Status: finished. c:

Our Wonderland

One / one.

“You don’t even know the first thing about owning anything other than a lizard.”

This was the first comment said by Harry Judd when he accompanied his boyfriend, Dougie Poynter, to the pet shop early Saturday morning. Also, by Dougie’s standards it was early—Harry didn’t consider half past eleven to be anything close to it. Growing up, Dougie wasn’t exactly a conventional pet owner, despite his family having a dog or two during his childhood. Once he was old enough to afford one, he’d managed to snag Zukie (and later on, a whole pseudo miniature zoo, but who kept track, really). Zukie was a pogona, commonly known as a bearded dragon. Since then, he couldn’t muster the courage to replace him. Hell, he’d even created a clothing line in his namesake.

“I think I’ll manage,” Dougie replied, his brows furrowing as his eyes darted from one display case to the next. “No hamsters or birds or fish. . .none of that.”

“We could get a poodle, how about it?” Harry grinned, bracing himself as he was shoved in the shoulder by the unamused blond beside him.

“I’m not opposed to getting a dog but for fuck’s sake—a poodle? Absolutely not.”

Dougie was convinced that each and every pet shop they walked into was lacking the kind of companion he desired. The cats were too placid and he was having flashbacks of the times at his friend’s house where he’d been asked to “babysit” them. Tom Fletcher had allowed Dougie to stay with him and his then-girlfriend (now wife) Giovanna Falcone. He was capable of taking care of their cats while he lived there temporarily. But once he’d moved out, they sometimes asked him if he’d be kind enough to do it again and he had politely declined.

“Maybe we’re not looking in the right places,” Harry mused as they walked hand-in-hand on the street after grabbing a bite to eat at a nearby restaurant. They’d been to four pet shops and none of them had an animal that piqued Dougie’s interest. There had been a few times when Harry would point to a dog he thought would be a match, only to be met with a firm “no” from him.

“Where should we be looking then?” Dougie waited for the brunette’s response but was distracted by a trio of puppies running towards him. He bent down to pet one, much to Harry’s dismay and warning that they could be stray dogs with rabies or fleas. He didn’t heed his warning while the first one tried to jump into his arms as the other two crowded around his hand.

“Harry, look at this runt, he can’t get enough of me.” He had picked up the chestnut coloured puppy and urged Harry to do the same with the remaining duo.

Harry cradled the other two in his arms, his expression softening as one licked his face. “Alright, they’re not complete nuisances. But what were they running away from, Doug? Or who?”

“No idea, but I don’t think I can give this one up.” Dougie scratched behind the dog’s ear while its tail wagged in excitement.

Excuse me. I’m so sorry, really.” A girl with long hair the color of coffee beans approached the pair, her cheeks red and her breathing labored. Harry knew she looked familiar but he couldn’t quite remember where he’d seen her until she held out a hand to Dougie. “I’m Isabel, but just call me Izzy. I work at the animal shelter and I’m a. . .” Her sentence trailed off as she realized who they were.

“. . .violinist. Izzy, it’s great to see you again, how have you been?” Harry smiled at the flustered girl before looking over at Dougie. “You remember Izzy. From the Wonderland tour all those years ago? She used to have blonde hair so maybe you don’t recall her exactly.” Their band, McFly, had their first arena tour in 2005 and during that time, they’d met Izzy, who they’d lost contact with after its end.

Contrary to what Dougie remembered of the tour, Harry noticed the way Izzy’s grin was genuine, but her eyes had darted from the blond’s gaze to his in quick succession. She remembered; that much he knew with certainty as Izzy took the puppy that Harry offered up—a silent exchange, save for the slight tipping of her chin to indicate a grateful nod. If Izzy started talking to Dougie, Harry barely noticed as he began to zone out, his surroundings blurring and morphing into a whole other setting as a myriad of memories flashed through his mind like an animator’s hand-drawn cartoon flip book.

It was as if he was suddenly transported back to the Wonderland tour, specifically during one evening of the band’s after parties.

Shit, shitfuckshitfuck, oh, bollocks.

Harry paused, his hand hovering over his pocket for the room key. He noticed a girl sitting down, cross-legged with her back to the wall and her head in her hands in frustration as she continued to mutter under her breath. She had her blonde hair in a neat ponytail and was dressed in all black attire. She seemed familiar, but then again, there were so many blondes that liked to dress in dark coloured clothing and the hotel wasn’t small by any means. However, he did feel the need to at least ask if she needed any help.

“Hello, er, miss, are you quite alright?”

When she lifted her face to reveal ruddy cheeks and a crease between her eyebrows, Harry shot her a smile and continued to try and be as polite as possible. He guessed that the guys were probably thinking that he’d gotten caught up in the washroom or sidetracked by a girl. Maybe the latter was actually the truth, rather than a shoddy excuse, that he could use as his defense when they asked. His friends and fellow bandmates, Tom Fletcher and Danny Jones, would end up taking the piss out of him anyway when he told them who she was and why he was intrigued by her.

“Have you gotten locked out of your hotel room? You seem. . .upset.”

The girl’s cheeks turned an even deeper shade of scarlet as Harry regarded her with subdued sympathy. “I’m fine, thank you. My roommate was supposed to put the spare room key in my purse before we left rehearsal but that obviously didn’t happen. She’s run off to some pub or another and I can’t track her down—I’m exhausted, as you can see.” She gestured towards her current state, elbows resting on her legs, hands cradled atop both sides of her face.

“Rehearsal? Do you mean that you’re a musician?” Harry blurted out before he could stop himself. For all he knew, she could’ve been a dancer. Or an exotic dancer, at that. He hoped he wasn’t blushing as that thought crossed his mind, his eyes scanning over her legs as she stood up and brushed her hands on her pants.

“I play the violin. I’m guessing you don’t recognize me, huh?” The girl bit her lower lip, thought better of it, and shook her head. “I’m sorry, that was rude of me to say. I know who you are. You could get me fired if you wanted to, maybe, and I said something so out of line. I’m the one who showed up late because of the traffic and ended up sneezing during the briefing and another time in the middle of All About You.”

“You’re the one who—” The laugh escaped his lips before he could finish his sentence and he clamped a hand over his mouth, composing himself. “Apologies. Now that display was rude so I suppose we’re even,. . .”

“I’m Izzy. Izzy Johnston. And you’re Harry Judd, the drummer of McFly.” She extended a hand, which he shook gingerly and met her gaze with his own. “But you’ll probably just know me as one of the blondes in the orchestra for your band’s big shot tour.”

“But now that you’ve reminded me of your claim to fame, Izzy, I’ll remember you fondly as the Sneezer in the strings section of the orchestra,” Harry teased with a grin.

“That’ll be an interesting title to put on my résumé, Harry.”

He was beginning to really like how Izzy said his name and it made him grin wider. There weren’t many people that he instantly felt at ease around; before he could reconsider his decision, he was inviting Izzy to the after party, which happened to be at the pub her friend had run off to that night. They called the girl—whose name was Beth—a cab back to the hotel before Izzy had even been handed the spare room key. Sometime during the evening, Harry ended up holding Izzy’s hand as they avoided the paparazzi that tried to hound them. “Tried” was the key word because they ended up hiding in an alleyway and waiting until Danny could call a taxi, which involved the Bolton native trying to lower his voice considerably. Dougie kept trying to get Harry’s attention as he was talking to Izzy, but the conversation the two were engaged in left him as the pesky third wheel vying for his attention. Tom, noticing this, directed Dougie’s attention away from the duo by pointing out a parked car covered in frost that had a crudely drawn image of a penis on the windshield.

Finally. Back to the HQ for the night,” Danny mumbled as the others trailed behind him while he led the way to the elevators. As soon as they went to their respective rooms, he was going to take a quick shower and sleep like the dead until their early bird wake up call.

“I’m kind of glad they cut us off before we did something stupid,” Tom said, earning a mixed response of laughs and protests. As they waited for the elevator to reach the destination that correlated to the button Harry had pressed, they started to sing show tunes, much to Tom’s dismay and warning that they better not lose their voices in midst of the merriment.

The group exited the elevator after countless rounds of singing and split up—Tom and Danny towards one wing of the hotel, while Izzy, Dougie, and Harry made their way to the other wing. They agreed to eat breakfast together in the morning and exchanged heartfelt “goodnight”s before both groups walked away out of earshot of the other. Izzy and Harry were no longer holding hands, much to the satisfaction of Dougie, who barely had a chance to ask Harry for cab fare when he was short on change earlier.

“Well, see you in the morning. You can sit with us during breakfast; it’s no trouble at all, really.” The hushed words Harry whispered to Izzy weren’t lost on Dougie as they went into their hotel room.

Harry locked the deadbolt and slipped off his shirt, which was then tossed into a pile of various other dirty clothes that needed to be laundered. He took out a towel and draped it over his shoulder. “I’ll be using the shower first, alright, Dougs?” He turned around and noticed how he was sitting on the edge of one of the beds—they didn’t care too much about staking claims on the two full-sized beds in the room—with his gaze focused directly on the wall.

“Mhm hmm. No problem.” Dougie barely glanced at Harry, who started to walk over to sit beside him. Despite this, Dougie held up a hand and shook his head. “Don’t. Just don’t, Harry. Go take a shower and we’ll talk afterward. I hate being this green-eyed monster over some bird who plays the viola.”

“Violin.” Harry’s voice sounded small as he stood in front of Dougie and tried not to shift nervously.

“Pardon?” Dougie’s eyebrows rose, his ears turning red.

“She plays the violin. Not the viola, to my knowledge.”

“Harry, what the hell are we doing? Why the fuck do we even bother trying to hide this? Tom and Danny know that most of the time when we’re joking—” Dougie sighed as he gestured with his fingers to illustrate air quotes “—we really aren’t. That those ‘stage pecks’ are more than friendly affection. The times we hold hands aren’t just for the goddamn ‘fan service.’ I’m just so hurt; so fucking hurt that I can’t say you’re mine to other people and mean it. Everything gets twisted and manipulated into it being just a ‘bromance’ because nobody thinks this is serious. Nobody wants to be responsible if record sales drop, or we get seen separately with women and suddenly there’s a tabloid scandal. Well, I’m beyond sick of it and this whole Izzy incident just brought me back to reality yet again.”

There was a pause as Harry knelt down so he was face-to-face with Dougie, his hand tilting the purple haired boy’s chin up slightly. The reddish purple hair and lip ring in that moment really made him seem much younger because of his crestfallen expression. “Dougs, I know how much it hurts you. It hurts me too, even though I don’t show it and put on a brave face for the sake of us and the rest of the band, as well as the fans. We just have to be patient. The timing isn’t right, and you’re aware of it. It’s our first big tour. Even better than the previous one. Sold out arena tour.”

Dougie blew out a breath and nodded. “It’s just frustrating and we don’t have any privacy. Just answer one question for me and we can move forward two steps instead of backward three steps.”

Harry’s arm dropped to his side as he folded his arms over his chest. “Go on.”

“Do you think you could ever love Izzy the way you claim to love me?” Dougie’s eyes were aflame, nearly burning a hole right where his heart was, if it were actually possible.

Harry ignored Dougie’s phrasing of the question. He was well aware that his insecurity sparked from not only his young age but also because they were both bisexual, which Dougie still struggled to accept because he didn’t know much about “alternative lifestyles” and had been exposed to close-minded individuals in school.

Harry leaned over, pushing back the purple strands that had shaken loose of the spiked up hairstyle the younger boy favored. “You know the answer to that. She’s just a friend, Dougie. In due time, we’re going to show them us. Just be patient with me.”

They really had shown everyone, eventually. Harry remained an acquaintance of Izzy’s but he didn’t let Dougie know that Izzy did develop a crush on him during the tour. His relationship with Dougie only grew stronger after they told the public in an impromptu “wedding” officiated by Tom, who announced Dougie as the bride, interestingly enough. However, this didn’t deter other people from unknowingly trying to break them up. Frankie Sandford—who was a part of the girl group The Saturdays—took an interest in Dougie, who by then had blond hair and sans lip ring. He had also grown up considerably, and was able to end the friendship he had with Frankie once she made it clear she didn’t (as well as couldn’t) desire to be ‘just friends’ with the bassist.

There were countless disagreements amidst their triumphs. Some were small, with the others seemingly larger than the universe itself at the time. But what mattered was that they were able to talk about their issues and not let them ruin what they had. Harry knew he wouldn’t trade it for the world though, and he believed Dougie shared his sentiment. He would’ve never guessed all those years ago that he would’ve been doing something like buying a pet with his best friend, bandmate, and most importantly, boyfriend at any point in his life. It still seemed so surreal and as if his life was a dream he was about to wake up from at any moment.

“Did you hear that, Harry? That’s fantastic.” Dougie was grinning from ear to ear at Izzy, who seemed less nervous as she smiled back at him. Harry was back in the present moment and he took the dog from Izzy carefully, cradling it close to his chest.

“What’s fantastic?”

Izzy and Dougie started laughing; Izzy began talking in short sentences that he was able to piece together after some difficulty. “Dougie said he wants that dog—which is a Patterdale terrier—in your arms right now. I agreed, and said you should sign the documentation to adopt him for the puppy fee. Dougie said you’ll take care of the expenses. And he also wants to get to the pet store to get supplies before they close tonight.”

Harry tried not to show his surprise at how well Izzy and Dougie were getting along during the short walk to the animal shelter. Even Izzy was still taken aback by their camaraderie when Dougie invited her over for dinner next Sunday at their house. Izzy accepted the invitation gratefully, asking if she could bring her boyfriend, and then the two were heading home, ready to make pasta and settle in for a movie marathon night.

“Hey, Harry, were you spacing out today before we brought the puppy home?” Dougie shot a cautious look at what looked like a ball of fur at first glance (it was now their ball of fur, actually) in a collapsible wire playpen. The puppy was fast asleep, curled in fetal position, and situated in the middle of the copious amounts of newspaper they’d put inside the pen. They still hadn’t decided on a name and were pondering it over dinner and even afterward when they popped in the first movie of the night.

Harry shifted slightly, wrapping his arms around Dougie as they made themselves comfortable on the couch. The opening credits rolling across the TV screen and one of the songs on the movie’s soundtrack played loudly, prompting the brunette to lower the volume. “A bit. I was just thinking of all we’ve been through to be able to be like this. How it should be, really.”

“Truer words have never been spoken,” Dougie said as he ran a hand through his hair. “Do you have a name for the puppy yet? I can’t think straight with the smell of that new soap you’re using assailing my nostrils. It’s torturous in the best and worst ways possible.” They both smirked at the double meaning of his words and redirected their attention to the movie.

“I think he looks like a Blix. I just hope no one makes a joke of it by saying ‘Oi! Your dog’s a reindeer—Blixen, innit?’ when we go to the park.” Harry couldn’t help but smile as he heard Dougie’s muffled giggles behind his shoulder.

“Blix it is then, Dancing Queen.”

There was silence, save for the sound of the movie, before Harry responded with an expected, “Right back at ya, Jungle King.”
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Alright, so I'm typing this out reaaaally quickly so I can go eat dinner (lasagna, yay) because this fic nearly killed me. Apologies if my "Britishisms" and other European slang isn't up to par because my nationality is, of course, American. Anyway, this is how I'd hoped history had progressed in regards to Pudd and whatnot. But sadly, it hasn't. Won't stop believing in it though because they make it way too easy to ship them.

Their "wedding" really happened as well as the Wonderland tour. But my timeline may a bit off and I know I didn't really talk too much about Dougie's miniature pseudo-zoo because I didn't find enough information on it. No idea what the exact breed Zukie is either but if anyone knows, kudos to you.

Anyway, hope you enjoyed it and thanks for reading. <3