Truthfully, you hated high school football games. They were too loud, too crowded, and honestly incredibly boring. If it was up to you, you wouldn't have attended a single game in the season, not caring if the Spartans, your school's mascot, won or lost. But unfortunately for you, your brother, Ben, was the star running back, and your parents insisted that you see every game of his senior season.
To you, it seemed unfair that you had to support your brother in sports but he never reciprocated the gesture when it came to your art shows. But in his defense, it was probably because your father drove him to the breaking point in football workouts, going out multiple times a day to run, lift, or train.
Similarly, your mother was doing the same thing with your sister, Hailey, who was four years younger and in seventh grade. She showed the slightest bit of potential in soccer and now that's all she did- practice, practice, practice.
You were glad you were born ungifted in athletics and horribly uncoordinated. On the other hand, though, if you were granted dexterity and athleticism, maybe you would spend more time with your parents that you had grown a bit distanced from.
And if your parents had spent time with you, and actually known about your interests, they would've let you stay home and paint or read instead of dragging you to a pit of teenage angst and social anxiety, otherwise known as a high school football game. But in reality, your parents didn't really care, so there you were, sitting in the car with your mother and sister, being pulled to the thing you dreaded.
"Y/N, dear," your mother said in a sweet voice as she parked the car, "we'll be in the section on the far left."
"Just come meet us after the game, okay?"
"And call if you need us."
With that, you parted ways with your family, Hailey and your mother heading toward the grandstand, and you going as far away from them as possible. You waded through the throng of teens near the bathroom and entrance, slipping through without paying a ticket fee.
Once you were safely leaned back on a brick pillar near the edge of the stadium, you pulled out your phone and checked to see if anyone had texted you. Yes, you had friends. To your delight, you had one message.
Lauren (7:28 pm): I'm coming to the game tonight, and I'm bringing Ally.
Lauren and Ally were two of your very few number of friends. You met them in art club over the summer, and were happy to find out they were in your painting class at school. If you didn't have them, your junior year would be absolute hell.
You (7:29 pm): Alright
Lauren (7:29 pm): You wanna hang out with us?
Although thankful for the offer, you really just wanted to be alone, so you shot Lauren a "no thanks" and continued to sort of watch the game. After two and a half quarters, you gave up on trying to follow along and just messed around on your phone. It was mindless, really. Until another alert popped up on the screen.
Ally (9:01 pm): Be careful, Becky is here.
God, anybody but her. You two had a... complicated history.
Knowing she and the other members of the preppy clubs liked to hang out near the spot you were currently in, you left your brick pillar, searching for solace. You found it near the concession stand, which currently had no customers. You leaned on the cement wall of the stand, trying to get a look at the scoreboard. The Spartans were winning 24-17 with five minutes remaining in the third quarter.
"Hey, you want a hotdog?" A voice called to you from inside the stand. "You look kinda lonely."
Turning toward the voice, you saw it belonged to a beautiful girl. She had long blonde hair and gorgeous caramel skin, and was very tall. You didn't answer for a moment.
"Well?" She prompted.
"I-" you cleared your throat. "I don't have any money."
The clerk shrugged and smiled kindly. "On the house."
Hesitantly, you made your way to the window and grabbed the tin foil cylinder that the girl was offering.
She smiled at your caution. "Don't worry. I didn't poison it."
You smiled back, unwrapping the hot dog and taking a bite.
"You got a name?" She asked, propping her elbow on the counter and resting her head on her fist.
She extended her other hand and you gladly shook it.
"So," Dinah continued, "why are you all alone?"
"Cause I wanna be, I guess."
"If you wanted to be alone so bad, why did you come to a football game?" One of her eyebrows quirked up, a curious smirk playing on her thick lips.
"I didn't choose to come. My parents dragged me here."
"My brother is the 'star player' or something."
"Ben's your brother? Cool."
You finished the hotdog, and Dinah kindly took your trash.
"You want me to set you up with him?" You asked, only half joking.
Dinah laughed lightly. "If I was straight, then totally."
You took a moment to compose yourself before speaking again. "What grade are you in?"
"I'm a junior."
"How come I've never seen you around?"
She shrugged. "Just moved here. Only been in school a week."
"Was the hotdog just a bribe for my friendship?"
"Did it work?"
Dinah opened her mouth to keep the conversation going, but a roar in the home crowd cut her off. You turned to see that on the field, Ben had just run a touch down, putting the team ahead even more before the fourth quarter.
"Wow, your brother is really good," Dinah breathed once the crowd settled, approval crossing her features.
"So look, I was gonna go out with the rest of the student council to IHOP, but do you wanna grab something together instead?"
You shrugged. "I have nothing better to do."
"Great, I'll see you later. Oh, here come some customers." Dinah frantically grabbed a pen and paper towel from inside the stand and scrawled something down. Handing it to you, she turned back to the patrons. On the paper was a phone number. Dinah's phone number.
So there's chapter one.
Thanks for reading.
Comments appreciated !