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Chapter 3: A Shot (of whiskey) in the Dark
Oliver was sitting on the couch listlessly thumbing through a magazine that I had laid out. I had tried my best to be hospitable in the beginning. All of the feminine décor that I had used went promptly in to my bedroom and was replaced by solid colors and more male-friendly patterns. I had also taken all of my magazines that had anything to do with celebrities, gossip, or sex advice and stowed them in one of the drawers of the coffee table, leaving out only magazines about quidditch and newspapers that we could both enjoy. This was the first time I had been able to see the magazines on the table in weeks.
He had cleaned while I was in the shower. I smiled at his gesture and I could tell that it mean he was starting to come back to a world where more than just his despair over not being able to play quidditch lived. He was actually shaping up to be the nice guy that tabloids accused him of being before he was injured and began acting out.
“I’m just about ready. About ten minutes.” I said, scrunching my hair in my second towel as I walked out of the bathroom toward my room.
Oliver turned his head to acknowledge my comment and his eyes widened. His face took on a nice rosey color before I realized why he was gawking at me. I looked down and then my head shot back up. I was only wearing a towel. It was a fluffy, oversized towel, but either way, it wasn’t much in the way of clothing. I dropped the second towel and clutched the top and bottom of the towel I was wearing with my hands before muttering “sorry!” and scampering off to my room.
I had intended to just hurry on to my room, or at the very least use accio to call my clothes, but when I had opened my door to a clean flat, I guess I lost all train of thought. What, a clean apartment at this point was like a naked man, enough for you to forget everything that mattered and just stare.
I could hear him laughing as I closed the door, but I wasn’t going to look back. I needed to put it out of my mind, and I tried, I really did try. Pinky promise! I shook my head and turned on music to avoid my own thoughts for just a little while. I used a spell to quickly dry my hair and pulled it into a loose bun. After pulling on a flowy mid-thigh length black dress and a pair of sparkly flats I looked in to the mirror. I knew I would be overdressed for anywhere Oliver wanted to go, but I rarely got to dress in anything but business clothes and pajamas, so I wasn’t going to waste the opportunity.
When I came out of my bedroom Oliver looked up and smiled before saying, “I guess we’re even now.”
“Well, you’ve seen me in a towel, and now I’ve seen you in a towel. Although, yours was much bigger than mine, so I’m not sure how fair it really is.”
“Aw, but life isn’t fair. You’re just going to have to be thankful for what you’ve got.”
He had succeeded in slicing the tension that I had not been looking forward to facing. I was smiling. He was laughing lightly. This might actually be a good night. We started out the door and I led the way to the stairs.
“Damn.” I heard him whisper this in a voice that I could only assume was for his own ears because I barely caught it.
I smiled bigger. I knew that he was appreciating the view from back there, and I had every intention of letting him continue. I mean, tonight was about cheering him up.
I was more than correct why I had assumed that we were not going to a place that I would fit in. There were peanut shells littering the floor from the free offerings along the bar and more than once I caught myself just before slipping on what I hoped was spilled alcohol. The music was loud, but at least it was good music and there was a tiny dance floor that was just crowded enough for me to think about dancing after I’d had a few drinks.
“Can I get a beer and a…” Oliver trailed off, looking at me to finish his sentence for him.
“Scotch straight up.”
He gawked at me for the second time today.
“Hey, if I’m only going to have one, I’m going to enjoy that one.”
“Well, okay then. I just had you pegged as the white wine or, at the most, vodka and cranberry kind of girl.”
“I’m full of surprises.” I winked taking my drink and sipping it through the stirrer.
Wait, I winked. I really had to stop doing little things like that or I was bound to give Oliver the wrong impression. I could NOT be with a client and I could NOT have one wanting to be with me. I needed to stop this, but it was so easy to flirt with Oliver.
Oliver and I sat talking while he polished off two beers and I finished my scotch and moved on to water. I was determined to learn everything about him since I had made such a careless mistake earlier. I found out that his parents Anne and Daniel Wood still lived in Scotland on a peaceful spot of land that had been in his family for generations. His family had constructed a makeshift quidditch field on their property and that was why he loved the sport so much. He grew up playing with his friends and family any chance he got. This injury and the subsequent rule not to play or practice Quidditch was pretty much killing him. It was the one thing he had that took his mind off of his problems, and without it, he had to face everything.
He had to face things like his fiancé leaving him two days after he was put on the injured list for his team. She had told him that she couldn’t stand the way he was moping around, and if he wasn’t sure if he would play again, she wasn’t sure if she could be with him. He had no escape when Gwen had done this to him; he was still essentially on bedrest. So he began drinking. Unfortunately, he was a pretty belligerent drunk and the drinking caused more problems that it solved. The cherry on top of the cake was when he was informed that he would be kicked out of his flat and forced to live with his new Public Relations Rep aka: babysitter.
“I’m really sorry they forced us to live together.” I said after listening to his whole story. “I had no idea they were planning that until I showed up to meet you on the first day.
“I guess it could have been worse. At least they forced me to live with someone who cared about me in some way. I probably would have really hurt myself if I had kept trying to go it alone. It also gave me a reason to stay sober more often.”
“And why is that?”
“It’s easier to see pretty girls when you aren’t seeing double vision and don’t think you’re dreaming.”
The blush that filled in my cheeks burned slightly because of the alcohol I had already had, but I appreciated the compliment either way. I hadn’t had a boyfriend since I was in school because I was either surrounded by guys from my office who thought a woman didn’t belong in this field or quidditch players from the team who saw me as just some girl who worked for them. I hadn’t really been complimented in a non-perverted, wolf-whistle way since I was in school.
I smiled and stood up and Oliver protested, “Hey! What about your life story?”
“How about a rain check? I think I want to dance a bit. Care to join me?”
He shook his head and waved me on, so I headed to the dance floor. Never one to be shy, I started dancing by myself but was soon joined by a bloke with shaggy brown hair and a scruffy face. His eyes were brown, but sort of glazed over and muddy looking. He was obviously very drunk, which I gathered was also the reason for his inability to move with the music. I continued to dance with him, but his hands began to wander, and more than once I had to smack his hand away as it traveled down the small of my back.
He began trying to pull me closer, and I braced my hands against his chest to push away. He was stronger that I was, even while drunk, and he began to pull my face towards his puckered, wet lips. I closed my eyes and continued to push, trying to avoid the inevitable. Suddenly, I felt the man release me. I stumbled forward as my eyes opened and I saw that Oliver had pulled him off of my and basically tossed him across the dance floor. Luckily the man was too wasted to be confrontational. He mumbled something about me not being worth it, shrugged, and moved on to his next conquest.
Oliver helped me right myself and began brushing my hair away from my eyes. I brushed off my dress and looked up at him. His eyes were worried and his mouth was drawn down in to a frown. When he raised his head to look for the man I had been dancing with, he froze. His hands went stiff as they held my shoulders. He wasn’t squeezing, but he was no longer just holding me for my own balance. It almost felt as if he was holding me for his own.
I followed his gaze and right there in all of her hot pink mini dressed glory was Gwen and her fiancé sipping white wine at a table near us. Reginald was hunched over and talking feverishly about something that Gwen could care less than nothing about. She was staring at Oliver and smirking. She excused herself from the table, which didn’t make much of a difference, because I’m not sure that Reginald was aware that she was walking away.
“Aw, how sweet. Adelynn finally landed her self a man, and Oliver finally got over me. Granted you took a few steps down, but…” Gwen looked from my shoes to my hair as if she were grading me. I felt like she wasn’t being very generous either.
Oliver opened his mouth to speak, but I placed my hand on his elbow and guided him away. Before moving too far away, I looped back around and stopped Gwen before she got to her table. I put on my largest fake grin, and stepped in front of her.
“I just wanted to thank you for all of your help today. You definitely helped narrow my search for future journalists when it comes to interviews.”
Gwen rolled her eyes dramatically before speaking, “So happy I could help, but you should really stay away from Oliver. He’s a train wreck.”
“No, he’s just facing things that are a little out there for him. I think he cleared a lot of his problems out around the same time you cleared out.”
“I don’t need to stand here and listen to this!” Gwen shouted, trying to step around me to the right.
I swerved to stand in front of her, pulling a left over glass of beer from an empty table near me down on to the floor just as she stepped around to my left. I felt a few splashes of the liquid hit my shin at the same time her foot met the floor and slid out from under her.
She wailed as she went down, and her dress flew up around her belly button as she landed on the ground, revealing the fact that she had decided tonight was a good night to go commando. I moved away from the scene when I saw a few cameras being pulled out. I felt a little bad, but honestly, anyone who goes to a bar without underwear in such a tiny dress is just asking for trouble…not to mention bacteria from the bar stools.
I walked out of the bar and inhaled the cold air before looking around for Oliver. I was surprised to see him leaning against the doorframe. I had expected him to head home, or at least take a walk around the block. He stood and come over to wrap his jacket around my shoulders. Stupidly, I had forgotten my own at the house before we left.
“Thanks.” I said, looking down at my shoes.
“No, thank you. I really appreciate what you did in there.” Oliver replied.
I looked up, shocked at how close he was to me. His face moved closer to mine. Shit, he’s going to kiss me! What the hell am I going to do? How can I avoid this with out seeming like a total idiot? I inhaled deeply, but his mouth passed mine and nestled close to my ear.
“I see she stopped worrying about…extra body hair…when she dumped me and moved on to broomstick heirs.”
We both burst out laughing and made our way to a quiet alley so that we could apparate home. I can’t believe I was silly enough to think Oliver Wood was going to kiss me. I had felt an intense shiver travel up my spine when his lips brushed my ear, but that was probably just from the cold. Yeah, that’s definitely what it was.
Author's Note: Hello everyone, I really appreciate you taking the time to read this story!
What do you guys think of Adelynn? I'm a little surprised at the way her character is turning out so I was curious how you were percieving her.
As always, thank you so much for reading, review if you have a moment, and the next chapter will be up shortly!