Stalemate

Reflect on a significant risk you have taken or an ethical dilemma you have faced. What action did you take and how did it change you?


“Click.”

The sharp, decisive sound of the chess clock suddenly snapped me out of my concentration. My opponent had made his move.

Deadlock — At that moment, it wasn’t just about victory; my faith and integrity were challenged. Winning meant betraying my honesty, losing meant accepting ultimate defeat for our team.

“We have to win this round in order to place in the tournament! Trevor Browne High School should be an easy victory for us.” Our coach’s words echoed in my mind as we started our third round in the state chess tournament. Despite the high stakes of this round, I underestimated my opponent and ended up miscalculating a sacrifice, which completely turned the game around. The confidence I had earlier was slowly replaced by a mounting sense of dread, and with it, came the pressure of my coach’s words. Out of the corner of my eye, I could sense how tense my teammates were-their desperate stares were all the more imminent.

Half the team had won, half the team had lost. It was entirely up to me to save the team from the defeat. Amidst all the anticipation, a preposterous thought crossed my mind-do I cheat with a chess computer?
Victory would easily be ensured.

I consider myself to be an honest person and pride myself on my...

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