Amazing Kids! Magazine

Chinese Checkers

By Abby Park, age 13

 

It was so quiet that a pin dropped, just in case anyone needed the confirmation.     Clink.

The black bobby pin fell from her silky hair while her fingers danced over the board in search of her next move.  The clicks brought her closer to her victory.  Her green minions were in a zigzag position, so that she could could skip over them, moving toward her triangle.  She played against her grandmother every Wednesday afternoon, and bet a dollar, although she lost more often than she won.  It was her grandma’s turn, but today, her eyes looked glazed over, like she had no intention of winning.

Her veined hand slowly moved towards her white pieces, hands in the game, her head out.  Ordinarily, she would set each piece down with a murmured “Dink!”, a little echo of the sound of a wooden piece touching the board.  But today there was no “Dink!”.  She played in silence. She forced a smile and motioned to her granddaughter.

It was the girl’s turn.  The older woman’s eyes were unfocused as she gazed into the middle distance.  The girl watched her for a moment, thinking.  Her grandmother would usually be able to tell by the scrunch of her nose when she was cheating.  Today she wasn’t looking at all.

better at this.

The girl chopsticked 2 green pieces in between her fingers and tapped them against the board to create the illusion that she was playing fair.  She swiftly moved them all the way to the point of the triangle and dropped them into place.

She sat back, spine straight, and held her head high. “Your turn, Grandma.”

Grandma?

Hello?

The little girl reached over to her grandma’s shoulder and lightly tapped her to see if she was okay.  Grandma held her heavy eyes open and made eye contact with her granddaughter.  Then, she softly closed her eyes while giving her a dollar bill and said with a gentle whisper,

“Today, you will be the winner.”