Sunday, 20 May 2018

AFTER ROMANCE Episode 41-45

"Are you okay?" Steph asks. She walks towards me and wraps her tiny arms around me. It's odd that her frail arms can feel so comforting.
"Yea, well no. But I will be. Thank you for making him leave" I tell her and she hugs me tighter, my tears are flowing now and I don't see an end in sight.
"Don't thank me, Harry may be my friend but you are my friend too and I don't want him upsetting you. I am sorry, this is all my fault. If I wouldn't have let him come around you all the time. He can be a real dick."
"No, it's not your fault at all. I am sorry, I don't want to come in between your friendship. I just need him to not come to our room anymore"
"Of course, I will get the key back from him. I knew I should have given it to Niall anyway" she says and I laugh lightly and pull out of her embrace. I appreciate her being here for me more than she will ever know. I feel completely alone, Noah is taking time to consider whether to break up with me or not, Harry is an asshole, my mother would lose it if I talked to her about this, and Liam would be disappointed. I literally have no one except this flame haired tattooed girl who I never expected to become my friend, but I am glad she did.
"Do you want to talk about it?" She asks and I nod. I do actually, I want to get it all of my chest.
I tell her everything from the first time I kissed Harry in his room to the way, our day at the stream, the orgasm I made him have last night, the way he called my name in his sleep, and the way he destroyed every ounce of respect I had for him when he made me tell Noah. Her face goes from concerned to shocked to sad during my story. My shirt is soaked with tears by the time I finish and she is holding my hand.
"Wow, I had no idea that so much happened. You could have told me after the first time. I knew something was up when Harry showed up here the night we were going to the movies, I had literally just got off the phone with him, then he showed up here. I had suspected he came here to see you, now I know I was right. Harry is a good guy, sometimes. I mean deep down he is he just doesn't know how to really care for someone the way that you, well most girls need to be cared for. If I was you, I would try to make things work with Noah because Harry isn't capable of being anyone's boyfriend." she says and squeezes my hand. I know everything she is saying is true and she is right, so why does it hurt so bad?
"Do you want to get some ice-cream? There is a good place right off campus, we can walk" she asks. I wipe my tears and nod. It is only noon and if I sit in this room any longer I will go insane.
Liam is leaning against the brick outside the coffee house waiting for me on Monday morning.
"What happened to your eye?!" He has a blue-purple ring around his left eye and now that I look closer I see another bruise on his cheek.
Realization hits me like a truck. "Liam! Did Harry do this?" my voice is shaky.
"Yea.." he admits and I am horrified.
"Why? What happened?" I want to kill Harry for hurting Liam.
"He stormed out of the house after you left and then came back about an hour later, he was so pissed. He starting trying to find more stuff to break so I stopped him. It wasn't so bad actually, I think both of us got a lot of our anger towards each other. I got quite a few good hits on him too" he laughs and my mouth falls open.
I am surprised at Liam's light tone while talking about him and Harry fighting.
"Are you sure you're okay? Is there anything I can do?" I ask him. I feel like this is my fault, Harry was mad because of me, but I can't imagine him being mad enough to physically hurt Liam.
"No, really I am okay." he smiles.
"What did your mom say when she got home?" I ask him.
While we walk to class he tells me how Harry's father broke up their fight, luckily they arrived home before they killed one another and how his mother cried when she realized Harry broke her dishes. He says they didn't have any sentimental value, but she was hurt that Harry would do that nonetheless.
"But in other news, much better news, Danielle is coming to visit next weekend. She is coming to the bonfire with me." He smiles.
"Bonfire?" I haven't heard anything about a bonfire.
"Yea, haven't you seen the signs all over campus? It's an annual thing, to start the new year. Everyone goes. I am not usually into stuff like that, but it's actually pretty good time. You should have Noah come up again and we can make a double date out of it" If Liam only knew I had been cheating on Noah with Harry and that me and Noah may or may not be broken up. I smile and nod. Maybe I should invite Noah so he can see that I have a friend like Liam. I know Harry and Liam.. I mean Noah and Liam would get along great, and I really want to meet Danielle.
Now that Liam has mentioned the bonfire, I notice signs littering almost every wall. I guess I was just too distracted by Harry all week to notice. Before I know it I am in Literature, scanning the room for Harry, despite my subconscious reminding me not to. I don't see him and he isn't in his normal seat next to me. " I will ruin her" his voice plays in my head. What could he possibly do that is worse than outing me in front of Noah? I don't know, nor do I ever want to find out.
"I don't think he is here, I heard him talking to that Zayn guy about switching his classes around. I do wish you could see his black eye though" Liam smiles and my eyes snap to the front of the room. I want to deny that I was looking for Harry but I know I can't. Harry has a black eye? I hope he is okay, no I don't actually, I hope it hurts like hell.
"Oh, okay" I mumble and pick at my skirt. Liam doesn't mention Harry for the rest of the class.
The rest of the week is the exact same way, I don't talk about Harry to anyone and no one mentions him to me. Steph almost slips a few times but quickly recovers and moves on. Tristan has been hanging out in our room all week but I don't mind, I actually really like him and he makes Steph laugh, and even I found myself laughing a few times during what seems to be the worst week of my life. I have been wearing whatever is clean and pulling my hair into a bun everyday. My short lived affair with eyeliner has ended and I am back to my normal routine. Sleep, class, study eat, sleep, class, study, eat.
"Come on Tessa, it's Friday, just come with us and we will drop you back off before we go to Har..I mean the party" Steph begs and I shake my head. I don't feel like doing anything, I need to study and call my mother. I have been dodging her calls all week and I want to call Noah and find out if he has made a decision. I have been giving him his space all week, only sending him a few texts in hopes that he will come around. I really want him to come to the bonfire next Friday.
"I think I will pass.. I am going to look at cars tomorrow, I need my rest" I half lie. I really am going to look at cars tomorrow but I know I won't be getting rest sitting here alone with my thoughts. I should feel resolved, besides Noah's uncertainty of our relationship. At least I don't have to worry about Harry anymore. He was obviously serious about staying away from me and I am glad. I just can't shake him from my thoughts, I just need more time. I keep telling myself. The way he tried to act like he wanted something from me, maybe even date me, got under my skin.
My thoughts drift off to a place where Harry was pleasant and funny, and we got along. A place where we could date, really date, and he would take me out to the movies or to dinner. He would put his arm around me and be proud that I was his, he would drape his jacket over my shoulders if I was cold and kiss me goodnight, promising me that he would see me tomorrow.
"Tessa?" Steph says and my thoughts disappear with a puff of smoke. That wasn't reality and the boy in my daydream would never be Harry.
"Oh come on, you have been wearing those fuzzy cloud pants all week" Tristan teases and I laugh. These pants are my favorite to wear to bed, especially when I am sick, or like this week going through a break up or two, I am still confused on how Harry and I ended something that was nothing.
"Okay. Okay, I will come but I need you to drop me off right after dinner because I have studying to do and I have to get up early" I warn her and she claps her hands and jumps up and down.
"Yay! Just please let me do you a favor?" She asks with an innocent smile while she bats her lashes.
"What?" I whine, knowing she is up to no good.
"Let me give you a little makeover? Pleeeaassee!" She draws out the word for dramatic purposes.
"No way!" I can picture myself with pink hair and pounds or eyeliner, wearing only a bra for a shirt.
"Nothing too dramatic, I just want to make you look.. like you haven't been hiding out in pajamas all day" she smiles and Tristan tries to stifle his laugh.
"Fine" I give in and she claps again.

After Steph plucks my eyebrows, which hurt worse than I ever imagined, she turns me around and refuses to let me see myself until she is done. I fight the nervous feeling in my stomach as she dusts powder over my face. I remind her over and over not to put too much makeup on me and she promises that she won't. She brushes my hair and curls it before spraying my hair and half of the room with hairspray.
"Makeup and hair are done! Let's get you changed then you can see yourself. I have a few things that will fit you" She is obviously proud of her work on me. I am just hopeful that I don't look like a clown. I follow her to the closet and try to sneak a peek in her small mirror but she yanks me away.
"Here, put this on" She says and pulls a black dress off of the hanger.
"Out, you!" She tells Tristan and he laughs but graciously leaves the room.
"I can't wear this!" I tell her. The dress is strapless and looks incredibly short.
"Fine.. how about this one?" She pulls another black dress out. She must have at least ten. This one looks longer than the last, and has two thick straps. The neckline worries me because it is in the shape of a heart and my bust isn't small like hers. I look it over again and she sighs.
"Just try it, please?"
I oblige and take my comfortable pajamas off and fold them into a neat pile. She rolls her eyes at me playfully and I smile while stepping into the dress. I pull it up my body and it feels a little snug before it is even zipped. Steph and I aren't that much different in size but she is taller and I am curvier. The material has a slight shine to it and feels silky. The bottom of the dress reaches half way down my thigh. It isn't as short as I thought it would be, but it is shorter than anything I would ever wear. I feel almost naked with my legs this exposed. My fingers tug at the material to try to pull it down a little.
"Do you want some tights?" She asks and I nod.
"Yea, I just feel so..naked" I laugh. She digs in her drawer and pulls out two different black tights.
"These are plain black, and these have a lace print" she explains and I reach for the plain pair. Lace tights are just too much for me especially given the fact that I probably have ten pounds of makeup on. I slide the tights on my legs while Steph digs through her closet for shoes.
"I can't wear heels" I remind her. I literally can't, I waddle like an injured penguin in them.
"Well, I have low heels or wedges. Tessa, I am sorry but your Toms just won't work with this dress" She says and I scowl at her. I am perfectly fine wearing toms everyday. She pulls out a pair of black heels with silver beading on the front and I have to admit they catch my eye. I could never wear them but for once I wish I could.
"You like these?" She asks and I nod.
"Yea, but I can't pull them off" I tell her and she frowns.
"Yes you can, they strap around your ankle to prevent you from falling"
"Is that what the strap is actually for?" I ask and she laughs.
"No, but it helps with that" she laughs again. "Just try them" she begs and I sit on the bed and stretch my leg out gesturing for her to put them on me.
She helps me stand up and I take a few steps. The straps really do help keep my balance. I am face to face with Steph now, while she is barefoot of course.
"I can't wait any longer! Look at yourself" she smiles and opens the other closet door. I look in the full body mirror and gasp. Who the heck is that? My reflection looks just like me, but a lot better. I was afraid she would go overboard on my makeup but she didn't. My gray eyes look lighter against the chestnut eye shadow and the pink blush on my cheeks makes my cheekbones more prominent. My hair looks shiny and is curled into big waves, not the small stringy curls I was expecting.
"I am impressed" I smile and look closer. I poke my cheek to make sure what I am seeing is real.
"See, you are still you, just a more sexy, well kept you" she giggles and calls for Tristan to join us. He opens the door and his lips part.
"Where is Tessa?" He asks and looks around the room playfully. He picks up a pillow and looks under it.
"What do you think?" I ask and tug the dress down again.
"You look great, really great" he smiles and wraps his arm around Stephs waist. She leans in and I look away.
"One more thing" she says and reaches over to the dresser. She pulls out the wand on a tube of lip-gloss and puckers her lips. I close my eyes and do the same while she rubs the sticky gloss across my lips.
"Ready?" He asks and she nods. I grab my purse and throw a pair of toms inside just incase.
During the drive I sit in the back and stare out the window. When we arrive at the restaurant I cringe at the number of motorcycles outside. I had assumed we would be going somewhere like Fridays or Applebee's not a biker bar and grill.
When we walk inside I feel like everyone is staring at me, even though they probably aren't. Steph grabs ahold of my hand and pulls me along as they walk to a booth in the back.
"Niall is coming, that's okay right?" She asks as we take our seats.
"Yea, of course" I tell her. As long as it's not Harry I don't mind. Besides, some company would be nice because right now I feel like the third wheel.
A woman with even more tattoos than Steph and Tristan strides over to the table and takes our drink order. Steph and Tristan both order a beer. This must be why they like to come here because they can drink underage. The woman raises her eyebrow to me as I order a Coke, but I don't want to drink. I have studying to do when I get back to my room. Minutes later she brings our drinks and I hear a wolf whistle as a group of people walk towards our table. I recognize Niall and Zayn and as they get closer Molly's pink hair comes into view, followed by Harry. I spit the coke back into my cup.
Steph's eyes widen as she lays eyes on Harry and she looks at me. "I swear I didn't know he was coming, I have barely seen him all week, we can leave now if you want" she whispers and Zayn slides in the booth next to me. I have to force myself not to look towards Harry.
"Woa Tessa, you look super hot" Zayn says and I blush. "Really, like wow! I've never seen you like this" he compliments and I thank him quietly. Niall, Harry and Molly sit in the booth behind us. I want to ask Steph to trade me seats so my back will be to Harry but I can't bring myself to. I will just avoid eye contact with him the entire time. I can do it.
"You do look smokin' Tessa" Niall says and I smile at him. I am not used to all this attention. Harry hasn't commented on my new look but I didn't expect him to, I am just glad he isn't insulting me.
Harry and Molly are sitting right in my eye range, I can see Harry's entire face through the space between Steph and Tristan's shoulders. If I just look once, it couldn't hurt. I look at Harry before I can stop myself and instantly regret it. His arm is hooked around Molly's shoulders. Why did I have to look? The pang of jealousy I feel is my punishment for looking at him when I shouldn't be. Of course they are probably messing around again, or still. They probably never stopped. I remember how comfortable she was straddling him at the party and I swallow the bile rising in my throat. Harry is free to do whatever or whoever he pleases.
"She does look great, doesn't she?" Steph asks them and they all nod. I can feel Harry's eyes on me but I can't look at him again. He is wearing a white t-shirt that I am sure his tattoos are visible through but I don't care. I don't care how good he looks or how skanky Molly is dressed. She really could wear a little more clothing. She is irritating with her stupid pink hair and her skanky clothes, she is a slut. I am surprised by my thoughts and anger towards her but its true, I don't like her. I don't think I have actually ever called anyone a slut, even in my head. I almost feel guilty until she calls my name.
"You do look good girl, better than ever before" she says and leans into Harry's chest. I make eye contact with her and fake a smile.
"Mind if I have a sip?" Zayn asks and grabs my cup. I allow him to drink out of my glass, which I usually am against but I am so uncomfortable right now that I can't think straight. He gulps down half of my drink and I nudge him.
"Sorry babe, I will order you another" he smiles. He really is very attractive, he looks more like a model than a college student. If he didn't have so many tattoos he probably would be a model. A noise comes from the other booth and my eyes dart to Harry. He knocked over a salt shaker onto the table and is staring at me with blazing eyes. I want to look away but I cant, I am caught in his gaze as Zayn lifts his arm up and rests it on the back of the booth, directly behind me. Harrys eyes narrow and I decide to have a little fun. I doubt Harry will care but he was pretty adamant about me not hanging out with Zayn before so it may work.

I lean into Zayn slightly and Harry's eyes go wide but he quickly recovers. I know how immature and ridiculous this whole thing is but I don't care. If I have to be around him, I want him to be as irritated as I am.
The leather-clad woman and takes everyone's food order. I go with a burger and fries, minus the ketchup and everyone else orders hot wings. She brings Harry a coke and the rest of them another round of beers. I am still waiting on my coke but I don't want to be rude.
"They have the best wings here" Zayn informs me and I smile at him.
"So are you going to the bonfire next weekend?" I ask Zayn.
"I don't know, it's not really my scene" he laughs and takes a drink of his beer. "Are you going?" He asks and brings his arm down from the booth to rest fully over my shoulder. I feel guilty flirting with him this way, well its not really flirting because I am just asking him questions but I still feel bad. I have never tried to flirt with anyone before so I am sure I am terrible at it.
"Yea, I am going with Liam" I answer and everyone bursts into laughter.
"Liam Payne?" Zayn asks, still laughing.
"Yea, he is my friend" I snap. I don't like the way they are all laughing at him.
"He would go to the bonfire! He is such a lame" Molly says and I glare at her.
"No, he isn't actually. He is really cool" I defend him. I understand that my definition of cool is not the same as theirs but mine is better.
"Liam Payne and cool do not belong in the same sentence" Molly says and brushes Harry's hair back off of his forehead. I hate her.
"Well sorry if he isn't cool enough to hang out with you guys, but he is.." I start to shout and sit up in the booth.
"Woa, Tessa calm down. We are just teasing" Niall says and Molly smirks at me. I get the feeling she doesn't care for me much either.
"Well I don't like when people tease my friends, especially when he isn't here to defend himself." I need to calm down.. My emotions are running wild from being around Harry and the fact that he is hanging all over Molly in front of me.
"Okay, I am sorry for making fun of him. Besides, I do gotta give him some credit for that black eye he gave Harry" Zayn says and wraps his arm back around me. Everyone laughs, even me, except Harry.
"Yea, good thing a professor broke the fight up or Harry would have gotten beat up even worse by the loser.. " Niall says and then looks at me. "Sorry, it slipped" he says and gives me a sorry smile.
A professor? Their fight wasn't broken up by a professor it was broken up by Harry's dad. I wonder if they even know Harry and Liam are soon to be stepbrothers. I look at Harry and he looks worried. He lied to them. I should call him out on it right now in front of everyone but I can't. I am not like him, I find it harder to hurt people than he does. Except Noah, my subconscious reminds me and I push her back.
"Well I think the bonfire will be fun" I say and Zayn smiles.
"Maybe I will make an appearance after all" He tells me.
"I am going" Harry says from the other booth. Everyone turn to look at him and Molly laughs.
"Sure you are" she rolls her eyes and laughs again.
"I really am, it won't be so bad" Harry says and Molly rolls her eyes again. Why would he go? Maybe because Zayn said he was. This annoying little game I am playing may be working after all.
The server brings out our food and hands me my burger. It looks great except the ketchup is dripping off the side. My nose scrunches up and I try to wipe some of the ketchup off with a napkin. I hate sending food back and I am already having a hard enough time tonight, the last thing I need is to draw even more attention to myself.
Everyone digs into their wings and I pick at my fries while everyone talks about the party tonight.
"Can I get you guys anything?" The woman asks as she walks back to the booths.
"No, I think we are good" Tristan tells her and she begins to walk away.
"She ordered her burger with no ketchup" Harry says and I drop a fry onto the plate.
The waitress looks at me, "Do you want me to take it back?" She asks nicely and I shake my head.
"Yea.. she does" Harry answers for me. What the hell is he doing? And how did he even know it had ketchup? He is just trying to make me uncomfortable.
"Here, give me your plate. I will bring you a new burger and fries" She smiles and holds her hand out. I hand her the plate and look down while I thank her.
"What was that?" I hear Molly ask Harry in his ear. She should really work on her whispering voice.
"Nothing, she doesn't like ketchup." he simply says and she huffs before taking a drink of her beer.
"So?" Molly says and Harry glares at her.
"So, nothing. Just drop it" he snaps and she rolls her eyes again and scoots even closer to him.
At least I know I am not the only one he is rude to.
I am given a new burger sans ketchup and new fries and I eat most of it despite my lack of appetite. Zayn ends up paying for my meal which is both nice and awkward at the same time. Harry's annoyance seems to grow as Zayn puts his arm around me yet again, as we walk outside.
"Louis says the party is already packed out!" Niall says.
"You should ride with me there" Zayn offers and I shake my head.
"Oh, I am not going to the party, Tristan is going to take me back" I tell him and he frowns.
"I can take her back to her room since I drove my car" Harry says, I almost trip over my feet.
"No, Tristan and I will take her. Zayn can ride with us too" Steph smiles at Harry. If looks could kill, Steph would be collapsing on the floor right now.
"You don't want to drive drunk on campus, the police are going to be looking for people to give tickets to because its Friday" Harry tells Tristan. Steph looks at me waiting for me to speak up but I don't know what to say. I don't want to be in the car with Harry alone but I don't want to drive with Tristan when he has been drinking. I shrug my shoulders and lean into Zayn while they settle this among themselves.
"I will ride with you to take her" Molly tells Harry and he shakes his head.
"No, you ride with Tristan and Steph." he says with force.
"For god's sake can we just get in the cars and go!" Niall whines and pulls his keys out.
"Yea, lets go Tessa" Harry orders and I look up at Zayn and then at Steph.
"Tessa!" Harry says again as he unlocks his car door. He looks back at me and I get the feeling that if I don't follow he will drag me to the car. Why would he even want to be around me if he told Steph that I better not come around? He disappears inside the car and starts the engine.
"Text me as soon as you get back to the room" Steph says and I nod and walk to Harry's car.

I open the passenger door and climb into Harry's car. No matter how hard I tried to avoid seeing him all week, I somehow ended up in his car with him. He doesn't look at me while I buckle my seat belt. I tug at the dress again, trying to pull it over my thighs. We sit in silence and he pulls out of the parking lot. I am so relieved that he didn't allow Molly to ride with us, I would have rather walked home.
"What's with the new look?" He finally asks once we are on the freeway.
"Uhm.. well Steph wanted to try something new with me I guess" I answer him but keep my eyes fixed on the buildings passing by outside the window. His normal screaming rock music is playing quietly through the car.
"It's a little over the top don't you think?" He asks and I ball my fists on my lap. So this is his plan today to insult me the whole way back to my room.
"You didn't have to drive me home, and I didn't know you were coming otherwise I would have never came" I lean my head against the window, trying to create as much space between us as possible.
"Don't get so defensive, all I am saying is your little makeover is a little extreme"
"Well good thing I don't care what you think, but I am surprised you don't think I look better than before considering your distaste for my usual appearance" I snap and close my eyes. I am already exhausted from being around him and he is sucking the little bit of energy that remained from me.
I hear him chuckle quietly and he turns the radio off completely.
"I never said there was anything wrong with your appearance, your clothes yes, but compared to these clothes I'd much rather see the hideous long skirts." He tries to explain but his answer doesn't really make sense. He seems to like when Molly dresses this way only much skankier, so why not me?
"Did you hear me Tessa?" He asks and I feel his hand touch my thigh. I jerk away from his touch and open my eyes.
"Yes, I did. I just don't have anything to say about it. If you don't like the way I am dressed then don't look at me." One good thing that comes from talking to Harry is that for once in my life I can say exactly what comes to my mind without worrying about hurting his feelings, he has none.
"That is precisely the problem here, isn't it? That I can't stop looking at you" the words leave his mouth and I consider opening the car door and hurling myself onto the freeway.
"Oh! Please!" I laugh. I force myself to find the humor behind him torturing me the entire drive. He will say just enough nice yet cryptic things and then take them back and throw more at me.
"What? It's true. I approve of the new clothes, but you don't need all this makeup. Regular girls wear tons of makeup to look as good as you look without it" he says. What? He must have forgotten that we aren't speaking, that he tried to ruin my life less than a week ago, and that we despise each other. That last part I am still struggling with.
"You don't expect me to thank you do you?" I half laugh. He is so confusing, he is brooding and angry one minute and telling me I don't need makeup the next.
"Why didn't you tell them the truth about Liam and I?" He asks, changing the subject.
"Because you obviously didn't want them to know"
"Still, why would you keep my secrets?"
"Because they are not mine to tell"
He looks over to me with hooded eyes and a slight smile on his lips. "I wouldn't have blamed you if you did, considering that I did with Noah"
"Yea, well I am not you."
"No, no you're not" his voice is much quieter. He remains silent for the rest of the drive and I do the same. I have nothing to say to him, well I do but it's best if I just stay quiet. We finally we pull onto campus and he parks in the further possible spot from my room. Of course.
I reach for the door handle and Harry's arm touches my thigh again.
"You're not going to thank me?" He smiles and I shake my head.
"Thanks for the ride" I say sarcastically. "You might want to hurry and get back to Molly" I add as I climb out. I hope he didn't hear me, I am not sure why I even said that.
"Yea.. I better, she sure is fun when she is drunk" he smirks. I try to hide the fact that I feel like he just punched me in the stomach. I lean down to look at him through the passenger window and Harry rolls it down.
"Yea, I am sure she is. Noah is coming down anyway" I lie and watch his eyes narrow.
"He is?" Harry picks at his fingernails, a nervous habit I assume.
"Yep, see you around" I smile. I hear him get out of his car and shut the door.
"Wait!" he says and I turn around. "I.. never mind, I thought you uhm dropped something but you didn't" he says and his cheeks flush. I know he is lying and I want to know what he was going to say, but I have been able to avoid him all week, I am trying to get over whatever has been going on with us. I need to walk away now, so I do just that.
"Bye Harry" The words mean more than I let on. I don't look back to see if he is coming after me because I know he isn't.
I take the heels off before I even get to my room and walk barefoot the rest of the way. The second I get into the room I put my fuzzy pajamas back on and call Noah. He answers on the second ring.
"Hey" I squeak. My voice sounds too high pitched, it is only Noah, why am I so nervous?
"Hey Tessa, how was your day today?" He asks softly. He doesn't sound like the same distant Noah that I have been talking to all week. I sigh in relief.
"It was okay actually, I am just hanging out tonight in my room, what are you doing?" I purposely leave out my dinner with Steph and everyone including Harry. That will not help my "please forgive me" campaign.
"I just got out of practice, I am just going to study tonight because I am helping the new neighbors cut a tree down tomorrow" he is always helping everyone. He is too good for me.
"I'm just studying tonight too"
"I wish we could study together" he says and I smile whilst picking at the tiny lint balls on my fuzzy socks.
""You do?"
"Yea, of course Tessa. I still love you and I miss you. But I have to know that nothing like this will ever happen again. I am willing to try to put this past us but you have to promise me you will stay away from him" he says. He doesn't have to say his name.
"Of course, I will I swear" I promise. Part of me knows that I am only desperate to have Noah forgive me because I don't want to be completely alone and fawning over Harry but I ignore it.
After exchanging "I love you's" Noah agrees to accompany me to the bonfire next weekend and we get off the phone. I look online for the closest car dealerships to campus, I will be taking the bus so I need to stay within a few mile radius, lucky for me there are a good amount of used car lots ready to rip off college students. I dig through Steph's makeup bag and finally find the wipes to remove all my makeup. It takes forever, this action alone makes me never want to wear it again, regardless of how good it looked.

I take out my notes and textbooks and dive into my studies. I am working on next weeks assignments, I like to stay ahead one week at least so there is no chance I fall behind. I still can't believe that Harry dropped Literature just so he doesn't have to see me. I should have asked him about that but I was too flustered and annoyed to think about it. Nothing that he does makes any type of sense to me, he drops a class to avoid me then practically forces me to let him drive me home? He gives me a headache. I know I am not paying attention to the essay I am supposed to be writing, I might as well find a movie and lay in bed until I fall asleep. It has only been two hours since I got off the phone with Noah, it seems like four.
I decide on watching a romance movie about a woman who loses her memory, despite the fact that I have seen it numerous times. Less than ten minutes into the movie I hear someone cursing outside in the hall. I turn the volume up on my laptop but ignore it. It's Friday so I know there will be drunk people all over the dorms tonight. A few minutes later I hear the cursing again, it's a male voice then a female joins in. The male voice shouts louder and I recognize the accent. It's Harry. I jump off my bed and swing open the door to find him sitting on the floor with his back against the wall outside my room. An angry girl with bleach blonde hair is standing over him scowling at him with her hands on her hips.
"Harry?" I say and he looks up. A huge grins slides over his face.
"Theresa?' He says and begins to stand.
"Can you please tell your boyfriend to get away from my door, he spilled vodka all over the floor and I will have to clean it up!" She yells and I look at Harry.
"He's not my.." I start to say but Harry grabs my hand and pulls me towards my door.
"Sorry for the spill" he says and rolls his eyes at the blonde. She huffs and storms into her room.
"What are you doing here Harry?" I ask him. He tries to walk past me and into my room but I block the entrance.
"Why can't I come in Tessa? I will be nice to your grandpa" he laughs and I roll my eyes. I know he is making fun of Noah.
"He isn't here"
"Why not? Okay so let me in" he slurs.
"No, are you drunk?" My eyes scan his face. His eyes are red and his smirk gives it all away. He takes his lip in between his teeth and puts his hands into his pockets.
"I thought you didn't drink, now you have been drinking a lot"
"It's only been twice, chill out" he says and pushes past me. "So why didn't Noah come" he sits down on my bed.
"I don't know" I lie and he laughs.
"Sure. The gap probably had a sale on cardigans so he cancelled on you" he laughs and I can't help but join him.
"So where is Molly? At a skanks-r-us sale?" I laugh and Harry stops for a second and then laughs harder.
"That was a terrible attempt at a comeback Theresa" he jokes and I kick my foot at him.
"Either way, you can't stay here. Noah and I are back together, officially"
I notice his smile fade and he rubs his hands against his knees. "Nice pajamas" he says and I look down. Why is he trying to be so playful? We haven't resolved anything and the last time I checked we were both staying away from each other.
"Harry, you have to go"
"Let me guess, one of Noah's conditions was that you have to stay away from me?" His tone is more serious now.
"Yea, and the last time I checked you and I weren't friends or even speaking. Why did you drop Literature and why did you hit Liam?"
"Why do you always ask so many questions?" He whines. "I don't want to talk about any of that! What were you and your cool pajamas doing before I came and why is your light off?" he smiles. Harry is much more playful when he has been drinking but I am beginning to wonder why he keeps drinking when he didn't before.
"I was watching a movie" I tell him, maybe if I am nice to him he will answer some of my questions.
"What movie?"
"The Vow" I answer and look at him. I expect him to laugh at me and after a few seconds he does.
"You would like that sappy movie. That is so unrealistic"
"It's based off a true story" I correct him.
"It still seems stupid"
"Have you even seen it?" I ask him and he shakes his head.
"I don't have to see it to know it is stupid, I can tell you how it ends right now, she gets her memory back and they live happily ever after" he says in a high pitched voice.
"No, actually that isn't how it ends" I laugh. Harry makes me insane most of the time, but its the rare occasions like this where he makes me forget how terrible he can be. I forget that I am supposed to hate him and find myself tossing one of Steph's pillows at him. He lets it hit him even though he could easily block it, he yells as if he is actually wounded and then we both laugh again.
"Let me stay and watch it with you" he half asks, half demands.
"I don't think that is a good idea" I tell him and he shrugs.
"The worst ideas are the best ideas. Besides you wouldn't want me to drive back drunk would you? " he smiles and I can't resist even though I know I should.
"Fine, but you are sitting on the floor or Steph's bed"
He pouts but I hold my ground, god knows what will happen if we are both on my small bed. I flush at the possibilities and then scold myself for thinking that way when I just promised Noah I would stay away from Harry. It sounds like such a simple promise to make but somehow I always find my way to Harry. Or like tonight he found his way to me.
Harry slides down to the floor and I finally take the time to admire how hot he looks in a plain white t-shirt. The contrast of his black ink and white shirt is perfect and I love the way his tattoos peak out from under the neck and sleeves.
"Got any popcorn?" He asks as soon as I press play.
"No, you should have brought your own" I tease and turn the screen so he can see it better from the floor.
"I could always go for another type of snack" he says and I smack his head playfully.
"Watch the movie, and no more talking or I'll kick you out" Harry pretends to zip his lips and hand me an invisible key which makes me giggle as I pretend to toss it behind me. As Harry lays his head back against the bed, I feel more calm and at peace than I have all week.
Harry watches me more than the movie but I don't care, I notice the way he smiles when I laugh at a funny line, the way he frowns when I sob after she loses her memory and the way he too sighs with relief when they end up together again in the end.
"So what did you think?" I ask him as I scroll through to find another movie.
"It was crap" he smiles and I ruffle my hand through his hair before I realize what I am doing. I sit myself up and he turns around to look towards the wall. Way to make it awkward Tessa.
"Let me choose the next movie" he says and reaches for my laptop.
"Who said you could stay for another?" I ask and he rolls his eyes.
"I can't drive, I am still drunk" he tells me. I know he is lying, I can tell he has mostly sobered up, but he's right. He should stay. I will deal with whatever Harry decided to do to me tomorrow, just to be able to spend time with him. I really am pathetic, just like he said. At the moment, I don't care. I want to ask him why he came here and why he isn't at his own frat party, but I will wait until the movie over because I know he will turn sour once I begin to question him.
Harry chooses some Batman movie that I haven't seen and swears it is the best movie of all time. I laugh at his enthusiasm as he tries to explain the previous movies in the trilogy but I have no idea what he is talking about. Noah and I always watch movies together but I have never enjoyed it as much as I am with Harry.
"My ass is numb from your hard floor" Harry complains as soon as the movie begins.
"Steph's bed isn't" I tell him and he frowns.
"I won't be able to see the screen from over there. Come on Tessa, I will keep my hands to myself"
"Fine" I groan and scoot over. He smiles and lays next to me on his stomach and mimics me by bending his knees and putting his feet in the air. I can practically see the tension between us as he lays two feet from me but I force myself to ignore it. Harry lays his head on his folded hands and he looks adorable. The movie is much better than I expected, I must be more into than Harry because when I look over he is fast asleep. He looks so perfect, I want to reach over and touch his face but I don't. Despite the fact that I should wake him and make him leave, I cover him with my blanket and lock my door before laying on Steph's bed. I have spent the night with Harry multiple times now, and never with Noah. I have done a lot of things with Harry that I have never done with Noah.
To be continued..


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