Checkers game after dinner with the boys. I am on a solo team, while Eldest Son and Middle Son both align themselves with Daddy. They've seen him at games, and know on which side their bread is buttered.
It started off okay. But at a critical juncture in the game, Daddy set a vicious trap, and I walked into it like a lamb. I was ruined in one blow. "The trap! The trap!" screamed the boys, giddy with battle-lust. Middle Son practically did a "boo-yah!" in-your-face you're-going-DOWN dance.
Now it's looking quite poor for Mommy. Eldest Son, with the evil, Machiavellian help of Daddy, moves across the board with rapacious glee. Many of my poor black pieces fall under his sway. He quickly Kings at least four pieces, and the Kings move like deadly puff adders to corner Mommy's sad, remaining black pieces.
I'm really scared, okay? My black pieces are backing away toward a Last Stand type of thing, and I feel the blood-chilling fear of a lone soldier who is out of ammunition. It would not have been so bad if Eldest Son had not turned to me with a deadpan expression and said, with those big blue eyes devoid of warmth: "There is nothing you can do to stop this from happening."
"Cruel child!" I shouted. The younger one sniggered in vicarious excitement. "Evil," he said. "Evil is his one and only name!" I probably shouldn't have been singing Austin Power riffs during the first heady moments of the game, when my fate was not yet apparent.
With no way out, I waited. Then Daddy (who was sweating with delight over the prospect of winning! On behalf of his son, of course) got careless and made a real dumb-dumb move--a corker of a stupid move. As he removed his hand from the piece, he blanched. But it was too late. In one victorious sweep, the game was over. I gave a cry of triumph.
Eldest Son immediately collapsed over the table as if stabbed, and began to wail piteously. In the very next moment, Middle Son leaned over the table conspiratorially, with bright, shining eyes:
"I was on your team the whole time, Mommy," he said.