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At the beginning of Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy, Willis and Turner are not friends. When Willis invites Turner to play softball, Willis is not used to how the ball is pitched. He is simply humiliated by his attempts to hit a ball which he has no idea how to hit.
Even after his humiliation at softball, Tuner accepts an invitation to go swimming. Given that the only way to swim is to jump off of forty foot cliffs, Tuner refuses and is again rejected and scrutinized.
Later in the text, Willis again attempts to play softball (in the last game of the season. As Willis begins to throw pitches, Turner is able to hit all of the balls this time (even though they go foul). As the last pitch to Turner is thrown over the plate, Turner allows the ball to pass (without swinging and strikes out). This stand showed Willis two things: that Turner could hit any of the pitches he wanted and that Turner had guts. After this, Willis had a great respect for him. Their friendship was inevitable.
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