We get to the miniature golf course. This place is impressive. It must be over fifteen thousand square feet of themed obstacles to get through spanning what would be the equivalent of a few city blocks.
I let out a slow whistle. Dillion claps his hand on my back. “Welcome to Treasure’s Cove my friend.”
“This place is amazing!” I said, “Is that an actual pirate ship in the middle of the course?”
“That it is!” Mr. Fischer said, finally joining us. He leads us to the booth where we pay to get our putters.
“Good Day young lady.” The teen girl, behind the booth, smiles.
“How many will be playing through?”
Cat’s father looks back at us. I raise my hand but I seem to be the only one. Cat’s mom comes up behind Dillion and pushes him forward. I think you boys should play, while Cat and I get a smoothie. Cat’s a little tired and so I think we’ll sit this one out if you don’t mind? We’ll catch up with you later on the back nine.”
Dillion glowers at his mom and she gives him her sweetest smile back. “It’ll be fun.”
“Okay, it’s settled then.” Mr. Fisher’s turns back to the girl. “Three to play through. Thank you!”
The girl rings up the sale, hands him 3 putters, 3 different colored balls for each player, scorecard and a pencil.
“Come along, Cat.” Her mom takes her arm and starts to lead her away. I notice her hesitation about leaving us, or I should say me alone with her father.
“It’s okay, Cat. Rest up. You’ll catch up with us soon.” I try to give her what I hope is a reassuring smile.
Her dad hands out the putters and the balls to Dillion and me. I couldn’t help but notice that he kept the scorecard for himself. I look over to Dillion and he looks like he’s been told he’s been drafted into the military or something. I elbow him. “Cheer up this was your idea remember?”
“Yeah, don’t remind me.” Dillion shakes his head looking down at the 3 red balls in his hand.
“Okay boys, let’s not forget the rules.” Mr. Fischer said taking a coaching stance at the first hole. “There are 18 holes and a 6 stroke limit per whole. You don’t get it in in six strokes, too bad, we move on. You get a one-stroke penalty if the ball falls into any water hazards and should your ball get stuck against an object you can move it out one ball length only. We good?”
I slowly nod my head, yes and Cat’s father looks pleased and turns to take the first stroke. I lean into Dillion, “Wow, you really weren’t kidding when you said he takes this seriously.”
Dillion looks over at me. “You have no idea.”
Mr. Fischer got the ball in, hole in one. He turns back and looks at us, with a glint in his eye that was hard to describe, predatory, maybe. “Who’s next?”
Dillion grins and waves his hand for me to step up to the green. I take a deep breath and moved forward. I remembered Cat’s warning but if I missed on such an easy hole that would crazy right?
I set my ball down and make my address. I putt and my aim is true, hole in one. Cat’s father smiles at me, I can’t say in a friendly manner but more with excitement as he now sees me as a possible challenger.
Dillion comes up and lazily hits the ball. It takes him three strokes to get the ball in the cup.
“Bogey!” Mr. Fisher yells and I can see Dillion stretch out his neck and shoulders like he’s already tense and we just got started.
The first three courses didn’t have much in the way of obstacles it was pretty much a straight run or a simple banked stroke so we played through them rather easily. When we got to the fourth hole we realized things were going to start to get interesting.
Mr. Fisher announced he was in the lead 1 point. I was counting strokes so deliberately screwed up the last stroke so we weren’t running neck and neck. Dillion was behind two points.
Dillion shoulders me, “What are you doing? You deliberately screwed that last hole up?” Dillion complained.
“I’m doing what Cat asked. What are you doing?”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean you’re not even trying to win.”
“What’s the point?” Dillion says. “I’ve never beaten my father at golf mini or otherwise.”
“It doesn’t mean you should stop trying to have fun.” I admonished.
He paused a second like he was considering my words. “Eh, it’s not really that big of a deal, but I guess I could try a little bit harder.”
“That’s the spirit,” I said punching his shoulder.
“If you two are done goofing around back there, Alex you’re up.”
My head shoots up. He took his stroke already! Damn it now I’m not sure what the score is as I missed how many strokes he had used to make it in.
I put my ball down. I purposely hit the brick and bounce the ball out of bounds and I hear Mr. Fisher chuckle. “Looks like your luck has left you Bragin.”
I make the next stroke. “A birdie, impressive.” So this should have taken 3 strokes to get par. I make some quick calculations in my head and Dillion steps up. I see him sporting a whole new expression. He addresses the ball, he takes aim and erupts when he gets a hole in one. His father stood there stunned. So, did I if I were honest it was a tricky stroke since you had to hit it through a barrel.