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The tennis ball came fast, hit bad and also was wrongly inclined downwards. Hard to catch, a sort of out. But she did.
She moved as soon as it was hit, aware of its trajectory, after she had turned the racket downwards. Then, once reached the landing area, she stopped with open legs and bent knees. She bounced the ball back and scored.
Won set, won game.
As I was looking at her excitement, I couldn’t help smiling
I had been watching her from a distance for about a week. She used to leave home at seven and to get to the Scientific Institute, 20 minute-walk away. Casually dressed, with jeans and jumper, her hair tied up in ponytails or plaits; yet a certain touch of class was to see from details, like a hem on her top, the hairpins, her fashionable shoes and all of the accessories embellishing her wrists and ears.
With a backpack and a gym handbag, which let see a tennis racket handle, she stopped at some building blocks; from there she kept on with a girlfriend.
Although it was October already, Friuli was still quite warm, which was showing in the attitude of the people from Udine as well.
She used to spend her mornings at the Institute. I had learnt her class schedule at heart and I sometimes could notice her outside in the yard, during the break. At the end, at one pm she had her home-made pocket lunch with her friend in a cozy garden nearby. The break was about one hour and a half maximum; afterwards they used to reach the sports Centre where they would train and challenge one another for hours on the tennis court.
On the tennis ground she was able to show all her talent: ability and agility, result of routine focused trainings which had made her into an enviable 15-year-old. But her happiness and brightness raised doubts on her relationship with her sister
How could she feel so cheerful just two months after her older sister had disappeared?
Omar had always been focusing on the bond between them, but he had never noticed any sadness in the girl I had been monitoring for days.
What if that decision had only worsened things? What if forcing one against the other had finally put him into troubles?
Standing against the light pole, hidden by a billboard, I was thinking about Ayhan’s choices when I saw Adam come. His slow pace, of a gym-built body, stretched along a two-meter height couldn’t cast any doubt on the decision he made.
DD had returned from Golyam Dervent more hardened than ever, less than one week with Opko had her subjugated. Lisa was Ayhan’s last chance to obtain the wished effect from his weapon.