I took Cherry and Coco to a chess tournament. The kids played six rounds. Those with the best records won medals and trophies. Cherry won a medal, and Coco just missed the cutoff. It was a long day on a hard bench for me, but I learned something significant about my oldest daughter. She is ruthless.
It happened during the fourth match. Cherry’s opponent was cocky. Her quiet girl manners were misleading. I watched with my girlfriend, K., from a distance of 20 feet. Cherry sat, facing us at the end of a long cafeteria table.
With serious cogitation, she moved her pieces while he talked trash. I couldn’t hear him, but I saw it in his posture, in the way he moved his mouth, in his smirk.
K. said, “She has on her game face.”
I said, “Yeah. I’ve seen it before.”
“Do you think she’s upset?”
“No, I think she hates to lose.”
A few minutes later she floated her queen to the far side of the board. He countered with a pawn. Then, before he could blink, she slapped her queen to the right, capturing his knight. Checkmate.
My little girl looked right at me, beaming. I got him.
Vanquished, the boy lifted his hand, admitting defeat to the scorekeeper. He sat speechless as the little girl with almond eyes and a Mona Lisa smile reached across the table to shake his hand.