Summer With Styles

Macey Calihan is a grown woman now, and when she comes in contact with an old box of keepsakes, she remembers a series of incidents that made her the woman she is today. As a youngster, she was struggling with past occurrences of suicide, self harm, and of course depression, all while trying to balance out the good and bad things of her life. She was so close to happiness when her adoptive parents informed her she and her brother, Carter, would be going to the U.K. to spend the summer at her father's recording studio. She then meets the boy -- or boys -- who save her life, only to pick it up and wreck it again in a new, exciting way. Macey falls head over heels for one, while another falls for her. The only thing standing in her way of happiness, is one decision. But as it turns out, some decisions make themselves whether you like it or not.

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5. Lovely Misunderstandings

 

I woke up early, the sun shining, wrapped in Harry's arms with my my head on his chest. I sighed, holding in the perfect moment and taking pictures in my mind. He looked so peaceful and calm, mumbling in his sleep. I inched out of his arms, careful not to wake him, and went back to the house to find his mom cooking breakfast.

“Good morning,” she said with a smile.

“Morning.”

“Breakfast will be finished in about twenty minutes. The restroom is upstairs on the left. You can take a shower and throw on some of Gemma's clothes. She just left for school, but she said to feel free to raid her closet.”

“Thanks,” I said and climbed the stairs to the bathroom. After my shower I ventured down the hall to find Gemma's room, wearing nothing but a towel. The first room was obviously Anne's so I went on to the next. I opened the door slowly and peaked inside, finding a blue-painted room with band posters on the wall.

“This must be Harry's old room,” I said to myself as I stepped inside. I placed my hand on his bed, feeling the softness of his comforter. Then my eyes went to his dresser where a found a picture of him and a man with curly hair and green eyes, probably his dad. Harry told me his parents got a divorce when he was only seven, but I didn't know if he still had a relationship with him. I picked up the picture, smiling at the younger version of my boyfriend.

Someone opened the door. “And curiosity killed the cat,” he laughed.

I sat the picture back down and secured the towel around me. “Sorry,” I said.

“I don't mind, I haven't been in here since I moved out. Gemma's room is the last on the right.”

“Thanks,” I said, giving him a kiss on the cheek and walking past him. “I'll be down in a second.”

Throwing on a pair of tan shorts and a navy blue, shoulder-revealing blouse, I went downstairs where Harry and his mom sat at the table, eating. “That looks great on you,” his mom said, noticing me in the doorway. “I apologize for Gemma's wardrobe. She doesn't have anything that isn't flaunty. But you look perfect. Don't you think so, Harry?”

He looked up from his plate and smiled. “Beautiful as always,” he said, patting the seat next him. I took it eagerly and made my plate of pancakes, eggs, and bacon.

“This is delicious, Anne,” I said, taking another bite of pancakes.

“Mum is a fantastic cook,” Harry replied with a mouthful of food. “It's all she does really.”

“Oh, please. I just do it to take my mind off things.”

I smiled and told her, “I cook myself. Probably not this good but I cook dinner a lot.”

“I'm glad to hear we have something in common,” she laughed. “Where did you learn?”

“Oh...my mom,” I said in a hushed voice. “My birth mom. It's the only thing she taught me before...”

“Okay, I'm done here,” Harry said, interrupting me and standing from the table. Thank God for him. He knew if I talked about my real parents I would be in a bad mood for the rest of the day. “Do you want to stick around for a while, or do you want to go home?”

“Please stay!” Anne pleaded. “I'd love to show you some pictures from Harry's childhood and such.”

Harry's eyes got wide and he shook his head at me. “Uh, I really need to be home soon. I don't want my parents to worry.” She seemed disappointed, but Harry mouthed the words “thank you” and walked me out to his car.

“Your family is so nice. Especially Gemma.”

“Gemma is overly nice. Ever since she started at University, she's been a social butterfly.”

“Still...”

The entire ride home was silent. There was tension from what happened last night, and I could tell Harry was so mad at himself for it. I appreciated the gesture, but I didn't want that to happen. Not yet, anyway. I did like Harry...I really, really did. But there were some things I just wasn't ready for.

Finally he broke the quietness. “I'm sorry about last night,” he said, turning onto my street. “I was being inconsiderate and selfish.”

“You were just caught up in the moment,” I assured him. “Don't hate yourself.”

“I can't help it. I feel like I've violated you.” He stopped in front of my condo complex and got out to open my door. I stepped into the warm, summer air.

“Look at me,” I said, grabbing his face to look me in the eyes. “Do I look violated? I don't feel it, and I'm still the same girl I was yesterday. You did me no harm and it's fine. One day, that will happen, but for now let's just enjoy each other, okay?”

“Okay,” he said with a smile and bent down to kiss me.

“MACEY!” Shouted a voice, interrupting us. My eyes danced around the area looking for the familiar voice, but I couldn't find it. I saw faces passing but I recognized none of them, until one came up to me with wide open arms, and I couldn't believe who I was looking at.

“El!” I gasped, embracing her. “How are you?”

“I'm great, actually. I had an early class and just got out.” She smiled and looked up at Harry who was grinning ear to ear, shaking his hand. “Well, I'll be damned.”

Harry laughed and hugged her. “Small world, isn't it?” He said.

Was I missing something or...?

“You guys know each other?” I asked.

“Of course we do!” El replied. “This man right here introduced me to my boyfriend, the love of my life, the apple of my eye.”

“Eleanor here is dating Louis,” he informed me. “This is the Eleanor that Gemma was talking about.” Well then. I couldn't believe it. I had called her El for so long, I almost forgot her name was Eleanor. “How do you guys know each other?”

“We met ages ago as kids,” El said. “Our mums are good friends. Every summer they came to England, Lizzie and my mum would schedule play dates for us. But of course I haven't seen her for the last few years. Harry!” She shouted, hitting him on the arm. “Are you two dating!? Why didn't you tell me you had a girlfriend!?”

“Only the boys know for now, we don't want it to get out,” he said. I sighed, hating the idea of us keeping our relationship a secret from the world. Not that we didn't hide it really...kissing on the street and what not where everyone could see. “Hey, why weren't you and Danielle at the show last night?”

She scoffed and rolled her eyes. “We went to Wales for this seminar and got stuck in traffic for five hours. I don't even want to talk about it. But Macey!” She turned to me and took out her cell phone, handing it to me. “Give me your number so we can hang out. I've loads to tell you!”

Later that night, I found Carter on the phone with someone talking about me. I didn't mean to eavesdrop, but he was being loud and – of course I won't deny – I was nosey. “Harry is a joke, and you are so much better for her.”

Really? A joke? My boyfriend was certainly not a joke, nor was anyone else better for me.

“She thinks she has him where she wants him, but I know he's going to end up breaking her heart. If only she saw how much you love her...”

I coughed slightly, letting him know I was there. He gasped and hung up the phone, giving me a sly smile and walking passed me. “Excuse me,” I said, annoyed. “Who exactly were you saying that shit to?”

“Language!”

“Sorry,” I said insincerely. “Tell me.”

“Never.”

I followed him through the condo and outside, where he began walking down the street, avoiding me at whatever cost. I refused to give up until he told me. “Nathaniel Carter Calihan, I will chase you all over London until you tell me who that was!” I squalled at him, struggling to keep up with his pace.

“Go away, I have to meet up with someone.”

“TELL ME!”

“Fine!” He said, stopping and turning to me so fast I almost ran into him. “I was talking to Zayn, okay? He's crazy about you Macey and you don't even see it. He told me that every time you and Harry are together he falls apart a little.”

I was fuming, enraged that he would invade on my love life. “Well, that's unfortunate. Zayn and I have had this discussion and he knows how I feel! And who are you to be saying who's better for me? You don't even know Harry, Carter, and I'm beginning to think you don't know me either.”

“I know you better than anyone!” He yelled back. “That's why I know Zayn is perfect for you, instead of that Backstreet Boy clone that somehow manipulated you into thinking he was right for you!”

Disgusted, I walked away from him as fast as I could back to the condo, slamming the door shut behind me. “What's with you two?” Joe asked, confused. “You two never fight like that.”

“How did you know we were fighting?”

“Because he just texting me saying he's disowning you has his sister.”

“Cool,” I spat and marched into my bedroom. I shoved my headphones in my ear and turned up the volume as loud as it could go. Sunddenly on my phone appeared a text from El.

Tomorrow, the shops at 2:00. Be there please? Xox

I texted her back with a quick “Sure thing” and turned over to go to sleep, thinking about what Carter said to Zayn. Was he really that interested in me to call up my brother and talk about it? I didn't know what was going through his mind, but I knew what was going through mine...I had a lot of damage control to do.

So when I woke up around nine in the morning, the first thing I done was text Zayn to meet me at the cafe in town. I took a cab and sat at a table for twenty minutes before he finally showed up.

“Hey,” he said, sitting down. He had a little girl with him. “Sorry, I'm watching my little sister for the day. Do you mind?”

“No,” I said as the little girl ran off to look at the pastries. “I want to talk to you about Carter.”

“I guess you know.”

“I do, and I'm not okay with it. Look Zayn,” I said, grabbing taking his hand across the table. “You're adorable, and very, very sweet. But you gotta understand that Harry is...everything I need right now. What I have with him is something I've never had before I don't want to jeopardize that.”

He didn't say anything, but he sighed and stared at our touching hands. Finally he said, “But don't you feel that, when our hands touch? It's like a spark.” Out of the corner of my eye, something flashed, momentarily blinding us both. We looked out the window to find a man with a camera standing right beside us, laughing. “Oh god,” he said, looking at me, fear rushing through his eyes.

“What?”

“Paparazzi!”

Suddenly tons of them were there taking shot after shot. Zayn took his sister's hand and we exited the cafe, diving into the cameras to get to a taxi. In the mix, they were shouting at us left and right.

“Zayn!”

“Zayn Malik!”

“Is this your new girlfriend?”

“ZAYN!!!” A group of girls yelled from down the street. A taxi pulled over and we jumped inside before they got to us.

When we were settled and the cab drove away, I realized there were tears in my eyes.

“Don't cry,” Zayn said, wrapping an warm arm around me.

“I'm not, I just...” I caught my breathe and rubbed my eyes with the palms of my hands. “That was so intense. How do you deal with that stuff?”

“You get used to it after a while.”

“I think they're all dogs!” The little girl yelled. “They don't have lives so they have to invade my brother's! It's gross and it's immature!”

We laughed at her sense of maturity, and she laughed along, clearly finding herself hilarious. Even the cab driver found it funny. “Where exactly are you going?” He said.

Zayn looked at me questionably and I shrugged. “I guess to my place?” I asked him.

“But it's the other way,” he replied.

“Let's go to the park!” His sister yelled. “I want to swing.”

“I refuse to go near another swing,” I laughed. “How about we turn around and go to my place and I'll make you something yummy to eat.”

She pursed her lips and looked up like she was contemplating the idea. “That's cool,” she said and pulled out a chocolate from her pocket. “It better be as yummy as this!” She popped it in her mouth and hummed to the taste of it.

“Did you take that from the cafe!?” Zayn asked.

“Don't be silly, the woman behind the counter gave it to me. I may be a kid but I'm not stupid.”

We laughed again. Within a matter of minutes we were back at my house to find Harry in my living room, waiting for me. Pissed. “What the hell are you doing with her?” He yelled at Zayn. “You better have a good excuse for holding my girlfriend's hand.”

“What?” He said, glancing at me. I panicked.

“Don't act dumb, you know what I'm talking about. The paparazzi has gotten more clever than we thought...apparently they can take pictures or videos and it goes straight to the media. Look!” He pointed at the TV where the headline read “Zayn Malik Spotted with New Girlfriend” across the top.

Harry started to lurch toward him, but I stepped in the middle. “Stop, Harry, it's not what you think!”

“I knew you were out for her!” He yelled. I could feel his heart beating out of his chest as I tried my best to keep him away from Zayn. “And you!”

He was looking at me now, fury dancing on his face. “How could you?!”

“Harry! It's not what you...”

“Save it,” he berated. “We're done.”

He stormed out the door, slamming it shut behind him. Instantly my eyes poured with heartbreaking tears as I ran after him. How many times could I chase someone down the street until I realized I was too worthless to talk sense into anyone?

“HARRY WAIT!” I yelled out of breath, sprinting down the sidewalk, dodging passerbys. “STOP!”

He finally reached an intersection and had to stop to wait for the light to change. “Harry...” I managed to say between breaths, grabbing a hold of his shoulder.

“Don't touch me! Don't you even dare touch me!”

He looked me in the face and saw my stream of tears, softening up a little.

“Listen to me. I asked Zayn to meet me at that cafe so I could tell him to lay off. I never meant to hurt you at all, I was trying to help my situation. There's nothing – nothing – between Zayn and I, and there never will be. Please, believe me.”

“I do,” he said, wrapping his arms around me. I saw paparazzi across the street, probably the same ones that got Zayn and I, but I didn't know. They were looking at us, deciding if it was Harry Styles or not. “I just got scared because...I love you, Macey. And I thought you and Zayn were...”

He stopped talking when I pulled away and looked him profusely, eyes wide and dread coursing through my veins. “You...what?”

Then he realized what he had said, but didn't retreat. “I said that I love you.”

It had only been over a month. But we had spent so much time together, and he did change me in ways I never thought were even possible. But love? Did I love Harry? I couldn't imagine my life without him from here on out, and to be away from him was the saddest part of my day.

“I love you too,” I said, laughing and kissing him right there in front of God, the paparazzi, and everyone else around us. Cameras flashed but I didn't care. Three words, that's all it took. Something I had never said to anyone other than Carter my entire life.

 

 

 

I pull out the picture of Harry and I that I took later that day when he, Louis, Eleanor, and I went shopping later that very same day. It reminds me of love, and how it always comes when you least expect it, and it can come from anyone, whether it be your friends, family...or even from your significant other. For the first time Harry showed me how to love someone, but just like all things, sometimes love can't conquer everything.

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