Author's Note: This is a story I've been sitting on for a while. It's a wrestling-related story, so not the typical AU realm I do. This story is dedicated to everyone who has supported my career.
And for those who are wondering, The Family sequel will be posted soon. This is something to tie you over until then.
She watched his match in slow motion. Each time he hit the turnbuckle, she slightly cringed. Granted, professional wrestling was scripted and choreographed. But the petite woman also knew when something hurt. When Jeff Hardy grabbed his left knee upon landing on the mat, Ariel Lee became concerned. After several minutes, she concluded that Jeff was trying to sell an injury. She breathed a sigh of relief and continued to watch his battle with Ric Flair.
Jeff flew everywhere throughout the ring but Ariel felt she was watching poetry in motion. Not so coincidentally, her former flame Jeff Hardy had a maneuver called Poetry in Motion. After the match, Ariel smiled at her ex, who blew her a kiss. She then made her way backstage to wait for him.
Standing by the loading dock, Ariel contemplated if coming to tonight's Raw was even a smart idea. Being head of the creative writing team, she didn't have to go to every show. Well, according to Vince she didn't have to go every show. However, if a problem aroused and she wasn't there to solve it, there was no telling what wrath Vince would give Ariel. She was too valuable to the company for little mistakes to happen on his watch.
But going to Raw wasn't Ariel's concern. She was in close vicinity with her ex-boyfriend, Jeff Hardy. She was also in close vicinity with her current flame, Dave Batista, who made a surprise appearance at Raw. Both men knew about each other and they each told Ariel they couldn't care less. Yet, Ariel wasn't too convinced. She had a hard time believing either man was accepting of the soap opera arrangement all three played unwillingly roles in. Bullshit, she scoffed.
"Did anyone tell you how beautiful you are when you stare into space?" Jeff asked.
Ariel blinked quickly and shook her head. "What?"
Jeff's eyes slightly danced. "Lights are on, someone's home, and she's wondering why the lights are on."
"Fuck you, Hardy."
"We have." Jeff retorted.
Ariel flipped Jeff off. She walked over to him and watched him load up his SUV. "You looked good out there tonight, Jeffy." She smiled.
"Thank you." Jeff grinned. "You looked great cheering me on."
Ariel giggled. Stop it, Ari. "Thank you."
Jeff closed the hatchback of his rental. He was uncomfortable of asking Ariel the next question for he already knew what the answer was going to be. But he didn't want to come off being a dick, either. "Um, are you here for the night?"
"Not really. I need to get on the road for Smackdown tomorrow."
I figured as much. "Tonight?"
"Okay." His voice had disappointment, which Jeff did not attempt to hide.
Ariel sighed out of frustration. Jeff was guilt tripping her to stay with him and it was working. "Did you want me to stay with you tonight, Jeffrey?"
Jeff shook his head. Whenever Ariel was pissed off at him, she always referred to him by his given name. She normally called him either Jeffy or Nero, his middle name. "No, you don't have to stay with me, Ariel Elizabeth."
Ariel let out another deep sigh. Jeff's way of undercutting Ariel was to talk to her in the same condescending tone she gave him. However, the night was long and Ariel's temper was short. Fighting for the umpteenth time with Jeff was not going to help the long road she had ahead of herself. "I'll call you when I arrive at the hotel."
"Alright." He then grabbed Ariel's hand. She stopped walking and turned to him. "Come here, Ari." He purred.
Ariel walked closer to Jeff. It was moments like that she remembered all of the beautiful moments of their relationship. His signature scent of various Calvin Klein fragrances. The way he would wrap his arms around her after a hot and steamy sex session. The times she would hold his head over the kitchen sink while she rinsed out the hair dye.
Of course, the good also came with the bad. Ariel couldn't remember how many times she stayed up all night because Jeff got too high to come down. Or the times Jeff would go into his makeshift studio and would not come out for hours. Or the night when everything went to hell in hand basket. Four years later, there were still whispers of what really happened that night.
Ariel slightly pulled away from Jeff. "I need to go now, Jeffy."
Jeff softly kissed Ariel's forehead and rubbed her cheek. "Call me when you arrive, Bella."
Ariel watched Jeff pulled out of the parking lot and speed off. She shook her head as she remembered their first date. She could've sworn Jeff was trying to kill her with his erratic driving habits.
"Will you slow the fuck down?" She yelled.
Jeff grinned. He had one had on the steering wheel. He was leaning back and had his other hand resting on his chin. His speeds were climbing 70 mph and the freeway wasn't very clear to begin with. "What's wrong, Ari? You never been in a corvette before?"
"I've been in a corvette before, Hardy." She hung onto the "Oh Shit!" handle bars. "I never rode with a jackass before."
"Ari? Ari?" Dave called to her.
Ariel shook her head. The first date memory soon faded to black. She turned to her current boyfriend, if that was Dave's role. Both Ariel and Dave teetered between dating and being in a full-blown relationship. The pair, although they wanted to, did not consummate the relationship. Dave thought it had something to do with his former girlfriend, Rebecca DiPietro. Ariel knew it was something deeper than that. "Yes?"
"I've been calling your name for the past five minutes. Is everything okay?"
Ariel grinned. She walked up to Dave and planted a big kiss on his lips. "Everything is better now."
As Dave and Ariel prepared the long trip to the next city, she stared out the window. So many things were going through her mind and nothing was concrete. She was going to need to make a decision: Jeff, the love of her life who supported her unconditionally but was the shaky wild card; or Dave, a budding romance that grew out of a close relationship and could give her the support she needed—as long as they didn't try to get married.
Ariel shook her head as she attempted to make sense of it all. But for now, she was focused on getting a good night's sleep with Dave. She'll deal with her feelings with Jeff later.