I entered Flat Tire in the ‘10,000 Followers’ contest on www.aplaceforwriters.wordpress.com. It actually won 2nd place. Whoo hoo!! I wanted to share it with everyone since I had so much fun writing it.
Racing down the winding, narrow trail, I looked over my shoulder to check the position of my nearest competitor.
Score! She was dragging her bike over a fallen oak tree that completely blocked the trail.
“Time to put the hammer down and increase the gap,” I panted.
Uneven, damp, moss-covered boulders were strewn haphazardly along the next section of the course so I knew I would need every advantage I could get.
Veering sharply to the left, I narrowly missed a jagged rock edge that could have easily sliced my leg wide open and ended my race.
While I wanted to zoom through this section, the terrain just wouldn’t allow it.
X-ray vision would be a huge asset to mountain bikers racing through these dense woods and granite rock gardens.
“You have got to be kidding – I can’t have a flat!” I groaned at hearing the air hiss from my front tire.
Zefal pump in hand, I got off my bike and peered down at the damage.
“Broke down, are ya?” he queried.
“Clearly you aren’t a rock scientist,” I huffed while shaking my head.
“Didn’t claim to be, missy,” he bent over to examine the rim.
“Ever changed a tire before in under, say, two minutes?” I crossed my fingers.
“Frankly I can’t say that I have, but maybe I can work some magic for ya, yes?”
Glancing back, I made sure no one was close enough to see my illegal helper.
Hands formed from the soil and decorated with leaves punched up through the earth and manipulated my bike with surprising dexterity.
I could have jumped for joy seeing the tire be fixed perfectly in mere seconds.
Juiced, I threw my leg over the bike, secured my feet in the clipless pedals, and shouted a heart-felt thanks to my new friend.
“Kindred spirits we are,” his eyes twinkled mysteriously.
Lost in thought at his cryptic comment, I never heard the other riders approaching.
Muscles bursting into action, I managed to insert myself behind the lead rider.
Next straightway, I was so going to pass her.
Orange flags signaled the finish line was only five hundred yards ahead.
Pride fueling my legs, I surged around her at the last possible moment.
Quite a win, thanks in large part to my magical friend.