Michael rushed to change his shoes, grab his ball and leave. He knew that he was in the wrong, and every silent second spent in the house seemed to remind him of his guilt. Claire sighed when she heard the door slam and the sound of footsteps leading away from the house. And she had hoped that she wouldn’t have to lug the groceries home again.
Michael walked quickly to the cage, trying not to concentrate on the guilt but on his anger towards his mother. The soccer cage was a 10 minutes walk away and by the time he reached, he found that his anger had dissipated. He was however, sweating from head to toe already due to the extremely hot weather.
Michael was disappointed to find that no one was there, it was around 4pm, and usually 7 or 8 boys would be in the cage playing at this time, but today there was no one. It was a weird sight, seeing the cage which was almost always full of boys playing inside so empty.
Brushing away his disappointment, Michael went in with his ball and started to kick it into the unguarded goals. With each kick, he tried to vent his anger, or what was left of it, on that red and sliver ball, expertly guiding it into the goal at the far end of the cage. Soon after, he realized that this was boring and decided to sit outside the cage instead.
“Okay, okay, I shouldn’t have left home at all, but I’m already here.” He thought aloud to himself.
After a few minutes, Michael walked over to pick up his ball and go home, deciding that maybe grocery shopping wasn’t that bad after all. Michael bent down to pick up his ball, brushing off a few leaves that had stuck on the ball in the process. Suddenly, Michael leapt up and dropped the ball. His heart started beating rapidly and he looked around wildly to see if there was anyone around. The place was deserted, and Michael looked back at the leaves, blinking a few times to be sure of what he saw.
The leaves Michael had touched had shriveled up and withered, as if they had been left there for a few weeks. But that was not the only thing. Michael bent down for a closer look, what he saw was the leaves beginning to disintegrate, melting into a brownish black goop that slowly began to seep into the concrete floor of the soccer cage. It was hard to describe, but even in his shock, Michael knew what it was, he had learned it in Science class, his teacher had taught them about life cycles and to describe it in one word, it was…
“Decomposition,” Michael whispered to himself, awed and appalled at the same time.