One Big Hurdle to Jump (Short Story- an excerpt)


One Big Hurdle to Jump

Josie | Inverloch Primary School |
Primary English | Term 1 2024

“Hurdlers, take your position.”

Beads of sweat glistened on everyone’s foreheads, slowly dripping down as if they were creating suspense. Lilah was sweating the most. Everyone moved forward and took their starting blocks and got comfortable, but they wouldn’t be like this for long.

“Take your marks,” the starter said. There was a moment of complete silence. Then…


The ear-splitting sound of the starters gun was fired. The only sound able to be heard was the stampeding of the hurdlers running. Lilah was winning, even with only one real leg, but Sam Dager was closing in at her heels. 3 hurdles jumped, 4 hurdles, 5. The end was closing in fast, but so was Sam.

‘5 hurdles to go’ thought Lilah desperately. Her leg was struggling to balance with the prosthetic ruining her rhythm. She was pushing as hard as she could go, 30m left. Sam was about to overtake her, but Lilah couldn’t let her win.

Born with only one leg, Lilah Robinson has many disadvantages. She often had to use a wheelchair. But it would never stop her, no matter what. Lilah was born into a good family, but her Dad never supported her, no matter how many times she tried to help him, or be nice or keep something safe for him, he never cared. Maybe he just didn’t like her. Maybe it was because of her long, brown and her dark but warm hazel eyes, or perhaps he never wanted a girl. Could’ve been the prosthetic leg that she had. But for whatever the reason, he despised her and there was no changing that.

Lilah’s brother was Dad’s favourite, but he always would try to put Lilah first. Whenever Dad tried to take Jake on a day to the park, Jake made sure that Lilah came too. Jake would help Lilah get around and help her with homework. When Jake would smile, it would light up the room. You could always see whether he meant the smile, because his light blue eyes smiled with him behind his blonde hair. His hair was often wet, as he liked to surf in the morning when the swell was good.

Lilah’s Mum, well, her mum did everything that she could for her, because her father was never any help. She would always go to her competitions and would pay a massive amount of money each year to keep her in the sport. She had to pay bucketloads of money for Lilah’s treatment, but she would do it any day of the week to see Lilah happy. And Lilah would’ve always been happy, if it weren’t for Sam Dager. Sam was the school bully and was good at every sport. But her specialty, was hurdles.

Sam hated Lilah, probably because even with one leg, Lilah could beat her. Sam was only a couple of centimetres taller, but was a million times richer. Sam’s parents were large business owners, and part-owners of Nike. She had all the best running equipment, from the shoes, to the running singlet. She had three major sponsors; Rebel sport, Adidas and she earned a fair portion of the money from Asics. See what I mean about the good shoes? Anyways, Sam was a bully, and there was no stopping that.

Lilah trained her whole life to get to this point, she wanted to be a Paralympian. She didn’t have anyone else in her area that only had one leg and would race her. So, she would have to race against everyone else. She had to train harder than anyone else in order to keep up. She would train over 7 days a week. It was brutal. Leg stretches, lunges, squats, you name Lilah did it to strengthen her leg. At school, the situation was even worse.

She was bullied every day. Everyone would avoid her except her best friend, Denise. Denise was always by her side. She always knew what to say. Like whenever Sam’s gang would come, she would always know how to tell them to back off. Like when they came and pushed Lilah’s lunch out of her hands, Denise stood up for her.

“Back off and pick on someone your own size, like me,” said Denise, flaring up. She was 183cm and taller and stronger than anyone in the school. To Denise, Sam was a little wimp. Sam just scowled and ran away, not wanting to get beaten into a pulp. Denise split her lunch in two and gave the other half to Lilah. Denise was a great friend. She always would come to Lilah’s races and cheer her on.

Josie | Inverloch Primary School

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