A Touch of Ember- Part 1 He sat quietly on the bed of his dorm room thinking to himself. Reflecting on elements such as school, life, people, and sports. The young man's name was Bryson Leon and he was on the college wrestling team as a walk-on despite him being there to study for a Business degree. This was his junior year at Blue Valley University and he had aspirations of making the starting varsity line up that has eluded him for the past two years. Every season match he's wrestled thus far has been JV matches. Bryson got up and stopped in front of the mirror shirtless. Physically he always bore a strong appearance, but beyond his determined stare and developed pectoral muscles that's not what he saw. He saw a weak person who couldn't win every battle thrown in front of him. In his heart it angered him that he's been stuck in the limbo of being a second string athlete and simply just having "potential" instead of the talent that others seemed to possess. The constant beatings he took from his teammate and opponent every time he tried to compete for the starting position wore on his mind. The several times he was lifted off of his feet and brutally slammed to the mat replayed through his head. The pain of being forcibly held down and unable to break from his opponents grasp replayed through his head. The hurt of watching his teammates succeed repeatedly, obtaining All-American wrestling status and some winning NCAA championships while all he could do was sit and watch replayed through his head. It felt as if all the grueling hours spent training and pushing his body were for nothing. Through gritted teeth he threw on his red hoodie, grabbed his bag and stormed out of the dorm. In the cafeteria of the school Bryson sat with his two best friends Jimmy and Morgan. Jimmy was a short Asian young man who practically lived for swag and the California lifestyle, and Morgan was a witty girl of Italian descent and had a head of huge, curly hair. "Dude seriously you gotta stop getting your butt kicked so you can get on that varsity lineup!" Jimmy ragged as he slapped his friend on the back jokingly. "What do you think I've been trying to do?? Still man, I'm not giving up" Bryson rebutted through rolled eyes. "Shut up Jimmy! Bryson ignore Jimmys dumb self, just do what you said and don't give up, yous got nothin to be ashamed of" Morgan supported in her usual New York accent. "Thanks Morgan I'm gonna do my best" Bryson responded feeling more positive now due to her kind words. "No prob but I see somebody hasn't been in the barbershop in quite a while" she noticed as she playfully ruffled his hair with her fingers. "Bryson bro you lookin rough man! you must be goin for that congo warrior look I take it" Jimmy joked. "Hey I thought I should try somethin new, switch my look up a bit plus I got tired of gettin haircuts" Bryson answered with a chuckle referring to the short coily afro on his head. Bryson was getting ready to say something else when he stopped in mid sentence when another presence caught his attention. Walking into the cafeteria was a girl that sparked his curiosity like a moth to the flame. Bryson was suddenly oblivious to everything around him, including his friends talking. The girl turned around to reach for something in her bag when she noticed the young man's stare. She had an athletic build, wore a yellow sundress, possessed ebony skin, and bore long black dreadlocks. The beautiful girl and him locked eyes, causing Bryson to suddenly feel as if his heart were beating at 1000 beats per minute but neither spoke a word. He felt as if he knew her, something about her seemed familiar. Perhaps it was those hazel eyes of hers. After a few more seconds she broke eye contact and proceeded to gathering her food. Even her walk continued to draw his eye, the way she walked with such grace and confidence, yet mysterious in a way. "Hey pal snap out of it!" Morgan barked snapping her fingers in his face to break his trance. "Oh uhh yeah sorry! sorry!" Bryson apologized clearly embarrassed. "Dude I see you got the hots for the girl from back in the day" Jimmy noticed. "Back in the day?" "Yeah Bryson don't you remember? that girl is Ember from back in high school" "That's why she looked so familiar....and I probably creeped her out too" "I swear you boys are so funny when you see a pretty girl, getting all googly eyed and dazed with your mouths wide open" Morgan jested as she did an imitation of the trance Bryson was in. Even at that moment all the struggling wrestler could think about was the mysterious girl that made his mind wonder in different directions. The name Ember burned through his mind as he saw her sit at a table by herself writing in what appeared to be a diary. "I wonder what's she writing....I imagine it's something beautiful" Bryson thought in his mind.