Breaking Free

Ever felt smothered by everyone else's idea of what your life should be like? Have you ever just wanted to say "Stop! It's my life!" to those closest to you? We all have, haven't we? I bet you were too afraid to do it though. So you kept your mouth shut, and did exactly what you always told yourself you would never do: you followed the rules set by people who don't really know you, and let THEM control your life. But what could happen if you finally just said no? If you decided to follow your own dream? Would something amazing happen? Would you fall in love? Would you find what you've been looking for your whole life? What could happen if you just...broke free?


14. Paps, Discovery, Tears, and Getting Hit In The Crotch

Louis caught up to Belle and the boys in no time and quickly fell into step with them beside Zayn, who turned and looked at him curiously. "Not so knackered after all then eh Lou?"

Louis flushed red and rubbed the back of his neck, chuckling awkwardly. Zayn just snorted and looked back ahead.

"So Belle, are you sure you're ready to handle the paps?" Niall asked in his thick Irish accent. Louis leaned forward to look past Zayn at Belle as the six walked through the huge hotel lobby. Belle was biting her lip and thinking intently.

"I don't know." She finally said, shrugging and looking at Niall. "I mean, people have been mean to me before so the harsh comments and rumors and stuff shouldn't bother me too bad I guess."

Niall smiled sweetly down at her and threw his arm around her shoulder. "Well don't you worry babe, we've got your back. Right boys?"

All the boys mumbled in agreement and Belle bit her lip again and blushed. She wrapped her arm around Niall's waist now and looked up at him. "Thanks Niall. And thank all of you guys, really." She looked away from Niall and looked at the other four boys. "I know I've only known you guys for like, a day, but you all are seriously the nicest and most down to earth boys I've ever met. I feel very privledged to get to know and work with you all for the next four months. And I mean that." The boys all smiled and blushed as well.

The six were now at the revolving door that led out to the street and they all stopped when they heard the noise outside. It was loud. Belle froze.

"Don't worry love," Harry said, "We're all right here with you." Belle relaxed a bit and Niall squeezed her waist a little tighter to comfort her.

"Louis you alright?" Zayn asked, feeling Louis tense up at Belle and Niall's contact.

Louis shook his head and looked at Zayn. "Oh, yeah I'm fine mate. Let's go, shall we?" Everyone nodded and stepped into the compartments of the revolving door and onto the street.

The first thing Belle noticed was the squealing. There were about fifty to a hundred "directioners" standing behind the boys' security guards and gates that kept them barricaded back, and they were going absolutely nuts. Belle looked and saw that most of them were about her age, a few of them a bit younger. Some were just screaming for no particular reason, some were holding up their phones and trying to get pictures, and others were just crying. Actually crying. Belle's mouth dropped and she looked up at the boys who were just smiling and waving as if this was so normal. Then she remembered. It is normal for them; they live like this every day.

"Boys who's the babe?!"

"Niall is that your new girlfriend?!"

"Liam is it true that you're considering leaving the band?!"

"Niall getting cozy with someone are you?!"

Belle couldn't believe all the stuff that the reporters were asking, most of it revolving around her. One reporter even asked if she was the girl that Zayn had allegedly knocked up. She couldn't help but burst out laughing at that one and the boys looked at her and chuckled too. Zayn just rolled his eyes though. "Fucking idiots," he mumbled under his breath.

Niall leaned down and spoke in Belle's ear so that she could hear him over all the shouting, "Do you want us to introduce you?" He asked. Belle looked up quickly and saw that all the boys were smiling, even Louis, as though they really wanted her to say yes. She grinned from ear to ear and nodded vigorously, making them all chuckle.

Suddenly Liam held up his hand to everyone, signalling that he wanted to speak. Almost everyone got dead silent instantly and Belle had to bite her bottom lip to keep from giggling.

"Alright guys we'd like to make an announcement!" Liam shouted.

Almost instantly, a rude reporter yelled out, "Niall is that your girlfriend?!" Niall just rolled his eyes in an annoyed fashion and removed his arm from around Belle's waist, shouting back, "No! She's not my girlfriend for crying out loud!"

All the reporters quickly went to scribbling on their notepad and Belle took advantage of the quiet. "But he wishes I was!" She shouted cheekily. The other boys burst out laughing as did most of the reporters and fans. Niall leaned down to whisper in her ear, "Thanks to you we're probably going to be trending on Twitter all day now!"

Before Belle could respond, Liam started speaking loudly to the crowd again, "Everyone, this here is Anabelle--"

Liam had moved past Niall and put his arm around Belle as he spoke, but Belle interrupted him with a light backhand to his chest, "My name is Belle!" She shouted instinctively, and the crowd laughed yet again as Liam looked down at her in amused shock. He rolled his eyes and chuckled, turning back to the crowd and holding up his hand again as he spoke.

"Alright, alright, this is Belle Costa," He looked down at Belle smugly as he put empasis on 'Belle' and Belle just smirked up at him. "And Belle here will be joining us on our 2013 three month UK tour as our opening act since our previous act--"

Nobody heard the rest of Liam's explanation as the paparazzi went absolutely nuts, snapping pictures and throwing out more questions. The boys tried to quiet everyone down again but it was useless. Belle had to cover her ears because it got so enormously loud.

After just a few seconds, Belle and the boys were ushered into a big black SUV by security to get away from everyone. Belle got in and sat down hurriedly, still covering her ears until Harry, who got in last, shut the door and sat down as well.

Belle looked around the inside of the SUV and saw that the two rows of backseats were facing each other. She was in the third row, next to the tinted window. Niall was beside her, and beside him was Harry, who was looking down at his phone intently. Across from them was Louis, beside Zayn, beside Liam. Louis was directly across from her, and since it was such a tight squeeze, their knees were touching. She noticed at the same time he did, and they both flushed quite red. "Sorry," He mumbled as he looked away. The car begin to quickly move through the busy New York streets.

It was quiet for about a minute as everyone took in the silence.

"That was crazy!" Niall finally shouted. "I didn't expect them to freak out that much! She's just our opening act, why did they have to go all ape shit on us?!"

The other boys shrugged and mumbled, "I don't know" or "That was so weird". Everyone except Harry that is, who was glaring down at his phone and looking quite furious.

"Harry you alright?" Belle asked quietly. He jerked his head up at her, red in the face.

"Actually I'm not, Belle Costa." He spat out, hissing her last name.

"What the hell Harry?" Niall asked defensively, shifting his body in front of Belle's so Harry couldn't glare at her so furiously.

Harry directed his attention to Niall for a second before turning to the other boys. "When we were getting in the car just now, I heard one reporter yell, 'Does this mean One Direction does not support Costa Enterprises?' I didn't know what that meant so I decided to go on Google and search Belle and this 'Costa Enterprises'"

Belle stopped breathing and paled drastically. "Oh my God," She muttered, putting her head in her hands.

"Wait what's Costa Enterprises?" Zayn asked innocently.

"It's a big ass company that she," Harry pointed a finger at Belle rudely, "owns!"

Belle snapped her head up and instantly got red in the face. "I do not own that godforsaken company, my father does! There's a big difference!"

"That doesn't matter if you were supposed to take over the company in a month but instead you fucking ran away!" Harry shouted, reaching across Niall and shoving his phone in Belle's face.

On the screen was an online article, titled "Costa Enterprises Heiress Anabelle Costa Runs Away From Home". Next to the article was a picture of Belle with her father, her hand on her hip and a smiling face as they cut the tape at a hospital that her dad's company funded a year ago. That picture had been on the cover of People Magazine.

"Fuck," Belle said, putting her teary face back in her hands.

"Look for yourself!" Harry said, removing the phone from Belle's face and tossing it to Liam, who caught it expertly.

The cab was quiet for a minute as all the boys passed the phone around and looked at the article. Belle could tell when one of them was done reading it because they would either sigh in frustration or mutter some obscenity.

"How the hell did management let this happen?!" Liam yelled. "She's an heiress who ran away from home and they didn't catch on?!"

"Because I didn't fucking put my father's name on my information Liam!" Belle shouted back, lifting her head from her hands and glaring at him. She looked around at all the boys and suddenly got very angry. "You know what, who gives two shits if I ran away from home?! I hated it there, I was smothered, nobody gave a crap about me! All anybody cared about was when I was taking over fucking Costa Enterprises, or if I was getting married to Alan so our parent's companies would team up, or what did I think about my dad's new financial plans for the company. They never cared about me!" The cab got quiet again. "All I've ever wanted is to just be Belle. Not Anabelle Costa, not the heiress of Costa Enterprises, not the future of the company that I hate! Just Belle. A normal eighteen year old girl, who dreams of being a singer and seeing her name in lights as she steps onto a stage. So on my paperwork, I didn't say anything about who I really was. Not many people know me anyways, especially in other countries, so that's probably why your management didn't catch on." She laughed bitterly. "You know what, I was so happy to meet you guys and hang out with you because you just treated me like I was normal. Like I wasn't anybody special. Yeah, I want the world to know my name, but I want to earn my fame. Not inherit it."

With those last words, Belle leaned her head against the tinted window and crossed her arms. She let the tears stream down her face silently, not bothering to wipe them away. The cab was completely silent now as the boys took in everything she had just said.

"Belle, we're--" Zayn started to say.

"You know what, I'm out of here." Belle interrupted, unbuckling her seat belt as the SUV came to a red light. "I don't need you guys in order to have a career, I'll go find people who can see me for me and not who I am in a fucking magazine article." She opened the door and stepped out into the New York street. "Goodbye!" With that, Belle slammed the door shut just as the boys were trying to unbuckle themselves, but they were too stunned to do anything in time.

Belle turned around and hastily weaved her way through the stopped cars, most of them honking their horns at her. She was crying much worse now, and she finally reached the sidewalk on the other side of the street, crossing her arms and sniffling. She began to walk in no particular direction, just away from stupid One Direction. They had seemed so great at first, but she should have known it was too good to be true. As soon as they found out what she came from, Costa Enterprises, they couldn't just see her for her. They just saw Anabelle Lee Costa, future CEO.

"Belle, wait! Belle, stop please!" She heard a far away voice behind her. It was a British accent, so she knew it had to be one of four boys, none of whom she wanted to speak to right now. She kept walking.

"Come on Belle, stop!" It yelled again, sounding frightfully close. Belle picked up her pace.

"Damn it Belle slow down!" The voice said almost right in her ear. Belle froze as a strong hand grabbed her shoulder and turned her around.

Once Belle had stopped walking and had turned around to face him, Louis doubled over and put his hands on his knees to try and catch his breath. He chuckled in between his gasping breaths. "Damn it Belle, thanks for reminding me how out of shape I am," With that, he stood back up to his full height and took in a deep breath. Belle couldn't help but chuckle at how red his face was. Once he had finally caught his breath, Louis got a serious expression on his face, looking down at Belle who was crossing her arms and looking bored. He could see past her expression though, at the hurt. He could also see the tear stains on her cheeks. "Belle, we're so sorry. We were just caught off guard when we found know, who you are. It would be different if you hadn't run away but now the media is going to latch on to this story, trust me. Harry just yelled at you in the car because he was surprised too." Belle's shoulders relaxed a little bit and Louis smiled kindly down at her. "Come on babe, give us a chance to talk this over. To us, you're Belle. The awesome girl who has already stolen our hearts and has a kick ass singing voice." Belle finally broke out into a smile and laughed. Louis grinned down at her, taking her hand in his own. "See? You can't stay mad at us." He winked at her.

Belle rolled her eyes and looked up at Louis' deep blue eyes. Damn he was gorgeous. She wondered briefly what it would be like to kiss his beautiful lips but then she remembered she already had.

Belle took in a deep breath and exhaled before saying, "Alright fine. But you promise that this whole heiress shit doesn't change how you guys treat me? I might have a bigass trust fund and I may have been on a couple magazines but that doesn't make me any different okay?" Louis smiled and wrapped Belle in a massive bear hug. "Louis, I can't breathe!"

Louis let go with an, "Oops, sorry," making Belle chuckle again.

"Well where are the other boys?"

Louis grinned and pointed across the street. Belle's jaw dropped with an audible 'pop' as she saw the black SUV parallel parked across the street, the doors slid open showing Liam, Zayn, and Harry looking at her with apologetic expressions. Niall, however, was standing up with his head and chest through the sun roof.

"BELLE WE'RE SORRY AND WE LOVE YOU PLEASE COME BACK TO US!" Niall shouted, well he pratically screamed, from the vehicle. Belle laughed as Harry rolled his eyes and backhanded Niall in the crotch from his seat inside the car. Niall doubled over in pain and slid back inside to where the other boys were sitting, clutching himself in pain.

"Belle he's right, we're sorry!" Liam yelled, putting his hands around his mouth to amplify his voice across the busy New York street.

Louis grabbed Belle's hand again and turned her to face him. She couldn't help but notice how warm his hand was. "Belle, come on. Forgive us?"

With that, Belle smiled meekly and nodded. Then she let Louis lead her across the street to the rest of One Direction.

She didn't let go of his hand.

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