'Tis said of love that it sometimes goes, sometimes flies; runs with one, walks gravely with another; turns a third into ice, and sets a fourth in a flame: it wounds one, another it kills: like lightning it begins and ends in the same moment: it makes that fort yield at night which it besieged but in the morning; for there is no force able to resist it.
--Miguel de Cervantes
It's not hard to see the outward appeal of the Olympic Games: watching the fittest and most-accomplished athletes in the world compete---generally with fairly skimpy uniforms. Voyeurism aside, there's nothing sexier than a beautiful body running, jumping, swimming, rowing, and a couple dozen other activities. Who wouldn't take the chance to enjoy the spectacle?
But the Olympics are more than just a chance to watch athletes at the peak of physical perfection. Every competitor at the Games has a story behind why they run or jump or swim, and why they compete. How they got to the Games, and what they sacrificed along the way to make the cut. To spectators, they may perform superhuman feats, but each and every one is human in the same way we all are.
In this collection of stories, you'll find there's a lot more to competing at Olympic level than being the best in one's field. Expectations and pressures from family, friends, coaches and country add up, and sometimes it's only the love of the right man who can make the effort worth it. And sometimes, love is more important than going for gold. Stories include: Hot Shots by Michael P. Thomas, Into the Deep by Nico Jaye, The Quad by Kelly Rand, Lightning in a Bottle by Sarah Madison, Swimming the Distance by Annabeth Albert, Shooting for Gold by Whitley Gray, Olympic Goal by K-lee Klein, Tumbling Dreams by Kaje Harper.
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