“Alright— Crane what are you doing? Doe get down! Dendron, Twig. Stop making out. Where the hell is Striker? Pegas... you’re actually...”
Cedric frowned at me as I sat in the grass and waited for him to gain control over the rest of the team. Nate and Callie were making out in the grass a few feet from us, Crane was running around, escaping from some bug that was bugging him. I pressed my lips together at the joke I made in my head but shook it away. Okay... then there was Seth. He was flying around on his broom and Melba hadn’t shown up.
“You’re usually just as annoying as the rest of your friends.” Cedric said and I scoffed, rolling my eyes.
“Yeah, well. I’m trying not to cry, y’know.”
He raised an eyebrow but then looked towards the castle where Melba came running in her uniform, wand in hand.
“I have a message from Sprout!” She called out and at her voice, Seth got back down on the earth while Callie and Nate broke apart, then slowly made their way back to us. Nick was still running around, screaming like a little school girl as the bug chased him. Melba reached us and threw her wand in the grass before leaning forward to place her hands on her knees as she panted heavily.
“You’re out of breath?” Cedric asked. “Unbelievable. We can’t have a beater who’s out of breath from running a little.”
“Oh shut up.” Melba snapped. “Sprout says Gryffindor needs the pitch today.”
“Seriously?!” I raised my voice. “Why are Gryffindor taking everything away from us?”
Cedric looked down at me with a questioning look before he shook his head. “Don’t make this about your breakup with Weasley.”
He looked at Melba. “I wrote Hufflepuff on the schedule. We have the pitch today.”
“Yes, and we do but we have to share it with Gryffindor.” Melba said. “Apparently Ron Weasley made the team as a keeper and he needs extra training before their match at the start of November.”
“Right. We share. That’s no issue, right?” Callie asked.
“No. It’s not.” Cedric shook his head. “Crane, get over here!”
Nick let out a shriek in response and Cedric sighed as he ran a hand through his hair. “Alright. No, there’s no issue. As long as we still get to practice, I think it’s fair. Now, seeing as Striker here turned up twenty minutes too late and out of breath, I need you all to do rounds. Not on brooms, no. Today we’ll focus on your form so give me ten rounds around the pitch.”
“You’re joking... right?” Seth asked. “Ten rounds? I’m not a bloody horse. I’ll be able to run half a round and then I’ll be out of breath.”
“Which we need to change.” Cedric said. “How you six made the team, is truly a wonder. Now get going. I’ll be running too.”
I pulled myself to my feet and as we started running the laps, the Gryffindor team showed up. I ran next to Seth and I tried to keep my focus on him and not look at Fred. I hadn’t talked to him since I left that night I got naked in his dormitory. He saw my nipples and those he hasn’t seen since we were together.
“I’m hungry.” Seth spoke. “Are you hungry? I could really use a burger right now.”
“I’m hungry!” Nick shouted as he caught up with us, running on my other side. “I would like some pizza.”
“We can go get some food when we’re finished with practice.” Nate said as he and Callie passed us. They always did that. Those two loved outshining us with how fast they can run.
“I’m not really hungry.” I said. “I think I ate too much dinner.”
“You always eat too much dinner.” Nick said and seconds later, he slowed down, letting himself fall into the grass as he was out of breath already.
“Crane!” Cedric called. “Get back up! You didn’t even make it half around the pitch!”
“When did you become our coach?!” Nick shouted back. “You’re our captain but not our coach!”
“In quidditch, the captain is your coach so get up and get running!” Cedric yelled at him as he passed him and shortly after passed Seth and I.
“Is it just me or is Ced more cranky today?” I asked, glancing at Seth before my eyes trailed to Fred who was laughing with Angelina over something and suddenly it felt like someone ripped my heart out and stomped on it.
“He’s always cranky when we’re involved.” Seth said with a small laugh, then noticed how my eyes were focused on the Gryffindor team in the middle of the pitch. “Hey. Ignore that they’re here. Don’t let them get to you. The love they have between them is completely fake. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a fake rela—”
Suddenly I tripped over my own feet, tumbling into Seth before we landed on the ground, me on top of him. We both groaned at the harsh contact and then I heard the familiar sound of Angelina laughing, along with Alicia.
“I just tripped us.” I stated as I looked down at Seth under me while I placed my hands on the ground to lift some of my weight off of him.
“You just tripped us.” He confirmed and nodded slightly. “And ouch... that hurt like hell.”
“I’m sorry.” I chuckled lightly. I stood up and extended a hand, helping him up. I brushed some dirt off his shoulders, then brushed some off my own quidditch uniform. “I got... distracted.”
“Yeah. I can tell.”
Suddenly Cedric reached us again and I looked at him, frowning as I felt a bit confused. How did he already run a whole lap around the pitch? He passed us only seconds ago.
“Are you two done messing around? Take this serious. As serious as you are about wanting to win those three matches.” He said, then started running again.
“I hate him.” I told Seth. “I mean, I don’t really but then again... I really hate him.”
“Yeah that makes sense.” He laughed and grabbed my hand, pulling me with as he started running again and I did as well. “Keep your eyes where you’re running, alright? I don’t want to be tripped again.”
“Yeah yeah. Alright.” I muttered as I took the deep breath. “I’m keeping my eyes where I’m running.”
Though that was extremely hard. I had always found it hard to not look at Fred if I know he’s near me. Well, not always. There was a time when I weren’t in love with him but then I fell hard at the start of our fifth year and now.. we’re not together, I’m single, he’s not and yet I can’t seem to keep my eyes off of him. I can’t seem to focus with him around and it’s even worse now than it was when we were an item. I hated him for it. Hated him for cheating and hating him for making me feel this way but I hated myself even more for not actually hating him.
I had stopped. I was no longer running. I was just standing there, heavily breathing while Seth walked back to me. “What are you—”
“I can’t concentrate.” I said. “My head is killing me. All I can think about is that he’s right here and I’m right here and I can’t talk to him like I used to. I can’t wrap my arms around him and feel him hug me in such a comforting way while he sways me from side to side. Johnson has all of that now and she doesn’t understand how lucky she is.”
“Oh dear Jules.” Seth pouted and grabbed my face in his hands. “Get him out of your head. I know it’s hard but listen to me. When you and he ended, your life didn’t. You still have so much and I know you do need time to get better from this but I am right here so just focus on me, keep running and get through practice. Think you can do that?”
“Not like that. But like that. I mean—” I sighed and closed my eyes. “I would feel a lot better if I knew he felt the same way that I do. If he saw me with someone like I see him with someone.”
“You want me to... kiss you?”
“Yes. Please, just to make him jealous.”
He laughed softly but then tilted his head and pressed his lips to mine. They were soft... his lips, I mean. They were soft and the kiss was nice but it was nothing compared to Fred.
Nick was right. I really were going to compare everything to him. Fuck Nick and fuck his stupid knowledge.
Seth and I moved together, his nose pressed against my cheek as our lips moved in sync. His hands were still cupping my jaw one of my hands ran to the side of his neck and the other went to his back.
We didn’t pull apart until we heard a howl. Nate was standing a couple feet away from us, howling at us and when we looked at him, we saw both he and Callie.
“I knew it!” Callie smiled. “I always felt the tension.”