Tossing Balls on a Rainy Day

Monday morning, not that everyone wants to be on campus, but Fall Break probably not far ahead, so better to come now, save absences for less important days maybe. Of those on campus is Samuel Bates, local through and through. Like most, he's driven to the Student Union due to the cold rain outside. Good thing the Rec Center is open. Of course, rec center on this campus means fitness center. He's not at fitness for the moment, just changed over from rain covered clothes from crossing campus to get here, he stands outside the changing area in contemplation. He could use a work out and yet, the windows in the large room are completely spattered, showing the dark grey sky outside. That needs a little extra motivation. Taking an offered towel, he slowly walks in consideration of what to do, benches are oddly in the mix with taking a machine.

Being a Haven Point local all her life and daughter of Doctor Henry Cunningham (M.D.), Ellie is known around town and campus. What she is /not/ known for is frequent a place like the Rec Center, as she has always favored books over sports. Yet here she is, sitting at one of the benches with a backpack next to her, but not in anything that resembles gym clothes: nope, no one should ever exercise in sweater, jeans and boots. Her mane of brown hair is a bit splattered, and the anxious manner she peers through the nearest window may hint at the real reason she's here in the first place.

Not only does clothes stick out, but not known to be a regular in such places, Samuel finds it curious when he sees Ellie. Also, that doesn't help his indecision for getting a work out today between classes. In fact, his path veers for the bench she has claimed, where she gazes out the window with some hints of anxiety perhaps. Other than thinking someone else is coming, that she is either nervously waiting for, or avioding (maybe a teacher for all he knows), he's not sure the whole reason for the look, but that just teases at his curiousity. "Hoping it doesn't storm out there," he asks of her, hints of a grin, going different route than waiting on someone all together for the moment.

There is a small start as Ellie turns to the unexpected voice, her eyes wide in a deer-in-the-headlights way for a brief moment before it registers who it is. "Oh. Hi Sam." She greets in her usual soft-spoken way, one hand lifting to tuck a lock of hair behind one ear. "I know. I didn't want to get my new books soaked by…" Ellie starts to indicate the window and explain, but cuts herself off to smile faintly to Samuel. "…so, uhm, are you just here to get out of the rain, too?" She's sitting all rather proper-like now, with her hands resting on her knees as she looks up at him.

"Hey Ellie," he returns the greeting, warmly. Then looks out from the hand tucking hair to the indicated rain covered window. Samuel smiles a little more, he wasn't certain if it was the rain or not, glad more that its no avoiding someone else at least. Coming back to her own smile, he shakes his head. "Something like that, protecting my books," all while holding a towel and looking more ready to get on a treatmill rather than brave the rain. "It might not let up, you want to borrow my packpack?" That could sound odd, even he realizes it, "Its canvas, with welded seams." Camping/hiking talk, 'welded' seams with rubber/synthetic material.

Ellie tilts her head curiously at the offer, and bobs her head in understanding once he explains it. "No. No, it's okay, thank you though. Uhm." She fidgets slightly where she sits. "Your stuff will get wet if I took your backpack, and besides I'm… well, I don't really have anywhere to go in a hurry." She turns her head again, peering through the window at the relentless rain. "You'd think someone can make it stop." Ellie mutters quietly, but turns back to Sam and his towel. "Are you…" She lifts a finger and points questioningly in the direction of a treadmill.

Samuel gives a shrug abou this books, "Maybe, but I'm pretty fast, and besdies, my books aren't so new." He leaves the offer hanging at that as he chuckles at making the rain stop, "All at once would probably be a challenge." As if seriously considering, then again, founding family and all. Another pause is given as he turns over to the treadmill, as if it could be offending even, that treadmill. Standing silent and challenging him. "I was going to, still trying to get the right motivation to get up there and you know, do the running thing. Such a dreary day, like hot coffee and sitting at the bakery would be better than running."

"Exercise is good for you. Keep up your heart rate and metabolism." Says the wannabe-doctor. "That's pretty good motivation. I think, uhm…" Ellie pauses to scratch a bit at the side of her head. "…we really should all reduce our sugar intakes. Pastries are, well, they're not so great for…" Again, she doesn't finish her sentence before inhaling deeply, then smiles a rueful smile. "I'd join you on the treadmill but I didn't bring any gym clothes."

There is a nod of his head, "Exactly, my body is telling me yes." To excersice, though when she pauses to talk about sugars, that brings his attention right back to her. "What about if I worked out just a little more, does that sort of balance out with the sugar intake?" His grin shows curious and no offense at any suggestion to watch his diet. "I wouldn't mind the company, makes for better running. I think half the people inside today didn't mean to be there." His eyes look up at the rain, as if that's the deciding factor for indoors.

Her smile now is both self-depreciating and a bit wry. "You know I'm really bad at sports." Ellie confesses, looking like she doesn't actually want to get up on a treadmill. "But I guess I should, uhm, do what I preach?" Turning to the side, she adjusts her backpack before rising to her feet, but still looks down towards her boots. "I'm so going to break my ankles if I run in these…" She observes and lifts her gaze to Sam. "…maybe some other exercise?"

"Its good, we won't make a sport of it," grins Samuel at the idea, but shakes his head, "I think you can exercise without doing too much. Walking more, moving around, that sort of stuff." Then he gives a serious pondering to the question. "Can you turn your hips and throw a ball?" He puts his feet shoulder width apart, sort of demonstrates holding an air ball, basket ball size, in his hands and rotating hips. Its sort of a lobbing motion, toss from the right, pause, toss from the left. An other excercise, one may deduce its not meant for throwing basketballs per say.

Ellie cocks her head to one side to watch Sam's demonstration. At the end of it, she breaks out into a little chuckle. "I'm not quite /that/ bad that I can't turn my hips." Then quieter. "It's not like I have to turn you into a pigeon or anything." She suppresses the chuckle and takes a breath, then gestures in the direction of the changing room. "I'm just gonna… wait, no. Gimme a minute." And with that, she drops the backpack and goes to pull her sweater off right there. She wears a gray tee underneath, so that works well enough for the gym, except the sweater seems to get caught in her mane of long hair so she struggles a bit with it!

Catching the chuckle and the pigeon comment, Samuel returns the same, chuckling. "No, just, its an excercise where we throw a medicine ball back and forth, its good for the core." Though he's not pressing either, and a nod, giving a moment towards that minute. Caught more when she simply goes to take off her sweater, hints of relief for him as there is a gray tee underneath of course. Then his hands come up, not wanting to be rude when she struggles where its caught, but not wanting her trapped there either, or pulling to hard to where it hurts hair. He moves foward to reach and help, "We gotcha, its good there." Calming sound mean as he does what he can, if he can, to help her just the same.

With a bit of assistance, the sweater is removed, although it does leave her hair a complete mess. A hit by a F5-level tornado. Ellie actually staggers a bit from it, but hurriedly lifts her hands to brush it back into place. "Sorry. And thanks." She smiles weakly, perhaps a bit embarrassed at her own clumsiness. Carefully folding the sweater and putting it on the bench, she retakes her seat to remove her boots. Yes, wearing just socks during an exercise is still way better than boots with heels. Once that's done, Ellie stands back up and nods. "Okay, I'm all set."

Shaking his head, Sam returns, "Don't worry about it." The help that is, none-the-concerned by any appearance of clumsiness. As she ends up with sweater neat on the bench and boots set aside, a smile hits him, "Now, I'm not gonna race if that's what you're after." A slight tease even, he'll turn, offering her first choice of treadmill even, then deciding on one to the side there. "And I think this means I owe you something. You got me to finally commit to my plan today." He'll loop his towel on one side of the machine, starting beeping away with his finger, plugging in the settings for a normal workout for himself.

"Oh." She says in a small voice. "I thought we were, uhm, throwing medicine balls." Ellie looks over towards the treadmills with just a bit of trepidation on her face. Still, she follows sheepishly, watching Sam set up a treadmill before moving to the adjacent one, where she squints and peers at the panel like she's never seen it before. Experimentally, she lifts a hand and starts poking at it, making a lot of beeping noises before she asks aloud. "I don't want… I don't mean to alarm you, but I have no idea what I am doing here."

Giving a pause in his beeping as she catches up, "Oh, no, we don't have to do the treadmill, I was being stupid." Looking around, "Assuming and all. The medicine balls are way better, quicker workout even, for the core. This is more cardio, but running around to dodge rain." He lets the idea go, stepping off his treadmill. He does point out the display, "Okay, three buttons to worry about, this one just turns it on." He points, but doesn't turn it on, "Here you can set your speed." Two buttons there, up/down, "And then of course timer if you want it." He does push that to show how it works. "These other ones are more resistance and the grade, or incline. There are some preset resistence and such too." He points to one that shows waves and such, labelled hills, or rolling hills, or mountains. "Come on, medicine ball is more fun anyways, sorry." A chuckle though, at his wrongful assumption. He'll move to secure a 6 pounder. "All you have to do is catch it, and throw it back. Alternate sides." He'll hold the ball ready to throw from the hip, rotating his core. And lob it when she's ready. A slight loft, to bounce it closer to her core.

Although Ellie listens attentively to Sam's explanation of how to set up the treadmill, she is clearly relieved that they're not going on it… because health-conscious Ellie knows better than to run/jog without proper shoes. Bobbing her head to Sam, Ellie backs up a few steps to take up position to receive the ball. "So maybe try not to hit me in the face." She calls back a request, while lifting both hands to brush her mess of hair back away from her face. When she looks up and back at Sam —- well, she blinks as the ball flies way past. What?

(OOC: +rolls were used here for the ball-tosses just to test out the mechanics, but not posted)

A slight chuckle hits him at her offer for aiming to throw the ball and he means to shake his head, but he lets the ball go the same. It sails clear certainly, and he'll move a little, to go it, since he threw it, unless she stops him of course. "No, I couldn't throw it at your face. I mean, yeah, its the lightest ball I could grab, but no way I'm throwing six pounds at your face." Humor at his misthrow aside, he does offer, "Sorry, I should of waited until we were both ready, its easier than I made it look once we get a rhythym down."

"No, no no. I can get it." Ellie holds up a hand, and is already jogging in the direction of the flung ball. Catching up and retrieving it, she holds it in both hands and does the side-to-side pivot of her upper body. "Let me… uh, I want to give it a try." She returns to her previous position, takes careful aim at Sam, and finally lobs it in his direction.

"That's it, twist and toss," he says waiting for the return. Samuel gets it, a good lob that more bounces right in front of him. Another bad assumption, he wasn't sure if it would make it to him or not. It makes it and lands nearly on his foot, bounding into his shin. A light 'ugh' as it hits, then a grin, "Perfect, quite an arm, you sure sports isn't your thing?" He moves over to grab said ball, forgetting that shin for the moment. "I think we almost have this down." He gets back into place, after getting it from the bottom of a treadmill, then gives it another lob back to her.

She knows it's just a good-natured tease, but Ellie still goes full-on blushing at her botched throw that almost squished Sam's toes. "Sorry." She says again, briefly cupping her cheeks with both hands as if to make the blush go away quicker. Not that it works that way, of course. More practice is needed for this, so she gets ready to receive another toss from Sam — another one that goes wide, but this time Ellie manages to spring to the side and catch the ball with an outstretched hand, even though she stumbles a couple of steps afterwards. "I think I'll try out for the football team after today." She adds with a wry little smile.

"Nah, all good," returns Sam to her sorry, not getting the full blush cause he chased down the ball. All in good spirits. Watching after his toss, she makes a good catch even stepping after his bad throw to retrieve it. "I think you should, better than I am at this." Irony in that he suggested they try this exercise even. "Maybe its all in the confidence, I should quit thinking, start trying." Then he bounds on his feet just a little, "Okay, I'm finally ready too, give me a good one.:

And maybe they should just treat this as an exercise and not a dodgeball contest. Ellie will get that through her head and lob the ball a bit gentler, not actually taking aim anymore — and it does go better, when the ball arcs gracefully towards Sam. "Oh that's better." She observes, standing back and swinging her arms in relief. "So, how's M… how are your sisters?" Ellie finally decides to take her mind off the ball itself.

Sam still needs to take a step to catch it, a good throw, then the question to get minds off the exercise itself. "Remains to be seen." About his sisters, as if something is afoot. Taking the step back and preparring to throw, "Mostly good, Meadow seems to have met some guy claiming to be a musician." Skeptical is his tone. He gives a better toss to here too, less focus on throwing it around seems to help. Conversation even better, "No playing yet, still looking for a guitarist he says." As if an excuse to sit around with his sister in a coffee shop.

Yes, Ellie is getting into the groove of casual throwing, catching the incoming ball with both hands with just a tiny bit of a fumble. "Now that they're all in college, I think, uh, they're bound to meet someone, right?" She opines, twisting her upper body from side to side a few times before returning the ball-toss. "He's an out-of-towner?"

Her rotations seem to help her with a good throw, right to Sam, he catches easily enough, letting it ride slightly into his body with the motion. Giving a moment, he returns the throw readily enough. "Yeah, Nick is his name, she didn't even mention him. I was out with Amelia in the courtyard." The campus courtyard, "And when he caught my name, he mentioned they were making a band or something. I guess its bound to happen, but that just seems … I don't, after school specia, like one shy of 'I'm an astronaught'." Or other cool things to be.

There's that smile again, Ellie's typical warm-but-demure special. "I think that's cute." She comments as she backpedals a step to catch the incoming ball. She's still fumbling a bit mainly because she's wearing socks, which provide very little traction against the gym floor, but it doesn't seem to bother Ellie too much as she tosses the ball back. "I mean, the way you're, uhm, fretting over your sisters' love lives. Are all big brothers like that?"

Giving a pause for the moment, Sam doesn't think its so cute. Not realizing at first until she explains, having jumped to conclusions again, about sister and musicians. Then he colors a hint at his cheeks, more at his confusion, but that its cute doesn't help the color. The smoothness of sock wearing and throwing gives him a smile at least. "I don't know, maybe they should be." But then, what about him and big brothers. "Less late night tears." He went through high school with three younger sisters, some heart break was probably mixed in there.

Ellie bobs her head to his reply. "I… kinda miss that. I mean, I love my sister and brother, but… we're never close the way you and your sisters are." She laments. Of course, all the locals know about the huge age disparity among the Cunningham kids. Her hair is given an idle toss, before the ball is done the same. "Are you going to… you're not going to punch this guy, are you?"

Considering that lament, Samuel nods quietly, watching the idle toss, the mannerisms in there coupled with socks. Socks seems to be a good thing. "I should," he says, moving just a little to catch the ball, deadpanned voice, wry even. But then a shake, "Nah, he could be legit, and I don't need that on my academic record." He bounces the ball hard once, real quick, then tosses it back. "See how it goes, if there are tears, that might change though. Depends how Meadow is with him, I'll have to ask."

"That's a full-time job. I mean, with three sisters to look after." Ellie observes with a faint smile, ducking her head back just as she manages to intercept the ball. "How do you find time to do anything else? Like, you know, your football team thing. And lunch." She can be wry when she wants to, see? But then her demeanor turns just a tad more serious. "Everyone's been so busy with college and classes, no one has actually thought about forming cir… uhm, you know, doing the other important stuff."

"No more time for football, have to catch the games when they play at the Firehouse," or televised in general he means. "And I stopped eating all together, unless I'm working." Maybe that's the rest of his time too, but Samuel is chuckling about his lack of time with three sisters, in college no less, to keep an eye out for. His own face serious as she turns to that topic. "Yeah, Elliot … Hale," as if there were lots of local lads name Elliot, "Seems he's just learning." That he's one of them, so to speak. "We were going to get together a group of us to go up to the lake, rent a cabin, talk to him and such. But maybe he's not so interested in talking now. Maybe we should rent a cabin anyways, take time off class, talk about that important stuff?"

There is another quiet "Oh" from Ellie, followed by a louder one — one of sudden recognition. "Oh! You guys already have… you're already talking about it. That's, uhm, that's good to hear." Again, she flashes that gentle, easy smile. The ball is tossed one more time, but with it Ellie also reaches up to tuck her hair behind both ears. "I think I should be going, even if I have to… go out in the rain. Thanks for the exercise though!"

"Just to talk, but yeah," returns Sam, as the Bates family has been adamant to the children about it. "I'll make sure word goes your way when ever a date is picked." Taking the ball, Samuel nods, "Thank you Ellie, I almost didn't do anything. If you want a good book bag, let me know, we can find you one." The camping sort, waterproofed so much it could be used as a personal floatation device if needed. "I should get going too. Good to see you." He'll see to putting the ball away, getting his towel and assure the machines are turned off/reset at least. A wave and he turns to that minor task.

OOC Date: 2015.06.02
IC Date: 2014.10.11
Cast: Ellie & Samuel

NE02: Student Union: Recreation Center

Named very creatively recreation center, this place attracts a mix of students, as it is open twenty-four hours a day. The building is non-descript on the outside - two stories, plenty of windows, but feeble and unremarkable in design, obviously designed sometime in the 1950s, but well-kept and owning its own charm, somehow.

Inside, it has been since remodeled into a more open layout. A round front desk seats attendants that point visitors to the various recreation areas of the building. The majority of the building is a fitness center, equipped with treadmills, weights, and regular human exercise equipment. Around the corner, there is an indoor rock wall, rising to well-above fifty feet, illuminated by a few skylights that display the outside sky.

Outside, cold rain falls from a grey-black sky without moon or stars. A raw wind blows from the east. Raindrops patter against the leaves, invisible in the darkness.

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