Handball

A WayHaught one shot based on a Vine of two Danish Handballers falling into a rather hilarious position.

I own nothing. SyFy US own everything. I just…. repurposed.

My amazing, fantabulous, amazeballs, incredible beta is Devje—may we build a Greekesque temple in her honour.

* * * * *

The first time Nicole Haught met Waverly Earp, there was groping. It wasn’t intentional groping, but there was no other way to look at it. For a small package, Waverly Earp came with big game, big plans and surprisingly plump breasts, the right one of which ended up cradled in Nicole’s hand, quite unexpectedly. Nicole flushed bright red, in the way that only porcelain skinned redheads can, stared into the eyes of Waverly Earp, and fell in love.

+

Nicole had grown up playing all the normal sports for someone in the north of North America. She’d played softball/baseball/whatever ball your brothers could conjure up at the corner park with a bat, three hats for bases and a hoodie for home. She’d played football, and basketball, and soccer, and even field hockey. When she moved to the Ghost River Triangle, she wanted to pick something up for several reasons: she was hundreds of miles from where she’d grown up; she knew no one; and, she was quite keen on keeping fit. While scanning the noticeboard at the local gym, she’d found flyers for several sports, but one had stood out.

She’d had to scan her memory for what the hell handball was anyway. Years of watching the Olympics, glued to the TV for two weeks every four years, threw up thoughts of a rather fast-paced game that seemed to be played by Eastern Europeans. She’d gone home and Googled. Given the game’s popularity in Scandinavia, it suddenly made more sense in this area of the world. 

She’d tentatively found a league on the internet, and, with a small amount of trepidation, had signed up.

From the first moment she attended training, she loved it. She loved the speed, the ball, the athleticism, and, most of all, the fact it was an all-women’s league. 

Her team, the Morley Magic, had been pretty welcoming. It wasn’t a big league, and they only played for the winter months, indoors. There were only six teams who played each other twice before the top four went through to some kind of finals league. It wasn’t exactly the big time.

It was during Nicole’s third game, her first time playing the Purgatory Devils, that she noticed the small woman with ‘Earp 77’ on the back of her shirt. Nicole was unlikely to miss the shorter woman, who was a complete dynamo on the court. Nicole, being relatively new to the game, depended on her natural athletic ability and significant reach. She was tall, she’d played basketball, she was holding her own. Earp, it seemed, managed to use her relatively small size to weave in and out and basically run everyone else off the court. Nicole had liked her from the start.

The Morley Magic were not doing well. They’d mostly kept Nicole in defence, but Earp kept slipping past her. When Nicole managed to get her hands on the ball, she passed it out to the more experienced players on the team, some of whom did manage to score, but mostly they were losing desperately. So when Earp tried to launch herself into a jump attack, Nicole took advantage of her height and just shot her arms straight up. She managed, for once, to block the ball—and, as it turned out, the small woman hurling it. Earp barrelled into her, then tottered backwards and promptly fell on her ass. Nicole, having been fairly stretched trying to keep her defence, had taken the impact, landed, and then realised that gravity was not her friend today. Instead, she fell forward, unable to stop herself, and landed bang on top of Earp.

It would probably have been okay if she hadn’t immediately tried to make it better by catching herself on her right hand and her knees. She succeeded, but the momentum of the fall meant that her left hand was also travelling forward and it just landed, bang, on one very soft, very warm breast.

For a long second, Nicole just stared at the woman who she was now, effectively, pinning to the floor and groping. A shot of heat ran through her. In that one instant she could feel Earp’s knees hugging her hips. Their bodies touched from pelvis to navel and the pressure was instantaneous. There was a very gorgeous, very heated and very pliant body under Nicole’s and for a second her hand tightened. Then reality kicked in and she jerked her hand away like she’d been burned.

“Shit! Shit! Sorry!” She pulled back, scrabbled to her feet and did the only possible thing she could—held out a hand to help Earp to her feet.

To her chagrin, Earp grinned at her while being hauled up. “I usually expect at least dinner before I let someone get to first base.” 

Nicole didn’t think it was possible for her cheeks to flame any harder, but she was sure they were.

“Sorry, I guess I’ll have to buy you a drink, at least.” Her heart was thumping, and Nicole knew it wasn’t just the recent exercise. As their hands  pulled apart, their respective teams sniggering, Nicole was sure she heard Earp’s response as:

“I’ll hold you to that.” 

But the whistle went, and the game went on, leaving Nicole with a fluttering in her stomach she hadn’t felt in ages.

 +

The second time Nicole Haught met Waverly Earp, there was blood. It was at the rematch of the two teams, and she hadn’t seen the girl since their last encounter four weeks before. Morley was sitting fourth on the table, just good enough to sneak into finals. Purgatory, thanks to Waverly Earp’s contributions, were sitting pretty at the top of the table, basically unbeatable. Nicole had asked around a little. It was hard to be subtle when your teammates were still ribbing you about feeling up the opposition, but she was captivated.

Right now, all she knew was that Waverly Earp was from Purgatory. She was one of ‘those’ Earps, though Nicole had no idea what that meant. She worked part time as a barmaid and part time at the police station (unexplained but intriguing), and she was very, very good at handball.

The whole week before had left Nicole in a bit of a twitchy mess. She knew she’d get to see Waverly again. She was almost one-hundred percent certain that she wouldn’t be able to throw herself on the other woman and start fondling her again, because that might make it all seem a bit planned, but maybe she could actually chat with her after the match. Nicole had never been shy about going after what she wanted, and she wanted to know more about Waverly Earp.

To be sure, as soon as they lined up on the court, her eyes trained straight on to Waverly. Nicole was certain she blushed when young Miss Earp winked at her, but then the whistle blew and the ball was thrown, and there was no time.

Again and again, Nicole found herself chasing after Waverly and her damn unstoppable feet. Nicole was no slouch on the court, but no matter how hard she tried Waverly seemed to find a way around her. What did not help was that this seemed to involve a lot of innocent barely-there body contact which was almost intolerable. It sapped at Nicole’s concentration and at least twice she made basic errors that she was sure she wouldn’t have against anyone else.

That made her annoyed.

Annoyed Nicole did get better. She got in a few more blocks, even against Waverly, and that was impressive. Waverly looked impressed after the last one, and that made Nicole smile. Then she got distracted by the bead of sweat which ran down Waverly’s throat and slowly but surely made its way to the dip between her collarbones. She got so distracted by the thought of what it would be like to chase that path with her tongue, that she didn’t notice Waverly had gone left. That would have been fine, except Nicole went to her right, which was the same direction, just as Waverly jumped. They made contact.

Not slight, tingling, teasing contact—no, that would have been fine. Not even, ‘hey, I just fell on top of you and, wow, your breast is in my hand and, geez, it’s a really nice breast’ contact. Nicole could have handled that, too. Instead, they made, ‘oh, excuse me, this would be my nose and that would be the top of your head and holy-mother-fuck-sticks, ow ow ow, is that blood?’ contact, and Nicole fell to the floor holding her nose, trying not to cry. 

It was only when they were both helped to the sidelines, Nicole holding a towel to her face and following her captain, that she noticed Waverly holding a towel to her own face. Apparently, Nicole’s elbow had reflexively come up and hit Waverly right over the eyebrow. Hurrah, blood for everyone!

They were directed to separate rooms to get bandaged up. Nicole’s nose was strapped by a nurse who happened to play on her team. The game was suspended and called a draw, at which the Purgatory Devils, who had been winning, were rather annoyed. Nicole just felt guilty. She knew she’d been concentrating on Waverly, which kind of made sense, given the girl was the best on the other team, but she also knew it had been for rather personal reasons.

Her reward was to rock up to work the next day with two black eyes, strapping across her nose, and an inability to breathe without pain. She also had to put up with constant ribbing about “what does the other guy look like?!” She had no idea; she hadn’t been able to catch Waverly and apologise.

Even though the Morley Magic weren’t playing the following week, Nicole turned up anyway, looking for Waverly. It wasn’t too hard to find the Purgatory team, but when she managed to catch their goalie by the elbow, she was handed a disappointment.

“Sorry, Haught, she’s out this week. Family crisis or something.”

So Nicole went home, sad and worried.

 + 

The third time Nicole Haught met Waverly Earp, it was the start of finals. Morely had scraped into fourth, and Purgatory, to no one’s surprise, were sitting pretty on the top of the table. They’d lost their last game, with the absence of Waverly, but that hadn’t had any impact. Two weeks on, Nicole’s face was back to normal, and, when she finally caught sight of Waverly, she was very relieved to note that there was no damage left there, either. 

She was busy tying her shoes when a shadow blocked out the fluorescent lights and she found herself staring at a pair of pink and white sneakers. She smiled at the little white sport socks with a unicorn pattern poking out as she slowly straightened up, taking in shapely calves, perfect knees and toned thighs in basketball shorts. Her eyes skipped quickly over the torso, not wanting to be caught leering, and then lit onto what was still the most beautiful face she’d ever seen.

“How’s the nose?”

Nicole smiled. “It’s healed. I’m so sorry.”

Waverly sat down next to her and smiled back. “Nah, I’m sorry. I wanted to find you after the game, but my ride was leaving and you were still being cleaned up. I didn’t mean to take you out like that.”

“For a small package, you sure pack a big punch.” 

“Hey!” Waverly punched her arm. “I’m not that small!”

Nicole grinned. “Uh, yeah, you are.” If she hadn’t had multiple other qualities that Nicole thought were attractive, then the narrowed eyes, set lips and half-pout that Waverly offered here might have been enough to make her fall, then and there. “But small things, good packages, right?” 

“You’d better watch this package tonight then, ’cause I’m taking you down.”

Nicole almost choked on her own saliva then. She knew full well what Waverly meant, but that didn’t stop the alternatives playing through her mind like the world’s fastest montage. “I’ll be sure to wear my face mask then.”

“You’ll need it.” 

“Words, Earp, just words. Let’s see if you can get around me without resorting to violence this time?”

“Hey!” Waverly narrowed her eyes again, until she realised that Nicole was just teasing her. “I hope your game is better than your smack talk, or you’re in trouble.”

“I’ve been practising.” The words were hollow: both of them knew Waverly could run rings around Nicole, but Nicole hadn’t enjoyed an exchange of words like this in years.

Whatever Waverly’s witty response was to have been, it was cut off by the teams being gathered for the start of the game. 

The Magic didn’t bother to have a single player on the Earp dynamo, because the whole team knew she was the danger player, so they all tried. They tried. But of course Purgatory won, because they were always going to win. At the end of it, shaking Waverly’s hand with a grin, Nicole felt so proud of her opponent.

And sad. She felt sad. The season was over. There was no reason for her to see Waverly Earp for another year, and that made Nicole feel empty. It was ridiculous. They’d met three times and had one real—well, vaguely real—conversation, almost all smack talk. And yet, Nicole felt sad. 

She showered and dressed in a hurry, leaving to hang around in the corridor. All the girls changed in the same locker room, and the possibility of being confronted with a half-dressed Waverly Earp was both far too tempting and too scary to contemplate. 

When Waverly finally emerged, hair wet and looking like a rainbow caught in a sunshower, Nicole pushed off the wall where she was standing and gave her a half-smile.

“Good game.”

“Thanks.” It looked to Nicole like Waverly was suddenly shyer than usual, almost uncertain. She was used to confident, bold Waverly, and this Waverly was a little bit confusing. Endearing, but confusing. “You’ve really come along this season.”

“Yeah… I was pretty new when I started, but once you realise it’s basketball combined with soccer, you kinda get the hang of it.” She tilted her head towards the door. “Walk you out?” 

“Sure. Um. I have to wait for my ride, though.”

“I can wait with you.”

“Serve and protect?”

“Huh?” Nicole’s brow furrowed until she followed Waverly’s finger pointing at her chest and realised she was wearing her Morley PD t-shirt. “Oh.” Was it possible that she was blushing again? Yes, yes, it was.

“Cop?”

“Deputy Sheriff,” Nicole said, with a tinge of pride. She loved her job, and the move to the more rural setting had made her love it more. “It’s a small department, but I love it. We have a bit to do with your PD. I met Sheriff Nedley the other day.”

Waverly nodded, but didn’t reply, and Nicole took a deep breath of the cool air to calm herself. She felt like a teenager talking to her crush, and it had been a long time since a woman had left her so uncertain. She knew she should just grow a pair and ask Waverly out to dinner or something, but, honestly, she was scared.

This wasn’t the big city. People didn’t just go around being lesbians all over the place out here, and though Waverly hadn’t given her any indication that she was a homophobe, she also hadn’t really given any indication that she was gay. 

Nicole was torn, all the while staring at Waverly as the war went on inside her.

“Do… do I have something on my face?”

She was staring at Waverly. Smooth. Really smooth, Haught.

“Oh, no, sorry, I was… thinking.” Nicole swallowed, feeling the flush burn up her face. She knew Waverly could see it. You could usually see Nicole’s blush from space.

“Anything you wanna share?” Waverly smiled at her. God, what a smile. Was it possible that Waverly Earp was an angel? Nicole thought it might be. Surely only angels had a smile like that. “I might even be able to find a penny.”

Nicole was about to gather her courage, say something, when Waverly looked at the ground and scuffed her foot. “You don’t have to wait, you know. I’m really quite capable of taking care of myself. Even if I am small.”

Nicole’s eyebrows shot into her hairline. Her brain floundered for a second and then she realised what Waverly was referring to. “Oh, I’m aware you can hold your own, Earp. You’ve beaten my ass down on the handball court three times, remember?”

That got Waverly to look up, and Nicole was pleased at the happy look that suffused across her face.

“Besides, all I have to go home to is my hungry, whining cat, so maybe I’m standing here for me.” The courage was inching in. She could do this. She could ask Waverly out. 

“What’s her name?”

“Huh?” 

“Your cat. Does she have a name?”

Nicole shook her head. This conversation was unlike any she’d ever had in her whole life. It was like a rollercoaster and maybe they’d forgotten to strap her in. “Calamity Jane.”

“Oh, that’s an awesome name for a cat.” 

“Thanks.” Nicole took a deep breath. “Hey, listen, I—”

 The door opened, and a group of three other women Nicole recognised from the Purgatory team emerged. 

“Hey, Waves, ready to go?” one asked. 

“Sure.” Waverly picked up her backpack and shot Nicole a radiant smile. “Thanks for waiting with me.” 

“Um, no problems.”

And Nicole watched Waverly walk off, uncertain exactly what had just happened or why, but certain that she’d never felt this off-balance before.

 + 

The fourth time Nicole Haught met Waverly Earp, she was fairly sure that she was going to die of a cardiac arrest. 

She had no idea what she was doing, but she knew that she had to see Waverly again, and there was only one place that she was certain Waverly would be: the handball championship game. The Purgatory Devils, having basically annihilated the competition, were playing the second-placed team, the Harper Harpies. The big final had drawn the largest crowd of any game, around thirty people. Handball really wasn’t the most popular game.

Nicole skirted the bleachers, finding a seat in a corner. She wanted to watch, but felt strange about Waverly seeing her. She didn’t want to throw the young woman off her game, although it was basically wishful thinking that such a thing might happen.

It was never really a match. For the last three years, Waverly Earp had been on the Purgatory Devils, and, for the last three years, Purgatory had taken the cup. Admittedly it wasn’t a very large cup, and no one else really knew it existed, but it was their handball trophy and Purgatory owned it. Just like they owned the final. They were always ahead and never faltered. Waverly played her usual fantastic game and Nicole could barely tear her eyes off her, even when she didn’t have the ball.

The problem with two thirty-minute halves of sport was that it gave a whole hour and twenty minutes, factoring in the half-time break, for Nicole to worry. By the time she’d sat through the game, she was utterly convinced that her presence was a mistake. Of course her crush was one-sided. Sure, handball was an incredibly gay sport, and Nicole knew at least half the women playing identified as queer, but that didn’t mean Waverly did. Even if she was queer, there was no suggestion she was interested in Nicole. 

Of course it was one-sided. 

“Well, hey there, Haught stuff.”

Nicole startled and looked up, seeing Waverly leaning up against the barrier around the stadium, sweaty, flushed and undeniably gorgeous. 

“You know my name?” 

“It’s on the player roster.”

Of course. Of course it was. 

“Didn’t expect you to be here.” Waverly didn’t sound unhappy. In fact, Nicole thought she sounded almost hopeful, but that was probably reaching on her part.

She shrugged and grinned. “It’s the final! Had to come see you guys cream the opposition.”

“Thanks. Thanks for being here.” Waverly bit her lower lip, gently, between two rows of perfect teeth and Nicole couldn’t drag her eyes away. When she did finally meet Waverly’s eyes, what she saw there set her heart pounding.

“Hey, Waves, you coming?” 

“Yeah, in a second.” Waverly didn’t drop her gaze from Nicole’s to answer her teammate. She just kept her eyes locked in place, and Nicole’s heart sped up to what she thought was a probably medically dangerous level. 

“Um. Good game?” she tried, weakly.

“Very,” Waverly agreed, and she still didn’t look away. “Can, can you hang around for a while? I need to shower and change, but I won’t be long.” 

“Sure. Of course. I’ll… I’ll just be outside.” 

Nicole added sweating, light-headedness and tingling in her lips to her growing set of symptoms and immediately diagnosed herself with a heart attack. 

Waverly’s departure alleviated her distress somewhat, but she couldn’t stop the nerves inside. She’d faced many stressful situations in her time as a cop, although nothing truly dangerous. She’d still never been this nervous.

Every time the door opened, Nicole jumped. She counted the people leaving out of sheer habit, until she was pretty sure that Waverly was the last one left inside. A few stragglers were hanging around the car park.

When the door swung open a final time, Nicole jumped again and then her nervous system went into overdrive as Waverly emerged—wet hair, jeans, hoodie—looking more beautiful than Nicole had ever seen.

“Hey, you waited.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

“Of course.” Nicole was perplexed. Waverly had asked her to stay; there was no other option. 

Waverly’s eyebrows furrowed. “Are you okay?”

“Sure! Sure… why… what wouldn’t… why wouldn’t I be okay?” Nicole swallowed.

“You look like you think I’m about to mug you.” Waverly gave Nicole that easy grin that made her stomach fill with butterflies and her knees go weak. “I promise, if I want your wallet, I’ll pick your pocket like a normal person.” 

“Well, that’s good to know. Although I’m not sure you should be telling a cop about your expert pickpocketing skills.”

Waverly laughed. “I suppose not.”

Nicole lifted a shoulder. “So, can I walk you to your car?” Inwardly, she cringed. Honestly, she sounded like she was from Little House on the Prairie and trying to court Waverly. How gauche could she be?

“You could, except I’m catching a lift with Stef.” Waverly adjusted the bag on her shoulder. “But… thanks for coming. I liked it. I liked you being here.” Her look was uninterpretable but Nicole felt her face get warm from the sentiment alone.

“Hey,” she said. “Gotta support the team, right?”

“The opposition?”

“Well, the sport. The league. Handball. I mean, we have… I have…” Nicole sighed and blinked twice. “I’m rambling.”

“Yep.”

“Sorry.” 

“It’s cute.”

At that point, all the butterflies in Nicole’s stomach teamed up with the horses that were galloping through her heart and the river of blood rushing through her ears and Waverly’s words caught up with her. Cute. Waverly thought she was cute.

This was not a drill. Waverly Earp thought she was cute. Perhaps, perhaps there was a chance that maybe—

“Have dinner with me,” she blurted out.

“Dinner?” Waverly cocked her head to one side.

“Last meal of the day. Usually. Restaurant, tables, maybe wine.” Nicole knew she was babbling now, but there was no stopping her.

“Like a date?”

Oh, Christ. Had she misread the entire situation? Of course she had. She had totally fucked this one up. This was going up on the cluster fuck of all time board and being pinned in the middle. With a star. 

Nicole nodded.

Waverly looked at her for a long moment. “That would be lovely.”

If Nicole had been moving forward, she would have fallen over at that point. Instead, she managed a ridiculously happy grin and her body finally relaxed. “Yeah?”

“Yeah. I thought you’d never get around to asking.” 

Nicole raised her eyebrow. “Oh, really?” 

“Yeah, I mean, you’ve already managed to cop a feel and injure me, so I figured you were just building to something.”

Nicole laughed. “Touché.” 

“Waves, are you coming?” Stef’s voice rang out across the carpark.

“Hey, I gotta go, but give me your number.” She handed her phone over, then hollered back to her friends while Nicole added her number in contacts. “Good. I’ll text you.”

Nicole nodded, not entirely sure that any of the last ten minutes had actually happened, but willing to go with it just in case. 

“Goodnight, Officer Haught.”

“Goodnight, Ms Waverly Earp,” she replied softly. 

And then Waverly was gone. 

If Nicole could whistle, she would have whistled on her way back to her car—possibly while swinging a cane and dancing around lamp posts. As it was, she’d never gotten the hang of whistling and it always ended up coming out like a shrill hiss. And there were no lamp posts. But Nicole still felt like she was walking on air. 

She’d just reached her car when she heard pounding footsteps on the asphalt and Waverly’s voice. 

“Nicole!”

She turned just in time for Waverly to get to her, cheeks still glowing pink and hair still beautiful in her messy ponytail. Before Nicole even had time to open her mouth, Waverly had stepped into her body and brought one hand up to cup Nicole’s cheek.

Then Waverly’s soft, soft lips were on hers and it was the most amazing kiss she’d ever had in her whole life. 

Their bodies came together like they were two halves of a whole, and Waverly’s lips moved against her own. Tilting her head, Nicole opened her lips slightly and gave a small moan when Waverly did the same, her tongue sneaking out to lick at Nicole’s bottom lip before racing back in her own mouth. Waverly tasted like mint and sweetness and something intrinsically Waverly and Nicole could have kissed her for hours.

Except that Waverly pulled back. 

She ran her thumb along Nicole’s bottom lip, while Nicole stared at Waverly, stunned. 

“G’night.”

And then she was gone again.

Nicole leaned back on her car. 

She’d never been more glad for a random poster on a pinboard.

4 Comments

  1. Swissgirl
    Posted 30 April 2017 at 9.33pm | Permalink

    I’ve been reading your stories since forever and I really love your latest wayhaught fics. I hope you’ll have time to post some more :)

  2. jdean
    Posted 1 July 2017 at 4.21pm | Permalink

    this is easily one of the best wayhaught stories ive read. i hope you write more for them!

  3. Holly
    Posted 28 September 2017 at 11.56am | Permalink

    I fell out of reading fanfiction for a while but i’ve been craving it recently and as some of your stories are my favourites I wanted to check and see if you had anything new. I definitely wasn’t disappointed! Love this and can’t wait to read more.

  4. Miss Leggs
    Posted 23 December 2017 at 12.45am | Permalink

    This story is fantastic. Very well written.

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