• Published 28th Nov 2023
  • 975 Views, 57 Comments

All Day, Everyday. - Penanka72

Follow the journey of a little girl who takes her football to the next level!

  • ...


Please be right Vinyl…

At the sound of Applejack's whistle, the moment everyone had been anticipating finally arrived. Scootaloo took a casual yet calculated jog toward the ball, embodying confidence. Each stride seemed to communicate her intentions to execute her choice with precision.

As Scootaloo approached, Amelia readied herself in the goal, her mind racing through the last-second guesswork of where the ball would be sent. All her focus narrowed to the young player's movements—her posture, her eyes, her striking foot, any tell that might give away her plan.

Scootaloo's approach was marked by a calculated nonchalance, her expression unreadable as she maintained a perfect poker face. This demeanour was strategically crafted to keep Amelia on edge, second-guessing Scootaloo's next move up to the very last second. As Scootaloo's foot made contact with the ball, Amelia exploded into action, using every ounce of her leg strength to dive to the left. However, her heart sank as she realised her mistake; Scootaloo had opted for a cheeky panenka, lofting the ball elegantly down the centre of the goal, well out of Amelia's desperate reach.

As the ball crossed the line, Scootaloo didn't hold back her delight, sprinting towards Amelia with a triumphant shout. She stopped short in front of the goalkeeper, her celebration overt and mocking. “Guess you picked the wrong side, huh?” she taunted, grinning broadly at Amelia's flustered reaction. The provocation was too much for Amelia, whose frustration boiled over. With a flash of anger, she grabbed Scootaloo by the collar, her voice thick with ire. “You want to mock me? Really think that’s smart?”

The scene quickly attracted a crowd; teammates and bystanders alike rushed over to defuse the tension, pulling the two apart amidst shouts of restraint. “Enough, both of you!” Applejack commanded sharply, echoing above the commotion.

Once the immediate chaos subsided and tempers began to cool, Amelia's gaze found Vinyl across the field. Vinyl appeared sheepishly regretful, nervously rubbing the back of her head and offering a small, anxious smile. Amelia could only manage a deadpan look in response, exhaling a deep sigh. “Really helpful, Vinyl.” she said dryly, her words dripping with sarcasm. The simplicity of Vinyl's gesture did little to mend the sting of betrayal, leaving Amelia to process the tumultuous events in quiet frustration.

72’ GGGGGGOOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLLLLL! 3-0! As Scootaloo approached the penalty spot, the tension was palpable. With a composed stride, she positioned herself, eyeing the goalkeeper and the goal with equal measure. In one fluid motion, she executed a cheeky panenka, effortlessly lobbing the ball down the centre as Amelia, anticipating a powerful shot to either corner, lunged decisively to her left.

The ball floated gently into the net, the very epitome of audacity and skill, as Scootaloo's teammates erupted in cheers. This bold move not only sent Amelia the wrong way but also widened the gap in the scoreline, making the Bibs team a commanding three goals clear.

81’ SAVE! In the midst of a heated and contentious phase of play, Octavia found herself in a prime position on the right side of the penalty box. With deft control and precision, she unleashed a powerful shot aimed low to the far corner, testing the goalkeeper's reflexes and resolve.

Amelia, the pegasus goalkeeper, showcased her agility and sharp instincts as she dove to her right. Stretching her wings and limbs to their fullest, she managed to get a strong hand to the ball, pushing it away from the danger area. Her remarkable save not only thwarted a near-certain goal but also kept her team in the game during a crucial moment.

The non-bibs team loudly protested for a foul they believed had occurred during the build-up to Octavia's shot. They argued vehemently, gesturing and pleading their case, but the referee, Applejack, was unmoved. She waved off the appeals, indicating that the play would continue without a call.

Amelia's save became even more significant given the controversy, proving to be a vital stop that maintained the balance of the match. Her ability to remain focused and effective under pressure was a testament to her skills and composure as a goalkeeper, ensuring that her team stayed competitive despite the challenges.

86’ SAVE! In a thrilling moment of defensive prowess, Amelia delivered a spectacular save that had the spectators on the edge of their seats. Big Mac, known for his powerful presence in the air, connected with a corner kick and sent a thunderous header rocketing toward the goal. The ball was destined for the back of the net, but Amelia had other plans.

With a burst of agility, she launched herself to the left, arms outstretched to their limits. The crowd held its breath as she made contact with the ball, her fingertips pushing it just wide of the post in a display of sheer goalkeeping brilliance.

Immediately following Amelia's heroic save, Meadow Song reacted quickly to clear the lingering danger. She volleyed the ball away from the crowded penalty area, ensuring that any follow-up attempts from the opposing team were thwarted. Her prompt clearance helped stabilise the situation, allowing her team to reset and organise defensively.

90+3’ OUTSTANDING TACKLE!!! As the game approached its climax, the tension on the field was palpable. The crowd was silent, every eye fixed on the unfolding drama. Octavia, known for her precision and quick thinking, spotted Scootaloo making a daring run towards the opposition's defence. With a swift exchange of passes, they executed a seamless 1-2 play. Octavia's initial pass cut sharply through the midfield, finding Scootaloo who momentarily held the ball, drawing the defenders towards her. With a deft touch, she returned it to Octavia, who flicked it right back over the defence, exploiting the space they had created.

Scootaloo, with her legendary speed, dashed past the defensive line, leaving Lyra—a typically fast defender—struggling to keep up. Her wings slightly unfurled, adding an extra burst of speed that no earth pony could match. Ahead lay only the goal, and Amelia, who had advanced slightly out of her box to narrow the angle of the shot.

Amelia’s determination was fierce; she had been bested before but was resolved not to let it happen again. Her focus sharpened to a razor's edge as Scootaloo bore down on her. Everything else faded into a blur—her only reality was the ball at Scootaloo's hooves and the grass beneath their feet.

As Scootaloo approached, she cleverly manoeuvred the ball to her right with the outside of her boot, a typical setup for a finishing strike. Amelia, anticipating this, shifted her stance to intercept. However, a strange, distorted voice echoed in her mind: Faint… right… Mis—direction… Confused but instinctively trusting the warning, Amelia paused, holding her ground.

True to the voice's warning, Scootaloo suddenly flicked the ball to her left, attempting to bypass Amelia's anticipated dive. But Amelia, spurred by the mysterious advice, reacted swiftly. She thrust her foot out, catching the ball with the side of her foot that not only cleared it from danger but also accidentally tripped Scootaloo in the process.

Scootaloo hit the turf with a mix of surprise and frustration, looking up at Amelia with wide eyes. "How did you know?" she gasped, bewildered by Amelia's uncanny anticipation.

Amelia, equally stunned by her own reaction and the unexplained guidance, could only shrug as she regained her stance. "I... I just did," she muttered, unsure herself, her eyes scanning the field as her teammates swiftly transitioned into a counter-attack.

Amelia stood a moment longer on the pitch, her mind racing as she processed the strange occurrence. The voice had been so clear, so distinct—it wasn't like anything she had experienced before. As the game resumed and her teammates rallied around her after the save, her thoughts lingered on the mysterious guidance.

Could it have been her subconscious? Perhaps, in the heat of the moment, her mind had synthesised her knowledge of Scootaloo's tactics and her observations of the game into a voice, guiding her instincts. It's not uncommon for athletes to experience heightened intuition during critical moments, where their senses sharpen, allowing them to perceive things they might not consciously notice.

Alternatively, the voice could be a manifestation of psychological stress. The pressure of the game, the fear of letting another goal slip past her—these could have conjured an auditory hallucination, a mental trick to cope with the high stakes. This phenomenon, while rare, is known to occur in situations of extreme stress or focus.

Regardless of the source, the voice had undoubtedly helped her make a pivotal play. It had preempted Scootaloo's misdirection, allowing Amelia to counteract a move that would have likely resulted in a goal. This incident, while puzzling, highlighted the depth of Amelia's mental and physical game—her ability to integrate cues, whether real or imagined, and use them to her advantage.

For now, Amelia decided to shelf these questions for later reflection. The immediate need was to maintain her focus on the game, keeping her goal secure. Yet, deep down, she knew this was a moment she would revisit, a curious and unexplained whisper that had made the difference between a save and a score. As she positioned herself for the next play, a part of her remained intrigued by the mystery, wondering if the voice would ever return or if it had been a fleeting gift delivered in her moment of need.

The whistle of the wind and the distant cheers seemed to drown out the lingering questions about the mysterious voice. For now, Amelia's focus returned to the game, leaving the enigma unsolved as play continued, her team pushing forward, energised by her critical save.

90+4’ GGGGGGGOOOOOAAAAAALLLLL!!! 3-1! The momentum shifted dramatically following Amelia's spectacular tackle, igniting a rapid counterattack by the non-bibs. Fuelled by the adrenaline of the save, Comet Tail seized the opportunity, darting down the right side of the pitch with the ball at his hooves. His pace was unmatched as he linked up with Apple Cobbler near the halfway line, initiating a swift give-and-go. Apple Cobbler tapped the ball back into Comet Tail's path, allowing him to accelerate towards the goal.

However, Thunderlane quickly positioned himself to intercept, his presence a formidable barrier. Despite this, Comet Tail skilfully managed to whip a cross into the penalty area, bending it around Thunderlane's attempted block. The ball sailed towards the goal, creating a moment of chaos in the box.

Bon Bon, ever vigilant in defence, jumped high to meet the cross. With a powerful header, she redirected the ball out of the immediate danger area, but her clearance wasn't enough to send it clear of the threat. The ball landed just outside the penalty box, where Minuette was waiting, her expression one of fierce determination.

As the ball descended, Minuette locked her eyes on it, her focus intense. With a look of sheer resolve, she timed her approach perfectly, lifting her leg for a thunderous volley. The shot was executed with precision and power, soaring into the top right corner of the net. Caramel, the goalkeeper, made a desperate leap but had no chance to react; the ball was past him before he could fully extend his arms.

The goal, scored in the 94rd minute, was a dramatic punctuation to a tense match, bringing the score to 3-1. Minuette's late strike not only showcased her striking prowess but also capped off a swift and effective counterattack that began with Amelia's critical tackle, demonstrating the swift shifts in momentum that can define a hoofball game.


Exhausted and emotionally spent, Amelia remained on the ground, the cool night air brushing against her flushed cheeks as she gazed at the starlit sky. The final whistle's echo lingered in her ears, a solemn reminder of the game's outcome. Losing was tough, and admitting it was even tougher. She wasn't overtaken by anger or sadness, instead, a complex feeling of acceptance settled within her.

Throughout the game, Amelia had pushed herself to the limits. As a goalkeeper, she had made leaps and dives, each one a testament to her dedication and skill. Yet, despite her best efforts, it wasn't enough to secure a win. Her opponents, Vinyl, Octavia, and Thunderlane, had all performed exceptionally, their talents shining brightly on the field. And Scootaloo—undeniably the match's standout—had dazzled everyone, her prowess undeniable. It pained Amelia to admit how critical Scootaloo had been for the opposing team's success.

Amelia's thoughts drifted to Applejack, wondering if her performance had caught the coach's eye. She wasn't aiming for immediate stardom or a direct leap into professional football, but perhaps a spot in the academy, a chance to grow and prove her capabilities further. The uncertainty of what Applejack might decide hung over her like the stars above—bright but distant. Would Applejack see potential in her efforts, or would she dismiss them as insufficient for advancing further?

The possibility of being turned away weighed heavily on Amelia's mind. She hoped fervently that she had done enough to merit consideration, to be seen as more than just another player on the field. As she lay there, contemplating her future in the sport she loved, Amelia resolved to accept whatever came next. Whatever Applejack's decision, Amelia knew she had given her all, leaving nothing behind.

“Whew! What a game, huh?” A sudden scratchy voice said, the voice belonging to Vinyl.

Amelia turned her head toward the familiar voice, seeing Vinyl approach with an energetic stride, her face animated by the night's exploits. The corners of Amelia's mouth twitched upward in a faint smile, despite the ache in her chest from the loss.

"Yeah, definitely intense." Amelia responded, pushing herself up to a sitting position and brushing the grass off her uniform. Vinyl plopped down beside her, both looking up at the starry sky for a moment in shared silence.

"You were incredible out there." Vinyl added, nudging Amelia gently with her elbow. "Seriously, some of those saves? Out of this world."

Amelia let out a small, appreciative sigh, her gaze drifting from the stars back to Vinyl. "Thanks, Vinyl. Could have done more though." she said, the weight of the defeat momentarily lifting as she acknowledged the compliment.

Vinyl grinned, her eyes reflecting the night sky. "Don't sweat the scoreboard too much. You’ve shown everyone what you're capable of. Applejack would be nuts not to see that."

The encouragement helped ease some of Amelia's worries about her future prospects. "I hope so. Just gotta wait and see, I guess." she mused, her voice tinged with a mix of hope and uncertainty.

Lyra's voice cut through the night air, brimming with confidence and support, which brought a more genuine smile to Amelia's face. "Don't sweat it! You'll definitely join the Toffees!" she shouted, the excitement clear even as she wiped the sweat from her forehead.

Vinyl laughed, and Amelia looked up to see Lyra standing beside her, her stance buoyant despite the game's intensity.

"Thanks, Lyra. That means a lot." Amelia replied, her spirits lifted by the encouragement.

"Hey, with those moves today? They'd be lucky to have you." Lyra added, giving Amelia a reassuring pat on the back.

Octavia came over too, maintaining her composed, elegant demeanour despite the game's exertions, her voice carrying a refined British accent as she complimented the team's efforts. "Indeed, an outstanding display." she said, managing to look nearly as put-together as she did at the start of the match. However, her poised facade was playfully disrupted as Vinyl, ever the spirited contrast to Octavia's refinement, threw an arm around her neck and pulled her in close.

The sudden closeness and the casual disruption of her personal space made Octavia huff in mild annoyance, her usual grace momentarily overtaken by the unexpected embrace. "Vinyl, really." Octavia chided, her tone carrying a mix of reprimand and reluctant amusement. Her attempt to straighten herself and regain her composure only added to the charm of the situation.

Vinyl, with a wide grin, responded cheekily, "Lighten up, Octy! It's just a bit of fun after all that hard work!" She gave Octavia a gentle squeeze, emphasising her point.

Despite her initial resistance, Octavia's features softened, and a small, reluctant smile appeared on her face as she accepted the affectionate gesture. The playful exchange drew laughs from their teammates, highlighting the strong bonds and light-hearted moments that often followed the intensity of their matches.

As the laughter and playful teasing flowed between Vinyl and Octavia, Derpy hung back, her posture slightly hesitant, her eyes occasionally darting towards the lively group as she searched for an opening to join the conversation. Noticing her reticence, Amelia decided to bridge the gap. With a few strides, she closed the distance between them, enveloping Derpy in a warm, comforting embrace. As Amelia wrapped her arms snugly around Derpy's waist, she rested her head against her chest, releasing a heavy sigh filled with empathy. "You did good too, Derpy." she murmured, her voice muffled but sincere.

Derpy's hands hovered awkwardly before gently returning the embrace, her voice tinged with disappointment. "I didn’t do much really, all I did was run around. I could have scored but, I fumbled it." she confessed, her gaze drifting away, unable to meet Amelia’s eyes.

Before Amelia could respond, Lyra, overhearing the exchange, bounced over with her usual buoyant energy. She flashed a bright thumbs up in Derpy’s direction, her smile encouraging. "Not true! You did well drawing out defenders from their position! Creating gaps in the defensive line! You made it possible to create chances! There’s a reason you play for the Toffees, you know!" Lyra exclaimed, her enthusiasm undiminished by Derpy's visible disheartenment.

Despite Lyra's spirited defence, Derpy's shoulders slumped slightly, and the frown remained etched on her face, her internal battle evident. She managed a weak smile, a fragile attempt at gratitude. "Okay… Well, I just came over to say you did a great job, Amelia. You’re a great goalkeeper." she said, her voice low and tinged with a trace of resignation. Turning away, she began walking towards the changing room, her steps slow, carrying the weight of her self-doubt.

Amelia's brow furrowed with concern as she watched Derpy disappear into the changing room. She turned back to her teammates, a puzzled and worried look crossing her face. "Why is she... sad?" she asked, hoping for some insight that might help her understand Derpy's sudden drop in spirits.

Vinyl shook her head, her expression softening into a frown. "She doesn’t have any confidence in herself." she said, her voice tinged with sympathy. It was clear that Vinyl cared deeply, and seeing Derpy struggle was affecting her.

Octavia, who usually maintained a composed facade, also looked visibly troubled as she added, "It’s true… It looks like she isn’t interested in the sport anymore." The concern in her voice was unmistakable, hinting at the seriousness of the situation.

Amelia's confusion deepened, prompting her to ask, "But why? What happened?" She hoped someone could shed light on the root of Derpy's issues, something that might help them help her.

Lyra, normally the group's source of relentless positivity, seemed subdued as she responded. "No idea, she just dropped form one day and she just couldn’t find form again." Her usual bubbly demeanour was dampened by the gravity of Derpy's predicament, her bright energy dimmed by her concern for their friend.

Amelia sat quietly, her mind churning with concern for her friend Derpy. As she watched her teammates laugh and chat, her thoughts were elsewhere, tangled in a web of worry. Is Derpy losing her passion for hoofball? she wondered, the question echoing in her head. Could it be that she's struggling because she's not performing as well as she used to? Or perhaps there’s something else at play here?

Her gaze drifted, lost in thought. Could it be something personal? Amelia considered the possibilities: issues at home, overwhelming stress, or even deeper emotional struggles like depression. The lack of answers gnawed at her, the uncertainty unsettling. She wished she could peer inside Derpy's mind, to understand, to help.

Seeing Derpy so downcast was distressing. Amelia hated to see any of her friends unhappy, and it was especially hard watching Derpy struggle without knowing how to help. What can I do to help her through this? she pondered, her heart heavy with empathy and her desire to support her friend as best as she could.

As Amelia stood apart from the boisterous laughter and chatter of her teammates, she felt a familiar pull towards the necklace she always wore, a simple yet profoundly significant piece that once belonged to her father. Her fingers traced the rough edges of the pendant, worn down by years of her seeking solace in its steady presence. Each touch was a silent conversation with the past, a ritual that anchored her amidst life’s swirling uncertainties.

Each time doubt crept into her heart, she clutched the necklace, searching for the wisdom her father would have imparted. How would he have navigated this challenge? Though his voice had long since faded into memory, the ritual of touching the pendant bridged the gap between then and now, infusing Amelia with a tranquil clarity.

She closed her eyes, allowing the cool metal to press firmly against her palm, its familiar weight grounding her spirit. Deep, measured breaths drew in strength and expelled hesitation, her thoughts centring with each cycle of air. It was more than a meditation; it was a communion with the essence of her father’s enduring guidance.

With her resolve fortified, Amelia’s eyes snapped open, a newfound determination gleaming within them. The brief retreat into her inner sanctum had sharpened her focus, steeled her resolve. She felt an invigorating rush of calm certainty, as if her father’s wisdom had suffused her very being.

Stepping forward with a resolute stride, she was no longer just Amelia—she was her father’s legacy, ready to uplift and steady her friend Derpy in her moment of need.

As Amelia was about to console Derpy, she suddenly found herself ensnared in a bear hug of Olympic proportions. The air whooshed out of her lungs as if she'd just been tackled by a friendly, overenthusiastic linebacker. “Can’t—breathe…” she wheezed, her voice a mere squeak against the constrictor-like embrace, while visions of needing a lung transplant flashed before her eyes.

Just as she considered signalling for medical intervention using Morse code, the iron grip released her. The sound of giggling bubbled up from behind her, indicating the source of her near asphyxiation.

“Oh, sorry y’all, I couldn’t help it, ya was just amazin’ out there!” Applebloom confessed, her voice sheepish but still tinged with the thrill of the hug attack as she fiddled with her red hair like a cartoon villain pondering their next caper.

Amelia straightened up, patting her chest as if searching for any misplaced ribs. “It’s alright, just try not to turn my spine into a pretzel next time, okay? I’m fairly certain Karma didn’t have scoliosis.” she retorted, her voice half-muffled as she checked that all her body parts were still functioning.

With a playful glare, she added, “And maybe let’s save the bear hugs for actual bears, yeah? At least they’d have the decency to growl a warning first!”

Applebloom’s laughter echoed around them, infectious and bright. Amelia couldn’t help but join in, though she made a mental note to enrol in a quick course on self-defence against enthusiastic huggers—or at least start wearing a sign: ‘Fragile: Handle with Care.’

"Amelia! A minute, please!" The call from Applejack cut through the chatter and laughter like a thunderclap, turning every head. Beside Amelia, Grind Duster paused mid-sentence, his eyes following her sharp pivot towards the source of the voice. As Amelia glanced back, she caught a fleeting glimpse of Derpy disappearing into the shadows of the changing room's doorway, her silhouette a ghostly echo against the dim light.

"Wish me luck, guys." Amelia murmured, her voice a mix of hope and trepidation. Her words hung in the air like a fragile promise as she turned to face Applebloom, Vinyl, Octavia, and Lyra. Their nods and smiles were like beacons in the gathering dusk, emboldening her spirit.

With a deep breath that felt like drawing courage from the very earth beneath her feet, Amelia jogged over to Applejack, her heart pounding in her chest like a drum of war echoing the steps of a soldier into battle. Each stride was heavy with the gravity of what this meeting might hold, the ground beneath her a tapestry of opportunity and doubt woven tightly together.

As she approached, the world seemed to narrow to a tunnel, the edges blurring into irrelevance. The only things in focus were the determined set of Applejack’s face and the grass whispering secrets beneath Amelia's feet. She could almost hear the whispers of fate, weaving through the evening air, tugging at her soul with the age-old question that haunted every aspiring athlete's dreams: Was I good enough?

The distance closed, and Amelia stood before Applejack, the weight of the moment settling on her shoulders like a mantle of lead. She could feel the eyes of her teammates on her back, their hopes and fears mingling with her own in a silent chorus of anticipation. This was more than a conversation; it was a crossroads, each word a potential step towards her dreams or a retreat into the shadows of what could have been.

Amelia's breath caught in her throat as Applejack opened her mouth to speak, the future hanging precariously in the balance, waiting to be tipped by the scales of Applejack’s judgment.

"Amelia." Applejack began, her gaze heavy with a thoughtful intensity that seemed to weigh down the very air between them. "As a goalkeeper... what is your greatest fear?" The words hung in the air, a sudden chill that made Amelia's eyes widen in surprise. The question pierced her, unexpected and profound, something no one had dared to ask before, nor had she dared to consider herself. Why would Applejack pose such a dark inquiry? Was there an ulterior motive woven into this seemingly simple question?

After a moment's hesitation, where the silence stretched taut between them like a string waiting to snap, Amelia found the courage to voice the truth that haunted the shadows of her mind.

"Failure." she confessed, her voice barely above a whisper, yet carrying the weight of her deepest dread. To her, failure wasn't just losing a game; it was a visceral, consuming fear. She envisioned the goalposts expanding exponentially, mocking her with their vastness. Her hands felt like mere apparitions, incapable of stopping any shot. Each ball that passed her was a ghost through her fingers, a stark reminder of her own perceived inadequacy. This was the essence of her fear: an overwhelming sense of helplessness that threatened to swallow her whole, defining failure in the most personal, harrowing terms.

That was why a surge of anger rose within Amelia each time a goal slipped past her defences, dragging her back to the harsh reality that, despite her efforts, the ball would inevitably find the back of the net. This relentless reminder fuelled a fire within her, burning away any illusion of perfection. With every shot that thundered beyond her reach, Amelia was forced to confront her own limitations, the boundaries of her capability starkly outlined against the vivid backdrop of the game. All she could do, amidst the roar of the crowd and the pounding of her heart, was to save what she could, to stretch her skills to their utmost within the confines of her human imperfections. Human… could she even call herself that anymore?

Grind Duster’s question reverberated in the charged air, his imposing figure framed by the curling smoke of his cigarette, adding an ethereal quality to his already intense demeanour. Beside him, Applejack stood with equal gravity, her presence commanding and potent. As Grind Duster’s deep voice filled the space, an extraordinary phenomenon unfolded—around each of them, an aura of power began to manifest, visibly pulsating and vibrant, matching the colour of their eyes. Applejack’s aura shimmered a deep emerald green, while Grind Duster’s glowed with a fierce crimson red. The display was awe-inspiring, like witnessing ancient gods unveiling their might, their energy so palpable it almost made the air around Amelia vibrate.

Stunned by the spectacle, Amelia felt a momentary awe. The sight of their power, so freely exhibited, was both intimidating and mesmerising, reflecting their strength and passion for the sport. It was a raw display of their spiritual and emotional energy, and for a moment, Amelia felt like she was standing before two colossal figures from an ancient pantheon, each challenging her to rise to their legendary status.

“And what is your deepest desire, kid?” Grind Duster’s voice brought Amelia back to the moment, his question slicing through the awe like a blade.

Amelia, gathering her resolve and pushing back the intimidation, steadied her voice to match the intensity of the scene before her. “To be the best.” she declared firmly, her words cutting clear and strong through the mystique that the two coaches projected. Her goal was simple yet ambitious, a reflection of her own inner fire that now seemed to kindle in response to the challenge before her.

“To be the best.” she repeated, more to herself than to them, affirming her resolve. It was a declaration of her intent not just to excel within the confines of the game but to transcend them, to reach a level of skill and dedication that could one day rival the near-mythic presence of her mentors.

As Applejack's smile unfolded, it brought a soft warmth to her weathered features, the corners of her eyes crinkling with genuine approval. At her side, Grind Duster's expression shifted into one of cool detachment. He closed his eyes briefly, his posture relaxing as the intensity that had previously marked his stance seemed to dissolve into the air around them. "Good answer, very good." Applejack's voice resonated with a rich note of commendation, a subtle undertone of pride threading through her words. In stark contrast, Grind Duster's response was a muted grumble; he turned away sharply, his silhouette marked by a slouch of resignation as he strolled off, hands shoved deep into the pockets of his faded jeans, his figure diminishing with each step.

Turning back to Amelia, Applejack's expression grew serious, her eyes locking onto Amelia's with a piercing clarity. "Amelia." she began, her voice lowering to convey the gravity of her next words, "even before today's training, before I had fully seen what you are capable of, I had made my decision." She paused, allowing the anticipation to build, her gaze never wavering from Amelia's. "You are to be a part of my project—the future of this club." She let the words hang between them, heavy with implication and promise.

After a moment's pause, Applejack continued, the finality in her voice underscoring the importance of her next question. "So, the last question I want to ask you now is this… Do you want to be a part of the Toffees?" As she spoke, Applejack extended her hand, her palm open and inviting. The gesture was more than a formality; it was a symbol of partnership and mutual commitment.

Flooded with an overwhelming rush of happiness, Amelia felt as if a reservoir of joy within her was about to overflow. Her heart raced, her mind whirled with the realisation of what this moment meant for her future. All the years of hard training, the setbacks, the moments of doubt—all culminated in this single, life-changing opportunity. With a surge of emotion so powerful it nearly took her breath away, Amelia stepped forward and grasped Applejack's hand. Her grip was firm and confident, a physical manifestation of her inner excitement and resolve. "I will!" she exclaimed, her voice thick with emotion, her words echoing the boundless hope and fierce determination that filled her heart. This handshake sealed her fate, intertwining her path with the storied legacy of the Toffees.

That was the moment Amelia became apart of the Toffee’s little family.

Chapter 10.