Chapter 14 : Make Me Proud
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Author's note: I know! I'm a terrible person. I have had this chapter 75%done for at least 3 months now, but between getting a new class full of students, weddings and my own engegement(!) I haven't had time to finish it.
Hopefully, I can go back to one chapter each week, since I have the entire rest of the story mapped out. I will try!
Again, i'm sorry, but let me know what you think so far and what you think will happen next!
If my undereyes weren’t the color of my navy blue cardigan I sported in support, I would be amazed. I didn’t sleep a bit last night and I know Oliver didn’t either. I have a pile of 3 sentence letters on my desk with his signature scrawled sloppily on the bottom to prove it. I started feeling bad for our owls around two in the morning, but I couldn’t sleep either so this was the best alternative. He was nervous, and understandably so.
Last night, the team manager announced that Ryan Lefton, Bill Duncan, and Artie White would be playing with the reserve team against Puddlemere during the open practice. Three recently retired quidditch record holders would be playing against Oliver in his return in front of the fans. It was put in place to drum up excitement, as if Oliver returning wasn’t exciting enough.
Finally somewhere around four in the morning, I enclosed a short-term sleeping potion in my letter. Oliver had to be up in five hours, and at the pitch in six. I really hope he took the potion. I don’t know if he did because I took a vial of my own and was out like a light until my alarm rang bright and early. All I can say is “Thank Merlin for good concealer and hair potions.”
I had tucked a gold satin shirt in to a high waisted pleated navy skirt and finished of the look with heels. Not the most sensible thing to wear on my feet at a quidditch pitch, but with all of the cameras, plus having to run straight to the business dinner with Daniel afterwards, I didn’t see much of a way around it. At least they were chunky and not very high. That seems to redeem the shoes a little bit, or at least it does in my mind. Which is all that matters. Right? Right.
I arrive at the pitch and make a bee-line for the locker rooms, successfully avoiding all of the camera crews that have already stationed themselves outside the pitch waiting for the doors to open. I find one of the team assistants and ask him to send Oliver out for a few minutes.
“The coach is coming down to talk to the team in five minutes.” He said, with snarky undertones bleeding from his voice.
He either didn’t know who I was, or he had never seen a female in this area that wasn’t a reporter trying to dig for dirt.
“Then I’ll make sure I keep it to four. Now go get him.”
I’m quite assertive when I need to be and the assistant scampered in to the dressing room.
Seconds later, Oliver emerged in his newly pressed Puddlemere robes. I never understood why they press them before matches, but Oliver looked amazing. Please keep in mind that I have seen this man both shirtless and completely naked when I say this. Oliver Wood has never looked better.
His eyes were bright and active(clearly the lack of sleep wasn’t affecting him a bit.) He stood tall and straight with an enormous grin on his face. He looked at home in his robes. It was as if everything had fallen in to place. I couldn’t help but share his smile.
“I just wanted to check on you before the match, but you look better than I’ve ever seen you.”
He wiggled his eyebrows and the smile turned in to a momentary smirk, “Ah, you like what you see Ady?”
“Oh stuff it.”
“Really professional. Is that the kind of flowery language they pay you for around here?” He quipped.
“I’m glad you’re ready. You look so happy.”
“I don’t think I’ve ever been this happy, and this sure of my game, since I was signed to the team.”
“Well, good luck out there then. I promised I’d have you back in less than five minutes, so you better get going.”
“Aw, no time for a little pre-game action?”
His eyes shimmered mischievously, but darted away as we heard footsteps coming down the stairs. We both turned and my breath caught once again when I saw Daniel in all his fitted three-piece suited glory.
“Don’t mind me, just passing through with a note for Adelynn.” He slipped a small piece of paper in to my hand and then moved in to the locker room just as quickly as he had come.
“There’s something about that bloke that I really don’t like.” Oliver muttered.
I bet this has absolutely nothing to do with me. I need to diffuse this situation and get happy Oliver back right away. My best idea was to reach up and ruffle his hair lightly.
“Don’t worry about him, or me, or anyone else for that matter. Get out there and show me how the best keeper in the league plays quidditch.”
Okay, so I added a little bit of a sexy undertone to my voice, and the ruffled hair was a bit more gentle tugging than ruffling, but it was time to bring him back to earth.
“ Well, if you insist.”
He leaned in to kiss me, but another set of footsteps interrupted us. This set belonged to the coach. Oliver diverted his kiss to my cheek and thanked me awkwardly. The coach just shook his head with an all -knowing look on his face. He didn’t say anything though and Oliver and I both breathed a sigh of relief.
I turned to go and he swatted at my ass, barely making contact before the coach called out to him.
Without the super star retired Chasers playing with the reserves, the game would have been a blowout. With the super star retired Chasers, Puddlemere’s main team was ragged and worn-down by the end of the game. They proved themselves though.
The beaters were able to keep the reserve keeper so occupied that the main chasers scored an absurd amount of goals, and Puddlemere’s seeker extraordinaire, and captain, Alex Smith caught the snitch within two hours of play. The veterans put up an amazing fight, firing off more shots than the main chasers for Puddlemere, and that’s where the stats get truly impressive. Olive blocked an unprecedented 93% of shots taken by the three renowned chasers.
I blinked in astonishment when the save percentage flashed across the screens lining the pitch. I finally pulled my gaze away to look at Oliver and I could see his mouth hanging open in a slack smile as the team flew at him. He looked up, directly to the box he knew I was sitting in, beamed and launched in to an impressive dive to the center of the pitch were a crowd had already begun to form for him full of VIP fans, reporters and the rest of the Puddlemere family. Those kinds of numbers were unheard of against those particular chasers, and even though this was just an open practice, everyone knew it was a big deal.
I rushed down the stairs as quickly as my heeled feet would let me and tried to scuttle my way through the crowd. There was no way I was ever going to make it to Oliver at this rate.
“I think there’s somebody looking for you.” Alex said, grabbing my hand and parting the crowd in front of us until we were steps from Oliver.
He was facing the opposite direction, so I launched in to a jog and threw my arms around his neck yelling my congratulations loudly, so that he could hear me.
He immediately spun around and lifted me in to the air, spinning me slightly. His face was so bright that I was certain the photographers didn’t need a flash to capture it. There certainly were a lot of photographers around.
Oliver seemed to realize this at the same moment that I did and he set me down gently, but quickly. People began filling in all the spaces around us, and before long, I could barely reach Oliver’s outstretched hand with my own.
I looked down at my watch and, realizing I was about to be late for my business dinner, decided it was time to go. Oliver could handle the press, and he wouldn’t be too mad at me for leaving the celebration early, right? A girl can hope, right?
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