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I Drove All Night (To Get To You)

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idroveallnight

Harry indicated and pulled in at the kerb, putting the car into neutral before he got out. He smoothed down his shirt and straightened his tie as he walked around the vehicle, opening the door for his well-known client.

“Wonderful as always, Harry,” James Corden said, smiling lightly at Harry as he closed the door again. “I believe I’ve booked you for another event of mine on Thursday. You’re definitely the only chauffeur I want to use whenever I’m in London.”

“That’s so kind, thank you,” Harry nodded. Mr Corden had been his favourite customer for a while now, although Harry wasn’t supposed to have favourites. “Have a lovely evening, sir.”

“James, please,” Mr Corden said, and Harry smiled to himself, knowing he could never call him James, no matter how many times he was instructed to. It didn't feel right, not in his line of work. “Drive safely home. See you Thursday.”

Harry nodded and watched his client climb the few steps up to his home, finally disappearing behind his front door. Harry got back into the executive car, settling behind the wheel for the night. Mr Corden was his last client, and Harry was grateful that meant he finally got to go home. He flicked down the sunvisor and lifted the cover to the little mirror, peering at his reflection. He sighed when he saw himself, obviously tired and pale, a little washed out from the constant late nights he’d been having thanks to his job.

Chauffeuring was never Harry’s career of choice. He’d fallen into it when he’d left University with a degree in Fine Arts, and no idea what to do with it. He’d taken several little jobs to make ends meet, collapsing into bed at the end of the night in his shitty little flat that cost him every penny he earned, and woke up each morning to start the vicious cycle again. It had been his Uni friend Josh who had seen the advertisement for the chauffeur job online, and in a fit of desperation, Harry had applied, getting an interview and the job all within five days.

That was nine months ago now, and Harry was still here. Sure, he got his mornings off, able to drive around the rich and famous, London’s elite to wherever they were going, and he’d met some wonderful people. Some, of course, were not so wonderful but Harry just sat quietly, doing his job until they were out of his car, and a distant memory. The company he worked for, Elite Cars London, were pretty good about listening to Harry over which clients he had a regular job with, and it was definitely more bearable than the month he’d spent working in Burger King.

Now that the car was finally empty, Harry flicked the radio onto Capital FM, something his bosses would never approve of him listening to with clients in the car, and pulled back out onto the main street, heading back to the office. He had to leave his car there each night at the end of his shift to be cleaned out properly by the expert valet team, and he drove his battered little Vauxhall Corsa home each night, missing the luxury of leather seats and lumbar support.

It was around an hour later that Harry arrived home to the TV blaring, his flatmate and best friend Josh asleep on the sofa. The remote control was clutched tightly in his hand, and Harry carefully extracted it, muting the episode of How I Met Your Mother , silence falling around him. He cleared up the crisp packet, apple core and beer bottle that Josh had evidently used that night and only woke his flatmate when everything was neat and tidy, just how he liked it.

“Josh…Josh, wake up, mate.”

Josh took in a deep breath, blinking blearily up at Harry as he sighed, rubbing his tired eyes.

“What time’s it?”

“Uh…” Harry glanced at his watch, his own eyes aching now. “Just gone two. You’ll regret it if you sleep there, you know you will. That sofa’s barely good enough for our bums, let alone our backs.”

Josh held out his hands and Harry helped hoist him to his feet, guiding a very sleepy Josh to his bedroom. It was a tiny flat, no more than two poky bedrooms, a bathroom barely big enough for Harry to stretch his arms out in and a kitchenette where Harry performed what he felt were quite frankly culinary miracles as often as he could. He bade Josh a good night and mooched off to his own room, happy to be divesting himself of his suit. He liked dressing smartly for work, and he knew he looked good in the form-fitting attire he had to wear for work, but there was nothing like the feeling of stripping off down to his boxers at the end of a shift. His sister Gemma likened it to the relief of taking off her bra at the end of a long day, but Harry wouldn’t know about that.

He flicked on his bedside lamp, smiling at the picture of himself and Gemma at the last concert he went to, the pair grinning at the camera, mad smiles on their faces, the stage lit behind them. It had been Gemma’s first Louis Tomlinson concert (and Harry’s ninth, but he wasn’t divulging that bit of information to anyone), and it had been so much fun. Harry had the fondest memories, and when he’d found that photo on his phone a few days later, he just had to print it out, popping it in a frame next to his treasured Louis Tomlinson photo he’d bought from eBay for an extortionate price.

There was a ping from his phone then, and Harry unlocked it, rolling his eyes at the message from Niall, his boss. He was a nice man, a couple of years older than Harry, but had a tendency to text his employees at all hours of the day, sleep be damned. The thing was, Harry and Niall were good friends outside of work, but the moment Harry was on the clock, he slipped into professional mode, putting aside his jokey manner usually reserved for Niall, treating him as the boss he actually was. Both of them appreciated the differentiation, and it had worked well for them for the past few months. 

Harry sent a thumbs up emoji to confirm he was indeed working the next night and then headed off down the hall, quickly brushing his teeth and using the loo before he slipped into bed, finally relaxing. He picked his earbuds up from the bedside table and popped them into his ears, always unable to sleep unless there was background music. Josh had shown him how to schedule it to stop within an hour, and Harry had been forever grateful.

He opened up his bedtime playlist, which only consisted of Louis Tomlinson’s two albums, as well as every remix of his songs ever made, and hit shuffle, smiling as his favourite song Home came on first. Harry finally let his eyes shut, Louis’ voice washing over him like a warm drink on a cold day, soothing and relaxing. With a small smile on his face, Harry drifted off to sleep, Louis Tomlinson front and centre in his mind as always.

*****

“I’m on my way, Mr Horan, the traffic on the North Circular has been hellish,” Harry said into the car’s bluetooth system, gritting his teeth as the traffic light turned red just as he approached. He was already ten minutes late to pick up his next client which he hated, and Harry could already feel himself stress sweating about it. He reached for a tissue from the packet he kept in the door pocket and pulled one out, dabbing at his brow before the light could turn green. “Yes, alright. Please let her know I’m on my way. Yeah, okay, bye!”

Harry hung up the call and hit the accelerator as a gap in the traffic appeared, listening to the sat nav guiding him through the busy London streets. His client, a TV presenter called Holly Willoughby, was on her way to an awards show, and Harry knew how important it was to be on time for these things. Getting his vehicle into the line to drop off his celebrity clientele was stressful enough on a normal day, let alone when he was running late. 

It was seven minutes later when he finally pulled up outside the hotel, spotting Holly waiting outside, chatting easily with one of the doormen. Harry spat his chewing gum into the tissue he’d used earlier and quickly got out of the car, smiling at her.

“I’m sorry I’m late, Ms Willoughby-”

“Holly, and don’t worry at all! I know what London is like, I’m impressed you’ve made it this early to be honest. What’s your name?”

“Uh, Harry,” he replied, not used to his clients caring about him one way or the other. He was the hired help, and he was okay with that, but it still made him smile when people made the effort to ask about him. “There we are, let me take your bag…”

He helped her sit down, shielding her from the paparazzi snapping pictures of her as she got in, not wanting personal pictures to end up in the press tomorrow. It would mean a telling off from Niall about etiquette, and Harry was never in the mood for that. He handed her bag over before he quickly situated himself back behind the wheel and started the engine, pulling away after he’d pulled his seatbelt on.

“Can we have the radio on, please? I’m not sure if that’s allowed…”

“It is. Most people prefer the quiet, but I like music when I drive,” Harry confessed, finding Holly easy to talk to. “Any preference for a station?”

“Whatever you want is fine,” she replied, clapping as the latest Little Mix song came on. “Oh I love these girls. They came on This Morning last week and they were so nice. Do you like them, Harry?”

“I do,” Harry agreed as he pulled into yet another traffic jam, glancing at the sat nav to see there was still another thirty minutes before they arrived at their destination, if they were lucky. The song ended and they both listened to the DJ talk for a few minutes before he put on the next track, and Harry grinned to himself, barely able to believe his luck. “Oh my god…”

“What?”

“This song, it’s my favourite. Have you heard of Louis Tomlinson? This is him…”

“He’s such a sweetheart, isn’t he? He was on the show as well, about a year ago-”

“You met Louis Tomlinson?” Harry interrupted, turning to look at Holly over his shoulder as he waited at yet another red light. “What was he like? Was he as soft as he looks?”

“Uh…” Holly began, laughing softy at Harry, and he blushed, knowing he was being a bit ridiculous. “You’re a fan then?”

“You could say that,” Harry murmured, focusing on the road again. “So was he nice?”

Holly proceeded to detail her entire encounter with Harry as he drove, even admitting how he’d come backstage with her to meet her three children afterwards, taking photos and signing photos for them. Harry was even more endeared than he could be at hearing the stories, and didn't stop asking her inane questions, loving the chance to finally talk to someone who had met the real Louis. All too soon, he was pulling up outside the O2 arena, staying in his seat as one of the organisers came to open the back door for Holly.

“Harry, this was the most fun I’ve had on a car journey in a long time, thank you so much.”

She leaned forward and brushed her lips against his cheek, promising to ring the company and leave him a positive review as she waved goodbye, disappearing out of sight. The door slammed shut, and Harry pulled away, knowing he had to move since the next celebrity was needing to be released from their vehicle. He drove for a while until he saw a McDonalds and pulled in, ordering himself a milkshake, glad that he had no more clients for the night. It wasn’t often he only had one job, and he was grateful for the opportunity of an early night.

He was debating the merits of going inside and ordering a cheeseburger as well when the car’s bluetooth system rang loudly. He glanced at the caller ID, seeing it was his boss again, probably asking if he’d made it to the venue yet, although the car tracking would have told him he had had Niall cared to look.

“Hi, Mr Horan,” Harry began, putting the milkshake into the cup holder while he spoke. “I’ve delivered Ms Willoughby safely there, and I’m done. I just stopped for a quick comfort break-”

“No problem, Harry,” Niall crowed through the line. “And lad, for fucks sake, call me Niall. Mr Horan is my dad. I actually had a huge favour to ask you.”

“Okay?” Harry asked, plugging his post code into the sat nav. He knew how to drive home by now, but he always put it on in case he was taken down a random diversion into the middle of nowhere, which happened more often than not. “What can I do?”

“I have another job for you. Bradley was on it, but he’s had a breakdown, bloody car. The client is due to be collected in an hour, should give you plenty of time to get there?”

“Where?” Harry asked, resigning himself to another late night. 

“Uh, Scott’s Seafood restaurant in Mayfair.”

Harry plugged in into the navigation, pleased to see the journey there seemed relatively easy.

“Alright then. Who’s the client?”

“It’s- shit, Brad’s on the other line, gotta go!”

The line beeped to indicate Niall had hung up, and Harry rolled his eyes, turning the radio up as Lewis Capaldi’s latest heartbreaker came on, and Harry warbled along, wishing he had a voice like Lewis did. He decided he’d rather be on time for his mystery client, especially since he had no idea who he was picking up and slurped up the last of his milkshake, getting out of the car to throw away his rubbish into the bin, checking for any errant straw wrappers on the floor.

~

Harry found the restaurant with relative ease, and had already spotted a few paps hanging around, clearly paid to be there to wait for whichever celebrity client he was collecting. Harry drove slowly around until he found a parking space, watching the entrance to the restaurant intently. His phone pinged, Josh telling him he wouldn’t be at home tonight as he was going to stay with his girlfriend and Harry replied, wishing him a good night.

Ten minutes later, he was bored silly and was browsing YouTube, watching some of his favourite videos from Louis Tomlinson’s concerts. He particularly loved the ones from earlier in Louis’ career when he would wear colourful jeans and stripey t-shirts on stage, embracing who he was. Louis was Harry’s inspiration for coming out to his friends and family and he’d given him the courage he’d needed. His family had been amazing as always, his mum and sister barely batting an eyelid at Harry’s ‘surprise announcement’, which made him pout for too long. 

A new video popped up and Harry grinned gleefully as he realised it was from the first concert of Louis’ he’d ever attended, an over excited seventeen year old about to burst at seeing his idol for the first time. He’d gone with his best friend at the time, Lucy from school, and Harry’s mum had dropped them off outside the arena in Manchester, making Harry promise to be good, arranging a meeting place for after…

“Harry, how much is that going to cost you?” Lucy asked, aghast as Harry pointed out several pieces of Louis’ merch from the merch stand, watching the girl behind the desk shove it into a generic plastic bag.

“Don’t care. It’s Louis’ stuff, I’ve been saving all year for this,” Harry mumbled, pulling his wodge of notes out of his wallet. “He’s worth it, though, Luce, you know he is.”

“That’s eighty five pounds fifty,” the girl said in a bored tone, and Harry grinned as he handed over five crisp twenty pound notes, waiting patiently for his change. “There you go. Enjoy the show.”

“Oh I will!” Harry grinned, grabbing Lucy’s hand and dragging her out of the line, over to the side. “Here, I got you something.”

He rummaged in the plastic bag for a moment, producing two of Louis’ flashing ear headbands with a big smile. He shoved one on his own head and flicked the switch, ignoring Lucy’s snort as they began to flash.

“Well, that and the curls is just the best thing I’ve seen,” she quipped, putting hers on as well. Harry reached out and flicked the switch, mesmerised by how pretty they looked as they flashed blue, purple, green and pink over and over. He also tugged out the Louis t-shirt he’d just bought, and right there in the main foyer pulled off his own t-shirt, replacing it with the new one, trying not to drool as he looked down at Louis’ face adorning his torso. “What a look.”

“Fuck off, I love it,” he muttered, pushing his t-shirt back in his carrier bag. “Want to go in and get our seats? 5SOS are on soon, and I want to see them.”

Lucy nodded and they walked in, making it just in time to watch the support act perform. Harry was on his feet the entire time, amazed he’d got so close to the front of the pit, Lucy stuck closely to his side as they both sang along at the top of their lungs. Before Harry knew it, it was time for Louis to come on, and his lungs were burning from how loudly he was screaming as the intro video played on the big screen, the live band starting the opening chords of Miss You, Louis’ breakout song.

“Is it my imagination…”

The lights flashed, Louis’ silhouette visible as he sang the next few lines, and finally, Louis emerged to the front of the stage, singing out loud and proud.

“WE’RE DANCING ON TABLES AND I’M OFF MY FACE, WITH ALL OF MY PEOPLE AND IT COULDN’T GET BETTER THEY SAY!” Harry screamed along, waving his hands as Louis walked by his section of the pit, trying not to faint at being so close to Louis Tomlinson, he could practically see the blue of his eyes.

“I LOVE YOU LOUIS, YOU’RE SO SEXY!” he shouted as Lucy just groaned. He ignored her, blowing kisses whenever Louis walked by, finishing up the song. “YOU’RE THE BEST SINGER IN THE WORLD, I LOVE YOU!”

“I love you too,” Louis chuckled into the microphone, glancing in Harry’s general direction, and Harry thought he was going to be sick. “In fact, I love every single one of you in this room! Everything I do is for all of you, I really do have the best fans in the world!”

“LOUIES’ FOREVER!” Harry screamed again, making the other Louies around him scream in support, making Louis wave over at them all again. Louis talked to the audience again for a minute before his next song began, and Harry screamed again, barely catching his flashing ears before they toppled off his head as he jumped up and down to the beat of his favourite Louis song of all time, No Control-

Harry fumbled with his phone screen as a bang on the passenger window startled him out of his daydream, smiling to himself from reminiscing about the best concert he’d ever been to. He’d lost his voice for two days after that, but it had been totally worth it. He glanced over to see a shadow at the window and flicked on the interior light, the soft glow lighting up the man’s face. Harry stopped dead, unable to breathe.

Shit.

He swallowed slowly and reached out for the window switch, sending it down, and a warm gust of wind blew in, making him shiver.

“Uh…”

“Sorry mate, but I think you’re my ride?”

Harry just stared, not blinking at the man in front of him, wondering what he’d done in a past life to deserve this.

“You’re Louis Tomlinson.”

“I was last time I checked,” Louis chuckled, still leaning in through the passenger window. Harry knew he was staring and not in a polite way, but he couldn’t bring himself to turn away in case this was all a dream, and he most definitely didn't want to wake up if that was the case. “Can I get in, then? Would kind of like to avoid more photos of my arse in the paper if it’s alright with you...”

Harry just nodded slowly, trying not to react to the mention of Louis’ arse as he flicked the button to release the locks, and he felt shocked as Louis climbed into the passenger seat instead of the back seat, where his clients usually sat. He must have sensed Harry freeze next to him because he turned to look at him, a look of concern on his face.

“Sorry mate, I can sit in the back if you’d rather…”

“No, uh…” Harry licked his lips, wishing his mouth would produce some saliva so he didn't feel as dry as the sahara desert. “You’re fine there.”

He started the engine and pulled away slowly, ignoring the paparazzi nearly surrounding the vehicle now before he broke suddenly, making them both slam back against their seats.

“Shit- what’s wrong?” Louis asked, and Harry’s hands gripped the wheel even tighter, unable to bring himself to look at the man next to him. It was too much. That was Louis bloody Tomlinson next to him, so close he could smell his aftershave. Harry held himself back from diving over the centre console to stick his nose in Louis’ neck, sure that would overstep the professional boundaries he’d set for himself. “Mate?”

“Where am I going? Your address, I mean?”

“Oh, yeah, sorry. Niall said you didn't have all the info. Here, let me…” 

He watched the edge of Louis’ sleeve slip up his arm as he programmed his post code into the sat nav. Harry eyed the rope tattoo on his wrist eagerly, unable to believe he was seeing it up close with his own eyes. The light hairs on Louis’ forearm glinted in the streetlight just outside the car, and Harry let his eyes drift down to Louis’ lap a little, admiring the tight jeans encasing his curvy thighs, his trainer clad feet resting on top of each other in the footwell.

“There we go. Shouldn’t take too long. What’s your name, by the way? You know mine, only seems fair…”

“Harry Edward Styles,” Harry blurted out as Louis chuckled next to him, finally working up the courage to look at Louis. “I mean, just Harry.”

“Not Harold?”

“No. Harry. I’m Harry.”

“Yeah, I got that,” Louis said, flicking on the radio. “Shit, why don’t those paps leave me alone? Me getting driven home really isn’t newsworthy. People must get sick of seeing me everywhere-”

“You look shorter in real life than you do on the telly-” Harry blurted out, making Louis raise his eyebrows at him, a small smile on his lips. “Shit, that was so rude-”

“No, it’s fine. But I’m not that short, love. I’m five nine.”

Harry just pressed his lips together and nodded, indicating as he pulled out onto the road, the silence almost suffocating. Harry already hated himself for what he’d said, and he figured that if he kept his mouth shut, he couldn’t make it any worse than it already was. It didn't help, though, when Louis started to sing along to the song on the radio, his voice beautiful and raspy and perfect. Louis then laughed as the song changed to No Control, and he sang along again, hands tapping on his thighs as Harry willed his body to not react to Louis singing about loaded guns and not getting enough of someone right next to him. He was sure that if he shut his eyes, he could pretend Louis was singing just to him, but that might cause an accident so probably wasn’t a good idea.

“God, I miss performing this song so much,” Louis admitted as it went into the bridge, stopping singing for a moment. “I think it’s my favourite, even now.”

“Mine too,” Harry admitted, daring to glance across to Louis. “I mean, when it came out, I was like seventeen, and I spent days tweeting all the radio stations asking them to play it. It’s the alarm clock on my phone.”

“Yeah? That’s pretty cool to know,” Louis grinned as they pulled up at a junction. “You like my music, then?”

Harry nodded, not wanting to admit to quite how much of a superfan he was. He’d embarrassed himself tonight, he wasn’t sure he could bear anything else. “Yeah, I like your stuff.”

There was silence again for a moment as they listened to the traffic updates on the radio, and Harry watched as Louis reached out, touching the air freshener that was dangling from the rearview mirror.

“Is that… an avocado?!”

“Yeah,” Harry said, beeping his horn as someone cut him up, braking a bit harshly. “I like them.”

“Trendiest bloody food of all time,” Louis muttered, shaking his head. “Everyone who’s anyone eats bloody avocado, don’t they?”

“It’s good for you,” Harry said, apparently having a severe case of verbal diarrhea. “They’re a great source of vitamins, you know. Got loads of them in there. And they’ve got good fats in them, which you really need to stay healthy. People don’t know that, they think all fats are bad.”

“I don’t-”

“And they’re high in fibre, so they stop you getting constipated, makes your bowel movements regular-”

Harry stopped talking in horror, realising he was literally talking about bowel movements with the man of his dreams. He just blinked and shook his head, tempted to open his door and throw himself into the road, sure it would be less painful than what was going on in the car right now.

“Is that so? Good to know,” Louis nodded, clearly unsure where to take the conversation after that turn. “Not keen on them myself, but I’ll bear it in mind.”

“Right you are,” Harry mumbled, grateful that according to the sat nav, they were just four minutes from Louis’ front door. Harry couldn’t think of a single topic of conversation in those few minutes and before he knew it, he was pulling up in front of a large detached house, a shiny black Range Rover on the drive. The house was dark, and Harry wondered if Louis lived alone, or if he had a special someone waiting in bed for him. Jealousy spiked through him, and he ground his teeth together for a moment. “Okay, we’re here.”

“Yep, that’s my house, alright,” Louis said, pulling a small set of keys out of his jeans pocket. “Thanks for the ride, Harry. It was really lovely to meet you.”

He opened the passenger door, and Harry willed himself to say something memorable or nice before Louis walked away, sure this would be the last chance he ever had to make an impression on his idol, but Louis got there first.

“I’m sure I’ll think of your bowel movements next time I see an avocado, love. Thanks again!”

The door slammed shut, and with it went Harry’s last shred of dignity. He groaned loudly and let his head flop forward, banging the steering wheel heavily, the horn blasting loudly, making him jump.

“Fuck, shit-”

He glanced to the house to see Louis had paused, and soon, he was stepping back to the car, knocking on the window.

“You alright? Was that you?”

“Yeah, uh, leant on the wheel,” Harry mumbled, ignoring the now throbbing pain in his forehead, praying there wasn’t an obvious mark. “Sorry. Goodnight.”

“Okay then, love. Drive safely home. Pop an icepack on that forehead when you get home, you wouldn’t want a bruise,” Louis quipped, winking at Harry before he turned around again, and Harry stayed where he was until Louis’ front door slammed shut. 

“Makes your fucking bowel movements regular? Harry, you fucking twathead!” Harry cursed as he pulled back out onto the road, needing to get home to have a shower and wash off the shame of the night. “Absolute fucking idiot…”

~*~

 

“Ah, there’s my favourite chauffeur. Good morning, young Harold,” Niall crowed as Harry walked into the office. He had a few new pieces of paperwork to fill in for some upcoming celebrity clients, and Niall always preferred them to come in to sign them rather than have them laying around his employees houses. 

Harry looked up as he wiped his feet on the doormat but stilled when he saw something next to Niall’s desk that wasn’t usually there. 

“Niall, what the fuck is that?”

“Oh, it’s my latest office decoration. You like it?”

“It’s a lifesize figure of Louis Tomlinson. Where the hell did you get it?”

“You’d be surprised what you can get in London at three in the morning,” Niall said cryptically, smirking at Harry. He laughed then stood behind it, holding out a hand as if it was Louis’ as he spoke, mocking Louis’ Doncaster accent as he teased Harry. “Oh, marry me, Harreh! You gonna take me for a ride again soon, huh? Talk dirty to me, Harreh, tell me all about avocados and bowel movements again-”

Harry had never regretted a late night phone call so much in his life as he did in that moment. He’d tumbled into his flat an hour after dropping Louis off, utterly mortified and wishing he could die. He’d called Niall after he’d showered, lamenting over the awful things he’d said to his idol, how he’d embarrassed himself. Niall had cackled his way through the conversation, offering nothing constructive at all bar saying at least Louis wouldn’t forget him in a hurry. Harry wasn’t sure he wanted Louis Tomlinson to remember him as the guy who insulted his height and talked literal shit with him.

“Fuck off, Niall,” he said as he stalked off to the kitchen, needing a coffee. “I don’t appreciate you making a mockery of the worst night of my life.”

“You met him, didn't you? We all know you’ve been in love with Louis for years, mate, this must have been a dream come true for you.”

“Well, it was until I started talking about shit.”

Niall bent over again as he laughed, clutching his stomach.

“Oh, don’t make me laugh, my stomach still aches from laughing so hard last night.”

Harry just shook his head and filled two cups with hot water, stirring them both before he handed Niall one, the pair wandering back through the office, the place eerily quiet at this time of day. Many of the other chauffeurs wouldn’t be in for a few more hours, and Harry appreciated the peace and quiet. He sipped his coffee as Niall fired up his computer, mumbling about Brad and last night’s breakdown, and how the car would be out of service for at least a week.

“So, I’m still booked on the usual runs this week?” Harry asked, and Niall nodded a confirmation, the pair looking over the interactive calendar on the computer for a moment, slotting in a couple of Bradley’s usual drives into Harry’s schedule. Harry signed the paperwork he needed to, and decided to get going, needing to meet his sister for a shopping trip. Gemma had been asked to be a godmother for her best friend’s baby the other week, and wanted Harry’s help picking out a Christening dress. “Well, give me a bell if anything changes, alright?”

“Like, if Louis needs a ride again?” Niall waggled his eyebrows at his friend, ignoring the middle finger thrown at him. “Sorry, I’m only teasing. Say hi to Gem for me, yeah?”

Harry opened the door, taking the post from the surprised looking postman and handing it to Niall before he stepped out. “Oh, and Niall?”

Niall looked up from where he was ripping a letter open, a questioning look on his face.

“If you don’t have a use for that Louis figure, I might possibly take it off your hands…”

~*~

3 days later

“Turn the air con up, will you?”

“Yes sir,” Harry mumbled, reaching for the buttons to make said device whir into action. He shivered slightly, finding the air conditioning too cold despite wearing his usual work attire of a suit, but he ignored his own discomfort in favour of his passengers.

“I can barely feel it, do turn it up!”

“It takes a moment to fully start, sir, but I will turn it up,” Harry pacified, silently gritting his teeth. He’d been livid when Niall had put Mr Franks on his roster for the week, begging and pleading to have him changed but to no avail. He knew that none of the drivers wanted to work with the older man and Niall usually gave Harry his trickiest customers because of Harry’s unfailingly polite manners and inability to be rude to anyone. “We’re almost there now.”

“About time too,” the man huffed, pushing himself back in the seat, the leather creaking under his considerable weight. Harry just kept his hands tightly on the wheel, grateful he was the last passenger of the day. After having someone like Mr Franks in his car, Harry always wanted to go home, blast some Louis Tomlinson songs as loudly as he could and scrub the night from his skin. He smiled to himself at the thought. “And do make sure you pull up on the right side of the road. The last buffoon to drive me came in from the wrong side and I had to cross the road on a zebra crossing like some sort of peasant!”

“Certainly sir,” Harry mumbled, trying not to smile at the thought of Mr Franks dodging life or death on a zebra crossing off all things. Thankfully, Harry had come into the street the right way and pulled up outside the well-to-do restaurant, smiling at the doorman who came up to release his passenger. Mr Franks was already blabbering to the poor young man in uniform as he got out, and Harry wasted no time in moving off as soon as the door was shut, not wanting Mr Franks to call him back for any reason at all. “Fucking idiot.”

The car phone rang and Harry answered, smiling as Niall’s voice filtered through, cheering him up immediately. He pulled over in a small residential street and cut off the engine for a moment, relaxing back in his seat, rolling his ankles in his smart leather shoes.

“How was our favourite customer?” Niall asked, and Harry just laughed, knowing Niall would know exactly how he was. “Sorry you were stuck with him, mate. But on the plus side, I have something that will make that whole thing a little bit sweeter.”

“And what’s that?” Harry asked, a little apprehensive about whatever bombshell Niall was about to drop. “Your idea of something good is very different to mine, Mr Horan.”

“Harold…” 

“Mr Horan…”

“You’ve got one more customer to pick up tonight,” Niall said, and already Harry could hear the smirk in his voice. “But before you whine to me ‘but Niall I’m done for the night’, you might want to hear who it is.”

“Who?” 

There was a pause and Harry drummed his fingertips on the steering wheel for a moment, noticing a glimmer of nail polish he hadn’t managed to remove before he started work that night. He picked at it, wishing Niall would get on with it so he could go home and shower.

“Louis. He asked for you personally.”

“Louis… Louis Tomlinson?” Harry stuttered out in disbelief. Meeting his idol once was a dream come true for Harry, but he’d embarrassed himself in a way that made him feel a little pleased he wouldn’t have to put himself through that torture again. “I- I can’t, Ni-”

“You can, and you will. He specifically asked for you. He’s at a club, some promo thingy, and he’ll want collecting in about an hour.”

Harry just stared at the display for the radio, trying to even out his breathing. Surely Niall was winding him up. There was no way Louis would have asked for him, not after the disaster that was his last journey with Harry; talking about bowel movements, and scaring him half to death with the horn as he’d got him home. No way.

“You’re lying. It’s cruel, you know, to play with my emotions like that,” Harry said, feeling annoyed now.

Harry could hear Niall’s tut through the speakers, and then the clicking of something as if he were messaging someone.

“I’m not lying. Check it out, you should get something from me in a sec.”

Harry’s phone did indeed ping, and he opened it, seeing a conversation between Niall and Louis from yesterday. Harry felt shocked as he saw what Louis had said about him, and he blushed fiercely. It was unfathomable that Louis Tomlinson knew who he was, let alone that he remembered his name and asked for him personally and Harry allowed the smile on his face to grow, his heartbeat quickening at the realisation he was going to see the man of his dreams again in just an hour or so.

IMG-7522

“Oh my god, Ni! He knows who I am… shit, I’m getting all sweaty, that’s not a good look…”

Niall talked him through the address and Harry put it into the navigation system, glad to see he wasn’t too far. He’d been to The London Reign before, and the thought of collecting Louis from there was sending the butterflies in his tummy wild. He ended the call with Niall and relaxed back for a minute, trying to push the awful night he’d had so far out of his head so he was in a good headspace to see Louis. A professional headspace, Harry reminded himself, nodding with finality as he pulled away, ready to collect his next customer.

This time though, Harry was prepared. He left his phone as he waited outside the venue, his body tense, praying he could keep his mouth shut, enough to make Louis’ ride home much more pleasant than their previous jaunt together. As soon as he saw flashes out of the corner of his eye, Harry knew Louis had left the building and he got out of the car, hovering nervously by the back door, opening it just as Louis approached with a grin.

“Ah, what super service, thanks Harry,” Louis said as he slid into the backseat. Harry tried to keep his eyes averted from Louis’ curvy bum as he sat down, and quickly shut the door, walking around the car and steadfastly ignoring the paps shouting Louis’ name. “Shit, they’re everywhere, aren’t they? Appreciate you being ready to get me in this time, mate.”

“Of course,” Harry mumbled, starting the engine. He plugged in the postcode Niall had sent him for this drive, glancing at the route before he began driving, a little relieved Louis was in the backseat this time, and there was no risk of them touching in any way. “How was your evening, sir?”

“Sir? Call me Louis. Let’s not act like it’s the first time we’ve met, Harry.”

“Sorry, just… I’m meant to be professional,” Harry shrugged, braking slowly and smoothly, wanting Louis to be impressed with his driving this time around. “Traffic is fairly light, so it should only take us around thirty minutes to get you home.”

“Sounds perfect. And my evening was good, thanks love. How about yours? You been working all night?”

Harry felt a little stunned that Louis had bothered to ask him about his night, and for a moment, thoughts of Mr Franks and his rudeness filled Harry’s mind, pushing away the positivity Harry had been feeling just a second ago about having Louis back in his vehicle.

“Uh, yes, I’ve been working. It’s been okay, you know how it is.”

Harry glanced in the rearview mirror to see Louis nod before he glanced down at his phone, the screen lighting up his face. Harry admired his eyelashes from this angle for a moment before the car behind honked, making him flush and quickly start driving again, trying not to be too distracted by Louis. Harry kept quiet, wondering if Louis would start a conversation if he did.

“Have you had a bad night?” Louis suddenly asked, and Harry’s eyes widened, hoping he’d given nothing away with his demeanour. He frantically shook his head, plastering on a smile as he indicated and turned off to the next part of the journey, driving past a drunken group of girls loudly cackling as they stumbled home. 

“No, no, I haven’t. I’m fine.”

“You seem quiet. You were chatty the other night, and now you’re not speaking to me… don’t make me make you pull over and get in the passenger seat…”

Harry pressed his lips together, not wanting to blurt out that really, he’d love that, especially if Louis wanted to rest his hand on Harry’s thigh as he drove. He met Louis’ gaze in the mirror again, seeing concern there which made him want to speak.

“It’s just been a long night. I’m fine, really.”

“Tell me something about you, Harry,” Louis said, leaning forward slightly. Harry could feel him inching closer and he kept his breaths as even as possible, hoping he didn't smell as sweaty as he felt. “Something that doesn’t involve me or avocados, though.”

“Oh god,” Harry moaned, making Louis laugh as he stopped at another traffic light. “Please don’t remind me of that…”

“Why? It made me laugh, and I liked that. But don’t change the subject. I want to know about you, Harry… all the nitty gritty…”

That made Harry laugh, and he ran his fingers in the collar of his shirt for a moment, giving himself a moment to collect himself before he answered.

“Uh, okay. Um, well, I have a sister called Gemma. I brought her to one of your concerts actually. She’s older than me, but I love her to death.”

“Know the feeling,” Louis nodded, his voice practically purring in Harry’s ear now, and it was doing nothing to quell Harry’s feelings about his idol. “I’ve got five sisters meself, and I love ‘em so much. Nowt like the love for your sisters, is there?”

Harry shook his head, agreeing wholeheartedly with Louis. Gemma might not understand his obsession with Louis Tomlinson, but she was still the best sister in the world in Harry’s opinion.

“Anyway, give me more. I want the juicy details, Harry.”

Harry blushed again at that, and Louis’ chuckle told him he’d seen the heat rise up Harry’s neck, covering his cheeks in pink.

“I have a degree in Fine Arts… this is just a go-between job until I find something I really want to do. Uh… I love music, and I’ve been learning the guitar since I was twelve, although I’m not very good…”

“Nonsense. Don’t put yourself down, love.”

Harry shivered at the term of endearment, and he crunched the gears, wincing as he went from second to third less smoothly than he’d have liked. To Louis’ credit, though, he ignored it and kept chattering away like Harry was an old friend.

“Took me ages to master the guitar meself. Didn't play anything on tour for years, was too scared of fucking up and making meself look like a dickhead-”

“You wouldn’t have,” Harry blurted out, hating hearing Louis put himself down. “Your tours are amazing and it would be great if you played more. I loved the small concert you did in London before the second album where you played Fool’s Gold acoustically-”

“You were there?” Louis asked, clearly surprised and Harry nodded shyly, knowing he’d started gushing again but he couldn’t help it, not around Louis. “Wow, that’s cool. You been to many of my shows then?”

“A few, here and there,” Harry admitted, glad Louis couldn’t fully see his face at the moment. 

“Well, next time one comes around, make sure you get in contact with my team, I’ll sort you out some tickets and VIP passes and shit if you’d like?”

Harry almost choked on thin air at the offer, and Louis’ hand came to rest on his shoulder, trying to calm him down. Of course, the touch did the opposite, and Harry jiggled his leg, not able to believe this was his life. He’d tweeted too many times about how he’d be if he ever met Louis Tomlinson, how he’d tell him how amazing he was, how much he loved him and not that he wanted to marry him and have his babies (he did). 

“That would be… yeah, amazing, thank you,” Harry gushed as he pulled in at the kerb outside Louis’ house, dark as it was the last time he’d dropped Louis home. He quickly got out of the car and walked around, pulling open Louis’ door for him, a small smile on his lips as he watched him unfold his small frame, clambering out. Louis stretched as he stood on the pavement, exposing a sliver of stomach which Harry tried desperately to drag his eyes away from, but when he looked back up, Louis was smirking and Harry knew he’d been seen.

“Didn't realise you were so tall, all folded up behind the steering wheel,” Louis commented, dragging his eyes from Harry’s feet all the way up and back down again. Harry just stood there, not sure what to do as Louis smiled at him again, brushing his fringe out of his eyes, one of his well-known traits. Harry couldn’t quite believe he was getting to see it himself. “How old are you again?”

“Uh, twenty two,” Harry answered, knowing he was a few years younger than twenty five year old Louis. “But I’ve got my licence and everything..”

“I never suspected otherwise, love, given you’re a chauffeur.”

Harry flushed again and watched Louis dig in his pocket for his keys.

“Well, thank you for another great ride tonight,” Louis said, and Harry brushed away thoughts of an entirely different kind of ride he could give Louis.  “It was really nice to see you again.”

He stuck his hand out, and Harry reached forward gingerly, letting Louis’ hand encompass his. It was much smaller than his own, but it was warm and felt like it fitted perfectly in his own. Harry desperately tried not to start singing the line from Louis’ early hit single Little Things and instead let Louis pump their hands up and down a few times, ignoring the goosebumps appearing up his arms at the touch.

“Goodnight, Mr Tomlinson,” Harry said softly as Louis released his hand, taking a step back. “Thank you for asking for me.”

It was Louis’ turn to blush at the realisation Harry knew he’d asked for him personally, and he looked to the ground as he smiled, shaking his head. 

“G’night, Harold,” Louis muttered as he walked away, leaving Harry stood just watching, leaning against the car. “Drive safely home.”

“I will,” Harry replied, although he knew there was no way Louis could hear him. Louis turned and gave him a final wave as he walked in through his front door, and closed it. Harry groaned and rubbed his hands over his face before staring back up at Louis’ house, watching one of the windows glow as Louis turned a light on. “G’night Louis.”

*****

A week later

Harry watched as Louis ducked behind the taller and bulkier man in front of him, a small hand shooting out to the point in the direction of the car. Harry quickly stumbled out, cursing as one of the buttons of his jacket popped open. He barely had time to redo it before Louis and his friend were almost in front of him, and he darted around the car, holding open the back door with a smile, his nerves slightly less now given this was the third time he’d been hired to chauffeur for Louis. When the light fell on the other man’s face, Harry realised with a start that it was Louis’ manager Liam Payne, someone Louis was regularly pictured with and he felt nervous to meet someone else important to Louis as they approached him, both of their eyes on Harry.

“Good evening, Mr Tomlin-”

“For the love of God, Harold, call me Louis. Now, this is my mate Liam, you don’t mind dropping him off on your way, do you?”

“No, uh, I’m sure that’s fine,” Harry said, slightly shocked to watch Louis let himself into the front of the car, making himself at home in the passenger seat. “Oh sorry, sir, let me get the door-”

“I’ve got it, thank you,” the man, Liam, said, his accent unfamiliar to Harry who nodded and went back around, getting in the car himself. 

“If you head towards mine, love, Liam’s just around the corner, I’ll guide you,” Louis said, clipping his seatbelt into place. “Liam’s my manager, we’ve been in a meeting finalising things for the next album and stuff, pretty exciting.”

“A new album?” Harry squeaked, unable to believe he was getting an exclusive like this. “Wow, that’s, like, the best news I’ve heard all day.”

Louis and Liam both chuckled, and Harry smiled to himself at how comfortable he felt around Louis this time. 

“Thank you for giving me a lift,” Liam, the other man, spoke up, now sat in the middle seat so he could see both Louis and Harry clearly. “Louis’ talked about you a fair bit-”

Harry didn't miss how Louis sat up slightly straighter, glaring back at his manager before he twisted his expression back to something more neutral.

“Just commenting on the wonderful service, love,” Louis quipped, turning on the radio and lowering the volume slightly. “Liam, on the other hand, not so much with the wonderful service, I have to be honest.”

“Nice,” Liam mumbled, shaking his head as he settled back in his seat. “So Louis tells me you’re a fan? Been to Louis’ shows?”

“Yeah, a few,” Harry replied as Louis glanced across at him, almost as if he knew the truth, which made Harry’s stomach flip over. Louis reached out and started playing with the avocado air freshener as Harry kept talking. “Last one was the last tour, actually. I came to the O2 for both shows. It was amazing.”

“I’ve told him we’ll hook him up with passes and shit next time, Li.”

“Yeah, sounds good to me. You’ll have to give Louis your number or something so we can get that sorted next time around, Harry. Oh, if you turn left here, you’ll avoid the roadworks at the top of my road.”

Harry did so, falling silent for a moment as Liam and Louis talked between themselves. Harry tried to follow the conversation but found himself tuning in to the timbre of Louis’ voice, listening as he laughed, a light, breezy sound that Harry felt was music to his ears. Louis wriggled in the seat, tucking one leg up under the other as he angled himself so he could see Liam as well as where they were going, and Harry was ridiculously endeared by how tiny Louis looked, curled up in his passenger seat. He certainly looked small next to Harry and if Harry was honest, he’d always loved his men to be smaller than himself. He liked to protect the people he loved and Louis definitely slotted into that category easily.

“Just over on the left, down that small street there,” Louis said, cutting into Harry’s thoughts, and he slowed the vehicle down, turning and driving carefully down the lane, his car feeling ridiculously large in the narrow street. Is that your car on the drive, Liam?”

“Yeah. Harry, you can just pull in here, this is fine. Thank you so much- no, don’t get out, I can let myself out.”

Harry nodded and turned in his seat, smiling and reaching out a hand to shake Liam’s. 

“Lou, I’ll call you tomorrow, we’ll chat about what we put in place tonight. Get home safe, alright?”

“I will, do Li. And email that thing as well, please.”

“Will do. Goodnight, both of you.”

“Goodnight,” Harry said softly as Liam finally got out of the car, crunching up the gravel driveway as Louis and Harry watched on. When he’d finally gone inside, Harry turned to Louis, startled at how close they suddenly felt in the car, on their own. It felt like a lot and Harry swallowed slowly, biting on his lip. “Uh, home?”

“Please,” Louis replied, just as softly. The atmosphere in the car felt charged all of a sudden, and Harry turned back to the car, pressing the ignition button, the engine roaring to life. “You alright?”

Harry just nodded, driving off again. He could sense Louis tapping his fingertips on his thigh, and it took all of his control to not reach over and place his own hand on top of Louis’, to lace their fingers together. Harry imagined that it would feel perfect, that their fingers would fit together perfectly, Louis’ more petite ones between his own. He turned slowly into Louis’ road, slowing down as he saw the gaggle of people stood together opposite Louis’ house, wondering what to do.

“Uh, Lou…” he murmured, wincing at the slip of the tongue, but it seemed Louis wasn’t bothered. He sank down slightly in his chair, and Harry drove on, certain that crawling along past them would just draw more attention to them than if he drove normally past. “I’ll go round the block, yeah?”

“They won’t go. They know I’m out, and they’re waiting for me to get home. Shit!” 

He thumped the dashboard, making Harry jump. All of a sudden, Louis’ small hand shot across to Harry’s side of the car, resting on Harry’s forearm. Harry’s eyes flitted down, looking at Louis’ hand on the sleeve of his jacket, already feeling the heat of his palm burning through the fabric.

“I’m sorry. I didn't mean to scare you. I just… it’s frustrating when they’re outside my house all the time, you know? Feels like I don’t get any privacy. Sometimes it all just gets a bit much, especially when I can’t even go home after a night out-”

“You can come home with me?”

Harry blinked as he said the words that had been on the tip of his tongue, but he was even more surprised when Louis answered quickly.

“You wouldn’t mind? I mean, that would be great. I wouldn’t take up too much space-”

“No, I know,” Harry said, making Louis laugh, squeezing his arm before he removed his hand much to Harry’s disappointment. “Sorry-”

“Don’t be. I like that you say things like that to me. But yeah, if I could just hang out with you for a while until they get bored, that would be amazing.”

Harry just nodded and began the drive back to his flat. “My flat, it… it’s not much,” he babbled, keen to set Louis’ expectations as low as they would go to save any disappointment. “It’s only small, temporary really, and I’ve got a flatmate, he probably won’t be there though-”

“Harry, will you chill? It’s fine, love. I’m not going to judge you, or think you’re a terrible person because you live wherever. I’m more than that, I promise. I grew up myself without a lot of money, so trust me when I tell you that I get it.”

“Alright,” Harry agreed, turning into his road. The space he usually parked his Corsa in was free, so Harry carefully manoeuvered the Mercedes into it, quite proud of his parking under pressure. He got out of the car, but by the time he got to Louis’ side, he was already out, looking up at the building. “I told you it’s not much…”

“It’s nice, love. Come on, get me inside.”

Harry felt nervous as he wandered up to the front door, flicking through his keys until he found the small brass one. He opened it and stepped into the foyer, and was grateful for the silence in the building. Several of his neighbours often watched movies with cinema levels of sound, but tonight, all was quiet. Harry led the way to the stairs, turning back to look at Louis as he climbed the first few steps.

“Sorry, I’m on the top floor.”

“S’fine, I can manage a few stairs, don’t worry.”

Harry could hear Louis’ footsteps behind him as they got the front door of their flat, and Harry quickly opened it up, sighing in relief as the flat was dark, meaning Josh was out. He didn't fancy Louis meeting Josh, as nice as he was, he was quite looking forward to spending some time with Louis on his own.

“Uh, welcome home,” Harry mumbled, flicking on the light as he kicked off his shoes, leaving them on the floor by the door. Louis copied, and Harry smiled to himself at the fact Louis was bare footed now, looking all cute and small in his hallway. “Come through, sorry if it’s a mess…”

“Stop worrying, it’s a nice place.”

Harry didn't think as he walked down the hallway to his bedroom, shrugging off his jacket as he walked inside. He hung it up on the hanger he’d left on the bed earlier, but as he went to remove his tie, he heard Louis’ bare feet slap on the wooden floorboards, heading in his direction. 

“Shit-” 

He started grabbing at the bits of Louis merch he had lying around, frantically shoving them into the wardrobe before Louis appeared in his doorway, leaning against the frame with a small smile on his face.

“So this is where the magic happens, hmm?” 

“I don’t know about that,” Harry muttered, kicking the door closed as casually as he could, willing Louis not to walk inside and see the extent of Harry’s crush. His eyes flicked over to the small photo frames on his bedside table, and he wandered over, lying them down quietly as he pulled off his tie with the other hand, undoing the top button of his shirt. “Uh, why don’t you go to the kitchen and help yourself to a drink? We’ve got a Brita water thingy in the fridge, or there’s tea bags by the kettle, so help yourself…”

“Alright. You want anything?” Louis asked as he stood up, hands shoved in the pockets of his trousers. He looked quite at home, and Harry shivered, nodding quickly. 

“Yeah, uh, tea would be good, thanks,” he mumbled, and Louis gave him a grin, quickly turning on his heel and making his way back down the hall to the kitchen. Harry could hear cupboards opening and closing as Louis evidently hunted for glasses, and Harry switched his work trousers for something more comfortable, leaving his work uniform on the bed. He pulled his phone out of his pocket and quickly dialled his sister’s number, needing to talk to her but it went to Voicemail.

Harry nudged the bedroom door shut with his toe as the beep resonated through the handset, telling him to leave a message.

“Gemma,” he hissed into the phone, pacing nervously, praying Louis couldn’t hear him. “Where the fuck are you when I need you? Louis fucking Tomlinson is in my flat. Like, right here, right now. What the hell am I going to do? How do I entertain Louis Tomlinson? I’m freaking out here, I’m going to make a fool of myself, I just know it-”

The phone then announced that the mailbox was full, and Harry silently screamed, chucking the handset onto the bed. He took a look at himself in the full length mirror on the outside of his wardrobe, relatively pleased with what he saw before he walked out, taking a deep breath to compose himself. He arrived in the kitchen to see Louis clutching a mug in his hands, staring at something on the fridge.

“You know, I always thought those flashing headbands Liam wanted as part of the merch were just too much, but I’ve got to say you look cute in them,” Louis said, making Harry blush deeply as he realised what Louis was looking at. It was a photo of himself at one of Louis’ concerts back in 2015. Harry was eighteen, and was wearing one of Louis’ t-shirts that he’d cut off to make a cropped t-shirt, his tiny waist fully on shown above his obscenely tight skinny jeans, flashing bow headband perched atop his curls, his tongue sticking out at Gemma behind the camera. “Very cute, actually.”

“Shit, you weren’t meant to see that,” he said, hurrying over and snatching the photo from under the magnet, trying to hide it. “Not one of my finest moments…”

“Oh, I beg to differ,” Louis teased, snatching back the photo and darting across the kitchen, staring at it. “You know how many women would die for a waist like that?”

“Louis, stopppp,” Harry pleaded, blushing furiously again as he chased Louis around for a minute.

“But hang on… this t-shirt, it’s from my merch, yeah?”

“Yeah, from your first tour,” Harry admitted, dreading whatever it was Louis was going to say next. “Why?”

“You cut my body off to make it a cropped top? I’m offended, Harold, really I am. I’ll have you know my body is my best asset-”

“No, that’s your arse,” Harry blurted out before his eyes widened in horror, slapping his hand over his mouth. “Oh my god, forget I said that-”

It was too late for that, though. Louis was cackling, bent in two as he laughed so loudly, the sound was echoing off the walls. Harry wanted to dig himself a hole and bury himself in it, never to see the light of day again. It was one thing to say embarrassing things to Louis Tomlinson himself, but for him to see photos that he never intended Louis to ever see was another altogether. With hindsight, the outfit was a terrible decision, but Gemma had stuck it on the fridge one day when she’d come round to visit, and somehow it had never been taken down.

“You’re brilliant, you know that?” Louis said as he stood up, wiping under his eyes. “Oh, your tea’s over there. Got to say I love the mugs as well.”

He raised his own to his lips, and Harry flushed deeply at the realisation he’d used one of Harry’s penis mug collection, a wonderful secret santa gift from Niall a few Christmases ago. 

“I, uh, they were, um-”

He stuttered out utter nonsense, trying to find a way to get himself out of the situation, but there was nothing he could say. He looked down at the mug of tea waiting for him on the side, seeing it had been made in his ‘ You can’t say happiness without penis’ one, Louis drinking merrily from the Take Your Penis to Work Day one, complete with graphics on the side that made even Harry blush. 

“It’s cool, love. I like a man with a sense of humour.”

Louis was watching Harry over the edge of his mug now, and Harry reached for his own, rubbing his foot back and forth over the lino on the floor.

“Uh, you want to watch some telly or something? Might as well do something while we wait for your place to be safe to go back to.”

“Sounds good to me. Lead the way.”

Harry did, and as he walked into the small sitting room, he watched Louis wander around, taking a good look at the photos dotted around on the surfaces, picking up one of Harry and his family.

“This your Mum and sister?”

“Yeah, that’s them. That picture’s a few years old now, Gemma’s got dark hair again now.”

“You’re a gorgeous family. And this is your flatmate?”

“Mm hmm, that’s Josh. He's probably at his girlfriend’s place tonight. To be honest, I’m just expecting him to not come home at some point, I reckon they’ll move in together soon.”

He settled down on the sofa, putting his feet up on the coffee table as he flicked the TV on, trying to find something to watch. Louis kept looking at the pictures until he ran out of photos to look at, coming to sit next to Harry despite there being a whole empty sofa along the other wall. Harry swallowed, trying to keep his cool as Louis’ feet settled next to his, less comfortably than Harry’s longer legs did.

“Oh, is that Friends? Leave that on, seen them all a million times but it’s genius, isn’t it?”

“Yep, was practically raised on this thanks to Gemma,” he agreed, sipping on the tea. “Mmm, this tea is lush, thank you so much.”

“If there’s one thing me Mum taught me, it’s how to make a good cup of tea. Splash of milk, no sugar and Bob’s your uncle. Simple but perfect. I’m just glad you’re not one of those weirdos who need sugar in their tea, Harold.”

“And if I was?”

“Then this friendship would be over,” Louis said easily, making Harry’s heart skip a beat. Friends. Louis thought they were friends. He and Louis Tomlinson, love of his life, man of his dreams, were friends. Maybe even best friends one day, Harry mused to himself with a small smile. “But luckily, you’ve got taste so we’re alright.”

His hand slipped across to rest on Harry’s thigh then as Chandler and Monica started to rant about shark porn, Louis chuckling away with the canned laughter on the screen. Harry tried not to make it too obvious that he was watching Louis watch the TV, his eyes crinkling in the corners as he smiled, throwing his head back in abandon, tucking his hair back from his face. He was beautiful and Harry still couldn’t quite believe this was real, that Louis was actually sat next to him, in his flat, watching Friends with him.

Harry drained the rest of his tea and reached forward to put the cup on the coffee table, Louis’ eyes following his every move. He sat back, grabbing a cushion and holding it against his stomach, feeling a bit awkward. He wished he had the confidence to talk to Louis like they really were friends, but part of him was still intimidated by his idol being right there, acting like this was an everyday occurrence.

“Don’t go all quiet on me, Styles,” Louis muttered as he sipped on the rest of his tea, crossing his feet at the ankles. Harry wasn’t usually a foot man, preferring eyes and bums if he was honest, but even he couldn’t help but note Louis had delicate little feet, much smaller than his own plates of meat. “I’m just a person, you know. You can talk to me like you talk to your other friends.”

“I don’t really have many friends,” Harry admitted with a shrug, drawing his knees up to his chest now, letting the cushion fall to the floor as he wrapped his arms around his shins. Louis turned his body on the sofa until he was facing Harry, his arms bare now he’d taken off his bomber jacket. Harry’s eyes walked up and down the tattoos inked into Louis’ skin, admiring the intricate artwork, wondering if one day he’d add to his collection in some way. “I keep myself to myself a lot, prefer a small circle of people I can trust.”

“And am I part of that?”

Harry felt stunned at the question, but he quickly nodded, sensing Louis was putting himself out there by even suggesting it.

“Yeah, I think so. If you’d like to be.”

“I would,” Louis confirmed, smiling as Harry finally looked back up at him, getting lost in Louis’ ocean blue eyes. “So you got any plans this weekend?”

Harry shook his head, playing with the hem of his joggers for a moment, feeling Louis’ gaze heavily on him.

“Nah. I’m not working, Niall let me off. I was thinking I might drive home, see the family for a bit, you know? I miss my mum a lot now I’m down here.”

“How did you end up down here in London anyway? I detect a Northern accent there, where are your family?”

“Holmes Chapel. I  was raised there, just a small village really. It was nice, but I always had bigger ambitions. I got accepted into London Metropolitan Uni for my degree, and I never ended up leaving. Not sure chauffeuring was the plan, but it pays the bills for now.”

“What do you want to do then? Do you have any plans?”

“Um…” Harry felt shy about admitting the truth about his dreams, preferring not to tell people unless he had to. It still felt like a pipe dream to him, and Harry felt a bit silly admitting it out loud. “Well, I always wanted to work in one of the galleries, you know? Become a curator or something like that. I love art, and I’d love to be surrounded by it all day. Sounds silly, I know…”

“No, it’s not silly at all!” Louis said, clearly interested in what Harry had to say. “I think it sounds different. I mean, art’s not my thing, but I appreciate that some people love it. If you want to do that, you should go for it.”

“I wish it was that easy,” Harry chuckled ruefully, knowing it was a hard area of work to get into. “The thing is, all the jobs I want to go for need experience, but they won’t hire you without any experience. It’s a vicious cycle, and I don’t know how to do it. I think I’ll have to volunteer or something, but I need money to stay in the flat. Ah, it’ll all work out, I’m sure. Shit, I don’t mean to bother you with my problems, Louis.”

“Friends don’t bother each other,” Louis said, nudging Harry’s side with his arm. “You’re not a bother. You could never be. I like… I like listening to you talk. You’re the first person in a long time I’ve wanted to get to know.”

Harry blushed at that, Louis’ words ringing loudly in his ears. He’d always known Louis was a nice person; anyone who ever interviewed him or spent any time with him raved about what a great guy he was, how kind and helpful he was and that he was one of the world’s nicest celebrities. Harry now knew that to be completely true and he felt warm inside at the realisation Louis actually wanted to spend time with him, to get to know him because he wanted to, not because he felt obliged to.

A new episode began in the background, breaking their conversation as their attention was drawn by the festivities on the television, but it all felt very natural, like they were meant to be here like this together. A few hours passed without them even realising, the pair sharing a tube of Pringles Harry had found, while Louis made them more tea, exclaiming in delight as he found more penis mugs at the back of the cupboard, shoving them in Harry’s face as he giggled like a child over and over.

“Shit, it’s gone one in the morning!” Louis exclaimed as Harry started to clear away, yawning now. “I’m going to order an Uber home-”

“No, let me drive you…”

“Uh, definitely not. You’re all cosy, and I don’t want to make you go out again. I’ll be fine in an Uber, the paps will be long gone.”

“You sure?” Harry asked, guilt gnawing away at him now as he watched Louis open an app on his phone, fingers flying across the glass screen. “I honestly don’t mind.”

“I know you don’t, but I do. Let me get myself home, love. I’m a big boy, I promise.”

Harry nodded and smiled, and Louis followed him back into the kitchen, stacking up their mugs by the sink for Harry to deal with tomorrow. Louis’ phone pinged and he pulled it out, eyebrows arching as he read the message.

“Wow, they’re only three minutes away. Must have been round the corner. I’d better get my shoes on.”

Harry followed Louis out into the hallway, watching as he knelt down to pull his shoes on, tying the laces quickly before he stood up, pulling on his jacket and doing up the zip to his mid chest. It felt awkward for a moment as Harry hung back, not sure if he was allowed to hug Louis goodbye or not, silently praying that he could.

“Listen, Harry,” Louis began, leaning against the wall as they waited for the sound of the Uber to arrive. “Thank you for tonight. You went above and beyond your job in bringing me home, and I’m really grateful for everything.”

“You’re more than welcome,” Harry muttered, his voice deep and low, unable to bring himself to meet Louis’ eyes. “I… I wanted to help out. It must be hard not being able to go home sometimes.”

“It is. But it let me spend time with you, so I can’t complain really, can I?”

Harry stayed quiet, not sure about whether or not he should answer.

“Harry, love…”

Louis took a step closer and tucked two fingers under Harry’s chin, dragging his gaze up from the floor onto Louis’ eyes. His skin was on fire where Louis was touching him, and Harry swallowed, his heart fluttering wildly in his chest. He still wasn’t prepared as Louis leaned in slowly but surely, his eyes closing as their lips met. Louis’ lips were warm and soft against Harry’s, the pair moving gently, cautiously, even.

It took Harry a moment to realise what was happening, before he actually began to kiss back. His hand came up to cup Louis’ cheek just as Louis pulled away, eyes parting as he smiled softly up at Harry, his cheeks stained pink.

“Was that okay?” Louis whispered, and Harry just about managed to nod his head, internally screaming over the fact Louis had just kissed him.

“Uh, yeah… uh, cropped t-shirt Harry is literally freaking out over the fact Louis Tomlinson just kissed him in his hallway,” he admitted, making the pair of them laugh for a moment, pressing their foreheads together shyly. 

“And what about regular Harry?”

“Regular Harry kinda wants Louis Tomlinson to kiss him again.”

Louis smiled broadly then, and leaned in, doing just that. It didn't go any deeper than before, just lips moving together, Louis’ hands coming around the back of Harry’s neck to keep them together until finally, they parted again, lips tingling from their kisses.

“I just kissed Louis Tomlinson again,” Harry muttered, and Louis shook his head, laughing as he used the pad of his thumb to swipe across Harry’s lip, wiping away the last traces of their kiss. 

“You do know at some point in our relationship, you’ll have to stop calling me by my full name,” Louis joked, and Harry nodded as he saw headlights pull up, the Uber evidently arriving.

“Relationship?” he asked, proud of how steady he was keeping his voice. Louis just shrugged, opening the front door and stepping outside. “G’night, Lou.”

“Night Harry. Thank you for tonight. I had a lovely time with you. Get inside, go on. I’ll see you soon, I’m sure.”

Harry nodded and waved one more time before he shut the door. He barely kept himself together for ten seconds before he squealed loudly, jumping up and down in excitement, grabbing his hair as he came to terms with the fact that Louis Tomlinson had kissed him. He’d kissed him first. There was no denying that, and Harry couldn’t believe it.

“Haz? Was that you? Are you okay?”

Harry stilled, grimacing when he realised Louis must have heard his own little celebration, and he cleared his throat, praying his voice wouldn’t sound stupid when eh spoke.

“Uh, no, the, uh, the neighbour’s cat must have got in. I’m fine!”

“Alright, love. Bye then.”

“Bye!” Harry called, pressing his forehead against the cool paint of the wall as finally, the car started to pull away, leaving him alone. “Oh my fucking god, I kissed Louis Tomlinson,” Harry murmured to himself, his fingers coming up to trace over his still tingly lips, unable to stop the smile on his face as he skipped down the hall, grabbing his phone and dialling his sister, praying she’d pick up this time. It was on the fifth ring that suddenly her voice filled the room.

“Gemma! Fuck me, Gem, you’re never going to believe what happened tonight!”

*****

Stained coffee cup, I don’t wanna wash away the night before…”  Harry sang as he danced around his bedroom, folding the laundry he’d taken off the line in the communal garden earlier that morning. He’d got another unexpected day off from Niall, and he’d decided to spend it clearing up the flat. Josh was gone again, leaving Harry on his own, but he didn't really mind since it meant he could blast his Louis Tomlinson album at full volume, and dance around in his boxers like he was right now. 

Waking up beside you I’m a loaded gun, I can’t contain this anymore, I’m all yours I’ve got no control, no controllllllllllllll,” Harry yelled at the top of his lungs, turning up the volume a few more notches so he could hear Louis’ beautiful voice above his own. They crooned together until the song ended, slipping into the next one, one of Louis’ beautiful ballads called Love You Goodbye . Harry didn't bother to sing along to this one, preferring to listen to Louis’ voice as he sang from the heart, making Harry wonder who he’d been singing about that had broken his heart like this.

His phone pinged and he opened it up, seeing Gemma had texted him another article about Louis. Since the night they’d shared at Harry’s flat, Louis had disappeared on some sort of pre-promo tour, appearing on various TV and radio shows, talking about his upcoming album, and various other things in the works. Harry had caught as many of the interviews as possible, wishing he could tell Louis himself how proud he was of him.

 

He just finished reading the article and was just standing up to put the neatly folded washing away when the doorbell rang. He frowned, knowing he hadn’t buzzed anyone in the building and scrambled for a pair of joggers, which he pulled over his hips before he jogged down the corridor, opening the door topless and giving his elderly neighbour Mrs Willis an eyeful.

“Oh, Harry dear. Sorry to disturb you but there was a young lady downstairs with these so I said I’d bring them up.”

She turned to the side, and Harry was startled when she produced an enormous bouquet of flowers out of nowhere, her frail arms struggling under the weight.

“Oh my goodness, let me take them-”

Harry stepped forward and lifted the bouquet from her, getting a noseful of the perfume as he did so. 

“Lucky boy,” she smiled as he propped the flowers up against his side, one of the leaves scratching his bare torso. “I’ll leave you to it…”

“Thanks a lot for bringing them up, Mrs Willis,” Harry called as she hobbled off down the corridor, her steps almost painful. Harry turned and disappeared back inside with the flowers, setting them down on the coffee table as he looked around for an envelope or card to tell him who they were from. He found it nestled in between two pink roses and he pulled it out, biting his lip when he saw Harry Styles scrawled on the front. He carefully peeled it open, and read the handwritten note, a smile crossing his face at the words.

5-BSGga-Ib-1

Harry clutched the note to his chest for a moment, wanting to scream with sheer delight. He had been feeling a little lost without his regular drive with Louis, even though he’d only done it a few times by now. Still, it meant a lot that he was on Louis’ mind enough that he’d thought to send flowers and expensive ones at that. 

He lifted up the cellophane wrapped bouquet and took them through to the kitchen, putting them down before he rifled around in the cupboards for a vase he knew was lurking at the back. He carefully clipped open the packaging and arranged the flowers as artfully as he could, filling them with water before he snapped a photo which he sent to Gemma with several rows of exclamation marks, not revealing who they were from just yet.

He lamented over the fact he didn't have Louis’ number to text and thank him, but from his card, he figured it wouldn’t be too long until Louis was back in London and he’d hopefully sort out a job with Niall. Harry took the flowers through to the living room, setting them down in the middle of the coffee table so anyone who came round to see him (basically just Gemma if he was honest) would see them and be dazzled with their beauty just like Harry was. 

Harry’s good mood, however, didn't last. Gemma hadn’t bothered to respond to his excited text messages, Josh hadn’t been around and Niall had just sent back a pathetic thumbs up emoji, leaving Harry a little pissed off and annoyed at being ignored. It was now the early evening and he’d cooked himself a frozen ready meal, something he only did in times of desperation, and he poked at the plasticy looking food with his fork, not at all inspired to actually eat any of it when his phone pinged. 

“Fucking finally,” he moaned as he saw Gemma’s name on the screen, quickly opening up their message thread. He read the message twice as he tried to make sense of it, but to no avail so he pulled up her contact, dialling her number.

“What do you mean the cat’s out of the bag?” he asked in lieu of a greeting, listening to his sister grin on the other end of the line. “Gemma, don’t be a cow, tell me what you mean.”

“Not been on Twitter, baby bro?” she asked, and Harry frowned, realising he hadn’t. He wasn’t hugely keen on social media, that had been something he’d been obsessed with when he was a teen, complete with a Louis Tomlinson stan account that he still accessed occasionally when he couldn’t sleep. Some of the old tweets were so embarrassing, but Harry couldn’t bring himself to delete them, knowing they were memories he’d treasure one day. “I suggest you have a look.”

“Now?”

“No, Harry, tomorrow morning. Yes now, you twat.”

Harry gave her the middle finger even though he knew she couldn’t see it, and he pulled up the app, waiting as it loaded up. He cringed slightly at the Snapchat filtered icon he’d set for himself last summer, but he was more puzzled to see the huge number of notifications he had waiting for him. Usually, he only had twenty or so at the most, even after not logging on for weeks, but it was in the high hundreds at the moment.

“What the…”

“Seems like your latest client might have found your twitter…” Gemma teased, and Harry groaned as he flicked down the list of notifications, realising Louis’ Twitter account had indeed liked and even commented on a few of his messages. With trepidation, Harry clicked on one and groaned when he saw it was a tweet from 2014, when he was a young and naive seventeen year old, and it was made worse when he saw Louis had written a reply to it.

IMG-7596

IMG-7598

IMG-7601

“Oh fucking shit,” he cursed, clicking on another notification to see the same thing. “Gemma, how- what’s he doing? Oh my god, I’m gonna die. This is mortifying. Seriously - how am I ever going to look him in the eye again?”

“Well, you’ll have to when you thank him for the flowers, won’t you?”

“Fuck off,” he snapped, still scrolling and realising Louis had liked a lot of the tweets he’d been mentioned in, bad hairdos and clothing choices included. 

“Look at his timeline as well, he tweeted something that just might be about you…”

Harry scoffed, shaking his head as he clicked on Louis’ twitter handle, bringing up his page. He blinked as he read the top tweet, realising it was made just last night.

IMG-7600

“There’s no way that’s about me,” he said, shaking his head. He hated the thought that Louis was thinking about another man as he toured the country, but the thought of being heartbroken believing Louis would tweet about him was even worse. “I don’t think- oh shit!”

“What?”

“I spilt this shitty curry down my front… oh god, it’s going to stain. I’m a fucking disaster, Gem.”

“Man up, Harry. Reply to his tweet, and tell him to ask you out.”

“Have you actually lost your mind?” Harry asked, aghast that Gemma would suggest such a ludicrous thing. “I can’t do that!”

“Why not? He snogged you, didn't he? And now he’s send you flowers…”

“We kissed, Gemma, there were no tongues, thank you very much. And the flowers were just a thank you.”

“Alright, Haz, bury your head in the sand all you like,” Gemma taunted, and Harry got a notification she’d like some of the tweets Louis had liked as well. “You do know you could get everything you’ve ever wanted if you were brave enough to go after it, right?”

Harry felt even worse now. Part of him knew Gemma was right, but the more sensible part of him was too scared of losing this tentative new friendship with Louis to even contemplate anything more happening between them. The kiss could be brushed off as a one time thing, and the flowers certainly weren’t a romantic gesture, not judging by the grateful note tucked in with them.

He ended the call with Gemma, promising to meet her later in the week for coffee and turned his attention back to the TV. He left his now cold and disgusting curry on the table, sighing when he caught sight of the stain again, and flicked through the channels, settling on Film4 when he saw Bridget Jones’ Diary was playing. It was one of Harry’s guilty pleasures and luckily, he’d caught the first part of the film. He suddenly felt sad, realising his life was just like Bridget’s. He was destined to be a singleton, to end up with a houseful of cats, living on disgusting frozen meals like the monstrosity he’d just tried to eat. 

It was nearly dark by the time Jamie O’Neal started crooning on screen about being alone and never needing anyone, and Harry couldn’t stop himself joining in, his deep voice complementing the one coming out of the TV speakers. He sympathised with Bridget as she downed her glass of wine in her cosy pyjamas, getting a little too emotional as he sang.

“All by myself… don’t wanna be all by myself… any mooooooooooooooooooooooore!”

Harry stood up with that, mimicking Bridget’s actions with his arms thrown wide, getting into the song now.

“All by myself, don’t wanna live all by myself….”

He sniffed, the emotion of the song and Bridget’s face getting to be a little too much and he brushed away a stray tear as he sat back down, barely registering a knock at the door as he did so. He ignored it, certain it would Josh warning him he was home, but when it came again, Harry lowered the volume slightly, sniffed and made his way down the hall to the door, lifting the hem of his t-shirt to wipe his eyes before he pulled it open.

“You don’t know how sorry I am to have interrupted that rather rousing rendition of All By Myself,” Louis began, a look of bemusement on his face as he stood on Harry’s doorstep, looking ridiculously handsome in a shirt and tight jeans. “Are you trying out for the part of Bridget Jones or something?”

“Depends if you’re trying out for the part of Mr Darcy or not…” Harry said cheekily, very aware his shorts were indeed very short and his t-shirt was a little too tight to be considered decent.

“Hmm,” Louis mused, tapping his finger against his chin for a moment as if pondering the answer. “Will you run down the street in your underwear if I say I am?”

Harry couldn’t stop himself laughing at that and he met Louis’ eyes, grinning at him.

“What are you doing here, Lou?”

Louis shrugged, his cheeks going slightly pink as he looked up at Harry from under his eyelashes, looking nervous and apprehensive for a moment. It wasn’t a look Harry had seen on him before, and he wondered if something was wrong.

“Louis?”

“Did you see my tweet?”

Harry’s heart skipped a beat, wondering to admit to seeing it, certain Louis meant the tweet Gemma had spoken about just a few hours ago.

“Uh… I might have done. Why?”

“Well, it turns out I worked up the courage after all.”

“Oh?” Harry asked, his mouth suddenly dry, feeling very exposed stood there dressed in his skimpy outfit. “Can we, uh, can we do this inside?”

Louis nodded, and let Harry shepherd him inside, leading the way into the sitting room. Harry grabbed his congealed meal and shoved it over to the corner of the room on the bookshelf as Louis took a seat on the sofa, smiling at the movie on the telly before Harry plopped down next to him, trying to tug his shorts down, trying and failing to hide his long, pale thighs.

“So, you were saying…” 

“I was. I worked up the courage to finally ask this guy out.”

“Oh, right. And how did it go?”

Louis’ eyes shone as he tilted his head to the side for a moment, a look of something Harry couldn’t place on his face.

“You tell me. Would you want to come out on a date with me, Harry?”

Harry just blinked, the words bouncing around in his head. It felt surreal. First of all, it was strange enough that Louis had turned up out of nowhere on his doorstep while he was warbling along to the Bridget Jones soundtrack and now he was here, actually asking him out on a date. Him. Harry Styles. Dressed in his short shorts, and stained star print t-shirt.

“Harry? Earth to Harry…” Louis called, wafting his hand in front of Harry’s face as he finally snapped back to reality. “Love?”

“Me? You want to take me on a date?”

“I really do,” Louis nodded, reaching and taking Harry’s hand in his. “I’ve missed you, like, a lot, actually. Liam said I’ve been moping but I think that’s a bit strong. I’d just say I’ve been a little lonely. I’ve been surrounded by people, but no one that really sees me for me, like you do.”

“But you’re Louis Tomlinson,” Harry mumbled, completely negating the words that had just come out of Louis’ mouth with that statement. “And I’m just… me.”

“You are. You’re you, Harry Styles. And if it’s okay with you, I’d quite like to kiss you right now. If Harry Styles is okay with Louis Tomlinson giving him a kiss, I mean…”

“That’s really very okay,” Harry mumbled, holding his breath as Louis leaned in slowly. All of a sudden though, Harry pulled back, placing a hand on Louis’ chest to make him lean back slightly. “Wait a sec-”

“Sorry, I didn't mean to be too forward…”

“No, you’re not. I just didn't get to say.. I’d love to go on a date with you,” Harry smiled, nuzzling against Louis’ hand as it came up to cradle his cheek, rubbing back and forth over his jaw for a moment. “You can kiss me now, Louis Tomlinson.”

“Okay, Harry Styles,” Louis chuckled before he finally connected their lips. It was soft and delicate at first, tender and searching, both men almost holding back. It was Louis who got brave first, his tongue darting out to graze across Harry’s full bottom lip, making Harry shiver. He slowly parted his lips, letting Louis dip his tongue inside, and although it was a deeper kiss, it was still perfect and pure, the pair exploring each other gently.

Finally, when they parted, Harry kept his eyes shut, almost not wanting to open them in case this was all a dream. 

“You’re an amazing kisser,” Louis whispered, pecking Harry’s lips quickly again. “Harry, open your eyes, love.”

“Can’t. What if you disappear and this was all a dream?”

“I’m real, and this is real. Please look at me. Want to see your eyes. Please?”

Harry couldn’t deny Louis anything and let his eyes flutter open, smiling when he saw Louis looking straight at him. 

“There you are. Beautiful. Now go and get dressed.”

“Huh?”

“Go get dressed, we’re going out. I’ll wait here. Oh, and I’ll be driving this time. Let me take care of you for once.”

“Now? We’re going out now?”

“Yes, love, right now. So go put your best frock on so that I can woo you.”

Louis got up and Harry followed, shaking his head at Louis’ spontaneity. 

“You’re really something else, you know that?” he said as he walked towards the door, running through in his wardrobe in his head, wondering what on earth he owned that was worthy of wearing on a date with Louis Tomlinson. Just Louis , he corrected mentally. On a date with Louis. (Tomlinson).

“Sure am. Hurry up, I’m hungry, and I don’t think you’ll like me when I’m hungry,” Louis warned and Harry chuckled, skipping off as he pulled off his clothes the second he got into his room. The movie was still playing in the background, and Harry laughed as Don’t Get Me Wrong by The Pretenders played as he wriggled into his tightest and most expensive jeans, flicking through the shirts hanging in his wardrobe. He picked a silky one Gemma had bought him for Christmas, and turned this way and that in the mirror, admiring his reflection, hoping he’d do. He spritzed himself with his favourite Gucci cologne, the one thing he splurged on for himself and slotted his feet into some boots. He did a final twirl in front of the mirror, catching a glimpse of the photo on his bedside table.

He walked over, picking up the clunky silver frame and grinning down at the picture. This felt like a very bizarre daydream. He was actually going on a date with Louis. The man in the frame was real, he was right there in Harry’s flat, and there were about to head god knows where together, just because they wanted to. Because Louis had asked Harry out on a date. He laughed and pulled open the top drawer, chucking the photo inside. He didn't need that anymore. He had the real man waiting outside for him.

With butterflies flapping in his tummy, Harry opened the door to his room and walked back to the sitting room, Louis finally looked up when Harry paused, looking nervously down at him.

“Wow. I mean… wow. You look gorgeous. That shirt is… wow.”

“Big vocabulary there, Lou,” Harry joked, and Louis poked his tongue out as he stood up, smoothing down his own shirt. “You look very handsome, too.”

“Well, what a pair we’ll make if we’re papped tonight, hmm?” 

Harry nodded and followed Louis out to the hallway, grabbing his keys and phone.

“Are you ready to be wined and dined, Harry Styles?”

Harry laughed and confirmed that he was, stumbling down the path after Louis, pigeon toed as ever. They paused beside Louis’ Range Rover, and this time, it was Harry’s turn to have the door opened for him as Louis grinned, dipping into a little bow as he waited.

“Your chariot awaits, sir. Oh, and Haz?”

“Yeah, Lou?” Harry asked as he pulled his seatbelt on, clicking it into place.

“We really need to discuss your twitter account… how cute were you?!”

*****

Two Months Later

Harry glanced out of the window of the car he was sat in the back of. It was a role reversal from what Harry was used to and he had to admit he could get used to this. One of his colleagues, Thomas, had arrived on his doorstep much to Harry’s surprise, telling him Mr Tomlinson had asked him to go with him for the surprise date night.

Harry and Louis had been seeing each other for a couple of months, but their dates hadn’t been as regular as either of them would like. Louis had released a new song a month ago, and the promo period had been hectic, with Louis flying all over the country to appear on various shows and as much as Harry had wanted to tag along, he’d had to stay at home, bound by his job and responsibilities. Louis came home as much as he could, but for their two month anniversary, Louis had made an effort, and arranged a surprise night out for the pair.

Harry’s doorbell had rung earlier that day, and a man in a posh suit had handed Harry over a garment bag with a smile and a nod, leaving Harry wondering what was going on. He hurried inside and set the posh black bag down on his bed, pulling down the zip to reveal the nicest black fitted suit Harry had ever seen, a small note pinned to the lapel.

IMG-7562

Harry had felt giddy after he’d showered and shaved, slipping the expensive clothes onto his body. Somehow, it all fitted perfectly, and Harry almost cried when he’d seen his own reflection when the outfit was complete. He’d put his own spin on it, of course, choosing to wear the tie inside the shirt against his skin as opposed to the traditional under-the-collar way, but he felt it was more him. He’d also painted his nails black for the occasion, determined that he be himself as much as possible, knowing Louis loved it when he did what made himself happy.

He tapped his fingers nervously on his thighs as the car navigated the brightly lit streets of London. It was November now, and the early evening darkness had well and truly set in, but to Harry, it added a magical air to their evening. He knew nothing of where they were heading, and his tummy felt nervous with anticipation of what Louis had arranged for the pair of them. He also couldn’t wait to see Louis suited and booted too, certain he would be a sight for sore eyes.

Soon, the car slowed down and came to a stop and Harry gasped as he looked out of the window, finally working out where they were. He sat for a moment, collecting his thoughts until the door opened, and there he was. His Louis, stood looking resplendent in a shimmering pewter jacket, a black shirt underneath, covering some fitted black trousers. His hair was styled up into a quiff that accentuated his stubble, and the sight of him literally took Harry’s breath away.

“Hello darling,” Louis said softly as he held out a hand for Harry, who put his into Louis’ gently, easing himself out of the car. “You look beautiful.”

Harry blushed as he leaned in for a quick kiss, too aware of the paps who were hovering. He turned and looked up at the building he loved to visit as much as he could, marvelling over it for a moment. It was the National Gallery, but as far as Harry knew, it was closed at this time.

“Louis, what are we doing here?” he asked, letting Louis lace their fingers together as he tugged him over to the building, Louis nodding his head as he walked by a security guard. “Louis?”

“I’ve planned a bit of a surprise for you,” Louis said with a smile, pulling Harry over to the main entrance. A woman inside wearing a fitted black dress smiled at the sight of them and nodded her head, a man opening the doors for them. Louis walked in first, and Harry followed, feeling like this was all a dream come true. He went to stand beside Louis who wasted no time in looping an arm around Harry’s waist, keeping him close.

“Love, this is Rebecca. She’s one of the Chief Curators here at the National Gallery. What she doesn’t know about art isn’t worth knowing.”

“Okay…” Harry murmured, still trying to puzzle everything together. “Uh, lovely to meet you.”

Harry outstretched his hand, shaking Rebecca’s as Louis watched on.

“I love the nails, Haz. Very you.”

“Okay gentlemen, if you’d like to follow me, we’ll start in Gallery A. Here, you’ll find some of our most famous historical pieces of artwork…”

She kept talking as she led the way, Louis and Harry following in her wake.

“We’re having a private tour of the National Portrait Gallery? Are you serious?”

“Anything for you, my love. I hope you like it.”

“Like it? Louis, I love it. This is, like, the best thing you could ever have done for me.”

They walked into the first gallery hand in hand, and already, Harry’s mind was blown. The most infamous pieces of art in the world hung from the walls in their gilt frames, and Harry listened intently as Rebecca spoke with such a breadth of knowledge about each piece of art, divulging as much history as she knew. Harry was aware of some of it from his own studies, but the level of knowledge she had blew his mind. Louis didn't leave his side as they wandered around, and Harry relished not being barged out of the way by other tourists eager to explore the art, instead allowing himself time to let it all sink in.

Much to Harry’s relief, Louis seemed more keen than he had expected. He asked Rebecca a lot of insightful questions, nervously at first as if he expected Harry and Rebecca to think him stupid for not knowing, but Harry loved his enthusiasm, squeezing his hand gently whenever he asked a question, often something Harry was wondering about himself.

From the first gallery, they headed upstairs to where the majority of the art was. They drifted around hand in hand, Rebecca leaving them alone to explore occasionally, coming over when Harry had questions, but he also enjoyed divulging what he knew to Louis, showing off the fact he’d learnt something at University after all.

“You’re brilliant, do you know that? You have a way of explaining it all so that I understand,” Louis confided as they headed off again, stopping in front of a famous Monet painting for a moment. “Wow, even I recognise this one.”

“Amazing, isn’t it? I can’t believe I’m here doing this, Lou. Thank you so much for this, I’m having such a good time!”

“I’m so glad,” Louis said, turning Harry gently until they were facing each other, the toes of their shiny shoes touching. “There’s more to come, though. I’ve got the whole night planned out.”

“Yeah?” Harry asked, cocking his eyebrow at Louis who smirked and nodded. “I can’t wait.”

They kissed slowly for a moment before Rebecca coughed, breaking them apart. She apologised but told them if they were to make the next part of their evening, they needed to pick up the pace a little. They both laughed and did as she said, following her as she walked through to the next area, listening hard as she explained more to the them. It still hadn’t sunk in with Harry that he was here, actually experiencing this, and as she bade them goodbye, wishing them a good evening, he felt disappointed that it was over all too soon.

“Don’t be sad, my love. We can come back, I just have other things for us to enjoy together,” Louis said, leading the way like he knew exactly where he was going. They headed back downstairs and paused in front of a large wooden door, a rope slung across it. Harry wondered what could be behind, and he waited patiently as Louis removed the rope, finally pushing the door open, revealing the room inside.

It had been set up with a table for two in the middle of the room, a white linen tablecloth draping down the sides, a tall candlestick resting in the centre. It looked like a scene from a fairytale, and Harry was speechless once again as Louis walked him over, pulling a chair out for him.

“Sit down, sweetheart.”

“You’ve… we’re eating here as well? Oh my god, Louis, how?”

“I wanted to make it special, don’t ask questions,” Louis murmured, kissing Harry on the head before he took his own seat opposite him. A smartly dressed waiter walked in with a bottle of wine in his hands, showing Louis the label before he poured a measure into each of their glasses. Louis took his first, raising it up between them. “Here’s to us. To two months together and to many more.”

“To us,” Harry replied, clinking their glasses gently before they took a sip. “Oh, this is good wine. What are we eating tonight?”

“A special menu I devised with the chef,” Louis smirked, now holding Harry’s hand on top of the table. “It’s all things I know you like, love, don’t worry. Have you enjoyed yourself so far?”

“I really have. This is the stuff of dreams, Lou. I can’t believe I’m lucky enough to be doing this with you, I really can't.”

“Well, believe it- ah, sorry, let me just put it on silent,” Louis moaned as his phone went off. He chuckled at whatever was on the screen, turning it around so Harry could see. It was a photo of the two of them heading into the gallery that night, smartly dressed and looking like a real power couple if Harry did say so himself. “I, uh… I think I might post that one.”

“Where?”

“To Father Christmas. To Instagram, Harry, what do you think?”

“I mean… if you want to? You don’t mind people knowing? That I’m, um…”

“That I’m with you? No, I don’t mind. I’m quite proud of it, actually.”

“Do it,” Harry said without hesitation, and Louis’s fingers flew over the phone screen as he drafted up a post, showing Harry for approval before he hit send. “Wow, that’s it. We’re Insta official.”

IMG-7564

“Yep, you’re publicly with Louis Tomlinson. How does it feel?”

Louis picked up the salt shaker and held it over to Harry’s mouth like a microphone, making them both laugh despite their opulent surroundings. Louis’ foot wrapped around Harry’s ankle then, and Harry had to answer the question, even though he knew Louis had been joking around.

“It feels wonderful. Everything about tonight is just perfect. Bit like you, actually.”

“Sap,” Louis said back, but his smile told Harry he liked being called perfect.

The first course was brought out to them, two bowls of roasted tomato soup, and Harry was already drooling. He and Louis made easy conversation as they sipped from their spoons, Louis steadfastly ignoring the side salad he was also given as Harry munched on his. They were finished all too quickly, and the waiter swooped silently back over to them, clearing away the plates in the blink of an eye. 

Harry reached for Louis’ hand as soon as the table was cleared, and it felt so natural to hold hands, Harry loving the way Louis always played absentmindedly with his fingers. They were trapped in their own little bubble in one of Harry’s favourite places in the world, and he was sure he’d never been happier.

“I’ve got an appearance on The One show on Friday,” Louis confessed, his wine glass nearly empty. “Will you come with me?”

“Yeah, I’m sure Niall can make sure I’m booked-”

“Not as my chauffeur, you dick,” Louis chided, smiling softly over at Harry. “As, um…”

“Say it,” Harry encouraged, his tummy swooping as he realised what Louis was hinting at.

“As my boyfriend. I’d like you there as my boyfriend, supporting me.”

“I’d love to, Lou,” Harry said with the biggest smile on his face. “Your boyfriend Harry Styles would love to come and support his boyfriend Louis Tomlinson while he appears on national telly.”

“You’re such an arsehole,” Louis laughed as the waiter appeared again, setting two plates down in front of the pair. “God, this looks delicious.”

“My favourite… I love roast chicken, Lou,” Harry murmured as he started to cut up his food, wanting it to cool down quickly so he could devour it. 

“Yeah, I know.”

Louis gave him a wink across the table at that, and the sound of cutlery clinking on plates filled the small room as they started to eat, both with big appetites as always. Harry choked on a piece of carrot as Louis made a very inappropriate remark, but other than that, everything went perfectly. Louis proudly told Harry he hadn’t spilt anything down himself when they were done, and both of their tummies were quite full, having eaten everything on their plates.

“I’m not sure I have room for desert,” Harry moaned, leaning slightly back in his chair, rubbing the slight swell of his belly over his trousers. “Look at the state of me…”

“Oh yeah, you’re a bloody whale,” Louis teased, making Harry poke his tongue. “How about we share a pudding? I don’t think I could eat my own either…”

“Sounds good,” Harry said. “I’m just going to the loo. Don’t disappear.”

He got up from the table and walked away, trying to sway his hips as he walked over to the small door with a bathroom sign attached. He slipped inside, and stopped in front of the mirror, resting his hands on the vanity as he stared at his reflection. He looked happy, was the first thing he thought. His green eyes sparkled with happiness, and his cheeks hurt from how much he’d smiled and laughed the whole night. Sure, the outfit looked good on him, and it felt nice to wear something designer for a change, but Harry realised it was the happiness he was wearing that made him feel good both inside and out.

He used the facilities and washed his hands before he headed back, smiling as he saw Louis was already eating the pudding that had been placed between them. It was the most delicious looking plate of strawberries with a bowl of melted chocolate next to it, and as Harry took a seat, Louis looked up guiltily up at him.

“Uh, whoops?” Louis mumbled, still chewing, a trail of chocolate dribbling down his chin.

“Not exactly sly, are you love?” Harry laughed, using his thumb to mop up the chocolate on his chin. “My turn.”

He picked up a plump red strawberry, his mouth already watering in anticipation of the taste and he swiped the rounded tip through the chocolate, creating a slight divot that soon disappeared as the chocolate settled again. He kept his eyes on Louis as he bit down into it, his tastebuds going wild as they were assaulted with flavours. 

“Oh my god…” he moaned, closing his eyes as he chewed, and by the time he opened them again, Louis was giving him a strange look. Harry swallowed and wiped the corner of his mouth with his napkin. “What?”

“You just made a sex face while eating a strawberry, love. That’s a bit weird.”

“How would you know?” Harry quipped, smirking as he picked up another strawberry. “Here you are, your turn…”

He fed Louis, and it continued like that, the pair feeding themselves and each other until they were done, both feeling like they were going to burst. Again, the waiter cleared up, offering them more wine which they refused, both men wanting to have clear heads for the rest of the night.

“Okay, one more little surprise,” Louis murmured quietly after a while. Their dinners had gone down a little bit, and Louis stood up, holding out a hand for Harry. “It’s in the next room.”

“Louis, what did you do?” Harry asked as he let Louis lead him over to another set of double doors, their hands linked between their bodies. The doors slowly opened and revealed a dancefloor space, a glittering chandelier on the ceiling casting light everywhere. The pillar candles around the edges of the room added another romantic element to it, and Harry felt his eyes burn with tears as music filled the room from hidden speakers. “I love this song.”

“I knew it would be perfect,” Louis said as he led Harry into the middle of the room, bringing an arm up around Harry’s neck, the other holding Harry’s hand in the air in a traditional dance hold. Harry’s arm came around Louis’ waist and pulled them together, their bodies swaying as Wonderful Tonight played, Eric Clapton’s voice crooning at the pair.

“This whole night has been perfect,” Harry confided, hoping he could hold it together until at least the end of the song. They both listened to the words of the song as they danced slowly together, and Harry did let a tear fall as Louis let his head rest on Harry’s chest, an intimate moment only for the two of them. “Louis…”

“Mmm?” Louis hummed, not bothering to move his head, but Harry wriggled slightly until he did, needing Louis to look at him for what he was about to do.

As Louis’ blue eyes met Harry’s green, Harry mustered up his courage and whispered the words he’d been holding back, needing Louis to know now how he felt.

“I love you, Louis.”

Louis’ grin said more than words ever could, and their lips met between them as they kept swaying, completely lost in the moment and each other.

“Just Louis?”

Harry smiled softly, and nodded.

“Yep. Just Louis. My Louis.”

“I love you too, my Harry,” Louis murmured as they kissed again, softly and sweetly until the song ended. As Elvis Presley’s Can’t Help Falling in Love began playing, Louis looked up at Harry, his face open and honest. “Come home with me, Harry.”

“I haven’t brought any pyjamas with me,” Harry whispered, and Louis laughed, tickling his boyfriend for a moment.

“Not sure we need those tonight, do you?”

Harry swallowed and nodded, leaning in to brush his nose against Louis’ quickly, making his boyfriend laugh. Thanks to their busy schedules, it wasn’t something they’d had a chance to do yet, but now, it was all Harry wanted. He wanted to fall asleep with Louis’ body curled around his own, to wake up to his face. Every day, if that was possible, but for now, Harry would take tomorrow. The first tomorrow of many, he was sure.

“I’d love to.”

*****

Harry hovered nervously behind Louis as he unlocked his front door, the pair stepping into the hallway. Harry had been there before, spending evenings with Louis on his giant sofa as they cuddled up watching movies together, or just hanging out before Louis had to dash off on yet another promo stop, or meeting with his team. Now, though, Harry knew he was staying the night, and to say he was a bit nervous was an understatement. 

“Don’t stand there like you don’t know where everything is, come in, make yourself at home,” Louis instructed, slipping off his blazer and hanging it up on the banister. His shoes were already off, and Harry was impressed he’d even put socks on for tonight. Louis really had gone all out. Still, Harry sat on the bottom stair and unzipped his boots, pulling them off and wriggling his toes back to life before he followed Louis, watching his boyfriend reach down two wine glasses before pouring a little red wine into each. 

Instead of handing Harry one as he’d expected, Louis slipped past him, brushing his body against Harry’s entirely unnecessarily as he left the room, especially given there was more than enough space for the two to pass each other without touching so much as a pinky finger. Harry knew what Louis was trying to do, and he watched his curvy bum move down the hallway, pausing at the bottom of the stairs as he looked back at Harry, his eyes dark and inviting.

“Coming up?”

Harry just nodded and scuttled along after Louis, the house almost silent as they walked up the stairs, Harry’s feet sinking into the plush pile of Louis’ carpet. It was a beautiful house, but at the same time, Louis had made it very homely. There were family photos everywhere you looked, and other knick knacks Harry was 99.9% certain Louis had no input on. Still, it was cosy, and Harry enjoyed spending time there.

Louis disappeared through the doorway to his bedroom, and Harry slowed down for a moment, trying to get his head around what was happening. They’d got close to this a few times before, but tonight, it seemed inevitable they were going to take that final step together. Harry rested his forehead on the wall for a second before a pair of arms came around his waist, Louis pressed up behind him.

“No pressure for tonight, my love. I just… I  want you here with me.”

He pressed a kiss between Harry’s shoulder blades, and that was all Harry needed to hear. He knew what he wanted, and he quickly turned in Louis’ hold, crashing their lips together, trying to tell Louis without words that he wanted him more than he’d ever wanted anything in his whole life. 

“I want you,” he panted out as they stopped kissing for a moment, both getting too into it considering they were still stood in the hallway. “God, do I want you. I love you, and I want this, Louis.”

Louis just grabbed Harry’s hand and walked him to the bedroom, kicking the door shut behind them despite the fact they were the only ones in the house. Harry stayed where he was, next to the bed as Louis’ small hands came up, undoing the single button holding his jacket together. When it opened, he ran his palms over Harry’s chest on top of shirt, and Harry’s breath hitched, feeling a bit overwhelmed.

“You okay?”

Harry nodded in reply, shrugging off the jacket, leaving it on the floor. He just stood as Louis began to undo his shirt, watching his nimble fingers work with the small buttons until it was undone, his torso exposed to Louis.

“You’re so fucking beautiful, you know that?”

“Can I…” Harry asked, his hands coming up to Louis’ shirt now. Louis nodded, and Harry kept his hands as steady as he could until Louis’ shirt was undone. Both men removed them, letting them pool on the floor as if they were a couple of Primark shirts, not designer ones which cost more than Harry’s entire monthly rent. “On the bed. Please.”

“So polite,” Louis teased as he crawled onto the bed, flopping down on his back, his head on the pillows. He looked like a god laid out like that, his skin golden against the sheets, and Harry had a sudden urge to trace of each of Louis’ tattoos with his tongue. He realised with a start that he could actually do that and practically leapt onto the bed, straddling Louis’ hips as he lowered his head, tracing the 78 tattoo with the tip of his tongue as Louis writhed beneath him, clearly affected. “Shit, Haz…”

“Sorry, I-”

“No, don’t fucking stop,” Louis moaned, rolling his hips gently, his cock nudging against Harry’s for a moment. Both men stilled, and Harry pulled away from Louis’ chest enough to look him in the eyes. “I-”

“Do that again,” Harry said breathily, groaning when Louis did just that, sending sparks of pleasure down Harry’s spine. “Kiss me, Louis…”

Louis’ hands came around the back of Harry’s neck and pulled him down into a kiss, much deeper and dirtier than any they’d shared that night so far. Harry let his hips press down against Louis as his body pinned him against the mattress, his tongue now roaming around Louis’ mouth, keen not to stop. There was intent behind both of their kisses, and Harry gasped as Louis’ hands came to fiddle with the clasp of Harry’s trousers, popping it open.

“Can I touch you?” Louis muttered against Harry’s lips, and he could only nod, keeping his eyes open and fixed on Louis’ as he felt a hand slide into his trousers, cupping him over the tight black underwear he’d put on that night. Louis’ hand rocked back and forth as they kissed until Harry couldn’t take it anymore. He pressed his hands against the bed as he sat up, his trousers tented, Louis’ hand still inside. “Haz?”

“Too many clothes,” Harry breathed, and clambered as gracefully as he could off the bed, getting rid of his trousers as he watched Louis do the same, both men in just their boxers then. Harry hesitated as his fingers hooked in the waistband of his boxers, but he decided to throw caution to the wind, pushing them down his thighs, leaving him bare. Louis did the same, kicking his off the end of the bed, and Harry gasped at the sight of Louis naked in front of him. “Shit. Louis Tomlinson is naked in front of me.”

Louis slapped his hand across his eyes as he groaned, shaking his head, and Harry giggled, climbing back onto the bed, but instead of straddling Louis again, he laid down next to him, pulling at Louis’ wrist. 

“Look at me,” he said softly, and Louis did. He shivered as Louis dragged his toes up Harry’s shin, and he reached out, resting a hand on the curve of Louis’ waist. His skin was warm and soft under Harry’s palm, and Harry dug his fingertips in a little, just enough to make Louis’s eyes flutter. 

“Louis Tomlinson would quite like you to touch him,” Louis murmured, and Harry nodded, shuffling closer. He pressed his thigh against Louis’ cock as they kissed again,  a little more lazily than they had before. Harry kept his leg still as Louis rocked against it, taking what he needed from Harry. When Harry still hadn’t touched him, Louis took charge. He grabbed Harry’s hand and pushed it down between their bodies until Harry finally wrapped his fingers around Louis’ shaft, tugging lightly. “Oh fuck, yeah… feels so good, Harry.”

“Yeah? Tell me what you like, Lou…”

“Just… keep doing that,” Louis murmured as Harry started to move his hand a little more, slowly rolling Louis onto his back as they kissed. Their bare chests were now pressed together as Harry’s hand worked over Louis, trying to ignore his own cock which was desperate for attention now. Harry saw out of the corner of his eye how Louis raised his knees, planting his feet against the bed as he looked down at his boyfriend, swallowing as he stopped kissing Louis for a moment. 

“Louis, do you…”

“Yes. I do. If that’s okay?”

Harry gave a shaky nod, and Louis wriggled across the sheet slightly, reaching out and grabbing something from the drawer, throwing it down on the mattress next to his hip. Harry’s heart was beating erratically again as he realised he was going to actually have sex with Louis, his boyfriend, for the first time, and he sent up a quick prayer that he wasn’t going to make a fool of himself. 

“Do you want me to…” Louis asked, holding up a small bottle in his hands, but Harry shook his head. As nervous as he was, he wanted to take care of Louis, to make him feel good. “It’s going to be fine, love. I love you, and I want us to do this. I want you inside me.”

Harry got up and sat on his knees between Louis’ legs, looking up at his boyfriend. His blue eyes were practically glowing in the soft light of the bedroom, and Harry felt like he was staring deep into Louis’ soul as they held their gazes for a minute. Harry’s attention was broken by the snick of the bottle opening, and Louis passed it to him, letting his legs fall open gently. Harry let his eyes drift down for a moment, admiring every part of Louis he could see. 

“You’re stunning,” he mumbled, drizzling the clear liquid over a couple of fingers on his right hand, slowly lowering it. “Tell me if you need me to stop, okay?”

“I will. But I won’t want you to,” Louis admitted, and took a breath as Harry reached down, tracing his slick finger around Louis’ entrance for a moment before he pushed in slowly. There wasn’t as much resistance as he was expecting but he still took his time pressing it forward until he was completely inside, looking up at Louis to gauge his reaction. “Feels good, baby, keep going…”

Harry did so, listening to every sound Louis made as he opened him carefully and slowly, treating his body with the love and care he deserved. Harry was so hard himself now it was almost painful, but he kept his attention on Louis, on not hurting him. He slipped in a second finger when Louis asking, watching his boyfriend touch himself as he worked his fingers inside him. It was the most erotic moment of Harry’s life, and he stilled his hand for a moment, making Louis pause too.

“Harry?”

“Sorry, just… I hope you know how much this means to me. I know I joke about you being Louis Tomlinson but… you’re so much more than that. I just needed you to know this isn’t about me having sex with Louis Tomlinson or whatever. This is me, loving you and wanting to be with you.”

“I know. I promise I do,” Louis began, wriggling slightly in discomfort. “And I love you too. But please, for the love of God, Haz, will you move?”

Harry laughed and carried on moving his fingers in and out of Louis’ body until he whimpered that he was ready. Louis grabbed the condom from the bed and tore the packet open with his fingers, reaching out for Harry as he rolled it down his length expertly. Harry’s cock twitched as Louis touched it, but he ignored it, feeling nervous now that he was going to muck this up and make it rubbish.

“I, uh, I’m sorry if this isn’t very good,” he began, keen to set Louis’ expectations nice and low. “I don’t top much, but I’ll do my best.”

“Love, it’s going to be wonderful because it’s us. I’m pretty versatile, so we can switch next time if you want to. But I know it’s going to be great. We’ll go slow, okay?”

Harry nodded and gave himself a couple of tugs before he shuffled closer to Louis, watching as his boyfriend draped his legs over Harry’s thigh, his hands clasped on his tummy as Harry held his cock steady, lining himself up. He licked his lips and took a breath, holding it as he pushed his hips forward, sliding gently into Louis’ body. It was an overload of sensations straight away. Louis felt tight and hot around his cock, squeezing him like a vice, and Harry edged forward slowly as Louis let out a long, low breath until Harry’s hips met the back of Louis’ thighs, fully inside.

“Okay?” Harry asked, lowering himself down gently, brushing his lips against Louis’. Louis just nodded, so Harry pulled back slightly before he rocked back inside, both of them moaning lowly. Harry could feel the vibration of Louis’ chest against his chest, and he dipped his face, kissing Louis lightly. He kept up the gentle motions as Louis scrabbled for his hand, lacing their fingers together next to his head on the pillow, and Harry sighed in pleasure at how good he felt. He could only hope Louis was feeling the same but judging by his noises, he was.

“So good,” Louis murmured as he brought his legs up and around Harry’s waist, resting his heels on the small of Harry’s back. “You can go a bit harder, you won’t break me.”

Harry nodded before he did a slightly harder thrust, swallowing down Louis’ moan. Harry knew he was close already but he couldn’t bring himself to care. The way their bodies moved together felt so good, and Harry dragged his lips away from Louis’ from a moment to lick a stripe down the side of Louis’ neck. Louis groaned, tilting his head to give Harry better access, and Harry wasted no time in nipping gently at Louis’ neck before he sucked the skin between his lips, rolling his hips gently as he left a mark there, one he knew Louis wouldn’t be able to hide.

“I’m close, Lou,” he murmured, picking up his pace a little again. “Sorry, just feels so good…”

“It’s fine,” Louis panted out, sounding breathless now. “I am too.”

Harry kissed Louis again as his hands rested on Harry’s bare back, digging in slightly as his thrusts got slightly harder, making the bed squeak underneath them. Harry went for it then, taking Louis as hard as he could while still kissing him, bodies a mess of sweat, heat and shared breaths.

“I’m gonna- oh Louis, shit, I-”

“Come for me,” Louis murmured before he bit down gently on Harry’s lower lip, and that was it for Harry. He cried out Louis’ name as he came hard into the condom, Louis’ body clenching around him. Harry was shaking with pleasure as he flopped down on top of Louis’ body, trying to catch his breath, Louis’ erection trapped between them. “Haz… you’re squashing me.”

Harry laughed and pushed himself up, his body protesting at being forced to move. He reached down and held the base of condom as he pulled out of Louis’ body, noticing again how hard Louis still was. Harry peeled off the condom and as he tied it, he dipped his head, slipping Louis’ cock between his lips.

“Oh fucking hell, warn a guy-” Louis rasped out, clenching his fists against the sheet, his body tensing. “Harry, I won’t last-”

Harry sucked harder and faster for a moment, wanting Louis to come. His hands held Louis’ hips against the bed, and he glanced up at Louis as he finally came, swallowing as much as he could, Louis’ eyes locked on him. When he was sure he’d got it all, he popped off, wiping his mouth on the back of his hand before he came back up the bed, laying next to Louis who immediately curled into his body, the two of them tangled up together.

“That was… I didn't know you were so good at that,” Louis mused, smiling sleepily up at Harry, stroking his cheek with his fingertips.

“Well, now you know,” Harry whispered, kissing Louis softly. “That was perfect.”

“It really was,” Louis agreed, tucking his leg between Harry’s. “I love you.”

“I love you too.”

There was quiet for a minute as Harry reluctantly got up, grabbing the duvet and pulling it up over their naked bodies, feeling chilly now that they’d cooled down a bit. 

“Hey, Haz?”

“Yeah, babe?” Harry murmured, half asleep by now, Louis tucked against his chest.

“I just had sex with Harry Styles.”

Harry giggled at that, nodding and pressing a kiss to the top of Louis’ head.

“You really did. Hope it was as good as you wanted it to be?”

“The best,” Louis confirmed, nodding slightly. “Stay. Want you to stay.”

“Not going anywhere tonight,” Harry whispered against Louis’ hair, inhaling the coconutty scent of his shampoo.

Louis shook his head, pulling back slightly so he could look up into Harry’s eyes,

“Not just tonight…”

*****

Harry stirred the next morning, cocooned in Louis’ cosy duvet to see a camera being pointed in his face. He gave Louis a sleepy smile, and soon enough, his boyfriend snuggled back down next to him, pressing his cold toes against Harry’s calves, making him shriek.

“Oi, Tomlinson, get your cold feet off me!”

“Oh, Tomlinson now, is it? Got your dick wet, so it’s back to formalities?”

“Fuck off-” Harry teased as he shoved Louis onto his back, kissing him deeply despite the fact neither of them had bothered to get up and clean their teeth yet. “Don’t joke, Lou. I meant what I said last night, you know…”

“I know, you twat. I’m just messing with ya. Would I post this if I didn't know you were in love with me?”

He turned his phone around to show Harry the photo he’d added to his Twitter a few minutes ago. It was of Harry’s sleepy face, clearly tucked up in bed with Louis, and the comment he left made Harry’s heart feel full.

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“Louis, I… that’s a lovely thing to say.”

“Well, it’s just the truth. Proud to tell the world you’re mine, actually.”

“Good, ‘cause I’m a bit proud to have you as well. I love you.”

They kissed again as their hands roamed, but both were stopped when Louis’s stomach growled loudly, making Harry laugh and dart under the covers, pressing kisses all over his boyfriend’s belly.

“Someone’s hungry. Want me to make some breakfast?” he asked as he poked his face out from under the covers, resting his chin on Louis’ tummy. Louis was looking down fondly at him, and Harry scrunched his face up for a second, making Louis’ laugh, his head bobbing up and down with Louis’ stomach. “What?”

“I’m just lucky,” Louis shrugged, pulling Harry up to lie beside him again. “I know I joke about it, you sleeping with Louis Tomlinson and stuff, but I hope you know I think I’m lucky to have you. Not sure you realise what a catch you are, Harry Styles.”

“You’re making me blush,” Harry laughed, kicking the duvet off as Louis shrieked, trying to pull it up and covered up his naked self. “Oh, don’t bother with that, think I saw it all last night, don’t you?” He stood with his hands on his hips as he looked down at Louis, unashamed at his own state of undress. “Come on, Lou, I’ll make breakfast. But, um…”

“What?” Louis asked, climbing off the bed, cuddling Harry.

“I might need to borrow some pants…”

*****

6 months later

Harry held up the pair of jeans, debating whether he really needed to pack a fifth pair or not. He knew he was going to be gone for a month or so, but still, five pairs of jeans seemed a little excessive, especially as there was literally no difference between them at all. He shoved them back in the drawer and slammed it shut, looking at his suitcase as if to work out how much space he had left.

His leather bag was open on the bed, his passport next to it. He still couldn’t believe this was actually finally happening, despite the fact they’d been planning it for months now. Louis’ album had come out a few months ago to massive success, and Harry and Louis had spent many nights holed up at home celebrating in their favourite way, as well as resurfacing every now and then to turn up at release parties, and to promote it on various telly and radio spots.

Now, though, Liam had been busy behind the scenes arranging the tour, which was starting the following week. They were flying out to America, where Louis was opening the tour in Florida before jetting all around the states. Harry was beside himself with excitement, having never been out there before, and he’d brought too many guidebooks he’d spent hours showing Louis, who, to his credit, had listened and been as excited as Harry was. After the American leg of the tour was over, Harry was returning home to start his brand new job while Louis flew off to Europe, keeping them apart for another month or so before he returned home to Harry.

Harry had been beside himself when he’d secured a new position at The Tate Gallery as an Assistant Curator. He’d been stunned when he’d got the call saying he had the job, and Louis had tweeted out how proud he was of his boyfriend, making Harry’s chest puff out in pride. He’d sadly handed in his resignation to Niall, apologising for finally leaving the job, and the pair had spend a drunken night consoling each other, promising to stay in touch. Harry knew he’d made a friend for life in Niall, so that wasn’t a worry at all.

The zip slid easily around the suitcase as Harry finally closed it, popping his luggage band around it, the rainbow pattern standing out proudly so he could find it easily on the carousel at the airport. He sat down next to it on the bed as he double checked all of his documents were there, and he finally put his passport into the front pocket alongside his phone charger. 

His phone trilled loudly then, and Harry grinned down at the display, seeing Louis’ face lighting up his screen. He was pulling a stupid expression, but Harry couldn’t bring himself to change it. He hit the button to put the phone on speaker, and greeted his boyfriend.

“Hi, love! How did it go?”

“All good, thanks, baby. You packed?”

“Yup. Just double checked I’ve got everything, so I’m good to go.”

“So organised. S’why I love you, you know?”

“Is that all?”

That and your big dick,” Louis chuckled, making Harry laugh. “ The car will be there soon if it’s not already. You excited?”

“Very,” Harry admitted, hoisting his suitcase off the bed, the weight of it making a loud clunk on the floor. Harry slung his bag across his body and headed down the hall. Josh had already left for work, Harry having said goodbye to his flatmate earlier on, but Harry had a sneaky suspicion he wouldn’t be living there much longer after he got back from Louis’ tour. The pair had hinted at wanting to live together, but neither wanted to rush it. Harry, though, was sure touring together and being with each other 24/7 in America would put a rush on their plans when they got back. “Oh, looks like they’re here…”

He lifted the case down the stairs, taking care not to stumble, and when he reached the ground floor, he wheeled it over to the car, tapping on the back window to get the driver to open it.

“Niall?” he shrieked, almost dropping the phone as his former boss stepped out, suited and booted as he grinned at Harry. “What are you doing here?”

“Well, I don’t do this for just anyone, as you know, but I thought I’d make an exception for you,” he said as he pulled Harry into a hug. “Go get in, that’s my job.”

Harry rolled his eyes but let Niall lift his heavy case into the boot as he got into the passenger seat, not able to even contemplate sitting alone in the backseat, far preferring to sit next to his mate.

“Lou? Did you arrange this?”

Might have done,” Louis said, a smile evident in his voice. “ Have a good trip to the airport, love, I’ll see you there, okay?”

“You will,” Harry agreed, smiling at Niall as he got in the car beside him, starting the engine. “I love you, Lou.”

Love you too. Oh, and Haz?

“What is it, babe?” Harry asked, keen to get on and get to the airport to meet his boyfriend.

I hope you packed that cropped t-shirt …