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Death Spiral

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  • 7.5
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Callum O'Leary accidentally let go of his fiance's hand too early during a professional ice skating competition. The accident is the reason Callum will never do figure skating again. As the guilt of his fiance's death takes over, Callum is afraid to let anyone else into his life. Elisia Algora is searching for a new partner for an upcoming couple's skating event. When Elisia meets Callum, her world changes as well as his. Callum is faced with the challenge of becoming Elisia's new coach when a unique job is offered to him by his former coach. Will Elisia be able to help Callum overcome his fear of pair skating or will his world continue to be one death spiral?

Chapter 1: Callum's POV

You'll be a champion, Callum. You'll take home the Gold. All you and Ginger have to do is nail every move between now and nationals.

My coach made it sound like winning was everything. But on the road to winning, I lost myself. I lost everything and everyone I cared about all for a stupid medal. If I could take it all back, I would. Because losing Ginger's life isn't worth ice skating.

"Callum, wake up? Are you still thinking about Ginger? You need to let that go. It's been over a year since she died. Ginger wouldn't want you moping over her death, she'd want you back out there winning medals."

That's my coach trying to make sense of it all. Ginger wasn't just my ice skating partner, she was my life partner. It was my job to make her look her best on the ice and to make sure she was safe. I failed to do my job because showing off and fame got in the way. One knee wobble made my ego slip and Ginger's life end.

The day Ginger died, the ice was covered in blood, and her head injury was my fault. They tell me it could have happened to anyone. That pair skating is the most dangerous, and that dancing with blades means injury and possible fatality. They only tell you that, but when it becomes reality it makes the world spin.

The color red brings out my inner turmoil. It's the color of betrayal and my ego getting in the way. I wanted to show off to the world. I tossed Ginger into the air and miscalculated when it was time to catch her. I didn't catch her on time and she landed head-first on the ice. I touched her hand before she landed. She tried to land on her left skate. But her body wouldn't turn around, and her head shattered on the frozen ice below her skull.

The audience gasped, and the medics skated toward me. The cameras were rolling as the microphones found my lips. I had nothing to say. No comment to make. My system was shocked, and any dream of pair skating with Ginger in the Olympics failed.

We were always in perfect synchronization. We were the best of the best, but even the best fail. And I became the biggest failure of them all. Ginger Yopp my dearest love, fell to her death and my heart broke alongside her head in that competition. They closed the rink early that day, and the rest of it was a blur.

I remember Ginger on life support with a heart monitor beeping faintly. It all stopped as her last breath gave way. I held her hand as the coma became death. As death became fear, and as fear became solitude. I became a lone wolf, without a mate. I no longer had meaning or joy. Only tears, beer, and countless days beside a headstone.

"Ginger Yopp, beloved daughter, and fiance." That is what her headstone said. But she was so much more than that. She was the magic of the ice, and no one would ever replace her. I vowed to never skate again.

"I can't Coach Ping. I can't skate anymore. Please stop coming here. I can't bring myself to lace up my skates and pretend nothing happened. I'm not ready."

"Will you at least come and sign a couple of autographs at the youth competition this weekend? It would be the world to them to see a professional, such as yourself."

Coach Ping will say anything to get me to enter the arena building. I haven't set foot inside the building since Ginger died. I don't have the stomach for it.

"Don't you have some other ex-professional skater to annoy? Ask Adam Rippon to sign autographs for you," I ask.

"He's not available. Only you are available and I am only asking you. You don't have to skate or set foot on the ice. You have my word."

Coach Ping surrenders it all, her hands give up and the ball is in my court. The ball is always in my court.

"Alright, I can sign a few autographs for the young skaters. But I am not performing or commenting. I don't want to be interviewed about anything. If you can keep microphones out of my face you have yourself a deal."

I hold out my hand to shake Coach Ping's hand. She firmly shakes it back.

"I will do the best I can to keep the journalist away. But sooner or later you will have to face what happened. I am not saying you need to be interviewed to face it, but someday Callum another woman might waltz into your life, and when she does you might want to tell her about Ginger and what she meant to you."

I know Coach Ping means well, but the chances of me falling in love again are slim to none. Ginger was my end game, and now she is gone. I am planning on being single for the rest of my life. Anyway, it's my business and no one else's. Coach Ping leaves as I prepare for the upcoming youth competition. I get on my laptop and look for a new outfit on Amazon. I could always use a new outfit to sign autographs in.

"I love you, Callum..." Ginger's voice haunts me.

"I'm sorry Ginger, it's time I return to the place where you slipped out of my reach. Please forgive me." I will never be able to forgive myself, but maybe Ginger can lay to rest if I let her go.

Chapter 2: Callum's POV

"Isn't it beautiful, Callum? An audience is chanting our names listen."

The sound of 'Ginger and Callum" can be heard from around the stadium. It echoes like a thunderous applause.

"They really like us. Let's get ready to skate." Ginger rests her head on mine and finds my hands. She prayers for us like she does for every performance and practice we undertake together. I am not a religious man, but I believe in the power of prayer. Her prayers are the guidance and praise from the higher power who gave us our ability to engage an audience.

The music begins as we find our skates on the ice. The fridged air means I haven't made a sweat yet. Ginger's hands clasp mine and our routine begins. We start with a pair sequence and are in perfect synchronization. The audience clasps as we make our first lift. I lift her effortlessly as she floats through the air like a cloud.

We skate toward the middle and perform a death


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