Flash Fiction

Title: Love Has Its Ways

Rating: PG

Word Count: 1000

Summary: Rachel and Vara are a new couple in a gymnastics team, and they learn to cope with the life of gymnastics with their love life.

For the decade of gymnastics Rachel had experienced, she had always been one girl of fifteen who contributed her whole heart and soul to making sure every competition resulted in a satisfying success of proportions directly related to the combined efforts of hard work. She exuded the kind of intense passion that looked suspiciously like ambition’s overachieving cousin.


They were all brought together by Coach Deagle was the kind of no-nonsense woman who encouraged this behavior; she respected girls liked Rachel who worked with diligence and patience despite any other flaws. This kind of coaching that expected all gymnasts to consistently expand and hone the limits of their craft shaped Rachel to become the gifted gymnast she was today.


The bond between the girls and themselves plus their coach was tight enough that they had all walked together toward the gymnasium. Vara floated in the back of the group and she had been utterly silent the entire walk from campus to the gym. She had joined for the first year as a junior, as she was a transfer student to the college team.
“Hey, Vara!” Rachel called during the few moments of glorious downtime, her social butterfly energy flaring through her voice. Vara flinched, body tensing, no doubt because she was caught off guard by the boom of Rachel’s voice. She collected herself in time to respond with a curt nod.


“Are you excited for practice today?” Rachel said in her best, most cheery voice. Vara’s icy exterior thawed at the warmth of Rachel’s greeting; a small smile lighting up her face.


“Yeah,” Rachel noticed the hesitation in Vara’s voice. Vara had walked closer to Rachel and brushed shoulders, only to stay that close with Rachel. They had synchronized their walking speed toward the gymnasium.


“You okay? You seem…nervous,” Rachel asked.


“I am. My mother’s coming out to visit for my exhibition and she’s too much for me to handle,” Vara explained.


“You’re safe with me,” Rachel put her arm around Vara, who relaxed into her touch and Rachel beamed as Vara placed her head within the crook of Rachel’s neck. It felt difficult to come by this kind of touching without mentioning that they were girlfriends for they weren’t sure if they wanted to out themselves as dating yet. They walked with their fingers interlocked all the way to the gymnasium, finding joy in small, intimate moments like this.


They were in this together and that was all that mattered, they had realized as they walked into the gym together for practice.


Gym was a hell of a sport, and that was something Rachel remembered during practices. Today especially she couldn’t help but stare at Vara, whose fluid movements showed a polished grace that many gymnasts of her age seemed to lack; she wobbled a little near the end of her routine, but that was a minor quibble Rachel would keep to herself.


Vara glowed as she hopped toward Rachel, who had sat in the bleachers watching with a mesmerized glee.


“How’d I do, Rachel?” Vara asked, eyes shining bright with energy Rachel found refreshing.


“You were pretty great! Keep it up for your match in the next few days,” Rachel said in her proudest but most neutral voice. Vara was cute but Rachel wasn’t sure if she should say anything out loud.


“Can you give me any advice on improvement for my routine? We can go to the lockers, where it’s quieter,” Vara’s determination warmed Rachel’s heart, so she found it easy to oblige.


They walked to the lockers shoulder to shoulder; Vara’s current upbeat mood felt electric and contagious, wherein Rachel couldn’t help but smile. Vara took a seat in a quiet area of the lockers.


“I can do your hair in a more simple style as I give you advice, if you like,” Rachel said, and Vara agreed quickly. She sat in silence as Rachel began to untie the elaborate ponytail. Rachel made sure to work with a more gentle touch, because Vara was special. Rachel’s advice was pretty general in terms of improvement: keep calm, don’t forget to stretch, and most importantly, don’t get distracted. A lot of the technical advice wouldn’t be helpful, as Coach Deagle probably already mentioned the. Rachel made sure to give out praise.


“You’re so knowledgeable, Rachel!” Vara exclaimed, her voice a little too loud with excitement.
“That’s what happens when you’re in gymnastics as long as I am,” Rachel said wryly; she liked being the mentor-type, plus she was always bad with compliments.


“Can I tell you something important?” Vara whispered, a sudden and unexpected thing.


“Sure. You can tell me anything,” Rachel said, thrown off guard. Vara stood up to meet Rachel’s eyes. Although they were only an inch between them height-wise, their bodies were touching. There was a spark, a heat growing between them as Vara and Rachel gazed into each other’s eyes.


“I really like you. I like you so much I don’t know how to contain myself,” Vara said, her voice quiet enough that Rachel almost didn’t hear. Rachel and Vara touched foreheads, their lips aligned for a kiss.


“I like you too,” Rachel said, her heart racing as the pressed their lips together in a chaste kiss, their bodies leaning into each other. They were dating but moments like this, full of ecstatic pleasure, were forever memorable. Rachel deepened the kiss, and Vara enjoyed it.


“Girls!” Coach Deagle’s voice boomed, jolting Vara and Rachel out of their sensual reverie.

As they walked out of the locker room with their fingers intertwined, their arms around each others’ waists in blissful happiness, their moods brightened considerably after admitting their feelings. Things seemed brighter as they left the locker room, Coach Deagle nodding at Vara and Rachel with an approving smile.


“You two make a beautiful couple, and it better stay that way,” Coach said right before launching into a detailed explanation of what to expect for practice.


Love had its ways, and Rachel was grateful.


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