Monday, 4 June 2018

AFTER ROMANCE 2 Episode 1-5

Previously in After romance,
It begins to snow as soon as I pull onto the freeway so it takes me over thirty minutes to get to the dorms. They look the same as I remember, of course they do it has only been a week sine I left them. It seems so much longer. I ignore the rude stare from the bleach blonde across the hall who once yelled at Harry for spilling vodka outside her door. That first night that Harry stayed in my dorm with me seems so distant, time hasn't made sense since I have met Harry. There is no answer when I knock on my old door. Of course she isn't here, she is never here. She spends majority of her time at Tristan and Niall's apartment and I have no idea where that is. Even if I did would I go there?
Just as I am about to give up on my radical decision to practically stalk my old roommate, I pass Blind Bob's, the biker bar I went to with Steph. As soon as I recognize Niall's car in the lot, I pull in. I take a deep breath before getting out of my car, the cold air burns my nostrils. The woman at the front smiles at me when I enter and I am relieved when I spot Steph's red hair from across the room. If only I had known what was to come.
................
Nervousness overcomes me as I walk through the smoky bar. Why did I think this was a good idea? Harry is going to be furious with me and Steph may just think I am insane.
"Tessa what the heck are you doing here?" Steph asks and pulls me into a hug.
"I.. well I was looking for you." I say.
"Is everything okay? Or did you just miss me?" She laughs.
"I just missed you." I decide to go with that for now.
"I haven't seen you in ages Tessa, where has Harry been hiding you?" Niall teases and hugs me.
Tristan appears behind Steph and wraps his arms around her waist. By the way she leans back against him, I know they have worked through the fight over Molly.
"Come sit with us, it's just us for now." She smiles and I follow the three of them to the booth. For now? I wonder if she means that Harry will be here soon?
I choose not to ask and order and burger and fries instead. I haven't eaten all day and it's past three in the afternoon.
"I will make sure there is no ketchup." The waitress laughs and walks back to the kitchen. She must remember me from the last time I was here when Harry made a scene about ketchup being on my burger.
I pick at my manicured fingers as I wait for the waitress to bring me my coke.
"You missed one hell of a party last night Tessa." Niall says. He lifts his glass and gulps down the remainder of his beer.
"Yea?" I smile. The most frustrating part of my relationship with Harry is that I never know what I am allowed to tell people. If I were in a normal relationship I would respond with "Oh yea, we had a great time last night at his father's wedding."
but since my relationship is far from normal, I stay quiet.
"Yea, it was wild. We went out to the docks instead of the frat house. We get away with more at the docks and we don't have to clean up after." He laughs.
"Oh, does Jace live at the docks?" I try to keep my tone neutral.
"What? No, the docks are boat docks." He laughs and continues, "He works there during the day though, he lives close by them."
"Oh.." I chew on my straw.
"It was freezing and Tristan here was plastered and jumped into the cold ass water." Steph snorts and Tristan flips her off playfully.
"It wasn't too bad, my body was numb the second I hit the water." He laughs.
My food appears along with Tristan's wings and a round of beer's for the three of them.
"You sure you don't want a beer? She won't card you." Niall tells me.
"Oh, no I have to drive. Thanks though."
"So how is your new dorm?" Steph asks and steals a fry from my plate.
"My what?"
"Your new dorm?" She repeats slowly.
"I don't have a new dorm." Did Harry tell her I moved into another dorm?
"Uh.. yea you do because you don't live in mine anymore. All of your stuff was gone and Harry said you changed dorms, that your mom flipped out on you or something." She laughs.
"Harry and I moved into an apartment." I tell them. I don't care how pissed he gets at me I am not going to lie. I am infuriated and embarrassed that he is still hiding our relationship.
"What?" Steph, Niall, and Tristan say at the same time.
"Yea, last week. We moved in together about twenty minutes off of campus." I explain.
All three of them are looking at me as I have grown a second head.
"What?" I ask harshly.
"Nothing.. it's just... wow.. I don't know. That is just a really huge surprise." Steph says.
"Why?" I snap. I know it isn't fair to direct my anger towards Steph when it is meant for Harry but I can't help it.
"I don't know, I just can't picture Harry living with someone, that's all. I didn't know you two were that serious. I wish you would have told me." She frowns.
As I am about to ask her what she means by that Niall and Tristan's eyes dart to the door then to me. When I turn around Molly, Harry and Jace are standing in the doorway. Harry shakes the snow from his hair and wipes his boots on the straw mat. I turn around quickly with my heart beating out of my chest. There are too many things going on at once, Molly is with Harry which honestly pisses me off beyond words, Jace is with Harry which confuses the hell out of me, and I just told Harry's friends that we moved in together.
"Tessa." Harry's voice is angry from behind me.
I look up at him and his face twisted in anger. He is trying to control it, I can tell but it's about to boil over.
"I need to talk to you." Harry says through clenched teeth.
"Right now?" I squeak.
"Yes. Now." He answers and reaches out to grab my arm.
I quickly climb out of the booth and follow him to the corner of the small bar.
"What the hell are you doing here?" He says quietly, his face inches from mine.
"I came to hang out with Steph." That's not exactly a lie, but not the truth either.
"Bullshit." He calls me out, he is struggling to keep his voice down and we have drawn the attention of more than a few patrons.
"Well you need to go." He tells me.
"Excuse me?" I steal one of his famous lines.
"You need to go home."
"Home where? Back to my new dorm?" I challenge.
The color drains from his face.
"I told them. I told them that we live together, how could you not tell them? Do you know how stupid that makes me look? I thought we were past you trying to keep me a secret."
"I wasn't." He lies.
"I am sick of the lies and the secrets Harry. Every time I think we are doing so great.."
"I'm sorry. I wasn't trying to keep it a secret, I was just waiting.." Harry's thoughts seem jumbled. I can almost see an internal battle waging behind his green eyes. His eyes frantically scan the room and his panic worries me.
"I can't keep doing this you know that don't you?" I tell him.
"Yea.. I know." He sighs and pulls his lip ring between his teeth and runs his hand through his damp hair.
"Can we go home and talk about this?" Harry asks and I nod.
I follow Harry back to the booths where everyone is seated.
"We are going to go." Harry announces.
"So soon?" Jace smirks. I notice Harry's shoulders tense.
"Yea." Harry answers.
"Back to your apartment?" Steph asks and I shoot a glare at her. Not now, I silently scream at her.
"Your what?" Molly cackles. I could have went the rest of my life without seeing her and I would have been content.
"Their apartment, they live together." Steph says in a sing song voice. I know she is only trying to shove it down Molly's throat and usually I would applaud her for it, but I am too angry at Harry to focus on Molly.
"Well..well..well.." Molly taps her long crimson nails on the table.
"That's very interesting." She says and looks at Harry.
"Molly.." He warns. I swear I see panic flash across his face.
"You're really taking this whole thing a little far aren't you?" She raises an eyebrow.
"Molly I swear to god if you don't shut the fuck up.." Harry threatens her.
"What thing? What is he taking too far?" I can't help but ask.
"Tessa, go outside." He commands but I ignore him.
"No, what is he taking too far? Tell me!" I yell.
"Wait.. you're in on it aren't you?" She laughs and continues, "I knew it! I told Jace you knew but he wouldn't believe me. Harry you owe Zayn some big bucks for this." She throws her head back and stands up.
Harry's face is completely pale, all the blood seems to be drawn from his entire body. My head is swimming and I am so confused. I briefly glance and Niall, Tristan and Steph but they are all focused on Harry.
"Knew what?" My voice is shaky. Harry grabs my arm and tries to pull me away but I jerk out of his grip and stand in front of Molly.
"Don't play stupid with me, I know you know. What did he do? Split the money with you?" She asks.
"Tessa.." Harry reaches for my hand and his fingers are ice cold. I jerk away.
"Tell me! What is she talking about!" I yell to him. Tears threaten my eyes and I struggle to swallow down all the emotions running through me.
Harry astounds me by opening his mouth and then closing it again.
"Oh my god, you really don't know? Oh this grand. Everyone pull up a seat!" She mocks.
"Molly, don't." Steph says.
"You sure you wanna know princess?" Molly gives me an evil smile. I can literally hear the blood pounding behind my ears and I wonder if everyone else can too.
"Tell me." I demand and she tilts her head slightly.
"I think Harry should tell her." She giggles and slides her tongue ring between her teeth making the most horrendous rattling, worse than nails on a chalkboard.

"I second that, go on Harry tell her." Jace smiles and takes a drink of beer.
"I.. I will tell you outside." Harry says. His voice low.
Everything is happening too fast for me to comprehend the look in his eyes. I don't know what is going on but I do know I don't want to go anywhere with him.
"No, you tell me here. In front of them so you can't lie." I spit. My heart is already aching and I know that I am not prepared for whatever he is getting ready to tell me.
"I'm sorry." He blurts and holds his hands out in front of him.
"Tessa, you have to remember that this was way before I even knew you." He says. His eyes begging for mercy.
"Tell me." I say, barely opening my mouth. I don't trust my voice.
"That night.. that second night.. the second party you came to when we played truth or dare.. and Niall asked if you were a virgin.." He stammers and closes his eyes as if to gather his thoughts.
Oh no. If it was possible for my heart to sink even lower it would have. This isn't happening. This can't be happening. Not right now. Not to me.
"Go on." Jace says. Harry shoots him daggers and I know that if Harry wasn't in the middle of single handedly destroying our relationship, he would kill him on the spot.
"You said you were.. and that gave someone an idea.."
"Gave who the idea?" Molly interrupts.
"Me, gave me the idea." He says. His eyes never leaving mine. He only answered her question for my sake.
"That.. it could be fun to make .. to make a bet." His head falls and tears pour from my eyes.
"No." I choke and take a step backwards.
I am heartbroken and completely destroyed. All of the memories flooding through me pile and piece together.
"Stay away from him."
"Be careful."
"Sometimes you think you know people but you don't."
"But Tessa, I need to tell you something."
All of the small remarks that were made by Molly, Jace, and even Harry himself play over and over. There was always something in the back of my mind, a feeling that I was missing something.
All of the air seems to be sucked out of the small room and I find myself almost gasping for air as the reality of all of this sets in. There were so many clues, I just was too blinded by Harry to see them.
Why would he take it this far? To have me live with him?
"You knew?" I turn to Steph, I can't manage to look at Harry any longer.
"I..I was going to tell you so many times Tess." She says, her eyes brimming with guilty tears.
"I didn't believe it when he claimed he won even with the condom." Jace snickers, obviously enjoying the show.
"Right! Me either, the sheets though I mean how can you deny blood on the sheets." She laughs.
The sheets. That's why they were still in his car. I know I should be saying something, anything, but I can't find my voice, everything is still moving around me, people in the bar are eating and drinking, not noticing the naïve girl ten feet away from them having her heart shattered in front of a crowd. How is it possible that time still moves as I stand here watching Tristan bow his head, watch Steph cry, and most of all watch Harry watch me.
"Tessa, I am so sorry." Harry takes a step towards me and I can't even move my feet.
"You know there is a sort of drama here that everyone has to appreciate I mean remember last time we were all here and Steph gave Tessa that ridiculous makeover and Harry and Zayn were trying to battle over who took her back to her room." Molly laughs and continues, "Then Harry showed up to your room right? With that vodka! You thought he was drunk! Do you remember when I called him when he was there?" She laughs.
"But really he was supposed to win the bet that night, he was pretty cocky about it but Zayn kept saying you wouldn't give it up that quick. I guess Zayn was right, but you still gave it up quicker than I thought you would. Good thing I didn't bet any money." Molly's voice and Harry's eyes are the only thing in the bar.
I have never felt this way, this is worse than I had ever imagined. Harry has been playing me this entire time, this was all a game to him. All the hugs, the kisses, the smiles, the laughs, the "I love you's", the sex, the plans, and fuck if this doesn't hurt. He had every move planned, every night, every single detail and everyone knew except me, even Steph.
"You'd be happy to know that you were worth a pretty penny though, even though Zayn tried to bitch out a few times. But with Jace, Louis and Zayn's money, I hope he at least bought you dinner" Molly laughs.
"I am only disappointed that I missed the infamous, I love you! announcement in front of everyone. I heard that was a killer." Jace laughs.
"Shut the fuck up!" Tristan surprises everyone by yelling. If I wasn't numb, he may have surprised me too. "Fuck you guys, she has already had enough!"
"Baby, please say something." Harry takes another step.
My brain finally connects with my mouth, "Don't you fucking dare call me that! How could you do this to me? You.. you .. I can't..." I have so many things in my head to say, they just won't come out. " And I won't because that's what you want." I sound much more confident than I feel inside. Inside I am burning and my heart is on the floor, underneath Harry's boot.
"I know I messed up.." He begins.
"You messed up? You messed up?" I scream. "Why, just tell me why? Why me?" I ask him.
"Because you were there." He answers honestly. "And a challenge, I didn't know you Tessa. I didn't know that I would fall in love with you." He says and it has the opposite effect than it usually does.
I can taste the bile in the back of my throat.
"You're sick. You're fucking sick!" I scream and rush to the door. This is too much for me. Harry's hand wraps around my small arm and I jerk away, slapping him. Hard.
The pain in his expression gives me the most painful satisfaction.
"You ruined everything! You took something from me that wasn't yours Harry. That was meant for someone who loved me, loved me truthfully. It was his, whoever he is and you took that, for money? I ruined my relationship with my mother for you, I gave up everything! I had someone who loved me, someone who wouldn't hurt me the way you did. You are disgusting." I spit.
"I do love you, Tessa I love you more than anything. I was going to tell you, I tried to get them not to tell you. I never wanted you to find out. That's why I was out all night, they all agreed not to say anything. I was going to tell you soon now that we live together because then it wouldn't matter." He stammers.
"Are you..you.. oh my god Harry! What the hell is wrong with you? You think going around convincing people to not tell me is okay? You thought that if we lived together I would let this go? That's why you were so determined for my name to be on the lease! Oh my god. You are sick." I have no control of the words tumbling from my lips.
"That's why you went and got my stuff for me from my room because you were afraid Steph would tell me!" Every small detail that made me think twice since I met Harry all points to this. It was so obvious. Everyone in the bar is staring and I feel so small, broken and small.
"What did you do with the money Harry?"
I look over and everyone is watching us, I know they can still hear us.
"I.. " He begins.
"Tell me." I demand.
"Your car.. the paint.. and the deposit for the apartment. I thought if I.."
"I was going to tell you so many times, once I knew it wasn't just a bet anymore. I love you, I loved you the entire time, I swear it." He says.
"You kept the condom to show them Harry! You showed them the sheets, bloody fucking sheets! Oh my god! I'm such an idiot. While I was reliving every detail of the best night of my life, you were showing your friends the sheets." My hands wrap in my hair and I tug at it.
"I know.. I don't have any excuse for what I have done but you have to forgive me. We can figure this out." He says and I laugh. A real laugh, despite my tears I find myself laughing. I am losing my mind. This scene isn't playing out like the movies, I am crying, pulling at my own hair, and barely able to control my emotions and form a full sentence.
"Forgive you?" I laugh.
"You have ruined my entire life, you know that don't you? Oh, of course you do. That was your plan the entire time remember, you promised you would ruin me. So congratulations Harry, you have. What should I give you, money? Or should I find another virgin for you?"
"Tessa, please. You know I love you, I know you do. Let's go home. Please, and I will tell you everything."
"Home? That isn't my home. It never has been, we both know that." I try for the door again, I am so close.
"What can I do? I'll do anything." He begs. With his eyes still focused on mine, he bends down. I am confused for a second before I realize he is getting on his knees in front of me.
"Nothing, there is nothing you can do." I tell him and mean it. If I knew what to say to hurt him as bad as he has hurt me I would, and I would repeat it a thousand times just so he would know how it feels to be so completely blindsided and ripped apart within minutes.
I take off for the door, taking advantage of Harry being on his knees. As soon as I reach the door, I crash into someone. I look up to find Zayn, still recovering from his injuries that Harry caused.
"What's wrong?' He asks and grabs my elbows.
His eyes travel behind me to Harry and realization fills his eyes.
"I'm sorry." He says but I ignore him. Harry is heading for the door and I have to get the hell away from this bar, and him.
The freezing air whips my hair in front of my face as soon as I get outside. I welcome the feeling, hoping it will cool the burning inside of me. Snow has blanketed my car and the streets.
"You can't drive Tessa." Zayn's voice calls from behind me. I keep trudging through the snow, across the parking lot.
"Leave me alone! I know you were in on it! You all were!" I scream and dig for my keys.
"Let me take you home, you are in no condition to drive in this storm." He says. As I open my mouth to scream at him Harry walks outside.
"Okay" I agree and the click of Zayn's car being unlocked is my cue to get in as fast as I can. Harry's face twists in anger and I hope for Zayn's sake he gets in the car before Harry reaches us.
The second Harry realizes that I am leaving with Zayn he runs towards the car. Zayn pulls out of the lot and I watch Harry fall to his knees, for the second time tonight.
"I :him.
"Okay." He agrees and turns onto the freeway.

The windshield wipers squeak against the snow and the noise makes me want to pound my head against the window. That, and the fact that my life just fell apart within minutes.
"You warm enough?" He asks and I nod.
"Either talk now or take me back." I snap.
He inhales deeply and runs his hand over the stubble on his chin. "Okay.. what do you want to know?"
"Everything, how it all started." Honestly, I don't want to know another detail but I owe it to myself to find out.
"Okay, you're sure?" He asks and I nod.
*Flashback*
"Why does she have to come again?" Molly asked the small group as she took a drag of her cigarette.
"Because she is Steph's roommate and Steph likes her for some reason so she is bringing her along." Niall explained.
"She's a total bitch though, super fucking obnoxious." Harry groaned which caused Molly to laugh and lean into him. Her pink hair was still slightly disheveled from sleeping with Harry less than an hour ago.
"She's hot though." Niall added.
"Hot? No, she's not." Harry snorted and rolled his eyes.
"She is definitely hot dude, I would fuck her in a heart beat." said Zayn.
"You wish, she is a total prude obviously. I mean who is a virgin in college?" Molly mocked the innocent girl whom she would never admit her jealousy for.
"Maybe that's why she is such a bitch because she hasn't been fucked properly." Harry said and moved a few inches away from Molly, hoping she wouldn't follow.
"I may need to do that then." Zayn said in an effort to make everyone laugh.
"Yea right. You couldn't even if you tried." Harry antagonized his friend.
"And you could? I would have a better chance than you!" Zayn countered.
"What did I miss?" Jace sat down and pulled a joint from his pocket.
"Steph has a total snob of a roommate and Zayn and Harry here are arguing over who could fuck her first." Molly informed him.
"You know.. we could make this much more interesting. You up for it?" Harry spoke to Zayn.
"Depends." Zayn smiled.
"Hmm.. okay so lets see who can fuck her first." Harry raised his brow arrogantly.
"I don't know.. " Zayn began to feel a little bad for the girl who he had only met once. Zayn thought Tessa was so pretty and her gray eyes seemed so pure and sweet.
"Come on, don't be a pussy. It wont be that hard, we will play another game of truth or dare. That will open it all up, it will be simple." Harry explained. He knew he could get to her before Zayn, he just wanted to prove it.
"This is stupid, who gives a shit who can take some random girls virginity?" Molly huffed.
"If you're so convinced you can do it, I will give you a week." Jace said and passed his joint to Molly.
"A week? Dude, she is super bitchy and we already don't get along. I need longer than a week." Harry wagered.
"How long? Two weeks? Look, if you get it within a month I will give you five hundred." Zayn said.
"Five hundred dollars?" Molly was beyond annoyed at all the attention the girl was getting and she wasn't even here.
"And I will add three. Eight hundred bucks. You think you can do it?" Jace asked with bloodshot eyes.
"Yea, of course I can do it. I just hope she doesn't go all psycho and clingy." Harry laughed.
"Doubt it." Niall teased his friend and Harry agreed.
"She isn't going to go for you, she doesn't seem that stupid." Zayn spoke.
"Yea, so we need proof when you hit it." Jace laughed loudly.
"I've never fucked a virgin, this should be fun." Harry smiled and rolled his lip ring between his fingers.
......
"It took longer than a month." I sob as Zayn finishes explaining.
"I know, he kept coming up with excuses and he kept asking for more time and he would lower the amount he was supposed to get. It was weird. We all just thought he was obsessed with winning, like to prove a point. Once Steph found out, she was pissed and wanted Harry to call it off but he wouldn't. It was all he talked about, then that day when I invited you to the movies he flipped out. After he dropped you back off, he totally flipped shit on me and said I had to stay away from you but I just laughed it off because I thought he was drunk." Zayn stops talking for a second and his eyes scan my face.
"Did he.. did you tell you about the stream? And the.. other stuff?" I hold my breath as I ask.
The pity in his eyes answers me wordlessly.
"Oh my god." I put my hands over my face.
"He told us everything.. I mean everything.." He says in a low voice.
I stare out the window, letting the betrayal seep into every crack that Harry has worked his way into.
"Where is your new dorm?" Zayn asks and I notice we are near campus.
"I don't live in a dorm, Harry and I .. " I can barely finish my sentence. "He convicted me to move in with him, just a week ago."
"He didn't." Zayn gasps.
"He did. He's so beyond.. he's just.. cruel." I stutter.
"I didn't know it was going this far, I thought once we saw the she...you know, the proof.. he would be back to normal seeing a different girl every night. But then he disappeared, he has barely came around us at all expect the other night he showed up at the docks and was trying to get Jace and I to agree not to tell you. He offered Jace a shit load of money to keep quiet."
"Money?" I say. Harry couldn't be lower.
"Yea, Jace laughed it off of course and told Harry he would keep his mouth shut."
"And you didn't?" I ask, remembering Harry's busted knuckles and Zayn's face.
"Not exactly.. I told him that if he didn't tell you soon I would. He didn't like that idea, obviously." He says and waves at his face.
"If it makes you feel any better, I think he cares about you."
"He doesn't. And if he does, it doesn't matter." I say and lay my head against the window.
Every kiss and touch has been shared amongst Harry's friends, every moment on display. My most intimate moments. My only intimate moments, aren't mine at all.
"Do you want to come back to my place? I don't mean that in a pushy or creepy way. I just have a couch you could stay on until you.. figure things out." He offers.
"No, no thank you. Can you just take me to my car?" I pray to god that Harry is gone, or not outside at least.
Zayn nods and for a moment my mind wanders to thoughts of how things would be different if I had not blown Zayn off for Harry after the bonfire. I would have never made all of these catastrophic mistakes.
"Do you think he is still here?" I ask Zayn as we get closer.
"I have no idea. He's going to come after me if he is." Zayn shrugs.
"I would apologize for being in the middle of this.. but you guys did this to yourselves." I say honestly. I do pity Zayn slightly because I do believe he had much better intentions than Harry, but my wounds are too fresh to even think about that right now.
"I know." Is all he says and pulls into the lot. Everyone's cars are parked exactly where they were, expect Harry's.
"If you don't want to go back to your place or need anything, call me." He offers and I nod before getting out of his car and directly into mine.
The heat is my car works better than I remember and for that I am thankful. Just as I begin to think I have shed every possible tear, they return. I have no where to go, I want to call my mother and go home. I know how that will go so I would rather sleep in my car. I have nothing with me, no extra clothes, no toothbrush, nothing. I had expected to go home.. back to that apartment after finding Steph. I had even expected to fight with Harry over whatever I found out but I had no clue it would be anything like this.
I have no friends here, only Harry's. I have spent so much time, well wasted so much time on Harry.
Liam is my only friend but he lives at Harry's father's house, the irony of this is not lost on me.
"Zayn!" I call before he pulls away.
I need to call Liam, I just feel like a fool. The biggest fool.
I swallow my pride as the snow falls harder and call Liam, I will only ask to stay for one night then I will figure out where to go.
He answers on the second ring and, just like I knew he would, he tells me to come right over. Granted, I haven't told him why I am coming over.
"Jesus, it is really coming down out there." Liam says and rushes me inside. "Where is your coat?" He scolds playfully then flinches when I step into the light.
"What happened? What did he do?" He knows immediately that Harry has done something. It seems so obvious, just not to me.
My eyes scan the room, hoping that Ken and Karen aren't downstairs.
"That obvious huh?" I wipe under my eyes.
"No." Liam lies for my sake. I know he would never rub my stupidity in my face so he smiles politely instead of saying 'I told you so'. He pulls me into his arms and I wipe my eyes again. I no longer have the strength, physical or emotional to sob. I beyond that, so far beyond that.
Liam gets me a glass of water and tells me to go up to 'my' room and I manage to smile. Instinct leads me to Harry's door but it stirs the pain that is so close to breaking back through, I turn and walk to the room across the hall. The memory of running across the hall to Harry when I heard him screaming in his sleep burn as I open the door. Liam joins me a few mintues later and sits on the bed.
"Do you want to talk about it?" He asks kindly.
I nod. Even though repeating it all hurt worse than finding out about it in the first place, it feels almost liberating to tell Liam. To know that one person didn't actually know about it the whole time.
"I can't believe him! What the hell is wrong with him! Here I thought he was becoming almost.. decent.. and he does this!" As soon as Liam finsishes speaking, his head snaps to the side.
I hear what he is hearing, footsteps rushing up the staircase. Not just footsteps, heavy, rushed footsteps.
"He's here." We both say and for a second I think about hiding in the closet.
"Do you want to see him?" Liam asks and I shake my head frantically.
"Tessa!" Harry's voice slices right through me.
Seconds later the door opens and I stand up off the bed. I am not sure what I am doing, I suppose trying to create as much space as I can between us.
"Tessa, thank god. Thank god you are here." He sighs and runs his hands over his hair.
I love him so much, I hate him. My chest aches at the sight of him and I look away, focusing on the wall.
"Tessa, baby. I need you to listen to me. Please, just.."
I stay silent and walk towards him, I see his eyes light with hope and when I pass him, the hope is gone. Good.
"Talk to me." He begs and I shake my head.
"No, I will never talk to you again!" I shout, turning away from the first man I ever truly loved.
"You don't mean that." He says.
"Yes, yes I do Harry." I say and mean it. "Get away from me!" I scream as he grabs my arm.
"You need to go." Liam steps between us and Harry's jaw clenches.
"Liam, you need to get the fuck out of the way." He warns him.
Liam stands his ground and Harry looks at me, then back to Liam. I know him well enough to know that he is weighing his options, whether it is worth punching Liam right now, in front of me. He seems to decide against it and he takes a deep breath.
"Please.. give us a minute." Harry says, trying to keep his calm.
Liam looks at me and I silently beg him not to.
"She doesn't want to talk to you." Liam says.
"Don't you fucking tell me what she wants!" Harry screams and his fist connects with the wall, cracking and crumbling the drywall.
I jump back and begin to cry again. Not now, not now. I repeat to try to manage my emotions.
"Go, Harry." Liam shouts as Ken and Karen appear at the doorway. Oh no. I shouldn't have come here.
"What the hell is going on?" Ken asks.
No one says anything and Ken asks again.
"I am trying to talk to Tessa and Liam won't mind his own damn business!" Harry's voice is loud again. Ken looks at Liam, then at me.
"What did you do Harry?" Ken's tone has changed from worried to ..angry? I can't quite put my finger on it.
"Nothing! Fuck!" Harry throws his hands in the air.
"He messed everything up is what he did, and now Tessa has no where to go." Liam speaks.
I want to speak, I just have no idea what to say.
"She has somewhere to go, she can go home. Where she belongs, with me." Harry says.
"Harry has been playing Tessa this entire time. He did unspeakable things to her." Liam blurts and I shrink. I am not sure if I wanted Ken and Karen to know, but I probably won't see them again after tonight so I guess it doesn't make much of a difference.
"Do you want to go with him?" Ken asks me and I shake my head.
"I am not leaving here without you." Harry steps towards me but I cringe away.
"I think you need to go Harry." Ken surprises me by saying.
"Excuse me?" Harry's face is a deep shade of red that I can only describe as anger.
"You're lucky I even came here to your house and you dare kick me out?" He scoffs.
"I have been very happy with how our relationship has been evolving lately son, but you have to go. Whatever you did to her, I hope it was worth losing the only good thing you had going for you." Ken spits at Harry.
I don't know if it was the shock of Ken's words or just that he didn't feel like fighting anymore, but he looks at me once more before leaving the room.
"I am so sorry, I will go. I didn't mean for any of this to happen." I sob as soon as I hear the front door slam.
"No, you stay as long as you need. You are always welcome here." Ken says.
"I didn't mean to come between you." I feel terrible for the way Ken had to kick his son out.
"Tessa, I love Harry but I think we both know that without you, there isn't anything to come between." Ken says.

"I feel terrible about the wall, I offered to fix it but Ken refuses to let me." I tell Liam as I brush out my wet hair. The shower I just took didn't help me relax like I had hoped. Nothing seems to calm the steady ache inside of me. It seems infinite.
"Don't worry about that. You have a lot going on." Liam frowns and rubs his hand across my back.
"I can't comprehend how my life came to this, how did I get to this point. Three months ago I had everything figured out, everything made sense. I had Noah, who would never do something like this, I was close with my mother and I had this idea of how my life would be and now I have nothing. Literally, nothing. I don't even know if I should go to Vance anymore because Harry will either come there or he will convince Mr. Vance to fire me just because he can." At least the tears have stopped.
"He messed up everything, he really did. He had nothing to lose and I did, I let him take everything from me. My life before him was so simple and decided, now after him.. it's just ..after."
"You can't give up your internship, he has taken enough from you. Don't let him take that, please." Liam advises.
"The good thing about this "after" life without him is that you can make it whatever you please, you can start all over." He tries to encourage me.
"Just please listen to me about the internship." He begs.
I know he is right but it isn't that simple. Everything in my life is tied to Harry now, even the paint on my damn car. He somehow became the string that held everything in my life together and in his absence I am left with the rubble that once was my life.
"I'll let you get some rest." Liam says and hugs me before walking towards the door.
"Do you think this will ever stop?' I ask and he turns around.
"What?"
"The pain?" My voice almost a whisper.
"I don't know.. I would like to think it will though." He answers and gives me his most comforting half smile, half frown.
I know if it will or not either, but if it doesn't, I know I won't survive it.
....
Ilay in bed and stare at the ceiling until my alarm goes off at five. I have to leave an hour early so I can go buy clothes and makeup to wear. I also have to find somewhere to brush my teeth, that should be fun. I have no idea how I am going to get my things from the..Harry's apartment. Right now I feel like it would be easier to just leave everything there and buy all new things just so I don't have to face him.
I force myself out of bed and to my car, leaving a note thanking Ken and Karen and apologizing again for the hole Harry put in their wall.
I cringe at my reflection in my rear view, my eyes are still bloodshot and rimmed with dark circles. I will need more makeup than I thought. I go to Walmart, the only store open nearby at this hour and buy everything I need. I don't have the strength or the energy to make a real effort in my appearance.
When I arrive at Vance, Kimberly gasps when she sees me. I try to muster a smile for her but she jumps up from her desk.
"Are you okay?" She asks frantically.
"Do I look that bad?" I shrug weakly.
"No, of course not. You just look.. exhausted." She lies. I know how terrible I look.
"I am exhausted." I tell her. I haven't decided if I will tell her the truth. Honestly, I am too ashamed to tell her.
"Did you and Harry have a fight?" She asks and I nod.
"Let me know if you want to talk, otherwise I will let you be." She smiles.
I am grateful for her not pushing me to talk about it right now. I walk past the breakfast table and only grab coffee, my appetite is non-existent. I thought I wouldn't be able to concentrate on this week's manuscript but once the thoughts of Harry and I on my desk disappear, I focus all my attention to the manuscript. It isn't an interesting or well written one so it keeps me busy all the way through lunch and most of the afternoon until someone knocks on my door. My heart sinks to the floor and I hold my breath as I call for them to enter. I have kept my phone off all day to avoid any attempts from Harry to talk to me.
I am relieved to see Mr. Vance at the door. "Good afternoon Tessa." He smiles.
"Good afternoon." I counter.
"I just wanted to touch base with you and let you know how impressed I am with your work so far. You are doing a better and more detailed job than most of my actual employees." He compliments.
"Thank you, that means a lot to me." I tell him.
"That being said, I would like to invite you to the conference in Seattle this coming weekend. It might be quite boring, its all about digital publishing but you could do a lot of networking and meet a lot of people. I am opening a second branch in Seattle in a few months and I need to do some networking myself." He laughs.
"So what do you say? All expenses would be paid and we will leave Friday afternoon, Harry is more than welcome to come along. Not to the conference but to Seattle." He explains with a knowing smile. If only he knew what was going on.
"Of course I would love to go, I really appreciate your invitation." I tell him. Finally something decent happening to me.
"Good, I am glad you will be coming. I will have Kimberly give you all the details." He smiles.
The idea of going to Seattle soothes my ache slightly, I will be further away from Harry. On the other hand, Seattle now reminds me of when Harry wanted to take me there. He really has ruined every aspect of my life. I feel my office getting smaller, the air in the room getting thicker.
"Are you feeling okay?" Mr. Vance asks, his eyebrows lower in concern.
"Uh, yea I just... I haven't eaten today and I didn't sleep much last night." I tell him.
"Go ahead and go home then, you can finish that at home." He says.
"It's okay, I can stay." I tell him. I don't want him to think I am taking advantage of him.
"No, go on home. We will manage without you." He assures me and I finally agree.
I gather my things to leave as soon as Mr. Vance leaves my office. On my way out Kimberly calls my name.
"You're going home?" She asks and I nod.
"Yea, I need to sleep." I tell her, knowing that probably won't happen.
"Harry is in a bad mood so beware." She half laughs.
"How do you know?"
"Because he just cussed me out for not transferring him to you." She smiles.
"He called?" The burn returns.
"Yea, only about ten times. I figured if you wanted to talk to him you would have on your cell."
"Thank you." I tell her. I am glad she is as observant as she is, the fragile wall I have built over the last few hours would have crumbled instantly if I would have heard Harry's voice on the line.
I manage to make it to my car before breaking down again. The pain only seems to get worse when there is no distraction, when I am left to my thoughts and memories.
After pulling myself together enough to drive, I do what I have been dreading to do. Call my mother.
"Hello?" She answers on the first ring.
"Mom?" I sob.
"What did he do?" She asks. That has been everyone's reaction, such an obvious conclusion to jump to.
"I.. he.." I can't form a sentence. "Can I come home, just for today?" I ask her.
"Of course Tessa. I will see you in two hours." She says and hangs up. Better than I thought but not as warm as I had hoped for.
The small envelope is present on my screen and my phone beeps repeatedly until I finally read one of the messages.
* Call me Tessa, I am not going to stop until you call me.* It reads. I shut my phone off before I do something stupid, like read anymore messages from Harry.
(Some of you have asked who I picture for the other characters and if you read on your phone sometimes you cant see the cast list on the side so here It is ,
Tessa is Indiana Evans from Blue Lagoon
Noah is Zach Roerig from The Vampire Diaries
Trevor is Ian Somerholder from the Vampire Diaries
Kimberly is Elizabeth Banks from a lot of things lol
Ken is Dylan McDermott from American Horror Story and a lot of things lol
Karen is Liams actual mother hah
Tessa's mother is Denise Richards

The drive to my childhood home is familiar and easy, despite the snow falling down. I force myself to let out every scream, literal scream, as in screaming as loud as I possibly can in my small car before I arrive in my hometown. Screaming is much harder to do than I thought it would be, especially since I don't feel like screaming. I feel like crying and disappearing. I would give anything to rewind my life to my first day of college, I would have taken my mother's advice and changed rooms. My mother was worried about Steph being a bad influence, if only we had both known it was the rude curly haired boy that would be the problem. That he would take everything in me and spin it around, tearing it into tiny pieces and blowing on the pile instead of stitching the pieces back together.
I have only been two hours away this whole time but it feels like I have been much further. I haven't been home since I left, because of Harry. If I wouldn't have broken up with Noah I would have been back many times. I force myself to stop thinking about Noah before I lose it again. My eyes stay focused on the road as I pass Noah's house and pull into my mother's driveway.
When I get to the door I am not sure if I should knock or not, it feels strange to knock but I don't feel comfortable just walking inside either. How has so much changed since I left for college?
I decide to just walk inside and my mother is standing by the brown leather couch in full makeup, a dress and heels. Everything looks the same, clean and perfectly organized. The only difference is that is seems smaller, maybe because I stayed at Ken's house last night. The house is warm and the familiar smell of cinnamon fills my senses. My mother obsesses over wax burners and has one in every room. I take my shoes off at the door, knowing that my mother will not want snow on her polished hard wood floors. The house is small and not the most appealing from the outside but the inside is decorated nicely and she did her best to mask the chaos inside her marriage by adding paint and flowers.
'Would you like some coffee Theresa?" She asks before hugging me. I get my coffee addiction from my mother.
"Yes please." I say through chattering teeth.
I follow her into the kitchen, unsure how to begin conversation.
"So are you going to tell me what happened?" She asks and sits down at the small kitchen table.
I take a deep breath and a drink of my coffee before answering. "Harry and I broke up."
"Why?" She asks.
"Well, he didn't turn out to be who I thought he was." I say. I wrap my hands around the scolding cup of coffee in an attempt to distract myself from the pain and prepare myself for my mothers response.
"And who did you think he was?"
"Someone who loved me." I am not sure who I thought Harry was.
"And now you don't think he does?"
"No, I know he doesn't"
"What makes you so sure?" She asks cooly.
"Because I trusted him and he betrayed me, in a terrible way." I know I am leaving out the details but I feel the strange need to protect Harry from my mother's judgment. I scold myself for being so stupid, for even considering him when he clearly wouldn't do the same for me.
"Don't you think you should have thought about this before living with him?"
"Yes, I know. Go ahead and tell me how stupid I am, tell me that you told me so." I say.
"I did tell you, I warned you about guys like him. I have dated guys like him before, it never ends well. I am just glad it is over with before it really even began. People make mistakes Tessa, not usually mistakes this big but I am sure he will forgive you." She takes a drink from her mug, leaving a pink lipstick ring.
"Who?"
"Noah of course."
"Just because things didn't work out with Harry doesn't mean I am going to date Noah again." I snap. How does she not get this? I just need to talk to her, for her to comfort me not for her to push me to be with Noah again.
"Why doesn't it? You should be grateful that he is willing to give you another chance."
"What? Why can't you just stop? I don't need to be with anyone right now, especially not Noah." I want to rip my hair out, or hers.
"What do you mean especially not Noah, how can you say that about him? He has been nothing but great to you since you were kids."
"I know mother, I care about Noah so much. Just not in that way."
"You don't know what you're even talking about." She stands up and pours her coffee down the drain.
"It's not always about love Theresa, its about stability and security."
"I'm only eighteen." I tell her. I don't want to think that I would be with someone without loving them just for the stability. I want to be my own stability and security.
"Almost nineteen and if you don't be careful now no one will want you. Now go fix your makeup because Noah will be here any minute." She announces and walks out of the kitchen.
I should have known better than to come here for comfort. I would have been better off sitting in my car all day. Just as she said Noah arrives less than five minutes later but I don't bother to fix my appearance. Seeing Noah walk into the small kitchen makes me feel even lower than I did moments ago, I didn't think it was possible.
"Hey." He smiles his warm crooked smile.
"Hey." I respond. He walks closer and I stand up to hug him. He is warm and his sweatshirt smells so good, just like I remember.
"Your mom called me." He says,
"I know she did." I try to smile. "I'm sorry that she keeps bringing you into this. I don't know what her problem is."
"I do, she wants you to be happy." He defends.
"Noah.." I warn.
"She just doesn't know what really makes you happy, she just wants it to be me even though its not."
"I'm sorry." I say.
"Tess, stop apologizing. I just want to make sure you are okay." He assures me and hugs me again.
"I'm not." I admit.
"I can tell. Do you want to talk about it?"
"I don't know, are you sure that's okay?" I can't bear to hurt him again by talking about the guy I left him for.
"Yea, I'm sure." He says and pours himself a glass of water before sitting across from me at the table.
"Okay..." I say and tell him basically everything. I leave out all of the details of our sexual experiences, those are private. Well they aren't, but to me they are. I still can't believe that Harry told his friends everything that we did, that is the worst part. Even worse than showing the sheets, its the fact that while he was telling me he loved me he and making love to me he would turn around and tell everyone.
"I knew he was going to hurt you, I just had no idea how bad." Noah says. I can tell how angry he is, it's strange to see because he is usually so calm and collected.
"You are too good for him Tessa, he is scum." He adds.
"I can't believe how stupid I was, I gave up everything for him and now I have nothing. The worst feeling in the world is loving someone who doesn't love you."
"Tell me about it." Noah says and I want to smack myself for saying that to him.
"It's okay." He says and rubs his thumb over my hand.
I wish I did love Noah, I wish I could love him the way I love Harry. I would be much happier with Noah, he would never do something like this to me.
We talk about everything that I have missed since I left, which isn't much. He tells me how he has decided to go San Francisco for college instead of WSU and I am grateful. At least one good thing came out of my hurting him, he has the push he needed to get out of Washington. My mother stays in her room the entire time and by the time Noah leaves it is almost seven. I decide to go out to the backyard to the greenhouse that I spent most of my childhood in. All the plants and flowers are dead and the area is a mess, an exact reflection of myself at the moment.
I have so many things to do, to figure out. I need to find somewhere to live and find a way to get all of my stuff from Harry's apartment. I was seriously considering just leaving everything there but I can't. I have no clothes expect the clothes there and most importantly my books are there. I will have to find a way to get everything when Harry isn't there. I reach into my pocket and turn my phone on, within seconds my inbox is full and the voicemail symbol appears. I ignore the voicemails and quickly scan the messages, only looking at the sender. All except one are from Harry.
* Christian said to tell you to stay home tomorrow, everyone will be leaving at noon anyway so stay home. Let me know if you need anything.xx*
Kimberly sent.
Having the day off tomorrow is a huge relief. I am so glad Mr. Vance is such an amazing boss and is being so understanding about this even though he doesn't know what is going on. I love my internship so much, but I am beginning to think I should transfer out of WSU, maybe even leave Washington. The campus isn't big enough to be able to avoid Harry and all of his friends and I don't want the constant reminder of what I had with Harry. Well, what I thought I had with Harry.
By the time I go back inside the house, my hands and face are numb from the cold. My mother is sitting in the chair reading a magazine.
"Can I stay tonight?" I ask her.
"Yea, we will figure out how to get you back into the dorms tomorrow." She says and goes back to her magazine.
My old room is exactly the way that I left it. I pull out sweats and a tshirt from my old dresser and change. I don't bother taking my makeup off before bed, I just want to sleep to escape the pain for a little while.
I force myself to sleep, dreaming of when my life was much better. Before I met Harry.
...
My phone rings in the middle of the night but I ignore it. I hope Harry can sleep tonight. I wonder if that was all part of his plan, to make that whole thing up to make me feel closer to him. Somehow, I know it wasn't.
The next morning, I leave while my mom is at work. She told me she will call and force them to let me back into the dorms and she assures me it will be a different building, far from my old one.
By the time I get near campus, my mind is racing. I need to get my stuff from that apartment even though I have no where to take it. I will keep it in my car until I figure out where I will be going. I turn the car around and make my way to the apartment before I can change my mind. Harry should be at class anyway and if his car is in the lot, I will leave immediately.
When I get to the apartment I scan the lot for Harry's car, twice just to be sure he isn't here. Once I am sure he isn't, I park my car and hurry through the snowy parking lot to the door. The bottoms of my jeans are soaked and I am freezing when I get to the elevator. I try to think of anything except Harry but it is impossible. I had been so clueless just a week ago, taking this same elevator ride up to our new apartment.
Harry must have really hated me to go to this extreme to ruin my life, to have me move into an apartment with him just so he could win. He must be pretty proud of himself right now for the extent of the pain he has caused me. I don't understand why he keeps trying to get ahold of me, probably just to verify his winning. To remind me how stupid I was, to build his already overflowing ego.
I fumble with my keys before unlocking the door. A new wave, a tidal wave of pain crashes over me nearly knocking me the ground. When will it stop? Or at least decrease? I go straight to the room and grab my bags from the closet, hastily shoving all my clothes inside without folding them. I will fix them later. My eyes flicker to the bedside table. There is now a small frame with the picture of Harry and I before the wedding. We are both smiling and love genuinely happy. Too bad it was all fake. I reach across and grab it, throwing it against the concrete. It shatters into pieces and I reach down to grab the photo, ripping it into as many pieces as I can. I don't realize that I am sobbing until I choke on my own breath.
I grab my books and Harry's copy of Wuthering Heights, he won't miss it and honestly he owes it to me after what he has taken from me.
I stop by the kitchen on my way out and grab a glass of water. I sit down at the table and allow myself a few minutes to pretend that none of this happened. To pretend that Harry will be home from class anytime and smile at me when he walks through the door, that he will tell me he loves me and he missed me all day. He will lift me onto the counter and kiss me with longing and love. The clicking of the door startles me out of my pathetic daydream. I jump to my feet as Harry walks through the door.
"So this is it." He says and looks behind him. What?
My already broken heart shatters again when a brunette in a black sweater dress walks in behind him.
"It's nice." She smiles.
I am frozen as his eyes widen in shock at my standing in the kitchen holding my bags.
"Tess?" He says as if he's not sure if I am actually there.

To be continued..

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