Saturday, July 19, 2014

Figure Eight...Complete

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Bella Swan is a nationally ranked paired skater with Jacob Black. Edward Masen is beautiful British skater paired with Tanya. However, both of their partners fall into hard times. These two try to navigate their way through life, both on and off the ice.

Chapter One: Nationals and Knees
"Damn it, Jacob! Stop touching my boobs as you're lifting me," I growled.
"Come on, you love it," Jacob purred as he batted his eyes.
"No. I don't. Come on, we have only three minutes left in the warm up skate before we perform for the United States Nationals," I seethed. "Star lift and don't touch the tatas."
"Fine," he said as he adjusted his stance. We built up speed and Jacob lifted me into a flawless star lift, soaring over his six foot tall frame. He may be a pain in the ass, but he was strong and he has never dropped me. I flipped down and landed softly on my skates. "See? I can play nice, Isabella."
"When you want to," I said as I jabbed in the ribs. "Do you want to win?"
"Yes, I do," he said. "Let's do this shit, babe."
"Don't call me babe."
We finished doing some basic lifts and spot checked a few places in the choreography. Before we knew it, warm up skate was done and we got off the ice. We were the favorites for the National Championship. We coasted through the short program and now we were last to skate for the long program. It was our third year together as a pair. Jacob and I hated each other off the ice, but he was an amazing partner. He was strong, confident and driven. Everything I looked for in a pairs partner.
We'd been foisted together by my mother and his father. I was trying to hack it as a singles skater but couldn't nail the needed triples. Jacob was on his fourth partner in six months. He'd slept with all of them. Two of them got pregnant and the other two were so repulsed that they left him. We met on the ice. It was hate at first sight. However, my coach, the esteemed Carlisle Cullen, insisted I try working with him. I sighed and went with it. Jacob taught me the basics for pairs skating and by the end of our first practice, we'd nailed the star lift and a death drop. I hesitantly agreed to work with Jacob. However, it was a strictly business relationship. No funny business. I wanted Olympic Gold and that means that I do NOT sleep around.
Besides, Jacob probably has the clap. Or something.
Six months after our initial meeting, we'd perform at several regional competitions. We were gaining notoriety and experience. Carlisle felt that we were ready for several international Grand Prix events and we enrolled in two competitions. We won gold at both events. Easily. The only other pair that was close to us in the way of scores was Edward Masen and Tanya Juneau.
Edward was a class act. Tanya, not so much. Her mouth got them into trouble and they lost points because she dissed several judges. I felt sorry for Edward. Honestly. It's a shame such a strong skater had a bitch for a partner.
I bet he was thinking the same about me. It's a shame that I have to put up with Jacob. He's such a prick. A bad boy. A baby daddy to two little girls who will never know their father. Bastard.
"Bella?" Carlisle asked. "Are you okay, sweetie?"
"I'm fine. Just trying to focus on the program," I said as smiled at my coach. "I don't want a repeat from rehearsal yesterday. I can't fall on the throw triple salchow."
"That wasn't you, Bella. That was Jake. He threw you too hard. How's the knee?" Carlisle asked.
"Fine. I may have Jasper take a look at it after this competition. I think I need some rehab on it," I said as I bent my knee. Yesterday in practice, I fell funny on one of our throws. My knee gave out and it was slightly swollen. Emmett McCarty who was the trainer that I worked with taped me up so I could have some extra support for today. He also gave me some stim and ice last night. Also a stern talking to Jacob.
"I hope that it's nothing serious," Carlisle said with a frown. "We have the Worlds in March."
"I'll be fine. Jacob just needs to not toss me like I'm a rag doll," I said with an eye roll.
I went into the woman's room to adjust my makeup. Normally I don't like to wear makeup but when I'm on the ice, I piled it on. My eyeswere smoky and my lips were a deep blood red. My brown curly hair was pinned back in a tight bun with a red swatch of fabric that matched my dress. Alice, Carlisle's daughter, was my best friend and costume designer for Jacob and me. The outfit she chose for us for the compilation of songs from Mask of Zorro was red dress with laser cut outs and a chiffon skirt. Jacob wore black pants and a shirt that matched my dress. Alice wanted him to wear a mask, but he abjectly refused.
I agreed with him.
One of the rare times that I did.
Just because I agreed with him, Jacob wanted to grab my ass. He got a toe pick in the shin for that one.
"Yo, Bells. We're up next," Jacob called into the bathroom. I blew out a breath and went out into the backstage area of the ice arena. I slipped off my jacket and did some brief stretches to loosen up my muscles. Once I did my stretches, Carlisle rubbed my shoulders and told me that I would kick ass.
I hope so.
I hated relying on another person to win but I wasn't strong enough as a singles skater to cut it. I needed Jacob. He needed me. We were a team. Despite the fact that I hated him, we needed to work together to win Nationals.
The pair before us finished their piece. Jessica Stanley and Mike Newton skated off the ice. I could tell by Jessica's tears that they did not do well. Mike had a posture of defeat. He gave me a slight smile as they went to the kiss and cry. Jacob and I stepped onto the ice and faced Carlisle.
"This is it. You both can nail this. Just be confident and don't let the standings faze you. You both worked so hard for this and I'm proud of you," Carlisle said. "Let's say a brief prayer and you both can kick some ass."
We bowed our heads and said our silent thanks to God and prayers that neither one of us would get hurt or fall. Carlisle squeezed our hands and gave us a smile as our names were called. Jacob grasped my hand and we did a loop around the arena before reaching our mark for the opening of our routine. We got into our positions and waited for music to start.
It did and we both flew into action. Like perfectly synchronized dancers, we moved and flowed with each other. I was only 5'3", easily dwarfed by Jacob. However, we fit together perfectly when we skated. Jacob had the strength that I lacked and I had the artistry that hestruggled with.
We were halfway through our routine when we got to the throw salchow that caused me issues in practice. "Don't toss me like I'm a sack of potatoes, Jake," I hissed as we built up speed.
"Got it, Swan," he said as he pulled close to his body. He twisted and turned, launching me into the air. I crossed my arms and prayed that my knee would hold up. I did my three revolutions and landed on my blade. I smiled as I didn't fall. We worked into our footwork sequence. It was tight and intricate and hard. I had no problem with it, but Jacob was bigger than me and struggled with the moves. Like I said, I had the artistry, Jacob had the strength.
We got through the footwork and did our spin sequence before the end of the routine. We had one more jump left and it was the bane of my existence. Side by side triple loops. Gah! I hated the fact that we put a triple at the end of the routine, but in order to get bonus points, we needed to do it. We readied our jumps and took off simultaneously. Thankfully, we landed at the same time but I noticed that Jake doubled his. I was pissed as it meant that we would not get the bonus points.
We finished the routine and landed our final pose. The crowd roared and we bowed for the audience. Flowers and stuffed animals were being thrown onto the ice and we waved at the audience before we exited the ice. We both slipped on our blade guards and went to the kiss and cry. Carlisle hugged both of us, exclaiming his pride and joy that we did so well. I was already mentally deconstructing the entire performance in my head. Each mistake, each nuance, each fumble. I knew that I wanted to address several places before we performed this routine for the world competition in a few months.
"Bella, stop obsessing," Jacob laughed. "Enjoy our adoring fans."
"Okay," I said with a smile. We both waved and waited for the scores. A few moments later, the scores were posted and like we had been favored to do, we won our third National championship. Jacob pulled me into a tight hug, lifting me off the ground. I squealed excitedly and returned his embrace. As we were the last pair to skate, the medal ceremony was being set up on the ice as we were hugging.
A camera was thrust in our faces and we had several interviews until we were beckoned on the ice to receive our medals. We skated around the arena and waved until we got onto the top rung of the podium. Scott Hamilton put the medals around our necks, shaking our hands and giving us bouquets of flowers. Jessica and Mike got the bronze medal and some new pair, James and Victoria Hunter, a brother/sister act got the silver.
We posed for pictures and then went our separate ways. I went into the locker room, changing into my jeans and t-shirt. I slipped on my comfortable Chuck Taylors and pulled my bag over my shoulder. Carlisle was driving me back to the hotel where I would have dinner with him and my parents. Jacob wanted to go out and drink to celebrate. He could have at it. I just want to crawl into bed and sleep. It had been a crazy few days and I needed the rest.

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