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I Was Made for Loving You

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 “Nathaniel!! Nate come- God dammit,” Harry muttered to himself, his camera bag falling off his shoulder and nearly smashing to the ground before his already full hand caught it and managed to somewhat push it back up his arm.

“Come on daddy!!”

“Buddy just- hang on, give daddy a second!” Harry yelled back, trying to organize himself and the million and one bags they seemed to have. “Nathaniel please come here.”

He knew at this point he was almost begging, but there were a thousand things running through his head, mainly making sure his son didn’t get taken or lost in the crowd on the dock.

“Daddy you not be having such hard time if you no bring cameras,” Nate huffed as he ran up to his father and tugged the camera bag off his dad’s arm, trying to help him out a bit.

“Buddy we’re going on an adventure, don’t you want to be able to look back at all the fun times we’re gonna have?”

Nate looked up to his daddy with raised eyebrows, letting out a deep breath and shaking his head, because his father brings his cameras with him everywhere. To the park, out to eat, even watching movies on the couch at home is considered an “adventure”.

“Don’t give me that look, I’m doing all this for you,” and Harry may have been half lying, the whole purpose of him taking pictures of his son is so he can remember all the moments they had together when he grows up, but he thought he could keep that to himself. “You should be saying ‘thank you daddy, I love the surprise you got me’,” he said with a teasing smile.

At that Nate bit his lip, hiding his growing smile as he reached for his father’s two fingers and wrapped his little hand around them. “Thank you daddy,” he said bashfully.

“You’re welcome love,” Harry laughed to himself, bending down just enough to press a quick kiss to his son’s head. “Now come on, Uncle Liam is waiting for us.”

“Yes!!” Nate cheered, tugging on his daddy’s fingers as hard as he could to get him moving towards the huge boat.

And Harry had no choice but to follow of course, pulling their luggage along the way and praying he wouldn’t trip anyone, or that he wouldn’t trip over himself.

It was definitely a lot harder than he thought with Nate nearly dragging him to the cruise ship, but Harry got it, he really did. His son was only 3 and this was the first vacation they’ve ever been on, and everything was so foreign to his little boy, he knew he wanted to explore it at all. But not only was Nate excited, but Harry was too. He’s never left the country before this, and truth be told he isn’t really the adventurous type, but when Liam offered him this deal he couldn’t pass it up.

“Daddy where uncle Liam? I no see him,” Nate groaned, tugging his father another way and not paying any mind to the other people walking by them.

“Buddy!” Harry shrieked, his son successfully making him crash into a small brunette haired man. “Sorry, I’m so sorry!!” he called over his shoulder as Nate kept pulling him, only to see the quick flash of bright blue eyes on him, offering a small smile and wave translating not to worry about it before he kept on his way.

“Nathaniel I know you’re excited, but please, be a little more careful big guy.”

Nate let out a small breath but nodded anyways, slowing down his pace and giving his daddy a break so he could adjust their bags.

“Alright, uncle Liam said he’d be waiting by the entrance for us, so we’re almost there,” Harry said, looking at the huge ship in front of them and trying to figure out just which entrance Liam was talking about since there were about 10 of them.

He knew there was no way in hell he was going to go to the right one though, so his only hope was to go through one of them and text his best mate once they were inside. And that’s exactly what he did, making sure they calmly and carefully got aboard the boat, Nate shaking with excitement as the minutes passed. But of course as soon as Harry texted Liam and they managed to find the older lad the 3 year old was screaming.

“Uncle Liam!!!”

“Nate!! Big guy!” Liam said, scooping up his nephew as he ran at him. “I’m so happy you’re here, now the real fun can begin!”

“Yes!!” Nate cheered, jumping in the older man’s arms and hugging him tightly.

“Hey mate,” Harry breathed out, smiling at Liam as he adjusted the bags in his arms. “Listen, thank you again for helping me out with this, you have no idea-”

“H, c’mon, stop thanking me,” Liam scoffed. “It wasn’t like it was any trouble for me.”

“Yeah, but still,” Harry said sheepishly.

He didn’t even want to know what strings Liam had to pull to get them such a cheap deal for this trip. Of course he knew his best mate was pretty high up in the chain, being head of entertainment on the ship, but he was still shocked and grateful Liam did this for them.

“Well I’m sure you guys are tired and want to relax a little bit, so I’ll take you to your room and get you settled in,” Liam said happily, taking one of Harry’s suitcase in the hand that wasn’t occupied with Nate and started heading to the lift.

Harry gratefully followed after Liam, more than relieved to finally be out of the burning Florida sun. He swears just from being outside for 10 minutes he already was starting to get sunburned, he was just happy Nate didn’t have his skin tone so he didn’t have to constantly coat him in sunblock like he did himself.

Despite the inevitable sunburn Harry was going to get he knew this trip would be great, just him and his boy and some much needed relaxing time.

And from the looks of this ship he knew there was going to be a lot of that. This was place huge and luxurious, and now Harry really wondered how much of a deal Liam gave them, because this cruise looked like it was built just for the rich, and he was far from that.

It wasn’t just him who noticed how nice the ship was either, Nate’s little eyes looking all over the place as Liam carried him to their room, even marvelling at the marbled and shiny lift that carried them to their floor.

“Here we are boys, home for the next two weeks,” Liam said happily, pulling a keycard from his pocket and opening the door for the two.

“Liam holy-” Harry cut himself off, his jaw going slack and barely shuffling into the room to get a full look. “Mate what the hell?! You- no, no, you didn’t have to do this for us, we-”

“Daddy shush! Thank you uncle Liam!!” Nate squealed as he crushed the older man in a hug.

Liam couldn’t help the surprised laugh that escaped him as he hugged Nate back and kissed his head, not really expecting this reaction. “Well of course buddy, it’s no problem.”

Harry wanted to tell him that yes, this was a very big problem. A room like this should not be given to someone like him who paid so little to be here.

“Liam really, we’d be good in a small room, just two twin beds and a bathroom…”

“Harry,” Liam warned, raising his eyebrows at the younger lad and silently telling him it really wasn’t a big deal. “It’s an empty room we had on board and this little guy needs some room to run around.”

Harry let out a deep breath, looking between Nate and Liam, knowing he could beg for a smaller room, but if his best mate was insisting…

“Thanks Li… For everything.”

And Liam just hummed, knowing that wasn’t the last time Harry would thank him, even though he really hoped it would be. “So do you guys wanna settle in and relax before we dock off or explore a little bit of the boat?”

“Exploring!!”

“Nate you don’t want to unpack?” Harry asked, more than ready to empty their suitcases and organize their belongings.

Nate just looked back at his father from his uncle’s arms, giving him a blank stare before huffing to himself and shaking his head. “Daddy you do that when I go to bed, but first explore!”

Harry really should’ve guessed the 3 year old would say something like that, but truth be told getting a personal tour of this enormous cruise ship from his best mate seemed more fun than unpacking.

“Alright, alright, we can explore,” he smiled at his son, unable to miss the way Nate lit up.

Even Liam’s own grin could be seen from miles away, shifting the 3 year old in his arms and nearly skipping back towards the door. “Well I hope you two are up for some walkin cause we have a lot to cover!”

And just at hearing that Harry wanted to groan, after hours of travel the last thing he wanted to do was walk around, but instead just nap. The look on Nate’s face though was all worth it, especially since it was something so simple as following Liam around and seeing everything the cruise had to offer them.

*~*

“And over here is where we have the midnight buffet, now Nate I know you’ll be in bed, but H if you wanna sneak out for a snack it’s awesome, especially the cocktails,” Liam said happily, knowing he himself was going to make a few trips out here when he gets off duty.

But all Harry did was hum, as tempting as drinks and endless food sounds at midnight he knew he couldn’t leave Nate in the room by himself.

Overall the cruise ship seemed more than amazing. There were plenty of things for Nate to do, too many shows, and activities they could do together and Harry wasn’t going to lie the adult only parts of the ships were more than tempting, but he knew it would be a bit hard to go unless someone could watch Nate.

And by the end of the tour there was no lying, both him and his son were more than exhausted from walking all over the place, but if anything Liam had more energy than he did before they started. It was clear he loved his job, and loved showing off everything he set up for the guests, but Harry had to give him credit of course, they had just launched off the dock and already people seemed to be having the time of their lives.

“Uncle Liam where the kitchen? I’m hungry,” Nate groaned as he tugged on the older man’s hand.

“Oh you’re hungry now are you? Well good thing uncle Liam has just the thing for you then,” he smiled down at the 3 year old. “I set you two up with a table at one of the restaurants tonight, thought you could start the first night off with a nice dinner.”

At that Harry raised his eyebrows, about to say just how grateful he was until Liam shot him a quick look and shook his head. So he snapped his mouth shut, instead just smiled gratefully at his best mate and followed him to wherever this restaurant was.

Harry just wished he looked a little nicer, especially since he hasn’t showered or changed since the flight. He hasn’t looked himself in the mirror since they left London, and Harry was sure he looked like a hot, sleepy mess, but then again, food seemed to be a very pressing matter if his son moaning and groaning in Liam’s arms about how hungry he was was anything to go by.

“Here you are big guy,” Liam said softly as he placed Nate down in a chair at one of the larger tables in the place. “Now when the waiter comes to give you the check just tell him your name, it’ll be on the house.”

“Liam-”

“No, nope, stop it,” Liam quickly stopped him.

Harry just eyed the older man for a second before letting out a huff and looking to the table. “Fine,” he muttered. “Can I at least ask why we have such a big table for the two of us?”

“Oh, so this is something new the ship is trying out, my idea actually,” Liam laughed sheepishly to himself. “So we want more people on the boat to get to know one another a bit, make it easier to make friends and whatnot, so we have multiple groups that come in sharing a table.”

Harry hummed and bit his lip, focusing his eyes on the three empty chairs at their table and curious as to who might be occupying them and joining him and his son for a meal.

“Don’t worry H, have fun with it, meet some people, be social,” Liam smiled softly at him. “I really have to get back to work but text me later alright? Let me know how you’re settling in or if you want to grab a drink after my shift is done.”

Harry nodded back at him, sending him one more grateful look before taking his seat next to Nate and seeing his son with his eyebrows furrowed, eyes squinted and his tongue sticking outside the corner of his mouth as he looked down at a menu.

“See anything that looks good buddy?” he chuckled to himself, knowing very well his boy couldn’t read a single thing this menu had to offer.

“I guess the chicken tenders,” Nate hummed and shrugged to himself.

At that Harry raised his eyebrows, scanning over the menu and seeing no such thing being offered. “How do we feel about baked mac and cheese? That seem okay?” he asked through a small laugh.

Nate pursed his lips, tapping his chubby little finger on his chin as he thought about it. “Sure,” he said easily enough, not needing to consider it all that much.

And Harry couldn’t help the fond smile that came over him as he looked down at his son and kissed his curls. He could see Nate winding down a bit as he slumped in his chair and tried to fight off sleep.

It’s been a long day for them and truth be told Harry was a bit shocked the 3 year old didn’t pass out in Liam’s arms as they took a tour of the boat. But then again he knew how excited Nate was for this trip and all the adventures they were bound to get up to.

There was no hiding it, this trip was more than important to Harry. He hasn’t been the father he needed to be for Nate for too long now, and he knew he had to change, had to make a difference in his life if he wanted his son to know that he really does love him, that he cares about him more than anything in the world. And he was hoping he could start with this trip.

“Here you are gentlemen, enjoy your meal.”

Harry looked up, his eyes catching a waiter motioning to their table and seeing 3 guys that looked about his age thanking the older man gratefully and taking their seats.

“Hey man, how’s it goin?”

Harry smiled back at the blonde lad, his Irish accent impossible to miss as he took a seat next to him and stuck his hand out to shake.

“Hey, good, m’Harry,” he said, offering him a small smile and accepting his waiting hand.

“Niall.”

And all Harry did was nod back at him, looking across the table and seeing a dark raven haired man grinning back at him, offering his hand as well before introducing himself as Zayn.

“Nice to meet you,” Harry said back to him before dropping their hands and looking to the last and final guy sitting directly across from him.

But as soon as their eyes met Harry went still, swallowing thickly and clearing his throat slightly at seeing this man just staring at him with his bright blue eyes, not moving an inch or making a sound.

And Harry was a bit stuck himself, seeing just how handsome this stranger was and knowing he looked like an absolute mess, definitely not making a good first impression. But what he didn’t understand was why this guy was still just staring at him, there’s no way he already said something stupid, all he did so far was introduce himself.

“Uhm..” Harry fidgeted a bit in his chair, shifting his gaze away from the man across from him but still feeling his eyes on him. “This is my son Nate,” he said, trying to fill the silence. “Nathaniel wanna say hi?”

“Hi,” Nate said shyly, tucking himself into his daddy’s side and trying to hide himself a bit from the three other men.

“Hey little man, how ya doin?” Zayn smiled softly at him.

And Harry really was grateful that they were being nice to them, in the back of his mind almost cursing Liam for doing this to them. He would’ve hated if these guys were rude or obnoxious, or were just annoyed having to sit with a toddler.

It was a bit weird for him, sitting with a group of guys that were his age, clearly here for some type of “boys retreat” while he was here with his 3 year old son.

“Uh hi.”

Harry picked his head up at the soft voice, his eyes meeting a pair of blue ones that were watching him carefully.

“I’m uhm, I’m Louis,” he said through a small smile, offering his hand to Harry. “Sorry, I was kinda off in me own little world.”

Harry just grinned back at him as he slipped his hand into Louis’ much smaller one, seeing he was a bit embarrassed if his pink tinted cheeks were anything to go by. “It’s no problem.”

And Louis’ smile just grew, biting his lip to try to hide it, but Harry could see right past it, could see the way he was grinning so much that it reached his eyes.

“Daddy…”

“Huh?” Harry’s eyes snapped to Nate, seeing the 3 year old look at him confused before he realized he was still shaking Louis’ hand. “Oh! Uh, sorry, sorry! ” he rushed out.

Louis pulled his hand away as Harry did, shrugging like it wasn’t a problem at all before a sudden realization came over him. “Wait… Were you the one who crashed into me on the dock? The guy who apologized like a million times?”

Harry’s jaw went slack, knowing his face was going bright red as he did recognize those bright blue eyes. “Uh… Uhm yeah?” he said with nothing but sheer embarrassment.

And it was the same time the three guys around the table burst into laughter, only making Harry blush that much more.

“I really am sorry about that, he was just excited and tugging on me, I didn’t mean to-”

“Mate! Mate! Calm down, it’s okay,” Louis stopped him.

“Shoulda seen Lou, he seemed like a truck ran over him, he was so scared,” Niall said in between his laughter.

At that Louis stopped his own laughing, instead turning to his mate and narrowing his eyes at him.

“I was happy, it got him to shut up about finding the right entrance to the boat,” Zayn muttered through a smile as he glanced over at the blue eyed lad.

“I didn’t even say that much!” Louis countered back. “Just all you need is faith, trust and little bit of pixie dust!”

Harry looked between the three guys, having to hold back his own laugh as they bantered a bit, but then he felt Nate tugging on him, and he looked down to see his son almost in shock.

“Daddy… Daddy that’s Peter Pan.”

“Nate, love, don’t point,” Harry said softly, gently pushing his son’s hand down and offering the man sitting across from him an apologetic smile. “That’s not Peter, he just-”

“How did you know I was Peter Pan?” Louis interrupted him, whispering to Nate as if it was a secret just between them and looking at him just as shocked. “Are you one of my lost boys?” he asked, a small smile playing at his lips and an eyebrow quirked in curiousity.

Nate’s jaw completely dropped as he heard the older man, his entire face lighting up before he was standing up on his seat and pointing an excited finger at Louis. “You are!! You are Peter Pan!!”

“Nathaniel!” Harry quickly said, trying to get his 3 year old to sit back down and stop screaming.

“Oh, did I forget to introduce myself?” Louis asked, his voice filled with surprise as he stood up from his own seat. “I’m Peter… Peter Pan,” he said with a bow.

At that Nate actually shrieked, him smiling so wide it could be seen from miles as he jumped on his seat and clapped his hands excitedly.

The other guys around the table weren’t as amused though, Zayn and Niall rolling their eyes’ having heard this line too many times to count as Harry was just trying to ignore the many eyes in the restaurant that were focused on them.

“I know it! I know it’s you!!” Nate said excitedly. “Oh my gosh, daddy!” he squealed, not even sure what to do with himself as he realized the real life Peter Pan was in front of him.

But Harry wasn’t really sure what to do, didn’t know if Louis was just being nice or if this guy sitting at their table really was the famous voice of Peter Pan.

“You know you… Well, you don’t have to do this,” Harry said quietly to Louis, making the blue eyed lad look at him confused. “It’s nice of you and all, but you don’t have to pretend to be Peter.”

What he wasn’t expecting were the three perplexed looks from the the guys around the table, followed by them all laughing at him.

“Mate he’s being serious…” Niall said through a snicker. “He really played Peter Pan... A bunch of other animated characters too as a matter of fact.”

At that Harry’s jaw went slack, looking to Nate who was still too excited for words, and Harry thought he might be getting to that point too.

“W-wait, you- you’re Louis, l-like Louis Tom-”

“Louis Tomlinson, yeah,” he chuckled to himself as he nodded. “The man, the myth, the legend, the voice of Disney at your service,” Louis winked at him, taking his seat and getting himself comfortable.

Harry went completely still, hearing Nate squeal again next to him and everyone else laughing but he couldn’t help it. He’s heard of this guy, he’s read about this guy, he secretly had crushes on all the animated princes he’s played and Harry doesn’t know how he didn’t hear it, how he couldn’t recognize such a unique voice.

“You alright there mate? You’re looking a little pink,” Niall said with a small smirk.

“M’fine,” Harry barely breathed out, trying to do everything in his power to not just stare at Louis.

So instead he focused his attention on Nate, trying to get him to sit back down and relax, not needing the entire restaurant to be watching them.

“Peter! Peter I remember you!! Daddy show me movie and it you, I know it you!” Nate said excitedly as he reluctantly took a seat. “And- and then there a show, there a show with princes and princesses and you in it! You Peter in that too!”

“Sweetheart his name is Louis, Peter is just someone he played,” Harry reminded his son. “Remember? He was the voice of the cartoon and then he was in the show Once Upon a Time? It was just a character.”

Nate looked to the blue eyed man, pursing his lips as he scanned his face and thinking that nope, this was definitely Peter Pan.

“Not much of a character there mate, he’s basically playing himself when he puts on the tights,” Niall muttered through a teasing smile as he glanced over at Louis.

“I resent that,” Louis rolled his eyes.

But just from watching him for a few minutes Harry knew Niall was right. Louis seemed to be a character all his own, and very animated in the way he went about doing everything. Every facial expression, every slight movement, and especially the way he talked there was such a liveliness to him, it was impossible to miss.

“Mate, can I ask you why you let him watch Once Upon a Time though?” Louis said, taking Harry out of his thoughts. “It kinda has some not toddler appropriate moments…”

“He likes fairy tales and it was something for us to do together,” Harry shrugged. “Plus he’s a big boy, he could handle it.”

“Yeah, big boy Nate,” he hummed and nodded to himself.

Louis looked between the two, trying to fight off his growing smile at just the way the pair looked at each other. And just before he was about to comment on how close they seemed a waiter came up to their table and got all their orders.

Louis watched as they all went around the table, but just as Harry finished he felt someone tapping his foot, only to see the green eyed lad looking back at him with a small smile.

“Don’t worry, I pre-watch all the episodes and only show him the good ones.”

“Oh good, had me a little worried,” Louis teased quietly back to him.

Harry bit his lip, trying to keep in a small laugh as he saw the blue eyed lad wink at him before turning his attention to the waiter and giving his order. He couldn’t help but watch him for a moment, let his eyes wander over Louis and take all of him in.

Harry didn’t know what it was about him, why he was so drawn to this guy, but even when Nate was trying to climb into his lap he couldn’t take his eyes off him.

“So Harry what is it you do?”

But he did snap out of his tiny trance as he felt the Irish lad nudging him, looking next to him and seeing Niall smiling widely.

“I uh, I just opened a photography studio in central London about a year ago,” Harry stuttered, needing to clear his throat as he felt the table’s eyes on him.

“Oh London boy?” Zayn perked up at that. “Well what would ya know, a bunch of us meeting half way across the world then, funny innit?”

“Wait you- all you guys are from London?” Harry asked with furrowed eyebrows as he adjusted Nate on his lap.

“No, Bradford.”

“Mullingar.”

“Doncaster,” Louis smiled at the man across from him. “But yes, we live in London for work.”

Harry raised his eyebrows at that, not thinking he would run into that many Brits on board, let alone be sitting with them and they all happen to live in the same place.

“So what do you two do then?” he asked, looking between Zayn and Niall.

“I’m an animator.”

“And I do sound engineering,” Niall said happily before taking a swig of his beer. “Met these two while we were working on Tangled, been inseparable ever since.”

Harry still had to get it through his head that he was sitting with the famous Louis Tomlinson, the man who is known worldwide for making Disney movies as great as they are and then meeting these two who were just as impressive.

And all throughout dinner he only grew more stunned at learning more about the three men sitting with them.They were funny and smart, and not only was Louis quite the character, but Zayn and Niall were too.

Nate seemed to be having the time of his life asking all about movies and songs and all of them were more than happy to answer everything. And Harry couldn’t say how grateful he was to them, especially Louis who was doing every impersonation that Nate asked him to, and the blue eyed lad was more than willing to oblige.

Whenever he did this though Harry couldn’t seem to take his eyes off the man sitting across from him. He talked with his hands and made the most ridiculous faces, and there was just something about him that pulled Harry in, that had him smiling and laughing at absolutely everything he did.

But then he would catch Louis’ eyes on him, the other man’s own smile appearing as their gazes met. And he doesn’t know why, doesn’t know why every time this happened he felt his face heating up, felt the way his breath would fall short or how he would quickly focus his attention on Nate but still feel Louis’ eyes on him. And when he would chance a glance up there it was, that same smile, those same soft eyes that made Harry feel weak.

“So Nate do you and daddy have big plans while your on board? Any adventures you’re gonna go on?” Louis smiled as he looked between the two across from him.

“Lots adventures!” Nate said excitedly. “Daddy make big plans so we spend time togefer.”

“Well that was really nice of him to plan all this.”

Harry carefully looked up from his son in his lap, his eyes immediately finding Louis’ on him and a soft grin tugging at his lip. But he couldn’t find it in himself to speak, wasn’t sure what he should say, or if there was anything to say at all. So he didn’t do anything but smile back at him and try not to make the way his cheeks were heating up completely noticeable.

“You come to adventure with us tomorrow?” Nate asked, his gaze focused on the blue eyed man across from them. “I know Peter love adventures.”

“Uh, yeah, that he does,” Louis nodded back at the toddler before chancing a quick look to Harry. “But you know I wouldn’t want to impose and-”

“And I’m sure he has other plans with his mates, it’s-”

“Actually me and Zayn are doin a little something, but I believe Lou is free all day,” Niall stopped Harry as he smirked over at his best mate.

Harry opened his mouth, wanting to say anything but his gaze was locked on Louis who was nearly killing the Irish man with his eyes. “W-well I mean if uh, if you’re not doing anything then… I guess uhm-”

“Come with us!” Nate said excitedly. “Please it be so fun!!”

Louis looked between the two, trying to figure out what to say but with his mates nodding at him, Harry smiling at him and Nate nearly begging for him to come he knew there was only one answer.

“Well then I would be honored to come on your adventure with you.”

“Yes!!” Nate cheered. “It be so fun and don’t worry, daddy talk more when get know you.”

“Nathaniel!” Harry looked at his son wide eyed, immediately feeling his cheeks heat up at hearing the guys laugh around the table.

“Hey, nothing wrong with being a little shy,” Louis chuckled to himself.

“No, no, I’m not shy, it’s just that you-” Harry quickly shut his mouth, almost wanting to hit himself for what he was about to say.

He couldn’t tell a perfectly good stranger that he found him so handsome it was hard to find words, or that everything from the way he talked to the way his laugh filled up the room made Harry’s breath fall short. He especially couldn’t say that in front of his son and Louis’ best mates of all people. Harry barely knew this guy despite his name and profession and that when he smiled it reached his eyes, and maybe that he was the world’s sweetest human because of how he talked to Nate and tried to include him in everything, but that was all.

But luckily he had his bright boy right next to him took away the attention from the table, talking to Louis about all the plans they have and how to not get annoyed by the constant noise of a camera going off.

Even if Nate was doing most of the talking during dinner Harry kept catching Louis’ eye, whether it was a quick wink or just a small smile it made Harry’s heart stop every time. He was always so flustered he never knew what do or if he should say something, so he didn’t do anything at all but grin back at him and focus back on his food.

And by the time dinner was over and everyone was done eating Harry doesn’t know how Nate didn’t tire himself out from talking so much, but if anything he was grateful the three guys entertained him enough to listen and add in to whatever he was saying.

“So it uh, it was really nice meeting you guys and hopefully we’ll see each other around,” Harry said happily as he gathered his and Nate’s things and scooped the 3 year old up.

“Yeah we’ll see you around mate,” Niall said happily. “And Nate I’m holding you to that splashing contest in the pool later, don’t think I’ll forget.”

Harry looked between the two as Nate said an excited “okay!” and jumped in his arms, but just as he said one more goodnight and was ready to turn away he felt a hand grab his arm.

“Hey, uh, wait,” Louis said, offering him a sheepish smile and slowly taking his hand off him. “I can walk you to your room… You know, if you want…”

Harry felt his jaw go slack, swallowing thickly and looking to Niall and Zayn behind Louis, and seeing their not so subtle smirks. “Uhm, sure, yeah. We can talk about tomorrow.”

Louis nodded back at him, waving a quick bye to his mates before following Harry out of the restaurant.

And it was quiet for a minute, Nate resting his head on his daddy’s shoulder and playing with the short curls at the nape of his neck as they walked to their room. But he could see Louis, the older lad making a quick funny face at him before he walked a bit faster to walk next to his father.

“So what is it exactly you have planned for tomorrow?” Louis asked as he skipped up to Harry.

“You know you really don’t have to come with us,” Harry said quietly, glancing over at the blue eyed lad and offering him a tight lined smile.

“Well… What if I want to?”

Harry kept his eyes on him for a moment, not believing some guy he just met would rather spend time with him and his toddler rather than the mates he came here with. “I would say you’re crazy, but the company would be lovely.”

And Louis’ own smile only grew as he heard that, especially when he saw Nate tiredly nodding his agreement.

“But we dock at St. Thomas tomorrow afternoon so after breakfast Nate and I were thinking we could spend the day on the island, go to the beach, maybe catch a boat ride. Seem at all interesting?”

“Very!” Louis said, not even trying to hide how excited he was. “Sounds great honestly, happy I get to join in on the adventure!”

“Peter come on all adventures,” Nate said sleepily as he tucked his head into his daddy’s neck.

Harry let out a quiet laugh at hearing his son, rubbing his back softly and kissing his head, secretly hoping that Nate knew that Louis’ real name wasn’t Peter, but they could talk about that later.

For right now he was more focused on getting his son into their room and ready for bed. But if Louis’ arm would occasionally brush against his own as they walked down the hall and made his thoughts run a mile a minute, well, no one had to know.

“So uh, this is me,” Harry said quietly as he gestured to the door.

“How convenient, I’m just a couple doors down from you,” Louis smiled at him as he leaned against the doorframe and watched Harry put the key in.

“Hopefully this one isn’t awake to hear you say that, he’ll be knockin on every door until he finds yours,” Harry chuckled to himself as he pushed the door open and took a step inside. “Here, you can come in for a minute.”

Louis was a bit surprised at that, but didn’t waste a second before following Harry in the room and watching him put Nate down on the bed. “So is uh, is anyone else going to be joining us tomorrow? Like maybe his mum or…?” he trailed off quietly, looking around the room thinking maybe it was just the two of them.

“Nope, just me and Nate. No wife, no girlfriend, no husband, no boyfriend.”

Louis kept his eyes on the curly haired lad, seeing him trying to get things ready for Nate, but after a moment of silence he caught Harry’s eyes and saw him let out a deep breath and shake his head.

“I-I’m sorry, I don’t know why I said that, I-”

“Hey, I’m happy you said it, now I know,” Louis smiled softly at him and grateful to see Harry trying to hide his own grin. “But there uh, there is something I’ve been wanting to ask you…”

“Sure, what is it?” Harry asked, trying his hardest to change Nate into Pajamas without waking him.

“Your number,” Louis said, immediately seeing Harry’s head snap up to him and feeling his smile widen at the look on his face. “Could I maybe get it? To ya know, talk about our adventures and stuff.”

“Oh that’s the only reason?” Harry barely whispered, trying to tease him but at the same time trying to remember how to breathe.

Louis shrugged, walking towards the bed and crossing his arms over his chest, hoping he wasn’t doing that shit eating grin thing he always does when he sees someone a bit flustered by him.

“Well of course it isn’t, but it’s a good excuse, don’t you think?”

Harry felt his jaw go slack, hoping he didn’t look like a complete idiot as he just stared back at Louis, not believing this was happening. “Y-yeah, I uh, I guess it is…”

“So then… Could I get it from you? After you’re done with Nate of course, I don’t want to get in the way,” Louis glanced down at the snoring 3 year old on the bed with his pajamas half on him.

“Uhm, yeah, yeah, just gimme a second,” Harry nodded quickly, looking back to his son’s sleeping form on the bed and trying to figure out what else he had to do with him.

“Take your time,” Louis laughed quietly to himself, seeing the curly haired lad scramble around a bit.

Harry thought all he really had to do was change his clothes, he knew Nate must be exhausted and waking him up to brush his teeth almost seemed cruel. So instead all he did was finish dressing the 3 year old and carry him off to his room, giving him a gentle kiss to the head before closing the door behind him and seeing Louis right where he left him.

“Uh, here, you can just uhm, put yours in and text yourself so you have mine,” Harry said as he offered Louis his phone.

“Cute background,” Louis smiled to himself as he saw a picture of Harry and Nate together on his phone. “He looks young, that wasn’t recent was it?”

“No, well, it’s uh, he was about a year and a half old there,” he said quietly as he watched Louis tap away on his phone.

“You two are really cute ya know? Like, you seem close,” Louis said softly, smiling up at Harry and giving his phone back to him.

At that Harry was a bit surprised, but didn’t want to show it to the blue eyed lad. He loved the idea of him and Nate being as close as they seem, but Harry knows over the last year he’s done damage to his son, that he’s hurt him and now he was willing to do anything to make it all up to him.

“So I’ll text you in a little bit and we can talk about tomorrow,” Louis said happily as he started to walk back towards the door, not daring to take his eyes off the curly haired lad.

“Sure, sounds good,” Harry nodded back at him with a small smile tugging at his lips.

And all Louis could do was say a quiet “great”, unable to help his own widening grin before turning around and reaching for the door. But just as he was about to leave the room he stopped himself, turning around and seeing the curly haired lad’s eyes trained on him.

“Name… What’s your name curly?”

“Uhm… Harry…?” he said confused.

“Last name there handsome, already knew that one,” Louis teased him, not even trying to stop the smirk that came over him.

“Oh…” Harry said, knowing that embarrassment was seeping out of him, but he couldn’t help it with the way Louis was looking back at him. “Styles, it’s uh, it’s Harry Styles.”

Louis hummed to himself, uttering “Styles” under his breath and looking back to the other man with a warm smile. “Alright then Styles, I’ll text you a little later.”

And Harry just nodded and grinned back at Louis before watching him leave the room. But at finally being alone he felt like he needed to breathe, because all evening he hasn’t been able to thanks to Louis and his stupidly handsome face and his stupid charm and stupidly amazing personality.

So he shuffled out to the balcony that attached to his room, seeing nothing but the dark water that surrounded them and the faint lights that reflected from the boat onto the ocean. And for the first time in hours Harry felt relaxed, felt like his heart could beat at a normal pace.

But of course that was until he felt his phone vibrate in his pocket and pulling it out only to see a text message from the one and only person who made him feel like breathing wasn’t an option.

From Louis Tomlinson: Is it later yet?

Chapter Text

“Daddy why you do that?”

Harry looked over to Nate, the 3 year old staring back at him and almost seeming disgust as his eyes were locked on his breakfast plate. “Do what...?”

“Put ketchup on you eggs, that wrong,” Nate wrinkled his nose at the sight.

“I dunno, I think it’s quite good,” Harry shrugged. “C’mon try it, you might like it,” he said, scooping some up on his fork and offering it to Nate only for the toddler to quickly scamper away and shake his head violently.

And Harry kind of figured he would have that reaction, but he was given the opportunity to freak his son out for a second and he wasn’t going to pass it up.

So as Nate was desperately trying to get away from the fork Harry was doing everything in his power to not burst into laughter at his son’s face. He thought he could at least try to give him something somewhat nutritious considering everything he picked out at the breakfast bar was nothing but a waffle with some sugar to put on top of it.

“Excuse me, do we have a problem here gentlemen?”

Both Nate and Harry stopped what they were doing, freezing where they were and looking over to the voice, only to see a bright smiling Liam in front of them.

“Uncle Liam!!”

“Big guy,” Liam said happily as the 3 year old jumped in his arms. “How was your first night on board?”

“It so fun!! Daddy make friend with Peter!”

At that Liam raised his eyebrows, looking to Harry with a sly grin only for the younger lad to quickly shake his head.

“No, no, it’s not like that, and Nathaniel we talked about this, his name isn’t really Peter,” Harry looked at his son seriously, and seeing him roll his eyes.

“His real name isn’t Peter?” Liam asked confused. “What does he have a fake one? What’s his actual name the-”

“Louis.”

All three of their heads snapped up, noticing the pair of blue eyes looking right back at them with a soft smile.

“Nate I’ve miss ya since last night, and Harry, long time no chat,” Louis winked at the curly haired lad.

And it was immediate Harry felt himself blush, it being just hours ago they finally texted goodnight to each other even though it was about 2 in the morning. The way Liam was looking between them wasn’t helping anyone either, his face between a mixture of shock and awe.

“Hey mate, good to meet ya, I’m-”

“You’re Louis Tomlinson!” Liam whisper yelled, looking at the brunette haired man wide eyed and trying his absolute hardest not to scream. “Holy- just, oh my- oh my God, it’s so great to meet you sir!”

Louis was a bit startled as Liam grabbed his hand and shook it quickly, looking to Harry and seeing him trying to muffle in a laugh, it seeming like these two knew each other. “Well it’s uh, it’s great to meet you too,” he chuckled to himself.

“Can I just say your portrayal of Peter Pan in Once Upon a Time was amazing, fantastic even! You know Peter Pan as a bad guy was really something no one expected and you did it so well, and you looked so young!”

“Just had to shave and do my hair up right,” Louis joked as he ran a hand over the stubble covering his cheeks. “Plus I’m a wee bit small, wasn’t hard to play a teenager.”

At that Liam let out a loud laugh, maybe one that was a tad too loud for the small dining area they were in, but he couldn’t help it, Louis Tomlinson was in front of him.

“So uh, I’m just gonna grab some breakfast, but do you guys mind if I join you?” Louis asked, motioning to the buffet behind him before smiling between Nate and Harry.

“Of course not, please, it’d be-”

“Yes!!” Nate interrupted his father. “Go get bekfast but no ketchup on eggs!”

Louis raised his eyebrows as he heard the 3 year old, not even bothering to question him as he laughed to himself, shook his head and walked off to get his food.

“Mate!!” Liam said as soon as Louis wasn’t in hearing distance. “What the- where in the hell did you meet Louis Tomlinson and why is he completely smitten with you?”

“Liam,” Harry warned with gritted teeth as he glanced to Nate and shook his head. “Can you please, just like, calm down?”

“Calm down?! The famous Louis Tomlinson is giving you heart eyes and you want me to calm down?!”

“Liam for God’s sake,” Harry groaned, taking Nate from his best mate’s arms and asking his son to finish eating, hoping that would distract him. “Him and a couple of his mates were seated with us at dinner last night and we met and I dunno, it was just nice.”

“Just nice,” Liam scoffed. “It was a hell of a lot more than that if he’s looking at you the way he’s been since he walked in here.”

“What? No, he-” Harry stopped himself, shaking his head and searching for Louis, only to see the other man’s eyes already on him from across the room, sending him a quick smile before focusing on gathering the rest of his food.

And Liam just hummed, a smirk coming over him as he saw what Harry did and then seeing his best mate’s cheeks go bright red. “So what’s the next move H? I mean he’s having breakfast with you, maybe invite him to hang with you and Nate today.”

Harry opened his mouth, not exactly wanting to tell Liam their exact plans for the day, trying to make something up but before he could Nate beat him.

“Uncle Liam, Peter already come to adventure today!” Nate said excitedly.

Liam looked back at the 3 year old confused, not knowing who Peter was for a second, but then it clicked. “Oh is he now?” he asked, not even trying to hide his teasing smile as he focused his gaze on Harry.

“W-well it’s just to get to know him better and ya know like- like Nate invited him and he was free today, so-”

“H please, stop your excuses,” Liam scoffed as he rolled his eyes.

“They’re not excuses!” Harry whispered shouted, looking at his best mate wide eyed and hoping Louis wasn’t anywhere near them to hear this. “I don’t know a bloody thing about him! How old he is or even if he’s gay! And seriously he’s probably just being nice because Nate clearly knows who he is.”

Liam pursed his lips, not quite sure about any of that but he didn’t want to make the younger lad upset. “Well if that’s the case I hope you guys have a fun day and I expect pictures,” he smiled at him.

And Harry was quiet for a second, just looking at Liam, letting out a deep breath and offering him a small grin. “Thanks mate,” he said softly.

Liam nodded back at him, knowing for a fact they were going to talk about this later tonight once they got back on board. But for now all he did was kiss Nate, say a quick goodbye and smile at Louis as he walked past him to leave the dining room.

“For someone who claims to be shy you seem to make mates rather quickly,” Louis said jokingly as he took a seat at the table with his full breakfast plate.

“First of all I never said I was shy, the 3 year old did, and keep in mind, he’s a toddler,” Harry said teasingly, looking to his son and seeing his cheeks go pink before he giggled to himself. “And second, he’s a mate of mine from back home. He’s the head of entertainment for the ship and helped me out with the trip.”

“Well that was nice of him,” Louis smiled back at him. “Nate you must’ve been excited when your daddy told you about the trip, huh?”

“It present for my birthday!” Nate said excitedly with his mouth full.

Louis looked at the 3 year old shocked, only making him let out a loud giggle. “And when was your birthday?”

Nate had a wide smile on his face, opening his mouth and more than ready to tell the older man before he got stuck. “Uhh… Daddy?”

“July 23rd love,” Harry rolled his eyes fondly. “Big guy just turned 3 a week ago,” he said proudly, still trying to wrap his head around when his son grew up, figure out when Nate wasn’t a baby anymore.

“Wow, well then happy late birthday,” Louis chuckled to himself before taking a bite of his food.

“Thank you!” Nate said happily. “And no worry Peter you no have to get me a present.”

“Nathaniel!” Harry looked at his son wide eyed as Louis let out a barking laugh.

“What? Daddy I say he no have to get me present,” Nate huffed, not knowing what he said wrong.

Harry rubbed a hand over his face, his son being something else. “Well can you at least say his real name? We’ve talked about this, it’s Louis buddy, not Peter.”

Nate looked over to the blue eyed man, to him still only seeing Peter, but if his daddy was so persistent that wasn’t his name he thought maybe he should believe him. “Fine.”

Harry breathed out a “thank you” before glancing to Louis and offering him an apologetic look. It seemed as though he didn’t even care, instead just smiled back at him before he took another bite of his food.

“So uh, Niall and Zayn didn’t want to come down to breakfast?” he asked, trying to start a conversation.

“No they uh… Well let’s just say that last night they went a bit overboard at the deck party. Wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t get out of bed all day,” Louis laughed quietly to himself.

“You didn’t go?” Harry asked with furrowed eyebrows.

“No, not my kind of scene,” Louis shook his head. “Plus I was a bit busy talking to a certain someone.”

Harry hummed and nodded, not thinking much of it until he saw the way Louis was looking at him, and realizing he was talking about him. “Oh, uh- yeah, yeah,” he said sheepishly, knowing his cheeks were going red.

Last night was such a blur to him, he barely even remembers what him and Louis talked about. Trying to think back to it Harry really only remembers the blue eyed lad telling him story after ridiculous story, mostly consisting of Zayn and Niall doing something crazy while they were working on a movie, or were just hanging out.

And it was kind of refreshing for Harry to learn that the real life Louis was much like the various characters he’s played in movies. He was funny and charming, savvy and spontaneous if the stories he told were anything to go by. And Harry thought that maybe Louis was the kind of person he should keep around, someone to get him out of his shell and maybe force him out of his comfort zone.

“So gents what's the plan for today? Anything I need to pack?” Louis asked as he looked between the two Styles.

“Sunscreen,” Nate said immediately, looking to the older man very seriously. “If you no put sunscreen on the sun monster come and burn you. Daddy say it hurt a lot, he scared of sun monster,” he whispered to him.

Louis raised his eyebrows as he glanced from Nate to Harry and saw the curly haired lad nodding rather seriously back at him. “Oh yeah, he’ll get you alright,” he said, almost sounding scared of the monster himself. “Thanks for reminding me buddy, we don’t want that evil guy coming anywhere near us.”

Nate shook his head, wanting nothing to do with the sun monster and happy he could help Louis keep him away too.

“So other than sunscreen we’ll need bathing suits, towels, a couple drinks, maybe some snacks, and a few toys.”

“Great, great,” Louis nodded back at Harry. “Thanks for getting all that stuff together for me, but what about Nate?” he asked, looking back at him confused.

But it was also at the same time the 3 year old next to him let out a loud laugh, throwing his head back and almost falling out of his seat as he heard Louis. “No! That for me, not you!”

“What?!” Louis asked wide eyed. “Well then who’s gonna pack my snacks and toys?!”

“You crazy! You old and no need snacks or toys!”

Louis felt his breath catch, placing a hand on his chest and looking back at the 3 year old like he just broke his heart.

“Uh-oh looks like you hurt his feelings Nate,” Harry gasped, seeing the face Louis was making and trying not to laugh at the way his lip was quivering and fake sniffles were coming out of him.

Nate’s jaw went slack, looking between his father and Louis, not sure what to do, until one thing came to mind, the one thing that always makes him feel better.

And before anyone knew what was happening Louis had the wind knocked out of him as Nate basically leaped into his lap, wrapped his arms around his neck and hugged him with all his might.

“I no mean hurt feeling, you not old,” he said quietly as he pat the back of Louis’ head.

Louis was still trying to get his breathing back to normal, but he couldn’t help the small laugh that came out of him as he hugged Nate back. “You sure?”

Nate quickly nodded, pulling away slightly and wiping away tears that weren’t even on the older man’s cheeks. “I sure.”

And Louis didn’t even try to stop the smile that came over him, seeing Nate so concerned for someone he barely even knew, it just showed how much love he has. But it was also at the time he heard a camera go off, knowing that noise anywhere and looking all over the place for where it came from.

“Daddy,” Nate groaned. “Stop it, you no need picture,” he said annoyed.

Then Louis saw it, his eyes focusing on Harry and seeing a camera in his hand, not even sure where he pulled the thing out from

“C’mon, you’re cute,” Harry laughed, turning his camera around and showing his son the picture.

But Nate just rolled his eyes, not even a little bit interested in what his daddy was showing him.

“Alright fine,” Harry breathed out, it being clear Nate didn’t care. “Can you try to finish your breakfast at least?”

And he was happy that the 3 year old seemed willing to do that, but it was also at the same time he felt someone tapping his foot, looking up and seeing Louis smiling at him.

“Can I?” he asked, motioning to the camera.

“Oh uh, yeah, of course,” Harry said a bit surprised, happily turning his camera around for Louis to see. “It’s uhm, well you know it’s just a quick shot, not my best work but-”

“Hey, c’mon, don’t cut yourself short,” Louis said softly, his eyes scanning over the picture.

He didn’t know what it was about it that captured his attention so quickly. Maybe it was Nate looking at him so softly or the way he was grinning back at the 3 year old as he held him in his arms. There was an innocence about it, how two people who were almost complete strangers were so comfortable with one another.

“It’s great Harry, really…”

Harry could see how genuine Louis seemed and he himself was a bit surprised at the reaction, but he definitely appreciated it. “Thank you Louis, at least someone likes it,” he said, side eyeing his son playfully, only to see him shrug and take another bite of his breakfast.

Harry really didn’t expect Nate to say anything, him always being a bit funny when pictures were involved or whenever he talked about his studio. He had an idea as to why though, but there was nothing he could do to change it.

Maybe he could talk to the 3 year old at some point about it, but now wasn’t the time, especially with Louis here.

“Daddy can we go?” Nate asked, finishing the last of his breakfast and moving from his seat to his father’s lap.

“Yeah, we can get ready to go in a little bit,” Harry nodded, almost done with his own food as he wrapped an around his son. “Louis will it uhm, will it take you long to get ready?”

“Not at all,” Louis shook his head. “Just have to get me trunks and pack a bag for the day.”

Harry hummed, saying a quiet “perfect” before he his cleaned his plate, knowing he should take Nate to their room and get him ready since it takes the 3 year old a good 10 minutes just to change into swimming trunks.

“I’ll meet you at your room?” Louis asked, seeing the two get up from the table.

Harry nodded and smiled back at the blue eyed lad, shifting Nate in his arms and assuring his son that they were finally going, him clearly more than ready to get their day of adventures started.

*~*

Harry held onto Nate’s hand tightly, the 3 year old skipping down the dock, looking all over the place amazed and almost squealing just at the sight of palm trees. He had to admit it though, even just getting off the boat he could see this place was beautiful

“Wow…”

And when Harry looked over to Louis he could see him in awe, his eyes locked on the beach in front of him and seeming more than ready to just sit back and relax in the sand.

Next to him Nate seemed to want to do anything but relax, pulling on his daddy’s hand and successfully making him trip over his own feet.

And Harry swears he was a second away from falling just before he felt a strong hand grab his arm and helped him stand back up, only to look over and see Louis trying to hold in a laugh.

“You good?” he smiled at the green eyed lad, carefully adjusting his grip on him, wrapping his other arm around Harry gently and helping him fully stand.

Harry went wide eyed, his mouth opening but absolutely no words coming out. His voice felt numb, body almost unable to move in Louis’ arms. The only thing bringing him out of his small trance was Nate tugging on him again and the blue eyed lad squeezing his hip gently, clearly trying to bring him back to earth.

“Y-yeah, yeah, I-I’m fine,” he stuttered out, clearing his throat and trying to get his heart beating again.

“Daddy come on! We gots to go swimming!” Nate groaned, trying to pull his father to the beach.

“Maybe give your dad a second there buddy, he looks a bit dazed,” Louis said, not even trying to hide his teasing smirk as he winked at Harry, still refusing to take his hands off him.

“N-no I-I- I’m-” Harry wasn’t even sure words could come out at this point, he probably seemed like a right mess. “W-we can go, come on.”

The look Louis was giving him wasn’t helping anyone though, neither was the hand that refused to leave his hip even after they started walking towards the beach again.

Harry felt like he couldn’t move, but somehow his feet managed to shuffle forward thanks to Nate tugging on his hand and Louis kind of pulling him along as well with his arm wrapped around him.

Luckily it seemed as though that neither of them noticed how dazed he was, Louis too busy pointing things out to Nate, like a boat or windsurfers, and the 3 year old was in awe of it all.

And Harry really did try to distract himself as they walked. Being outside for only minutes and already the blazing sun was making him sweat, but luckily the tropical breeze was just enough so he wouldn’t look disgusting. And just from listening to the waves in the distance already he could feel himself relaxing.

Sand was finding its way between his toes, and truth be told it was exactly what Harry needed. What he didn’t need was Louis’ hand going from his hip to his lower back as they walked, almost like he was trying to guide him along the way and make sure he didn’t trip on anything else, like he wanted to protect him.

Harry didn’t need it, but he would be lying to himself if he said he didn’t want Louis’ hand to stay right where it was on him, for any more room to be created between them as they walked down to the beach.

“What do we think boys? Here good?” Louis asked, pulling his sunglasses down from his hair to his nose, seemingly finding a decent spot to set themselves up.

“I wanna go swimming!” Nate said excitedly, being so close to the water and just itching to go in.

Harry opened his mouth, wanting to tell his son that of course they would go swimming just as soon as they set all of their stuff up but with Louis taking one his bags off his shoulder and smiling at him he felt himself still. Even behind his sunglasses he could see the crinkles by his eyes and God Harry didn’t know how he was going to last all day with this guy.

“We will big guy, just gotta get our stuff out,” Louis said happily to the 3 year old, pulling out a few things from Nate’s bag as he saw Harry basically frozen where he was.

“H-here, I can- I can do it, you don’t have to,” Harry finally managed to stutter out, not needing Louis to get everything out for Nate.

“Oh, finally decided to join us back on earth?” Louis smirked at hearing him talk for the first time in what seemed like forever.

Harry opened his mouth, some kind of noise that definitely wasn’t a coherent word escaping him, only making his cheeks go red, and not just from the heat.

“Hm, well maybe not fully,” Louis chuckled to himself as he shook his head and spread out Nate’s towel for him on the sand. “Buddy what’s up with your dad? He alright?”

Nate looked over to his father as he heard Louis laughing, only to see his daddy’s face all red and seeming like he wanted to say something. “I think you scare him.”

And at that Louis nearly lost it, letting out a barking laugh at what the 3 year old said only to look over to Harry and seeing him look absolutely mortified. “Oh come on, I’m not scary, am I?”

“Not to me,” Nate shrugged. “But daddy come on I need sunscreen so I can play.”

Harry cleared his throat, having no clue if there was anything he could say to make up for his embarrassment so instead all he did was nod back at his son and try to pretend none of this was happening.

“Shirt on or off?”

“Off,” Nate said, already raising his arms so his daddy could help him out of his shirt.

Harry put his camera bag down before kneeling down and pulling the 3 year old’s shirt off, having to think for a second where he put their sunscreen just as Louis was passing him the bottle over his shoulder.

And he was shocked he managed out a “thanks,” there being no doubt in his mind that behind Louis’ sunglasses he winked at him before he finished setting up the rest of their towels.

“You want your sunglasses or your hat?” Harry asked, making sure to cover every square inch of Nate in sunscreen.

“Both,” he said, taking no chances of the sun monster getting him.

At that a proud smile came over Harry, knowing he taught his boy well as Louis passed him Nate’s sunglasses and hat from their bag. “Alright big guy, all set.”

Nate was jumping so much his father almost couldn’t put his hat on him, but as soon as it was situated on him he took off running for the water.

“Nate!!” Harry screamed wide eyed, not wasting a second before sprinting after his son. “Nathaniel Jacob Styles stop!”

Before Harry even knew what was happening though in almost a flash Louis rushed past him and managed to scoop up Nate just before he was about to throw himself in the water.

As soon as he saw him in Louis’ arms he allowed himself to breathe, his heart racing as the blue eyed lad carried Nate over to him.

“What in the world were you thinking?! Are you trying to give me a heart attack?!”

“No,” Nate said confused, never wanting to hurt his daddy. “But swimming.”

Harry let out a deep breath as he saw his son pointing to the ocean, rubbing a hand over his face and trying his hardest to calm down and not have a melt down. “Buddy we’ll go swimming but you can’t take off like that, you need somebody with you.”

“But Louis right here,” he said, looking to the older man and wrapping his arms around his neck.

“Yeah after he had to chase you, you little monster,” Harry breathed out, sending Louis a thankful look. “Please just give me a few minutes and we’ll go swimming together, I promise.”

Nate huffed to himself but nodded anyway, wiggling out of Louis’ arms and shuffling back to their towels.

“I can’t thank you enough,” Harry said softly to Louis as they followed after the 3 year old.

“I have seven younger siblings, it would’ve shocked me if he didn’t take off like that,” Louis waved off as he chuckled to himself. “I know as scary as that was for you but it’s adorable to see you all worried and protective.”

And he was at it again, Louis being his charming self, but Harry really couldn’t get sucked into it right now. He knew if he took too long to situate himself Nate would have a freak out and probably run towards the water again.

“Here daddy, you face already get red,” Nate said, passing his father the sunscreen.

“Don’t think that’s from the sun there buddy,” Louis smirked at the curly haired lad, only to see his eyes go wide and quickly look away from him.

Of course Nate was just looking between them confused, having no clue what was going on, but all Louis did run a gentle hand down Harry’s back and feeling him freeze at the touch.

And Louis knew he was probably pushing it a little bit, but seeing the other man get all flustered at the simplest things had him going a bit weak at the knees himself. He could see that Harry didn’t seem to mind, not in slightest, so Louis wanted to see exactly what the boundaries were, or if there were any at all.

“I uh… Nate I-I’m just gonna put sunscreen on and then we can go in, okay?” Harry managed out, taking the bottle from his son, only to hesitate for a second as he realized something… He had to take his shirt off.

Well, it’s not like he had to, but he definitely preferred it with it being so hot outside. But Louis was here, and he would see him, and overall it seemed like a terrible idea.

Of course as he was debating this in his head he looked over to the blue eyed lad, only to see him yanking off his own shirt and putting his sunglasses back on. And it was so easy for him, like it wasn’t a big deal at all. But Harry was just staring at him, not even trying to hide it as he watched Louis bend over to put his shirt in his bag, noticing his perfect curves, how his swimming trunks clung just right to his bum, how-

“Daddy!!”

Harry jumped at Nate’s voice, his eyes snapping to his son and seeing him look back at him expectantly.

“I call you thousand times,” Nate huffed. “Take you shirt off and put sunscreen on so we go swimming.”

Harry swallowed thickly, glancing over to Louis quickly and seeing the other man smiling at him. He couldn’t bring himself to say anything though, only bite his lip and tug at the hem of his shirt nervously, knowing Louis was watching him.

But he was thinking way too much about this, making a big deal out of nothing. Nate was waiting for him and he probably looked like an idiot just standing there. So Harry just thought screw it, and pulled his shirt off, forgetting his nerves and trying to ignore the lingering eyes that he knew were on him.

Instead he just focused on making sure he was lathered in sunscreen, knowing he would need more than a few coats for the hours they were bound to spend outside. But of course when he was trying to rub the cream on his back he was clearly having more than a hard time, and within a second Louis was snatching the bottle from him.

“Seemed like you were struggling a bit,” Louis shrugged as he smiled back at him and squeezed a bit onto his hand.

And Harry just stared back at him wide eyed, not moving a muscle or making a sound as Louis looked back at him expectantly.

He swears even behind his sunglasses he could see Louis rolling his eyes before reaching for his arm and making him turn around. And Harry really should’ve expected the hands that started running down his back, but still at the touch he jumped, only to hear Louis laughing behind him and pull him back in.

He was trying, he was trying so incredibly hard to just stand still and not make a noise as Louis work the sunscreen into his skin, the blue eyed lad not being shy at all. He was pressing his thumbs just above where his swimming trunks met his hips and almost too slowly running his slick hands from his shoulders down the curve of his spine. And just at the touch Harry wanted to shudder, wanted to let a noise slip, but refused to let himself do so. Instead he just stood there, tried to keep his breathing low and his heart at a decent pace, which seemed near impossible, but eventually Louis patted his side, silently telling him he was done.

Harry swallowed thickly as he slowly turned around, about to thank Louis but found himself unable to say anything as he saw the shit eating grin the other lad was sending him.

“You’re welcome,” Louis smirked as he tossed the bottle into one of the bags, only to feel a hard tug on his hand a second later.

“Come on,” Nate groaned, waiting far too long for them.

And Harry was about to stop his son, not wanting him to be rude, but apparently Louis didn’t need to be told twice before scooping the 3 year old up and heading for the water.

*~*

“Well aren’t you looking quite red.”

“Don’t talk about it,” Harry muttered as he stepped aside and let Liam into the room. “It’ll be a tan by the morning.”

“Yeah, keep telling yourself that mate,” Liam scoffed before looking around the room in search of Nate. “Big guy in bed?”

“Passed out as soon as we got back on board.”

Liam hummed and nodded to himself, still scanning the room and expecting to see someone else with the younger lad. “So how was it then? Your day with Peter?”

Harry rolled his eyes as he threw himself on the bed, too emotionally exhausted to even think about Louis.

“Come on mate, gimme something! You spend all day with this guy and you have nothing to say about him? Seriously?”

“Well I-...” Harry stopped himself, knowing there was plenty he could say about the blue eyed lad, but there were definitely some things Liam didn’t need to know. “Let’s just say I learned a lot about him, and we had a really great time.”

“Elaborate,” Liam huffed as he hopped on the bed next to Harry.

Harry was quiet for a second, trying to bite back the smile that threatened to come over him just at the thought of the day he had. But with the way the older lad was looking at him, waiting for him to start talking, he knew he wasn’t going to leave until he got the full story.

So Harry decided to just dive right into it, told his best mate all about their morning at the beach, how sweet and caring and gentle Louis was with Nate. How he was clearly more than willing to do absolutely anything just to see the 3 year old smile or laugh, even if it meant doing impressions of Crush from Finding Nemo the entire time they were in the ocean. And when they went to lunch at a local restaurant Louis absolutely refused to let Harry pay, making sure to give the waiter his card before the curly haired lad could notice the bill was put in front of them.

But what Harry really noticed was that Louis was able to convince Nate of something that he’s been struggling to do for the past year, and that was take pictures. At first sight of the camera the 3 year old was whining and complaining of course, but it was almost too easy for the blue eyed lad to tell Nate to just have fun while the pictures were being taken.

He showed him all of his goofiest faces and of course the toddler tried to copy him, only making for some of the best pictures Harry has gotten of his son in a long time. And he knew he couldn’t tell him how grateful he was, there were no words to express it, but he hoped by the looks he was sending Louis translated into what he wanted to say.

“And so we went on a boat tour around the island and the guide was able to get dolphins to come to the side of the boat, look,” Harry said, showing the older lad picture after picture he got of Nate and Louis feeding the dolphins and petting them.

“Wait, wait!” Liam stopped him as he was scrolling through pictures. “Go back one.”

“Uhm, no, it’s uh, i-it’s-”

Liam snatched Harry’s computer from him and despite his many protests went back to the picture that caught his eye in the first place. “Oh my God…”

Harry went completely still, knowing his cheeks were going bright red as Liam gawked at the picture and then looked back at him with raised eyebrows. “I-it’s just a candid, I-I-”

“Harry!!” Liam stopped him, letting out a barking laugh as he just stared at the picture on the screen.

It was of Louis of course, him looking out to the ocean and smiling, sun shining on him and seeming as happy as can be. But there was a reason it caught Liam’s eye, and not because it was just a picture of Louis.

“Mate… You edited this,” he said, glancing over to Harry and seeing the younger lad looking anywhere except for him.

Out of all the pictures he took today this was the only one he clearly edited. The way Harry lighted the sun rays over Louis almost made him look like a God, he highlighted his cheekbones and brightened his eyes, and the more Liam looked at it the more he could see what Harry touched up.

“H… We clearly need to talk about this,” Liam chuckled to himself, only for Harry to shrug and focus his gaze on his hands in his lap. “You are so smitten with him!”

“N-no I-I, he’s just- he-”

“Harry don’t even try to deny it, you’ve already been caught!” Liam said, trying his hardest to contain his excitement. “Do you even know if he’s gay or how old he is, or anything? Well I mean he has to be gay, there’s no way in hell someone would look at you the way he has been and not be gay.”

Harry rolled his eyes as he heard the older lad scoffing, Louis never telling him if he was gay or not, but there were definitely a few reasons to think that he was. “He’s 26, just two years older than me.”

Liam hummed to himself, his smile impossible to miss as he looked back at his best mate. “So what’s the next move then? Maybe ask him to dinner? Or hang with you and Nate tomorrow?”

“Well I was gonna text him and ask if he wanted to-” Harry stopped himself though, hearing a knock at the door and with Liam already here he had no idea who it could be.

So he pushed himself up from the bed, shuffling towards the door and swinging it open, only to reveal a nervous looking Louis.

“Uh, hi,” the older man said a bit sheepishly. “So I uhm, I just wanted to stop by and say how much fun today was and I uh- w-well I wanted to ask if you and Nate would like to join me for dinner tomorrow night?”

Harry opened his mouth, trying not to show how shocked he was at the request, but before he could answer Liam beat him to it.

“He would love to!!”

“Liam!” Harry hissed, shoving his best mate away from him at seeing Louis jump with the sudden burst and making his cheeks go red. “Will you please just go away?” he muttered, wanting nothing more than some privacy.

“Make sure you say yes,” Liam whispered to him before scurrying back into the room.

Harry just glared back at him, only turning back to Louis when he knew his best mate wasn’t in hearing range. “Uhm… Sorry about him,” he scratched the back of his neck nervously. “But I was- w-well I was actually going to text you and ask if you wanted to spend tomorrow with me and Nate again,” he said quietly. “He was just asking about you, and I thought it would be fun but if you have plans or-”

“No, no,” Louis said quickly, a wide smile coming over him as he shook his head. “No plans, I would love to join you guys.”

“Oh, well great,” Harry said, straining to fend off his own grin. “But I know- well I know that you’re here with your mates, I wouldn’t want to take away your time with them…” he said, there being no lie he felt a bit bad about hogging the older lad. “If they wanted to come of course that would be fine, I mean Nate was asking about Niall and Zayn and I think there was something involving a jumping contest in the pool or I don’t know, but-”

“I can ask them,” Louis nodded back at him, knowing if he didn’t interrupt Harry would keep on with his rambling. “I’m sure they would love that, they kept bugging me about you two as soon as we got back on board.”

“Really?” Harry asked quietly, almost not believing it.

“Yeah well I… I kind of wouldn’t stop talking about you guys so of course after today they were a bit curious.”

Harry was still for a second, trying not to look shocked at what Louis had just said. He didn’t understand, he wasn’t anything special, but with the way he was getting looked at by the blue eyed lad he was starting to question that.

“But uhm, yes, definitely yes to tomorrow,” Louis cleared his throat, trying to get over his slight embarrassment at what he just said. “And I’ll talk to the boys of course and text you and we can make a plan but uh, with dinner, would you- w-well would you and Nate like to come out with me?”

Harry opened his mouth, straining himself not to just scream yes and instead bit back his growing smile and nodded back at him.

“Great!” Louis lit up, almost jumping where he stood with how excited he was. “Well I don’t want to take up your time, I’m sure you’re tired after today, but uh, I’m- well I’m really looking forward to tomorrow.”

“Me too,” Harry said softly back to him.

And Louis didn’t say anything else but nod and grin at the younger lad, reaching for his hand and giving it a gentle squeeze before saying a quiet “goodnight” and backing away from the door.

Harry let out a deep breath as he closed the door, running a hand over his face and trying to put together what just happened. But of course as he was heading back towards the bed Liam was just sitting there, staring at him, and looking like he was trying not to squeal.

“A date! You have a date with Louis Tomlinson!!”

“No, no, it’s not a date.”

“What?!” Liam asked shocked. “How can it not be a date?! He invited you to dinner!”

“Yeah, with my 3 year old son,” Harry raised his eyebrows at him.

“Oh come on, that’s sweet isn’t it? It means that he cares about him, it’s cute.”

Harry bit the inside of his cheek, that being true, and he always wanted to meet someone who cared for Nate, who could love him as much as he does. “Well he never said it was a date.”

At that Liam just rolled his eyes, his best mate clearly in denial, but at least progress was being made. And Harry couldn’t deny no matter how hard he tried to not have feelings for Louis. Especially when Liam was scrolling through the other pictures the younger lad had taken today, and seeing more than half of them of the blue eyed man and edited just like the first one he saw. Yeah, there was no way Harry could get around this one.

Chapter Text

“I need you guys on your best behavior. That means no swearing, keeping the inappropriate jokes to a minimum and please for the love of God don’t embarrass me,” Louis almost begged, knowing his best mates had an act for making him look like an idiot.

“It’s not our fault you’re so easy to tease Tomlinson, especially with how you’ve been talking about these two since we met them,” Niall smirked at the older lad.

Louis couldn’t even try to defend himself as he just glared back at Niall and then Zayn at hearing the brown eyed lad snicker.

“But don’t worry mate, we’ll be good so you can charm your way into their little family.”

“Would you stop?” Louis groaned as they got out of the lift and made their way to the pool deck. “It’s not like I’m trying to infiltrate their family, I just want to get to know them a bit more, and you do that by hanging out.”

“And asking them out on dates,” Zayn wiggled his eyebrows at the shorter lad.

And again Louis was left speechless. He couldn’t deny that at all, he had asked if Harry and Nate would like to come to dinner with him, and there was no lying that he was hoping that after tonight things could move in the direction he wanted them to, that was if Harry wanted that too of course.

“It’s cute Lou, don’t worry about it,” Niall clapped him on the back. “Let’s just hope he’s into you as much as you’re into him.”

“Gee, thanks Ni, real helpful,” Louis rolled his eyes as they got to the deck, looking all around and searching for the curly haired lad.

Niall shrugged, not thinking he said anything completely ridiculous or untrue.

“Oh God, there they are,” Louis breathed out, finding the two Styles across the deck by the pool. “Alright, please don’t do or say anything stup-”

“Nate! My man! How are ya buddy?” Niall asked excitedly as they walked up to the two.

“Hi!” Nate waved happily, almost jumping where he was as he saw the three men. “Daddy say we gon- we gonna swim and when boat stop we go on adventure on island!!”

“Your daddy has the right idea,” Zayn laughed fondly to himself at hearing the toddler stumble over his words.

Louis looked between his two mates and he couldn’t say how grateful he was to them for being so nice. Of course he knew they would be nice to Harry and Nate, they love kids as much as he does, but he only hoped that when it came to him and Harry they wouldn’t say anything embarrassing.

And when he looked to the curly haired lad he could see his eyes already on him, his cheeks almost immediately going pink at being caught staring, but if anything that only made Louis’ own smile grow.

“Hey,” he said softly, reaching a careful hand over and rubbing Harry’s back gently.

Just at feeling his hand on him Harry felt his face heating up impossibly more, having to clear his throat so his voice wouldn’t crack as he said a quiet “hi,” in return.

“Hey Harry, how’ve ya been mate?” Niall asked as the 3 year old kept tugging on his hand, clearly wanting to skip the chatter and get straight to swimming.

“I’m uh, I’m really good thanks for asking, but Nate, buddy, c’mon, stop that,” Harry said, not wanting his son to bother the blonde lad.

“Oh he’s alright, just excited,” Niall smiled down at the toddler before scooping him up. “You ready to jump in big guy?”

“Yes!!” Nate cheered.

And just as Niall was about to walk off with him towards the pool Louis stopped him.

“Wait, he needs sunscreen.”

The Irish lad raised his eyebrows at that before glancing over to Harry and seeing him trying to bite back a laugh.

“Already put a coat on him, you can take him Niall,” Harry said, looking to Louis and trying not to make a big deal of how cute the older lad was being all protective.

And Niall didn’t do anything else but smirk at Louis quickly before shifting Nate on his hip and heading to the pool.

“Yeah, I’m just gonna go with them,” Zayn said, wanting to leave the two for a bit as he tugged off his shirt and joined Nate and Niall.

Both Harry and Louis watched as he walked away, seeing him jump in the pool right where Niall was swimming around with Nate and hearing the 3 year old squeal and giggle at getting splashed by the water. And even if Harry wanted to he doesn’t think he would’ve been able to stop the wide smile that spread across his face at seeing his little boy so happy.

“You get a coat on as well? We can’t have ya burning anymore than you already are,” Louis slightly teased as he pulled off his shirt and tossed it on the chair with Harry’s bags.

“It’ll turn into a tan,” Harry rolled his eyes playfully, but as he said that he glanced over to Louis and almost immediately freezing at the sight of him.

Yesterday the older lad may have spent ninety percent of the day with his shirt off, and yet Harry was still in awe of his body. His perfectly tanned skin, perfectly chiseled pecs with the tiniest bit of hair between them, his stomach that just barely went over the band of his shorts but was so clearly firm if he were to touch it. And then there was his arms, every time he flexed Harry could see just how muscular he was, just imagining feeling his thick biceps wrapped around him or his strong hands-

“H, hello?” Louis laughed, waving a hand in front of the younger lad’s face and clearly taking him out of some kind of trance. “Come on love, let’s get you out of this and put some sunscreen on.”

And Harry still found it impossible to move as he felt Louis tugging at the hem of his shirt, but that wasn’t the only thing making him stop in his tracks. Love… He called him love and at a quick glance he could see how sincere and softly the blue eyed lad was looking at him, and just at that Harry wanted to melt.

But instead of standing there like a complete idiot he just pulled his shirt off and reached for the sunscreen. He poured a bit onto his hand and was about to toss the bottle aside before Louis stopped him and put his own palm out, silently requesting some.

And Harry didn’t think anything of it, so he squeezed a bit for the older lad as well, only for Louis to walk behind him and just like yesterday start rubbing the cream into his back.

He was a bit proud of himself for not jumping like the first time, but instead felt himself immediately relax at the other man’s gentle touch.

“So uh… For dinner tonight would you want to eat somewhere on the boat, or we can find a place on the island?” Louis said as he pressed his fingers into Harry’s lower back. “I looked at a few restaurants Antigua has and a few looked good, but I wanted to ask.”

“You did research?” Harry glanced over his shoulder, trying to fend off his smile as he saw Louis’ cheeks going red.

“Well I wanted to go somewhere that was at least decent,” Louis laughed off. “Wouldn’t be a very good date if the food sucked.”

It was that that made Harry go tense, refusing to move a muscle as his jaw fell slack and his breath go short.

“D-date?” he could barely manage out, not even daring to chance a look at Louis behind him as he felt the older lad’s hands go still on him.

And Louis was stuck himself, mentally cursing himself and trying to think of anything to say so he wouldn’t freak Harry out already more than he has. But he already slipped up, and since he jumped in with both feet he figured this was it, sink or swim.

“Y-yeah, you know, I just- I really like you and Nate, he’s so sweet, I thought it would be nice and kind of fun to go out,” Louis said through a deep breath, his heart pounding faster and faster as the seconds passed without Harry saying anything.

But the thing was that Harry was at a complete loss for words. Not only did Louis like him and ask him on a date, but he liked Nate enough and cared enough to ask him on their date as well, and that was just something Harry had a hard time believing to be true.

“Harry…” Louis barely whispered, carefully stepping in front of the younger lad and seeing his gaze focused to the ground. “Shit, I’m sorry, I-I mean I get it if you don’t want to-”

“No, no,” Harry said quietly as he quickly shook his head and bit his lip nervously, just barely looking up enough to see Louis through his eyelashes. “It’s just… No one’s ever cared about Nate like that or thought to include him, to get to know him like you… It means more than you know.”

At that Louis let out a relieved breath, a small smile coming over him as he saw that he didn’t completely ruin everything. “So is it still a yes then?”

Harry was trying not to get stuck in his thoughts, try not to be in awe of the older lad that he actually wanted to go on a date with not only him, but his son too. And before he could scare Louis again by not giving him an answer he found it in himself to nod back and grin softly at the older lad, only to see him light up a second later.

“Great, fantastic even,” Louis said happily.

And Harry was doing everything in his power not to show just how excited he was, not wanting to make a fool of himself at just the idea of going on a date with Louis.

“So what do you think love? Have enough sunscreen on to last an hour and maybe go swimming?”

“Hopefully,” Harry laughed quietly to himself, already feeling the sun attacking him.

Louis just smiled back at him, reaching for the curly haired lad’s hand carefully and tugging him towards the pool.

Harry was sure Louis had to drag him all the way there, because just at feeling the smaller man’s hand in his own he went still. But then of course if that wasn’t bad enough Zayn looked over at them as they made their way over to pool and not so subtly smirked at them, only making Harry’s cheeks go bright red as he saw their hands together.

It was at the same time though that Louis let go of him, only to jump into the water with a huge splash and make Nate laugh and squeal in Niall’s arms as he got soaked.

And Harry couldn’t help the soft smile that came over him just at hearing his son, seeing how happy he was at swimming around with the three lads. But it was when Niall tossed Nate in the water, only for Louis to catch him and make the 3 year old burst into laughter did Harry still, just watching the two for a second as they swam around together.

Nate climbing on Louis’ back, wrapping his arms around his neck and yelling “Lou Lou swim faster!” or “Louis do the Stitch voice!”, only for the blue eyed lad to counter back that Stitch doesn’t like the water. But of course Nate screamed an excited “exactly!”, just so he could see the older man pretend to freak out while he was swimming and doing the famous voice.

And Harry can’t remember the last time he heard his son laugh so hard at watching Louis. Even Zayn and Niall couldn’t help themselves as they watched their mate entertain the toddler despite multiple onlookers watching them like they were crazy. But Harry loved every second of it, just seeing Nate so happy and playing with Louis in the water, and maybe taking more than enough pictures so he could capture and remember this moment.

“Daddy come on!” Nate groaned, making Louis help him swim to the side of the pool so he could talk to his father. “Come swim! Lou Lou gon be Tigger!”

“You got him being Stitch and now Tigger? Give him a break big guy,” Harry chuckled to himself, reluctantly putting his camera away before walking back over to the edge of the pool, taking a seat and letting his legs dangle in the water.

“Oh I don’t mind,” Louis said as he smiled at Nate and shifted him on his hip. “You gonna come in?”

“Yeah, just gonna warm up to it,” Harry breathed out.

“No daddy, you jump in,” Nate shook his head as he made grabby hands for his father.

Harry bit his lip, not wanting to just jump, knowing it’ll be freezing but he reached for his son anyway, more than ready to pull him onto his lap. But just as he was about to grab Nate from Louis he felt a strong arm wrap around his waist, tug him forward and successfully making him splash into the water.

Nate was a laughing mess in Louis’ arms, hiding his face in the older man’s neck as he saw his father’s shocked face.

“Oh I am so getting you back for that,” Harry shivered, but still unable to stop the small laugh that came out of him as he saw Louis snickering to himself.

“Getting aggressive there Styles, I like it,” Louis smirked and winked back at him.

Harry’s eyes immediately went wide, his face going red hot and feeling his heart almost stop at how Louis was looking at him. And luckily Nate wasn’t even phased by it and he was beyond grateful for that, but he knew he would be shaken up for a little bit if the older lad kept looking at him the way he was.

“Come on boys, enough flirting, more swimming!” Niall said, splashing the two out of their own little world.

If possible Harry only felt his face get hotter, only to see Louis roll his eyes, clearly wanting to curse his mate out but kept himself together because of Nate. But neither of them had to be told twice, even the toddler whining and begging to keep swimming, so that’s exactly what they did.

Nate clinging to anyone who would hold him, playing tag with his daddy and the three other men, having jumping contests and seeing who could make the biggest splash.

And it was crazy to Harry, to see his son so happy with people they just met, to see him having so much fun. But the one thing he couldn’t ignore was that Louis was willing to do absolutely anything just to see Nate smile and laugh. He was caring, loving, and too sweet for his own good. And Harry had a date with this man, and he couldn’t wait.

*~*

“Nathaniel! Big guy come on!” Harry groaned as he heard his giggling toddler and saw him running all over the room without clothes on. “We gotta get ready for dinner with Louis!”

“But daddy we just see Lou,” Nate breathlessly said as he came up to his father.

“I know but he asked us to go to dinner, don’t you think that’s nice?” Harry offered him a small smile as he started to get the 3 year old dressed.

Nate hummed happily as he nodded to himself, loving it whenever they spent time with the older man.

“Buddy can I-... Well, can I ask you something?” Harry said quietly as he looked at his son nervously.

“Sure,” Nate shrugged just before his daddy pulled his shirt over his head.

Harry bit his lip, trying to think of what exactly he wanted to say, he’s never had a talk like this with Nate and he didn’t want to say something wrong. “W-well uhm… What do you think about Louis?”

“He nice and funny!” Nate giggled to himself.

“Yeah, he is pretty funny, isn’t he?” Harry smiled at him. “But you like him, yeah?”

Nate looked at his daddy like that was the dumbest question ever before nodding and humming happily back at him.

Harry let out a deep breath at that, figuring Nate would yes, but he wanted to be sure. “Well I just wanted to ask because uhm… Y-you see Louis asked us to dinner, it’s something called a date because he likes spending time with us and wants to get to know us a bit more,” he tried to explain as easily as possible.

Nate thought about that for a second, it seeming to make sense and any time spent with Louis was a fun time. “So we go on date with Lou?”

“Yeah, if you’re okay with that,” Harry said nervously.

“Sure,” Nate shrugged, it not seeming like a big deal at all.

Harry just looked at his son for a second, still feeling like he had to explain the whole situation a little bit. “Buddy do you… Well do you remember when your mum and I were still together a-and-”

“Daddy…” Nate cut his father off quietly, carefully reaching for him and climbing onto his lap.

“It’s okay, I’m not sad, I just want you to understand something,” Harry said softly, knowing that whenever he talked about Nate’s mum he more often than not thought back to memories he wished he could forget, and his son knew that. “But do you remember when sometimes we would hold hands or kiss because you know, we were a couple?”

Nate nodded slowly, resting his head against his daddy’s shoulder as he felt him hug him and kiss his hair.

“I’m just asking because I wanted to know what you thought if… Well, ask if you were okay if maybe I did those things with Louis?” Harry said nervously, hoping and praying Nate would understand what he was trying to say.

“You and Louis couple?” Nate asked with furrowed eyebrows.

“No, not quite, but that’s why we’re going on this date,” Harry said, trying really hard not to confuse him. “People who have feelings for each other go on dates, and after a few dates sometimes they become a couple.”

“So… You and Lou have feelings?”

“Yeah, we have feelings for each other,” he said, that being the first time he really said it out loud, and to his son no less. “Are you okay with that?”

Nate was quiet for a second, just looking up at his father and wrapping his arms around his neck. “If he make you happy daddy.”

Harry was at a loss for words as he heard Nate, hugging him close to his chest and kissing him anywhere he could. “Big guy you know what makes me happy?” he asked, his eyes focusing on his son and smiling softly at him as he saw Nate look back at him confused. “You do.”

And just at that Nate lit up, almost squeezing the life out of his daddy as he smiled widely into his neck. “Make me happy daddy,” he mumbled against him, giving him one more hug and kiss before scampering off his lap. “Come on! We get ready for date!!”

Harry couldn’t help the laugh that escaped him as he felt the 3 year old tugging on his hand, urging him to get up and get going. And he didn’t have to be told twice, pushing himself off the bed and starting the long and grueling process of figuring out what to wear.

*~*

Nate perked his head up at hearing a knock at the door, screaming to his daddy that someone was here before rushing towards the door and swinging it open. “Lou!” he squealed, nearly bounding for the older man and wrapping his arms around him.

“Hey big guy, excited for tonight?” Louis asked breathlessly as he scooped the toddler up and walked into the room.

“Yes!” Nate jumped excitedly. “You look pretty for date Lou.”

“Oh, well thank you buddy,” Louis said, feeling his cheeks heat up just a bit from that, but hopefully Harry thought he looked as good as the toddler did. “Your daddy told you this was a date?”

Nate hummed and nodded to himself as he adjusted his arms around the older man’s neck. “He say you have feelings.”

“Have feelings?” Louis asked with furrowed eyebrows, trying to understand what that meant in 3 year old language. “Feelings… Like, feelings for each other?”

“Yeah,” Nate scoffed, thinking that was obvious.

At that Louis felt his jaw go slack, not only hearing that Harry had feelings for him as well, but that he had clearly talked to Nate about him, about them. Of course he figured the younger lad at least liked him a little bit to agree to go out with him tonight, but to know that he liked him enough to have a serious talk with Nate gave him a clue as to just how much.

“Hey I-... I-I didn’t know you were here.”

Louis snapped his head up, seeing a frazzled looking Harry come into the room. “I’m sorry, I knocked and Nate answered the door, hope that’s okay,” he said a bit nervously.

“Uhm, yeah, yeah, it’s fine, no worries,” Harry said, it being clear Louis thought he did something wrong.

And Louis just smiled and nodded back at him before gently placing Nate down and letting his eyes scan over the younger lad, almost feeling himself stop breathing just at the sight of him.

“W-well you uh, you look really great,” he at least managed out, unable to stop his widening grin at how Harry’s cheeks went pink.

“How come you no say I look nice?” Nate pouted.

“Oh well of course you look nice buddy, you got your dad’s looks, it’s impossible for you not to,” Louis winked back at the 3 year old before ruffling his hair.

At that Harry almost choked on his own spit, luckily it not being obvious when Louis’ eyes focused back on him. And it took everything Harry had in him to just barely say loud enough how amazing the older lad looked himself, and he would say it a thousand times over if it meant getting to see Louis light up the way he did.

“So are we ready to go boys? We have a fun night ahead of us,” Louis said, trying his absolute hardest not to be over eager or too excited but that seemed near impossible.

“Yeah, definitely, just Nate, big guy, can you use the potty before we go?”

Nate huffed but nodded anyway, scurrying to the bathroom knowing the sooner he went the quicker they could go.

“So uh, did you pick where we’re going tonight?” Harry asked, restraining himself not to brush his fingers through the top of his curls so he wouldn’t mess his hair up.

“Yeah, I may have a few little surprises up my sleeve,” Louis hummed, taking a few steps closer to the younger lad and letting his eyes run over younger lad.

And as badly as Harry wanted to say something, just anything he felt himself almost go numb at the way Louis was looking at him. But then to make it worse he felt the blue eyed man’s hand settle on his waist and squeeze gently, his eyes never leaving his the entire time.

Harry was sure he forgot how to breathe, knew he wouldn’t be able to move even at the simple touch. And God, he’s never wanted to grab somebody’s face and just kiss them so badly before, but he couldn’t he knew he couldn’t. He was too scared, too nervous to even think about doing that, and Nate was just in the other room, no doubt in his mind about to come back in a second.

Harry was right of course too. Just as Louis tugged him a bit closer to him, just as he was about to actually wrap his arms around his waist they heard the toddler sprinting back to them.

“Let go!!”

Louis jumped at the excited voice, almost immediately taking his hand off Harry and already the green eyed lad could say that he missed the touch. But it wasn’t even a second later he felt Louis slip his hand into his own, telling Nate he could lead the way to the lift and following the toddler out the room and tugging Harry along with him.

He was praying his hand wouldn’t get all sweaty, hoping Louis couldn’t tell how he was practically shaking as they walked down the hall.

One thing that calmed Harry’s nerves some was that when Nate saw their tangled fingers the 3 year old didn’t even same phased by it at all, and that was a huge relief to him. This was as much about Nate as it was him, he needed to know his son was okay with all of this, and truth be told the toddler seemed more than happy.

“Looks like you were able to get him down for a nap after we got back on board. I was worried he was too amped up from going to the beach with the boys that he wouldn’t want to go down,” Louis said, squeezing the younger lad’s hand gently as they followed after Nate and the 3 year old seemed refresh and wide awake.

“Yeah, well it didn’t happen without some protesting and a little tantrum,” Harry chuckled to himself, knowing Nate was having so much fun with the three men today that he never wanted to leave them.

“Oh, sorry about that,” Louis said, feeling a bit bad. “I know the guys can be a bit too playful, I’m sorry if they-”

“No, no, Louis it’s more than fine,” Harry shook his head at him, not wanting him to think it was his fault. “He had so much fun with them, and you especially, please, don’t apologize.”

At that Louis couldn’t help but light up a bit, love knowing that Nate liked to spend time with him. “Well he’s a really great kid, it’s impossible not to love him,” he said softly, tugging on the younger lad’s hand and making them press that much closer together. “Niall and Zayn can’t get enough of him either, they wanted to know what the plan was for tomorrow so they can come with us.”

“Oh, so we have plans tomorrow too?” Harry asked a bit teasingly, only to see Louis’ cheeks going red.

“I just- y-yeah, you know I thought if tonight went well…” he trailed off, scratching the back of his neck sheepishly as they followed Nate into the lift.

And Harry just hummed at that, trying to stop the smile that came over him as he nodded to himself.

“Lou Lou come on all adventures!” Nate said happily, reaching for the blue eyed man’s hand and tugging on him excitedly.

“As long as you guys don’t get sick of me,” Louis winked at him.

It was immediate Nate gasped, never thinking a day would come where he would get sick of Louis. “You fun, no get sick.”

“Thanks buddy,” Louis laughed to himself, pulling Nate into his side and giving him a quick hug.

It was impossible not to feel Harry’s eyes on him as he talked to the 3 year old, even feeling the younger lad squeeze his hand a few times as Nate went on and on about nothing, but Louis was more than happy to listen.

It wasn’t until the lift doors open did the toddler stop his excited talking, only to sprint into the hallway even though he had no idea where they were going.

“Nate! Big guy, hold up!” Louis said quickly. “We’re going the other way buddy, off the boat.”

At that Nate actually squealed, clapping his hands excitedly and not wasting a second before skipping in front of the two to head to the door. And not only was he beyond happy to be going off the boat again, but so was Harry. He was more than interested in what Louis had planned for tonight and trying his hardest not to become a nervous wreck. But with Louis’ hand in his own and having the older lad so close definitely calmed him some, at least having some reassurance that he really did like him.

When they got off the boat the fresh air immediately hit him, the cool summer breeze almost instantly relaxing him. They spent almost all of their day earlier outside by the pool, then going to the beach once the boat docked and only came back so Nate could nap. It was definitely nice to be off the boat again, and luckily they had all day tomorrow too to tour around the island.

Already Harry knew how beautiful Antigua was from visiting the beach, but just walking around with Louis and Nate he was in awe.

The cobbled streets, old buildings that each had a story of its own and the tropical music that filled the air was something that Harry had never experienced before. The further they walked into the small village the more he loved it, even Nate’s little eyes looking all over the place, almost seeming as entranced as his father.

“It’s too bad you don’t have your camera, could’ve gotten some great shots,” Louis whispered to the taller lad, himself seeing just how lovely the lit up streets were.

“Didn’t want to bother Nate too much,” Harry laughed sheepishly to himself. “Plus I… Well it’s a date, I didn’t want to ruin it with going into photographer mode.”

“You could never ruin it,” Louis rolled his eyes playfully, giving Harry’s hand a gentle squeeze. “Especially when you take pictures, honestly I love when you do.”

Harry looked down at him for a moment, almost not believing it. “Really?”

“Yeah, I mean, you’re so good at it, and it’s clearly something you love. Just watching you take pictures is… I dunno…” Louis stopped himself, not wanting to say something over the top embarrassing and come off as weird.

But Harry just kept his gaze on him, trying his absolute hardest not to smile like an idiot as he heard the older lad. And the only thing he could do was thank Louis, not really sure what else to say.

He couldn’t keep his focus on Louis the entire time though, Nate quickly gaining his attention as the more they walked the more curious he got and wanted to absolutely see everything up close.

Harry made sure to call the 3 year old over, taking his hand to make sure he wouldn’t go anywhere. And with both his hands occupied by the two boys he knew he couldn’t get any happier. But then of course there was still dinner that he had to remind himself of, and from that thought he knew this night could only get better.

*~*

“He get put down alright?”

Harry picked his head up from his phone, ignoring another one of Liam’s many texts asking how tonight went and instead decided to focus on the blue eyed lad sitting on his bed.

“Yeah, despite the amount of sugar you loaded him up with,” he teased.

Louis bit his lip, trying to hold in a laugh as he was so clearly trying to spoil the 3 year old earlier. “It’s not like you stopped me though,” he joked back.

Harry rolled his eyes, honestly not even seeing just how much Louis was slipping his son since he was so preoccupied trying to breathe with the older lad’s hand on his thigh all night.

“I was a bit distracted,” he muttered, only to hear Louis snickering before he took a seat next to him on the bed. “You come in here just to make fun of me?”

“Oh stop,” Louis chuckled as he bumped their shoulders together and wrapped a careful arm around Harry’s waist to pull him just a bit closer. “Just wanted to talk is all, like adult talk,” he mumbled into the younger lad’s shoulder.

Harry nodded at that, knowing while Nate was with them there were only so many things they could talk about. He was sure Louis had questions, probably about his past, where Nate came from and his mum. But that didn’t of course mean there wasn’t non stop chatter throughout dinner, mostly Nate and Louis going on about something ridiculous and laughing about nonsense. And Harry loved every second of it.

From dinner to watching the sunset on the beach, splashing in the ocean and only walking back to the boat when Nate was nearly asleep in Louis’ arms. It was all perfect.

And just as Harry was about to thank him for the night he heard a frantic knock at his door, knowing exactly who it was and letting out an annoyed breath.

He muttered his apologies to Louis before getting up from the bed and opening the door, only to see a nervous looking Liam. “What?” Harry nearly spat through his teeth.

“You didn’t answer my texts a-and I was scared it didn’t go well, so I brought wine and I’m ready to listen, you can let it all out mate,” Liam rushed out.

Harry looked down to the bottle of wine and two glasses his best mate had and quickly took them from him. “It went great, so great in fact that he’s inside, so I’m taking this and I’ll update you tomorrow,” he said, and a second later closed the door.

And he knew Liam wanted to say something, but he was more focused on the man waiting for him on his bed.

“You order that?” Louis asked a bit surprised.

“Oh, uh no,” Harry laughed to himself as he shook his head. “That was Liam, he thought tonight didn’t go well since I wasn’t answering him and he thought I needed a pick me up.”

Louis hummed to himself and nodded, a small smirk coming to him as he saw the younger lad’s cheeks going red. “Well I’m sure you stole it for a reason.”

“Yeah…” Harry trailed off a bit embarrassed, “ Do you uhm- do you want some?”

“Please.”

Harry smiled back at him, making quick work to open the bottle and bringing Louis a glass before taking his seat back next to him on the bed.

“You and Liam must be real close, seems to care about you a lot,” Louis said, wrapping his arm back around the younger lad and pulling him into his side as he took a sip of the wine.

“Yeah, he does,” Harry nodded to himself as he settled into Louis. “He’s really the best mate I’ve ever had, was there for me when Nate’s mum and I split, when I opened the studio and everything,” he said softly.

And Louis was quiet for a moment after that, knowing there were so many things he wanted to talk to Harry about, wanted to ask him, but he didn’t want to make anything uncomfortable.

“You can ask me ya know,” Harry barely said loud enough for the older lad to hear, seeing the way Louis was almost staring into space like he was thinking about something.

“I… I just don’t know if it’s my place to ask,” Louis said quietly as he bit his lip and leaned back against the headboard.

But when he saw Harry nodding back at him he really knew it was okay, that he wasn’t overstepping any boundaries and the younger lad really was alright with it.

“Can I… Well can I ask what happened with Nate’s mum? Like where she is or if she’s in the picture?”

And Harry really did expect that one, he would be just as curious, and it wasn’t like it was an unreasonable thing to ask.

“I uhm… I believe she’s still in London,” he said, really not sure about that one. “But we split when Nate was about a year and a half old and I got full custody of him when he was 2.”

“What was it that made up guys break up?” Louis asked still hoping he wasn’t being too nosy.

At that Harry was quiet for a second, taking a sip of his wine and sinking impossibly further into the mattress under him. He wasn’t sure if he should go into full detail as to what happened, if Louis wanted the full story, but he figured that was the easiest way to answer most of the questions Louis had about his ex.

“There were a couple reasons, I mean we can both be to blame…” Harry started off, feeling Louis’ eyes trained on him. “Her and I met at a party, had a one night stand, that one night stand turned into expecting a baby and we thought fuck it, let’s try and date… And it worked out for a little bit ya know? I was happy at the time, I thought she was too, but then Nate was born and… I dunno, everything changed…”

“We don’t have to talk about H,” Louis said, pulling the younger lad impossibly closer and resting his head on his shoulder.

“No, it’s fine, really,” Harry shook his head, wanting him to know this. “It was no secret I was always more interested in men, everyone knew it, especially her. But I tried, I really did to make things work because we had a baby and I just wanted to make her happy... I was willing to do anything, even if it meant sacrificing my own happiness, so I bought an engagement ring,” he said, the memory replaying over and over again in his head. “I had just come home from buying it, and I had Nate with me, I was ready to ask her right then, but I… I heard something, so I left him in the living room, went to my room where the noise was coming from and caught her in bed with someone else.”

And within a second the air in the room became heavy, both of them refusing to move, Harry’s eyes just locked on the glass in his hand.

“I didn’t say anything, just picked Nate up and left, and the next day I packed mine and his things… But the worst part of it was that she didn’t even ask why I left, she didn’t care.”

“Harry…” Louis barely whispered, now regretting asking, seeing how clearly hurt he was over it.

But Harry just shook his head, not wanting him to feel bad. “It was my fault too… I wasn’t in love with her, I never was, but I thought if I had showed her that I was willing to be a real family that maybe she might come around and then hopefully someday I could love her…”

And it broke Louis’ heart to hear how badly Harry had tried, how he was willing to do anything for this girl just to make her happy, but she didn’t care for it in the slightest. It was clear how hurt over it he was, how it was something he wanted to forget. Despite never loving her he definitely cared about her, and she couldn’t give the same courtesy.

“Is Nate upset about not seeing his mum ever?”

That was a whole other story Harry could delve into, but he chose not to go into detail about this one because it was still something he was trying to get over. “No if anything I think he was relieved,” saying that by itself breaking his heart. “The guy she had cheated on me with, after we split she started seeing him and whenever Nate would come back to me after visiting her he always seemed shook up, like afraid… He was so young he couldn’t say much when I asked what was going on, why he seemed scared but when I changed him he… He had bruises on him-”

“Wait she-”

Harry shook his head, sucking in a deep breath and rubbing a hand over his face. “No, he did… The guy would spank him, but hard and I’m sure for no reason, and the worst part was that she wouldn’t stop him… Her own son,” he could barely manage out. “But as soon as I saw that I took her to court, I wasn’t ever going to let her see him again, I couldn’t.”

Louis was completely still as he heard the younger lad, never believing someone could ever hurt Nate.

“He’s so happy now though…” Harry added on quietly, and smiling to himself for the first time in what felt like forever. “He has so much energy and I can barely keep up with him, but especially on this trip I’ve never seen him smile or laugh so much,” he said, glancing down to Louis resting on his side and feeling like he was a big part of that.

“You’ve got a great little boy Harry,” Louis said softly, offering him a small grin back. “And you’re a great father too.”

And Harry wanted to believe it, wanted to think that he was, but he wasn’t so sure. He knows he’s made a fair share of mistakes when it came to Nate, in this past year especially. But he was trying to make up for it now, he had to.

Harry didn’t say anything to the older lad though, instead just finished his wine and set the glass on the bedside table next to him before settling himself completely against Louis and resting his head on top of the blue eyed lad’s that was resting on him.

He couldn’t say the last time he felt so at peace in someone’s arms, he can’t remember if he ever has. But being with Louis felt as natural as breathing, like it was what he was supposed to be doing.

“Hey…” Louis said, picking his head up and resting a gentle hand on the younger lad’s chest. “You alright?”

Harry nodded back at him, placing his hand over Louis’ that was on him and giving it a reassuring squeeze. “Yeah, m’good.”

Louis just looked at him for a second, not quite sure he believed him. “What’s your favorite movie?”

“My favorite movie?” Harry asked a bit confused, that coming out of nowhere.

“Animated movie, just humor me for a second,” Louis said through a small laugh.

Harry had to think about it for a second, watching too many movies with Nate and trying to sort out which one he could still stand. “Well I guess Aladdin… Or maybe The Little Mermaid.”

“Hm, goin old, okay, I like it,” Louis said, thinking about it for a second before clearing his throat slightly. “You know Harry…” he started off but within a second his voice changed and the younger lad’s eyes went wide as he said, “do not be fooled by its commonplace appearance. Like so many things, it is not what’s outside, but what is on the inside that counts.”

Harry felt his jaw go slack as it seemed that Louis had basically become the genie from Aladdin and then letting out a barking laugh.

And just at the sound Louis’ own smile appeared, but he still had a little something up his sleeve. “You’ve got your own style, now let it shine through and remember no matter what, you got to be you.”

Harry was in shock again, now being Sebastian from The Little Mermaid and he was absolutely losing it, having to clutch his stomach and maybe let out a cough or two from laughing so hard at the older lad.

And Louis just watched him, slightly hovering over the younger lad and carefully bringing up his hand to run it through his curls.

“I see why Nate has you doing voices all the time,” Harry breathed out, trying to gather himself again and not completely freak out at the position they were in.

“Just missed that smile of yours,” Louis said softly, letting his fingers get lost in Harry’s hair as he massaged his scalp.

All Harry could do was look back up at him, melting at Louis’ touch and trying his absolute hardest not to just lunge at the older lad. He wanted to kiss him so bad, has all night if he was being honest but he couldn’t bring himself to just do it. Harry was terrified to say the least, he hasn’t been with anyone in so long, someone he cared about and he wanted this to go well, he really did.

But then Louis was cupping his cheek and he was practically laying on top of him, Harry couldn’t help himself but bring up his own hand and run it through the back of his hair.

It was so soft, so feathery and light he swears if he had it his way Harry would constantly push his fingers through it, just loving the feeling.

And he hadn’t noticed how close they became, feeling the older lad’s soft breath on his cheek, his nose just barely brushing against his own and green locked on blue for what felt like forever until the distance was completely closed between them.

It took Harry a second to realize Louis was actually kissing him, but when it did hit him he didn’t waste a second before pulling him impossibly closer by the nape of his neck and moving his lips against the blue eyed lad’s.

And it wasn’t the sparks and fireworks that one normally hears about. It was warm and comfortable, so sincere and deep, and Harry was absolutely melting under him.

The shaky breaths exchanged between them, the curious hands that ran up sides, and through hair had Harry close to trembling, but he never wanted it to stop. The way their mouths moved together, how Louis’ thin, soft lips perfectly molded to his own was addictive.

But then the older lad cautiously licked at his bottom lip, and it didn’t take Harry a second before tasting right back into Louis’ mouth and gripping at his waist to keep him in place on top of him.

It seemed that did it for Louis, breathing deeply against him and seeming to do everything in his power to control himself as he heavily kissed him back.

He dug his fingers impossibly deeper into Harry’s curls, the other hand slipping under his shirt just to massage at the younger lad’s heated skin and humming against his lips. And just at the vibration, how Louis was kissing him and touching him he wanted to moan, trying to hold back the tight whine that threatened to escape him.

Harry could do this for hours, for forever if he was able to. And he doesn’t know how long they were exactly kissing for, how long they were exploring one another and getting lost before it all slowed down.

Louis’ lips carefully moving against his once again, the two of them trying to control their breathing and Harry desperately wanting to stay still under the older lad so he wouldn’t make his little situation any bigger.

Already he could feel himself sweating just at kissing, getting worked up and aching for more, but he couldn’t do anything more, not now. And Louis seemed to sense that too, just barely pulling away from him before allowing his lips to travel down his jaw and neck, carefully pressing kisses into his skin before he found Harry’s mouth again and gave him one last gentle kiss.

They were both quiet for a second, catching their breaths and Harry couldn’t help himself as he wrapped his arms around the older lad, rubbing his back and feeling his warm breath on his neck as he laid on top of him.

It was this simple thing that gave him so much peace, made him feel too comfortable to move. And truth be told he could stay like this forever, with Louis in his arms and his son sleeping in the other room, and he only hoped the older lad felt the same.

Chapter Text

Harry hissed at the gel that was getting spread over his back, knowing for a fact the bottle said “soothing aloe” but if anything it was only putting him in more pain. “Ow! Shit!”

“Okay, okay, you’re alright,” Louis said softly, biting his lip and carefully rubbing the cool gel into the younger lad’s skin. “I’m sorry love, I’m trying to be gentle but-”

“But I’m a fuckin lobster,” Harry mumbled into his pillow, almost having to clutch the sheet under him at how much it hurt.

Louis let out a small breath, feeling awful at how bad Harry was burnt, but he did tell him to put on more sunscreen and clearly he was ignored. “How are your shoulders? They’re already peeling a bit.”

“It hurts,” Harry groaned, that being the only thing on his mind besides the way Louis’ hands ran down his back and sides.

“I’ll find you some better sunscreen, make you feel better, alright?” Louis said as he finished rubbing Harry’s back and leaned down to kiss his cheek.

Harry hummed at that, not even trying to stop the small smile that came over him at feeling Louis’ lips on him.

Despite being burnt beyond belief they’ve had a great day so far. Louis joined him and Nate for breakfast before the three of them, Niall and Zayn went to the beach and spent their afternoon lazing around.

If Nate wasn’t splashing in the ocean or building sand castles he was burying Louis in the sand and squealing every time he saw a sea shell. And Harry was so busy taking pictures he completely forgot about his hourly coating of sunscreen, even with Louis reminding him.

He couldn’t help it though, seeing Nate so happy and him and Louis having so much fun, he wanted to remember all of this.

“You alright? You got that thinking face,” Louis said quietly, laying down next to the green eyed lad and carefully pushing his fingers through the top of his curls.

“Yeah, m’good,” Harry offered him a soft smile, actually more than good with Louis next to him. “Just thinking about today, Nate had so much fun and played so much he tired himself out, I’m almost grateful.”

Louis laughed at that, the toddler falling asleep on him when they were walking back to the boat and didn’t wake up even when they put him down. “You’re not planning on taking a nap too are ya? Was hoping I could get you to myself for a bit,” he said at seeing Harry’s eyes start to droop shut.

“Well then it’s you and me taking a nap, that counts doesn’t it?” Harry tried to joke as he wrapped an arm around the older lad and pulled him into his side.

“I guess,” Louis huffed dramatically. “Was kinda hoping we could do something other than nap.”

At that Harry shoved his face in his pillow, not needing Louis to see his bright red face at what he was suggesting. And if that wasn’t bad enough it was only a second later he felt a pair of lips press under his jaw and moving painfully slow down his neck.

It was no lie, after last night he was aching for a little something from the blue eyed lad. All day the most he got from Louis was a kiss on the cheek and his hand constantly in his own or on his thigh. Of course it’s not like they could snog in front of Nate and Louis’ mates, but watching the older man walking around without a shirt all day has been torturous, especially now that Harry knows exactly how his skin feels under his palm. How firm his stomach is, how strong his back and arms are, and not being able to touch him was killing Harry.

“We can really take a nap if you’re tired though, I-”

Before Louis could even finish huffing out what he wanted to say though Harry stopped him. Cupping the older lad’s cheeks and pulling him in for a hard kiss, the other man not wasting a second before he was smiling against him and running his fingers through the back of his curls.

And it was clear Louis was just as desperate to have this time to themselves, maybe more so than Harry was. He was kissing him so heavily and Harry was doing everything in his power not to shudder at the way they blue eyed lad’s hand moved from his hip down to his backside until it reached the back of his inner thigh and squeezed tightly over the thin material of his swim trunks. And if Harry didn’t moan against Louis’ mouth then he definitely did when he felt himself getting pulled on top of the older man and settled against his chest.

“You okay?” Louis asked a bit breathlessly, just barely pulling away from the taller lad on top of him

“Yeah, I’m good,” Harry said shakily, and just as he was about to dip his head to connect their lips again he heard a little voice.

“Daddy?”

Louis snapped his head up as he heard the toddler, only to smack his forehead against Harry’s and making them both hiss.

“H-hey buddy,” Harry stuttered out as he rubbed his head and rolled off the older lad, his eyes focusing on his confused looking son. “I didn’t hear you get up from your nap, did you sleep okay?”

Nate hummed and nodded to himself as he sleepily shuffled towards the bed and climbed on it before sticking himself in between the two. “You and Lou take nap?”

“No just talked for a bit,” Harry wrapped an arm around the 3 year old and kissed his head.

“Talk bout what?” Nate mumbled tiredly.

“You, what else is there to talk about?” Harry laughed quietly to himself, seeing Nate’s cheeks go red and hearing him giggle.

“Well there was one thing we haven’t talked about yet,” Louis raised his eyebrows at him, only making Harry confused. “If you two have plans for dinner tonight.”

Harry said a quiet “oh”, glancing down to Nate as he realized he actually had to talk to the 3 year old about his plans. “Well Liam asked to go to dinner to talk about some stuff, and I was going to drop Nate off at that kids club so they can watch him.”

Louis nodded to himself, figuring he couldn’t keep the younger lad hostage the entire time they were on the boat. But when he looked to the 3 year old between them he saw him pouting a bit at not being able to go to dinner with his father.

“Uhm you know I uh, only if you and Nate are okay with it of course but I could watch him,” he said a bit nervously.

Harry felt his jaw go slack as he locked his eyes on Louis, having no clue what to say at the offer just as Nate started squealing and nearly begging him to say it was okay.

He trusted Louis, of course he did, especially when it came to Nate. It was clear how much he cared about his son, and he loved how much fun they had together but there was something still nerve wracking about letting him watch the 3 year old alone.

“Daddy please, please, I be so good, I promise!” Nate nearly begged.

Harry let out a quiet breath as he glanced down to the toddler, and then looking back to Louis who’s eyes were already set on him.

“H if you’re not comfortable with it I get it,” Louis said softly. “I-I just thought I would offer and-”

“No, no, it’s uh, it’s okay,” Harry cleared his throat slightly. “Thank you for offering and if Nate wants to of course-”

“I do, yes!!” Nate cheered, climbing into Louis’ lap and jumping on the older man.

And Louis couldn’t help the grunt that came out of him as the 3 year old attacked him and refused to let him go, but even through the pain he couldn’t help the smile that came over him. He was more than grateful Nate was so happy to spend some time with him, and he couldn’t put into words how happy he was that Harry actually said it was okay.

“You don’t have to worry H, I’ll take him to dinner and maybe him and I can catch a show on the boat or something,” Louis offered him a small smile, hoping to calm some of the younger lad’s clear nerves.

Harry nodded back at him, trying not to internally freak out at leaving Nate with Louis for the night. He wasn’t sure what had him so scared, maybe it was not being with his son all night, or maybe it was the fact that this would be the first time Nate and Louis would be completely alone and there was nothing more he wanted than for it to go well. Harry would hate for the 3 year old to have a tantrum and the older lad not knowing what to do or just get annoyed, but that was the worse case scenario, and with Louis being Louis he knew the two would have a good time tonight and definitely a sugar overload.

“I should probably shower so I don’t smell like the ocean when I meet up with Liam,” Harry mumbled to himself as he sat up from the bed. “Would mind just hanging with him for a minute? I’ll be quick, promise.”

“Don’t worry, take your time,” Louis grinned back at him as he watched the younger man gather a change of clothes. “When you come out though we’re putting another coat of aloe on you.”

“What? No,” Harry said, trying his hardest not to seem like he was whining.

“You need it love!” Louis called after him as Harry sulked towards the bathroom.

And Harry didn’t even try to stop the groan that came out of him, hoping if he stayed in the shower long enough Louis will forget all about rubbing the burning gel on him.

*~*

Louis flopped himself down on the bed, letting out a few deep breaths and trying his hardest not to fall asleep on the spot. “How are you not exhausted?”

“C’mon Lou!” Nate whined, tugging on the older man’s hand. “Just one more time!”

Louis couldn’t believe how much energy the 3 year old had, Harry definitely wasn’t lying or kidding about that. The two of them went out to dinner, took a night swim at the pool and went down the water slide too many times to count before heading to one of the many shows on the boat. And Louis was more than relieved to see Nate so happy the entire time, the toddler clinging to him all night and practically sitting in his lap as they watched the performance in the concert hall. But now they were back in Harry’s room, Louis all but shocked that Nate hasn’t passed out yet but instead wanting to be thrown onto the bed and run absolutely everywhere, and he wasn’t even given that much candy.

“One more time and then we’re getting ready for bed mister,” Louis breathed out as he rolled off the bed and scooped the 3 year old up. “Your father will have my head if he comes back and sees you awake.”

Nate huffed but nodded at the same time, knowing his father would be furious if he knew he was up past his bedtime. At least he still got one good run around the room in Louis’ arms and a toss onto the bed, leaving him surrounded in the fluffy blankets and in a fit of giggles.

“Alright you, pajama time,” Louis said, getting the clothes Harry set out for Nate. “You change, I’m going to the loo real quick.”

“Lou go to the loo,” Nate laughed at his own joke, earning a fond eye roll from the blue eyed man as he went into the bathroom.

And as soon as the door was shut Louis ran a hand through his hair, almost feeling like he had to splash water on his face just to wake up and remind himself to breathe. As fun as the night has been it’s also been exceptionally tiring. He doesn’t understand how Harry does this on a daily basis by himself and now it just made Louis want to help out more than ever.

But just as he was about to do what he came to the bathroom for he heard a scream, followed by a loud thump and an even louder cry.

“Nate!” Louis yelled, his heart dropping into his stomach as he sprinted into Harry’s room, only to find the toddler on the floor with his pajama pants halfway on and tears streaming down his face. “Buddy are you okay? You hit your head? What happened?”

He quickly checked the 3 year old over, making sure he had no cuts or scrapes and especially no bumps on his head. But Nate was basically balling into his shoulder and Louis felt helpless, he had no idea what happened that caused him to fall off the bed.

“It’s okay, you’re alright,” he shushed him before kissing his head softly. “You just scared yourself a bit, that’s all… You’re not hurt, right?”

Nate sniffled to himself as he shook his head, wiping his snot covered nose on Louis’ shirt. “N-no, I try to put my jamas on b-but my pants hard and I roll off bed.”

Louis nodded, trying not to cringe at his now boogie coated shirt, but when he thought about it this is what parents go through on a daily basis. Nate was comfortable enough with him to rub his snot on him and cry into his shoulder, and Louis felt that like he should wear his booger covered shirt like a badge of honor, feeling like he was getting initiated into the parents club.

“I’ll help you finish getting dressed, but you’re okay big guy, yeah?” he whispered gently to Nate, rubbing his back and kissing one of his chubby cheeks.

Nate hiccupped one more time to himself but nodded anyway wrapping his arms around Louis’ neck and resting his head on the older man’s shoulder.

And despite what had just happened Louis found himself smiling at having the toddler in his arms. He loved being someone Nate could come to when he was upset, and even though he may not be the little boy’s first choice, at least he was a choice at all.

“C’mon buddy, as much as I love hugging you I can tell you’re getting a bit sleepy,” Louis laughed to himself, giving Nate one more squeeze before setting him back on the bed and helping him finish changing.

It seemed as though as the minutes passed the 3 year old was growing more and more tired, clearly the day’s events finally catching up with him. To say Louis was a bit relieved would be an understatement, and when he set Nate in his bed he was happy that there wasn’t any protesting but instead him immediately cuddling into his blankets and reaching for an extra pillow to wrap his arms around.

“Goodnight big guy, have a good sleep and I’ll see you tomorrow,” Louis whispered to him, gently running his fingers through Nate’s hair and kissing his head.

“Night Lou Lou,” the toddler yawned back, offering him a sleepy smile before his eyes closed gently and deep breaths were escaping him.

And it was almost impressive how quickly he fell asleep, despite being as tired as Louis was he knew he could never possess a skill like that and he was definitely jealous of the little boy. But now he had the fun of staying up, anxiously waiting for Harry to come back and tell him all about his dinner with Liam and show the younger lad that he can watch his son.

In the meantime though Louis busied himself by playing on his phone and checking the texts from his agent, almost groaning at seeing that as soon as he got back to London there was a script waiting for him to look over. As much as he loved his job, and he really did, sometimes it got a bit tiring being in the studio. But that was also why he took this vacation with the boys, to get a little bit of a break from his hectic life as “the voice of Disney”. It was nice to just be Louis Tomlinson, to be a normal 26 year old for once and not have to go to interviews about the latest movie he was working on or standing in front of blinding, flashing lights at a premier or award show.

But there would be something different when he got back home, something he can easily say he hasn’t had in a long time, or maybe even ever if he really thought about it. Louis felt like he finally found someone he could share all of this with, that he didn’t have to be alone anymore. He only hoped Harry felt the same, that when the boat docks in a week it won’t be the last time they see each other, that when they go back to their lives in London it will still be Harry, Nate and Louis.

And maybe it was a bit bad of him to be so caught up in his thoughts about what would happen when they all return home, thinking about every possible outcome. Louis was so distracted though that he didn’t even hear the room’s door open, and maybe letting out a not so manly scream at the quiet “hey” he heard in the silent room.

“Jesus Harry,” he clutched his chest, looking to the younger lad wide eyed, only to see him offering a crooked smile back. “How was Liam?”

“S’good,” Harry nodded to himself, unable to wipe the grin off his face as he nearly threw himself on the bed next to Louis and rolled around a bit until he got comfortable.

Louis watched him for a second with raised eyebrows, trying his hardest not to laugh as Harry almost looked like a cat trying to find the perfect spot on the bed. “You drunk?”

Harry let out a deep breath as he flung an arm over the top of the blue eyed lad’s lap and buried his head into his side. “Maybe a little,” he whispered as if it was a secret between them.

And Louis couldn’t help the laugh that escaped him, pulling him impossibly closer to his side and kissing the top of his curls. “You didn’t have too much fun without me, now did you Styles?”

“Oh never, you’re so much fun Lou,” Harry slightly slurred, nuzzling his nose into the older man’s shirt. “You and Nate have fun?”

“Well I tired him out, that’s for sure,” Louis scoffed as he ran a gentle hand down Harry’s back. “But yeah we had a lot of fun, clearly not as much fun as you but,” he trailed off and shrugged, trying to tease him a bit.

“He’s sleeping now, you can get on my level,” Harry joked back.

And oh the temptation was almost too much for Louis to pass up, just at the mere thought of having a few drinks after the exhausting night he’s had, it sounded perfect. “You know what I might,” he chuckled. “You okay if I grab a few drinks from my room?”

“I got some in the cooler, take your pick.”

Louis raised his eyebrows at that, not needing to be told twice before scrambling over Harry and rushing towards the cooler, only to see it stocked with drinks. And to say he was more than surprised would be an understatement, but he understood with having Nate that the younger lad may want a drink or two once the toddler was in bed and Liam probably hooked him up with it.

So he grabbed a few beers before shuffling back over to the bed, crawling over Harry and hovered over him just for a quick second to peck his lips and laying down next to him.

Harry hummed to himself, a smile coming over him as he practically engulfed Louis and clung to him like a koala. “I like you.”

“Well I like you too,” Louis laughed to himself as he sipped at his beer and wrapped an arm around the green eyed lad. “You’re cute when you’re drunk, you know that?”

“M’not drunk, just tipsy,” Harry huffed. “Trust me when I’m drunk you’re dealing with a whole other beast.”

“Oh yeah?” Louis asked, not even trying to hide his smirk. “And what kind of beast are you?”

Harry opened his mouth, realizing he probably shouldn’t have said that. “Well… You know…”

“Hm, don’t think I do. Mind explaining it to me love?”

And Harry was left kind of laying there, not wanting to explain it at all. “You should just drink, come on.”

Louis rolled his eyes fondly but did as he was told, taking a few large gulps of his beer and trying not to choke on it as he saw Harry smiling happily at him. “Didn’t really take you for a drinker.”

“Eh, I’m not really, maybe a drink or two a night and on a very very rare occasion I’ll go out with Liam,” Harry shrugged.

Louis hummed and nodded, understanding that with him having a 3 year old. “Well there’s a deck party tomorrow night and Zayn and Niall are going, and they asked me to go but I wasn’t sure… Would you uh, would you maybe want to go with me?”

Harry thought about it for a second, the only thing really to think about was who could watch Nate. “If Liam is free to watch Nate of course I’d want to go with you.”

“Great,” Louis smiled back at him before finishing off his beer and reaching for another one. “And you know if at any point you want just some you and Nate time please feel free to shoo me away.”

“Oh stop,” Harry scoffed. “Nate adores you and I need someone to rub sunscreen on my back.”

“So that’s why you’re keeping me around? I knew it wasn’t my devastating good looks and incredible charm.”

Harry scoffed, maybe clinging to the older lad impossibly more and tucking his head into his neck. “There are plenty of reasons I keep you around, but having a personal sunscreen masseuse is a definite plus.”

“Right,” Louis muttered through his smile, trying to down his beer as fast as he could to feel that buzz running through him.

It was times like this he was really grateful he was a lightweight because getting drunk was so easy for him, but it could also end disastrously if he wasn’t careful and watched how much he drank.

And as he lazily drank his beers away Harry was practically laying on top of him, but Louis had absolutely no complaints. His hair was getting played with and he could feel lips being pressed from his jaw down to his neck, and if this was just tipsy Harry Louis wondered what the drunk one would do.

“You alright love?”

Harry hummed against him, wrapping his arms just a bit tighter around Louis and sneaking his leg in between the older lad’s. “You know we never picked up where we left off when Nate interrupted earlier today.”

Louis looked down at Harry, trying not to seem shocked at what he just said, but that seemed near impossible. He was so used to him being shy and quiet, but this, this was something Louis could definitely get used to.

“Oh?” he swallowed thickly, his eyes landing on Harry whose cheeks were tinted pink.

And all he did was shrug, biting his lip nervously and hoping he didn’t sound extremely forward.

But all Louis did was smile back at him before setting his bottle aside and making himself comfortable under the younger lad. “Well in that case…” he trailed off, just barely saying it loud enough for Harry to hear before reaching for the nape of his neck and pulling him down until their lips met.

And Harry couldn’t help himself as he laughed against the older lad, but he didn’t waste a second before kissing him back. If he was being honest he’s waited for this moment all night, and all throughout dinner with Liam Louis was the only thing on his mind. Granted they were talking about him ninety percent of the time, his best mate nearly attacking him in questions about the famous Louis Tomlinson and how their date went and what’s next for them. But right now Harry was with Louis and the shorter man was kissing him so heavily and his fingers were lost in his curls, he couldn’t ask for anything more.

He could taste the beer on Louis’ tongue, feel the older lad’s soft skin under his palm and in all honesty Harry was trying to touch him everywhere he could. And he might’ve been a bit over eager, but he hasn’t kissed anyone in so long, especially someone he liked this much. But he wasn’t sure if with Louis he should take things slow, because last time he went too fast he ended up with a baby. It just seemed so hard with how he was being kissed, how the man under him was sneaking his hand under his shirt and making sure there was absolutely no room between them.

“You okay?” Louis asked a bit shakily, barely pulling away from him only to be pulled back down and feel Harry hum against him.

He could easily say he was more than okay despite the fact that he was nearly shaking over Louis. Harry wanted everything the older lad was willing to offer him and to give as much as he could back, but he was absolutely terrified of making the first move, not knowing if Louis would be okay with it.

But he had to do something, just anything to release some of the pressure on his embarrassing growing hard. And Harry couldn't help himself as he moved on top of Louis, almost moaning at how his thigh felt against him.

As soon as he did that though he could feel the older lad breathing heavily against him, gripping at him impossibly tighter and clutching at the thin material of his shirt.

“Can I?” Louis barely managed out, tugging at Harry’s t-shirt and earning a quick nod as a response.

And it seemed as though within a flash Louis was tugging the shirt over his head, tossing it to the side and crashing their lips together again.

Harry was doing everything in his power to keep himself together as he felt Louis running his hands down his back, all the way down to his thighs and squeezing tightly at him. It was as if he was trying to close the room that wasn’t between them, making them come completely compressed together. But Harry wasn’t complaining, not in the slightest with how the blue eyed lad was touching him, and at least he knew he wasn’t the only one who was more than eager.

He was so incredibly desperate, probably so much so that is was embarrassing, but he couldn’t help it. Harry wanted more, he needed it from Louis and at this point he was ready to beg for it.

“L-Lou,” he could barely muster out, already feeling his cheeks heating up at what he was about to say. “Can we uh, w-well I was wondering-”

“What do you need love?” Louis breathed against him, refusing to take his lips off him, sucking at his neck and feeling Harry shudder over him.

“Anything,” he said, trying to bite back the moan that threatened to escape him at feeling Louis tugging him closer, making him rut against his thigh.

And it seemed as though the shorter man didn’t need to be told twice, nodding quickly before pulling his shirt over his head and rolling them over so he was straddling Harry’s hips.

Harry was so shocked though that he found it near impossible to move, even after feeling Louis’ lips back on his neck and slowly moving lower and lower. “Lou…” he choked out, squeezing his eyes shut at the warmth of the older lad nipping and sucking his collar bone.

“Want me to stop?” Louis asked, peering through his eyelashes just as he was about to continue down Harry’s chest.

“No, please, God no,” he said maybe a bit too quickly.

And all Louis could do was let out a small chuckle, not even nodding back at him before pressing his lips to the younger man’s skin and working his way down his stomach.

Harry wasn’t sure what to do with himself but run his fingers through Louis’ thin hair and try not to gasp at the feeling of the blue eyed lad’s hard against his leg. He couldn’t believe this was actually happening, that this man was kissing him like they only had seconds left together. But when Harry felt Louis reaching for his belt buckle he was sure he was about to start hyperventilating.

“Love are you okay?” Louis asked with a touch of worry in his voice. “I won’t if you don’t want me to, it’s alright.”

Harry just had to breathe for a second, had to calm himself down and not think about this too much. He couldn’t even begin to describe how badly he wanted this to happen, but he was so nervous he could barely stand it.

“I-I just… I haven’t done this kind of stuff with anyone I cared about in a long time…” Harry barely whispered, trying not to seem pathetic but it basically oozed out of him.

But with the way Louis was looking back at him, with how he smiling so softly at him, how he was touching him so carefully it made Harry feel something he hasn’t in so long. He almost forgot what it was like, he thought it was lost, something he would never get back. But here it was, with beautiful blue eyes and a smile that made Harry almost forget how to breathe in the best way possible. And he couldn’t let this go, he wouldn’t.

“C’mere,” Louis said softly, crawling back up towards the younger lad and gently connecting their lips.

It was so careful and Harry was beyond grateful Louis understood how he was feeling, but there was no lying he was more than eager to keep things going.

“I’m okay really,” he said quietly, just barely pulling away from Louis and combing his fingers through the back of his hair.

And Louis just looked back at him for a second as if making sure he really was okay before nodding at him and pressing their lips together again, wanting Harry to get comfortable and calm down.

He was silently telling him how much he understood, that he cared for the green eyed lad just as much and this wasn’t just some fling.

It was only when he felt Harry completely relax under him did he carefully make his move and hesitantly reach for his belt again, only to feel him release a deep breath against him. Louis just kept kissing him though, letting their lips slowly move together and Harry couldn’t help himself as he gripped at the older lad’s back while the other hand was lost in his hair.

He was surprised that even when Louis managed to undo his buckle and pop the button of his jeans he was still calm at feeling his lips against his own. But still he kept asking Harry if he was okay, if he was comfortable with all of this and it might’ve been a bit embarrassing how quickly he was nodding. All Louis did though was laugh against him, pressing their lips together one more time before working his way down Harry’s chest again.

This time he knew he could keep himself together, this was Louis after all, he knew how the older lad felt towards him and there was no denying or hiding that he felt the same. So Harry happily let him continue what he was doing before he had a tiny freak out and desperately tried not to shake as he felt his pants slowly get pulled down his thighs.

Louis was kissing and sucking at his skin just above the band of his boxers, and Harry couldn’t help himself as he clutched at his hair, letting out deep breaths and aching for just anything because at this point his painful hard was unbearable.

“Lou…” he breathed out, so close to start begging but he didn’t even have to before a finger was hooked into his boxers and were getting tugged down.

All Louis did was hum against him though, pressing his lips against him and gripping his hips so he would stay in place.

Under him Harry was breathing heavily, trying his hardest to calm down at feeling the older lad against him. But it was only a second later he was biting back a moan as Louis’ lips wrapped around him, grabbing his hair impossibly tighter and trying not to jerk up at feeling him take him further into his mouth.

“Christ Lou,” Harry choked, squeezing his eyes shut and letting his rush chase through him.

Every inch of him felt like it was on fire, he didn’t know what to do with himself besides hold onto Louis and grip at the bed sheets around him. At the slightest touch, the way Louis’ mouth felt around him, so warm, so slick, Harry felt like any second he would unload but it would be beyond embarrassing for him to come undone so quickly.

But the older lad was just so good he didn’t know how long he could last. How he would bob his head, hollow his cheeks, lick at his length and tease his tip, it was all too much.

Harry needed more, he was so, so close, he couldn’t help himself but jerk his hips up in time with Louis going down on him. And it only got worse when he hummed around him, the vibrations making Harry let out a low moan from the back of his throat and thrust further into the blue eyed man’s mouth.

Louis completely took him in, opening the back of his throat even more and taking as much of Harry as could.

He knew if the man over him kept going the way he was it would only be minutes before his end came.

Harry could feel himself hitting the back of Louis’ throat, feel the slow drag of his tongue on his length and at this point there was no trying to stop the quiet whines that escaped him.

“Lou I mmph-” he tried to say something just anything but the only thing that came out of him was another deep moan as the older lad went faster down on him.

His head bobbing, cheeks hollowed and warm mouth completely engulfing him making Harry let out deep heaves.

Throughout his entire body his rush was coursing through him, a sweltering heat completely taking him over and making it near impossible to stop himself from shaking at Louis’ touch.

He was gripping his thighs to keep him in place, his scratchy beard rubbing against his sensitive skin each time he went down on him and his hair brushing against Harry’s stomach only made holding himself together that much harder.

But Louis was going faster and faster down on him, clearing sensing his end coming close and Harry couldn’t fight it, he couldn’t stop the strangled whine that came out of him as he shot into Louis’ mouth.

He just laid there, completely breathless and trying not to seem too dazed at what had just happened as Louis crawled back up towards him and gently pressed his lips to his neck.

Harry could barely think as he tried to regain himself, knowing his eyes were probably glazed over and his cheeks flushed, but when he looked over to the older lad next to him he found himself to have just enough energy to offer him a tired smile.

And all Louis did was grin back at him, brushing his fingers through his sweaty curls and unable to help himself as he leaned over and captured Harry’s lips with his own.

“God, look at you,” he said through a small laugh, his eyes scanning over the younger lad’s face and seeing just how flustered he was.

Harry knew he probably seemed like a complete mess, but with the way Louis was looking at him he felt anything but that. So he couldn’t help himself as he rolled over to his side, just barely hovering over the blue eyed lad and connecting their lips.

He ran a hand down Louis’ bare side while the other combed through his sweaty fringe, and it was almost immediate he felt the older man’s hard on his thigh. And Harry thought since Louis helped him out so much, maybe he could do a little something for him as well.

“Lou can I-”

He was cut off though, Louis pulling him back down and crashing their lips together as he nodded frantically against him.

So Harry took that as his go ahead, not wasting a second before shifting himself so he was completely over Louis and reaching for the button on his pants.

Their mouths moving messily against one another’s, the blue eyed lad nearly heaving against him and shifting himself so Harry could get his pants off quickly.

Louis wasn’t even trying to hide how eager he was, Harry easily able to see how terribly he wanted this to happen. And despite feeling himself close to shaking he snuck his hand under the older man’s briefs and reached for his length, only to feel Louis moan against him a second later at the touch.

“Fuck H,” he gasped, not even able to kiss him anymore as his hand wrapped around him.

But that didn’t stop Harry from pressing his lips to Louis’ neck, sucking at his skin and feeling Louis squirm under him as he began to lazily pump him.

He ran his thumb over his tip, getting just enough precum to slick up his hand and allow Harry to move faster against the older lad. He wanted to do anything he could to make him feel good, making sure his lips never left Louis, be it nipping at his collarbone, kissing his jaw and leaving his mark on his neck, all the while flicking his wrist and making sure he didn’t lose his grip on the blue eyed lad’s thick length.

Louis was holding on to him for dear life, one hand gripping at his bicep while his other arm was draped over his eyes. And the entire time Harry’s hand was around him he was moaning, muttering curses and letting out heaving breaths.

And the more noises he made the more confident Harry got, knowing he was doing something more than right. So he kept going, faster and faster, the only noise in the room being slick skin on skin and the older lad’s tight whines that escaped the back of his throat the closer he got to his end.

Harry could feel just how close Louis was, could see it all over his face and how he held onto him with everything he had. So he kept his pace, making sure to attach his lips to where Louis seemed most sensitive and hearing him bite back a moan at the touch.

“H… H-Harry- fuck-” he mumbled out, trying to catch his breath as the younger lad kept with his pace but he couldn’t help but fidget under him, feeling his rush catching up with him.

But Harry just kept going, sucking and kissing Louis’ sweaty skin, feeling his heavy breaths and seeing his eyes squeeze shut just as he heard the older man let out a muffled grunt and release into his hand. And as soon as he did Harry didn’t waste a second before picking himself up just enough to connect their lip and feeling Louis let out a deep breath against him before combing his fingers through the back of his curls.

It was slow and deep, the blue eyed lad still trying to calm down but with kissing Harry it didn’t take long for his breathing to return to normal and himself completely relax into the mattress.

Harry pulled just mere centimeters away from Louis, slowly taking his hand out from his briefs while the other cupped the older man’s cheek and rubbed his thumb over his slight beard.

“You okay?”

Louis raised his eyebrows at that, almost trying not to laugh as he nodded to himself. “Fuck yeah I’m okay, are you kidding?”

And it was almost immediate Harry felt his cheeks heating up, the only thing he could do was sheepishly shrug back at him and try not to laugh at his own embarrassment.

“Here,” Louis said, reaching over the side of the bed and handing Harry his shirt. “You can wipe your hand off.”

“What? No, not on your shirt,” Harry shook his head.

“Yeah well your son already got boogers on it so I have to wash it anyway. Seriously go ahead, I don’t care,” Louis chuckled, already grabbing Harry’s wrist and wiping his hand off.

And the younger lad couldn’t help but roll his eyes at hearing what Nate had done to Louis’ shirt, swearing his son has zero boundaries. But the only thing he could do was apologize to Louis and he wasn’t all that surprised to see him roll his eyes, clearly not caring if his shirt was boogered up or not.

“C’mere love, lemme fix you up a bit,” Louis said, tossing his messy shirt aside and reaching for Harry’s pants.

He didn’t object at all of course, allowing Louis to pull his boxers up and throw his pants that were halfway down his thighs to the floor. But then of course doing the same exact thing to himself, being left in just his briefs before cuddling into the younger lad’s side.

“A-are uhm… Are you staying here tonight?” Harry asked quietly, glancing down at the older lad who was basically laying on his chest.

Louis stilled for a second, slowly picking his head up and looking back at Harry nervously. “I-I don’t have to… I mean I can just go, I-”

“No, no,” Harry rushed out, shaking his head furiously as he realized he probably sounded like he wanted him to go. “Please stay, I was just wondering... Had to prepare to not take up most of the bed like I normally do,” he tried to joke.

And he was relieved he at least got a small laugh out of Louis, only to feel him cling impossibly closer to him.

“You can take up the entire bed if you want, just be prepared for me to sleep on top of you,” Louis mumbled into Harry’s chest.

“Yeah, you’re kinda already doing that,” Harry chuckled, softly running his hand up and down the older lad’s bare back.

“Get used to it love, you’re stuck with me now.”

But as Louis said it Harry couldn’t help the small smile that came over him, thinking that he wouldn’t mind in the slightest if the older lad slept on him, as long as he stayed.

Chapter Text

“You alright mate? You look like you’re close to shaking,” Liam whispered to Harry, him seeming like any second he would have a panic attack.

“Just nervous,” Harry breathed out, combing his fingers through the top of his curls for maybe the millionth time since they got in the lift.

“There’s nothing to be nervous about mate,” Liam clapped him on his back. “Just a nice little outing with the boys.”

“And me!!” Nate jumped excitedly.

“And you,” Liam chuckled at the 3 year old.

All Harry did though was let out a huff, knowing it should be like any other night with Louis and his mates, but now Liam was here and it would be the first time they’re all hanging out together. Of course he needed Liam to like Louis, if his best mate didn’t approve of him then Harry didn’t know what he would do with himself. But then he had to remind himself that Louis was Louis, and it seemed near impossible not to fond over him.

“You’ll be nice, right?”

“No Harry, I’m going to be a complete arse and try to scare him away,” Liam rolled his eyes, only to feel a little hand hit his leg, looking down and seeing Nate eyeing him. “Sorry buddy, uncle Liam said a bad word.”

Nate hummed, seemingly accepting his uncle’s apology.

“Well at least thanks for taking the night off and everything,” Harry said through a grateful smile. “It means a lot.”

“Of course mate, gotta be a good wing man,” Liam winked at him.

But Harry just scowled back at him, knowing Liam’s version of being a wingman was embarrassing him until his face was bright red and he could barely breathe. He only hoped that wouldn’t happen tonight because he knew with Louis he would never live any of it down.

He did owe his best mate one though, since he took the night off just to watch Nate and he only got a limited number of them while out on the water.

“Daddy come on,” Nate groaned as the lift doors opened and his father refused to move.

Harry let out one more deep breath, trying to get himself to relax and prepare for the night ahead of him as he followed Nate and Liam down the hall and to the restaurant.

“Mr. Payne, good to see you,” the maitre-d said happily. “Your guests for dinner are already here, I set them up at your table.”

“Perfect, thank you Jackson,” Liam smiled at him before scooping Nate up and leading Harry to the table. “Damn… Does he work with models, what is this?” he muttered to himself, seeing the two other men sitting with Louis.

Harry couldn’t help but laugh to himself at hearing that, not at all surprised Liam thought of Niall and Zayn like that because there was no point in lying they were both more than handsome.

“Harry!” Louis said excitedly at seeing the curly haired lad and pushing himself out of his seat. “Hello love,” he said softly, standing on his toes and pressing their lips together quickly before focusing on Liam. “Hey mate, good to see ya again.”

“And you,” Liam smiled back at him as he shook his hand.

As soon as they dropped their hands though Louis was quick to happily introduce his mates to Liam. And Harry really couldn’t say how relieved he was to see things so far going well. But the night had just begun, so there was still plenty of time for him to embarrass himself, or Liam doing that for him.

“Harry, good to see ya mate,” Niall clapped the curly haired man on the back as he took a seat next to him.

“You too, Nate here hasn’t stopped talked about you guys, he’s missed you since yesterday,” he tried to joke, only to see his son blush from Liam’s lap.

“How come you never miss us, it’s always Nate,” Niall rolled his eyes playfully.

Harry opened his mouth, looking between Niall and Zayn and trying to figure out what to say but instead just laughed it off, knowing whatever he said would be stupid.

“Will you leave him alone?” Louis huffed, reaching a hand over and rubbing the younger lad’s back.

“It’s fine, I don’t mind,” Harry whispered back to him, offering Louis a small smile to reassure him that he really didn’t care.

“Alright… But if they start buggin you just let me know, I’ll shut them right up.”

Harry nodded, having to almost stop himself from rolling his eyes at how protective Louis sounded. But then of course the blue eyed lad was grinning back at him, the same that made Harry’s knees go weak, and to make matters worse a second later he felt a pair of lips on his and groans around the table.

“You two were cute at first, but please, stop,” Zayn complained.

“Yeah, just none of that in front of us,” Niall agreed.

“Hey! Be nice to daddy and Lou Lou, they have feelings so they show feelings!” Nate defended his father.

And as Harry’s cheeks were going bright red next to him Louis let out a barking laugh, throwing his head back and clutching his stomach before high fiving Nate and saying a grateful “thank you!”.

“Nathaniel, c’mon buddy, be nice,” Harry chuckled, seeing the 3 year old nearly death glaring Niall and Zayn for teasing him.

“Yeah, big guy, they were just playing,” Liam added in, kissing Nate’s head and hoping to calm him down some, knowing just how protective he can be when it comes to his father.

Nate muttered to himself but nodded anyway, if his uncle Liam and daddy were saying it was okay then he supposed he could let it slide.

And all of the teasing was quickly forgotten, Liam not wasting a second before he started his questioning about how the cruise was going and if they were having any fun. Of course Harry had to remind him to not interrogate them, almost begging him to stop being in his work mode.

At least the three men were happy to answer any questions he had about their trip, Louis especially as he went on and on about all of their different adventures on the islands.

“Have you guys checked out any of the activities we have on the boat?”

“Liam,” Harry groaned, close to begging him to stop.

“What? I just-”

“We have actually,” Niall nodded before taking a swig of his beer. “Zayn and I go to those deck parties whenever you guys have them, fuckin sick mate.”

“Niall,” Louis hissed, eyeing his mate before glancing over to Nate.

“Right, sorry…”

Louis rolled his eyes, offering Harry and apologetic smile before shifting his gaze to Liam. “And Nate and I actually went to one of the shows, we had an awesome time, right buddy?”

“The best time!” Nate cheered.

“Good, I’m glad,” Liam smiled widely, loving to hear all the fun times they’ve had.

“Speaking of stuff to do on the boat, how would you lot feel about some karaoke tonight after dinner?”

“But Lou, the deck party,” Niall whined.

“We’re still going Ni, it’s just something fun beforehand and Nate can come,” Louis said happily as he looked over to the 3 year old and seeing him light up at the sound of that.

“Yes! Please, please daddy!!” Nate almost begged. “I be so good for uncle Liam tonight and I wanna sing!”

Nate didn’t even need to ask, because honestly Harry could never turn down karaoke, but this was a card he always loved to play. “Well… I guess if you promise to be extra good for uncle Liam I suppose we can go.”

And everyone could see that no matter what he wasn’t going to say no, except Nate who was basically cheering at hearing him say they could go.

“We sing Let it Go! Me and daddy do that one real good!”

Harry just groaned as he heard his son, knowing it was his favorite song, but the other lads didn’t need to know they sing it, and quite often when they’re at home. But if it was for Nate then of course he’d get up on stage with him, willing to do anything to make him smile even if it meant singing Let it Go for maybe the millionth time.

“Daddy be excited! We show everyone how such good singers we are!” Nate said happily, scampering off his uncle’s lap to his father’s and basically bouncing on him.

“Oh of course, the Styles boys are gonna steal the show,” he laughed, pressing a kiss to the 3 year old’s head and hugging him tightly.

And Nate was smiling so wide it must’ve hurt but that was all Harry wanted to see. So as they ate dinner he mentally and physically prepared himself for singing, hoping not to completely embarrass himself in front of Louis, but Liam was already doing that for him as he told horrific stories about him when he was younger.

Of course everyone at the table except for him was laughing their heads, but if anything Harry was just happy they were all getting along and Liam seemed to really like Louis. He was only slightly terrified his best mate wouldn’t be fond of him, but the two seemed to talk like they have been friends for years.

“And then there was this one time when Nate was just about 1 years old and we were in the park-”

“Liam for God’s sake, stop,” Harry groaned, stopping the older man before he could tell one more story about him.

“Oh come on Harry, we’re having fun,” Zayn smirked over at him.

“Yeah, you may be but I’m not,” he scoffed.

Liam looked at Harry, seeing his cheeks red and he knows he may have told fice too many stories, but he couldn’t help it. It wasn’t his fault his best mate made a fool of himself quite frequently.

“Alright fine, I’ll stop… For now.”

At least Harry could breathe knowing Liam was finally finished with his stories, but of course he knew there were many more to come if they continued to hang out with Louis and his mates. And as much as he wished things like this would continue to go on, even after the cruise he could do without the stories.

“Daddy when we go sing?”

“Soon buddy, right after everyone's done eating,” Harry rubbed his back, looking around the table and seeing most of the plates clean.

Nate nodded eagerly, more than ready for everyone to finish so they could go. And it wasn’t soon long after they were all getting up, Nate almost running out of the restaurant but not getting too far before Louis scooped him up.

“Where do you think you’re going big man? You don’t even know where this place is,” Louis chuckled, settling the 3 year old on his hip and kissing his head.

“I excited Lou!” he bounced in his arms.

“I can see that buddy, but I would prefer it if you didn’t get lost,” Louis smiled at him, only to feel Harry’s hand running along his back and seeing the younger lad grinning softly back at him.

And just at the way he was looking at him Louis felt his cheeks going red, almost feeling like he had to duck his head so Harry wouldn’t see. It was always the same look whenever he interacted with Nate. When they were talking, playing, joking around, just anything, Harry had this look on his face that almost made Louis want to melt. He could never describe it, never knew what that look meant, only that it was always the same when he watched him and Nate together.

“What?” Harry asked as they walked down the hall, noticing Louis just staring at him.

Louis shook his head, biting his lip as he tried to stop his smile from growing. “No, nothing.”

Harry just looked down at him confused but didn’t push the matter anymore. Instead he just kept his arm around the older lad as they walked.

“Mr. Payne! Didn’t know we’d be seeing you tonight!”

“Hey Charlie, yeah just out with some mates,” Liam said happily as he shook the worker's hand.

“Well I’m sure you guys will have fun, the place is packed.”

“Great, thank you,” he nodded back at him, gesturing for everyone to go inside.

“We don’t have to pay?” Louis whispered to Harry.

Harry shook his head, his eyes scanning around the dim lit room for a table. “Perks of being mates with the head of entertainment. Basically get into everything for free.”

Louis tried not to looked shocked, but it awesome that Harry could essentially go to anything on the boat for nothing.

“Alright boys, come on! Let’s start the night off right!!” Niall cheered, shaking Zayn’s shoulders and nearly diving into the first available booth.

Harry watched as all the boys got comfortable, Nate happily claiming Louis’ lap and looking around the room in awe, clearly excited about singing later.

“I’m gonna go sign me and Nate up real quick, you have him.”

“Yeah, I got him love,” Louis grinned back at him. “But babe can I see your phone real quick? Mine died and I just gotta check something real quick.”

“Sure,” Harry shrugged, passing the older lad his phone before making his way towards the front to the sign up.

As soon as Harry walked away though Louis went to work, scrolling through his phone and trying to ignore his mates’ curious eyes.

“Whatcha doing?” Liam asked, not sure why Louis was looking through his phone.

“He’s got a plan, that’s his thinking face,” Zayn teased.

But Liam continued to just watch him, not so sure how he felt about this guy doing something on Harry’s phone. And it was only a second later he was passing him Nate and making his own way up to the front of the room, seemingly signing himself up for karaoke.

“Alright buddy, you better get ready to sing cause we’re one of the first people up there,” Harry smiled at his son, expecting the loud squeal that came from him as he clapped his hands. “Louis must be signing himself up, it’ll be fun to hear a pro.”

And all Zayn and Niall did was hum, trying to stop their smiles as they had an idea as to what their best mate was up to. They didn’t want to give anything away though, instead ordered drinks for the table and made sure to get Nate his own little glass of juice so he could feel like he was drinking with the boys.

“Alright, easy big guy, we can’t have you getting tipsy on juice,” Louis laughed to himself, taking away his third cup of juice.

“I drink like Niall!”

“Yeah! There we go buddy!” Niall high fived him across the table, him chugging one drink after the other and clearly the 3 year old wanted to keep up.

Harry rolled his eyes, not needing his son to be encouraged about drinking. “Niall, he’s 3,” he reminded him.

“Aw come on man, it’s just juice.”

“Niall,” Louis said, raising his eyebrows at his best mate and getting a huff in return from him.

So he left it alone at that, instead turning his focus to the people who started getting up on stage for karaoke, it finally starting. And any song that came on that Nate knew he wasn’t afraid to belt it out from his place on his daddy’s lap, making all the men around the table laugh and in Liam’s case videotaping his nephew.

It was clear he couldn’t wait for his turn to go up there, every time someone’s name getting called a small frown coming to him at not hearing his or his father’s. But soon enough he heard it, his name followed by his daddy’s, and he didn’t waste a second before scrambling off his lap.

Harry almost felt the air leave his lungs as Nate not so gracefully got off him. But nevertheless he stood up from his seat as well, hoping to shake his nerves some so he didn’t make a fool of himself on stage.

“Good luck handsome, you’ll do great,” Louis winked up at him, reaching for the younger lad before he could walk away.

And of course it was immediate Harry’s cheeks were going a bit red, knowing the other guys around the table were watching them, but he just couldn’t help himself as he bent down just enough to press their lips together.

Thus beginning the cheering and clapping coming from their mates, making Harry blush that much more.

It only encouraged Louis, reaching a hand around the back of Harry’s neck and pulling him impossibly closer to him, not being shy at all as he kissed the younger lad. And he only let him go when he heard Nate whining and the 3 year old was tugging on his father to drag him to the stage with him.

“Sorry buddy,” Harry said only a bit embarrassed as the toddler pulled him towards the front of the room.

“It’s okay,” Nate huffed. “I know you have feels for Lou, you gots to show it sometimes.”

Just at hearing that Harry felt like a bit of a proud father, knowing that his son was exceptionally caring but even at just 3 years old he was more than considerate for other people’s feelings.

“Alright big guy, we ready?” he asked, scooping Nate up onto the stage and getting him settled on his feet.

“Yes!!” Nate cheered, not wasting a second before grabbing the microphone his daddy was passing him.

Harry nodded back at him, offering the toddler a soft smile and trying to calm down as he saw all eyes in the room trained on them. But of course he allowed his gaze to solely focus on Louis, not sure if seeing the older lad smiling back at him was helping his nerves or making them worse.

He gripped at his microphone in his hand, trying to remind himself to breathe and not have a panic attack at what he was about to do. But then he heard the soft notes floating through the room, looking down and seeing Nate smiling so wide it must’ve hurt. And it was only a second later the 3 year old’s little voice was heard over the speakers, him not being scared in the slightest at singing in front of all these people, and Harry truly wished he had as much courage as his toddler son. But soon enough he joined him, maybe not singing as loud as Nate and clearly much more shy than his son.

The year old was walking all over the stage, singing his little heart out and pouring his soul into what he was singing, and all Harry could do was watch him with a small smile on his face. He was more than happy to let Nate be the star of the show, letting him have all the attention and joined in with his son every now and then, but he would be shocked if anyone actually heard him.

Louis was sending him thumbs ups, and the other guys at the table were smiling and videotaping Nate as he performed, and Harry was more or less just kind of standing there awkwardly. But at least by the end of the song he could see his son with a clear wide grin on his face, and in all honesty that’s the only thing Harry wanted to see.

“Alright, thank you guys, that was great!” the DJ said as the two hopped off the stage. “Now up next we have two more guys coming up here, could I get Louis and Harry up on stage?”

Harry’s head snapped up as he was halfway to the table, only for his eye to snap to Louis’ and seeing the blinding smile on the older lad’s face as he skipped up to him. “Are you insane?! I-I-”

“C’mon H, it’ll be fun!” Louis said happily, snagging Harry’s hand and pulling him back to the stage.

Harry opened and closed his mouth, having no clue how to get out of this, but clearly with Louis basically dragging him he couldn’t. When him and Nate were up there he barely opened his mouth, but with Louis he knew he would be forced to sing, there would be no way around it.

“W-well how do you even know if I know the song or-”

“Don’t worry about that love, trust me, you know it,” Louis chuckled to himself, stepping up on stage and bringing Harry with him.

“I dunno Lou, I’m not at all that good and you’re a professional and-”

“Hey, hey, come on,” Louis said softly, cupping the younger lad’s cheeks and offering him a small smile. “You’re overthinking this love, it’s just for fun, yeah?”

Harry bit his lip, Louis’ deep blue eyes looking right at him and he knew maybe he was freaking out for no reason but he was mildly terrified of actually having to sing.

“It’ll be fine babe, and I’ll even start,” Louis whispered to him just as the opening notes of the song started, and it was clear within a second Harry knew exactly what song it was.

“Wait how did you… This is-”

“Your favorite song, yeah,” Louis chuckled at him as he nodded. “Stole your phone for a reason love.”

Harry was completely speechless as he saw the blue eyed lad smiling back at him, having no clue what to say, but he didn’t even get a chance before Louis winked at him, brought up the microphone and opened his mouth to sing.

And as soon as the words escaped him Harry was in shock, himself going completely still at hearing Louis sing, but he didn’t expect anything but perfection from him. The entire time the older lad’s eyes were trained on him, his smile blinding with the lights focused right on him and at what he was singing Harry wasn’t even sure if his heart was beating.

There was no denying his voice was beautiful, clearly capturing the attention of the room and no matter how hard he tired Harry couldn’t take his eyes off of him. But then it was his turn to sing apparently, Louis raising his eyebrows at him, and Harry doesn’t know how he did it, but somehow he managed to bring up his shaking hand with his microphone and open his mouth to sing.

Hold me close through the night

Don’t let me go, we’ll be alright

Touch my soul and hold it tight

I’ve been waiting all my life

I won’t scar your young heart

Just take my hand

And as he sang Louis’ smile only grew, his eyes lighting up and almost the look of shock on his face as he heard the younger lad.

He didn’t waste a second before joining him for the chorus though, their voices almost perfectly melding together. But if that wasn’t shocking enough the fact that Louis was singing this song with him, his absolute favorite song had Harry almost want to cry. He knew that would be over the top though, so of course he didn’t do that. Instead he just smiled back at the older lad, hoping and praying that he wasn’t blushing too hard and that he at least sounded decent singing with Louis.

As soon as it was over though Harry felt like he could finally breathe again, but he wasn’t able to catch his breath for too long though before he basically got attacked, feeling Louis wrap his arms around him and kiss him anywhere he could reach.

“You are incredible, holy shit,” he rushed out, only to crash their lips together a second later and hearing claps and cheers erupt from the room.

And if Harry’s cheeks weren’t red while they were singing they sure as hell were now as he heard the crowd and felt Louis on him. But there was no way he was going to stop him, when it came to the older lad and him kissing him he was never able to pull away.

“Always full of surprises, hm?” Louis smirked against him.

But Harry couldn’t answer him, couldn’t say anything but bite his lip and try not to smile like an idiot as he heard the crowd and saw how Louis was looking at him.

“Come on love, we can’t have the spotlight all night,” he winked at the younger lad, twist their hands together and tugging him off the stage.

Harry just let himself get pulled, without Louis knowing his feet couldn’t carry him to where he needed to go.

“Seems like we have another super star! Who knew you could sing?!” Niall screamed, raising his glass to Harry as they walked up and took a large swig of his drink.

“Oh mate you should hear him,” Liam scoffed, what Harry did tonight being nothing. “In the shower, at his studio, making breakfast for Nate, or-”

“Liam for God’s sake!” Harry yelped, looking at his best mate wide eyed. “Can we please not?”

“What Harry? There’s nothing wrong with singing all the time, Louis does it for a living!” he tried to defend himself.

“Especially when you’re that great at it love, there’s no problem flaunting it,” Louis added in, kissing the younger lad’s cheek quickly as he took a seat.

Harry didn’t know what to do with himself as he saw the other boys nodding along and Nate smiling so wide his dimples were popping out.

He was never very good at receiving compliments or having attention on him, he doesn’t know what it is about something so simple that has him freaking out or growing anxious, but he couldn’t help it.

“C’mere H, have a seat, relax,” Louis rolled his eyes fondly at the green eyed lad, seeing him just standing there, having no clue what to do with himself.

Harry just let out a huff and did as he was told, plopping into a seat and grabbing the closest drink to him before chugging it back. But luckily instead of the boys focusing on him they all watched as different people went up to sing, Nate of course telling his daddy and Louis that they were the best and no one could ever be better than them.

And all night as the 3 year old went on and on about them the two didn’t say anything, but just looked at each other, trying not to smile like idiots at what Nate was saying about them.

Closer to the end of karaoke the other lads around the table were so fed up with the two just being in their own little world that they couldn’t help but outwardly complain, almost threatening to leave the table and take Nate so they could be alone. Even if they did that though they were sure the pair wouldn’t even notice any of them getting up and leaving.

“H you think it’s about time I get this one to your room?” Liam asked, looking at Nate in Louis’ lap.

“What? No,” Nate whined, looking at his uncle with his best pleading face.

“Nope, it’s time big guy, no whining,” Harry said with raised eyebrows.

And Nate knew better than to fight with his father, but that didn’t stop him from pouting back at him.

“Oh it’s okay buddy, we’ll spend all day together tomorrow,” Louis tried, not wanting the toddler to be upset.

Nate was quiet for a second, looking between his daddy and Louis before letting out a huff and nodding. “Fine.”

And Louis couldn’t help but light up at that, happy he was able to diffuse that a bit, and when he glanced over at Harry it was impossible not to notice how softly he was looking back at him. He just hoped that the younger lad didn’t see his face going red or notice the way he couldn’t stop smiling like an idiot.

“Alright buddy, c’mon, time to say goodnight to everyone.”

Nate muttered to himself but hopped out from his chair anyway, making sure to hug each of the older men and give his daddy extra kisses before his uncle scooped him up and started walking out of the room.

“Okay boys, so party time?” Niall asked with raised eyebrows. “This has been fun and all but I need to get proper sloshed and find a girl for the night.”

“Niall, geez,” Louis huffed, noticing Harry’s slightly shocked face.

“Yeah, I second Niall on that one,” Zayn breathed out, chugging the rest of his drink and already pushing himself out of his seat. “So you two done staring at each other and care to join us.”

And as Harry’s face went bright red Louis just glared at his best mate, him knowing that they haven’t been able to keep their eyes off each other, but he didn’t need Zayn to point it out.

“Whatever asshole, let’s go,” he muttered, reaching for Harry’s hand and following his mates.

The other two were almost skipping ahead of them, clearly far too excited about this party. If Louis was being honest though he was looking forward to this all night as well. He really did love his time with both Styles, but when he had Harry all to himself it was a treat. It was no secret he loved spending time with Nate, but with it being just him and Harry tonight he was definitely going to try and take advantage of it.

“Oh hell yeah, it’s already in full swing!” Niall said excitedly, almost fast walking towards the deck as he saw the colored lights and heard the booming music.

There were people absolutely everywhere, it looked like it was almost impossible to walk anywhere with how crowded it was. But their first destination of course was the bar across the deck and Zayn and Niall’s brilliant plan to get there was to go through the dance floor and dance their way through everyone.

“Uh Louis,” Harry said a bit nervously, squeezing the older lad’s hand just a bit harder at seeing what Niall and Zayn were doing.

“It’s fine love, c’mon,” Louis tugged on him, offering him a reassuring smile as they made their own way towards the hoard of people.

Harry just looked at him for a second, somehow managing to shuffle his feet forward and not seem completely awkward as they pushed their way through people. Of course Louis looked like a natural, gracefully moving about the crowd and bobbing his head to the blaring music while here he looked like a scared newborn deer.

“Here we are, see that wasn’t so hard, was it?” Louis stopped at the bar, turning to Harry and seeing him just bite his lip. “You okay, what’s wrong?”

Harry thought he really should’ve mentioned this as soon as Louis invited him to this party, but of course he didn’t think this far ahead, he was just too excited to spend time with the older lad. “I uhm… I can’t dance.”

“What?” Louis laughed, looking at Harry like he didn’t believe him. “Come on H, everyone can dance.”

“Uh no, not me,” Harry said quietly, refusing to meet his eyes.

But Louis just kept his eyes on him, just from seeing Harry’s face feeling terrible for laughing. “Babe it’s fine, it’s not like it’s a big deal…”

“No, I know, I do,” Harry combed hi fingers through his hair. “S’just embarrassing I guess.”

“No it’s not love, look around you,” Louis almost scoffed. “These people are so drunk they’re not even dancing but jumping and falling, and I’m sure you can’t be worse than that.”

And Harry did try not to laugh as he got a good look around the deck, the older lad being more than right.

“If it makes you feel better I’ll dance terrible on purpose and you’ll look amazing.”

“I don’t think you understand-”

“Boys come on!!” Niall screamed, nearly thrusting the pair a shot and beer each. “You can be all mushy and cute while drunk, let’s go.”

And the pair just looked back at the Irish lad blankly, him not even paying attention to them anymore as he downed his shot and then started chugging his beer.

“Well what do you think love?” Louis asked, turning to Harry and wiggling his eyebrows at him.

Harry looked between the glasses in his hands and then back to the older lad, not even answering him before taking his shot and wincing only for a second.

Louis looked back at him a bit shocked as he watched Harry start to sip at his beer and seeing him start to bob to the music. But it was only a second later he took his own drinks, more than eager to get this night officially started.

And with the help of Niall the pair never had empty hands, the Irish lad constantly shoving another drink at them as the night went on, but the two weren’t complaining, not in the slightest.

Harry loosened up enough to the point where he felt comfortable enough to dance, or what he at least considered dancing. Granted Louis was holding onto him the entire time and making sure he didn’t stumble into anyone as he jumped around. He couldn’t help himself as he wrapped his arms around the younger lad, not wanting him to wander off but he also just wanted to keep him close.

He loved feeling Harry’s breath against his neck, how his hands would travel from his shoulders, to his biceps and then squeeze at his waist, making sure there was absolutely no room between them. And despite there being barely enough room to move because of how many people there were it was like it was just the two of them there. Lost in their own world as they “danced” to song after song, more or less Louis trying to keep Harry on his feet. But it was the younger lad’s smile, the way he laughed after he would trip over his own feet that would make Louis still for a second and just look at him.

“What?” Harry slurred through a giggle, catching the blue eyed lad just staring at him for maybe the millionth time tonight.

But Louis just shook his head, his own smile creeping onto his lips as he reached for Harry and stood on his toes to connect their lips.

And Harry wasn’t quite sure why he was being kissed, but he wasn’t going to pull away, he wasn’t going to stop this because any opportunity he had to kiss Louis he would take it.

So he just kissed the older lad until his lips were numb and his lungs felt empty. He didn’t care who was around, he didn’t care who was looking or watching, all he cared about was having Louis in his arms and making sure he wasn’t going anywhere.

Even at the end of the night when they were drenched in sweat from dancing and drunkenly stumbling to Louis’ room, muffling their laughs into each other’s mouths, Harry wouldn’t let him go.

After some of their clothes were thrown to the floor and they fell into bed Harry held onto the older lad and refused to let there be any room between them. And it was just when he closed his eyes, feeling how heavy his body was, but how light his head felt there was just one thing he needed from the blue eyed man.

“Lou…” he whispered in the silent and dark room, only to feel Louis hum against the back of his neck. “Little spoon.”

And that’s all Louis needed to hear before he came up behind Harry, unable to stop the smile that came over him as he wrapped an arm around his waist and pulled his back into his chest, allowing his smaller frame to mold to Harry’s. But little did the younger lad know that that was all Louis needed too.

Chapter Text

Louis jumped awake, a loud knocking echoing through the room and almost making him wince as he felt his throbbing head. But he sat up and slumped to the door anyway, wishing he could still be sleeping like Harry, and he doesn’t know how the younger lad could still be snoring like a bore with all this noise going on.

When Louis opened the door though he was a bit surprised to see Liam there, but even past his foggy thoughts he somewhat remembered that the brown eyed man had Nate for the night and it was clearly morning.

“Oh uh, hey mate, I’m sorry, I can wake Harry and we’ll take Na-”

“No, no, it’s not about Nate, it’s fine,” Liam shook his head. “I’m sorry for waking you but I was hoping we could talk…”

Louis looked at him a bit confused but nodded anyway, about to get Harry so they could talk but Liam stopped him.

“Just you, leave H to sleep.”

“Uhm… Yeah, sure,” Louis said quietly, scratching the back of his neck nervously before taking a step further into the hallway and closing the door behind him.

They were just standing there for a second, Liam not saying anything and Louis was wondering what in the world he would want to talk to him privately about. If anything he was just trying to calm his nerves, this being Harry’s best mate and clearly it was him Liam wanted to talk about.

“So uh, you and H seem to be getting really close and everything,” Liam finally spoke up, shifting on his feet a bit uneasily as he met the older man’s eye.  “And I just… I wanted you to know he’s not the kind of guy to just have a fling on a boat, he’s looking for more than that.”

Louis opened his mouth, wanting to say that of course he knew that, well he at least figured with Harry having a child.

“I guess… I uh, was wondering what your plan was when we get back to London,” Liam said quietly. “And I’m sorry if it seems that I’m overstepping boundaries and it’s a conversation for you and H, but he’s my best mate and he’s been through a lot… I just want to make sure he’s falling for someone who won’t break his heart.”

“No, no, it’s okay, I mean, I get it,” Louis nodded at him. “But you know I’ve thought about it a lot and I understand that with Harry having Nate, well, it’s a big deal, it’s serious… But I wouldn’t be doing everything I am now with them if I didn’t want to be with him after the cruise.”

And just at hearing that Liam didn’t try to fight off the small smile that came over him, there being no denying that he was more than relieved to hear that.

“You know I was hoping you’d say that, could almost read it on your face whenever you’re with them, but I wanted to make sure,” he said, easily seeing Louis’ cheeks going pink at that. “I just wanted to make sure, ya know? He’s my best mate, gotta perform my duties properly.”

“Of course,” Louis chuckled to himself. “I was uh… W-well I was actually going to talk to Harry today about what we’re doing and all that, I guess you beat me to the punch.”

“Wait, were you really?!” Liam almost squealed. “Oh my God, that’s fantastic!! And don’t be nervous, I mean, he’ll probably be quiet and a little scared at the idea, but seriously mate I think he’s a bit crazy for you, wait, don’t tell him I said that, but really.” he said quickly, almost fumbling over his words.

And Louis just raised his eyebrows at Liam, trying to hold in a laugh at how excited he seemed, he only hoped Harry would feel the same.

“But I won’t take up any more of your time, I’m sure you’d like to sleep off the hangover you probably have. I just wanted to have a quick chat.”

“Yeah mate, of course,” Louis smiled softly back at him, offering Liam his hand to shake. “If you have to get back to work though I’ll take Nate really quick and bring him to my room, I’m sure Harry would love to wake up with him.”

To say Liam was a bit surprised would be an understatement, but that didn’t stop him from nodding back at the blue eyed lad as he dropped their hands and led him down the hall to Harry’s room.

As soon as Liam opened the door to the room Louis walked right in, knowing exactly where to go to get the 3 year old, and he didn’t waste a second before bending over his bed and as carefully as he could picking Nate up and pulling him into his chest.

“Lou Lou,” Nate mumbled into the older man’s neck, wrapping his arms around him and resting his head on his shoulder.

“Hey big guy,” Louis whispered through a soft smile, rubbing his back and kissing his hair. “We’re gonna go to my room because daddy is there okay? You can go back to sleep and when you wake up he’ll be there.”

And all Nate did was let out a tired yawn and hum, almost immediately falling back asleep in his arms.

Liam just watched the two, now understanding why Harry basically melts when he sees the two of them together. “I’ll catch up with you boys later, can’t wait to hear about that talk you’re gonna have,” he said as he followed Louis towards the door.

“Yeah, hopefully it goes well,” Louis laughed a bit nervously. “Wish me luck mate.”

“You don’t need it,” he said as soon as the older lad stepped into the hallway. “Really Louis, he likes you… A lot.”

Louis just nodded back at him, trying to hide his smile into Nate’s hair as he pulled him in just a bit closer.

He made his way back down the hall to his room, making sure not to jostle the 3 year old too much as he unlocked the door and shuffled into his room. And of course Harry was still snoring, now taking full advantage of him not being there and completely sprawling out on the bed.

“C’mere big guy, let’s see if daddy will make some room for us,” he whispered, trying his absolute hardest to gently nudge Harry closer to his side of the bed.

Luckily he was able to make just enough room for him and Nate to lay down without waking Harry. When he placed the 3 year old on the mattress though and then made himself comfortable he almost went still at feeling Nate reach for him and sleepily crawl onto his chest.

Louis just laid there still for a second, the toddler making himself completely comfortable on him, and if he was being honest he didn’t know what to do as Nate wrapped an arm around his neck and fell asleep on his chest. He just looked down at the 3 year old, trying to think of what to do, if he should just let Nate sleep on him. But just at watching the toddler on him, seeing his slow deep breaths and how comfortable he seemed on him made a small smile come over Louis.

It was amazing to him how at ease Nate seemed with him, how he was was comfortable enough with him where he felt safe enough to sleep on him. So with that thought Louis wrapped a secure arm around the 3 year old, pulling him impossibly closer to his chest and rubbing his back as he kissed his hair and tried to fight the wide grin that threatened to come over him.

With Nate in his arms and Harry snoring next to him Louis wasn’t sure if there was any better way to fall asleep.

And he wasn’t sure how much longer it was when he woke up, but when he did it was to a camera going off and a lens pointing at him and Nate.

“What’re you doing?” he whispered to Harry, not even trying to fight off his tired smile as he saw the younger lad standing over him.

But Harry didn’t say anything, instead grinned back at Louis before kneeling down, bringing his camera back up to his face and taking one more picture of the two.

It was always moments like these he wanted to remember, the small things that could so easily be forgotten, the things that don’t seem important but to Harry means the world.

So he didn’t say anything but put his camera down on the bedside table and lean down until his lips met Louis, almost immediately feeling the older lad smiling against him and brushing his fingers through the back of his curls.

If Harry had it his way this would be his forever, waking up like this, with Nate and Louis. He just hoped the blue eyed lad felt the same.

*~*

Louis bounced on his heels as he waited for the door to open, knowing Harry was inside as he heard him talking and he also got a text from him not even ten minutes ago to come over so they could go to the beach. But here he was, knocking at the door for maybe the third time and still no answer.

“H? Babe can you open the door?”

And it was only a second later it swung open, Harry not even saying a hello before he turned on his heel and got back to his seemingly very serious conversation on the phone.

Louis was still for only a moment, biting his lip and taking a careful step into the room, looking around and seeing Nate pouting on the bed with his arms crossed over his chest.

“Hey buddy, you alright?” he asked as he made his way towards the toddler.

But Nate just shrugged, glancing over to his father who was pacing the room and paying no mind to anything else but who he was talking to.

“Are you upset? Is it about who daddy is talking to?” Louis asked softly, taking a seat on the bed and wrapping an arm around Nate.

“He promise…” Nate barely whispered.

Louis furrowed his eyebrows, having no clue what the 3 year old could possibly be talking about. But just as he looked up to see where Harry was he saw the younger lad come over to them, his phone still clutched in his hand.

“I’m sorry Lou, I’ll be off soon,” he whispered to him. “Buddy Sam says hi.”

“I don’t care,” Nate mumbled, sinking further into the bed.

Harry just looked at him for a second, letting out a deep breath before sending one more apologetic look to Louis and getting back to his conversation.

And Louis didn’t know what else to do besides pull Nate in closer to his side, having no clue who Sam was or why the 3 year old seemed so upset with Harry.

It may have been another 15 minutes when he was finally off the phone though, clearly more than stressed and annoyed at whatever they were talking about.

“Hey, you alright?” Louis asked carefully as he watched Harry throw himself into a chair and run a frustrated hand over his face.

“Uhm, yeah, yeah, m’fine,” he mumbled. “Just have some unexpected work that needs to get done.”

“Daddy no!!” Nate suddenly screamed, looking at his father furiously. “You promise!!”

“Buddy I know but-”

“No!” Nate yelled again, this time his lip quivering and seeming a second away from crying. “You promise this time no work, a-and you always break promise you say this time different!!”

Harry opened his mouth, wanting to say anything to calm Nate down but knew nothing he said would. “Big guy I know I did, but Sam-”

“Make him do it!” Nate said, this time tears running down his cheeks as he looked back at his father.

“He can’t Nate, that’s the problem, that’s why I have to,” Harry tried to explain to him. “I’ll be done before dinner and-”

But Harry was cut off again, this time by his son letting out a loud cry and rolling himself off the bed, running to his room and slamming the door shut.

It was silent for a second, Louis just looking at Harry, seeing him completely stressed and hearing Nate’s muffled cries from the other room.

“H is there anything I can do?” Louis asked softly, carefully getting up from the bed and heading over to the younger lad to rub his back.

Harry just hid his face in his hands, letting out a deep breath and trying his absolute hardest to calm down. “I’m sorry Lou, he just- he gets like that when work comes up, I-”

“Hey, hey, it’s fine,” Louis assured him. “I can still take him to the beach and into town, maybe grab some lunch and you can do your work, it’s fine love,” he said, pressing a gentle kiss to his hair.

“You sure? Because Lou I know-”

“I’m positive,” Louis said, not wanting him to stress about this.

Harry looked at him for a second to make sure he was positive about this, but nodded anyway, knowing Nate would have a much better time with Louis at the beach than with him cooped up in the room.

“I really appreciate it Louis… And I promise to be with you guys for dinner... I just have this one client that wants me to do their editing and if I don’t we won’t get paid so…”

“I get it love, it’s okay.”

And Harry couldn’t even say just how grateful he was to Louis, but he still worried for Nate. It was this exact thing he knew that he had to work on to be a better father, but it wasn’t going to come overnight.

“I’ll go get him ready to head out and you can start on work,” Louis said, offering the younger lad a small smile before leaning down and gently connecting their lips.

He saw Harry nod back at him before he headed into the other room to check on Nate. And as soon as he walked into the bedroom he almost felt his heartbreak at seeing the 3 year old curled up in his blankets and crying into his pillow.

“Oh big guy, it’s okay, it’s alright,” he said softly, rushing over to the toddler and wrapping his arms around him. “C’mon we can’t have you crying on the beach, that won’t be much fun.”

“I-is daddy coming?”

Louis bit his lip, keeping his eyes on Nate as he let out a quiet breath. “No buddy, it’s just gonna be me and you for a bit.”

And if possible Nate only started crying more at hearing that, tucking his head into Louis’ neck and holding onto him tightly.

“It’s alright, you and I are still gonna have a great time, it’s okay…”

But Nate just sniffled to himself, knowing Louis was fun to be around, he just wished his daddy would come with them.

“C’mere buddy, let’s get ready for the beach,” Louis said softly, kissing the toddler’s head one more time before wrapping his arms around him and picking him up from the bed.

He knew where everything Nate needed was, making sure to pack a bag for him and triple check he had everything before getting him in his swimming trunks.

“We all set buddy?” Louis asked, offering the 3 year old a small smile and making sure he was all set.

Nate nodded and hummed, and Louis could see he was still a bit disappointed that Harry wasn’t going with them. He was determined to make today fun for the toddler though, he hated seeing him so upset.

“Wanna say bye bye to daddy?” he asked, scooping Nate up as they made their way out of the bedroom.

But the 3 year old just looked at his father, seeing him sitting on the bed and seemingly very focused on whatever was on his computer.

“H…” Louis said, trying to get the younger lad’s attention as he saw that he didn’t even notice them back in the room.

“Huh?” Harry mumbled, never taking his eyes off his laptop.

“We’re heading out,” Louis said quietly, biting his lip as he watched Harry.

And it was only when he heard that did Harry look up, seeing Nate in Louis’ arms and grinning softly at him. “Ready for a fun day?”

Nate nodded at his daddy, resting his head on Louis’ shoulder and wrapping his arms around his neck.

“Okay well I-... I love you buddy, never forget that,” Harry barely managed out as he kissed his son’s head. “And thank you so much, I owe you,” he whispered to Louis, making sure to give him a quick peck as well.

“It’s no problem love. Just get your work done and you can join us later,” he smiled back at the younger lad.

And Harry just nodded back at him, looking between the two and letting out a deep breath before saying one more goodbye and watching as the two left.

“You alright big guy?” Louis asked once they were in the hallway.

Nate shrugged, keeping his head on the older man’s shoulder and hiding his face in his neck.

“C’mon Nate, it’s alright,” Louis said softly as he shifted the 3 year old on his hip and kissed his hair. “We’ll still have a great day, just you and me and then later daddy will be with us.”

“But he always do this,” Nate barely whispered. “He always do work and that more portant.”

Louis glanced down at him, trying his hardest not to see how broken the toddler looked. “You and I both know that nothing is more important to your father than you. You always come first buddy, but right now daddy just has to do a little work and that’s it.”

“That what he say but he no mean it!” Nate suddenly raised his voice. “He always takin picture and always on puter doing work! He say we go on trip and no work, but he lie!!”

“But Nate it's not always work,” Louis tried to point out. “When we’re out having fun daddy just likes to take pictures, it’s not work. And when he’s on the computer he’s working on those pictures, trust me big guy, that’s just what your father does for fun.”

And all Nate did was huff, mumbling to himself as he heard the older man, but he still didn’t like that his father did those things.

Louis could see he wasn’t going very far with him either, knowing Harry would have to talk to him about this, that Nate wouldn’t believe him, but maybe his father. He’s sure Harry has talked to him about it too, that he tried to explain the situation to Nate, but maybe the 3 year old just didn’t want to hear any of it.

But still, he wanted to try to distract Nate enough and make sure today was for him.

So the two made their way off the boat, passing Liam as they went along and waving to him. And Louis may have seen a flash of confusion on the brown eyed lad’s face as he saw the two of them with no Harry, but he wasn’t worrying about that right now, his focus was solely on Nate.

“Wow, look at that buddy, huh?” he asked, breathing in the fresh air, if possible this island seeming more beautiful than the last they’ve been to.

Nate picked his head up, squinting into the sun and just at seeing the beach and the large ocean in front of them he couldn’t fight his smile. “Lou Lou what that?”

Louis looked to where Nate was pointing as he walked further onto the dock and tried to get past the sea of people to make it to the beach. “Looks like they’re windsurfing buddy, maybe you and I could have a go at that, what do you think?”

“We can do that?!” Nate looked at him wide eyed.

“We can try,” Louis chuckled to himself. “I’m sure there’s somewhere we can get someone to take us out on one.”

Just at hearing that Nate was almost squealing in the older man’s arms, and Louis could easily say it was the best thing he heard all day. He was thinking maybe that could be one of the last things they do today, ending the afternoon on a great note and it also gave him time to look around and see if it was even possible to get on one of the boats.

“Alright big guy so we’re gonna find us a little spot to put all our stuff and then the fun can begin,” Louis said, looking all around and only feeling a bit nervous at all the people here.

He would be terrified if something happened to Nate, if he got lost or someone bumped into him. He didn’t want to take the 3 year old out of his sight and it was as if within a second a wave nerves washed over him with all the things that could possibly go wrong running through his head.

“Spot there Lou! Go!” Nate urged, seeing an open area on the beach.

Louis didn’t waste a second before taking off for the spot on the sand, making Nate giggle from his arms, but he wasn’t going to let anyone get there before him.

“Aw yeah buddy, look at this,” he said happily, getting to the small area and not wasting a second before setting their towels out. “Now just because daddy isn’t here doesn’t mean we’re going easy on the sunscreen, so come here big guy.”

And he expected the groan that came from Nate, but because of how much sunscreen Harry puts on Nate he only figured the toddler burned easily. If he’s anything like his father then Louis knew he would go red within an hour if he didn’t put the cream on him.

“Alright, we got our hat, sunglasses,” Louis muttered to himself, double checking that Nate was safe from the burning sun.

“Lou,” Nate whined, him possibly being worse than his father. “Can we just go swimmin already?”

Louis let out a small breath as he looked over the toddler again, deeming him safe enough to actually be outside in the sun. So he let Nate drag him towards the water and the 3 year old didn’t waste a second before jumping into the ocean, only making Louis have a minor heart attack as he went in after him and made sure his head popped up.

He felt like it would be like this all day, just being overprotective and watching Nate’s every move. But he supposed that is just what parenting is like, and he might as well get used to it.

*~*

“Lou Lou,” Nate muttered, crawling on the older man’s chest as he was laying in the sand and soaking up the sun.

“What’s up big guy?” Louis mumbled tiredly, wrapping his arm around Nate and just barely picking his head up from the ground.

He couldn’t even say how exhausted he was from chasing the 3 year old around all day, he doesn’t know how Harry does this on a daily basis.

“Do you think…-” Nate stopped himself for a second, trying to figure out what it was he wanted to ask him. “Do you think if I be more good then daddy no work so much?”

“Be good?” Louis asked quietly with furrowed eyebrows.

“Well like listen more, I dunno,” Nate shrugged, refusing to meet Louis’ eyes as he looked back at him.

Louis felt his jaw go slack, looking back at Nate and having no clue where he was getting these thoughts from. He tried so hard all day to make sure the toddler was having fun. Being in the water as long as Nate wanted, helping him build sand castles and buying a football they could kick around and even getting the two of them on one of the wind surf boats. But still, he could see that the 3 year old was missing Harry.

“Buddy I don’t want you thinking like that,” Louis said softly, looking at him seriously. “Your father, he-... Being a boss of a business can be very hard,” he tried to explain as easily as possible. “But he’s doing the best he can right now to make sure you two have everything you need and sometimes that means he has to work a lot. I don’t want you to think your daddy works so much because of something you do, he works because he has to.”

“But it just- it all the time,” Nate said, not wanting to whine but he couldn’t help it. “You no see him at home, he always work.”

“You’re right, I don’t see him at home,” Louis said quietly. “But Nate, I can promise you the reason daddy works so much is because he has to, not because he wants to, and it has nothing to do with anything you do or how you act.”

Nate didn’t say anything, instead finally picked his head up and looked back at the older man, and seeing just how serious he was. “You talk to daddy bout work?” he asked almost nervously. “Daddy listen to you…”

Louis opened his mouth, wanting to say anything to comfort Nate, but he didn’t know if it was his place to say something to Harry. Clearly it was a problem between the pair and it crushed him to see how upset the 3 year old was about all of it, but he also knew that Harry understood the problem and tried everything in his power to fix it.

“I’ll see what I can do big guy…” Louis finally settled on, pulling Nate even closer to his chest and kissing his head. “Come on buddy, I think it’s about time we get on the boat, and maybe get some dinner?”

Nate nodded back at him, standing up and helping Louis pack all of their things.

For the first time ever he was excited to go back on the boat and be carried away from the beach just so he could see his daddy. He only hoped that when they got back to the room that his father was done with work.

Louis carried him the entire way, the older man weaving through people and getting on the boat with no problems. And the closer they got to the room Nate was growing more and more worried that his daddy would be busy still.

But luckily when they finally got back into the room he saw his father off his computer and not fiddling with his camera, but fast asleep on his bed.

“Daddy!!” Nate shrieked, wiggling out of Louis’ arms and rushing towards the bed.

Harry let out a grunt as he felt a body fall on top of him, successfully waking him up and making a small smile come over him as he saw his son. “Hey big guy, you and Louis have fun?”

And he wasn’t all that surprised to hear the toddler dive into all the things he and Louis got up to, telling him about everything they did to the last detail.

Harry was more than happy to listen though, he was so relieved to hear that despite him not being there his son had a good time. And he couldn’t even say how grateful he was to the blue eyed lad for sending him pictures of Nate throughout the day, that also putting himself at ease some.

His son was almost clinging to him, and Harry knew he missed him all day and truth be told he hated that he couldn’t be with him but instead cooped up in the room.

“You get all you work done?” Nate asked quietly once he was done telling his father about his day.

“I did,” Harry breathed out as he nodded. “I promise big guy, that’s it for the rest of the trip. I talked to Sam and made him promise he won’t even call me unless it’s an emergency, okay?”

“Really?” Nate asked, looking up at his daddy and biting his lip, really hoping that was true.

“Really really,” Harry smiled down at him.

And just at hearing that Nate didn’t try to fight his own grin, but he just hoped his father would keep this promise.

“You hungry love? You eat yet today?” Louis asked as he put Nate’s bag on a chair.

“Food sounds incredible, I haven’t been able to do anything at all today, just too busy,” Harry huffed.

“Well then what do you think boys? You okay if I take you both out on a little date?”

“If daddy come,” Nate said, looking to his father.

And Harry just smiled down at Nate, pulling him into his side and kissing his head, knowing his son missed him all day, and it was no secret he missed him as well. “Of course buddy.”

Louis couldn’t help the laugh that came out of him as he heard Nate cheering and saw how happy Harry seemed. It was this he loved to see and he was happy to see the 3 year old smile genuinely for the first time all day.

*~*

“You alright babe?” Louis asked, seeing Harry sprawled out on the bed as he came out of the bathroom.

“Yeah,” Harry breathed out as he combed his fingers through the front of his curls. “Just today… I dunno, I hated that I couldn’t be with you and Nate.”

Louis nodded as he crawled on the bed next to the younger lad and rested his chin on his chest to look up at him. “You needed to work love, it’s okay.”

“No but… This kinda stuff happens all the time, and I feel so awful about it,” Harry barely whispered. “I promise him time for just the two of us and every single time I get pulled one way and then another for work, and it breaks my heart knowing that my promises mean nothing to my own son.”

Harry couldn’t even begin to explain how terrible he’s been when it comes to work. That was one of the reasons he wanted to come on this trip, to really get away from it all and show Nate that he’s the most important thing in his life, and yet he still managed to screw that up.

“Love you know…” Louis stopped for a second, trying to figure out what it was he really wanted to say. “You can’t be perfect at everything,” he said quietly. “You have to juggle, and right now you’re doing the best you can and in the long run it’s to benefit both of you.”

“I know but at the same time I’m hurting mine and my son’s relationship.”

And Louis wanted to say something, just anything to make the younger lad feel better. But he felt like no matter what he told him Harry wouldn’t listen.

“You’ve done so much for him Harry…” he barely whispered, keeping his eyes on him even though Harry refused to look back. “You fought so hard to give him a good life and I know you don’t believe it, but you are an incredible father. Sure, you have some bumps here and there but at the end of the day you will forever be the person he looks up to and loves with all his heart.”

Maybe it was that that did it, because Harry finally picked his head up to look at Louis and for a split second he thought the younger was actually taking in what he was saying.

“Thank you Louis…”

Louis smiled back him, more than relieved he was able to get Harry to see what he sees. It was clear to anyone with eyes how much the two Styles meant to each other, how much they loved each other. But maybe sometimes they both just needed a reminder of how the other felt.

“I really don’t know what I would’ve done without you on this trip…” Harry barely whispered. “I mean, which is pretty crazy considering we just met and all, but I dunno, you just mean a lot to me and Nate.”

Louis was quiet for a second, this being his chance to talk to Harry, to get a better understanding how the younger lad really feels about him. “Harry uhm… What are- l-like what are we doing?” he asked, trying his hardest to contain his nerves and not seem like a complete mess.

But Harry just laid there, his eyes locked on Louis and trying to figure out what to say.

“You know, like you and me,” Louis continued on, not sure if he understood what he was really asking. “Because I’ll be honest H, I don’t want this to end after the cruise is over…”

“Really?” Harry barely whispered, not expecting that in the slightest, but if he was being honest it was exactly what he was hoping the older lad would say.

“Yeah, really,” Louis smiled back at him, almost trying not to laugh as he saw Harry’s shocked face.

Harry felt his jaw go slack, wanting to say something but absolutely nothing was coming out. He was trying to get it through his head that this man, this incredibly sweet and caring guy wanted to be with him, and also wanted to be a part of Nate’s life.

“Well… What if I say I wanted that too?” he asked, finally finding his voice.

And just at hearing that Louis didn’t try to fight the blinding smile that came over him as he picked his head off from Harry’s chest and pressed their lips together.

He knew he startled the green eyed lad a bit, but it was like taking in a breath of fresh air when he started kissing him back and didn’t have a trace of hesitance before wrapping his arms around him to make sure there was absolutely no room between them.

“Holy shit, I don’t think you understand how happy that just made me,” Louis laughed sheepishly to himself.

“Well that makes two of us.”

And if possible Louis’ smile only grew as he leaned back in to connect their lips again.

He couldn’t even begin to describe how comforting it was to know that he didn’t have a limited number of times he could do this. Now Louis knew that Harry wanted to be with him just as much as he did, and he knew he wouldn’t be letting go of the two Styles anytime soon.

Chapter Text

1 Week Later

“Are you okay buddy? You still sleepy?” Harry asked softly, shifting Nate on his hip as he rubbed the toddler’s back.

Nate couldn’t help the yawn that came from him a second later, nodding at his daddy before resting his head on his shoulder and slowly closing his eyes.

Harry let out a quiet breath as he glanced at his son, stepping into the lift and pushing the number that Louis had texted him.

He knew the jetlag was hard on Nate, they landed back in London just yesterday, but he had hoped that by now the 3 year old would be used to the time difference. There was no lying that they were both upset about the cruise coming to an end, but Harry liked to believe they used the rest of their time on the boat to the fullest. Of course they went to the beach, went on every water slide available, built enough sand castles to create an empire and walked through too many little towns to count. At least he got enough pictures to relive the entire trip, every single one of them having Nate or Louis in them, or the two of them together.

But now they were home, and the blue eyed lad true to his word made it a point that they still see each other. So this is how Harry and Nate found themselves walking down the hall of a clearly overly fancy building in the search of Louis’ flat.

“My boys!!” Louis squealed as soon as he swung the door open after hearing a soft knock.

And he didn’t even waste a second before lunging at the younger lad and squeezing the life out of him, kissing Nate’s head and making sure to press his and Harry’s lips together.

“Love, love,” Harry laughed against him. “What’s gotten into you?”

“I missed you!” Louis said like that was the most ridiculous question.

Harry raised his eyebrows at that, letting a low chuckle escaped him as he shook his head at him. “Lou it’s only been a day.”

“Well yeah, but…” Louis trailed off a bit embarrassed. “I’m just- I’m excited, okay?” he huffed, there being no way he could hide it. “We’re all back home and you’re at my place for the first time and I dunno, it’s- it’s just like boyfriend things or whatever.”

And Harry really did try to stop the wide smile that was coming over him as he heard Louis, it impossible for him to say he was happy about the same thing. But just as he was about to say something so he didn’t seem like some idiot a small but mighty bark scared the life out of him.

“Princess! Stop it!” Louis said, tugging on the small pug’s collar to get her to stop jumping on Harry.

“Doggy!!” Nate shrieked, very suddenly wide awake as he wiggled out of his father’s arms.

“Princess?” Harry barked, his laugh echoing in the hallway and only getting louder as he saw Louis’ bright red cheeks.

“Okay, yeah, whatever, but you’ll understand once you get to know her!” Louis huffed, rolling his eyes as he pulled his dog inside and ushered the two Styles in as well.

Harry just hummed as he tried to keep in his laughter, his eyes trained on Nate and this overly adorable pug that was running circles around the 3 year old. “I didn’t even know you had a dog.”

“Really?” Louis asked a bit surprised. “I mean, I know I never mentioned her, but she’s my phone background and you’ve seen that.”

“Well how was I supposed to know she was your dog? I thought you just liked pugs or whatever and liked to look at them.”

Louis thought that was a fair point, but he didn’t think he came off as a weird dog lover like that. “Sorry about never mentioning her, but at least now you two can get to know each other.”

“Yeah,” Harry said softly, kneeling down and smiling to himself as the little dog immediately made her way over to him. “When did you get her?”

“Uhm, about two years ago... She was actually a gift from my mum. I suppose she only got her for me because she thought I was lonely in this big place by myself…”

Harry looked back up to Louis, seeing the older lad biting his lip as he watched his dog rolling on the floor. “Hey buddy you wanna play with Princess for a bit while Lou and I talk?”

Nate scoffed, that seeming like a crazy question as he focused back on the dog.

And that was good enough for Harry, sending a silent look to Louis to lead him further into the flat, having no clue where to go.

“Are uh, are you okay?” Louis asked quietly as he started walking down the hall and towards the living room.

“Yeah, yeah, m’fine,” Harry smiled softly at him. “Just wanted to talk is all.”

Louis just nodded back at him, taking him into the kitchen and having him take a seat before he made his way to the fridge and pulled out two beers for them.

“So uhm… Your place is absolutely beautiful, makes me feel like my flat is a dump,” he chuckled a bit nervously, just trying to make small talk before he got to what he really wanted to talk about.

“Oh c’mon, don’t say that,” Louis laughed sheepishly. “I mean, don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that, but I’m sure you’re flat is lovely, it’s your guys’ home.”

Harry shrugged to himself, his focus mainly on the bottle in his hands as he listened to the older lad. “But you uh, you’ve lived here all by yourself for that long? I mean the whole two years while you’ve had Princess?”

“Uhm, yeah, I mean…” Louis started off quietly, biting his lip and scratching the back of his neck as he thought of what he wanted to say without seeming pathetic. “Even a few years before Princess it was just me… Hence why my mum got her for me.”

At hearing that Harry picked his head up, his eyes locked on Louis and seeing him almost sink into himself. “You never- l-like- you didn’t date anyone or…?”

“I-...” Louis let out a deep breath, leaning against the counter and finding himself trying to talk but absolutely nothing was coming out. “I work a lot,” he settled on. “And when I tried to date it was difficult, they would just get fed up with it really quick and I wasn’t willing to change because I love my job more than anything. I mean, it’s given me everything I have,” he said quietly as he looked around his flat. “I just gave up after a while and told myself I wouldn’t start dating again until I found someone I was willing to do anything for and be anything for them.”

And even if Harry tried he doesn’t think he would be able to stop the smile that came over him, making sure to duck his head just so Louis couldn’t see his reddening cheeks.

“And just in case you were wondering… I found that someone.”

Harry could actually hear the smirk on Louis’ face, and sure enough when he looked up there it was, followed by a wink sent from the older lad that made him melt that much more.

“And just so you have a clue...” Louis whispered, leaning even further on the counter so he was just inches away from Harry. “It’s you.”

“You’re an idiot,” was the best Harry could come up with as Louis was looking at him the way he was, and almost immediately wanting to hit himself as he said it.

“Maybe…” Louis shrugged. “But I’m a lucky idiot.”

He wanted to say something, just anything so he wouldn’t be sitting there looking even more stupid. But the only thing he could think to do was reach for the back of Louis’ neck and pull the older lad towards him until their lips met.

And Louis didn’t waste a second before kissing him back, making it a point to take the few steps to go around the counter just so he could be closer to Harry. Wrapping his arms around his neck and settling himself between his legs just so he could feel more of him.

Their lips moving together so effortlessly, and even after a day Louis couldn’t put into words how much he missed this. Kissing Harry, being so close to him had Louis feeling like he could breathe easily again.

It seemed ridiculous that is was only hours ago the two said goodbye to each other and already Louis couldn’t wait to see him again. But they were together for nearly two weeks straight and as soon as Harry was gone Louis couldn’t help but miss him.

“Lou Lou I wanna take Princess for walk!!” Nate screamed as he ran into the room with the little dog on his heels.

Louis pulled away from Harry, not needing the 3 year old to see them snog and rested his head against the younger lad’s.

“I know you only want to be alone so you can show feelings,” Nate huffed as he looked between the two.

Louis almost startled himself with how loud he laughed, taking a full step back from Harry and putting his hands up in defeat. “Of course it wasn’t that buddy, we were just gonna start dinner.”

“Oh yeah?” Nate asked with a raised eyebrows as he crossed his arms over his chest. “Then where the food?” he challenged him.

“Nathaniel calm down,” Harry chuckled into his hand. “We’ll walk Princess after dinner, don’t get too aggressive there big guy.”

“Fine,” Nate muttered as he let out a small breath. “But Lou where loo?”

“C’mere buddy, I’ll show ya,” Louis smiled fondly at the toddler. “You too love, I’ll give you that full tour.”

And Harry definitely wasn’t going to argue with that, following the two as Louis led Nate to the bathroom.

Even at just the kitchen and few hallways he’s seen Harry was in awe. Louis’ place looked like it belonged in a home decor magazine. It was completely spotless and absolutely beautiful, he couldn’t believe the blue eyed lad lived here by himself.

“So uh down here I have my library, where I spend most of the day. I usually have a script to go over and lines to learn so it’s nice to have a room where I can talk to myself and make voices without Princess looking at me like I’m crazy.”

Louis pointed to each room, having to pause each time as Harry made it a point to look into the room and take in every little thing. If anything he found it to be adorable though, the younger lad looked as if he was walking through a museum.

“And uh, up here is uhm, is my room,” Louis said a bit nervously, nodding his head to the only closed door in the entire place.

“Can I?” Harry asked, already reaching for the door.

Louis couldn’t help himself as he bit his lip and shuffled on his feet, but he nodded anyway, not even why he was so nervous about Harry seeing his room.

But clearly the younger lad didn’t even notice his slight hesitance as he pushed the door open without a second thought and made his way into the room. And the first thing Harry saw made him go still. Before he noticed anything else his eyes were drawn to an entire wall that was covered with awards. From the movies that Louis has done voice acting in, the shows he starred in, and even some from his high school footie years, every award the older lad has ever won was on this wall and took up shelves.

“Wow…” Harry breathed out, even just looking at this one thing in his room he was blown away. “Lou these are incredible… I mean, shit…”

And Louis was a bit surprised as he saw Harry speechless, his eyes just scanning along his wall and taking every single award in. “Hard work pays off I guess,” he said, not sure what else he could say.

“I’ll say,” Harry chuckled to himself. ‘I mean your entire place is incredible, but this I really love.”

“Really?” Louis asked a bit surprised, him being a bit nervous that Harry would think all of his awards came off as him trying to show off.

“Seriously,  I mean… It’s just incredible how much you’ve accomplished and you know, that’s something to be proud of, I think it’s great.”

Louis couldn't even say anything, only allowing a soft smile to come over him as he watched Harry walk around the rest of his room and take everything else in.

“Daddy!! Where are you?!”

“Upstairs buddy!!” Harry yelled back, not all that surprised to hear the little patter of feet and dog nails running towards them.

“Lou you place so big! It like a maze!” Nate said breathlessly as soon as he found the room.

“Well do you think you can find your way back to the kitchen? I dunno about you boys, but I’m starving.”

Nate didn’t even answer him before taking off, taking what the older man said as a challenge and determined to show him he knew where he was going.

“You don’t know how nice it is for him to have a place to run around,” Harry chuckled to himself as he took Louis’ offered hand and followed him out of the room.

“Well you two are welcome here anytime. Not gonna lie it was a bit lonely not having you in the bed last night.”

Harry pressed his lips together, trying to stop his growing smile as he heard the older lad. There was no lying, he missed Louis a lot too, especially last night when he went to sleep and didn’t have him there with him.

It was hard to think that he’s only known Louis for just a few weeks and already he felt so connected to someone. But now with them being home it gave him the opportunity to see the older lad in his everyday sense. He got to see where he lived, what his everyday life was like and Harry was excited to get to know these parts of Louis.

*~*

Harry gripped at the railing in front him, taking in a deep breath and letting his eyes scan over the river that laid below him. The lit up city, the London eye and Big Ben all before him were absolutely breathtaking, he swears he could spend forever just looking at the lights.

“You alright love?”

Harry’s head whipped around at the sound of Louis’ voice, a smile immediately coming over him as he saw the older lad with two wine glasses. “I’m more than alright, I can’t get over how amazing your place is.”

“Well I’ll tell ya with you two here it makes the place feel like a real home,” Louis breathed out quietly as he passed the younger lad his glass. “It’s always been so quiet, so empty and with you and Nate coming over for once there’s life here.”

Harry bit his lip as he listened to the older lad, from talking with Louis earlier tonight it was clear just how lonely he was. Sure he had Niall and Zayn, but there was always something special about having someone to go home to.

It was clear to anyone with eyes just how much Louis loved having them over tonight. He was so excited about absolutely everything, showing them how he makes his favorite dinner, his movie collection, where Princess sleeps, it was as if he was a child who had a friend over for a playdate for the first time. And even if they weren’t on a boat or tanning on some tropical island they still had the time of their lives.

Nate was practically rolling on the floor from laughing so much at all the voices Louis was doing, acting just as silly as ever. And Harry was trying to make sure the older lad didn’t burn his flat down because he was too distracted trying to entertain Nate instead of cooking dinner.

“It’s so different being back home…” Louis said softly, his own gaze on the lit up city below them. “I just can’t believe you’re here with me.”

“No other placed I’d rather be,” Harry said just loud enough for Louis to hear, it not even a second later he felt the older lad walk up behind him and wrap his arms around his waist.

Louis hummed into his shoulder, kissing him gently there and pressing his thumb into Harry’s hip.

And Harry was trying incredibly hard to stop his cheeks from going red at the blue eyed lad’s touch. Luckily Louis was behind him though and he was able to hide himself a bit behind his wine glass as he sipped at it.

“By the way Nate is with Princess watching a movie, he knows we’re out here but I think he might pass out soon,” Louis told him, knowing Harry would be wondering where his rambunctious boy was.

“Oh, do you uh, do you want us to leave?” Harry asked a bit nervously, not sure if he was trying to politely hint that he wants him to go.

“Love I’m gonna keep you hostage here for as long as you’ll let me,” Louis scoffed.

“Well you might have to let me go so I can go to work, but I promise I’ll come back and be your hostage again,” he tried to joke.

“Are you already trying to move in Styles?” Louis laughed, squeezing at his hip again before letting him go to walk around him to lean his back against the railing.

“You’re the one trying to keep me here!” Harry retorted wide eyed back.

“Hey it’s not a hostage situation if you want to be here though,” Louis pointed out.

And Harry couldn’t think of anything to say to that. There was no way he could hide that he absolutely loved Louis’ place, and he loved being with him even more. So being a hostage really didn’t seem all that terrible.

“We’ll just call it a volunteer hostage then,” he said, sounding more and more ridiculous as time went on.

But Harry wasn’t expecting the loud bark of a laugh that escaped Louis. He was worried for a second that the older lad finally saw how crazy he can be but then he felt Louis grabbing him and pulling him into his chest until their lips collided.

Harry was still and kind of startled for a second, but Louis was kissing him, and he wasn’t going to waste that opportunity.

He let his fingers run through his hair, down his back and resting it on the older lad’s hip. But it was Louis who was taking full control of the kiss. It was hard and sloppy at first, their lips moving together in a rush but before Harry knew it Louis slowing them down, easing them into a much gentler kiss.

“You are something else Styles, you know that?” Louis mumbled against him, only to press their lips together again.

And Harry couldn’t help himself as he smiled against the older lad, kissing him back and refusing to let him go anytime soon. “Yeah, you tell me about five times a day,” he joked before connecting their lips again.

“It’s a good thing, I promise,” Louis chuckled, this time actually pulling away from the younger lad and combing his fingers through the back of his curls.

Harry hummed, not so sure about that, but for now he’ll take Louis’ word for it.

“So can I keep you hostage for the night and maybe in the morning take you and Nate for a little breakfast date?” Louis wiggled his eyebrows at him.

“I guess that’s fine,” Harry breathed out dramatically. “But I have to get back to work tomorrow, so can we make it a quick breakfast?”

“Whatever you want love,” Louis said softly as he smiled up at him. “But for now I think you and I should go finish out that movie with Nate before we have our own fun later.”

And Harry went near still as he saw Louis wink at him before he walked off to go back inside. But he was quick to scurry back inside and follow after the older lad, trying not to completely overthink what Louis just said and not get too worked up about it.

*~*

“He get put down okay?”

“Yeah, he has Princess as company,” Harry laughed quietly to himself, the 3 year old not letting the dog out of his sight all night.

Louis rolled his eyes fondly as he tugged his shirt off and unbuttoned his shorts and started getting ready for bed. “My cuddle buddy got stolen from me,” he fake sniffled.

“But at least you have a replacement,” Harry said quietly, glancing towards Louis only to see him wiggling his eyebrows back at him.

“Yeah I do, much better than the original.”

And Harry could hear the smirk the older lad was undoubtedly wearing, only making his face go hot just at his imagination of what they could possibly get up to tonight.

“You need shorts or something to sleep in?” Louis asked, seeing Harry hesitantly start to undress.

He knew while on the boat the younger lad always slept in shorts but it was clear Harry didn’t think Louis would keep him here for the night. He really just wanted to make Harry was comfortable as he could be, considering how nervous he looked.

“Uhm, n-no I’m okay to just sleep in my boxers, thanks.”

“Aw c’mon, what’s wrong love?” Louis asked, Harry acting as he did when they first met and he had hoped over the course of the cruise he had become more comfortable with him.

Harry let out a quiet breath as he got on top of the covers of the bed and shrugged to himself. “I dunno just being home, seeing your place… It’s like we’re starting from the beginning and it’s making me kind of nervous I guess.”

Louis nodded, understanding what Harry was saying and coming from as he made himself comfortable next to him. “Well it still is the beginning H,” he said softly. “We haven’t known each other all that long but I’d like to think we’ve gotten close and we decided to start dating to become closer. And ya know, being home now we’ll learn more about each other, how we are on a normal day versus on vacation mode. It’s not something you should be nervous about love, but excited.”

Harry knew what Louis said was all true. Being home meant he got to know the real Louis rather than just his fun vacation side, and there was no lie he was excited to get to know Louis even more.

“I am excited, believe me,” he said, sending the older lad a sincere smile. “I guess this is just you getting to know me more, most things that are new make me nervous.”

“Yeah well I believe one of the first things Nate said to me was that the more I get to know you the more comfortable you’ll be with me.”

“Maybe it was something like that,” Harry muttered, still a bit embarrassed at what his son said and Louis winking at him didn’t help anything.

“I’m not all that new now, am I?” Louis almost whispered, shifting himself so he was nearly hovering over the younger lad.

And Harry just looked back up at him, feeling like he wasn’t even breathing with how Louis’ eyes were trained on him, how close he was it kept him guessing as to what the older lad’s next move was.

“N-no, I guess not…”

Louis smirked down at him, allowing his fingers to brush through Harry’s curls and leaning down that much closer to him. “So what is there to be nervous of?”

Harry opened his mouth, almost begging for something to come out but with the way Louis was touching him, was virtually on top of him with the two of them in just their boxers had his voice go numb.

“C’mon H, what is it?” Louis whispered, his lips just barely ghosting over Harry’s ear, moving along his jaw agonizingly slow and feeling the younger lad shudder under him.

“I-I dunno, just you,” he barely managed out, letting his hands mold to the curve of Louis’ hips and pulling him in that much closer.

“What about me?” Louis mumbled against him, refusing to remove his lips from him and kept moving along him until his mouth met Harry’s.

And all Harry could do was hum against him, digging his fingers into Louis’ hair and just as he was really beginning to ache for something more the blue eyed lad pulled away.

“Please H…”

“I don’t know Lou,” Harry breathed out as he shook his head. “This, you, I don’t know…”

“Is it something I do?” Louis asked with furrowed eyebrows, backing up a bit from Harry, only for the younger lad to pull him back in and shake his head again.

“No, no,” he said softly, running a frustrated hand over his face, hating that he couldn’t put his thoughts into words. “It’s just… I like you a lot… A-and you and I, this- this could like be a real amazing thing and that makes me nervous.”

And Louis is rarely speechless, but that, that had him at a complete loss for words.

“Fuck you see? This is why-”

But he was immediately cut off by a strong pair of lips crashing onto his, silencing him in the best way possible. And he didn’t waste a second before kissing Louis back, this being confirmation what he said wasn’t absolutely crazy and he wasn’t going give up this opportunity.

Louis was smiling against him as they kissed, laying down completely on top of him, taking over every single one of his senses with the way he was touching him. Harry wasn’t going to stop him of course, instead encourage him the best way he knew how.

Running his hand down his bare back until they touched the hem of his boxers, spreading out his fingers and squeezing at the older lad’s skin while the other hand roughly comb through his feathery hair and pulled him impossibly closer. And Louis was responding to him just the way he expected, licking his way into his mouth, groaning against him and starting to circle his hips on top of him.

Just at that Harry was if possibly aching for more, he needed it. Everything that Louis was doing had him questioning what would happen next, if this would be just like the other handful of times they’ve gotten to this point and it was just hand jobs or blow jobs, or if tonight would be different, if it would be more.

“What do you want to do love?” Louis breathed hotly against him, as if reading the younger lad’s mind.

“I-I dunno,” Harry shakily breathed out. “Don’t make me make decisions, that’s hard.”

And all Louis could do was laugh into Harry’s mouth, pulling away slightly but making sure he was still rutting up against him to keep heat rising in the two of them. “Well consent is a pretty big thing, so sorry for asking,” he joked.

“Come on, you know I’m okay with this,” Harry muttered, squeezing his eyes shut at the way Louis was sucking at his neck and painfully slow moving his hand towards his growing hard under his boxers.

“I’m just making sure.”

And Harry couldn’t nod fast enough, grabbing the back of Louis’ neck, just aching to feel his thin lips back on his. Of course the blue eyed lad was quick to kiss him back, if possible this time seeming more needy, kissing him with urgency, with want and holding absolutely nothing back.

It was almost like a frenzy at this point, Harry sitting up and wrapping his arms around Louis, pressing their hards together making them moan into each other’s mouths. And Harry couldn't help himself as he molded his hands to Louis’ arse, making the older lad rub against him in smooth motions that absolutely tortured him.

“F-fuck,” Louis stuttered to himself, ducking his head and trying desperately to catch his breath. “H can we- I-I dunno, can we-”

“Yeah, yeah,” Harry nodded, at this point not even needing to think about it.

“Really?” Louis gasped out, looking at him a bit surprised.

“Yes please, so can we just-...” he cut himself off, motioning for things to move along.

“Yeah, yeah, okay,” Louis said quickly, scrambling off the younger lad and towards his bedside table.

And if Harry wasn’t as hot as he was right now he probably would’ve laughed at how fast Louis was moving to get everything, looking frantic as he put a bottle of lube and a condom on the bed.

“You sure you want to do this?”

“Yes I’m sure,” Harry nodded, almost getting tired of this question.

And that's all Louis needed before he reached for the bottle and tore the condom package open.

“Wait, wait,” Harry stopped him, making Louis freeze. “C-can I?” he asked nervously, pointing to the condom. “I-I’m sorry, I just haven’t in a long time and-”

“Yeah, yeah, fuck yeah,” Louis didn’t hesitate before passing Harry the bottle.

And just at that Harry was close to groaning, not wasting a second before laying Louis down on the bed and crashing their lips together. It was sloppy and quick, the two of them needing just to feel one another as much as they could.

They kept it like that for only a moment before Harry hesitantly reached for Louis’ boxers band, getting confirmation it was okay to take them off as the older lad picked his bum up, allowing Harry to take them off with ease.

“You okay, you ready?” Harry breathed out, trying his hardest to calm down and not let his nerves get the best of them.

“Oh so now you care about consent?”

And Harry couldn't help himself as he rolled his eyes at hearing Louis tease him, but if anything that made him only want to kiss him more, so that’s exactly what he did. Easing himself on top of the older lad and just at feeling his hard against his thigh losing his breath.

“H you can start, it’s okay,” Louis barely managed out.

Harry nodded nervously, not even remembering the last time he did something like this with a guy, it’s been far too long and that by itself was killing him. So he shakily reached for the bottle, popping the cap open and squeezing some onto his finger.

He felt like with how nervous he was he wouldn’t even be able to do this, but then Louis was kissing him, clearly trying to calm him down and it helped more than Harry wanted to admit. It helped so much that he actually found enough courage to slip his hand down and feel for the older lad’s hole.

Just at that Louis was breathing heavily against him, nodding furiously until Harry pushed his finger in and the blue eyed lad went still, his jaw going slack and eyes closing shut.

“Good?” Harry asked a bit nervously, not wanting to hurt him of course.

“Yeah, yeah,” Louis barely breathed out at feeling the slow drawl of Harry’s finger in him. “Just been so long.”

“We’ll take it slow love,” Harry said softly, gently pressing his lips to Louis’ as he dragged his finger in and out of him.

Louis just nodded under him, only able to mutter a “fuck” as he felt Harry’s lips sucking at his neck while his finger moved faster and further into him.

And just at the way Louis was responding to him Harry knew to keep going, to keep doing what he was doing until the older lad was ready for more. He ground his hard on top of Louis’, if possible making him squirm and moan even more under him, aching to keep that heat rising in him.

But when Harry felt Louis stiff under him he began to panic. “Fuck, you okay?”

“That’s it, that’s it, right there,” he said in a rush, starting to ride Harry’s finger just to feel him hit that spot again.

Harry opened and closed his mouth, nodding furiously before curving his finger as Louis rode down on it and not even a second later hear him moaning at the touch. And within a second the older lad was reaching for the back of his neck and slamming their lips together, immediately making the kiss sloppy and wet as Harry continued to finger him faster and faster before carefully adding in a second finger and making the kiss that much more messy.

He could tell how desperate Louis was, it basically radiating off him as they kissed and Harry continued to finger him and ground his hips on top of the older lad’s hard.

“F-fuck Harry,” Louis barely managed out. “I-I know you said slow but i-if you keep going like this I’m gonna unload right now.”

Harry was quiet for a second, just kept doing what he’s been doing before he leaned down towards Louis’ ear to whisper to him. “Hold it in until I’m in you or just let it go now and I can make you cum again.”

Just from hearing that, from feeling Harry’s hot breath on him and how his fingers worked at him Louis was done. He didn’t mean to but before he could stop himself he let himself go, a stream of white shooting between him and Harry and a low groan escaping from the back of Louis’ throat.

“Oh shit, didn’t think that would actually work,” Harry chuckled, still moving his fingers inside the older lad to stretch him out and hitting his sweet spot just right to get him hard again.

“Was that your plan?! You wanted me to cum early?!” Louis looked at him wide eyed, feeling like he was being completely taken over but he wasn’t going to complain about it, not at all with the way Harry was touching him.

“Maybe,” Harry smirked, hoping the dark room would hide the way he looking down at him.

“Fucker,” Louis laughed quietly, only to bite his lip to hold in another groan a second later at how Harry’s fingers were working at him.

“It may have been a long time but I have a few tricks up my sleeve,” Harry said a bit breathlessly, just looking down at Louis and trying desperately himself not to cum at how needy he seemed.

And before Louis could even ask what else there was he could do he was cut off by seeing Harry moving further down him and not wasting a second before taking his length into his mouth.

He couldn’t do anything but bury his fingers into Harry’s curls, holding onto him tightly as he felt himself get stretched open and the younger lad’s tongue swirling around him.

He started bobbing his head, letting Louis’ tip his the back of his throat and already feeling him get hard again. Harry knew he was doing this right, knew Louis was enjoying himself if the noises coming out of him were anything to go by. And he himself was ready to lose it, just how Louis looked, how he sounded and every response he gave to what Harry was doing had him a second away from unloading himself. But he couldn’t, not until he was in the older lad and Louis was ready to cum again would he allow himself to let go.

He continued to go down on Louis, hollowing his cheeks and playing with his tip with his tongue as his fingers continued to stretch him out, only adding a third when the blue eyed lad said he could. And it really didn’t take all that long for Louis to get hard again with Harry’s mouth around him and his fingers hitting his spot every single time he pulled his fingers out and pushed them back in in a smooth rhythm.

Before Harry knew it Louis’ length was basically throbbing in his mouth, feeling how tight the older lad was holding onto him and muttering curses under his breath.

“Love I’m ready, it’s okay,” Louis barely managed, knowing he was stretched out enough to take Harry.

“Yeah?” he asked, clear want seeping out of him as he hovered himself over him.

Louis just nodded, reaching for the younger lad and pulling him down until their lips met, within a second slowing everything down as Harry eased himself on top of him.

They kept it like that for a minute, both of them calming down just enough before Louis reached around the bed for the condom, ripping the package open and slipping his hand into Harry’s boxers to put it on him.

And just at feeling Louis’ hand around him Harry was groaning into the older lad’s neck, sucking in a deep breath and trying not to shake at the pressure around him. But Louis wasn’t even phased by his hesitance, instead, pushing Harry’s boxers the rest of the way off him and making sure the condom was one him before stroking his length a few more times.

“F-fuck,” Harry muttered, letting out a few deep breaths and trying to calm down as he realized what they were about to do. “A-are you ready? Like okay if I-”

“Yes, yes, please,” Louis nearly begged.

Harry nodded, gaining his composure as much as he could before settling on top of Louis and aligning himself with his hole. He pushed in slow, immediately hearing the older lad hissing under him and he wasn’t all that shocked since he knew he was rather thick and Louis hasn’t done this in years.

“You okay?” he asked carefully, running his fingers through the blue eyed lad’s hair and kissing him gently.

“Yeah, just-” Louis cut himself off, letting out a deep breath and trying to calm down. “Just go slow.”

“Of course love,” Harry said softly, pressing their lips together once more before placing his hands on either side of Louis’ head and very gently pushing in just a bit more.

Each time he got a bit further into him Harry let the older lad adjust to him, taking this all one step at a time. He talked softly to Louis, making sure he was okay and that he wasn’t hurt, only for him to say back that he could go in more. And it worked like that until Harry felt himself be engulfed by Louis, trying not shake and the tightness that surrounded his length. But he let the blue eyed lad get used to him before he moved, only pulling out a bit when Louis said he could start.

Harry was slow at first, not wanting to hurt him so he only pulled out a little at first before carefully pushing back in. And it took everything in him not to speed up, wanting as much as he could get from Louis but he had to keep himself under control.

Already that unruly heat was consuming him, making him want more and more as he kept grinding into Louis, relieved to hear and see the responses coming from him. Harry could see the older lad relaxing as they went on, saw that he was truly enjoying himself if the moans escaping him were anything to go by, and that’s all Harry wanted.

So he sped up his pace, pulling out more and pushing back in with force, feeling Louis squeezing at his biceps, thighs, scratching down his back and running his fingers through his curls with each thrust. And Harry kept up his pace, Louis comfortable enough where he could start to slam into him, deep grunts escaping him with each movement he made into him.

They were getting into a smooth rhythm, Harry’s length dragging out of Louis before pushing back in with force and feeling himself getting closer and closer to his end. It was exhilarating and exciting, both of them sweating and nearly shaking at the heat that completely overtook them.

And Harry wished it didn’t take him this long to come undone, but before he knew it he was panting, holding everything in him to not let everything go before Louis. But apparently the older lad wasn’t far behind him as Harry saw Louis start squirming and whining under him, clear desperation seeping out of him as he came closer to his own end.

So Harry sped up his pace even more, pulling out as much as he could before slamming back into him and sneaking his hand between the two of them to jerk his hard off. And it was immediate Louis was letting out deep moans, gripping onto Harry as if his life depended on it. It only encouraged him to go harder, to go faster, wanting the blue eyed lad to cum before he did.

Harry was nearly shaking, almost unable to hold himself up any longer and letting their slick chests collide as he ground into Louis with everything he had. He felt like there was no air left in his lungs, his legs going to jelly and his body feeling like it was on fire, just aching to finally release.

And it didn’t take much longer for Louis to come completely undone with Harry slamming into him and the younger lad’s hand wrapped around his length, cumming with a high pitched whine from the back of his throat as white covered his chest for the second time tonight. Harry was right behind him though, as soon as he saw Louis cum allowing himself to release inside the condom with a low grunt.

His face was hidden in the older lad’s neck, deep, shaky breaths escaping him as he came down from his rush and tried to regain himself. Under him Louis was in the same state, barely able to move as Harry slowly and carefully pulled out of him before rolling to the side of him and not wasting a second before gently pressing their lips together.

It was slow and sweet, Harry combing his fingers through the back of Louis’ sweat soaked hair. And just after he released him from the kiss the two just looked each other, both of them not having the energy to talk, but the tired smiles they sent each other was more than enough for the both of them.

Chapter Text

“Alright sweetheart, can you hold your sister, just like this?” Harry smiled gently at the little girl, placing her baby sister carefully in her little arms. “Perfect, you two look so beautiful, so beautiful in fact I’m gonna take a couple pictures, is that okay?”

And the girl nodded happily back at him, holding her sister just like he said and making sure to keep still.

“Thank you so much love, now just smile big at the camera, alright?” he said, picking up the camera that was hanging from his neck and kneeling down on one knee to get the perfect shot.

This is definitely one of the easier shoots he’s done with kids. Half the time they’re crying and the other half they’re running around and refuse to sit for even five minutes for him to take a picture. But these two girls were beyond adorable and so sweet, listening to absolutely everything he said and luckily the little newborn was sound asleep the entire time.

He was getting amazing shots and their parents were cooing at absolutely everything the girls were doing, it was definitely one of the better shoots he’s done.

“Alright you two, I think we’re all set here,” Harry said sweetly, taking the newborn from the little girl and bringing her over to her parents. “So I’ll edit what I have and I can give you guys a call as to when you pick up the pictures, sound good?”

“Sounds perfect Mr. Styles, thank you so much.”

“I’ve told you Lynn, call me Harry, please,” he chuckled to himself. “It was a pleasure working with all of you, really.”

“Well thank you again Harry, we can’t wait to see the final product.”

Harry just smiled at the pair, nodding and smiling at them as they got their girls ready to go. But just as he turned to see them out he froze at seeing Louis standing at the door and grinning ear to ear.

“W-what are you doing here? I-I mean how did you know where my-”

“I googled it,” Louis laughed and shrugged, walking up to the younger lad and pecking his lips. “Thought I could surprise you a little bit.”

“Yeah, well you definitely achieved that,” Harry said, still a bit shocked that he was here.

And Louis just kept smiling up at him, standing on his toes and kissing him one more time. “Just wanted to see you in action and check the place out. It’s incredible in here.”

Harry shuffled a bit nervously on his feet as he watched Louis look around the studio and take everything in. “Yeah I uh, I put everything I have into this place and luckily it’s working out.”

“I’d say,” Louis scoffed. “You even got a basketball hoop, like to have a little fun in here, huh?”

“Uh yeah,” Harry laughed sheepishly to himself as he pulled his camera off from around his neck and placed it on his desk. “I did a shoot for a basketball team one time and I just left it up there. Sometimes when Nate is in here with me he gets pretty bored so we’ll play a bit.”

“Too cute,” Louis muttered to himself. “Where is he by the way? I was hoping if you two weren’t busy I could take you both out for a little lunch date.”

“He’s at my sister’s daycare two blocks over. He hates being here with a burning passion while I’m working so I drop him off there until I’m done for the day.”

“Do you have any more clients coming in?”

Harry bit his lip as he looked at his schedule book on his desk, unable to stop his growing smile as he saw that his afternoon was free. “Well, Mr. Tomlinson it looks like you get to kidnap me for the day.”

“Just what I love to hear,” Louis smirked back at him. “C’mon love, let’s go get the boy.”

Harry nodded back at him, cleaning just a few things up before he took Louis’ hand and led him to the busy city street. “By the way when you meet my sister don’t believe a word she says.”

And Louis could’ve figured he would say that, but he knew out of anyone Harry’s sister would have the best stories on him, and he wanted to hear them all. Sure he was nervous about meeting her for the first time, wanting to make a good first impression, but he was also desperate for any embarrassing stories he could get on his boyfriend.

The two made their way down the crowded pavement, their hands joined between them and squeezing their way past people. It wasn’t a far walk, just a few blocks down from Harry’s studio and the closer they got the more visibly nervous the younger lad seemed.

“Alright, here we are,” Harry breathed out, reaching for the door handle and opening it for Louis.

The two walked in, the immediate sounds of toddlers shrieks and giggles filling their ears. But there was one scream that caught their attention.

“Daddy! Lou Lou!!”

“Hi big guy!” Harry smiled widely at his son. “You have a good day?”

“Yeah! I play with aunt Gemma all day, I miss her!”

“I know you did buddy, I missed her too,” he chuckled at his son. “Where is she?”

“H!!”

And if possible that shriek was louder than all the kids combined before Harry felt a strong force knock into him and squeeze the absolute life out of him.

“Okay, okay, yeah, hi Gem,” Harry barely managed out.

“Oh my God look at you, you look so tan and all the pictures you sent me, it looked like you had such a good time!” Gemma gushed. “Nate was telling me all about it and-”

“Gem,” Harry stopped his sister, her looking like she wasn’t even breathing. “I promise we’ll talk about all that, but there’s someone I want you to meet.”

And it was only then Gemma noticed the other man with her brother, him smiling shyly back at her, but she knew exactly who he was. “Oh hi!!” she said excitedly, not wasting a second before rushing towards him and wrapping him in a hug. “It’s so nice to meet you, you look even better in person than the pictures if possible, holy shit!”

“Gemma!” Harry hissed, seeing Louis a bit startled.

“H come on!” Gemma groaned before letting the other man go. “It’s so cute! Like you guys met on the cruise and fell in love and now you’re home and-”

“Whoa, whoa, no one said we were in love,” Harry rushed out with reddened cheeks.

“Well with how you talk about him you seem in love, geez.”

“They show feeling lots,” Nate nodded along.

The two just stood there, glancing at each other and trying not to become more embarrassed as the seconds passed. And Harry couldn’t do anything but send Louis an apologetic smile before looking back to his sister.

“Why can’t we be normal?” he pouted slightly at his sister. “Like why can’t I just be like Gem this is Louis, Louis this is my sister Gemma. It’s that easy and not weird at all and you make things weird.”

Gemma looked back at her brother astonished, her jaw going slack and hearing the blue eyed man next to him trying his absolute hardest to hold back a snicker. “Well…” she huffed.

“Daddy! You hurt auntie feelings!” Nate said, hitting his father’s leg and glaring up at him.

“Nathaniel you don’t need to hit me,” Harry said seriously back at him. “And it’s not my fault your aunt is crazy and doesn’t know how to socialize with anyone over the age of 4.”

At that Louis couldn’t hold it in any longer, letting out a barking laugh and almost choking on his own spit at what Harry just said.

“You think that’s funny?”

And just as quickly did Louis shut his mouth, his eyes going wide and freezing where he was as Gemma was raising her eyebrows at him. “Uhm, n-no.”

“No one ever thinks H is funny,” Gemma said, sounding more confused as the seconds passed. “You must really like him. Like actually genuinely like him.”

Louis glanced over to Harry, the younger lad looking like he was killing his sister with his eyes. “Yeah, I could easily say that I do.”

Gemma just kept her eyes on Louis, and he could easily say it felt like she was staring into his soul for what felt like forever before she allowed a small smile to come to her.

“Alright, I approve,” she winked at him. “Just be good to him,” Gemma warned Louis. “And Nate of course, you have to be even better to him.”

“Always,” Louis said softly, glancing at the two Styles boys and grinning at them.

“Good,” Gemma hummed.

“Alright, great, well Louis said something about lunch so we’re just here to grab Nate and head out,” Harry said, wanting this whole interaction to be over.

“Yes! Lunch with Lou Lou, let go!!” Nate cheered, almost lunging at the blue eyed man and trying to climb up him so he could be held.

And Louis didn’t waste a second before picking him up and squeezing the 3 year old to his chest. “It was really nice meeting you,” he said to Gemma, offering her a nervous smile.

“Yup, real fun, c’mon Lou, let’s go,” Harry said before his sister could utter anything, taking the older lad’s hand and rushing him out of the nursery.

He was basically forced to follow Harry out, him tugging on him until they were safely away from the building.

“Well she’s quite the character, huh?”

“You have no idea,” Harry muttered.

“Aunt Gemma is the best, no let daddy fool you,” Nate said, pointing a little finger in Louis’ face as he carried him down the pavement.

“I promise that won’t happen buddy,” Louis chuckled. “By the way I saw the basketball hoop in your daddy’s studio, and I think you and I need to play a game at some point.”

Nate went wide eyed, a smile stretching from ear to ear and making his dimples pop out as he heard that. “Yes!!” he cheered. “Did you see my room? Cause I have lots of toys and my-my Peter Pan poster!” he said so excitedly he tripped over his words.

Louis glanced over to Harry a bit confused, only to see the younger lad biting his lip. “Uhm no, your room? Like playroom?”

“No!” Nate squealed, that sounding silly. “My bedroom! We live upstair from studio!”

“Oh,” Louis said quietly, not knowing that. “No buddy I didn’t see it, but I’m sure you can show it to me soon.”

And as Nate cheered in the older man’s arms Harry stayed silent. His eyes were locked on the sidewalk in front of him, hoping Nate would drop the subject and Louis would forget about seeing his flat. He figured that at some point the blue eyed lad would want to see his place and visit, but he just hoped it wouldn’t be this soon, he can’t even bare the thought of Louis seeing where he lives, how he lives. In comparison to Louis’ flat his home looked like a box, and there was no doubt in Harry’s mind that as soon as he saw it the older lad would just pity him, and that was something he couldn’t have.

“So boys what do we feel like having for lunch?”

For now at least Nate could focus on that, the 3 year old telling Louis all about his favorite foods and even his favorite restaurant that his daddy takes him to. Harry only hoped his son wouldn’t bring up Louis visiting their flat again.

*~*

“Alright mate, let’s just go through that scene one more time and I think we’ll be done for the day.”

Louis let out a deep breath as he nodded and gave a thumbs up to Niall on the other side of the glass. He adjusted his headphones and took a swig of his water, scanning over the scene one more time and allowing himself to completely become this character.

“All right, I gotta get this speck up to the top of Mount Nool A.S.A.P, whatever that means, probably 'act swiftly, awesome pachyderm'! I mean, how hard can that be?”

He really couldn’t say how much he loved this script. Horton was definitely a one of a kind character. He was sweet, caring and absolutely hilarious, Louis was having the best time reading for him and letting himself be as ridiculous as he could be.

There were about five scripts waiting for him when he got home, but this was definitely his favorite by far. He loved doing kids movies and it was nice not having to travel even if it meant turning down a role for a new tv series that was offering more. This in his eyes was definitely more rewarding.

“Perfect Lou, that’s exactly what we’re looking for,” Niall said happily into his microphone at hearing the older lad finish. “Let’s pack up and we’ll call it a day.”

Louis was a bit happy to hear that though, his voice getting sore and exhaustion basically seeping out of him as he was being his overdramatic self all day for his character’s sake. It wasn’t just his voice that he put into his acting, but his whole body, as if he really was this large elephant trying to save this town on a flower. He put everything he had into his job but by the final product it was definitely more than worth it.

“You wanna visit Zayn before we go? Might have to drag him out of the studio for a pint if he’s too focused,” Niall joked, as he saw Louis come out of the booth.

“Yeah, sounds good,” Louis nodded back at him, knowing all too well how Zayn will sit there forever if no one gets him.

So the two made their way to the lift, heading down to the art department and sure enough there was Zayn sitting at his easel with his glasses on and scribbling all over his paper.

“Mate come on, we’re kidnapping you.”

“Almost done,” Zayn muttered back without looking up.

“Yeah, you say that and two hours later we’re still waiting for you,” Niall joked as he walked up behind him and saw what he was drawing.

“It’s not my fault with animations you have to do each action and our mate Louis here has too many facial expressions,” Zayn countered back.

And okay, yeah, maybe that was Louis’ fault, but it definitely made for one great character. But it’s always fun when Zayn sits in the studio with them and watches Louis so he could get ideas as to how to draw his character. Every movement, facial expression, the tiniest thing Louis does while recording his voice Zayn catches and draws them out, but the final product is always amazing.

“I have one more to do from what scenes you guys did today, just gimme a few minutes,” he said, still refusing to look up from what he was doing as his pencil was moving rapidly against the paper.

So the two just waited and watched their mate, always amazed with how quick Zayn works and how all of his pieces turn out. Luckily today was one of those days where they weren’t actually waiting for forever for him, but only a few minutes before they saw him start to put all of his things away.

“What’s the plan boys? We going out for a few drinks?”

“Yeah, I’m only gonna have one or two though, I wanna meet up with H a little later,” Louis said as he followed the two down the hall and to the lift.

“So whipped,” Niall muttered through a snicker. “I mean c’mon mate you’ve seen him every day since we’ve been home.”

“Sorry for wanting to see and spend time with my boyfriend, how terrible of me,” Louis rolled his eyes. “It’s nice having someone to go to bed with and wake up to, and with Nate there’s actual noise in the flat, it’s nice not being alone all the time.”

And the two couldn’t say anything to that, knowing all too well how lonely their mate gets despite trying their hardest to make sure he doesn’t feel like that. They were more than happy that Louis found someone he could completely open himself up to and let into his life. Even if it meant hearing all about Harry and Nate while they made their way to the pub and even after they had their drinks.

Louis just went on and on about what they’ve been doing for the past week while they’ve been home, but the two weren’t going to complain because it was so nice to see their mate as happy as he was.

“Have you been to his place yet mate? Seems like he’s always going over to yours,” Niall said with furrowed eyebrows before finishing off his beer and waving a waitress over to bring him another one.

“Uhm no,” Louis said quietly. “I’ve been to his studio a few times and he lives just upstairs from it, but every time I ask to go up there he always has a reason to say no.”

“Hmm, that’s kinda weird,” Zayn hummed.

“Have you tried to talk to him about it? Like he doesn’t want you to go up there?”

Louis shrugged back at Niall, taking a swig of his beer and keeping his eyes on the bottle. “I dunno, the entire subject of it just seems weird, I don’t wanna make him uncomfortable and try to seem like I’m pressuring him or something.”

“You think he’s hiding something?” Zayn asked, his curiosity getting the best of him.

“Like what?” Louis laughed, that seeming ridiculous.

“I dunno,” he shrugged. “But why else would he not want to have you over?”

At that Louis was quiet for a second, himself asking the same question as to why Harry seems to be trying to hide where he lives.

“Can you stop, you’re gonna make him overthink,” Niall muttered to Zayn, seeing Louis’ face and knowing they didn’t need to put their mate into worry mode for no reason.

“You know what, I think I’m gonna head over to his studio,” Louis said, chugging back the rest of his drink before pushing his chair back.

“What? Lou come on, it’s okay,” Niall said, trying to stop him.

“No, no, I told him I was just gonna have a few drinks and then I’d be free, it’s fine,” Louis said, tossing a few bills on the table. “I’ll talk to you guys later, have a good rest of the night.”

And with that he was gone, finding himself walking down the busy city sidewalk and to Harry’s studio. He didn’t think Harry would have anything to hide, that just seemed impossible, but he didn’t know why the younger lad would seem so weird about his flat.

But as he made his way to Harry’s studio his thoughts were running a mile a minute and the closer he got the more he over thought. Louis was sure at some point he started fast walking just to get there quicker and finally get some answers. But as soon as he burst through the studio door he reminded himself to calm down and not demand to see Harry’s flat just because his curiosity was getting the best of him.

“Lou Lou!!”

“Hey buddy!” Louis smiled at Nate, kneeling down to the toddler’s height and scooping him up.

“Lou,” Harry said with furrowed eyebrows, turning around in his desk chair and seeing the older lad. “I uh- I thought we were going to your place tonight…”

“Yeah, well, we’re always at my place, thought we’d change things up a bit,” Louis said quietly as he made his way over to Harry.

Harry was quiet for a second, just looking back at Louis and trying to figure out what to say. “Uhm… I-I mean, I-...”

“Lou you see my room!” Nate said excitedly, jumping in the older man’s arms and smiling widely at him.

But Louis was more focused on Harry, not sure if he was mad or what, for the life of him he couldn’t tell what he was thinking.

Harry rubbed a hand over his face, trying to remind himself to breathe and think maybe this wasn’t such a big deal. So he closed out the project he was working on and waved for Louis to follow him up to the flat above the studio.

And Louis didn’t say anything but walk after Harry, now regretting all of this just at the younger lad’s face. He carried Nate up the stairs to the flat anyway, the 3 year old talking a mile a minute with how excited he was to show Louis all of his favorite toys and where he keeps his favorite movies.

“Come on Lou! I show you!” Nate said as soon as they got upstairs, wiggling out of his arms and running through the living room to get to his bedroom.

Louis stole a glance at Harry, only to see the younger lad walk into the kitchen that connected to the living room, leaving the two of them alone.

As soon as they to Nate’s room he’s running all over the place and grabbing his toys only to shove them into Louis’ hands.

“I sleep here!” Nate pointed proudly to his bed once most of his toys were in the older man’s hands. “See! It Peter Pan, like you! A-and daddy give me table to draw on and he put all my picture on fridge!!”

“That’s awesome buddy, you must be really good at drawing if he puts them on the fridge,” Louis smiled back at him, unable to get over just how cute and excited the toddler was.

He had to admit, Nate’s room seemed like a dream for any kid. He had too many toys to count, posters of almost every Disney character, drawers and a closet full of clothes and an entire box of different colored crayons for all of his coloring needs. It was clear to anyone with eyes Harry tried his absolute best to give everything Nate could ever want and need, showing just how much he cared for his son.

And Louis was stuck in there with the 3 year old for another half hour or so, but he wasn’t complaining, not at all with how happy Nate seemed to be at showing him all of his things. But once the full tour of the room was done Louis made his way back out to living room to find Harry. He had a quick look around the rest of the flat and noticed the only other room was the bathroom, making him wonder where the younger lad slept.

“Hey,” Louis said softly, coming up behind Harry, seeing him still in the kitchen and standing at the counter with a water in his hand.

“Hey,” he breathed out, not picking his head up from his glass.

Louis bit his lip, wondering if he should ask, but just from looking at Harry he already seemed upset. He was curious though, he figured any normal person would be.

“So uh- where do you sleep? I just saw Nate’s room and the bathroom so…”

But Harry just stood there silent, finally picking his head up and just nodding towards the living room.

And Louis’ eyes took him to the couch, looking back at Harry and feeling his face fall. “H… I uh- I didn’t know-”

“How would you Louis?” Harry asked, his gaze focused on the older lad. “It’s not like I ever told you I sleep on the couch, it’s not like I ever said I can’t afford a bigger flat.”

“Yeah but-”

“But nothing,” Harry scoffed as he shook his head. “My place, where I live is an embarrassment,” he said, trying his hardest not to choke up. “I keep my clothes in a hall closet or downstairs in the studio because I have nowhere to put them and as bad as I want to move I can’t because I can barely afford this… Do you know how sad that is? That- that I can’t give my son something better, that I can’t provide for him like I should because I was selfish and put all my money into a photography studio that he hates being in…”

Louis just looked back at him for a second, it being clear that Harry didn’t want him to see where he lives because he was ashamed of it. He was ashamed of sleeping on the couch and not having enough money to move, but to him everything he said was ridiculous.

“H you don’t get it…” Louis said quietly, making Harry snap his head up to him. “I mean… You just don’t see the way Nate looks at you, how he thinks of you. You’re his hero love, you give him everything he needs and more, I don’t get why you think he gets annoyed with you or something.”

“You just don’t know,” Harry shook his head. “When I opened my studio it ruined him… He hates my job because it’s all I focus on, he feels like my job is more important than him and living above the studio doesn’t help anyone.”

“Harry he loves you,” Louis said almost firmly, hating how the younger lad thought that his own son hates him just because of his job. “Anyone who has eyes can see that Nate looks up to you, that you’re his absolute favorite person, and you’ve done so much for him, I mean- I just- I don’t get how you don’t see it.”

Harry just shrugged, staying quiet and knowing that whatever Louis said wouldn’t change his mind.

“Nate!” Louis yelled, seeing Harry go wide eyed at not knowing what he was doing, but he had a plan that he was sure would work.

And as soon as the 3 year old scurried into the room he scooped him up and grabbed Harry’s hand.

“Where we goin Lou?” Nate asked confused.

“We’re gonna have a little photoshoot with daddy.”

“Louis I don’t think-”

“Daddy take pictures?” Nate asked with furrowed eyebrows. “But he said he done work for day,” he groaned.

“This isn’t work,” Louis said, pretending to be confused. “This is fun, cause guess what?”

“What?”

“You’re gonna be the one taking pictures.”

“Me?” Nate giggled, that sounding ridiculous.

Even Harry was looking at him funny, but Louis was sure this was going to work. So when they got down to the studio Louis put Nate down, gave the toddler his phone with his camera open on it and dragged Harry to one of the backdrops.

“Alright buddy, me and daddy are gonna do whatever pose you say cause you’re the photographer tonight, you’re in charge, okay?”

“Just like daddy!” Nate jumped excitedly.

“Yeah, you’re just like daddy big guy,” Louis smiled at him, only to turn his gaze to Harry and seeing his cheeks go red.

At that the 3 year old squealed, clutching the phone in his hand and holding it up to take pictures.

“Okay daddy you lay down and Lou Lou sit on top.”

Harry looked back at his son questionably for a second, but then again, this was Nate’s shoot and he was going to do whatever his the 3 year old said. So he laid down on the ground, only for Louis to place his big bum not so gracefully on his chest.

And the entire time Nate was laughing as he took pictures of the two, almost going hysterical at Louis’ face and how his daddy was whining and complaining under him. No matter what he was telling the older men to do they did it and each picture was more ridiculous than the next.

Harry was honestly shocked that Nate was having as much fun as he was. The entire time his son was smiling and laughing at all the crazy things he had them do, but it was all more than worth it just to see him light up the way he was.

“Alright Nathaniel, come here buddy,” Louis said, unable to stop his grin as he took his phone from the 3 year old. “You’re gonna model with daddy. Gotta get some pictures of you two handsome devils.”

If possible Nate was squealing even more at that, almost leaping into his father’s arms and still being his bossy self as he told him how to pose for the camera.

And Harry couldn’t hide how shocked he was at how happy Nate seemed. He never thought to include him in his work, thinking it would just bother him, but if anything his son seemed to be having the time of his life.

“Daddy make me fly! I go high and tall like you!” Nate said, reaching his little arms up and giggling as soon as his father lifted him above his head.

“Oh yeah, love it, you two look great,” Louis said, taking picture after picture of the two.

Harry was smiling the entire time and Nate was having such a good time when normally he’s whining whenever a camera is pointed at him. It was like night and day with the toddler, actually having fun and seeing that what his daddy does can actually be exciting and fun.

“Buddy you wanna see what else daddy does for work? Cause it’s not all just taking pictures ya know,” Harry said with raised eyebrows, catching onto Louis’ little plan and thinking he could go somewhere else with it.

“What else do daddy?” Nate asked with furrowed eyebrows.

“C’mere, I’ll show you,” Harry smiled at him, scooping the toddler up and bringing him over to his computer. “It’s kind of like coloring, but on the computer, you wanna try?”

“Yes!” Nate cheered from his father’s lap.

Harry couldn’t help but allow his smile to grow at that, taking Louis’ phone from him and uploading the pictures to his computer. And as he looked through them they were all more than ridiculous, but made sure to pick one that Nate took so he could complete a project.

“Okay so we’re gonna edit this, do you think there’s anything we can do to make it better?”

“Lou Lou have stache!” Nate giggled, looking at the picture of his daddy carrying Louis.

“A mustache? We can draw that,” Harry chuckled, putting Nate’s little hand on the mouse and helping him draw over the picture.

“You know, I definitely look better like that,” Louis hummed, peering over Harry’s shoulder at what the two were doing.

And no matter what ridiculous thing Nate wanted to draw or put into the pictures Harry helped him do it. Whether it was making his daddy’s head into a football or making Louis look like Peter Pan, Harry showed him how to do it on the computer and printed out each picture once Nate deemed them good enough.

“Daddy see! I grapher like you!!” Nate said, waving his printed pictures in his father’s face.

“Yeah buddy, just like me,” Harry said softly, smiling down at his son before looking to Louis and seeing the older lad wink back at him.

He couldn’t even say how much this meant to him. Harry never thought Nate would actually enjoy anything to do with photography, but Louis made it happen, and he couldn’t thank him enough.

Chapter Text

2 Months Later

“Daddy where are we?” Nate asked, looking around the large building curiously just before his father took a cautious step inside.

“Uhm, I believe this is where Louis works,” Harry said, hoping he had the right address. “Hi, uh, I’m here to see Louis Tomlinson, I’m just not sure where to go,” he said a bit nervously to a girl sitting behind a receptionist desk.

The woman looked up at him, her eyes scanning him up and down before letting out a deep breath and crossing her arms over her chest. “Mr. Tomlinson doesn’t have any appointments for meet and greets today and we don’t allow walk ins who want to meet him.”

Harry stood there stunned for a second, feeling Nate gripping onto his collar tighter, clearly a bit scared of her. “N-no, I uhm, I’m his boyfriend… Harry Styles…” he said quietly. “He texted me to come, I-I just-”

“Oh! Mr. Styles, I am so sorry!” she rushed out, standing up from her seat with red embarrassed cheeks. “Of course, Mr.Tomlinson told me you were coming, I really am so sorry!”

“Oh, uh, it’s fine,” Harry said, it being like a switch went off in this girl and all of sudden she was the world’s nicest secretary. “Would you mind just telling me where I could find him?”

“It’s no problem at all, just go to the lift and you’ll press number 3. He’ll be right down the hall in studio 5.”

“Perfect, thank you,” he offered her a small smile before heading towards the lift.

“She was mean,” Nate muttered as soon as the doors were closed behind them.

And Harry just chuckled at his son, kissing his head and hugging him close. “She’s just protective love, that’s all. Doesn’t want anyone who isn’t supposed to see Louis to come up here.”

Nate didn’t care for that answer all that much, muttering to himself because no one should talk to his daddy like that. But the closer they got to finding Louis to more he relaxed, there being no lie he was excited to see the older man at work and of course press all the buttons Louis talked about.

As soon as they stepped out of the lift though the last thing Nate was thinking about was the buttons. His entire focus was on the brightly decorated walls with all of his favorite animated characters surrounding him.

“Wow…” he barely managed to breathe out, in complete shock as to what he was looking at.

It seemed even his daddy was in awe, if possible every Disney character was painted on these walls, and the further they moved along the hallway the more they saw.

“Daddy! Daddy!! That Lou! See!”

Harry snapped his head up, looking to where the 3 year old was pointing, and instead of finding the blue eye lad he saw Flynn from Tangled painted on the wall.

“Yeah buddy, that is Louis,” he chuckled, knowing he had played his voice in the movie.

He loved how proud Nate seemed that he knows the man behind the famous character. The toddler would talk to anyone who would listen about Louis and all of the voices he’s done and which ones are his favorite. Whether it’s his aunt Gemma or just someone at the studio, he had plenty to share about the funny older man who could do any voice you ask him.

“Okay big guy, looks like we’re here,” Harry said, seeing studio 5 and cautiously opening the door.

Apparently he didn’t have to be too quiet though because as soon as they stepped into the room the first thing the two Styles were met with was Love is an Open Door blasting through the speakers and Louis and Niall singing at the top of their lungs as they danced.

Harry just stood there a bit shocked for a second, watching to two who had no idea they were in the room. Nate on the other hand lasted all of five seconds before he burst into a fit of laughter, almost falling out of his father’s arms from laughing so hard.

But it was also that moment Louis and Niall stopped in their tracks, going wide eyed at seeing the two and nothing but sheer embarrassment flooding their faces.

There nothing but silence besides Nate giggling to himself, them all just staring at each other and having no clue what to say as this song was still playing through the speakers. But of course it was that exact moment Niall realized that and turned off the song and almost shamefully looked to the ground.

“Can… Can we just pretend this didn’t happen?” Louis broke the silence, his gaze focused on Harry who was just staring back at him.

“...No,” Harry said, immediately smirking at the older lad and knowing that this will definitely be something he’ll want to remember forever.

Louis grumbled to himself at that, even Niall’s head snapping up and looking at the curly haired lad, knowing there was no way in hell they were ever going to live this down.

“Well when we were at the beach that one time a crab got your toe and you thought it was a shark and you screamed like a little girl until Louis pulled you out of the water, so ha!” Niall said, trying to take the embarrassment off of them.

“Alright, yeah, whatever, I do a lot of embarrassing things but you guys don’t and you take it a lot more personally than I do,” Harry shrugged as he placed Nate down, the toddler not wasting a second before running to Louis just so he could hug him.

And Niall just grumbled to himself, at least Louis could get over it easily enough at having Nate in his arms.

“Lou look at all the buttons!!” Nate shrieked, his attention immediately taken away at seeing the large panel.

Louis laughed to himself, always finding it so adorable how easily he gets distracted. “All these buttons are what make me sound good, that’s Niall’s job.”

“You no need buttons to sound good,” Nate said confused. “You sing all time! And daddy say you have best voice, love to hear you sing.”

“Oh does he?” Louis asked, smirking at the curly haired lad and seeing his cheeks going red.

“W-well you just… You have a nice voice,” Harry shrugged as he scratched the back of his neck sheepishly.

“Yeah, yeah, Disney prince worthy voice,” Niall rolled his eyes. “Now c’mere Nate, lemme show you how awesome my job is,” he said, taking the toddler from Louis and bringing him over to his large panel of buttons.

But instead of following his son Harry was frozen where he was with the way Louis was looking at him. He couldn’t exactly pinpoint what he was thinking. All he knew was that the older lad was smiling at him so softly it made him want to melt right where he was.

“Thanks for coming by, I was hoping you guys could swing by today,” Louis said softly to the younger lad as he made his way towards him and wrapped his arms around his waist.

“It didn’t come without some trouble,” Harry chuckled to himself. “That secretary downstairs is ready to attack.”

Louis furrowed his eyebrows, his jaw clenching a bit as he heard that. “Did she say something to you?”

“She thought I was a fan of yours or something and brought Nate in to see you, it’s nothing,” Harry shrugged, not wanting Louis to go into a rage for no reason.

Just at that though his face went hard, letting go of Harry and started heading towards the door.

“Hey, hey, calm down love,” Harry snatched his hand, not letting him take another step. “It’s fine alright? It’s not like my feelings are hurt or anything, she was just doing her job.”

Louis looked at him for a second, letting out a few deep breaths to calm down and realizing it really that wasn’t big of a deal. “I just don’t want anyone being rude to you or anything, that’s all,” he said quietly.

“I know but you don’t have to go all attack dog either,” Harry tried to joke to lighten the mood.

And at least he got a smile out of Louis, the older lad wrapping his arms around him again and resting his head on his chest.

“I just know how people can be…” he said softly. “Be it the paps or fans, it gets hard and I don’t want anyone bothering you.”

“I know love, I know,” Harry said, pulling him impossibly closer and pressing his lips into the blue eyed lad’s hair.

It was no lie, at first the paps were a bit overwhelming. Harry remembers the first time they were seen out in public by the paps, them just out for a bit of shopping when Louis spotted them taking pictures from across the street.

It’s happened a few times since then and of course there are a few times when fans recognized Louis while they’re out, but Harry was happy they haven’t been bombarded or anything, especially while they’re with Nate.

“I’m sorry again, today was supposed to be a good day and I’m being all crazy.”

“It’s not like you ruined today love,” Harry laughed quietly. “And besides, today isn’t anything special, just another day.”

Louis bit his lip, looking up at Harry and letting out a quiet breath. “W-well I-... I had plans and I have to talk to you about them of course, but yeah, today was supposed to be a good day.”

Harry furrowed his eyebrows, of course having no clue what he was talking about.

“Do you want to go to dinner with me tonight? Niall said he could watch Nate, I just- I wanted to talk to you about some stuff.”

“Is it bad…?” Harry asked a bit nervously as he slowly released him. “Like-”

“No, no, of course not,” Louis rushed out, not wanting to scare him. “It’s good, I promise, but I just wanted it to be the two of us.”

Harry felt like he could breathe a bit at that, but still, something about all of this was making him a bit scared. “Uhm, yeah, it’s no problem. Is Niall okay with watching him at my place?”

“Well I said he could take him to mine. Ya know hang out with Princess, watch all the Disney movies his little heart desires,” Louis smiled up at him, wanting him to relax. “That is if you’re okay with it.”

“Yeah, yeah, of course,” Harry nodded back at him. “Makes it easier so afterwards we can just go back to yours.”

And if possible Louis’ smile only grew, hoping that when the time comes later to talk to Harry his nerves won’t get the best of him. But for now he was more focused on his boyfriend and Nate pressing every button he could get his little fingers on.

Niall was playing some of the songs they recorded early today and Nate was having almost too much fun making Louis’ voice sound as ridiculous as possible. But when Louis actually took him in the recording booth and the toddler was nothing but smiles as he sang and did funny voices with the older man, only for Niall to play it back so they could hear themselves.

Of course Harry knew his son would have fun while they were here, he always does with Louis no matter where they are. And he loved to see Nate having so much fun, but still something was nagging at him. He wanted to know what Louis had to talk to him about and the more he thought about it the more nervous he got. The older lad said it wasn’t anything bad, but for the life of him he couldn’t figure out what he would have to talk to him alone about.

He couldn’t overthink this now though, so instead he focused on spending the day with his boyfriend and son and not letting his thoughts get the best of him.

*~*

Harry shuffled nervously on his feet in the foyer of Louis’ flat. Hearing some Disney movie playing in the background and glancing towards the living room to see Nate and Niall all snuggled up on the couch.

It was at least one relief that Nate would be okay for the night, but all this anticipation was killing him. All of that stopped within a second though when he saw Louis walk into the room, feeling himself completely still just at the sight of the older man.

“Wow…” he barely managed out. “Y-you uh, you look great.”

Louis smiled back at him, feeling his cheeks going red at the way Harry was looking at him. “Could say the same about you… You look amazing.”

“Thank you,” Harry said quietly, shuffling his feet nervously as Louis took his hand and gave it a gentle squeeze.

“You ready to go?”

“Yeah, just wanna say bye to Nate,” Harry nodded back at him before leading Louis to the living room.

The two said their goodbyes to the 3 year old, making sure to give him enough hugs and kisses until he was squirming in both of their arms and begging for them to leave.

As soon as Harry was done giving him his usual speech of when Nate should go to bed and what to drink with dinner the two were off. Hopping into Louis’ car and getting onto the road, and it seemed that it was within a matter of minutes Harry’s nerves were picking right back up again.

“You okay love, you’re sweating,” Louis said, glancing over at him and feeling Harry’s hand going warm in his.

“You just got me a bit nervous about tonight, all this mystery and all,” he said quietly.

“Sweetheart it’s nothing bad I promise,” Louis chuckled to himself. “If anything you should be excited, we have a great night ahead of us.”

And Harry just nodded at that, trying to calm himself down but still, all of this was nerve wracking. This fancy dinner and how secretive Louis was being about whatever it was he wanted to tell him or talk to him about.

His nerves didn’t get any better when they pulled up to the restaurant either, maybe only multiplying. Louis didn’t seem nervous at all though, if anything he was excited and basically jumping around as soon as the valet took the car and they were heading into the restaurant.

“Hi, reservation for Tomlinson,” Louis said once they got to the host stand.

“Yes, of course, right this way Mr.Tomlinson.”

Louis smiled politely back at the maitre-d before wrapping an arm around Harry’s waist and following the older man to a table in the back.

He made sure to pull the younger lad’s chair out for him before he made himself comfortable in his own seat. But as soon as he sat down he noticed how uneasy Harry looked and that was the last thing he wanted.

“Love can you relax? Why are you so nervous?”

“Because I have no clue why we’re here,” Harry groaned, this absolutely killing him.

“Is it so wrong of me to go out with my boyfriend every now and then?” Louis chuckled, tangling his and Harry’s fingers on the table and giving his hand a gentle squeeze.

“C’mon Lou, you know it’s more than that,” Harry said quietly as he bit his lip. “Whatever is it you have to talk to me about can you just spit it out? I mean if you keep me waiting I’ll sweat through my suit and be all gross and-”

“H, love, calm down, yeah?” Louis said softly. “I was gonna wait a little bit, but you being your stubborn self I guess we can talk about it now.”

“Please?” Harry almost begged, not know how much longer he could last.

Louis nodded, maybe for the first time all night feeling his own nerves pick up. “Well uhm, I… I know we haven’t been dating all that long, but I was thinking of something that make both our lives easier, and I wanted to know what you thought.”

Harry furrowed his eyebrows, now growing more intrigued than anything as Louis was visibly trying to calm himself down. “What is it?”

Louis let out a deep breath, holding onto Harry’s hand like a lifeline as he realized what he was about to say. “I was thinking that maybe you could uhm, w-well you and Nate could move in with me…”

Harry sat there completely still, trying to process what Louis just said but he couldn’t find it in himself to say anything back. To him that was huge, it was so much and all at once, he had no clue what to think.

“Trust me, I know, it’s a lot to ask and it’s so soon, but I-... I just wanted to talk about it,” Louis said nervously. “That way it’s so much easier to see each other and you’re at mine almost every night anyway, and you don’t have to worry about rent or sleeping on the couch… It-... It was just a thought, and I’m sorry if I’ve overwhelmed you, but it’s just something I’ve been thinking about…”

But Harry still couldn’t say anything. There was so much to think about and how it would effect Nate, it was too much at once.

“Love…” Louis said quietly, trying to get Harry to look at him. “What’re you thinking? We can talk about this, and I’ll answer any questions you have but can we at least have a conversation about it?”

Harry released a quiet breath but nodded nonetheless, squeezing Louis’ hand and silently telling him he wasn’t mad or upset. “It’s just… It’s only been 3 months Lou, it’s a lot, and especially with Nate.”

“I know, trust me, I know,” Louis said softly. “That’s why I was kind of nervous about asking you, but it’s- it’s just something I want… I want to make my house a home and with you and Nate I can do that…”

It was that that really had Harry stuck. His gaze focused on Louis and seeing how sincere he was about this, how much he meant it.

“You’ve really thought about this then? What it will be like to have a 3 year old running around, tantrums and all and being stuck with me all the time?”

“Yeah, and honestly it made me smile,” Louis chuckled to himself. “I’ve figured everything out, from how you’ll get to work and how we can decorate Nate’s room, where I can make space in my closet and dresser for your clothes, just everything.”

Harry raised his eyebrows at that, figuring Louis really did think about this a lot, and at least that gave him some reassurance that the older lad wasn’t just jumping into this.

“It’s not like I need an answer tonight H, but I just wanted to put it on the table and let you know it’s an option. I want to help make your life easier and this is one way I can do that.”

Harry nodded back at him, knowing he would definitely have to think it over a bit and probably talk to Liam and his sister to see what they think. But most importantly he had to think about Nate.

“I’ll think about it Lou, I promise,” he said softly, offering him a small smile to know what he offered wasn’t a bad idea or made him upset.

“Take your time love,” Louis grinned back at him. “Again, I know it’s a lot and soon, but just know it’s an option.”

“And I appreciate that, I really do…”

There was definitely a lot to think about and mull over, but the fact that Louis offered it at all was still kind of shocking. At least everything was out in the open and they could enjoy the rest of their night together. With having Nate it was rare to get a night to themselves and of course they were going to take full advantage of it.

*~*

“He asked you to do what…?”

“Move in with him,” Harry said quietly, biting his lip and refusing to look up at Liam, knowing his best mate was looking at him like he was mental.

“And you’re actually considering it?” Liam asked, not believing it.

“Well… Yeah,” he said, knowing it would only be a second before he started hearing the older lad lecture him and tell him what a terrible idea this was.

But instead Liam was quiet for a minute, just looking at Harry and letting out a deep breath as he tried to figure out what to say.

“Well do you want to move in with him?

Harry picked his head up at that, actually looking at Liam since they sat down and started talking about this. “I’ve been thinking about it a lot since he asked and… And yeah, I do…”

Liam raised his eyebrows at that, scratching the back of his neck and trying to figure out what he actually thought of this. “What is it that made you decide you wanted to?”

“Ultimately Nate,” Harry said quietly, shifting his beer in his hand before taking a small sip from it. “He loves Louis so much and I think it would be good for him, well the both of us to move in with him.”

“Mate I… I don’t wanna sound like a downer but you know it’s only been like 3 months, yeah? That just seems really fast…”

“I know, trust me, I do,” Harry breathed out, that really being the only thing that’s making him nervous. “But the more I thought about it, the more ridiculous that point seemed… Like I’m there every single night, we basically live there already, and it would be so much easier on me to not have to pay to for both the studio and the flat, plus no more sleeping on the couch and Nate would have so much more room to run around and-”

“Okay, geez H you don’t have to list off every reason,” Liam laughed at him. “I mean, I get it, I just want to make sure you’re actually ready for this and not just jumping into it.”

“I’ve been thinking it over for over a week now and I’ve finally decided what to do. I just wanted to tell you and ask what you thought about it.”

“Well it’s not like I’m gonna say not to do it. If you want to move in with him H then do it, I won’t stop you,” Liam shrugged before taking a swig of his own drink. “Do I think it’s moving along a bit quickly? Yeah, but Louis is a great guy and he really cares about you and Nate. Just from the way he looks at you anyone can tell he’s head over heels in love with the both of you so I guess it makes sense why he wants to constantly be with you two.”

Harry felt his cheeks going red as Liam was laughing to himself, feeling his jaw go slack and palms sweat just at the word love. Just at the mere mention of it he was shifting in his seat and clearing his throat, not wanting to delve into that conversation.

“Oh come on H, it’s okay,” Liam smiled at him. “I know it’s been a long time since you’ve loved someone, hell this might be the first, but it’s okay, it’s a great thing.”

“It’s terrifying, that’s what it is,” Harry mumbled.

“It can be that too, but it’s okay mate, really,” Liam said, not wanting him to freak out for no reason. “It’s scary to completely open yourself up to someone and allow them to see you vulnerable or scared or hurt, but it’s also a beautiful thing because it’s something you share with someone, ya know? It’s deep stuff,” he nodded at him.

Harry couldn’t help himself as he rolled his eyes and let out a laugh under his breath, knowing his best mate could get sappy, but this was something else. “You know if I were to guess I could say that you and Sam are more than happy,” he teased.

Just at hearing his boyfriend’s name Liam smiled from ear to ear and shrugged sheepishly. “He’s my favorite human, what can I say?”

“Yeah, I know, cause he only talks about you at work,” Harry scoffed. “I pay him to take pictures, not talk my ear off about you and all the nasty shit you two do,” he fake gagged at just thinking about it.

At that Liam let out a loud laugh, smacking his leg and raising his beer. “That’s my guy!” he said proudly.

Harry just scoffed and rolled his eyes, not needing or wanting to talk about this anymore.

“But back to what I saw saying before,” he started off, seeing the not so subtle breath of relief. “You just know when you love someone. They could be doing something as simple as making dinner or even sleeping and just at looking at them you know.”

Harry was still for a second, slowly nodding and biting his lip as he thought about what Liam said. He’s definitely had those moments when he’s found himself just staring at Louis for no reason. May it be him picking up his flat or playing with Nate, there’s just something about the way that Louis does everything that makes Harry’s breath fall short.

“So when are you gonna tell him?”

“What?” Harry nearly choked out, his eyes going wide at what Liam just said.

“Not about the whole love thing,” Liam rolled his eyes. “That you’re gonna move in with him.”

“Oh..” Harry breathed out. “I uh… I dunno.”

“Well have you told Nate? Or your mum or sister?”

Harry shook his head, Liam being the only person he’s outwardly talked about this with.

“Well that might be a good idea, get their opinions on it and talk to them about it so you feel more comfortable with the whole idea. Hell, he hasn’t even met Anne, has he?”

“No,” Harry breathed out. “I was thinking about introducing them soon, plus Nate really misses her so a visit is due anyway.”

“Yeah, well, you know maybe once you do all that stuff you’ll feel more confident about moving in with him.”

“Yeah,” Harry nodded along. “Really my whole worry with it is just moving too fast, that’s all.”

“And that’s understandable,” Liam shrugged before sipping his drink. “But you never know mate, maybe this will end up being the best decision you ever made for you and Nate.”

At that Harry was quiet, him having the same thought when Louis first suggested moving in together. “That’s what I’m hoping for…”

And he really did. He couldn’t make another mistake when it came to Nate and make things even worse between them. But because Louis is the way he is there was no doubt in Harry’s mind that if possible things could get even better with Nate once they move in with the blue eyed lad.

*~*

“Lou! Nate!! Come on, dinner is ready!” Harry called out, placing the last plate on the table.

He peered into the living room, knowing the two were in there watching a movie, but when his eyes landed on them Louis was passed out and snoring on the couch while Nate was cuddling with Princess on the floor, his eyes locked on the tv.

“Buddy,” Harry said, walking into the room and rubbing his son’s back. “Come on, wash up, dinner is done.”

Nate let out a huff but nodded anyway, making his way down the hall to wash his hands with Princess right on his heels.

Harry turned his attention to Louis, a small smile coming over him as he saw the older with his mouth hung open and bore like snores coming out of him. “Love… Louis wake up,” he whispered softly, running his fingers through his chestnut hair and kissing his forehead.

“No,” Louis whined, tucking himself closer to the couch

“Babe come on, I have dinner ready and maybe a little surprise for after.”

At that Louis opened his eyes, trying to not seem too excited as he looked back at the younger lad. “What kind of surprise…?”

“A good one,” Harry smiled back at him, pecking his lips before standing up and heading back towards the kitchen, knowing Louis would follow him.

Louis mumbled to himself as he sat up, swinging his legs over the couch and reluctantly going after Harry. “When do I get to learn what this surprise is?”

“As soon as Nate sits down,” Harry said, eyeing him playfully before taking a seat at the table.

And Louis just eyed him back for a moment, his gaze never breaking from him, not even after Nate sat down and looked between the two of them curiously.

“Uhm… Can I eat?” he asked, almost wondering if something was wrong with the food.

“Of course buddy,” Harry smiled back at him, knowing he was torturing Louis by not telling him, but there was no harm in making him suffer for a second.

“What is it?!” Louis yelled, making Nate jump in his seat and look back at him startled.

“Lou, you’re gonna make him choke,” Harry said, urging Nate to continue chewing his food.

“Well then just tell me what it is!”

“You haven’t even given me a chance to, you nut!” Harry countered back.

“Yeah well-”

“No!” Nate interrupted the blue eyed man. “No fighting! It family time, so no fighting!” he said sternly, glaring between the two of them.

And the two were just silent for a second. Their mouths hung open and looking at each other almost shocked. Just at the fact that Nate had called them a family was amazing to the both of them. And even though it seemed like nothing to Nate, it meant everything to the two of them.

“Well uhm, speaking of family then I guess I can share my little surprise with the two of you,” Harry said, glancing between his two boys and seeing Louis grow more and more confused. “Nana is coming down to visit for a few days next week.”

“Really?!” Nate shrieked, going wide eyed and making the table shake from trying to jump out of his booster seat.

“Yeah, really,” Harry smiled back at him. “She uh, well she missed us of course and she really wants to meet Louis,” he said softly, his eyes landing on the older lad and noticing he looked a bit nervous.

“This gonna be so fun! I miss nana so much and Lou you gon love her, she so funny and make the best cookies!!”

Louis offered him a small grin as he nodded back at him and picked up his fork to eat. “Yeah, I uh- I can’t wait to meet her.”

Harry furrowed his eyebrows as he watched the blue eyed lad. He definitely seemed more tense as soon as he mentioned his mum visiting, but he doesn’t understand why he would seem so nervous.

“Babe…” he said softly. “If you don’t want to meet her you don’t have to… I just thought that we’ve been seeing each other for a while now and from how much I’ve talked about you she dying to meet you,” Harry said a bit sheepishly, trying to lighten the mood so Louis could try to calm down.

“No, no, it’s- it’s nothing like that love, I promise,” he assured him. “It’s just… She’s your mum and I don’t want to mess anything up,” Louis barely whispered as he scratched the back of his neck, unable to meet the younger lad’s eye.

“Oh Lou, c’mon, you know you could never,” Harry said without a trace of hesitation. “She’ll love you, really. I’m sure she already does just from what I’ve told her about you.”

And Louis couldn’t help but feel his cheeks heating up at that, now wondering just how much Harry talks about him. “Well I can’t wait to meet her then. If you want she can stay here. I have another bedroom I usually let my mum stay in when she visits.”

“I’ll talk to her about it and let you know what she says, thank you love,” Harry smiled back at him before leaning over the table just enough so he could connect their lips.

He understood Louis was nervous about meeting his mum, but he absolutely no doubts that she would fall head over heels for him in minutes. Harry couldn’t even say how excited he was for her to visit, there were so many things to talk about and there was no lie, he could really use some motherly advice right now.

He had made up his mind about whether he wants to move in with Louis or not, but it was a huge decision, and of course he couldn’t do give Louis his answer without talking to his mum about it first. He wanted to make sure he was doing right by Nate, that he wasn’t being selfish or jumping into this too soon, and Harry knew if there was anyone who would know what to do it would be his mum.

Chapter Text

Harry kept his eyes on his computer screen, allowing his mouse to follow along the picture and do it’s job. His hair was falling into his eyes and he was too tired to even think about moving it from his view. But this last piece he had to get done and all of his hours of work today will be well behind him.

He hoped Nate and Louis were okay, he hasn’t even had a chance to look at his phone since he walked into work this morning. But with his son and boyfriend being how they are he was sure they were just fine and having the time of their lives together. Of course he just then reminded himself that he should’ve texted Louis earlier to remind him his mum was driving down today.

And just as he looked at the time and saw how late it was Harry was sure he had a heart attack knowing his mum should be here within minutes.

Without even thinking about it he reached into his pocket and pulled out his phone, fumbling with it for a second before actually managing to steady it in his hand. He pulled up his messaging app and tapped on Louis’ name, getting his thumbs ready to type before he felt a hand on his shoulder and successfully making him jump from his seat and drop his phone to the ground.

“Harry! Geez! It’s me love!”

Harry caught his mum’s eyes, her face full of worry as her arms were out to steady him. “Mum! Hi! Oh my God, Hi!!” he said excitedly, engulfing her in a hug and kissing her cheek.

And really Anne shouldn’t have expected anything less from her son as she hugged him back and laughed into his neck. “Hi sweetheart,” she smiled at him, “hard at work as always I see.”

Harry looked back to his computer sheepishly, this being the first day in a while he’s really satten down and gotten some work done. “How did you know I’d be here though, I’m mean-”

“Harry you live here,” Anne said, looking at her son a bit crazy.

“Right…” Harry said slowly, his eyes looking up to the loft above the studio that him and Nate haven’t slept in in weeks. “Well it’s so good to see you mum. Nate is so excited to see you and Louis can’t wait to meet you!”

“I can’t wait either sweetheart, but for right now come here,” Anne said, pulling her son back into her arms and hugging him to her chest. “I’ve missed you so much love.”

Harry took in a deep breath, his mum back with him and all the love and care from her he’s been missing for too long. “Missed you too mum,” he barely whispered into her neck.

Anne had to sniffle to herself, wiping her wet eyes quickly before smiling back up at her little boy. “Where’s that grandson of mine? I can’t believe he hasn’t ran down here yet,” she laughed to herself

“Oh, he uh, he’s actually at Louis’,” Harry bit his lip, scratching the back of his neck and waiting for some kind of scary motherly look from his mum.

“Really?” Anne asked, her face lighting up in surprise. “Well that’s great love, I can’t wait to see him in a little bit. But in the meantime text Louis that you’ll be there in an hour and you and I can talk for a bit.”

Harry studied his mum for a second. Not sure if she was mad or happy or just shocked, but either way he picked his phone off the ground and texted Louis just as his mum said to do.

“Come here H, sit down with me,” Anne said, sitting Harry back down in his computer chair and she took the seat across from his desk.

Harry nodded, trying to relax and get it through his head that his mum shouldn’t really be mad at him for anything, but there’s always that worry in the back of his mind.

“You’re not in trouble sweetheart, I just want to talk,” Anne smiled at him, seeing Harry’s overthinking face. “I just… I love seeing you so happy.”

Harry raised his eyebrows a bit surprised, but couldn’t help the small grin that made his dimples appear.

“You are happy, aren’t you?” Anne asked, already knowing the answer, but she wanted to hear it.

“Mum, you… You have no clue,” Harry tried to hide his embarrassed laugh just at thinking about how happy he was.

“Oh, I knew it,” Anne sent him a small smirk. “And you knew what gave it away?”

Harry hummed, raising his eyebrows and silently asking her what it was.

“All those pictures you sent me,” she said, thinking it would be obvious. “Nate and Louis on the cruise and the pictures that you let Nate take and edit,” Anne laughed just thinking about the pictures her grandson sent her that are hanging on her fridge at home. “It’s written all over every single one of your faces.”

And Harry just smiled back at her, knowing she was right but he didn’t want to hide the fact that he was incredibly happy.

“Have you told him yet?”

“Told him what?” Harry asked confused.

“That you love him,” Anne huffed and rolled her eyes.

“W-what?” Harry stuttered out. “Mum this- this is moving kinda fast isn’t it, I mean, like, this conversation is.”

“Well come on honey it’s always easiest with you to get all the awkward stuff out of the way,” Anne pointed out. “So have you?”

Harry’s mouth was open, but absolutely nothing came out as he just stared back at her. “W-well uh… No…”

Anne hummed, her eyes never moving from her son as she nodded back at him. “It’s alright sweetheart, I know how new all of this is to you, like dating.”

Harry bit his lip, not even trying to deny that. In high school he didn’t date much, was always too nervous to talk to someone or found that his quiet time in the school’s dark room was all he needed to be happy. And then there was uni and that was just a mess of finding himself and one night stands that sometimes were good enough to last a weekend until he met Nate’s mum.

“But let me tell you, I think you found a keeper,” Anne said softly, reaching for her son’s hand on the desk and giving it a light squeeze.

“Mum you don’t even know him,” Harry chuckled, picking his head back up to look at her.

“Well from what I’ve heard and seen in your pictures he seems lovely,” she smiled at him, “I can see how much he loves the two of you.”

“He hasn’t even said it,” Harry breathed out as he shook his head.

“He doesn’t have to H,” Anne said, giving him a knowing look before squeezing his hand one more time and pulling it away.

And Harry just looked back at her, a small smile creeping onto his lips at just the thought of Louis loving him.

“Anyway, besides all that, what’s new with Louis that you actually want to talk to me about, but maybe not in front of him,” Anne said, knowing Harry would want a little them time.

Harry snorted,his mum almost reading his mind when she asked that. “Well, there is this one thing,” he said slowly, peeking at his mum and seeing her raise her eyebrows at him. “Louis, he uhm, well a little while ago he asked if Nate and I would maybe like to move in with him.”

And he was just waiting for her to say something, anything so it would calm his nerves some. But instead all his mum did was look back at him, a warm smile coming over as she nodded back at him.

“And?”

“And… Well uh…” Harry trailed off, not quite sure what to say, but was expecting his mum to have something to say. “I talked to Liam about it, and of course I’ve thought about it alot, and I know as soon as you meet him you’ll agree that maybe it’s a good idea for Nate and I to move in with him.”

Anne was a bit surprised by how fast that all came out, normally her son to be the kind to talk abnormally slow, but that was rather impressive for him. “Well sweetheart I think it’s a lovely idea and I’m sure I’ll love it even more when I meet him.”

There was no trying to hide that Harry was utterly shocked at what she had just said, having to shut his mouth shut from his jaw going slack.

“Really?” he barely whispered.

“Yeah, really,” Anne said gently, making sure to smile so he knew she was being serious.

And that was it for Harry. If his mum so easily thought it was a good idea then it really must be.

“Seems like you two have a bit to discuss,” she smirked at him.

Harry could only hum, knowing there were a couple things he had to tell the older lad.

“Alright sweetheart, well if that was all then I guess we should stop delaying and go see your boys.”

Harry was so close to protesting, trying to prolong the inevitable, but there was no point.

“Yeah of course, let me just get my things,” he half heartedly smiled at her.

Anne watched as he put away his cameras and grabbed his bag, nervously glancing from here to there as he went along.

“So how is it you get over to Louis’? Does he live close?”

“Uhm, well for right now the weather is pretty nice so I’ve been walking but when it starts getting colder I’ll be using one of Louis’ cars,” Harry explained.

“Oh, well isn’t that sweet!” Anne cooed as she followed Harry out the front and watched him lock up. “Well I’m sorry, but for right now you’ll have to deal with the good ole’ mum mobile.”

Harry chuckled to himself, almost too easily swinging himself into his childhood car. “Wouldn't have it any other way mum,” he smiled at her.

And Anne just grinned back, almost having to hold in a snort as the car made a loud thump before the engine roared to life. But Harry wasn’t shy about letting out a booming laugh, it being the little moments like this with his mum that he’s missed.

It may have taken them a couple minutes, but before they both knew it they were on the road and to Louis’ flat. It really wasn’t that far from his work which he was grateful for, and within minutes he was showing his mum where she could park in front of Louis’ building.

“You have any bags you need help bringing up mum?” Harry asked as soon as he hopped out.

“Oh, will I be staying here?” Anne asked a bit confused.

“Well if you’re okay with it…” Harry said quietly. “Nate and I essentially live here already and Louis has an extra room, and you know how my place is, so…”

“Honey it’s fine, was just a surprise is all,” Anne waved it off. “I just have the one bag in the back there.”

Harry made sure to grab it before leading his mum inside, praying Louis had seen his message and that place was at least decent. But instead of thinking about that too much his mum had his attention more with commenting on how nice of a place this was. Harry couldn’t wait until she saw inside if she thought just this hallway was nice.

“Alright, here we are,” Harry breathed out, reaching for the handle and bracing himself for what was on the other side of the door.

“Nate! Nathaniel Jacob you have to stop playing with princess and get dressed before your dad and nan get here!”

“Lou?” Harry stifled a laugh, seeing his boyfriend in an almost soaked tank top and sweatpants, looking more than stressed.

And it was immediate the two Styles saw the shorter man still, slowly turning around and going wide eyed at the two of them.

“What’s uhm, what’s going on?” Harry asked, trying is absolute hardest to hide his amusement.

“Hey- it’s uh, just bath time and I was trying to clean up a bit but I guess Princess jumped in the tub and you can probably figure out how the rest of that went,” Louis explained as he scratched the back of his neck sheepishly. “But I’m so sorry, Mrs. Styles, it’s so nice to finally meet you and I’m so, so sorry for… All of this,” he said slowly, looking around his flat before offering her his hand.

“Hi sweetheart don’t you worry about it at all, and please, call me Anne,” she smiled at him before shaking his hand.

Even though she said it Harry could see that he was clearly stressing more than necessary.

“Mum why don’t you try to go surprise Nate? I’m sure he’d love that,” Harry offered, his mum not even needing to think about it before she took off.

“Up the stairs to the right!” Harry called after her.

He watched her find her way, unable to stop the small laugh that came out of him before his eyes set on Louis. “Love? What’s wrong?”

“Harry oh my God, she’s gonna think I’m a complete mess!” Louis said wide eyed. “I’m sorry, I’m so sorry, I was just trying to get everything ready but-”

“But my son started acting like a toddler?” Harry joked as he wrapped his arms around the older lad. “Don’t worry about it love, she doesn’t care and neither do I, it’s fine.”

“No, she’s gonna think I can’t take care of him alone and then-”

“Lou, please, please don’t do this,” Harry begged. “You’re overthinking and she already loves you, just please relax.”

Louis mumbled to himself but squeezed his arms around Harry’s waist just a bit tighter. He knew he was acting like a maniac but meeting Harry’s mum for the first time was important to him, he wanted to make sure everything was right.

“I should probably change… I’m soaked and look like a wreck.”

“What? C’mon I think you look kinda-”

“Oh no, don’t you dare start with me Styles,” Louis tried to say seriously but couldn’t stop the laugh that escaped him. “Your mum is here and I’m gonna clean myself up and then finish dinner.”

Harry huffed but let his boyfriend go, knowing right now wouldn’t be the best time to torture him. “Anything I can do to help?”

“Your sister will be here soon so could you answer the door? But other than that keep an eye on the food on the stove!” Louis called back as he jogged up the stairs.

“What? My sister?” Harry whispered to himself, having no recollection of inviting Gemma over.

It didn’t take him much thinking to figure out Louis was the one to invite her over. He was sure his mum would love the surprise and maybe Louis would calm down a bit at seeing how happy she would be.

“Daddy! Daddy! I found nana, look!” Nate shrieked as he dragged his nan into the kitchen.

“What? Oh my God, you did!” Harry said shocked, making the toddler burst into a fit of giggles. “Where in the world was she hiding?”

“In the hallway!” Nate said like it was the craziest thing as his father scooped him up.

“Gave him a right scare,” Anne poked his side, making her grandson laugh and push her hand away “And can I say Louis has an amazing place here. Almost got lost without this one showing me around.”

“Wait, wait!!” Nate yelled. “I have to show nana my and Princess room!”

Anne looked at Harry confused, not knowing who this Princess was, but just before she was about to ask she heard the little patter of paws behind her.

“Princess! Come here, this my nana and you be nice,” Nate said, wiggling out of his father’s arms and going towards the pug that was staring his nan down.

Anne looked back at the little animal, a small smile coming over her as she watched her grandson and the dog. “You got a dog?”

“What? No, no, this is Louis’ dog,” Harry quickly filled in.

She raised her eyebrows at that, a bit surprised how close Nate and the dog were. And not only that, but apparently he already seems to have his own room here.

“She real nice nana I promise.”

Anne could only smile at that, not only at realizing that the dog’s name was actually Princess but Nate absolutely adored her.

“Mum do you want to sit down or have a drink? Lou has dinner on the stove so we can relax for a bit,” Harry offered.

“Daddy nana likes her juice!”

Harry raised his eyebrows at the 3 year old before looking to his mum and seeing her snicker. “Yeah, her juice,” he rolled his eyes fondly, going over to the fridge and pulling out an already open bottle of wine. “You go sit down mum, I’ll bring it to you.”

“Oh my goodness, all my boys know just how to spoil me,” Anne smiled, letting Nate take her hand and pull her towards the living room.

And Harry just watched the two walk out, keeping his eyes on them until they made it to the couch. He couldn’t help the small grin that came over him just at seeing the two together again. He always wished he could see his mum more, and maybe since he and Gemma have steady jobs in the city now she might consider moving closer to them.

But for right now he just brought his mum her drink and smiled at the two before going back into the kitchen and checking on what Louis had cooking.

“Hey love, how’s it going?”

Harry turned around to see Louis breathlessly making his way towards him, clearly still very stressed. “You run a marathon while you were up there? Geez,” he laughed at him.

“No, I just-...” Louis huffed. “I had to change and clean up the bathroom but I didn’t want to be a bad host and disappear for too long,” he explained.

Harry looked right back at him, not even trying to hide the fact that he thought the older lad had gone a bit mental.

“What?” Louis asked confused.

“Babe, just… Relax,” Harry laughed at him. “My mum is a mum, and if it makes you feel better you’re doing total dad things, so she gets it.”

Louis furrowed his eyebrows at him, his jaw going a bit slack at what he said. “Really?”

“Uh yeah,” Harry said as if it was obvious. “Giving a 3 year old a bath while trying to make dinner and clean, yeah, last I checked that’s a dad’s life.”

“Oh…” was all Louis could manage.

He didn’t really think about it, but when Harry put it like that he really understood. And just at the thought he didn’t even try to fight the wide smile and pride that came over him.

“Why don’t you go relax with Nate and mum, get to know her a bit,” Harry offered softly, not wanting him to have to run around anymore.

“What? No, you just came home from work and-”

“And you’ve had just as hard of a day with that one,” Harry eyed his son in the living room. “Please, you’ve watched my son, you’ve gotten this place ready for my mum, let me do this one thing.”

“Harry, no, it-... I want to do these things, for you and Nate and your mum, ya know it’s… It’s just helping out the family,” Louis explained, unable to look the taller lad in the eye as he scratched the back of his neck nervously.

And Harry didn’t have any words. His throat felt numb, hands shaky and mind screaming at him to tell this man just how much he means to him.

“Louis I-”

But he was stopped by a knock at the door and Nate not wasting a second before sprinting to it and yanking it open.

“Aunt Gemma!!”

“Gem!”

The two looked over as Anne and Nate showered Gemma with hugs and kisses, both of them frozen where they were.

“Go say hi to you sister love and I’ll keep an eye on dinner. After your done though send her in the kitchen so I can get her a drink,” Louis said gently as he rubbed Harry’s back and kissed his cheek.

Harry looked back at him, not sure of what else to do so he just nodded at Louis and went to go say hi to his sister.

But still, even after everyone was settled with a drink in their hand and dinner almost done he was replaying what Louis had said. He couldn’t believe how much the older man really cared for them, how he really thought of them as a family.

It was everything Harry has ever wanted, and not only for him but Nate too. He’s wanted someone to settle with, someone else who could love Nate as much as he does, and Harry thought that he might have found that person.

*~*

“But daddy I no want to go to bed!” Nate whined, wiggling in his father’s arms and trying his absolute hardest to get out of his grasp.

“C’mon buddy, nana will still be here tomorrow and the next day and the day after that, so it’s okay if you got to bed,” Harry said, somehow managing to get his squirming toddler in bed.

But at that Nate actually calmed down and seemed to think that was a fair enough point to get a few hours of rest.

“Fine, but we need to make bekfast for nana in the morning,” Nate huffed as he stated his conditions to going to bed.

“Hm… Well that sounds like an early wake up so we might have to put Louis in charge of that,” Harry raised his eyebrows at the 3 year old, peeking behind him and smiling at Louis sweetly.

Just at the word early Louis was groaning and throwing himself against the door frame. “But it’s Saturday and- and-”

But there wasn’t a single excuse popping into his head so he wouldn’t have to wake up early. He didn’t mind cooking for everyone, not at all. Just after today he really needed a good night’s rest.

“Can we do brunch maybe?” Louis suggested. “We can make some waffles and maybe if daddy is feeling nice he’ll make his famous fried chicken,” he said, not even phased by the nudge Harry gave him.

The younger lad threw him under the bus first, now he knows how it feels.

“Oh I like that idea Lou!” Nate said excitedly. “Brunch with nana! And- and aunt Gemma, and uncle Liam and Sam and Niall and Zayn and-”

“Buddy! Nate!” Harry stopped his son. “We can’t invite everyone we know big guy, I wish we could,” he laughed to himself. “We’ll just keep it the family for tomorrow alright? Just you, me, Lou, nana and aunt Gemma.”

“Okay, that nice too,” Nate said quietly, but still, a small smile came over him at the thought of brunch tomorrow.

“Good, I’m glad you think so,” Harry grinned back at him, pulling the covers over him and kissing his forehead. “I love you buddy, sleep well.”

“Love you too daddy,” Nate said sleepily, fighting to keep the smile on his face as he focused his attention on Louis, trying his hardest to stay awake so the older man could say goodnight to him.

“Oh man, you are tired mate,” Louis teased the toddler as he made his way towards the bed and knelt by Nate’s side. “That means we better stay in bed tonight so we can get as much sleep as possible for brunch.”

“I promise,” Nate mumbled, knowing he’s been told time and time again he can’t go into Louis and his daddy’s room past bedtime.

“Okay,” Louis smiled down at him before kissing his hair. “Say hi to Peter Pan for me tonight, will ya?”

“Lou,” Nate sleepily groaned, but he couldn’t fight the smile that came over him as he said it. “I told you I don’t see Peter.”

Louis looked back at the toddler like he had gone mad, knowing for a fact he was wrong. He also knew he could start a great story right now if he wanted to. So Louis decided maybe he’ll have some fun with this.

“You know that place between asleep and awake? The place you can still remember dreaming?” he asked quietly, leaning in just a bit closer to the 3 year old. “That’s where Peter Pan waits at night, that’s where he stays.”

Nate looked back at the older man, feeling himself sink further into the mattress as he gripped onto his blanket tighter. “Why is he there?”

“Well, it’s because that’s where he loves Wendy. That’s where he promised he would always wait for her,” Louis explained softly, his heart nearly melting just at Nate’s face.

“But- but if he love her how come they not together? You and daddy together all the time so how come Peter have to wait?” Nate almost whispered.

It took Louis a second to answer though, feeling himself still at how Nate thought of him and Harry like Peter and Wendy. “Of course you know in the movie Wendy goes home to her family,” he started to explain, only continuing when the toddler nodded. “Well Peter Pan, ya know him, he never wants to grow up, so he can’t go home with Wendy…”

And Nate’s eyes grew wide, only now realizing Peter and Wendy never ended up together forever.

“But no!” he said suddenly. “No Lou! Wendy has to see Peter!”

“Whoa, whoa, relax,” Louis chuckled. “Of course Wendy sees Peter, just like you see Peter.”

Nate thought about it, all at once slowing down once he remembered what Louis said. “We see him where we dream?”

“That’s right,” he smiled down at him. “Every night Wendy will visit Peter in the place between asleep and awake. And you can visit him too.”

“Really?” Nate asked like he didn’t believe it.

“Of course,” Louis said without a trace of hesitance in his voice. “All kids can.”

And with that, one more kiss and goodnight to the toddler Louis made his way out of the room. He didn’t even realize Harry had left but made sure that Nate was okay before leaving the room.

Louis couldn't even get a step out the door though before he saw a shadow standing in the hallway and almost let out a shriek but caught himself just as he was about to let it out.

“H-how long have you been standing there?” he stuttered out, needing to give his heart a second to start beating again.

“Long enough to know where Peter Pan waits for Wendy and why,” Anne said softly back, unable to hold back the smile that came over her just at looking at the younger man. “I’m going to say goodnight to him, but Harry and Gem are downstairs.”

Louis couldn’t even get an “okay” out though before Anne slipped into Nate’s room. So instead he just let out a deep breath and hoped that she didn’t think he was insane before he made his way downstairs.

“Hey, you tell him a story?” Harry asked, Louis always taking a little extra time to say goodnight.

“A short one tonight,” Louis smiled back at him, gratefully accepting the wine glass he was being offered as Harry walked out of the kitchen. “And I ran into your mum on the way out, almost gave me a heart attack.”

“Yeah, she’s famous for being sneaky like that.”

Louis hummed as he took a sip of his wine and followed the younger lad to the couch. “Much more quiet than your monster feet thumping up the stairs.”

He didn’t expect to get an actual laugh from that, but when Gemma cracked up he was pleasantly surprised.

“The more I hang out with you the more I like you,” Gemma hummed.

Louis tried not to light up at that, but Harry looked less than thrilled.

“You only like him because he makes fun of me,” he mumbled.

“Yeah,” Gemma said, everyone in the room knowing that was more than one hundred percent true.

“Oh come on, you know I’m just playing though,” Louis whispered to the younger lad, making sure to wrap his arm around him and that there wasn’t any room between them.

And Harry didn’t want to stop the small smile that was creeping onto his lips. It was moments like this where he felt like it was just the two of them. How Louis would look at him and touch him, how’d he talk so softly to him as if he were to go any louder it would disturb the little bubble of peace around them.

It was moments like this where Harry wished he could say “I love you”. He wished he could whisper it to him, and it would only be for his ears but there would be no doubt that someone in the room would catch their little moment. He wished he could, but he can’t.

“I swear if you two were as easy to put to bed as Nate is my life would’ve been so much easier,” Anne said teasingly as she walked into the living room.

But neither Gemma or Harry didn’t seem all that shocked their mum said that. Since Nate was born Harry swears his mum has compared them, and granted they are more alike than not, but one opposite thing about them is how well the 3 year old behaves.

There are too many stories of how much of a troublemaker Harry was when he was younger and he only prayed his mum didn’t bring them up.

“What were you like as a child Louis? Were you like Nate or Harry?”

“Mum,” Harry groaned, looking at her like she was mental.

“No, no, it’s fine,” Louis laughed, it being no big deal. “I dunno if I was much like either them, I was a bit of a tyrant.”

“Oh?” Anne chuckled, knowing there must be some stories.

“Yeah, I was kinda terrible,” he said, feeling his face heat up as the room laughed.

But he really didn’t mind that everyone’s attention was on him. He really did want Anne and Gemma to get to know him well and there was nothing better than telling stories of the past and growing up.

Louis had too many stories he could tell to count of him as a kid growing up in his tiny town. It was definitely a way for him to calm down too, he loved sharing memories he had with other people and to see how they react at what had happened. Thankfully it didn’t take long for the room to start cracking up and everyone started joining in with their own stories.

This what Louis had hoped for when Anne came to visit. Sure, he made of made a fool of himself a couple times, but things seemed to be going really well and more than anything, Harry looked happy.

By the end of the night between the four of them they finished more than a few bottles of wine and didn’t even notice how quick the time had gone by. But before they all said their goodnights they promised to meet up and do it again tomorrow.

“What a night,” Louis said as soon as they were in their bedroom, immediately reaching for his shirt and throwing it off.

“And we have brunch tomorrow,” Harry giggled, Louis not even saying anything but just throwing himself on the bed. “Hey,” he said softly, crawling over to him and running his hand down his bare back. “Thank you for just… I dunno, being you tonight.”

Louis peeked his head out from where he was stuffing it into the mattress and raised an eyebrow at him. “What?” he laughed, fully turning so he could the younger lad’s cheeks go red.

“Well my mum absolutely adores you, like, loves you, and I don’t think I’ve seen Gem laugh as much ever,” he said softly. “I just really appreciate everything you’ve done and do, so thank you.”

And Louis just looked back at him for a second, it being natural at this point that when he sees Harry he can’t help but smile. But this, this was different. This was just one of those times where he looked at his boyfriend and felt like everything was right in the world, felt completely at peace and like the only thing he needed was him.

“Also I uh- w-well I wanted to talk to you about something too,” Harry stuttered and slurred a bit nervously.

“Okay, sure,” Louis said quietly, reaching for Harry’s hand at seeing he was nervous.

But just at that it made his own heart race a bit, not knowing what he would have to bring up that would make him this scared.

“So I know you’ve been waiting a while for an answer about if Nate and I will move in with you,” Harry said, needing to take a deep breath as he saw Louis nodding back at him. “And I’ve thought about it a lot, and I-I think that uhm, that it would be a good idea for us to come live here.”

Louis was completely still for a second, squeezing onto Harry’s hand as he looked back at him. “Really?” he barely whispered in the silent room.

“Yeah,” Harry nodded, offering him a small smile.

And within a second Louis lit up, lunging at the younger lad and knocking him onto his back on the mattress. “Oh my God, yes! Holy shit I love you, this is amazing!”

But just as quickly as the room was filled with excitement did it come to a screeching halt as Harry heard the older man.

Louis looked down at Harry as he was hovering over him wide eyed, his mouth opening but absolutely nothing coming out. He almost wanted to cry from how stupid he was, he couldn’t believe he had just blurted it out like that.

“You… Y-you love me?” Harry swallowed thickly, his hands gripping the blue eyed lad’s hips, feeling like he had to hold onto him for dear life.

Louis bit his lip, letting out a deep breath before letting his eyes fall back on Harry’s. “Yeah, yeah I do quite a bit.”

And Harry first reaction was to wrap his arms around Louis’ neck and tug him down until their lips met.

Of course Louis was absolute confused, it taking him a second to kiss the younger lad back. He figured being kissed was better than nothing at all, so it must’ve been a good sign.

“Oh my God,” Harry whispered, pulling millimeters away from his boyfriend just so he could look at him, so he could grasp what this incredible man just said to him. “I… I love you too, yeah, holy-”

But he was cut off by a powerful pair of lips attaching to his, not wasting a second as he kissed Louis back with everything he had in him.

It was immediate they were a tangled mess. Louis’ legs between Harry’s, arms around one another and hands roaming along sides, but the two were completely lost in one another.

They both knew what a load it was to get it off their shoulders and it was like nothing was holding them back.

There have been so many times either of them would’ve loved to scream “I love you” because they just needed them to know. They’ve both been there, but now that it’s out they could do things just like that.

And neither of them were really shy about it saying it over and over again. Muttering it, whispering it and moaning it in the otherwise silent room as they worked each other’s clothes off.

They both did everything in their power to be as quiet as possible, knowing that people were not too far down the hall from them. But every time Louis said it Harry almost wanted to ask him if he was sure, if he was serious.

It seemed almost impossible that this man, that this amazing human actually loved him and wanted to live with him and his son and share a life together. Just at thinking all of that though Harry wanted to scream how much he loved him back. But instead he showed the older lad.

Laying Louis down and wasting no time in kissing and nipping at his neck while his hand snaked between them and slowly wrapped around his length.

He expected the moan from the man under him, always loving when he could make Louis feel good like this. So Harry just kept it like this, sucking at his boyfriend’s neck and stroking his growing hard.

He loved the way Louis would melt under him, how it seemed like as soon as his lips were on him he had total control.

Of course they had their times where Louis would basically throw him onto the bed and waste absolutely no time in pounding into him. Those were usually the times where they had to be quick or were drunk, but if Harry was being honest he absolutely loved it when the older lad did that. Most times they barely even got half their clothes off and Louis had Harry bending over the bed because he couldn’t even make it fully into the room.

It was quick and messy and sexy and sometimes Harry just needed to be taken over. But not tonight.

Tonight was one of those nights where Louis wanted to go slow, and so did Harry because he could really show the older lad how much he loved him.

But it wasn’t too long before he was thrusting into Harry’s hand and moaning for something more.

“Yeah? You sure?” he asked softly, with his free hand combing his fingers through Louis’ already sweat soaked hair.

“Wait, wait, are you-” Louis hitched, not even able to finish his question as Harry started easing down around his length. “Jesus- H, you’re- stop.”

“What?” Harry asked almost worried.

“You’re not even stretched out, I don’t wanna hurt you,”  Louis breathed out, trying to control the pleasure that was rushing inside him just at how tight the younger lad felt around his tip.

Harry looked down at his boyfriend and raised his eyebrows at him, not even responding before sliding the rest of the way down his length with no problem, and earning a loud moan from Louis in return.

“Fuck,” he breathed out, digging his fingers into Harry’s thighs as he settled on top of him.

And Harry couldn’t help the small chuckle that came out of him, slowly rocking on top of the older lad as he leaned down towards him.

“I don’t think you realize how much we have sex,” he teased him, breathing hotly into his ear and allowing his teeth to gently graze his skin. “Plus I kinda sneaked some lube when you were taking off your pants.”

But Louis’ only response was a barely audible hum, him more focused on gripping the taller man’s waist as he slowly rode him up and down.

Harry kept with his rhythm, the only noise in the silent room being their heavy breathing and wet skin on skin. It was moments like this where he just like being as close to Louis as possible.

Pressing his face right into the older lad’s sweaty neck, gripping his arms and letting his hands roam everywhere and anywhere they wanted to go on him.

He loved feeling Louis’ pounding heartbeat against him and his arms wrapped around him. He loved with each time he would go down on the older lad he would gasp and hold onto him tighter.

With each time his length went into him it went deeper and deeper, both of them allowing the pleasure to wash over them and completely consume them.

“I love you.”

Harry was quiet for a second, squeezing his eyes shut and trying not to come undone just at those words. “I love you too.”

And Louis didn’t even get the chance to smile before he felt a strong pair of lips on his, all of a sudden Harry making sure there was absolutely no room between them.

Louis’ fingers were a tangled mess in Harry’s curls, his other hand without a doubt leaving bruises on arse as he gripped it the harder and harder the younger lad rode him.

Their kiss was becoming sloppy, both of them growing more and more eager the closer they got to their end.

And the entire time all Harry could think was “I love you”. With every kiss, every touch, every moan he was thinking it, chanting it in his head. He was sure there were a million and one things he could say he loves about Louis, but right now, in this moment he can say that he loves how he makes him feel.

Louis makes him feel whole, makes him feel complete and confident, and like with them together they can take on the world. Harry loves Louis because he makes him feel loved.

And when they were both coming down from their rush, a sticky mess between them and Louis’ arms wrapped securely around him, his lips gently grazing his temple, that’s all Harry could think.

He loves this man, and it almost scares him how much. But knowing and feeling just how much Louis loves him too there was nothing to be scared of.

Chapter Text

“Nate! Nate, shoes!” Harry called after his son as soon as he saw him sprinting into the flat.

“I got him H,” Anne chuckled, following after her grandson.

Harry let out a quiet breath, hoping Nate wouldn’t make a mess that he would have to clean before Louis came home. But just as he was putting his bags down on the couch he noticed a shadow moving outside on the balcony.

He furrowed his eyebrows, knowing Louis was supposed to be at the studio all day but here he was. Just at a quick glance though Harry could see the older lad was mad or stressed.

The blue eyed man had his phone pressed to his ear while his other hand was clutching a beer, which for Louis at this time of day meant something was going wrong. So Harry carefully made his way to the glass door that led to the balcony, opening it and feeling the cool fall air hit him.

“Lou…?”

Louis spun around, his cheeks pink and fingers white from the cold but that didn’t stop the almost relieved breath that came out of him as soon as he saw his boyfriend.

“Hey love, I’ll be off soon, I promise.”

Harry just offered him a small smile and nodded, of course not wanting to interrupt his conversation. But then he saw Louis wasn’t wearing very warm clothes for his pacing outside so he made quick work of rushing to their bedroom and grabbing him a sweatshirt.

“I already told you, I’m not coming in, I don’t understand what you don’t get about the word no!”

Harry bit his lip as he silently walked back out to the balcony, clutching the sweatshirt as he heard Louis getting more and more frustrated on the phone.

“No! You listen!” Louis yelled into the phone. “I’m asking for a few days off while I have family here! It’s not too much to ask for a movie that takes a whole fucking year to make!!”

He really, really didn’t want to sneak up on him, but he hated that he was cold and clearly stressed and didn’t want to be inside so everyone could hear him yelling.

“Love…” Harry almost whispered, very carefully putting his hand on the back of the older lad’s back. “Here.”

Louis let out a deep breath, turning around and his eyes immediately falling on the article of clothing his boyfriend was offering him. He couldn’t even say thank you before Harry was reaching for his beer bottle and holding it for him so he could put his sweatshirt on.

Louis pulled the phone away from his ear, keeping his eyes on his boyfriend, and for the first time since they said goodbye to each other this morning he smiled. “I love you.”

And if Harry wasn’t looking at him he probably wouldn’t have even noticed the older man was talking to him. But of course he noticed, and as soon as Louis slipped the sweatshirt over his head he was able to sneak in for a quick kiss.

“I love you too,” he said softly, his own grin coming over him. “I’ll be inside alright?”

Louis just nodded back, the smile never leaving his face as the green eyed lad shuffled back inside.

Harry was at least happy he could get him to smile but from how that conversation was going he wasn’t too sure how long it would last.

“What’re you looking at love?”

Harry snapped his head to where he heard his mum’s voice coming from, only to see her walk to where he was and look out to the balcony.

“I thought he was supposed to be at work all day?” she asked confused.

“Yeah, he was but uh- I don’t know, he’s on the phone from someone from work I guess.”

“Hm, doesn’t seem like a pleasant conversation,” Anne said quietly as she saw the blue eyed man pacing around and looking like he was doing everything in his power not to blow up.

“Little man, big temper,” Harry joked, making his mum laugh to herself.

“Never with you though.”

“No, just exceptionally sassy,” Harry chuckled. “I’ve only ever seen him get this mad when a pap gets in our face or someone is rude to me or something.”

Anne hummed, Harry not needing to tell her just how protective Louis was of them. “But this is a work call?”

“At least it seems like he’s talking to someone from work,” Harry shrugged, his eyes following his boyfriend outside.

But it wasn’t too much longer Louis was off the phone and making his way back inside.

As he walked passed them he offered them both a small smile before taking his beer to the kitchen.

“You talk to him love, I’m gonna go see what Nate is getting in to,” Anne said softly.

Harry nodded, thanking his mum quickly before he followed where Louis went and saw him sitting at the breakfast bar. “Hey, everything okay?”

“Uhm, yeah, yeah,” Louis nodded to himself. “I’m sorry if your mum saw me freaking out I just…” he couldn’t even finish his sentence, letting out a deep breath and groaning into his hands just at the thought of the conversation he had.

“Hey, hey, it’s alright,” Harry shushed him. “Talk to me love, what’s going on?”

Louis was quiet for a second, seemingly calming himself down as his eyes were locked on the beer bottle on the counter. “I’m not doing the same shit again, I can’t. Not to you, not to Nate,” he barely whispered. “I’m not letting work take over my life again.”

“It’s okay to go into work Lou, I mean me of all people get that,” Harry said softly.

“No, no, it’s different than that,” Louis shook his head. “There’s a reason all of my relationships ended H, and it’s because I wasn’t there… I’m not doing that to you and Nate.”

Harry just looked at him for a moment, the older man refusing to meet his eyes. “Hey…” he said, placing his hand on top of Louis’ and giving it a gentle squeeze. “I love you.”

And that finally got him to look at Harry, the smallest of smiles coming over him as he tangled their fingers. “I love you too,” Louis whispered back, leaning over just enough to connect their lips.

“You know I was talking to mum earlier and she offered to watch Nate one of the nights she’s here so we can go out,” Harry started off, “maybe tonight we can go out, get you to stop thinking about work for a bit.”

“Really?” Louis asked quietly, his smile only growing at hearing that.

“Yeah, really,” Harry chuckled. “Maybe some dinner and afterwards would you want to meet up with the boys and go to a club?”

“Oh come on, now I know you’re pulling my leg,” Louis scoffed.

“Shut up, you know I like to cut loose every now and then,” he winked at him. “Text the boys, I’ll call Liam and Sam, talk to my mum and make a reservation for tonight.”

And with that he kissed his boyfriend one last time before going off to plan the night.

*~*

“You sure about this?” Louis double checked, seeing his boyfriend just staring at the lit up club in front of them. “It’s okay if you don’t want to go in, I mean, I know you don’t like-”

“No, no, it’s fine,” Harry breathed out. “Just get me enough drinks so I won’t remember anything embarrassing I do.”

Louis rolled his eyes fondly, giving Harry’s hand an encouraging squeeze before they started walking towards the building. “It’s when you’re drunk your most embarrassing moves come out, you sure you want that?” he teased.

“Hey!” Harry slapped his arm. “It’s… It’s not like-... Okay, fine, but at least I don’t remember it, so who cares.”

“Oh come on love, I’m just playing!” Louis laughed, not wanting him to get upset. “Besides, I love your dance moves and I love you, so we’ll have an amazing night no matter what.”

Harry bit his lip, looking down to his shoes so Louis wouldn’t see his growing smile. He doesn’t think he’ll ever get used to hearing his boyfriend say those words, get used to the comfort and confidence that washes over him every time because this incredible man actually loves him.

“I love you too.”

“Good, I thought so,” Louis grinned back at him. “Now let’s get in there and make fools of ourselves.”

At that Harry couldn’t hide his smile, knowing Louis would have absolutely no problem dancing worse than him on purpose so he wouldn’t be embarrassed. And just at that thought he had a skip in his step the entire way into the club.

The first thing that hit him as soon as they walked through the door was the thumping bass. Lights were flashing, sweaty bodies were everywhere and already Harry desperately needed a drink.

“C’mon love, to the bar!”

Louis read his mind, having no problem letting the older man tug and weave him through people.

“We going heavy or light tonight?”

“Heavy,” Harry said, it not even being a second thought.

And Louis was very clearly happy with that decision, about to wave over a bartender before he felt a body crash into him.

“Niall, geez!” he said startled, not expecting the Irish lad. “I thought you weren’t gonna be here for another half hour.”

“Zayn and I came early!” Niall screamed over the music. “C’mon, we got a table with drinks already there and more coming!”

It was music to the pair’s ears, maybe following him a bit too closely as he led them to the table. And Harry could say he was pleasantly surprised to see Liam and Sam both there as well.

“Harry I’m only exceptionally hurt that you never introduced me to these guys and yet them and Liam seem to be best mates, not cool.”

“Well we only spent two weeks on a boat with them,” Harry rolled his eyes at Sam before making him scootch into the booth to make room.

“I’m just saying it would have been nice to be included after you guys got back,” Sam huffed. “I don’t like being stuck at work when everyone else is having fun.”

“Hey you wanna run the studio have at it, I’ll happily switch with you.”

“Oh no, you put up with way too much shit, no thank you, I’d rather be lonely,” he said quickly, making the table laugh.

“That’s what I thought,” Harry hummed. “Sam, this is Louis by the way, babe, this is Sam,” he said, remembering the two still haven’t met.

Louis stuck out his hand to shake and smiled at the other man. “Hey mate, good to finally meet ya. Heard loads about you from H.”

“And I’ve seen loads of you,” Sam laughed. “You know Harry’s computer at work is like seventy five percent pictures of you.”

“Sam!” Harry hissed.

“Well hopefully it’s only the appropriate ones,” Louis winked back at him, making Sam bark out a laugh.

“Louis! God, can we not?!” he looked at his boyfriend wide eyed.

“Oh c’mon Harry, people like us are the only ones where it’s okay to have files of naked men saved on our computer, it’s artsy,” Sam laughed at him.

Harry covered his hands with his face, not even here for 10 minutes and already this was happening.

“Get me drunk, please, just give me anything,” he mumbled.

“Are they actually on you work computer?” Louis asked slowly, now not knowing what Sam has seen.

Sam stilled for a second, glancing over to Harry and seeing his face bright red. “Wait… I was totally kidding… Harry you seriously took pictures of-”

“Sam!!” Harry screamed, now laughter booming from all around the table except for Louis next to him who realized that Sam was joking about these inappropriate pictures that really exist, just not on his work computer.

“Holy shit… Fuck Harry I’m sorry, I thought-” but Louis stopped himself at seeing his boyfriend reach for two shots and then immediately shoot them back. “Yup, I messed up…”

“This is why I love him,” Liam said through his laughter as he wrapped an arm around his boyfriend. “He has such a skill for making this happen,” he said, gesturing to his best mate that was trying to drink anything available.

“Honestly, I don’t blame ya H,” Niall chipped in. “Hell if I could take pictures the way you do I’d be doing it for my lady.”

At least that was enough to ease some of the tension, Harry actually smiling as he heard that. But then Louis was pressing himself into his side and kissing his temple and maybe it was the obscene amount of alcohol he just drank but everything felt right in the world again.

“Yeah, how come we haven’t done that?” Liam asked Sam with furrowed eyebrows. “I’m sure you’d appreciate it when I’m away for work,” he joked.

“I didn’t know it was an option until now!” Sam retorted. “See, this is why Haz runs the place, he has the brains and creativity.”

At that Harry chuckled, now not feeling horrified that all his mates found out about his secret collection.

“You alright?” Louis whispered to the younger lad, praying he hasn’t ruined the night.

“Yeah just mildly horrified,” Harry said through an airy laugh. “Just keep getting me drinks and we’ll be even.”

“I can make that happen,” Louis smiled back at him before connecting their lips.

And that was just what Harry needed to hear before he took the last shot on the table.

It wasn’t exactly how he planned the night to start off with the boys but he knew nothing could top that, so the worst of it was over. And it was almost on cue a waitress came over with more drinks, Harry almost too happily helping her empty the tray and placing glasses on the table.

“Alright boys, listen up!” Niall yelled over the music as soon as he saw that everyone had a drink. “I just want to say that I’m really super happy that we’re all mates and we could come out tonight, and Lou, Harry, I love you guys. Thank you for combining our little groups and bein the glue we all need, so here’s to ya!”

The lads all cheered around the table, raising their glasses and taking large gulps of their drinks. But Louis and Harry were stuck, their hands tangled under the table and giving each other that look they have a thousand times before.

“I love you,” Louis whispered to him, it not being a second later he felt a pair of lips on his.

And Harry knew he didn’t have to say it back, that Louis knew, but he had to keep telling him, had to remind himself that this man was his.

“I love you too.”

“Alright! We get it! Now drink up!!” Zayn screamed at the pair.

Louis may have kissed him one more time but he didn’t waste a second afterwards to grab them drinks and earning another round of cheers from the table as they shot them back.

“Whoo!! C’mon baby, we’re dancin!” Sam yelled, standing up and nearly dragging Liam out of the booth.

“I love him,” Niall said, his eyes trained on the dark haired man dancing. “He’s amazing and Liam should love him like he deserves.”

Zayn raised his eyebrows at his mate, knowing for a fact he was hammered at this point. “Let’s go dance mate, maybe you can steal him away.”

Niall let out a booming laugh but didn’t hesitate before heading in the direction of the dancing pair with Zayn amusedly following behind him.

“Oh we are so lucky,” Louis chuckled to himself before taking a swig of his beer.

“Yeah, we are,” Harry nodded along, his eyes focused on the older lad.

And he was so, so lucky to have what he did. He never thought he could say or even think that with full confidence, but now he can and he will until his lungs give out.

“You want to come dancing with me? Preferably away from the lads,” Louis chuckled, the alcohol already catching up with him as Harry took his offered hand.

Just squeezing through the crowd was more hard than usual, his feet tripping over each other and people knocking into them but luckily it seemed Harry was already too drunk to care.

Louis made sure that they weren’t in eye sight of the other lads before twirling Harry and pulling him back into his chest.

The green eyed lad’s smile was infectious as he looked back down at him, normally him being quite shy when they go out like this but Harry wasn’t thinking twice before moving to the music.

Louis was quick to reach for his hips, letting him come as close as he could. It was moments like this, both of them drunk, dancing and completely stuck in their own world that Louis loved.

It was rare they could do this, but even if that was true he wouldn’t trade it for anything.

*~*

“Wait, wait, wait!” Louis rushed out through a heavy breath. “Where are-”

“Sleeping idiot, where do you think?” Harry rolled his eyes. “It’s like 3 am Lou.”

Louis only had to think about it for a second before nodding and standing on his toes to connect their lips again. He was drunk and not used to having his house full, it wasn’t his fault for being a bit nervous.

“Well, we- we can’t just barge through the flat. What if-”

Harry let out an annoyed grunt, taking no time in reaching for his boyfriend’s waist and throwing him over his shoulder. But of course Louis just had to scream and started clinging to him for dear life.

“That’s how you wake people,” he slurred before not so carefully making his way towards the stairs.

“Don’t scare me like that! Warnings are nice!!” Louis whispered yelled.

“Where’s the fun in that?”

“Harry I swear if you end up waking Nate or your mum I’ll kill you!” he threatened, “Need I remind you of the night Nate almost came barging in because you sounded like you were having nightmares?!”

“I’m not even the one making all the noise!” Harry retorted, picking up his step just to get them to their room faster.

And just as Louis opened his mouth he felt himself get tossed on the bed, not even having a moment to catch his breath before he saw the younger lad pulling his shirt off.

“There’s one way to get you to shut up,” Harry chuckled, reaching for Louis’ hips and tugging him towards him until they met on the edge of the bed.

All the older lad could do was hum, pressing his lips to his boyfriend’s and wrapping his arms around his neck as he felt that familiar warmth wash over him.

There wasn’t any point in trying to hide it, since the club he’s been stiff in his pants and he swears the entire time Harry was trying to make it worse. His reputation as the man behind Disney would have been quickly ruined and replaced with something vulgar if they stayed at the club any longer. Harry was killing him, and he knew it, but Louis knew that’s what he loved.

“H I know sometimes you like to go a bit slower but I’ve had a hard since the club and I-”

Harry didn’t say anything though, and was grateful it was dark in the room so Louis wouldn’t see him rolling his eyes as he reached for his pants button and yanked them down to his knees.

“Wow you really want me to shut up, I’m talking too much, aren’t I?” Louis asked, his drunken rambling probably annoying him.

“Oh no, you know me love,” Harry slurred himself, “I just like to get the deed done quickly so I can have a second round.”

Louis furrowed his eyebrows, maybe taking a moment too long to realize Harry did that on the regular. “Wow… I love you.”

And Harry may have let out a too loud laugh for their silent home but it was quickly muffled between the two of them as Louis yanked him down for a kiss.

Of course it was one of those nights Harry was more than quick to take his boyfriend into his mouth and humming around him as the older lad prepped him. It was messy and quick and one of those times Harry loved the most because there was something so sexy and intimate about it. He felt young and alive and it was with someone he loved which made the second go that much more special.

Louis’ head tucked into his neck, sweat dripping from his chin and wet lips sucking and nipping at his skin.

He could hold him like this, feel him everywhere at once with every thrust he made into him. His strong hands on his biceps or fingers running through his curls. And it was these touches that had Harry aching for more, but Louis always made it last.  He wanted to feel every dip, every curve on the younger lad until he was done, wanted know and memorize every square inch of him.

But Harry loved it, and he loved him. He loved how Louis made him feel every second of everyday, but this, these were the moments for them, and he never wanted to let them go.

*~*

“C’mere sweetheart, breakfast,” Louis said through a yawn, placing Princess’ bowl down before watching her waddle over to it.

He smiled down at her, standing back up and stretching, hoping to finally crack his back and loosen some of the tension. And when it finally did crack he let out a breath of relief, shuffling over to the whistling kettle and started making his morning tea.

Louis could say he’s become a much bigger fan of mornings, which he never thought in a million years he would say. But he liked the little time to himself and Princess in the mornings. He loved Harry and he loved Nate, but his mornings alone kept him sane through the day. He needed the time to gather himself and his thoughts and just breathe.

But Louis also loved when Harry would get up with him sometimes. It was time just for them and during the day those moments were hard to find until Nate went to bed. The mornings were their escapes for a little bit, at least until the real fun of the day began.

“Good morning dear.”

Louis jumped, almost knocking over his mug on the counter before he quickly caught it and stood it back up.

“Oh- I-I- didn’t hear you come down,” he rushed out, seeing Anne tiredly sitting at the breakfast bar.

“I’m known to be quite sneaky, ask H or Gem.”

Louis chuckled as she did when she said it and nodded back before getting a second mug down from the cabinet. “Would you like a cup?”

“Please,” Anne smiled at him. “I’m surprised you’re up dear, I figured you and Harry got in late.”

“Uh, yeah, we did,” Louis laughed to himself. “I guess I’ve just learned to appreciate quiet mornings.”

Anne hummed, offering him a grateful smile as he passed her a mug of steaming tea. “It gets like that when there are kids around. I mean look at me, still getting up with the sun even after those two moved out years ago,” she joked, making the younger man smile.

“The peace is nice for a bit for sure, but I do have to say Nate scream singing his good mornings to Princess every day is really my favorite part of the day,” Louis said sarcastically, making a startled laugh come from Anne.

And just in that one moment Louis could see so much of Harry in his mum. Her contagious laugh, bright eyes and deep dimples. This was a family with nothing but love, and it was a family he so terribly wanted to be a part of.

“There’s nothing wrong in wanting time for yourself love, it’s how we stay sane,” Anne said softly as she took a sip of her tea. “When Harry had gotten custody of Nate and he opened his studio he would escape a lot, need time alone…”

At that Louis picked his head up, his eyes really meeting hers for the first time since she sat down. “Yeah, he uh, well he’s mentioned that. Said he would be at the studio a lot and it was hard on their relationship.”

“Yeah, it was… It really was,” Anne nodded along. “I know he would never admit it, but he was heartbroken with a baby and as much as he loves Nate he needed an outlet.”

“Can I ask who would watch Nate while Harry was gone?” he said quietly.

“Gemma would a lot, and so did Liam when H needed someone at night,” Anne said as she looked back down to her mug. “I know now he really hates himself for how much he was gone and how distant he was but he did his best at the time… I wish he would see that.”

“I know what you mean,” Louis breathed out. “Like, he’s so genuine and loves Nate with all his heart but he acts like he’s ruined them forever. And then you have Nate who looks at him like a superhero and like his dad is the ruler of the word, and H doesn’t see it at all.”

Anne raised her eyebrows at him, a small smile coming over her as she listened to the younger man. “Yeah, but you’ve helped him and you don’t see it. I’m sure that drives him a little mad as well.”

“What?” Louis asked, almost having to hold back a laugh. “I mean, if you want to play that game I could say he’s helped me just as much if not more… And that’s what I love, ya know? It’s not really give and take, but more give and give,” he said, this time laughing along with Anne. “We have a good thing goin.”

“I would say so,” her smile reaching her eyes as she looked back at him. “You’ll be gaining two rowdy roommates, are you ready?”

“Oh, am I,” Louis said happily, not even trying to hide how excited he was. “This place has been like a tomb for so long, I’m ready for life and excitement and for my house to finally feel like a home.”

Anne’s smile fell for a moment as she looked at him, “how long has it been dear? Since your last relationship, if you don’t mind me asking.”

Louis was a bit taken back, not really expecting that, but of course, he didn’t mind. “Uhm a few years, but even then those few relationships I did have didn’t last long, 8 or so months at most.”

“Why?” Anne asked, her curiosity getting the best of her.

“I… Well, I worked a lot back then. I was only just really getting started with big movies and then came tv shows and guest starring here and guest starring there, so my relationships were put on the backburner,” Louis explained, his eyes trained on the cooling tea in his hands. “So after a while I told myself I wasn’t gonna get into something unless I was willing to slow everything down for them,” he said softly, his gaze glancing over to the stairs where both Styles boys were sound asleep. “And I’ll tell ya, I’d stop the world for those two.”

Anne couldn’t help her small laugh as she watched the blue eyed man, his smile so wide it reached his eyes. “I know you would love… Which is why while I’m here I’m gonna help H pack up his flat. Fully moving in will be good for everyone.”

Louis froze for a second, not believing she was actually willing to do that. “I mean if H is okay with it, please, yes, get them in here.”

“It’s not like it will take much convincing,” Anne rolled her eyes.

“I’d hope not,” Louis joked. “And I really appreciate you offering, I mean you came down here for a visit and-”

“Sweetheart please, I’m a mum, let me mum.”

Louis had to give her that one, and just as he opened his mouth to say something he heard the morning ritual of Nate screaming his good mornings to Princess before he came barrelling down the stairs.

“Lou Lou! Mornin!” he said happily before sprinting to the older man. “Waffle time!”

Louis let out a grunt as he got attacked, but that didn’t stop him from scooping the 3 year old up and getting him settled on his hip. “Waffles before you even say good morning to your nan, my word sir,” he said in fake shock.

Nate quickly covered his mouth with his hands and looked over to his gran almost horrified. “Sorry! I sorry!!” he rushed out. “Good mornin!”

“Good morning waffle monster, you have quite the energy,” Anne said a bit surprised at his chipperness.

“Oh you can thank-”

“Because daddy say it’s- it’s a start a new beatiful day!” Nate interrupted Louis, almost falling out of his arms as he jumped.

“That’s right, daddy says it’s the start to a brand new beautiful day,” Louis translated, unable to stop his smile as he watched the 3 year old.

Anne couldn’t help her smile as she watched the pair, the two of them happily chatting as Louis carried him around the kitchen and started his breakfast. It seemed to be routine at this point, and the fact that they were so comfortable with one another while Harry was still upstairs sleeping only assured her that them moving in was more than the right thing to do.

“Lou what we doin today?” Nate asked as the older man sat him on the counter, letting his little legs swing.

“Well, I gotta go to work for a bit, and I think your daddy does too today so we were thinking maybe you could spend some time with auntie.”

And it was almost immediate Nate’s smile fell, his little face already turning into a pout.

“Hey, come on now, you know we’ll have most of the day together. It’s just until a bit after lunch, that’s all,” Louis said softly, expecting the little tantrum that was bound to come.

“But you say that and then it dinner time,” Nate whined, throwing his head back so he wouldn’t see him close to crying.

“Sometimes we do have to work a little later, but not today, alright?” Louis rubbed his leg to calm him down. “You know we’d love to spend every waking second with you, but we have to go to work too ya know. Otherwise I won’t be able to afford Princess’ food and we don’t want that.”

At least that got a small giggle out of the 3 year old, him wiping his eyes quickly and nodding back at Louis.

“You promise?”

“Better yet, I’ll pinky promise ya,” Louis raised his eyebrows at him before bringing up his hand.

“Okay,” Nate smiled at him as he intertwined their pinkies.

“And sweetheart I don’t mind watching him, little nan and Nate time,” Anne jumped in.

“Oh, no, have a day to yourself, you watched him last night and-”

“Lou!”

“Dear please, I don’t mind,” she said, immediately calming the toddler down. “It’ll be perfect, we can go to the flat and start packing up Nate’s room.”

“Pack my room?” he asked confused.

Louis looked over at Anne, not sure himself if Harry had talked to Nate about moving in or not.

“Well we’re just gonna be moving things around a bit, that’s all,” Anne said as simply as possible.

And Nate seemed to accept it, his focus taken away anyway by the plate of steaming waffles that Louis put on the breakfast bar for him.

“Anne I’m gonna go wake H up, you good with him for a minute?” he asked as he got the 3 year old settled in his seat and food cut up.

She smiled back and nodded at him, it being only a minute later Louis made his way for the stairs.

He figured Harry would want to sleep in for a bit after last night, but he also knew Nate would have a right meltdown if he didn’t get to spend a little bit of time with his father before he left for work.

Louis wasn’t at all surprised to see the younger lad snoring rather loudly as he slept like starfish on the bed. It’s like as soon as he left in the morning Harry took full advantage of it.

“Hey… Love,” he said softly, taking a gentle seat on the bed and running a careful hand down his bare back. “H…”

Harry let out a muffled grunt as he curled in on himself and reached for the covers.

“Sweetheart come on, it’s time to start the day,” Louis said, trying to roll him over. “We both have to leave for work in an hour and you know-”

Harry just groaned, hiding his face in his boyfriend’s stomach and clinging to his shirt.

“Don’t feel so great?” he asked quietly, running his fingers through his curls.

“I drank… A lot,” Harry mumbled.

“Yeah you did,” Louis’ laugh filled the room. “You want some medicine? You don’t have to go to work you could just rest.”

“No, I have to go,” he breathed out. “But medicine would be nice.”

“Alright, I’ll get it for you when I head back downstairs, get ya some tea too,” Louis bent down to kiss his hair. “Also your mum is watching Nate today, she said she’d take him to the flat to start packing his room.”

At that Harry picked his head up, his eyes finally landing on Louis since he woke up. “She told him?”

“Well, no, not really,” Louis scratched the back of his neck, not wanting him to be mad. “She said they were just gonna be moving stuff around a bit.”

He could somewhat breathe at that, him really wanting to be the one to explain what will be happening when they move, and the one to tell him that they’re moving in general.

“Okay, well I guess I’ll have a little talk with him before work,” Harry said, all of a sudden feeling his nerves pick up at the thought of this conversation.

“Do you want me to sit with you guys and talk? Make it a bit easier on you?”

Harry didn’t even need to think about it as he said a strangled “please” under his breath.

“Alright love, it’s okay,” Louis said gently as he pulled him into his chest. “If anything I think he’ll be thrilled, it’s nothing to be nervous about.”

“Just another change for him.”

“But it’s a good one, don’t worry over it,” Louis reminded him.

“Yeah, yeah, you’re right,” Harry said, him going over this a million times already.

Louis smiled down at him, connecting their lips and squeezing him one last time before he let him go. “I’ll meet you downstairs.”

Harry nodded, letting himself flop back onto the mattress as he watched Louis leave.

He’s thought about how he was going to tell Nate so many times. Of course he never expected his mum to get a move on things so quick, but he figured while she was here she wanted to help. And Harry appreciated it, he really did, it was less work for him in the long run.

He figured he should also get up and actually have this talk with Nate so they have enough time together before he jets off to work.

So Harry slid on a pair of shorts and t-shirt quickly before heading to the bathroom, brushing his fingers through his hair and preparing his toothbrush. When it came time to actually get ready for work he’d change, but this was good for now.

Once done he made his way downstairs, hearing the usual loud chatter that echoed through the kitchen in the morning.

“Well good morning everyone,” Harry said happily, as soon as Nate seeing him squealing and hopping down from his chair. “Buddy! Hey, careful, yeah I’m happy to see you too,” he said, picking the 3 year old up and making sure he didn’t choke.

“Mornin!” Nate said once he swallowed his food, wrapping his arms around his daddy’s neck and squeezing the life out of him.

But Harry just hugged him back, kissing his son’s hair and carrying him to his seat. “You seem to be having a great morning.”

“Lou made waffles!” Nate said, showing his father his waffle and syrup covered fork.

“My goodness does he spoil you,” Harry said, his eyes catching the older lad as Louis winked back at him. “Mum, good morning,” he said with a soft smile, leaning over and kissing her cheek.

“Morning dear,” she grinned back at him. “I’m actually going to head upstairs and get ready for my day with this one,” she tickled Nate’s side, making a loud squeal come from him.

Harry watched as his mum gave them all one more smile before she headed for the stairs, and he knew this was their time. It seemed Louis knew it too because as soon as their eyes met his boyfriend nodded and grinned at him, offering him the smallest of encouragement.

So Harry took a deep breath and seat next to his son as he tried to gather his courage.

“Hey buddy, so uhm, Louis and I wanted to talk to you about something,” he said, thinking that would be a good place to start

“Okay,” Nate said before shoving a forkful of waffles in his mouth, slurping up syrup and smacking his lips as he went along.

“Alright, well I know nana said that today she’s gonna help pack up your room and we’re actually going to be packing up the entire flat.”

Nate looked over to his daddy with furrowed eyebrows, “why?” he asked.

“What we’re gonna be doing is uhm, well we’re packing up the flat and moving all of our stuff here, with uh, with Louis and Princess,” Harry said, �offering his son a warm smile so he knew this was an exciting thing.

“We moving?” Nate asked, now his gaze focused on Louis who was nervously nodding back at him. “So we live with Lou Lou and Princess all the time? And that my room now?”

“Yeah, yeah buddy, that’s exactly right,” Harry nodded at him. “Are you okay with that?” he asked, almost a bit scared that Nate wasn’t jumping for joy at this point.

“Yeah,” Nate shrugged as he looked back to his breakfast. “It like we live here now,” he said as if they knew this. “But now I get all my toys back!”

Harry and Louis just looked at each other, both of them letting out muffled laughs at hearing what the 3 year old said. It’s like to him it was nothing, as if they’ve already been living together, as if they’re already a family.

“We’ll have to make some more space in your room for them, huh?” Louis asked, smiling over the rim of his mug before he took a sip.

“Yes! And my- my color table and we gots ta hang all my poster!”

“We promise buddy, we’ll decorate just how you want,” Harry said, relief seeping out of him as he saw Nate buzzing with everything he could do to his room.

“And I want a bed for Princess in my room! I can’t share mine all time,” Nate huffed.

“Demanding little bugger, I love it,” Louis chuckled before kissing the top of Nate’s head.

Nate giggled into his syrup coated hand, only to rub the sticky mess on his face. “Love you Lou.”

And at those little words the room went silent, Louis’ eyes trained on the 3 year old even with Harry’s gaze staring at the two of them.

“I love ya buddy, I do,” Louis barely whispered to the toddler, leaning down to hug him to his side and give him one more kiss.

Nate smiled back up at him, not even phased by what had happened, but the older pair were near stuck. Just at their eyes meeting though they both knew that this was it, this was the true start to their family.

Chapter Text

“Lou! Lou Lou, I want this!!” Nate screamed as he ran down the aisle to the older man.

“Depends on what it is,” Louis said, not looking up from the list Harry scribbled out for him as the 3 year old crashed into his legs.

Nate grabbed the blue eyed lad’s arm, tugging on him until he had his attention and thrusting what he had in his hand to Louis.

“...You want beans?” he asked completely confused.

“No! It chili!” Nate said as if that was the silliest thing he ever heard.

“Right,” Louis chuckled to himself, taking the can from him and making a mental note to add chili fixings to the list. “With you and daddy all unpacked I was thinking we could have a special dinner tonight, what do you think?”

“Pizza!”

“Just pizza? You don’t want to go out?” he asked, scooping the toddler up and sitting him in the trolley.

Nate lit up at hearing that, nodding quickly and saying a loud “yes!” as he jumped in his seat.

Louis couldn’t help but smile down at him as he walked along the aisle. Even with the 3 year old stopping him every five minutes to look at something on the shelf or ask if he could have this or that, Louis couldn’t wipe the grin off his face.

Just the change of permanently shopping for three, coming home and knowing Nate and Harry will be there had the older lad feeling like he was on cloud nine. His house was a home with his two boys living there now and everything was unpacked and in it’s place.

Everything from Harry’s flat fit seamlessly into Louis’ place and Nate’s room was finally decorated the exact way he wanted it, it was almost too easy. But since Harry finished the last of the unpacking today Louis thought a little treat was in order.

But first he had to try to read Harry’s chicken scratch handwriting and get everything he needed on his shopping list, otherwise he’d be hearing it from his boyfriend later.

The two had made their way mostly down the list, walking through the store without Louis spoiling Nate too much for Harry to get mad at him.

“What do you think buddy, orange juice or cranberry juice?” he asked, his eyes scanning over the options and trying to figure out which one to get.

But when the 3 year old didn’t answer him he looked to the toddler, only to see him completely still and staring at something further down the aisle.

“Buddy? What’s wrong?” Louis asked, his eyes following where Nate was looking, only to see some guy’s gaze on them.

Again Nate didn’t answer though, instead let out a quiet whimper and tried to climb out of the trolley.

“Whoa, whoa, calm down big guy,” Louis said quickly, noticing how scared all of a sudden he got.

He tried to sit him back down but if anything Nate only clung to his neck as he shook his head furiously.

“Okay, alright,” Louis said softly, needing him to calm down before he had a full blown tantrum, and he didn’t even know why he was upset.

“I wanna go home,” Nate sniffled against Louis’ shirt, quiet tears coming from him as he held onto the older man for dear life.

Louis opened his mouth, now really having no clue what got him this shaken. “We’re almost done, just a few more minutes and we’ll go home.”

But he couldn’t even take a step before Nate was clinging to him harder than before, letting out a loud cry and trying his absolute hardest to get down.

“Nate! Hey! It’s okay, what’s going on?” Louis asked, the 3 year old kicking his legs and squirming in his arms as he cried.

The entire time though he noticed the toddler’s eyes were still focused on what was down the aisle and when Louis looked behind him it was just the same guy but now some woman with him.

He noticed they were looking at them as well and whispering but he did have a screaming toddler in his arms, he didn’t blame them.

“Go home! I-I wanna go home!!” Nate yelled, sobbing into the blue eyed lad’s neck as he held him.

“Okay, okay, we’ll go home,” Louis said quietly, rubbing his back and leaving the trolley behind as he carried the 3 year old out of the store.

In his mind it was easier to just get Nate out of here and come back to the store some other time. He couldn’t bare to see him this upset and especially since he didn’t even know what had him so upset.

But even as they made their way outside the toddler’s cries didn’t stop, only quieted once they got to the car.

“Nate what happened in there? You alright?” Louis asked softly, getting him in his car seat and trying to calm him down.

All he got was hiccuped breaths from him though, so he kissed his head and tried to calm him down before buckling him in.

“I-I wanna go home, I w-want daddy,” Nate sniffled.

Louis nodded back at him, figuring he wasn’t going to get an answer as to what got him this worked up. So instead of questioning Nate again he made sure he was okay in his seat before he got into his own.

As he started the car though he saw the same couple that was inside pretty much staring at him as they walked through the parking lot. He didn’t think much of it though, there being a bit of a scene inside and them leaving in a rush made a few heads turn their way.

If anything he was grateful Nate started to calm down a bit once they were on the road and on their way home.

It was a quiet ride other than the toddler’s occasional sniffling but once they got home it was clear Nate wanted nothing more than to go inside and see his father.

“H!” Louis called out as soon as he opened the flat door, carrying the 3 year old in and taking his shoes off.

“Hey how was-... Where are the groceries?” Harry asked confused as he saw the two empty handed. But his attention was quickly taken away from that as he heard Nate hiccuping and felt him reaching for him from Louis’ arms. “What happened?”  he asked worriedly.

Louis shook his head, his mouth opening and closing as he saw the toddler clinging to his father. “I dunno, I mean we were almost done but then he started crying, like real bad, it was like something scared him but he was begging me to leave so we did.”

Harry furrowed his eyebrows, rubbing his son’s back and kissing his head to calm him down. “What happened love? Why did you want to leave the store?” he asked Nate softly.

“I-I see the bad man, I want to go home,” he cried quietly into his daddy’s neck.

“Bad man?” Harry asked, having no clue what he was talking about and when he looked to Louis the older man just shrugged.

And just before he was about to ask Nate who this man was the intercom went off.

“What’s up Daniel?” Louis asked into it.

“Mr.Tomlinson there’s a woman here who is asking to see you, she seems pretty adamant.”

Louis grew confused, having no clue who this woman would be as anyone who knows him or Harry has the code to come up. “You expecting someone?” he asked his boyfriend.

Harry shook his head, himself not knowing who this person was.

“Did she give you a name?” Louis asked into the intercom.

“She says her name is Kate. Do you know her sir?”

And again Louis was completely lost as to who this was, but when he looked to Harry to check with him he saw his boyfriend frozen.

“Haz?”

“Watch Nate,” Harry barely whispered, not wasting a second before passing his son to Louis and rushing out of the flat.

It was like a whirlwind, the younger lad pretty much jogging out the door in a rush and clearly mad.

“Buddy I’m gonna help your dad, can you be real good and sit on the couch with Princess?” he asked, needing to follow Harry and figure out what was going on.

Nate nodded, Louis not wasting a second before placing him down and following where the green eyed lad went.

He was able to catch up with Harry just as he saw him stomping through the lobby and approaching the woman he assumed was trying to come up.

“Outside,” Harry spat through his teeth as he approached her, his eyes boring into her as she looked back at him.

But once Louis got a good look at her he recognized her as the woman from the store, and his confusion only grew as the two clearly knew each other.

Harry led her outside, not even trying to hide how furious he was as soon as they got out the door. “What the hell is the matter with you?! Why are you here?!” he yelled, anger seeping out of him as he stared Kate down.

“I saw him at the store,” she said quietly, her gaze shifting to Louis for only a second before it landed back on Harry. “He had Nate.”

“And?!” Harry screamed even louder, “so you follow him home?! What the fuck were you thinking?!”

“I-I just… I didn’t know him, I wanted to make sure Nate was okay,” Kate explained.

Harry scoffed, having to clench his fists as he heard that. “So now you care?” he asked lowly. “Cause you didn’t when your boyfriend was hitting our son. You didn’t when you left him in diapers for days and gave him rashes or when he hit his head on the table and you left him bleeding until I picked him up! Don’t you dare fucking say that you care!!”

“Harry I-”

“No!” he stopped her, not wanting to hear a single word that came out of her mouth. “There are no excuses, you need to go now and not come back,” Harry said seriously, nodding over to her car and encouraging her to leave.

As he looked at the car though if possible he felt his blood boil even more at seeing who was in the driver’s seat.

“You did not fucking bring him here…” Harry said through gritted teeth, it only taking a second to recognize the man.

He didn’t even wait for a response though before he started stomping towards the car.

“Harry! No!” Kate tried to stop him, reaching for his arm but having it yanked out of her grip.

“H… Harry,” Louis fast walked after him, seeing his boyfriend a second away from pulling this guy out of his car and beating him.

He was able to get to him just before he reached the car, wrapping his arms around his middle and pulling him away.

“I’m gonna fucking kill you! How dare you come here and-”

“Harry! Stop!” Louis yanked back on him, his boyfriend trying to get out of his grasp and go after the guy who was amusedly watching from inside the car.

“What?! You’re not gonna face what you did?! A big man who hits a baby of course won’t go up against someone his own size!” Harry screamed, growing more and more furious as the seconds passed.

Louis gave him one final tug, pulling him back enough from the car so he couldn’t reach it. “You need to go, now,” he said to Kate, her giving him a quick nod before she scurried to the car.

As soon as she was in the car they beelined it out of the parking lot, Harry basically heaving in the older lad’s arms before breaking free and pacing as he combed his fingers through his hair angrily.

Louis just watched him for a second, himself catching his breath and feeling his heart plummet into his stomach now knowing who the couple was. “Harry…”

“Louis please...Just a minute, please,” Harry breathed out as he shook his head, needing to calm down and think rationally before he talked to the older lad.

Louis bit his lip, feeling completely helpless as he just followed the younger lad with his eyes. He couldn’t imagine how Harry must be feeling, how angry he must be. But the younger lad didn’t even say anything before he started making his way back inside, Louis right behind him.

“If she shows up again or you see that car please let us know and call the cops,” Harry said to Daniel once he was inside and getting a nod back from the older man.

But he still said nothing to Louis, not when they were in the lift to go upstairs or even when they reached the flat, he was silent.

Luckily Nate hadn’t gotten into anything, instead was fast asleep on the couch, probably tired from all of his crying earlier. But right now Louis was more concerned about Harry, so he made his way to their bedroom, knowing the younger lad had gone in there.

“H…?” he asked quietly, peeking his head inside and seeing his boyfriend sitting on the edge of the bed.

“I’m sorry,” Harry barely whispered, shaking his head and biting his lip as he felt tears threaten to spill. “I-I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have- I-”

“Hey, hey, it’s alright,” Louis rushed over to him, wrapping his arms around him and almost immediately feeling his boyfriend crying into his neck. “Any feelings you have are justified, those people did nothing but hurt you and Nate.”

At that Harry only cried harder though, hating them for how much they hurt his son, hating that they even had the audacity to follow Louis home.

“If anything I should be the one apologizing…” Louis barely whispered. “I should’ve known something was wrong at the store, I-”

“No,” Harry stopped him, shaking his head and grabbing his hand. “You got him out of there, that’s the best thing you could’ve done and you did that, you don’t have to be sorry.”

Louis let out a quiet breath, squeezing his hand gently and kissing his temple. “Are you okay?”

“I will be when I talk to Nate and tell him he’ll never see them again... No wonder he got terrified at the store,” Harry said softly. “I just… I could never wrap my head around how she could do let him hurt Nate, how she could be so awful to her own son, and now she shows up like-”

“I know love, I know,” Louis said as he heard the younger lad get choked up. “None of it makes sense to me either, but Nate is here with us and nothing like that will ever happen to him again, alright?”

“Yeah, yeah, I know,” Harry sniffled. “I hate that it happened at all but I did everything I could to keep them away and it still feels like it wasn’t enough.”

“No love, don’t believe that,” he said quietly as he wiped away Harry’s tears. “You did do everything you could, nothing could’ve stopped what happened today.”

Harry nodded at that, letting out a few deep breaths and trying to completely calm himself down. “Thank you for being there for him, for just caring about him and-”

“Hey, hey,” Louis stopped him. “You don’t need to thank me for that,” he said seriously, “I love the two of you and I’d do anything to make sure no one hurts either of you, but that’s me just being a boyfriend, nothing special.”

“No, it is something special,” Harry shook his head, “you’re not just a boyfriend Louis, you’re like his other dad and after everything that happened with Kate I never thought I would find someone who would love him like he deserves, but you do and more and I need to say thank you, so just let me, please.”

Louis was still for a second, his eyes focused on Harry and the smallest of smiles coming to him before he leaned forward and gently connected their lips. “We’ll turn today around, alright? We’ll talk to Nate, make sure he’s okay and the three of us can do whatever you guys want for the rest of the day.”

Harry looked back at his boyfriend like he was too good to be true, and to him Louis was. He doesn’t know what he did to deserve a someone like this, and of course it’s not like his boyfriend really saw how much he did for them, Harry wasn’t sure if he ever would.

“I love you,” he barely whispered, resting his head on the older lad’s shoulder and letting out a deep breath.

Louis grinned down at him, pressing his lips into his hair and rubbing his back as he pulled him impossibly closer to his side. “I love you too.”

The two just sat there for a few minutes, Louis letting Harry take his time before they got up to go downstairs and check on Nate, the 3 year old still napping on the couch.

“Hey, big guy, can we wake up?” Harry asked gently as he took a seat on the couch next to his son and ran his hand down his back. “C’mon buddy,” he said, pulling Nate into his lap and getting him to open his eyes.

“Daddy?” Nate mumbled into his chest, curling into him and clinging to his shirt.

“Yeah love?”

“I see her,” he said quietly, looking up at his father through his eyelashes. “I see her and bad man.”

Harry bit his lip as he pulled Nate impossibly closer to his chest, holding on to him with everything he had as he kissed his head. “I know you did sweetheart and I’m so sorry,” he whispered to him. “But I want you to know that me and Louis will never let them come close to you, alright? You’ll never see them again.”

Nate looked back up at his daddy, nodding at him before his eyes focused to Louis next to them on the couch and crawling over to his lap. “Thank you Lou Lou,” he said, wrapping his arms around the older man’s neck and squeezing him tightly.

And Louis didn’t waste a second before hugging him back, letting out a deep breath and pressing his lips to his temple. “I love you buddy, I’ll always be here for you.”

But when he felt tears on his neck he grew worried, pulling slightly away from the 3 year old so he could wipe his eyes.

“What’s wrong love, why are you crying?” he asked softly.

“B-because you nice and I-I love you and daddy love you, I-I wanna stay with you and daddy.”

“Oh buddy,” Louis breathed out, “daddy and I aren’t going anywhere, and wherever we go so will you, it’s okay.”

Nate just nodded against him, sniffling to himself and tugging back on the older man so he would hold him.

And that’s exactly what Louis did, pulling the 3 year old back into his chest and rocking him so he would calm down. The entire time he could feel Harry’s eyes on him, but his focus was on Nate and making sure he was really okay. And the two just stayed like that, Louis holding onto the toddler and Harry wrapping his arm around him, assuring Nate that with the two of them there nothing bad would happen to him.

*~*

Harry lifted up the sheet covers, letting out a deep breath as he climbed under them and immediately attached himself to Louis.

“Hey love,” the older lad chuckled, placing his book down on his bedside table and running his fingers through his boyfriend’s still damp curls from his shower. “Nate got put down easy enough, probably already asleep.”

Harry let out a quiet hum, taking off Louis’ glasses for him and shoving his face into his neck.

Louis just looked down at him for a moment, letting his hand slide down the younger lad and began rubbing his back. “What’s going on? What’s on your mind?”

Harry nibbled on his lip for a second, clinging impossibly closer to his boyfriend. “Do you ever just wanna get away?”

Louis almost didn’t catch it he spoke so softly, but after today’s events he wasn’t surprised Harry had asked. “Sometimes, yeah…” he said quietly. “After I met you two though my running away days are behind me… We can go away though ya know. Pick a place, take Nate and just leave.”

Harry looked up at his boyfriend through his eye lashes, seeing his honesty, seeing how sincere he was and this was Louis, it’s how he always is. “It’s not that easy Lou, I have work and-”

“And what?” Louis chuckled. “You have work and that’s all, and Sam can cover for a few days, maybe a week.”

“You act like you don’t have a job,” he scoffed.

“I’m my own boss, they work around me,” Louis tried to joke, making the younger lad roll his eyes.

“We can’t just run away though…”

“It’s not running away love, just a little vacation to put us all back at ease,” he said, pressing his lips against Harry’s curls and tugging him in impossibly closer. “Today was… Well let’s just say you and Nate deserve it.”

Harry shook his head, saying a quick “no we don’t,” as their gazes met. “Hell I wish I could send you on a vacation after all the shit you’ve had to put up for me.”

“No, now you stop that,” Louis said almost firmly. “I hate that, come on, you know I do,” he breathed out, pinching the bridge of his nose as he heard the younger lad. “I don’t put up with anything, I don’t want to go on vacation alone, I want to go with you and Nate, now would you shut up and just say okay?”

Harry opened his mouth, absolutely nothing coming out as he just looked at the older lad. But then he saw Louis’ smile break, the same smile that makes him go weak at the knees and he couldn’t say no.

“I’ll talk to Sam and see if maybe he can-”

“Yes!” Louis cheered, making a startled laugh escape the green eyed lad.

“Maybe Lou, maybe,” Harry tried to stop him. “You know I ask alot of Sam, especially recently so I dunno if he can.”

“Oh come on H, that man would do anything for you,” Louis rolled his eyes as he sunk deeper into the mattress.

Harry couldn’t fight him on that, Sam would do anything for him especially if it meant him and Nate got to spend more time together. “Alright, okay, we’ll go,” he nodded to himself. “Pick a place and we’ll go.”

“This’ll be fun,” Louis hummed to himself, rolling over so he could turn off the bedroom light and wrapped his arm around his boyfriend. “Gimme until the end of the day tomorrow, I’ll have something planned for the three of us. We could all use it love.”

Just at those words Harry could feel himself relaxing in Louis’ arms, slipping into sleep with his boyfriend tangled around him.