Wednesday, August 13, 2008

FIFTY

I could hear Sid's heart beating as I rested my head on his chest. He stroked my hair absent-mindedly as we lay in bed in contented, satisfied silence.

"Oh, there was something I wanted to ask you." I lifted my head so I could look at Sid's face. "Who's Alissa Kirkpatrick?"

I felt Sid's body tense up under me. Strange, I thought with a small frown.

"The new trainer," he replied. "Who told you about her?"

"Sylvie mentioned it today. Why didn't you tell me you guys hired a new trainer?"

He shrugged. "Connor kind of had my full attention…I didn't think it was important enough to talk about, I guess."

"Oh," I replied. A few seconds of silence passed; I was waiting for him to tell me he knew her from Shattuck, but apparently he thought the conversation was over. "Sylvie said you two know each other?"

"Oh. Yeah." I noted the tone of Sid's voice—he seemed irritated. I wondered if he would have told me he knew Alissa if I hadn't brought it up. "We were in the same grade at Shattuck-Saint Mary's."

"Sylvie said you two were pretty good friends."

"I guess we kinda were." He shrugged. "Why does it matter?"

"I just thought it was weird you didn't tell me," I replied.

"I didn't think it was important." Sid kissed the top of my head and crawled out of bed. "I'm starving," he said as he pulled on his boxers. "Do we still have leftover Chinese?"

I nodded and he exited the bedroom and went downstairs. I pulled on my clothes and chewed on my bottom lip thoughtfully. Sid was meeting with the new trainer, this Alissa, while the rest of the team practiced tomorrow morning. I didn't have any plans…maybe I could stop by the arena and watch the guys practice. And if I just happened to run into Alissa, no harm done, right?

***

"I think I'll go watch practice today," I said to Sidney in a forcedly casual tone.

"Really?" Sid asked, looking at me suspiciously over my coffee cup. "I can drive myself now, you know. You don't have to come."

"I want to come. I don't have anything better to do."

"Alright…" Sid said with a shrug. He tossed me the keys to his Range Rover. "You're driving."

I grimaced and followed him out the door. I hated driving his SUV…I felt like I was driving a tank. Hopefully I wouldn't leave a path of destruction from Fox Chapel to the arena.

I pulled into the player's parking lot, proud of myself for not killing anyone on the way here. However, Sid was gripping the edge of his seat very tightly and looked rather pale. "You're getting better," he said unconvincingly. I laughed and put the Range Rover into park. Sid reached for my hand as he hobbled into the arena. "I'll come get you when we're done," he said, giving me a peck on the cheek.

"Oh. Okay," I replied. I was a little surprised that Sid didn't offer to introduce me to Alissa…even though he was too oblivious to know it, that was the reason why I came. Why wouldn't he want to introduce his girlfriend to a high school friend?

I frowned slightly as I watched him enter the locker room. I trudged through the winding hallways and made my way to the ice, where I sat with Uncle Mario on the visitor's bench.

"You look like your mother," Uncle Mario observed with a laugh. I glared at him and crossed my arms over my chest. "What's on your mind?"

"Sylvie told me there is a new trainer, and apparently she and Sidney went to Shattuck together. But he didn't mention this to me at all, I had to bring it up, and I came here today because I wanted to meet her but I have the feeling he's trying to keep us apart."

"And now you sound like your mother," Uncle Mario replied, this time looking more serious. "Did you tell Sidney you wanted to meet Alissa?" I shook my head. Uncle Mario threw his eyes up in exasperation. "Women," he muttered. "How would he know you wanted to meet Alissa if you didn't tell him?"

I thought about it for a minute. Uncle Mario was right…I was overreacting. Sid and I didn't talk about Alissa much. There was no way he could have known how curious I was about her. "I think I'll go introduce myself," I said.

"Good idea," Uncle Mario replied, rolling his eyes.

I stood up just as Jordan broke his stick. "Hey, Karine, could you go to my locker and bring me up another stick?" he called from across the ice.

"Sure," I called back as I stepped onto the runway leading into the Penguins' locker room. I pushed open the door and made my way to Jordan's locker. As I reached for an extra stick, I heard Sid's laugh ringing from the trainer's room. I clutched the hockey stick in my fisted hand and walked slowly to the room.

I froze in the doorway when I saw the woman who could only be Alissa. Sylvie was right—she was beautiful. Her long, wavy auburn hair shone under the florescent lights and she looked like a supermodel in a pair of gray pants coupled with a tailored navy button down top. She was tall and slender, and her facial features were absolutely flawless.

My stomach did a flip when I noticed her hand gently massaging Sidney's thigh. Was that really necessary? His ankle was hurt, not his thigh. Blood rushed to my face as jealousy coursed through my system. They hadn't noticed me yet…they were talking softly, both with huge smiles on their faces. Alissa's face was only inches from Sidney's.

I cleared my throat loudly and stepped in the room. Alissa eyed me over critically and a small, condescending smile appeared on her face. "The equipment room is next door," she said casually.

Sid's smile grew as he realized I was in the room. I relaxed a little…at least my presence had more of an effect than hers. "Alissa, this is my girlfriend, Karine."

I couldn't help but smile at her stunned expression. "Karine Lemieux," I said, extending my hand. Although it was unnecessary, I thought this was a good opportunity to obnoxiously use my surname.

"Oh," Alissa replied, raising one eyebrow. She reluctantly shook my hand. "Alissa Kirkpatrick. Sidney, you're dating the equipment manager?" she asked, motioning at the stick in my hands.

Sid laughed at her little joke, but I grimaced at her patronizing tone. "The Gronk needed an extra stick," I explained to Sidney. I turned my back to Alissa and faced Sidney, blocking her out of the conversation. "Are you almost done?"

"Not quite," Sid replied. It was obvious by his tone of voice that he couldn't sense the uneasy atmosphere between Alissa and me. "We shouldn't be much longer, though."

"Oh, we've only just begun, Sidney!" Alissa disagreed with a flirtatious laugh. I scowled at the innuendo in her voice.

"Well, I'll be watching practice…just come get me when you're done," I said to Sid as I gave him a light kiss.

"Right," Sid replied distractedly. Alissa was already working on his leg again.

I stomped out of the locker room and up to the ice. Wow, did I hate that girl. She had to be the most demeaning, conceited person I had ever met. It was necessarily what she said, it was the way she said it…like she didn't just think she was better than me, she knew she was better than me. But the absolute worst part was that Sidney had no idea how much she wanted him. I wasn't being a psychotic girlfriend…she was really, really uncomfortable with having me in the room. The way she was looking at me…it was obvious she thought of me as competition.

I felt the blood drain from my face as I realized how horribly plain I must have looked to Sidney when I was standing beside Alissa. She honestly had the body of a supermodel—long, slender, and graceful—whereas I was built like an athlete. I had no curves to speak of and my thighs were a little too muscular for my legs to be considered hot. My face was too round, my eyes too big, my shoulders a little too wide…there was an entire list of things I hated about my body. I thought I had gotten over these issues in college, but all it took was two minutes in the same room as Alissa Kirkpatrick for all my self-confidence problems to resurface.

9 comments:

stovgirl said...

Love it!

Anonymous said...

Ooooh, this is getting really good.
Please update, today!!! :]

Do you know how far you're going to take this story, or are you just gonna go with the flow?

Summer said...

I kind of have an idea as to where I want the story to go, but I haven't made an actual decision as to how or when I'm going to end it. I'm kind of playing it by ear right now. I only have a few more parts written but I am no where close to wrapping this up. But I'm starting college in a week and I hope I'll have enough time to continue writing. =/

Kimmy said...

I loved the update!!
It's getting good.

More soon!!!

Anonymous said...

It's getting really, really interesting!
I love it.
Update soon.

Kylie said...

I hope you have time to update while you're in school. This is my favorite story!

Lauren said...

Love it, as usual! More soon, please! This story is one of my very faves!

anika875 said...

i like this little scandal! lol. but please.. dont make him cheat on karine! this is my fave story and i don't want them to break up! lol.

pensfan4life said...

I loved this chapter! I actually laughed out loud! Hope you're able to keep posting and good luck at school!