Sequel: Right Here
Status: active;;

Tomorrow

chapter twenty-eight;;

“Tell me what?” I questioned shakily as I made my way into the kitchen; my knees felt weak, like they were made of water.

If I hadn’t been feeling like the very floor I was standing on was going to swallow me at any second, the expression on Harry and Gemma’s faces would have made me go insane with laughter. His eyes were wide, and he opened and closed his mouth repeatedly, resembling a fish on dry land. Gemma had paled significantly. A deep blush began spreading across her cheeks. Her eyes flitted nervously between her brother and me, and she bit down hard on her bottom lip. I crossed my arms over my chest and raised an eyebrow; I was just grateful that I’d had so much practice forcing a calm facade to mask inner turmoil. Finally, Harry swallowed audibly and spoke, but his words were far from what I expected:

“Liam’s got himself a girlfriend.”

What?”

“Yeah. Gem caught him and that photographer from our tour.”

“Stefanie?”

“Yes, her!” he said loudly, snapping his fingers in recognition.

“A-and… wait, what?”

Gemma shot me a quizzical look. “You act like you’re relieved, not shocked.”

I sat in the chair next to her, lowering myself down slowly to prevent my body from collapsing to the floor with my relief. “Well, I mean… he kinda told me he was dating Stefanie when he came to my first solo show. I guess I’m sort of shocked that they’re still together, but it’s not totally unexpected, I guess.”

“Did you think we were talking about Niall?” asked Harry in a quiet voice, and I hesitated then nodded sheepishly, honestly ashamed of how easily my trust in my boyfriend had wavered. “Trust me, I don’t think he’s even so much as looked at another girl since, well, you know. We all know that you two are perfect for each other. And besides, even if he wasn’t in love with you, I don’t think he’d cheat now that you are both on the same page in regards to the relationship. He won’t mess things up again.”

I sighed, sat back in my chair. “I know that. I do. But it’s just… hard sometimes to believe that I’m good enough for him, y’know? Especially after all the shit we’ve gone through.”

“Don’t let your insecurities get in your way, babe,” murmured Gemma as she leaned over to hug me from the side, and I nodded, though I was slightly annoyed at her words - she meant well, but that kind of advice wasn’t helpful at all; if I could stop my insecurities from getting in the way, I wouldn’t have such a hard time accepting that Niall and I were actually together and he wasn’t going to leave me.

“I’ll try. So, uh, where is Niall?”

“He went with Liam to get food. He’s been living off Nando’s while we were recording, but Gem here, er, suggested politely that you would probably prefer actual food.”

“Ah. Okay. Well, I’m gonna go take a shower. I feel gross.”

They waved me off, and I walked back to Niall’s room. He’d set my suitcase by the closet door, which was smart of him. If he had put it in the closet, I probably would never have found it on my own; I had a thing against going through someone else’s room, even when it was Amber. Once I set the suitcase on the bed and unzipped it, I rifled through the clothes inside then groaned. Stupid me had forgotten to pack pyjamas in my rush to get everything gathered and be on my way. I sat on the edge of the bed, flopping backwards and cursing myself; after a few moments, I shrugged and decided it wouldn’t necessarily be a crime to borrow some clothes from my boyfriend. I ignored the this is wrong don’t go through his stuff this is wrong wrong wrong alarm in my brain and opened the closet. Dozens of shirts and pairs of pants hung on the rod, and I moved top after top until I spotted one of my favourites of his: a white tank with the American flag emblazoned on the front. I gingerly took it off its hanger, bringing it to my nose and inhaling the worn-in scent of Niall, before deciding that I could find bottoms after my shower. I grabbed my underwear from my suitcase and headed to the bathroom.

The hot water beat down on my shoulders, the tension in my muscles draining almost immediately. I ran my fingers through my hair, winced when strands wrapped around the digits and tugged out of my scalp when I pulled my hands away. I twisted the hair into a ball and set it on the ledge of the shower-wall. I didn’t want to take too long to shower, because I knew that Niall would most likely be back soon, so I hurried through washing my hair and scrubbing my body with a washcloth that I found in the bathroom cupboard.

I stepped out of the bathroom wearing Niall’s shirt with a towel wrapped around my hips and another twisted around my hair to catch the rest of the moisture. I’d just taken a step toward the dresser where I assumed his sleep clothes were when I caught sight of the boy I loved standing by the bed, clad in only a pair of boxer-briefs, and stopped short. He glanced up from the phone in his hands; a smile instantly lit up his face, but I was too busy drinking in the sight of so much of his skin on display to smile back. He tossed the device onto the bed next to him and stepped closer, his arms held out. I stepped into his hold and grinned up at him; my finger dragged along his chest, tickled by the curls there.

“Has anyone ever told you how breathtakingly beautiful you are?” he whispered, leaning his forehead against mine.

A flippant response was on my tongue, something about how he was just saying that because I was fresh from the shower and only covered by a towel and his shirt, but the words died in my throat at the seriousness on his face, the lack of humour in his eyes. Instead, what came out was “It’s never meant much until you said it.”

“I hope you believe it.”

“I… I do now.”

No further words were spoken as he pressed his lips to mine. I melted into the kiss; it was soft, sweet, loving, and sparks danced up my spine to explode behind my closed eyelids. Sure, I’d had a few first kisses before - some too short, too long, too sloppy - and he and I had already locked lips in the hallway shortly after I showed up, but this was entirely different. Nothing could have prepared me for the intense electricity coursing through me, twisting my nerves as it diffused through my entire being. I snaked my arms around his neck, pressed closer to him. He deepened the kiss, and I couldn’t find it in me to give a damn when the towel fell to the floor. I let him guide me where he wanted me to be, too far gone in the heady feeling to care much about anything other than keeping the tendrils of fiery passion lit as they surged up inside of me, fanning with the contact into flames that swallowed me whole. The back of my knees hit the bed, and I fell back, bouncing as I landed on the mattress; he quickly covered my body with his, and I shivered at the way his fingers slid, light as a feather, over my skin and his lips found their way to the curve of my neck.

A breathy moan escaped me, hung in the air, and he smiled against my neck. I gasped when he wrapped an arm around me and abruptly rolled us over so that I was straddling him. His hands made quick work of my top, lifting it over my head and throwing it across the room. I leaned down and kissed him again, hard and insistent, and his hands skimmed over my sides before coming up to cup my breasts; the pad of his thumb traced soft circles around my nipples, and my hips shifted, pushed down, as I moaned again. He squirmed beneath me, one of his hands leaving my skin, and I heard the sound of his underwear hitting the wall, the noise almost deafening over our ragged breathing in the silence of the room. Goosebumps raced along my flesh, and I let my head drop down against his shoulder as his fingers lightly slid teasingly over and up my thigh.

“Oh, fuck! Fuck, I’m… oh, shit. Oh, God, I’m so sorry!”