Status: Very Active

Study of Life and Love

Beach Bonding

I knocked loudly on Caydances door before closing my eyes and pushing the door wide open.

“Get up, we leave in twenty and Harry still needs to sneak out the back door.” I called into her room and heard a dull thud of a body hitting the ground. I didn’t open my eyes until I had turned away, not wanting to see any naked bodies.

Olivia was smirking from the top of the stairs. “She does know that we all know he stays here right? Why does she still make him sneak out?” She fiddled with the button on the top of her denim shorts.

I shrugged. “I think she just likes making him sneak out the back door.”

The entire bottom floor of the house was abuzz with girls all dressed in some type of swimwear and our beach bags lined the walls of the foyer. Foldable chairs had been stacked in the side room with large umbrellas next to them.

I headed into the kitchen to grab a drink and found Sidney sitting amongst four different girls as they scrutinized her as she ate each and every bite of her cereal. She looked ready to argue.

“I will drive you back to the hospital the moment someone tells me you didn’t eat a full meal.” I warned her, smiling at her defeated look. I didn’t care if she felt like we were babying her; if she wouldn’t look after herself we would do it for her. It was too scary to watch her faint to ever consider letting her go back to her old ways.

“The bus is here.” She mumbled around her mouthful. “Louis and his boys have started to pack their stuff into it, we should probably start loading too.”

I hesitated but grabbed a bottle of juice anyway. “I’m sure Rhiannon will start loading soon.”

“Are you going to avoid Louis all day today too?” Sidney dropped her spoon back into her now empty bowl and showed it to each of the girls around her.

I rolled my eyes at her. “There will be at least fifty of us at the beach today. I don’t need to avoid him.” I said spitefully. I didn’t like how he made me feel lonely and vulnerable. I didn’t like that despite my best attempts at distancing myself from him my heart still jumped every time I saw his face. I hated that even after all the pranking everything had reverted back to like before this year happened. Where I barely registered in his life and yet he kept becoming center stage of mine.

Caydance brushed into the kitchen, red hair plaited and swimwear thinly covered by a white dress.

“Harry snuck out then?” Sidney asked.

Caydance shot her a glare. “I have no idea what you are talking about.” She said, grabbing my bottle of juice and taking a drink. I snatched it back from her.

“I hope you don’t, since it’s against the rules and all that,” Sidney said.

Caydance glared at me before grabbing her own bottle of juice. “I know the rules, Sid.”

“Are you girls coming to the beach or what? This was your idea for stupid beach bonding or whatever crap.” Rhiannon glared the last part of her words at Sidney who shrugged.

“Louis’ idea as well.”

“Whatever.” Rhiannon stalked off.

“Guess her and Connor still aren’t back together.” Caydance let out a low whistle.

I grabbed my bottle and made my way out of the kitchen, following closely behind Sidney to better scrutinize her balance. “I’ve never seen either of them fight before.”

“It’s abnormal not to fight with someone you’re dating.” Caydance stated before grabbing her beach bag from the bottom of the staircase.

“For you, maybe,” laughed Sidney. Niall took that moment to waltz through our front door followed by boys from Kings’ house, all ready to load the bus with whatever we had. Niall smiled widely and placed a large kiss on Sidney’s forehead before grabbing her bag and dumping it on the closest Grace girl that was near him, which happened to be Riley.

“I can carry my bag,” Sidney protested. Niall merely ignored her and sent Riley out of the house before grabbing two umbrellas from the floor.

“They’re disgusting.” Caydance mumbled from next to me.

I laughed and shook my head, thinking she should be the last person criticizing anyone on their relationship. Her and Harry were inseparable.

“Please, I saw you platting Harry’s hair the other day, in broad daylight. Where people could see you. It was disgusting.” Olivia said loudly, standing in between Caydance and I.

I let a loud laugh rip through my throat and both Olivia and I danced out of the reach of Caydance’s arm.

“Seriously girls, let’s get on this bus today please.” Louis’ voice boomed through the doorway. Everyone’s attention switched to him and his incredibly bare chest. I tried to groan internally but from Caydance and Olivia’s smirk and sympathy smile, Caydance being the one more likely to smirk, I didn’t hide it very well.

Louis was hot. He knew that. We all knew that. It was a basic statement of my life. But it didn’t mean I had to spend the whole day with it staring me in my face. The faster I could get over him the better, and that meant not having a half-naked Louis parading through my life.

I moved towards Sidney, planning on faking sickness or someway to get out of today.

I hadn’t even opened my mouth before her glare shut me down.

“No, Thea. Get on the bus.” She pointed towards the door. I sighed and grabbed my bag before joining Caydance at the doorway.

“I could push you down the stairs and hopefully break your ankle.” She offered in her own sweet way.

“I really don’t want to break my ankle.” I assured her quickly, stepping down the stairs before she could decide to override my decision.

“You will all be sitting with a member of the opposite house on the bus today, so do not start buddying up with someone from your own.” Sidney yelled behind the group of Grace girls that walked towards the bus. There was a collective groan from both groups of students, everyone muttering under their breaths.

Caydance only looked joyful, her eyes searching for dark curly hair through the bus windows as we made our way to the door. I frowned at her in jealousy and climbed up the stairs, Louis was sitting on a seat in the first row, a sheet of paper held up in front of him.

He made eye contact with Caydance before his eyes flickered to me then went back down to the sheet. “We have a seating chart,” he said.

Caydance groaned and hit her head against one of the steel bars lined up next to the bus driver’s chair.

“Caydance you’re with Liam,” Louis smirked. The smirked stayed intact after Caydance had punched his shoulder and moved three seats behind Louis to sit next to Liam. She made him get up and give her the window seat.

“Thea with Zayn,” Louis said so quickly I almost missed it. Sighing I took the seat behind him where Zayn sat, head resting against the glass window. Eyes shut.

“Hey,” he greeted when I sat down next to him, one eye opening to glance at me.

“Late night?” I asked.

“Not a morning person.”

I smiled and lifted my knees up to rest on the chair in front of me, while everyone began to pile onto the bus. Sidney was last on before the bus driver shut the doors and she took the seat beside Louis. She shot me a smile over her shoulder before Louis nudged her into a conversation.

“Is Zayn asleep?” Caydance asked obnoxiously from behind us.

“No,” Zayn said, slapping away the finger she attempted to poke him with, without even looking.

“He can fall asleep anywhere,” Caydance said to Liam and I. “But moving transport is his specialty, he always falls asleep on the car ride home in a matter of seconds.”

“Oi yeah remember that time we had stopped to have lunch for two hours and when we got back to the car he was still asleep.” Louis turned around to join the conversation.

“He literally had no idea we had already eaten and complained later when we wouldn’t stop so he could eat,” Caydance said.

“I fall asleep so I don’t have to put up with the both of you,” Zayn mumbled before pushing his head away from the glass and glaring at the both of them.

“You did fall asleep that time on those kids trains that take you around theme parks,” Liam said.

“Why were you on one?” Caydance asked with a smirk.

“Zayn was tired and wanted to sit down and then he fell asleep, almost rolled out a few times if I didn’t have a hold of him.”

“Okay, okay, enough with the Zayn stories. I think you all forget that I have plenty about each and every one of you,” Zayn growled, rubbing his eyes tiredly before crossing them over his chest.

“Please, I don’t get embarrassed that easily,” Louis scoffed.

“Oh really, you wanna test that out?”

Louis eyes briefly met mine before he huffed and turned around in his seat so he was now facing the front. Zayn made a small noise of victory and flicked the back of Louis’ head.

“Now I’m curious.” Sidney murmured but only received a glare from Louis in response.

“You’re no fun, Zayn.” Caydance pouted, bottom lip pretending to tremble. Zayn rolled his eyes and shoved his hand in front of Caydance’s face.

“How have you lived with her for so long?” he asked me. “It’s bad enough I have to spend my Christmases with her.”

Caydance pushed Zayn’s hand away, “I’m a fucking delight.”

I smiled at her and said to Zayn, “sometimes you just have to make the best of a bad situation.”

Caydances indignant snort was met with a bark of laughter from Louis. I looked his way in surprise but his shoulders were slumped and head focused down in his lap. He refused to turn around despite the silence that had fallen over the six of us.

Zayn casually ruffled the back of Louis hair before resting his head back against the window. I sighed and grabbed my phone and earphones, plugging them into my ears so I could block out all the noise around me. I slunk further down in the seat and began to let my eyes flutter closed, meeting Zayn’s eyes briefly as he watched me from his bent position against the glass. Eye contact only lasted a matter of seconds before his own eyes slipped closed. I followed suit.


Zayn nudged me awake, I groaned and rolled my head to the side and was met with the blinding sun as the bus rolled past the bright sandy beach. I pushed myself up into a sitting position and yanked the earphones from my ears. I regretted this instantly when Caydance’s loud voice filled my ears. She seemed to be arguing with Riley about something, Riley who was sitting at the back of the bus next to a sleeping Harry.

“You’re going to have to pull a curl, he hates that.” Caydance was saying loudly. She was leaning over the back of her seat, ass in the air dangling red hair into Olivia’s face.

“I’m not pulling a curl. What if he wakes up violently?” Riley shook her head, eyes sliding to the slumped Harry.

“Just do it Riles.” Caydance grew frustrated.

“How is Harry still asleep with them yelling over him?” I asked.

Liam turned around in his seat to face front. “Harry can sleep through anything. We’ve tried it all, megaphones, air horns, bells, lids smashing together, a whole lot of yelling and screaming. You name it and we have tried it.”

“I’ll do it.” Connor snapped and turned in his seat to grab a handful of Harry’s hair and yank. Riley jumped out of her seat just in time for Harry to splutter and send his long gangly limbs pin wheeling over both of their seats. He blinked around as the entire bus focused on him.

“Was going on?” He mumbled, reaching up to rub the spot that Connor had pulled hair from.

“Caydance wanted you to wake up.” Riley supplied as she now sat on the other side of the aisle of seats, in Luke’s lap.

“Thanks babe.” Harry yelled, holding his thumb up in the air, sarcasm dripping from his words.

“Not a problem honey buns.” Caydance replied, a shit-eating grin spread across her face.

“We’re here,” Louis cut in over the noise that had filled the bus since Harry’s awakening. The bus pulled into a park as his voice echoed. I leant over Zayn to stare out the window and smile dreamily at the bright sand and blue, blue water. I wanted to run straight down there and dive in. I met Liam’s eyes and we seemed to have a passing thought.

“Race you in?” He asked, as the front door to the bus opened. Caydance looked over, light in her eyes and I knew that she would happily join the race.

I hesitated, measuring how far we would run and how difficult it would be to get there. Louis was just climbing over Sidney to get into the aisle first and I made my decision.

“You’re on.” I grinned, bolting up from my seat and grabbed Louis’ shoulder, spinning us around so I was now at the front of the bus and he was blocking Liam and Caydance’s path. He had a look of momentary confusion before I propelled myself out the door of the bus and onto the road.

There were shouts and a shriek of laughter, which belonged to Caydance, but I didn’t turn around. Instead I kicked of the thongs that were preventing me from going fast, they flew onto the bitumen seconds before my bare feet hit the hot sand. I only ran faster, needing to get off the hot sinking sand and closer to the water.

There was noise close behind me, only getting closer and I pushed myself further. I grinned once my feet hit colder, harder sand and it became easier to run. The wind whipped my hair around my face and I had seconds of breathing in the salt of the ocean before warm hands grabbed my waist and my feet lost the ground. I screamed as I flew through the air only to have the sun shine right in my eyes blinding me to the person who currently had me cradled in their arms as they kept running, their feet hitting water as it sprayed up around us from their kicking feet.

I had a moment to brace myself before I was dumped into the crashing waves, cold water washed over me, my eyes and mouth slammed shut and I spun around in the water the moment hands were free of me.

It was a disorientating few seconds where I couldn’t figure out which way was up until my hands hit sand. I righted myself before kicking off the ground the short way until my head breached the surface of the water. I broke through, gasping for air, and let out the bubble of laughter that had been waiting to break free.

Wiping the hair back from my face I looked around for the person who threw me under and I paused when I met Louis’ mischievous smirk, it flinched a little when our eyes met but it stayed there out of pure stubbornness.

I was more than surprised that it was Louis. Louis, who had backed off when I told him too, who I had relentlessly been pranking for weeks now. Louis who hadn’t necessarily done anything bad. He just didn’t like me how I liked him and that wasn’t his fault. It was mine for expecting more from him.

He looked lost for a moment when I still didn’t speak but a flash of red hair appeared behind him and I took that as my opportunity to even it out. I took two steps towards him before jumping at the same time Caydance grabbed him from behind. My hands grasped his shoulder and between the two of us, we all went under the water.

I had another exhilarating tumble under water before finding my footing and pulling myself up the right way. Caydance was gasping for air next to me while Louis was busy trying to brush the wet hair from his eyes. I grinned and met Louis’ eyes briefly but a shrill whistle pulled all of our attention.

“Great, now that you are all nice and wet can someone please help unload the bus.” Sydney yelled to the dozen or so of us now floating in the water.

Niall let out cackles of laughter from next to us before Harry promptly pushed him under the water for having a dirty mind.

It wasn’t long before a couple of the boys were setting up a volleyball net and Caydance was throwing the ball at them while the rest of us began to migrate into the water and stretch out over beach towels.

“Girls against boys,” Caydance said.

I closed my eyes and pushed the hat further down so it would block out most of the sun from my face while warming my body in all the right ways.

“No not girls against boys. The whole point of this trip is to get along with each other better. We’ll have a mix team with Louis and I as captains.” Sidney’s voice disappeared from where she had been lying beside me and had wandered off closer to wear the volleyball court had been set up.

I could feel the warmth beginning to make my mind wander, the need to nap present despite the time I had spent sleeping on the bus. There was something about the warm rays and soft wind that made me even more tired.

I startled when my leg was nudged, my hat falling off my face and I blinked blearily into the bright sun.

“We need another player,” Caydance said. “No one else wants to play, they think I’ll get too competitive.”

They weren’t wrong but I knew if I rejected like the others, Caydance would only pester and perhaps hurt me until I agreed to join. So I grabbed her hand to pull myself up and dusted off the sand that had still covered my skin despite lying on a towel. I pulled a long tank top over my bikinis so I was covered to the tops of my thighs before walking over to the group that had gathered around the nets. I pondered whether I should stop giving into Caydance all the time but life was so much simpler that way.

“We’re on Louis’ team.” Caydance pushed me to the left, where Louis, Harry and Connor stood waiting. Sidney was on the other side with Rhiannon, Olivia, Liam and Niall.

I wanted to be on Sidney’s team, knowing that everyone on that side was probably going to be less competitive than everyone on this side. Connor was already waiting to serve the ball, his glare clearly telling me to hurry up. I sighed and took the only empty spot, next to Louis who was already glaring across the net.

“First team to ten points win and then we switch over.” Sidney yelled, gesturing to the crowd of people around us, some who would play the next game and others like Zayn who were just lying back and ready to watch the probable train wreck that was surely going to happen. And it wasn’t because Kings and Grace were on the same sides. No, it was because they had unknowingly placed Rhiannon and Connor against each other so soon after their break up. Niall was likely to piss Sidney off by not taking it seriously. Harry would hurt himself at some point and Caydance and Louis were way too competitive to be on the same team without having a common enemy. Olivia had a no nonsense attitude when it came to sport and in the end it would only be me and Liam, wishing we had better friends.

The only thing wrong with that theory was that I had severely underestimated the anger and competitiveness that existed between Rhiannon and Connor. To the point where we were five to four, five being my team and four being Sidney’s and so far the only people who had been playing was Rhiannon and Oliver. Louis was becoming desperate, throwing himself closer to the ball but Connor was quicker and better. Spiking the ball back over the net far from the position he was supposed to be in.

“Do we even know why they are fighting?” Caydance appeared by my side, her eyes surveying the ball being repeatedly hit between only two people.

“All I know is that Rhiannon broke up with Connor.” I shrugged, standing from my half crouch, accepting the fact that we would not be playing team volleyball while these two were on the court.

“According to Connor, Rhiannon broke up with him over forgetting some anniversary. But if you ask Rhiannon she broke up with him because he was a selfish asshole.” Harry appeared between the both of us, wrapping an arm over each of our shoulders.

Caydance and I shared a surprised look.

“What?” Harry asked. “They had a fight while I was with Connor.”

“Apparently boys like to gossip a lot more than society thinks.” Caydance nudged Harry in the ribs.

Rhiannon and Connor were getting closer and closer to the net, threats falling out from their mouths at this point. It wasn’t pretty.

“I’m going to get some ice cream.” I spotted the ice cream truck in the car park near our bus. I wasn’t in the mood to watch Rhiannon and Connor explode so I ducked out of Harry’s arm and left to grab money from my bag.

Caydance joined me, her warm arm winding through mine as we trekked our way back across the hot sand and towards the car park.

“Ten dollars that they’re going to be making out by the time we get back,” Caydance said.

I shook my head at her. “I’m not going to take that bet because I totally agree.”

The footpath was scorching and we both quickly ran across until we hit grass.

“You seem more comfortable around Louis,” Caydance said. It wasn’t a question but she expected and answer.

I ordered a chocolate Sunday with strawberries placed on top. “I realised that it’s not Louis’ fault that he doesn’t feel the same way and I was the one being horrible in our scenario. So the best way to get over him is to stop being angry at him for my feelings.” I paid the man and accepted the ice cream.

“And if he does like you?” she ventured, ordering two ice creams.

“Caydance, don’t.” I shook my head and pulled a strawberry off and bit into the fruit.

“I’m just saying he wasn’t happy about Daniel Alston being all over you.” She grinned and took both the ice cream cones from the man. We started to head back.

“First of all Daniel was not all over me. Second of all why do you always say his last name? And third, Daniel is from Emmanuel and I’m from a different alliance. Louis was just protecting that alliance.” I shrugged, enjoying the cold chocolate.

“It makes you happier, doesn’t it? Not having to worry about what Louis feels?”

“It makes it easier to be around him when I understand that nothing will happen.” I assured her. Harry met us halfway back to the volleyball courts and accepted his ice cream with a sticky kiss from Caydance. I looked away to the courts and noticed that both Rhiannon and Connor had disappeared. I grinned and made my way back down to the court.

“Hey, where’s mine?” Louis grinned and stole a strawberry off the top of my sunday.

The only problem with accepting Louis as a friend and nothing more was that my heart still didn’t understand. The skipped beat in my heart wasn’t going to go away anytime soon.

“Sorry Lou, if you want someone to buy you ice cream you better get a girlfriend.” Caydance said, wrapping her free arm around my waist and pulling me along.

“I’m a strong independent man who don’t need no woman to buy him ice cream.” Louis yelled after us, to the amusement of everyone within hearing distance.

“And you, certainly don’t need a man.” Caydance winked, jokingly knocking our ice creams together.
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So I'm back!! Sorry for such a long wait and I don't know if you guys are still hanging around to listen to more of this story. But here is a chapter :D