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Respectable Distance by skittery
Chapter 15: Piper loves practice
What a tosser. Honestly. Stomping grumpily down the corridor, Oliver yawned and ran a hand through his hair. After the previous evenings ‘study session’ and the subsequent hour long lecture from Percy, Oliver hadn’t slept much and the morning’s Quidditch practice came much too soon. Scuffing his trainers through the snow, he snorted thinking about Percy’s lecture. The cheeky bugger had accosted Oliver before he could fall exhaustedly into bed and had the audacity to give him the ‘lay off my sister’ talk. Well, it was more of a ‘hands off my cousin’ talk.
Did Percy think he was an idiot? PJ’s brothers, father, grandfather, and House Elf gave him the same lecture. Needless to say; Oliver got it. Like I would really put my future and career on the line for some girl, he thought darkly.
Admittedly, Oliver mused, Piper James wasn’t just some girl. She was fun, smart, witty, motivated, powerful, beautiful...Perfect. The perfect girl.
Piper Prewett? Thinking back on the little he knew about Piper before the holidays, he grimaced. At school, Piper was completely different. She was quiet, studious, serious... kind of a right prissy cow, actually. Someone Oliver had never and would never bother with.
Stepping up to the edge of the bleachers, Oliver’s attention was drawn to the lithe figure lackadaisically dipping and rolling around the pitch, high above the ground.
Curly red hair ruffling in the breeze, Piper straightened out and headed toward the far Post. Oliver rubbed his eyes wearily; not really believing someone was flying around at four forty in the morning. His tired brown eyes followed Piper’s journey to the Post and he jogged a little closer, hopping on his broom in case she did anything rash.
Keeping his eyes glued to PJ, Oliver inched slowly closer, not wanting to make her fall off her perch.
By now Piper had reclined in one of the smaller hoops. Legs crossed at the ankles, hands behind her head, eyes closed; looking completely content. Without a care in the world.
Should I help her down? What if she falls? Although, after spending a week with her and seeing what she’s like, I highly doubt she’s going to fall from up there. Oliver groaned quietly. Bloody manners. If mum hadn’t-
“Wood, I can hear you thinking from all the way up here,” Piper called out testily. “Turn your brain off.” She turned her head slowly towards Oliver as he floated up towards her, eyes still closed. “It’s too damn early for thinking.” She rubbed her nose. “Ruddy boys and stupid early mornings. Bah.”
A bit flummoxed at her impression of a pissy cow, Oliver spoke up. “What’s got your knickers in a twist?”
“Sod off, you twit. I got next to no sleep last night, thanks to our ‘study session’ last night. I have absolutely no focus for schoolwork right now. Ugh.” She sighed rather heartily then opened her eyes, turning to glance wearily at Oliver. Who looked about as tired as she felt. “You?”
Oliver grunted, swinging a leg up so it could prop his elbow up. “Percy Weasley.”
“Really?” Piper drawled. “Percy the Prat’s got your knickers in a twist?” She smirked amusedly.
Oliver flushed a soft pink; an amazing feat considering it was January. Shrugging like he wasn’t the slightest bit embarrassed, he chortled. “Now, that sounds like the PJ I know.”
Swinging her legs down to hang over the side of the hoop, Piper good naturedly glared at him before patting the hoop next to her. Oliver sat and then peered out over the Pitch, blanketed in snow. A comfortable silence fell over the two teenagers sitting side by side; each of them content just to sit for awhile.
Watching the snow fall lightly in front of them, Piper sighed tiredly. “Listen. I’m tired and it’s driving fair me mental. Winter’s a busy season for the team, and it’s not fair that I’ve given you the short shaft. I’m sorry for being such a cow.” Her eyes snuck a quick glance at his face. She took in the deep shadows under his eyes, the faint shadow of stubble lining his strong jaw line and felt a pang of remorse.
“Alright,” was Oliver’s simple reply.
Grinning, Piper placed her left hand out, palm up. “Friends?”
A little cautiously, Oliver squeezed her hand. “Of course.”
The quiet that had taken over the Pitch was broken by a long string of loud, imaginative swearing from the changing rooms.
Piper chuckled heartily. “Sounds like George didn’t get enough sleep last night either.” She shook her head in disbelief. Gesturing to the pitch, she spoke. “So how do we do this?”
Oliver looked confused for a moment and then cleared his throat hesitantly. “Well, I reckon that we’ll start out by spending time together outside of class, having long winded conversations about common interests and nothing at the same time. We will have to work out together a lot, since you are in such good physical condition. Hang out. Have a pint. Be men.” He finished enthusiastically.
Sending Oliver a bemused glance, Piper snorted. “Actually, I was just asking about what you wanted me to do in regards to this whole helping out your practice business.” She stopped and giggled at his blunder. “But thanks for clearing that up. I’ll keep that in mind for future reference.”
Scanning the small straggling group of kids he was going to hold practice with, Oliver hopped onto his broom. “Um, well. I suppose if you can stay awake, you are more than welcome to relax up here. Or in the bleachers.” A light flickered through his dark eyes, a zap indicating his excitement for the sport they both loved. Turning bodily away from Piper, he went on. “Just observe. And we’ll go over your thoughts later, maybe at breakfast? Or during Charms?”
“You got it, Cappy.” Piper winked cheekily at Oliver as he turned his head before he flew off to instruct the others. What a knobby twit. Really? “Just observe.” Bleeding hell! Who did he think he was? She scoffed twice for good measure, and stewed. Mumbling darkly to herself, Piper gazed towards the unmistakable heads of her favorite set of twins. “Ruddy jerk. Bossing me around? Maybe I’ll show him what’s for.”
“Mistress Prewett? George, do you see the fair Mistress perched upon yonder Quidditch Post? Come George; tell me this wondrous sight is not a figment of my imagination.”
Said twin snorted. “Come off you tosser. Percy said no hitting on our cousin.” George stopped short, gagging.
“Your captain would have to agree with Perce. No chirping at PJ.” Oliver flew closer to Fred. He looked at Piper, then at Fred again. “Cos that’s bloody disgusting.”
“Oi!” Three peeved red heads spoke up.
Oliver backpedaled quickly. “I just meant...PJ’s your cousin; you gits.” Sending Piper an apologetic smile, he sped off towards the Chasers.
Leaving Piper alone with the Wonder Twins. Who sent matching devious smirks towards their cousin, sitting high above them.
“What the bleeding-“
“-Hell was that Piper-“
“Elizabeth?” Fred finished for George, both of them crooking identical brows. He sniggered immaturely before receiving a hard elbow from his brother. “What?”
George glared at him. “Why are you chuckling? Nothing said was even remotely entertaining.”
Fred giggled girlishly. “Wood and Piper. Together?” He coughed, trying not to break into full on laughter. He turned mischievous eyes to George. “Like it would ever happen.”
“Oi! What the bloody hell’s so funny bout me and Wood? Huh?” Piper hopped onto her broom and zoomed down to the twins, fire in her eyes. Smacking a fisted hand angrily into Fred’s chest, Piper let him have it. “Well? Nothing! We could be friends, you ruddy bastard.” She crossed her arms, a thoroughly pissed look on her face.
George, still apparently half asleep, rolled his eyes. “PJ; that’s not what he meant.” Cutting off what was sure to be a bitchy sleep deprived comment, he waved her mouth shut. “He means you and Wood together in a romantic entanglement.”
“Romantic entanglement George? When have I ever used that phrase?” Fred scoffed haughtily.
“Fine then. PJ, he meant Oliver Wood as your love interest.” Fred’s chuckle earned him a smack to the back of the head from George. “Shut it, Fredrick.” Slinging a companionable arm across Piper’s shoulders, George steered her away from a groaning Fred. “You know we are just looking out for you, Pipe.” He peered over her head towards Oliver on the other side of the Pitch. “I thought you lot didn’t get along?”
Piper sighed. “It’s not that we didn’t get along. We just didn’t really know each other.”
“And now you do?” George’s eyebrows were about to his hairline. “After a week...when we were on holiday? Really?”
Realizing how convoluted that sounded, Piper shrugged. “Yep. He was there.” She summoned her broom. Hopping on it, she grinned mischievously towards her favorite twin. “But you don’t know that. Or I’ll tell everyone about the time you met Benny Ravensdale and peed-“
“Got it. I know nothing. We never spoke.” Pushing off the ground gently, George flashed a smirk at Piper. “I’ll go back to practice and being smashing in general, and you can go back to being a snobby cow.”
Rolling her eyes, Piper turned left and headed to the top of the stands. “Bloody family. Ruddy stupid boys. Boys are rubbish.”
AN:Another chapter? In the same calendar year? Holy molasses. I know. I'm getting a little crazy. Anywho...You all know the normal schpeel...reviews are greatly appreciate as well as critiques. Any ideas or suggestions? Let me know. Thanks!-Skitts