Status: Hiatus--Last Update was 7.23.12 (Chapter Twenty-Two PREVIEW)

Love in Ice



"I told you something's going on between them! Just look at how close they are!"

"You're going to wake them up, Sharpy! Keep your mouth shut, or else we won't get a picture of them!"

"A picture? We have a video camera, just record them!"

Several voices rang in my head, sounding much louder than usual. I shifted a little, hoping the voices were part of a dream. I thought I moved away from something to get myself comfortable, but something kept me pressed against something oddly warm. My eyes flew open when I stilled, but felt more movement and a steady breath.

I flinched at the blinding light of the sun, which shone through the plane window. After my eyes adjusted to the light, I reached out and pulled down the shade. I realized why I felt something moving, looking over at the person who had allowed me to rest my head on his chest.

Fast asleep, Nemo seemed unfazed by my moving form, save the fact that he had been the one to keep me at his side. His chin took its place on the top of my head, and now I had been locked in place.

"She's awake," someone whispered, and I recognized the speaker as Hammer. I could not turn my head to see who else was nearby, but I could hear several other bodies hastily return to their seats.

My left hand, while warm, felt stiff. I stretched out my fingers, but failed to get my hand out of a tight grip. It must have tickled his own hand to some extent because his eyes blinked open. His drowsy gaze lingered for the longest second I ever endured before traveling to our joined hands.

Nemo gave a small smile at his realization, but then pulled his hand from mine. Just like earlier, the change seemed to be forced, and his blue eyes lost a bit of their brightness. I found myself hurting at this, and cold rushed to my hand, numbing every nerve that just possessed warmth.

I quickly took a glance to my right, seeing if anyone watched us. The aisle was empty, but I spotted a few of the guys shifting rather nervously in their seats. Tazer sat across the aisle on my right, and his wandering gaze met mine. I shook my head with a smirk, and he grinned innocently at me, shrugging. Very funny, Tazer.

I turned to Nemo, who lifted his gaze to look at me. I asked, giving a light smile, "How'd you sleep?"

He must have found something relaxing because the corners of his lips tugged upwards into a smile. "Pretty good, actually. How about you?"

"I slept just fine. Do you know what time we're going to land?"

He shook his head in the negative, and someone behind me answered my question. "We'll be there in half an hour!"

I laughed at the response. "Thanks for the info, Laddy!"

"No prob, no prob."

Nemo chuckled, which stimulated my own giggles. "You are all so silly, I swear," I voiced aloud, Nemo agreeing with a short nod.

"That includes you too, Nemo."

"I know, and I take that as a compliment."

I could not contain the laughter that spontaneously attacked. I did not expect his response, and he laughed along. If I had the chance, I would listen to his laughter forever.

He's your best friend, Alex, I scolded myself mentally. You don't think thoughts like that about your best friend.

The bright smile on Nemo's face did not falter, but instead remained in tact. I barely kept my heart beat under control, but with a huge effort on my part, I managed. I asked, watching his light gray eyes glimmer, "What do you want to do for the rest of the flight?"

Nemo was rather hesitant in his answer. First he opened his mouth to reply, but closed it after a second thought. Something in his eyes flashed as he thought, and I wondered what he was about to say.

"Well, I don't exactly want to sleep, but we can just relax," he said, looking straight at me with his breathtaking eyes. I blinked away the shock and nodded, liking the sound of his plan. After we both stretched out the remaining stiffness in our bodies, we sat back down and leaned against each other.

It took some effort to will away the nervousness, but I managed to do so, leaning my head to rest on his shoulder. Nemo leaned over and placed his cheek on my head. As a reaction, heat raced across my face, and I wondered momentarily if he could feel it.

I felt the arm he had against my side shift slightly, and I watched to see what he was doing. His hand laid open on his leg, almost as if it was waiting for something. Without a second thought my hand hovered over to his vacant hand, landing softly on his. A content feeling swept throughout my senses, spreading a new warmth evenly.

Nemo, although surprised, allowed his smile to resurface, and the smile on my face grew. His fingers played with mine for a split second, and I momentarily forgot how to breathe. I looked up into the steel gray sky of his eyes, and it became a wonder how lightheadedness did not overwhelm me.

Really, how did any of this not overwhelm me?

I ignored the arduous question and rested my head against Nemo's shoulder once more, blushing all the while. Half an hour will fly by, I thought, and I impulsively reminded myself to enjoy this moment. I couldn't be sure if this whole exchange was due to lack of sleep or any other stronger feelings....


My eyes flickered open, and I suddenly realized that I had fallen asleep. Looking up, I met Nemo's gray eyes. Out of the corner of my eye I saw Nemo's thumb softly grazing my hand. Realizing I caught him, Nemo stopped and looked at me with startled eyes.

He stumbled over his words, saying, "I-I didn't want to w-wake you, so I l-let you sleep."

I stretched the sleep away, turning to him with a smile. "You didn't need to do that, Nemo, but thank you. I wouldn't have minded." I wrapped my free arm around him, giving him a hug he easily returned.

"We're almost in Pittsburgh, Alley Cat. Are you excited," he asked, pulling away slowly. I gave him a nod, sitting through the sweeping chills I experienced from the lack of heat. Someone shifted in front of us, and a voice said, "Hey guys! What's going on back here, you two?"

Without lifting my head, I retorted, knowing immediately who it was, "Sounds like you're in a much better mood, Sammy." The mentioned person scoffed as I continued, "Nothing you'd want, that's for sure."

She gave me a look, shifting over to Nemo and then back. She repeated this a few times before shrugging, "I'm not sure what you're talking about, but okay."

A beep sounded overhead, and I told her, "Sit down Sam, we're going to land. Or else I can have Benny hold you down in your seat, that's fine with me...."

The head of buzzed, blonde hair turned in my direction, blue eyes sparkling mischievously. "It's fine with me, Alley Cat, I can do it!" Sam squealed in surprise while disappearing behind her seat, and I could only guess that Benny had pulled her down.

I shook my head, and Nemo chuckled from my side. I turned over to him with a questioning stare. "What's so funny, Nemo?"

His next movements startled me; he took my unbuckled seatbelt and fastened it. Whether he realized how close he was to me in that moment or not, I couldn't tell. All I could confirm was how I froze in my seat, knowing how little space existed between---

"Just wanted to make sure you had your seatbelt on, Alley Cat." A smile followed this sentence, and air still had not found its way into my lungs. He remained in close proximity, and he only moved to my ear, where he whispered his answer.

"Ben and Sam seem....rather close. Don't you think?"

I thought about his observation, breaking through the haze clouding over my brain. Nemo certainly had sharp eyes, and I did not just mean through the colors they turned. I thought I had been the only one to notice. However, it seemed as though we both reached a unanimous, unspoken conclusion.

Those two were too much to be "just friends". Something must have happened between them....

I let out a hushed, "Yeah, they do...." It was partially because of the volume he spoke, but the other reason was because I was remiss in the amount of air needed to raise my voice. After a few silent seconds Nemo realized how he still had his hands on my seatbelt and abruptly pulled away, color adding to the bridge of his nose.

A fiery blush dispersed across my face, singing hair roots close to my forehead. I felt divided--I felt relieved at how Nemo would not be able to see my tinted face, but I also longed to see the gray-blue mix of his eyes.

The plane jerked suddenly at the wheels' contact with the runway, and the excitement of being in Pittsburgh cooled me significantly. Once the plane halted, I unbuckled my seatbelt and stood up, getting ready to get the bag I had in the overhead compartment. Heat tickled my spine, and I figured out with a skipping heartbeat that Nemo closely stood behind me.

The guys in front of us headed out of the plane, some getting a bag from the compartment above their head before leaving. After Sam and Benny walked down the narrow aisle, I grabbed the bag I stored. Nemo followed me out the plane, and I took in my surroundings.

The sun's early morning rays emphasized the glittering snow. Some rays stretched along the lengths of the runways, which glistened with the potential ice forming. I looked up to the pavement-reflected clouds, sighing happily.

I heard slushing footsteps heading towards me, and I saw Sam bounding over with a grin spread across her face. When she reached me, she asked, out of breath, "Isn't this awesome, Alex? We're in Pittsburgh!"

I smiled at her, feeling the same excitement she did. Other footsteps approached from behind, and someone said, "Hey Alex."

I spun around to see who spoke to me, and Leslie walked over to me with a smile and a wave. Steeger, several feet away, spoke with Kaner while Nemo hung back with Hammer.

Leslie said, noticing where my gaze lingered, "Kris just went to talk to Kaner over there. Do you like Pittsburgh so far?"

I replied enthusiastically, "Definitely. I'll probably like it more when I see more of it. Hey, I'll introduce you to my best friend since she's in a much better mood, as you can see."

I continued as Leslie laughed at Sam's decision to shove me a little, "Leslie, this is Sam. Sammy, meet Leslie, Steeger's girlfriend."

The two smiled at each other, shaking hands. Leslie said to both of us, "We'll be best of friends for sure, I can tell."

"I think so too," Sam mused happily, loving the fact she now had two girls she could talk to on the trip.

The three of us chatted as we boarded the bus, all of us agreeing on choosing seats on the end of the aisle. We could talk the whole way to the hotel, and we were all within a talking range where we could whisper if need be.

Our luggage was sitting safely with the guys' luggage, minus the purses we carried. Within a few minutes, the guys boarded the bus. When Nemo came by, I stood up and made room so he could sit next to me. He gave me a crooked smile, slipping into the seat I saved for him. Benny and Steeger followed suit, sitting next to Sammy and Leslie respectively.

Steeger turned around and said, directed at the three of us leaning into the aisle to talk, "Ooh, looks like we've got a gossip triangle. Mind if I make it a gossip square?"

Leslie turned to him and told him, "Sorry to crush your hopes Kris, but it's strictly for us girls sitting on the aisle."

"Well, how about I move over to the aisle? I've got enough gossip to last the whole ride there."

I giggled as Leslie continued, winking at him, "Not this time, but maybe some other time. We just met. Let us talk first."

Kris nodded with a grin, stealing a quick kiss from her. I turned to Sam, whose grin mirrored my own. Sam whispered, "There's obviously an added meaning to that, isn't there?"

My cheeks singed slightly, and Sam basked in the immediate embarrassment I revealed. Benny laughed teasingly until Sam said, "Hey! You're not supposed to be listening either, Eager!"

After Sam scolded and warned Benny, Leslie rejoined us in the aisle. Soon enough, the three of us started talking, getting to know each other better. Every few minutes or so, I glanced back at the goalie sitting next to me, who decided to listen to music and allow us to talk. My heart fluttered at his kindness, and it continued to do so when his eyes caught mine. The shining eyes entranced me, and I almost didn't notice when his hand slipped under my hand, grasping it.

I flushed once more, but gave him a small smile that he reflected. I turned back to my friends in the aisle, mentally noting the fact that Nemo played with my fingers like he did on the plane.

He never stopped the whole ride to the hotel.
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Hey readers! I hope you liked the idea of the preview to the chapters. I'm sorry for the long wait you guys have to endure. I just have a lot of things to do with school.

Still, I'm grateful to all 50 of you, including my 8 subscribers. Thank you so much! I hope to get the next installment out soon.

Happy Halloween! This is your treat, haha! :D