because you know star of the football team

luke imagine - he kisses you after he wins the game (#13) *requested

You sat on the silver benches, the cold emanating from the metal seeping through the thick pants of your band uniform. It didn’t really bother you, if you were honest. You couldn’t take your eyes off of Luke as he played.

Of course he had to be the team’s star player. Your school had sucked before he’d arrived from Australia, and even then he’d barely known the rules of American football beyond what he had seen on TV.

Once he’d been properly educated, he’d taken their winning ratio from negligible to 5:1. He was a sight for sore eyes for the entire school.

He’d introduced himself to you one sunny Tuesday afternoon. Your older brother, a far less impressive football player, had started hanging around for extended training to improve his skills. Because your parents barely trusted him with his own bed, let alone a car, it was your familial obligation to wait and drive him home.

You’d sat on the benches, the same you were on now, and used a hand to shield your eyes from the sun. You watched the blonde boy running around the field, and when he was close enough, saw the way the muscles of his toned body moved with every step he took.

As if at once, he’d begun to come over to you, and your heart started to race. Had he seen you staring at him?

Grabbing a book from your bag and opening it on your lap, you turned your head downward and hoped he wouldn’t say a word to you.

“Hot out here, huh.” It wasn’t a question, but you wanted to reply; it might be your only chance to talk to the hot new guy. Lifting your head to ensure he wasn’t speaking to anyone else, you turned to smile at him. “It’s not so bad when you’re the one watching the beep test, not taking it.”

He grinned - a lop-sided, toothy grin. “Frankenstein. Interesting choice.” Gesturing to the book in your lap, he turned to grab an empty plastic cup and filled it with sports drink that sat in the esky. So that’s why he had come over.

“Studying it for a class, but to be honest, I’m kind of loving it. Wouldn’t take a jock for a reader.” His eyebrows raised in shock at your response.

“Little ignorant coming from the kinda guy who comes across as, how do the kids phrase it nowadays… misunderstood.”

A snort, though impolite as it was, escaped you. “Reads on a bench as he waits for his brother, and is automatically branded misunderstood. I have other facets to my personality, you know.”

Biting his lip, Luke nodded for you to continue. Then, he brought the cup to his lips and chugged the drink down like it was going to save his life.

“I play tenor sax. Very nerdy.”

Instead of a laugh, which was the expected response, he shrugged his shoulders. “Nah, not nerdy anymore. Star Wars, classic literature and playing in a school band are cool now, didn’t anybody tell you?”

The hot sun beat down on your bare neck that day. You’d worn an old t-shirt with the movie poster for Tango and Cash, but as Luke looked you over, it felt childish. Here he was, looking like a model even as he sweat his ass off, and here you were, in your jeans and your old school movie shirt.

“Ugh, I was left off the newsletter email list again! Guess I’ll have to stop branding myself the lame outsider.”

“Guess so, hm.” He licked his lips and swiped the back of his hand across his forehead.

After that he’d handed you his number, and jogged back off to the rest of his team mates.

That was all before; before the season changed, before Luke skyrocketed to the top of the ‘people of note’ memo, and before he tried to keep you a secret.

Your best friend, Andy, sat beside you. In his lap lay a brass clarinet, and he kept shining it with the cuff of his sleeve.

“You need to tell him.” It came out as a whisper, but you still heard it.

“Tell who what?”

Andy rolled his eyes at your response. “Nuh-uh. You can play dumb with everyone, but I know. Maybe he just wasn’t ready to be out yet, did you consider that? You remember how hard it was. Now times that by ten, because he’s this big macho man on the footy team that, by high school definition, has like, ten girls on the go at once.”

“He doesn’t have ten girls on the go at once.” It was your only addition.

But Andy pushed further. “You’re avoiding the question. Consider how he feels.”

A whistle was blown. Loud and sharp, it cut through even the noise of the roaring stadium. It was modest, with the school struggling to fill it before they began to win games. Since Luke had come along though, they’d been turning people away every game night and planning for an extension on the wings.

Band members always got front row seating though, so you were always forced to watch Luke’s phenomenal performances every two weeks up close and personal.

“I can’t be with someone who makes me ashamed of something I’m not ashamed of. He puts me in the quiet and says no, you can’t tell anyone about us. You can’t go home to your parents and say, ‘Mum, Dad, here’s the boy I’ve been talking about’. You can’t even mention to your closest friends that we went on a bunch of dates.”

“You broke that last one” Andy smiled, though it had more sympathy than the line of questioning he had been pedalling before, “eleven times.”

Your eyes glanced to the score board. Thirty seconds to go and you were down by four points. It was enough to make your heart quicken.

Your school’s team was in offence, about 20 metres from the touchdown line. One more shot to get it across that line, or the team’s winning streak was all over.

The game play had paused momentarily, and it felt as though the stadium had drawn in a collective breath. They needed a miracle.

The whistle blew again and the ball seemed to disappear inside a huddle of boys. “What would it take?” Andy asked you, and you couldn’t tear your eyes off the game play to respond to him.

“I don’t know, something big. Something that would prove to me that, despite everything, he actually gives a shit about how I feel.”

You stopped short, watching as Luke emerged from the pack with the ball. He tore through the opposition, his feet darting around those that helplessly stuck out their arms, or threw their body in his path.

The clock ticked down; five, four, three…

“Something that would tell me he’s comfortable with who the both of us are.”

Two, one.

Luke was standing in the zone, ball on the floor, staring in amazement at the field of players he had left behind. The siren to signify the games end rung out, and the stadium screamed in collective excitement. Most rushed out of their seats, toward the middle of the pitch to swarm Luke.

Somehow in the madness he had pushed his way through the crowds, and made his way to stand right in front of you. His helmet was in his hand, and his hair was drenched.

“Hi” he grinned, just as he had the first time you met him.

“You just… you just won it. Luke what are you doing over here? You just won it for us.”

All he did in reply was lean forward, press his lips to yours, and wrap his sweaty, uniform clad arms around your waist. The roar of the crowd somehow, defying logic, drowned out. All you could hear was the sound of your own heart thudding in your chest.

Luke pulled back slowly.”I’m sorry. I’m here now, okay. I’m here now.”

In response you grabbed the front of his shirt and pulled him toward you.The kiss you gave him was enough.