‹ Prequel: Chances Risked
Sequel: Life's Chances

The Three C's

Chapter Fifteen

It was January twelfth; we had gotten home from out road trip the day before, winning four of the five games and losing the one in overtime. I still hadn’t heard word from Pat since he broke up with me over two weeks ago. Right now, we were all at Mario’s home, crowded in his TV room because they were about to announce who was going to represent the USA men and women’s team for the Winter Olympics that took place in a month.

“And this a big decision in the NHL and the Olympic world, if you’re just tuning in now, we’re talking about Maggie Marshall, number forty six for the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Olympics being held in Sochi, Russia next year and where will this talented girl be, has everyone wondering,” the announcer started as we all sat around at Mario’s house to hear the news on who’s team I’ll be on.

“That’s right Mike, she is the only woman to make it into the NHL, you know there was Michelle Krupts last year that tried, but didn’t make- But because Maggie is a woman, will she play for Team USA on the men’s or women’s team? You know back in 2010 she won silver with the women’s, but that was before she was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins, still in the AHL,” the other announcer said and I sighed as I sat in-between Marc and Sidney, my knee tapping in anticipation of what was going to be held for my future.

“You know we had the lockout last season, but if you look back at three seasons that Marshall’s had with the Penguins- And even the start of this season, you can see that she’s capable of keeping up with the boys. Here’s a clip from this past season of Marshall trading blows with former Boston Bruins’, Tyler Seguin, and then her hat trick from 2010 against the Stars, her first ever in the NHL. She’s had injuries,” I winced when they showed my hit from 2011 against the Blackhawks where I was tripped and fell into the wall where Pat was already on the ground and I landed right into his skate, the scar on my side still stung every now and then. They also showed when I was shoved on the ice and went right into the boards in 2012, I went legs first and hurt my leg. There were little things being showed from throughout the seasons I was with the Penguins, “You know she had the loss of her brother almost two years ago,” they showed the clip of Mike being on the ground, with the trainers around him, not of his actual hit that killed him. I looked down, feeling my eyes start to well up and biting my bottom lip to stop it from quivering. Marc wrapped his arm around me and I could feel the guys rubbing my back, “That was a tough time for Marshall, you know she had that month where she didn’t have any points, trying to recover of what happened to her brother. But this girl is a survivor and a very good, very talented and very capable girl.”

“You are so right, Mike, so now we’ll tune into the meeting to announce who will represent Team USA,” they said and then Gary Bettman stepped forward.

“Before we start to announce the players representing Team USA men and women’s hockey team, I will announce the placing of Pittsburgh Penguins Maggie Marshall,” he said and I crossed my fingers and stared at the TV, everyone seemed to be holding their breath waiting to find my placement, “After much discussion with the Olympic board and considering the fact that Marshall is a woman, they believed that it was best if Marshall played on the woman’s team,” he said and I sighed and looked down, really wanting to play with the guys, “However,” he said and I looked back up, “After witnessing her abilities in the NHL and her skills in the 2010 Olympics, we are awarding Marshall the opportunity to play for the men’s Team USA.”

“YES!!!” I cheered, jumping up from my seat, smiling brightly and holding my arms in the air. I felt arms around me and smiled when they were Paul and Brooks’, two of my teammates that were considered for Team USA team.

The guys congratulated me and I was so happy to hear that I had gotten what I wanted. I placed my hand to my neck and to the gold necklace and cross hanging down, the necklace that belonged to Mike. Kasey Stone, the woman that was the head coach for Team USA’s women’s team stepped to the podium to announce the roster. None of us really paid too close attention to it; I was still excited over the fact that I was going to play with the guys. My phone was buzzing in my pocket and I saw that some of the guys that were considered for the team were texting me, obviously hearing the news. They were congratulating me and saying that they were excited to be my teammate.

Once Stone was finished, Coach Blysma, our Coach, the man that was going to be the head coach for the Team USA’s men’s team. We cheered for Coach as he looked into the cameras and then down at his sheet, “Representing Team USA for the 2014 Olympics; goaltenders; Jimmy Howard, Ryan Miller and Jonathan Quick. Defensemen; John Carlson, Justin Faulk, Cam Fowler, Paul Martin-“ we cheered for Paul and I was happy that he was going to be on the team again, “-Ryan McDonagh, Brooks Opik-“ we cheered again for Brooks and I hugged both of them, we were going to be together on Team USA, “-Kevin Shattenkirk, and Ryan Suter. Forwards; David Backes, Dustin Brown, Ryan Callahan, Patrick Kane, Ryan Kesler, Phil Kessel, T.J. Oshie, Max Pacioretty, Zach Parise, Jow Pavelski, Paul Stastny, James van Riemsdyk, Blake Wheeler, and as the Commissioner announced before, Maggie Marshall.”

“Well looks like it was a good thing that I went to camp,” I smiled as I looked at my team who chuckled. I looked back towards Kris who stood behind me and smirked.

Sidney, Kunitz, Geno, Jussi, Olli, Paul, Brooks and I were the only ones that were going to the Olympics so far. Geno was excited that it was going to be held in his home country and saying that Russia was going to win gold, which sparked an argument between us saying which country, USA, Canada, Finland or Russia was going to win gold.

I heard my phone going off in my back pocket and pulled it out; surprised to see Pat’s picture on the screen, after two weeks he was calling me. I looked up and saw that none of the guys were looking at me; at last I didn’t think they were. I slipped out of the room, and moved to somewhere more private, “Hello?”

“Hey Mags,” he simply said and I bit my lip, I missed him.

“Hey,” I said and sat down on the couch, looking around to make sure I was alone.

“I just- Um, I saw- Congrats on making the team,” he said and I looked down.

“Thanks,” I said, “We’ll be teammates.”

“Yeah,” he said, this conversation getting to be awkward, “Maggie, I want to-“

“Why’d you do it?” I asked, wiping my eyes because I knew they were tearing.

“Because I’m an idiot,” he said and I scoffed.

“And then you don’t call for two weeks,” I muttered and Pat sighed.

“A giant ass idiot,” he said and I just listened, “Maggie, I’m so sorry- I don’t know why I said what I said, I did mean any of it!”

“I know you were frustrated about what you heard- About the rule, but- We would have figured something out!” I sniffled.

“I know, I just wasn’t thinking, Maggie- I’m so sorry,” he said and I pinched the bridge of my nose, “I love you.”

“I love you too, Pat- I just- You just gave up-“

“I didn’t give up! I just- I wasn’t thinking!” he said and I heard footsteps and looked up to see James standing in the doorway to the room I snuck into. He leaned back and said something to someone and then I saw Kunitz appear next to him, “Please Maggie, I’m so sorry, can you give me another chance?”

“I have to go,” I said quickly when the two started to walk into the room.

“Mags? Wait-“ I hung the phone up and tossed it onto the coffee table in front of me. I covered my face, wiped my eyes and felt the two sit on each side of me and wrap their arms around me.

“It’ll be all right, Maggie,” Kunitz said and I sighed and nodded my head, “Come on, we’re going to celebrate the good news.”

“I’m suddenly not in the mood to celebrate,” I said but then squealed when I felt myself being pulled up.

“Well too bad, you are, and we’re going to make you smile again, whether you like it or not!” James said and I gasped as I watched him bend down and then grab me and pick me up, “Let’s go, Kuni.”

I had no choice in this, the boys took me out to celebrate getting what I wanted, I was going to be playing on the men’s Olympic hockey team. I tried my best to put up a front, but I just really wanted to go to bed and not wake up until it was time for the Olympics. Some guys were already tipsy and I giggled when Beau was flirting with the waitress. I stared down at my double tequila on the rocks and sighed, taking a small sip of it and then feeling my phone buzz. I pulled it out of my pocket and saw that it was a text from Pat.

‘I still love you Maggie, I’m sorry’

‘…And that’s enough for me…’ I thought and then looked up and down the table that we were at to see that Sidney and Marc were missing, ‘…Where’d they go? They were here before…’ I thought and then stood up, eyes immediately going on me.

“Where are you going?” Brandon Sutter asked and I rolled my eyes.

“Bathroom,” I said and he looked at me, “Is that all right?”

“I don’t know, is it?” he asked and I scoffed, smirked and shook my head, turning around and heading away from our table and towards the bathroom.

As I was about to turn the corner, I saw Sidney and Marc’s reflection in the mirror, they were talking around the corner. It looked to be a little heated, so I leaned against the wall and listened in on the conversation.

“You have to tell her, Sid!” Marc said and Sidney sighed.

“You know I can’t do that, Marc.”

“Why not?! She deserves to know! She already knows- But she should hear it from you so it doesn’t sound like you’re just plotting to keep her in Pittsburgh!” Marc said and I was confused on what they were talking about.

“Marc, you said it yourself last time we talked about this- Maggie would murder me if she found out that I knew about the rule and didn’t tell her,” Sidney said and my eyes widened, “I just wanted the perfect team.”

‘…That fuckin’ dickhead!...’ I thought and suddenly felt sick.

“Whatever man, you’re just making this worse for yourself,” Marc said and it looked like the two were coming this way, I turned around and headed back towards the table and took my place in-between James and Geno.

Marc and Sidney came back, Marc sat three seats down from me and Sidney was across from me. I looked up at him, gripping my glass in anger and he just gave me a small smile. I tried to act like I didn’t know anything, but I couldn’t, I was never good at secrets and holding back my anger. I just leaned back in my chair and looked towards Marc, he must have felt me looking at him, because he turned towards me, I just glared at him, ‘…He could have told me that Sidney knew…’

“You all right?” Marc asked and I looked forward and at my drink. I threw back the glass against my lips and downed the last of my tequila, slamming the glass on the table and pushing my chair back.

“I’m going home,” I said and the guys looked at my.


“Don’t Marc,” I growled and he looked at me, “Just don’t.”

“You know, don’t you?” he asked and I just looked at him.

The horrible part was that I needed to go around the table and passed Sidney to leave the bar. I just grabbed my jacket and walked passed Marc, I heard the guys call me, but I ignored it. a hand grabbed my arm and I turned and saw Sidney, I wanted to punch him right there.

“Let go, Crosby,” I hissed and glared at him.

“Maggie, let-“

“Don’t even finish that sentence, just sit down and leave me alone,” I muttered so that he could only hear. Sidney sighed, let go of my arm and then sat down in his chair. I should have walked away right there, but I didn’t. I should have, I shouldn’t have said or did anything, but I could not help myself, “Cheers to your perfect team, Crosby.”

The guys all stared at me in shock as I took Sidney’s glass of beer and poured it over his head; I still couldn’t believe that I just did that. I slammed the glass on the table, surprised I didn’t smash it and then turned around and left the bar.

‘…Fuck him…’