Author Topic:  [Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)  (Read 615 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

172 Posts 30
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« on: July 19, 2020, 08:40:06 AM »
After a flawless technical program Aglaya Tikhomirova was rather pleased with herself. She felt she did not need to watch her sister perform. She would be in first place after this segment no matter if Anastasiya got through her exercise flawlessly as usual and this realisation put a satisfied smile on her face. She hoped that her parents, her grandfather and Aleksandra would realise that they had made a mistake telling her to end her career. She still had it all in her own hands. If she performed cleanly she could win and nobody could do anything about it.

Now she was even competing without a coach at her side. It was definitely more difficult that way, she had to figure out everything at the venues of the competitions by herself, had to deal with all the formalities, had to figure out the perfect schedule, and had no one who'd give her some last minute advice or some words of encouragement. Thinking of that ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ the last time that anyone had actually told her anything encouraging had been quite a while ago. Sometimes it still irked her. She was determined not to let her family make decisions for her career again. She'd act as a representative of the school because the school was fantastic, but she wanted to decide when she'd end her career and not get manipulated into performing easier programs just to give her little sister to shine.

As she went backstage, leaving the noise of the stadium behind, Aglaya shouldered her broom and was glad that for once there was no crowd to deal with. At some events the backstage area was rather limited and that meant that one had to choose between being backstage with a lot of competitors or facing the fans outside of that area. Here it was actually pleasantly handled. The athletes had a warm up area at one side and after competing they got off at the other side. There was a long, mostly deserted corridor with a few chairs standing by the wall which led back to the changing room.

As she walked down that corridor, she felt quite positive that she'd win her fifth European title the next day. She tried not to think about what could happen to prevent this. When she did that though, her free program from the world championships in 2000 immediately came to her mind and that memory still made her feel uncomfortable to say the least. However, she was in perfect shape now, the weather forecast had not mentioned any rain and the program that she'd be performing for the first time was bound to earn her an excellent C-mark. Truth be told, she had held the program back so far because she wanted to surprise everyone at a major event but now she felt already a little sad. Her new free program was breathtaking or so she thought at least. Showing it just once in competition felt wrong now. Maybe, if it was as successful as she expected, she'd keep it at least for the minor events of the upcoming season.

These thoughts on her mind, Aglaya almost didn't see one of her distant cousins sitting on a chair. The junior athlete was all alone and looked quite upset. For a moment Aglaya thought that if Zinaida did not look up at her she could just walk past her and pretend that she had not noticed her at all.?á However, she knew the struggles all too well or thought so at least. After all, Aglaya's career had started off with her domineering the then small junior field.

?óÔé¼?ôZinochka,?óÔé¼?Ø she said, stopping in front of the girl. ?óÔé¼?ôAre you alright? Why are you here all by yourself??óÔé¼?Ø She sat down next to her and patted her gently on the back. ?óÔé¼?ôDo you want to talk about it??óÔé¼?Ø;u=25801' rel='nofollow noopener' target='_blank'>@Zinaida Shishkina

Zinaida Shishkina
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2020, 03:49:34 PM »
A day had passed since she had fallen twice in her free program and lost her lead, leaving Zina without a medal, and the intensity of her disappointment was just as strong as the moment her scores had been read out. She hadn't wanted to go to the arena just to watch the seniors at all, but her parents insisted. Zinaida took advantage of her competitor's pass to take refuge in the corridor backstage, away from the crowds and away from artistic flying. Luckily the corridor was basically abandoned, and in the half hour that she'd been sat there, only two or three people had passed by. Zina didn't dare look up, she didn't want to talk with her emotions pressing down on her so strongly. She felt tense everywhere, and she was sat awkwardly, bruised from the two falls.

Zinaida was the odd one out. Her siblings were all so talented, and they had all won a competition, while she had not. It was always a touchy subject for her, but it was now really getting her down. Her parents spent the previous evening and the entirety of breakfast that morning praising Zhenya, and encouraging Ruslan. What did Zina get? A plea to try harder next time. As if she hadn't already been trying her hardest... She had barely touched breakfast, having been replaying her two falls again and again. Was her scorpion not as she good as she thought it was? And then there was the trophy that Zhenya had given her. It still didn't sit right with her, especially since she hadn't had the chance to talk to Zhenya and ask her about it yet. The figure of the girl in a needle position had been staring at her from the moment she woke up.

That conversation outside the changing rooms the day before with Ruslan and Zhenya was bothering her too. She had asked him if he was looking forward to competing, and he had replied with such zeal, that he loved everyone watching him. Even Zhenya's more subdued reply suggested she enjoyed competing, in Zina's eyes. But Zinaida hated it. She hated everything about it, especially all the people looking at her. It was making her question whether she was dedicated enough to continue competing. She loved artistic flying though, that she was certain of. It was her life, she wasn't Zinaida without it. It was just she got so nervous that it was debilitating.

A figure suddenly was in front of her that called her name, and Zina startled as she squeaked in shock. Looking up, she saw her distant cousin, the amazing senior champion. She wished she could be half as good as Aglaya was. "Oh... hi." Zina shifted uncomfortably, wincing as she put pressure on her bruise before the other witch sat down beside her. She felt Aglaya's comforting pat on her back and soon she wasn't as alright as she thought she was. Aglaya asked if she wanted to talk, and Zina vigorously shook her head. "No." She firmly stated, as she took in a shaky breath. "I'm sorry I didn't watch you... but I'm sure you were amazing, as u...usual." Her chin wobbled and her voice cracked as Zina desperately tried not to cry for the umpteenth time that day. Everyone was great. Except for her.

"I was in first place and then I didn't get a medal at all, because it went wrong, it always goes wrong!" She cried out rapidly. Okay, so she was talking after all. "Why can I never perform like I do in practice?" She sniffed, and wiped her eyes. "How do you not get scared with all those people watching you?" She asked, looking up at Aglaya with watery eyes.

172 Posts 30
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2020, 06:47:44 AM »
"Hmm," Aglaya said as Zina shook her head at her question if she wanted to talk. She had a feeling that this wasn't quite true. By the looks of it the girl was going through some sort of emotional crisis. And, given the results of the girls' competition from the day before, she assumed that it had to do something with Zina's free program. Even if Aglaya had won multiple championships she also knew how it was to lose. It was not like she had done so frequently but in her opinion it was even worse when one was used to winning everything. Veronika had clearly felt the same when she had lost to Aglaya after being dominant in the sport for many years and Aglaya knew the feeling from the nationals she had lost to her sister. Admittedly her loss had been decorated with a silver medal but it had still felt pretty upsetting.

Zina apologised that she hadn't watched Aglaya's performance but the older witch didn't really mind that. Of course, it was always nice to know that the younger athletes of the school followed her career closely but she felt that the most exciting part of a competition was the free program anyway and Zina still had a chance to see that if she wanted to. There had been a time when Aglaya had watched her competitors more, had also been there for the junior (or senior during the time she had been a junior athlete herself) and men's events but nowadays the redhead was mostly focused on herself.

"Thanks," Aglaya said anyway. "I did indeed well today," she admitted with a smile. It was not the moment to expand on that now. Besides, the competition wasn't over yet. No matter how confident she felt that she'd win in the end, anything could happen. She had, after all, still lost to Nastya at the world championships in V?â?ñxj?â?Â. Admittedly that had been because of her accident in the free program but it had still cost her the title.

The girl next to her looked like an emotional mess right now and Aglaya carefully pulled her into something like a half hug. "Shhh," she said softly. "don't cry." She didn't really have an idea what she could possibly say to make the girl feel any better. The multiple champion in artistic flying just wasn't good at dealing with people. She tried to think about what she would have liked to hear in a comparable situation and what she had been told when she had felt down like that. It seemed to her that these two approaches were actually quite different and not exactly compatible.

"I mostly just focus on myself," Aglaya admitted. "We all mess up a program every once in a while. It happens." She paused, trying to think of an event that could serve as a good example. "Did you see last year's senior nationals?" she then asked. "I was in fifth place after the technical exercise. Totally blew it there. I mean, that wasn't even an international competition and I had such a low placement. I tried to look ahead after that and managed a flawless free program. There's always a next program to perform and you need to find a way to use your disappointment with your performance as a reason to try harder next time." She looked at Zina with a compassionate little smile on her face. "I know this is easy to say. However, you need to think of your next performance rather than keep replaying your mistakes in your head. That's what you've been doing, haven't you?" Aglaya still did that occasionally but she always tried to keep this to a minimum and focus on future performances instead. There was no way to change the past but the future could still be decided.

"As for the people watching... If that's really what you struggle with try to imagine an empty arena. However, I find that the crowd can also be encouraging. You can draw energy from the support of the fans." She smiled again, thinking of the standing ovations that she had received.

Zinaida Shishkina
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2020, 07:19:00 AM »
Aglaya didn?óÔé¼Ôäót sound convinced that everything was fine in Zina?óÔé¼Ôäós World. That was exactly Zinaida?óÔé¼Ôäós problem in a nutshell. No matter how hard she tried she just couldn?óÔé¼Ôäót hide her feelings, couldn?óÔé¼Ôäót control them or suppress them. They just flowed out of her like a river of emotions. It was, at least, nice and semi-comforting to hear that Aglaya did well, Zina liked it when her family continued being successful, even when she wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót.

Her idol pulled her into a half hug, quietly shushing her and then Zinaida completely lost it. Aglaya was being so nice, and Zina didn?óÔé¼Ôäót really feel like she deserved it. She let the tears roll down her face as she hid her face behind her hands. She was so disappointed in herself yet again.

?óÔé¼?ôYeah, everyone messes up once in a while.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina nodded, before turning her face away and biting the inside of her cheek. ?óÔé¼?ôBut I mess up every single time.?óÔé¼?Ø It wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót even an exaggeration, Aglaya only needed to look at her results to see that. Not one competition had gone well for Zina.

The senior artistic flyer mentioned her previous nationals and Zina smiled. ?óÔé¼?ôThat free program was incredible.?óÔé¼?Ø She gushed, wringing her hands together. ?óÔé¼?ôI have no idea how you weren?óÔé¼Ôäót nervous for that. You looked so?óÔé¼?ª so confident, as if you were winning the whole time.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina was envious of that ability sometimes. She felt being too confident would be a bad thing too, that being convinced one was better than everyone else would make one blind to the talent snapping at their heels until it was too late. But enough confidence to perform how she wanted to would have been really nice.

?óÔé¼?ôI want to. I try hard, I really do.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina began, not wishing to hear ?óÔé¼?£do better, Zina?óÔé¼Ôäó again, just like her coach and her family did. ?óÔé¼?ôAll the people stare at me, and I know I?óÔé¼Ôäóm not as good as everyone else.?óÔé¼?Ø She shrugged sadly, wiping her eyes again. ?óÔé¼?ôI just feel like they all judge me for not being as talented as the rest of my family.?óÔé¼?Ø When Aglaya mentioned that she needed to stop replaying her mistakes in her mind, Zina?óÔé¼Ôäós mouth fell open and she looked up at her relative with eyebrows raised. ?óÔé¼?ôHow did you know??óÔé¼?Ø She asked, ?óÔé¼?ôDid you do that too before you were amazing and won everything??óÔé¼?Ø

Performing to an empty arena sounded great. If she could make it be just her and her broomstick and nothing else but the music, like how it was when she trained at Durmstrang, that would be amazing. Zina genuinely enjoyed training, loved it more than anything in the World. ?óÔé¼?ôBut how do you just pretend people aren?óÔé¼Ôäót there? They make so much noise and they stare at you.?óÔé¼?Ø Zinaida asked. Aglaya made it sound so simple, but Zina thought that tuning everyone out would be the most difficult thing in the World. And the alternative that she offered was scary. The crowd just made her anxious, Zina didn?óÔé¼Ôäót think it was possible they could help in any way. ?óÔé¼?ôI?óÔé¼Ôäód much rather it was just me and the judges and no one else.?óÔé¼?Ø Zinaida said with a frown. ?óÔé¼?ôNot even Aleksandra Viktorovna. Or my family...?óÔé¼?Ø She felt bad for saying it, but they put so much pressure on her without even realising it. Zina felt that she had to live up to some crazy standard whenever they watched her.

172 Posts 30
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2020, 04:39:22 AM »
?óÔé¼?ôYou are still at the beginning of your career,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said, unsure if that actually made anything better or not. ?óÔé¼?ôYou'll get there.?óÔé¼?Ø It was hard to have a conversation like this. She really wanted to help her younger relative but, truth be told, the multiple-time champion had no idea how to deal with emotions unless she was on her broom, performing a free program. Off her broom she kept all emotions bottled up and it usually worked just fine for her. She could use all these pent up feelings in her performances making her expressive and emotional when it was most needed.

Aglaya smiled as Zina complimented her on her free program from last year's nationals. She remembered quite well how it had been when she felt that she was actually going to win the free program then. She had been confident and happy. However, while it would be easy to tell Zina about the triumphant feeling she had had back then, she realised that this was probably not all that helpful now.

?óÔé¼?ôYou are better than you think you are,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said quietly. It was the truth. Zinaida was an extremely talented young artistic flyer and the experienced athlete thought that her main problem really was the lack of confidence. She gave her another half hug, feeling somewhat awkward doing so. She was aware that others liked this kind of gesture even if to her it just felt odd most of the time.

?óÔé¼?ôWhy do you think that you are not as good as everyone else? That simply is not true. Maybe this time your free program wasn't good enough. So what? Try to forget about it. If you really believe that others judge you, do prove them wrong. You can certainly do it. Focus on what makes you feel strong.?óÔé¼?Ø

Aglaya laughed softly as the girl asked her if she used to replay her mistakes in her head too before she was amazing and won everything. She was actually tempted to tell the girl that she had always been amazing and won more or less everything but she realised that it was probably better to keep this to herself. If, instead of Zina, she had been?á talking to Nastya then she'd have said it, just to provoke her sister a little. However, with Zinaida this didn't feel like a good plan. ?óÔé¼?ôEverybody does that at some point,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said, ?óÔé¼?ôand, to be honest, we need to analyse our mistakes to try and rule out making the same mistake again. However, it doesn't do well to go through that over and over again. It won't change that the mistakes happened and it won't give you confidence for your next performance either.?óÔé¼?Ø

Zina's insecurity was hard to relate to for Aglaya. At Zina's age she had been the outstanding junior athlete and nobody had doubted her. A competitor had even poured a sleeping potion into her drink to stop her from winning because otherwise she couldn't have been stopped. However, the reigning champion knew that the times had changed. There were a lot more competitors now than there had been in her junior days.

?óÔé¼?ôWell, of course the audience is there,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said, thinking that she would not be quite as good without spectators present. Their immediate reaction during her performance made her stronger. ?óÔé¼?ôIf they intimidate you just focus on yourself, your broom, and, in the free program, on your music. I know you are an expressive artistic flyer. You have a lot of potential. Allow yourself to show it to the world. You'll find that the audience will love you and then you'll enjoy competing in front of a crowd as well.?óÔé¼?Ø

Zinaida Shishkina
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2020, 03:39:00 PM »
?óÔé¼?ôBut when??óÔé¼?Ø Zina blurted out, getting impatient with herself. Aglaya meant well, Zinaida was sure of this and genuinely was trying to be kind to her, but they all felt like just empty words to the unlucky witch. ?óÔé¼?ôRodya has won, Zhenya has won, even Rusya has won?óÔé¼?ª When is my turn??óÔé¼?Ø Her voice grew more strangled and quiet as she curled into herself a little tighter. Had her younger brother not won competitions, Zina might have placated, and believed that she would win with more experience, but with even her youngest sibling outshining her, Zina couldn?óÔé¼Ôäót help but feel inferior to the rest of her family.

The junior athlete?óÔé¼Ôäós head snapped up towards her role model and gazed at Aglaya as if she had suddenly grown three heads. The compliment felt unearned, but Zinaida knew that her relative was not one for mincing her words and did not give praise where it was undeserved, which meant that Aglaya genuinely believed what she said. Zina?óÔé¼Ôäós mouth opened and closed as she tried to process this information. Her eyes shed a few tears and Zina quickly wiped them away as she smiled shyly. ?óÔé¼?ôOh?óÔé¼?ª thank you.?óÔé¼?Ø She eventually replied, as Aglaya pulled her into another half hug, which Zinaida appreciated immensely as she squeezed the other witch in return. ?óÔé¼?ôThat?óÔé¼Ôäós really sweet of you to say so.?óÔé¼?Ø

Aglaya asked her why she didn?óÔé¼Ôäót believe she was as good as the rest of her family and Zina hung her head low to avoid eye contact as she shrugged and hugged her knees. She had no clue what to say back. Part of her still felt that the senior artistic flyer was just saying to make her feel better but didn?óÔé¼Ôäót actually mean it, even though she could tell from Aglaya?óÔé¼Ôäós tone that she was being truthful. ?óÔé¼?ôI?óÔé¼?ª I?óÔé¼Ôäóm just not.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina provided weakly, tucking a strand of hair behind her ear. ?óÔé¼?ôI mess up on really silly things and I always lose.?óÔé¼?Ø The reigning World champion told her to forget her free program, and Zina puffed air out her nose, tossing her head slightly with a half-smile. That was easy for Aglaya to say, she was a champion, and talented. The Durmstrang student glanced sideways at Aglaya as she pondered what she was saying. ?óÔé¼?ôMakes me feel strong??óÔé¼?Ø She echoed, brows furrowing deeply as she tapped her finger and thumb together. What made her feel strong? Zina shook her head a little, feeling like she wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót quite grasping the concept properly. ?óÔé¼?ôLike?óÔé¼?ª when I can really express myself to the music? I like doing that.?óÔé¼?Ø

?óÔé¼?ôOh?óÔé¼?ª?óÔé¼?Ø Zina smiled a little as Aglaya told her everyone replayed their mistakes in their head at some point. She released her knees from her hold on them and uncurled herself as she placed her feet on the ground again. This knowledge comforted her somehow, that she could relate to her idol even just a little bit. ?óÔé¼?ôI guess that is true, but I can?óÔé¼Ôäót get it out of my mind even when I don?óÔé¼Ôäót want to think about it. It just kind of creeps up on me and then I get stuck in the loop again.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina frowned, wondering if her relative was going to judge her.

Zinaida nodded as the older athlete talked about the audience, trying to absorb all the advice she was being given. She felt a blush rising up through her cheeks as Aglaya kindly complimented her and said probably the nicest thing she?óÔé¼Ôäód ever heard about herself. ?óÔé¼?ôThank you,?óÔé¼?Ø Zina chirped in response to the praise. ?óÔé¼?ôI like moving to the music, I feel kind of?óÔé¼?ª free? At least, in practice. Sounds silly, I know.?óÔé¼?Ø She shook her head a little, feeling that Aglaya would laugh at her for such nonsense. ?óÔé¼?ôI barely hear the music in competition though, all I can hear is my heart in my head. I want to share my feelings with everyone though. I just?óÔé¼?ª?óÔé¼?Ø She paused, glancing up to make eye contact with Aglaya as she tucked her hair behind her ears. ?óÔé¼?ôI want to make history. Like you, and Nastya! I?óÔé¼Ôäód like to be remembered for my contribution?óÔé¼?ª but I haven?óÔé¼Ôäót really contributed anything yet.?óÔé¼?Ø

172 Posts 30
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2020, 02:03:41 PM »
?óÔé¼?ôIt'll be your turn quite soon, I'm sure,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said, wondering what Nastya would tell the girl. Her sister was so much better at social interactions. When Aglaya had to deal with other people and their emotions and problems she usually wondered how others would act if they were in the situation. For her other people's feelings were generally quite a mystery.

?óÔé¼?ôYou'll have to believe in yourself. Once you see yourself as a winner you'll get your gold medals as well. The most important thing is talent ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ of which you have plenty ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ and, of course, you need to train hard to perfect your skills, but your attitude matters as well. If you believe in yourself you will perform better and if you show confidence, everyone will see it and you'll get the marks you deserve.?óÔé¼?Ø

While a conversation about the sport seemed easy enough, Aglaya found it still pretty hard. She tried her best to comfort the little witch next to her even if she wasn't sure if she was making things better or worse with what she said. How should she know what to say to actually help Zinaida anyway?

?óÔé¼?ôYou mess up silly things because you don't believe in yourself,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said calmly, feeling like she was repeating herself. ?óÔé¼?ôDo not think about all the things that might go wrong. Try to enjoy your performance. It's what you work for throughout year. The performances at competitions are like the reward for tiring hours of practice with a coach yelling at you.?óÔé¼?Ø She tried to make the last sentence sound humorous and smiled at Zina. Aglaya loved performing in competitions, she was usually even better then than she was in training. She enjoyed the adrenaline kick she got there. However, she also liked her training when she got a chance to develop new programs and figure out new technical highlights.

?óÔé¼?ôTry to focus on your music in the free program then,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said, grateful that Zina offered something that made her feel strong. ?óÔé¼?ôYou are a really good performer and even if some technical elements go wrong you can always rely on your expressiveness.?óÔé¼?Ø Well, Aglaya knew she could always do that anyway, having received perfect marks for the C-mark more than once.

The conversation was getting straining and Aglaya wished that she could leave already. Zina was a nice girl and part of the family but the older athlete wasn't used to the role she had in this conversation. ?óÔé¼?ôThe secret is to focus on something else. The best is usually to look ahead rather than back. You can still influence the future but you cannot change the past.?óÔé¼?Ø

Aglaya tried to keep a kind expression on her face when Zina told her about enjoying to perform to music but being nervous to even hear it during a competition. Truth be told, the multiple-time champion had no idea how to respond to that. She was sometimes nervous as well, but she did not feel the way Zina described her feelings.

When the junior athlete said that she wanted to make history just like Aglaya and her sister had, the redhead was slightly amused but tried not to let it show. Nastya was admittedly the only rival that could actually challenge her but according to Aglaya her younger sibling still had to make history. Having one senior world title and two national titles were hardly enough to say that she had made history in her opinion. Besides, while her sister was very strong technically and her split jumps were incredible they were nothing entirely new, nothing others didn't do (even if maybe not quite as well). Maybe Zina was talking about Nastya's junior days though, when she had been dominant for the lack of a proper rival.

Instead of voicing any of these thoughts, Aglaya decided to smile at Zina. ?óÔé¼?ôYour time to contribute to the sport and make history will come. Just keep the hard work up and try to enjoy yourself when you are performing in competitions, then things will work out for you.?óÔé¼?Ø

Zinaida Shishkina
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2020, 11:30:20 AM »
Zinaida smiled demurely, as Aglaya said she?óÔé¼Ôäód have her turn to win soon. She wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót entirely sure what to do or say in response, as the younger witch didn?óÔé¼Ôäót really believe a word her distant cousin was saying. It was very kind of her role model to say such a thing though.

The junior artistic flyer?óÔé¼Ôäós eyebrows furrowed slightly as she was told to believe in herself. She didn?óÔé¼Ôäót really know how to do that. How could she believe in herself when she wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót talented? How could she believe in an ability that wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót there? If she was as skilled as Aglaya, then Zina was sure that she could be the most confident person ever, just like the champion beside her, but she wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót. ?óÔé¼?ôHow can I see myself as a winner when all I do is lose??óÔé¼?Ø Zina asked in desperation, wondering if she was just making Aglaya angry now. The senior artistic flyer said she had plenty of talent, but that couldn?óÔé¼Ôäót possibly be true. Zina thought that she did train hard, but maybe she really did have to train harder, work for longer and forget everything else. Perhaps, she?óÔé¼Ôäód have to try perfecting even more difficult elements. ?óÔé¼?ôSo?óÔé¼?ª I have to look confident even if I?óÔé¼Ôäóm not??óÔé¼?Ø Zina?óÔé¼Ôäós brow furrowed again, confused that she was supposed to act even before she stepped on the little platform on her broom.

Aglaya?óÔé¼Ôäós words were making the Durmstrang student conflicted on how to feel. She was still upset and disappointed with herself, and it felt like the older witch was lying to her face?óÔé¼?ª but at the same time, the praise was boosting her mood a little, though she was embarrassed by the attention.

Zina stammered as she tried to reply to the champion. She really didn?óÔé¼Ôäót want to disappoint Aglaya, not like she disappointed literally everyone else. ?óÔé¼?ôI?óÔé¼Ôäóll try my best to work on it.?óÔé¼?Ø She eventually answered, timidly. Zina looked up to Aglaya more than anyone else in the World (except for Zhenya, of course) and even if she didn?óÔé¼Ôäót believe that what Aglaya was saying was right, she was going to work hard to make her role model proud.

She nodded slowly in resignation, she knew it was her fault that she was always messing things up. Zinaida wished there could be something else to blame though. Zina raised her eyebrows up as her head tilted to the side. She wondered how Aglaya could say all these things so easily when she found the very thought of them impossible. It was really hard to not think about things going wrong, when she had a whole selection of mistakes in previous competitions to look back on. Zina wanted to try to enjoy her performances, she really did. But she hated them, so much. Zinaida never saw any other athlete puking into a bucket that their coach had to hold before they competed, just her. It was so stupid. Aglaya said that her performance was the reward and the younger witch turned towards her elder with wide eyes. It was certainly a new perspective that she?óÔé¼Ôäód never heard before and she liked the idea of it. Zina gave a watery laugh as Aglaya mentioned their coaches yelling at them. Aglaya was funny. Nice, too. Zinaida believed that she didn?óÔé¼Ôäót really deserve all this attention.

Focussing on just the music was a definitive goal and she could totally work on that. She could even work on that off of her broom by doing dance practice, just turning on the music and tuning everything else out. It could work, in theory. Zina violently blushed as Aglaya called her a good performer, and she raised her hands to cover her cheeks. ?óÔé¼?ôThank you!?óÔé¼?Ø She beamed, thinking that Aglaya really was so sweet. She hadn?óÔé¼Ôäót thought of relying on her expressiveness as a performer before. She supposed it was possible that one?óÔé¼Ôäós C mark could be so strong that it would beat a witch who was a technically stronger flyer. In fact, Zinaida immediately thought of the rivalry between the champion in front of her and Aglaya?óÔé¼Ôäós own sister, Nastya, who was technically basically invincible, or at least that?óÔé¼Ôäós how it seemed to Zina.

She couldn?óÔé¼Ôäót change the past, but she could change the future. ?óÔé¼?ôGood point.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina muttered, as she nodded her head slowly, calming down a bit. She avoided eye contact with Aglaya, as she suddenly hoped that she wasn?óÔé¼Ôäót irritating Aglaya or troubling her unnecessarily.

Aglaya?óÔé¼Ôäós smile comforted her immensely and instantly drew out a smile back. The senior artistic flyer seemed to believe in her, and Zina raised her head higher and sat up a little straighter, the smile growing a little brighter. She could make history too. Zinaida gazed at her distant cousin for a beat longer than necessary as she realised that Aglaya only pulled off a back flip when she was a senior. Maybe?óÔé¼?ª just maybe Zina could try and do it in a junior competition? That would certainly make history! Zinaida felt sure that if she was exactly like Aglaya, then she?óÔé¼Ôäód win everything for sure.

?óÔé¼?ôThank you, Aglaya Antonovna. Truly.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina said sincerely, as she breathed out the rest of her negative feelings (temporarily). ?óÔé¼?ôIt was really nice of you to talk to me?óÔé¼?ª I know you probably have more important things to do. I really appreciate it!?óÔé¼?Ø Zina smiled brightly, showing her teeth properly for the first time in the conversation. ?óÔé¼?ôYou?óÔé¼Ôäód be an amazing coach one day, you know? Any student would be lucky to have you on their side.?óÔé¼?Ø

172 Posts 30
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2020, 10:37:07 AM »
?óÔé¼?ôYour placements are not everything,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said quietly. ?óÔé¼?ôBesides, you do not always lose, you won the technical exercise. You do have a lot more potential than you realise. How old are you now? Fourteen? Fifteen? Zinochka, of course there are artistic flyers who already won medals at this age but most only get there later. I mean, wasn't it the first international title for your elder sister now, too??óÔé¼?Ø

She nodded as Zina asked about having to look confident. ?óÔé¼?ôYes, of course. Besides if you pretend to be confident you'll soon feel more confident as well. A lot of this really is a question of the right attitude. You can work on this.?óÔé¼?Ø

While Aglaya really hoped to make her younger relative feel better about herself and wanted to help, the conversation was getting a little too straining for her. She wasn't used to someone else being in the centre of a conversation for so long. It was not like her to boost other people's confidence. Usually other people praised her and by now it did not even feel so great any more. She was used to it. Being the outstanding athlete in artistic flying for many years now, the young woman felt like this was just how it ought to be.

Briefly she wondered if one day, in the hopefully far future, Zinaida would take her place in the sport. She didn't think it was impossible. She liked how the girl performed, could totally see her developing into a future star of the sport they both loved so much if, and only if, she got over this fear of competing in front of a crowd.

As she noticed that Zina sat up straighter and managed a genuine smile, the older witch felt that her work here was done. She had tried her best to comfort the junior artistic flyer. Now she could only hope that her time hadn't been spent in vain and that Zinaida actually took her advice to heart.

?óÔé¼?ôYou're welcome,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said and really meant it despite the fact that she was relieved that the conversation was coming to an end. ?óÔé¼?ôYou looked like you really needed to talk,?óÔé¼?Ø she shrugged and offered another slight smile. ?óÔé¼?ôI'm glad if I could help you at least a little.?óÔé¼?Ø

Zinaida thought that she'd be an amazing coach one day? Aglaya was surprised to hear her say so. She had, of course, sometimes wondered what she could do when her active career came to an end and had considered coaching, but nobody had told her before that they thought that she'd be a good coach and Aglaya herself had dismissed the thought rather quickly herself, feeling like she was not made to help others get into the spotlight.

?óÔé¼?ôThank you,?óÔé¼?Ø she said anyway, looking slightly surprised all the same. ?óÔé¼?ôI'm not sure if that's the way for me to go, but we shall see in a few years...?óÔé¼?Ø her voice trailed off and she put on a professional smile, not wanting to let her distant cousin see just how scared she was of her future.

?óÔé¼?ôI have to go now,?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said, looking at Zina again. She really just wanted to get out of the situation before the junior artistic flyer would say any more about the time after her active career. ?óÔé¼?ôYou are okay?!?óÔé¼?Ø She got to her feet and picked up her things. ?óÔé¼?ôI'll see you later.?óÔé¼?Ø She offered another small smile and left the girl behind, thinking that she wouldn't try and cheer anyone up again so soon.


Zinaida Shishkina
[Leknes, Norway] O Fortuna (Zina)
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2020, 04:03:53 PM »
Zinaida?óÔé¼Ôäós eyebrows shot up as Aglaya suggested that placement was not everything. The junior artistic flyer couldn?óÔé¼Ôäót understand how that could possibly be true. What was the point of competing if she didn?óÔé¼Ôäót win? However the senior athlete made a good point that even she could not deny. She did win the technical exercise, after all. Though, if she was perfectly honest, Zina didn?óÔé¼Ôäót feel like she deserved it. Aglaya kept mentioning her potential and Zina wondered how long it would be until she unlocked her so-called potential. She just felt stuck. ?óÔé¼?ôI?óÔé¼Ôäóm fourteen!?óÔé¼?Ø Zina clarified, as Aglaya tried to convince her that it was okay to have not won things yet. That most artistic flyers won their medals later was a fact that Zina didn?óÔé¼Ôäót want to admit was true, mainly because she was comparing herself to Aglaya and Anastasiya. ?óÔé¼?ôYes?óÔé¼?ª I hadn?óÔé¼Ôäót seen it like that. I suppose it is Zhenya?óÔé¼Ôäós first major win. Maybe, I can win like her in two years' time??óÔé¼?Ø

So, she had to be confident without being confident. Zina nodded as if that made perfect sense to her, which it really didn?óÔé¼Ôäót at all. However, she could be resourceful; read books on it, talk to friends who liked theatrics and see if they had any tips or tricks. She could definitely work on her attitude. Zina was determined to work really hard on it and be patient so that she could show off her improvements at the end of next season. ?óÔé¼?ôOkay. I?óÔé¼Ôäóll do my best.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina said resolutely.

She really was grateful for Aglaya?óÔé¼Ôäós help and felt rather honoured that the older witch was even talking to her. It had cheered her up immensely, and the lost mojo for training and working hard was quickly returning to her. She was determined that she was going to win one day, and she wouldn?óÔé¼Ôäót give up until she?óÔé¼Ôäód seen that become a reality. Zina was so glad Aglaya had come along and bothered to talk to her. ?óÔé¼?ôThank you.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina smiled at the senior champion. ?óÔé¼?ôSo very much. I really needed some encouragement. You?óÔé¼Ôäóre really wonderful, Aglaya Antonovna. I promise to work really hard on your advice and not let you down.?óÔé¼?Ø Zina pledged, leaning across to give her role-model a proper hug in thanks.

?óÔé¼?ôYou?óÔé¼Ôäóre welcome. If you do decide to coach?óÔé¼?ª let me know.?óÔé¼?Ø Zinaida smiled brightly. ?óÔé¼?ôI?óÔé¼Ôäód love to be your first official student.?óÔé¼?Ø Aglaya said she had to go and Zina nodded in response. She also should have been elsewhere. There were the rest of the competitors to watch and she?óÔé¼Ôäód need to find her family, who were no doubt looking for her. ?óÔé¼?ôYes. I?óÔé¼Ôäóm fine now, thank you!?óÔé¼?Ø Zina half-laughed as Aglaya asked if she was alright. ?óÔé¼?ôSee you soon, and good luck for tomorrow!?óÔé¼?Ø Zina called out, before taking a few moments to herself to just sit there, smile, and take all of the advice in. Soon, she stood up and ran off to tell her youngest brother all about what Aglaya had told her.



    SimplePortal 2.3.7 © 2008-2024, SimplePortal