Equal Ice

I’m a performer, but I don’t act on a regular stage. I dress up in costumes, but I don’t play a character. My stage isn’t one in a theater; it’s clean slick ice at a rink. I don’t play a character, I’m just myself. Sometimes on the ice though, I feel like I’m someone else. Someone who is graceful and beautiful, it’s still me though, just a different side of me. A side that I like much more than my everyday self. Ice skating is much more work than people may think though, and some people don’t consider it a sport. It’s not as extreme as hockey for example. I may not look very tough, but I can accelerate faster than the guys on the racetrack. I take harder impacts than a rider being thrown from a bull. And I handle more G-Force than a fighter pilot. So why just be extreme, when you can be extremely graceful.

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27. Chapter 27

Chapter 27

Harry’s POV

After Gabrielle had pushed me out of her house, I walked out to my car with a smile on my face. I knew my aunt was probably wondering where I was because I stayed out a bit later than I usually had. I didn’t really worry about that at the moment though. I don’t know why but I had a really good time with Gabrielle today, I acted so upfront and confident with her, I didn’t really know I could do that around people I hardly knew. I was still pretty proud of myself as I got into the car, and put in my keys.

As I was driving down the road, and out of the neighborhood, I got myself to stop thinking about Gabrielle, and think about what my aunt might say to me when I got home.

Surely she can’t be that worried that I wasn’t home yet since she hadn’t called me, I’ll probably just tell her that we stayed a bit longer at the buffet than usual, that should cover it. I started wondering about what Gabrielle might be saying to her dad right now. I hoped he wasn’t one of those people who will constantly shoot out questions to her.

Nevertheless I continued to drive back to my aunt’s house, leaving the neighborhood of all the fancy and rich people and downgrading to the small not so fancy neighborhood that I’m currently living in. I wasn’t complaining about where I was living with my aunt, I was happy just to have a place to live while I was here. I really just thought that all the people that lived in Northbrook where stuck up little shits, then again what did I know, I’ve only lived here for a couple of weeks.

I noticed that I was now driving past the rink, so that meant I was almost home. It was then that I realized that I had just gotten on to the wrong side of the road a few moments ago. I quickly turned the wheel and got back to where I was supposed to be on the road. Luckily I was on one of the roads that is usually never very busy, especially now since its late at might.

Once I was completely where I needed to be, I remembered what Gabrielle had asked me about if it was easy for me to figure out how to drive here and remember which road to be on. I eventually arrived back at my aunt’s house and looking at the windows I noticed that less lights were on than usual.

I didn’t think my aunt would’ve already gone to bed or getting ready for bed by now. I guess I really did get home later than I thought. I never really checked the time that I usually got home, but by the looks of it I was probably a few hours late. I parked my car in the driveway next to my aunts, and grabbed my hockey bag before getting out if the car.

Once I was inside the house, I walked into the kitchen to see if my aunt was in there, but of course she wasn’t. Just as I was about to walk to my room, I saw my aunt emerging from the hall and over to me.

“Harry,” she said to me once she saw me, and I couldn’t figure out if she was angry with for being home late, or just acknowledging that I was here.

“Hey,” I said back.

“Where have you been?” she asked quietly, I assume that Ben is already fast asleep in his room.

“Practice ran long, and then we stayed a bit longer at the buffet,” I lied.

“Okay, just next time call or at least text me that you’re going to be home late, you know how I worry,” she said to me, and I nodded understandingly.

When I got upstairs, I was ready to go straight to bed. Before I actually got ready for bed, I took out my phone and sent Gabrielle a quick text. I wasn’t sure why I felt the need to text her right now, but I just did.

•••

I woke up the next morning to me actual alarm clock going off instead of Ben tugging at my arms. Quite a change of waking up since I’m so used to Ben waking me up. I was pretty sure that my aunt told Ben he couldn’t wake me up today because I needed to sleep longer since I went to bed late.

I was happy that I had my alarm clock set, because otherwise I probably wouldn’t have woken up on time. I always have one set on my phone, but I usually end up turning it off because I’m woken up earlier than I have to be. I grabbed my phone off the bedside table, and turned off the alarm.

Just as I was about to set my phone back down and get up, I noticed that I had a new text. I opened it up to see that Gabrielle had replied this morning to my text from last night. She just responded to the greeting that I had sent her, so now I wasn’t exactly sure how to respond, since I now had to think of a way to start a conversation.

I knew she was probably at practice right now, but I went ahead and sent her a simple ‘what’s up?’ and then put my phone back down so I could get up and ready. I dressed in whatever clothes I could find that would work for practice today.

After I had done everything I needed to do, I grabbed my hockey bag and my phone and headed downstairs. I set my bag on the couch, and walked into the kitchen causing both my aunt and Ben to turn and look at me.

“Good morning,” my aunt said as I sat down at the counter next to Ben.

“Morning,” I said back to her.

“How’d you sleep?” she asked.

“Good,” I replied, and the conversation pretty much went on like this until Ben decided to speak up.

“Harry guess what?” Ben said, as a plate of eggs and sausage were set in front of me.

“What?” I asked and turned to look at him.

“I have another play date with Sam,” he said excitedly.

“That’s great,” I told him, happy that he had found a friend even if I wasn’t the one who found him for Ben.

“Well I’m glad you got up on time,” my aunt told me,

“It didn’t occur to me that you might not have an alarm clock, or set one, but I didn’t want Ben waking you up early like he always does,” she said.

“I have a phone alarm clock that I always set,” I informed her.

“Okay good,”

After I finished breakfast, it was about time for me to leave. I said bye to my aunt and Ben, and then headed out to my car.

As I was driving to the rink, I paid close attention to how I was driving. Making the same mistake as yesterday would really be awful now since there were a lot more cars on the road. I arrived at the rink safely though, and parked my car towards the back of the lot like I always do.

Once I was inside the building, I headed to the locker room to meet with the rest of the boys who were almost all here before we headed to the rink for practice.

When we walked into the rink, we had a small encounter with Gabrielle and her friend. I gave her a small smile, which she subtly returned before her and her friend left.

•••

 

Practice seemed to go by quicker than usual, one minute we’re starting warm ups, and now we’re walking back to the locker room. Everyone went off to do their own thing to clean up and get ready for the buffet. I found myself back where I was last week, wanting to ask someone about the figure skaters, mostly Gabrielle though. I looked around to see who was currently in the area I was in right now.

I soon noticed Ryan sitting down at one of the benches, and I went ahead and walked over to him. He seemed like a pretty safe one to ask questions to because he was fairly new to the team I heard, I think he joined a few months ago.

“Hey Harry,” he said once he saw me sitting at the bench across from his.

“Hey,” I said back.

“You know Gabrielle?” I found myself nonchalantly asking after a few moments of quiet.

“Who?” he asked.

“Gabrielle Gold,”

“Oh yeah, figure skater, bright blonde hair. What about her?”

My hands played with the strap of my bag, “What do you think of her?” I asked.

“What do you mean?” he grabbed his bag to put his skates in, and took out a bottle of water,

“I don’t really think much about her,” he shrugged.

“She seems nice,” I commented, and he questioningly raised his eyebrow at me.

“I haven’t really talked to her,”

“Do you think she’s attractive,” I heard myself asking before I could take it back, and he almost spit out his water.

“Why are you asking that?” he chuckled.

“I mean she’s not bad looking,” I said, and he just shrugged.

“I don’t know, why are you asking anyway? You like her?”

“No, no, I was just wondering,” I told him.

“Well don’t bring up your wondering to anyone else, you know we aren’t supposed to associate with them,” he told me. I nodded as he stood up,

“I’ll keep this between us, just don’t let whatever you’re thinking get in the way, those figure skaters are bad news,” before I could ask him anymore questions, he was already walking away.

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