I smiled at the wiz television. Seven and Zero were written right beneath “Falcons soaring high!”. Flashing on the screen were some of our best plays this season. I saw me loop around a bludger. I saw Barry swing unbelievably hard at a bludger. Chris caught the snitch. James punched the air after another victory. Matt smiled and smacked Adam’s shoulder as we walked out onto the pitch. James kissed my cheek as we were being watched. I didn’t even look like it was unnatural.
I pulled my hair into a tight ponytail and started to pull my shoes on. It was an early Saturday in mid-October. Britain was actually pretty cold in October, but not too cold where I couldn’t go for a nice jog. No, I’m not a big fan of running, but Coach keeps calling me fat or something that is equally as diminishing. I’ll eventually prove him wrong, I suppose. Sooner or later.
If the stairs weren’t a big enough work out, it seemed that the streets were even worse. I had to swerve in and out of people and avoid small children racing around their parents. I slowed to a stop. This wasn’t exactly my best idea. A jog at 10 in the morning wasn’t a good plan. Maybe I should make my “early” earlier. I wouldn’t have this problem if I woke up at six in the morning and went for a jog. The life of a Quidditch player does start pretty late, though.
I looked around, taking in my surroundings. As in the ice cream shop that had just opened for the day. I sighed, debating if I could go in or not. Skinny Gigi could wait another day. Choco-moco ice cream couldn’t. The bell above the shop door jingled as I walked in. The store may have just opened, but the smell was absolutely to die for. It smelt like baked goods and fresh frosting. I sighed in content. Time to be a muggle for a little.
“Hi, how can I help you?” The young girl behind the counter asked. I felt like a kid in a candy store as I peered into the glass with multiple ice cream gallons in it.
“The choco-moco, please?” I requested. She nodded, grabbing a small bowl and scooping the ice cream into it. I grinned at her as she handed it to me and I handed her some money. She shook her head at me.
“It’s on me. It’s not every day a national Quidditch star comes into our little shop,” she said with a wide grin. I cringed slightly but forced a smile onto my face. So much for turning into a muggle for a little while.
I took a table in the far corner of the small shop. If this was really a wizarding neighborhood, I wasn’t going to be seen. I was just going to enjoy my ice cream by myself and not let anything distract me. The Falcons were seven and zero. I was making a name for myself. Things were finally falling into place and I couldn’t be happier with it all. I was finally living my dream and boy did it feel good.
But you know what always happens when you’re happy, right? Everything always wants to come crashing down. Everything will shatter at your feet. You can feel like you’re on cloud nine but then one tiny thing will happen and you will fall straight back into reality. Reality is real. Reality is right in front of you. My reality was the blonde haired, blue eyed Cannon player standing in front of the giggling teenage girl.
“Choco-moco, please,” He said. I could hear the thick American accent. It was almost as identical as mine.
“Two Quidditch stars in one day? I’m one lucky girl,” the girl giggled, handing over the same ice cream I was consuming. I was frozen to my spoon. I couldn’t move. It was like the ice cream had melted into my blood and had then frozen again right on spot.
“Two?” He questioned, glancing around. That was when his eyes met mine. That was when we both froze, thick as the ice cream we held.
“Yeah! Gigi Jacobs!” The girl said, obviously not noticing our predicament.
“Gigi is that really you?” Tyler Gates asked, chuckling to myself as he broke out of his trance and made his way towards my corner. I felt like I was trapped. I didn’t have anywhere to run. I was still frozen to my spoon.
“Y-yeah,” I managed to mumble. Tyler’s grin only widened when he heard my voice. His sparkling teeth were too white. His eyes were too blue. He was too perfect.
“It’s been so long!” Tyler said, reaching down and hugging me. I didn’t return the hug. Unwelcomed, he took the seat across from me. “How have you been?”
I shrugged. What was I supposed to say? My life was plastered all over every single magazine in Europe. I may avoid seeing his name on covers, but I’m sure he didn’t mind seeing mine. He obviously didn’t mind seeing me right now. I managed to pull my gaze away from his face and casted it into my ice cream bowl. Do you think ice cream could drown you? I’d be willing to test that theory at this rate.
“Oh that’s right. Can’t talk to the opponent, eh?” He asked, chuckling again. He took a bite of his ice cream, eyeing me over the bowl. “Falcons, huh? I’ve got to admit that’s pretty impressive. I didn’t think you’d make it that far.”
“I didn’t think you’d make it to the Cannons, but here we are,” I found myself biting back. Tyler smirked right at me. I felt my stomach flip around a bit. Oh no. This is not going to happen. I was not going to even listen to him. He’d smile at me, flip his blonde hair away from his face, and then he’d walk off like he always did. People who you loved always left you. It’s what I did.
“Same ol’ Gigi,” Tyler chuckled, shaking his head. I felt a fire erupt in my chest. I was not the same.
“Same old Tyler,” I responded coolly. I saw his jaw clench as his eyes narrowed slightly. A sense of pride swelled up in me. “So how’s Hannah? Not as good in the sack I presume since she had her third kid. Lucroy’s this time, right?”
I saw his cheeks flush slightly. Good. I would embarrass him to the end of the world and back if I had to. I didn’t want to think about our past, but bringing it up made him feel uncomfortable, which I loved. A part of me wanted him to bugger off, but another part wanted him to stay. I wanted to see those damn blue eyes and I wanted to see that smirk. My infatuation with him was never healthy, but I had learned to be immune to his charm. Ever since that day.
“We split not long after we started,” Tyler mumbled, taking a bite of his ice cream. He didn’t make eye contact with me.
“That’s Hannah for you. Stealing other people’s toys and then once she gets them, moving on to the next,” I said, taking a bite of my ice cream in turn. Tyler narrowed his eyes on his ice cream.
“I shouldn’t have left you.”
I froze. My whole body tensed up. He couldn’t be saying this. He couldn’t be sitting in front of me, telling me he shouldn’t have left. It felt like someone was digging a knife into my chest. Not just stabbing me, but digging it into me like a shovel. I wanted to scream. I wanted to cry. But most of all, I wanted to kill Tyler Gates. He didn’t have a right to say that to me. He lost that right two years ago.
“Shut the hell up.” I snapped. Tyler’s eyes darted straight off of his ice cream and onto my face. He was used to my snaps and had been expecting it.
“I mean it, Gigi. It was the biggest mistake of my life. I’m not asking for you back, I’m just telling you that you deserved better than that,” Tyler said. My jaw clenched. I wanted to reach over and punch him. I wanted to leap across the table and make sure that Tyler Gates couldn’t breathe again.
“You have absolutely no right to be talking to me like this,” I hissed. I started to get to my feet to run from this small ice cream shop but Tyler was faster and grabbed my arm, tugging me back into my seat.
“Don’t do this, Gigi. I am just here to talk,” Tyler said, using the voice he reserved for little children. You know the voice. The I’m-better-than-you voice. The voice that makes you want to kill baby hippogriffs because you feel so pathetic.
“And I’m here to eat my ice cream. Guess neither of us got what we wanted, hmm?” I pushed myself up, dodging away from his arm as it reached out to pull me back down into my seat. I wasn’t a chaser for nothing.
“Stay away from me,” I warned. I stepped around the table to leave the ice cream shop, but he stood in my way. “Move.”
“Just sit down and-“
I cut him off by slamming my ice cream into his face. It didn’t go as well as planned since the dish was smaller than his face. So what ended up happening was the ice cream landed on his shirt and the dish made a cracking noise against his nose. He let out a yelp and stumbled back as blood oozed from his nose. The teenager from behind the counter gasped as she rushed forward with napkins for Tyler.
I took this as my opening to escape.
“Merlin, Gigi!” Matt yelled as he caught the quaffle, bracing it against his chest.
“Are you trying to kill him or something?” James asked me. I felt the anger flare in me again. I would love to kill Tyler Gates right now. The whistle blew below us as Coach Smithson waved us all down. I groaned, but flew to the ground slowly.
“Jacobs, you may think you can carry the chaser squad on your back, but contrary to your beliefs, you still need Hankin and Potter to play decently,” Coach hissed at me. I kicked at the spot in the grass that was worn out. This was the spot that I normally landed on or kicked off from. I didn’t respond.
“I’m fine, Coach. No big deal,” Matt mumbled.
“Take a seat, Jacobs,” Coach said. I growled under my breath, but shoved myself into the bench on the side of the pitch anyways. Everyone else kicked back up into the air. I stared down at my broom for a while, not willing myself to look up into the air. In three days, we were playing the Cannons. They were rated number one in the league right now. We were number two. I knew how sweet of a feeling it would be to take that title away from them. Especially since it was Tyler-effing-Gates’s team.
“So, what’s going on, Jacobs? I’m not one for the mushy bollucks, but when my chaser tries to take out my other chaser with the quaffle, I have to get a little worried,” Coach said, taking the seat next to me. I glanced at him, then continued to stare at my broom.
“Nothing.” I mumbled.
“Something wrong with you and Potter?” He pressed. I felt a blush creeping up my neck.
“I’m not good at this girl shit. It’s why I never got married. So just come out with it and I’ll pretend to listen.” Coach said in frustration. I couldn’t help it; I grinned at him. He looked like he was extremely constipated. It was the first time I saw Coach treat me actually well.
“My ex is on the Cannons. Ex fiancé. And I ran into him the other day at a ice cream parlor,” I confessed. Coach wrinkled up his nose.
“Gates?” He asked. I nodded my head, taking my hair out of the tight pony it was in and running my hands through it. “Does Potter know? That you ran into him?”
“No.” I admitted sheepishly. Coach raised his eyebrows at me. “I didn’t really think I had to…do I?”
“You have to tell your current boyfriend about all encounters with your ex. If you don’t, he might not be happy when he finds out.”
“What makes you think he’ll find out?” I asked.
“You’re a Quidditch star. Things leak easily.”
I stared up into the air as James shot the quaffle towards Adam who caught it with ease. James yelled profanities at him as Adam laughed and threw the quaffle back. I wasn’t used to relationship etiquette. I wasn’t used to relationships period. Even though the relationship with James was for show, I was warming up to him. I was beginning to see why we were called the “Quidditch Couple”. People loved seeing us together. People loved hearing us talk about one another. I felt a pang in my chest. It was all fake.
“Genevieve Jacobs!” A screech came from the entrance to the pitch. I swiveled around to see Sally charging up the walkway, a paper tucked under her arm.
“This is never good,” I mumbled to Coach, who was already on his feet. The team obviously heard the screech and were flying towards the ground.
“What the hell do you think you’re doing?!” Sally asked in a shrill voice. She batted my shoulder with the newspaper she had rolled up.
“Ouch! What do you even mean?!” I hissed at her, ripping the paper from her grip.
“Go ahead, read the front page!” She yelled. “I cannot believe I am the manager to such an incompetent, inconsiderate, pre-Madonna!”
“Who’s a pre-Madonna?” Adam asked.
I unfolded the paper and saw the flashing letters on the front page and my heart nearly stopped. “JACOBS A REAL PLAYER?”. Below that was a picture of Adam sitting across from me in the ice cream shop. He was smiling at me and I was staring down into my ice cream dish. To someone who was looking at the picture, it looked as though I was shyly looking away from Tyler. I didn’t need to look at the article to know what it said. I’m sure the teenage girl was quoted many times.
”No. No, no, no, no, no!” I groaned, slamming the paper onto the bench. The team immediately swarmed around it, trying to get a view at what had bothered me so much. I held my breath as they all gasped. All except for James. He looked pissed. More than that, he looked hurt.
“James...” I found myself mumbling. He didn’t even look at me. I doubt he could find the capacity to. We had actually been doing really well the last few weeks. We hadn’t argued. We had been the perfect vision of a couple. We held hands in public and we kissed at just the right moments for the press.
“You’re so inconsiderate, Genevieve!” Sally hissed. “Think how bad this makes me look!”
“Shut up, Sally.” I hissed at her. She looked very offended, but I didn’t care.
“You will not speak to me that way!” Sally growled. I glared at her, but only briefly.
“James?” I questioned. He still wasn’t looking at me, but staring at the front cover of the page. He reached down, picking the newspaper up. His eyes scanned the picture multiple times. Suddenly, he ripped the paper straight in half. I covered my mouth up from gasping at the sudden movement. He threw it on the ground. I glanced at to see me on one half and Tyler on the other.
“Holy shit, James,” Barry mumbled. James turned and glared at Barry before shoving past everyone and rushing into the locker rooms. All of the guys turned towards me with raised eyebrows.
”Fuck,” I mumbled, running my hands through my hair in frustration.
“Well?” Chris asked. “Go after him.”
I did as I was told and ran to the locker rooms. James was sitting on a bench, head in his hands. I slowly crossed the room, sitting down next to him. He didn’t move. I wasn’t even sure if he was breathing. He had every right to be mad. I made him look like a fool. People would think we were unstable. People would think we didn’t have a good relationship. Everything would escalade. Everything would be messed up.
“James, I’m really sorry. I should’ve told you,” I mumbled. James didn’t move again. I wasn’t even sure if he had heard me. “Look, I’ll talk to the press myself. I’ll make sure they don’t bother you-“
“Do you really think that’s what makes me so upset?” James asked in a cold tone. He pulled his head out of his hands, his eyes narrowed into slits on me. I blinked a few times.
“I made us look bad as a couple. It was shitty of me to do, I know that, but I’ll fix it.” I explained. James let out a cold laugh. I felt a shiver run down my back at the fake tone of it.
“You really are thick, aren’t you? You saw your bloody ex-fiance. By the looks of it you still care about him!” James hissed. I frowned. I did not care about Tyler Gates. He was an asshole. He could burn on his broomstick for all I cared.
“He ran into me. I was there first.” I defended myself. James rolled his eyes dramatically.
“So you’re telling me he stalked you there?” James asked, but it was a very sarcastic question. I felt my anger and impatience growing.
“No, that’s not what I’m saying-“
“Then what, Gigi? You were flirting with your ex in an ice cream parlor! In a back corner, nonetheless.”
“I was not flirting with that git!”
“Yes you were!”
“I was not!”
“Damn it, Gigi!” James shouted, getting up and punching the locker in front of him. I wasn’t intimidated by his action. I was around men all the time so I was used to them putting out their anger on inanimate objects. It still made me jump. I’m sure he wished I was that locker.
“What in the hell do you want me to say, James?” I asked him, my tone softer than it was before.
He sighed, pushing a hand through his wind-tangled hair. He slowly slid to the floor, back against the locker he had just punched. He shook his head, studying his hands for a little while before looking up at me. His eyes swam across my face, taking in every feature down to the sweat droplets that were still on my forehead. He ran the opposite hand through his hair again. His eyebrows crumbled together as his jaw tightened, then unhinged again.
“You really don’t see it, do you?” James asked me, his voice quieter than it was before. I blinked a few times at him.
“What do you mean?” I asked. James sighed, shaking his head.
“Forget it.” He pushed himself to his feet. He then grabbed onto my hand that was on my knee and pulled me to my own feet.
”Just stop. All I want you to do is promise you’ll stay away from Gates unless you are slamming him into a wall during the game,” James said. He had me close to his body. Even though it was hot out, I shivered slightly. I could see the freckles dancing across his nose from the amount of time we spent in the sun. My eyes wandered to his full, soft lips. My heart flipped suddenly.
”Mhm.” I managed to mumble. He smiled, drawing my attention right back to his lips.
“Then we’re fine,” He said. Though I knew we weren’t. We were far from fine. Well, he was fine. Yum.
He stepped back from me and pulled his shirt off. Fuck, he sure knew how to keep himself in shape. Oh wait, he’s a Quidditch player, of course he knew how to keep himself in shape. Get a grip on yourself, Gigi. You’re turning into some sort of fan girl. I blinked a few times, tearing my eyes away from his abdomen. James turned towards his locker, fishing for the clothing he had worn here. When he bent over, it was hard not to stare at his ass. What? I’m only human and James Potter was extremely hot right now.
“What do you say to coming over for watching the Puddlemere and Harpies match tonight?” James asked me. I blinked as he turned around, already fully clothed.
“You bring the fire whiskey,” He said, going past me and towards the shower. Oh hell.
“That was a nice hit!” I shouted as one of the Harpies’ chasers slammed into a Puddlemere chaser.
“How did he stay on his broom?!” James questioned, leaning forward on his couch and getting into the game.
“If she slams into me like that in a few weeks, I will be down for the count,” I joked.
“Me too!” James retorted back, sending us both into bits of laughter. James took a swig of his fire whiskey.
“You’re an idiot,” I mumbled, shaking my head as I grabbed another fire whiskey from the jumble on the coffee table. It was only bottle three. Thank Americans for teaching me to have a high tolerance.
“I’m your idiot,” James said, his voice barely above a whisper. I blinked a few times.
“Not technically….I mean, it’s not real,” I mumbled. I felt an odd pang in my chest.
“I don’t care about technicalities. I’m still yours, Gigi.” I had to stare down into my hands. Romance and I don’t mix too well.
“I-I think…er… I’m going to just…I think I’ll-“ I started to stumble, my cheeks flushing and my heart speeding. James grabbed a hold of my chin, pulling it towards him. The television felt quiet. The room felt quiet.
“Stop, Gigi. Stop thinking. Stop talking.” James whispered. He was a inch or so away from my face. And then just one inch. Then a few centimeters.
“That’s going to kind of be hard,” I found myself saying. James smiled, chuckling a little bit. Only about one centimeter now.
“I’ll help you.”
And then James kissed me. His lips were soft, moist. At first it started off slow and passionate. My stomach was flipping into my throat. My mind my racing. James. Kissing. James shirtless. Kissing James while he was shirtless. Yum. I couldn’t get the though out of my head as we made out on his couch. It was James and I. That was it. There weren’t any secrets behind it or anything too complicated. We weren’t complicated. We were simple. That’s why what I did next. That’s why James and I were right where we were.
Shagging on his couch. I guess it’s classier than his kitchen floor.
Author's Note: HOW COULD I DO THIS TO YOU?! I know I'm aboslutely horrible. I think I have a problem. But tell me what you think of this chapter! Favorite quotes? Favorite scene? Now we have sober shagging! Woo James and Gigi! Ow ow! ;D.