. The first clap was followed so quickly that no one ever saw who started it. By the time Janice had reached her bike with the streamers on the handlebars, the applause was deafening.