Age is Just a Number

Caroline is a 15-year-old girl who likes One Direction, but isn't in love with them like the rest of her friends. When one of her friends takes the four of them to meet One Direction backstage, Caroline meets five boys who will change her life forever.

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14. Curly Fry

Harry's POV

      I waited until Caroline got out of the bathroom, and, in truth, it was quite a while, but it didn't seem long to me. I don't know why. I always hated having to wait for Evelyn, especially when we had a specific time planned ahead of time. But for some reason, waiting for Caroline didn't seem like a pain at all.

      She came out of the bathroom and her hair was in a messy bun, and there was no longer any makeup streaming down her face. She looked beautiful as always.

      "What do you want to do?" she asked, sitting next to me.

      Without even thinking, I said, "Look at your beautiful face."

      Her cheeks turned a rosy shade and her hair fell in front of her face as she looked down at the floor.

      "Really, though, what did you want to do? My parents will be gone all day," she said, glancing up shyly at me. I grinned at her cheekily.

      "How about we watch some films? That's always fun," I suggested. She smiled.

      "That's a wonderful idea," she said, and stood. She led me to the living room with a large TV and we watched The Notebook.

      As the movie progressed, Caroline gradually edged over to me from her seat a few inches away. After half an hour, she was right next to me, almost touching me. I could tell she didn't want to go to fast or creep me out, so I gently scooted the last little bit so that we were right next to each other. I went with the cheesy yet classic "yawning and stretching the arm and having it land around the lady's shoulders" and she quickly leaned into me.

      We cuddled the rest of the movie. She teared up at the saddest moments and I held her closer to me, hugging her tightly.

      After the movie ended, we decided to play a board game. Of course, we went with the greatest game on the face of the earth: Candyland. After getting stuck in the same spots over and over again, I told Caroline the game was rigged. She giggled and, after her fourth win, she folded up the game and we watched a few more films.

      Four hours later, we sat stretched out in her room, talking and playing on our phones. Every time I glanced at Caroline, she was frowning at her phone. It was buzzing constantly.

      Finally I couldn't stand it any more. "Hey, Caroline, can I see your phone?" I asked. Real subtle Harry. Reeeeeeeal subtle.

      Her eyes got wide and she answered quickly, "Why? Why would you want to see my phone?"

      "I just want to beat your Angry Birds high score, relax," I said, hopping off the bed and laying on the floor next to her.

      "Oh," she said. She relaxed and opened up Angry Birds, handing me her phone. I gave her mine and I quickly started playing once she seemed to be satisfied that I was, in fact, playing Angry Birds, she took my previous spot on her bed and I continued playing. For about two seconds.

      I hit the home button and opened up her messages. What I saw shocked me. They're were loads of nasty, hurtful messages from her friends, and an especially high number from Kayla. I couldn't believe the things they were saying to her. They were awful.

      Finally I couldn't take it. I turned to Caroline and asked, "Do you mind if I reply to the twats you call friends?" Her eyes widened in surprise and she jolted upright.

      "You read my messages?" she yelped.

      I ducked my head. "Yeah, sorry. I was just worried, and they kept appearing, so..."

      She breathed out frustratedly. "It's alright, Harry. I didn't really want you to read those, but I guess it doesn't matter."

      "It does matter! I'm sorry I invaded your privacy. I shouldn't have done that. But I'm kind of the cause of all this, so it's only fair that I should get to reply to these morons. Please? I'll even let them know it's me!" I pleaded. Caroline rolled her eyes and shrugged her shoulders.

      "Go ahead. Doesn't matter to me."

      I whooped and started texting back, calling them the worst things I knew. I made sure they were so obscure that most Americans would have no idea what they meant. I typed until I thought my fingers would fall off, and then I kept typing some more. Soon enough, the texts stopped coming entirely. I handed the phone back to Caroline, grinning contentedly.

      "There," I said, "now they won't be texting you for a while."

      A smile spread across her face as she read the messages. "I can't believe you. What do these things even mean?" she giggled. I just smiled at her and went back to playing on my phone.

      A little while later, I rolled over to look at Caroline. "I know this is kind of a weird time to ask this," I started, "but would you, um, I mean, I know we met two days ago, but I really like you, and you're beautiful, and, um, would you, uh, be my girlfriend?" I stuttered nervously. I had no idea if it was too early, but I only had a week, and I wanted to get things going before I left. Hopefully we could make it work.

      She blushed and her eyes turned to saucers. "Really? I mean, me?" she squeaked. I nodded to her and she beamed back at me. "Of course Harry! I'd love too, but, you only have a week. How is that going to work?"

      I sighed. "I don't know, but we'll figure it out."

      A little while later, Caroline rolled over and looked at me. "If I am your girlfriend, I need a nickname for you. And it can't be something like Haz, it has to be...unique," she said. "Any suggestions or cautionary information?"

      I shook my head. "Nope. If you want the nickname to be special for us, you're going to have to come up with it all on your own. And anything you like, I'll like."

      She thought a moment, and then said, "Well, in that case, you're new nickname is, drumroll please..."

      I made a drumroll like noise by rapping my knuckles on a nearby table.

      "Curly Fry!" she yelled, throwing her hands in the air and falling backwards onto the bed. She began having a fit of giggles, and I quickly pounced on top of her and tickled her, making her giggle all the harder.

      "Curly Fry! Curly Fry!" she screamed, and I tickled her harder. Eventually she was screaming so loud and laughing so hard that there were tears running down her face, so I fell down onto the bed next to her. She rolled over to face me and I stared into her beautiful hazel eyes.

      "I like that nickname. It can stay," I said. Caroline smiled and I leaned in close to her. We were centimeters apart, but her phone buzzed and startled us, ruining the moment. She mumbled apologies all the way over to where her phone had been tossed while I was tickling her, and as soon as she looked at her messages she grimaced.

      "The girls don't believe it's you. They think it's me tricking them."

      I frowned and stood up. I gently took her phone and opened the camera, flipping it toward us. Then I kissed her full on the lips, fireworks going off inside me, and snapped a picture. We kept kissing, deeper and deeper. Gradually I moved Caroline up against the wall, kissing her passionately. But then we heard the front door swing open and her parents bustling into the house and we broke apart.

     Caroline plopped down on her bed, breathing heavily. "Wow," was all she could say, and I grinned at her. I quickly sent the picture to all four of her friends, asking them if that didn't prove that it was me.

      "There," I said, showing Caroline the sent messages. "Now they should believe it's me." She smiled and looked up at me.

      "Thanks, Curly Fry. You're the best."

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