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Colin

 

Keeley had always had a special place in her heart for Colin. When she was with Jamie he was always one of the nicest guys on the team, never ogling her, always asking questions about her life, and actually listening to the answer. With the exception of her current boyfriend, he was probably her favorite member of the team.

 

She’d suspected he was gay for a bit now, had always had the best gaydar of any of her friends. She also knew how hard it was to be out in professional sports, could count the number of players who had come out and were still playing professionally on one hand. 

 

So she didn’t say anything. Thankfully Ted was pretty progressive, as was Rebecca, so they always agreed with her PR suggestions that put the team in rainbow jerseys for June, making large donations to organizations helping fight homophobia, having the team do an equity and inclusion seminar, the whole thing. Whenever Colin, or any of the players, felt ready to come out they should feel safe telling the team.

 

What she wasn’t expecting however was to see him outside a club, shirt half off, pressed against a guy Keeley vaguely recognized as one of the bartenders she had seen earlier in the night. Normally she’d keep moving, leave him be, and talk to him in the morning about subtlety but the rest of the team was also in the club and she knew she only had a few minutes before they came tumbling out, with them coming public attention that she didn’t want to turn to Colin.

 

“Colin!” She yelled, trying to get his attention. After a few more tries he finally extricated himself from the guy, looking towards her.

 

“Keeley…” He trailed off, looking like a deer caught in the headlights. He motioned for the guy to leave as Keeley approached him. She’d never seen Colin look so scared.

 

“Lets get you pulled together.” Keeley smiled at him adjusting his shirt and hair. Colin grabbed her wrist, and she met his eyes again, heart breaking.

 

“Thank you.” He whispered. She threw her arms around him in a hug, holding him as tightly as possible.


“Don’t mention it.” She knew he would though, would need to talk to her about it, but right now he needed to know that it was okay. That he had her in his corner, always.

 

(Many years later he asked Keeley to officiate his wedding. She cried the whole ceremony.)

 

 

Isaac

 

Keeley loved to dance. Didn’t matter when, didn’t matter where, if there was music she wanted to be dancing. Jamie had always refused to dance with her the way she wanted, only choosing to do dances that made him seem ‘cool’ which was basically swaying and drinking. Roy’s knee caused too many issues for him to really truly dance with her. But at least she had Isaac.


She’d discovered this little talent of his at a club one night, when she saw him dancing with a girl, spinning her around like a top. The next day before practice she interrogated him and found out that Isaac’s mom had made him take dance lessons as a kid and he was a diehard fan of Strictly Come Dancing.


Honestly, if Keeley wasn’t so head over heels in love with Roy she probably would’ve married Isaac then and there.


One night a week, when there wasn’t a game or training, they’d meet up at one of their houses and watch Strictly Come Dancing, while also trying the dances out for themselves. They killed at parties.


But really, Keeley loved their nights for another reason. Isaac was so quiet, so stoic, so hard to reach sometimes. Besides him really loving rolos, she didn’t know much. But on their nights in, with glasses of wine and sweatpants, she learned so much about him. She knew about his family, about his friends, about his past and present and what he dreamed for his future.

 

In between dancing she grew to love Isaac the person, the teddy bear, the big brother she never had.

 

(Isaac gave Roy dance lessons before he got married, but still insisted Keeley save a few dances for him.)

 

 

Jamie

 

Jamie knows Keeley deserved better than him. They both made mistakes in the relationship, neither of them were their best selves when they were together. 

 

But in the after, he knows that Keeley wasn’t at her best because she was trying to connect to him, and even her at her worst was worlds better than he was. 

 

He still loved her. Not like that, but a part of him would always care for her, want to protect her, all that emotional bullshit. 

 

It didn’t hurt that she knew him better than anyone else. He rarely let anyone near him, didn’t show anyone his life, kept it all close to the chest, but Keeley knew. She had worked her way in, sliding around every barrier with smiles and sunshine. She knew about his dad, his mum, all of the issues that stemmed from it. 

 

After the game, after he hit his father, after Roy fucking Kent hugged him, after it felt like he’d been stripped down to skin and bones in front of the team, all he wanted was to go home, get piss drunk, punch a wall, and sleep. 

 

But there Keeley was, sitting on the hood of his car. 

 

“What are you doing?” He tried to be angry, but only managed exhausted. 

 

“You shouldn’t be alone. So I’m going home with you and we’re going to deal with this.” She smiled, putting a bag in the backseat. 

 

“Won’t gramps be jealous? Or did you finally dump him.” The insults sounded empty, even to him. 

 

“Roy understands. Besides, I’m not going to sleep with you.”

 

Keeley allowed him 3 beers when they got home, and made his favorite dinner. They slept on opposite ends of the couch, an old tv show playing. 

 

He didn’t speak more than 5 sentences the whole night, but Keeley kept up a running monologue. Talking about work, about life, about anything. She kept him out of his own head, kept him from drowning, like she always had. 

 

Because they may not have been their best selves when they were together, but Keeley helped him become his best self. 

 

(It’s why he was so honored to be one of her ‘bridesmen’)

 

 

Sam

 

Keeley knows she’s fit. She’s always known that. She’s seen the way men have always looked at her, even since she was a child. She made money off of it, she made a career off of it. She knows she is hot, she knows how to use that. But sometimes it doesn’t feel that way. Sometimes the press or someone on social media say something and it feels like she’s nothing. 

 

Today is one of those times. 

 

She’d posted a photo of her and Phoebe on Instagram, one where they were both launching and smiling. And where she felt genuinely happy. Every comment she was seeing was talking about her wrinkles, her smile, how ugly she looked while she laughed. 

 

And now she had to go and take photos for the club. Some magazine was doing a “behind the scenes” shoot, with pictures of the team and the people behind them and all that bullshit. 

 

She gives it her best shot with the photographers, gives them 20 minutes of her doing the normal poses, 20 minutes of her trying before she gives up. 

 

“Keeley!” Sam yells from the makeup chair, getting up and bounding over to her. 

 

“What is wrong?” He asked, wrapping one arm around her shoulders as she leaned into him. Sam always made her feel safe and comforted. 

 

“I just…feel like shit. And don’t want to take these because people are arseholes.” She sighed, scrubbing a hand over her face. 

 

“I have a solution! One you taught me.” Sam smiled, grabbing his phone and turning on some pop music. Keeley started to laugh, remembering the trick she taught him. If you dance, eventually your body will loosen up to the point where it doesn’t look like you have a stick up your ass in pictures. 

 

Sam danced with her, getting her moving, letting her laugh and sing, and when she finally felt comfortable enough to pose he cheered her on. 

 

(A few years later, when Keeley was 7 months pregnant and felt like a whale, it was Sam who got her to stop crying when she couldn’t find a dress that she felt confident in for Rebecca and Ted’s engagement party)

 

 

+Roy

 

Keeley loved Roy’s thoughtfulness, above all else. He knew just what she needed, when she needed it. And right now, she really needed to get the fuck out of her office. It was 9pm, the PR campaign she was working on was killing her, somehow all the boys had gotten themselves into trouble or potential trouble or whatever, and she just wanted to go home to bed with him. 

 

She started to reconsider her position on him knowing her when he led her to the pitch. 

 

“Roy, I’m not in the mood to listen to you lament your injury here. Can we do that in the morning?” She tried to pull him back towards the parking lot, but he tugged her back, rolling his eyes. 

 

“Just look.” He whispered, turning her to face to pitch fully. 

 

On the center of the field laid a blanket, a case of champagne, and chocolate strawberries

 

“Dance with me?” Roy asked her, eyes dark and soft and she felt her entire body melt as he spun her around. 

 

They pantomimed the fancy dancing they’d seen at galas, exaggerated dips and twirls and some attempted lifts, dancing to a song only they could hear. 

 

Keeley doesn’t know how long they danced, but at some point she’d slipped off her heels, he’d gotten rid of his jacket, and she fell more and more in love with him by the second. 

 

“Keeley,” Roy pulled her close to him, resting their foreheads together as they continued to sway, “I need to ask you something.” She felt her breath catch. 

 

“No, we’re not having sex on the pitch. I told you that last week.” She tried to joke, but her voice was shaky by the end, seeing Roy reach into his back pocket for something. 

 

“Right, I still think you should reconsider that but we can discuss it later,” He pressed a kiss to her nose, feather light, “What I really wanted to ask, you minx, is if you wanted to marry me.”

 

“What?” She whispered, stepping back from him a bit. 

 

“I can’t get down on one knee too well, so I’m going to remain standing, but Keeley Jones, I love you. I want to spend the rest of my life with you. I want to be your husband. What do you say?” And there wasn’t much she could say.

 

So she leapt into his arms instead, almost knocking him off his feet. She kissed him like she was drowning, like he was salvation, like he was heaven and hell rolled into one. 

 

Minutes later, after her heart stopped beating so hard, after he stopped crying, after they actually put the ring on her finger, she let it sink in. 

 

“The boys are going to fucking lose it. So are the coaches and Rebecca.” She laughed, imagining a Richmond wedding. 

 

“C’mon babe, Rebecca and the coaches know, have known for a bit now, I asked for their blessing. And the boys…” he trailed off as Keeley heard the familiar sound of the team rushing the pitch. “They helped me plan it.” Roy shrugged. 

 

She was swept into the familiar arms of the team, all of them congratulating her and threatening to kill Roy if he hurt her simultaneously. Rebecca, Ted, Higgins, and Beard came out of the owners box, joining the revelry. 

 

Over the speakers came her favorite songs, all the screens in the stadium read “Congrats Roy and Keeley,” and somewhere in the distance fireworks went off. 

 

It was perfect. Not too public so it felt like a spectacle, but with all the flash and people she loved most. 

 

(And months later they did in fact have sex on the pitch. Roy swears it’s where their daughter was conceived.)