The party's in full swing by the time Nick gets there, what feels like hundred of people crammed into Harry and Louis’ — admittedly not exactly tiny — flat, but somehow Harry finds him right away and pulls him into his bedroom to show Nick something on his phone that he couldn't properly explain over the pounding of the music and the raised voices.
It only takes two minutes for Harry to finish his story, but then they're already sitting side by side on Harry's bed and chatting about what's happened in the week since they've seen each other. Harry tells him about this thing Caroline had done with him, and while Nick isn't a prude, not by a long shot, he thinks he might need more drinks for this conversation. A lot more drinks.
He wrestles Harry to the bed instead, trying to give him a dead arm. He utterly fails at the endeavor, but they're both a bit more wrinkled when Harry looks at the door and and Nick suddenly remembers that there's a party on in the rest of the flat.
Nick ruffles Harry's hair before Harry can move too far away from him out into the crowd. The last he sees is Harry turning back to dimple at him before his attention is stolen by Sam. He lingers in the doorway for another minute before making his way to the kitchen and grabbing a beer.
As soon as the he takes his first drink, he finds Louis standing in front of him, arms crossed. "I suppose you'll be on your way, then?"
"What?" Nick's only just got his first drink. It's just gone nine and this is a New Year's party. There's at least five more hours left. Maybe more.
Louis points at Harry, who is fixing his hair and grinning at something Niall's doing on the other side of the kitchen. There's a row of shots set out between them. "You got what you came for, looks like."
Nick's never really talked to Louis much, and only really knows him through Harry's stories and the press, which might paint radically different pictures but either way he's never got the impression that Louis was mean. And yeah, maybe he fancies Harry a bit — with the curls and the dimples and the ridiculous shaggy amiability he's got going it's hard not to — but that's not what's happened. Not tonight, not over Christmas, and never in the few months they've been friends.
He takes another sip, using the extra seconds to size Louis up. He's pint sized and a bit scruffy, and with a personality that takes up way more space than should be allowed. They're standing in the middle of a crowded party and Nick feels like he's being pushed up against a wall, even when Louis is a good two feet away. He also looks like he's ready for a fight.
Nick puts on his breeziest voice. "Not what it looks like, love," he says, and sweeps out of the kitchen with his still mostly full beer, not even pausing to look back at Louis' expression.
"He's got a girlfriend, you know."
Nick hasn't seen Louis for hours. He's in the cinema room now, the screens showing the BBC special on mute, as the music's coming from the DJ set up in the living room. Nick remembers throwing parties at their age. They'd had crap boom boxes and bottom shelf alcohol and red cups everywhere.
That much hasn't changed, at least. Nick's own cup is mostly empty, and he should do something about that. He's quite comfortable where he is, though, squashed on the sofa with Lou, with Harry's legs draped over Cazza's on the other side. Lou isn't paying them any attention, too deep in conversation with Caroline.
They are, in reality, quite adorable. Harry's completely smitten over her, flushed from a combination of booze and her hands playing in his hair. Nick's not going to do anything to mess with that. They get enough trouble from outside, and Nick's not in the business of breaking his friends' hearts.
"Oh for fuck's sake," Nick says. Louis is backing him into a corner without lifting a god damned finger again, and it's completely unfair. "I'm not trying to sleep with Haz."
There's a definite bitter edge to Louis smirk. "Not what it looks like to me."
This time he's the one who flounces off, but only because Nick's still sitting down and he has no idea how well his legs are going to work if he gets up now. His last drink had been pretty strong, and food is pretty scarce.
At midnight, he's standing with Harry and Cazza and Lou and Sam, and they all kiss, going around in a big circle. Harry kisses Caroline first, as is right and proper, the polite midnight kiss on the edge of turning into something else entirely until Lou tugs on Harry's hair and they break apart, laughing. Nick kisses Lou and Sam and Cazza in quick succession, and then Harry's standing in front of him, eyes glazed over and cheeks flushed.
His lips are soft and warm and gone after barely a second, dimpled grin lighting up his face when he pulls away. Nick can't help but match it until Harry turns back to Caroline.
He needs a smoke.
There's a fair amount of people outside on the terrace despite the cold, hunched over and curling their arms around themselves and huffing out mixed clouds of white breath and smoke. The ashtray Nick's standing next to is overflowing. When Nick gets to the end of his he drops it to the ground and grinds it it. It's more satisfying that way.
"Someone's going to have to pick that up, you know."
Of course Louis is out here. He's been everywhere tonight. He is the party's host, but Nick doesn't think it's just his imagination that Louis' been paying him more attention than any other guest. Well, he hasn't bothered to track Louis at all, but he just keeps showing up, elbowing his way past Nick when he's trying to pour a drink, slinging his arm around Harry's shoulders and distracting him in the middle of a story that makes little enough sense to begin with.
This isn't about the party cleanup, Nick knows that well enough. "Who are you more jealous of? Him or me?"
There's no doubt Louis knows exactly what Nick's talking about, because he's been the one making snide comments about Nick's tiny, insignificant crush on Harry on night. Nick has had to try very hard not to gloat openly each time Harry elbows Louis away to keep talking to Nick.
There it is again, that thing Louis does where he takes up too much space. Nick is drunk enough, and it's late enough that it takes him a minute to realize that Louis is actually creeping closer this time, physically backing him up to the railing. He's pretty sure Louis couldn't manage to push him over it, but he holds tightly just in case. The stone is freezing and rough under his fingers, pulling his focus from drunken fuzziness into something brighter and sharper.
"He's never going to give you what you want," Louis says.
Nick barely has time to process the odd emphasis before Louis is crowding even closer. He's got just enough time to wonder if this is actually the end, if he's about to be murdered by a tiny boybander when Louis rises up on his toes and kisses Nick.
It's not soft, Louis bites at his mouth and presses forward and has a grip tight enough on Nick's hips that he'll probably bruise. He tastes like smoke and booze, probably exactly the same as Nick right now, and he shivers when Nick manages to release his grip on the railing and slide it under his t-shirt.
Louis presses closer instead of pulling back and Nick loses track of time to the feeling of Louis warm lips juxtaposed against the frigid air around them. It goes on long enough that Nick starts to wonder who is going to see them, pushing at Louis hips to get him to let go. Every boyband has a gay one, but no one ever say anything until they're on the way out, at the very least. Louis and Harry and their boys are just getting started. They've not even put out a single yet.
When they finally do break apart, Louis face is soft and it takes his eyes ages to open. Nick takes the opportunity to study the curve of his cheekbones before his glare sets in again. It doesn't come, and Nick isn't sure why.
"Five minutes," Louis says, and disappears back into the house.
The only other person on the balcony is Zayn, but he just goes back to his cigarette like he didn't see anything. Nick wonders how many secrets these boys know about each other.
It's more like twelve minutes by the time Nick manages to follow. He'd gone inside right away, opting for a glass of water instead of another drink, but then got waylaid by James talking about something he was planning, and would Nick help out? He's a bit fuzzy on the details, but tells James to send him the details and he'll think about it.
Then he runs into Harry, and only manages to escape by pretending he's desperate for the loo. He only knows which door is Louis' because it's the one that's not Harry's, and he knocks softly before slipping inside, not wanting to be caught lingering.
"Took you long enough," Louis says. His bed is messy and unmade, and he's sitting on top of the covers, still clothed. His legs are spread wide and he's definitely rubbing himself through his trousers. "Thought you'd bailed. Wouldn't blame you."
There's a touch of insecurity in his voice, like he'd been waiting for the disappointment, waiting to be left alone after all that. Like he and Nick haven't been drawing together like magnets all evening. It's easy to continue that now, too. Nick sheds his boots at the foot of the bed and crawls up until he's kneeling over Louis, hovering for a minute before carefully leaning down to kiss him.
The kiss is softer this time, and Nick doesn't think it's just because they're lying on a rumpled duvet instead of crowding against cold stone. Louis still bites at him with sharp teeth, but it's not urgent or rough anymore. It's almost as if Louis is testing him, looking for his reaction. Nick confirms this when he lets himself slowly collapse until they're lying flush, Louis' ankles hooked behind Nick's knees.
He wants to ask what's happening here, aside from the obvious, but Louis isn't giving him the chance. He's digging his fingers under Nick's shirt and into his belt, holding him close and kissing him long enough that it's turning desperate, his hips flicking up into Nick's every few seconds seeking more pressure and friction.
Nick pulls away and Louis whimpers, trying to pull Nick back in, even though they're both fully dressed. It's easy enough to pull off his shirt while kneeling up between Louis legs, though he has to collapse to the side and do a weird hip-wiggle thing to get his jeans off. Probably would have been easier to stand up, but Nick's got a nagging feeling that if he loses his connection to the bed, this is over. It's probably irrational, but by the time he's kicked his jeans and pants to the floor, Louis is laughing at him, and that's the kind of sex Nick likes best.
"You do it, then," Nick says, reclining back on the pillows, one arm behind his head, his free hand lazily stroking his hard cock. Louis unbuttons his shirt while lying on the bed, and then sits up, leaving it behind. He's made of smooth, soft, tan skin and Nick aches to reach out and touch, but for even though they were doing plenty of that before, he's not been invited to touch bare skin yet.
And then Louis is shimmying his hips and kicking his own jeans to the end of the bed, barely giving Nick enough time to look at him spread out and hard before he's rolling over and straddling Nick.
Nick has to fist his hands in the already rumpled duvet to avoid grabbing him and pulling him right down. It doesn't go unnoticed by Louis, either.
"What are you waiting for?" He grinds his hips down into Nick's, and that's the last bit of invitation Nick needs. He skims his hands up the back of Louis' thighs before spreading his palms over the round of Louis' bum, squeezing a bit just to feel him. Louis pushes back into his hands, and Nick holds tighter, angling his head up to capture Louis' lips. He moans loudly, right into Nick's mouth, when Nick dips his fingers in to rub against Louis' rim; his whole body tightens, back arching and hips trying to press in every direction at once.
Nick tips him onto his side, above Louis' protests.
"Where are you going?" he whines.
Nick pats his cheek in an overly exaggerated and patronizing manner, but moves down the bed and positions Louis where he wants him. Louis doesn't fight at all, and soon enough, Nick's got him on his knees, legs spread wide, chest pressed into the bed. He looks delicious like this, but Nick doesn't get to look too long, because Louis is reaching a hand back to grab at him.
"Hurry the fuck up, I haven't got all night. I'm hosting a party."
They probably do, really. The party had been in that last stage before truly dying when they'd sequestered themselves away for a shag — everyone growing weary but not ready to leave quite yet. Besides, Harry's still out there, and everyone's probably too drunk to notice Louis isn't.
Or, they'll take a look at his locked bedroom door and think he's pulled, which is what's happening. If Nick can get out of his head and get to work.
It's easy to concentrate after that. He's still a bit fuzzy from the drinks, but not enough to let it cloud his concentration as he bends forward and bites at the soft swell of Louis' arse. He smiles when Louis yelps, but then bends to work. Louis bucks his hips wildly at the first touch of Nick's tongue against his hole. He wonders vaguely if anyone's done this for Louis before. He's still young, just turned twenty, and Nick had been well past that the first time he'd been eaten out. Once he started sleeping with blokes who weren't just his own age.
Louis is sweaty, but clearly showered before the party. There's a hint of soap buried underneath, but mostly he tastes like sweat and smoke and heat. Nick takes his time, even as Louis is clutching at Nick's hand on his hip, digging his fingers in and begging for more, please.
At least he's got manners some of the time. Nick is dying to actually say that, but his tongue is already quite busy.
When Louis is relaxed enough to let Nick press forward into him with his tongue, he lets go of Louis hip and slips a finger in, too. Nick knows his fingers are on the gangly side, but for now it actually works in his favor, as he's able to easily find Louis' prostate and brush against it, feeling the way Louis clenches around him when he does. He'd add another, but he'd have to stop and hunt for lube, and Nick really hates that chemical taste.
Later, he decides. If he gets to have later. Right now it's becoming desperately urgent that he feels Louis' orgasm under his tongue. Carefully, he untangles his other hand from Louis and reaches around to take Louis dick in his hand. It's a bit odd, really, that this is the first time he's touching him like this. Had barely even seen him before got his tongue buried in Louis' arse.
Louis is twitching in his hand, though. Cock straining in his grip as he's clenching down on Nick's tongue and fingers. He's making the most gorgeous, choked off noises, too. The closed bedroom door isn't enough to block out the music from the party completely, but it does enough for Nick to hear every hiss of breath and every choked off moan.
When Louis comes, he doesn't warn Nick. He just arches back onto Nick's tongue and clenches up and spills over Nick's fist with a drawn out groan. One that Nick can barely hear. It's muffled somehow, like Louis is trying to smother himself with his own pillow. Maybe he is actually biting it, Nick thinks. He's not going to check yet, still gently licking and sucking and stroking Louis through the end of his orgasm, right through to when all the tension goes ouf of him and he collapses onto his side, nearly breaking Nick's finger when he doesn't move with him right away. Nick wipes his hand on the back of Louis knee before coming up to lie down facing him.
His eyes are a bit wet, lashes clumped together on his cheeks where they're still closed, so Nick reaches out to wipe it away. Louis grabs his hand and shakes his head.
Nick isn't sure exactly what's being asked of him, but he drops his hand to Louis' hip instead, stroking over the soft skin there. He's achingly aware of how hard he still is, that he hasn't got off yet, but Louis doesn't look like he's going to be moving anytime soon. With one last squeeze of Louis hip, Nick brings his hand between them and starts stroking his cock.
"Don't," Louis says again. His eyes are open now, and still a bit watery but if he's not going to acknowledge it, then Nick's in no position to do the same.
If Nick's not allowed to touch himself, he doesn't know what to do. "What do you want?"
Louis blinks at him a few times before rolling over onto his back and stuffing an extra pillow under his head. There's a wet spot in the corner of it, and it looks like Nick was right, he was biting it earlier.
"Fuck my mouth," Louis says once he's settled.
He looks a bit nervous, biting his lip and cutting his eyes away instead of meeting Nick's, but his arms are reaching out to pull Nick in, so he sits up and climbs to his knees and carefully straddles Louis' chest.
Louis strains his neck up and reaches out to rub the head of Nick's cock over his lips, licking them after to taste.
"Warn me," is all he says before dropping his jaw open and pulling Nick in by the hips.
He gags the first time, and Nick pulls back immediately, but then Louis swallows and drops his jaw again and pulls Nick back in, slower this time. It's a gorgeous sight, if Nick ignores his own belly in the frame. Louis with his lips bitten red and stretched wide around him. His clear blue eyes still a bit watery, looking up at Nick with something like wonder. His fingers are going to leave bruises on Nick's thighs, and Nick can't think of a better way to start the new year.
After a minute, Louis' hands slide up to Nick's arse and pull him in again, before pushing him back out, and Nick remembers Louis' request that he fuck his mouth. He starts slow and shallow, only speeding up when Louis seems comfortable enough and keeps up the pressure on Nick to go deeper.
He doesn't last long after that. He threads his fingers into Louis hair, feeling the sticky hair spray he must have used earlier along with the damp sweat from the night itself. Nick's own hair is probably a complete disaster by now, but he doesn't actually care.
When Nick goes to pull out all the way, he's met with a whine of protest until he says, "I'm close, love."
They stay like that for a minute, Louis hands still on Nick's bum, making no move to help him finish. His face is turned up though, and his mouth is open, tongue flat over his bottom teeth. Nick swipes his thumb over his lip, and watches as Louis swallows immediately.
"Is this — "
"On my face," Louis demands. His voice is rough, but his words are clear, so Nick gets to it. He rubs the head of his cock over Louis' swollen mouth a few times and strokes himself quickly, the edge of his orgasm easy to find again. When he comes he takes care not to splash too high up Louis' cheek, mindful that it stings like a bitch when it gets in your eyes.
Louis doesn't move when Nick carefully climbs off him and lays down by his side. He doesn't even look at Nick, he's just dabbing his fingers into the jizz on his face and swiping bits of it into his mouth, licking himself clean one tiny bit at a time.
He wants to kiss Louis again, but since his mouth is busy, he lays his hand flat on Louis chest instead. That gets Louis to stop what he's doing and look at Nick.
"Do you want —" Nick's not exactly sure what he's asking, only that he doesn't know what to do now.
Louis face shutters closed. Where he looked blissful and fucked out a moment ago, he's got a scowl on his lips, along with the rest of Nick's come, what he hadn't licked off himself.
"You don't have to stay," he says, before grabbing one of the pillows from under his head, the one with the wet spot in the corner, and wiping his face. "I'm sure you've got better places to be than my bed."
This is the hard part. Nick doesn't know Louis well enough to know what he wants, now that they've both come. Louis isn't reaching for him, and Nick's not much for a cuddle after sex, hating the way it gets too hot and sticky.
"I could," Nick offers. He really has no idea what's going on in Louis' head.
Louis turns his head to stare up at the ceiling. "Just go already." His voice is still wrecked, but his tone is firm, and there's nothing left except to do as Louis asks.
Nick rolls out of the giant bed, and gets dressed slowly, part of him wishing that Louis will change his mind. He doesn't. He's just lying in the middle of his enormous bed, eyes closed, looking tinier and tinier by the minute. Nick only opens the door wide enough to slip out, not wanting anyone to see Louis in that state. He may have seen it, but it's not meant for him either.
The party is near dead by the time Nick gets back down to the living room via the terrace, having stopped for another smoke before facing the rest of the world. Harry is tangled on the sofa with Caroline, but catches Nick's eyes and waves at him before turning his attention back to her. He wonders if Harry's noticed that Nick's been gone from the party for an hour, but he's not going to stop to find out. There's a few other people that Nick knows still hanging around, but they're all clustered together in small groups and they don't notice him.
Nick slips out the front door without saying goodbye to anyone else.