Reunion
Gregory Mogren
It’s been thirty-five years since I’ve seen that rat bastard. Thirty-five long years since we played that game. But now he is back, and we will play once more.
When he walks into the room his eyes lock onto
mine and the recognition clicks immediately. When he sees the board that I have on the table, he smiles. Without a word, he sits down, clicks the clock, and moves his first piece.
“Daniel! It’s been too long. How are you?” He says, the smug bastard. “How’ve things been going?”
I make my first move, hit the clock, and look up. “Oh fine, Grandmaster,” I state, my voice dripping with sarcasm and venom.
“Seriously? We haven’t seen each other in over thirty years, and that’s your response to me?” Another move, another hit of the clock.
“One time. One fucking time you beat me, Christopher.” Move, click. “One time, and then you sweep that tournament. Then you are set for life as a professional chess player.”
A pause, not for thought about the game, mind you, but for that last statement. “You made a mistake in that game, and it cost you. Trust me though, being a professional chess player is not all it’s cracked up to be.” He moves, and hits the clock.
“You get to travel the world, meet all kinds of interesting people, and you get paid to play our favorite game” Another move and another hit of the clock.
“But I don't have time for anyone. I couldn't contact my FRIEND because I didn't have time.” He moves again. Slowly he reaches for the clock.
“We are not friends!” I move before he can hit the clock.
He pulls his hand back and looks at the board. “Not now. But, you still are the only person who’s beat me.”
“But you got out of here! I’ve been stuck in this dead end town!” We stop playing. We just stare at each other for several minutes.
“Who’s move is it?”
“Yours.”