46 pages • 1 hour readMindy Mcginnis
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As Ashley’s foot continues to worsen, the red streak of infection reaches her calf and the swelling intensifies. She knows that time is running out; once the infection takes over her leg, she won’t be able to walk. As she starts walking, she looks for flint, which she knows is sharp enough to take her foot off. She finds a beanie stuck on a high branch and recognizes it as Davey Beet’s. Ashley thinks about the way Davey was a sore spot between her and Duke. Duke knows how much Ashley idolized Davey, and Duke felt Ashley compared him to Davey when they hiked together.
When Ashley stops at a stream in the heat of the day, she thinks about her running scholarship. When she started running cross-country her sophomore year, Ashley discovered a passion and talent for the sport. Davey wrote her a letter after she was featured in the local paper for qualifying for nationals. Even better, she was offered a full college scholarship for running. She knows that amputating part of her foot will mean losing her scholarship. As she wonders what to do, she notices a piece of flint on the opposite stream bank.
By Mindy Mcginnis