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?

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66. The Last Chapter

 

1 Week Later, In London, England...

"Kaylie did you see this?!" Belle shrieked, slamming down the latest release of Famous Magazine on the kitchen table in front of where Kaylie sat with a cup of tea.

Kaylie sighed. "Yes, I saw it." She said calmly.

Belle laughed bitterly, turning around and putting her hands on the back of her head. "I can't believe this. I honestly can't believe it. Actually yes I can, they'll say anything for a story these days!" She turned back around and picked up the magazine again. "Listen to this!" She began to read. 

'Belle Costa, seemingly overnight teen pop sensation all around the world, isn't as innocent as she seems. The young performer got her start opening for One Direction over a year ago as you may remember, when she was dating the one and only Louis Tomlinson. After a mysterious break up and eight month long disappearance though, Costa returned to the scene alive and on fire. All of us here at Famous Magazine expected Tomlinson and Costa to get together once more, as did their fans, commonly called Directioners and Bellators. However much to everyone's surprise, she began dating Tomlinson's friend and bandmate, Niall Horan! Costa managed to keep her reputation in tact, much to everyone's surprise. Information and pictures in the last week though have been released exposing Costa for what she truly is: a two timing hoe! That's right, we said it. The infamous pictures and video of Costa and Tomlinson in Hawaii, holding hands and having an intense conversation, have gone viral around the w--"

"Belle stop!" Kaylie shouted, snatching the magazine away from her friend. "My God! You're making yourself miserable reading all of that!"

Belle huffed and ran her fingers through her hair in frustration. "I don't get it though! They don't say anything about how well the board meetings went with HMSA! Not a word about how not only did they agree to sponsor Allies for Alan fully, they donated over half a million dollars to get the organization on it's feet! All they give a damn about is the fact that I'm apparently a two-timing hoe!" 

Belle's voice cracked on that last phrase and she tried to blink back some tears, ducking her face and sitting down in a chair across from Kaylie. 

"Well I guess they're not wrong." Belle muttered to herself, putting her head in her hands.

"Aw Belles." Kaylie said, standing up and moving to sit beside her friend on the other side of the table, rubbing her back. "You're not what they say you are, they don't know anything about you. And they don't know anything about you and Louis! They just want a story to write and you're the unfortunate victim. But hey, it took you this long to finally get some bad press, I wouldn't feel too bad." She said, trying to lighten the mood.

Belle laughed weakly and lifted her head. "I just don't want my fans to be let down. Imagine what they think of me right now." She said with a sad expression.

Kaylie thought for a moment before lifting her index finger and saying, "Hold that thought."

Kaylie stood up abruptly and darted out of the kitchen. She was back just seconds later, her laptop in hand, typing away.

"Kayles what are you--"

"Look at this." Kaylie interrupted, sitting the computer down in front of Belle. "You're worried about what your fans think of you? Scroll through your timeline and see what your fans are saying. Do it."

Belle huffed but turned to the computer nonetheless. She was stunned by what she saw.

 

@Bellator143: if you honestly think Belle is some horrible skank, you don't know her at all. She would never purposefully hurt Niall or anyone.

@CostaIsMyWorld: BELLE DIDN'T BREAK NIALL'S HEART. He's been happy in pics and tweets lately! They both are! 

@BellesDirection: I ship Niall and Belle super hard but I don't hate her for being with Louis. I just want my idol to be happy <3

@TommoLife: If you say Belle is a whore you're obviously stupid and irrelevant

@DirectionerBellator13: """I'm not a Bellator anymore because she broke up with Niall!!1!""" Well if you think that then fuCK OFF WE DON'T WANT YOU HERE ANYWAY

 

Belle's bottom lip quivered with emotion at her fan's dedication. Even when she made mistakes, they always had her back.

"And look what's trending number two worldwide." Kaylie said in a soft voice, pointing to the left side of the screen.

Belle looked at the trends and gasped. There, on the worldwide trends lift, second from the top, read:

#BellatorsWillAlwaysLoveYouBelle

Belle closed her eyes and shook her head, overwhelmed by emotion. Her Bellators were her entire world.

"This is my account right?" Belle asked hoarsely. Kaylie nodded and smiled, pushing the computer all the way in front of her.

Belle took the laptop and immediately started a new tweet.

 

My fans are my world. Thank you for the tweets and the trend. I love you all, keep believing in me because I'll always believe in you <3 #BelleWillAlwaysLoveBellators

 

Belle sighed and pressed the tweet button, sitting back in her chair.

"You see?" Kaylie said after a moment. "Your fans love you, they know you well enough to know that you'd never purposefully hurt anyone. This is going to blow over, I promise. And you're not alone!" She said with a smile. "You have me, and the boys, and your new super cool manager since you finally fired that dick Nathan."

Belle laughed. It was true, Louis had insisted she fire Nathan the second she landed back in London, which she did. Her new manager assigned by Syco was a whole lot nicer, and had big plans for her career.

"Most importantly though, you have yourself." Kaylie added, poking Belle's arm with her index finger. Belle looked back up at her. "You know in your heart that you're with the boy you love, and who loves you back equally. And we all know Niall is doing fine and dandy, he certainly isn't heartbroken. Once he and Riley go public everyone will see that. It looks bad on the surface, but being in love is nothing to ever be ashamed of Belle."

Belle sighed and nodded. Kaylie was right. Well of course she was, Kaylie's always right.

"Thanks Kayles." Belle whispered, turning and hugging her best friend tightly. Kaylie smiled and hugged back.

"Anytime Belles." She replied, just as heartfelt. 

When they broke apart, Belle looked at Kaylie with an unreadable expression.

Kaylie smiled awkwardly and looked around. "What?" She asked. "Do I have a booger in my nose or something?"

Belle laughed and shook her head no. "No, it's just..."

"Just what?"

Belle took in a deep breath. "Y'know, you and Alan would have gotten along so well. I really wish you could have met him." She finally said, her voice loaded with emotion.

Kaylie inhaled sharply before closing her eyes and smiling. She opened them back up and took Belle's hand in a friendly manner. "Well if he cared enough about your crazy ass self to keep you in line as much as I do, I'm sure we would have gotten along."

Belle barked out a laugh and yanked her hand away. "Way to ruin a moment, bitch!" She yelled jokingly.

"That's what I'm here for, skank!" Kaylie teased back.

The girls dissolved into a fit of giggles until Belle's phone pinged. She pulled it out, still catching her breath. Her smile disappeared though.

"What is it?" Kaylie asked.

"It's a notification from Sugarscape. They tell me when an article about me or the boys is posted." She said, looking down at her phone oddly.

"Well what's the article?"

Belle read the notification line. "It's called, 'In the case of love, apologies are always necessary. So in Sugarscape's case, we would like to formerly apologize the Tommo and Beller.'"

Kaylie said nothing for a moment.

"What the hell does that mean?" She finally asked incredulously.

Belle looked up and shrugged her shoulders. "I honestly don't know." 

Kaylie furrowed her brow before grabbing her laptop and pulling up Sugarscape's web page. "Well we're going to find out." She muttered under her breath.

It only took Kaylie a second to find the article, and attached to it was a video. The caption read 'The Normally Level Headed Tommo Loses It...And We're To Blame!'

"What the...?" Belle mumbled, clicking the play button on the video immediately.

In the video, paparazzi were surrounding Louis, Liam, and Niall as the trio walked down a street with their heads down, swarming them with insane questions.

"Niall how do you feel about Belle cheating on you with her ex and your best friend?!"

"Louis are you and Belle official?!"

"What happened to bros before hoes Tomlinson?!"

"Liam what do you think about your bandmate's behavior?!"

"Niall what do you have to say to Belle?!"

"Louis if she cheated with you she'll cheat on you correct?!"

These and many more obscene questions kept being thrown out and the boys kept their heads down as they pushed through the crowd. Belle could tell though that Louis, in his gym shorts, hoodie, and red snapback, was getting incredibly irritated. His shoulders were tensed up and his jaw was clenched.

Suddenly, a certain pap asked a particularly inappropriate question concerning Belle, and Louis snapped his head up, stopping in his tracks and lunging at the greasy, overweight man. Liam and Niall reacted, but not quick enough. 

Louis took the pap's shirt in his fist, pulling him so close that their noses were almost touching. The pap's camera fell to the ground and Louis glared at him menacingly.

"Don't you ever talk about Belle like that!" Louis hissed in the man's face. Everyone else shut their mouths and the crowd got quiet except for camera clicks. 

Niall put his hand on Louis' shoulder.

"Come on Louis just let it g--"

"You think that just because this is your job, it gives you a right to badmouth one of the most honest, caring, and truthful girls on this planet?" Louis asked the man, still clutching his shirt. "You don't know anything about Belle, not a damn thing, any of you! And you sure fucking don't know anything about our relationship, because it's none of your goddamn business! We're together, because I'm head over heels in love with her and for some crazy reason she loves me too! She and Niall are still best friends, and so are we! Nothing is changing in One Direction, I don't hate Niall and he doesn't hate me."

Louis released the man and shoved him backwards, taking in the rest of the crowd, who were wordless, snapping pictures and videos as if their lives depended on it. He wasn't finished though.

"Y'know, Belle has been through a hell of a lot lately and you guys calling her rude and disrespectful names just shows how pathetic the lot of you are! She and I are together, and if she'll let me, I'm going to do everything in my power to keep it that way for a long time. So leave us alone, and let us be in as normal as a relationship as we possibly can. Please just..."

Louis' tone softened and he looked down at his feet for a moment. Then, he looked up and looked straight into the camera whose video Belle and Kaylie were watching. His entire expression was completely serious.

"Please see Belle for who she truly is. A kindhearted, beautiful, talented, amazing woman. Badmouth me all you want, but don't badmouth her. Because it breaks my heart to see the girl I love hurting."

Louis' voice cracked at that last bit and Liam put his hand on Louis' shoulder and pulled him back a few steps.

"C'mon Lou, let's go."

Louis nodded and the trio began walking again. The paps jumped right back into their routine, shouting out questions and flashes of cameras, but surprisingly, they gave Louis more space. And the questions were much less invasive.

The video clip ended abruptly and Belle realized that she had tears streaming down her face.

"Belle?" Kaylie asked softly, closing the laptop. "Belle are you--"

"He defended me." Belle choked out, taking in a deep breath. "They were attacking his character, and he defended me." She smiled thoughtfully, thinking about Louis. God, she loved him so much.

Kaylie chuckled and pulled Belle in for a hug, stroking her hair. 

"Oh of course he did hun. Because he fucking loves you to death."

Belle laughed.

"He does, doesn't he?" She asked. The two friends pulled away from one another, smiling. Kaylie nodded her head.

"Yeah." She said bluntly. "For some crazy reason, I don't know." She added cheekily.

"Ugh!" Belle scoffed, shoving her now laughing friend. Kaylie just giggled even more. 

"Hey when was that video posted?" Belle suddenly asked.

"Like, fifteen or twenty minutes ago I think."

"That must have been today then. And Louis said he was on his way here earlier in a text so--"

Belle cut herself off as she heard the front door open.

"Girls?" A familiar voice rang out.

Belle and Kaylie smiled at each other, wordlessly standing up and walking towards the front foyer.

"Honey. I'm home!" Harry's slow drawl rang out.

"Oi shut up you twat, that's such a lame phrase."

"It is not, it's a classic!"

"It's cliche and shit."

"Oh leave him alone Louis, you know he's a hopeless romantic."

"Yeah but we don't live in the 50s."

"Ugh you boys bicker over anything these days!" Kaylie rang out as she and Belle rounded the corner, five familiar boys coming into view. Louis, Liam, and Niall must have picked up Harry and Zayn on their way.

All the boys turned towards the girls and smiled, Harry and Louis both stepping forward to greet their girlfriends with a kiss. Belle though grabbed Louis' nape and kissed him hard, and it lasted a few seconds longer that Harry and Kaylie's did.

Once they separated, Louis looked down at Belle with a content grin.

"Somebody's happy to see you." Zayn muttered teasingly, the group heading towards the den.

Louis rolled his eyes and reached out to punch Zayn on the arm as he walked by. Zayn acted as if he were mortally wounded, making Belle giggle and curl into Louis' side, his arm thrown over her shoulder as they also began making their way to the den.

"What was that for?" Louis asked, leaning more into Belle. She smiled and looked up at him to see his curious expression.

"What, I can't give my boyfriend a proper kiss when I see him?" She asked innocently.

"Not in front of us you can't." Liam weighed in jokingly, jumping over the back of one of the plush sofas and plopping down, turning on the TV in the process.

"Oh shut up Liam, you've snogged Juliet in front of us loads of times!"

"Yeah but that's different."

"Oh really? How?"

"Because I'm the one doing the snogging." Liam retorted, winking at Louis.

Everyone laughed at that one, Louis shaking his head as he sat down on the couch, pulling Belle down onto his lap.

"No but really, you seem especially happy to see me." Louis said to Belle. "What's up?" He asked, pinching her sides playfully.

Belle laughed and batted his hands away, leaning back into his chest. "It's nothing, it's just...Kaylie and I saw a video of you, Liam, and Niall on Sugarscape today. You were defending my honor." She said with a smile, nudging him with her shoulder.

Louis nodded. "Oh, that. Well of course I defended you, they were saying awful things!"

"They were, but you know I don't expect you to fight all my battles, right?" Belle asked.

Louis tutted, putting his chin on her shoulder. "Yeah I know, but I went too long not taking care of you. And I love you, so I'm going to protect you the best that I can. Forever." He said seriously.

Belle rotated and put her arms around Louis' neck, playing with the hair at his nape. She looked deep into his gorgeous blue eyes.

"I love you too." She whispered. "Forever and ever." She added with a smile, leaning down and connecting their lips softly.

The sweet moment didn't last though.

"Ew!"

"Gross!"

"Get some Lou!"

"No, get a room!"

The rest of the group began throwing pillows at the couple and Belle pulled away, laughing.

"Excuse us, we were having a romantic moment!" Louis yelled at his friends, wrapping his arms all the way around Belle's waist.

"Well have your romantic moment somewhere else, you're grossing me out!" Zayn yelled, chucking another pillow at Louis, which he expertly caught before it hit him.

Belle smiled thoughtfully and began to look around the room.

Liam was making gagging noises, which in turn was causing Niall to laugh hysterically, rolling around on the floor and clutching his stomach. Zayn was pointing at Louis and they were bickering and being cheeky. Harry was tickling Kaylie's feet, which were propped up in his lap as she squirmed and squealed.

And then there was her. Anabelle Lee Costa. Sitting with the man she was madly in love with, surrounding by her favorite people on the planet.

"This is it." She mumbled quietly to herself, smiling.

Louis flipped Zayn off with a smile, ending their bickering, and turned to look back at Belle.

"What's it?" He asked.

Belle chuckled and looked down at Louis. 

Louis. Her whole world. Sure, they'd had their ups and downs, and it took them way too long to finally resolve things, but they were finally here. Together.

Belle reached out and touched her palm to Louis' cheek. His eyebrow rose up in question, but he didn't say anything.

"This," Belle said, gesturing to the rest of the room, "Is all I'll ever need. I've got my fans and your fans, I've got an amazing career, I have Kaylie, I have the boys...And I have you." She said thoughtfully. "I'm the luckiest girl in the world." She half-whispered.

Louis smiled and leaned up, whispering against Belle's mouth.

"And I'm the luckiest man in the world, because I get to call you mine."

"Forever?"

"Forever."

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