AN - Thanks to those who reviewed, Favorited or put this story on alert, it means a lot to me. Here is the next installment of 'Whoops-a-Daisies!' Don't forget to review if you can to let me know what you think - constructive criticism is welcomed. Hope you enjoy it!

II

Advance

verb

[no object] move forwards in a purposeful way

move forward in time

[with object] change the date of (an event) so as to occur earlier than planned

make or cause to make progress

[no object] (of shares) increase in price.

[with object] put forward (a theory or suggestion)

[with two objects] lend (money) to (someone)

pay (money) to (someone) before it is due

noun

a forward movement

a development or improvement

an increase in amount or price

an amount of money paid before it is due or for work only partly completed

a loan

(usually advances) an approach made to someone with the aim of initiating sexual or amorous relations

adjective

[attributive]

done , sent, or supplied before hand

"Whoops – a – daisies!" she said, sending an apologetic glance at the woman whose chair she had just tripped over. Travis sighed, but smiled amusedly, it would be a wonder if she could make it to the table without spilling the drinks.

It was Friday after school and he had agreed to go to coffee with Wilhelmina to further sort out the 'arrangement'. His friends thought it was a date and he had received countless remarks since she had approached him at lunchtime on Wednesday and asked him. Flynn had even joked about teaching the others the pout and eyes trick that rendered Travis' resolve useless.

Wilhelmina, he was quickly learning, happened to be one of the clumsiest people on earth. As this thought came to mind, she tripped over her own feet and fell right in front of him, their drinks miraculously remaining in the plastic cups (though it helped that they had lids).

He raised an eyebrow as she sidled into the chair opposite him, acting as if she hadn't just made an utter fool of herself. Pretty much the whole of the small 'Costa' was watching her, though it might also have been related to her pink hair - that had a tendency to draw attention also.

"Who says 'whoops-a-daisies' anymore?" he asked her incredulously. "Except nineteen fifties schoolgirls of course."

Wilhelmina quirked her own brow in return.

"Notting Hill? Is your sister even old enough to watch that?"

"She's twelve."

"And it's a fifteen."

Travis frowned; there was no way he could overcome that.

"Well it's not so bad," he reasoned. "Plus no-one can say 'no' to Leah anyway."

She smirked, "You mean you can't say 'no'."

He pouted, "Look, just because I have a pathetically weak resolve and you're a stubborn hellion does not mean you can rub it in."

"I'm not a hellion!" she protested. "I just like things the way I like them and use my feminine wiles to get what I want."

"Precisely – you're a stubborn hellion."

Wilhelmina sighed heavily in defeat, her pride preventing her from admitting the fact and moved onto something else.

"So, since I'm setting you up, I need some background info," she prompted.

He raised an eyebrow, feeling that it was becoming a rather common occurrence.

"Why? You never asked with Flynn and Rylan."

"That's because I knew instantly that there was something between the two."

Travis frowned as he considered this. "But what about Dahlia?"

Wilhelmina pursed her lips in annoyance, though he wasn't quite sure why.

"Dahlia is just a fleeting fancy, you like her because she seems unobtainable, half the guys in your year like her."

Travis said nothing, after all, she was right – Tom also liked her, but that was nothing; Tom liked anything with legs and breasts.

"See the thing is, I can usually tell when it comes to connections between people, like that," she clicked her fingers to illustrate this. "But you," she continued, "I look at you and nada, not a thing. I'm trying to determine a bit more about you because you and Dahlia could be quite well suited, if you were in the same league as her when it comes to ambition."

Travis was at a loss for words. He wasn't connected to anyone? Wow. If he believed in that mushy stuff about soul mates (love was purely circumstantial in his opinion), he would have been quite offended.

"There's no-one in school for Dahlia either, but she approached me and you seem perfect."

He gagged on his iced fruit drink, almost swallowing the straw.

"Dahlia asked for a set up?" he managed to croak out. He found that surprising since the girl had refused every single person who had asked her after it was realised that she was in fact very pretty in around Year Nine.

Wilhelmina nodded. "So tell me – any ambitions?"

Travis paused as he considered his answer, stirring the partially-melted ice drink as he did so.

"I want to study History at one of the better universities, but not Oxbridge, somewhere like Durham or St Andrew's or maybe Manchester or York."

"You can't go to Manchester!" Wilhelmina gasped. "As a Liverpudlian, that's one of the worst crimes you can commit!"

"Other than support United."

Wilhelmina nodded and waved her hand for him to continue, prompting him with, "Why History?"

"Sets me on a footing for most things, since I am yet to decide what exactly it is I want to do."

"Ideal job?"

"A History professor – good work, high pay, more mature students. Plus- I can settle in a city and never be too far from anything."

"Country life not for you, eh?" she asked lightly.

"Nah," Travis answered with a shrug, "Hills, sheep and rain just ain't my thing." He noisily sucked through his straw at the small amount of drink left. "What about you?"

Wilhelmina looked slightly taken aback at his question. "Me? I'm finding out about you here."

"Please?"

Travis attempted the pout and puppy-dog eyes that always seemed to work on him, yet knowing that not only did he look incredibly stupid, but it wouldn't work on the hard-headed teen.

"Suppose there's no harm in it," Wilhelmina said, trying to suppress a smirk at Travis' expression. "I want to do Psychology at uni, don't really care where, but I want to become a therapist, help deal with couples going through problems."

"Figures," Travis muttered.


"I hate you," Travis growled, wiping the sticky substance from his vision and glaring at a manically laughing Malcolm. He swept his irritated gaze of the rest of his friends who sniggered at his expense.

It was Saturday night and he and his friends were having a games night in James' house. Malcolm, who had gone downstairs to fetch another round of drinks, thought it appropriate to pour a jug of iced cordial juice over Travis, thus causing him to lose his race of Mario Kart, which otherwise would have ended with him in first.

In retaliation, he seized a large handful of popcorn and threw it at Malcolm, also hitting Tom and James. The three of his friends smiled wickedly and attacked him in a barrage of gummy sweets and crisps, which brought Flynn and Rylan into the war also. Before long, it had escalated into a full blown fight, every man for himself, with all kinds of junk food flying around the large bedroom and dirtying the walls, carpet and furnishings, which were fortunately dark.

In fact, they only halted upon realising that Flynn and Rylan were not trying to rub cake into each others' hair in the corner, which had been the presumption, as the moans being elicited were a sign of enjoyment.

"Alright, break it up, break it up," James ordered, standing above the two boyfriends and dousing them in his beaker of cola.

Flynn pulled off Rylan reluctantly, narrowing his eyes at the room's other occupants.

"Cock blocks."

"Ya not getting off in my room," James stated, still looking down on his friend.

"Alright," Rylan piped up brightly, placing his hand on his boyfriend's shoulder. "We can just go in ya ma's room."

A look of horror crossed James' face, causing Travis to laugh.

"Hey, I wanna do his ma!" Tom added.

James glared at him. "Tom you want to do everything with two legs and a vagina."

"And big tits!"

"Tom, you're gross," Travis stated as he wrinkled his nose.

"Least I'm not a pseudo-girl like you."

"I'm not a girl!" Travis protested.

"Which is why you watch chick flicks with Leah," Malcolm chipped in dryly.

Travis felt his cheeks burn as he friends all smirked at him.

"How did you find out about that?"

"A certain little birdie told us," was James' evasive answer.

"Who?"

"Not telling ya," Tom said, sticking out his tongue for effect.

Travis sighed, knowing his attempts were fruitless and instead noted the absence of Flynn and Rylan, which wasn't too hard, considering that Flynn was a hulking, six-foot-three mass of muscle and Rylan was clad in a fluorescent green t-shirt.

"Shit!" James cried as this was noted, clutching his head. "They'd better not get jizz on anything!"

With that, he dashed out of his bedroom and along the landing to where his mum's room was.

Very occasionally, Travis wondered about his friends, he really did.

As they waited for the return of the other three, Malcolm and Tom started a race on the abandoned console whilst Travis contented himself with watching and poking whoever was in the lead, just to be annoying.

As several curses were heard from outside, indicating James had found wherever Flynn and Rylan had snuck off to, Travis' phone went off with an obnoxious, tinny rendition of 'The Bad Touch'.

Travis groaned - Tom had somehow altered his ringtone yet again. Glaring at the snickering teen on the floor, he answered.

"Hey Mina," he greeted her.

"I thought we'd been over this – my nickname is Willy," she said in reply.

Travis sighed, this was the third time he'd had this discussion with her, "I know, but every time I refer to you by that, Tom laughs."

"Isn't he the really lewd one with the mono-brow?"

Travis snorted at the accurate description, "That's him alright."

There was a momentary lull in the conversation, until Travis asked, "So what did you want?"

"Well I was hoping you could meet me at the 'Costa' tomorrow at around ten o'clock?"

"But it's a Sunday," Travis protested.

"It's something important," she said. Travis opened his mouth, about to suggest she tell him over the phone.

"And no, I can't say it now; it's a face to face thing."

Travis sighed, he supposed ten o'clock wasn't too early and he had got a lie in that morning also, since Leah had had a sleepover the previous night and wasn't home to wake him at some ungodly hour such as nine o'clock.

"Fine," he said, "I'll see you there."

"Aww, our little Travis is going on a date," Malcolm cooed as he hung up.

"It's with Wilhelmina, don't be stupid."

"I think our Travis has an incy wincy crush on the matchmaker," Tom added in the same babying tone.

Travis felt his cheeks colour for no apparent reason. Still, he shot an incredulous look at his friends and muttered a 'shut up'.

Just then, a hysterical James burst into the room, followed by the ruffled, but very satisfied looking Flynn and Rylan.

"You would not believe what I found these two doing in the toy room!"


Travis shifted his weight about as he stood outside the small 'Costa', waiting for any signs of Wilhelmina. His mind was still bleary for the games night had developed into a sleepover so he had had a grand total of two hours sleep and an unceremonious wake-up from Tom, who thought it apt when he woke up early to throw large icepacks from James' freezer into everyone else's makeshift beds.

He cast his gaze over the small square of shops in the suburban town, that had been dubbed 'the Village'. The buildings were old, of Victorian style – red brick three-floor terraced houses with slate roofs. They bordered the cobbled square on three sides, with four bright flower beds on the fourth, next to the main road. There were a few people milling about, mainly visiting the newsagents' opposite where Travis stood, or headed for the large supermarket, tucked behind the square.

As the clock on the Queen's Arms pub struck the hour, Travis could see there was no sign of Wilhelmina still. Silently, he lamented his getting up early, only for her not to turn up, when he caught sight of a different familiar face heading towards him.

A taller, slim girl, with a cheery smile despite the hour and a head of natural blonde corkscrew curls approached him. He stiffened in an automatic response, ruffling his hair self-consciously.

"Hey Travis," she greeted as she reached him. "Have you seen Wilhelmina Hart anywhere? I was meant to be meeting her here."

"That's odd," Travis said, tapping his chin in thought, "Since I was supposed to be meeting her too."

She groaned, "This is a set up, isn't it?"

Travis smirked, "I have a feeling it is Dahlia."

Well, might as well make the most of it. He offered her his arm, but she did not take it, instead looking at him with a confused glance.

"Would you care to join me?" he offered. "After all it would be such a pity to have come all this way for nothing."

"It would," Dahlia replied, taking his arm as he led her into the coffee shop.

From her position safe behind one of the flower beds, Wilhelmina watched the pair with satisfaction, yet could not smile at the success. After all, she couldn't shake that sickly feeling in her stomach that had bubbled up when she saw Travis arrive. She straightened up and fixed her skirt. She was probably just hungry, after all, she had missed breakfast that morning.