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~ June 6, 2015 ~

Niall was feeling a bit uncomfortable.

He'd decided to go out for a few drinks with Josh and Sandy, the others wanting to stay back at the hotel claiming they were too tired, and there was this very attractive lady sitting a few seats down from him that was staring at him. Now normally he'd feel flattered really, but right now she gave him the chills and made him want to run off. She was very attractive with long auburn colored hair, a soft tan and a bit curvy. She was wearing a tight white dress and her lips were a bright red along with her fingernails. Something about her drew Niall in, but also made him want to cower in fear.

"I'll be back, I'm heading to the bathroom!" Josh shouted over the loud music and Niall nodded, watching him go off and searching for Sandy who was out on the dance floor with some pretty girl.

"I finally got you all alone," a soft voice spoke in his ear which made him jump in his seat.

Niall looked up and found the lady who'd been staring at him standing close to him, her mouth set in a smile and up close Niall could see her eyes. They were an ice blue color, reminding him of those harsh winter days and made him involuntarily shiver.

"I-I'm Niall," the fake blonde stuttered out after breaking out of his trance.

"I know who you are silly, my niece loves your band and to be honest I do too. I'm Gianna but you can call me Gia," she smiled even wider, showing off perfectly white teeth as she took a seat next to him.

"Gianna, such a pretty name for a pretty lady like you," Niall commented with a grin and even though he wasn't straight, he would totally do her.

Gia blushed and let out a soft laugh which sounded like a hypnotizing melody to Niall. If Niall were to believe that sirens were real, than he would be pretty damn sure Gianna was one. Everything about her put him under some kind of spell yet at the same time he was frightened. Gia screamed danger and he was afraid to do or say the wrong thing.

They talked for a bit and he got to know her more. He found out that she's twenty four and is a make up artist, sometimes posting videos on her youtube account and her most recent boyfriend dumped her a few weeks ago and she hasn't seen him since.

"Niall, Sandy and I are heading back. Are you coming or are you staying?" Josh asked with a smirk as he eyed the two, Gia still smiling while Niall seemed to snap out of a daze.

"I-I'm leaving too, just wait for me outside," he replied and Gia's smile faltered slightly but she quickly composed herself so no one noticed.

Josh nodded in understanding and left with a very tipsy Sandy. Niall turned back to Gia whose eyes seemed icier than before and her lips were curled into a smirk as she handed him a drink.

"One last drink before you leave, popstar," Gia told him and Niall nodded hesitantly, looking at the drink in curiosity before drinking it.

The rest of the night Niall couldn't stop thinking about her and there was an uneasy feeling in the pit of his stomach that had settled ever since he took that drink she offered him. He shrugged it off though and slept through the remainder of the night.

*

~ June 7, 2015~

They were running late. Like really late and Niall still wasn't up which had the others worried because Niall was on time on most occasions, but then they realized that he might be hungover from last night. They had to leave now if they wanted to make it to their next show and have time to make the changes they needed to make with the parts they got after Zayn left, so Louis offered to go wake up their blonde friend.

The Doncaster lad pulled out the key card to Niall's room that he took from Liam and upon entering the room, he froze. There was a small bundle under the covers on the bed and not the usual Niall sized one so Louis figured he was in the wrong room, but then he saw Niall's things thrown around the room messily. He frowned in confusion and moved towards the bed, pulling back the covers and letting out a small gasp once he saw who was under there. It was Niall, just in child form. Louis had seen enough baby pictures to know that this indeed was Niall, but the question was how.

He pulled out his phone with shaky fingers and dialed Liam's number. "C-Come up here. Now. It's freaking urgent!" He hissed quietly so he wouldn't awaken the child.

"We're on our way," Liam replied and hung up.

Suddenly there was a small whimper coming from the bed and Louis looked over to find Niall sitting up tiredly and rubbing at his eyes cutely with chubby fists. The shirt he was wearing hung off his small frame, exposing his left shoulder completely and the older lad couldn't help but let out a small coo.

"W-Who are you?" The small frightened child-like voice startled him and Niall's eyes were wide and he was clutching at the sheets tightly.

"You don't remember me?" Louis questioned and Niall shook his head.

There was a knock on the door and Louis quickly opened it, letting in Harry and Liam who both had worried look on their faces.

"What's going... on," Liam trailed off once he saw the child on the bed and Harry completely froze. "Is that Niall?"

"Yep and apparently he doesn't remember us," Louis sighed, running a hand through his messy hair.

"Crap. How did this even happen?" Harry mumbled more to himself than to the others as he took in Niall's new appearance.

Niall was small, but they guessed he was maybe around four or five years old. His cheeks were rosy colored and chubby with big blue eyes, and long messy blonde hair with the fringe practically covering his eyes. The three boys were astonished really, baffled that this sort of thing had happened to him. Sure they'd heard of it happening here and there, but never in a million years did they think it would happen to Niall.

"Liam, you should talk to him. You know, since you're a giant teddy bear and all," Louis told his friend and Harry snickered while Liam rolled his eyes.

"Niall, don't be scared, love," Liam cooed as he moved towards the bed slowly. "I'm Liam and those are Harry and Louis."

"W-Why am I here?" Niall stuttered out as he lowered the blankets and looked at Liam curiously.

"Ni, can you tell us what you remember? Maybe we can help you out."

Niall looked down at his lap in concentration and frowned. He couldn't remember anything. At all. He doesn't even know if he has a mom or dad or who these people are or why he's in this strange place and wearing a large shirt.

"I-I can't!" Niall cried out, eyes welling up with tears and choking back a sob as he looked at the boys.

"Oh love," Liam cooed before pulling the child onto his lap and holding him close. "Don't worry though because we're going to take good care of you, but only if you promise to trust us. Can you do that, love?"

"Y-Yeah, you're nice," Niall mumbled as he cuddled into Liam's chest.

"Good, now why don't you stay here with Louis while I go make some phone calls and Harry goes out to buy you some clothes that will fit, hmm?"

Niall nodded and made grabby hands at Louis who cooed at the boy before taking him into his arms and hugging him tightly. Harry chuckled and followed Liam out the door.

"Okay now what?" Harry asked as he looked at his friend.

"Ni went out last night with Josh and Sandy, so go find one of them and go back to the bar and see if you can figure something out. I'll call management and explain why we're not on our flight to Austria. Call me if anything and pick up some stuff for Ni, but not too much. Maybe three shirts and jeans or something until we know for sure what we're dealing with. Maybe it's a one day thing or something. If Josh or Sandy ask why, just explain. Everyone's bound to find out eventually," explained Liam as he pulled his phone out and Harry nodded.

"Alright, I'll get going and meet you back here in two hours or so."

Harry left while calling Josh and Liam let out a sigh. "Here goes nothing."

*

"So why are we going back to the bar?" Josh asked as Harry's bodyguard drove them to the place.

"This is going to sound crazy and all, but Niall is a child, approximately a five year old child. We need to know if anything happened last night or something that can help us figure it out," Harry explained and Josh nodded with wide eyes and looking quite shocked.

"Well he did talk to this one girl all night, she gave me this kind of a creepy vibe even though she was really gorgeous."

"A girl? Since when does our blondie pick up girls?"

Josh shrugged and once they were at the bar, they headed inside where only the bartender and a few other people were around. Josh looked around and to their relief, he saw the girl sitting there. He informed Harry and the two headed over to her.

"May I help you boys?" She spoke in her usual soft voice while looking up at them with the same icy look.

"You were with Niall yesterday, what did you do to him?" Josh asked her angrily, glaring at Gia.

Gia let out a soft laugh. "Ahh yes, Niall. Such a lovely lad but it was such a shame I couldn't get him in bed. It's a small potion I added to his drink, shouldn't last more than a year if he's lucky. Sometimes I add a little too much and it tends to last longer," Gia shrugged as if it were no big deal.

Harry glared at her and let out groan. "A whole year? Do you not know who we are?! We have responsibilities and are also currently in the middle of a tour and we lost one member, we can't afford to lose another."

"True, but maybe the asshole that left can fill in for a few shows. You're all smart boys and I'm sure you can manage. Or maybe now you can take that break that you boys most definitely deserve. You'll end up thanking me."

"You're nuts, lady," Josh scoffed as he crossed his arms across his chest.

"Fine I'll be nice. If by six months from now the curse isn't up, come and find me. Just ask for me at this bar, my name is Gianna Morretti and everyone around here knows who I am. Remember, six months," Gia warned them with a stern look.

"Fine. You're a fucking witch," Harry hissed at her and she laughed loudly.

"Thank you for noticing because I am in fact a witch. Now boys if you don't mind, I have more spells to cast and potions to make. Oh and before I go, here's my card. Call me if you have any questions or concerns, there might be some side effects."

"What kind of side effects?" Josh asked worriedly as he glared at Gianna.

"Well he's five and his memory has been completely swiped, but he could get flashbacks of his actual life and he can get scared or whatever. Flu like symptoms, nothing too bad or anything to worry about too much. I'll see you boys in six months," she smiled cooly and grabbed her black messenger bag before walking off.

They watched as Gianna left the bar and the two let out a sigh.

"Six months," Harry mumbled as they too headed out.

*

Meanwhile back at the hotel, Louis had ordered room service and the two were currently eating breakfast while watching a Disney movie. Niall was still in his too big shirt, but he was more comfortable now. Liam walked back into the room as the two were now cuddling and giggling along to the movie.

"What'd they say?" Louis asked as Liam sat on Niall's other side.

"Well they are pissed but understand that we couldn't have known that this would happen. For now they told us to to get on the next flight to Vienna as soon as we can and inform them of whatever Harry and Josh find out. If things don't go back to normal soon we might end up cancelling the rest of the tour since we can't really perform with just us three," Liam explained as he looked down at the child who paid them no mind.

"Man and not only that, but we need to manage to keep him out of the spotlight."

Harry and Josh walked in with a few things and walked over to the group of three. Niall looked up and smiled shyly at the stranger, hiding behind Louis. Harry smiled at the child and set the bags down.

"That's Josh love, he's a friend of ours," Louis cooed at the child. "Can you say hi to him?"

"H-Hi," Niall waved shyly at Josh who only smiled before waving back.

"So figured anything out?" Liam asked as he looked through the things.

"She said it could last up to a year, maybe more, but she said she'd be nice about it and told us to come back six months from now," Harry explained as he took a seat on the arm rest.

"She?" Louis frowned.

"Yeah, they met last night at the bar and since he left before they headed farther, she decided to curse him," Josh shrugged.

"Well we leave in about four hours so we better get our things ready. Can you two change Niall while I talk to management again?" asked Liam as he stood up and followed Josh towards the door.

"No worries, bro, we'll get our little munchkin ready to go!" Louis exclaimed as he tickled Niall's sides and caused the child to giggle.

Liam and Josh both smiled before leaving the room. Harry grabbed an outfit while Louis undressed the child who protested.

"Lou, no!" Niall whined, pouting at the older man who chuckled.

"Lou yes!" Louis laughed as he peppered the boy's face with kisses which had the blonde giggling as Harry quickly dressed him. "There, see! All ready to go!"

"Go where?" Niall asked curiously as he looked at the two.

"We're getting on a plane because we have to go to work," Louis explained, tying Niall's black converse while Harry cleaned up the rest of the clothes.

"Work?"

"Yeah, we sing for people," Harry explained as he smiled over at a still confused blonde.

"You'll see, babe," Louis assured as he ruffled the boy's hair and let him finish his movie before helping Harry pack Niall's new clothes.

"So six months huh? We're going to have to figure out how to work this out during our breaks and all," Harry told Louis who nodded. "Are we going to tell his parents? Zayn?"

"His parents yes, but why him?" Louis frowned, shoving things into Niall's suitcase roughly.

"Lou, you can't be angry at him forever and he has a right to know. They might have ended their relationship on the wrong foot, but he deserves to know, Lou. They were together for almost four years and you know he's always been overprotective of him.

Louis let out a sigh but nodded anyways. "Alright, but I'm only doing this for Niall."

Harry smiled and zipped up the suitcase before dragging it towards the door. The movie ended and Niall got up and walked around the room, attaching himself to Harry and whining about being bored.

"It's gonna be a long six months," Harry sighed as Niall continued to whine and try to get their attention.

Chapter Text

~ June 7, 2015 ~

Getting on a plane with a restless five year old who is constantly asking questions is no easy task. Niall was driving everyone mad, even Liam who was usually the most calm out of the group. Niall was holding Harry's hand as they headed towards their seats, looking at everything with awe. Harry sat the boy next to the window and strapped him in right away so he wouldn't sneak off.

"But Harry," Niall whined, jumping in his seat.

"You gotta stay in your seat, pumpkin. Here, play with my phone until we take off, yeah?" Harry said as he handed his phone to the child who quickly nodded and let Harry help him pick out a game.

The ride wasn't too eventful, Niall eventually falling asleep halfway through and then being woken up by Harry when they were minutes away from landing. Niall was cranky though, as any five year old would be after a long tiring day. It was dark and way past dinner time by the time they reached their hotel, Niall resting comfortably on Louis' hip as they reached their shared room.

"Lou, I'm hungry," Niall whined, arms around Louis' neck as he refused to be set down on the ground.

"I know bug, we'll get room service so you can take a bath and then it'll be off to bed because we have a long day ahead of us tomorrow," said Louis as he grabbed the phone while holding Niall up with one arm.

"Where we going?" Niall asked tiredly, tucking his face into Louis' neck.

"We have to work, babe, but don't worry hmm? Now why don't you pick some pajamas so I can change you after your bath."

"No, I wanna stay here," Niall replies stubbornly as he cuddles into Louis more, arms tightening around his neck as he shuts his eyes while Louis lets out a small sigh.

"You're going to be a difficult child, aren't you?" Louis grumbled, moving over to their suitcases and grabbing some superhero pajamas out for the blonde.

Luckily for Louis, Harry arrived shortly after and the older lad made the curly haired boy help him to get Niall in the bath. The blonde child simply whined and fussed, trying to fight his way out of taking a bath but eventually gave in when Louis finally managed to set him in the warm water. Harry laughed at Niall's adorable pout and couldn't help but take a picture, sending it to Liam right away.

"You're adorable, pumpkin," Harry cooed as he placed some bubbles on Niall's head.

"Am not adorable," Niall huffed, arms crossed against his chest.

The rest of bath time was tiring and Niall giggled each and every time he splashed either Harry or Louis. It was funnier when he splashed Louis because Louis would groan and pretend to get mad, but Harry would laugh all the time and splash him back. Eventually the water was drained and the child wrapped in a big fluffy hotel towel, carried back into the room by Harry while Louis was left behind cleaning the mess they made.

"See, now that wasn't so bad. You're all squeaky clean now, pumpkin," Harry grinned as he finished dressing the child.

"Guess so," Niall yawned, rubbing at his right eye tiredly which made Harry coo before pulling the blonde back into his arms and holding him tightly.

"I'm never letting you go," Harry mumbled into the damp hair, eyes shut as he continued to cuddle the boy who only hummed and closed his eyes as well.

"Oi, don't let him fall asleep. He needs to eat something," Louis warned his band mate as he walked back into the room.

"I won't, come on NiNi, let's go watch a movie and wait for the food to get here," Harry told Niall.

"But I'm sleepy!" Niall whined again for the millionth time that day.

"I thought you were hungry?" Louis asked with a smirk as he tickled the child's side.

Niall only giggled and squirmed in Harry's arms as the older lad continued to tickle him. They were to engrossed in Niall's tiny laughs that they didn't even hear the hotel room door open and Liam walk in with the food that Louis ordered.

"Aww, look at the lovely family. Are you two playing daddies now?" Liam teased them with a smirk and Louis stepped away from Harry with a scowl.

"Liam!" Niall cheered and made grabby hands at the other lad who cooed and handed the food off to Louis before taking Niall from Harry and showering his face with kisses.

"I've missed you, snowflake! You smell so good, did you take a bath?" Liam asked as he too buried his nose in the damp hair while the blonde giggled.

"Yes! Harry and Louis give me bath!"

"Alright love, time to eat. I got you mac and cheese with chicken nuggets and some chocolate milk," Louis informed Niall as he took him from Liam and sat him on the couch in front of the TV.

Niall's eyes lit up when he saw all the food on his plate and the large glass of chocolate milk. Harry and Liam both looked a bit worried about the amount of chocolate, but let it slide for the child's sake. Niall only finished half of his food and milk before he fell asleep against Harry's side, tiny snores leaving his mouth. Harry could only run his fingers through the child's blonde hair as the other three continued to speak quietly.

"So when are we going to tell Zayn what happened? You know how overprotective he always was of Ni," Harry asked as he looked up at the two, watching as Louis glared at the wall.

"I changed my mind and I don't want to tell him. He said he wanted nothing to do with us anymore the minute he left this band. Do you not remember the pain he put Niall through? He was a wreck and all of a sudden you want to tell him what happened? How about no," Louis hissed before gently picking up the kid and taking him over to the bed.

Liam glared at Harry who only rolled his eyes knowing how stubborn the older lad could be. Louis however was now laying on the bed and watching over the tiny boy sleeping peacefully next to him, fingers running through blonde hair and looking at him sadly.

"I wish we could keep you from getting hurt, love. I wish we could have been able to avoid the pain he caused you when he left, but I promise to do what I can to keep you from getting hurt again while you're just an innocent little creature. I'll keep you safe, Niall," Louis whispered, pressing a light kiss to the boy's head.

Liam left along with Harry, not wanting to interrupt Louis who was now singing to the little Irish lad who had now cuddled into Louis. Louis was a bit scared though. He knows this isn't a permanent thing, but he's already so attached to little Niall that he won't know what to do once big Niall returns. He doesn't want to let go of his little boy.

~June 8, 2015~

In the morning Louis was awakened by tiny hands slapping at his face and he groaned when he felt extra weight on his chest. Opening his eyes Louis found a grinning Niall looking down at him with bright blue eyes and rosy colored cheeks. Louis couldn't help but smile as he pulled the child down onto his chest to cuddle him. Niall giggled as he snuggled into the older male and hummed. Louis rubbed Niall's back as he hummed a random tune as Niall closed his eyes again.

"Hey," a voice called out, making both boys on the bed jump as they looked up only to find Harry standing there with his hair up in a bun. "Sorry." He laughed as he got on the bed next to them and cooed at Niall who blushed and hid his face.

"What time are we skyping them?" Louis asked as he continued to rub the blonde's back.

"In an hour so you two better get ready soon. If you want I can get Niall ready so you can get ready," Harry offered, holding onto Niall's right hand and rubbing his large thumb against the child's soft skin.

"Yeah that'd be great, Liam will want us to be ready in advance and we need to get our little angel some food."

"Food!" Niall shouted excitedly as he sat up and looked down at the two.

Harry and Louis laughed and got up as well to start getting ready for their meeting. An hour later all four were sitting on the couch, Niall on Liam's lap as they answered an incoming call from management. Niall was busy playing with Liam's fingers as the screen showed Simon Cowell, the head of their PR team, and two other guys all with serious expressions and eyes probably focusing on the child sitting on Liam's lap.

"So it is true," Simon spoke in amazement.

"Yeah, we didn't really believe it either but here he is," Louis sighed, running a hand through Niall's hair and getting the blonde's attention.

Niall smiled up at Louis and giggled as he leaned back on Liam's chest. Louis smiled and bopped the boy's tiny button nose.

"Okay so here's what's going to happen. You're next show will go on with the excuse that Niall is ill and by doctor's orders will be forced to stay on bed rest. After that we'll cancel the tour because the doctor said it'd be best for Niall's health and that the dates will be reprogrammed at a later date when the doctor gives him the okay. We'll release a statement as soon as the show is over and we'll handle the rest," Frank, their manger, told them as he typed away on his phone.

"Okay but Niall can't just go MIA. The fans will start to worry and all," Harry commented.

"Yes, you boys will be in charge of his social media. Tweeting randomly to update the fans on his health and maybe post a few pictures on his instagram account. The only issue we might have will be that fans could think that he's maybe pulling a Zayn to get out of the band as well, but we'll work on getting it all under control. You three just worry on keeping him out of the public eye until this is all over," Simon told them with a grin.

"Alright."

Niall was starting to get bored and began to whine and squirm around in Liam's lap trying to get the boys to either do something with him or to let Liam let him go.

"Ni, sit still bug, we're almost done and then we can play," Louis whispered in the child's ear.

"Play now!" Niall pouted, going limp in Liam's arms.

"Babe, you gotta behave, alright? We're doing something important right now," Liam scolded lightly and sighed when Niall whined.

"Seems like you lot have got your hands full so we're going to go and keep us update on the situation. Also you're going to be working extra hard during rehearsals to divide Niall and Zayn's solos up again. Don't fret though, you'll get your break. A bit sooner than planned but it'll be a break nonetheless."

"And the new album?" Louis asked curiously.

"We're pushing it all back. Maybe you can get some writing done during the break, but we can't actually record until Niall is back. Just don't stress too much and work on keeping that little boy happy. We'll keep in touch," Simon told them and disconnected the call.

"Play now?" Niall asked hopefully with big blue eyes and the other boys just couldn't resist so much cuteness so they nodded. "Yay!"

Niall was fast asleep after lunchtime, having been tired out by Louis and Harry while Liam was in his room talking to his girlfriend. The little blonde fell asleep on Harry and with a tight grip on the curly haired boy's shirt. Louis made a mental note to buy Niall a stuffed animal and some toys to entertain him.

"We have rehearsals in about an hour, so we have to figure out what to do with Ni," Liam informed the two adults as he entered Louis' hotel room.

"Well we can take him?" Harry suggested, playing with one of his rings.

"We could, but we'd still need someone to watch him," Louis reminded his younger friend.

"Well maybe we can have Lou watch him and maybe he can play with Lux? Or Lottie."

"I'll go call her and explain our situation," said Liam as he pulled out his phone and walked out.

"So after our last concert, who's taking Ni?"

"We could let him pick, but he can come stay with me. I live alone and you're usually back and forth and Liam lives with Sophia," Louis sighed as he ran a hand through his hair. "Besides, I live close to me mom and I can call her when I need help or something."

Harry nodded in understanding, but in reality, he kind of really wanted to take the blonde child. He knows Niall is attached to Louis though and if the blonde were to pick, Harry was positive he'd go for Louis. He could always visit though, maybe even take Niall for a few days when Louis needed some rest or something.

When Niall woke up, he was in Liam's arms and in a strange place. He didn't really care at the moment because he was in Liam's arms and that was enough to assure him that he's safe. He yawned and cuddled more into Liam's neck, feeling the lad's large hand rubbing at his small back.

"Li? Where are we?" Niall asked quietly, opening his eyes and seeing Louis talking to some strange people a few feet away from them.

"We're at this place where we work, bug," Liam replied, bouncing the child slightly.

"Oh."

Louis walked over and smiled when he saw the blonde was awake. Niall immediately made grabby hands at the older lad who cooed and grabbed him from Liam's hold.

"Have a nice nap, love?" Louis asked, pressing his lips to Niall's temple.

"Yeah. Where Hazzy?" Niall questioned as he looked around in confusion.

"He'll be back in a bit."

"Is that Niall?!" A female voice asked and they all turned to see Harry approach them with Lou and Lux following shortly after.

"Yeah," Liam chuckled, watching as the boy hid his face on Louis' neck.

"Bug, can you say hi to Lou?" Louis cooed as he bounce the child who whined, refusing to come out of his hiding place. "Sorry, he just woke up a few minutes ago and he's actually a very shy child."

"Oh that's fine honey, he'll have fun with us anyways, right Lux?"

"Right!" Lux agreed as she skipped around Harry.

They all talked for a few more minutes, Niall still tucked into Louis' neck and Harry was trying to find a way to get the little boy to come out of hiding. Eventually he managed and took Niall from Louis even though the little blonde refused to let him go.

"Louis," Niall cried, tears welling up in his big blue eyes.

"Babe, we've talked about this before and you need to behave," Louis spoke in a firm voice as he stroked the child's cheek.

Niall only whimpered and cuddled into Harry's neck instead. Louis let out a sigh and went back to talking with Lou until they were called to get ready for their rehearsal.

"Alright pumpkin, we gotta go but you're staying with Lou and Lux. If you're good we'll let you have ice cream after dinner and watch any movie you want, yeah?" Harry bribed Niall who sniffled and came out of his hiding place with a few tears rolling down his cheeks. "Oh pumpkin, don't cry."

"Promise to not leave, Ni?" Niall whimpered as he held out his little pinkie.

"Promise, now be good," Harry kissed Niall's head before handing him off to Lou.

Niall watched with sad eyes as his three boys left, but more specifically Louis. He'd made his Louis mad and Niall didn't like making him mad.

"Come on kiddo, let's go play," Lou cooed as she took the two children back to the dressing rooms.

*

"Want my Lou!" Niall sobbed as he sat on the ground with big fat tears rolling down his chubby cheeks.

"Sweetie pie, he's busy right now," Lou sighed as she crouched in front of the child, Lux not paying any attention to the boy,

"L-Louis!" Niall continued to sob and it broke the stylist's heart to hear him so worked up.

"Should I go get him?" Basil asked with a frown as he peeked into the room for what felt like the millionth time in the last half hour.

"Can you grab me one of the headphones? Maybe if he sees Louis from the side he'll calm down a bit."

Bas nodded and left while Lou tried her best to quiet down the child. Bas returned shortly after with the headphones Lux usually uses and handed it to Lou who quickly put them on the boy who only cried more as he tried to take them off.

Louis kept messing up or was constantly distracted during rehearsals and their stage manager was getting mad. All Louis wanted was to go see his little boy and his wishes came true when he spotted Lou walking over with a crying Niall in her arms. Louis handed his microphone to Liam before racing towards them.

"What happened?" Louis asked worriedly as he took Niall and held him tight, the little boy coughing and hiccuping as he continued to sob and clutch at Louis' shirt tightly.

"He kept asking for you. He won't calm down and we all tried everything we could, one of the ladies from catering even offered him some candy but he just wanted to be with you," Lou explained, watching as Louis tried his best to calm down the hysterical boy.

Liam and Harry ran over as well seeing the commotion and Lou went over what she told Louis.

"Can we take a break?" Harry asked the crew who nodded.

"You've got twenty!" Someone shouted and they all nodded before heading off with Niall who was finally starting to calm down.

"Baby boy, what's wrong? I'm here now sweetie, please stop crying," Louis cooed as he rubbed the boy's back and bounced him around gently.

"Miss you," Niall hiccuped, pulling back to look at Louis who smiled softly.

"I missed you too, babe, but there was no need to cry."

Niall only whined and buried his face back into Louis' neck. The other two boys rubbed his back and all three sang to their little Irish boy who was fast asleep in no time.

"He's going to be making this difficult, isn't he?" Liam wondered out loud.

*

~ June 10, 2015~

Tonight was their last concert and Niall had been in a mood all day. He was being clingy, throwing tantrums when one of the boys would walk out of his sight and he wouldn't agree with anything they said. They were minutes away from starting the concert and Niall was currently clinging to Liam, refusing to be set down on the ground.

"Sweetie, let's go watch a movie," Lottie spoke softly as she rubbed the Irish boy's back.

"Nemo?" Niall sniffled as he looked at her with big blue eyes.

"Yeah Nemo," she smiled, taking the five year old from Liam who thanked her as he went off to finish getting ready.

The show was a bit weird with just the three of them, but the fans were supportive and even had get well signs for Niall. They had been informed that Niall had fallen ill at the last minute and wouldn't be able to perform and that a doctor would be checking him tomorrow, which would be when the statement comes out. The three boys would be in it for one hell of a ride.

Chapter Text

~ June 11, 2015 ~

The concert had gone well, a lot of fans asking for Niall and wanting to know where their favorite Irish lad was, but the others assured them that he would be fine. The statement came out as the four were in the air heading back to London with a fussy five year old who hadn't gotten any sleep and didn't seem like he was going to sleep anytime soon. No one checked social media though, afraid of the amount of chaos there'd be.

"Niall, pumpkin, we're landing soon so please sit still," Harry begged tiredly as Niall kept bouncing in his seat and whining.

"No!" Niall shouted, shaking his head and getting ready to throw a tantrum.

"I'm going crazy," Louis groaned as he banged his head against the seat in front of him.

Liam had his eyes closed with his headphones on as he listened to music at a loud volume to block out the child and his other two friends. There were about ten minutes left of the flight and Niall was finally starting to wind down, starting to nod off in his seat. Harry sighed in relief and so did Louis, but it was short lived as soon as they landed because Niall was wide awake and throwing tantrums again. He wouldn't even let Louis hold his hand, that's how whiny he was.

"Babe, we're going home," Louis called as he grabbed their things, the other two already off the plane and heading to their awaiting ride.

"With you?" Niall asked quietly, rubbing at his eyes.

"Yeah babe, with me," Louis smiled, picking up Niall a bit hesitantly but relaxed when the blonde cuddled into him.

"The others no say bye bye to Ni," Niall mumbled tiredly, eyes already closed and he fell asleep before receiving his answer.

"Finally."

Louis was busy cleaning his kitchen around two hours later when Niall walks in looking confused but broke into a run when he saw Louis and hugged the older man around his legs. Louis chuckled and picked up the boy, showering him with kisses and taking in his sweet little giggles.

"Is my sweet little boy back? You're not going to be naughty anymore like earlier today?" Louis cooed as he sat Niall on the counter and brushed his wild blonde hair back, the brown starting to take over since big Niall wasn't around to bleach it.

"I'm a sweet little boy, not naughty," Niall giggled, pecking Louis' cheek and bursting into giggles again.

"Good. Now let's go see a surprise I have for you."

"Surprise for Ni?!"

Louis laughed and carried the boy into the living room where it was filled with bags and a giant stuffed bear was sitting on the couch with a bow around it's neck. Louis had managed to order somethings online a few days ago and had them delivered to his house. He wanted the little boy to at least feel somewhat like a child, even if it would be for a short amount of time.

"All for Ni?" Niall asked in astonishment, his blue eyes as wide as they could go and his tiny mouth in the shape of an o.

"All for you, babe. I got you some clothes and toys so you won't get bored," Louis explained as he set the boy down and watched him head towards the bear who was just as tall as him.

"So big," Niall mumbled as he stroked the bear's soft caramel colored fur with both hands.

Louis laughed and turned around when the front door opened and in walked Harry, pausing when he saw the amount of things on the floor. The green eyed boy looked at Louis who only shrugged innocently and smiled.

"You got him all this?" Harry questioned as he stood by his smaller friend.

"Yeah. Look, I know it's only temporary but he deserves to at least act like a kid. You know, maybe this is what we really needed to get rid of our stress from touring. With Ni being a kid he won't have to worry about anything and taking care of him is easy and all," Louis explained, eyes following the tiny blonde who was peeking through the bags. "Babe, look who's here."

"Hazzy!" Niall shouts and ran up to him with his little arms wide open and Harry couldn't help but smile and pick up the boy, setting him on his hip.

"I missed you pumpkin, are you being good to Lou?"

"Very good!" Niall exclaimed, playing with Harry's long hair.

"No more tantrums?" Harry questioned.

"No more. Look at my giant teddy!"

"I see it pumpkin, it's very big."

Liam arrived shortly after with Chinese food and found Niall in the living room laying on his teddy while watching TV. Niall looked up and waved at Liam with a smile before turning his attention back to his cartoon.

"Did you buy him that bear?" Liam asked Louis as he stepped into the kitchen where the other two were sitting at the breakfast bar with their phones out.

"Yeah, it's cute huh?" Louis chuckled while Harry rolled his eyes.

"You're going to spoil him," Liam argued, setting the bags down on the counter.

Louis only shrugged and his phone buzzed with a new text. Harry peeked at it.

"It's Greg, said we can Skype them in an hour when he gets to Maura's house," Louis informed, looking up at Liam who nodded.

"Than we should eat so we can set it up."

They all walked back into the living room where Niall was laughing at something on the screen. Liam picked up the boy and kissed his cheek.

"Hi Li," Niall giggled, poking the boy's nose.

"Time to eat, bug," Louis said as he set their food out on the coffee table.

"Food!" Niall began to chant until Liam set him down and he walked over to the table, looking at the strange food. "What's that?"

"It's food, pumpkin. Here, just try to eat a little and if you don't like it we'll make you something else," Harry told the child as he piled small portions on the plate.

"Okay," Niall shrugged and sat in between Louis and Harry.

An hour later Louis was setting up his laptop while Niall was busy talking to his bear and jumping on it. Harry was in the kitchen putting the left overs away and Liam was texting Greg asking if they were ready. The call came through a few minutes later and Louis answered it as the other two sat next to him.

"So what did you guys want to tell us?" Maura asked the boys after they'd all greeted each other. "And where's Niall?"

"Ni's here!" The little boy shouted as he moved to be in the view of the camera and waved at the strange people. "Who are they?"

"Is this some kind of joke? Guys, what is going on?" Greg asked with furrowed brows.

"Well he encountered a witch back in Cardiff and she turned him into a child," Louis explained, helping Niall climb onto the sofa.

"A witch, oh dear," Maura gasped. "So that's why the tour was cancelled and he hasn't answered his phone."

"Yeah. And he's stuck like this for six months. It would have been a year but she was being nice," said Harry as he let Niall settle down on his lap.

"Six months," Bobby echoed still trying to process everything.

"What do you guys want to do? Do you want us to take him over to you?" Louis asked, fearing at the answer as he didn't want to let go of the little Irish boy.

"No! Lou, no leave me!" Niall cried as he threw himself onto the Doncaster native who fell backwards from the sudden weight with an 'Oof!'

"Well by the look and sound of it, he'd be having a hard time leaving you boys so he can stay with you. Besides we'd have no time to raise him again as we all work and we'd have him with a babysitter who would only ask questions and all so he's better off with you lot. Just keep us updated," Maura told the boys who nodded.

"Very well," Liam nodded, looking over at Louis who was struggling to get Niall to let go of him.

"Baby, sit still, I promise I won't leave you," Louis cooed as he tried making Niall sit down on his lap but the little blonde wasn't having any of it and instead held on tighter to Louis' neck.

They ended the call a few minutes later and Niall had finally settled down, sort off. He was still clinging to Louis like a baby koala and would let out small giggles when either Liam or Harry would tickle his side or make funny faces at him. They sat in the living room watching movies and eventually Niall detached himself from Louis and went to go lay down on his bear.

Harry took a picture and set it as his wallpaper. It was quiet for a bit, only the TV filling the silence and the occasional giggle from Niall.

"Pumpkin, bath time!" Harry called as he picked up the child who whined.

"No Hazzy!"

"Yes. With bubbles and toys?" Harry bribed as they headed upstairs, making Niall nod excitedly.

"So Zayn," Liam began and Louis' head whipped over to him so fast that Liam was afraid the older lad got whiplash.

"No. Look Liam, I'm just- he doesn't really deserve this anymore. Niall was put through so much and Zayn didn't even bother answering his calls or texts all this time. Besides, he's not apart of this band anymore so really he doesn't have much right," Louis argued as he got up and began to pick up the discarded toys on the ground.

"Louis, he's probably worried by now if he's seen the statement."

"Okay. If he calls, because it's been like seven hours since we released it, then we'll tell him."

Liam sighed but took Louis' offer nonetheless. He wanted what he thought would be best for Niall and that was having all the support he could get. And yeah he could see Louis' point of view because Zayn had been an ass and he hurt Niall so much that Liam was angry as well, but Zayn had always been there for them.

"Hazzy?"

"Yeah pumpkin?"

"Do you love me?" Niall suddenly asked as he moved his toy boat in the water and dunked it.

Harry was caught off guard by the question and frowned. "Of course I do, Ni, why do you ask?"

"I love you too. And I love Lou and Liam and Lottie," Niall listed off, looking up at Harry with a bright grin that had Harry leaning down to press a kiss to the boy's wet and soapy forehead. "Eww, you ate soap silly."

"I did, silly me. I thought it might taste like strawberries but it doesn't," Harry grimaced and Niall laughed loudly.

Half an hour later Harry had Niall dressed in some pajamas and carried him back downstairs where Liam picked up the blonde and held him tight.

"Have a nice bath, kiddo?" Liam asked as he settled Niall on the couch.

"Yes and Hazzy ate soap," Niall giggled as he placed his tiny hands over his mouth while Harry blushed as Liam laughed.

"Bad Hazzy," Liam chuckled and threw a pillow at Harry that hit him right in the face, making Niall shriek with laughter.

"He keeps texting his phone," Louis said as he walked into the room with Niall's phone in his hands and a scowl on his face.

"What should we do? Should we have Ni call him?" Harry asked as he clutched the pillow to his chest, sitting next to Liam as they looked up at Louis.

"Yeah and give him a heart attack? Well we can wait until he contacts one of us and then we can explain or something," Louis suggested as he placed Niall's phone in his back pocket. "If he even calls one of us you know with the way we left things on such a great note."

"Can you not be so sarcastic for once? We've got an issue here that won't go away in a day and he's worried about this, we can't just push him away and pretend everything is fine! It's obvious he still cares!" Harry shouted as he turned to glare at Louis who only scoffed. "And things are not okay!"

"He's been gone for three months and not once did he think about calling us! He didn't think about checking up on him knowing how much of a wreck he'd left Niall in and now he suddenly cares again?! Please."

"Zayn said he needed time, Louis! He needed to get used to being away from us and not have us smothering him all the damn time!"

Niall got up from the couch and ran out of the room with tears falling from his eyes while Liam sighed as he glared up at his two friends.

"You fucking assholes, if you want to argue go argue outside," Liam scolded them before he went after Niall.

Liam searched all through the house until he found the child whimpering in Louis room and the lad walked in, finding Niall hiding in the closet and holding his legs up to his chest with tears rolling down his cheeks.

"Baby, can you come here?" Liam cooed as he opened the door and kneeling down on one knee, his heart breaking a bit when he saw the child's scared face.

Niall crawled out of his hiding place and ran into Liam's arms, crying into his neck. Liam stood up once he had a tight hold on Niall and began to walk around with the blonde trying to calm him down. Eventually Niall fell asleep and Liam sighed in relief, rubbing his back and headed into the guest room where Niall would be staying in. Liam was setting Niall down when Louis walked in, a red mark on his forehead and Liam immediately went over to inspect the older lad.

"What happened?" He asked worriedly and keeping his voice hushed. "Did Harry do this?"

"Sort of. He threw one of Niall's toys at me and I don't think he actually thought he'd hit me, but now he won't stop apologizing even though I told him that it was fine," Louis sighed.

"You don't feel dizzy or anything though, right?"

"No, just a headache. Is he okay?"

"Yeah, cried himself to sleep but he was just shaken up," Liam explained as he let Louis approach the child.

"I'm sorry, love," Louis whispered as he leaned down to press a kiss to the boy's forehead.

The two then headed downstairs where Harry was sitting on the couch with his head in his hands and Louis took a seat next to him, cuddling into his side. The taller of the two immediately wrapped his arms around the smaller one and whispered a thousand more sorry's until Liam let out an annoyed sigh and Louis laughed.

"Hey, stop feeling so guilty. I kind of deserved it," Louis shrugged, head tucked under Harry's chin.

"Don't say that, you'll make me feel worse," Harry whined, arms tightening around Louis' waist.

Suddenly Liam's phone went off with Zayn's ringtone making everyone freeze. No one had heard that ringtone in ages and honestly, they never thought they would again. Liam unfroze and the other two sat up straight as Liam answered it and placed the phone on speaker.

"Hello?" Liam answered, wincing when his voice cracked a bit.

"Liam, what the hell is going on?" Zayn demanded in an almost high pitched voice.

"Would saying hello kill you?" Louis mumbled, earning a slap on the back of his head by Harry. "Ow."

"Now's not the time," Harry hissed. "And no I don't feel guilty this time."

"You two cut it out, I don't want you to start arguing and wake up Niall," Liam hissed at them, forgetting about Zayn momentarily.

"Liam! What. Is. Going. On. Is Niall okay? Why did you guys cancel the tour? And tell me the truth, don't make me fly out there," Zayn threatened and Louis rolled his eyes.

"Might as well buy a ticket," Louis grumbled, making Harry hit him again. "Ow, fucking cut it out!"

"Well stop making stupid comments!"

"They're not stupid if I'm telling the truth!"

"I told you to shut the fuck-"

"Stop!" A high pitched voice rang out, making them all jump and turn to face Niall who was standing at the entrance of the living room with tears running down his cheeks as he stared at the three with wide scared eyes. "Stop it!"

"Ni, babe, we're sorry," Louis cooed as he approached the child softly, not wanting to scare him off.

"Liam, who was that?" Zayn asked, feeling frustrated at Louis for always interrupting and making them get off track when all the Bradford boy wanted were answers.

"Uh see that's the thing. It's a bit hard to believe when you're not seeing it with your own eyes, but uh, a witch turned Niall back into a kid," Liam finally explained and they all heard Zayn let out a small chuckle.

"I'm not that stupid so please stop playing games and tell me the truth, Liam."

Liam sighed and FaceTimed Zayn instead. The raven haired lad looked better than he did back when he was still in the band and Liam was glad that at least one of them was fully rested.

"Then believe this," Liam told him as he faced the camera towards where Louis was trying to calm down a hiccuping Niall who clutched him tightly. "Lou."

Louis looked over and saw Zayn's face on the screen before he walked closer to them and sat on the ground with Niall on his lap.

"Love, why don't you say hi to Zayn? He's a friend of ours and he loves you very much too," Louis cooed as he wiped away the blonde's tears.

Niall sniffled and looked up, waving shyly at Zayn who was staring in shock at the five year old.

"I'm taking the first flight over," was all Zayn said before hanging up and the living room went quiet.

"Great," Louis smiled sarcastically before standing up with Niall in his arms and heading back upstairs and to his own room.

"Lou, no more fighting. It scares Ni," the blonde sniffled as he laid on Louis' chest.

"Don't worry baby, I promise we won't fight anymore. Now go to sleep, it's getting late and a certain little boy shouldn't be up anymore," Louis smiled as he poked Niall's side which earned him a squeak.

"Night Louis, love you so very much," Niall yawned.

"Love you so very much too, baby."

*

"Are you going to stay tonight?" Harry asked as he stretched on the couch.

"I would, but I've got some stuff to take care off tomorrow and I'm heading out to see my parents so I probably won't even come over. I'll come over if Zayn gets here to help with keeping Lou tamed," Liam joked and Harry laughed. "Are you staying?"

"Yeah. I have a feeling Louis will need me."

"You're just using that as an excuse to play house with your boyfriend."

"He's not my boyfriend," Harry whined, cheeks turning red.

"Keep telling yourself that. You both have been beating around the bush since you broke up two years ago," said Liam as he headed towards the door.

"Just leave you, ass."

Once Liam left, Harry made sure to lock all the doors and windows. He turned off the lights and headed upstairs and peeked into the room where Niall should have been but found it empty. Harry checked in Louis' room and smiled when he saw the two fast asleep before closing the door and heading into the other guest room himself.

Chapter Text

~ June 12, 2015 ~

When Louis woke up, he immediately panicked when he didn't feel or see Niall. He struggled to get out of bed, feet tangled in the sheets, but once he did he searched the second floor until he heard Niall giggling downstairs and Harry's deep voice. Louis let out a sigh and decided to get ready for the day ahead.

"Lou!" Niall shouted excitedly when he saw the older male walk in, jumping excitedly from his spot on the kitchen counter.

"Morning love," Louis grinned, pressing a kiss to the child's cheek. "And morning to you, Harold."

"Morning Lewis," Harry grinned as he flipped a pancake. "Can you set the table and get Niall in an actual seat?"

"Will do. Come on, bug."

Niall giggled as Louis carried him over to a seat and placed him in it with another kiss to his head. Niall watched with wide blue eyes as Harry and Louis joked around with each other, shoving at each other and laughing. He felt right at home with the two, he felt safe and loved. He loved his little family.

"Here you go pumpkin, eat up," Harry smiled as he placed a plate of chocolate chip pancakes in front of the boy who only bounced in his seat excitedly.

"I don't think he needs anymore sugar," Louis mumbled worriedly, sitting next to the child with his own plate of pancakes.

Harry only rolled his eyes and poured some orange juice for the boy. Breakfast was calm, sort of. Niall was happily singing to himself, unknown to him a One Direction song, while getting drenched in syrup and bits of chocolate chips. Once breakfast was over, Harry offered to give Niall a bath while Louis washed the dishes.

"Hazzy, where Leeyum?" Niall asked as he played in the tub with his toys.

"He's with his mommy and daddy and maybe he'll come over later. Do you miss him?" Harry asked as he rinsed off the shampoo from the blonde hair.

"Duh!" Niall giggled.

Harry was getting Niall dressed when the doorbell went off and he mumbled a quiet curse word under his breath. Meanwhile downstairs, Louis took in a few deep breaths before heading over to open the door. Zayn was standing there with his buzz cut hair and dressed in clothes that Louis thought only Harry would wear, but that's how much his once used to be best friend has changed. Louis motioned with his hand that he could step into the house, but the awkwardness was felt more once Louis shut the door.

"How was your flight?" Louis asked, feeling a bit uncomfortable as he headed towards the kitchen with Zayn following behind.

"Cut the small talk, I'm just here for Niall," Zayn spat out and Louis bit his bottom lip to refrain from screaming everything he was feeling at the one guy who hurt them so much in the last three months.

"I was trying to be nice and if you could lose this attitude for Niall's sake then I'll thank you. Harry!"

Suddenly tiny feet ran down the stairs and towards the kitchen, a tiny little blonde crashing into Louis' legs with loud giggles. Louis could feel his heart swell as he smiled and picked up the child, cuddling him close and kissing his cheek.

"All clean? No more sticky Niall?" Louis asked, completely ignoring Zayn who was staring in awe.

"No more sticky! Hazzy was calling Leeyum, said he'd be down soon," Niall grinned, running his right hand all over Louis' jaw and giggling at the stubble.

"Babe, Zayn's here. Remember when you talked to him last night? He came to see you."

Niall turned around and stared at the new lad that was staring at him with wide eyes. Niall waved at Zayn shyly and the older lad waved back with a soft yet forced smile. Harry walked in and stood by Louis, kind of glaring at their guest while Niall lost interest in Zayn and went back to petting Louis' facial hair.

"Are you just going to stand there all day or are you actually going to say something?" Louis questioned and Harry didn't even care that the shorter lad was being rude. Well maybe he did care a bit, but whatever.

"I just- I don't know what to say. When I left he was a twenty one year old and now he's what, four?" Zayn questioned with wide eyes.

"Five actually," Niall answered, not even looking back at Zayn while Louis giggled at the child in his arms.

"You're too cute!" Louis gushed as he hugged the boy tighter to himself and Harry chuckled as Niall whined.

"So what, are you two playing house now?" Zayn scoffed, leaning back against the counter.

"Are you jealous?" Louis asked with a smirk, feeling Niall press a soft kiss to his cheek.

"You're not nice," Niall said as he turned around to look at Zayn with a cute glare that made the dark haired boy deflate from his bad mood. "You gots to be nice to my Lou and my Hazzy or we not friends."

Harry bit his bottom lip to stop from smirking and Louis hid behind Niall. Before anyone could say anything else, Liam walked in, well ran in. He stopped and stared at the scene; Niall still glaring at Zayn with a protective hold on Louis who was hiding his smile behind Niall and Harry biting his bottom lip while inspecting his rings and Zayn looking like he wanted to laugh or cry.

"Um hi?" Liam greeted awkwardly.

"Li, he being mean to my Lou and Hazzy!" Niall tattled, pouting over at his puppy-like caretaker.

"Oh, is he now?" Liam asked as he too glared at Zayn who sighed and ran a hand through his non existent hair.

"Babe, why don't you go play so the adults can talk yeah? We'll go play with you once we're done," Louis said as he looked at the blue eyed cherub like child.

"Okay," Niall grinned and ran off once Louis set him down.

"If you're not going to be civil then you shouldn't be here, we have a child here to think of. He needs us right now and if you aren't willing to help out, there's the door," Liam said and it quite shocked the other three boys.

"Okay, but I feel like the four of us should sit down and have a talk to solve our issues before anything else. I don't want either of us to go off on each other with Niall around," said Zayn, looking at them but mostly Louis who nodded.

"I don't know why you're looking at me like that. You didn't have to butt into my fight with your 'pal', pal," Louis huffed, crossing his arms across his chest.

"Louis," Harry hissed.

Louis rolled his eyes but Zayn nodded.

"I know I did wrong with siding with that asshole, but can we please just leave that behind us? I really missed you guys and I don't want to keep fighting with you," Zayn practically begged as he looked at all three of his ex bandmates.

"Okay fine. Let's sit and talk. Do you guys want anything?" Louis offered.

"Water," Liam said and the others only shook their head.

All four sat around the kitchen table in silence, hearing Niall giggle every now and then from the living room. No one said anything for awhile and Louis was considering just getting up and going over to play with Niall, but stayed when Zayn finally spoke up.

"I really want to apologize about the way we left things off. I didn't mean anything I said and you guys know I hated this from the start. Sure I was excited because it was all new and amazing, but when you're not in it a hundred percent, well it gets hard to keep going. I know I was also a nightmare those last few weeks I was with you and I apologize. I would really like if our friendship could go back to the way it was before I started to drag the band down," Zayn said as he looked at the three boys in the eyes.

"Well, I guess this would be a good time to start over. What do you boys say?" Liam asked.

"It might take a bit of time for me, but I'm willing to forgive and forget," Louis smiled, though it didn't really reach his eyes and Harry knew why. "I'm going to go check on Niall."

Once Louis was away and out of ear shot, Zayn groaned. "He still hates me."

"Well he doesn't hate you, more like he doesn't like you like before. Zee, you've got to realize that you hurt him quite a lot before and after you left. You said some pretty awful things to him and he also feels hurt with how you decided to defend Shahid and how you went off on Ni that one time before you left," Liam explained, leaving out the part where Niall cried himself to sleep and even blamed himself at some point for Zayn's ugly exit.

"Besides, he's really over protective of Ni right now and he's just looking out for him," Harry butted in, tracing random shapes on the table. "Just give him some time and maybe be involved, don't push us away again."

In the living room, Louis walked in and smiled when he found Niall playing with some toy cars he got him. The little blonde looking up when Louis sat down next to him. Niall smiled at Louis who ruffled his hair in return.

"Play now?" Niall asked cutely as he moved to sit on Louis' lap.

"Yeah, but don't you want lunch first? I'm sure you're hungry," Louis asked as he played with the strands of blonde and brown hair.

Niall thought about it for a few seconds, tapping his index finger against his chin. "Maybe. Mac and cheese, please?"

"Alright. Let's wait for the others to stop talking though."

"Is Zayn still here?" Niall questioned awhile later, tilting his head to the side as blue eyes sparkled with curiosity.

"Yeah he's still here, why?"

Niall only shrugged and cuddled into Louis, hiding his face in the man's chest as he heard footsteps approach the two sitting on the floor. Louis chuckled and ran his hand up and down the child's back as he looked up to find Harry smiling down at the two with a fond look. He sat on the floor next to them and poked Niall's side until the child came out of hiding.

"Are you guys done?" Louis asked, leaning slightly into Harry's side as Niall cuddled back into him.

"Yeah, just Liam and Zayn catching up. Is my pumpkin okay? You tired?" Harry cooed as he leaned over to kiss Niall's head.

"I'm hungry!" Niall whined, banging his head against Louis' chest.

"Ow you little boy," Louis groaned, holding Niall's head back and rubbing his sore chest.

Niall giggled and looked up when Zayn and Liam entered the room. The child eyed the new guy with interest before deeming him acceptable and making grabby hands towards him. Zayn frowned slightly, but picked up the child and smiled when Niall ran a hand through his shaved head.

"It's fuzzy!" Niall giggled, using both hands to rub Zayn's head while the others laughed.

"I'm gonna go make some lunch," Louis announced as he stood up from the ground.

"I'll go with you!" Harry announced and quickly followed the older boy into the kitchen, leaving the other three in the living room.

"So how's it been taking care of Ni?" Zayn asked, watching the blonde play with his toys as him and Liam sat on the couch.

"Well it hasn't been easy, but he's surprisingly well behaved. He does get in a bad mood when he doesn't sleep well, but that's not new," Liam said and they both laughed.

"He stays here with Louis?"

"Yeah we all agreed that it'd be for the best since he's closer to his mom and Harry is constantly traveling to L.A. and I live with Sophia," Liam shrugged. "Though I think Harry wants to come stay with them until the six months are up to help out as much as he can."

"Who knew he'd ever get in trouble with a witch. My money was on Louis."

"Heard that!" Louis shouted from the kitchen and Niall giggled.

The five ate lunch together and joked around, Niall just laughing because the others were laughing and he wanted to laugh. After that, Louis took Niall upstairs for his nap that the blonde was refusing to take, but eventually caved in when he couldn't keep his eyes open anymore. Louis only kissed the boy's forehead before heading downstairs, but not before leaving the door slightly open. Once he was back in the living room, he sat next to Liam and curled up into his side. Zayn had left sometime after Louis took Niall upstairs, but not like Louis mind, he didn't really want to deal with Zayn without Niall around.

"He's asleep?" Liam asked, playing with Louis' hair.

"Yeah," Louis yawned. "Maybe we should take him out to a park or something."

"Lou, you know we have to be careful and keep him out of the spotlight."

"I know, but he can't stay locked up for the next six months. If we do get caught, then we can just say he's my cousin or something."

"Alright, we can take him out soon."

Liam left shortly after and by the time Niall woke up, it was only Harry and Louis left and the two were laying on the couch watching Friends. Harry was on his back with Louis in between his legs, back to chest.

"Hi!" Niall greeted them with a giggle, climbing on the couch and laying down on Louis' chest.

"Hi pumpkin," Harry chuckled, adjusting himself a bit to wrap his long arms around the two.

"Have a nice nap?" Louis asked the child, playing with his hair.

Niall only nodded but yawned, the heat of his two boys making him tired again. On the screen Phoebe was singing her 'Smelly Cat' song that had Niall giggling and the other two full out laughing. Harry could see it though. He knew it was temporary, but he visualized himself in the future with Louis and their kids. Of course the first step would be asking Louis out, again.

"Is this even appropriate for his age?" Harry suddenly questioned.

"Probably not, but big Niall loved this show so whatever," Louis shrugged.

"Smelly cat!" Niall sang throughout the day and would giggle when Harry would groan in annoyance.

Harry wondered if this is what it was like to have younger siblings. Louis and Zayn always complain about their younger sisters, but Harry, Liam and Niall are the younger ones, so now Harry kind of feels bad for Gemma.

"Ni, please stop," Louis whined, placing his hand over the child's mouth.

"Great parenting skills, Lou," Harry chuckled, watching as Niall struggled to take Louis' hand away from his mouth.

"Well he won't shut up."

Harry only rolled his eyes and took the child from his friend. Niall stuck his tongue out at Louis who did the same before huffing and leaving the room. Harry rolled his eyes at his friend's dramatic exit and pulled the child onto his lap.

"Why are you so cute?" Harry asked with a pout as he stared at the child who giggled.

"Because I just am, duh!" Niall sassed, rolling his eyes and Harry laughed.

"My mom called asking why I've been home and haven't gone to see her yet," Louis spoke as he walked back into the living room a few minutes later, tucking his phone into his back pocket.

"Did you tell her about..." Harry trailed off, gesturing to the boy sitting on his lap oblivious to their conversation.

"Yes and she wants to see him but I told her we should wait a bit before we overwhelm him. We took our chance with Zayn, but I'm going over to see my family tomorrow. You mind staying with the kid?"

"Not at all. We'll have fun by ourselves, right pumpkin?" Harry asked, making the blonde boy look up at him with a confused expression. "Louis has to go do some things tomorrow so it'll just be us two and we'll have a lot of fun together, right?"

"Right!" Niall giggled, most likely not understanding what Harry just said.

Louis smiled and shook his head, having a feeling that it would be the total opposite tomorrow.

Chapter Text

~ June 13, 2015~

Louis left before Niall was up and Harry checked in on the tiny blonde almost brunette and found him still fast asleep tucked into his giant bear's side. An hour later when Niall woke up, he was given breakfast and changed by Harry, but then started asking for Louis.

"Where's my Lou?" Niall asked, sitting on Harry's lap and pouting at his current guardian.

"He went to go see his family, remember? He told you yesterday and I told you we were going to have a lot of fun together. Just a special Harry and Niall day," Harry spoke in an enthusiastic tone hoping to keep the blonde from asking more questions or going into a tantrum.

"Just a Hazzy and Ni-Ni day?"

"Yep and we can go out for ice cream if you want."

"Yes, please! I want ice cream!"

"Okay, but you have to be good until after lunchtime and Louis promised he'd call in a few hours," Harry said, brushing back the child's fringe and smiling fondly down at him.

"Okay, can we play Hazzy?"

"What do you wanna play?"

"With my cars! I'll go gets them," Niall giggled and jumped off of Harry's lap to run up to his room to grab his cars while Harry shook his head fondly.

The two play on the living room floor, Niall crashing his cars against each other and making noises while Harry tried not to laugh. He took a picture and sent it to Louis who replied back with an 'Aww, I miss my boy. followed by the broken heart emoji. Harry chuckled and put his phone away as he focused on keeping Niall entertained.

After lunch, the two headed out for the ice cream that Harry promised the child. Harry knew he shouldn't be taking Niall outside, but they also couldn't keep him locked away for the next six months. Besides, Niall was skipping along happily by his side as they entered the ice cream shop where only an old couple were sitting at a table by the window with milkshakes and the woman at the front only gave the two a friendly smile, cooing at Niall who waved at her happily.

"Alright pumpkin, what flavor do you want?" Harry asked as he picked up Niall and placed him on his hip so the five year old could better see all the options.

"Hmm I want the cookie one!" Niall told the curly haired lad with a large grin.

"Alright. One small cookie dough and a small vanilla, please," Harry told the lady who nodded.

"Coming right up sir. You've got a cute kid," she smiled as she got to work on their orders.

"I do, don't I?" Harry smiled as he looked at Niall who was watching the lady intently and practically drooling with anticipation. And Harry didn't bother correcting the lady with saying that Niall wasn't his, but truth was, Harry felt like a proud dad.

Harry and Niall sat at a table far from the large windows and watched as Niall ate his ice cream making a mess. He listened as Niall told some weird story, a dream he'd probably had. After that, Niall was jumping around and giggling a lot more than normal so Harry thought to take him to the park so he could burn off some of his energy. Niall shrieked with happiness once they arrived and tugged on Harry's hands towards the swings.

"Please push me, Hazzy!" Niall shouted and Harry laughed.

*

"So he's sleeping right now?" Louis asked Harry through the phone line.

"Yeah, lad tired himself out today. Took him out for ice cream and then we went to the park and he ran around a lot," Harry explained as he cleaned the kitchen and started looking around for something to make for dinner. "You coming back tomorrow?"

"I would, but I miss him, Harry! Gosh, I didn't think it'd be this hard to be away from a little person who I'll miss six months from now. I'll try and make it before dinner, the twins are sick anyways and Lottie and Fizz went on a small vacation."

"Alright-"

"Harry!" Niall called as he entered the kitchen, rubbing his eyes tiredly with his fists and pouting up at the older man who cooed. "Who are you talking to?"

"It's Louis, wanna say hi?"

"Yes! Wanna say hi to my Lou!" Niall shouted, suddenly wide awake and making grabby hands at the phone.

Harry sat on a chair and pulled Niall onto his lap, pressing the phone to his ear.

"Hi Lou! I misses you!" Niall shouted.

"I miss you too, babe, are you being good to Harry? Cause if you are, I might give you a present," said Louis and Niall gasped.

"I'm being very good! Can I have present?"

"Maybe. I gotta go, babe, but I'll see you later yeah?" Louis said with a soft sigh a few minutes later.

"Bye bye, Lou. Love you," Niall spoke sadly and Harry could feel his heart breaking a bit as he kissed the back of Niall's head.

"Love you too."

The line went dead and Harry took his phone back as Niall let out a small sigh. Harry sat Niall on the kitchen table so he was eye level with the pouting boy who looked at him with teary blue eyes.

"Wanna watch a movie and eat pizza?" Harry asked Niall softly, tucking a strand of blonde hair behind Niall's ear.

"Peter Pan?" Niall mumbled cutely and Harry nodded.

"Peter Pan it is. Now go wait in the living room and I'll be there soon, okay?" Harry said as he helped Niall off the table.

Niall ran off. Soon the two were watching the movie and after that was over, Harry ordered their pizza and put on another movie since Niall was still a bit down about missing Louis.

The chaos came shortly before bedtime when Louis still wasn't back and Niall was tired, but refused to go to sleep until his Lou came back. So now the blonde nearly brunette boy was sitting in the middle of the hallway, in front of the front door, and crying and begging for his Lou. Harry was going crazy. Louis had sent him a text saying he was ten minutes away, but those ten minutes turned into nearly half an hour and he still wasn't here.

"Pumpkin, please come here sweetie. I'll make you chocolate milk and we can watch cartoons until Louis comes back," Harry begged as he approached the child who only let out a loud cry of protest.

Suddenly the front door opened and Harry let out a sigh of relief as Louis walked in. Niall immediately stopped crying and made grabby hands at Louis who scooped him up quickly.

"Oh sweetie, why the tears?" Louis cooed as he wiped them away. "What happened?"

"He's tired and wouldn't go to sleep without you here so he's been sitting here for the past hour throwing a tantrum," Harry explained tiredly as he got up from the ground and headed into the living room.

"Okay babe, no more tears, yeah?" Louis said as he rocked Niall around while rubbing his back.

"I-I miss you," Niall hiccuped, head resting on Louis' shoulder as his eyes started to close from how tired he was.

"I did too baby, but I'm here now and it's okay. You can go to sleep now, yeah?"

Niall didn't say anything else and Louis headed into the living room where Harry was sitting on the couch watching a late night show.

"Sorry I was late," Louis spoke quietly, hand still rubbing Niall's back.

"It's fine," Harry shrugged. "Everything okay at home?"

"Yeah, though the girls really want to see Ni but I don't want to overwhelm him with so much."

The two fell into a somewhat awkward silence and Louis stood up with a sigh, leaving the room without a word and heading into Niall's temporary room. He laid the boy down on the bed and tucked him, leaning down to kiss his forehead.

"Lou?" Niall mumbled, opening his eyes a bit.

"Shh babe, I'm right here," Louis whispered, rubbing Niall's back through the blankets and watched as the boy fell back asleep with dried tear stains on his cheeks.

"Hey, I'm heading out," Harry mumbled quietly from the doorway of the room, leaning his body against the frame as he stared at the two on the bed.

"Are you sure you wanna go? It's late," Louis said as he got up from the bed and headed over to the curly haired lad who looked to be in a bad mood.

"I'm sure, Louis. I have somethings to take care of tomorrow so I won't be around. Tell Niall I'll try and call him."

With that, Harry left and Louis frowned after him. He didn't know what had made Harry get mad, but suddenly the curly haired lad was acting cold towards him like back when they broke up and Louis didn't like it. Harry had avoided him like the plague and had made it so obvious to the fans, but not like management cared because they didn't have to worry about Larry anymore.

~June 14, 2015~

The next morning Niall woke up in a bad mood and so had Louis, so really it was only a matter of time until it became chaotic. Niall was saying no when Louis said yes and vice versa. The two eventually started a screaming match with Niall yelling out a whole bunch of nonsense and Louis yelling at Niall to be quiet. All that was happening and it wasn't even lunchtime yet. Harry hadn't called and Louis had no idea where Liam was or why the hell Zayn was promising to be around when he wasn't.

"I want Hazzy! You're a big meanie!" Niall shouted out in frustration, a tear slipping down his flushed cheek and stomping his left foot on the floor.

"Well too bad Nigel because he's not coming!" Louis shouted back, glaring at the five year old who was glaring back.

"It's Niall, Lewis!"

Louis froze. Little Niall called him Lewis, something that big Niall always called him, but surely it had to be a coincidence and not because Niall was actually starting to remember something. And arguing with little Niall was making Louis really really miss big Niall because he loved to tease the younger boy.

"It's Louis," Louis mocked and Niall shrieked before stomping up the stairs. "Hey, stop that!"

"No!"

Louis gripped his hair tightly when Niall slammed his bedroom door shut. Louis doesn't remember big Niall being this bratty, but that's because it was rare for big Niall to have a bad day.

"Come on, answer," Louis begged as he called Liam's number which sent him straight to voicemail and he groaned.

Calling Harry was out of the question because the younger lad was being weird with him and Louis didn't even know why so that only left him with Zayn even though Louis wasn't sure he was still in London. Swallowing his pride, Louis hit dial and waited.

"'Lo?" Zayn answered.

"A-Are you still here?" Louis stuttered out, head in his free hand and eyes shut as his head began to throb rather painfully.

"Yeah, what's up? Is Niall okay?"

"H-He's being a brat and I- fuck Zayn, I-I can't do this," Louis choked back a sob. "I miss him so much and Harry fucking left-"

"Wait, Harry left you alone with Niall?"

"Y-Yeah, he was off with me last night and left and said he would probably call Ni but he hasn't and Niall and I have been screaming at each other all day and my head is bloody killing me and-"

"Hey, I'll be there in fifteen and I'll bring him back to mine and let you rest, yeah? Just take deep breaths. Have you called Li?"

"Won't answer," Louis whispered, trying to desperately stop his tears that kept coming. "Hurry though because I don't know how much more I can take."

"I'm in my car now, I'll be there soon."

The line went dead and Louis laid down on the couch after unlocking the front door and curling up. He didn't really know if he was coming down with something or it was just a simple headache from the morning's events or what. Niall was still locked upstairs when Zayn walked into the house nearly twenty minutes later.

"Doing okay?" Zayn asked softly as he crouched in front of Louis.

"Took some pills and they're just making me drowsy but the pain is still there," Louis mumbled as he struggled to keep his eyes open.

"How much is some?" Zayn asked worriedly.

"Like three. Jus' go with the kid."

Zayn sighed but headed upstairs anyways, knocking on the closed bedroom door before walking in and finding Niall sitting on the center of his bed coloring in a coloring book. The child looked up and smiled at Zayn.

"Zaynie!" Niall cheered.

"Hi bug, do you wanna go to my house and play?" Zayn asked in excitement as he held the child's hands and helped him stand up on the bed.

"Yes! What about Lou?"

"Well he's feeling a bit icky and he's going to sleep, so I told him you could come to my house and we can have a lot of fun!"

"He's sad, right? I c-called him a meanie and he got sad w-when I called him Lewis," Niall stuttered out on the brink of tears.

"Oh. No Ni, he's not sad because of that. His head hurts a bit, but we're going to have a lot of fun together and then once Louis feels better we'll come right back."

*

Louis was in the living room with a cup of tea in his hands and watching TV when Liam walked in with grocery bags and a large smile.

"Zayn called me. How are you feeling?" Liam asked once he set the bags in the kitchen and took a seat next to a tired looking Louis.

"Better I guess, just had a small breakdown," Louis shrugged, not looking up at Liam and instead focusing on the liquid in his cup.

"About?"

"I really miss Niall and when we were arguing this morning it made me realize how weird and difficult this situation is. And then I really like having this version of him around and I'm so fucking attached that I'm scared when our Niall returns. And then Harry's being all off with me and he fucking left me alone with this and he didn't even call!" Louis cried, clutching the mug a bit tighter.

"I know this is hard but we're going to get through this and you know we all have off days, Ni was just being like any other kid. Not every day is going to be easy as the first, but when you need us we're here for you."

Liam started making dinner when Zayn and Niall walked in, the child running over to Louis and holding him tight.

"Hi babe, have fun with Zayn?" Louis spoke softly as he held the child just as tightly but careful to not hurt him.

"Yeah. You don't feel icky anymore?" Niall asked innocently as he pulled back to look at Louis.

"No I don't," Louis assured with a smile.

"I called H," Zayn says as he walks into the room.

"And?"

"He's in L.A."

Anger boiled in Louis and he scoffed. He couldn't believe Harry would just leave without saying anything. Louis would have understood if he needed to go on business or to take care of something with the house they bought when they were together, but leaving without saying a thing while dealing with a five year old Niall? Yeah that makes Louis very angry and he swears he's going to give the curly haired lad a nice long lecture on just taking off like that.

"Did he say anything else?" Louis asked, letting Niall play with his hair.

"Just that he'll try and be back in a week."

"A week, how great. Well you can tell him that if he wants to see Niall then he can talk to either you or Liam."

Zayn didn't say anything, but nodded and went into the kitchen to help out Liam.

"Lou?" Niall spoke up quietly, sitting back on Louis' lap to be able to see Louis.

"Yeah my precious little snowflake?" Louis cooed, stroking Niall's chubby cheek with his index finger.

"Where's Hazzy? Does he not like me no more?"

"Of course he likes you babe," Louis spoke gently, feeling his heart break as he saw the child's expression. "He just had to go do some work, but I promise he'll be back soon, yeah? I know he loves you very much."

"Does he love you too?" Niall asked innocently and Louis could feel his face heat up, but before he could answer, Liam called them back for dinner. "Food!"

Louis sat back and ran a hand through his hair after Niall ran off. Zayn walked over and chuckled.

"What happened now?" He asked in an amused tone.

"He asked me if Harry loves me too," Louis sighed, looking up at Zayn who laughed. "It's not funny."

"It's not, but it's true. And I know you love him too. Now come on, don't want Payno to throw a fit if the food gets cold."

Louis sighed and followed Zayn into the kitchen. For the rest of dinner, Louis couldn't shake Niall's question out of his head and he had a theory that maybe Harry left because he did in fact still love him and having a child to look after wasn't helping. Back when they'd dated, Harry and Louis had made plans of adopting a kid or twenty after the madness that is the band died down and management would let them come out. And Louis had to admit that having been taking care of Niall with Harry had only made it seem like they were already their own little family. And maybe Harry ran off feeling scared that this was happening, still doesn't excuse him for doing so and leaving Louis alone to have his mini breakdown over the situation.

"I miss Hazzy," Niall sighed dramatically from where he sat next to Liam, head perched on his tiny first as he picked up some vegetables from his plate. "This is gross. I hate vegetables."

"But you gotta eat them all so you can grow up to be big and healthy, yeah?" Zayn tried to persuade the child who eventually placed some carrots and peas in his mouth.

Louis smiled fondly at the nearly brunette boy who made a face each and every time he ate some vegetables. He was still the same Niall, just in a way smaller body. And as Louis took a picture of Niall frowning even more at the remaining veggies on his plate, Louis promised to use this stuff later on as blackmail because that's what best friends do.

Chapter Text

~June 22, 2015~

Louis was awakened sometime in the middle of the night to Niall crying. In the almost two weeks that Niall had been a kid, not once has he woken up like this and it frightened Louis. He stumbled out of his bed and ran down the hall to Niall's room. The nightlight in the room gave Louis enough light to see Niall sitting up on the bed.

"Baby, what's wrong?" Louis asked worriedly as he sat on the bed, Niall crawling onto his lap right away and crying into his chest. "Sweetie, stop crying baby boy. You're breaking my heart."

Niall hiccuped and pulled back, letting Louis wipe away his tears and he said, "H-Hazzy never come back a-and h-he said he no love me!"

"Oh," Louis mumbled brokenly, looking down at the heartbroken child and he swears he never ever wants to see that look on Niall, no matter big or small. "Sweetie, he'll come back, I promise you and I promise you, pinky promise, that he does love you. He loves you so much, Ni, he always has and he always will just like I'll always love you and how Li and Zee will always love you too."

"B-But he no call and I miss him!" Niall cried, burying his face into Louis' chest and clutching his t-shirt. "I'm mad at him."

"I know honey, me too, but how about for now we go to bed, yeah? It's still too early to be up and you can sleep with me if you want."

Niall nodded and clung to Louis as the older lad stood up and carried the child to the master bedroom. Louis settled them on the bed and pulled the covers over their bodies. He fell asleep holding onto Niall and a soft smile on his face.

*

It was almost eight in the morning when Harry entered Louis' house and being as quiet as he could. The house was still quiet, so it was obvious Louis and Niall were still asleep. He climbed up the stairs and found Niall's bedroom door wide open and the bed empty. Harry panicked a bit, but willed himself to calm down as he approached Louis' room and opened the door carefully. Peeking inside, Harry smiled softly when he found Niall sleeping on top of Louis. He walked forward and kissed their heads softly before leaving the room and heading downstairs to make them some breakfast.

It was nearly an hour later when he heard Niall's giggles coming from upstairs and Louis shouting out some profanities. He shook his head and hurried up with making Niall's favorite breakfast.

"You can't catch me!" Niall was heard from the stairs and he ran into the kitchen ready to hide, but stopped when he saw Harry at the stove flipping some pancakes.

"Hi pumpkin," Harry greeted with a large smile which only made Niall frown.

"Louis, some stranger is in the kitchen!" Niall shouted, running off to find Louis and Harry sighed.

"Some what?" Louis asked the brunette child.

"Someone's making food," Niall said as he tugged on Louis' hand to make him move towards the kitchen.

Louis frowned but followed the child nonetheless, freezing when he saw Harry.

"Why are you here?" Louis asked angrily, letting Niall cling to the back of his legs.

"What, so now I can't come to what used to be my house as well?" Harry asked back as he turned off the stove and placed the last pancake on a plate with the others.

"You said it, used to be your house. This has been my house for nearly two years now when you decided that fighting for us became too much."

"Why are you so mad that I'm here?" Harry asked, feeling angry that Louis was suddenly behaving like they were enemies again.

"Ni, sweetie, why don't you go up to your room and play for a bit, yeah? I need to talk to Harold for a bit," Louis spoke softly as he knelt in front of the child who nodded.

"Love you," Niall whispered as he kissed Louis' cheek before running off.

"How do you expect me to not be angry when you fucked off to LA without saying anything?! You left me to care for him alone, Harry! And to top it all off the day you decided to fuck off was one of the worse days we've had! How do you not want me to be angry when we have a responsibility to take care of?" Louis asked Harry angrily, trying to not raise his voice too much for Niall's sake.

"You're acting like we're married and I've never left without telling you guys where I go!"

"What angers me the most is that you fucking left Niall when he's only five. You know he had a nightmare last night about you not coming back and saying that you didn't love him anymore. I've been hearing Niall ask me why's all week and it's breaking my heart when he keeps saying that you don't love him. He's a kid, Harry, and you know big Ni wasn't very keen on saying what he felt, but he's vulnerable right now. He needs us."

Harry rubbed his forehead and leaned back against the counter as he stared at a teary eyed Louis. And looking at him good, Harry could see the circles under his eyes were darker and by the tone in his voice Harry could hear how tired and frustrated he was as well. Harry felt like an asshole because he never thought about how it would hurt Niall him leaving the way he did. He only thought about himself and getting away from Louis and the overwhelming urge he had to kiss him every time he was near.

"I don't know why you ran off like that, but if you're going to keep doing it, then I don't want you around Niall anymore. I want him to be happy for however long this lasts and I most certainly don't want you to hurt him like this anymore," Louis spoke softly, arms crossed against his chest as he looked up at Harry. "I promised from the start that I would protect Niall at all costs and if I have to protect him from you, than I will because he doesn't deserve this."

Louis went to leave the kitchen but Harry grabbed his arm and pulled him back. The curly haired lad turned Louis around to face him and hugged him tight, crying into his neck. Louis only stood there with his arms trapped to his side.

"I'm sorry. About everything. About leaving you with Ni and not telling anyone. About being such a coward and not fighting for us."

"Harry no. Not now, please," Louis whispered, pulling Harry away from him before heading out of the kitchen and heading upstairs.

Louis didn't see Niall in his room, so he headed towards the master bedroom and found a lump under the covers. Louis smiled softly and walked quietly over to him before jumping on the bed and making Niall shriek in fright. Niall came out of his hiding spot as Louis laughed, the child's hair pointing in all directions and reminding Louis to get Lou to give him a trim.

"You scared me!" Niall shouted, hand over his heart as he stared wide eyed at Louis who only continued to chuckle.

"I'm sorry, bunny," Louis apologized sincerely, trying to brush Niall's hair but it was useless.

"Is he gone?" Niall whispered, hands cupped around his mouth.

"No, he's still downstairs but we can't let those yummy pancakes go to waste so let's go eat something and then we can go visit Liam and his girlfriend at their house. They have dogs," Louis bribed and watched as Niall's eyes widened at the word dogs.

"Yes please!"

Heading downstairs with Niall on his back, they passed a sad Harry sitting on the couch in the living room and staring at something on his phone. Breakfast is quiet and quick and soon, Louis and Niall are leaving Harry alone and heading off to Liam's house. The radio was playing and Niall was nodding his head in the backseat. Suddenly 'What Makes You Beautiful' came on and Niall went completely still. Louis was about to ask if he was okay, but Niall began to hum along to the song.

"Isn't that a song you sing?" Niall asked curiously and Louis met his eyes through the rear view mirror.

"That's right. You remembered my smart boy," Louis cooed, smiling wide when Niall blushed.

When they reached Liam and Sophia's house, Niall made Louis carry him and Louis rang the doorbell with Niall on his hip. Inside the dogs started to bark and Niall grinned excitedly. The door opened and Liam smiled when he saw the two.

"Lima!" Niall greeted and launched himself at the man who laughed.

"Hi kiddo! Came for a visit? Come in Lou," Liam said and Louis closed the door behind him.

"I wanna meet your doggies!"

"I had to bribe him," Louis shrugged and Liam laughed.

They walked into the living room where Sophia was with the giant dog that Louis would not admit he's slightly terrified off, no matter how much of a sweetheart Watson is.

"That's a big doggy," Niall mumbled and Sophia laughed as she stood up and walked towards them.

"Hi sweetie, wanna meet Watson and Ralph?" Sophia cooed, taking Niall from Liam and carrying him over to the dogs who were looking at Niall excitedly.

"I'm scared your giant dog will squash my kid," Louis voiced his concern as he watched Sophia put Niall on the ground as Watson stood up from where he was laying on the ground.

"Don't worry too much," Liam laughed deciding to not mention how Louis said my kid.

"Can we talk?"

Liam nodded and lead Louis into the kitchen and put the kettle on for some tea.

"So what's up? You look off," Liam asked worriedly.

"Harry came back and we got into an argument this morning. In short I told him to stay away from Niall if he was going to keep running off like that. The poor kid had a nightmare Li, he thinks Harry doesn't love him anymore," Louis explained as he ran a hand through his messy hair.

"Well you did the right thing by saying that. He needs to understand that he can't play with a kid's emotions like that and we all said from the beginning that we'd be here to be with Niall," Liam told Louis sincerely, though he was angry at Harry as well for leaving.

"He apologized for that and for being a coward when it came to our relationship. I told him it wasn't the time."

Liam stayed quiet for a bit as he observed his best friend. He got up to make their tea and Niall's giggles coming from the other room were the only noise keeping it from going completely quiet.

"And will it ever be the time? I know you're still hurting and so is him, but will you ever let the two of you sit down and talk about it?" Liam asked, handing Louis his mug of tea.

"I-I want too, but Niall is my only priority right now. Taking care of a child is huge responsibility and I want to be able to give him my complete attention," Louis eventually explained.

"But you miss Harry and he misses you. I'm sure you can talk things out and hell, Sophia and I will watch over the little munchkin for a whole day to let the two of you work over your problems."

Louis simply stared down at his mug thinking about it. Suddenly Niall ran in followed by Watson.

"Lou!" Niall cheered and wrapped his little arms around Louis who smiled wide and lifted the child onto his lap.

"Hi bunny, what are you up to?" Louis asked as he placed a kiss to the back of Niall's head.

"Playing with Watson! Ralph doesn't really like me," Niall sighed sadly, patting Watson's head.

"Awe, don't be too sad champ, Ralph doesn't really like me either. He only likes Sophia," Liam assured the five year old who shrugged.

"What's this?" Niall asked as he pointed at Louis' mug.

"It's tea, you want some? It's really good," Louis informed Niall as he grabbed the mug.

"It's hot though, see?" Niall pointed out and Liam laughed.

"Then we'll let it cool for a bit."

Sophia walked in and took a seat next to Liam, smiling at Louis.

"Is he a handful?" Sophia asked, watching Niall place his hands over Louis' on the mug.

"Oh yeah. He likes to hide and give me heart attacks, don't you Nialler?" Louis teased the boy on his lap, tickling his sides a bit.

"Stop!" Niall giggled.

Louis only took a few sips of his tea since when Niall tried it and said he'd liked it so he ended up finishing it all, not that Louis minded.

They stayed until after lunch and as Louis drove back to his house, Niall was fast asleep in the backseat. Harry's car was still in the driveway and Louis sighed. He picked up Niall and carried him inside.

"Need help?" Harry asked as he descended the stairs in a different outfit from that morning and hair up in a bun.

"Please," Louis whispered as he walked closer to Harry and handed off the sleeping child to him.

"I'll put him in his room."

Louis nodded and watched Harry head upstairs. He sighed and went into the living room to take a seat, thinking over what Liam had told him. He did want to, needed to talk to Harry, but Louis was just afraid. He was afraid of the direction their conversation could head to, afraid of starting over again only to have it crumble and leave him brokenhearted once more. Of course he knew that Harry hadn't really meant to hurt him, the poor lad can barely hurt a fly without feeling guilty.

"I set him in his bed," Harry said as he walked into the living room and sat on the other couch.

"Okay. I um, I would really like to talk to you about you know," Louis mumbled awkwardly, not meeting Harry's eyes for more than five seconds.

"Are you sure? I just, I would really like to set things right, Louis, but I also need you to be fully ready for it."

"Harry, I talked to Liam and he helped me realize that I need this. We need this. If we're going to be taking care of Niall for the next six months, we need to set things straight because if you're going to keep running off because of your feelings, it's only going to keep hurting Niall. And me," Louis spoke sincerely as he finally met Harry's sad green eyes.

"You're right and I should have told you and Ni where I was going or at least called, but I ran away from this. It's too much, Louis. One day we're on stage singing with Niall and the next we're basically his parents. It's, this is insane! I still can't wrap my head around this mess and to think that we're in this situation for six months it makes me want to just walk away," Harry sighed, putting his face in his hands and Louis glared at the younger lad.

"Well you just can't walk away because he's our bandmate! Our brother, Harry, for fuck's sake he needs us more than ever now. This isn't like when Niall was sad and we'd cuddle him to make him feel better, it won't go away that easy," Louis argued, but then sighed and went over to sit next to Harry. "Do you think that I'm okay with this situation? I'm not. I had a fucking breakdown when I needed you the most, I don't even know if I'm ready for the next six months of this if you won't be here to help me."

"I want to, I really do, but it feels like we've made our own family and you know what? I still fucking love you, a lot and I know I made the mistake of walking out on us, but you have no idea how much I've regretted it. Every time I'm near you I just want to hold you in my arms, kiss you and just, it hurts to love you like this," Harry spoke gently as he placed a large hand on Louis' cheek and letting his thumb rub his cheekbone. "I can't stop thinking about you Louis and I know I did wrong, but it would be nice if we could try again and this time I promise I'll stay. I promise to be with you through thick and thin, to fight every war and brave the storms together."

Louis smiled softly as he stared into Harry's green eyes. He let his impulses take over and he leaned forward to place his lips softly against Harry's. It was quick and Harry had to think twice about if Louis really did kiss him or not, but the goofy smiles on both of heir faces said otherwise.

"Just really keep your promise this time, curly. I'm willing to give you another chance and I also promise to not give up on us."

Harry pulled Louis into a hug buried his face into Louis' neck. It was the first real hug they've given each other in awhile and as they stay there in each other's arms, it makes them remember of when they were young. They fit together like a puzzle piece from the very beginning and Louis smiles because they still fit together. The emotions are still there, the fuzzy feeling he always got when they touched and the connection their hearts have. It's like they never were apart.

"So will you be my boyfriend again?" Harry asked as he untucked his face but kept hugging Louis, afraid the older lad would get up and walk out saying he wasn't ready.

"I'll be your boyfriend again," Louis assured, pulling back and pecking Harry's lips.

After that they cuddled on the couch and watched TV, waiting for Niall to wake up.

"What about Ni? Are we going to tell him?" Harry asked, arm wrapped securely around Louis' waist.

"I don't know, I mean, he's only a kid and I don't want to confuse him with this," Louis replied as he rested his head on Harry's shoulder.

"I think we should so I can reassure him that I won't leave you two without saying anything."

"True and hopefully he won't be so mad at you anymore."

Nearly half an hour later Niall walked down the stairs carefully and walked into the living room, freezing when he saw Louis and Harry.

"Come here bunny, we wanna talk to you," Louis spoke softly as he stretched an arm out to Niall.

The child eyed Harry wearily as he walked to Louis who untangled himself from Harry's long limbs to pull Niall onto his lap. Harry simply smiled down at Niall, hand on Louis' thigh and squeezing it lightly.

"Okay babe, so Harry has something he wants to say to you."

"Pumpkin, I'm really sorry for leaving you and not calling. I promise that I love you so so much and I pinky promise I won't ever leave again without saying anything, yeah? Can you forgive me, pumpkin? Pretty please?" Harry begged, pouting at Niall who giggled into his hand quietly.

"Okay, only cause I missed my Hazzy!" Niall declared after a few seconds and launched himself at Harry who caught him easily. "I love you too Hazzy."

Harry grinned and hugged the brunette child tightly, kissing his forehead before settling him on his lap so they could finish talking.

"Also love, Harry and I are together like Liam and Sophia."

"Eww, you guys give each other kisses?" Niall asked as he scrunched up his nose cutely and stuck his tongue out at the couple who laughed. "Kisses have cooties!"

"Oh yeah? Well guess who's getting our cooties then!" Harry announced and then attacked Niall with kisses and made him shriek with laughter.

Yeah, Louis would definitely miss this in six months.

Chapter Text

~June 23, 2015~

"Morning babe!" Harry greeted happily as he walked into the kitchen with a tired Niall on his hip.

"Morning love," Louis smiled, leaning up on his toes to peck Harry's lips. "And morning to you too, bunny. Sleep okay?"

"Tired," Niall whined. "And hungry."

"Well don't worry," Louis chuckled, "breakfast is ready."

Harry set a reluctant Niall on a chair and went off to help Louis. As they ate, Louis and Harry talked happily while Niall ate at a very slow pace and practically asleep. Louis noticed and frowned worriedly.

"What's wrong, babe? Are you feeling ill or something?" He asked as he leaned over to feel Niall's face for any signs of a fever.

"No, you two are loud," Niall said, sounding like big Niall for a bit and making both Harry and Louis freeze before bursting into giggles at Niall's grumpy face. "Not funny! You say I can't play cause I need to go sleep, but you play almost all night!"

"Oh pumpkin, we're so sorry," Harry apologized as serious as he could, though he felt bad that they kept him up at night. "Well how about you go sleep after breakfast and I promise we won't play, okay?"

Niall nodded and went back to eating while Louis sat back with a blush.

"Big Ni always did complain that we'd be too loud," Louis mumbled.

"True, he always was a grumpy one when his room would be next to ours. I'm thinking that's why he started asking for the room farthest from us," Harry mused, leaning over to kiss Louis' cheek.

It was awhile later and Niall was asleep upstairs while Louis went off to do some laundry and Harry made some work calls to set up some time in the studio to start writing. Liam walked into the house followed by Zayn, the two talking about who knows what.

"Hey guys!" Louis greets them with a large grin.

"Where's the little brat? Usually he'd be jumping around by now," Liam questioned as they moved into the living room where Harry had now finished his call.

"He's sleeping, poor thing was tired," Harry replied with a smile as he leaned back on the couch with an arm resting on the back of the couch.

"Don't think you should be messing up his schedule like that, he won't be taking a nap later on," Liam frowned in concern and yeah, leave it to good old Daddy Direction.

"Don't worry Li, we know what we're doing," Louis sighs with a smile as he sits next to Harry and curls up into his side.

"So what's this? You two getting cozy with each other," Zayn asked suggestively as he wiggled his eyebrows.

"It feels like we're seventeen again, well nineteen in my case, and testing the waters," Louis said, looking at Harry with a fond smile and eyes sparkling as he looked at the younger lad who was smiling down at him.

"So you talked things out?" Liam asked as him and Zayn smiled, happy to see that their best friends had resolved their issues.

"We did and we both made sure that this was what we wanted and we're gonna work through it day by day to make sure we don't make the same mistakes as last time."

"Louis!" Niall cried from upstairs and Louis could hear the upset tone in the child's cry so Louis shoots up from the couch and heads for the stairs quicker than he's ever ran.

"Ni? What's wrong, baby?" Louis asked breathlessly as he ran into the room.

"I-I'm sorry!" Niall cried, big fat tears running down his chubby cheeks and Louis really wants to stop seeing the child cry so much.

"Sweetie, tell me what's wrong?"

"I-I went potty in my undies!" Niall cried, making grabby hands at Louis and looking quite embarrassed about the situation.

"Sweetie, shh, it's okay. We'll clean you up and you'll be squeaky clean again in no time. There's no need to cry, it's just an accident and it happens, yeah?"

"What happened?" Harry asked as he walked into the room only to see Louis stripping back the sheets from the bed.

"Um can you finish here while I give Ni a bath?" Louis asked his boyfriend who nodded, noticing the child hiccuping and just standing there making himself look smaller. "Come on love, let's go to the bathroom."

Niall headed out into the bathroom still hiccuping and Louis pulled out some clean clothes for the child.

"Do you think we're gonna have to buy him pull ups?" Harry asked as he balled up the sheets and set them on the floor as he went over to the closet to grab some clean ones.

"I mean I'm hoping we don't have to, but if it keeps happening than yeah. My sisters weren't fully potty trained at five and I remember my mom making them wear pull ups at night. I think we should be prepared though, just buy some in case he needs them," Louis sighed, Niall's clean clothes draped over his arm. "I'm gonna go get Ni ready."

Louis found Niall sitting on the bathroom floor with his head bowed and shoulders still shaking. He let out a soft sigh and set the clothes on the counter before kneeling in front of the boy.

"I promise it's okay and I'm not mad, okay? These things happen," Louis spoke gently as he took off Niall's shirt, making the blue eyed child to look at him. "Did you have a bad dream? Or did it just happen?"

"Bad dream," Niall mumbled as he stood up and let Louis finish removing his urine soaked clothes before turning on the water.

"Do you want to tell me about it? It'll make you feel a lot better," Louis smiled reassuringly at Niall who seemed hesitant to do so.

"There was a lot of screaming. You and Hazzy were angry at Zee and Li was hugging big Ni who was crying," Niall explained, frowning after he said Big Ni because that didn't make sense to his little brain.

"Oh," Louis mumbled as he realized that Niall had a dream about something that had happened. It was the day Zayn said he was leaving and him and Niall got into a very rough fight where Zayn said some things that very obviously got the other three riled up and made him leave. "Don't worry, yeah baby? Now let's get you all squeaky clean and get some food in your tummy because Li and Zee are downstairs."

"Really?!" Niall asked excitedly even though he saw Liam yesterday, but he's probably more excited to see Zayn. It seems like even little Niall has a crush on Zayn.

After a bath, more reassurances and getting changed, a giggling Niall ran down the stairs despite Harry telling him not too. Louis ran after him with a comb because Niall's hair was all tangled still.

"Zaynie!" Niall cheered and jumped into the man's arms, both laughing and Zayn spun Niall around.

"Look at you all clean and smelling like strawberries," Zayn cooed as he kissed Niall's cheek and making the child blush.

"Look at the kid, doesn't even know he's in love with Zayn," Liam teased as he stood with Louis and Harry.

Harry laughed but Louis frowned.

"So what was wrong with him?" Liam asked worriedly, watching as Niall and Zayn talked about who knows what.

"He had a nightmare, but more like he remembered something from not too long ago actually," Louis explained and noticed the frowns on the other two so he continued. "It was when Zayn and Niall got into that really bad fight where Zayn almost hit him and we had to kick Zayn out of the room until he cooled down."

"Fuck," Harry mumbled, swallowing thickly as he remembered how scared and angry he'd been that day. Never before had he ever been so angry at Zayn and Harry never thought he would ever be angry like that at one of his bandmates.

"Lou, I'm hungry!" Niall called as Zayn set the child on his feet and he walked over to Louis to hug him around his legs.

"Alright, let's go make you something to eat," Louis smiled and ushered Niall into the kitchen.

~June 26, 2015~

It was Friday and the three were getting ready to go visit Louis' family and spend the weekend in Doncaster. They left early, Niall sleeping in the backseat as Louis and Harry make small talk, the radio playing softly and when a Taylor Swift song comes on, Louis changes the station and Harry keeps his smile to himself. When they reach Louis' family home, Harry carries a still sleeping Niall up to the front door while Louis grabs their stuff from the trunk of the car. Jay opens the door and smiles, cooing at Niall who was fast asleep and oblivious to what was going on around him.

"Come in boys," she smiles and lets them into the house, hearing loud chatter and giggles coming from the dining room. "You can put Niall up in Ernest's bed if you want."

"Hazzy?" Came Niall's voice, muffled by Harry's shirt.

"Looks like we won't have to," Harry joked. "What's up pumpkin? Sleep okay?"

"Where are we?"

"We're at my mom's house to visit her and my siblings," Louis answered, rubbing Niall's back to get him to wake up more.

"Is Lottie here?"

"Did I just hear my name?" Lottie asked excitedly as she walked over to where they were all standing. "Ni-bear!"

"Lottie!" Niall cheered and reached over for the platinum blonde girl.

Lottie took Niall into her arms and kissed his cheeks, the two talking about a movie while Jay, Louis and Harry laugh. Louis sets their things in the guest bedroom before finding Lottie and Niall in the living room with the others, Phoebe and Daisy already cooing at the child. Louis smiled and shook his head fondly before heading into the kitchen where Harry was with Dan and Jay.

"Hey," Louis greeted his step dad.

"Hi Louis, had a nice drive?" Dan asked with a kind smile.

"Yeah. A little early, but nice."

The grownups talked with mugs of tea, getting caught up with their lives while Niall was busy with Louis' siblings. Eventually Louis gets up to go check on Niall and finds that the kids have moved outside to play in the yard and he watches Niall run around with them, laughing happily as he's being chased by Lottie. Suddenly a hand was placed on his hip and Louis smiled when he smelled Harry's familiar scent.

"Look at him Haz, I don't think I've ever seen him this happy and carefree," Louis sighed, resting his head on the taller lad's shoulder as he continued to watch them all play outside.

"I know, gonna miss this," Harry mumbled, turning his head to place a kiss on Louis' head. "But maybe after this is all done, the band and all, we can think about starting our own family?"

"Sounds great."

Soon Harry and Louis are calling everyone back for lunch and Niall clings to Harry tiredly, hair matted down to his sweaty forehead. Harry chuckles and carries Niall into the dinning room, sitting with him on his lap as they begin to eat a simple lunch that Jay and Louis had made. The room is loud, everyone talking here and there, laughing and making jokes. Even Niall joins in with his cute giggles. After that comes nap time and no matter how much Niall whines and pleads, Louis reassures him that they'll still be here when he wakes up.

"Okay so this witch, she promised to change him back in six months?" Jay asks curiously, sounding concerned for Niall.

"That's what she said and if she doesn't, then it's another six months of Niall like this. I'm just worried how these next six months will go. Management told us to keep updating his social media from time to time, but even we can't keep the fans satisfied with just that," Louis sighed, holding onto his phone and his other hand holding onto Harry's.

"That poor boy, he suffered enough with Zayn and now this?"

"Yeah, but at least it's doing something good."

"Lou, Ni is up and he's asking for you," Fizzy said as she walked into the room, smiling at her brother and Harry.

"Thanks Fiz," Louis smiled and left the room to head upstairs.

"So you and Louis are back together?" Jay asked curiously as she eyed Harry who flushed under her gaze.

"Yeah, we finally talked things through and promised to work through everything together," Harry explained.

"If you hurt my brother again I won't hesitate to grab some scissors and cut your hair, understood?" Fizzy threatened Harry with a glare as she grabbed an apple.

"I promise I won't, but if I do I give you permission to do so."

Louis walked in with Niall in his arms and laughing as Niall whispered something into his ear.

"Family of the year," Fizzy teased and cooed at Niall who looked over at her with his hair all over the place.

"Hi Fizzy!" Niall waved at her.

"Hi bub."

Daisy walked in and took Niall from Louis before running off with a giggling Niall in her arms. Louis looked slightly surprised as did the others, but they soon laughed and went back to their previous conversations. The rest of the weekend passes by in a blur and by the time they're meant to leave on Sunday afternoon, Niall is reluctant to leave his new friends. He cries once he's put in the backseat of Louis' car and continues to do so even ten minutes into the drive until he's fast asleep.

Louis checks his phone once, his wallpaper being of Niall cuddled into Watson and both watching TV. Harry chuckles when he sees the picture and opens Louis' phone to text it to his phone.

"So he met Liam's giant dog?" Harry asks as he puts Louis' phone back.

"Yeah and I was slightly terrified of Watson squashing the poor boy."

"You know Watson wouldn't do that, you're just being paranoid because you don't really like him," Harry smirked, rubbing Louis' thigh as Louis continued to drive.

"Um not my fault, I honestly don't think dogs should be allowed to be that big. It's like having a fucking dinosaur in your house."

At home, Niall wakes up and seems to forget that he isn't with Louis' family anymore and goes on about the rest of his day happily. Niall forces Louis and Harry to play with him after a late dinner and then Louis bathes the boys.

"Lou, can we watch a movie?" Niall mumbled tiredly as Louis washed his hair.

"Sure, but only for a bit because it's almost bed time, yeah?" Louis warned the child who nodded with a tired grin on his face. "What movie do you wanna watch?"

"Hmm Tarzan please! He reminds me of Hazzy," Niall giggled and Louis let out a loud laugh as he looked at the child who continued to giggle.

"Who reminds you of me?" Harry questioned as he walked into the bathroom.

"Tarzan and you know, the kid is right. With the long hair and all," Louis teased his boyfriend who huffed but cracked a grin anyways as Niall continued to laugh.

"You guys think you're so funny, but I'll go look for the movie while you two finish up."

Soon the three were in Louis and Harry's room with Tarzan playing and Niall laying between the couple, fast asleep about halfway through the movie.

"You know, you do look like Tarzan," Louis mumbled, laying on his side and playing softly with Niall's hair.

"And you look like a hedgehog," Harry mumbled back with a smirk.

The three sleep together, Niall snuggled in between Louis and Harry with their arms wrapped protectively around him.

~June 29, 2015~

Niall's been quiet all day and it concerns both Harry and Louis quite a lot because usually the child would be running around all over the house. Now he just sits on the living room floor coloring on a black sheet of paper with a bunch of markers that Louis had bought for him.

"I'm really worried," Louis mumbled quietly.

"Me too, but I'm sure he's just having an off day. You know when big Ni had those he never wanted to talk to any of us until he felt better. Maybe it's the same way with little Ni," Harry suggested, wanting to believe his own words himself as the two stared at the child who was busy coloring and ignoring his two guardians.

Harry's phone rang and he walked off to answer it while Louis took a seat next to Niall who looked up at him with a tiny smile.

"What are you doing babe?" Louis asked softly, rubbing Niall's back and smiling when the child sighed and leaned into him.

"I want to make pretty pictures for you and Hazzy, Li and Zee and Lottie," Niall listed off though he rubbed his eyes tiredly and yawned cutely as he cuddled into Louis' side, dropping the marker.

"But I think my baby boy is tired and needs a little nap, yeah? We can finish coloring after."

Niall nodded and wrapped his arms around Louis' neck as the older lad stood up and carried the child upstairs to his temporary room. It looked more like a typical child's room now than a guest room. Toys were scattered around, the giant stuffed bear sitting in a corner of the room, little tiny shoes were pilling out of the closet and drawings that Niall's made taped to the walls.

"Night night, Lou," Niall mumbles.

"Night love, sleep well," Louis whispers and presses a kiss to Niall's head before putting him on the bed and covering him up with a blanket.

"Is he better?" Harry asked worriedly once he saw Louis walking down the stairs.

"Could have been because he was tired, but he was busy drawing though. Said he wanted to make us all a pretty picture," Louis smiled as he leaned up to peck Harry's lips.

"Now why don't we have some us time?" Harry asked, arms wrapped around Louis' waist as he moved his lips down to his neck to make a lovebite just below his ear.

*

"I made you a picture!" Niall declared happily as he shoved the piece of paper to Louis and Harry who'd been cuddled on the couch as Niall continued to draw.

"Yeah? Oh, it's so lovely Ni," Harry smiles as he looks at the stick figures.

Niall climbs on Louis' lap and sits down before explaining, "The very tall one with long brown hair is you, Hazzy. The tiny one is me and this one is Lou!"

Louis smiled as he stared at the three. Niall was in the middle of an exaggeratedly tall Harry and a medium sized Louis. All three had smiles on their faces and there were hearts surrounding them. Louis kissed the back of Niall's head as he wrapped an arm around him and whispered that he was proud.

"Can we put it on the fridge?" Harry asked as he looked at Niall who was resting comfortably on Louis' chest.

"Yes, but can you help me spell something?" Niall asked a bit shyly.

"Sure pumpkin, what do you need help with?"

"Spelling 'my family' at the top."

Both Harry and Louis looked at each other with teary eyes and smiles, before helping the boy spell the words. And once that was complete, they placed it on the fridge and stood back to admire it.

Chapter Text

~July 2, 2015~

Harry had left a day ago to go take care of some business in LA and Louis had stayed back with Niall who was a lot more calm now with Harry leaving. But of course, Niall just had to get sick when Harry was away.

"Lou, I don't feel good," Niall whined as he walked into the laundry room where Louis was folding clothes.

"Ni, I told you not to go out in the rain yesterday," Louis sighed as he finished folding one of Niall's shirts. "Alright babes, can you tell me what's wrong?"

"My head hurts and tummy feels funny," Niall answered, bowing his head in shame and staring at his sock covered feet.

"Well let's get you some medicine and make you rest. Come on," Louis smiled and picked up Niall who cuddled into him right away.

Louis struggles with getting Niall to take the medicine even though he fakes his excitement by saying that it tastes like grapes and then Niall argues that it doesn't. Niall takes it though and after that, Louis lays the child on the couch and puts on some cartoons before he goes off to finish folding his clothes. It's quiet as Louis heads up to put his clothes away and when he comes back down, he finds Niall fast asleep on the couch with his cheeks even more flushed than normal.

"Oh love," Louis whispers, leaning down to kiss the child's head.

Niall woke up not long after, whining and complaining about feeling ill and wanting cuddles from Louis. Louis only smiled and did as he was told as they watched cartoons.

"How are you feeling?" Louis asked softly, arms around the child who was leaning back against his chest and rubbing his tummy.

"I feel better cause you're here with me. Don't leave me, Lou," Niall mumbled as he turned around in Louis' lap to wrap his arms around Louis' neck.

"Oh babe," Louis cooed with a large smile and hugged the child back.

Halfway through the night, Louis was awakened to Niall's loud cries and he sat up in bed frightened though slightly used to this new routine from the child's part. He stumbled out of bed, nearly falling flat on his face, before racing to Niall's room. Once inside he found Niall sitting up in bed and hiccuping. Louis turned on the light and found a puddle of sick on the floor near Niall's bed and the ex-blonde boy was flushed and his hair stuck to his damp forehead.

"Oh baby, did you get sick?" Louis cooed as he avoided the puddle and picked up Niall who was trembling in his arms as he continued to cry, coughing into Louis' shoulder as he did. "Let's get you in a quick bath and I'll clean this up. Oh sweetie, you're burning up."

Niall only whimpered and held onto Louis tighter. After a quick bath and cleaning up the vomit from Niall's room, Louis gave the child some medicine and took him into his room, settling him on the large bed before getting in himself.

"You doing good?" Louis asked, running his hand through Niall's damp hair.

"I'm cold," Niall whimpered, looking up at Louis in absolute misery and Louis really wishes he could take his boy's pain away.

"Then I'll cuddle you and wrap you up in blankets until you feel warm and I'll give you lots of kisses and cuddles until you feel better," Louis declared with a smile as he pulled the blankets up to Niall's shoulders and pulled him into his chest, holding a shivering child tightly.

~July 3, 2015~

Niall was still awfully sick the next day and Louis was worried he'd have to take him to the hospital if his fever kept climbing. Liam and Zayn were over as soon as they were informed the child was sick to give Louis a bit of a break since the older lad had been awake almost all night with Niall who couldn't sleep.

"Have you told Harry?" Liam asked Louis as they left Zayn in the living room with Niall who was half asleep on the Bradford boy but was refusing to shut his eyes all the way.

"Shit, I haven't. I'll call him right now," Louis mumbled and took his phone out, dialing Harry's number and hoping his boyfriend wasn't busy.

"Hi love, how's it going?" Came Harry's voice from the other line.

"Hey Harry. We've got a bit of a situation here."

"What's wrong? Is Niall okay?"

"He's sick and I don't want to worry you or make you come-"

"Are you crazy? I'll be there as soon as I can, alright babe and keep me updated."

Louis had no time to say anything else as Harry hung up and he sighed. Walking back towards the living room, he found Niall clinging to Zayn who was rubbing his back and Liam was changing the channels.

"How are you feeling sweetie?" Louis asks the child softly.

"Bad."

And bad was an understatement. His fever wouldn't go down and still couldn't keep much down. Liam, Zayn and Louis were worried for the little boy who was paler than normal and dark circles under his eyes from the lack of sleep.

"He's finally asleep," Louis sighed tiredly as he walked into the kitchen after leaving Niall up in his room. "And his fever went down a lot, so I'm really praying he'll be better by tomorrow."

"Hopefully. Well I'm gonna get going and you should get some rest, it's been a long day," Zayn said as stood up from his seat and pulled Louis into a hug. "Take care and call if you need anything."

"Yeah, thanks for helping out," Louis mumbled and pulled away from Zayn who nodded and left.

"I'm gonna head out too so you can sleep, you'll need it," Liam grinned and hugged Louis as well before walked out.

Half an hour later, Louis was in his room fast asleep. It was late when Niall cried out for Louis, but he quieted down which made the older sleep filled lad confused. He heard hushed voices and he grew concerned, quickly racing out of his room and to Niall's where he saw Harry and Louis let out a sigh.

"Jesus, you scared me. Thought someone broke in or something," Louis mumbled, approaching the two with a hand over his heart.

"Sorry, was going up the stairs when Niall started calling for you," Harry replied, Niall resting on his hip with tears still streaming down his cheeks.

"What's wrong, bug?" Louis asked, wiping away Niall's tears.

"Bad dream," Niall whimpered, clinging to Harry who was rocking him gently.

"And how are you feeling? Do you still feel icky?" Harry asked Niall, rubbing his back and his lips pressed to the child's head.

"Not too bad, my tummy still feels funny though," Niall answered.

"Do you feel like you're going to throw up?"

Niall shook his head and so Louis suggested they let Niall sleep with them.

"I talked to Gia and asked her about this because I remember her saying there could be some side effects from the spell," Harry spoke quietly as he and Louis talked a bit away from the bed where Niall was currently curled up in the middle.

"And what did she say?" Louis asked desperately.

"That it shouldn't last more than three days, but if it does and his fever gets worse she said to call her right away and not the hospital. She said that it's Niall's body way of coping with the sudden transition, though she did say she was surprised that it had taken this long."

"Is that a bad thing?" Louis asked worriedly, following Harry into the bathroom.

"No, just said that people react differently to the spell," Harry shrugged and Louis narrowed his eyes when the curly haired lad wouldn't meet his eyes. But before Louis could ask, Niall started to whine.

"I'm lonely!" Niall called from the room and they smiled fondly before Louis walked over to the child.

"I'm sorry bug, I had to talk to Hazzy first but now I'm here to cuddle you," Louis told Niall as he got on the bed and let Niall cuddle into his chest.

"Night night."

"Night."

Harry soon joined them and laid down on Niall's other side. He pecked Louis' lips and then kissed Niall's head lightly before settling down for the night.

~July 4, 2015~

In the morning Louis woke up and smiled when he saw Niall sleeping peacefully half on top of Harry and Harry's arm wrapped protectively around the child. Louis took a quick picture before moving closer to them and kissing Niall's cheek. Niall whined and tried pushing Louis away when he went in for another kiss and Louis laughed which made both Harry and Niall wake up.

"Lou!" Niall whined, glaring at Louis.

"I'm sorry bug, sleep okay?" Louis asked as Harry shifted so Niall was resting on his chest.

"Yeah and I don't feel icky anymore," Niall grins.

"So glad you're feeling better, Nialler," Harry speaks, well more like mumbles.

"And how about we bake some cookies later, yeah?" Louis asked Niall who gasped in excitement.

"Yes please!"

Harry made them breakfast and Liam and Zayn called to ask how Niall was doing. Their morning was pretty uneventful and eventually all three were making cookies. Niall tried being sneaky as he ate the chocolate chips, but Harry always caught him and would jokingly scold him.

"Babe, you're going to finish the chocolate chips before we can make the cookies," Louis whined as he looked at Niall who was looking at him with a pout and chocolate smeared on his lips.

"But I like the tiny chocolate," Niall whined back, popping another chip into his mouth just to further annoy Louis.

"Well how about I give you a bigger chocolate so there's enough of these for the cookies, yeah?" Harry asked Niall who nodded, eyes wide and bright as he made grabby hands at Harry who chuckled and picked him up.

"He's gonna get a sugar rush, Haz," Louis scolded his younger boyfriend who only shrugged as he gave Niall a chocolate bar.

Louis finished making the cookies and Harry placed them in the oven, Niall already bouncing off the walls and knocking into things until Harry let him out into the backyard. Niall found a soccer ball and began to kick it out, the ball never going to far with his tiny little legs. Louis laughed when Niall slipped and fell on his butt, Harry simply smacking his arm as he asked Niall if he was okay.

"He's fine," Louis simply waved off as Niall giggled and ran up to them.

"Did you see me?! I fell!" Niall laughed, jumping slightly in place.

"You did bud, now how about we check on those cookies to make sure they don't burn?" Louis suggested, lifting up the small child who nodded. The three head back inside and to the kitchen where the cookies are coming along nicely, but still need more minutes in the heat so Harry pours Niall some juice into a cup and they sit at the table.

"Can I go color?" Niall asks when he's done with his juice and Louis nods, watching Niall run off.

"How was LA?" Louis asked his boyfriend, holding his hands.

"Tiring. Worked a lot, met up with Jeff, got a song finished though I'm gonna need your guys input on it. Sent it to Julian, said it was sick but I still need my boys to decide," Harry grinned, leaning over to peck Louis' lips.

"And you know I'll say yes even if you decide to write about kale and all your juice cleanses or shit," Louis teased.

"Bad word!" Niall shouted from the living room, running into the kitchen. "Lou said a bad word!"

Harry chuckles while Louis looks quite shocked at the sudden turn of events. He really does forget that Niall is only five and not twenty one and swearing after almost every word.

"Oh, I'm sorry love, I thought you wouldn't be able to hear," Louis finally explains himself as he ruffles Niall's long hair, reminding himself yet again to call Lou to give him a trim or something.

"It's alright, but next time you owe me something," Niall sassed, looking at Louis expectantly

"Oh okay. You're getting quite bossy, mister."

"Am not. It smells like cookies! Are they done yet?" Niall whined, leaning completely into Louis' side and letting Harry play with his hair.

"A few more minutes, pumpkin, but then you need to let them cool so you don't burn yourself," Harry replied, chuckling when Niall whined more.

Niall ran off again, leaving Louis and Harry in a comfortable silence. Louis sighed as he looked at Harry, remembering last night.

"Last night when you were telling me about Gia, there's something else, isn't there?" Louis questioned, watching the way Harry's eyes widened and how he averted his gaze from him to the table. "Harry, you need to tell me if there's more, if there's something else I should now about."

"It's just- we might need the others here for this Lou. I mean, Gia said it doesn't happen very often, but it's a possibility."

"Harry, you're scaring me," Louis whispered, feeling his heart beat accelerate as a thousand different scenarios went off in his head. "Just tell me and we can discuss this with the boys."

Before Harry could say anything, the timer went off and it made both Harry and Louis jump in the process. Niall cheered from the living room before running in as Harry stood up to get the cookies out of the oven.

"Alright pumpkin, we just gotta let them cool yeah? And then you can eat one," Harry told Niall who pouted.

"Two?" Niall asked hopefully, widening his big blue eyes and pouting cutely at Harry, knowing he always got his way when he did that and Louis shook his head fondly as he chuckled.

"Two and no more because you gotta take a nap."

"But it's way past my nap time!" Niall stomped his foot and Harry sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose.

"Don't test me, boy."

"I'm not a boy, I'm a pumpkin!" Niall cried, glaring up at Harry and Louis bit back his laugh that threatened to escape.

"Go color and I'll call you to get your cookies."

Niall huffed and walked off angrily while Louis stared after the child. Harry took his seat again and they stared at each other for a bit before Harry sighed.

"Gia said that Niall being a child could be permanent," Harry eventually choked out and Louis felt lightheaded as the air seemed to escape his lungs.

"P-Permanent?" Louis stuttered out, running a hand down his face. "But how? Why?"

"She said that it's only happened twice in the almost ten times that she's cursed someone like this. She still doesn't know how or why, but she guesses it's because maybe the ingredients are off or she adds too much or too little of something."

"Harry, we can't do this permanently. This- this isn't even normal! A month ago he was still our Niall and now we're taking care of him? Practically raising him?!" Louis spoke, his tone getting more and more higher pitched as he stood up to pace the kitchen.

"I know Lou, but she did say it didn't happen very often, so we've got a higher chance that in five months from now we'll get our Niall back. Don't stress about it, yeah babe?" Harry told Louis as he pulled him into his arms.

"H-How would we know?"

"Well if by December when Gia tries changing him back, if he doesn't within a one week period than we're screwed, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there. For now let's just focus on the now," Harry mumbled into Louis' hair as he rubbed the shorter lad's back.

Eventually Harry went to go get Niall so he could have his cookies, but found him fast asleep on the living room floor with a blue crayon in his hand and a sheet of paper with swirls and circles laying next to him. Harry cooed and picked up Niall carefully, shushing him when the child stirred and mumbled something. Niall was taken up to his room while Louis cleaned up Niall's mess in the living room.

"Can't believe he fell asleep when he'd been begging for a damn cookie all day," Louis huffed as he sat on the couch and turned on the TV, making Harry laugh as he sat next to him.

"And then he'll wake up asking for one," Harry mumbled as he cuddled Louis close.

And true to Harry's word, the minute Niall is downstairs, he starts asking for his cookies and Louis goes to fetch them for the blonde. Niall sits on the ground in front of the TV munching happily on his cookies while Harry heads off to sort dinner. Louis lays down next to Niall on his stomach and steals a bite of his cookie when the child isn't looking.

"Hey!" Niall whined, pouting at Louis who laughed and Niall tried shielding his cookie away.

"It's yummy," was all Louis said as he smirked at Niall who finished his cookie before throwing himself on top of the older man.

"Ow you little brat! Your bony fingers are hurting my ribs," Louis coughed out as he turned on his back with Niall on his stomach. "Are you upset cause I ate your cookie?"

"Yes, it was mine Lou Lou," Niall pouted, his little fingers tracing over Louis' chest tattoo that was poking out from his shirt.

"Well I'm sorry, but I really wanted a bite."

"Then you should have gotten your own, hmm?"

"Yes but it's so far away!" Louis cried dramatically, jostling Niall from side to side and making him laugh.

"You're silly," Niall giggled, leaning down to kiss Louis' left cheek before snuggling into him with his head under Louis' chin.

"And you're silly too, my silly boy," Louis grins, his arms wrapped protectively around Niall.

Chapter Text

~July 5, 2015~

"So you're saying this could be permanent?" Liam asked in disbelief as he looked up at his two best friends with wide eyes.

"Gia said it hasn't happened much so there's a bigger chance he'll turn back when the time comes," Harry assured a shocked Zayn and Liam.

"But there's still that small percentage though and fuck, we'd be so screwed if it did happen. We'd have to come clean about this whole situation and the fans would go crazy knowing the cute Irish one is a kid again."

"Calm down Payno, like Harry said, we'll most likely get our old Nialler back," Zayn assured Liam, patting the lad's back while Louis rolled his eyes fondly. "Where is the little munchkin anyways?"

"I'm right here!" Niall shouted as he jumped out and scared them all in the process.

"Ni, you're going to kill me one day," Louis panted, hand over his heart as he glared at the giggling five year old.

"Hi snowflake, where were you?" Zayn asked with a large smile as he pulled Niall onto his lap.

"I was asleep because it was my nap time," Niall grinned, covering Zayn's eyes with his hands.

"Yeah? Well now I can't see your cute face," Zayn pouted.

"Too bad," Niall shrugged with a giggle.

"How's Soph?" Harry asks as they all settle around on the couches.

"Doing great, was thinking since we've got this break that I might take her out on vacation for a few weeks. Get away from it all and relax before we start the hassle of touring and recording again," Liam explained with a smile. "And she wants to see Niall again, misses him."

"I want a cookie!" Niall suddenly shouted, getting off of Zayn's lap and tugging him towards the kitchen.

"Only one, Neil!" Louis shouts after the child who huffs and Zayn chuckles.

"'S kinda weird seeing the two together again, but not in that way. In fact, thinking about them in that way is weird since Niall is a kid and all," Harry mumbled as he returned his gaze to Liam and Louis who laughed.

"Can I have three?" Niall asked Zayn.

"One or Louis will kill me," Zayn warned the child who pouted.

"Two."

"One."

"Fine," Niall huffed and took the cookie Zayn gave him. "Sometimes I dream about you."

Zayn froze as he looked down at the child who was busy looking at his cookie. The dark haired male frowned as he tried to find the right question to ask. Sure he knew that Niall would be having flashbacks of his old life in his dreams, but Zayn was worried about what Niall was dreaming about.

"Oh yeah? What about?" Zayn asked as he picked up Niall and set him on the counter.

"You being mean to big Ni. A lot of yelling and it scares me," Niall shrugs, still too focused on his cookie which is half gone now.

Zayn stares at Niall feeling his heart pound in his chest. He remembers the last time he ever talked to Niall, it was before he left the OTRA tour for "stress" though he knew he wasn't coming back. He and Niall had an argument that escalated too much and things were said and actions were almost done. Zayn felt guilty afterwards, but he'd already broken up with Niall and the others wouldn't let him near the then blonde.

"Finish your cookie, I'll be back," Zayn mumbled and headed off, but minutes later when he didn't return and Niall's cookie was long gone, the blonde began to whine because he wanted to get off the counter and last time he jumped off he hurt himself and Louis and Harry had yelled at him and told him to never do it again, but instead wait or tell someone to get him down.

"Can somebody help me?!" Niall called impatiently as he swung his legs back and forth, turning around to make sure someone would come in and help him off.

Harry walked in and frowned when he saw Niall alone in the kitchen and siting on the counter. He approached the child and picked him up, giving him another cookie in the process and Niall thanked him quietly.

"What happened, pumpkin? Where's Zayn?" Harry asked curiously as he settled Niall on his hip and looked around to make sure Zayn wasn't just in the bathroom or on his phone somewhere, but the kitchen window gave view to the driveway and frowned even more when his friend's car wasn't in the driveway.

"Said he'd be back but he left me here, stranded on an island," Niall cried over dramatically, handing Harry the last bite of his cookie.

"You need to spend less time with Louis, you're starting to act like him."

"Heard that. Now what's this about Zayn leaving Niall stranded on an island?" Louis asked as him and Liam walked into the kitchen.

"Zayn left," Harry shrugged, finishing Niall's cookie.

"Do you know why, Ni?" Liam questioned the child who was busy playing with Harry's long hair.

"I just told him I sometimes dreamed about him. And that it scares me when he's yelling in my dreams," Niall shrugged, not looking over at the others as he kept playing with Harry's hair and twirling it around his finger.

"I'll go see if I can find him. I'll call you once I do and I'll have a nice long chat with him," Liam sighed and kissed Niall's cheek goodbye.

Niall was off playing a few minutes later and Harry and Louis were kissing in the kitchen with Harry pressing Louis back into the counter. They pulled away before they got too carried away and scarred the poor boy who was singing along with the cartoon he was watching.

"We should have a weekend to ourselves. I'll cook something romantic for us, have some wine, with candles everywhere and I'll give you some roses and then we can make love all weekend long," Harry mumbled into Louis' ear, his fingers gripping Louis' hips a little tightly.

"Yeah? And what about our kid? Who are we gonna ship him off to? Maybe my sisters?" Louis questioned, eyes clouded over with lust as he stared into Harry's green eyes.

"Your sisters sound good. Besides, Lottie keeps bugging me to send her pictures of Niall."

Louis laughed and pecked Harry's lips before pushing him off gently. Louis went off to call Lottie while Harry went to tell Niall.

"Hey pumpkin?" Harry called as he took a seat next to the child.

"Yes, Harry?"

"How would you like to spend the weekend with Louis' family?"

"Really?! I wanna sleep over at Lottie's please! I wanna see Lottie and Fizzy and Daisy, Phoebe and the babies!" Niall listed off. "And Lou's mommy and Dan too."

"You're so cute, but yeah. You'll get to spend the weekend with them," Harry grinned, getting the wind knocked out of him when Niall jumped on him.

Louis walked in with a grin and sat next to his boys.

"Lottie said she's more than happy to have the pumpkin over all weekend. Told her we'd drop him off Friday afternoon and pick him up either Sunday afternoon or Monday morning," Louis informed Harry who nodded and went back to trying to get Niall off of him.

~July 10, 2015~

"Alright pumpkin, you promise to be good all weekend?" Harry asked the child for the millionth time as they pulled up at Louis' family home,

"I promise to be extra very good!" Niall vowed, playing with his stuffed penguin that Harry vaguely remembers Luke Hemmings giving Niall back during their Take Me Home tour and it somehow ended up in Louis' place sometime after the tour.

"Okay, bug, we're here," Louis announced after he shut off the car and unlocked the doors.

Both Harry and Louis got out; Harry grabbing Niall's bag which was filled with clothes, some toys, shoes, a towel and other things Niall might need while Louis helped Niall out of the car. Niall held Louis' hand as they walked up the front steps, feeling slightly anxious about spending three possibly four days away from his boys. Félicité opened the door and smiled down at Niall who let go of Louis' hand to wrap his arms around her legs.

"Hi honey, ready for a fun weekend?" She asked as she picked him up and kissed his chubby cheek.

"Ready!" Niall giggled, arm around her neck as he looked over at Harry and Louis who were smiling.

"Alright so we'll be back Sunday afternoon most likely, if not then Monday morning and everything he needs is in the bag but please don't hesitate to call us if something happens. He isn't allergic to anything as far as we know, and he's scared of the dark so always leave some light on for bed," Louis explained, holding Harry's hand a little tight as the anxiety filled his body at the thought of being separated from Niall for a whole weekend.

"Hey chill, big bro. We know how to take care of kids and mom's an expert anyways," she laughed, taking the bag from Harry and handing Niall over to them so they could say bye.

"Alright pumpkin, be good," Harry said as he pressed his lips to the boy's temple. "We'll call before your bedtime and I love you."

"Love you too, Hazzy," Niall sniffles as he hugged Harry round his neck.

Louis hugged and kissed the boy goodbye before they were off and Niall stood at the doorway watching them drive off until the car was no longer visible. Fizzy smiled softly and pulled Niall inside so she could close the door.

"Come on honey, let's go find the others," she spoke with enthusiasm as she held his hand and lead him inside the house where Doris and Ernest were shrieking with laughter in the living room.

"My little Ni-bug is here!" Lottie cheered as she ran over to scoop him up into her arms and kissed his cheeks, leaving red lipstick stains and making Niall giggle. "Come on, I want you to meet my boyfriend Tommy."

"Though technically he already met me," Tommy spoke, but smiled at Niall. And yeah Tommy was shocked because the last time he'd seen Niall, he'd been blonde and twenty one with a beer in his hand. "Hi there, I'm Tommy."

"Hi! I'm Niall," the child grinned.

"So he's staying with the twins?" Félicité asked her older sister.

"Yeah, Dan set up one of those kid beds that Daisy had," Lottie explained, setting Niall down and watching him wander over to where Phoebe was on her phone.

*

"Oh god Harry, I miss him!" Louis whined not even a minute after they'd dropped Niall off.

"Me too babe, but he'll be fine and besides, we need some us time," Harry assured his boyfriend who was staring out the window.

"The house will be so quiet without him, but it's how it's going to be once Gia turns him back to normal and all that. Though we will have plenty of blackmail for the future," Louis grinned mischievously which made Harry laugh, one hand on the steering wheel and the other on Louis' thigh.

"He's going to hate you once he sees those pictures of him sucking his thumb and whatnot, won't even thank you for taking care of him and I'll still be forever his favorite best friend/dad."

"Ugh Harold, you're such an ass kisser. So has Liam contacted Malik?"

"Nope and Niall asked me this morning why his Zaynie hadn't been over to see him and I'm thinking Niall's blaming himself a bit over Zayn leaving."

"That kid has always had too big of a heart, blames himself too easily," Louis sighed sadly. "But when I see Malik I'm gonna punch him real good because I warned him not to hurt Niall again."

"Oh, mama Louis getting angry, I find it hot," Harry purred as he moved his hand higher up his boyfriend's thigh.

"Call me mama Louis one more time and I'll turn this car around and get Niall and you can forget about not getting laid for another month," Louis threatened and Harry backed off.

"Though technically you are like a mom to him so then that makes me his dad," Harry said a few minutes later and Louis growled.

*

"I wish you could stay like this forever," Daisy giggled as she looked at Niall who was drawing her a picture, his penguin still stuck to his side.

"You better be careful with what you put up on Snapchat, we don't need the fans finding out about this," Lottie warned her younger sisters after she caught Phoebe taking a picture of Niall's drawing.

"No worries, Lotts," Phoebe grinned.

Lottie and Tommy took Niall out for dinner and had a nice evening out, but then it was getting to be bedtime and Niall was starting to miss Louis and Harry.

"They're gonna call soon, love," Fizzy cooed as she finished changing the child.

"But I miss my home," Niall whimpered as he looked up at her with big blue teary eyes.

"Oh love, but we're going to have so much fun together and that way Louis and Harry can spend some time together and they'll probably get you a present if you're good."

"I like presents," Niall pouted. "But I want Hazzy and Lou!"

"I've got a phone call for a Niall?" Lottie grinned as she walked into the room with her phone in her hands. "It's from a Louis and Harry."

Niall perked up a bit and took the phone from Lottie.

"Hi!" Niall greeted them as he bounced on his bed excitedly.

"Hi kiddo, how was your day?" Louis asked softly.

Niall went on and on about what they did and how he shared a chocolate cake with Tommy because Lottie wouldn't let him eat it all on his own. His excitement faded and he let out a sigh as he began to play with the blankets.

"Tired, pumpkin?" Harry asked worriedly at Niall's sudden silence.

"I miss you a lot, when you coming to get me?" Niall mumbled, sniffling as he struggled to hold in his tears.

"Oh honey, we miss you too but I promise it won't be long, yeah? And then when we go and pick you up we can go and get some ice cream and have a nice day out together, yeah?"

"Okay."

"Alright pumpkin, it's time for bed. Have sweet dreams," Harry told him.

"Night night. Love you."

"We love you too, kiddo, night."

Niall handed the phone back to Lottie and let Fizzy tuck him in bed. Fizzy smiled and brushed his hair back, pressing a soft kiss to his forehead. Lottie came over as well and kissed his head too.

"Night Ni-bug, have sweet dreams and if you need us, my room is right across the hall and Fizzy's is the last one on the right," Lottie told the child who nodded and clutched at his stuffed penguin.

"Night," Niall told them with a soft smile and watched them leave, leaving a small lamp on.

~July 11, 2015~

Surprisingly Niall slept through the night and after he woke up, he realized the twins were no longer in their cribs and he could hear Phoebe out in the hall. So Niall climbed out of bed still clutching his penguin and headed out of the room. He stood there and watched Phoebe who was arguing with Daisy until the girl turned around and smiled at Niall.

"Hi Ni! Did you sleep okay?" Phoebe asked as she picked up Niall and let him snuggle into her.

"Yes, but I'm hungry," Niall complained.

"Well let's go eat then!"

Downstairs, Lottie was helping their mom make breakfast while Dan was in the living room with the twins. They had a very loud breakfast and all Niall did was watch with wide eyes and little giggles escaping his lips. After that, he was changed into his clothes and then they spent the whole day outside playing in the yard.

~July 12, 2015~

It was around four in the afternoon when Harry and Louis arrived to pick up Niall. Dan opened the door with a sleepy Doris on his hip and smiled at the two, letting them in.

"Had a nice weekend boys?" He asked with a smirk and Louis rolled his eyes while Harry blushed.

"Excellent, now where's our kid?" Louis asked, noticing the lack of Niall's giggles.

"Upstairs with the girls, I'm slightly worried so I would go up and check on them to make sure they aren't corrupting him or something."

"Knowing my sisters, they're probably testing any new makeup they've got on him. Come on Harold."

The two headed upstairs and Niall's giggles were coming from Phoebe's room. They stopped at the doorway of her room and found him having a tea party with the girls. They were sipping actual tea with cookies and Phoebe leaned over to kiss Niall's cheek which made him blush.

"Having fun?" Louis chuckled and Niall turned his head around so fast both Harry and Louis feared the boy would get whiplash.

"Lou! Haz!" Niall cheered and ran up to them with his arms up ready to be picked up, his penguin laying on the ground forgotten.

"Hi pumpkin, ready to go home?" Harry asked as he picked up Niall and hugged him tight.

"Yes please!"

"Alright then, go get your bag and then come back so you can say bye," Louis smiled and ruffled Niall's hair.

Soon the three were heading back home, Niall singing along happily in the backseat as he made his penguin dance on his lap. Louis was secretly recording the boy while Harry drove.

"What do you want for dinner, bug?" Louis asked as he put his phone away and turned around in his seat to face Niall.

"Hmm, pizza? I love pizza," Niall smiled dreamily at the thought of pizza. "Penguin says he likes pizza too."

"Well then let's eat some pizza and then the ice cream that I promised."

"Ice cream!"

Harry bathed Niall early while Louis ordered the pizzas. They'd made plans to eat their dinner in the living room while they spent the rest of the afternoon watching movies and letting Niall stay up a bit later than his usual bedtime, though they could both see that Niall was tired since Lottie told them he hadn't had his nap that day because he'd been too excited for their arrival.

"So did you have a lot of fun with Louis' sisters?" Harry asked as he washed Niall's hair with the kids shampoo that smelled of strawberries.

"A lot of fun, though I missed you a lot and I didn't like going to bed because it felt weird," Niall answered with a small shrug as he dunked his rubber duck under water. "I don't like sleeping in different places, it feels weird.

"Trust me, I know," Harry chuckled lightly. "Close your eyes and tilt your head back, pumpkin, don't want the soap to get in your eyes."

Niall did as he was told and Harry rinsed off the shampoo. Soon the water was being drained from the tub and Niall was being wrapped in a big fluffy towel before Harry carried him to his room where Louis had laid out some pajamas for Niall. They were superhero themed and Niall's favorite because they weren't too hot or uncomfortable to sleep in. And boy did Niall complain a lot about his pajamas so they had to practically wash those every week, though Niall would settle with different ones from time to time.

"Alright, all done," Harry declared after he'd dressed Niall and brushed his hair. "Now go find Lou while I take a quick shower, yeah?"

Niall nodded and ran downstairs. Louis was in the living room watching a soccer game when Niall took a seat next to him on the couch.

"All clean, babe? You smell very nice," Louis smiled as he pulled Niall to sit on his lap.

"Like strawberries, I like strawberries," Niall giggled, tracing Louis' tattooed arms that were wrapped around his waist protectively.

"What don't you like, bug," Louis teased with a light chuckle.

Their pizzas arrived just as Harry was descending the stairs and Niall clung to Louis' legs as he watched the delivery boy hand the boxes to him and Louis give him money. The guy waved at Niall who waved back with a giggle before running off to Harry. Louis laughed and closed the door, making his way into the living room and setting the two boxes on the coffee table. Harry walked in with plates and two sodas along with a cup with apple juice for Niall.

"Alright boys, what movie shall we watch first?" Louis asked. "And don't you dare say Tarzan again, Neil."

"Ugh, fine. Um I wanna watch Lilo and Stitch! Please," Niall added with a small blush on his cheeks as he took the pepperoni off his pizza and ate it.

"Love that movie," Harry commented more to himself as he settled back as Louis put the movie on Netflix.

They were halfway done with the second movie when Harry brought out the ice cream and handed each their own bowl. Niall had a napkin over his lap in case of any accidents as he ate since he got distracted a lot with the movie and would sometimes let the ice cream sit on his spoon until it melted.

Niall didn't last much after his usual bedtime and he was fast asleep with his head resting on Louis' lap and his penguin clutched to his chest as another movie played on the screen quietly. Harry looked over and smiled fondly as Louis played with Niall's hair gently.

"We're doing great, aren't we?" Harry spoke quietly, staring into Louis' blue eyes.

"We're doing great," Louis chorused, blue looking into green.

Chapter Text

~July 15, 2015

Things were going great. A little too great, until they weren't. It was early Wednesday when Louis was on his twitter scrolling through after having tweeted something in Niall's account when he saw the pictures. Pictures of Kendall Jenner and Harry in LA along with an article suggesting that they were rekindling their romance or wondering if it was just a summer adventure. The pictures were taken back when Harry was in LA and boy was Louis angry.

"Hi babe," Harry greeted as he walked down the stairs and into the kitchen where Louis was sitting on a stool at the island with his phone clutched tightly in his hands. "Are you alright?"

"You didn't tell me you met up with that Jenner girl while you were in LA or that you would be doing a stunt with her," Louis said through gritted teeth as his eyes looked up to glare at Harry who looked quite surprised.

"Well I didn't get the chance to with Niall sick and me having to fly back from LA!" Harry huffed, crossing his arms across his chest and putting his weight on one leg.

"Well I didn't tell you to come back now did I? I told you I could handle it and don't go blaming Niall for this."

"You're so fucking stubborn all the time. I know you couldn't handle it because I know Liam and Zayn were over to help you and besides I said that we were in this together so Niall is as much my responsibility as he is yours. And besides, it's not the first time I'm made to go on a PR date."

"No, but you knew about it and didn't bother telling me, Harry. This is why we broke up the first time because you weren't telling me things and instead I had to find out from other people that you were seen out and about with Swift," Louis sighed, running a hand through his hair angrily and tugging on it in exasperation.

"Well I'm sorry I forgot!" Harry shouted.

While the two were busy arguing with each other, they didn't notice Niall standing near the doorway of the kitchen looking frightened and clutching at his stuffed penguin tightly. He watched on with wide blue eyes and soon found himself with his little hands pressed against his ears to block out their yelling. He couldn't believe or understand why the two men were yelling at each other when everything had been fine half an hour ago. He was scared because he'd never seen Louis or Harry with such angry faces.

Niall had originally come into the kitchen because he was hungry, but he decided that he could wait instead and left, going up to his room to hopefully block out the yelling. Closing his bedroom door, Niall went over to his giant teddy that was sitting in a corner of the room and curled up into its belly. A small whimper left his lips when something crashed downstairs and the yelling only grew louder.

"Oh Penguin, I want them to stop," Niall whimpered as he clutched both his stuffed animals tightly and closed his eyes.

"I just can't believe you're acting like I shouldn't be mad, for fuck's sake Harry. I told you every single time I had to go out with Eleanor and even when I went out to party after we 'broke up'. Why is it so hard for you to tell me things?" Louis asked clearly upset and shook his head when he received no reply.

"It's been awhile since we've been together Lou, of course I'm going to forget," Harry spoke gently, wanting to approach Louis but the older man only shook his head.

"The fact that you actually dated Kendall is what really hurts me here Harry," Louis mumbled and left the kitchen.

Harry sighed and leaned against the counter with his phone on the counter and the screen lighting up with three missed texts. Soon the front door opened and closed and the sound of Louis' car speeding off is what made Harry grab his own car keys and leave.

Niall didn't know how long it'd been since he locked himself in his room, but suddenly he realized the house was quiet and decided it was time to go see what was going on. So he silently opened his bedroom door and headed down the stairs carefully. Once downstairs he frowned when Harry and Louis were nowhere to be found. Calling out their names, Niall got no response, simply the quietness of the house answering him.

"T-They left me," Niall whimpered, sitting down in the middle of the hall right in front of the front door with his bottom lip trembling.

Niall began to cry, not knowing what else to do. He was alone and didn't know why Harry and Louis forgot about him. The minutes ticked and he cried and cried until he was coughing and choking on his own breath. He waited though, hopeful that they would remember him and come back but they never did.

The doorbell went off and it startled Niall who was half asleep on the ground, but he quickly got up to open the door thinking it was one of his boys. It wasn't and instead he found Zayn standing there.

"Z-Zee!" Niall sobbed, making grabby hands at Zayn who frowned worriedly before picking up the child.

"Babes, what's wrong? Why are you crying?" Zayn asked as he closed the front door and bounced the child around to get him to calm down. "Where are Harry and Louis?"

"T-They were fighting a-and t-then left," Niall cried, clutching Zayn tighter.

Zayn was angry. How could they have forgotten about Niall like that? And boy was he going to have a nice long chat about this with them. For now Zayn called Liam and explained the situation.

"Bring him over to mine, maybe pack an overnight bag first so he can stay here and let the other two cool down and think about what happened," Liam sighed sadly, hearing Niall's sobs through the line.

"Alright, we'll be there in half an hour."

Zayn hung up and walked up the stairs, peeking in the rooms until he found Niall's and really he wasn't shocked at the large bear or the amount of toys scattered around. Niall was being spoiled and really, Zayn wasn't shocked since they'd always sort of babied him before this.

"Alright babes, I'm going to pack some of your things so you can spend the night with Liam and Sophia, yeah? Would you like that?" Zayn cooed as he set Niall down on his bed.

Niall only nodded and hiccuped as he rubbed his eyes tiredly. He watched as Zayn searched the room for some extra clothes and his pajamas stuffing them in a bag he found in the closet. Soon Zayn was picking up Niall again but before they could leave, Niall asked for his penguin. On the drive to Liam's place, Niall fell asleep and Zayn couldn't help but sigh at the tear stains on his cheeks.

"Has he been asleep for long?" Liam asked when Zayn walked in with Niall in his arms.

"No, maybe ten minutes or so. Where can I put him?" Zayn asked quietly.

"Up in our room. Here, I'll take him," Sophia offered with a soft smile and took Niall gently from Zayn, shushing him when Niall began to stir and mumble.

The two men waited until Sophia had disappeared up the stairs with Niall before heading into the kitchen where Liam prepared them some tea.

"Have you tried calling them?" Zayn asked as he took a seat at the table.

"I called Louis, but his phone is off and Harry answered but didn't even let me talk, just said that it wasn't a good time and I called again but it was off," Liam sighed. "Glad you went over though, who knows when they would have been back. If they'd even come back today."

"I wonder if this whole drama is because of those Kendall and Harry pictures that leaked today."

"Yeah, I wondered that too."

Sophia walked in a few minutes later with Niall in her arms and he smiled when he saw Liam, making grabby hands at the man who chuckled and took him from Sophia.

"Weren't you sleeping you silly little boy?" Liam questioned as he tickled Niall's stomach, causing him to laugh.

"Well I'm not tired anymore," Niall replied through his giggles.

"Do you want something to eat? I'm sure you haven't eaten yet, have you?" Sophia asked Niall who shook his head. "Want a peanut butter and jelly sandwich?"

"Yes please!"

Niall was sitting in the seat next to Liam as he waited for his food. Zayn was sending some texts to Louis and Harry about how angry he was at them for leaving Niall behind. The boy was happy for now as he ate and chattered away and once he was done, Watson decided to stroll in and barked happily when he saw Niall who squealed and ran after the dog. The three adults talked quietly as they waited to hear from Louis or Harry.

It was getting late when Liam's phone went off with Louis' picture and name flashing on the screen. He quickly answered it and didn't even let Louis talk before he went on and on about how angry he was.

"How the fuck could you leave Niall alone? Are you and Harry that far up your own asses to realize that you have a five year old child under your care?!" Liam yelled angrily, beginning to pace the kitchen and Sophia ran out to the living room where Niall was when she heard him whimper. "Actually don't bother explaining right now and get your ass to my house. Now, Tomlinson."

"Does he at least sound sober?" Zayn asked Liam after he hung up.

"Yeah, said he was with Oli and they were about to head out to a club. Now we just wait for Harry."

Sophia was upstairs with Niall getting him ready for bed when the doorbell goes off and Zayn goes to open the door. Louis' standing there staring down at the ground but once the door opens, blue eyes flick up to him and suddenly Louis is glaring at him as if it were Zayn who'd left Niall home alone.

"You fucking dare show up again after I told you not to hurt Niall?!" Louis shouted angrily as he shoved Zayn further in the house, clouded over by the anger he's felt since Zayn ran off. "Do you know how awful you made that poor kid feel after you left like that?!"

"Oh please like you're one to talk, Tomlinson! You fucking left him at home alone! You completely forgot about him because you were too busy being a jealous prick!" Zayn yelled back, he too shoving Louis back.

"You're the one with the leaving problem, Malik. You left Niall broken-hearted, left the band, left us, you're best friends! You're brothers! Are you going to keep leaving every time the poor kid mentions something about the past?"

"Are you going to keep running out every time you have a silly argument with Harry? Huh?"

Louis was about to punch Zayn when a hand wrapped around his wrist and pulled him back into a familiar scent. Louis saw Liam holding Zayn back so Louis knew it had to be Harry holding him back. Harry's arms went around his waist and Louis sagged into them tiredly, all the anger draining out of him.

"You need to stop, Niall is upstairs and you're only going to make things worse if he comes down here only to see you fighting," Harry mumbled quietly into Louis' ear.

Louis only nodded in agreement and took in several deep breaths. Harry placed a kiss to the back of Louis' head and gave his waist a soft squeeze before pulling away. It was quiet for a few seconds before Zayn went into the kitchen for a glass of water and Harry's phone started going off.

"It's my mom," Harry said as he looked at his screen. "Gonna take this outside."

Soon it was just Liam and Louis and they moved to the living room to wait for the others to return.

"I keep fucking everything up, Li," Louis whimpered as he plopped down on the couch with Liam next to him.

"You're not fucking everything up, Tommo, you're doing great with basically turning into Niall's dad," Liam spoke softly in some sort of encouragement but all he got was a glare in return and okay yeah, today's problem didn't help his statement at all.

"Yeah? Well look where we are right now. I'm not exactly father of the year or will ever be one. And then I'm messing up my chance to fix things with Harry. I just get so fucking jealous over Kendall and I know I shouldn't because I know Harry loves me, but I can't help think about the past that they have and I overheard him telling Niall once a few years ago that he could see himself falling for her the same way he did with me and it hurt. It hurts and I still think about it, even more now knowing that they hung out together over a week ago."

"But you need to learn to trust him again and I know it must hurt you, but talk it out with him and get this bump out of your road. Now come here, I'm still mad at you but you need a good cuddle."

Louis huffed out a wet laugh but let Liam pull him into his arms as he wiped away his eyes before the tears of frustration and guilt began to fall. Harry walked in a minute later and sat on Louis' other side, rubbing his boyfriend's thigh with his large hand. Sophia was upstairs in case Niall woke up and the three waited until Zayn walked in. Louis sat up and played with his hands nervously, taking in the comfort of Harry's hand on his thigh as the tension in the room got thicker.

"You two can work your couple shit at home, right now we just need to discuss what happened and how the hell did you two forget about Niall," Liam explained as he glared at his two friends.

"I honestly thought Louis took him since Lou left the house first. Guess I didn't bother checking to make sure or calling him," Harry shrugged, avoiding eye contact because he already felt like a bad parent, didn't need to feel worse about it.

"I didn't think Harry would leave the house so I assumed he'd stay with him," Louis mumbled sadly.

"Then you two really need to work on your communication skills here, but just don't let it happen again. If something like this happens again, at least call one of us to take him or something, there can be no repeats of this again. Since day one we all promised to help out, keep him safe and happy, so far we've all been doing a shitty job," Liam told them, fixing a pointed glare at the three, but lingering on Zayn more and the dark haired male squirmed under his gaze. "And you really need to stop running out on your problems. So what if Niall's dreamed about that day, it's not like he understands what's happened. Hell, he doesn't even understand why there's a big Ni in his dreams. We're all going to start facing our problems the second they happen."

"Got it," Zayn, Harry and Louis said.

"Sorry to interrupt your therapy session," Sophia said as she walked into the room, "but Niall is asking for Harry and Louis."

The two nodded and headed up the stairs to where they could hear Niall crying. They walked into the room and found him sitting up on the large bed and hugging his penguin to his chest.

"Pumpkin?" Harry called.

"Please no leave me!" Niall cried, making grabby hands at the two and the guys moved over to the bed, putting Niall between them and cuddling him.

"We promise we won't and we're so sorry about today. So sorry, honey," Louis spoke softly as he kissed Niall's wet cheek. "We didn't mean to leave you alone baby, we're so sorry."

"I-I wanna go home, please?" Niall asked them, cuddled into Harry's side and holding Louis' hand in both of his. "And sleep with you?"

"Of course pumpkin, come on."

Harry stood up and picked up Niall while Louis collected Niall's bag and then they made their way downstairs. Liam and Sophia were sitting together on the couch and Zayn was nowhere to be seen.

"Leaving?" Liam asked as him and Sophia stood up, following them to the door.

"Yeah, we'll call in the morning. Thanks for today."

Niall was fast asleep by the time they got home and so Harry set him in the middle of their bed. The two got ready quietly and got in bed on either side of Niall.

"I'm really sorry about not telling you about Kendall," Harry mumbled, searching for Louis in the dark.

"We'll talk in the morning Harry, we'll wake Niall if we do it now," Louis answered and turned around facing away form Harry and closed his eyes.

~July 16, 2015~

Harry woke up early and decided to go on a jog, leaving behind Niall and Louis who were holding onto each other, almost as if they were afraid one of them would disappear. Harry kissed their foreheads gently before leaving. When Louis woke up, Niall was sleeping on top of him with his hand clutching at Louis' shirt. Louis smiled and rubbed Niall's back, hoping to wake up the child since it was late.

"Lou, wanna sleep," Niall mumbled, hiding his face in the crook of Louis' neck.

"But it's late baby, don't you want breakfast?" Louis asked as he continued rubbing at Niall's back and pressing little kisses to his head.

"Well yeah, but I'm tired."

"Boys," Harry called as he walked into the room, freshly showered and a large grin on his face.

"Hazzy!" Niall shouted and got up, walking on the bed to get to Harry's height and jumped on him, giggling when Harry caught him and spun him around.

"I made breakfast and it's ready so let's go eat before it gets cold," Harry informed, smiling at Niall who had his arms around Harry's neck while Harry supported him with an arm under his butt.

"I'll be down in a sec," Louis replied as he sat up on the bed and stretched.

"I need to go potty, Harry!" Niall whined in the hallway.

"Niall," Harry whined and Louis chuckled as he went into his own bathroom to do his own business.

Breakfast was somewhat silent, just Niall humming as he ate his french toast and Louis and Harry sharing small glances.

"We're going to be okay," Harry spoke quietly as he reached over to grab Louis' hand in his and give it a reassuring squeeze. "I promise to tell you when I do these things, yeah? I didn't mean to hurt you, Lou, you know I love you."

"I know and I love you too," Louis smiled at Harry.

"And I love you too!" Niall shouted enthusiastically with a large grin on his face which made Harry and Louis laugh.

"We love you too, pumpkin."

Chapter Text

~July 25, 2015~

It was a hot Saturday and Liam was over, the three remaining One Direction boys starting to write for their next album. Zayn was keeping Niall busy outside. They were painting and Louis would glance out the window almost every five minutes until Harry told him to focus on what they were doing.

"I'm sorry guys, but I'm really not feeling it right now," Louis sighed, leaning back on the couch and running a hand through his messy hair.

"Same, I've been stuck on this line for the past fifteen minutes and I'm going crazy looking at it so much," Liam complained as he threw his notebook onto the coffee table along with his pen.

"It's not the same without Neil."

Harry nodded in agreement and suddenly Niall shrieked from outside. Louis looked over and found Niall covered in blue and purple paint while Zayn was laughing while Niall pouted and flicked his own brush at the other lad, splashing him with red paint. Louis chuckled and got up from the couch to head outside.

"What are you two doing? Thought you were painting on paper, not each other," Louis laughed as Zayn tried wiping away the paint from his face but only smeared it across his cheek.

"He started it Lou," Niall pouted as he dropped his brush and went over to cling to Louis' legs knowing Zayn wouldn't splash him back with Louis there.

"Zayn, stop being mean to my boy," Louis scolded halfheartedly though he was rather amused and waiting to see how it would turn out.

"Yeah yeah, mama's boy," Zayn grumbled in a teasing tone and smirked at Louis who glared at him.

"Oh, you better take that back!" Louis yelled, going over to pick up the plastic container that had pink paint and Niall's forgotten brush.

"And if I don't what?" Zayn challenged Louis, but gasped as a large glop of pink paint landed on his old t-shirt. Niall bursted into loud laughter and cheered Louis on as the two adults began to throw paint at each other.

"What in the world is going on out here?" Harry asked as him and Liam walked out, eyes widening when they saw Niall, Louis and Zayn covered in paint. "I swear you're a bunch of kids."

"Hey," Niall cried as he turned to glare at Harry.

"But you're okay because you are a kid, but you two?"

Louis looked over at Zayn and the two nodded before launching random colors at Liam and Harry, Niall getting splattered in the process. Niall started laughing as Louis put on an innocent look.

"You two are so dead," Harry mumbled and started to chase Niall and Louis.

"Look at them, Li, they're so happy together," Zayn commented as he watched Harry pick up Niall and throw him over his shoulder as he went after Louis, their laughs getting louder.

"I know and I also know that once Harry and Lou decide to really adopt, they're going to make great parents and as for Niall, well as much as I like him like this, we need our Niall back," Liam spoke, looking over at Zayn who sighed and nodded in agreement.

"You know I still love him, right? Like, I really regret everything that happened that day and the days after that. I know I did wrong with everything that I said and I just miss him, Li. We were together for so many years and we were fucking engaged, I've felt like shit for what happened."

"Well, I can't say that I'm not mad at you because I am, but after this mess is sorted, fix your mess with him because I know he missed you a lot. Even the last night when he was still our Niall, I caught him looking at pictures of the two of you on his phone. I'm sure he'd be willing to work things out if you showed him that you still love him."

Harry walked up to them with Niall hanging upside down in his arms and Louis snickering as he followed not far behind.

"We're gonna go get cleaned up, can you clean up Niall to finish faster?" Harry asked and Niall was making grabby hands at both Zayn and Liam to see which one would save him from Harry.

"Sure mate, no worries but no funny business in the bathroom," Liam warned them as he took Niall and sat him on his hip.

"No promises!" Louis shouted as he grabbed Harry's hand and dragged him inside.

"Come on snowflake, let's get you all clean again," Zayn told the child and the three headed inside.

~July 28, 2015~

"Where's Liam? I want Liam," Niall whined as he sat at the kitchen table eating his lunch.

"Well I'm sorry pumpkin, but Liam is on vacation with Sophia and it'll be a few weeks until they come back," Harry informed the child who pouted and ate the rest of his food without another word. "Are you full?"

"Yeah, it was yummy. Thank you, Hazzy," Niall smiled at his caretaker and got up with his plate, going over to hand them to Harry who smiled.

"No, thank you for being so polite. Now go find Lou, he's got a bit of a headache so he needs plenty of cuddles right now."

Niall nodded and ran off to find Louis while Harry stayed back to clean up the mess left from their lunch. Niall found Louis laying in bed and he climbed on the bed quietly. Louis shifted and smiled tiredly when he saw Niall, opening his arms for the child and letting him cuddle into his chest.

"What are you doing, babe?" Louis asked curiously as Niall nuzzled his face into Louis' neck.

"Hazzy said you were feeling icky so I came to give you lots of cuddles because you give me cuddles when I was feeling icky," Niall informed Louis with a shy smile as he pulled away to look at him.

"Why thank you, babe, I'm feeling much better now that you're here with me."

The two were fast asleep in no time and when Harry walked in to check on them, he smiled fondly at the two and covered them with a thin blanket before walking out.

Louis walked downstairs with Niall in his arms nearly two hours later and grinned at Harry who'd been writing in his journal and taping a Polaroid picture to a page.

"Feeling better, babe?" He asked Louis as he sat next to him with Niall.

"Yeah and thank you for sending my munchkin up to give me cuddles, they made me feel a lot better," Louis grinned as he kissed Niall's forehead.

"I like cuddles," Niall giggled, returning the favor by pressing a kiss to Louis' cheek.

~August 3, 2015~

It happened the first Monday in August when Niall was watching cartoons and Louis and Harry were working on a song. They had the chorus down and were discussing the next line when the child walks in looking a bit sad and thoughtful. Louis and Harry shared a worried look before giving Niall their whole attention.

"What's wrong, pumpkin? Why the long face?" Harry asked him as he pulled Niall onto his lap.

"Why don't I have a mommy and daddy? Are you my mommy and daddy?" Niall asked quietly as he looked at the two with watery blue eyes.

The question caught Louis and Harry off guard as Niall waited for his answer. They hadn't honestly thought about something like this and Maura and Bobby hadn't exactly told the two to tell Niall about them.

"You do have a mommy and daddy, and no, it's not us, but we're like your parents because we take care of you. Why are you asking?" Louis told Niall gently, grabbing the child's tiny hands and giving them a soft squeeze.

"Because in the cartoons the kids had a mommy and daddy and since I call you Louis and Hazzy, I didn't know if I had a mommy and daddy."

"Well you do, pumpkin and they love you a lot. They just live far and can't come to see you, but they asked us to watch over you for a few months," Louis cooed as he stroked his boy's cheek. "But if you want, you can call us anything you want."

"C-Can I call you mama and papa?" Niall asked timidly, avoiding eye contact with the two older lads who could feel their hearts swell.

"Of course you can, but who's who?" Harry asked curiously, though he had the feeling that Louis would be mama.

"Mama," Niall said and pointed at Louis, making Harry snicker a bit. "And you're papa."

And Louis didn't even care that Niall viewed him as a mom because his eyes were teary and he grabbed Niall, pulling him into his chest and holding him tightly. He looked over at Harry and smiled at his boyfriend who leaned forward to peck his lips.

Later that afternoon, Niall was coloring in the living room and Zayn was over for dinner, helping Harry and Louis in the kitchen while checking on Niall every few minutes. Niall was humming to himself and then Zayn was sitting next to him with a smile.

"What are you drawing babes?" Zayn asked curiously.

"Um it's for you," Niall blushed as he moved the piece of paper over to the dark haired man whose grin only widened.

Zayn looked at the picture and cooed. It was a picture of Niall and Zayn holding hands with pink sloppy hearts all around them. It was adorable and the blush on Niall's cheeks made it even more. So he scoops Niall up onto his lap and presses kisses onto his cheeks which made Niall blush even more and giggle shyly.

"Thank you for the picture, babes, it's so pretty," Zayn told Niall honestly. "Do you think you can make me more?"

Niall simply nodded happily and wrapped his little arms around the man's neck, cheeks still flushed and relaxed as Zayn rubbed his back and hummed quietly to him.

"Louis, you're going to burn the food!" Harry scolded his boyfriend and Zayn chuckled, shaking his head as Louis fought back.

"I'm going to go help your mama and papa in the kitchen before the whole house burns down," Zayn said as he went to set Niall back in his spot, but the child only held onto his neck tighter and whimpered.

"Please don't leave me," Niall mumbled and it definitely broke Zayn's heart at hearing the child speak with so much pain in his voice and the way he held on tighter and his tiny body trembled. Zayn had caused this to Niall the very first time he left and the most recent one. He kept hurting the Irish lad and Zayn didn't want to keep doing that to him anymore.

"Hey, I promise I won't okay? How about we go together and you can watch us cook?" Zayn asked Niall as he kept rubbing at the child's back.

Niall nodded in his arms but refused to let go so Zayn stood up and headed into the kitchen with Niall. Harry and Louis were finishing up and turned around when the other walked in, smiling at him and cooing at Niall.

"Hi baby, you hungry?" Louis asked as he walked over to Niall and kissed his little shoulder.

"Yeah," Niall giggled, still cuddled into Zayn.

"Well don't worry, Papa's almost done with the pasta."

Dinner was loud and Niall sat next to Zayn, often cuddling into his side as the three adults struck up conversation about music and their future careers. Niall didn't understand nor care about that, but he sat up when One Direction was mentioned, a familiar feeling tugging inside of him but he frowned and waited until it went away. Zayn had to leave eventually, but the child only let him go with the reassurance that he'd be over to visit sometime soon and that he'd be happy if Niall made him more pictures.

"Mama, I'm tired," Niall said as he cuddled up into Louis who was carrying him up the stairs for his bath.

"I know baby, but I promise I'll be quick and soon you'll be in your bed ready to sleep," Louis cooed as he walked into the bathroom and turned on the water as he set a clingy tired Niall on the ground. Louis made sure the water temperature was perfect before filling up the tub and then undressing a whiny Niall and setting him inside. "Babe, you gotta work with me here. The faster I can finish, the sooner you can go to bed."

"I sorry mama," Niall mumbled, eyes half closed as he let Louis scrub his hair.

Soon the water was being drained and Louis wrapped the child in a big fluffy blanket before carrying him to his room where Harry had laid out some Toy Story pajamas, courtesy of Liam Payne. Niall was dressed quickly, hair dried with a towel and brushed to the side neatly since Niall's long fringe often covered his eyes. Harry walked into the room with a smile as Louis began to tuck the child into bed.

"Night pumpkin, have sweet dreams," Harry cooed quietly as he leaned down to kiss Niall's forehead.

"Night papa," Niall mumbled, clutching his penguin to his chest as he yawned cutely.

"Night sweetie, we'll see you in the morning," Louis told him with a gentle smile.

"Night mama. Love you guys."

"We love you too."

Harry turned on Niall's nightlight before the two walked out of the room and closed the door quietly. They headed to their room and laid down on the bed in exhaustion. Louis was complaining about everything while Harry only rolled his eyes before he shifted to his side to look at his boyfriend with a fond smile. The older lad had his eyes closed and hands resting on his stomach.

"You know we gotta get used to this if we want to adopt our own kids soon," Harry reminded Louis who sighed.

"Yeah yeah and Niall makes good practice, blah blah. I've heard this all before, H, but doesn't make it any easier. Little Niall is an even bigger ball of sunshine who just won't stay still or be quiet for more than five minutes. He's whiny and cuddly and grumpy when he doesn't eat or sleep right, much like big Niall. He demands attention when he realizes no one is giving it to him and is curious about everything. The other day he asked me where puppies came from and you know what I fucking said because I was so damn tired? I said they came from doggy Paris by a doggy stork," Louis explained as he sat up and Harry immediately began to laugh as he too sat up.

"What? A doggy stork? Doggy Paris?" Harry laughed, trying to not be too loud for fear of disrupting Niall and making him grumpy.

"Apparently a stork is now some kind of bird dog hybrid that can fly and carry puppies from the land of doggy love."

"Babe, this is part of the experience of being parents. We get tired, they ask silly questions, won't sit still, throw tantrums, etc. I'd be more worried if Niall didn't do those typical childlike behaviors. This little Niall is our big annoying Niall, just everything more childlike and annoying times ten. In four months from now when Gia can hopefully reverse this spell, you'll be wishing we had this kid friendly version of our Irish lad back instead of the beer-loving-I-curse-a-lot Niall," Harry spoke gently as he pulled Louis into his arms. "We're all gonna make it."

~August 4, 2015~

It was one of Niall's bad days. Meaning he woke up grumpy, wouldn't eat his food without throwing a fit first and was definitely not listening to what Louis and Harry told him to do. Harry was just counting down the minutes until Louis exploded and put the child into time out or something. Really it was only a matter of time until Louis and Niall started a screaming match.

"No!" Niall screamed for the millionth time that day and Louis walked out of the living room glaring at nothing as he walked into the office where Harry was sitting behind the desk working on something.

"I'm done," Louis sighed tiredly as he plopped down on a chair in front of Harry.

"He just needs a nap," Harry assured Louis who rolled his eyes.

"I was gonna say we should dump him at Liam and Sophia's place, but they're on vacation."

Harry went back to answering emails, arranging more time with Julian to write while Louis was starting to fall asleep in the chair, head tilted back and legs perched up on the other one. Suddenly tiny feet reach their ears and they kind of freeze, but then they hear Niall enter the office with a small sniffle that breaks Louis' heart a bit because that kid has him wrapped around his little finger. And Louis always turns into goo when Niall makes even the smallest of noises.

"What's wrong, pumpkin?" Harry asks as he peeks around Louis at the entrance where Niall is standing looking sad and lonely.

Louis only opens his arms and Niall runs into them, letting the older male pull him up onto his chest to lay there. Harry goes back to his emails and Louis very nearly falls asleep again until Niall is shifting and whimpering.

"What's wrong?" Louis asks again as he opens his eyes, rubbing Niall's back.

"I gotta potty," Niall giggled and Louis quickly set him on the ground and watched him run off towards the bathroom.

"I should feed him something before nap time, want anything?" Louis asked his boyfriend who only shook his head.

"No thank you, babe."

Louis nodded and waited for Niall outside of the bathroom. Niall's eventually came out and held Louis' hand as they headed to the kitchen.

"Want chicken nuggets babe?" Louis asked and Niall nodded excitedly. "And some baby carrots or Harry will be mad that I keep feeding you junk."

"No!" Niall whined, stomping his foot and getting ready to throw a tantrum when Louis glared at him.

"I've had it up to here with you today, so you better behave or I'm sending you to the naughty corner, got it?" Louis threatened the child who pouted but sat quietly knowing very well that Louis would send him to the naughty corner. He's done it before and Niall doesn't like it.

A few minutes later Niall is eating quite happily and Louis is sitting next to him scrolling through his Twitter. Niall is humming as he chews and soon he grows bored before leaning over and peeking at Louis' phone.

"Who's that?" Niall says as Louis scrolls through an article about One Direction and making up shit about Niall's sudden health crisis and with it attached a picture of the now quartet.

"You mean the blonde one?" Louis asks and Niall nods.

"Oh um well that's Big Ni. Remember you always dream about him," Louis explained a little unsure and Niall made an 'o' shape with his mouth, tiny fingers covered in ketchup.

"He looks like me but gots yellow hair," Niall commented as he went back to his food and Louis chuckled.

Once Louis settled Niall down for nap time, Harry pulled him back into the office since they had a phone meeting with Modest.

"Is this about that article?" Louis asked as he sat on Harry's lap.

"Yeah, I take it you've read it then?" A male voice spoke up and Louis honestly couldn't place a name to the voice.

"Yeah and it's fucking shitty how they're just spreading rumors out like that about Niall and saying that he's really ill."

"Yes and we got word that there's another article coming out tomorrow about Niall leaving the band because of his health and we're doing our best to stop that, but for the meantime I want someone to tweet from Niall's account telling the fans to not believe anything unless it comes from you guys and maybe Louis you can tweet something too. Keep Liam in the loop as well, I know he's on vacation but he needs to know just in case. We need to keep the fans calm and that article has brought mayhem upon them so do your best to reassure them."

"Will do and don't worry we'll try and keep this as much as under control possible," Harry told the guy who thanked them and hung up.

"This is a never ending problem," Louis sighed as he leaned back on Harry who chuckled and kissed his cheek, hands rubbing at Louis' chest softly.

"It is, but let's calm the fans down and then I'll help you relax, yeah?" Harry questioned as he began to suck softly at Louis' neck and hearing the soft barely audible moan the older man let out.

"Gotta be quiet though, Ni's sleeping upstairs," Louis mumbled as he pulled out his phone and opened up the Twitter app.

'Don't believe all that rubbish out there !! Sometimes we tend to forget t' take care of ourselves but I promise I'm getting better !!' Louis wrote from Niall's account and hit send before switching back to his account and typing another message. 'Don't worry loves ! Our Nialler is a strong lad and he'll be back bouncing on stage with us soon !'

Louis set his phone down and turned around in Harry's lap until he was straddling the younger lad who grinned. Harry placed his large hands on Louis' hips and puckered his lips until Louis got the hint and kissed him. It was a soft kiss that slowly got more and more heated as their hips began to move against each other and Harry moved his hands over to cup Louis' ass. Louis moaned and pulled away from Harry's lips.

"We have to be quick and quiet, the kid never lasts more than an hour asleep during nap time," Louis panted, leaning his head down to suck a lovebite right on Harry's collarbone.

~

Louis had just finished pulling up his pants when Niall was calling for him from the stairs. Harry grinned over at his boyfriend and said, "Just in time, babe. And you thought we wouldn't finish."

"I know, but I'm still half naked and have cum on my chest so while I clean up, you go get our boy before he rolls down the stairs or comes in here," Louis bossed Harry who rolled his eyes and walked off.

Harry had put his hair up into a bun after finishing up with Louis and had splashed cold water on his face to get rid of the sweat. He walked over to the stairs and found Niall sitting about halfway and he smiled when he saw Harry.

"Papa, you came for me!" Niall cheered as he stood up and made grabby hands at the man who laughed.

"I did pumpkin, have a nice nap?" Harry asked as he carried Niall down the stairs.

"Yes, where's mama?"

"In the bathroom. Now come on, let's go play outside!"

When Louis walked out of the bathroom and went off in search of his two boys, he found them outside playing with a soccer ball. He smiled fondly and watched as Harry let Niall score a goal, both cheering and Harry picking up Niall and tossing him up in the air a bit.

'Just four more months,' Louis thought a bit sadly.

Chapter Text

~August 29, 2015~

"So it's Lima's birthday?" Niall asked curiously as he followed Louis towards the stairs.

"Yes and he's having a party at his house so we need to get you ready so we can go," Louis explained, turning around to pick up Niall and help him up the stairs or otherwise they would be awhile.

"When's my birthday, mama?"

"It's two weeks after Liam's and yes you'll have a birthday party too," Louis answered before Niall could ask and chuckled at Niall's excitement.

"But is my real mommy and daddy coming? And Greg and Denise and little Theo?" Niall asked, stroking Louis' face lightly and giggling when his stubble tickled his palm.

"I don't know bug, they live pretty far, but they promised they'd try and make it but don't be sad if they don't yeah? You'll see them eventually. Now let's get you ready before Papa comes in and yells at us because we're being too slow," Louis teased, tickling Niall's side and smiling when the child giggled loudly.

"Are my boys ready to go?" Harry asked as he entered Niall's room but sighed when he saw Niall in his same clothes while Louis searched through his clothes. "Of course you're not. Louis, he's not going to be on TV, just pick something so we can go."

"But papa, I wanna look good!" Niall whined from his spot on the bed.

"You're lucky you're cute," Harry grumbled but smiled and went over to kiss Niall's head.

They dressed Niall in a pair of black skinny jeans ripped at the knees, a Rolling Stones shirt and black vans. Niall was happy because he was dressed like his mama and papa. At Liam's place, Zayn was already there helping Liam get things ready for the party. Niall skipped inside happily and immediately ran over to Liam.

"Happy birthday Liam!" Niall shouted with a large grin on his face as he stared up at the man.

"Thank you, Nialler, can I get a hug?" Liam asked as he crouched down to Niall's height with his arms outstretched.

"Only cause you're the birthday boy," Niall warned and wrapped his little arms around Liam's neck, making Liam laugh as he held Niall tightly and placed kisses all over his face.

Harry and Louis laughed, having caught Niall's statement and knowing the kid would give anyone a hug who asked for one. Watson walked in and immediately took Niall's attention from Liam who was left pouting as Niall ran off with the giant dog.

"Left for a dog on my own birthday, unbelievable," Liam sighed though he had a fond smile on his face as he stood up and greeted Louis and Harry.

"Happy birthday, mate," they said.

"Thanks. Glad my favorite family could make it," Liam grinned.

"Fuck off bro," Louis grumbled, fingers laced with Harry's. "Where's your lady?"

"At the store getting some thing we forgot, I don't know I really wasn't paying attention to what she was saying. Zayn's outside setting up the grill, though Niall was really the only capable one of doing it but not like we can ask a five year old to do it."

They headed out into the backyard where Niall was now with Zayn probably asking him a bunch of questions. That's all Niall did now, was ask why's and how's. At first they all find it cute, but it gets annoying after awhile pretty quick. Zayn smiled over at couple when they walked out and went back to answering Niall whatever the hell he'd asked. Watson was off rolling around in the grass, having lost interest in Niall.

"Why are you dressed like Louis?" Zayn questioned Niall with a smirk. "Louis, stop making him your clone. It's scary how much he acts like you, we don't need him to dress like you too."

"You think I'm gonna let him dress like Harry with all his Saint Laurent shit? Don't want my kid dressed with those weird button down shirts with the funny print, no offense Harry," Louis smiled up at his boyfriend who was smiling and shaking his head fondly.

"None taken, love," Harry replied, leaning down to kiss Louis' head.

"Where's Sophia?" Niall asked as he made grabby hands at Liam who picked up Niall while the others continued to get the place ready.

"I think she went out to get the cake and Lottie is with her," Liam informed Niall who gasped and smiled wide.

"Lottie's coming!" Niall cheered happily.

"He loves my sister more than us, unbelievable," Louis pouted and Harry laughed as he wrapped his arms around the shorter male and pressing his lips to his temple.

Soon Liam's parents and sisters arrived and Liam immediately went over to show off Niall to them, the tiny child being all shy as he was reintroduced to Liam's family. Karen cooed and pinched his cheeks while Liam's dad laughed as Niall blushed and tried hiding his face into Liam's neck. Next came his sisters who much like their mom, pinched his cheeks and kissed them.

"Alright, I came to steal my child back before you suffocate him," Louis said in a playful tone as he pushed his way through and took Niall into his arms.

Niall hid into Louis' neck with a little giggle as Ruth and Nicola started to whine. Louis walked off with Niall singing quietly to himself and chin resting on Louis' shoulder. Louis smiled as he carried the child over to where Harry was chatting with some of Liam's friends.

"I'm hungry," Niall whined as he pulled back to look at Louis with a pout.

"Well go tell Zayn and Liam to hurry up then," Harry told Niall who only sighed dramatically and let himself hang limply from Louis' arms. "Stop being so lazy."

"I like being lazy," Niall commented and Louis laughed.

"I see my precious little angel!" Came Lottie's voice and Niall looked over and grinned at the girl, making grabby hands at her.

Lottie walked out into the yard followed by Sophia and Tommy who was carrying some bags. Liam grins and goes over to kiss his girlfriend while Lottie takes Niall from Louis and kisses his cheeks repeatedly which has him giggling like crazy. Tommy handed the bags to Liam after greeting him and headed over to his girlfriend and the child in her arms.

"Hi Tommy!" Niall waved.

"Hi kiddo, doing okay?" Tommy asked in amusement, still not really used to seeing the Irish lad so different.

Niall nodded happily and was handed over to Harry as Louis had gone off to get Niall some food. Lou and Lux arrive sometime later and after both Niall and Lux eat, they run off together and Louis' a bit glad Niall has finally stopped being shy around Lux and has someone his age to play with. Louis was starting to feel bad with Niall spending so much time with adults.

"How are you guys doing with Niall?" Lou asks Harry and Louis as they sit at a table just the three of them while the other guests mingle.

"Some days are easy some are hard. You know this whole experience has helped us and we really want to adopt sometime soon, but with the band that idea might have to wait another year or two," Louis explains with a small pout and Lou laughs.

"Aren't you boys going on hiatus soon though?"

"Well yeah but we still gotta finish OTRA and release the next CD, though thankfully we aren't required to tour that so then we'd be done," Harry smiles.

Suddenly they heard a cry and Louis and Harry could both recognize that cry anywhere. It was Niall and suddenly the boy was full on sobbing while Louis located the boy and ran over to where he was sitting on the grass holding a bloody knee. Harry ran after his boyfriend, the two kneeling down in front of Niall.

"Oh pumpkin, what happened?" Harry asked as he inspected the cut on the child's knee.

"F-Fell," Niall sobbed out, making grabby hands at Louis who picked him up bridal style gently and began to carry him inside the house with Harry while Sophia ran ahead of them to get the first aid kit. "M-Mama, hurts."

"We know baby, but we'll get you cleaned up real quick and you'll be good as new," Louis told Niall as they walked into the bathroom where Sophia had set out the first aid kit.

"There's band aids and everything you need in there. There's some cartoon band aids somewhere in there too, you know Liam," Sophia told Harry and Louis who laughed and thanked her before she left, closing the door after her to give them some privacy.

"Alright Lou, you hold Niall and I'll clean him up," Harry instructed and Louis nodded as he set the child on the counter and wrapped his arms around Niall who hid his face into Louis' chest. "Alright pumpkin, this is gonna sting but it'll help make your cut better."

Niall simply nodded and let Harry disinfect the bloody cut which made him cry out and whimper while Louis held him and whispered comforting words to the blue eyed child.

"Okay pumpkin, which one do you want? There's a Batman band aid, Hello Kitty or Frozen?" Harry asked Niall and the child peeked out of his hiding place to look at the band aids and he picked the Frozen one by pointing at it with a shaky finger. "Good choice."

Louis smiled and brushed back Niall's hair, pressing a kiss to his forehead as Harry placed the band aid over the cut. Harry wiped away Niall's remaining tears with a soft smile and kissed the tip of his nose.

"All better, Ni," Harry told Niall as he pressed a light kiss to his knee.

"Thank you, papa," Niall hiccuped, resting his head on Louis' chest.

"Wanna go back? I'm sure Liam's gonna cut the cake soon."

Niall nodded and held onto Louis who carried him out of the bathroom with one arm under him to support Niall's small body and his other hand holding Harry's. Once outside, Zayn walked up to them worriedly and rubbed Niall's back.

"You okay, babes?" Zayn asked the child in a soft tone, one he only ever used with Niall and it brought a sense of nostalgia over Louis and Harry as they watched the two interact.

"Papa fixed me and look, I got Frozen," Niall told Zayn quietly, a blush dusting over his chubby cheeks as he looked at Zayn and pointed at his pretty band aid.

Zayn smiled and leaned down to kiss the child's band aid covered knee. Niall only blushed more and turned to hide his face into Louis' neck, causing the three to laugh. Louis had to eventually sit down because he was tired and Niall refused to be set down on the ground and instead clung tighter to him and whimpered each and every time. They were all sitting around with drinks and music playing not too loudly, talking with each other and what not. Liam and Sophia were being good hosts, going around and making sure their guests were happy.

"Are you cold baby?" Louis asked Niall, feeling the child shiver as a small gust of wind blew.

"A little," Niall mumbled, snuggling further into Louis and searching for warmth.

Louis shrugged off his sweater and placed it around Niall's body, the child curled up in his lap and if he were a cat, Louis swore Niall would be purring by now.

"Alright guys! It's time for cake!" Sophia shouted with a smile as she lit up the candles on Liam's cake.

They all gathered around and sang to Liam, even Niall who had seemed seconds away from falling asleep was singing loudly and clapping along with everyone else. Louis had put on the jacket on Niall and zipped it up, practically swallowing his whole body with just his shoes showing. Harry was standing to Louis' side with an arm around his waist.

The party was over a few hours later, Niall had moved on to cling to Zayn and was now fast asleep on the dark haired boy's lap still tucked into Louis' jacket. Harry and Louis stood up, saying their goodbyes to Liam's family. Lottie and Tommy had already left and so had Lou and Lux.

"I'm gonna be heading to L.A to work on some things, but I'll be back by his birthday," Zayn told Harry as he handed Niall over to him carefully.

"Alright," Harry smiled at Zayn, cradling Niall gently and watching the boy sigh in his sleep.

Once at home, Harry and Louis managed to dress Niall into his pajamas without waking him up and tucked him in. The two exhausted 'parents' headed into their room ready for bed.

"Mama! Papa!" Niall screamed the second both Harry and Louis were under the covers, making them groan.

"You go," Louis mumbled out tiredly.

"Um no babe, he called for you first," Harry argued and turned so his back was to Louis and the older male groaned.

~September 13, 2015~

It's Niall's birthday today and both Harry and Louis wanted to give the boy a great day, regardless of his age. They'd planned to throw him a great party at the Tomlinson family home. They'd left the day before and now Lottie and Tommy were helping set up the backyard while Niall was being taken care off by Fizzy and the twins. Niall was just soaking up all the attention, loving every single minute of it.

"He wanted a Frozen themed birthday party?" Lottie asked as she grabbed the stuff out of the bags.

"Yeah, he's been watching that movie at least twice a week and I swear if I hear Let It Go one more fucking time I'll drown myself in bleach," Louis mumbled as he tied the Elsa and Anna balloons to the nearest object he could find while his sister laughed at his misery.

"Don't be so dramatic babe, you've been singing along quite often now," Harry spoke up with a smirk.

"Guys, here comes the birthday boy!" Daisy shouted as she walked out into the yard with a large smile on her face, Phoebe following not long after her too smiling as they stood on either side of the door. Daisy was wearing an Elsa dress and Phoebe was wearing an Anna dress and suddenly Niall walked out wearing an Olaf costume.

"Didn't know this was a costume party," Lottie mumbled under her breath in amusement.

"I'm Olaf and I like warm hugs!" Niall shouted, giggling as he stood between Daisy and Phoebe with a bright blush covering his cheeks as Harry, Louis, Tommy and Lottie cooed at him.

"He's so cute I'm gonna melt," Daisy giggled as she looked at Niall.

"Oh baby, look at you! You're so adorable!" Louis cooed as he went over to pick up the birthday boy and pushed back Olaf's head to kiss his cheek. "You're the most precious thing I've ever seen."

"Mama," Niall whined as he moved his head back to avoid getting more kisses from Louis.

"Should I call you my little snowman now?" Harry teased as he took Niall from Louis and kissed his cheek to further annoy the child who was now pouting in his arms.

"I'm a snowman and a pumpkin, silly papa," Niall told Harry, pinching his cheek and making the others laugh.

Louis wondered if Niall wasn't hot in the costume. Luckily they'd brought extra clothes in case, even though Fizzy had said that the twins had gotten Niall a costume for the party and they were going to dress up as well.

Soon Liam and Sophia arrived, both taking pictures with Olaf Niall. Lou arrived with Lux and eventually Zayn arrived. Niall's actual family weren't going to be able to make it, but they'd talked with the boy in the morning to wish him a happy birthday and even though Niall had been a little sad, he quickly got over that because it was his day.

"I'm Olaf and I like warm hugs," Niall told Zayn as he walked up to the dark haired male with his arms up and making grabby hands at him.

"Well hello there Olaf," Zayn laughed as he picked up the boy and hugged him tight. "Happy birthday, babes."

"Thank you," Niall giggled, struggling to hug Zayn with the costume. "I missed you."

"I missed you too, babes. We're you good to Louis and Harry?"

Niall nodded and let Zayn shower him with kisses, not complaining about it and making Louis pout because Niall usually pushes him away if he does that. Harry wraps his arms around Louis and kisses his cheek as he chuckles.

"Put that pout away, babe, you know he loves you, but he also loves Zayn," Harry told Louis who sighed.

"I know, but it still makes me jealous though."

The kids had pizzas for dinner while the adults ate something else that Harry had helped Jay prepare. Ernest and Doris were happily running around with Niall and Lux. There was a Frozen cake sitting on a table and ice cream waiting in the freezer. Presents were also sitting on the table and more Frozen balloons that Zayn had brought along with his present.

"Mama, I'm hot and tired," Niall complained as he walked up to Louis who'd been in the kitchen getting a drink.

"Do you want to change? Papa brought your Olaf sweatshirt," Louis said as he knelt down in front of Niall who nodded. "Alright, let's go change you upstairs. Do you need to use the potty while we're at it?"

Louis took Niall upstairs to Lottie's room where he put the extra set of clothes he brought for Niall. He noticed the child was dancing around so he quickly took the costume off of Niall and ushered him into the bathroom. Soon the two were heading back downstairs, Niall clinging to Louis as his energy was running low now because he hadn't had a nap earlier.

"Hey, don't fall asleep on us or you won't get cake and ice cream," Louis told Niall, shaking the now six year old (well technically twenty two year old but whatever).

"But I'm sleepy, mama," Niall whined, burying his face into Louis' neck as they walked outside and the loud voices of everyone reached their ears.

"Too bad, Papa and I told you to take a nap and you didn't listen so eyes open, pumpkin," Louis grinned as Niall began to whine and kick his legs. "Hey, stop it."

"Hey, what's wrong?" Harry asked as he walked over to the two.

"Niall's being a little brat because he's tired," Louis replied, setting the child down on the ground and feeling his little fists hit his thighs. "Niall James, I've told you to stop. You either behave or go sit in the corner and no cake."

Niall plopped down on the grass and whimpered as tears began to stream down his face, looking up at the two with a tired yet heartbroken expression. The two men looked down at the child just waiting for him to finish with his tantrum. Niall always played this trick after getting yelled at and threatened with the corner. He sit down and look up at the two with the saddest expression he could muster and eventually they would sometimes cave in and cuddle the child until he was happy, but now they knew all his tricks and Louis and Harry would simply wait until Niall realized he wasn't getting cuddled.

"Up, please!" Niall whined as he looked at Louis and Harry who had amused smiles on their faces.

"Are you done being a little brat?" Harry cooed as he picked up Niall who nodded and whispered a sorry.

They sang happy birthday to Niall not long after and Louis helped him cut his cake, dipping his finger in the blue frosting and putting it on the tip of Niall's nose. Niall giggled and grabbed some of the frosting as well and smeared it across Louis' right cheek, making the others laugh and coo, camera flashes going off.

"Alright pumpkin, let's get you cleaned up so you can have some cake and ice cream," Harry told Niall as he grabbed a napkin and wiped his nose and hands of the frosting as well as Louis' cheek.

After eating his cake and ice cream, Niall opened his presents but the one he loved the most was an Olaf stuffie that Zayn gave him. And that night, Niall went to bed hugging both his penguin and Olaf with a large smile.

"Look at him, H. He's so pretty I can't stop looking at him," Louis mumbled quietly as they stood in the doorway of the guest room where all three would be staying at the Tomlinson/Deakin house. "It hurts."

Harry only laughed and kissed Louis softly before leading him downstairs to help the others clean up the mess. Louis got plenty of pictures of Niall in his Olaf costume and that would come in handy in the future.

Chapter Text

~September 26, 2015~

It's Saturday night and Louis and Niall are at home alone while Harry is off in LA working on something with Jeff and going out with Kendall, not that it makes Louis happy, but at least Harry told him ahead of time. The two are currently in the living room watching the X Factor while it rains outside. Louis' phone is resting on the coffee table as they munch on popcorn and make talk over the contestants. Louis was surprised when Niall had pointed at Simon Cowel saying that he's seen him before, but made no move to explain or anything. Everything was looking out to be a quiet weekend, but then Louis' phone started to go off with Twitter notifications, texts and any other social app on his phone came to life all at once which made him frown.

Louis was going to reply to a text from Liam when Harry starts to call him and Louis answers, thankful that Niall was being entertained by Nick Grimshaw and Rita Ora making jokes so he took the call and headed out to the kitchen.

"Harry, what the hell is going on? Is the world ending cause my phone just went crazy with notifications," Louis asked his boyfriend as he began to pace the kitchen floor as dread and anxiety filled his stomach.

"Someone on Twitter has been stalking us for the past few weeks and released pictures of little Niall with the dates of when they took the pictures and where they took them," Harry explained to Louis who had to hold onto the counter as he became slightly lightheaded with the information. "And obviously we can't play them off as old pictures because of the quality and because you appear in most of them along with me, Liam and Zayn. Even Sophia and Lottie are in a few pictures."

"Fuck, Harry," Louis mumbled in shock as he looked over at Niall who was still busy watching the show and clapping after a performance. "What now? Wait, have you seen the pictures? Does it really look like it's Niall?"

"Unfortunately, and fans immediately recognized him from all the baby pics they've seen so we can't say he was a cousin or something. Everyone's going crazy making up theories and getting into fights over this. My plane leaves in an hour and Modest wants us at their office as soon as I get there to try and see what we can do, but Lou, this account was just made today for the purpose to leak those damn pictures. The pictures date back to July, from what I found but there could be more, and there's even some from his birthday party. They were at your house, Louis."

"Fuck fuck fuck," Louis mumbled angrily, running a hand through his hair.

"Mama said bad word," came Niall's soft timid voice from the kitchen doorway.

"I'm sorry baby," Louis sighed and offered him a smile, beckoning him forward. "Wanna say hi to papa? He's on the phone."

Niall smiled and nodded immediately. Louis picked him up and sat him on the counter, putting his phone on speaker as Niall greeted Harry excitedly.

"Hi pumpkin! I miss you so much," Harry told the child who was leaning into Louis.

"I miss you too, papa. When are you coming home?"

"I'll be back tomorrow, but in the meantime you have to be good and do everything Louis says and eat all your veggies," Harry told Niall who giggled and looked up at Louis who narrowed his eyes at Niall. Louis hadn't been feeding Niall vegetables since Harry left and if Niall ratted him out, then Louis would be in trouble.

"I promise!"

After their conversation, Louis said it was bedtime and helped Niall with his daily routine, but instead of tucking him into his bed, Louis took him into his own bedroom so Niall could sleep with him. Louis really missed having Harry and Niall didn't mind sleeping in his mama's big bed. Louis stayed up even when Niall was asleep and he opened his twitter, dreading seeing the comments and pictures.

The pictures were everywhere, some fans telling people to stop sharing them and others just kept retweeting. Every music and gossip site had done article after article about the situation and it wasn't okay. Their privacy had been invaded and now everyone wanted to stick their noses in their business wanting to know what was going on and why Niall was suddenly a child again. Louis ended up finding the account where the pictures came from and indeed, the account had just been created that day and they already had over a hundred tweets, most of them being pictures and even a video. The video was dated from back in July and it was of Niall running towards Louis' car with Louis not far behind. The video was muted and some leaves got in the way of the ten second video, so Louis had to guess the person hid behind some bushes. Even the paparazzi weren't that invasive anymore. The last thing the person tweeted was about an hour ago and indeed, they were saying they would release more within the next few days. The account only had like three hundred followers, but Louis guessed it would only grow by tomorrow.

~September 27, 2015~

Zayn was over at Louis' place around lunchtime keeping him company until Harry arrived. There was some tension in the house and Niall could probably sense it so he's been quiet all day and has kept to himself mostly. Louis doesn't mean to ignore Niall or anything, but he's so worried about this situation and it's stressing him out. He honestly can't believe someone would bother so much to follow them around all the damn time and if Louis was being honest, he didn't feel safe, not even in his own home.

"When is Harry getting here?" Zayn asked Louis, scrolling through his twitter to make sure no more pictures were leaked but so far the account had been quiet since last night.

"In an hour or so, I think," Louis answered, rubbing his hands together as he tried watching whatever kid show was on TV.

Niall had managed to drag his giant teddy bear down the stairs and placed it in front of the TV, laying down on it and watching his show. It was like having no kid at home, he was so quiet.

"Ni, sweetie, do you want anything?" Louis asked as he knelt down next to the child and rubbed his back.

"Can I have apple juice?" Niall asked quietly as he looked over at Louis with sleepy eyes.

"Of course babe. Do you want me to bring it to you or do you want to come with me?"

"Go with you."

Louis picked up Niall and made his way to the kitchen to get the child his juice and hopefully make him fall asleep before their meeting. Niall drank his juice and Louis went back into the living room, sitting next to Zayn and cradling Niall like a newborn baby. No one talked and soon Niall was fast asleep.

"Want me to take him upstairs?" Zayn asked Louis who nodded and handed Niall off to him gently.

Harry got home nearly half an hour later and Louis immediately went up to hug and kiss him, feeling relieved that the younger boy was home safe. Harry grinned into Louis' lips, his hands at his hips and giving his boyfriend a soft reassuring squeeze.

"Alright lover boys, break it up. I texted Liam telling him you'd be on your way," Zayn said as he leaned against the wall with a smirk.

"Let me just put my bag in the room," Harry said.

"Did you see anyone outside?" Louis asked worriedly.

"No, don't worry. Besides, I made my bodyguard check just in case. Where's Niall?"

"Sleeping, he's been a bit quiet all day, probably being able to sense our mood so don't expect too much."

Harry nodded and headed upstairs to put his bag in the master bedroom before going off to Niall's room and smiling at the sleeping child. He picked up Niall, hearing him mumbled and just curl more into him as he continued to sleep. Harry met up with Louis downstairs, Zayn already having left to go home since he wasn't with Modest anymore.

"We ready?" Louis asks as he grabs his car keys and handing them off to Harry's bodyguard who went to go start the car.

"Yeah."

~

Liam was already waiting for them at the conference room where most of their team was seated. Niall was awake, but clinging to Harry. They were greeted as they took their seats with Niall on his lap but facing his chest since the room was filled with strangers and they were a bit scary looking with their expressionless faces.

"Alright gentlemen, as you know pictures of current Niall have leaked and it's done too much damage that we can't cover it up with a fake story. All that's left is come out with a statement and explanation as to why we kept it covered," a guy with graying hair and wearing a black suit with a blue tie told them, his iPad sitting in front of him and a laptop to his right.

"Okay, but uh, are we going to write it or-?" Liam asked curiously and they all nodded.

"Yes it's best if the fans hear it from you and they've got a sixth sense to when it comes to you guys not writing statements and such," a female told them with a gentle smile. Louis vaguely remembers her, but from the bit that he does, he knows she's kinder than these cold hearted assholes.

"We're trying to contact this person and negotiating with them to prevent them from releasing more images, but they're ignoring our messages so we're working on getting the account taken down."

"Have they tweeted yet?" Louis wondered.

"They just did. Said that they are sick tired of the lies the band gives them and that's why they're leaking all these pictures to expose One Direction," The blue tie guy, Tom, said as he looked up from his iPad.

"What do we do? The paps are going to be after us and we can't expose Niall to that kind of thing," Harry expressed his thoughts to the group in front of them who nodded.

"We know, that's why today you release that statement and tomorrow we start releasing the new dates for the remainder of the tour and that should bury this mess a bit, get them excited. Louis, Harry, we know you two are together again but we would definitely advise you to be careful from now on and maybe start looking for a new place. This person, whoever it is-"

"Yeah yeah, we know the drill," Louis mumbled a bit angrily. In all honesty he thought the best way to bury this problem was to just come out, but obviously management won't like that idea. Louis was tired of hiding though and was definitely tired of some fans thinking Harry and him hated each other because of the Larry rumors.

Harry looked down at Niall who tugged on his shirt. Wide blue eyes met his and Harry smiled at the child.

"I gotta potty," Niall whispered, looking quite urgent about the situation.

"I'm gonna take Niall to the bathroom," Harry informed the people in the room who nodded and he stood up with the child in his arms and walked out of the room in search of a bathroom.

"Alright, I'll be right here," Harry told Niall as he set the child down who nodded and walked into a stall.

Harry leaned against the counter and pulled his phone out, seeing new pictures and he sighed. The pictures were from their last concert and that made him frown even more because the person leaking the pictures had to be someone that worked for them, someone that knows them. The picture was of Niall with Lottie somewhere backstage in the stadium. Who in the world was this person?

"All done!" Niall declared as he walked out with a large smile.

"Good job, pumpkin. Now come here so we can wash your hands," Harry instructed as he tucked the phone back into his pocket and picked up Niall to help him wash his hands.

"Papa, when are we leaving? It's scary here and I don't like it," Niall mumbled as they walked down the hall to the conference room.

"Don't worry, we'll leave soon we just have to talk about something with those guys."

Niall nodded and held Harry's hand. Harry opened the door and stepped inside, drawing the attention of everyone and making Niall hide behind him. Liam was the closest to the door so he stretched out a hand to Niall who ran to him and hid into his chest. Harry took his seat next to Louis.

"I'm guessing you saw the picture," Harry told the people in the room, noticing the tense atmosphere.

"Yes and we need to find who it is and it is more than clear that it has to be someone working for you guys," Tom said as he typed away on his phone.

"For now just work on that statement and we'll get the new dates out by tomorrow and we'll focus on the issue here. We'll call you when we have some news," the lady, Annie, told the boys with a reassuring smile.

The boys left the conference room with a sigh, Niall in Liam's arms resting comfortably. At the lobby of Modests! office, they were met with Basil who stopped them before they headed out trough the front doors.

"What's going on?" Louis asked with a frown.

"There are quite a few paps outside. Someone must have tipped them that you guys were here," Basil said as he looked at them, eyes lingering on Niall who was busy looking around the large and expensively decorated lobby.

"Just great. Now what? They're gonna want to get a glimpse of Niall," Harry said, looking over at the child who was looking at him. Niall smiled at Harry and the curly haired lad smiled back.

"Alberto handed me his jacket, you can cover him up with it."

Louis took the jacket from Basil and Liam handed Niall over to Harry.

"Alright pumpkin, I'm gonna have to cover you up with this for a bit because there's some people outside with cameras and we don't want them to hurt your little eyes with the flashes. Try to stay still and don't peek out," Harry warned Niall who nodded. "Can you do that for me?"

"Yes papa! I'll be good," Niall promised and rested his head on Harry's shoulder as Louis covered him up with the jacket.

They all went out together, Harry in the middle holding the jacket over Niall while Louis walked in front and Liam behind him with their security ushering them to the awaiting car. Questions were being thrown at them as the camera flashes went off one after the other. Niall whined under the jacket at the amount of noise, wanting to know what was going on, but he promised to stay hidden and he wanted to be a good boy. The jacket was kept on him though, even when he was in the car but it was removed when they were away from the yelling people.

"You okay, Ni?" Louis asked as he took off the jacket from Niall's head and found a grinning child staring back at him.

"Okay!" Niall giggled, bouncing in his seat in between his mama and papa who laughed.

"Where to now boys?" Their security guard told them form the driver's seat.

"My place, please," Harry told the man who nodded.

"Your place?" Louis asked his boyfriend with a confused expression on his face.

"Well since whoever is following us around might be parked at your place more often then not, I figured we should find some privacy elsewhere and my house seemed like a better option since it's farther out. I texted Zayn and told him to pack some things for you and Ni and to drop them off at my house," Harry explained, playing with Niall's tangled hair and trying to tame it a little.

"Yeah that sounds good," Louis sighed.

The drive to Harry's house was a half an hour drive and Niall was getting restless. He kept complaining about his butt being numb or being hungry. Eventually Louis pulled his phone out and let Niall play a game on it to keep him quiet. Eventually the car pulled up at the driveway of Harry's house, Zayn and Liam's cars already parked there and they got out with Niall skipping up to Zayn who was sitting on a chair on the porch with Liam.

"Zaynie!" Niall cheered with his arms wide open.

"Hi babes," Zayn smiled and picked up Niall after he stood up, kissing his flushed cheeks and waiting for Harry to unlock the front door.

"Haven't been here since the tour kicked off in February," Harry stated as they all walked in.

"So there's no food in the fridge?" Louis asked his boyfriend with a pout as he headed towards the kitchen without waiting for a reply.

"No, sorry."

"If you want I can send Sophia to go bring some stuff over," Liam offered as they all headed into the kitchen even though there was nothing in there.

"Thank you for the offer but Gemma's in town and I asked her to, should be here in a few minutes I'm guessing," Harry told Liam who nodded and sat on the counter.

Zayn was sitting on a chair with Niall who was playing on his phone. Harry looked over at Louis and glared while the older lad shrugged innocently. Louis had accustomed Niall to playing too much with their phones. Niall was scrolling through Zayn's pictures, smiling at the pictures of Zayn's family and the other lads and frowning when he saw a blonde girl with blue eyes. She was hugging Zayn and Zayn was kissing her cheek.

"Who's that?" Niall asked Zayn, looking up at the dark haired man with the same cute adorable frown that was making Louis and Harry coo while Liam just looked amused by the whole situation. Even little Niall was just as jealous as big Niall.

"Oh um, that's a friend, her name's Perrie," Zayn stuttered out, looking at the picture and trying to think of when it was taken, but froze when he realized it was not even a month after he and Niall broke things off.

"She's pretty," was all Niall said, but you could hear how upset he was by his tone and by the way he focused on the picture a little too hard, probably wishing it away.

"Come on, pumpkin, let's go see your new room," Harry said as he took the phone away from the child's hands gently and picked him up.

"I saw the date on that," Louis mumbled, sitting on the counter with Liam as the two waited to hear some sort of explanation. "I know she was your beard and the fake engagement was called off a month ago, but I would really hope you didn't hook up with her after your break up with Niall because I know how much she liked you and flirted with you even when Niall was around."

"I'm sorry! I-I had a moment of weakness! She's so fucking pretty and I was heartbroken about the breakup and we had a few drinks then one thing lead to another and we woke up in bed together the next morning. I swear it didn't mean anything," Zayn explained himself, watching Louis' expression go from neutral to angry.

"A moment of weakness. Zayn, what the fuck?!" Liam exclaimed, shaking his head.

"I just, guess I wanted to know what it was like to have a relationship where you didn't have to hide," Zayn shrugged.

"So you dated her while Niall was crying over you every fucking night. While we had to force him to eat and sleep and fucking function like a human being? While we had to reassure him over and over again that it wasn't his fault that you left the band!" Louis shouted, face turning red with how angry he was and really, he just wanted to punch Zayn's pretty face. "Are you still seeing her? If you are then get the fuck out."

Zayn let out a sigh and stood up, heading out of the kitchen and leaving a shocked Liam and a very angry Louis behind. There were some voices by the front door; one female and the other being Zayn's before it closed and Gemma stepped inside.

"Whoa, I can feel some tension in here. Is everything okay?" She asked as she walked in with bags of groceries which Liam helped her out with. "Thanks."

"Zayn was better off not coming back," was all Louis told her before he walked off.

"Um did I miss something? I thought Louis and Zayn had solved their problems?" Gemma asked Liam as the two unloaded the bags.

"Zayn's actually dating Perrie and has been since shortly after breaking it off with Niall, approximately three weeks after," Liam explained, making Gemma gasp in shock. "Niall saw a picture of Zayn and Perrie and even though he doesn't understand the situation, it still hurt him in some way. Harry's upstairs with him right now."

"That poor boy, he's suffered enough and now as a kid he doesn't even get a break. By the way, the pictures of you guys walking out of Modest are all over the web with some pretty pissed off articles about you guys wanting to keep Niall hidden."

"This is only getting worse."

Upstairs, Harry was doing a Frozen puzzle with Niall when Louis walks in and sits down next to him. Harry frowns and wraps an arm around his boyfriend's tense body.

"Hi mama!" Niall greeted Louis with a smile.

"Hi baby."

"What happened? I heard yelling," Harry asks quietly, Niall singing Do You Want To Build A Snowman? while he worked on his puzzle with his left hand and Olaf tucked under his right arm.

"I'll tell you later, but your sister is here with the stuff you asked," Louis told Harry who nodded and placed a kiss to his temple before standing up.

"Where you going?" Niall asked Harry as he looked up at him, Olaf now clutched to his chest with both hands.

"My sister Gemma is here and she brought food cause we didn't have any," Harry explained.

"Can I go say hi?" Niall asked timidly, hiding behind Olaf and the two adults smiled. They honestly couldn't believe little Niall was so shy around new people.

"Of course you can. Come on," Harry told Niall as he extended his hand and waited for the child to take it before they headed downstairs, leaving Louis alone and unmoving in what would be Niall's room for the next few days,

Harry and Niall entered the kitchen holding hands with Olaf still hiding half of Niall's face. Gemma smiled and greeted her brother very quick before kneeling down in front of Niall who inched closer to Harry.

"Hi sweetie, I'm Gemma and it's so nice to see you," she spoke softly with a large smile as she looked at Niall.

"Hi," Niall whispered, moving Olaf so he could smile at Gemma who leaned forward and kissed his cheek.

"Thanks for doing this, Gem," Harry told his sister, watching Niall walk over to Liam and show him his Olaf even though Liam's seen it plenty of times since Niall's birthday party.

"Hey it's no problem, if you need anything else just call. I gotta go, but I hope this situation passes over soon."

"I hope so too."

Gemma left and Harry got busy on making dinner. Louis eventually walked in looking slightly less tense than earlier.

"H, maybe you should go rest for a bit. You just had a long flight and haven't sat down to relax since you got back," Louis told his boyfriend worriedly.

"I'm fine, promise."

"Lads, we should definitely work on that statement," Liam informed the couple, breaking up whatever moment could have come.

"I'll bring my laptop," Harry said and headed upstairs.

"I don't like Zaynie no more," Niall suddenly said from his spot at the table, making both Liam and Louis scoot closer to better hear the child.

"Why not baby?" Louis asked, rubbing Niall's back.

"Cause he likes that pretty girl from the picture and I don't like her. Zaynie is mine."

"Oh baby," Louis murmured, not knowing if too feel sad by the situation or feel amused. Either way, little Niall was not too fond of sharing someone he doesn't know he loves.

Chapter Text

~September 27, 2015~

"And done," Harry said as he finished typing up the last of the statement.

"Lets read it over to make sure we didn't leave anything behind or made mistakes," Louis suggested as he finished up cooking the mac and cheese Harry had started to make.

"I wish things wouldn't have come to this... our privacy was invaded in the worst way... legal action will be taken against whoever released the pictures... the problem came about back in June... witch... won't last much longer..." Harry skimmed through, making changes here and there. "All the love, Harry, Louis and Liam."

"That sounds great, let's get it up on Facebook and Twitter then," Liam told Harry, watching Niall color at the table.

Harry nodded and uploaded the statement to the band's Facebook and Twitter account. Within minutes they got various supportive comments from fans who were also trying to take the account down.

Dinner was uneventful, just the usual grown up conversations and Niall humming a song as he ate. They had mac and cheese with broccoli for dinner which didn't make Niall very happy but he ate everything on his plate anyway. Liam left shortly after and while Louis cleaned up the kitchen and washed the dishes, Harry was upstairs getting Niall's bath ready.

"And all your little things!" Niall sang loudly, giggling as Harry looked at him with wide eyes.

"Where did you hear that, pumpkin?" Harry asked as he put a now naked Niall in the tub.

Niall only shrugged and sighed as he realized he didn't have any of his toys. Bath time was quick since Harry was tired and Niall didn't want to play because he had no toys. Soon Niall was in his pajamas and wincing as Harry brushed his hair.

"Owie!" Niall cried out after a particularly bad tug.

"I'm sorry, pumpkin, it's just your hair is a little too long and it gets all tangled easily," Harry told the boy.

"My hair is not long, it's like yours papa!" Niall giggled and Harry chuckled. Niall's hair was looking like Where We Are tour Harry's hair had been and Louis kept forgetting to call Lou to give Niall a haircut. Though Harry didn't want Niall to get one because the kid looked adorable with long hair.

Niall pouted and let Harry continue to brush his hair. After that Harry carried Niall downstairs where they found Louis in the living room watching TV. Louis smiled at the two and stretched his arms out for Niall, Harry handing him off to him and watching the two cuddle.

"Is my baby all clean?" Louis mumbled tiredly as he let Niall snuggle into his chest.

"Yeah, now I'm sleepy," Niall mumbled back, yawning right after.

Harry sat next to Louis and wrapped his arms around the two, pulling Louis into his side. An hour later Niall was fast asleep in the guest bedroom and both Harry and Louis were in Harry's room under the covers ready to call it a night but before that, Louis told Harry about the Zayn incident and the curly haired lad simply sighed and shook his head, anger bubbling inside of him but he was too tired to even think about strangling the Bradford boy.

"He's not going to hear the end of this when I see him," Harry mumbled as he let Louis spoon him.

~September 28, 2015~

Things were worse the next day. While the statement had cleared up some questions and all, the next round of pictures that had been leaked were of Harry and Louis with Niall which only made the Larry rumors increase. Management was pissed since they couldn't get the account taken down as quick as they'd hoped and they were still working on who might be leaking those pictures. Harry and Louis were honestly just wanting to come out, but they also knew this wasn't the time nor the way to do it.

"Mama," Niall whined in boredom, big meanie Zayn hadn't packed his favorite toys so Niall was bored and in search of something to do.

"Ni, baby, we can't go out and get your toys. I'm sorry," Louis told Niall whose bottom lip began to tremble and suddenly he was crying. "Sweetie, don't cry. I'm sure we can find something to do."

Niall made grabby hands at Louis who picked him up as Harry walked into the room.

"Management doesn't want us to say anything about this situation, as usual but now they want Niall to be seen with Liam and Sophia for a day or two to make it seem like we're all switching off to help take care of him and they want you to be seen going home alone so the fans can assume Niall is off with one of us," Harry explained with a sigh, watching Louis bounce Niall around to try and calm him down.

"This is bull. I'm sick tired of hiding and pretending and we can't let them treat Niall like a toy. He's not something we can just let someone else borrow for a bit."

"I know babe, but it's the only way until this is cleared though they think they have some suspects in mind. It's one of the new people we hired for this tour."

"Harry, we hired like twenty new people for this tour, it could be awhile until we truly find out who it was. Or do you think maybe it was someone else in our circle?" Louis asked worriedly, holding onto Niall tighter as if he were afraid someone would come in and take him away from him.

"I don't know babe, we've known these people for years and I don't want to just start accusing someone who I thought we could trust. It could honestly be anyone from one of the new crew members to someone who's been with us since the very beginning," Harry told Louis with a sigh escaping his lips as he looked at his tired looking boyfriend. "We're going to find this person, don't worry."

"I know, I'm just worried about him," Louis said as he motioned to Niall who was hiccuping in his arms.

"We won't let anyone hurt him."

"I want my Olaf," Niall mumbled tiredly and that's when Louis decided it was nap time.

"Let's go find Olaf and lay down for a bit, yeah? Papa and I can sing to you if you want?" Louis bribed Niall as soon as the child started to whine.

"Okay."

Harry chuckled and shook his head as he followed the two up the stairs and into the master bedroom where there on the floor lay a forgotten Olaf. Niall is asleep not even halfway into the first song and so are Louis and Harry shortly after.

It's nearly two hours later when they are awakened by the doorbell going off. Niall whines and turns to cuddle into Harry, but the taller man is already up and heading down the stairs Harry grumbled the whole way to the front door and when he opened it, he glared at the person on the other side of it.

"What the hell are you doing here?" Harry asks angrily.

"Look, I just want to talk about what happened last night," Zayn says as he pushes past Harry to get inside the house.

Harry closes the door and runs his hand down his face. Taking a deep breath, Harry turns around and follows Zayn into the living room. Zayn was pacing and Harry stood by the entrance with his arms across his chest as he waited.

"Look, I'm not dating Perrie. I was and I regret it, but I was just tired of hiding and pretending and I just wanted to know what it was like to be able to date someone without having to hide. And well Perrie is a sweet girl, but I couldn't stand being with her like that. It felt wrong and I just wanted Niall back," Zayn explained as he looked at Harry with wide eyes, looking like he didn't get a wink of sleep last night.

"But you gave her false hope, Zayn. You knew she liked you and the way she fucking treated Niall yet you still chose to go out with her," Harry told Zayn in a stern tone, trying to not raise his voice in case Niall and Louis had gone back to sleep. No one had slept last night. Louis and Harry because they're stressing over the current situation with their stalker and Niall slept for a bit, but then woke up from a nightmare and refused to go back to bed even though it had been three in the morning.

"And I know, I broke it off with her before the engagement was called off because of a bad comment she'd made about him and she's so pissed off she's been sending me these texts."

"What kinds of texts? Pissed of with a bunch of bad words kind of texts? Or a whole different level of obsessed kind of texts?" Harry asked worriedly, though he didn't want to even think that maybe Perrie was the one releasing those pictures. Of course she hadn't been at their concerts or backstage, but maybe she'd hired someone.

"The obsessive kind and keeps making threats about telling the truth on our fake relationship and how I just used her as a rebound and all these other things that made me think that maybe she's the one behind the account leaking the pictures," Zayn commented and it definitely made Harry think about it more and not feel guilty.

"Well do you know if she was close with anyone of the crew members from the times she would visit?" Harry asked, trying to think back to those times he saw Perrie roaming around while they were on tour.

"I think she mentioned someone once, some girl named Gia?"

"Gianna Morretti?" Harry questioned in shock.

"Yeah that's her! I think I only saw her around once or twice before I left, why. Do you know her?"

"That's the fucking witch that turned Niall into a kid!"

"Bad word," came Niall's shy voice from behind Harry.

Harry turned around and saw Louis with Niall resting on his hip and clutching his Olaf. Louis glared at Zayn but Harry quickly interfered before anything could happen.

"We think, well more like we're sure, we know who the stalker is," Harry informed Louis who looked over at Zayn looking slightly shocked.

"Who is it?" Louis asked in an almost too demanding voice as they all sat on the couches, Niall sitting on Louis' lap and refusing to look at Zayn.

"It's Perrie and Gia, the witch who turned Niall," Zayn told Louis who gasped in shock and then Harry went on to explain what Zayn had told him.

"But then there has to be a third," Louis concluded after Harry finished explaining, the other two frowning. "Gia turned Niall back in Cardiff on June 6th so she obviously couldn't have gone back on tour with us because Josh and Harry talked to her the morning after meaning she wouldn't have been stupid enough to return somewhere where people already knew her. And then pictures of little Ni and Lottie leaked from our concert before we cancelled so there has to be someone else that helped with the rest of the pictures because I doubt Gia would risk herself so much by coming all the way over to London."

"So then Gia turning Niall was also part of the plan since Perrie has always disliked Niall," Zayn told them.

"And we need to find this third accomplice, but for the meantime we inform Modest about this and Liam," Harry said as he pulled out his phone to call their management.

"I'm gonna talk to Perrie and see if I can pull anything else out of her without tipping her off about this," Zayn said as he stood up. "I'm sorry."

"For what?" Louis frowned, hearing Niall let out a long sigh.

"I feel like I caused this mess. If I wouldn't have actually gone out with her then we wouldn't even be in this situation and you guys would be finishing up the tour."

"Zayn, there was no way of knowing this would have happened so don't go blaming yourself on me, got it?" Louis warned Zayn with a smile as he stood up after setting Niall on the couch. "You've got nothing to worry about, now come 'ere."

Zayn was pulled into Louis' arms for a tight hug. He relaxed and hugged Louis back, realizing how much he's missed being around his old bandmates. They pulled away after a minute and then Zayn left, feeling disappointed that Niall had ignored him the whole time.

"You saw Gia at the bar, do you remember ever seeing her around while we were on tour?" Louis asked Harry who was playing with Niall's hair and hearing the child giggle as he shook his head to make his hair fly around wildly.

"I don't really remember her, but when I saw her at the bar she seemed familiar to me. Zayn says he saw her once or twice. There are a lot of our crew that we don't really see much, maybe she knew someone that we don't really know," Harry shrugged, tugging on his hair as he tries remembering seeing Gia around backstage or something.

"Figuring the rest out will be like reading something in a different language. Let's just hope Gia will turn Niall back or we're going to have to search for another witch that didn't turn out to be such a bitch," Louis grumbled angrily.

"Mama, you keep saying naughty words!" Niall whined as he crawled on the couch to get to Louis and sit on his lap, cupping his face in his hands and squishing his cheeks. "Your face is scratchy."

"I'm sorry baby," Louis laughed, leaning forward to press a tiny kiss to Niall's nose.

"We should get a swear jar," Harry commented. "With the amount of time you swear the jar would be overflowing with money."

"Hey, I'm not the only one who swears. Did you forget that Ni caught you saying the f-word earlier? I mean yeah sure most of the money would be mine, but you're no saint."

Harry laughed and rolled his eyes.

"Can we watch Frozen?" Niall asked, interrupting Harry and Louis' bickering.

"Niall," Louis whined, sick tired of watching Frozen. And Tarzan. He had a Tarzan, he didn't need to keep watching Tarzan.

"Please," Niall pouted at them with his big blue eyes.

"How about we watch Peter Pan? That's one of my favorite movies," Louis told Niall and Harry disguised his chuckle with a cough.

"Only cause you look like Peter Pan," Harry told Louis.

"You're one to talk, Tarzan."

Niall giggled between them as the two continued to argue about their Disney look-a-likes. Eventually they did settle on Peter Pan and for dinner they had Chinese food. It was a quiet rest of the day compared to the current problem they were having, but they were glad they were able to have a bit of peace. Of course it didn't truly last long since the dark clouds that had been threatening to bring rain all day actually let the rain fall sometime before bedtime with thunder and lightning, they now had to deal with a scared Niall who clung to either Louis or Harry each time the sky would rumble and the bright flash would illuminate the sky. It was bound to be a long night.

"Baby, there's nothing to be scared about," Louis told Niall as he carried the child up the stairs to get him ready for bed. They skipped bath time because it would be hard to bathe the child while there was a storm outside.

"But is scary, mama," Niall whimpered as he sat on his bed clutching Olaf and his penguin as Louis grabbed some pajamas from the drawer.

"Well how about you sleep with your papa and I? We'll keep you safe," Louis told Niall as he pried away the child's stuffed animals and began to undress him.

"Please? I don't want to sleep alone. The room is kinda scary and I miss my old room with all my toys and my giant teddy. He keeps me safe at night and teddy isn't here to keep me safe," Niall explained to Louis, his head getting stuck in the shirt.

"Oh baby, you could have told us you felt scared sleeping here. Is that why you had a nightmare last night?"

Niall nodded and pulled up his light blue pants and grabbed his stuffed animals again while Louis cooed, feeling slightly guilty that Niall was afraid of his temporary room. Well Louis had to admit that he felt weird sleeping in Harry's room since he'd actually been sleeping in the same bed for months now so obviously it would affect Niall as well the sudden change.

Louis carried Niall into the master bedroom where Harry was watching Friends. The curly haired lad smiled at Niall and let Louis place him on his lap as he went to go get ready for bed.

"Sleeping with us, pumpkin?" Harry asked as he pulled up the covers with Niall sitting on his lap.

"Mhm, the storm is scary," Niall told Harry tiredly.

On the screen Ross yelled, "We were on a break!" for what seemed like the millionth time but it made Niall giggle anyways.

"He's funny," he told Harry, craning his neck upwards to look at Harry who smiled down at him.

"He is isn't he?"

Eventually Louis returned to bed and they finished the episode before calling it a night. The tv was shut off and so were the lights, Niall placed in the middle with his Olaf as Harry and Louis provided him safety and comfort over the storm still going on outside. He fell asleep with a content smile and the sound of the rain hitting the windows lulled him further into his slumber.

~September 29, 2015~

It was still raining when they woke up, but luckily it was just rain. They had a simple breakfast because they'd woken up late and Harry didn't want them to ruin their lunch time. Louis had merely rolled his eyes and had said that they could eat later but Harry wanted Niall to nap at his usual time.

"Now we know who the strict parent is," Louis mumbled, helping Niall out with his strawberries because Harry wanted Niall to eat healthy no matter what meal or time of day it was.

"Just eat, the guys and Sophia will be over soon," Harry told his boyfriend.

After breakfast Niall was sitting in front of the glass door that lead to the backyard just watching the rain fall. He wanted to go out and jump on the puddles but it was obvious neither Harry nor Louis would let him when it was still raining. The doorbell went off and Niall stood up, running towards the front door just as Louis opened it.

"Hi!" Niall greeted Liam, Zayn and Sophia excitedly, forgetting about his past dilemma with Zayn.

"Hi sweetie!" Sophia greeted Niall with a smile.

"Hi! Hi! Hi!"

"Niall, that's enough babe," Louis told the child, patting his head as he let the others in.

Niall pouted and skipped off to find Harry. Louis greeted his friends and then lead them into the living room where Niall was sprawled out on the floor like a starfish. They stepped around him and took a seat.

"Have we found anything else?" Liam asked.

"Not on our part. Zayn?" Harry told the dark haired lad who sighed.

"I talked to Perrie asking her if she knew more about Gia but without telling her why and all she said was that Gia has a brother who started working for the band shortly before OTRA began but said she doesn't remember his name," Zayn told them.

"Well, we're one step closer," Louis commented, watching Niall crawl around the floor with a frown. "Baby, you alright?"

"I'm bored, mama!" Niall whined as he crawled over to Louis and hugged his legs.

"Go find Olaf then."

"No."

"Niall."

"No."

Louis rolled his eyes and figured if he ignored Niall the kid would stop whining about everything.

"But we know her last name so if we search for the guy by last name then we should definitely find him!" Harry exclaimed. "We're looking for a guy with the last name Morretti."

"That's a great idea. I'll start making calls see if we kind find him," Liam said as he stood up and headed to the kitchen to make a call, Sophia following behind.

"If we find him, what's gonna happen? The damage has been done," Zayn asked Louis and Harry who sighed.

"We know, but he has to have more pictures that we can't risk him leaking. And him and his sister need to pay for the damage they've done, of course right after Gia changes Niall back to normal and I don't know if management and the label will do something about Perrie," Louis explained, wincing as Niall hit his shin with his knee. "You little brat, go play somewhere else."

"Papa, mama is being mean to me!" Niall cried, making grabby hands at Harry who sighed and pulled the kid onto his lap.

"Oh for the love of," Harry groaned, but pulled Niall into him to cuddle him.

Liam walked back into the room with Sophia and said, "They're looking into it now and once they have him they'll call back."

"So now all we have to do is wait?" Louis wondered out loud.

A twitter notification went off on someone's phone, making them all jump and Zayn grabbed his phone.

"It's the account, they tweeted something else," Zayn told them as he opened the app.

"What are they saying?" Sophia asked for everyone in the room.

"Well it's a DM, they're threatening to release pictures from 2012 of you two and Niall and I if we don't back off on trying to get rid of their account. And they said that if we succeed to delete their account that they'll only make a new one," Zayn said as he looked through the message.

"From 2012? Jesus," Louis mumbled, running a hand through his hair. "Well then Perrie had to have taken those pictures because Gia and her brother have only barely been around."

After that they had lunch, Niall refusing to sit anywhere but with Zayn so the dark haired lad ate with Niall on his lap just happy that the child had seemed to forget his anger towards him. Zayn was even in charge of putting the boy in his bed for nap time. Niall didn't whine too much, just made Zayn read him a story.

"Sweet dreams, babes," Zayn whispered as he leaned down to press a kiss to the top of Niall's head before he left the room quietly.

Chapter Text

~September 30, 2015~

"So now that everyone knows about Niall, can I start posting pictures of him on Instagram?" Louis asked his boyfriend as the two laid in bed in the morning after having brushed their teeth, just waiting for Niall to wake up and demand for breakfast. "Pretty please H, he's so cute and the fans are going to die when they see him!"

"Louis," Harry warned as he set his phone down to look over at the pouting older male who had his arms crossed against his chest. Now he knows where Niall got that look from. "Look, we promised we'd be careful with this and keep Niall out of the spotlight but look where it's gotten us. Pictures of our private life have leaked, the fans don't need to see more."

"You're such a party pooper, but I'm gonna post it anyway." Louis shrugged as he grabbed his phone and dashed for the bathroom, locking himself in as he heard Harry yell his name and stumble after him.

Louis sat on the closed lid of the toilet seat and scrolled through his photo album of baby Niall he'd created which was filled with quite a lot of pictures of the adorable little Irish lad. He found one of Niall on his large teddy bear fast asleep back when he still had little blonde hair. Louis grinned and posted that on Instagram with a caption of 'The secret is out so here's my boy !!' Comments poured in and Louis chuckled at some of them.

Louis walked out of the bathroom and found Harry glaring at him.

"Delete it," Harry commanded Louis who shook his head with a smirk.

"No, besides, the fans have already seen it and deleting it would only rise suspicion," Louis explained as he took a seat on Harry's lap. "Besides, he's too cute to not want to show off to the fans."

Harry gave Louis one final glare before he caved in and wrapped his arms around his waist, pulling him into a kiss. Their moment was short lived however when they heard Niall's bedroom door open and his little feet walk towards their room. Louis moved to sit beside Harry and the two waited until Niall opened the door and ran inside, jumping on the bed with loud giggles as he bounced.

"You silly, pumpkin." Harry laughed as he grabbed Niall under his armpits and dragged him to place him in between himself and Louis.

"I like being silly!" Niall exclaimed as he laid on his back and smiled brightly at the two. "Being silly makes me hungry though."

"Well let's go eat because I don't want my precious baby to be hungry," Louis told Niall, tickling his tummy lightly which made the child laugh loudly as he squirmed around trying to break free from Louis' fingers. "We'll meet you downstairs."

Harry nodded and watched as Louis carried Niall out of the room with a fond smile on his face. He shook his head with a soft sigh and got out of bed. Downstairs Louis was pouring Niall cereal into a bowl while Niall told Louis some random story as he waited rather impatiently for his breakfast.

"Alright, eat up but try to not make a big mess like last time or I'll feed you like a baby," Louis threatened the child who huffed and rolled his eyes as he grabbed his spoon.

"I won't make a mess and I'm not a baby," Niall informed Louis and Harry laughed.

"What's on the agenda for today? Can we finally go home or are we still under lock down?" Louis asked Harry as they too ate cereal.

"Not yet babe, not until we find out who this guy is but you can go pick up somethings if you want. Just take one of our security guys with you," Harry told Louis who grumbled.

"Might as well because I'm running out of clothes and so is Ni."

And that's what Louis did after they ate lunch and Niall was taking his nap because if Niall saw Louis leave, then the child would want to leave with him. Harry is enjoying some quiet time, getting some work done and checking his emails while also waiting for the call. A twitter notification went off and he checked his phone to see that it was from that account that was leaking the pictures. He opened the app and saw that it was pictures of Louis entering his house alone. Harry shook his head and called Louis.

"What's up? Did Ni wake up?" Louis asked when he answered.

"No, just telling you to be careful, the person's there," Harry informed his boyfriend who sighed.

"Bastard. Management hasn't called I'm guessing."

"Nope. They're assholes, so let's not expect much from them at this point even though it's our safety on the line right now."

"I should be home in an hour, hopefully the person will be gone so they don't follow me," Louis sighed. "Love you."

"Love you too, and be safe."

Harry hung up and went back to his work. Almost an hour later Niall called for someone from the top of the stairs and Harry jogged up the stairs and smiled at the child.

"Had a nice nap, pumpkin?" Harry asked as he grabbed Niall's hand and helped him down the stairs.

"Yes, but where's mama?"

"Mama went out for a bit to get somethings from the house, but he'll be back soon. In the meantime, we have another papa and pumpkin day," Harry grinned, picking up Niall and kissing his cheek as he headed into the kitchen. "Want some fruit?"

"Yes please! I want a banana," Niall sounded out carefully because sometimes he added and extra na or two. "And strawberries please."

Harry set Niall down on a chair and went to go cut up a banana for Niall with some slices of strawberries. Harry placed the fruit in a bowl and placed it in front of Niall with a plastic fork, sitting next to him in case Niall needed help eating. Or was being lazy and wanted Harry to feed him. They had more of that these days.

"Can we go home soon?" Niall asked as he continued to eat his snack.

"Not right now Nialler, maybe in a few more days," Harry told the child who pouted.

Two hours later Niall was busy making a drawing for Zayn in Harry's office as the curly haired lad continued his work. Harry had music playing softly from some speakers and Niall hummed along on the occasional song that Harry knows big Niall liked. Like when Justin Bieber's Somebody To Love came on, Niall actually stood up to dance around and giggle, Harry recording the whole thing with a fond smile to show it to Louis and the other boys later.

"Do you think Zaynie will like my picture?" Niall asked Harry a little unsure as he colored in his butterfly the large sun at the top of his paper with a smile and blue eyes.

"Of course he will pumpkin," Harry replied with a smile.

"Anyone home!?" Came Louis's voice from the front door and Niall gasped as he looked up at Harry with wide eyes before racing out of the room.

"Mama! Mama's home!" Niall yelled excitedly as he ran down the hall.

Louis grinned when he saw the six year old and got ready to pick him up. Niall crashed into his legs and Louis quickly picked him up, kissing his cheeks and hugging him tight.

"I've missed you!" Niall giggled as he wrapped his arms around Louis' neck.

"I missed you too, babe. Were you good to papa and did you have fun?" Louis asked Niall, looking up when he saw Harry walking towards them with a smile.

"I was very good," Niall confirmed, laying his head on Louis' shoulder.

"Hi babe," Louis greeted Harry, puckering his lips for a kiss from his boyfriend.

"Hello," Harry greeted back and leaned down to press their lips together.

"Eww!" Niall giggled between them.

Harry and Louis laughed at Niall's reaction. Harry grabbed the bag Louis had packed and carried it further into the house while Louis carried Niall.

"Did you see the guy?" Harry asks Louis once they're sitting in the living room and Niall was busy playing with some toys Louis had brought him from their home.

"No, but when I got there there was a black car parked across the street from our house and when I went out it was gone," Louis said. "Though I'm sure it was just a neighbor's car and not me being paranoid."

"Hopefully," Harry sighed out. "I'm just hoping management can hurry up and find the guy."

Harry's phone rang awhile later which startled the three out of the movie they'd been watching. It was their management and Harry took in a deep breath before answering the call and putting it on speaker.

"Any good news?" Louis asked in a hopeful tone, holding Harry's hand.

"Yes, we have a name. The guy is Marcus Morretti and he was part of the sound crew. We hired him back in January and had even asked if his sister could join him. We're trying to contact him, but it seems like all of the contact information he gave us is no longer available. You said his sister is the witch who turned Niall, have you tried contacting her?" Their manager asked them.

"No, but we'll do that right now and hopefully we can get some answers from her, but uh what's gonna happen with Perrie?" Harry asked.

"We're having a meeting with her and the Little Mix girls tomorrow and we're going to discuss the problem she's caused but don't worry about that."

They finished the call shortly after and while Louis informed Zayn and Liam in their group chat of the news, Harry tried calling Gia.

"This is Gia!" She answered happily and Harry let out a sigh of relief.

"It's Harry, we know of you and Marcus leaking the pictures and we just want to know why," Harry told her and Louis looked at him like 'really?' and Harry simply shrugged.

"Well for your information I'm not the one who took the pictures and leaked them. Could I have warned you? Yeah, but I also couldn't rat out my brother, il mio amore. I will warn you though, he's got quite a bit of an obsession with Niall so I'd be careful. Don't leave him out of your sight and I would keep your boyfriend close too, Marcus has been following him a little too much. And I keep my promises, so unless you have questions or concerns, call me up again in December and I'll return Niall to his actual age. Bye!" and with that, Gia hung up and Harry sighed as he tossed his phone onto the couch.

"What'd she say?" Louis asked, trying to keep Niall from running off.

Harry explained everything that Gia told him and Louis couldn't help but feel worried now that he knew Marcus was after them because of his obsession with Niall and possibly him.

"But she's still willing to turn him back, right?"

"Of course she is."

"I'm bored!" Niall whined from Louis' arms, trying to squirm away from him. "Mama, let me go please! I wanna go potty."

"Okay, but wash your hands mister!" Louis called after Niall who was running down the hall to the bathroom just as the doorbell went off. "Oh yeah I called Lou and asked her to come give Nialler a haircut."

"Louis," Harry whined, wanting to argue but he went to go open the door and smiled at their stylist. "Hi Lou."

"Hello love, you boys doing okay?" She asked as she walked inside with Lux trailing behind happily, her hair up in two pigtails and what looked like lip gloss on her lips.

"Yeah everything's good around here. Hi Lux."

"Hi uncle Hazzy!" She greeted him with a grin.

"Thanks for coming Lou, I've been meaning to give you a call for a while now," Louis told her, Lux attached to his legs and Niall pouted when he walked in and saw Lux with his mama.

Harry was the only one who saw Niall's jealousy so he scooped him up into his arms and kissed his cheek, making sure to give him some extra love. Louis helped Lou set up her things in the master bathroom upstairs since it was obviously the biggest bathroom and Lou would have enough space to set her things on the counter while Harry stayed in the living room with Lux who wanted to play and Niall who refused to let go of him.

"Papa," Niall whined again when Harry tried setting him down on the floor again.

"You're gonna get a haircut pumpkin, so you gotta let go and then you can play with Lux for a bit," Harry tried bribing the child who shook his head.

"Nuh uh, I wanna look like you papa!" Niall exclaimed as he tugged on Harry's bun and then his own hair.

"But it'll be easier for bath time and when I brush your hair because you won't cry as much," Harry told Niall, motioning for Lux to follow them upstairs.

"Okay," Niall finally sighed in defeat and tucked his face into Harry's neck to not look at Lux who was now chattering away with his papa.

"Alright kiddo!" Louis grinned, taking Niall from Harry's arms and sitting him down on a chair while Lou covered him up with a cape. "Don't worry, babe, it won't be too much. Just a bit so it doesn't get in your eyes as much and you can see better. And maybe hopefully you'll stop tripping as much, Bambi."

"I'm not Bambi, that's papa!" Niall giggled as he looked at Louis through the mirror.

"Alright, you two shoo so I can work on Niall without distractions," Lou told the couple who nodded and left the bathroom with Lux.

Louis snickered as he heard Niall whine and complain the whole time Lou was cutting his hair, but eventually Niall came out with shorter hair that didn't cover his pretty blue eyes. Niall is smiling wide and he runs into Louis' arms. Louis picks him up and examines his hair and gives Lou a thumbs up as he lets Niall cuddle into him just as Lux and Harry walk into the room.

"All done?" Harry asked in surprise. He'd only been downstairs with Lux feeding her some fruit for no more than twenty minutes.

"Look how cute he looks, babe. We can finally see our little Nialler's eyes," Louis cooed as he tried coaxing Niall out of his hiding spot knowing his face was probably bright red from all the attention he was getting.

"See pumpkin? It wasn't so bad and you probably feel a lot better now that you don't have to brush your hair back constantly," Harry told Niall as he wrapped his arms around Louis and placed a kiss to Niall's head.

Niall mumbled something into Louis' neck that neither could make out.

"Thank you for doing this Lou, was afraid he'd end up being Rapunzel soon," Louis teased and Niall whined, very obviously not liking that joke.

"Anytime lads, now I gotta get going. Meeting Lottie at the salon with our future students," Lou grinned as she collected her things.

Soon after Lou and Lux were gone, Niall was still being a little clingy but otherwise let his parents make dinner as he sat at the table playing a game on Louis' iPad. Niall eventually grew bored of playing and went to roam through Louis' apps, clicking on the picture app and going through the hundreds of pictures his mama had. There were pictures of Louis' family, of a younger version of his mama and papa holding hands, pictures of big Niall with Zayn that made little Niall frown slightly as he noticed them smiling at each other with Zayn's arms around Niall's waist. Niall let out a small sigh and exited out of the app, going to play a different game before the other two noticed.

"Go wash your hands baby, dinner's ready," Louis informed Niall as he took the iPad away from the child who whined but headed towards the bathroom to wash his hands. "Whiny kid."

Harry chuckled and set the table just as Niall returned and sat at his usual seat. They were having lasagna that night, one of Niall's many favorite dishes that Harry made. The table was filled with chatter and Niall's loud laughter echoing in the room. Harry hadn't even bothered Louis with the Instagram picture anymore.

"Bedtime!" Louis declared sometime before ten, they were terrible with keeping Niall on an actual bedtime and they should probably work on that before they have their own kids.

"But mama," Niall whined tiredly but followed his mama up the stairs anyway.

"No buts, baby, you're tired and don't you dare say no because you can barely keep your eyes open."

Niall sighed but let Louis change him into his pajamas and tuck him into bed just as Harry walked in freshly showered and a soft smile on his face as he sat on the bed.

"Good night, pumpkin," Harry whispered, kissing Niall's forehead and both his cheeks. "If you need us you know where to find us."

"I know papa, good night and I love you," Niall told him, pulling his Olaf to his chest.

"Night baby, sleep tight," Louis grinned, he too kissing Niall's forehead. "Love you a lot."

"I love you a lot too mama."

The two adults left the room shortly after and left a small lamp on before heading into their room. They were tired, this whole situation with the stalker who is apparently obsessed with Niall dragging on for too long now. Louis didn't want to worry anymore about Marcus hurting his baby. Louis just wanted everything to go back to the way it was at the start when all they had to worry about was keeping Niall safe and happy.

"Hey, don't overthink this, yeah?" Harry spoke softly as he pulled Louis to sit on his lap.

"I just worry. I want this to end, Harry. I don't want some creep out there to keep stalking us and obsessing over Niall. Who knows if he has something other than leaking pictures planned? Are we just supposed to wait around until something happens?" Louis rambled as he buried his face into Harry's neck and taking a deep breath.

"I know babe, but until then we gotta stay patient and keep Nialler safe. I'm sure this situation will get sorted soon, but since Halloween is a month away, I was thinking we could throw a party for our families and a few friends. Let Niall have some fun and distract us from what's happening," Harry suggested as he rubbed Louis' thigh.

"Only if it's a costume party and us three can dress up the same like say I can be Peter Pan, you can be Wendy and Niall can be Tinker Bell."

"Louis!" Harry laughed, but he would gladly do anything to make his boyfriend and his Nialler happy. "Fine, we'll see what happens. Now let's go to bed before Niall wakes up calling for us."

"Shit, I forgot to bring his giant teddy, he says that he feels a little scared sleeping in a different room and that having his giant teddy around made him feel safe."

"Yeah, I would have assumed that getting him used to being in one place and then switching him to another would bring some issues. We can get Zayn or Liam to bring it tomorrow because who knows how much longer we'll be here."

"Yeah, now bed."

The lights were turned off once the two were under the covers and Louis had his head resting on Harry's chest.

"Night, Haz," Louis mumbled tiredly.

"Night my love."

Chapter Text

~October 1, 2015~

"Niall's sick," Louis told Harry as he walked into the kitchen with a sleepy and ill looking Niall in his arms.

"Is my pumpkin sick?" Harry cooed at the child who let out a cute sneeze just to prove Louis' point. "Oh my poor Nialler. Let's get you something to eat and then some medicine and we'll give you plenty of cuddles today, sounds good?"

"Yeah," Niall mumbled.

"I also called Liam so he could bring the you know what," Louis told Harry who nodded and gave him a thumbs up in response. "Hopefully he can finally get a better night's sleep."

Harry nodded tiredly. Last night Niall had woken up a total of three times. The first time because he needed to use the bathroom and was scared to go out into the hall on his own. The second time because he was thirsty and the third because he wanted to sleep with his mama and papa.

After breakfast Niall was wrapped in a blanket and sitting on the couch as he shivered and sneezed, trying to watch his cartoons but his head was pounding and Harry didn't have any medicine so now they had to call Liam to buy some. Louis walked into the living room with Olaf and handed it to Niall who smiled weakly at him.

"Oh pumpkin," Louis cooed and pulled Niall onto his lap and pressing a kiss to his forehead which he found incredibly warm.

"I'm cold mama," Niall mumbled in absolute misery as he sniffled.

"But you have a fever baby. I hope Liam doesn't take too long with your medicine."

"My head hurts too mama."

Louis hated seeing Niall so miserable, even big Niall because Niall was all sunshine and smiles and giggles but when he was sick it was all tears and looking his absolute worse and he was so needy that it broke their hearts. Of course now it was like twice the heart break because he was a tiny six year old who sneezed like a cute little baby kitten.

"Are you thirsty, honey? You need to stay hydrated," Louis asked Niall quietly because of the child's headache.

"Water please," Niall begged as he looked up at Louis with dull tired blue eyes.

"I'll be right back then."

Louis set Niall on the couch and went over to the kitchen to grab him a plastic cup with water. Louis bumped into Harry on his way in and smiled at his taller boyfriend.

"How's Ni?" Harry asked worriedly.

"Feverish and shivering and he says he's got a headache. I just hope Liam gets here soon so Niall can take the medicine and rest," Louis told Harry, holding the cup in his hands.

"He sent me a text and said he'd be here in five minutes with Zayn."

Louis let out a small sigh of relief and the two headed back into the living room with their sick little boy who was cuddled into the corner of the couch practically being swallowed in it. Harry placed Niall on his lap and Louis helped Niall drink the water. Luckily Liam had a key to Harry's house so instead of ringing the doorbell, he unlocked the front door and stepped into the foyer with a bag of children's medicine, some tissues and a thermometer. Zayn followed, struggling with the large bear and cursing Louis for buying it for Niall in the first place.

"Hey," Liam greeted them quietly as he walked into the living room after taking off his shoes at the entrance. "Hi baby, feeling icky today?"

Niall nodded sadly as he looked up at Liam who handed the bag over to Louis. Zayn walked with the bear and Niall's eyes widened.

"Look who we brought," Zayn smiled at the child who made grabby hands at the giant bear and hugged it tight once Zayn had put it within reach. "He heard you were sick and wanted to come make you feel better."

"Thank you," Niall giggled, going into a coughing fit right after.

"Alright sweetie, I need to take your temperature and then some medicine, after that you can cuddle with your bear and sleep for a bit if you want," Louis told Niall who whined and buried his face into Harry's chest. "Please Ni, it'll be quick."

"Come on, pumpkin. You want to feel better, don't you?" Harry asked Niall who nodded slightly and eventually pulled away.

Niall's fever wasn't too high, but Louis was still concerned anyways. He gave Niall the medicine and eventually Niall was laying on top of his giant bear on the living room floor ready for some much needed rest with a blanket draped over him. The adults headed into the kitchen to talk and not disturb Niall but to also be within ear shot in case he needed anything.

"You guys didn't see him or anything, right?" Louis asked, referring to Marcus.

"No but the car you described was there right across the street and Zayn said he thought he saw someone inside but the windows are tinted so we couldn't really see much," Liam explained and Louis looked at Harry worriedly. "He was gone when we walked back out of the house which is weird because I would think he would follow us around to find out where Niall is being kept."

"It is weird. And it's even weirder that he hasn't posted anything at all in over twenty four hours," Harry informed them, his phone resting on the table top.

"What the hell is this guy playing at? Is he trying to scare us because it's kind of working here," Louis said as he ran a hand through his messy hair and letting his fringe fall back into its swept look.

"You two look like hell though," Zayn pointed out as he took in their tired appearances. Louis looked like he hadn't shaved in over a week, they both had dark circles under their eyes and Harry was dressed in some joggers and an old sweatshirt that had probably belonged to Liam at some point.

"Well this whole situation has been stressful and Niall won't sleep through the night at a new place. Hopefully he will now that his giant teddy is here," Harry explained to his friends. "So how are you guys doing?"

"Well I'm working on my solo stuff, you know," Zayn mumbled awkwardly, avoiding eye contact with the ones who used to be his bandmates.

"Hey, you don't have to feel bad for telling us this stuff. We all knew you weren't just going to sit around and actually do nothing," Louis teased the dark haired male who let out a sigh of relief. "If you want to tell us about your solo stuff you can, we're still your friends."

"Thanks Lou," Zayn smiled at the older male who smiled back.

Harry was quite surprised with Louis, even though he knew his boyfriend was still hurting from Zayn's departure, hell they all were, but he was proud that his boyfriend was making the right choices to just forget what had happened and move forward.

"Well that's great mate! Glad you're working on what you like now," Liam said, patting Zayn's back. "Any release dates set?"

"First single should be out in January and the album is set for release in March, but we'll see how things progress from now until then."

"That's great though, we'll see when we can release our last one before our break."

They sit around and talk for a bit more until Niall starts coughing and Louis heads out quickly to go attend to his sick boy.

"He's really taken on that motherly role, hasn't he?" Zayn asked in amusement which made Liam laugh and Harry roll his eyes playfully.

"He definitely is the mom," Harry says rather fondly as he leans back in his seat, hearing Louis' soft murmuring from the other room as Niall's coughing fit comes to an end.

"You alright now baby?" Louis asks softly as he continues to rub Niall's small back.

"Y-Yeah," Niall chokes out, face red and tears streaming down his face, small body trembling.

"How are you feeling?" Louis asks as he feels Niall's forehead, relieved to find that he isn't as hot as before. "Your fever seems to have gone down."

"My throat and my head hurt mama and I'm thirsty," Niall tells Louis in a raspy voice that makes Louis wince because it sounds quite painful.

"Let's get you something to drink then and see papa and the others, yeah?" Louis tells Niall as he picks up the boy gently and carries him into the kitchen, Niall's body completely limp against him.

Louis walks into the kitchen and the other three look up at them, cooing at Niall quietly. Niall's got his arms wrapped around Louis' neck, legs dangling and not making the effort to wrap them around Louis and face tucked into his mama's neck.

"Hi pumpkin, feeling a bit better?" Harry asked as Louis set Niall down on his lap to get the child some water.

"Hurts," Niall whispered, grabbing his throat and cuddling into Harry's chest seeking warmth as he shivered.

Louis handed Harry Niall's water and Harry helped Niall drink it. Meanwhile Zayn went off to fetch Niall's blanket while Liam helped Louis make Niall some soup.

~October 3, 2015~

It had been a little too quiet the past three days, but the boys really appreciated it. Niall was still a little sick, he'd completely lost his voice the day before and his fever was up and down all day, now it was just the coughing and hoarse voice with a slight fever.

"It hurts me throat!" Niall whined, not wanting cereal for breakfast.

"Then how about some oatmeal? Or fruit?" Louis suggested as he peeked at their half empty fridge and half empty cupboards.

"I want some banana please."

"Alright baby. Two?"

Niall nodded and also pointed at the strawberries, it was all he ate these days so Louis made a mental note to run to the store and get some more fruit. Harry was just happy the boy was eating healthy on his own and didn't have to beg for him to eat his fruits and veggies.

"Anything?" Louis asked Harry when he walked into the kitchen with his phone in his hands and hair up in a bun.

"No. It's like he's not even real. No one has seen him, Perrie won't talk and Gia very obviously won't tell on her brother. Management still want us to stay here for a few more days just in case, especially since his Twitter has been silent they're saying that if it stays that way until the end of the week than we can leave," Harry explains, leaning down to press a kiss to the top of Niall's head.

"Well maybe he's been quiet because we've been holed up in here for days! I'm going crazy Harry!"

"I know babe, but I don't want to risk either of you. I'm worried about what Marcus would do."

Louis sighs and hands Niall his bowl of fruit. Niall happily starts eating and asks for a glass of orange juice. Harry gets it for the boy while Louis makes himself a bowl of cereal.

"We're running out of food so I don't know what you wanna do."

"I'll go get some today, but I'll leave Preston outside just in case."

Louis smiled softly and pecked his lips before taking a seat next to Niall. He stared out the window into the cloudy day, wishing to be outside even if just for a few minutes. He really was starting to get snappy from being inside so much, not liking the whole being on lock down thing for their own safety, but Harry worries a lot and well Louis doesn't want to expose Niall. He promises to keep his little boy safe until Marcus is caught and not terrorizing their lives anymore.

It's later that day and Louis' in his bed cuddling with Niall who's currently whining for attention while Harry gets ready to leave for the store to buy some groceries. Louis was humming to Niall, playing with his hair and hopefully he'll get him to sleep for a bit since he gave the child some medicine not that long ago.

"I'll be back later," Harry whispers as he leans down to press a kiss to Louis' head and then Niall's, earning a soft whine from the child who's been cranky.

"Yeah, be safe," Louis tells him.

"I will."

Harry's only been gone for a few minutes when Louis hears a noise that sounds like it's coming from the backyard. He frowns, but shakes it off as maybe it being an animal or Preston scouting the area. Niall clings to him tighter when something crashes downstairs and this time Louis starts to panic a bit. He reaches for his phone and calls Preston, but it rings and rings and Louis frowns when there is no answer.

"Mama?" Niall whimpers, coughing into his fist as he hears another noise outside.

"Shh baby, everything's fine and I'll call Liam and Zayn," Louis tells Niall, glad he has Liam on speed dial.

"Hey Lou, what's up?" Liam asks as he answers.

"You busy?" Louis asks a little urgently.

"No, what's wrong? Is everything okay?"

"Um well we keep hearing noises outside and I called Preston and he's not answering. Harry isn't home and well yeah," Louis trails off, not wanting to say he's scared in front of Niall who's trembling in his arms. "Would you mind coming over?"

"No I don't mind. I'll be there as quick as I can and I'll call Zayn on the way. Just stay locked in your room until one of us gets there, yeah? If something else happens than call the police."

"Thanks."

Louis hangs up and goes to set Niall down on the bed, but the child whines. "Babe, I'm just going to close the door, I'm not leaving, okay?" Louis reassures him.

"Okay," Niall whispers and waits on the bed as Louis goes to close the door and lock it.

Louis looks out the window hoping to find whatever was making noises and hoping it was just his paranoia, but unfortunately he found a familiar black car parked not too far off, but badly hidden. Both Louis and Niall jump and let out a small sound of fright when they hear glass breaking downstairs.

"M-Mama," Niall whimpers and gets off the bed, heading over to Louis and attaching himself to his mama's legs.

"It's gonna be okay sweetie, Liam's on his way and I'm gonna call papa right now," Louis reassures the boy, picking him up and calling Harry.

"Babe? Need something?" Harry answers.

"Harry, he's here," Louis tells his boyfriend in a shaky tone as he looks out the window again.

"What? Marcus? Are you sure?"

"Y-Yeah and something broke downstairs. Preston didn't answer my calls so I called Liam and Zayn hoping it was just me being paranoid, but now I'm completely sure it's him. His car is parked outside as well."

"Shit, okay, are you and Ni safe right now?"

"Yeah we're locked in the room and the lads should be here soon, but still."

"Okay okay, I'll be there as quick as I can. Take care, love you."

"I love you too."

It was five minutes later when Zayn and Liam called out for Louis and Niall. The child was clinging to Louis's neck as Louis sighed in relief and unlocked the door, heading towards the stairs.

"You guys okay?" Liam asked once Louis was in sight, looking a little shaken up.

"Yeah, we heard something break though," Louis informed Liam, rubbing Niall's back softly.

"Yeah, the window back here is broken," came Zayn's voice from somewhere near the back door.

The two headed over there and found a rock laying on the floor with a note attached to it. Zayn picked it up and unfolded the piece of paper while Louis bit his bottom lip as they waited to hear what the note read.

"It only says watch yourself," Zayn tells them, looking up at Liam and Louis with the small piece of paper in his left hand.

"Did you guys see Preston out there?" Louis asks them worriedly.

"No but his car was parked in the driveway. I'll go search for him. Is Harry on his way?" Liam asked Louis who nodded and handed Niall off to Zayn while he took the note.

Niall clung to Zayn and sniffled, finding comfort in the dark haired male who hummed quietly as he rocked the child. The front door opened minutes later and Harry walked in with Liam, both talking about something but then Harry ran over to Niall and took him from Zayn before rushing over to Louis and pulling him into a tight hug.

"You're both okay, right?" Harry asked as he held Niall up with one arm and his other was wrapped around Louis' waist.

"We're fine," Louis whispers as he buries his face into Harry's neck.

"Did you find Preston?" Zayn asked Liam, letting the other three have their moment together.

"No. Searched around the area and even called him, but nothing. Paddy and Bas are looking now," Liam said, running a hand through his hair.

"We can't stay here, Louis," came Harry's stern voice and both Liam and Zayn turned around only to find Niall sitting on the ground covering his ears with his eyes squeezed shut while Harry and Louis argued.

"But we can't keep running each and every time he finds us! He can't control us like this," Louis told Harry in an exasperated tone.

"Come on babes," Zayn cooed at the child and picked him up, carrying him out of the room while Liam stayed back with the bickering couple. "Let's get you something to drink, babes."

"You two need to chill. I know this is bad and scary, but you can't be losing it like this in front of Niall. He needs you," Liam scolded the two, glaring at the couple who sighed. "I know this was a close call, but like Louis said, if you keep running he'll find you. Look right now we'll call the police and management to inform them of what happened and if they suggest you guys leave then you do."

"I'm just sick tired of this," Louis spoke in an exhausted tone as he sat down on the nearest chair and placed his head in his hands. "This whole mess shouldn't even have happened in the first place."

Harry looked at his boyfriend sadly but made no move to comfort him. It was easy to see that the situation was affecting Louis a lot more than he let on.

"Look, if you want some time off we can take Niall for a few days, let you two rest," Liam told Louis softly as he knelt in front of his best friend.

"It's not that. I just want Marcus gone. I want him to leave us alone."

Liam rubbed Louis' shoulder before he stood up and gave one final glance at Harry before walking off to call the police.

"M-Maybe he can stay with my mom. He'll be safe there," Louis sniffles as he looks up at Harry with teary eyes.

"Maybe you two should stay there. I don't want anything to happen to you or Niall and as crazy as he may be, I doubt Marcus would want to act with so many people around," Harry said as he pulled Louis to sit on his lap. "But I don't want to risk your family either."

"We're not safe," Louis choked out, burying his face into Harry's neck and trying to compose himself.

Harry held him tight and closed his eyes. Meanwhile in the kitchen Liam had finished talking to the police and Zayn was keeping Niall busy with a game on his phone.

"What now?" Zayn asked Liam who sat next to them.

"Well the police are on the lookout for said car because it's stolen and now that they know that Marcus knows where they are they're going to be around the area more," Liam explained, watching Niall giggle quietly as he continued playing a Disney puzzle game.

"I finished!" Niall declared and looked at Liam and Zayn who clapped and cheered.

"Good job babes!" Zayn chuckled, kissing the top of Niall's head.

"Where my mama and papa?" Niall suddenly asked as he looked up at Zayn and Liam with a small pout.

"They needed to talk about something that little boy's like you can't hear," Liam explained to Niall whose pout only became bigger.

"But I'm a big boy!"

"But you're my little boy," Zayn cooed at Niall who blushed a bright red. "My cute little boy."

Liam laughed as he saw Niall hide his blushing face into Zayn's chest, mumbling something that neither adult could make out. A few minutes later Harry walked in and smiled. Niall brightened up and made grabby hands at his papa who took him out of Zayn's lap and kissed his still flushed cheeks.

"Where's mama?" Niall asked, looking behind Harry to see if he could spot his mama but pouted when he wasn't around.

"He's in the bathroom, pumpkin. Are you all better now?" Harry questioned Niall, noticing how he didn't sound as bad as he did that morning and his temperature felt normal to the touch. "You feel better but how do you feel?"

"It only hurts a little," Niall said, grabbing his throat and smiling at his papa who kissed his forehead before setting him down.

"Where's Lou?" Zayn asked once Niall ran off into the living room.

"Our bedroom, talking to his mom. Might take Niall to stay with them for a bit," Harry explained as he leaned back against the counter.

"Niall won't want to though," Liam told Harry who sighed.

Niall grew bored and tired of waiting for his mama so he headed towards the stairs and began to climb them slowly. He eventually reached the second floor and headed into his room, seeing his giant teddy tucked into a corner waiting happily. Niall went over to his bed and grabbed his Olaf before heading off in search of his mama.

"Mama?" Niall called softly as he entered his parents room.

"Hi baby, what are you doing here?" Louis asked as he walked out of his bathroom.

"Missed you, mama. Wanted to come see you," Niall explained, yawning softly and extending an arm up to Louis who smiled and picked him up.

"Did you climb the stairs all on your own? You could have gotten hurt baby," Louis cooed as he rubbed Niall's back and cuddled him close.

"I was careful mama," Niall mumbled, face tucked into Louis' neck and eyes starting to close.

"I know you were, pumpkin."

Chapter Text

~October 4, 2015~

Louis woke up in the middle of the night not really knowing why, but suddenly there was a noise out in the hallway. Harry was fast asleep next to him with an arm hanging off the bed. Louis sat up and removed the blankets, thinking that maybe it was Niall outside. Louis walked over to the door and opened it, frowning when he noticed Niall's bedroom door was open but there was no child in sight.

"Niall?" Louis called out as he turned on the hallway light and headed into the child's room, heart stopping when he didn't see him in there. "Niall? Niall I swear if you're hiding I'm gonna take your stuffed animals away."

"No, please don't take my friends away!" Niall suddenly yelled as he jumped out of his closet with Olaf clutched tightly to his chest.

"Niall, what were you doing in there? You scared me, angel," Louis told the child, extending his left arm out towards the child who grabbed it.

"I was hiding, mama," Niall mumbled as he looked at his small hand in Louis'.

"Hiding from what? I thought you weren't scared anymore because Mr Teddy was here," Louis said, referring to the giant bear sitting near the bed.

"Well yeah, but I heard something outside and if it's a bad guy Mr Teddy won't be able to save me," Niall stated as he let Louis place him back on the bed.

"You heard something? Was it like last time?"

Niall only shrugged his shoulders and just before Louis could say something, there was a crash outside and what sounded like one of the chairs tipping over.

"Louis?" Harry called and Louis called him into Niall's room. "Wha's going on?"

"Niall woke up and was hiding in the closet because he heard something outside and we just heard a crash," Louis explained, feeling Niall hide his face into his stomach.

"Yeah I heard something too. I'll go check it out," Harry said as he headed out of the room and Louis picked up Niall, heading after Harry.

Niall tucked his face into Louis' neck.

"Harry, be careful," Louis called out as he stopped in the middle of the hall that lead to the backdoor. Harry only turned to look at his boyfriend and nodded.

Niall whined as he heard the backdoor being opened and a slight cold breeze pushed past them. Louis rocked him gently and cupped the back of his head with his hand. Harry was out there for no more than three minutes before he returned with a frown and shook his head as he closed and locked the door.

"Didn't see anyone out there, but some of the furniture was out of place," said Harry as he went to stand next to Louis and rubbed Niall's back. "I'm really hoping it's not him again."

"Now what? We can't keep living like this," Louis sighed, his hold on Niall tightening just a tiny bit. He didn't want to keep risking Niall.

"We could move back to our other place or just think about staying in a hotel for awhile. I know you don't want to risk our families with this."

"I don't know, Haz," Louis mumbled, his lips pressed into a thin line as he thought about their options. "A hotel would probably be our best option. Doubt he'd want to cause something with so many people around."

"I'll make reservations in the morning, but for now let's get some sleep because it's too late and a certain little boy shouldn't be up at this time," Harry said as he tickled Niall's sides and the boy giggled and squirmed in Louis' arms. "Wanna sleep with us or will you be okay in your own room?"

"Sleep with my mama and papa, please!" Niall said as he came out of his hiding place and smiled at Harry who chuckled and pressed a loud kiss to his cheek.

In the morning Harry made chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast which put Niall in a better mood than when he'd woken up. They ate happily, though still feeling slightly put out by what had happened last night.

"So I'll make the reservation for the hotel and tell the lads, but Liam and I have a meeting with Modest to go over somethings and such," Harry told Louis who nodded.

"Alright. Ni and I will pack our things and maybe head over to the other house because I need to grab some more clothes since we haven't done laundry and Niall's ran out of clothes," Louis said as he looked over at Niall who had already spilled milk down his shirt and giggled shyly at his mama.

"Oops," Niall giggled as he wiped the milk with his hands while Harry and Louis shook their heads fondly. This is why they had to keep doing laundry so often.

"Maybe we shout get you some cups with lids on them so you stop spilling everything you drink," Harry informed Niall who shook his head.

"That's okay papa, I don't need them."

"Um yes you do, angel," Louis informed Niall who pouted. "Maybe a bib just in case."

"I'm not a baby!" Niall whined as he swung his little legs back and forth rather quickly, his toes brushing against Harry's legs every so often.

"But you're my baby," Louis pouted at Niall who stopped whining and giggled.

After breakfast, Louis and Niall were back at their old place while Harry was off with Liam in a meeting. Louis was cleaning around a bit and sorting through his mail while Niall ran around happy to be back home, if only for a little while before they headed off to a hotel.

"Mama, can I play outside?" Niall asked as he latched onto Louis' legs like a koala.

"Baby, it's cold outside and you're just recovering from your cold," Louis told Niall who whined and pouted.

"I'll wear a big puffy jacket, please!" Niall begged and Louis sighed because he knew the kid would not give up and all his begging would eventually lead to a temper tantrum. "And a hat and gloves!"

"Okay, but only for a little bit and let's hope this doesn't make you get sick again. If it does I'm blaming you."

"Yay!" Niall yelled excitedly and ran upstairs with Louis following him.

Niall was soon playing outside wearing a warm jacket, a beanie and gloves. He was running around the backyard playing with the leaves and giggling while Louis watched him from the window to make sure he wasn't getting hurt or going somewhere he shouldn't. Suddenly he saw Niall stop and stare over to where the gate of the yard should be and Louis frowned.

"Mama!" Niall yelled in fright and Louis dropped the papers he'd been holding and ran outside just in time to see a tall man in a leather jacket walk in with a smirk.

Louis glared at the man and stood in front of Niall, shielding him from the guy who Louis guessed had to be Marcus. He felt Niall clinging to the back of his shirt and heard a small whimper come from the child.

"This is private property so get the fuck out," Louis told the man as he grabbed his phone getting ready to call the police.

"Was pretty stupid of you to come back here knowing I'm around more often then not, but it would have been pretty stupid to stay in the other house knowing that I know where you were. Either way I would have found you," the guy said as he moved closer to the two which made Louis step back with Niall.

"What do you want?"

"You know I told my sister to turn you into a child too, but unfortunately only Niall was around that night at the bar. Such a shame because you both would have been mine by now."

"You're a sick bastard," Louis growled at him, hands trembling a bit as Marcus kept moving forward.

"Mama," Niall whimpered and Louis looked down at him which was a mistake because Marcus took the chance to grab Louis' wrist and pull him away from Niall. "M-Mama!"

Louis was thrown on the ground and he saw Niall dash inside the house as Marcus went to grab him. He caught Niall by the hood of his jacket and Louis sprang up to get Marcus away from Niall.

"Don't touch him!" Louis cried angrily, getting Niall free from Marcus. "Niall, run inside and lock yourself in my room and call Harry!" Louis shouted as he tossed his phone to the child.

Niall nodded and ran inside as quick as he could while Louis distracted Marcus who was getting quite angry by now.

"You're really getting on my nerves, pretty boy," Marcus hissed as he turned to look at Louis, towering over the shorter lad who stumbled back in fear.

"I'm not going to let you lay a hand on him!" Louis says as angrily as he stands in front of the door.

Upstairs, Niall had locked himself in his mama and papa's room, unlocking Louis' phone and searching for Harry's number in the contacts.

"Hey, what's up?" Harry answered.

"P-Papa help! Some bad guy is here and he's hurting mama!" Niall cried, body trembling as he sat on the ground.

"Okay pumpkin, I'll be right there quickly. Are you safe?" Harry asked frantically and Liam's voice could be heard in the distance.

"I-I'm in your room like mama told me to."

"Okay that's good, pumpkin. Stay there until we come and get you, okay?"

Niall hung up and winced when the shouting outside only grew louder. He removes his jacket and goes to hide under the covers as he waits patiently for someone to get him. It doesn't take long, or at least he thinks, until there is a knock on the door and Liam's familiar voice reaches his ears. He jumps out from under the covers, beanie crooked on his head and he unlocks the door and opens it. Liam picks him up right away and hugs him tight as Niall lets a few tears fall.

"It's okay, baby, you're okay," Liam cooed as he held Niall and sat on the bed with him on his lap since the police was downstairs and Liam wanted to wait until they were gone with Marcus.

"W-Where's my mama and papa?" Niall hiccuped as he pulled away from Liam to look at him, tears still rolling down his cheeks.

Liam smiled softly at the child and wiped away his tears with his thumb. "They're downstairs talking to the police who are taking the bad guy away. We'll go see them soon, okay? And Zayn is downstairs too."

Niall nodded and rested his head on Liam's chest. Meanwhile downstairs Harry was checking Louis over for any injuries but only found a growing bruise near his right eye.

"Are you sure you're alright? Does anything hurt?" Harry asked as he cupped his boyfriend's face in his large hands.

"I'm fine, baby. Just the one bruise and this," Louis said as he lifted his right hand and showed Harry his bloody knuckles from when he'd punched Marcus. "He's worse off than me."

Harry chuckled and pecked his lips. The police finally left and Zayn headed upstairs to tell Liam he could go down. Harry lead Louis inside the house and went tot the first aid kit to clean off the blood and wrap his hand up before Niall saw it and got scared. Harry had honestly been so frightened when he got the call and even more so when he ran in just as Marcus punched Louis.

"I shouldn't have left you guys alone," Harry mumbled as he wiped the blood from Louis' knuckles.

"Don't blame yourself for this, H. I should have also been more careful and brought Bas or one of the other guys with me," Louis sighed.

"I'm just glad you're both okay and proud that you held him off on your own and kept Nialler safe."

"I couldn't let that asshole hurt our boy. Now I'm just glad this is all over and we can get back to our lives without fearing he's out there watching our every move."

"Mama! Papa!" Came Niall's cries and suddenly the six year old ran into the bathroom where his arms wrapped around Harry and Louis' legs, choking back his sobs.

"Oh pumpkin no, don't cry," Harry cooed as he picked up Niall and let Liam finish wrapping Louis' hand up. "Everything is okay now. The scary man is gone and he won't ever hurt you or mama again."

Niall only wrapped his little arms around Harry's neck as he tried to calm himself down, finding comfort in Harry's hand rubbing his back and his lips pressing small kisses to the side of his face. Niall had his eyes closed, but when he opened them he found his mama looking at him with a soft smile and his good hand reaching out to cup his wet cheek.

"We're okay, angel, everything's fine," Louis spoke softly, pressing a kiss to Niall's forehead.

It's a bit later and Niall is fast asleep on the couch, Zayn sitting near by just watching over him while Harry is on the phone with management and Liam and Louis are drinking tea in the kitchen.

"You sure you're okay?" Liam asks carefully, looking at the bruise and Louis' bandaged hand.

"Fine, the adrenaline really helped me with keeping Niall safe. I couldn't let that bastard hurt him," Louis growled, hands curled around his mug as he glared at the liquid inside though it was directed at the man that had caused them so much trouble the last few days. "Just glad he's gone and it's all over."

"And Gia?"

"She tried her best and she probably just did whatever her brother told her to. I would do anything for my sisters and brother, so I guess I understand why she did this in the first place and besides, she's apologized and even offered to change Niall back now."

Liam's eyes widened at that, biting his bottom lip. "Are you guys going to get her to change him back now?"

"Not yet, we can wait another two months. Though it would be better if we did it now, for the band and stuff, but we think this is a nice break away from everything. We'll be back on tour mid February and working on our new album so it's best we rest up now and let Niall and us have our fun," Louis grinned. "Though I don't know if what we're doing is selfish."

"Hey, you know Big Niall won't mind being stuck with you two as his parents for another two months. He loves you two and I'm sure that even long after little Niall is gone you'll still be like another mom to our dear Nialler," Liam teased Louis who laughed and went to pinch Liam's nipple but the man moved.

Harry walked into the kitchen and sat beside Louis with a tired sigh. "Management said that Perrie is feeling bad for the whole mess she's caused but it doesn't matter because Little Mix have been dropped from Syco and Modest. Said she's hated Niall from the start and hated how we've had more success than her band so she tried figuring out a plan to make us lose another member so we could officially break up. She knew Marcus had been obsessed with Niall and once Gia had turned Niall into a kid her plan was for Marcus to kidnap him and all that," Harry explained, leaving Liam and Louis in shock.

"You're shitting me, right?" Louis asked his boyfriend, not quite believing Perrie would go through all that trouble just to get the band out of the way.

"Her words not mine."

"She's a psycho then, though I feel bad for the other three girls," Liam said as he took a sip of his tea, wincing as the liquid burned his throat.

"Yeah, but Perrie dug her own grave and didn't care about damaging her career or dragging the other girls down with her. She was only acting out of jealousy."

Louis finished his tea as they talked and then headed out to go check on Niall who was still fast asleep, head resting on Zayn's lap.

"He's feeling a little warm," Zayn told Louis who sighed and went over to place his hand on Niall's face.

"I told him not to go outside," Louis mumbled, watching Niall stir and seek out Louis' cold touch.

~October 10, 2015~

The days following the incident were long and filled with a jumpy and sick Niall. He had nightmares and more often than not woke up crying and having wet himself. Louis and Harry had gotten to the point where they had to put him in a pull up before bed. Marcus wouldn't be able to get out on bail and would be in jail for quite some years, especially after police found pictures of Niall all around Marcus' house. Luckily the media simply had put it off as a crazy stalker, but no other details had been released. Everything was returning back to normal slowly.

"Morning baby, did you sleep okay?" Louis asked Niall as he sat on the child's bed and watched fondly as Niall stretched around and made cute little noises as he woke up.

"Mhm. I didn't have a nightmare mama and I didn't go potty in my pull up," Niall stated proudly and Louis grinned.

"That's my good boy, I'm so proud of you. Let's get you changed so we can go eat breakfast."

Niall nodded and let Louis lead him to the bathroom, chattering away excitedly. Once Niall was dressed and all ready to go, Louis and him headed downstairs. Harry greeted them with a large smile and he picked up Niall, pressing kisses to his cheeks and taking in his giggles.

"So what's the plan for today?" Louis asked.

"Liam and Sophia are coming around to take the k-i-d out for a bit, they said they wanted to give us a break," Harry told Louis as he set Niall down on a chair.

"That sounds wonderful," Louis all but moaned out in delight. He loves Niall, but every parent could use sometime away from their kids and well with everything that had happened recently Louis really wanted to spend some alone time with Harry. "What time are they coming?"

"Before lunch. They want to take him out to lunch."

After breakfast Louis told Niall what was going to happen and the child looked a bit sad that he wouldn't be spending the day with his mama and papa.

"You still love me, right?" Niall asked quietly as he sat on his bed swinging his legs and avoiding eye contact with Louis.

"Angel, why would you ask that. Of course I still love you and so does Harry. You're just going to be spending a bit of time with Liam and Sophia because they want to take you out and have some fun. And when you get back we can start looking for Halloween costumes, yeah?" Louis spoke softly as he brushed back Niall's hair and stroked his cheek. "You know I'm always going to love you."

Niall nodded and finally looked up to look at Louis, stretching his arms out to indicate that he wanted his mama to hug him. Louis smiled and pulled the child into his arms, holding him tightly and closing his eyes as the two enjoyed their warm embrace.

"I love you too," Niall mumbled and for a second, it sounded like big Niall was telling him this.

"When's Zaynie coming back?" Niall asked as Louis placed Niall's beanie on his head and then began to tie his Vans.

"He'll be back before Halloween, babe, he's working right now in a different country but he promised to call you as much as he could," Louis informed Niall as he finished tying his shoes and stood up, patting his shoulder. "All done."

The doorbell went off and Niall grinned up at Louis before taking off towards the stairs, but stopped because he needed to wait for his mama or otherwise he could fall. Louis held Niall's hand as they walked down the stairs one at a time. They heard Harry and Liam talking and laughing. Niall smiled at Liam and Sophia and once he finished going down the stairs he let go of Louis' hand and ran to Liam.

"Hi!" Niall greeted him and giggled as Liam picked him up and threw him into the air a bit.

"Hi Nialler, ready to have some fun with us?" Liam asked as he set Niall on his hip.

"Yes! Hi Sophia," Niall greeted her a bit shyly and she cooed, kissing his cheek and leaving a light lipstick stain behind.

"Hi love, I've missed you," she told him with a smile.

Harry and Louis chuckled as they stood side by side.

"We'll bring him back later," Liam told the couple who nodded.

"Alright pumpkin, don't cause too much trouble to Liam and Sophia," Harry warned Niall as he kissed his cheek.

"I'll be good," Niall giggled but Louis gave him a look that said that he clearly didn't believe the child. "I promise."

"Good, we'll see you later than and have fun," Louis smiled at Niall who nodded.

"Alright then, let's get going," Liam said and they headed out.

Harry and Louis stood at the doorway waving them goodbye and once they were gone, the closed the front door. Harry wrapped his arms around Louis and began to kiss up and down his neck, leaving light kisses that tickled Louis.

"Well now that he's gone, let's go have some of our own fun," Harry spoke into Louis' neck.

"Sounds like a plan," Louis grinned and the two headed upstairs.

Chapter Text

~October 10, 2015~

It was nearing dinner time when Liam and Sophia returned with a tired Niall. Harry had gone out to get dinner and Louis was watching TV when the doorbell went off. He opened the door and smiled at the three who were standing there.

"Hi mama," Niall greeted tiredly, clutching a stuffed Panda to his chest and two Frozen themed balloons tied to his wrist, lips tinted a blue color and a bit of chocolate smudged at the corner of his lips.

"Hey angel, did you have fun?" Louis asked in amusement as he let them walk in.

"Boy did he have fun," Liam chuckled and Sophia nodded in agreement. "We went to an indoor theme park and he just had to get on every ride."

"And did he eat a whole candy shop?" Louis asked with a laugh leaving his lips right after as Niall sat on the stairs tiredly and rubbed his left eye with the hand tied with the balloons.

"Don't worry though, he had a nice lunch and the candy came right after. He was very well behaved and we didn't have any problems."

"Thanks guys for doing this."

"Awe it's no problem," Sophia smiles at Louis.

"Do you guys wanna stay for dinner?"

"No thanks, we're heading to Sophia's parents place for dinner, but maybe another time. We're gonna get going or we'll be late. Bye Nialler," Liam waved at the child who walked over to them and puckered his lips. Liam leaned down and let Niall kiss his cheek before Sophia did the same and they left.

"Where's papa?" Niall asked as he followed Louis into the living room.

"He went to get some food. Now tell me, who got you this lovely panda?" Louis asked as he placed Niall on his lap and cuddled him on the couch, ignoring the balloons though it was a bit hard because they kept getting in the way.

"Liam won him for me at a game! He had to shoot balloons with a little gun," Niall explained as he hugged his panda tightly. "And Sophia bought me the Olaf, Anna and Elsa balloons."

"Well I hope you said thank you to them."

"I did," Niall grinned proudly.

Harry walked in five minutes later and Niall ran over to greet him. "Hi papa! I'm back!"

"I can see that pumpkin, did you have a nice time out with Sophia and Liam?" Harry asked as he walked into the kitchen with Niall and Louis following behind.

"A lot of fun! Lili got me a panda and Sophia some Frozen balloons and I had candy and lots of food and went on a lot of rides! I had so much fun!" Niall told Harry excitedly, still holding his panda but his balloons were in the living room.

"Well I'm glad you had so much fun pumpkin. Now why don't you go wash your hands because it's time for dinner," Harry told Niall as he began to pull out the food containers from the bag.

"Okay!"

Louis smiled and went over to kiss Harry's cheek, helping him get the food on the table and get drinks out from the fridge. They had a quiet dinner, Niall eating his food and his eyes closing with how tired he was. Louis was only waiting for the moment Niall face planted into his food. After that Louis gave Niall a quick bath and tucked him in early for bedtime. Niall was now in the middle of the double bed with his Panda to the left and Olaf and his Penguin to the right.

"Sleep tight, babe," Louis mumbled as he pressed a kiss to Niall's forehead.

"Night," Niall mumbled, eyes already closed.

~October 20, 2015~

"I'm taking Niall to my mom's on Saturday, the girls want to see him," Louis told Harry as he entered the office where Harry had been working on a song.

"Sounds good and maybe we can get away for a bit," Harry said and wiggled his eyebrows suggestively at Louis who rolled his eyes fondly before walking over and sitting on the desk.

"But babe, we'll get enough time for that when big Ni comes back," Louis assured Harry as he smiled down at him and Harry chuckled.

"Doubt it, you're not gonna want to let him move back to his house. Speaking off, no one's been around to check on it in all this time. Speaking of the kid, where is he?"

"Don't know. Think he was up in his room coloring or something."

"Babe," Harry laughed. "He's six years old, you can't trust children to be on their own for long periods of time. You have siblings, you should now."

"I'll go look for him," Louis leans down and pecks Harry's lips before leaving his office. "Ni-boo!"

"Mama!" Niall calls back with a giggle that makes Louis worry.

"Ni-boo, where are you angel?"

"Come find me!"

Louis groaned and searched the first floor but found no signs of Niall, just a mess of Cheerios on the kitchen floor and a small trail that lead to the stairs. Louis smiles and shakes his head as he climbs up the stairs and finds Niall sitting in the middle of the hall with his cute little panda bear sweater dirty with paint and cheeks covered in yellow and blue paint as he simply sat there grinning. As Louis got closer, he noticed that Niall's hair was also dirty with different colors and his hands covered in all sorts of colors. Louis sighed and braced himself for what was to come.

"Where is it?" Louis asked, definitely not finding this cute or funny.

"Bathroom," Niall giggled but shut up when Louis glared at him and shrunk back into a tight little ball.

Louis took in a deep breath before he walked into the room and gasped. There was paint everywhere. There wasn't an inch of floor that wasn't covered in the colorful mess swirled around by his tiny hands. On the wall across from the toilet there was a picture of a heart and a flower with a sloppy N done in red paint and Louis wanted to pull his hair out.

"Harry!" Louis yelled angrily and he heard Niall mumble a small 'oops' under his breath as he heard his papa run up the stairs.

Harry stopped in his tracks when he saw the mess on Niall and where Louis was standing. He gave a pointed look at Niall who buried his face into his hands and Harry joined Louis in the bathroom, gasping when he saw the child's work of art.

"This is why you don't leave kids unattended," Harry mumbled and Louis glared at him. "Okay, sorry. Niall, go to my room and don't touch anything. Just wait until I get there to clean you up."

Niall didn't need to be told twice by the tone Harry used and he scrambled down the hall.

"I'll clean this up you go deal with him," Louis sighs and looks around the bathroom, looking for a place to start. Harry only nodded and headed into Niall's room to grab a set of clean clothes.

Harry grabbed a clean long sleeved Frozen shirt which Harry had bought from the girls section because he knew his little boy liked Frozen and fuck gender norms. He grabbed a pair of Adidas sweatpants that Louis got and some socks before heading to his room and setting the things on his bed. Niall was in the bathroom looking down sadly and Harry sighed before walking in and turning on the water in the tub.

"Niall, I just hope you know that what you did might have seemed fun, but it's a naughty thing to do. You can't just paint on the walls, especially if you don't have permission," Harry told Niall as he removed the paint filled clothes from the child who refused to look up at him.

"I'm sorry," Niall mumbled, a small hiccup escaping his lips and a tear rolled down his cheeks and Harry's gaze softened. Sure he's a little mad, but kids will be kids and he can't stay mad at someone like Niall. He'd never been mad at Big Niall for longer than an hour so being mad at little Niall was even harder.

"Pumpkin, I don't want you to be sad, baby."

Niall doesn't say anything else and lets Harry place him in the bath once it's full with water. There's no bubbles or toys and it's quick and quiet, Niall just sniffling and letting Harry wash the paint off. Harry drained the dirty water and turned on the water to get clean water in. He grabbed a bucket and started to rinse the boy off the soap. After that Harry wraps a towel around Niall who is still quiet and carries him out into his room.

"Alright, let's get you dressed," Harry said as he placed Niall on the bed.

Soon Niall was changed and hair brushed to the side neatly and Harry sighed before sitting down with Niall to have a talk.

"Alright pumpkin, why don't you go apologize to mama for the mess you made."

"Okay. I'm sorry papa, didn't mean to," Niall mumbled as he looked at Harry sadly.

"I know pumpkin and it's okay, just don't do it again. Now let's go see mama." Harry smiled back and picked up Niall who laid his head on his shoulder.

Louis had just finished cleaning the bathroom when Harry walked over to him with Niall. Louis smiled at the pair and took Niall out of Harry's arms. Niall cuddled into Louis and wrapped his tiny arms around his neck.

"I'm sorry mama," Niall hiccuped, tears rolling down his cheeks again and Louis sighed, rubbing the child's back soothingly.

"It's okay angel, it's all clean now and there's nothing to worry about," Louis told Niall who nodded and let himself relax in Louis' arms. "Are you wearing your Frozen shirt? It's so pretty."

"Y-You like it?" Niall asked shyly as he pulled away and looked down at his blue shirt with Anna, Elsa and Olaf printed in the front and the word Frozen in white bold glittery letters.

"Of course I like it angel, you look so cute and I just want to hug you all day!" Louis cooed as he pressed Niall's face down to his chest and kissed his head repeatedly which made Niall giggle.

Later that day after the whole bathroom-paint incident, Louis is doing a puzzle with Niall in the living room while Harry was on the phone with his mom. Niall was singing Kiss You under his breath without knowing who sang the song and Louis could only smile at the child.

"Mama, you're not helping me!" Niall whined as he stopped singing and looked up only to find Louis still staring at him with a dopey smile on his face, head resting on his fist.

"Oh, I'm sorry baby, but you're so cute and you were singing and I like hearing you sing," Louis pouted at Niall who giggled and shook his head, throwing a puzzle piece at Louis who gasped. "You traitor!"

And with that, Louis pinned Niall down on the ground and tickled him, earning loud laughter from Niall who squirmed around on the floor trying to escape Louis' fingers. Louis laughed right along with Niall before leaning down and pressing kisses to Niall's cheeks and lifting up his shirt to blow a raspberry which only made Niall shriek.

"S-Stop! Mama!" Niall laughed, tears now rolling down his cheeks. "Please!"

"Okay okay," Louis chuckled and laid down next to Niall, pulling him over onto his chest.

Harry walked in a few minutes later and smiled when he saw the two laying on the ground and Louis telling Niall a story about one of their many times on tour while Niall listened in fascination. Harry took a quick picture of the two before taking a seat next to them and listening in on the last part of the story.

"Hi papa," Niall greeted Harry with a large smile as he sat up on Louis' chest.

"Hi pumpkin, you having fun with mama?" Harry asked as he brushed back Niall's hair to stare into his blue eyes.

"A lot of fun!"

"How's Anne?" Louis asked, watching Niall get up and run off mumbling about needing to use the restroom and he sat up, pressing his lips to Harry's.

"She's great. Sends her love to you and Ni."

~October 31, 2015~

It's finally Halloween, but they couldn't throw a party like they'd wanted to because they had to make a trip to LA for work purposes and because they were finishing with the remodeling of their house and needed to be present to supervise the final things. So they got on a plane at exactly four in the morning London time with a grumpy child and arrive at LAX during the rush hour where some fans greet them and the paps are outside as they head to their awaiting car. It's all hectic, especially since it's Louis and Harry traveling together with a six year old who at some point used to be their bandmate.

"Mama," Niall whined once they're in the car heading towards their house. "Why are we here?"

"Because we need to see our new house, angel," Louis replies tiredly as he leans his head back and closes his eyes.

"Why do we need a new house? I like our old one. This one is too far and it's too hot here!" Niall complained as he tugged on his sweater, wanting to take it off but couldn't because of the seat belt.

"But we're not going to live here all the time, baby, we'll be back in London in a week or two."

Niall stayed silent after that and dozed off for a bit, waking up when Harry shook him awake because they'd arrived at their house. Niall was left in awe at the large house with the big windows and fancy looking exterior. Sure their London house is huge and fancy as well, but Niall was used to that and he wasn't even phased when he discovered something new. And there wart palm trees around, there weren't any of those in London.

"They're kinda scary," Niall said as he pointed up at the palm trees that swayed slightly with the wind.

"It's fine love, nothing's gonna happen," Louis assures the boy as he gets out of the car and grabs Niall's hand as he leads him towards the front door.

"I like this house, but I like our old one better," Niall informed Louis who unlocked the door and opened it, leading Niall inside.

Harry walked inside with their things and sighed before thanking their driver and closing the front door. Niall headed off to explore the place and once he came into view with the glass sliding doors that lead to the yard, he gasped excitedly because this yard was a lot bigger than the one they had in London. There was a grill on the deck area covered and a fire pit with seats around it and a whole bunch of grass and bushes around the fence and a small rose garden in one corner.

"Do you like it outside?" Louis asks as he crouches down next to Niall and rubs his back.

"It's very pretty," Niall said.

"You can play outside later, yeah?"

Niall nods and lets Louis take him away and the two head upstairs where Harry's already in the master bedroom. Niall stares at the walls covered in pictures and eventually Louis leads him into the guest room closest to the master bedroom.

"You'll be sleeping in here until we leave and look who's here," Louis smiled and Niall gasped when he saw his giant teddy sitting next to the bed. Niall let go of Louis' hand and ran over to his bear, hugging it tight and burying his face into the bear's fur.

"Thank you for bringing him!" Niall exlaims as he detaches himself from his bear and runs over to hug Louis.

"You're welcome babe, I know how you can't sleep somewhere new without it."

Niall put his arms up and Louis picked him up, carrying him towards the master bedroom where Harry was setting their bags down near the closet. He looked up when they walked in and smiled.

"Hi papa," Niall greeted tiredly.

"Hi pumpkin, did you like your surprise?" Harry questions as he sits on the bed and motions for Louis to sit next to him.

"A lot! Thank you!"

"Liam's flying in tomorrow and the meeting with Julian and the other producers is the day after tomorrow," Harry informed Louis who nodded and readjusted Niall to better sit on his lap.

"Who's going to watch over-" Louis says as he motions down to Niall who is busy tracing one of his tattoos with a concentrated face and Harry sighs.

"Zayn's here since last week and he's coming over."

"Good, I thought we were going to have to get Oli to watch over him. You know Niall doesn't like him and I think the feeling is mutual for them."

"Well Ni tried biting Oli last week when he came over and Oli tried to ruffle his hair," Harry commented as he laughed at the memory and Louis shook his head. Neither understood why Big Niall and Oli never got along and it was the same with Little Niall and Oli. Niall just hated him.

"I'm hungry," Niall complains as he looks at both Harry and Louis, interrupting their conversation. "And sleepy."

"Well my, aren't you a lot of things. Let's go see what we can feed you but you can't sleep right now, pumpkin," Harry says as he picks up Niall who whines and asks why not. "Well because you're going to eat and then we gotta fix your room so it's all ready for tonight and then it's bath time and then you can sleep."

"You fix my room and no bath," Niall told Harry who laughed and shook his head.

"No can do! Now do you want a sandwich, pizza-"

"Pizza!" Niall shouted excitedly.

"Pizza it is then."

That night Niall was tucked in bed by nine with his hair still a little damp from his bath but the little boy couldn't keep his eyes open any longer. Both Louis and Harry tucked him in and kissed his forehead before turning on the night light and leaving the room. They just hoped that with how tired Niall was that he'd sleep through the night.

~November 1, 2015~

The next morning Harry and Louis were running late for their meeting with the people who would be producing their fifth album. Julian had a few demos he wanted the boys to hear and they couldn't be waisting anymore time so three out of the four would do for now. Zayn was already at their place making Niall some lunch as he watched the two run around searching for their wallets, phones or car keys. Niall meanwhile was coloring in a Disney Princess coloring book at the island swinging his little feet back and forth from the stool he was sitting on not even paying attention to the other two.

"Alright, we're leaving now. Anything happens just call, we'll have our phones on," Harry told Zayn who nodded as he finished making Niall's grilled cheese sandwich with bacon bits inside.

"I know I know," Zayn sighed and placed the plate in front of Niall who grinned and shoved his book and crayons off to the side. "Eat up babes."

"Thank you Zaynie!" Niall cheered and picked up one slice of the sandwich and bit into it.

"Angel, papa and I are leaving. We'll be back later but have fun with Zayn and be good," Louis informed Niall who nodded excitedly. He gets to spend a whole day with his Zaynie!

"Bye mama and papa!" Niall waved at them and soon it was just Niall and Zayn. "Can I have apple juice, please?"

"Of course babes," Zayn smiles and fetches the drink for the child who is still happily eating his sandwich and getting crumbs all over his face and the island. "So what do you want to do today?"

"Can we play outside?"

"Sure thing."

Zayn did not count for Niall to have so much energy after lunch. He's running all around the yard screaming and laughing, tripping here and there and getting mud on his jeans and t-shirt. They're playing tag and at some point Zayn has to sit down because he's so out of breath and tired and he thinks about just giving up smoking all together because his lungs are weak. Niall found a soccer ball and is now kicking it around and laughing. Zayn watches the boy fondly, but he really misses his Niall and he can't wait for him to come back so he can make things right between the two.

"Zaynie, I'm thirsty," Niall says as he walks up to the dark haired male with sweat making his hair stick to his forehead and panting tiredly.

"Alright, lets go get you some water and cook off inside." Zayn lead the child inside and closed the back door hoping that Niall was tired enough to want to stay inside and watch tv.

"When are mama and papa coming back?" Niall asks curiously as he watches Zayn grab a water bottle from the fridge.

"They should be back soon, they've been gone for a few hours now," Zayn answers and hands the bottle to Niall who takes small careful sips with both hands holding onto the bottle tightly.

Niall and Zayn are coloring in the living room sitting on the floor with the book and crayons on the coffee table with music playing from Zayn's phone. Niall is humming along to some songs and moving his head around as he colors Ariel's hair red. The front door opens and Harry and Louis step inside followed by Liam who has his bag with him.

"You're home!" Niall cheers and abandons the crayon in favor of going over to hug his mama and papa.

"Hey angel, did you have fun with Zayn?" Louis asks as he picks up the six year old who nods happily and cuddles into him. "I hope you were good."

"I was very good," Niall states proudly. "Hi Liam!"

"Hi kiddo," Liam smiles and takes Niall from Louis, pressing kisses to his cheeks. "Guess what? I'm gonna be staying with you guys until we go back to London."

"Really?! Yay!" Niall cheered and wrapped his arms around Liam's neck making Harry and Louis laugh.

They all moved into the living room where Zayn had stopped the music and was sending a text to someone, the coloring book and crayons still on the coffee table the way they'd left them.

"Hey, how was Niall?" Harry asks as he sits on the couch.

"He's got a lot of energy and I haven't done this much exercise in so long," Zayn told them and Harry laughed, watching Niall go back to his coloring. "He's a great kid though."

"Very great," Louis agrees as he watches Niall color Ariel's dress pink and blue along with parts of her skin because he kept coloring outside the lines.

Chapter Text

~November 8, 2015~

They're still in LA and Niall, without realizing it, is feeling homesick. He loves the LA house and spends most of his time outside since it's sunny and decent weather, but he misses his room and his toys and the boys' families and even Liam's giant dog Watson. Louis and Harry assure him that they'll only be a few more days, but they're not really sure since they're in meetings most of the time and have been writing an awful lot. Harry's met up with Jeff and has been seen out and about with Kendall while Louis has been out partying on some nights because management are dicks and don't seem to realize that they're watching over a child. Their bandmate who is a child who is completely dependent on them.

"I wanna go home," Niall whines sadly as he buries his face into Harry's chest, Louis being out doing another stunt instead of being at home with his boyfriend and child and Liam is in his room. "And I miss mama a lot."

"I know pumpkin, but just four more days and then we can leave," Harry reassures Niall, rubbing his back and pressing a kiss to the top of his head.

Niall makes a noise of disapproval and Harry chuckles. It's not even ten when Louis returns home looking exhausted and smelling of alcohol and cigarettes. Harry scrunches up his nose a bit though he's used to that smell, but Niall isn't.

"You're back early," Harry comments, feeling Niall shift around in his lap until he's looking up at Louis with tired eyes.

"Snuck out, wasn't feeling it tonight. Saw Zayn there with some model," Louis comments as he takes off his shoes and sits on the couch. "Hi baby."

"Hi mama," Niall greets him tiredly before going back to cuddling into Harry and closing his eyes.

"With a model?" Harry frowns and Louis nods.

"Blonde, taller than him and if I'm not mistaken I think she was dating Joe Jonas like not even a week ago."

"Well could be a one time thing or PR. I'm hoping for a one time thing because our big Niall won't like it if it's PR. Again."

"I just hate that we're here for work purposes and management has to make us do these things just so we can stay in the constant spotlight despite the fact that one of our band members is a child and that got enough publicity for a week."

"I know babe, but we're leaving soon," Harry told Louis as he reached over and rubbed his leg soothingly. "And it's time for bed, pumpkin."

"No," Niall whined but held on tight to Harry as he stood up and carried him upstairs.

"Yes," Harry mocked as he walked into Niall's room and set the child down on the bed, undoing one side before tucking Niall in. "Alright pumpkin, have sweet dreams and we'll see you in the morning. You know where to go if you need us."

"Night papa," Niall mumbled tiredly as he hugged his Olaf and slowly fell asleep.

Harry smiled and left the room quietly after turning on the night light. He met Louis in their room and the older lad was brushing his teeth in the bathroom. Soon the two were under the covers fast asleep.

~November 9, 2015~

"It's another Zaynie and Niall day?" Niall asks curiously as he watches Harry and Liam make him breakfast while Louis was off getting ready. They were running late again and Zayn was still a no show.

"Well if he shows up, pumpkin. If not then you're gonna have to go with us to work because there would be no one to take care of you," Harry tells Niall who is left pouting in his chair as he waits for Harry to finish making his scrambled eggs.

"He's not answering, bitch probably partied too hard with Jelena," Louis grumbled angrily as he walked into the kitchen and made himself a quick toast.

"Language, Louis," Harry scolds his boyfriend with a glare while Niall giggles in his seat.

Zayn never made it and he didn't answer his phone so Harry and Louis had to take Niall with them into the studio. Liam had already left since the two other two had waited an extra half an hour in case Zayn showed up. Louis had made sure to pack some things for Niall like a coloring book, crayons, snacks and an extra set of clothes just in case. Niall's whining the whole car ride to the studio and asking why Zayn isn't with them.

"Niall, sweetie, when we get in there, you gotta promise to be a very good boy. Papa and I gotta work with Liam and some other people. If you need to use the bathroom just tell whoever is closest to you, okay? And don't try to hold it in, you know what happened last time," Louis warned Niall as he helped get Niall out of the car.

"I promise I'll be extra good," Niall promised as he smiled up at Louis as he grabbed his hand.

"You're so cute, I wish I could believe you," Louis murmured to himself, but Harry heard and he chuckled as he lead the way inside, hood of his jacket up despite it being not that cold outside.

"Liam!" Niall greeted the lad once they were inside and he spotted said man, running up to him with his arms open wide though they'd seen each other earlier that morning.

"Hi buddy," Liam greeted with a grin as he picked up Niall and kissed his cheek. "Thought you know who was watching over him."

"Didn't show up and wouldn't answer his phone. Wasn't surprised since I saw him last night with Gigi Hadid at a club," Louis explained with a roll of his eyes as he set down Niall's backpack next to the couch that was in the studio.

"Alright boys, we ready to- oh, seems like we have a visitor today!" Julian says quite excitedly as he looks at Niall who is looking at him curiously from his place in Liam's arms.

"I'm Niall!" The child greets him excitedly and Julian chuckles.

"Well hello there, I'm Julian."

"We're sorry we brought him, our nanny didn't show up," Louis explained to Julian who shakes his head.

"It's fine Louis, the little lad is going to enjoy being here today."

Niall sits quietly on the couch, eating a pack of Goldfish crackers as he watches everyone with curious blue eyes. He watches how Louis laughs at something that Liam says, eyes crinkling at the corners and teeth on full display while Liam looks smug about his joke. Harry is with Julian and two other guys, writing something down on a notebook and Niall gets a weird sense of nostalgia and deja vu wash over him. He feels like he's seen something similar before, like he's lived it in a different time and it makes him miss it without realizing it.

Flashback

"Isn't that a little naughty?"

"What are you, five?" Louis scoffs. "Neil, we're men, not teenagers singing about things that make you beautiful. Why did we even agree to sing that song in the first place?" Louis questions bitterly, shaking his head at the mention of their first taste of success. Sure they owe everything to that song now, but it's awful.

"It's just, I mean the lyrics aren't straight out mentioning sex, but seriously? When did we start singing stuff like waking up beside you I'm a loaded gun?"

"Babes, it's okay, just go with it. Our fans are mature enough to handle this and they'll love it," Zayn grins over at Niall, though there's something missing in his eyes that none of them can pin point what it is.

"Yeah babes, listen your boyfriend," Louis teases Niall who flushes a pretty shade of pink and whines as he throws his guitar pick at Louis.

"Alright boys, let's get back to work," Liam comes in to their rescue before Niall and Louis start to play rough and someone actually gets hurt. "Alright so Niall you get the first two lines and then Harry. Lou, you take the chorus-"

End Of Flashback

"Niall, babe, are you okay?" Louis asks as he kneels in front of the child who seems to be off in his own little world.

"Mhm. Mama, can I have something to drink please?" Niall asks Louis with a cute grin for extra effect, though he knows Louis won't deny him something when he uses his manners.

"Of course love, I'll go see what I can find."

Louis walks out of the room, taking the chance to go use the restroom while they're all taking a small break from songwriting.

"Are you tired?" Harry asks Niall as he sits next to the child on the couch before pulling him over onto his lap.

"A little," Niall replied, leaning back on Harry's chest and finishing his last goldfish. "Can we go home soon?"

"Not yet pumpkin, there's still stuff we gotta do."

Niall pouted and soon Louis walked in with a Gatorade in his hand.

"Here you go, love. Be careful to not spill anything," Louis told Niall as he uncaps the drink and hands it to the child who nods but lets Harry help him out.

Louis' phone going off interrupts his time with his family and he sighs and answers without looking at who is calling him and interrupting his precious Niall time.

"Yes?"

"Louis, fuck, I'm so sorry," Zayn speaks quickly from the other line, the sincerity in his voice making Louis to not be so mad at him.

"You called nearly four hours late, mate and I know you must be so hungover from last night. You had quite the night out with your new blonde girl," Louis huffed out in anger as he sat next to Harry and leaned into his side.

"You saw me? Look, it's a PR thing my management set up with her camp, supposed to make us more famous or something. I honestly don't care about her, she's a snobby bitch who can't even walk a runway right."

Louis laughs and rolls his eyes though Zayn can't see him. "You should have at least called to tell us you weren't going to be able to watch him, Zee, he was sad when he realized you weren't going to show up."

"I feel so awful, but I promise I'll make it up to him. When do you guys leave?"

"In a few days, why?"

"I wanna take him out for a little bonding time, can I?"

"Sure you can mate," Louis grinned, running his fingers through Niall's hair.

"Can I take him tomorrow?"

"Fine by me, but don't let him down again, Zayn."

"I promise I won't, bye Louis."

The rest of their day at the studio passes by and by the time they leave, Niall is fast asleep on the couch with dried pizza sauce on his cheek. Louis snaps a quick picture and posts it to his twitter before Harry picks up the child and they all call it a night.

~November 10, 2015~

True to his word, Zayn is over at the Styles-Tomlinson residence before they leave for the studio and Niall greets him with a hug and kiss to his cheek clearly excited about spending a whole day with his Zaynie.

"So I'll bring him back in the afternoon or unless you'd like to spend the night with me, Nialler?" Zayn asked the child who looked over at Louis and Harry excitedly, pleading with big blue eyes and a pout.

"Alright, but you're going to need an overnight back, baby, let's go pack," Louis said and the two headed upstairs.

"So where are you taking Niall?" Harry asked curiously as he offered Zayn something to drink.

"Here and there. Got a special day planned," Zayn grinned and Harry eyed him. "I promise I'll watch over him and all that."

Soon Niall and Zayn are off and Harry, Louis and Liam are heading to the studio.

"Where are we going, Zaynie?" Niall asks curiously as he sits in the backseat, staring out the window and looking at everything with wide eyes.

"We're going to Disney!" Zayn exclaimed and Niall gasped in excitement.

"Really?! Can I meet Elsa and Anna?!" Niall asked as he bounced in his seat feeling so excited to be going somewhere so special with his Zaynie.

"Of course you can, babes and any other princess you want."

They arrive at Disney sometime before lunch and Zayn is grateful that there isn't a lot of people but he supposes it's because it's Tuesday and not a weekend. He puts a sweater on Niall and holds his hand as they walk inside, the child skipping along happily as he looks around with big eyes. They get on a ride first and Zayn enjoys hearing Niall's giggles and even takes a video of the child.

On their walk to their next ride, they bump into Pluto and Niall claps before running up to said creature with Zayn yelling after him.

"Hi! I'm Niall!" The child greets Pluto with a large smile and the yellow dog waves at Niall and does a silly little dance which makes Niall laugh.

"You want a picture, babes?" Zayn asks Niall who nods and Pluto squats down to be at Niall's height and hugs him as Zayn snaps the picture. "Thank you."

"Bye Pluto!" Niall waves at the dog who waves goodbye back and Niall asks to see the picture. "Can you send it to my mama and papa?"

"Of course, want to make them jealous because they're working and you're having fun?" Zayn questions Niall who nods with a small giggle.

*

"That son of a bitch," Louis grumbles as he receives Zayn's text with a picture of Niall and Pluto.

"What is it?" Harry asks as him and Liam crowd closer, their phones being off at the moment.

"Zayn took Niall to Disney and he sent this picture of Niall with Pluto."

"Well that was certainly a surprise," Liam laughed. "But look how happy he looks."

'Watch over my boy, Malik and make sure he has a lot of fun or I'll beat you up when you get back,' Louis texted Zayn.

'I'll look after him, no need for threats Tommo!' Zayn texted him back. 'Gotta go, your boy is looking for Anna and Elsa and he won't be happy until we find them.'

'Good luck bro!'

*

Niall got to meet Anna and Elsa and he talked to them a whole lot and the two girls were laughing each and every time Niall said something cute and funny and Zayn simply stood back and watched with a smile. He ended up taking a few pictures of Niall with Anna and Elsa and Niall had a hard time saying goodbye to them but eventually did and now Zayn and him are walking towards a restaurant for a late lunch.

"Are you having fun babes?" Zayn asks after they order their food.

"A lot of fun, Zaynie! Thank you!" Niall tells Zayn who nods and smiles.

Two girls walk up to Zayn and ask if they can take a picture and well Zayn can't really say no even though he really doesn't want to because he's having a special day with little Ni. The two girls look at the child and giggle and then leave happily.

"Who were they?" Niall asks curiously as he shifts in his seat.

"Some fans," Zayn shrugged.

By the time the two left Disney, it was late and Niall was dead tired. He'd met a lot of his favorite characters, had a lot of food, bought a lot of souvenirs and even the Mickey ears that both him and Zayn had worn nearly all day though Zayn also bought Niall some Minney ears with a cute bow because Niall had really liked them so now Niall was wearing those instead. There hadn't been much encounters with fans, but they'd managed though Zayn knew there would be pictures of him and Niall out by tomorrow.

"Did you have fun, babes?" Zayn asked as he unlocked his car and settled Niall in the backseat along with the bag of things they'd bought.

"Lots of fun, Zaynie. Thank you," Niall mumbled as he rubbed his eyes and let Zayn buckle him in.

"Well I'm glad you did, now it's time to go home, yeah? You still want to sleepover with me?"

Niall nodded and Zayn kissed his head before closing the back door and going over to get in the driver's seat to drive home. Once at Zayn's place, Niall was fast asleep and Zayn had to carry him inside. As Zayn was setting Niall down on the bed, his phone went off and he curse because Niall woke up.

"Hello?" Zayn answered, trying to get Niall to go back to sleep.

"Hey, just calling to check in. Everything okay?" Louis asked and Zayn rolled his eyes which made Niall giggle.

"Everything is fine, mate, the little lad tired himself out and had a lot of fun with Zaynie. He's right here if you want to talk to him?"

"Please."

"Babes, Louis wants to talk to you," Zayn told Niall whose eyes lit up and he took the phone and put it to his ear.

"Hi mama! I miss you!" Niall told Louis as he watched Zayn grab his pajamas from the bag that Louis packed.

"I miss you too, angel. Did you have fun at Disney with Zayn?" Louis asked Niall with a large grin on his face.

"I did mama and I met Elsa and Anna and so many others! And I ate lots of food and went on rides."

"Well that's great sweetheart, how about you tell your papa and I tomorrow yeah? Zaynie will drop you off at home and then you can tell us all about it. Sounds good?"

"Yep! Night mama, love you."

"Love you too, Nialler. Goodnight."

Louis hung up and Niall handed the phone back to Zayn who smiled and began to change Niall out of his clothes and into his pajamas. After that he helped Niall brush his teeth before tucking him in bed with his Olaf.

"Sweet dreams, babes. If you need me I'm right next to your room, okay?" Zayn told the child as he leaned down and kissed his forehead.

"Night Zaynie. Thank you for today," Niall blushed as he stared up at the dark haired man who was looking down at him fondly.

"It was nothing babes, now sleep because you had a very long and fun day."

Zayn left a small lamp on and then left the room. Niall sighed happily and snuggled under the unfamiliar covers and hugged his Olaf before falling into an easy rest.

Chapter Text

~November 18, 2015~

They're back in London now and things have been quiet and easy. Gia had called and said she'd be in London in December around the time Niall is supposed to be changed back and warned Harry and Louis that Niall might start getting more flashbacks of his old life since they're five months into the spell and he could start remembering things easier.

*

"Ni, clean up your toys babe, they'll be here soon," Louis said as he walked into Niall's room, referring to Louis' and Harry's family who would be over for dinner. It was rare to get both families in London at the same time, so Harry and Louis took the opportunity to use the overly large dining room they never use.

"Okay, mama," Niall smiled up at Louis and began to put his toys away in the toy box in the corner of the room.

The doorbell went off downstairs and Louis carried Niall downstairs just as Harry opened the door. Anne walked in with Robin and Gemma, all greeting Harry and then Louis before cooing at Niall who wanted to be held by Gemma who smiled wide and took him into her arms.

"Hi sweetie, how are you doing?" Gemma asked as she carried Niall into the living room and sat down with him on her lap.

"I'm very good. Zaynie took me to Disney and I met Anna and Elsa," Niall told her with a smile as he played with her hair.

"Well that sounds like fun!" Gemma humored Niall who then went on and on about his trip to Disney with his Zaynie and Anne sat down next to them to also listen to the story with a smile on her face.

Shortly after Louis' family arrives, they have dinner and then the kids run around to play while Anne, Jay, Lottie, Fizzy and Gemma sit in the kitchen drinking tea and the men watch a game on the screen. Suddenly Niall walks into the kitchen where Louis is talking to the women and they all gasp and coo at the smiley six year old.

"Pumpkin, what happened to you?" Louis asked with a smile as he pulled Niall onto his lap.

"Daisy was making herself pretty and she colored my lips with her pink thingy," explained Niall as he puckered his lips to show off the pink lip gloss Daisy had painted him with.

"Oh love, you look so cute," Lottie gushes as she looks at Niall who blushes and Fizzy smiles at the child. Lottie takes her phone out and takes a picture of Niall who poses for her happily unknown that it was going on snapchat.

"Harry, babe, come see our boy!" Louis calls as he watches Niall make silly faces at Lottie.

Harry walks in and takes a seat next to Louis. "Hi pumpkin."

"Papa, Daisy colored my lips with pink!" Niall told his papa excitedly as he abandoned his focus on Lottie to see the curly haired lad smiling down at him.

"She did, pumpkin, you look quite adorable," Harry told the child who only beamed at his papa's words and then snuggled into Louis' chest with a blush coating his cheeks.

As Niall sits there, he goes off into his own thoughts and suddenly it's a different time and place but his four boys are around him and they're all smiling and laughing. Louis and Harry are cuddling on a couch sharing small kisses every now and then, Liam is sitting with Zayn both with their feet on the coffee table and Niall is just sitting on the ground eating some chips. They look a lot different, no one has their tattoos, they still have baby faces. Harry's hair is shorter and Louis is wearing red pants and a stripped shirt with suspenders. He can't comprehend what they're talking about, but he feels the happiness and when his eyes lock with Zayn's, he feels his whole face flush before returning his attention back to the bag of chips on his lap. He went back to a time when they were young, naive not knowing what the future would hold. How cruel and hard things would turn out, how their dream would end up also becoming their nightmare. They're still shining with innocence.

"Ni?" Someone calls, and he sees Louis, current Louis, looking down at him worriedly and suddenly Niall starts crying which startles him and everyone in the room. "Hey angel, what's wrong?"

Niall shakes his head and moves so he wraps his tiny arms around Louis' neck and buries his face into his shoulder crying as Louis rubs his back soothingly. A pair of lips press to his temple and Niall sees Harry looking down at him sadly.

"Come on pumpkin, lets go upstairs," Harry says softly as he takes Niall gently from Louis' arms and heads upstairs with Niall hiccuping in his arms.

"Wanna tell me what's wrong?" Harry asks once they're in the master bedroom with the door shut and he sits on the bed with the child on his lap.

"I 'member stuff," Niall tells Harry as he looks up at him with teary blue eyes and Harry sighs as he wipes away the child's tears.

"What did you remember, Nialler?"

"You no have these," Niall says as he points at Harry's tattoos. "And mama was wearing a stripe shirt and red pants and Zaynie and Liam look very different."

"Oh love," Harry pouts and pulls Niall into his chest. "It's okay baby. I know these might seem a little scary to you or overwhelming, but it's okay. Just know that your mama and I will be here to help you through them and for you to talk to us about it. Hmm? We don't want you to feel scared because you might be getting these more and more."

"It hurts my head," Niall whimpers as he places a hand onto his head.

"Well how about we get you some medicine and you sleep for a bit? You look pretty tired to me."

Niall nodded and waited on the bed for Harry to come back with his medicine. Niall took it without a fuss and let Harry tuck him in but not before wiping the lip gloss from his lips. Niall giggled and snuggled into his mama and papa's bed.

"We'll come check on you and if you need us we're downstairs," spoke Harry softly as he leaned down to press a kiss to Niall's cheek. "Sleep tight, pumpkin."

Harry goes back downstairs after closing the door and arrives just in time to say goodbye to their families. Louis' youngest siblings were getting fuzzy and so Jay and Dan had decided to leave. Soon it was just Louis and Harry left downstairs cuddling on the couch.

"How's Ni?" Louis asked as he placed kisses against Harry's neck.

"Sleeping. He had a flashback of one of our earlier times in the band and I gave him some medicine since his head was hurting," Harry explained, rubbing Louis' back and closing his eyes as his boyfriend began to suck on the skin between his shoulder and neck softly.

"Poor Ni," Louis sighed as he pulled away to look at the nice mark left on Harry's skin along with two other fading ones. "I just hope they're not too frequent, don't wanna see my baby in pain."

"I know love."

Louis and Harry settled on the couch to watch some show they're both obsessed with when Niall walks downstairs with his Olaf and hair all messy on his head as he rubs his eyes with his chubby fists.

"Hey angel, have a good nap?" Louis asked as he pulled Niall onto his lap.

"Couldn't sleep much," Niall mumbled as he cuddled into Louis' chest.

"Do you want some warm milk?" Harry asked the child who nodded and Harry went off to make it.

"Have you had these flashbacks often?" Louis asked the child on his lap, playing with his hair and pressing soft kisses every so often.

"Sometimes. I used to have them in my dreams, but I'd forget after I woke up. They make me head hurt cause I don't understand them, mama."

"I know baby, but we can't really explain it to you. I promise it's going to get better soon, okay? But in the meantime you have papa and I here to help you and make you feel better and just give you lots of cuddles and kisses!" Louis exclaimed as he peppered Niall's face with kisses and tickled his sides which made Niall shriek with giggles as he tried to get away from his mama.

"Papa, help!" Niall giggled, placing his tiny hands on Louis' face and trying to push him away.

Harry laughed as he walked in and saw a bright red Niall laughing and Louis tickling him. He sat next to them and took Niall away from Louis who pouted.

"Here's your milk, pumpkin," said Harry as he handed Niall his plastic Frozen cup with the lid on it since the child spills things on regular cups.

Niall grinned and took his cup with a thank you and began to drink his milk as Harry cradled him to his chest and Louis leaned against his boyfriend, smiling down at the child.

"Can you sing to me?" Niall asked timidly as he looked at both his 'parents' who smiled wider.

"Anything for my little angel!" Louis cooed as he pinched Niall's cheek softly. "Anything special?"

"Hmm Night Changes, please."

"Alright, love, H, you start," Louis told Harry who nodded and continued to hold Niall.

They switched off parts and both harmonized on the chorus and by the time the song ended, Niall was fast asleep with Harry having taken the cup out of the child's hands. Louis brushed back Niall's hair softly and smiled down sadly at the child.

"Gonna miss this," Louis mumbled into Harry's shoulder, watching Niall's long eyelashes brush against his cheeks as his eyes fluttered every now and then.

"Me too babe, me too." Harry sighed.

~November 24, 2015~

Niall seemed to be getting at least one flashback per day now and Louis and Harry both hated to see the child so confused afterwards and in pain. Harry and Louis did their best to keep Niall happy these days. They gave him extra attention, especially knowing that they would be saying goodbye to their little boy soon. The clock was ticking and they knew it.

"Mama, when's Papa coming home?" Niall asked as he walked into the office where Louis was sitting in the chair behind the computer.

"Not sure, baby, why? Miss him?" Louis asked as he pulled Niall to sit on his lap.

"Yep. What are you doing, mama?" Niall asks as he looks at the screen and seeing a bunch of pictures and words.

"Just reading some emails, babe, for when we have to go back to work."

"Work as in singing for a bunch of people?"

"Yeah, you remember that right?"

Niall nodded in confirmation and watched his mama type out a reply to an email. He was humming under his breath as he sat still for his mama who was busy. Louis smiled and pressed a kiss to the top of Niall's head as he realized the child was humming Fireproof. The songs Niall remembered the most were their most recent ones, the ones from FOUR.

"Boys, I'm home!" Harry calls and Niall gasps excitedly before scrambling off of Louis' lap and racing down the hall towards Harry who was removing his boots at the entrance.

"Papa!" Niall shouted with his arms up wanting to be picked up by his papa, whom he missed all day.

"Hi, pumpkin! I've missed you today," Harry cooed as he picked up the child and cuddled him close. "Have you been good to mama?"

Niall only nodded and nuzzled his face into Harry's neck just as Louis walked over to them with a fond smile.

"Hi babe," Louis greeted the long haired lad who leaned down to kiss him softly. Niall giggled between them because he didn't need to see to know that they were kissing. It was routine by now. "My little giggle bear."

They have a normal day as a family. Louis and Harry make dinner together while Niall sits at the table coloring and dancing to the music that's playing through the kitchen. He looks up and smiles when Harry and Louis start to dance and sing, using cooking utensils as microphones and he giggles and claps happily. Niall really loves being a part of this family, even though a part very deep inside of him knows that this is only temporary.

"Come on babe, time for dinner," Louis tells the child as he begins to clean up the crayons scattered around the table and sets them on the counter.

"Food!" Niall cheered excitedly.

Dinner was pretty much the same as any other night. They laugh and talk, just having a good time. After dinner Niall is off to play in the living room while the other two clean and then comes bath time. Niall whines all the way up until Harry sets him in the warm bubble filled water. Niall relaxes in the warm water and grabs the purple rubber duck gloating around.

"Papa?" Niall calls the curly haired lad who is busy scrubbing Niall's hair with shampoo.

"Yes pumpkin?" Harry responds, rinsing his hands with clean water.

"I love you lots."

"I love you lots too, pumpkin." Harry grins, remembering back to one of the first times he bathed Niall and the child told him he loved him. It feels like it's been so long now and it makes him sad to think that a month from today Niall will be back to his normal self again.

"And I love mama, and Liam and I love Zaynie a lot too."

"And they love you a lot too."

That night both Louis and Harry tuck the boy into bed and read him a story. Niall is asleep halfway through the book that Louis borrowed from his twin baby siblings. Louis looks down at him fondly and takes a picture. Harry leads Louis out of the room quietly and they head into theirs.

"We only have a few more days left with baby Ni, Haz," Louis mumbled sadly as he buried his face into his taller boyfriend's chest. "I don't want my baby to grow up. Again."

Harry chuckled and wrapped his arms around Louis, kissing the top of his head and rocking them from side to side. "I know love. I guess this is what all parents feel like as they see their kids starting to grow up. Probably what our parents felt like when they realized we were leaving home."

"Can't we keep him like this? He's so much nicer as a kid. And cuter, but Neil's always been cute. He's our cute little Irish lad."

"He is, but soon it'll be just us two."

~November 25, 2015~

When Niall woke up, the sun was out and the few birds left were chirping. He sat up in his bed, giggling as he got tangled up in the blankets and Olaf and his penguin. Eventually his feet reached the ground and he walked out of his room curiously, crossing the hall to his mama and papa's room. His tiny hand reached for the door handle and went to turn it, but frowned when the door wouldn't open. He could hear noises coming from the other side so he knew his mama and papa were awake, but why would they not let him in?

Meanwhile inside the room, both Louis and Harry were wide awake despite the time being a little after seven. Louis was laying on his back with Harry hovering above him as the bed springs squeaked every now and then from the movements.

"F-Fuck, Harry," Louis moaned out softly, dragging his blunt nails down Harry's bare sweaty back.

"Shit Lou," Harry groaned as he moved his hips slightly faster with his hands on either side of Louis' head, trying to reach his orgasm but not wanting this blissful feeling to end. His aching member was buried deep inside of his lover's tight entrance. He opened his eyes and looked down at Louis, watching him get lost in the ecstasy the way his mouth opened to let out silent moans and tiny gasps.

"Mama! Papa!" Niall screamed as he banged on the door, making Harry still his movements and Louis to groan because he'd been so close.

"If we ignore him, he'll leave," Harry whispered as he quickly found his pace again, hoping to convince Louis who moaned as Harry found that spot inside of him that almost made Louis scream out.

"H-Harry," Louis half moaned half scolded his boyfriend.

"Mama!" Niall cried as he banged on the door and he sounded really close to tears and it was making Louis feel incredibly guilty.

"Harry, seriously."

"Just let me finish. He's such a cockblock," Harry groaned in irritation, speeding up his pace.

Outside, Niall kept banging on the door but he was crying now as he tried the door handle again and Louis was pushing at Harry's chest telling him to stop. Harry wasn't listening though and instead only focused on his pleasure and wanting to release, ignoring Niall's crying and Louis' pleads to stop.

"H-Harry, stop!" Louis tried again as he went to shove Harry but the curly haired lad trapped his wrists above his head. "Harry, seriously! Niall's crying out there and-"

"Fine," Harry huffed out angrily and pulled out of his boyfriend and headed into the bathroom, slamming the door shut and locking himself in there.

"You're such an ass!" Louis screamed as he threw the covers away and pulled on some boxers and then some loose sweatpants before going over to unlock the door. He opened it and felt so guilty when he found Niall sitting in front of the door with big fat tears rolling down his cheeks. "I'm sorry for not opening the door, love."

"M-Mama," Niall hiccuped as he made grabby hands at Louis who quickly picked him up and cuddled him close.

"Wanna cuddle in your bed? It's still early, angel."

Niall nodded and Louis walked over to Niall's room, laying down on the child's bed with him. Louis sang to Niall softly, wiping away his tears and pressing soft kisses to his head as Niall snuggled into him and the blankets. Niall was fast asleep again in no time and Louis left him to sleep for a bit longer.

"I'm sorry." Harry sighed as he followed Louis down the stairs.

"You should be, Harry. He was out there crying for us and I told you to stop and you didn't listen to me. I told you stop more than once," Louis whispered as he entered the kitchen, looking for what to make for breakfast.

"I know and I'm so sorry," Harry said, wrapping his arms around Louis from behind and holding him tight.

"Just don't let it happen again, H. Niall could have been hurt or sick."

"I know I know. Where is he anyways?"

"I got him to fall asleep again, he was so upset. I know it's been awhile since we've done anything like that, but if we want kids, this is how it's going to be."

"I know and I'm terribly sorry I let myself get carried away."

Louis has just finished making breakfast and Harry's about to head upstairs to go wake up Niall when the child walks into the kitchen rubbing his eyes.

"Hi pumpkin, sleep okay?" Harry asked as he picked up the child and let him cuddle into him.

"I'm tired, papa," Niall whined, closing his eyes again.

"No more sleep, bug. It's time for breakfast and maybe we can call Zaynie later, yeah?" Louis told Niall who perked up at the mention of Zayn's name.

"I wanna talk to Zaynie!" Niall chanted over and over until Louis shushed him.

"We get it love, but you gotta be quiet and eat."

Niall pouted and sat in his seat quietly. After breakfast, Louis dialed Zayn's number and they let the two FaceTime while Harry and Louis watched from afar with smiles on their faces.

"Hope they can fix their problems when our Niall returns to normal," Louis tells Harry who hums in agreement. "Niall deserves to be happy and Zayn made him very happy."

"If we could solve our shit after nearly three years than I'm positive they can solve their problems as well. Besides, Zayn's really trying right now with Niall and he's gonna be here when we call Gia in a few days."

Louis sighed sadly at the mention of Gia. He was really torn because he really missed his big loud mouthed Niall who drinks too much beer, but gives great cuddles, but he also knew he was going to miss having little Niall to take care of. And obviously it wouldn't be easy for Harry and Louis to transition from having taken care of Niall to treating him like an adult again. They just hoped things flowed smoothly in the end.

Chapter Text

~November 28, 2015~

"Zaynie's coming today!" Niall sang throughout the house as he skipped around with his Olaf.

"We know baby, he should be here in half an hour now," Louis told Niall, hoping to shut the child up but that only caused him to shriek excitedly and sing louder which made Louis groan in frustration. He really wasn't going to miss this.

Liam chuckled from the living room and looked up when Louis walked in. Louis sat next to him with a huff as Niall ran past the living room chanting Zayn's name.

"Did you give him sugar?" Liam asked with a chuckle and Louis shook his head.

"Zayn's his sugar, he always gets like this when he knows Zayn's coming and besides, it's been a few days since they last saw each other so he's twice as hyped on Zayn sugar," Louis explained and Liam laughed because even big Niall was never that excited to see Zayn after being apart for some days. "Harry called, said they were on their way now but there's traffic."

"As usual," Liam commented.

Eventually Niall walked in with a pout because he was tired and his Zaynie still wasn't there. Louis and Liam both shared a look before focusing on Niall who was dragging his Olaf on the ground as he walked. He stood in front of Louis and let himself fall forward until his face was buried into Louis' chest.

"What's up, angel? Tired so soon?" Louis asked in a playful manner as he pulled Niall onto his lap.

"I want Zaynie!" Niall whined.

"He'll be here soon, buddy," Liam told Niall, and just then, the front door opened and both Harry and Zayn's voices rang out which made Niall gasp and run over to them.

"Zaynie!" Niall cheered.

"Hi babes, I've missed you so much!" Zayn says as he picks up the tiny child and holds him tight.

Niall giggled and closed his eyes as he took in Zayn's warmth.

"Hey mate, how was the trip?" Louis asks as him and Liam walk over to greet Zayn.

"Long. Tiring, but I couldn't wait to see this little boy again," cooed Zayn as he pressed kisses to Niall's cheek and making him giggle. "How have things been here?"

"You know, we're getting the final details set up for the remainder of the tour and we're battling with the North American tour dates. We've written more songs for the album and we're busier with our lovely little child," said Louis as he went over to tickle Niall's side.

"And what have you been up to? Have you been a good little boy to your mama and papa?" Zayn asked Niall as he set the child on his right hip, smiling as Niall blushed as he saw all eyes on him.

"I've been very good! I'm always good," Niall stated proudly as he looked at his mama for confirmation and Louis nodded. "Mama and papa always say I'm a good little boy."

"Well that's cause it's true, you're always using your manners, pumpkin," says Harry with a smile as he wraps an arm around Louis' shoulders and pulls him into his side.

The three remaining adults figured out what to have for dinner while Niall had dragged Zayn up the stairs to his room so they could play. They were sitting on the floor with toys scattered all around them and Zayn wondered what Harry and Louis were going to do with the toys once little Niall was gone.

"Zaynie?" Niall calls as he puts down a red crayon and picks up a purple one instead.

"Yeah babes?" Zayn asked as he helped Niall color the other page of the coloring book Niall had insisted they do.

"Why did you make big Ni cry? He was really sad," Niall says innocently as he looks up at Zayn who is frowning down at the coloring book.

"Big Ni?" Zayn questions wanting to make sure he heard right.

"Yeah. You were yelling at Big Ni and he was crying and then you left and he was still crying very hard and Lili was hugging him and mama was angry and yelling at you and papa was looking for something. I sometimes dream of big Ni and he's sad a lot and it makes me sad," Niall explains as he continued to color as if he were just describing a show he likes to watch.

"Do you dream of anything else?" Zayn questions the child who nods.

"I do," Niall says and then proceeds to tell Zayn of what he can remember. The memories vary from their X Factor days to the last ones he had as Big Niall or to some in between. Zayn laughs as he too remembers the funny ones.

"Lads, dinner's here. We're having Nando's," Louis told them and Niall gasped in delight. "You still like the same thing, right Zee?"

"Yeah, don't worry. Come on, babes," Zayn said as he picked up Niall and headed down the stairs following after Louis. Niall is busy playing with Zayn's hair and pouts when he's set on a chair.

"Leeyum, where Sophia?" Niall asks as Harry placed a plate of food in front of him.

"She's visiting her mom and dad, bud," Liam tells Niall with a smile as he sits across from the child.

"Oh."

Dinner was loud, having all five together again was just like old times when they ate a late dinner in hotel rooms after a long day. Of course it wasn't the same, because Niall was loud and always fought with someone who tried to take his food. This time Niall sat back and giggled and watched his four boys make up the most conversations, but he still had to be the center of attention. Didn't like not being included when they broke into two groups and had two different conversations going around.

"My, someone's feeling a bit left out," Louis teased as he focused on Niall who'd been poking his side for the past minute to get his attention after Louis had fallen into a conversation with Liam. "What's up, angel?"

"I want juice, please," Niall told Louis and that's when the older man realized they hadn't given the child anything to drink.

"Coming right up, love."

Niall sat patiently as he waited for his juice. Harry reached over and wiped away some ketchup from around Niall's mouth and Niall blushed and giggled while the others laughed.

"You're so messy, pumpkin," Harry chuckled and Niall shrugged as he dipped his fries into the ketchup and got more of the red stuff on his cheek this time. "Niall."

"Oops," Niall giggled as he shoved more ketchup filled fries into his mouth and Harry gave up cleaning the child.

"I'll give him a bath after dinner," Zayn offered as he chuckled at Niall who looked down as he got ketchup on his Power Rangers shirt.

"He's definitely going to need one," Louis commented with a chuckle as he watched Niall shrug at the stain and continue eating.

After dinner Niall ran off to hide from Zayn who had announced he was going to get Niall's bath ready. Louis sighed and shook his head as he looked at Zayn apologetically.

"He's been like that for about a week now. He likes to hide to try and get out of bath time. He usually hides in his closet, if not then he'll be in mine or the other guest room," Louis told Zayn who nodded.

"Gotcha," Zayn said and headed up the stairs while the other three cleaned up the kitchen.

Zayn entered Niall's room first and gathered a clean pair of pajamas from his drawer and some underwear before setting it on the bed and begins his search for Niall.

"Ni, babes, come out please. The quicker we can clean you, the quicker we can watch any movie you want," Zayn said as he opened the closet door and found Niall sitting there behind a few boxes. "I'll be quick if you want."

"Can I have toys? Mama and papa don't let me have toys no more, they say I make a big mess," Niall speaks sadly and Zayn feels his heart break a bit.

"You can have toys love, now come on."

Niall picks out some toys and follows Zayn to the bathroom. It's weird having Zayn give him a bath because Niall is used to only having his mama or papa, but it's nice because he loves his Zaynie a lot. And Zaynie tells him a story as he washes his hair and Niall giggles and listens intently, yawning softly. After his bath, Zayn carries a sleepy Niall down the stairs and hands him off to Louis who grins and cuddles him close.

"My angel is all clean and smells so good," Louis said as he hugged Niall tightly, the child resting his head on Louis' chest. "Sleepy babe?"

"Mhm," Niall yawned again, fighting hard to stay awake.

"Calling it an early night pumpkin?" Harry asked as he pressed a kiss to Niall's head.

Niall only nods and within seconds he's fast asleep.

~December 1, 2015~

Niall's been the center of attention for the last few days now and he's absolutely loving it. They've taken him out for ice cream, Liam took him to the movies, Zayn to the park and Louis and Harry had movie marathons with him with lots of cuddles and junk food.

It's sometime after lunch and Niall is napping in his room while the four other lads are in the living room just sitting in silence until Harry's phone going off makes them all jump.

"It's Gia," Harry announced and answered it with a heavy heart. "Hey."

"I'm sure you know why I'm calling, Harry," said Gia as she sighed. She had an idea as to how hard this would be. "I'm in London now and I'm starting to work on the potion today. Should be ready within the next three or four days but I'll call you when it's ready."

"Alright and how are we going to do this? Like do we bring him to you or-?"

"No, you don't have to. I can go to you instead or whatever works best with you guys. Though it would be best if I went, in case Niall has some side affects right after. He's gonna need to rest so the potion can start working and I don't think a car ride would be best."

"Alright then you call us when it's ready and I'll give you the address then."

"Good and I'll go over any questions you guys might have then. Just enjoy these last few days because they're going to fly by. Take care."

"You too Gia, thanks," Harry sighed and hung up.

"What'd she say?" Louis asked Harry.

"She's in London and she's working on the potion now. She'll have it ready between three or four days and will call," Harry explained to the others who nodded and sighed quietly.

"Mama!" Niall shouted from the top of the stairs and Louis stood up, quickly running over to the child who was sitting at the very top while rubbing his eyes tiredly.

"Hey angel, you have a good nap?" Louis asked as he sat next to the child who leaned into his side.

"My tummy hurts, mama," Niall whined as he looked up at Louis with sad blue eyes.

"Oh love, do you want some medicine? I told Harry not to give you so much junk food."

Louis stood up and picked up Niall carefully to not upset his tummy more and carried him towards the bathroom. Louis opened the medicine cabinet and searched through it until he found what he was looking for and Niall whined at the sight of the medicine. Louis chuckled and shifted Niall around on his hip.

"Alright love, don't fight me with this or you're going into time out again," Louis warned Niall as he sat him on the counter to open the medicine with both hands. "Now open wide."

Niall did as he was told and made faces as the liquid entered his mouth and he swallowed, a tear rolling down his cheeks that Louis quickly wiped away. He coughed and made gagging noises, his face turning read as he kept coughing.

"Are you going to throw up?" Louis asked worriedly as he lowered Niall onto the ground and over to the toilet.

And he did, just barely making it into the toilet.

"Shit," Louis mumbled and rubbed the child's back, wincing as he threw up a second time. "It's okay angel, just let it all out and you'll feel better. Harry!"

"M-Mama," Niall sobbed as he dry heaved into the toilet while Louis kept rubbing his back.

"What's- oh. Pumpkin, you're sick buddy?" Harry asked worriedly as he took Louis' spot while Louis wet a flannel to wipe Niall's mouth with.

Niall eventually stops and settles back into Harry's chest tiredly as Louis wipes his mouth clean and then offers him a glass of water. Niall's pale and shaking in Harry's arms with tiny beads of sweat across his forehead. Harry looks up at Louis worriedly and the older male sighs as his own blue eyes look dull and tired.

"Let's get you in some pajamas and then we'll cuddle you downstairs, okay love?" Louis tells Niall softly, brushing back his hair and pressing a gentle kiss to his head.

"My tummy hurts," Niall whines.

"I know love, but you threw up the medicine and you'll probably do the same if I give you more."

"I'll go change him," says Harry as he stands up with Niall in his arms and carries him to his room while Louis flushes the toilet and before heading downstairs.

"Is Niall sick?" Zayn asked worriedly as he saw Louis walk in.

"Yeah, his stomach hurts and I gave him medicine but he threw it back up. Was big Niall ever sick this often because he's only been a kid for six months and he's been sick quite a lot," Louis wondered as he ran a hand through his hair.

"Not really, but you gotta realize that he's a kid and kids well they're sick quite often," Liam told Louis who groaned.

Harry walked down the stairs with Niall in his arms and wrapped in a blanket, with his head resting on Harry's shoulder. He was still pale and visibly shaking in Harry's arms.

"Heard you're feeling poorly, babes," Zayn coos as Harry sets Niall down on the couch next to him.

"Want some water?" Harry asks Niall who is pouting but nods hesitantly.

Liam gets up and brings a bucket just in case Niall needs it and sets it down on the floor below Niall who is wrapped up like a burrito and leaning against Zayn's side as he stares at the TV which is playing SpongeBob.

"Hopefully he's not sick when Gia calls otherwise it's gonna be a pain to get him to drink the potion," Louis says as he watches Niall doze off.

"Hopefully not," Liam echoes though he knows that they wouldn't mind keeping Niall little for an extra day or two, but he also knows that the sooner they do it the better because it's already hard to think that they won't have a six year old to take care of in a few days. Unless the potion doesn't work and Niall is stuck like his, but he's confident it'll work.

"Wanna be sick," Niall whimpered and Harry quickly placed the bucket under Niall just as the child began to throw up again, tears rolling down his flushed cheeks as Zayn rubbed his back and cooed comforting words into his ear.

"Done, pumpkin?" Harry asks after awhile and Niall nods, Liam taking it to go get rid of the sick before bringing it back.

"C-Cold," Niall complained as he shivered despite the fact that he was wrapped in a thick blanket and Zayn was holding him on his lap.

"I'll go turn on the heat a bit more," Louis said and got up, heading off to crank the heat up a bit.

Throughout the day Niall kept throwing up and they made him drink plenty of fluids, but the night was tough. No one got any sleep because Niall was still very sick and he'd only sleep for about an hour or two before waking up. They kept a bucket near Niall's bed and Louis and Harry each took turns throughout the night sleeping with him or staying up with him. It was one of the longest nights of their lives.

Chapter Text

~December 4, 2015~

They're eating breakfast and laughing like any normal day when Gia calls. Both Harry and Louis look at each other sadly while Niall remains oblivious and instead focuses on his French toast and sings quietly. This time he's been singing Stole My Heart since yesterday. Harry is the one to answer the phone and holds Louis' hand.

"Hey," Harry greets in a low mumbled voice.

"So I've got the potion. It's done and ready to go so I can drop by today if you want. The sooner the better in case it doesn't work and I need to work on a stronger one," said Gia in her chirpy voice, but it was mixed with a bit of sadness because she could only imagine how hard this would be for all of them and she feels kind of guilty for making them go through this, but hey, things happen.

"Yeah that's fine. So um you can come over at around noon? Gotta get the other lads over and enjoy a bit of time with him before you know."

"Yeah that's fine. I'll be there at noon and before we do that, I'll explain what the side effects can be or answer any questions you might have concerning this. It'll be easy though and it won't be painful, that I can promise you," she reassured Harry who let out a small breath because he'd been worried it would hurt Niall like sometimes in the movies when these kinds of things happen.

"Thanks Gia, we'll see you soon," Harry said and hung up. "She'll be over at around noon so we gotta call Liam and Zayn."

"I'll do that after we finish eating," Louis whispered, looking at his food sadly.

Liam and Zayn arrive an hour after the call and by then Niall has picked up on his mama and papa's sad moods so he's been clingy and upset. There's an hour and a half until Gia arrives and they're all trying their best to be normal for Niall, but they're upset and it's hard. They're in the living room trying to get Niall to play with his toys, but the child is refusing to let go of Louis and cries every time Louis has to get up and put Niall down.

"Baby, why are you so sad?" Louis asks as he carries Niall upstairs to his room.

"Cause Gia's coming," Niall mumbles as he plays with the string on Louis' Adidas hoodie and it makes Louis freeze. Has Niall been aware of everything?

"Niall?"

"I remember Gia and she turn me like this and now she coming to turn me back!" Niall cried as he looked up at Louis with wide blue eyes that were filled with tears.

"I know, love it's hard for Harry and I as well, but we have to face reality again," explained Louis as he stroked Niall's flushed cheeks. "It would also be very selfish of Harry and I to keep you this way."

"I know," Niall sniffles and buries his face into Louis' neck as the older male rubs his back and holds him tightly. "I do miss singing with you and the fans."

"See? We have obligations to do and we can't do them if you're not our big Niall anymore. There would be no more One Direction and your other friends would miss you and your family as well. I'm sure little Theo would be confused as to why his uncle Niall is almost his age."

Niall giggled and Louis smiled as he set Niall on the bed, standing him up so they're at eye level. Louis brushes back Niall's brown hair and lets out a small sigh.

"Besides, I'm sure you and Zayn have things to solve and it'd be best if you weren't a child." Niall blushed and Louis chuckled as he kissed his forehead. "Now tell me, how long have you been aware of what's happening?"

Niall only shrugged but didn't say anything else and instead made grabby hands at Louis who chuckled and picked him up. They head back downstairs and Louis hands Niall off to Harry and joins Liam and Zayn in the kitchen where they're making themselves some tea.

"Our big Niall is aware of what's happening," Louis says as he leans against the counter, watching Liam and Zayn frown in confusion.

"Excuse me?" Liam asks.

"He's still a child and acts and talks like one, but he's aware of what's happening as big Niall. He knows we're sad because Gia is coming today and he's sad about it too. He didn't say how long he's been seeing things as big Niall though."

They head back into the living room and smile as they see Harry sitting on the ground with Niall between his legs and they're doing a Disney puzzle. Niall giggled as Harry places a piece on the wrong place and scolds him. Harry throws his head back as he laughs at Niall who keeps telling him to pay attention.

"Mama! Papa don't know how to do a puzzle!" Niall whines over at Louis who walks over to them and sits next to them on the ground.

"I'll help you baby, papa can be a bit slow," Louis teased, winking at Niall who giggled and Harry pouted.

Liam and Zayn sat on the couch and watched the three finish the Finding Nemo puzzle. It's ten minutes to noon when the doorbell goes off and they all just sort of freeze and look at each other before Zayn opens the door.

"Hey, come in. Gia right?" Zayn tells her and she nods.

Her hair was now a platinum blonde and sat on her head in a messy bun. She was wearing knee high boots with leggings and a black coat. Her lips were a matte pink and eyelashes long and coated in mascara but she looked a lot prettier than the last time Harry had seen her. A lot less makeup on her face.

"Yes, and you must be Zayn," she smiled at him and Zayn couldn't help but shiver at her ice blue eyes. "Well I'm here."

Harry and Louis walk over to her and Liam follows with Niall on his hip hiding his face from Gia who only smiled at the child.

"Okay, so now what?" Louis asks as they all move to the kitchen and sit around the table.

"Well here's the potion," Gia tells them as she pulls out a small container with a light free liquid inside from her purse. "You just pour this into another drink like juice or something and shake it up and then he drinks it. I promise it doesn't taste bad, in fact it doesn't taste or smell like anything."

"So we give him the whole thing?" Harry asks as he grabs the container and examines it.

"For better results the whole thing and he has to drink the whole thing. It can take anytime between twelve hours or a whole week for the thing to work and if it doesn't we can try again with a stronger dose and if that doesn't work then I'm sorry," she tells them, watching the way Niall snuggles into Liam's chest as he stares at the liquid in Harry's hands. "Questions?"

"Okay so any side effects we should be aware of? You weren't exactly specific the first time," Louis told Gia who laughed.

"I apologize for that, but the side effects may vary on the person. There's not much to worry about. Just he may feel nauseous for awhile, ache in his bones, may still be a bit childish afterwards but that's normal. He may be clingy with you and Harry," Gia says as she points to Louis who nods. "You can always call me if there's something that's concerning you. An allergic reaction or something, though that hasn't happened but we can never be too careful. Just call, I promise I'll answer."

"Alright," Harry sighed. "Thanks for this."

"I need to go potty," Niall whispered at Liam who chuckled and let the child run off towards the bathroom.

"Yeah Gia, we want to thank you. You gave us some great practice with Niall," Louis tells Gia who smiles and shakes her head. "And well this happening made Harry and I get back together."

"Don't thank me for anything. And the future is looking quite bright for all of you. Great things are coming to you five."

Niall ran back in and went over to Zayn, hiding into his side and peeking at Gia who smiled at Niall who blushed and hid away from her. Zayn chuckled and wrapped an arm around Niall.

"Alright well I'm off. Take care you five," Gia says as she stands up along with the others.

"Wait, you're not gonna be here for when we give him the thing?" Louis asks her and she shakes her head.

"Don't have to, it's not rocket science boys. Just give it to him in a drink during dinner and you'll be fine. Don't hesitate to call me if something doesn't seem right, I can't stress this enough. Only I will be able to know what's happening."

"Don't worry," Harry tells her. "And thanks again."

Gia waves at them one last time and walks off. Louis closes the front door and wraps his arms around Harry. Harry hugs him back and presses a kiss to Louis' head before they pull away and head back into the kitchen where Niall is sitting on the table eating a cookie. Niall was giggling at something that Liam had said and he looked over when Louis and Harry entered the room.

"Who gave you that cookie, baby?" Louis asked as he picked up Niall and took a bite of his cookie which made Niall pout.

"Lili gave me the cookie," Niall told Louis with a grin.

"So when are you giving him the thing?" Zayn asked Harry as he leaned back in his seat, eyes trained on the container sitting in the center of the table.

"Dinner time," Harry answers.

For dinner they have lasagna and Louis mixes the potion in with Niall's juice in his Frozen cup and the poor lad drinks it, having forgotten about it. He ate happily and as usual, sat next to Zayn with a napkin working as a bib for the child.

"Is it good, love?" Louis asks Niall who nods happily as he looks up at Louis.

"Very good," Niall declares with a large grins, sauce all over his mouth and a tiny bit of pasta in his hair. How he managed that is beyond them. "Thank you for dinner, Lili."

"No problem, Nialler, I'm glad you liked it," Liam tells the child who asks for more.

Niall finishes eating last and Louis makes sure he's drank all his juice. Niall runs off before Zayn can clean him up screaming about something that no one can comprehend. Zayn chuckles and goes off in search of the child, catching him before he can run up the stairs though he knows he's not supposed to be running on the stairs.

"Gotcha, babes." Zayn chuckled as he lifted Niall and carried him back into the kitchen with Niall wiggling around and wanting to be let go. "We gotta get you all cleaned up, can't have you be messy, kiddo."

"But I like being messy," Niall pouted as he fell limp against Zayn's arms.

"Is that why you like making a mess when you eat?" Harry asked with a raised eyebrow as he looked at Niall, handing Zayn a wet flannel to clean the boy.

"Maybe."

Zayn chuckled and began to wipe the dried pasta sauce from around Niall's mouth and cheeks.

"But I gotta take a bath later, why not wait?" Niall questioned.

"Because we can't have a dirty little pumpkin running around," Louis cooed as he pinched Niall's cheek, earning a whine from the boy who tried getting away from them.

It was Liam's turn to give Niall a bath that night and he let the child play in the tub for a bit as music played from his phone and Niall hummed along to some he recognized. After that, Niall begged to sleep in one of Louis' t-shirts so Louis pulled one out from his drawer and handed it to Liam who put it on NIall. The shirt was long on Niall, making it look like a dress and it hung off his left shoulder with the sleeves reaching past his elbows. He giggled and ran into the living room to show off to the others who cooed at him.

"Oh you look so adorable, love!" Louis all but squealed as he grabbed Niall by the hand and lead him over so the other two could see him.

"Is that mama's shirt, pumpkin?" Harry asked a blushing Niall who nodded shyly, hiding his face against Louis' side.

Liam finished walking downstairs and chuckled at the sight. Zayn had snapped a picture of Niall who had now moved over to hide into Harry who was laughing as he pulled Niall onto his lap.

"Are you sleepy, pumpkin?" Harry asked as Niall settled into his chest and yawned, rubbing his right eye with a tiny fist.

"Yeah," Niall mumbled, as he grabbed onto Harry's shirt.

"Want mama and I to put you to bed then? It's past nine and that means it's past your bedtime."

Niall only nodded and clung tighter to Harry as the long haired lad stood up and so did Louis.

"Say night night to the others, pumpkin," Louis told Niall.

"Night night, Li and Zaynie. Love you," Niall mumbled as he waved at the two who smiled fondly at him.

"Night babes, love you too," Zayn responded first.

"Night kiddo," Liam said and with that, Harry and Louis took Niall upstairs to tuck him in.

Louis undid the bed while Harry rocked Niall and kissed his head gently a few times, thinking that maybe this was the last time he'd be able to hold Niall like this. Louis and Harry locked eyes and smiled at each other before Harry brings Niall to the bed and sets him down.

"Alright pumpkin, have a goodnight and you know where we are if you need us," Harry told Niall as he covered the child with the blankets and placed his Olaf and penguin close by.

"We love you," Louis mumbled as he pressed a kiss to Niall's cheek. "Sleep tight."

"Night," Niall mumbled as he gave them a tired smile, fighting hard to stay awake but he was so tired.

Louis turned on Niall's nightlight and the two just stood at the doorway a little longer before leaving. Harry closed the door quietly and they headed back downstairs where Zayn and Liam had settled on watching a late night show.

"Everything good?" Liam asked.

"Yeah," Louis whispered with a smile.

~December 5, 2015~

Louis is roused from his dream by a sudden shift in the bed and a quiet giggle. He can hear Harry whine and shift so Louis has to assume it's Niall who's waking them up.

"Go away," Louis mumbled, eyes still shut as he tried finding another comfortable position.

"You two better not be naked under the sheets," Niall warned them, but his voice wasn't childlike anymore. It was the old Nialler with a thick Irish accent. The one who you couldn't sometimes understand what the hell he was saying and that made Louis' eyes snap open only to come face to face with a twenty two year old Niall.

"Holy shit," Louis mumbled as he shook Harry awake. "It worked. It really fucking worked." Louis said as he took in Niall who was wearing the shirt he'd gone to sleep in last night and some gray sweatpants. Louis lunged himself at Niall and wrapped his arms around his shoulders and buried his face into Niall's neck.

"Jesus," Niall huffed out, but wrapped his arms around Louis nonetheless and giggled as Louis mumbled incoherent words under his breath.

"What's goin' on?" Harry mumbled tiredly as he sat up, his eyes widening as he saw their old Nialler. "It worked?"

Niall nodded as he looked at Harry shyly, Louis still holding onto him and he can hear the older man sniffling. Harry smiled and wrapped his arms around the two, pulling them close and pressing a kiss to Niall's temple.

"Lou, you're gonna suffocate the poor lad," Harry told his boyfriend as he pulled back but Louis was refusing to let go of Niall who looked a bit worried about Louis.

"I'm just- I'm sorry," Louis chuckled wetly as he pulled away from Niall with his cheeks wet and eyes rimmed red. He cupped Niall's face in his hands. "I'm so happy you're back, just, this makes me a little emotional."

"Understandable, but you're like those annoying embarrassing parents," Niall told Louis who huffed and pouted, crossing his arms across his chest.

"Keep it up and I won't be your mom again when you get your ass in trouble with another witch."

"Aww, I'm sorry mom," Niall joked with a giggle and Harry chuckled as he watched Louis gasp and blush before tackling Niall to the bed and the two began to wrestle.

"Alright boys, don't hurt yourselves. Pumpkin, go get ready so we can go eat breakfast."

"Harry," Niall whined with a bright red blush on his face while Louis snickered and kissed his cheek.

"Go before your Zaynie gets here," Louis teased Niall who only kept whining and his blushed deepened before he shoved Louis off and ran from the room. "The teasing only gets easier."

"Don't meddle, let them work on their stuff on their own time. Niall's just gotten back to normal and we still have to wait and see if there will be any side effects," Harry warned Louis who mocked being hurt.

"I won't meddle. When have I ever done that? Besides, I'm not gonna let my baby rush into anything he's not ready for."

Harry rolled his eyes but laughed, pulling his boyfriend into his arms and kissing him.

"Definitely feels weird without a child running around and yelling for us every five minutes," Louis sighed as he sat on the bed looking out into the hall where usually by now they'd have little Niall running towards them begging them for food and jumping on the bed until he got what he wanted. "Gonna take a little getting used to this again."

"I know, but like I said from the start, it was great practice for when we decide to have our own kids in the future. Gonna fill up the house with them."

Louis smiled at Harry and stood up, stretching as he did so and beginning to look for clean clothes. Harry headed into the bathroom first, smiling as he heard Niall moving around and let out a small yelp and curse as he probably stepped on a toy. Which reminds them that they're gonna have to find what to do with those toys and clothes they bought Niall during the last six months and all the other child things in the house like Niall's cups, kids shampoo and the kids towel they had. It'll be hard to get rid of certain things, but they have to let that go.

"Ni, want pancakes love?" Louis asks as he pokes his head into Niall's room, finding the Irish lad picking up the scattered toys from around the room with a frown.

"Yeah, sounds nice," Niall mumbled. "Why did you guys have to buy me so much shit?"

"Hey, language," Louis scolds him out of habit and Niall blushes before the two burst out into laughter. "Guess we wanted to spoil you, angel."

"Lou, stop!" Niall whined, having to stop himself from calling his best friend mama. That would be awkward.

"So he's back?" Liam asked Harry through the phone.

"Yeah and he seems okay right now, so we gotta wait and see if there will be any side effects," Harry said as he pulled out the pancake stuff. "Are you and Zayn coming over?"

"Don't know, Zayn's acting a bit weird."

"I don't want him hurting Niall or bringing his hopes up so he needs to get his shit together."

"Don't worry."

Louis and Niall walked in laughing about something and Harry smiled over at the two. Everything would be just fine.

Chapter Text

~December 6, 2015~

It was decided that Niall would be staying with Harry and Louis, well Louis insisted that Niall stay with them, until the Irish lad decided he felt ready to be on his own again. Niall told them that he would only be staying until he left for Ireland to spend the Holidays with his family and once he was back he would be heading back to his own place. So now the child clothes filling the drawers had been replaced with some of Niall's old clothes and the toys had been put away in the closet in a box, but the bears remained in their place. And when Louis had checked in on Niall that morning, he smiled when he saw Niall hugging his Olaf. Niall was still a kid on the inside and Louis hoped that wouldn't change anytime soon.

"Is he still sleeping?" Harry asked as Louis walked back into their room and shut the door.

"Yeah," Louis said fondly as he settled back under the sheets and curled up into Harry's side. "We should start getting the Christmas tree up and all the other decorations."

"Yeah, we should. You know a small part of me hoped we'd be celebrating Christmas with little Nialler. Would have been a unique experience," said Harry as he pressed his lips to Louis' head.

"Yeah I'd thought about it as well, but now he's back and we've gotta get back to work soon. Just one more year of this, Haz."

Awhile later they heard Niall moving around and the couple greeted him in the hall. Niall smiled tiredly at them and attached himself to Louis' side as they headed downstairs.

"You alright, love?" Louis asked as he rubbed Niall's back.

"I'm tired and I've got an ache all over," Niall mumbled.

"That's normal, Gia said you'd feel like that for a few days. And if you start to feel sick or anything else that you think isn't normal, tell us," Harry told Niall who rolled his eyes.

"Yes dad."

Louis snickered as Harry made a face at Niall who giggled into Louis' shoulder. After breakfast, Niall headed upstairs and Louis sighed sadly because Niall hadn't talked much during breakfast and he seemed down. Harry had simply told Louis to give him a bit of space and that's what Louis did, but he was itching to go upstairs and comfort his boy. But he gave Niall his space, of about half an hour before he headed up the stairs and found Niall sitting over by his giant teddy curled up into it while hugging his penguin and Olaf. Louis smiled and went over to sit next to him.

"What's up, angel?" Louis asked as he rubbed Niall's arm softly.

"Why hasn't Zayn called or come to see me? Does he really not love me anymore?" Niall asked Louis brokenly, looking at the older male with teary blue eyes.

"Just like this whole thing wasn't easy for you, I'm sure it isn't easy with him. He probably thinks that you won't want him around now that you're our big Niall again. Or maybe he just wants to give you some space to get used to being big again. I'm sure he'll be over soon and why aren't you mad at Liam as well?" Louis questioned the Irish lad with a soft chuckle.

"He's Liam, I can never be mad at him and besides, he called pa- Harry yesterday." Niall shrugged, sitting up properly and letting Louis pull him into his arms. "Thank you for everything that you and Haz did, you didn't have to take me in like that."

"And you can bet your ass I'd do it again and again, because I love you Neil and we're family," spoke Louis softly as he held Niall to his chest and pressed a kiss to the top of his head.

"Hey, why are you cuddling without me?" Harry pouted from the doorway and Niall giggled as he looked up at his younger friend who quickly crossed the room and tackled them to the ground.

"Harry!" Louis screamed and Niall laughed as he was trapped under both Louis and Harry. Niall laughed as he rolled around with his best friends and band mates, but a small part of him wished he could be small again.

Niall was in the living room later that day, Harry was off doing who knows what and Louis was upstairs talking to his sisters. The Irish lad was watching TV while letting his phone charge when the doorbell goes off. He groans and gets up from his very comfortable spot on the couch and heads over to open the door.

"Liam!" Niall greeted and jumped on his slightly older friend who laughed and spun him around.

"You have no idea how much I've missed you, Nialler," Liam said as he set Niall back down on his two feet and buried his face into his neck. "How are you doing? Feeling okay?"

"I'm fine, just a bit tired and my body aches like when you're about to get the flu or something," Niall said as they pulled away and moved to sit in the living room.

"Hey Payno," Louis greets as he walks into the room with a smile. "Came to see our little pumpkin?"

"Louis," Niall whined, cheeks turning red and earning a chuckle from both Louis and Liam.

"It's so easy teasing you love," Louis said as he pinched Niall's cheek and sat on Niall's other side, letting the Irish lad curl up into his side right away. Niall was definitely being clingy, but not that Louis minded, he really missed having little Niall around. "How's Soph?"

"Doing great and sends her love," Liam said, watching Niall close his eyes and let Louis play with his hair. Niall really did still have some childish traits left. "Where's H?"

"Off at a meeting," Louis replied. "Love, weren't you gonna go call your family? You should do that before you fall asleep."

"Oh yeah," Niall giggled and grabbed his phone before heading upstairs.

"Have you talked to Zayn?" Louis asks Liam once he's sure Niall is out of ear shot.

"Yeah, said he wanted to give Niall some space before coming over."

"Well he should have said something because Niall's been upset all day because Zayn hasn't come to see him. I told him that maybe Zayn wanted to give him space or something, but it's still bothering him. I just don't want Zayn to keep hurting my boy, Liam. He's been through a lot already." Louis sighed running a hand through his hair and Liam hummed in agreement.

"How's Niall been? No side effects?" Liam asked, wanting to change topics in case Niall decided to come downstairs again.

"He's been clingy, looks a bit lost. Sometimes he stops himself from saying mama or papa, but otherwise he's been pretty normal so far."

Niall's in his room dialing his mom's number as he sits on his bed with Olaf and his penguin. It rings three times before Maura answers it and Niall smiles at the his mom's voice.

"Hi ma, how are you?" Niall asks her.

"Oh sweetie, you're back! And I'm doing fine, but the more important question is how are you?" Maura asked her son in a worried tone.

"I'm, a bit lost I guess. I mean, Lou and Haz took care of me for six months and now suddenly I'm back to being me. Like, it feels weird being this old again when just a few days ago I was calling them mom and dad."

Maura chuckled on the other line and said, "It'll take some getting used to again, but now tell me, are you coming by to see us soon?"

"Yeah, I'll be up there for the holidays, just that I need to stay here in case there are any side effects from the thing," Niall explained to her. "That and Louis won't let me go anytime soon."

Maura laughed at the that and the two talked for awhile longer until Niall hung up and curled up on his bed, falling asleep shortly after.

~December 8, 2015~

Niall woke up half an hour ago, but hasn't moved from his bed for fear of upsetting his stomach further. He'd woken up this morning feeling slightly nauseous and even though he felt hungry, the thought of food made him feel even more sick.

"Nialler?" Harry asked as he opened the door, frowning when he saw the Irish lad wide awake but curled up in bed looking slightly more pale than normal. "You alright?"

"Feel sick," Niall mumbled, feeling the bed dip as Harry sat next to him and stroked his hair.

"Wanna try eating something? I can make you something that won't be too heavy on your stomach," said Harry as he looked up when he saw Louis walk into the room.

"Is my boy sick?" Louis coos as he kneels in front of Niall. "Do you need a bucket? Medicine? Anything?"

"No, just wanna sleep for a bit more, hopefully I can feel a little better afterwards."

"Alright love, we'll be downstairs or just text us if you need anything."

Niall sleeps for about two more hours before he wakes up and concludes that he feels slightly better. He takes a shower and then heads downstairs where Louis is sitting at the kitchen table staring out the window with his lyric journal open and pen tapping his chin.

"Hey," Niall greets him, giggling as Louis jumps.

"Hey, feeling better?" He asks and the Irish lad nods as he sits next to Louis.

"Yeah. What are you up to?"

"Writing. Gotta start working on our new record." Louis smiled at Niall who nodded as he too stared out the window as he seemed to be in thought. "Want something to eat?"

"Please?" Niall pouted at Louis who laughed and got up to make him something.

Later that day, Niall was up in his room just playing on his phone when there's a knock on the door and he looks up, gasping quietly when he sees Zayn standing there looking rather nervous.

"Can I come in?" Zayn asked Niall as he stood at the doorway of Niall's room.

"Yeah, come in," Niall told Zayn with a smile, exiting his game and turning off his phone before setting it on the nightstand.

Niall moved over on the bed to make room for Zayn who sat next to him. They were quiet for a bit and Niall let out a long sigh, playing with his Olaf who was resting on his lap. He might be back to his regular self, but he still loved them a lot and found it a bit hard to sleep without Olaf now.

"I'm not dating Gigi, I hope you know," Zayn said out of nowhere and Niall giggled but frowned right after. He giggles a lot and finds it kind of annoying, but at the same time cherishes it because it's a reminder of when he was happier and stress free.

"You don't have to explain it to me, Zaynie. I mean Zayn," Niall blushed and Zayn chuckled at the Irish lad. "Besides, not like I actually knew about a possible thing between you and her. I'm still not up to date on the pop culture that I missed these last six months."

"I know but still. And I want to apologize for everything I did and said when I left. I never wanted to hurt you. That was never my intention," Zayn explained gently, looking over at Niall who was staring down at his lap with a concentrated look on his face.

"I'm not one to hold grudges, you know that and I forgave you shortly after you walked out on all of us. I knew you weren't completely in for this whole thing and we kind of knew it was only a matter of time before you left since you didn't seem to be completely there when we started FOUR. I also knew that in order to find who you really are, you needed to let go of whatever tied you down to your past even if that meant me."

"It shouldn't have meant you because I'd promised you a forever. I still love you Niall and-"

"I love you too because no matter how much you might have hurt me, you still mean everything to me and you always will," Niall told Zayn gently with a soft smile and a blush on his cheeks. Zayn leaned over and pressed a kiss to the corner of Niall's mouth.

"I love you, babes."

Niall giggled and cuddled into Zayn, sighing happily as he was wrapped in his arms.

"Can we work on us? We'll go at your pace, yeah?" Zayn told Niall who nodded.

"I'd like that a lot." Niall smiled, looking up at Zayn and pecking his lips a bit shyly. Zayn's smile grew larger as the two stared into each other's eyes before Niall broke contact and buried his face into his Zayn's chest. They were both happy to be back where they belonged and Niall no longer felt missing. He no longer felt like he was half a heart without Zayn. "I hope you know we're starting over and it'll be just like when you first asked me out all those years ago."

"I know and once you're up for it, I'd like to take you out somewhere special."

"That sounds nice and thank you for giving me my time. This whole going back to being an adult after being a child thing has me feeling all different sorts of things."

"And I also want to apologize for the whole Perrie thing. If I hadn't given her hope between us, then none of this crazy stuff would have happened," Zayn sighed.

"You don't have to apologize for that, she's always been crazy, but somehow I was the only one who was able to see through her act."

Niall and Zayn talked for almost an hour until Louis walked in. Zayn was just catching Niall up on what had happened in pop culture and how, surprisingly, Taylor was still dating Calvin Harris. Louis smiled at the two and sat on Niall's other side so the Irish lad was in the middle. As soon as Louis was settled however, Niall shifted over to curl up into Louis which left Zayn pouting.

"I'll always be his favorite, Zayn, don't pout," Louis said as he wrapped his arms around Niall who giggled. "So things are okay, boys? I don't need to beat anyone up?"

"We're fine, Lou," Niall said as he looked at Zayn and smiled at the Bradford lad who smiled back.

"Everything's perfect, or about to be anyways."

"Good."

~December 12, 2015~

"Louis, I don't know what to wear!" Niall whined as he searched through his clothes and Louis sighed as he shoved Niall away gently to search for the younger lad.

"Well, where is he taking you? Cause it has to depend where you're going? What if he wants to take you somewhere fancy but instead you're dressed like you're going to a footie match," Louis told Niall who sighed and pouted.

"Well he said to not dress too fancy, but not too casual either so something in between, but comfortable."

"Okay. Hmm, let's take a look then." Louis hummed as he searched through Niall's clothes. "Here, put this on."

Niall took the black skinny jeans, without holes, and a white button up. Louis walked out to give Niall some privacy to change and stood out in the hall, jumping when the doorbell went off and only hoped Harry wouldn't go all overprotective dad mode.

"Neil, your date is here, so hurry up lad," Louis said as he walked back into the room just as Niall had taken off his sweatpants, making the Irish lad yelp and cover himself. "Oh please, it's nothing I haven't seen before. I used to give you baths."

"But, I was just a little kid then," Niall mumbled in embarrassment as he pulled up his jeans and buttoned them up.

Louis left Niall shortly after and headed downstairs to save Zayn from Harry's interrogation.

"Alright, babe, leave the poor lad alone. Zayn, don't listen to Harold, but do watch over my boy and if you hurt him, I will beat your ass," Louis smiled at Zayn who nodded with wide eyes.

"Understood."

Niall walked downstairs five minutes later with his hair hidden underneath a beanie that Louis recognized as his own. Zayn smiled over at Niall who blushed and quickly went over to him.

"Ready to go, babes?" Zayn asked Niall who nodded and grabbed his coat from Harry.

"Come here," Louis instructed Niall who blushed and went over to him a little reluctantly. "Take care of yourself, be good and if he's mean tell us so Haz can beat him up," Louis told Niall as he helped him put on his coat and zip it up.

"Louis," Niall whined, looking over at Harry for help but his younger friend only agreed with his boyfriend. "Guys, stop! You're just as embarrassing as any parents."

"Well technically we kind of are, pumpkin," Harry told Niall with a smirk as the Irish lad blushed more and whined while Zayn laughed at their interaction. "Okay, jokes aside, go have fun, but not too much. If you do, make sure you use a condom."

"Okay, I'm leaving. Zayn, let's go," Niall said as he pulled away from a laughing Harry and Louis and went over to grab Zayn's hand, pulling him out the door. "So where are we going?"

"Do you remember our first date?" Zayn asked as he opened the passenger seat for Niall.

"Yeah, of course I do." Niall smiled.

"Then there's your answer, babes."

~

"I'm worried about him," Louis sighed as he snuggled up to Harry on the couch.

"He'll be fine, love. Zayn is really trying and he's not going to mess this up," Harry assured Louis.

"I know, but Niall was literally just a kid a few days ago and I worry about him."

Harry laughed and kissed the top of Louis' head.

"Well since we have the house to ourselves, why don't we do something?"

"What are you suggesting, Mr Styles?" Louis asked as he sat up to look at his boyfriend whose green eyes were darker than usual.

"Well we've got a Jacuzzi that we have yet to use together."

"I'll go set it up. You find that wine bottle you brought last week and maybe some snacks, I'm getting kinda hungry," Louis told Harry and pressed a chaste kiss to his lips before running upstairs.

Harry shook his head fondly and headed off to find the bottle of wine and grab some snacks.

~

Their first date way back when had been a picnic at night under a full moon and a sky full of stars, back before they were truly well known. Now their first date was a picnic but in Zayn's backyard which really shouldn't work because of the cold weather, but there's a fire pit nearby that keeps them warm enough. There's a large blanket spread out on the grass with pillows to sit on, a basket sitting in the middle with two champagne glasses and a bottle stuffed in ice. String lights are hanging all throughout the yard to give it a soft romantic glow without the harsh glare of a light bulb and more blankets folded nearby with a bouquet of about a dozen red and white roses resting on a pillow.

"So you know that going out is a little difficult, but I hope you like this," Zayn spoke nervously as he lead Niall out into the yard.

"This is beautiful, Zee. It's so sweet, thank you," Niall said as he kissed Zayn's cheek.

"Come on."

The two sat on the pillows and spread blankets over their laps as Zayn opened the bottle and poured the drink in the glasses. Zayn had ordered pizzas, so as soon as they'd arrived, the pizza man delivered their food and so now they were eating their food and talking about random stuff. Zayn was updating Niall on his upcoming solo album and how they planned to release his debut single next month and Niall was genuinely happy and proud for the man he's always loved and always will love.

"So what's with the whole you and Gigi thing then?" Niall questioned, wiping his mouth with a napkin after getting sauce everywhere.

"It's for PR and promo. Since she's going to be in my music video, management wants people to think that we're dating to generate buzz and neither of us are allowed to confirm nor deny anything until after the video. And um, I talked to my management yesterday about the possibility of me coming out next year," Zayn said nervously as he set his pizza down and looked at Niall who looked quite shocked.

"Y-You don't have to do that just to prove something to me, Zayn. I know you've always been scared to think of how the fans are going to react," Niall told Zayn carefully, not wanting to hurt the older man's feelings.

"But I want to because I'm tired of not being able to be who I am. And I don't want to get stuck in another fake relationship for years and be engaged again and fool everyone like that. It's not fair to me, or the fans and it most certainly wasn't fair to Perrie."

"I'm very proud that you've gotten the courage to do that. You know I've wanted to for years, but Modest just won't let me, but hopefully I'll be able to do that next year."

After eating, they laid down on the blankets and snuggled up to each other as Zayn put music on his phone and Niall gasped as he recognized the songs.

"Y-You still have our playlist?" Niall asked him, feeling emotional at the thought that Zayn had kept the playlist of songs that meant the most to them.

"Yeah and I listened to it almost everyday after we broke up because I knew I'd made a mistake but couldn't man up enough to admit it," Zayn whispered as he turned on his side to better look at Niall and stroked his cheek with a gloved hand. "How could I let someone as beautiful as you go?"

Niall let his eyes flicker down to Zayn's lips before looking back up into his soft eyes. By the time Here With Me by The Killers came on, Niall was practically on top of Zayn as they made out softly and passionately. They didn't want to rush into things, but truth was, they'd missed each other like crazy and in a way couldn't believe that they were together again. Zayn pulled away first when he started to need air and smiled at Niall who giggled shyly.

"Don't want your picture on my cellphone. I want you here with me," Zayn sings softly before leaning up to kiss Niall again.

~December 13, 2015~

"Niall James Horan, do you know what time it is?" Louis asked the next morning when Niall walked into the house.

"Leave him alone, Lou," Harry told his boyfriend as they both walked over to greet Niall who was hanging his jacket up on the coat closet and took off his shoes. "Niall James Horan, is that a hickey?"

"Can you stop using my full name? Jesus. Okay, we fell asleep and yeah it's a hickey, like the one on your neck Louis," Niall shot back and the older one of the three blushed while Harry smirked.

"We need details though, so come on," Louis mumbled and pulled Niall into the living room and sitting him on the couch.

Niall told them what Zayn did for their first date and how they listened to music and just laid outside and kissed quite a lot and how after they were both too cold, they headed inside and cuddled in Zayn's bed under the covers and talked for hours on end until they fell asleep and maybe kissed some more.

"Well I'm glad he's trying and that he's treating you right, pumpkin. You deserve to be happy," Harry said as he pulled Niall into his arms and kissed the top of his head.

"Thank you," Niall whispered and refrained himself from saying papa. And truth was, Niall would always view Harry and Louis as another set of parents for everything they did these last six months and he'll be eternally grateful to them for what they did. And Niall was one hundred percent positive that Harry and Louis would be the best parents ever to their kids.

Chapter Text

~December 22, 2015~

"You're leaving tomorrow, right?" Zayn asked as he held Niall as the two cuddled on his bed in Louis and Harry's house.

"Yeah and I'll miss you," Niall mumbled as he buried his face into his boyfriend's chest. They'd made it official again yesterday after their third date.

"Me too babe, but you're gonna see your family again. I'm sure they miss you a lot," mumbled Zayn as he traced small shapes onto Niall's back, pressing his lips to the top of Niall's head.

"And I miss them a lot too, but I'm also gonna miss Haz and Lou, but mostly you."

"And they're gonna miss you too, but not as much as me."

Zayn leaves shortly after and they kiss goodbye because Niall is leaving for Ireland tomorrow morning and Zayn is heading home to see his family. They say goodbye at the front door and once Zayn is gone, Niall lets out a long sad sigh.

"Why the pout, angel?" Louis asks as Niall walks into the office and sits across from him.

"Zayn left and we won't see each other until next year. I miss him already, Louis!" Niall whined as he leaned back on the chair and tapped a pen against the desk which irritated the fuck out of Louis who reached over and snatched the pen away from the Irish lad.

"I forget how annoying the honeymoon stage is, especially with you two. You'll see each other again soon. Now, is your stuff packed? I don't want you rushing around in the morning to get your stuff together," Louis warned Niall who mumbled an oops under his breath.

"I'll go do that right now."

Louis chuckled and shook his head fondly as he watched Niall head off to do something he should have done yesterday, but someone by the name of Zayn had to take him on a date.

~December 23, 2015~

Niall's been home for an hour and he already misses being with Harry and Louis. And Zayn. He sometimes feels like a stranger in what used to be his own house. He's up in his room in Maura's house while his mom is downstairs making dinner since Bobby, Greg, Denise and Theo are coming over to greet Niall. Niall was laying in bed with his Olaf whom he'd managed to pack and just thinking about Zayn.

"Hey sweetie, your dad will be here in about an hour," Maura said as she poked her head into the room, smiling at Niall.

"Alright," Niall said as he sat up, cheeks turning red as his mom's eyes landed on Olaf.

"Where'd you get that?" Maura asked as she sat on the bed and grabbed the stuffed snowman.

"Zayn gave it to me for my birthday and well, I've grown attached to it."

"That's sweet, baby. Now tell me something, how are you really? You seem to be a little lost in your head, love."

"Um, it's just, I don't really wanna tell Bobby right now, but uh, Zayn and I are back together. We're taking things slow, and he's letting it go at my pace, but I really love him mom and I really really want this to work. I'm just worried how Greg and da will react," Niall said as he looked at his mom and took his Olaf back because it currently had Zayn's scent and Niall didn't want it to wear off so soon.

"Well you know your brother and father are only trying to look out for you, and so am I, but if you say that you're happy, then I'm happy knowing you are. I'll convince your father and Greg once you tell them and get them off your back and Zayn's."

"Thanks ma." Niall smiles at Maura who kisses his cheek before walking away.

Zayn calls Niall about half an hour later and Niall answers his phone quickly.

"Hi babes, how's everything back home?" Zayn asks and Niall settles back on his bed.

"It's great, but I miss you a lot," Niall tells his boyfriend with a pout that Zayn can just imagine and wishes he could kiss it off of the boy.

"I miss you too, Ni, but I promise these days will just fly by and I'll see you again soon."

They talk until the doorbell goes off and Niall has to say goodbye to his boyfriend before heading downstairs to greet his family.

"Thought you were gonna be a kid forever, little bro," Greg says as he hugs Niall briefly.

"Would have certainly been better," Niall mumbles under his breath and then moves over to greet Theo who smiles wide and refuses to let go of his uncle until they sit down to eat dinner.

Dinner is slightly tense. Things between Niall and Greg have been a little tense lately and it's certainly bound to get worse when Niall tells his dad and brother about him getting back together with Zayn.

"So what's new with ye lad?" Bobby asks.

"Um," Niall gulps and looks over at his mom who smiles encouragingly at him. "Zayn and I are back together."

Everything falls dead silent at that, even Theo looks up at the mention of Zayn. Niall focuses on his food with his left leg shaking in anxiety as he waits for someone to say something.

"Well I for one, am happy for you Niall, you two really made a cute couple," Denise says and Niall looks up to smile at her.

"Thank you, Denise," Niall tells her sincerely.

"I don't approve," Bobby says sternly and it makes Niall's heart drop down to his stomach even though he had already seen it coming.

"Neither do I and I never have and never will," Greg told Niall and Niall looked up to glare at his brother. "I don't know why you insist on going back to that asshole."

"Greg," Denise hissed, motioning down to Theo who was oblivious to the tension in the room.

"I insist because I love him and I'm sorry you can't be happy for me. And Bobby, I didn't expect you to approve because of what happened, but if I managed to put that behind me then I hope you can someday do so as well. Just know that I really love him and he's not going anywhere." With that, Niall stood up and left the dinner table, heading upstairs to his room and closing the door.

Niall grabbed his phone and dialed Louis' number, hoping he wasn't interrupting something, but he just really wanted to talk to someone.

"Hey angel, what's up?" Louis answers cheerfully, but hears Niall sniffle and grows worried quickly. "Niall, what's wrong, love?"

"I-I told my family about me and Zayn and d-dad and Greg can't accept it. I-I j-just wanna go home," Niall whimpers into the phone as tears roll down his cheeks. "I feel like a stranger in my own home."

"Oh Nialler, if you want I can find you a plane ticket so you can come home and spend the holidays with us instead," Louis says, but then Harry's voice comes through the line and says, "Pumpkin, I know you're upset right now, but maybe they'll come around. You're on speaker by the way, so hi."

"D-Doubt it. Greg said he'd never accept it and Bobby just doesn't want to even hear Zayn's name. And I get that he's looking out for me, but he has to trust me with this. I wanna be happy and Zayn makes me so happy, but he's just refusing to see that."

"I'm sure he will, because he's your dad and eventually he's going to see how much Zayn means to you. And Greg, well maybe just talk to him-"

"No, I can't do that. We haven't been seeing eye to eye lately and I don't want to risk making things worse," Niall said sadly and he heard both Louis and Harry mumble something to each other.

"Alright love, just try being there with your family. You just got there, but if you really wanna come back, just tell us, okay?" Louis told Niall. "In the meantime we're here whenever you need to talk."

"Okay," Niall said in a small voice and hung up shortly after.

Maura walked in shortly after and Theo was giggling downstairs. Niall was hugging Olaf to his chest and inhaling Zayn's sweet scent and his mom sat in front of him.

"Sweetheart, you know they both love you and only want the best for you, but I'm sure they're going to come around sometime soon. After what happened the first time, Bobby's just being an overprotective dad and Greg, well I don't really understand what the problem between the two of you is but I hope you can solve it soon. You're brothers and as your mother it pains me to see you two so distant from each other," Maura spoke softly as she brushed back her son's brown hair.

"Well we've never really been that close and I've always envied the other lads for that, especially Louis. It's just, I love Zayn and I love my dad and brother, I don't think I could ever be able to handle there being a rift between my family and I."

"I know baby, but I promise it's only a matter of time before they see how truly happy you are with Zayn. Now why don't you rest, I'm sure you're tired from the flight and after today's events. I'll excuse you from them."

"Thanks."

Maura left and Niall decided to call it an early night. He sent a quick goodnight text to Zayn and settled under the covers.

~December 24, 2015~

When Niall woke up, the first thing he did was send Louis a happy birthday text and get ready for the day. He took a shower and got dressed before heading downstairs where his mom was making him breakfast.

"Any plans for today, sweetie?" Maura asked Niall.

"Yeah, gonna head out with some of me mates for a bit, haven't seen them in ages. Maybe go walk around town for a bit," explained Niall and Maura nodded.

"Dinner's at Bobby's tomorrow," said Maura and she shot her son an apologetic look.

"It's fine, I can be civil, don't know if da and Greg can."

After breakfast Niall met up with some friends and he did some last minute Christmas shopping, only for his mom, Theo and Denise. He found no point getting Bobby and Greg anything since they weren't on speaking terms and he was sure tomorrow's dinner would only be awkward. Niall was out all day getting caught up with his old friends and eventually headed home for dinner though his mom was out and he just heated up some leftovers from last night and ate it in front of the TV with a beer and watching some Christmas movie. His phone goes off and he smiles when he see its Zayn.

"Hi Zaynie," Niall greets him, setting his empty dish and bottle on the coffee table as he settles back on the couch with a smile.

"Hi love, how are you? Couldn't call you yesterday to ask how dinner went," Zayn said.

"Well Bobby isn't too fond of you which was to be expected and Greg is flat out refusing to even accept us at some point. Mom and Denise are happy, even little Theo, but gosh Zayn, I've never felt so lost. I don't feel comfortable being here knowing that my own brother and father are ignoring the fact that I'm happy with you. I just wanna go back home and be with you," Niall told Zayn.

"Oh babes, if you wanna come back early just do so. I know Maura won't mind and I'll be here for you. I'll always be here for you, baby because I love you so much and I only want what's best for you. I only want you to be happy."

"I love you too, Zayn, so so much and I can't wait to see you again."

"Me neither. It's up to you though what you want to do."

"Yeah, I'm having dinner at Bobby's tomorrow and we'll see what happens. If all goes wrong expect me back home before New Year's."

~December 27, 2015~

Christmas dinner was a total disaster. Niall got in a heated argument with Greg which resulted in both saying some things that Niall later regretted and then Niall went off on Bobby just saying how much of a great person Zayn is and Bobby saying he didn't approve because he broke Niall's heart over nine months ago. So now Niall was on his way back home to Zayn after saying goodbye to his mother and apologizing to her for ruining Christmas. She simply said she understood and said it was fine and wished her son a safe trip. Niall knows his dad is just being stubborn and he'll eventually come around, but when he does, Niall will be with his boyfriend.

"Zayn?" Niall called out as he entered his house for the first time since they went off on tour. Zayn's car was parked in the driveway and despite the place being abandoned for nearly a year, it was spotless.

"Hey, babes," Zayn greeted Niall as he walked out of the kitchen and pulled Niall into a kiss. "I've missed you so much."

"Me too and it's so great to be home," Niall sighed as he relaxed in his boyfriend's arms.

"You dyed your hair back to blonde." Zayn chuckled as he ran his fingers through Niall's bleached strands.

"Yeah, grew bored yesterday so I ended up going back to blonde. It's not ugly, right?"

"Of course not love, you look beautiful either way. Though I know Louis will be getting a heart attack when he sees you. I invited the lads over for dinner today, hope you don't mind. Want to get your mind off of things and we haven't hung out all together since you got changed back."

"It's fine and thank you."

Zayn only smiled and hugged Niall closer to him, running his fingers through the bleached strands.

~

"Neil, what'd you do to your hair?" Louis exclaimed with wide eyes as soon as Niall opened the door to greet the three lads.

"Not like I haven't ever done it before," Niall grumbled and instead hugged Harry and Liam but completely stepped out of Louis' reach.

"Ugh, I know that lad, but you were all natural and now we gotta get used to you with blonde hair again and having you dye it over and over again. What's wrong with you?"

"Ignore him. How are you feeling? You doing good?" Harry asked worriedly as he cupped Niall's face in his hands and looked him in the eye knowing very well Niall couldn't lie. Well he just doesn't know how, poor lad gives himself away right away.

"I'll be fine, I'm back home with my family," Niall told Harry with a smile and let the taller lad pull him into a hug again. "Love you, Hazza."

"Love you too, pumpkin."

They sit around and eat dinner and joke around just like old times and suddenly everything feels okay. Niall is happy being in his boyfriend's arms surrounded by his three best mates having the time of his life.

"I love you," Zayn whispered in his ear.

"I love you too," Niall smiled up at Zayn, pressing a chaste kiss to his lips and earning groans from the other three which make Zayn and Niall laugh because it really is like old times.

"Don't start being all cute and sappy again," Louis complains even though he's tucked into Harry's side on the other couch.

"Oh please, at least you're not a fifth wheel," Liam grumbles but all the boys know he's being playful about it.

"I have an idea! Why don't we share embarrassing stories of little Niall!" Louis says and they all agree but Niall doesn't.

"How about let's not," Niall chuckled nervously. He doesn't remember much from when he was little, just the last three weeks and he knows he probably did a lot of embarrassing shit.

"You know you actually wet the bed quite a few times. It was worrying then, but now it's just funny," Louis giggles and Niall's whole face feels like it's on fire and he just knows it's about to stay that way for the rest of the night.

"And you dressed up as Olaf for your birthday and Phoebe as Elsa and Daisy as Anna. You were way too obsessed with that movie," Liam recalled with a chuckle and Zayn laughed which now Niall understood why he had an Olaf stuffie.

"Or the most recent one when the twins put makeup on you," Harry smirked.

"Stop! Please! I've seen enough pictures floating around on social media thanks to Lottie and the twins for putting stuff on Snapchat, I don't need more reminders," Niall groaned, burying his face into Zayn's neck.

Of course they didn't stop and kept telling him stories and how it was so obvious how much he was crushing on Zayn as a kid it was cute and funny. Niall just knows that the next time he runs into a witch, he's gonna ask for a potion to turn them into kids and see how they like it when Niall tells them their embarrassing stories. Yeah, that'll make up for some sweet revenge.

Chapter Text

~January 28, 2016~

"Congratulations on the song, Zayn, it sounds amazing," Niall tells his boyfriend over the phone as he sits on the ground and Zayn chuckles.

"Thank you babes, I'm glad you liked it. And I'm sure you're gonna like the album. You were my muse for the whole process and well you can kind of imagine where I got my inspiration for this song," Zayn explained to his boyfriend who blushed.

"Zayn! And uh, now what? With the whole you and Gigi."

"Well I did mention in an interview that we were just friends and we're going to keep saying that until the media starts dropping the dating rumors. I did talk to my management though about coming out and you wanting to do so as well and eventually confirm our relationship."

"And what'd they say?" Niall asked curiously, watching Harry, Louis and Liam walk into the room where rehearsals are held. He waves at his bandmates and motions that he's on the phone so they can keep it quiet.

"Well since the media pretty much thinks that we all hate each other despite the fact that they saw me taking care of you when you were little, they want us to start easing our friendship back into the fans. Maybe flirt a little, just get them talking and then once we're ready to tell them, it won't be much of a shock. Well it will be because I was supposedly engaged to Perrie when I was dating you, but whatever."

"I talked to management, but you know they're huge dicks but I honestly don't care anymore. Also be aware that we're releasing our first single next week, you know how competitive the label is, especially since they're so butt hurt over you leaving," Niall told Zayn as he stretches his legs and looks at his shoes.

"And I'll be here supporting you babes. and the boys of course. I gotta go, but I'll see you soon, yeah?"

"Alright. Love you."

"Love you too baby. And say hi to the lads for me."

"Will do, bye Zaynie," Niall said and hung up the phone, letting Liam pull him up onto his feet.

"Talking to your boy? Congratulating him on his sexy new song?" Louis teased Niall who whined and blushed as he shoved the older lad slightly.

"Louis stop. Just, we talked about coming out and we're gonna do it sometime this year. He's talked to his management and they're all in for this surprisingly. It's nice to have a management that isn't like ours," Niall sighed a bit sadly and Liam rubbed his back.

"Everything's gonna be fine, love," said Louis as he smiled reassuringly at Niall.

"Alright lads, let's start rehearsing!" Josh, their drummer, shouted as he entered the room with the other members of their band. "Niall, mate, glad you're not five years old anymore."

"Thanks Josh," Niall giggled at their drummer.

It's a long day of rehearsals, and they make changes to the set list they had when they started a year ago and there's a bit of an argument between Louis and Harry that makes everyone feel awkward. Niall kind of just sits there and it's like watching his own parents fight all over again and suddenly he feels five and scared. He kind of clings to Liam who seems to understand and rub his back in soft circles.

"Hey, fucking stop you two!" Liam screams as he leaves Niall's side to go stop the fight that's been going on for nearly ten minutes now. "If you're going to be arguing, go do it somewhere else, we don't need to fucking hear your shit."

"I'm sorry," Louis sighs, running a hand through his hair and offering Liam a tired smile.

"Alright, good, now you two can argue at home so let's get back to work guys!" Liam shouted at the band who gave him thumbs up and went back to their places.

"Um, where's Niall?" Harry asked as he looked around the room, trying to locate the blonde lad who was nowhere to be seen in the room.

"He was getting upset because of you two, so he probably went off to get some air or something," Liam told Louis and Harry with a glare before he went off in search of the blonde.

Niall was sitting outside leaning against the wall with his knees drawn up to his chest and head hanging between them, the way he usually sits when he's feeling on the brink of a panic attack. Liam sat next to him slowly and nudged his shoulder with his.

"You okay?" Liam asked Niall quietly.

"Yeah just, needed some air," Niall mumbled, resting his head on Liam's shoulder as they stared out in the parking lot. "You know those six months that I was a kid, I viewed Louis and Harry as like my parents and I still somewhat do. Hard not to when they're still worrying over me and calling me asking me if I'm okay or something. It's just that them fighting reminded me of my real parents shortly before they got divorced and how much they fought. I suddenly felt like a child again watching my mom and dad argue about something silly. I don't know, 'm being stupid." Niall shrugged.

"You're not being stupid. I can understand why you'd feel like that. Are you sure you're feeling okay? We can call it a day if you want, get you some rest. You're looking a little pale, like you're coming down with something."

"I'm fine Liam, it's just been awhile since we've had to work this much and I'm not used to it, I guess. Now let's get back before my moms come searching for me," Niall teased and Liam chuckled.

~February 5, 2016~

A week before they went back on tour and a week after Zayn released Pillow Talk, Drag Me Down was released causing quite the chaos among fans. And the biggest shock of them all was when Zayn tweeted Niall congratulating him on the song and the small interaction they had with each other online. The Zigi rumors were starting to die, mainly because they hadn't spotted the two together since the video came out. Rehearsals were long and tiring and Niall forgot how much he hated them.

Bobby and Niall finally talked and made up and Bobby promised to be supportive of his relationship with Zayn and that he'd talk with Greg about it. Things were starting to clear out again and Niall was finally being able to breath.

"Alright love, we gotta start packing your stuff for the tour. Don't want you forgetting anything," Louis said as he lead Niall up the stairs to his room. Of course there's still the part where Louis takes his mom roll a little too seriously, not that Niall minds. Okay maybe he does, but just a little.

"But we leave next week, can't we leave it for some other day?" Niall asked with a whine.

"No, Nialler. Last time you forgot your phone charger and quite some clothes. Now come on," Louis said as he pulled out Niall's suitcase and started pulling some clothes out of the closet. Niall sat on his bed and began to fold his clothes as Louis tossed it over.

"How are you and Zayn? Everything okay?" Louis asked as he grabbed Niall's other suitcase.

"Yeah. He should be here tomorrow to spend a few days together before we head off on tour. It's gonna be weird, going on tour without him and yeah we already did that last year, but it still feels weird."

"I get what you mean. Do you know if he's going to go on tour?"

"He wants to, but doesn't think he's ready for that. He had to cancel that TV appearance to promote his song because of his anxiety. He loves doing his own music, but he says he never liked the touring part of the promotion."

Louis nodded in understanding because as fun as it is touring, he admits that he gets tired from the constant travelling.

~February 6, 2016~

Niall was in the kitchen making himself a sandwich when the doorbell goes off and he frowns because last he heard Liam was with Sophia on a little romantic getaway and Harry was with his family and Louis with his and Zayn wasn't supposed to get here until late at night. He set his food down and wiped his hands before heading off to open the door, gasping when he saw Zayn standing there with a large grin.

"Zayn!" Niall cried and wrapped his arms around Zayn's neck. Zayn chuckled and hugged his boyfriend tightly. "Thought you wouldn't get here until tonight?"

"Well I took a flight last night, wanted to spend more time with you, babes," Zayn explained as he carried Niall inside and closed the front door before taking them to the living room. "I just couldn't wait to see you."

"Good, because I was getting antsy waiting for you. It's been nearly a month without," Niall said as he curled up into his boyfriend's side on the couch. "Though I was making myself a sandwich just before you got here so I'm gonna go finish that because I'm hungry. Want anything?"

"Yeah. You," said Zayn as he pressed his lips against Niall's.

Niall giggled into his lips and his eyes snapped open when Zayn pushed him back so he was laying flat on his back on the couch with Zayn above him, lips still pressed together. Niall relaxed again and closed his eyes as he tangled his fingers into Zayn's dark hair, tugging on it gently. Their make out was getting pretty heated, but it was interrupted by Niall's stomach grumbling and reminding him of his sandwich. They pulled away and laughed before heading off to the kitchen.

Zayn sat on the counter and watched Niall finish making his sandwich as they chatted about their days apart and their plans for the future. Zayn also mentioned that Bobby had called him and they had a nice chat about Zayn treating Niall right and not hurting him again.

"I'm just glad he's come around on us. I know how much he disliked you after our breakup, but you know dads, they're just looking out for their kids," Niall said as he sat next to Zayn and took a bite out of his sandwich.

"Speaking of dads, how are Harry and Louis? They must be missing you now that you don't live with them anymore."

"Well obviously they're not used to me not living with them if the constant nagging is anything to go by. They call me at least twice a day and ask if I'm eating alright, if I'm sleeping as much as I should and blah blah blah. Not even my mom asked that much the first time I went on tour with you lot. It gets annoying, but I'm also a bit thankful for that because I'm not used to being without them," Niall admitted with a blush as he focused on his half eaten sandwich while Zayn cooed beside him.

"I think it's sweet that you three formed a different kind of bond."

"Yeah, I just know that they're going to be great parents whenever they decide to adopt."

"And what about us? Will we be great parents?"

Niall froze and his eyes widened as he went over what Zayn asked him. Of course Niall wanted to have kids, but Zayn had never showed interest in having his own despite him having a great bond with Lux and Brooklyn.

"Y-You really wanna have kids?" Niall asked Zayn as he looked at his boyfriend, a soft smile on his face as he saw Zayn stumble over his answer.

"Well yeah, I mean, would be nice. I mean, we're getting older now and there's no doubt in me that I want to spend the rest of my life with you and I would like to have two or three kids just running around and all that," Zayn explained as he stroked Niall's cheek, staring into his beautiful blue eyes. The blue eyes he loved to dream about, the blue eyes he fell in love with once upon a time. "I mean, there's still time, we're still young anyways, but I just wanted to let you know that I want to have a family with you."

"I want a family with you too," Niall smiled and leaned in to kiss his boyfriend softly. "I want at least one girl, I've had enough of living with all men."

"Of course we'll have a little princess we can spoil. But first I wanna put a ring on it." Niall hugged Zayn and buried his face into his neck. "I love you so much, babes."

"I love you too, Zaynie."

~February 13, 2016~

They were heading off today and after a whole week together, Niall didn't want to leave Zayn's side. The tour would last nearly six months, with breaks in between of course, but it was still long and it took a toll out of them. It was early morning, not even four and all five were gathered at Niall's house. They were waiting for their ride to take them to the airport.

"I'm gonna miss you," Niall mumbled into Zayn's neck as the two stood hugging in the foyer. Niall was dressed in some navy blue sweatpants and one of Zayn's hoodies.

"I know love, me too, but you get breaks and we'll see each other soon," Zayn said into Niall's messy blonde hair, his arms around Niall's small waist as he swayed them from side to side. "Just have fun and we'll call each other often. It'll all be over before you know it, babes."

"The ride's here," Louis said, interrupting the two. "You get a few extra seconds, we'll put our stuff in the van."

"Thanks Lou," Zayn told the older lad who smiled at him. "Alright babes, this is it. You gotta get going."

"Don't wanna," Niall whined childishly and Zayn laughed because it reminded him of when Niall was little.

"Well you gotta. Have fun, break a leg," said Zayn as he pulled Niall away and placed kisses all over his face. "Call me when you get to Belgium, wanna know you lot made it okay."

"Okay," Niall sniffled as he looked at Zayn with a small smile. "Love you."

"I love you too, so much and it's only five dates right now. You'll be back in two weeks before heading off again."

"I know."

"Ni, we gotta go, pumpkin," Louis said as he entered the house again with the other two.

Zayn and Niall kissed goodbye and then Zayn hugged the other three, telling them to watch over his Nialler. Zayn stood out in the porch as he watched the van drive away and sighed sadly once it was out of sight before heading inside to try and get more sleep.

~

"I miss him," Niall mumbled as he curled up on the airplane seat as they were off to their next destination.

"I know love, but you'll see him again soon," Louis spoke in a soft tone as he brushed back Niall's blonde hair. "It's just six dates and then we go back home for three weeks and then we tour the rest of Europe before hitting North America. We get longer breaks in between so you won't have chance to miss him too much."

"I know. So when do we start working on the new record?"

"Well we get an almost two month break before heading off to North America and we have some studio time scheduled in and once we get to North America, we get more time over there. Now, why don't you get some sleep? It's really early and I'll wake you up when we get there."

Niall nodded and thanked Harry when the younger lad offered him a blanket. Within minutes, Niall was fast asleep and Louis smiled as he kissed his head before going over to sit with Liam and Harry who were talking quietly together. The perks of traveling on a private plane.

~November 11, 2016~

They released their fifth album today and have been busy with promo all month and also gearing up for their final performance as a group for now. It was all bittersweet. On one hand, Niall and Zayn would be going off on vacation for now with no worries about work or anything and on the other, Niall would really miss the hassle of everything.

Zayn had already come out two months ago and had gained quite the support from fans and other people who weren't, but of course there were some who just didn't like that idea of their idol being bi. Niall would be coming out once the hiatus started since his contract with anything that tied him down with these assholes ended soon. Louis and Harry also planned on coming out next year, but they liked being private and wanted to keep it that way for a bit longer.

"So what are your plans once the break starts?" Liam asked the group of his friends as they lounged around in some hotel in New York. They would be doing a few interviews during the week and played Jimmy Fallon on Thursday.

"We're going on a long vacation," Zayn answered as he looked at Niall with love filled eyes that made them all roll their eyes but Niall give him the same look. "But first we're heading off somewhere on our anniversary and then we're visiting our families during the holidays before heading off in January."

"Well that sounds exciting," Louis smiles. "Well I for one am spending more time with my family."

"I go anywhere Lou goes, but same," Harry replied with a shrug, feet thrown over his boyfriend's lap.

"Lame. Sophia and I are heading off on vacation for a bit as well and I plan on proposing to her," Liam admitted with a blush.

"What? No way!" Niall exclaimed excitedly.

"Bout time, Payno," Louis said.

"Can you all believe this? Payno's getting engaged, Ni and I are planning our future, Lou and Haz are doing their own things. We're all grown up now. Six years ago we sat just like this in the X-Factor house just wondering if we'd even make it and now you lot are going into early retirement," Zayn teased and they all laughed.

"How fast the night changes," Niall mumbled as he leaned into Zayn's side.

"Funny indeed. A year ago our precious Neil was six and giving us headaches," Louis said as he looked at Niall who blushed. "Though we do gotta thank you because if it wouldn't have been for that, who knows where Harry and I would be right now."

"At least me turning into a kid still amuses you, idiots."

"But you were cute," Zayn says as he kisses the top of Niall's head. "I just hope our kid is as cute as you."

Niall tensed in Zayn's arms and looked at his boyfriend who mumbled a small shit, but the others seemed to have either ignored the comment or not give it too much importance. They were all talking about one thing or another. The truth is, Niall and Zayn had met up with a surrogate not long ago and are waiting for when she calls them saying she's pregnant. And the others don't know only Niall, but Louis and Harry had started the adoption process about two weeks ago and they know it can be long, but they're excited to be expanding their little family.

~December 11, 2016~

This was it. They were playing their final show in the place that created them. Of course they had this goodbye of some sorts planned for a year ago, but it's okay either way. They had their nice six month break running after a cute five year old Niall and now they were back to work, but playing their final show for a bit.

Zayn was there for support, lucky that fans and the audience haven't spotted him yet. He watches the four get ready and rush around nervously before they get in their huddle and say their usual pep talk before they are ushered out onto the stage. Zayn watches them give their heart to the entire performance with a proud smile on his face. He catches Niall's gaze once and he blows him a kiss to which Niall smiles and focuses back on the large audience cheering them on.

After their performance comes an emotional video that makes Zayn tear up a bit because even though he left the band over a year ago, he spent his most memorable time with those four boys. He can see them wiping a tear every now and then and at the end the whole room bursts into loud cheering and they give one final bow before leaving.

"We did it!" Niall cheers as he jumps into Zayn's arms.

"You guys were amazing," Zayn says as he holds Niall up and pecks his lips.

"Thanks Zee," Liam smiles and they all walk back to their dressing room.

"Well, this is it lads," Louis says as they all stand around. "Last time we do this together for who knows how long. Don't forget to visit and you two better at least check in every now and then. Don't disappear for too long," he said as he pointed at Zayn and Niall who chuckled.

"We'll check in with you at least once a week, how about that," Niall told Louis who nodded.

"Good."

After some hugs, they all headed their separate ways and Niall and Zayn headed home for some celebratory fun. The band was done for now and Niall felt like he could finally focus on his own happiness and his new life alongside Zayn. Of course they all had promised they would at least meet up every now and then, but even Niall knew it wouldn't be much as they all embark on their own thing.

"By this time in a month, I'll be out and we can show off our relationship to everyone," Niall grinned as he laid in bed with Zayn holding him.

"And you can bet your ass I'm gonna fill up my Instagram with pictures of you," Zayn grinned as he pressed a soft kiss to Niall's neck, arms tightening around the blonde's waist. "So when are we telling the las about, you know."

"When we get back from vacation, I wanna be absolutely sure that it's happening."

"Sounds good to me. Hmm, you know a year ago tomorrow I asked you out on our first date, again."

"That you did and it was amazing. So happy anniversary on that," Niall giggled.

"Yeah, but our real one is on the twenty first."

Niall smiled and kissed his boyfriend softly before pulling away with a large smile on his face. He was happy and excited. Tomorrow they would be jetting off to a small vacation to Paris and then fly to Ireland on the twenty third to spend Christmas with Niall's family and then heading off on the twenty ninth to visit Zayn's family for New Years. It was gonna be busy, but they wanted to see their families before they disappeared off on their vacation backpacking through Asia. Niall just hoped they could go under the radar for as much as possible.

~December 21, 2016~

"Baby, wakey wakey," Zayn said as he ran his hand through Niall's blonde hair, hoping to get his boyfriend to wake up.

"Shoo," Niall mumbled as he tangled himself further in the expensive hotel sheets.

"Babe, it's our anniversary and I have a whole special day planned for us," Zayn pouted, poking the blonde's cheek a few times until blue eyes were staring back at him tiredly. "I'm sorry for waking you, but I already ordered breakfast and it should be here soon."

"Fine," Niall sighed but sat up anyways and stretched with a lazy smile on his face. "Happy one year, Zaynie."

"Happy one year, babes," Zayn grins and pecks Niall's lips repeatedly until there was a knock on the door and Zayn got up to go open it while Niall headed into the bathroom to brush his teeth.

When Niall walked out the food was on the table and some very pretty flowers were in Zayn's hands as he sat and waited for his boyfriend. Niall wrapped his arms around Zayn's shoulders from behind and kissed his cheek.

"Who are these for?" Niall asked curiously.

"You obviously. Wanted the most prettiest flowers for my flower," Zayn grinned cheekily up at Niall who was blushing. "Now sit because breakfast will get cold and we have a long day out on the streets of Paris, my love."

Niall set the flowers in a vase and they ate in front of the balcony which gave them a very beautiful view of the city with the Eiffel Tower out in the distance. After that they both took a shower and got ready before heading out. They walked through the streets together and took pictures like tourists and then headed back to the hotel to get dressed for the dinner reservations Zayn had made at a very fancy and romantic restaurant. They both wore suits and ties and arrived at the restaurant once the sky had darkened and the city became illuminated by pretty lights.

"You know you always look gorgeous," said Zayn as he sat across from Niall with his hands under his chin as he took in his beautiful boyfriend reading the menu.

"Yeah? Well thanks," Niall blushed as he looked over at Zayn.

"Babes, do you think it's time we move in together? We've been together for a year and I practically live at your house anyway. Besides, we've got our future to think about," Zayn told Niall after they'd ordered their food.

"I think that's great, so who's house are we choosing?" Niall asked Zayn as he picked up his glass of red wine to take a sip.

"Well we can always talk about that when we get home or we can just look for a new one."

They talked about random things all throughout dinner and even ordered dessert. The place is romantic, with soft instrumental music playing and the quiet chatter of people sitting around them, but no one seemed to know who they were and it was nice to be able to have a date night where no one payed them any mind.

"I have something I wanna ask you," Zayn said, making Niall jump as he had been lost in his thoughts.

"About what?" Niall asked worriedly as he stared at Zayn who fished something out of his pocket.

Zayn stays quiet and instead slides a small black box across the table towards Niall and motions his eyes towards it. Niall can feel his heart beating as he reaches over to grab the box with shaky hands and opens it, revealing a shiny silver ring. It was just a simple band with three little diamonds in the middle and the word forever graved inside.

"I've made plenty of mistakes in my life and the one that I'll always regret is letting you go. It made me learn of one thing though and that's that I never want to lose you again because you really mean the whole entire universe to me. You're my best friend, the love of my life and I just want to ask you if you would like to spend the rest of your life with me?"

Niall's mouth was open in shock and tears were gathered in his eyes. He nodded mutely but then found his voice and whispered choked out yes's over and over to which Zayn chuckled a little wetly and slid the ring onto Niall's finger. Niall cupped Zayn's face in his hands and they shared a quick soft kiss.

"We're really doing this? We're getting married?" Niall asked Zayn, not being able to believe that Zayn had just asked him such an important question.

"We're doing this, babes. We're really really doing this."

Niall is feeling like the happiest man on earth.

Chapter Text

~December 4, 2015~

They're eating breakfast and laughing like any normal day when Gia calls. Both Harry and Louis look at each other sadly while Niall remains oblivious and instead focuses on his French toast and sings quietly. This time he's been singing Stole My Heart since yesterday. Harry is the one to answer the phone and holds Louis' hand.

"Hey," Harry greets in a low mumbled voice.

"So I've got the potion. It's done and ready to go so I can drop by today if you want. The sooner the better in case it doesn't work and I need to work on a stronger one," said Gia in her chirpy voice, but it was mixed with a bit of sadness because she could only imagine how hard this would be for all of them and she feels kind of guilty for making them go through this, but hey, things happen.

"Yeah that's fine. So um you can come over at around noon? Gotta get the other lads over and enjoy a bit of time with him before you know."

"Yeah that's fine. I'll be there at noon and before we do that, I'll explain what the side effects can be or answer any questions you might have concerning this. It'll be easy though and it won't be painful, that I can promise you," she reassured Harry who let out a small breath because he'd been worried it would hurt Niall like sometimes in the movies when these kinds of things happen.

"Thanks Gia, we'll see you soon," Harry said and hung up. "She'll be over at around noon so we gotta call Liam and Zayn."

"I'll do that after we finish eating," Louis whispered, looking at his food sadly.

Liam and Zayn arrive an hour after the call and by then Niall has picked up on his mama and papa's sad moods so he's been clingy and upset. There's an hour and a half until Gia arrives and they're all trying their best to be normal for Niall, but they're upset and it's hard. They're in the living room trying to get Niall to play with his toys, but the child is refusing to let go of Louis and cries every time Louis has to get up and put Niall down.

"Baby, why are you so sad?" Louis asks as he carries Niall upstairs to his room.

"Cause you and Papa seem sad," Niall mumbles as he plays with the string on Louis' Adidas hoodie and it makes Louis freeze. He can't believe how obvious they'd been making this. Sure they're sad little Niall is leaving, but they should be happy because they're getting their best friend back.

"I'm sorry, angel. I promise we're not sad, we're just a little tired," Louis lies to the child who looks at him curiously. "I promise."

"Okay, mama."

They head back downstairs and Louis hands Niall off to Harry and joins Liam and Zayn in the kitchen where they're making themselves some tea.

"So what's wrong with Niall?" Liam asked Louis.

"He's just sad cause we're sad. I told him we were just tired."

They head back into the living room and smile as they see Harry sitting on the ground with Niall between his legs and they're doing a Disney puzzle. Niall giggled as Harry places a piece on the wrong place and scolds him. Harry throws his head back as he laughs at Niall who keeps telling him to pay attention.

"Mama! Papa don't know how to do a puzzle!" Niall whines over at Louis who walks over to them and sits next to them on the ground.

"I'll help you baby, papa can be a bit slow," Louis teased, winking at Niall who giggled and Harry pouted.

Liam and Zayn sat on the couch and watched the three finish the Finding Nemo puzzle. It's ten minutes to noon when the doorbell goes off and they all just sort of freeze and look at each other before Zayn opens the door.

"Hey, come in. Gia right?" Zayn tells her and she nods.

Her hair was now a platinum blonde and sat on her head in a messy bun. She was wearing knee high boots with leggings and a black coat. Her lips were a matte pink and eyelashes long and coated in mascara but she looked a lot prettier than the last time Harry had seen her. A lot less makeup on her face.

"Yes, and you must be Zayn," she smiled at him and Zayn couldn't help but shiver at her ice blue eyes. "Well I'm here."

Harry and Louis walk over to her and Liam follows with Niall on his hip hiding his face from Gia who only smiled at the child.

"Okay, so now what?" Louis asks as they all move to the kitchen and sit around the table.

"Well here's the potion," Gia tells them as she pulls out a small container with a light free liquid inside from her purse. "You just pour this into another drink like juice or something and shake it up and then he drinks it. I promise it doesn't taste bad, in fact it doesn't taste or smell like anything."

"So we give him the whole thing?" Harry asks as he grabs the container and examines it.

"For better results the whole thing and he has to drink the whole thing. It can take anytime between twelve hours or a whole week for the thing to work and if it doesn't we can try again with a stronger dose and if that doesn't work then I'm sorry," she tells them, watching the way Niall snuggles into Liam's chest as he stares at the liquid in Harry's hands. "Questions?"

"Okay so any side effects we should be aware of? You weren't exactly specific the first time," Louis told Gia who laughed.

"I apologize for that, but the side effects may vary on the person. There's not much to worry about. Just he may feel nauseous for awhile, ache in his bones, may still be a bit childish afterwards but that's normal. He may be clingy with you and Harry," Gia says as she points to Louis who nods. "You can always call me if there's something that's concerning you. An allergic reaction or something, though that hasn't happened but we can never be too careful. Just call, I promise I'll answer."

"Alright," Harry sighed. "Thanks for this."

"I need to go potty," Niall whispered at Liam who chuckled and let the child run off towards the bathroom.

"Yeah Gia, we want to thank you. You gave us some great practice with Niall," Louis tells Gia who smiles and shakes her head. "And well this happening made Harry and I get back together."

"Don't thank me for anything. And the future is looking quite bright for all of you. Great things are coming to you five."

Niall ran back in and went over to Zayn, hiding into his side and peeking at Gia who smiled at Niall who blushed and hid away from her. Zayn chuckled and wrapped an arm around Niall.

"Alright well I'm off. Take care you five," Gia says as she stands up along with the others.

"Wait, you're not gonna be here for when we give him the thing?" Louis asks her and she shakes her head.

"Don't have to, it's not rocket science boys. Just give it to him in a drink during dinner and you'll be fine. Don't hesitate to call me if something doesn't seem right, I can't stress this enough. Only I will be able to know what's happening."

"Don't worry," Harry tells her. "And thanks again."

Gia waves at them one last time and walks off. Louis closes the front door and wraps his arms around Harry. Harry hugs him back and presses a kiss to Louis' head before they pull away and head back into the kitchen where Niall is sitting on the table eating a cookie. Niall was giggling at something that Liam had said and he looked over when Louis and Harry entered the room.

"Who gave you that cookie, baby?" Louis asked as he picked up Niall and took a bite of his cookie which made Niall pout.

"Lili gave me the cookie," Niall told Louis with a grin.

"So when are you giving him the thing?" Zayn asked Harry as he leaned back in his seat, eyes trained on the container sitting in the center of the table.

"Dinner time," Harry answers.

For dinner they have lasagna and Louis mixes the potion in with Niall's juice in his Frozen cup and the poor lad drinks it. He ate happily and as usual, sat next to Zayn with a napkin working as a bib for the child.

"Is it good, love?" Louis asks Niall who nods happily as he looks up at Louis.

"Very good," Niall declares with a large grins, sauce all over his mouth and a tiny bit of pasta in his hair. How he managed that is beyond them. "Thank you for dinner, Lili."

"No problem, Nialler, I'm glad you liked it," Liam tells the child who asks for more.

Niall finishes eating last and Louis makes sure he's drank all his juice. Niall runs off before Zayn can clean him up screaming about something that no one can comprehend. Zayn chuckles and goes off in search of the child, catching him before he can run up the stairs though he knows he's not supposed to be running on the stairs.

"Gotcha, babes." Zayn chuckled as he lifted Niall and carried him back into the kitchen with Niall wiggling around and wanting to be let go. "We gotta get you all cleaned up, can't have you be messy, kiddo."

"But I like being messy," Niall pouted as he fell limp against Zayn's arms.

"Is that why you like making a mess when you eat?" Harry asked with a raised eyebrow as he looked at Niall, handing Zayn a wet flannel to clean the boy.

"Maybe."

Zayn chuckled and began to wipe the dried pasta sauce from around Niall's mouth and cheeks.

"But I gotta take a bath later, why not wait?" Niall questioned.

"Because we can't have a dirty little pumpkin running around," Louis cooed as he pinched Niall's cheek, earning a whine from the boy who tried getting away from them.

It was Liam's turn to give Niall a bath that night and he let the child play in the tub for a bit as music played from his phone and Niall hummed along to some he recognized. After that, Niall begged to sleep in one of Louis' t-shirts so Louis pulled one out from his drawer and handed it to Liam who put it on NIall. The shirt was long on Niall, making it look like a dress and it hung off his left shoulder with the sleeves reaching past his elbows. He giggled and ran into the living room to show off to the others who cooed at him.

"Oh you look so adorable, love!" Louis all but squealed as he grabbed Niall by the hand and lead him over so the other two could see him.

"Is that mama's shirt, pumpkin?" Harry asked a blushing Niall who nodded shyly, hiding his face against Louis' side.

Liam finished walking downstairs and chuckled at the sight. Zayn had snapped a picture of Niall who had now moved over to hide into Harry who was laughing as he pulled Niall onto his lap.

"Are you sleepy, pumpkin?" Harry asked as Niall settled into his chest and yawned, rubbing his right eye with a tiny fist.

"Yeah," Niall mumbled, as he grabbed onto Harry's shirt.

"Want mama and I to put you to bed then? It's past nine and that means it's past your bedtime."

Niall only nodded and clung tighter to Harry as the long haired lad stood up and so did Louis.

"Say night night to the others, pumpkin," Louis told Niall.

"Night night, Li and Zaynie. Love you," Niall mumbled as he waved at the two who smiled fondly at him.

"Night babes, love you too," Zayn responded first.

"Night kiddo," Liam said and with that, Harry and Louis took Niall upstairs to tuck him in.

Louis undid the bed while Harry rocked Niall and kissed his head gently a few times, thinking that maybe this was the last time he'd be able to hold Niall like this. Louis and Harry locked eyes and smiled at each other before Harry brings Niall to the bed and sets him down.

"Alright pumpkin, have a goodnight and you know where we are if you need us," Harry told Niall as he covered the child with the blankets and placed his Olaf and penguin close by.

"We love you," Louis mumbled as he pressed a kiss to Niall's cheek. "Sleep tight."

"Night," Niall mumbled as he gave them a tired smile, fighting hard to stay awake but he was so tired.

Louis turned on Niall's nightlight and the two just stood at the doorway a little longer before leaving. Harry closed the door quietly and they headed back downstairs where Zayn and Liam had settled on watching a late night show.

"Everything good?" Liam asked.

"Yeah," Louis whispered with a smile.

~December 5, 2015~

Louis is roused from his dream by a sudden shift in the bed and a quiet giggle. He can hear Harry whine and shift so Louis has to assume it's Niall who's waking them up.

"Go away," Louis mumbled, eyes still shut as he tried finding another comfortable position.

"Mama, papa! Up please!" Niall giggled as he wiggled his way in between the two and accidentally elbowing Louis in the ribs.

"No Ni," Louis grumbled, but opened his eyes when he felt cold tiny hands on his face and came face to face with a still six year old Niall grinning down at him. "Why are you up so early, munchkin?"

"I'm hungry," Niall whined, moving to sit on Louis' chest, the shirt looking a little bigger on Niall than last night.

"Alright love, go put some socks on so your tiny little feet don't get cold."

Niall nodded and hopped off the bed, running out of the room with a bunch of giggles leaving his mouth. Louis smiled fondly at the child, but then he realized that they gave him Gia's potion last night and so he began to shake Harry awake. The younger lad whined and mumbled in his sleep until Louis managed to successfully awaken him.

"What, Lou?" Harry asked tiredly as he laid on his back to look at his boyfriend.

"The potion didn't work, H!" Louis told Harry with wide eyes.

"Babe, Gia said it could take anytime between twelve hours to a whole week. We're past the twelve hour mark, now we just gotta wait and see. Don't worry, I'm sure it'll work and we'll get our Nialler back soon."

"I don't know H, he looked slightly different today and I can't pinpoint why."

~

"He does look a bit different," Harry said once he saw Niall who was still in Louis' shirt but it seemed a bit bigger on his small frame.

"I know, but did he shrink?" Louis questioned, finally pinpointing that Niall did in fact look slightly smaller than yesterday.

"I sure hope that potion won't make him younger again or this time we'll be screwed."

"Mama, up please!" Niall said as he walked up to Louis and put his arms up.

"Hi my sweet little angel, do you like wearing my shirt?" Louis asked Niall who nodded, his cheeks flushed and his tiny hands holding onto the collar of Louis' jacket.

"Smell like mama," Niall says as he tucks his face into Louis' neck and yawns a bit which makes both Louis and Harry coo at the child.

"No sleepy, time for breakfast, yeah?" Louis said as he bounced Niall in his arms and followed Harry into the kitchen.

They had cereal for breakfast and heard Niall go on about a dream he had with Olaf and it was entertaining. Louis couldn't shake off the feeling that something wasn't right because Niall definitely looks smaller than yesterday. Even when he picked him up, Niall seemed to weigh less. Even his grammar was a bit more off than usual.

After breakfast, Harry had gone to get Niall changed while Louis cleaned up the kitchen when his phone goes off.

"Hello?" Louis answered.

"Hey, how's Niall? Did it work?" Liam asked.

"No, but I did notice he looks a bit smaller and we're really hoping that he won't shrink instead of returning to normal."

"He shrunk? Well that's not good, so are you gonna call Gia or wait the week?"

"Gonna wait, because even if she gave us the wrong one, I don't reckon we can give him another antidote so soon."

"True, well keep us updated on that little issue then."

~December 12, 2015~

It's been a week, and Niall was definitely not twenty two and not six. In fact the child had actually shrunken down to about the age of three and both Louis and Harry called Gia as soon as the week was up while keeping their eyes on an energetic toddler.

"Hello, didn't think I'd hear from you. So is everything okay? Probably not since you're calling," said Gia with a small giggle and Harry sighed in annoyance and Louis refrained himself from yelling at her.

"Either you gave us the wrong fucking potion or it did the exact opposite of what it was supposed to do because we have a three year old now," Harry explained and Gia mumbled.

"Oh dear. Okay, um let me search through my stuff here. Give me a second."

They hear her humming through the line, but their attention is snapped over to Niall when they hear his tiny giggles and something crash soon after. They check up on him, but sigh in relief when nothing is broken and instead find toys scattered all over the living room which neither seem to care. For now.

"Okay well I did give you guys the right one but I don't understand what happened. I'm just gonna make up a new potion then and deliver it to you guys either tomorrow or the day after. I just want you two to be aware that maybe he won't ever change back and if he de-aged again with the potion that was supposed to turn him back to normal, than it's a possibility that it'll just make him younger. I use the same ingredients each and every time and instead of being stuck with a three year old, be aware that you could very well be stuck with at the earliest a baby."

"So are you saying we shouldn't try again?" Louis asked her.

"It's up to you really. I mean we could wait a year or so before trying again, but if it's just going be the same result then you're just going to keep making the poor lad go through his childhood over and over," Gia told them softly and they could hear how much she was sorry.

"C-Can we think about it? This is a lot to take in and we don't want to make the wrong decision here."

"Yeah, you guys think about it and once you come to a conclusion just tell me. I'll hold off on starting on the potion just in case."

"Thank you Gia, we'll call you soon," Harry said and they hung up.

"Fuck, now what?" Louis asked as he began to pace around in the kitchen. "I mean, we either keep him as a three year old or risk making him younger. This isn't okay! We shrunk our bandmate and we don't even have a certain response that we'll be getting him back!"

"I know Lou, so what? We keep him this way for at least two more years and then try again?"

"But what if we try again and it'll just bring him back to being three. And we can't try now because we can't really be raising a baby, H, I mean yeah baby Niall would be cute, but we've got a tour to think about. Oh shit, the band. This is it, we broke One Direction!" Louis cried hysterically and Harry was staring at his boyfriend in amusement, the two completely forgetting they have a curious toddler to take care of.

"But maybe, think of it this way, maybe this is the chance for us to have a family of our own? We've got a kid who doesn't seem like he's going anywhere anytime soon and well, we can always just do a farewell tour and settle down."

"But this isn't our kid, Harry. Niall's got a whole family in Ireland and we're legally nothing to him but his friends and ex band mates."

"I know love, but I'm sure Maura and Bobby wouldn't mind us raising him like we've been doing for the past six months. Especially not if we let them see the kid whenever they want."

"I think we should get Liam in on this as well, he's part of the band and our best friend and deserves to know what might be happening with the band and everything else. And get Zayn over as well," Louis sighed and walked off to the living room where Niall's gaze was focused on Peppa Pig.

"Mama!" The three year old squealed excitedly, making grabby hands at Louis who smiled and picked up the child, cradling him to his chest.

"Everything's gonna be alright, angel. Your papa and I will figure things out," Louis mumbled as he pressed his lips to Niall's temple.

*

"We got your SOS, what's the emergency?" Liam asked nearly half an hour later as him and Zayn ran into the house.

"Honey, we've shrunk the kid," Harry told them with a nervous chuckle and now was certainly not the time for jokes so Louis kind of just glared at his boyfriend.

"Shit," Liam and Zayn mumbled once their eyes landed on tiny Niall walking around on chubby legs and a slightly large t-shirt that had once fit him perfectly.

Chapter Text

~December 13, 2015~

"So what's your plan?" Gia asked them the next day.

"We're keeping Niall like this. We just don't want to risk anything else and maybe we can try again in a year or so," Louis answered with a sigh and Gia hummed in agreement.

"That would be for the best. I'm so sorry, lads. I've never had a problem like this before, but I guess there's a first for everything."

"It's fine, Gia," Harry told her with a soft smile even though she couldn't see since they were talking to her through the phone. "We'll keep in contact with you."

"Yeah that sounds great. I'm truly sorry about this, I've never had someone react like this to what should have been an antidote."

"It's fine, Gia, you couldn't have known. Thank you for trying though," Louis told her sincerely and then they hung up.

The two headed into the living room where Liam and Zayn were watching TV with Niall half asleep in Liam's arms. The kid was fighting sleep and Liam could only chuckle and sing quietly to Niall in hopes of getting Niall to actually give in and sleep. Of course that peaceful feeling didn't last much longer because as soon as Niall saw his new parents, he sprung up in Liam's arms wide awake and making grabby hands at them.

"Thought you were going to sleep?" Louis asked as he took Niall from Liam.

"No sleepy. Wanna play!" Niall exclaimed as he bounced in Louis' arms, almost making Louis drop him in the process.

"So when are you telling Maura and Bobby?" Zayn asked as he watched Niall head over to the toy box they now kept in the corner of the living room and start pulling toys out and making a mess around him. Three year old Niall loves to make messes, but hates to clean them up.

"We're calling them later and management right after hopefully. We're gonna have to figure out a way to tell the fans as well because this isn't easy," Harry said as he sat on the other couch with Louis while Niall scattered some Legos along the floor.

Niall sat on the floor and grabbed a red block and looked at it curiously before bringing it up to his mouth. Louis grimaced and sat next to the toddler, pulling the toy gently out of his mouth and scolding him for it.

"We don't put these in our mouth babe, we can choke and they're dirty," Louis tells Niall gently.

"Play?" Niall asked Louis who sighed but played with the child who giggled as the two made a tower meanwhile the other three talked and kept an eye on the three year old.

Eventually a tired and fussy Niall climbs onto Louis' lap and curls up into him, slowly falling asleep. Louis only smiles fondly at the tiny little human and holds him gently, stroking his hair and pressing light kisses to the top of his head as he hums quietly. Harry looks at the two with a fond look on his face and Liam and Zayn both tease him quietly.

"Is he asleep?" Harry asks as he goes over to his boyfriend who looks up at him.

"Yeah. Can you take him up to his room? Kinda can't get up and I don't want to risk waking him up," Louis asks Harry who nods and bends down to pick up the sleeping toddler gently.

Niall moves in his sleep and makes a cute little noise that has Harry biting his bottom lip to not coo out loud. Niall simply moves closer to Harry's chest and his tiny hand comes up to grip at his t-shirt. Harry rocks the toddler gently as he begins to head upstairs while Louis stands up from his spot on the ground and stretches.

"This is definitely going to be a challenge," Louis tells his two friends who nodded. "Gonna have to baby proof the house, actually set up a room for him and think about how we're gonna do this while we're on tour."

"I'm guessing you're gonna wanna take him?" Liam asked Louis.

"Don't reckon he'd want to stay back and I'd feel better knowing Niall was with us. Don't need another Marcus incident happening while we're in a different country."

Harry walked back downstairs five minutes later with a smile and he sat next to Louis.

"What took you so long?" Louis questioned his boyfriend in curiosity.

"He's just so precious, I can't stop looking at him," Harry said and the others laughed.

Later, Liam heads upstairs to check on Niall and smiles when he finds the three year old rubbing his eyes with his chubby little fists and yawning cutely. Liam moves into the room and Niall makes grabby hands at him when he spots him.

"Hi Nialler, you sleep okay?" Liam cooed as he picks him up and holds him against his chest and rubbing his back.

"Mhm," Niall replies tiredly as he lays his head on Liam's shoulder and yawns.

"Let's go see your mama and papa," Liam says as he stands up and begins to walk downstairs with Niall resting on his hip and making silly little noises that make Liam smile fondly.

"Where Zaynie?" Niall asks as he looks around and frowns when he sees that his Zayn is missing.

"He had to go, pumpkin, but he said he'd come back soon, so don't worry," Louis coos as he takes Niall from Liam and kisses his cheek.

"And papa?"

"I'm right here, pumpkin," Harry said as he walked out from the area where the bathroom was located and smiled at the child who waved at him excitedly.

"Papa, play?" Niall asked Harry as he made grabby hands at Harry who nodded and took the child from Louis, heading over to the toy chest.

"What time are we calling Maura and Bobby?" Louis asked as he looked at his boyfriend and toddler.

"I'd say in about half an hour? We gotta contact management still to tell them about this big issue that isn't going away."

*

"What do you mean?" Maura asked through the line and Louis looked over at Harry who sighed.

"Um well a week ago we talked to Gia who gave us the potion to turn Niall back to his regular age and said it could take up to a week, but uh it did the exact opposite and so now we're stuck with a three year old Niall," Harry explained nervously as he bit his bottom lip and things were silent on the other line for around two minutes before Maura let out a long sigh.

"Gia told us we could try again, but she said that'd we'd be risking the chance of de-aging Niall again and turning him into a baby," Louis continued.

"So this is it? Niall is a three year old now?" Bobby asked in shock.

"We really tried, but we'd rather not risk turning Niall into an actual baby if we give him another potion. As much as we love Niall, he's still your son and we want to know what you guys would want to do now that we know this is a permanent thing? We could take him over to you if that's what you'd like?" Louis asked them, swallowing down the lump in his throat at the thought of not having his baby around anymore.

"Well, of course we miss him, but neither Bobby nor I are in conditions of raising a child. Theo's energetic and so full of life that we can't really keep up with him anymore during his visits, so if you two wouldn't mind doing us the favor. You boys did amazing with Niall these last six months and we know you'd be great parents to him," Maura told them sadly. Of course she'd love to get another chance to raise her baby boy, but really it wouldn't be ideal for Niall or her and Bobby. Niall would have to be back and forth between her house and her ex husband's house and she doesn't want her Niall to go through that again. "Only if you boys wouldn't mind."

"No no, we don't mind, but are you sure? We don't want you guys to be saying this just because we've essentially become his parents," Harry tries, hoping and praying they don't change their mind because he really wants Niall to stay with them. He's grown too attached to the boy to want to let him go and not see him again.

"We are completely sure and we are happy knowing Niall is in complete and safe hands. We have faith that you two boys will be amazing parents to him," Maura tells them. "Of course we'd like to see him from time to time."

"Anytime you want, we could fly over or have you fly over. You can Skype him or talk to him on the phone, we won't mind and thank you," Louis tells them, leaning into Harry's side in relief because they get to keep their boy as selfish as that may sound.

"No, thank you for this. Give Niall all our love and we'll see you soon," Bobby tells them before they hang up and Louis sets his phone down and hugs Harry who lets out a sigh and holds him tightly.

"There's no turning back. We're really doing this. We're gonna raise Nialler as if he were our own and be the best damn family we can," Harry says as he kisses the top of Louis' head.

"Management won't be too happy we're doing this."

"Fuck them, we deserve this bit of happiness and they can't take it away from us after everything they've put us through these last few years."

The couple walked downstairs where Niall is watching a movie with Liam and doesn't even acknowledge his new parents since he's too engrossed in the film with his blue eyes wide and mouth in a small o shape. Liam, however, looks up when they walk in and follows them into the kitchen.

"Everything go okay?" Liam asks though they know that he really wants to ask if Niall is staying with them.

"Everything is perfect. Maura and Bobby want us to raise Niall," Louis tells him with a smile and Liam let's out a soft sigh.

"I feel bad for them, though," Harry says and Louis nods. "But it would have sucked if we would have had to give up our pumpkin."

"True, now comes the harder part though. Telling management," says Liam as Louis nods and begins to dial their number as they sit around on the table.

"Please tell me you boys have good news," they hear a male voice on the other line.

"Um I'm sorry but unfortunately we don't. We have bad news, actually," Harry starts off and they hear three different sighs.

"What is it then?" A female voice asks next.

"Well the potion did the exact opposite and so now we're stuck with a three year old Niall and that's final. And also Harry and I will be raising Niall as if he were our son and there's no turning back on our decision," Louis informed management.

"Alright so things are going to be different. We should still go ahead with this tour, but if you'd want we could make it a farewell tour and just maybe add a few more dates, like go to places you haven't gone on this tour yet."

"Yeah that'd be good since Louis and I really just wanna settle down for a bit to focus on Niall."

"Very well then we can make the announcement later this week and release a statement about Niall's situation. I know you two want to come out and with having Niall under your care now, we'll let you decide when and how you want to do so."

"What? Really?" Louis asked in shock and grabbed Harry's hand, giving it a small squeeze as he couldn't believe this was really happening.

"Yes really, your contract with us will end as soon you finish this tour and so we figured we'd let you guys do this after everything you've been put through as a couple and the five of you as a group."

"Thank you," Harry told them sincerely.

Niall walked in curiously and walked over to Liam who smiled and picked him up, setting him on his lap.

"Leave Ni," the child whined and Liam cooed down at the child.

"We're sorry kiddo," Liam said as he tickled the child's tummy and Niall giggled.

"Alright lads, we'll talk again soon when we get ready to release the announcement."

"Okay, thank you," Louis said and hung up shortly after, smiling over at Niall who was playing peek a boo with Liam who was making silly faces at the child who was laughing loudly.

"What should we do now?" Harry asked as he leaned back in his seat, playing with his phone.

"We could have dinner and maybe start fixing up Niall's room? Order his stuff online," Louis suggested, rubbing Harry's thigh. "He's going to need proper stuff now. Clothes his size, shoes, and whatever toddlers need. Pull ups would probably be a good idea for night time."

"It's going to be a mess to set that up and get ready for Christmas," Liam said, setting Niall down and watching him run off happily.

"Fuck, I forgot about Christmas."

Harry let out a small sigh and said, "Okay so we can set up the tree and decorations up tomorrow and order the stuff for his new room today and the rest we can take it a day at a time. There's no need to stress over this and I'm sure we can do our Christmas shopping done in between. Shit, we need to tell our families about this, too."

"Okay, you two get buying Niall's furniture and I'll cook dinner," Liam offered as he stood up and the other two thanked him before Louis went off to grab his laptop and Harry to check on Niall who was now throwing Lego pieces all around.

"Niall, don't throw that, pumpkin. You're going to lose your blocks and someone can get hurt," Harry said as he grabbed the bucket and began to throw the pieces into it while Niall whined but helped Harry clean up his mess.

"Papa, I watch telly?" Niall asked as he pointed at the TV with a cute pout after he finished helping Harry clean up his mess.

"Only because you've been a very good boy, pumpkin. Want Peppa?"

"Want Pooh, please!" Niall told him as he struggled to get on the couch, refusing Harry's help and cheered when he finally got up after a little struggle. Harry chuckled and cheered him on as well.

Harry switched on a Winnie the Pooh movie and met Louis in the kitchen where Liam was busy cooking. The couple got to work on looking for new furniture for Niall's room, getting into arguments about what type of furniture they wanted and Liam could only laugh and shake his head, hearing Niall trying to sing along to the movie.

~December 15, 2015~

Niall's new room was officially complete now. They'd gotten the furniture delivered yesterday and had spent all of yesterday and part of today fixing it. The walls had already been painted a light blue, so they decided to keep those and arrange Niall's theme around that color. And now they were going to focus on setting up their Christmas stuff.

"Look, mommy!" Niall giggled as he ran into the living room wearing a rather large Santa hat that covered his eyes while Harry snickered at Louis' new name. Niall had somehow changed from calling them mama and papa to mommy and daddy which did not sit well with Louis at first, but he had to get used to it.

"Are you all ready for Christmas, baby?" Louis asked in amusement as he picked up the child who was dressed in a whole Adidas outfit, courtesy of Louis Tomlinson. He now doesn't hold back on buying clothes and shoes for Niall and Harry rolls his eyes each time he finds his boyfriend browsing clothes for Niall even though he's also bought the child his fair share of big brand outfits.

"I'm ready!" Niall exclaimed excitedly, lifting up his hat to look at Louis who was smiling wide at the child before leaning in to kiss his cheeks. "Mama!" He shrieked and laughed uncontrollably as Louis showered him with kisses.

"Pumpkin, you want to put the star up on the tree?" Harry asked as he took Niall from Louis's arms, a smile on his face. A smile that seemed to be permanent now because Niall brought them so much joy,

"I wanna put star! Cause I'm a star!" Niall shouted excitedly and both men laughed at the boy.

"Of course you're a star, baby! You're our star," Louis cooed as he tickled Niall's side.

"Alright, Nialler, here's the star," Harry said as he handed the tiny child the star and lifted him up so he could place the star on top of the tree.

Niall placed the star on the tree carefully and once it was on, he clapped in excitement and looked over at both Louis and Harry with sparkling blue eyes. Harry and Louis both cheered and Harry pulled the boy onto his chest and kissed his head.

"You did it, Nialler!" Louis cheered with a little too much enthusiasm and Niall clapped some more, giggling and fixing his hat so he could see his mama and papa better. "Now do you want to help put up the bows on the tree?"

"Yes!"

Louis grabbed the box and Harry put the blonde down, watching him head over to Louis. Louis puts the box down on the ground and the child grabs two red bows and heads over to the tree, putting them on places where he could reach. Harry smiled fondly and took a picture of Niall as he reached up on his tip toes to place a gold colored bow up on the tree. Louis chuckled and walked over to Harry, wrapping his arms around his boyfriend who sighed.

"Can you believe we're actually going to be spending Christmas as a family?" Harry asks Louis, pressing his lips to the shorter man's hairline.

"I can't, honestly. Feels like I'll wake up any day and find that our big Niall is back and maybe him being three is just a small setback and he'll be back to normal soon," Louis said, a soft smile on his face as he watched Niall lose his balance and fall back on his butt, giggling to himself before standing up again.

"I know, but this is actually our life from now on. I've got you and I've got an amazing son now, nothing else matters," Harry says with a smile as he presses a kiss to the top of Louis head.

~December 20, 2015~

Louis' at home with Niall while Harry is off doing some last minute Christmas shopping. The little Irish boy has been a ball of energy all day and Louis is sitting tiredly on the couch watching the blonde create a mess everywhere he runs off too. He closes his eyes for a second and lets out a long sigh before he hears the sound of skin hitting the hardwood floor and suddenly Niall starts crying and Louis shoots out of his seat and runs off towards Niall. He finds Niall kneeling on the floor at the bottom of the stairs with big fat tears running down his flushed face and he makes grabby hands at Louis when he spots him.

"Oh baby," Louis cooed and gently picked up the boy and began to rock him around to calm down the sobbing boy. "Shh snowflake, it's okay. Mommy's got you."

"H-Hurts!" Niall screamed, arms wrapped around Louis' neck and his tears wetting Louis' shoulder.

"Where does it hurt, pumpkin? Can you tell me where so I can make it all better?" Louis asked the child, trying to pull him away from his shoulder gently but he refused.

"Here," Niall hiccuped as he pointed down at his knees.

"Want some milk and watch Peppa?" Louis coos as he walks towards the kitchen with Niall resting on his hip still hiccuping but Louis guesses it's more from the shock than the pain.

"Please."

"Anything for my little prince."

Louis grabbed a sippy cup and poured milk in it with one hand before screwing the top on and making sure it wouldn't spill before heading upstairs with a tired Niall resting his head on Louis' shoulder. Louis entered his room and set Niall in the middle of the bed and handed him his sippy cup. Niall settled back on the pillows and began to drink his milk as he watched Louis turn on the TV and put on Peppa Pig for him.

"Mommy!" Niall whined, making grabby hands at Louis who chuckled fondly and got in next to him.

"Mommy's here, just watch Peppa," Louis told the tiny child who moved closer to cuddle into his chest.

Harry walks into the house and is quite surprised to find everything so quiet. With a three year old, there is no moment of peace. He drops his shopping bags in the office and locks the door before heading upstairs to search for his boyfriend and child. He enters the master bedroom and smiles fondly when he sees both fast asleep on the bed with one of Louis' arms wrapped protectively around the smaller body and Niall's thumb in his mouth. Harry snapped a quick picture before getting on the bed behind Louis and wrapped an arm around his waist.

"Haz?" Louis mumbled tiredly.

"I'm right here, babe. Have a nice day?" Harry asked as he pressed a kiss to Louis' shoulder.

"Mm sort of. Niall was way too hyper until he fell and wouldn't stop crying."

"Is he okay though? He's not hurt right?"

"No, he's fine."

"Mommy?" Niall mumbled as he began to move around and rub at his eyes tiredly. Harry looked at the toddler fondly and reached a hand out to rub at his tummy which made his blue eyes snap open and look at Harry. "Daddy!"

"Hi pumpkin," Harry cooed and grabbed Niall and pulled him onto his chest. "You've been good to mommy?"

"Always good," Niall mumbled and yawned right after.

~December 24, 2015~

It's Louis' birthday and Christmas Eve. Harry and Niall are downstairs making breakfast, well Harry is, Niall is just sitting on the counter watching his daddy flip pancakes. There was a perfectly decorated cake sitting on the island away from Niall and with candles on top all set for Louis. Niall is swinging his little legs and trying to sing a song he heard while watching Mickey Mouse yesterday, but instead he ends up mumbling random things.

"Morning," came Louis tired voice from the kitchen doorway and Niall gasped excitedly as he turned to face one of his favorite people in the whole wide world.

"Mommy! Happy birthday!" Niall shouted excitedly as he made grabby hands at Louis who smiled wide and picked up the boy, pressing kisses all over his face.

"Thank you, snowflake," Louis grinned as he settled Niall on his hip and walked over to Harry who pulled him in for a kiss to which Niall whined and covered his eyes.

"Happy birthday, beautiful," Harry mumbles as he presses one final kiss to Louis' forehead.

"Mm thanks."

"Now go sit with Niall, I'll have breakfast over and we can blow out the candles," Harry instructed.

"I'd rather blow something else," Louis mumbled into Harry's ear and the long haired lad laughs.

Louis sat Niall in his seat, which was a chair with a booster seat so the little blonde could reach the table better. He sat next to the blonde and watched with a smile as Niall played around with his plastic fork, the one he rarely uses when he eats and Louis supposes they should teach him some table manners. Again.

"Alright babes, eat up," Harry says as he places a plastic plate in front of Niall with two chocolate chip pancakes and another plate with three pancakes in front of Louis before grabbing his own and sitting at the table with his two loves.

After they finished eating breakfast, Harry lit up the candles on Louis' chocolate flavored cake and Niall and him sang happy birthday and then Louis blew out the candles. Niall clapped excitedly and watched as Harry cut the cake.

"So we're going to your parents' house for dinner?" Harry asked as he helped Louis' wash the dishes while Niall was off making a mess.

"Yeah, gonna be a right shock when they see a three year old Niall," Louis commented.

"You haven't told them?"

"It might have slipped my mind. It's been crazy these last few days with getting everything set up for him, the Christmas shopping and the meeting with management to see how the hell we're going to tell the whole world our bandmate is now our son."

"True. And that he calls us mom and dad."

Louis rolled his eyes fondly and walked off to let Harry wash the dishes without distraction. When he walks into the living room he finds Niall laying on his stomach on the living room floor and pushing around a red truck and blue race car. He's making cute little noises with his mouth and Louis smiles before sitting next to the Irish child.

"Hi mama!" Niall greets him, laying his head on his hands to look up at his mama and Louis smiles back.

"Hi Ni-boo, what are you doing?" Louis asks because he really likes to hear Niall's high pitched little voice and all the mispronunciation he makes of the big words.

"Playing cars," Niall replies as he sits up and offers one to Louis. "Play with me?"

"You want me to play? I'd be delighted to play with you, Ni-boo!" Louis exclaims with fake enthusiasm as he takes the blue race car and begins to play with Niall who giggles.

Getting Niall ready to head off to dinner is a nightmare. Harry gives him a bath and Niall runs off naked with soap in his hair and giggling, leaving a trail of water until Louis caught the three year old and returned him to Harry whose hair and clothes were wet.

"No!" Niall screams, thrashing in the water and they've come to realize that three year old Niall hates bath time unlike their five year old Niall.

"Stop it right now," Louis scolds the boy because Harry's never really had the heart to do it and he'll cave if the child starts to pout. "Santa will take your presents if you're naughty."

"No!" And Niall begins to sob which earns Louis a glare from Harry but the other lad simply scoffs and walks away.

Harry manages to change the cranky child into some dark colored skinny jeans, a plaid button down shirt and his Vans. Louis walks in fully changed and tells Harry to go change and he'll finish Niall.

"Mommy," Niall whines tiredly, making grabby hands at Louis who was busy grabbing his jacket out of the closet and his beanie and gloves. It only makes Niall whined louder.

"Hey, stop," Louis says, voice firm and turning around to look at the child with a gaze that immediately has him freezing in his spot before dissolving into another round of tears that makes Louis sigh. "See, this is why you need to take naps."

On the drive to Louis' family's house, Niall falls asleep in the backseat, dried tear stains on his chubby flushed cheeks. Both Louis and Harry sigh in relief, but they also know it's going to be a long night. They eventually reach the Deakin house and while Louis goes up to ring the doorbell, Harry takes Niall out of the car gently.

"Daddy," Niall mumbles tiredly, rubbing at his eyes with his gloved hands.

"Shh pumpkin, we're gonna see mommy's family," Harry tells the child who instantly brightens, especially as he hears Lottie greeting her older brother.

"Lottie!" Niall cheered.

"Oh there's my baby!" Lottie exclaims and takes Niall out of Harry's arms. "Why is he so small?"

"The potion did the exact opposite and instead of getting our old Nialler back, we're stuck with a three year old," Louis informed his sister who only grinned wider and kissed Niall's cheek.

"Oh my baby! I get to be an auntie forever!"

"Lottie, dear, let the boys in. It must be freezing outside," comes Louis' mom's voice and soon she appears behind her older daughter. "Well hi, cutie."

"Hi!" Niall waves at her excitedly, cheeks flushed from the cold weather.

They all headed inside and they hung up their coats and removed their shoes before heading into the living room where the rest of the family was. Niall was set down on the ground and he ran over to Felicite who quickly scooped him up and cuddled him close.

"So he's stuck like this?" Dan asked his step-son as he watched Niall play with the two younger twins.

"Yeah and we're doing a goodbye tour because we wouldn't want to continue the band with just three members and it wouldn't be the same without him," Louis responds from where he's curled up into Harry with Phoebe at his side.

"And you two are going to raise him then? As your son?" Louis' mom asks the couple as she walks in.

"Yeah we already got Maura and Bobby's blessing and we're going to come out soon," Harry says as he watches Niall fondly, watching the way the little Irish lad giggles at something that Daisy told him.

"Well you two are going to make great parents," Lottie tells her brothers.

"Alright kids, time for dinner," Louis' mom calls them and they all head to the dining room, Louis picking up Niall and kissing his cheek.

"Time to eat, Ni-boo. Is my little baby hungry?" Louis asks him, carrying Niall on his hip as he follows Harry into the dinning room.

"Hungry," Niall echoes with a small nod as he plays with Louis' hair and offers him a wide grin.

"You're the most precious thing in this world," Louis tells him, smacking a kiss to his cheek.

Dinner is loud. Niall sits on Harry's lap and the curly haired lad feeds the impatient three year old and the two younger twins have a constant chatter. Louis just looks around with a smile. It's definitely one of the best birthdays he's ever spent.

Chapter Text

December 25, 2015

Louis and Harry were still fast asleep in their bed and cuddled up under the covers when there's sudden movement on their bed and tiny little giggles. Louis opens his eyes and sees Niall crawling his way over to them with a dummy in his mouth, but Louis brushed it off and pretends to be asleep.

"Mommy! Daddy! Up! Is kiss-mas!" The little Irish boy exclaimed, the dummy now in his hand as he tried to crawl in between his dads, but they were cuddled together pretty close and that made him pout. "Up!"

"It's kiss-mas? Well come here then!" Louis said as he pulled the child down and began to press kisses all over his face, making Niall burst into loud laughter and squirm in his mommy's hold.

"No mommy!" Niall shrieked and Harry groaned but there was a smile on his face as he moved to be able to pull Niall down between them.

"Morning my loves," Harry mumbled out tiredly as he rubbed his eyes, Niall settling in between them and putting the dummy back in his mouth.

"Morning," Louis greets him with a smile, pulling Niall into his arms and holding him tightly. "Babe, where'd you get this?" He asks as he taps the dummy in Niall's mouth.

Niall pulled it out and looked up at Louis and said, "Auntie Lottie give me."

"Just let him be, babe," Harry says, not wanting to start an argument with the three year old on Christmas morning.

"P'esents!" Niall cheered as he sat up on the bed and began to clap.

"Are you calling us peasants?" Louis teased the little boy and Harry laughed. "Even as a child you're mean."

"Nialler no mean," the little boy tells Louis with a huff.

"You're not mean, pumpkin. Mama's just being silly," Harry says as he sits up and stretches, then proceeds to put his hair up into a bun and Niall watches with wide blue eyes. "Let's go so we can open all of your presents and eat breakfast."

Niall nods and makes grabby hands at Harry once the man is up. Louis watches fondly as Harry picks up Niall and places the child over his shoulder, the child's laughter filling the room.

After brushing their teeth and washing their faces, the family of three head downstairs in their Christmas themed pajamas. Niall was in a white onesie with red reindeer, little snowflakes and green patterns all around. Harry was wearing pants with the same design and red at the waistband and a white long sleeved shirt since he'd slept shirtless. Louis was just in red plaid pants and a white muscle tee.

"You want breakfast first, bub?" Louis asked the child as he entered the kitchen to make himself some tea.

"No! My p'esents!" Niall whined in Harry's arms.

"Hey, no whining."

"P'esents," Niall pouted and sniffled for extra effect, causing Harry to coo and cuddle the child close.

After Louis makes his tea and Harry his coffee, the three walk towards the living room and Harry places the child in front of the tree that's surrounded by presents. Niall looks around with wide eyes, wondering which one he'll open first. Harry and Louis chuckle as they sit next to the child and help him decide.

Niall immediately began to tear at the snowman patterned wrapping paper and gasped. He got a stuffed Chase dog from his favorite show Paw Patrol.

"Who's that, pumpkin?" Harry asked the child with a smile on his face as he watched his three year old keep looking at the stuffed dog like it wasn't real.

"Is Chase! My Chase?" Niall questioned as he looked at both his dads who nodded. "My Chase! T'ank you!"

"You're very welcome my sweet boy," Louis tells the child as he takes a careful sip of his tea.

Niall also got a plush Elephant chair that he just adored right away and made Harry open it so he could sit in it. Louis and Harry both laughed as they watched their little one get comfortable in his new chair.

"How is it, pumpkin. Do you like it?" Harry asks as he takes a picture of the child and sends it to his mom and Gemma.

Niall nods excitedly and the proceeds to open the rest of his presents from his seat.

"This really is the most wonderful time of the year," Harry says softly with an arm around Louis as they stand by the entryway and watch their little boy play with all of his new toys.

"It truly is," Louis confirms with a smile.

February 1, 2016

"Shh baby, we can't wake daddy up," Louis says quietly as the two creep down the hall to the master bedroom, Louis holding a tray filled with breakfast for Harry.

"I be quiet," Niall whispered loudly, putting a finger up to his lips as he tip toed alongside Louis in his footie pajamas.

Louis rolled his eyes fondly and motioned for Niall to open the door. Louis pouted a bit when he saw Harry finish setting his phone on his nightstand and quickly close his eyes. Niall looked up at Louis, the poor boy was actually fooled by Harry's terrible acting.

"Go ahead," Louis whispered and Niall grinned before going to get on the bed with a bit of difficulty since it was so high up.

Eventually Niall got up and moved his way over to where Harry was before jumping next to him and yelling at him to wake up. Harry opened his eyes and grinned as he pulled the child down and hugged him tight.

"Happy birthday, daddy!" Niall cheered as he wiggled in Harry's arms trying to get comfortable.

"Thank you, pumpkin," Harry told him, showering Niall's face with kisses.

"Mommy and I make yummy food."

"Did you know?"

Niall nods proudly and Harry sits up, dragging Niall along with him as Louis continued to smile at the two before lowering the tray onto Harry's lap.

"Happy birthday, babe," Louis says as he leans over to peck Harry's lips.

"Thank you, my love," Harry grinned and looked down at the food on his tray. There were pancakes with fruit on the side, a glass of orange juice and a plate with scrambled eggs and strips of bacon.

Harry picked up a piece of bacon and handed it to Niall began to munch on it happily, distracted by the food while Louis and Harry talked about Harry's family joining them for the rest of the day.

"Is it yummy, pumpkin?" Harry asked the child as he now fed him some eggs.

"Yummy!" Niall nodded and Louis chuckled as he took a sip of Harry's orange juice.

"Did you eat?" Harry questioned his boyfriend who nodded.

"Had some oatmeal with Nialler since he's been up since six, isn't that right snowflake?" Louis cooed at the child who giggled and nodded even though he had no idea what Louis was talking about. He was happy eating breakfast again because his daddy was feeding him.

After breakfast, the family of three barely have enough time to get changed and clean up the kitchen when the doorbell is going off and Louis goes over to open the door, hearing Niall and Harry argue about something in the other room.

"Louis, love!" Anne greets her son in law with a large smile as she hugs him tight, pressing a kiss to both of his cheeks.

"Hi Anne, it's nice to see you," Louis greets her back with a smile.

Anne pulls away and Louis greets Harry's stepdad and Gemma. Louis lets the three inside, sighing as he hears Niall's whining and Harry mocking the child.

"Harold, stop torturing the poor child and come greet your family!" Louis says as he leads the family towards the living room, Gemma and Anne both laughing.

"Mama!" Niall cried as he ran over to Louis and wrapped his tiny arms around Louis' waist. "Daddy mean!"

"I know love, daddy is always mean," Louis humored the child as he picked him up as Harry greeted his family with hugs. "But look who's here."

"Nana! Pappy! Auntie Gemma!" Niall cheered at his daddy's family who all cooed at the child and Anne took Niall from Louis' arms, showering him with kisses and letting her husband greet the child and then Gemma took Niall.

"You three been okay?" Anne asked the two couples sat around, Gemma keeping Niall entertained by playing with the toys in his toy box.

"Yeah, Niall's actually a very chill kid. He does get on our nerves often, but he's a big ball of happiness and we're just happy to have gotten this opportunity with him," Harry replies with a smile as he looks over at Niall who's showing Gemma all of his Paw Patrol and Peppa Pig toys.

"Well now that I'm a grandma, you can't keep my grandson away from me for too long. You know how much I've always loved Niall."

It was no secret that since day one of the band Anne had taken Niall in as another son, the other lads often teasing Harry that Anne liked Niall better than him.

"No worries, Anne. I'm sure Niall would love to spend time with his Nana and Poppy," Louis tells Anne who chuckles a little.

February 10, 2016

"Are you sure we have everything?" Harry asks as he double checks through their bags while Louis rolls his eyes fondly at the taller boy.

"Yes we do, H. I packed our passports, important documents, clothes and other important stuff and you made a list, Monica Geller," Louis teased his boyfriend who rolled his eyes and stood up straight, wrapping his arms around the blue eyed boy's waist.

"So does that make you Chandler Bing?"

"Mommy! Daddy!" Niall whined as he walked into the room on his chubby little legs and rubbing at his left eye tiredly while gripping his stuffed penguin in his little hand.

"What's up my little shortcake?" Louis asked as he picked up the three year old and smiled as Niall rested his head on Louis' shoulder with his penguin clutched to his chest.

"Why go bye bye?" Niall asked with a pout as he eyed their packed suitcases.

"Because we have to work, baby. We have to sing in front of lots of people, remember we showed you some videos yesterday," Harry explained as he ran his fingers through Niall's brown hair.

"I go bye bye too?"

"Yeah you're going with us and we'll see lots of cool stuff," Louis informed the child who nodded. "And uncle Liam and uncle Zaynie are going too. And aunt Lottie."

Niall made a small little noise and yawned again, making the two men coo at their baby.

"It's nap time, pumpkin," Harry says softly as he takes Niall from Louis and heads out to Niall's room.

Louis sighs and places their bags by the bedroom door. Niall's stuff was already packed and waiting downstairs for tomorrow. He was excited to continue with their tour, but at the same time he just wanted to stay at home with his boyfriend and son. It was still a little weird, the fact that Niall was never returning to his actual age and instead was going to be taken care of by two of his band mates. Either way though, Louis wouldn't trade it for the world.

"He fell asleep quick," Harry says as he walks into the room with a smile.

"He had a rough night. Think he's coming down with something," Louis replies softly as he sits on the bed.

"You okay?" Harry asks as he sits next to his boyfriend, wrapping an arm around his waist.

"Worried. You know how stressful touring can get and with having to take care of a three year old?"

"I know, babe, but we can do this, yeah? And we don't have to hide anymore. They all know we're together and that Niall's under our care and we've got a whole crew with us to help out. Besides, Lou did it with Lux, this really isn't any different," Harry tells his boyfriend softly. "We can do this."

February 11, 2016

Niall's crying and has been crying for the past ten minutes since Harry picked him up from the warmth and comfort of his bed way before the sun came up. They would be heading off to continue their tour today and they had to leave early to avoid getting mobbed at the airport with baby Niall.

"Shh pumpkin, it's okay," Harry cooed as he rocked the child, hoping to get him to fall asleep.

"Our ride's here," Louis calls as he opens the front door to see the black SUV parked outside and ready to drive them to the airport.

Harry nodded, thankful that Niall's cries were now reduced to small hiccups as he gripped at Harry's jacket and rested his head on his papa's shoulder, his beloved dummy now in his lips and bobbing under his nose. Harry grabbed Niall's things and Louis draped a blanket over the child to cover him from the early morning cold as the driver walked over to help them with their things.

Once in the car, Louis handed Niall a sippy cup with chocolate milk in it and the little Irish boy sat back and drank it silently, leaning into Louis' side as his eyes grew heavy. Over half an hour later they make it to the airport and Louis picks up the three year old this time, covering him with the blanket as Harry thanked their driver and grabbed their things.

"Is he sleeping?" Liam asked curiously as he looked at Niall who upon hearing Liam's voice removed the blanket and looked at him with a large smile.

"Uncle Lee-yum!" Niall cheered and made grabby hands at the man who laughed and took the child from Louis.

"Hi pumpkin," Liam cooed, brushing back his messy hair as they all sit and wait for their plane to be called. "Aren't you tired, little one?"

"Nope," Niall said, popping the 'p' and grinning at Liam who chuckled.

"Well it's way to early for little boys like you to be awake, so why don't you try to sleep for a bit?"

"No wanna."

"Please babe? Look, the sun isn't even up yet and good little boys need to sleep a lot to grow up to be big and strong," Harry tells Niall as he rubs the child's back, watching in amusement as Niall rubs his eyes with his tiny little fists and there's a small pout.

"No," Niall whines and Louis can tell he's on the edge of throwing a tantrum and it's only a matter of time before Harry pushes him too far.

"Alright lads, don't push him," Louis warns the two.

Their plane gets called nearly an hour later after a short delay and Louis grabs Niall's hand as they start heading inside. Niall whines as they walk towards their seats, dragging his feet and refusing to walk until Louis sighed and picked him up.

"If you're good, I'll let you watch a movie," Louis bribed the child quietly, knowing Harry wouldn't approve of his bribes to get Niall to be good.

"Okay," Niall mumbled tiredly and rubbed at his eyes again, whining as Louis set him down on his own seat and strapped him in.

"Hush baby, it's just for a bit, okay?" Louis cooed as he sat next to the child, Liam and Harry sitting behind them.

Niall fell asleep before they took off and Louis let out a small sigh because it was too early and he didn't really want to deal with Niall for however long their flight took.

*

They arrive at Buenos Aires, Argentina because even though it wasn't an original stop on their tour the first time, they added a bunch of new dates now since technically this is their farewell tour. Just before they get off the plane Louis removes Niall's jacket seeing as it's summer in Argentina and not winter like in London. The three year old is wide awake now and pretty eager to get out of the plane.

"Go now?" Niall asked as he jumped around in his spot, making Liam, Harry and Louis laugh as they watched him.

"Yes pumpkin, we're going now," Harry tells the child who cheers.

It's chaotic out in the airport. There's fans and paps waiting for them, hoping to catch a glimpse at baby Niall so before they can all be spotted, they look at their security guards for help.

"Sorry lads, your management called them in," Preston apologized and they sighed. Of course management wants to expose a poor three year old like that.

"Alright pumpkin, we need you to hold on tight, okay? If you get scared just hide your face in mama's neck and don't look, okay?" Harry tells the child as Louis picked up Niall and placed him on his hip.

"Okay," Niall said a bit quietly, his gaze on the fans all waiting excitedly. Even little Niall looked wary of the large crowd as he quickly tucked his face into Louis' neck.

"Alright boys, lets grab your things so we can take you straight to the hotel," Paddy says as they begin to head towards baggage claim.

Getting their bags is easy, but trying to walk past the screaming fans and paps is easier said than done. Niall whimpers and closes his eyes as he keeps hiding his face. Louis doesn't even bother to look friendly as he holds onto Niall tightly and even glares at the paps. Harry walks beside him with a hand on Louis's back and closest to where Niall is so he could shield the child as best he could. Their security walks close to the boys and they hurry in working them down towards their awaiting ride.

Once inside the safety of their ride, Harry pulls Niall onto his lap and hands him his stuffed Olaf to calm him down. The child is quick to fall asleep cuddled up into Harry's chest and his dummy in his mouth that Louis still didn't approve of. Niall's three, not a baby, but he does admit that he looks cute. And he only really allows it when Niall's really upset.

"What's on our agenda today?" Louis asks Preston who's sitting at the front.

"You've got two radio interviews later and a small rehearsal afterwards," Preston replies as he looks through his phone.

"Alright, thanks."

They reach the hotel after a bit of traffic and Niall is still fast asleep, only wakes up a bit when Louis gets him out of the car and away from Harry's warmth. Louis quickly shushes him and sways the little lad back and forth to get him to fall asleep, Olaf nearly falling from his grip but Paddy quickly grabs it and Louis sends him a thankful smile.

They head up to their room after checking in and Louis lays Niall down in the middle of one of the large beds. They were supposed to get a suite with two bedrooms, but there'd been a mix up so now they were stuck with a double bed suite not that they minded anyways. Liam's room was three doors down from them.

"I'm exhausted," Harry groans as he lays down on the other bed facing the ceiling and his eyes closed.

"I'm mad," Louis says quietly as he lays down next to his boyfriend.

"Me too."

*

Liam was let into Louis and Harry's hotel room with a smile and Niall gasped excitedly and ran up to the man.

"Lee-yum!" Niall cheered, arms up and clutching at his shirt.

"Hi munchkin!" Liam says as he picks up the boy and kisses his cheek. "We've got a surprise for you."

"For me?"

"Yes for you, baby," Louis assured him with a chuckle.

Harry grinned and opened the door again, letting Zayn walk in.

"Zaynie! My Zaynie here!" Niall cheered and reached over for the dark haired man who laughed and took the child from Liam's arms.

"Hi babes! I've missed you so much," Zayn says as he hugs Niall tightly and pressed kisses all over his face and making Niall laugh loudly.

The other three watched with smiles on their faces as Niall began to talk to Zayn even though over half of his story didn't make sense. Zayn simply watched on in amusement and humored the small child.

"So are you boys ready for tomorrow night?" Zayn asks with a smirk as he sits on the couch and watches Niall head off to play with some race cars on the ground.

"Question is mate, are you ready?" Liam asked the dark haired male who laughed.

"I'm ready to do this again with you, lot. The fans will practically die on the spot once they see me, but the surprise will be worth it."

Louis and Harry chuckled at his response. Niall was still sitting on the ground making cute little noises as he pushed his cars around.

"Mommy, potty!" Niall called, his face telling Louis that it was urgent as he stood up and did a little dance.

"Alright. Hurry kiddo!" Louis said as he stood up and took the child to the bathroom.

"Seems like Louis has settled for being called mommy," Liam teased and Harry and Zayn both laughed.

"He still hates it, so we've been trying to change it to papa, but I doubt Niall's ever gonna want to call him anything else. He's been calling Louis mom for months now," Harry told them.

"Harry! We had an accident!" Louis shouts suddenly and Harry sighs as he stands up.

"Been happening often?" Liam asks with an amused expression.

"Niall's developed a habit of not telling us until the very last possible minute and we've warned him about putting him on nappies if it keeps happening."

Zayn and Liam chuckle as they watch Harry grab some clean underwear and joggers for Niall before heading towards the bathroom where they can hear Niall's soft sniffles.

When Harry enters the bathroom, Louis' sitting on the edge of the bathtub with Niall standing between his legs and crying into his chest. Harry sighs as he closes the door and goes over to run his fingers through Niall's hair.

"Pumpkin, no more tears, yeah?" Harry coos as he pulls the little boy away from Louis' hold.

"S-Sorry!" Niall cries, looking at Harry with scared blue eyes.

"Shh, babe, it's fine. We'll juts clean you up real quick and then we can go watch a movie or whatever you want, yeah?" Louis tells the child as he leans forward to press a kiss to his forehead.

Harry decided to give the child a bath since it was getting late and that way he'd be all clean and ready for sleep. So while Harry bathed the boy, Louis went out to wait with Liam and Zayn who were watching TV.

"Is Niall okay?" Liam asked Louis.

"Yeah," Louis sighed.

Ten minutes later Harry walked out of the bathroom with Niall in his arms still looking a little upset. Louis pouts at his upset baby and makes grabby hands, Harry setting Niall down on Louis' lap.

"It's okay, pumpkin. Hmm? There's no need to be upset because accidents happen, yeah?" Louis reassured the toddler as he cuddled him close, rubbing his back and loving the way that Niall curled up on his lap into a small ball.

"Want my Olaf," Niall mumbled as he looked up at Louis who smiled down at him.

"Anything for my precious little pumpkin. Can someone get me Ni's Olaf?" Louis asked the others and Zayn nodded before going off to get the stuffed toy he'd given the child for his birthday.

"Here you go babes," Zayn tells the child as he hands him the stuffed snowman and Niall smiles wide and giggles, bringing a large smile to the others who look at him fondly.

February 12, 2016

The day of the first show arrived and everyone was stressing out, even Niall because no one would play with him. Lottie and her boyfriend Tommy had been trying their best to entertain the child with movies or playing with him while the other four did soundcheck and then did interviews, minus Zayn because no one was supposed to know he was there.

"Mommy!" Niall cried excitedly as Louis walked into the dressing room where Niall had been playing with Lux and Lottie, making grabby hands at the man who smiled and picked him up.

"Hi baby," Louis cooed as he cuddled the boy close and kissed his forehead. "Are you having fun with Lolo and Lux?"

"Yes and I very good," Niall told Louis with a large grin as he pulled back to look at Louis who chuckled.

"Well good! After dinner I'll tell Sarah to give you an extra special treat then."

Niall nodded eagerly and then he was set back down next to Lottie and the three resumed playing again while Louis moved around trying to find his phone charger. Once he finds it he walks out and Niall is left pouting but still continues to be good so his mommy and Sarah can give him a special treat after dinner.

Dinner time arrived and Harry held Niall's hand as they walked over towards the catering area, the little boy skipping along beside his daddy excitedly and Harry couldn't help but coo. Sarah served the three year old a simple meal of mac and cheese with dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets that made him really excited.

"What are those called, Nialler?" Louis asked the child sitting beside him, pointing at the chicken nuggets.

"They dinos and they go rawr!" Niall exclaimed, imitating a dinosaur and curling his fingers until they resembled claws.

"Good job!" Liam and Zayn chuckled at that, Harry having recorded the whole thing on his phone.

"You're such a smart boy," Louis told Niall, pressing a kiss to the top of his head. "Now eat your dinos so you can get smarter."

The rest of their meal went by quickly and soon enough all four were warming up their vocal chords for their show while Niall and Lux colored in their books in Louis and Harry's dressing room with Lou watching over them.

Just before the show started, the four boys checked up on Niall who gave them each a good luck kiss before they hurried off to get ready to head on stage. The show went on without a hitch and the crowd only screamed louder when Zayn walked in halfway through the first song. Of course it was difficult without the energetic Irishman, but they had to get used to it. They would smile each time they'd spot their biggest little fan watching from the side dancing around with Lux while Lottie laughed and recorded them.

By the time the show ended, Louis and Harry found their baby fast asleep on the couch in their dressing room wrapped in one of Louis' hoodies.

"We're doing great, aren't we?" Harry asked his boyfriend as they stood and watched the child with soft looks on their faces.

"That we are," Louis responded.

February 14, 2016

For once, they have a day off on Valentine's Day, so Harry and Louis were taking up that opportunity to go out and have a date, as well as Liam and Sophia who'd flown in a day ago. That meant that Niall would be spending the day and most likely the night with Zayn.

"Alright buddy, you're going to have a fun day with uncle Zaynie. And I want you to be good, okay?" Louis warned the child as he tied Niall's black Vans.

"I be good!" Niall promised his mommy who looked at him a little skeptically. While Niall was good on most occasions, it'd been figured out that the boy behaved bad when neither of his parents were around.

"Alright, Niall's backpack is ready to go!" Harry cheered as he walked over with Niall's Paw Patrol backpack.

"Did you pack his toothbrush?" Louis asked his boyfriend as he stood up and stretched, watching Niall skip off towards Harry and put his backpack on.

"Yes, and his dummy and pull ups and his pajamas," Harry listed off for Louis who rolled his eyes.

"Don't get sassy with me, lad."

"Zaynie!" Niall began to chant over and over as he walked around Harry in circles.

"Yeah yeah, let's get you to your precious Zaynie," Louis huffed jokingly as he headed towards the door with Niall following him.

The family of three left their hotel room and headed down the hall towards Zayn's room where Niall knocked on the door excitedly. The door opened a few seconds later to reveal a smiling Zayn Malik who quickly scooped up the three year old and kissed his chubby rosy colored cheeks.

"Are you ready for a fun night with me?" Zayn asked the child who nodded excitedly.

"Not too much candy and don't let him go to sleep late. Bedtime's at nine and don't let him watch anything that's above PG or too violent," Louis warned Zayn who rolled his eyes.

"Yes, I know these things because you reminded me all day yesterday and I'm sure you'll keep texting me through the day to remind me," Zayn said tiredly as he set Niall down and watched him run inside the room. "Now leave before I smack the both of you."

"Pumpkin, come say bye!" Harry called as he looked around Zayn to spot the toddler inside who ran out, dropping his Olaf on the ground as he jumped into Harry's arms. "Love you."

"Love you too!" Niall giggled and kissed Harry's cheek, leaving behind a little bit of saliva but the curly haired lad didn't mind.

"Remember to be good and we'll come get you in the morning and we'll all go eat yummy breakfast," Louis told Niall as he ran his fingers through the child's hair.

Niall simply nodded and giggled in delight when both Louis and Harry kissed him on either cheek at the same time. Soon Niall was in Zayn's hotel room already causing a mess for the older boy.

"Alright babes, what do you want to do?" Zayn asked as he walked into the living area of the room where Niall was sitting on the ground by the couch already dumping the contents of his backpack. "Babes, you're making a mess."

"Oops," Niall mumbled nonchalantly and a small shrug of his shoulders while Zayn chuckled.

"Just get your toys out so I can stuff your things inside."

Niall pulled out some race cars and his coloring book and crayons before handing Zayn his backpack and watching him clean everything up.

"Zaynie, can we watch movie?" Niall asked him in a cute little voice. "Please."

"Alright. Which movie do you want to watch?" Zayn asked as he picked up the child from the ground and placed him on his left hip.

"Hmm The Lion King!"

"Good choice."

The two watched the movie cuddled on Zayn's bed.

It's a long day for Zayn. Niall is full of energy after they go out for lunch and the child refuses to take his nap. He's running around the hotel room and even the security guards look tired from having to help Zayn watch after the child. Niall finally crashes sometime after three and falls asleep on the floor with a crayon on his left hand and Olaf tucked into his other arm. Zayn smiles as he snaps a picture and sends it to Louis and Harry before he picks up Niall gently and sets him in the middle of the bed.

Niall wakes up an hour later and it's a lot more calm than earlier. Liam and Sophia stop by to drop of some treats for the two and hang out before leaving again.

By the time night falls, Niall is tired, cranky and missing his mommy and daddy. There's more tears than giggles and Zayn doesn't like it.

"Nialler, they'll be back soon," Zayn says as he cuddles the sad child.

"Miss 'em!" Niall cries, big fat tears rolling down his cheeks.

"I know you do, love. And I'm sure they miss you too."

Niall hiccups as he sits up on Zayn's lap, looking up at him with red swollen eyes. Zayn pouted a little and wiped Niall's tears with the pads of his thumbs.

"How about a nice warm bath?"

"With bubbles?"

"With bubbles," Zayn promised and Niall nodded, wrapping his arms around Zayn's neck as the older man stood up, holding onto the child. "You little monkey."

Niall giggled as Zayn's fingers tickled his sides.

By nine forty one, Niall was fast asleep on Zayn's bed curled up into Olaf and Zayn sighed in relief. It'd been a long day and he never thought that it'd be hard watching over a three year old on his own.