♫ Life's Melody {1D Edition} ♫

Melody May Millington is a music geek. She's not drop dead gorgeous (at least she doesn't think so), not a member of the cheer squad (she's way too uncoordinated), and never won Prom Queen (not that she went to Prom-- she didn't get invited). She has a past that no one knows. She's always in the background, and doesn't mind it, at all. Until she meets the wonder that is One Direction. Will love blossom, or is it all about the music for Melody? And what about when a jealous best friend enters the picture? Friendships will be strained, relationships will be tested, and the truth will be revealed. Read about it all in "Life's Melody {1D Edition}".

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3. ♪ Welcome to England ♪

"Melody Millington? What a pleasure to meet you; I'm Paul Higgins, the boy's tour manager," Paul— also known as the man that burst through the room and had the boys drag me out—introduces himself.

"Why am I in a van? Am I being kidnapped?!"

Yeah... I'm not really the best in social situations.

"Kidnapped? Of course not. We just need to finalize everything for tomorrow morning," he informs me, holding back a confused grin.

"Finalize what? I don't understand what you guys are on about.”

"We loved your audition; you're going on tour with us as our keyboardist!" Niall cheers, smiling at me.

"I didn't audition?"

"Yes you did, in the music room 10 minutes ago," Louis says wickedly, a mischievous gleam in his eye.

"That wasn't an audition, Mr. Caballero tricked me!" I cry out, shaking my head.

"You don't want to go on tour with us?" Louis asks pouting at me.

"No."

"Why not?" he whines, sticking his bottom lip out at me.

"I don't even know you, there's no way I'm going to travel with you for... how long is this tour anyways?"

"From December to June of next year, with breaks in between of course," Liam states.

"Even if I did want to go with you guys, my brother would never allow it," I protest, crossing my arms across my chest.

"Actually, we already have permission from your legal guardian, who dropped off your luggage as well," Paul, who has been relatively quiet throughout our bickering, speaks up.

"There is no way Brandon would have approved this; he's extremely protective of me," I counter, grabbing my phone to call him and see.

"Hello?"

"Brandon, I am in a van filled with maniacs trying to get me to live with them," I whisper into the phone.

"Calm down Mel, Mr. Caballero contacted me. He said Paul is a close friend of his who can keep an eye on you, and that this is an amazing opportunity for you, I couldn't refuse his offer. Believe me, I was reluctant at first, especially since you'll be with five boys, but you need to expand your horizons," Brandon explains calmly.

"But-" I begin to protest, but get cut off by my older brother's voice.

"Melody, I've never seen you hang out with anyone but Cody. You don't even have any girlfriends as far as I know,"

"I do not need to 'expand my horizons' and I most definitely do not need a girlfriend," I snap into the phone, causing all the lads to laugh.

"You know that's not how I meant it," Brandon chuckles from the other end of the phone.

"Whatever, I'm hanging up now," I state, rolling my eyes.

"Just call me as soon as you land in England, alright? I already packed for you. And remember, don't speak to strangers."

"I hate you," I say, glaring at my phone.

"I love you too!" he sings, ending the call.

I growl and shove my phone into my pocket, turning to face the window.

"Great, so it's all settled that you're going on tour with us now," Louis chirps happily. I ignore him and continue silently staring at the window. "Melody, please talk to us, we want to get to know our new band mate," he pleads with the most adorable puppy dog eyes known to man, besides Cody's, that is.

"Sorry, but my brother told me not to talk to strangers," I mutter, my gaze never breaking from the window. I decide to ignore the boys and their questions throughout the rest of the car ride, opting instead to mentally rehearse my new strings piece. I quietly hum the music to myself, drumming my fingertips lightly on my knees, blocking the boys out entirely. I begin to fantasize about performing in famous music halls all over the globe, headlining them even...

"MELODY!"

I shriek and fall out of my seat, not even realizing that I never had my seatbelt on to begin with.

"Are you alright? I didn't mean to frighten you," a familiar accent inquires. I turn my squished face away from the van floor to meet Louis' bright blue eyes and amused smirk. Will this boy ever leave me alone?

"I'm fine, you startled me is all." With that, I pull myself up and run out of the van, realizing that we're parked and everyone else is gone. I turn around trying to spot one of the boy's semi-familiar faces, but to no avail. The entire front of the hotel is packed is screaming teenage girls (and a few boys), much like how it was back at the school, disabling me from going inside. I advance about three steps before I'm rudely elbowed in the face and forcefully pushed back.

"Excuse me, I need to get through," I mumble, risking one last attempt at getting through the crowd. Once again, a bony elbow is jabbed into my side. I whimper and step away, reevaluating my circumstances. 

 "You're never gonna make it through them, babe," Louis whispers into my ear, shocking me once again. When I don't reply, he grabs my hand and leads me towards a circle of buff (and rather scary looking, if I'm quite honest) men, presumably their bodyguards.

"There you are! We can escort Ms. Millington from here," one of the men offers.

"I think I can manage, Preston," Louis says sarcastically, tugging at my arm.

"Wouldn't you like to quickly greet the fans?" The man, who I now know is named Preston, asks, confused.

"Of course I do, Melody can join me!"

"I don't think—"

"I don't want to face the fans," I interrupt Preston quietly. He turns to address me, "Would you feel more comfortable if we took you through the back entrance instead?" I nod and detach my hand from Louis', much to his disappointment. Preston motions towards some men, who step forward and encircle me. I don't even glance back at Louis as I let the men lead me around the building and indoors, away from the piercing screams and frantic fan girls.

"The boys are on the tenth floor, you can go ahead and meet them up there," one informs me, handing me the key that's needed in order for the elevator to reach said floor. I smile and thank him, walking towards the elevators. Once I reach the floor, a blond head pops out from a door.

"Louis, is that you? Did you get Melody?" Niall asks, looking down the corridor. "Oh, hi, Melody!" he calls, spotting me exiting the lift. "Where's Louis?"

I shrug my shoulders and slowly walk down the hallway, awkwardly stopping in front of the doorway that Niall is standing in. I stare at him for a few seconds until he catches on.

"Come in!" he invites, stepping back and opening the door wide. I silently walk in, staring down at the ground the entire way.

"You don't have to be scared of us, we're not going to bite you know," Liam says from his position on the couch.

"Yeah, there's no need to be shy! We'll be getting to know each other pretty well while on tour," Zayn agrees, smiling cheekily at me. Liam motions for me to join them on the couch, so I reluctantly settle in between him and Niall. Harry's sitting on one of the beds, staring down at his phone, silent. Moments later Louis barges in, followed by Paul, breaking the silence.

"We are all checked out and ready to go. Our flight to England leaves at 6," Paul announces. I look at the time and notice it's barely 4.

"What about our luggage?"

"It's already taken care of, now we better get going if you want to stop for food," he replies knowingly, looking at Niall pointedly.

"Yes, Paul," the boys answer simultaneously— It's kind of freaky actually.

I'm the last one out of the room, with Paul closing the door behind me. "You're going to be fine," he reassures me. "Mr. Caballero is a very close friend of mine, and he's spoken very highly of you. Remember you can always come to me if you have a problem." He smiles down at me and pats me on the back. I nod, shutting my eyes tight to stop the tears that are welling up. I've never had a father figure in my life— it's been me, Brandon, and Cody for as long as I care to remember— and his last sentence sounded well fatherly to me.

"OK," I whisper, my voice hoarse from unshed tears.

"Why don't you take a moment to collect yourself, and we'll catch the next elevator, alright?" He sends the boys down with a few security guards.

I pause a few steps away from the van, taking a few deep breaths and hastily wiping underneath my eyes. Plastering a fake grin on my face, I open the door and slide in next to Zayn. He sends me a questioning glance, but I pretend to not see it and lean my head back, shutting my eyes. The car fades into silence, and soon my breathing evens.

"Do you reckon she's asleep?"

Louis gently pokes my cheek and when I don't flinch, withdrawals his hand and whispers, "I think so."

"She's very distant with us," Zayn comments, thinking I'm unconscious and can't hear him.

"I wish she would open up," Niall replies sullenly.

"We did just meet her for the first time not even two hours ago; you can't expect her to share all her secrets like we're best mates," Liam reasons. I had a feeling he was the sensible one, and guess what; I was right.

"You do have a valid point..." Louis trails off.

"Aww look at her, she's sleeping on Louis! How precious," Niall coos suddenly. He's right; without knowing it, my head has lolled to the side and is now resting on Louis' shoulder. I can't exactly switch my position, because then they will realize that I've been awake and eavesdropping throughout the entire conversation. Besides, his sweater is very soft against my skin.

"Should we leave her? She looks so peaceful..."

"I'll stay here while you eat," Louis offers.

"What if she's hungry and then gets cranky at us for not including her? And you must be starving as well," Zayn ponders. Louis doesn't respond, but shrugs his shoulders so lightly it barely disturbs me. I decide that now would be a good time to 'wake up'. I open my eyes and lift my head up, looking around in mock confusion.

"Where are we?" I yawn, raising my arms above my head as if I were stretching.

"Hello, Sleeping Beauty. We're at McDonald's for a quick bite," Louis mutters, amused.

"Perfect, I'm famished," I chirp, jumping out of the van and walking inside as if I didn't just hear every word they said.

"What would you like?" Paul asks, staring down at me. Wow, I guess he's taking his promise to my brother and Mr. Caballero seriously.

Louis pops up behind me and scans the menu. "I think I'll get the Spicy Chicken McBites... Or maybe I'll get a Big Mac instead..."

"Chicken tenders for me," Liam orders, straight and to the point. He turns around and tells me that he's very fussy about food and likes to keep things simple.

"Umm, can I have a cheeseburger kid’s meal please?" I ask Paul quietly. He nods and repeats it to the cashier, who's staring at the boys, awestruck, and doesn't question my choice. "With no mustard, onions, or pickles," I add as an afterthought, scrunching my nose up in distaste at the thought. I absolutely despise mustard, the smell alone nauseates me, although I'm not sure why.

Louis stops talking to himself and smiles at me. "Look at Mel's cute little face," he fawns, poking my nose. I swat his hand away and grab my cup from Paul, noticing that he upgraded it from the standard kid size. I race to the fountain machine and contemplate over whether I should drink sweet tea or Coca-Cola. I end up with a cup full of coke, and about 5 lids snapped in half lying in the trash bin. Note to self: Never let Niall choose my lids ever again.

"Orders ready!" a worker calls from the front, not even bothering to say our number since the restaurant is deserted except for us.

All the boys stare at me when Paul hands me my little red and yellow box.

"May I help you?" I ask, preoccupied by opening my box.

"You got a Happy Meal?" They raise their eyebrows at me, with grins on their faces.

"Yes..." I murmur sheepishly, ducking my head down. Unfortunately, my hair is still up in a ponytail, so I'm pretty sure my blushing cheeks are in full view.

"There's no need to be embarrassed; I find it adorable!" Louis gushes, beaming at me. I ignore him and proceed to pull out my cheeseburger, cautiously unwrapping it and checking it before taking a dainty bite, unlike the boys who cram all the food they can into their mouths at once, alternating between their main meals and their fries. I love how now they give you both a package of apple slices and a little box of French fries in the kids meals, especially because I could never finish all my fries when they were handed out in larger portions.

"Uh, can someone open my caramel?" I ask meekly, holding the packet up. Niall is too immersed in his meal to notice me, but everyone else holds their hand out. I hand it to Liam, simply because he's right across me and closest to my outstretched hand. He unseals it without a problem and smiles benignly at me.

"Thank you."

"Mmhmm," he replies, going back to eating his chicken strips.

I pour the caramel into one of those little paper containers set out by the ketchup pump, and dip an apple slice in, covering it in sauce. I absolutely love caramel as much as I hate mustard, and you know how intensely I despise mustard. Zayn reaches over and grabs one, sticking it in my caramel and popping it in his mouth. I stare at him bewilderingly; I've not even exchanged more than 2 sentences with him.

"What? They looked appetizing," he defends himself.

"All you had to do was ask and I would have gladly given you an apple, instead of just stealing my food," I inform him, calmly.

"Fine, can I please have an apple slice, Melody?"

"Of course! Do you want caramel?" I reply enthusiastically, grabbing a slice out of my bag and presenting it to him.

He nods his head and smiles at me. "Yes please."

I slather caramel all over the apple and gingerly place it in Zayn's hand.

"There you go, one caramel covered apple slice for Mr. Malik!" I call out in an exaggerated manner; by now all the boys are in hysterics at Zayn and I.

"Paul, can we have dessert?" Niall beseeches, complaining about how he's still hungry.

While Niall is ordering with Paul, I throw my trash away, grabbing my empty cup so I can get a refill.

"Wait, I want your toy!" Zayn calls, rushing forward and grabbing the little action figure from my box.

"Alright..."

Zayn smiles in contempt and joins everyone else at the cash register, ordering sweets. I on the other hand, rinse out my cup with water and fill it with tea, before heading outside with Liam.

"Those boys have a preposterous appetite," I note, kicking the curb by the van lightly.

"That's what our Nialler's known for," Liam responds, with a hint of pride in his voice. We stand in a peaceful silence after that, neither of us wanting to break it. Well, at least I didn't want to.

"I'm dreadfully sorry about everything," Liam blurts out, ducking his head bashfully.

I look up at him and squint from the sunlight. "What do you mean?"

"I mean... Taking you from the school and throwing all of this at you at once. Practically forcing you to join us on tour... We can tell you don't want to be around us," he sighs, running a hand through his hair in distress.

"It's not that I don't want to be around you guys— you seem like an entertaining bunch— I'm just exceedingly shy; it takes a while for me to feel comfortable around others," I confess, avoiding his penetrating gaze.

"You don't have to be self-conscious, Melody," Liam whispers. "We're not going to judge you, we love you already, and we just met you not even 5 hours ago!"

"But—"

"Mel, I got you an apple pie to make up for all those apple slices I ate!" Zayn declares out of nowhere, waving a McDonald's bag in my face.

"That's so sweet, Zayn, thank you. I love apple pie!" I take the bag from his hand and pull out the pie, offering half to Liam. He shakes his head and disappears into the van.

"Is it good?" Zayn questions, watching me take a bite.

"It's delicious, would you like a piece?" I break a section off from the opposite end I'm eating off and offer it to him.

"I'm good; I had some of Harry’s."

"If you insist; I'm just glad I switched my coke out for tea!"

This time around, I make sure that I have seatbelt secured, and I actually respond to the boys when they talk to me. Before I know it, we're in the airport and boarding the plane. I'm actually very nervous, because I've never been on a plane before. I take my seat in between Liam and Niall, and try to soothe myself by music. The boys must notice my expression, because instantly they're surrounding me.

"What's wrong? Are you sick?" Liam asks worriedly.

I shake my head and gulp, wringing my hands together. I'm going to have to tell them sometime...

"I've never flown before," I whisper inaudibly.

"What?"

"I said I'm scared, because I've never been in a plane before," I speak up a little louder.

"What?"

"I'M AFRAID, BECAUSE I'VE NEVER FLOWN IN A PLANE BEFORE!"

The boys seem a little taken aback by my outburst, but they're expressions soften once my words register in their minds.

"It's OK, I've never been on a plane until I joined the band," Zayn offers, smiling at me.

"Do you want to sit with me?" Louis questions. I agree and follow Louis to his seat on the opposite side of Harry, so basically I just moved over a couple seats. With some persuasion, the flight attendant barely protests when I climb into Louis' lap and burrow my head into his shirt. Squeezing my eyes shut tight, I clutch fistfuls of his striped shirt and whimper quietly once the engine starts.

"Shh, just go to sleep and I'll wake you up after we're up and steady," Louis promises, rubbing my back soothingly. I comply and drift away to the steady rhythm of his heartbeat.

* * *

"Why does she only pay attention to you? Does she like you? She likes you, doesn't she?" A voice groans. I crack one eye open slightly and watch as he leans back in his seat in frustration. Eww, the boys thinks I like Louis? Louis is the closest I have to Brandon; he's a brotherly figure and that's it. He's way too old for me even if I did like him in any other way.

"Would you please quiet down?" I beg, shutting my eye again.

"No, I'm bored!" Niall whines.

I lift my head up from Louis' chest and smile at him. "Thank you for helping me," I say gratefully, truly meaning every word.

"You’re welcome!"

I climb off Louis' lap and settle back in my own seat, waving at Liam who's listening to his iPod.

"Watcha’ listening to?"

"Good Feeling, care to listen?"

I take one of his headphones and stick it into my ear, relaxing back in my seat. Liam and I play around on his iPod for a little bit, him introducing me to tons of artists I've never listened to before.

"I'm going to the toilets," Harry announces, gloomily, standing up and securing the blanket wrapped around him.

"Why are you bringing a blanket to the bathroom?"

"Uhh... Because I don't have anything on underneath..."

"OH MY GOD!" I shriek, jumping back and covering my eyes.

"At least he has the blanket on; Harry's always parading around naked," Niall informs me.

"It's liberating," Harry protests.

I turn my attention back to Liam's iPod and wave Harry away. "Just, go to the bathroom already. I don't even want to think about your body underneath there!" I shiver dramatically.

"You know secretly you love it," Harry sings, walking away slowly.

"No, Harry, I really, really, don't."

He finally disappears, and when he comes back I coax him into wearing clothing; we are about to land after all. That's right, my first flight is almost complete, and it was an interesting one, to say the least. I step off the plane and into the airport, thankfully no one even knows the boys we're flying today, so we get through rather quickly, and unharmed. I step outside and breathe in the cool air; it was stuffy in that plane! A breeze blowing throw makes me instantly regret not wearing my coat as the boys laugh at me.

"Welcome to England."

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