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Chapter Six: Only a Dream

That night Jack had the most vivid dream. He was standing in a fairway sand trap on the ninth hole at Turkey Creek Golf Club. He could see the green about 140 yards away, surrounded by blurry-faced people. He looked to his right and saw another young boy. He thought it was Jeremy.

Chapter 6 illustrationHe looked down and saw a golf ball at his feet. Then he heard voices from behind him.

“Don’t be tempted to go for the green,” Tem Po said, shaking his head. The caddie stood three-feet high. He was small, but much bigger than the wooden statue from the attic. “You must use good judgment, as Master Wilkins told you. Good judgment is most important in the game of golf, as in life. You have a two-shot lead. Now is the time to play safe. Use good judgment and use your wedge to get the ball back in the fairway. You can still make par from there.”

Jack stood motionless, unsure of what to do. He looked at Ti Ming.

“He is a caddie,” Ti Ming said with a smile. “You can use good judgment and show perseverance at the same time.”

Jack looked back at his ball, then the green up ahead and then he realized he was holding a 5-iron. He was playing a golf tournament, and everyone was watching and waiting on him.

Slowly Jack put the pieces together. He was on the final hole of the summer camp tournament. He had driven his ball into the fairway trap, and he was about to try and reach the green with a long iron.

He took his stance and dug his feet into the sand for stability. He took a look at his target, the flag whipping in the wind. He didn’t have a great lie, but he was ready to give it a shot.

Before he did, he looked back at Ti Ming and Tem Po.

They both shook their heads in disapproval. Tem Po looked at the ground. Ti Ming frowned and said, “The champion golfer does what he must, not what he wishes. Use good judgment, Brave Son.”

Jack went back to his bag and exchanged the 5-iron for his pitching wedge. He blasted the ball back out into the fairway from the sand trap. He then hit his third shot, an 8-iron, to about 10 feet. He rolled in the putt, and the gallery all ran toward him. He looked back, and Ti Ming and Tem Po remained back near the fairway bunker. Tem Po smiled and jumped up and down. Ti Ming simply grinned and rubbed his beard.

The next thing Jack knew, he stretched his hands above his head … and opened his eyes.

“Ah, rats,” he said. “It was only a dream!”