Chapter 4 : Idiots with an Ego
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---Chapter 4 – Idiots with an Ego---
“Only the first training and she’s got us doing bloody laps!” moaned Elbie, as he latched onto his girlfriend for support. Miranda easily shrugged him off and tossed him a scowl.
“She’s like a woman possessed!” added Seamus.
“Someone needs to get her laid or something,” Adam panted, always the one to add a crude remark.
“Oi, you lot! Shut the hell up before I make you do more laps!” I growled in their direction. I was only a couple yards ahead of them but I knew they heard me loud and clear.
So what if it was our first training?
We didn’t need try outs so there was literally no reason why we couldn’t jump straight back into it. Plus with just coming back from summer, we had to get our endurance back if we wanted to beat Gryffindor or Hufflepuff for that matter.
Maybe I was slightly psychotic, but they’ll thank me when we’re sipping Butterbeer from the House Cup.
You hear that, Oliver Wood? I’m going to kick your arse!
I shook my head and stopped by the edge of the pitch. I watched as each one of my players came panting towards me. We were going to have to do way more laps next time if a measly five around the pitch was tiring them out.
Adam was the last one to stumble into our huddle.
“Alright you lot, I know I’m being a tad harsh on you today,” I began.
“A tad? Woman, you’re being…” Elbie was promptly elbowed in the ribs before he was able to finish that sentence—fortunately for him. If he did, I would have probably made him do more laps.
“Look guys,” I tried again, tossing Elbie a stern look. “I want to apologise to you for being harsh but that’s just the thing. I’m not your friend here. On the pitch, I am first and foremost your captain and any disrespect from either of you will result in laps. I think I’ve been a fairly reasonable captain in the past years but this year.” I paused. “This year, to some of us, is our last chance to get that House Cup and I’ll be bloody damned if Gryffindor or Slytherin steal it from us. Yeah, maybe Hufflepuffs if they get good players but that’s hardly likely.”
Miranda and Lizzie sniggered loudly. I fought the urge to snigger as well but I had my captain face on and Captain Keegan does not snigger at the expense of other teams. Much.
“I want you to treat each and every training session as you would a match,” I continued. “I want to win. Merlin, I can’t even tell you how much I want that House Cup in my hands, and I know I’ll fight tooth and nail for it. So if you’re not willing to put in the hours and the sweat then I suggest you leave now.”
I knew it was a slim chance anyone would leave. There was one thing my team had and that was fight. At least that was something I could always count on.
They grinned in response so I took it as a sign to finish up my speech. “Glad to see you lot are staying! Now get the hell up there and show me you want to stay!”
I stood back as I watched the Ravenclaw Quidditch team all kick off at the same time, whooping and cheering as they soared through the sky. I felt pride surge through my veins and I quickly jumped onto my own broom and followed them.
Training went by quite uneventfully except for the minor incident when Seamus ‘accidentally’ knocked a Bludger at Adam’s shoulder. To be fair, Adam was making very rude gestures and insinuations about the nature of Marcus and Lizzie’s relationship. They were bloody fifth years! They shouldn’t be doing any of the things Adam was suggesting. Well… I’m pretty sure that last one wasn’t even legal in most countries.
Blimey, that boy was disgusting.
I smiled as I watched my team make their way to the changing rooms. Seamus stayed behind and walked up to me. He swung his arm around my shoulders.
“I’m assuming you’re back to being my lovely yet slightly mental mate, Keegan, right?” Seamus joked.
I rolled my eyes at the big lug and shrugged off his shoulder. “Maybe. It depends what you say next.”
Seamus’ body shook as he laughed. “Nothing bad, Keegs. Was just going to say that that was a great training session, great way to start the season.”
“Thanks, Seamus,” I said sincerely. I looked up into his light green eyes. “I’m an alright captain, aren’t I?”
“Where’s this coming from?” Seamus asked. He pulled me into a tight hug causing my feet to lift up off the ground. “You’re the best captain! You’re tough when you need to be but you’re caring. You know what this team needs and you know us all well enough to know our strengths and our weaknesses.”
“I guess,” I grumbled. “I’m just… I want this so bad!”
“I know, love,” he smiled affectionately at me. “But regardless of what happens, you have to know that we all will follow you till the end.”
I smiled happily, my mood quickly lifted.
I loved Seamus. He was the big teddy bear brother I’ve always wished I had. I mean I do have Edan, but I look out for him, not the other way around. I liked the fact that the boys took it upon themselves to look out for me.
He quickly helped me put the balls back into the shed, and together, we started to make our way back to the Ravenclaw Tower. We were discussing the likelihood of the Montrose Magpies winning the league this year when I was rudely interrupted by the Slytherin’s slimiest member. Marcus Flint.
“Riddell, can I speak to you for a minute?” he said quickly. He was a large muscular bloke with coarse black hair and incredibly crooked teeth.
I could feel Seamus tense up beside me, but I quickly put a hand on his forearm before it turned into some ‘who’s got the most testosterone’ match.
“Yeah, fine,” I told him. I turned to Seamus, “it’s okay. I’ll see you back inside.”
Seamus nodded reluctantly, but left me alone with Flint.
“So Flint, what do you want?”
“I’m going to cut the small crap so listen carefully, Riddell,” Flint began. “I know you and Wood have an unfriendly relationship and seeing as my first match is with that prick, I was thinking we should join forces.”
I choked. “Sorry, what? Because I swore you just asked me to join forces with you!”
“I did just say that,” Flint said confusedly.
Poor boy, I bet he was dropped on his head far more times than his mum could remember.
“We both want Gryffindor to lose so why not help each other out? I mean Wood obviously finds you fit so you could use your ‘ways’ to find out his tactical plans for the Gryffindor versus Slytherin match.”
Holy crap! Did Marcus Flint just ask me to seduce tactical plans out of Oliver Wood? Can this day get any weirder?!
And wait, did he just say Wood finds me fit? That’s a load of crap too.
My silence seemed to spur the Slytherin on since he carried on talking. “It’s the perfect plan, you get me those plans and when it comes to your match against them, let’s just say a few broom malfunctions may occur.”
“Look, Flint,” I poked him firmly in the chest. “As much as I dislike Wood, I will never ever join forces with a cheating slimy git like yourself! And you know what? Oliver Wood could kick your arse blind-folded so shove off, alright?”
He looked affronted at first, but his sneer quickly appeared back onto his face.
“You’re a stupid bint, you know that? I could have helped you out, but now, it’s out of my control if a stray Bludger happen to knock you unconscious at our match… or whether a certain Gryffindor Keeper will break an arm,” he snarled at me before turning on his heel and disappearing down the corridor.
I stared at the spot where he was before. Did he just threaten me? With my life? And Oliver’s well-being?
Does that mean I have to tell Wood that Flint was out to get him?
But I can’t! That requires actually speaking to him and I’ve been avoiding that for the past week. Ever since that bloody almost-kiss…
God, when did my life get so ridiculous?
“You’re a sodding magnet for trouble,” Miranda sighed after I had finished retelling my encounter with Flint.
It was a beautiful Sunday morning, and the girls and I were downstairs having breakfast. I had avoided them all of last night but I knew I wasn’t going to get off that easily this morning. At least they still don’t know about the almost-kiss…
“Wow,” my other dorm-mate, Lucy Montague, said. “You lot take Quidditch way too seriously.”
I rolled my eyes at her. “Yeah, but I don’t go around threatening to break my opponent’s arms, do I?”
“No and I wouldn’t have tolerated it even if you did,” my third and most charming (cough) dorm-mate, Penelope Clearwater told me with an arch of her eyebrow.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the girl, but she was a stickler for the rules—something that was clearly not apart of my genetic makeup. However, Penny was my voice of reason and she always kept my head above water especially when Miranda and Lucy were the ones throwing me into the hypothetical water in the first place.
Lucy was a bubbly boy-obsessed girl with white-blonde hair and wide blue eyes, but don’t let her innocent look fool you, the girl was a menace. She was a manipulative little genius and always got her way. Sometimes I think the only reason why she wasn’t put into Slytherin was because she looked so bloody innocent.
As for Miranda, well… as my best friend? She sucked. She was always there for me, sure, but she also loved putting me in difficult situations.
“Oh, shush, Penny dearest,” Lucy grinned. “It’s not like Keegan said yes or anything! Although, the seducing Oliver Wood bit seems quite enticing.”
I reeled away from her. “No! And don’t go getting any ideas!”
She feigned shock. “I’m hurt that you think I’d suggest you go seduce Oliver for his Quidditch plans! I was just thinking maybe you should go seduce Oliver for… other reasons,” she winked at me and I groaned in response.
“Alright, enough,” Miranda chuckled. “As much as I’d love to see those two snog the pants off each other, I hardly see it happening any time soon.”
“Eww! It won’t happen ever!” I retorted. Penny snorted.
“For now, I think you should go tell Oliver about the fact that Flint’s out to get him,” Miranda told me sensibly.
“What if I don’t want to?” I crossed my arms huffily. I was being childish and I know I can’t keep away from him forever but I was going to bloody well try.
“And why not?” Miranda arched her eyebrow at me. “You’ve been avoiding him for the past week!”
“Nothing new with that,” I pointed out.
“It’s weirder than usual,” Lucy agreed and Penny even nodded.
Damn, I was cornered.
“So? Spit it out, Keegan,” Miranda crossed her arms as well. She meant business and I’m pretty sure if I didn’t come out with an excuse or the truth now, she was going to torture me.
“Uh, nothing…” I mumbled. “ImighthavetoldhimIlikedJustinDodgson.”
“What?” Lucy demanded. “Did anyone else hear what the girl just said?”
They all shook their heads.
“FINE!” I cried out. “I told Wood that I fancied Justin Dodgson and it might have been a lie and now I’m avoiding him!”
“Oh,” Penny said. “Why would you tell him that in the first place?”
Uhh… crap. Why? THINK, KEEGAN! Why?
“Because I think Oliver likes me,” I blurted out before I had a chance to stop myself.
Wow. I really needed to stop doing that! He doesn’t even fancy me. He’s just trying to mess with my head so I’d slip up and lose to Gryffindor. I seriously needed to stop blurting out lies…
“WHAT!” all three of them cried out causing the entirety of the Great Hall to stop what they were doing and stare at us, including the Gryffindor boys.
I caught Wood’s eye and tossed him a scowl. He grinned obnoxiously back at me before turning back to whatever his mates were saying.
“Shut up, will you!” I glared at the three of them as I reached over to shut Lucy’s mouth close.
“Oliver Wood fancies you?” Lucy whispered harshly at me. “OHMIGOD!”
“It’s not that big of a deal and maybe he doesn’t,” I replied, shrugging.
I turned to look at my best friend for her opinion, but Miranda just looked dumbstruck. For the next few minutes, she stared blankly at me.
Suddenly, she exclaimed, “wait, what happened that made you think that?”
Damn it. Why was she so bloody inquisitive? Darn Ravenclaw traits!
“Uhh…” I stalled. There’s no point in lying now. Here goes… “He tried to kiss me.”
“WHAT!” they all cried out, and we were once again met with the same reaction from the students in the Great Hall.
“Shut the hell up!” I hissed through my teeth.
“Sorry, sorry, but why the bloody hell have you not told us this vital piece of information?” growled Miranda.
“No, no, why the hell did you not kiss him?” Lucy exclaimed. “Have you seen that boy? He is the epitome of sexy and rugged!”
“Keegan, even I can’t deny his sex appeal,” Penny smiled at me. “And according to you lot, I have shit taste in men.”
We chuckled at this. Well, she was dating Percy Weasley and the boy was a weirdo fascist Prefect—kind of like her but without a sense of humour.
“I never said he wasn’t fit,” I replied. “Not that I’m saying he is but Wood and I… We’re like fire and ice. We don’t mix and even messing with that dynamic will end in catastrophe.”
Lucy rolled her eyes. “You’re a bigger melodramatic than I am!”
“Whatever, okay?” I snapped irritably now. “Nothing will ever happen between Wood and I, I don’t fancy Justin Dodgson, and Wood does not fancy me!” I grabbed my Quidditch bag. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go teach little bitty first years Quidditch!”
I quickly got up from the Ravenclaw table and stalked off towards the Quidditch pitch. My mind was swirling chaotically and I felt on edge again. It was only the second bloody week of school and I’ve already been propositioned into bets I don’t even want to be in, threatened by a slimy git, asked out by a boy I don’t like, lied about liking said boy, and nearly kissed by my sworn enemy.
Wow. Just wow.
I really did not need any of this adding onto my stress load of Quidditch and school and trying to keep the girls off my back. Don’t they know I was an easily stressed out person and slightly neurotic?
Right, calm, Keegan. I just needed a plan. Plans make you happy, right? Right.
1. Tell Wood about Flint’s threat
2. Tell Dodgson you don’t fancy him (if he asks you out again)
3. Fancy someone (that way maybe everyone would just leave you alone…)
That is a stupid plan… Yeah, that’s a stupid plan.
Why would I need to fancy someone?
Because Keegan, if you do then maybe the girls will lay off, Fred and George will cancel the dates, and Wood and Dodgson will leave you alone.
But who would I fancy?
I can’t just force myself to like someone though. Maybe I needed to open my eyes to new people, but… that doesn’t mean they’d fancy me back.
Was I even fancy-able?
Maybe I was too much of a Quidditch-obsessed psycho maniac? Guys don’t really want to date girls they’re intimidated by, right?
And I mean I intimidate most of the guys at this school. The only ones that weren’t were the ones that played Quidditch and I wouldn’t fancy any of that lot.
“You all right, Riddell?”
“Huh?” I looked up at Cedric Diggory and then at my current surroundings.
Oh. I was already at the Quidditch pitch. Right.
“You all right?” Cedric repeated again, trying not to laugh at me. “You seemed pretty out of it just now.”
“Oh, right,” I grinned at him. “I’m fine, just… thinking. Quidditch plans and all that malarkey.”
“Of course,” he laughed now. “You and Wood are two of a kind. Quidditch always on the brain, no time for anyone else.”
I stared at him for a few seconds before blurting out, “am I fancy-able, Diggory?”
“Huh! What?” he looked confused.
“I mean… am I likeable? To the males of this school?” I kept going. I really was on a roll today with the ‘putting my foot in my mouth’ thing. “Or are guys too intimidated by me?”
“Well I… uhh…” he stuttered.
Oh… well that puts things into perspective for me.
“Sure you are, Riddell,” a voice said from behind me. “You’re likeable. Sure, you scare the crap out of most boys at this school but that’s just cause you’re one of the few girls in this place that actually has a backbone.”
I whirled around. Wood… I should have realised.
He was smiling at me, his brown eyes dancing with amusement at my sudden interest in what the opposite sex thought of me.
“Does this questioning have anything to do with what you told me last week? Because if it does, I don’t think you’ll have a problem with snagging that one.” He gestured towards my right and I turned to look at Justin, who was waving stupidly at me.
There were so many things that just plain sucked at that Quidditch camp thing. One, no one BLOODY KNEW HOW TO PLAY!
Okay, I wasn‘t expecting them to but I never realised how frustrating it is to try to teach athletically challenged people. Also, hearing-challenged as well.
Merlin, I can’t teach someone to throw a Quaffle if they don’t even listen to anything I say. No, no! Instead, they choose to sodding ogle Wood or Diggory!
I GET IT, UNIVERSE! WOOD IS FIT!! SO FLIPPING WHAT?
Oh right… second thing to be wrong was Justin. He’s adorable and sweet, but… he’s too sweet. He’s too caring and just compliant with me. Everything I say, he agrees. Every joke I make, he laughs. Every insult I throw at him, he accepts. And the most irritating part of it all? When I fell off my broom trying to catch a Quaffle, he runs over like the world’s most worried boyfriend.
Problem is HE’S NOT MY BOYFRIEND!
Oh and Wood couldn’t stop laughing at the entire thing! Bloody git!
Third thing was that almost half of the people that showed up were giggling first, second, and third years that wanted to come out and stare at Wood and Diggory. They couldn’t care less how to properly kick off a broom or anything Quidditch-related for that matter.
This Quidditch camp was a waste of my freaking time and if I wasn’t so terrified of Headmaster Dumbledore, I would give him a piece of my mind.
It doesn’t even support House unity! Actually, it de-supports (yeah, I know that’s not a word, sod it) it, because Flint and I got into an argument then Wood and Flint got into an argument. Then I threw a Quaffle at Wood and then he shoved me into the mud. Oh, and then Justin tried to get involved but luckily for him, Diggory held him back and told him that spats between Wood and I were normal.
Today sucked big hippogriffs. Seriously big hairy hippogriffs!
I took out my water bottle from my bag and splashed some water onto my face. I was starving and lunch was about to be served. I should probably shower, but I wanted food and I wasn’t that smelly! I was just… covered in mud. No biggie.
“Dodgson seems nice,” Oliver said innocently, coming to stand in front of me. At least he was covered in mud too.
“Sod off, Wood,” I grumbled tiredly. “I’m not in the mood.”
“You’re never in the mood,” he noted.
“Not for you anyways,” I replied sweetly. I undid my ponytail and let my hair loose. I used the rest of the water in my bottle to pour down my hair and wash away the mud.
“Do you really like him?”
“Dodgson,” Oliver rolled his eyes at me.
I shrugged. “I guess.”
“And how would you know that?” I asked indignantly. “I could like him a lot!”
“Because he annoyed the crap out of you today,” Oliver said matter-of-factly.
I sighed heavily. “Fine, I don’t like him! Happy, Wood? Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m starving.”
I grabbed my bag and headed into the castle. I was walking down the corridor when I heard a loud gagging noise so I looked up. There at the top of the stairs was Amanda Kearney, a girl I’ve never particularly liked for some reason. She was a Gryffindor from what I know and shared a dorm with Alicia, Katie, and Angelina in sixth year.
“Ew, what the hell are you?” she made a very unattractive face at me. Her gaggle of girls laughed snottily at her comment.
I ignored it and kept on walking. I didn’t deal with snotty girls well. Mild snotty? I ignore, but if they got too snotty, sometimes I get violent so for their sake, I hope they were just mild.
“I was talking to you, troll,” Amanda growled at me.
Moderately snotty. Only moderately, Keegan. Walk away. Willing all the self-control I had left, I kept on walking.
“Riddell, I was talking to you,” Amanda yelled out again. She bounded down the stairs gracefully and walked straight up to me. We were the same height. “Look, I’m just going to be straight with you. You’re a weird tomboy with no girly bone in your body but for some bloody reason, you’ve caught Justin’s eye. And well that’s the problem right there, he’s my ex and I want him back so if you don’t want any trouble, I suggest you back the fuck off!”
I blinked. She… Did she just… Oh for Merlin’s sake!
I growled. Literally. The low sound burned at the back of my throat as I watched her inwardly flinch.
“Talk to me, look at me or even breathe near me again, Barbie, and I will punch your pretty little face in. Like you said, I’m a tomboy and I’ve got a mean right hook.”
I changed my snarl to a fake grin before turning on my heel and walking into the Great Hall.
Stupid snotty bint!
Does everyone have it out for me this week? That’s the second time I’ve been threatened by some idiot with an ego. I really hope the rest of the year isn’t like this.
Actually, I’m just praying tomorrow is better than this…
A/N: wow!! the queue is super fast right now so i thought i'd pop this in. i haven't properly edited it so please don't be too harsh on the grammar etc. anyway, chapter 4 already!! what do you guys think?! favourite lines?? favourite new development? favourite character thus far??? do let me know. it makes me so happy to read a review and encourages me to write/update faster ;) xxx
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