It was a normal Thursday night at the Swordsmen, and I was sparring against a left-handed individual from Garden City. Lefties are…well, lefties are evil. They have a distinct advantage in a lot of sports just because all your actions against them need to be reversed, and fencing is not an exception. It's especially frustrating because your foil bends the wrong way against them (it normally bends to the left, as to provide better point control against righties), so you have to even hold the weapon differently. Brhet happened to walk by and watch, and after a while he pulled me aside to give me a few tips on how to change up my attacks. He demonstrated an attack on me where he went from a very low target to very high by turning his wrist, then told me to practice the move on him. Yes, well, he wasn't wearing his protective mask. I hit him right in the eye.

We both just stood there in stunned disbelief for a few seconds, until he dropped to his knees and said, "Oh my god, you hit me in the eye." We rushed over to Coach and told him what happened…well, Brhet was a bit of a practical joker, and Coach didn't believe us. It was about this time that Brhet realized he couldn't see out of the eye I hit. I ran with him outside, and he started to wash out his eye in the water fountain. After a minute or two, his vision started to return and I started to breathe again. Coach wandered out into the hall at this point, realizing that we might have actually been serious when we ran out of the gym. Coach called Brhet's grandfather up, who picked Brhet up and drove him to the hospital with me in tow. You know the joke about the guy waiting in the hospital waiting room while he slowly bleeds to death because it's not his turn to see the doctor yet? Well, we knew that Brhet wasn't going to die from this, but I was getting pretty damn concerned at this point that he was going to have permanent vision loss from this. And, after Hour One passed without Brhet seeing a doctor, compounded with the fact that I was coming to terms with being enough of a bonehead to point a foil at someone not wearing a mask, I was a complete nervous wreck. I remembered my parents didn't know where the hell I was, so I gave them a call from the hospital…when they asked me where I was, I realized I didn't actually know which hospital I was at. I had to actually run outside and look on the sign on the wall. Finally, at the end of Hour Two, Brhet got sent to the triage unit and started to get treated. My parents came to pick me up, and at 2:00 AM I got back home.

I'd like to say my night ended there, but my nerves were so shot I could barely close my eyes, much less sleep. I gave up trying after about an hour, and I ended up sneaking out of the house and lying in the driveway staring up at the stars, wondering what the hell I'd done.

Up to RimRod's Fencing Autobiography
Back to Chapter Four: Downward Spiral
Forward to Chapter Five: Hitting Bottom

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