"You're arse is mine, Ethan," I called as he caught up the ball from the dummy half, Ashton. He smirked, running forward slowly. I jogged up to meet him but he leapt to the side, swinging his body out of the way of my hand. I swore softly as he ran past me, only to get touched a meter before the touchdown line by Blake.
It was tradition that whenever we got together, we would have a game of touch football and tennis afterwards so the older family members could be entertained. We were nearly finished the game, with Ethan's team leading 9-7. It was first to ten, so they were one point – more like one meter – away from winning.
Ethan placed the ball down and stepped over it as Monny came by and swept it up. Stupidly, she ran straight for Chris, who was on my team, and got touched. My Uncle Dominic, who was playing as the ref, called for a change over.
"What?" Monny screeched. "But we have four more touches!"
"You were the dummy half, you fool!" Chris crowed as he grabbed the ball off of her with a grin.
"What a stupid rule," she muttered as she stalked back so she was onside. Chris tapped the ball with his foot and took off running. Keira tagged him and he placed the ball down. Blake picked it up and spun the ball backwards to me. It went a bit high, so I jumped up, caught it, and landed running. I was playing wing and Ethan was usually opposite me, but he had switched with Ashton. Which was actually pretty fortunate, because I easily swerved around him and started sprinting. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Ethan gaining quickly on me.
Dammit. Why did he have to run so fast?
I threw the ball over to Chris who was the closest person to me. It easily fell into his waiting hands and he shot off. I slowed down and laughed when Chris easily outran Ethan and scored us a try.
"Yes!" I cried, pumping a fist into the air as the audience cheered, my grandmother being the loudest.
Uncle Dom called the try and we went back to the middle of the field, which was actually the Deans' backyard.
After two more changeovers, Riley scored the winning try for Ethan's team.
"I say we play Arse," Riley commented as we all headed back inside for a quick drink. The sun was setting, but luckily the tennis court had lights that we could turn on.
"Agreed!" Keira said, disappearing to grab all the tennis rackets.
Ten minutes later, we had broken off into the same teams on either side of the tennis court. Arse was definitely one of my favourite games ever. We had four to a side with one person off. Someone started off with the ball and you had to keep hitting the ball back and forth until it touched the ground or you hit it out. If it was your fault, you got an A. The second time, you got R. The first person to get all four letters had to sit at the baseline, bum in the air, as everyone else served balls from the opposite baseline at it.
It was fun.
Both Riley and I were on S, only one away from losing.
Riley hit a shot that went zooming straight into my head.
"Ouch!" I yelled, grabbing the side of my head as the ball bounced away.
"You're it!" Riley yelled triumphantly, not even apologising.
"What?! That's not fair!"
"Yeah, I have to agree with Cody on that one," Ashton said, and I heard murmurs of agreement from everyone.
"Looks like you lose, Riley!" Chris said, grinning.
"What the hell?! I did not lose!"
"Riley Miller, you hit your sister and didn't apologize so get over to the baseline, put that little bottom in the air and get what you deserve!" mum called sternly, making everyone laugh.
Riley threw his racket down, muttering as he threw himself to the ground at the baseline. I skipped happily to the other side and waited as everyone had their turn. No one got close until Ashton stepped up, winking at me. He tossed the ball up, drew his racket back, then snapped it forward. I watched in awe as the ball flew threw the air and with a dull thud, hit Riley square on the bottom.
"Ow! I'm gonna kill you Ash!" Riley yelped as everyone bent over, laughing hard.
"Oh Riley! Darling, are you alright? You should have put your bottom down! I have to say, that was quite entertaining and deserving though! Again!" grandma called, her elderly voice filled with amusement.
"Thanks granny," Riley muttered, standing up with a dark scowl. "You're not driving my car anymore, Cody."
"We'll see about that!" I called back, still laughing at him.
"Okay, we'll be there in about an hour but it'll be longer if you keep talking," I said to Sam over the phone as I exited the house on Sunday, Ethan and Riley already in the car.
"Fine, I'm shutting up. I'm just so excited! I get to see your hot brother and boyfriend!"
"He's not my boyfriend," I hissed softly into the phone so Ethan wouldn't be able to hear me. "I'm going; bye."
I cut off her reply as I hung up, slid my phone into my cream pants pocket and entered the car. I took out my iPod and plugged it into the stereo system.
"We're going to be here all day," Riley whined from the backseat. Because he's such a gentleman, he'd given up the passenger seat to Ethan.
"Oh, shut up," I said back mildly as I found my favourite playlist and pressed play. Feel Alive came on and I started humming to it as I turned on the engine and reversed out of the driveway.
"I love this car," I said as we got out onto the highway and I pushed the car up to a hundred and twenty kilometres per hour.
"Don't go too fast," Riley said, his brow creased with worry as he watched the countryside streak past.
"I'm not!" I protested.
Ethan leaned over to look at the speedometer, chuckling when he read it. "Yeah, only twenty above the limit," he said sarcastically.
The steering wheel had lots of buttons on it, so I used one to turn up the music and drown out what Riley said in reply. Looking in one of my mirrors, I saw him huff and sit back, frowning.
I tapped my fingers on the steering wheel, bobbing my head to the music as I drove like the stereotypical, crazy green P-plater. Forty-five minutes later, I slowed down as the limit changed to sixty and we entered the main town of Armidale. I stuck my elbow out the window and turned my music down a tad, slowing down at a pedestrian crossing. A group of typical town boys walked onto the street, laughing and shoving each other.
I rolled my eyes as one of them turned to the car.
"Hey, nice car pretty lady! Wanna give me a ride?" He made a crude movement as his friends laughed at his absolute wit.
Ethan's eyes flashed with anger and he opened his mouth, but I beat him to it. I stuck my head out the window and scowled at the guy in front of the car, stopped in the middle of the crossing. "In your dreams, you piece of shit. Now you and your dirty townie friends can get the fuck out of here before I 'accidentally' let go of the brake."
The guy jolted and peered closer.
"Cody?" he asked in surprise, and his group of friends stopped roughhousing each other and peered closely at the car.
I blinked and took a closer look, before scowling. "Derek," I said frostily. I saw Ethan frown in confusion and Riley bolt upright, the look on his face deadly.
"I'm going to kill that little cun—"
"Riley, please don't. And I hate that word," I added, twisting in my seat to glance at him. He sat back but his eyes narrowed, whole body tense.
"Baby, I haven't seen you in ages. Where've you been?" he asked, a smile on his face as he swaggered towards the car. Luckily we were at a very quiet intersection and a car had yet to pass us.
"School, asshole, something a worthless drop-out like you'd know nothing about. I wasn't serious about my threat before but now that I know it's just you, I think I might fulfil it," I snapped.
"Aw, don't be like that. I miss you, babe, we should get back together."
I made a face of revulsion. "You're disgusting. You should have thought about 'missing me' before you went running to my dad."
His eyebrows rose in surprise. "You don't even care about Olivia?"
"Why the fuck would I give the slightest shit about some slut? What you did was way worse than that. Now move," I snapped as I took my foot off the brake and slammed on the accelerator. He swore harshly as he had to jump out of the way.
We soon left them behind around another corner, and I found myself scowling and chewing on my lip. Seeing Derek had made me feel way angrier than I'd thought I would be.
"Who was that?" Ethan asked tentatively, still frowning as he twisted in his seat to watch them disappear.
"A stupid ex-boyfriend," I muttered, fiddling with my iPod.
"Oh," was all Ethan said, his frown easing slightly as he stared out at the passing scenery.
Ten minutes later and we'd arrived at the polocrosse fields. I'd calmed myself down and was now beginning to feel excited about playing.
I saw Sam over by her horse truck, but she ran over when we pulled into a parking spot.
"Cody!" she cried as she hugged me tightly, squealing.
"Hey Sam!" I said back, laughing. She finally let go of me and hugged my brother.
"Oh my god, look at your muscles!" she said, squeezing his biceps. "You sure are a hunk now!"
Riley laughed and playfully pushed her away. Suddenly, she scowled.
"Who the fuck are you?" she sneered at Ethan.
To his credit, he didn't even flinch, but met her glare head on with an easy smile.
"I'm Ethan," he said in a lazy drawl, holding out his hand. "It's nice to meet you Sam."
"I wish I could say the same thing," she replied quickly, looking dirtily at his hand until he retracted it. "I, personally, am not too fond of meeting disgusting, snobby brats from the city."
"That's just too bad, isn't it?" he said, smirking. "You're missing out on all this."
Sam blinked when she realised her usual intimidation wasn't working and I saw an amused gleam enter her eyes. I thought about telling her to back off, but it was too much fun watching someone react differently to Sam.
"All what?" she said, her lips lifting as she gave him a sceptical once over. Even though she didn't look it, I could tell that on the inside, she was fanning herself. Who wouldn't be, though? The guy was hot. "Hate to break it to you, but it seems your nice muscles are trying to compensate for lack of size down there. Happens to the worst of us, mate," she continued, smirking.
Ethan all out grinned now, and I rolled my eyes as I began to walk away. However, I managed to catch Ethan say, "Trust me, babe, 'down there' isn't lacking in the slightest…"
"Hey Hailey," I said, trying my hardest to smile nicely at her.
"Cody!" she shrieked, running over and hugging me tightly. I winced and pushed her away.
"Rather you didn't hug," I said, but the girl was still grinning for some insane reason.
"What." I deadpanned.
"You get to ride Flash!" she cried, throwing her arms around extravagantly.
On the inside, I did a little happy dance. Flash was one of Sam's numerous horses, and he was a whole lot of fun. He was extremely fat and lazy and not really built like a polocrosse pony with his big build. However, once you eventually got him going, he was quite good. He'd lean on all the other ponies, which was very useful for the defensive position I played, number three.
"Cool," I said, and followed as she skipped to Sam's huge horse truck. "There he is!" she said, pointing to a fat bay horse.
"Thanks for that unneeded bit of information," I said caustically.
"That's alright! Did you see where Sam went?" she asked, making me roll my eyes. She took this as a no and hopped off to annoy someone else.
I walked up to Flash and greeted him by rubbing his forelock, and he leaned into my pat. I smiled, then went to find his tack. As I was rounding the truck, I heard voices.
"…don't give a flying fuck if your some top CEO's son or the son of a garbage man, if you fucking hurt Cody I'll smash your face in. And don't you fucking dare doubt that I can!" Sam was snarling.
I hesitated, waiting for Ethan's reply.
"I'm just her friend," he said steadily.
Sam snorted. "Just her friend? I bet you're just trying to get nice and close so you can screw her!"
"Maybe," he admitted, and I could imagine him shrugging. My eyes narrowed as I realised what he'd just said. "When I first met her, sure, I wanted to 'screw' her. She didn't throw herself at me, so I thought it'd be fun."
"Why you massive cockhead, no one says that shit about—"
"But," he said sternly, cutting her off, "I don't want to anymore. She's just my friend."
I thought this was a good time to interrupt.
"Sam!" I cried as I rounded the side of the truck. "I told you not to interrogate him!"
Sam looked guilty for a second, before sticking her chin out.
"And when do I listen to anything anyone says?" she asked haughtily.
"You're so annoying," I muttered. "Is all Flash's stuff in the truck?"
"Yessum," she said, turning and walking away. I grabbed all the stuff as Ethan appeared next to me.
"Do you need any help?" he asked.
I thought for a moment, then dropped my helmet, racket, and boots into his arms. "Thanks!" I said sweetly. "Now turn around."
He gave me a confused look until I glared at him and he faced the opposite way. I quickly threw off my plain yellow shirt and shrugged on the team shirt with a big 3 on the back.
"Okay, we're good now," I said as I picked up the rest of the tack and walked back around the truck.
"What's this for?" he asked, fingering the chin guard on my helmet.
"So I don't get smashed in the face," I said, giving him a 'duh' look. I dumped the stuff in my hands down and threw on the saddle blanket, then the saddle, doing up the girth and breastplate.
"Are you right?" Ethan asked hesitantly as I strained hard to pull the girth up.
"Yep," I said quickly, grunting. "Bloody hell, he's so fat." Finally, I managed to pull it up to the right hole and do it up.
Next, I strapped his legs and pulled the coronet boots on. Finding another strap, I plaited and strapped his tail.
"Riding doesn't look too hard," he commented as he watched Hailey cantering back and forth.
I glanced at Ethan and smirked when an idea popped into my head.
"Why don't you give it a try, then?" I asked.
His face paled slightly. "I don't think so," he said quickly.
"Aw, why not? Don't tell me that poor widdle Ethan's afraid of the big bad horse! Don't worry, Flash is a lazy shit; he won't do anything. See?" I gave Flash a mighty and sudden shove on the shoulder, but all he did was readjust his footing.
His face twisted. "Fine," he ground out reluctantly. "But only so you know that I'm not a coward."
"Excellent!" I crowed, grinning. I pushed my helmet on his head – which luckily fit – and he patted the chin guard with disgust.
"I feel like such a retard with this," he muttered. I ignored his comment and showed him how to get on the horse. Because this was the first time he'd ridden, I led him over to the back of the truck so he could use it to get on.
He flung himself on and sat there.
"This is actually pretty comfy," he said, bouncing around.
"Do you wanna have a go at walking?" I said slowly, speaking to him as if he were a baby.
He scowled at me. "Okay."
I led Flash around as Ethan gripped tightly to the pommel, not even bothering to pick up the reins.
"I want to do what she's doing," he said, nodded to where Sam was doing rising trot.
"Are you sure?" I asked dubiously.
"Heck yes, it looks easy."
"Okay," I said, an evil smirk crossing my lips. I started jogging but kick Flash in the guts when he didn't go anywhere. I strained my neck around to watch Ethan trying to rise out of the saddle like Sam was doing, but failing miserably. All he ended up doing was bounce around and look like a fool.
"Alright that's enough! I'm going to fall off! Stop Cody!" he called franticly as I just ran faster. Finally, I slowed down and stopped.
Ethan leapt off straight away and threw down the helmet in disgust.
"Never again," he said heatedly, rubbing his bottom. "That hurts like a bitch!" he whined.
I laughed at how adorable he looked with his hair sticking up everywhere.
I glanced up when I heard another horse approach, and saw Sam sitting on top of her horse, Toby, as he jigged around.
"Hurry up!" she called. "We're on in twenty and we're playing Inverell."
"Oh shit," I said as she rode off. Inverell's team was well known for their aggression and prowess and to add to it all, I hadn't ridden in weeks. I was going to die.
I slipped of his halter and put on the bridle, quickly doing the straps up. I grabbed my helmet out of his hands and quickly swung onto the horse. Usually, a polo pony was extremely excitable, like Toby, so I was surprised when Flash just stood there, chewing lazily.
"Racket?" I asked, and Ethan handed it to me.
"I'm actually kind of excited," he said. "I never would have seen myself out in the country, chewing on a piece of hay and watching polocrosse."
I grinned and then laughed when he picked up a piece of hay out of Flash's feed and stuck it into his mouth.
Ethan walked over to where Riley was leaning against his car as I pushed Flash into a trot. When he didn't go anywhere, I sighed in frustration and whacked him on the bottom with my stick. With a start, he jumped into a steady trot.
"Hey Hailey?" I asked sweetly. "Could you grab me a pair of spurs?"
"Sure!" the girl said, always eager to please. She jumped off her horse and ran to her horse float, fetching the spurs and bringing the back to me. I smiled at her as she jumped back on her horse. At least she was good for some things!
With spurs, Flash actually went somewhere thankfully.
After fifteen minutes, the referee blowed on the whistle and I cantered my horse to the middle of the field, throwing the ball out of my net and onto the sidelines. Hailey was playing number one and Sam number two. I measured up the team as I stopped next to their number three. They had two boys and one girl, all of them absolutely massive.
It was kind of intimidating, especially when my player – the number 1 – started swinging her racket around in quick swoops.
The game started with the ball being thrown in the middle by the ref, and I reached my stick up. When I saw that the ball wasn't going anywhere near me, I wrenched my reins to the side and kicked Flash in the flanks. He spun around and cantered to where the number one – the only girl – was trotting.
By this time, Sam had possessed the ball and she leant over Toby's neck as she galloped down the field, the three other horses chasing her. She had to bounce the ball to get into the goal third, and when she did one of their players leant low and swooped it up into their racket. I smiled fleetingly when I heard Sam swear colourfully as she wheeled around and gave chase to the fleeing number two. He threw to the number one and I strained upwards in my stirrups to catch it. I missed it, however, and it flew into the number one's net. It was my turn to swear as I squeezed Flash into a gallop, making him lean into her horse and push it away from the goals. I fixated on her stick as I brought mine to the other side and swung it up. The girl's face twisted in surprise as the ball flew out of her racket to a few metres away.
I tugged the reins and Flash reluctantly spun around, not on his hindquarters as he was too lazy. I leant over the side of his shoulders and scooped up the ball, a second before the other girls racket came sweeping in and knocked mine. My arm jarred for a moment and the ball flew up. Fortunately, I whipped my net underneath it and pushed Flash forwards. My eyes widened when I saw the number two of the opposing team galloping towards, racket outstretched. I sat deep in the saddle and flung my feet out in front of me for balance as I wrenched them to the right. He sat almost all the way down on his back legs and spun 270o. I grinned as I easily passed by him and hurled the ball at Hailey, who didn't have a player on her at all. She galloped, unhindered, towards the goal posts. Sam finally managed to get free of her player and called out to Hailey. Once Sam had the ball in her racket, she threw it through the two posts. I let out a cheer as the referee called the goal and a car beeped. I found the source of the beeping coming from Riley's red Ferrari, with Ethan hanging out of the window pressing the horn.
I laughed and made my way back to the T.
Four minutes later, the ref called chukka. With a shaky sigh, I walked Flash off the field. Riley handed me my water bottle once I was close enough.
"I've trained you well," I said, smirking at him.
He laughed and patted my leg. "Good work with that last save. What's the score again?"
"One all," I replied shortly as I gulped down the water.
"You haven't lost it at all!" Sam panted as she stopped Toby next to me. "And that girl you've got against you is the most aggressive out of the whole team. She's a huge bitch!"
I grinned at her as the referee blew his whistle again and we were off.
It was nearing the end of the fourth game – therefore the whole game – when my opponent began to get desperate, as we held a two-point lead.
I'd just swiped the ball out from underneath her pony and she was bashing her pony into mine. Of course, Flash had a semi-trailer for a father so he held firm as he cantered along. She brought her stick up in an aggressive swing but it flew right past my net. Instead, it smashed me in the head. I cried out as my head beginning ringing and the force of the blow sent me right off the back of my horse. The only thing that made it less embarrassing was the fact that I wasn't the first to fall off. Thankfully, I was the third.
I somehow landed on my feet, but stumbled off and landed on my bum.
"Ow," I muttered, taking my helmet off and rubbing the lump on my head. "Stupid bitch."
"Are you okay?" Sam asked, Toby stomping excitedly dangerously close to where I was still on the ground. I pushed myself up and took a step away.
"I'm fine, but it's beginning to hurt like a bitch."
Sam made a sympathetic face. "Yeah, what a dirty slut."
And that, my friends, was Sam trying to be sympathetic.
I grabbed onto the stocks of the saddle and pulled myself back on, strapping my helmet back on. I stretched a bit, wincing at the pangs coming from my backside and head. I gave a serious dirty look to the number one, who looked – if anything – smug.
However it was my turn to look smug when the referee, much to her dismay and anger, awarded us a goal thanks to her foul play.
Another minute of meaningless playing and the ref called the final chukka.
"Ch'yeah boy!" I cried, pumping my fist into the air as I walked Flash over to Sam's truck where the other two were waiting. I swung off and embraced first Sam, then Hailey.
"We beat those motherfuckers into the ground good!" Hailey said, showing her amazing grammar.
I laughed as Riley and Ethan came over and patted me on the back.
"Nice fall on your arse," Ethan said with a smirk.
"Shut up," I said, but I still had a silly smile on my face thanks to the win.
"I think we should go out tonight to celebrate the arse-whooping we just dealt to Inverell," Riley said, his face completely serious but his eyes twinkling.
"Hell yeah!" Sam yelled, giving him a high five.
A/N: I edited half of it but then I got tired… sorry!
Thanks to: ImmortalIncarnate , Jevanminx , pbgurl , HelgaBertoni , PrincessCherokee01 , Crushed Promises , Krazyreader , MintCcIceCream , Angelic Bitch Ice , BITnGyAlisFiCtIoNmAd , YouMakeMeBiteMyLips , emmlay , DesireToSmile , Lyrica , teh-crazeh-one , MarloCarlo10 , LittleWolfPup , and sxcbaby-nikki.