Jolly Holiday

Shelbie was a fashion designer. Very low key, living in upper Manhattan with her junkie brother. Then she got her big break. And that big break, went by One Direction.

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17. Official

"HOLY-" I had to block my ears from the endless stream of expletives flowing from my baby sister's mouth, "Wait a minute. You're hosing me, around you?"

"No, I'm serious, Babe," I giggled at the slack in her jaw as se tried to process what I was telling her. She didn't believe me, "You are opening for the boys tonight."

"Shelbs, I haven't sang in two years." she reasoned, "I can't do an opener for One Direction! I didn't even bring my guitar!"

"Relax, Kat! I've got it all under control. Niall said you could use his guitar. He even said he'd do that Jason Mraz song you love so much as a duet! It's so perfect! I'll find you something amazing to wear. Trust me, you'll have a ball."

"You're the best sister ever. I hope you know that." she squealed. And so began the ecstatic squeals of joy and bear hugs.


"How'd she take it?" Louis asked as he let me into his room.

I grinned proudly, striking a pose that vaguely resembled Superman, "Not to toot my own horn, but I just got One Direction the most kickass opener in the history of openers." he took me by the shoulders and led me to the couch, "This is going to make her so happy. You have no idea."

"Glad I could be of assistance," he chuckled, eyes glistening, "You know, I know you can sing, too. I'd like to hear you. Will you sing for me, Shelbie?"

"You've already heard me sing, Lou. I'm nothing special. I'm just me." I brushed off his question like it was nothing.

"I've heard you sing when you were drunk off your rump and higher than a kite, Shelbs. It's a little different. I want to hear you like this. I want to hear you sing like nobody's here with you."

Nodding, I shuffled through my mental playlist as he got comfortable, preparing for whatever was about to come out of my mouth. I finally knew what I was going to do. It was an odd choice, but suitable for my situation nonetheless.

"I look up to the
Little bird that flies
Across the sky
He sings the clearest melody
It makes me want to cry
It makes me want to sit right down and cry, cry, cry"

Louis' eyes grew huge and I bit my lip. That look was certainly never a good one. His features soon lightened, though, and he mumbled, "With a voice like that you should be on a stage. You could be on Broadway of you wanted! Why the hell are you making you living as a pack mule with a voice like that?"

"Okay, first off, I'm an intern. Not a pack mule-"

"Same difference." he dismissed.

"And secondly, I was offered a Broadway stand-by when I was a sophomore. And I declined."

"Why would you decline? The just flat out offered you a role and you just declined? Shelbie, this is Broadway you're talking about! Not the freaking Derby Dinner!"

"Well, I would like to point out that had I taken that role, I would still be in New York schlepping drinks for a living. Instead I'm curled up on a couch in a posh hotel in Europe with Louis Tomlinson from One Direction." I giggled, "Besides, I don't have any regrets. If I want to consider theater in the future, that option is still open. I'll just have to audition like everyone else. Which I find better, but I'll be getting in on pure talent. Not just because some talent scout who has his nose up the director's arse decides I'm good enough."

"I get it." I whispered, running his hands up and down my arms. It was relaxing, I'll admit that. He wrapped his arms around my middle, pulling me close until my back was pressing against his chest. He lay his chin on my shoulder. Louis really did look to be about ten years old like this. There was not a sexual thing about it. We were just two friends. And honestly, I could've stayed exactly like this forever and would've been perfectly happy.

"Alright, so we have about five hours until we have to leave. So what would you like to do until then?" I asked, turning to face him. I was so oblivious I hadn't even realized that when I had turned I'd ended up straddling him. Awkward.

There was a knock on the door then and I shot to my feet, "Lou," Niall's voice called, "I can't find Shelbie. Is she in there with you?"

"Duty calls." Louis grumbled. He actually seemed somewhat dejected at the sound of his best mate's voice.

"Alright, I'll see you tonight." I said, leaning over to hastily peck him on the cheek, "I owe you, Lou." I said, before allowing the door to close behind me and turning my attention fully to Niall.

"Why do you owe him?" Niall asked curiously as we made our way to the elevator bay.

"Oh, he just did me a little favor."

"Care to elaborate?" he asked suspiciously. What the hell was this? An investigation?

"Well its a long story. So the abridged version will have to do. He's helping me put Kat on a your opening act tonight."

"Should I be concerned?" he asked jokingly. Okay, I may have told a teeny white lie about Niall knowing about all this. He hadn't exactly agreed to anything yet.

"No? But you should be for-warned. I told her she could borrow your guitar." I mumbled so quietly he could barely make it out.

"WHAT?"

"And that you would do a duet of that Jason Mraz song that you hate, but she happens to love...." I eeked out in one breath. Wow. It actually sounded crazier when I said it out loud.

"What's in it for me?" he asked, a cheeky grin at play.

"We'll talk later." I said with an impish grin of my own, "Now go practice!"

"You're lucky I love you." he concluded before turning on his heel and skipping off to his room once more.

Yup. It's official. He said it. And I was frozen because of it.
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