The Students Of Foxbury Going About Their Daily Lives…
Spring, Year 5
Keith pouted as he read the match report on the University website. His performance in Foxbury F.C’s last match had been lacklustre at best and now with a sprained wrist, he was feeling a bit down about himself. He’d also been crossed off for practice that evening. He sighed heavily and logged off. If he hurried up, he could go down to the green and join his teammate, Racquel, for a kickabout and join in the Foxbury Spirit party.
“How’s your wrist?” Racquel asked as they arrived on the grass. The Foxbury Spirit society part was in full swing and their roommate, Richard, had joined in for the fun.
“It’s been worse.” Keith sighed. “Did you see the line up for the match this weekend?”
“I did. That’s so unfair. We all have our off days.” Racquel scowled. “I’m having a word with the coach tonight.”
“No, don’t.” Keith winced. “It’ll look like I can’t fight my own battles. I do appreciate it, though,” he added hastily, on seeing Racquel’s face fall. “Thanks.”
The started passing the ball back a forth quietly for a few minutes. Keith glanced over at Richard and smiled. “Richard gets quite into this, doesn’t he?”
“He does.” Racquel laughed. “You should have seen his face yesterday. He was furious with the UBrite team because they beat us. I had no idea he was such a passionate footie supporter!”
The sense of team spirit really had inspired Richard. The gathering died down and most of the members drifted back to their dorms, muttering something about presentations, papers and coursework to do. Richard, however, was still feeling the adrenaline rush and needed to do something.
Quietly, he slipped away from everyone else and caught a taxi over to the UBrite campus. They’d taunted the Foxbury team the night before when they’d hung UBrite banners from the rafters. Let’s see how they liked it themselves.
Careful to make sure nobody but his accomplice, Larry, was watching, Richard started to work.
That wasn’t his only act of daring. After hanging Foxbury team banners on their stadium, he set about his next little prank; covering the statue in the middle of the campus with toilet roll.
When his work was done, he snuck away, grinning like a Chesire cat. It was perfect and best of all, the UBrite fools would never know who’d done it. And the Foxbury Spirit society would be thrilled with his daring acts.
It was almost too easy.
Racquel had been forceful and persuaded the coach to let Keith join the practice sessions and the match new weekend. The two arrived back at the dorm from practice, caked in mud but pleased. The coach had driven them hard after the appalling defeat last night and while they were both sore and exhausted, they felt a rush of determination.
Meanwhile, Elliott and Tina were sharing a moment in the common room at their dorm.
“I thought you were seeing someone?” Tina said, frowning slightly.
“Only casually,” Elliott replied. He kissed Tina’s hands lightly. “It’s nothing serious.”
“Oh.” Tina wasn’t convinced. She knew Elliott was dating a girl from UBrite but she didn’t know whether it was serious or not. She’d fancied Elliott for a while and she was beginning to convince herself not to care whether he was seeing someone or not.
She later met up with Riccardo at Larry’s Lagoon to work on some coursework. It was a gorgeous day so they sat outside in the sunshine.
“Ricky, you’re Elliott’s mate, aren’t you?” Tina began.
“Yeah, I am. Why?” he asked.
“Is he seeing anyone at the moment?”
Riccardo frowned slightly. “Yeah. He’s been dating Danielle Hutchins for, like, two years.”
Tina was alarmed. “So she’s definitely his girlfriend then?”
“Well, yeah.” Riccardo laughed. “If she isn’t after two years, then I’d say he’s got commitment issues. Why do you ask?”
Shrugging, Tina glanced back down at her book. “Just wondered.” Her heart sank. Obviously Elliott had been lying and she was quite gutted. She liked him quite a lot and it was quite frustrating to find out he was lying about his relationship. She also felt bad for Danielle.
Meanwhile, Claire was out bowling with Tony. After not hearing from him for ages, he’d finally asked her out for an afternoon date and as she had no classes that afternoon, she jumped at it. She’d been feeling a little insecure about their relationship, especially as she knew Ashley was still interested in him.
Tony assured her he hadn’t seen Ashley at all since he’d dropped out of Uni. Claire wished she didn’t feel so nervy about their relationship; she loved Tony and really didn’t like the way she was feeling at all.
“I didn’t expect to see you out here. I thought you’d be at practice.” Tina spotted Racquel sitting on the balcony. “Where have you been?”
“At work.” Racquel swallowed. “Look, promise you won’t tell anyone.”
“Okay.” Tina eyed her friend suspiciously. “What’s going on?”
“I got a job. I was sort of offered it, really. But it’s a good job, a very god job. Trouble is, it’s taking up all my class time.” Racquel bit her lip. “I’ve gone in quite high up though, Tina. Good pay. I can’t turn it down now and today was my first day.”
“So drop out of Uni.” Tina shrugged. “I’ll miss you like crazy but you’ve got to do what’s best for you, Racquel. Yeah, people will probably be disappointed for a bit. But if you’ve got this great job ahead of you, why turn it down?”
“You’re right. Maybe I’ll finish the term.” Racquel gazed at the skyline. “You graduate this term, don’t you?”
Tina nodded. “I do, yeah.”
“What do you think about us getting a flat together?” Racquel suggested. “We’d both be working; could be ideal.”
“I love that idea!” Tina beamed.
With final exams approaching fast, the group set off for an all-nighter at Larry’s Lagoon again. Against her better judgement, Tina found herself sitting opposite Elliott in the hall and couldn’t stop staring at him. She was cross with herself because he’d lied to her; she shouldn’t still be lusting after him like this.
Frustrated, she turned her attention back to her books.
She was also pointedly ignoring Richard. They’d had something romantic going once that had turned out to be nothing at all. Tina was tired of falling for guys who weren’t as interested in her.
Graduation day arrived and Tina was delighted to have passed and finally finished her Art History degree!
After the ceremony, Tina took herself off for a final walk around the Foxbury grounds. She’d been here three years and it was surprisingly emotional to be leaving soon.
Racquel had failed her classes and so was dropping out. She was going to organise a flat in San Myshuno for them and Tina was going to join her as soon as she’d tidied everything up.
She watched the gentle sway of the river in the light breeze. The town on the other side seemed so peaceful now that the term was ending. Hardly anyone around today.
Her future was looking bright and she was excited. Suddenly, the feelings of resentment towards Richard and Elliott didn’t see as important; almost as if everything that had happened in Foxbury during the last three years had been a farce.