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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9. Terminate

"Your services will no longer be required."

My face dropped. I couldn't even be polite about it. Manager was firing me, "But...why?" I asked in shock.

You will be able to stay on with the crew until we return to London, but after that you will be sent back to America. There will be no cost to you of course."

"You haven't answered my question, Sir. Why am I being -" then I understood, "It's because of the bad publicity, isn't it?"

"Your services are no longer required." he recited.

In a second, my entire world came crashing down around me. I'd lost my job. I couldn't afford to live in New York anymore. That left me with one option. There was nothing left to do but to go back to Henryville.

I ran. I couldn't see a thing. I was running in a blind fit. I was angry, devastated, terrified.

"Babe, what's wrong?" Louis asked, as I slammed the door to the bus and collapsed on the couch, "What is it?" he asked, taking me in his arms, "Do you want me to get Niall?"

"No," I whispered, "I don't want Niall to see me like this. Can you just hold me for a minute?"

"Do you want to tell me what happened?" he asked, pulling me into his arms and pressing a kiss to the top of my head, "You don't have to talk, but if you want to -"

"You have to swear not to tell Niall. He has to have his head in the game when he performs tonight."

"Dear God. You're not pregnant are you?" he asked in horror.

"No, I'm not pregnant," I giggled through my tears, but when I looked back up at him, he was as serious as I had ever seen him, "I got fired."

His face grew into one of fury, "He figured out about you and Niall, didn't he?"

"No, it isn't that, Lou. Manager just said my services were no longer required. So I guess I'm going home."

"God, he did this same thing to Danielle." he barked. My hearts clenched at the mention of Liam's girlfriend, "You have to tell Niall."

"I can't tell him, Lou. Because when we get back to London, they're sending me home. And I don't think I can say goodbye to him. It would hurt too much."

"Who said anything about you going home, Shelbs? We're going to figure something out."

"Like what?" I sobbed, "What can you possibly do to stop this whole thing? Manager said-"

"We can find out a way to get around Manager. Danielle tags along on the tour. I'm sure you can too."

He really was reaching. It was kind of sweet. I could tell he genuinely didn't want me to go, "That's different, Lou. Danielle is Liam's girlfriend."

"Well, then..." he mustered up all the will power he could before spitting out words I never thought I would hear, "Be my fake girlfriend!"

"I don't think Eleanor would be very happy about that." I murmured, "But thanks."

"Eleanor isn't exactly..." his voice dropped. Unread territory.

"You two broke up?" I gasped, "Why?"

"I kind of had a thing for someone else and she figured out about it." he admitted, "It wasn't like I acted on it or anything. No, I really do love Eleanor. But I had a crush on someone else and she didn't like that. So..."

"Well, then Eleanor is missing out on something real special." I whispered. My brain chose that moment to kick into overdrive. I realized how close I gotten to Louis and I flew backwards.

I was laying across his lap. Our lips were practically touching. This was not supposed to happen. I was over the infatuations. Louis was one of my best friends! Why was I doing this?

"Okay," I murmured, "We'll be fake together." I extended a hand and we shook on it.

"Well, you may want to warn Niall. As irresistible as I am-" I gave him a slap across the chest. Louis could be so vain, "It may not be fake for long!" I knew he was joking.

I couldn't see how this couldn't blow up in my face. Niall and I were dating. Well, sort of. I'm not really sure what were. Okay; we were friends who were making plans to be more than friends.

And Louis had broken up with his girlfriend all of what? Five minutes ago?

So I from now until I managed to somehow either get hired back or start for real dating Niall, I was just supposed to go around holding hands and standing close with Louis. It sounded easy enough. I got a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. I knew something was going to go wrong. I just knew.

Be my fake girlfriend, he said. We'll figure something out, he said.
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