4.2 ~ Taking tips and getting stoned
When he wakes up on Liam's couch, his head is fuzzy and the memories of the night before come back slowly as he acclimates himself to his surroundings. The sun is dim where it streams in through the glass doors leading out to the balcony, but it's enough to make Louis grumble, flipping over onto his stomach to point away from the light. That's when he sees papers scattering the floor below him, scribbled words across the pages, some in Liam's scrawl and some in his own. He picks one up, his movements sluggish, and he reads the words we learned about love in the back of a Ford, the lesson hadn't gone too far , before he drops it, groaning to himself. He'd told Liam through lyrics, he'd told him about Harry, about loving him and being left. If he wasn't so tired, he'd be mortified when Liam enters the room a minute later, smiling sleepily, his eyes ten times brighter than when Louis had arrived the night before. He walks around the mess of papers and sits on the couch at Louis' feet, waiting a few minutes before he finally says anything.
So, who knew you're a bloody brilliant songwriter? He says and Louis buries his head under his arms, grunting his disagreement. No, seriously, Lou, Liam goes on, you saved my arse. We did so much good stuff last night and, listen, you've got to write this album with me. Louis flings his arms away and lifts his head enough to stare incredulously at Liam.
Are you still stoned, mate? Liam turns in his seat, excitement shining in his eyes.
Come on, seriously. You're incredible and like, when it's the two of us, I even wrote some good stuff. He looks shy, but he doesn't stop, reaching down to grip Louis' ankle as he lowers his voice. I need you for this, please. Help me write my album. Louis could point out that it was probably just the weed that made it good and maybe that's what Liam needs, not Louis. Louis isn't, he's not a writer, has never been particularly good with words. It's just Harry, really, that makes him feel a bit poetic and that's the fucked up part. Louis could probably write a dozen albums about those two and a half years, but that's all he has. Just the memory of that short period of time, just some words on a page that prove he hasn't done anything with his life since he was a teenager.
He leaves without giving Liam a firm answer, assuming that the lad will eventually realize he doesn't need him and it won't come up again. Louis isn't sure what exactly has happened, but as the week goes on, it becomes clear that Zayn and Niall have made up. The blonde has been around again, maybe even more than before and even though things seem to be getting back to normal and Zayn hasn't been nearly as mopey since Niall's return, Louis knows Zayn still hasn't told him. There's still hesitance in their smiles and touches and Louis has to fight the urge to shake both of them.
That Sunday, Niall is at theirs when Zayn suggests a film. Louis had worked the rare day shift after working late the night before and he's absolutely knackered, but he agrees anyway. He curls up in the armchair, giving the other two the couch, and halfway through the film, his eyelids are falling, unable to stay open anymore. He floats somewhere between consciousness and unconsciousness as the film plays on. He hears the sounds from the telly but they seem far away from his sleepy mind. When the sounds of the film come to an end, soft music playing over the credits, Louis is tugged back toward consciousness. The other two lads haven't moved and he curiously opens one eye, peeking over to the couch. He's not sure what he's expecting, but his stomach flips when he sees the way they're looking at each other silently, the light from the credits flickering over their faces. Louis can practically feel the butterflies as he watches without moving, wanting them to have their moment.
Hi, Niall whispers, so softly that Louis can barely hear it. Louis can tell Zayn's probably nervous, the blush on his cheeks almost visible in the shadows.
Hi, he replies, just as quietly. Louis feels the heat on his own skin, remembers the excitement of a first kiss when it actually means something. He watches as Niall turns in his seat more, lifting his leg over Zayn's lap. He sees the way Zayn's eyelids flutter when Niall touches his neck and he watches as they move in slowly and shakily. When their lips meet, even Louis is relieved. He can only imagine how they feel. He closes his eyes, then, unable to fall asleep, but not wanting to intrude or interrupt. He lets his thoughts wander, trying not to pay attention to the soft sounds of kissing from across the room. When they disappear into Zayn's bedroom, they don't say a word. They shuffle slowly out of the room and Louis opens his eyes just in time to see their fingers intertwined where Zayn is leading Niall, and the sweet smiles on their faces. Louis is glad for his friend, he is. He's so glad for him, for both of them, but his loneliness multiplies in the moment, swelling in his chest until it's practically suffocating. He eventually goes to bed, sending out a quick text before he falls asleep alone.
Louis: Busy tomorrow night? Come over? xx
The next day, Liam texts him a long string of sad emojis, begging him to come over for another writing session. He's been trying ever since Louis last saw him and he finally texts back when he's stopped at a hotel after dropping someone off.
Louis: FINE.. not tonight tho, tomorrow?
The rest of his shift goes by slowly, making small talk with the people he picks up, dropping them off, then repeating the cycle. When he finally gets home, Zayn is sitting on the kitchen counter, eating a slice of pizza.
Hey, bro, he greets around a mouthful of it when Louis walks into the room. Got sausage and jalapeno. Have at. Louis checks the clock, deciding he has enough time to eat and brush the taste out of his mouth, so he grabs a slice from the open box and hops up on the counter across from Zayn, his regular spot.
So, he starts, biting off a piece of the pizza. Anything you want to talk about? He waggles his eyebrows, not-so-subtly hinting. Zayn shakes his head, but can't stop the grin that lights up in his eyes, the curl at the corner of his lips.
Yeah, you might've been right, he concedes, dropping his crust into the pizza box and wiping his hands on his jeans. Like, he called me and said he missed me and he came by and it was just, I don't know, it was just different. He shrugs, but he's blushing now, trying so hard not to grin. And then last night, when you were asleep, it just kind of happened? Louis rolls his eyes hard.
I know it did. I wasn't asleep, dumbass. Even at that, Zayn can't find himself to scowl, as hard as he may try.
Dude! That's fucked up, bro, really.
I wasn't, like, watching, Louis defends, holding his hands up when Zayn whips a piece of sausage at him. Or, at least not the whole time. Zayn throws another piece of sausage, eyes twinkling happily through his mock anger. Louis easily deflects it, then settles down, smiling over at his friend.
So, other than the couch kissing? He asks, lifting his eyebrows curiously. I know I didn't wake up to the headboard slamming against the wall or anything. Zayn looks down, swinging his legs below him so they thump against the cabinet.
Yeah, I mean, I didn't want to freak him out or anything, but- he hesitates, shrugging. But yeah, we, uh - we did enough. Louis smirks around his bite of pizza, swallowing it down before he replies.
So he's not as afraid of a dick as you thought? For that, Zayn jumps off the counter and pulls Louis down as well, tackling him to the floor. As Zayn tries to catch his wrists to pin him, Louis feels something suspiciously like sausage under his head and this is definitely not the time to have any kind of meat product smashed into his hair.
Fuck, get off, he wheezes, hands flying up to pick the sausage out of his hair with a grimace. Great, lovely, he mumbles, pushing Zayn off of him.
Not the worst you've had in your hair, Zayn snips as he backs off, rolling onto the floor beside Louis. Before Louis can come up with a retort, there's a knock at the door and he whispers fuck under his breath, pushing himself up. He's got jalapeno breath and sausage hair and this is already a disaster. When he opens the door, Jack is standing there, looking as good as ever. His hair is a bit different from the last time Louis saw him. It's still dark brown, but he's got it styled into a loose, messy quiff instead of down like it had been.
Hey, he says, smiling when he sees Louis, the dimples in his cheeks appearing. Louis' always been such a sucker for dimples.
Hi, Louis says, looking up at the familiar face. I've got jalapeno breath, but if you give me one second- Before he can excuse himself to wash the taste out of his mouth, Jack is pulling him in and kissing him right there in the doorway. Louis squeaks out a little surprised noise, but melts into it quickly. He'd forgotten what a good kisser Jack was, but he remembers now, feeling the gentle way he licks into his mouth, slowly flicking his tongue against Louis'.
Good thing I like jalapenos, Jack says when he pulls away, leaving Louis breathless. I'm glad you texted me. Louis nods as he catches his breath.
Me too, he says honestly. He'd met Jack years ago, when Louis was new to the city, at a club. They went home together and exchanged numbers and it just became a thing. When they both found themselves single, they'd fool around fairly regularly, no strings attached. He's exactly what Louis needs right now. He needs someone he can be with, someone to fuck and then hold him as he falls asleep. He needs someone to have a laugh with, someone he trusts. Most of all, he needs to forget about the past and start living his bloody life. When he pulls Jack inside, Zayn is still sitting on the kitchen floor, except now he's got his phone out and he's grinning at whatever it says. Louis sighs, slipping his hand up Jack's back, impressed by the good shape he's kept himself in.
Zayn finally kissed the boy he's mad about last night, Louis whispers loudly, turning to the taller man. He's gone a bit soppy and gross as a result. It's true, but honestly, Louis' happy for him. Better soppy than stroppy.
Oh, hey, Zayn says, finally noticing the new person in their flat. Shit, sorry, didn't- He scrambles up off the floor to his feet. Long time, no see, he says curiously, gaze flicking over to Louis as he leans in to give Jack a quick one-armed hug.
Yeah, man, good to see you, Jack replies, slinking his arm around Louis' waist when Zayn steps back. And congratulations on the whole kissing thing. Zayn gives Louis a death glare, but at least he's not throwing sausage in front of company. He goes back to texting, but Louis notices how he sneaks curious glances at them every few seconds.
Did you already eat then? Jack asks lowly, leaning down to press a soft, lingering kiss to Louis' lips.
A bit, yeah, Louis whispers back. But if you haven't, we could go out. If you want. Jack hums, sliding his hand down from the small of Louis' back to lightly squeeze his bum.
Think there's a different kind of eating out I'd rather do, he murmurs, just loud enough for Louis to hear. Zayn is only a few steps away, though, and Louis definitely wouldn't doubt that he heard. He doesn't care, though, pressing up against Jack's chest.
That one, he answers, nodding against his lips. Definitely that one. With that, Jack lifts him up in one movement, squeezing his arse and carrying him out of the room.
"It was nice to see you, Zayn, he calls over his shoulder, then hauls Louis into the bedroom, kicking the door shut behind them.
The nice thing about Jack is that it's easy. They've done this enough to sort of know each other's preferences, to be comfortable with each other. So when Louis spreads his legs and lets Jack lick his way down between them, it's not quite as awkward as it would be with a stranger.
Two orgasms later, Louis cuddles up against the man, shivering when he feels fingertips tracing down his spine.
Stay? He asks quietly, his voice rough. Jack doesn't answer, just pulls Louis closer and relaxes into the pillows.
He gets into a bit of a pattern from then on. Work, writing with Liam, fucking Jack, hanging out with Zayn and Niall, who still seem really tentative with each other. (Louis finds out one rare night when it's just Zayn and him that they still haven't fucked for real because he's worried Niall will suddenly realize he's with a dude and run off. Louis smacks him for this and tells him to stop being an idiot.) Maybe it isn't the ideal situation, but it's pretty good anyway. Jack always stays the night, keeps Louis warm, kisses him goodbye in the morning. When Louis goes to his, Jack texts to make sure he's gotten home safely. It's not a relationship but it's enough to ease some of Louis' loneliness, but when he goes to Liam's, the words he writes aren't about Jack. They're not about anything except falling in love in the backseat of a shitty car, about hope and fearlessness and the most beautiful boy he's ever seen and, eventually, about all of it crashing down around him, about sitting alone in his car at that park and letting his heart bleed dry, listening to the CD Harry had left behind. Liam gives him concerned looks on those nights and Louis goes onto the balcony alone to dull the pain. Liam never actually asks, but he really doesn't have to. The whole story is written out on the pages scattering across his floor. As he quietly strums his guitar, he sings Louis story, from beginning to abrupt end.
And it's fine.
Het nummer Fireproof staat echt honderd keer op repeat. Hun stemmen zijn echt prachtig in dit nummer,
het is weer zoveel anders dan Midnight Memories, hoe doen ze dat toch.
By the way het duurt nog even tot Harry weer op komt dagen, ergens bij deel 4.5 komt hij weer.
Ik hoop dat jullie geduld hebben haha.