The sun shone brightly on center court. Ben and Margie scanned the crowd, noticing a handful of friends and relatives sprinkled about in an otherwise empty grandstand.
“Do we have to play today?” Margie whined.
Ben nodded, strapping on his equipment. “Margie, you can do this. We’re only playing a best of five. This won’t take long. Martin and Kira aren’t that good.”
Ben shifted from side to side and took a few practice swings, limbering knotted muscles. With one hand on her hip, Margie watched, sighing. “Come on Ben, serve the ball.”
Ben looked at the crowd one more time, and then fired a scorching serve over the net. Martin countered with a strong forehand. Margie lunged, smacking both the ball and Ben on the back of the head. “Ouch,” he yelped, rubbing the base of his neck.
“Sorry,” she apologized.
Kira sent a lazy looping shot into the frontcourt. Ben and Margie dove for the ball, collapsing in a tangled heap of arms and legs on the floor.
“Ow. That’s gonna leave a mark,” she complained.
Ben scrambled to his feet, just missing a screaming return by Martin. Still seated, Margie pulled her knees to her chest and began to softly cry. “I hate getting old.”
Ben dropped down beside her and drew her close. Margie leaned into her husbands embrace, burying her face in his chest. “Is this exercise really worth it?” she snuffled.
“Sure it is, honey. Don’t forget, the doctor gave us two options. Lower your cholesterol by diet and exercise or take a little white pill.”
A small tear snaked down the side of her face. “And why did we choose diet and exercise again?”
He chuckled. “Because there are side effects to those little white pills. Why, you might grow a third arm, or an unsightly patch of back hair.”
“How long have you been taking it?” she muttered.
“Never mind.” She rubbed her face on his shirt. “You’re right.” Margie gave Ben a quick embrace and moaned to her feet. “Let’s finish this game.”
“Now you’re talking.” Ben jumped up enthusiastically. “And when this over, we can have dinner. I’m starving.”
Ben and Margie finished the set, each suffering only minor additional bruising from playing too close together.
“We won!” Ben exulted.
“Yeah,” she mumbled sarcastically. “But look at this.” Several blue blotches paraded down her arms. “I’ve got a deal for you Ben.”
“I’ll keep working out, but let’s play singles from now on. Being a smurf is not that attractive.”
A smile lit Ben’s face. “Deal. Ready to eat?”
“Yep, and don’ forget.”
Ben looked confused. “Forget what?”
“Turn off the Wii.”
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