Chasing Elliott

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Chapter 13

Scintilla (n.)
a tiny, brilliant flash or spark; a small thing.

"Come on, King," I yelled down the hall as I tied the front of Cooper's jersey so you could see my jean shorts. "I don't want to be late."

"Calm down," Kingsley scolded as she came strolling down the hallway in a loose fitted yellow shirt and black shorts, our school's colors. "The game doesn't start for another two hours."

"But I want food," I complained as she approached me. Kingsley put her arms around my shoulders and gave me a quick peck on the cheek before pulling back to look me in the eyes.

"You're so smitten," she teased as she flicked my nose with her pointer finger. Scrunching up my face, I clipped on my fanny pack and made my way out the front door.

Pulling up to the diner on main street, we both climbed out of her car and saw Benjamin waiting for us by the front entry.

"Hello ladies," he greeted as he gave Kingsley a quick kiss and she wrapped an arm around his waist as his fell to rest over the top of her shoulders. "Looking good, Elli. Surprised he let you wear his jersey."

"Why?" I asked as he held open the door for us to walk in.

"He never let his ex-girlfriend wear his extra jersey before," Benjamin informed me as he and Kingsley walked past me to find a seat. I froze on the spot, caught off guard by his statement.

"You coming?" Kingsley called, snapping me out of my thoughts. Shaking my head, I walked over and joined them in a booth near the corner.

After ordering our food, I spotted Laura walking into the diner. She glanced in my direction and we maintained eye contact for a few seconds before she turned her back on me and walked in the opposite direction.

"So, how are you handling Coop?" Benjamin asked after our food had been delivered. Laughing, I plopped a fry in my mouth.

"I should be asking you how he's handling me," I retorted which brought a laugh out of Kingsley.

"Oh, he's crazy about you," he said without hesitation which caused a smile to grace my face. "I hope he's not being over the top or anything."

"Not at all," I replied quickly, shaking my head. "He's so sweet and thoughtful, I'm soaking it up."

"Good," Benjamin said with a mouthful of food. "And you're still into him?"

I glanced over at Kingsley who sat next to him and saw her shrug. I took a deep breath, knowing that I had done this same thing to him about Kingsley so I had no right to question him questioning my motives.

"I am," I assured him with a smile.

"Then why haven't you two kissed?" He asked which almost made me choke on my fry. Wiping at my mouth, Kingsley roughly slapped his shoulder but he didn't react as he kept his eyes trained on me.

"That's not really on me," I informed him once I caught my breath. "I've wanted to and have put out plenty of feelers but I guess I just also haven't figured out enough to initiate it yet."

"So are you saying you can't tell if he wants to kiss you or not?" He asked and I nodded my head in response.

"If he kissed you, you wouldn't push him away then?" Kingsley followed up, piping into the conversation. Rolling my eyes, I answered with another nod before going back to my food, suddenly uncomfortable.

The rest of the meal was spent with us hassling one another and talking about our plans for after the game. Benjamin paid for all our meals, even though I argued with him about it. Finally leaving the diner, I noticed we had about forty-five minutes until the game started but Benjamin insisted on getting there early so Cooper could see that I showed up.

Pulling up to the baseball field, we all made our way over to the stands. For the first time in my life, I felt a little self-conscious as the few people who were already there stared at me; I wasn't sure why but I didn't like it.

"They're just jealous," Kingsley whispered in my ear as we sat down on the metal bleachers, noticing my uneasy demeanor. "You're wearing Cooper Hearst's jersey, after all."

I rolled my eyes and smiled gently, grateful that she was attempting to put my mind at ease. Suddenly, a bunch of boys started running out of the dugout and onto the field. I watched as some of them warmed up with a game of catch while a few others mingled not too far away from us just outside of their respective benches.

Catching sight of Cooper, I smiled as I watched him toss a ball up in the air before catching it effortlessly in his glove. He definitely looked amazing in those tight black pants and form fitted jersey and I wasn't the only girl who noticed.

Cooper's eyes suddenly fell on me and his face lit up which caused me to bite my lip. He came strolling over so he was just in front of the awning that covered the dugout and flashed me a wink.

"So glad you came," he said softly so just the three of us and the few boys around him would hear. "Let's see if you can bring me good luck."

Cooper suddenly rolled the ball that he had been tossing earlier across the awning and it fell into my lap. Raising a brow, I tossed the ball between my hands as I maintained eye contact.

"Kiss it," Cooper said with a slight chuckle in his voice. Smiling, I kissed the ball, not caring that I left a light lipstick mark on it. Sliding the ball back over the awning, Cooper smiled as it fell into his glove.

He sauntered out to the outfield with the rest of his team and started warming up his arm. I watched intently as his muscles rippled through the back of his shirt each time he wound up to pitch the ball.

"Guess I should've been more of a slut and I would've been able to wear his jersey," a high pitched voice said from the stairs to my left. Glancing over, I narrowed my eyes at Laura before I rolled them and went back to watching Cooper.

"Did you hear what she did?" Some girl she was with suddenly said as they walked behind us.

"Who hasn't? It's all over twitter," Laura giggled back as they turned and walked up the bleachers.

Kingsley suddenly pulled out her phone but I put a hand on her arm to stop her, not caring what was out there about me. I gave her a sad smile and turned my attention back to the field as the boys came jogging back into the dugout.

As Cooper neared the benches, he looked up and blew me a kiss. Benjamin fake gagged next to me as I rolled my eyes and a laugh tore through me but I returned the favor. He smiled widely and disappeared into the dugout, out of view.

"Have you ever watched baseball before?" Benjamin asked as he leaned forward to rest his elbows on his knees.

"Yes," I said at the same time Kingsley said, "No." We both laughed and I shook my head, slinging an arm around her shoulders.

"Don't worry, babe, I'll teach you the ropes," I told her as I looked over at Benjamin. "Don't listen to him, I can guarantee I know more than he does."

"Oh, is that so?" He fired back as he narrowed his gaze at me. A cocky smile came to my lips as Kingsley groaned and crossed her arms over her chest.

"Don't you dare start or else I'm leaving," she grumbled. "I'm not in the mood for the competitiveness."

"Then you've come to the wrong place with the wrong people, darling," I informed her as I turned my attention back to the field to see that we were batting first. "Sports are the most competitive thing there is."
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