Pinkie Promise

Gwen sees herself as merely a pretty face, too shy and too careful to live her life. She lives everyday in fear of encountering the same fate as her mother: rape. All Gwen wants is to feel like a normal person. Nobody but her closest friends knows about her illegitimate birth, but she can't help but feel isolated, even from her brother and sister, who don't know how it feels to know that your Dad, the man who's lived in her house since she was three, isn't her Father. She wants to come out of her shell, but she's afraid to trust and afraid to live- until she meets someone who leads the lifestyle she longs for.

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6. Snowball fight

The cold bit at my nose and chilled my blood as we made out way out into the yard. Every other yard was blanketed in soft, undisturbed snow, except Harry's, which was stamped with footprints and little troughs where snowballs had been scraped out. It was clear evidence that could mean only one thing: a snow ball fight. 

Two forts had already been set up on either side of the yard. They were uneven and lumpy, as though someone had thrown it together without a second thought, which, I reminded myself, they probably had. 

"Captain!" Liam shouted. 

"Captain!" Louis repeated quickly. Harry and Zayn closed their mouths slowly, having been beaten. 

Harry scowled, clearly disappointed. "Aww, Curly upset he didn't get captain??" Louis cooed, adopting the gooey voice reserved only for babies and animals. 

Harry batted him away, a smile returning to his face. "Alright, just choose your teams," he encouraged. I laughed quietly. I definitely liked it better when he was happy. It was more becoming. 

Immediately, Louis and Liam turned to each other and began rock, paper, scissors, to decide who would choose first. 

"Rock, paper, scissors, SHOOT!" They chanted in unison. 

Louis groaned dramatically as Liam held up his fist. "Rock beats scissors," he teased. He then swiveled on his heels, facing the group of us. "I choose..." He furrowed his brow and pointed to each if us in turn. Finally, his finger stopped. "Gwen!"

I smiled and crossed in front of Harry to meet Liam as Louis muttered "Not fair" under his breathe. Picking up his head, he quickly cried, "Paige!" 

She blushed and ducked her head. I smiled. Louis had made a good choice. Paige had an amazing aim. It all came from chucking coins and other small trinkets at me whilst I was studying. She loved to annoy me. 

"Um, Harry?" Liam said slowly, beckoning to him as he crossed the lawn. I felt my flutters in my stomach, secretly pleased Harry was on my team. 

"Niall," Louis said, almost lazily. Zayn looked exasperated. "You know, Zaynie, I'm not gonna choose you unless I have to. Ya suck!" Said Lou, not looking up at him. 

Liam looked slyly at Louis, a mischievous smirk playing on his lips. "Michael..." He drawled. 

"Uggggh, why do I always end up with HIM??" Louis vented, gesturing to Zayn. 

"Aww, Lou, you know you love me!" Zayn cawed, experimenting how best he could aggravate Louis, who was pretending to pout angrily. 

Out if the corner of my eye, I saw Harry creep behind me. I shifted my weight, uncomfortable. However, he was merely using my body as a shield so that Louis and Zayn wouldn't see what he was doing. 

THWACK! I saw it fly throught the air and land squarely on Louis's face. I burst into giggles with Harry and everyone else. Louis just stood there, too in shock to even move. I figured part of it was also him being melodramatic. 

The snow slowly plopped off his face and onto the ground below him. He reached up and wiped away the rest that hadn't quite fallen, revealing the high arch if his eyebrows and the 'o' shape his mouth formed. 

While everyone was caught up in fits of laughter (even Louis), I took the opportunity to land another hit. I leaned down and scraped a clump of snow into a decent-sized snowball. After packing it down hard, I set my sights on Zayn, who was now imitating Louis's face. 

I threw it hard. Nobody saw it coming. It hit Zayn's neck with a satisfying THWOP. 

My team broke into another round of giggles as he scrunched his shoulders up to his chin. 

Pretty soon, we were all engaged in a full-out snowball fight. Liam was best at throwing on our team, but his snowballs sucked, so Harry took it into his own hands to make them for him. Instead of participating in the throwing, I spent my time rebuilding the fort. Michael chucked snowballs with Liam. His aim was great, but he lacked force. 

On the other team, it seemed they were missing organization. Louis, Paige, and Niall threw snowballs at us, but they were poorly made and often fell apart in midair. Zayn took to doing whatever he could to avoid hits. Unfortunately, their fort was awfully made, and there was nothing to hide behind. 

However, what they lacked in skill, they made up for in spirit. When Liam hit Niall right on his face, he disappeared behind the fort. A few seconds later, someone's middle finger was raised high above the fort, in clear sights of everyone on our team. Both Paige and I broke into fits of giggles. Harry and Liam rolled their eyes, and Michael was completely oblivious. 

"Gwen!" I heard someone yell. 

I looked up, but it was much too late. A thick ball of snow smacked me square in the face. I sat, stunned, seconds after it had already fell off. When I looked over, I saw Paige and Louis grinning evilly. I should've known she would do whatever she could go hit me. 

"Gwen," I heard Harry whisper. 

I turned to him, but left my eyes on Louis and Paige, who now had their heads tucked down, no doubt plotting some extreme attack. The nape of their necks looked so vulnerable, so open. I fought a a sudden urge to run over and shove snow down their shirts. "Yes?"

"Gwen," He repeated, his face cracking into a wicked smile. "We should sneak up on them."

I nodded vigorously. A vision of Paige squealing with snow tucked down her back played in my mind. "Definitely."

"C'mon." He leaned over and began balling up snow in his hands. Within a few minutes, we both had a sizable pile of snowballs stacked in our arms. Harry turned to Liam. "Throw a ton if snowballs at them," he said, using his freehand to gesture at them. "Like, a shitload."

Liam smiled. 

We waited until he began propelling the snow at them, hitting almost everybody in a few, swift, fluid movements. Then we ran. We kicked up snow, leaving obvious footprints behind us as we threw ourselves behind a bush near them. 

I bit my lip, trying to stifle giggles. Harry smiled at me, his green eyes reflecting mine. We crouched behind the bush for a minute, waiting to catch our breath. "C'mon," he said finally. 

I nodded and followed him out of the bush and behind the group. On the other side, I saw Michael notice us. He looked confused, and I silently willed him to keep his mouth shut. I urgently placed my finger over my lips, hoping he'd understand. Thankfully, Liam noticed, and busied him with snowballs to throw. 

I looked at Harry, whose eyes were alight with a kind of wildness I had never seen before. He mouthed 'go' silently, and all hell broke loose. 

I threw snowballs randomly at the back of their necks, hitting each time. Beside me Harry was doing the same. Louis started screaming obnoxiously, and Niall, Paige, and Zayn covered their necks with their hands. It looked as if they were in a tornado drill. 

I leaned down, and shoved a snowball down Louis's shirt. It created a dark stain as the snow melted in his skin. He shrieked and writhed around in the snow, trying to rid himself of the cold. 

As soon as it started, it was over. We had run out of snowballs. 

They forgot about Liam and Michael, and turned on us. Niall took their pile of snowballs and started throwing them at us with force. The rest followed suit, and soon, Harry and I were crouched on the cold ground, enduring the same agony they had. It was ironic, really. 

I felt Harry's arm on top of me, shielding  me from the snow. Like before, I felt uncomfortable at first, but I grew used to it and didn't object. 

Despite the continuous flow of snowballs thudding on our backs, we couldn't help but laugh. My whole body shook with cold and giggles, and I could feel Harry laughing as well. 

"What the hell?!" I heard someone shout. But it wasn't playful. It was angry. 

Harry's arm left my shoulders and I felt myself being pushed to my feet and shaved behind Louis and Niall. I didn't know what was happening. Until I saw Harry being pushed to the ground. 

"Auguste!" I yelled. "Stop!"

He ignored me, and just stared down Harry, who quickly got back on his feet. Auguste continued pushing Harry around. Harry, to my despair, began fighting back. 

"Gwen!" I heard a terrified voice whisper. I looked down and saw Michael holding tightly to my hand. I gripped his hand tightly, scared for Harry. I knew Auguste wouldn't be hurt, but he could easily injure Harry. 

My other hand had subconsciously found Niall, who was standing protectively in front of me with Louis and Liam. I searched for Paige, and saw her with Zayn's arm around her. She looked terrified also. I knew she never loved Auguste. 

"Auguste!" I repeated, firmly now, for the sake of Paige and Michael and Harry. "Stop!"

Finally, he quit. I noticed Paige left Zayn to check on Harry. I flashed her a grateful look Auguste didn't see. 

"What the hell was that??" He spat. 

"What??" I cried, distressed. 

"Don't pretend that you don't know. I saw you and him just now." His brown eyes, which were usually so full of love, were now dark and angry with pain. 

"Auguste, we were having a snowball fight! What are you talking about?" I approached him nervously. 

His voice softened, showing the pain much clearer. "Do you love me?" He said quietly. 

I felt my heart skip a beat. I was torn between anger and sympathy. Did he really think I was unfaithful? On the other hand, was he really so insecure?

Despite whatever pity I felt, my anger eventually won over. "Auguste, I wouldn't cheat on you!" But the anger wasn't there. I felt my voice strain to try to convince him. 

I could feel seven pairs of eyes hot on my neck, and blinked away tears. I avoided his stare, and busied myself by looking at the ground. 

He put a warm, calloused hand on my cheek, and I choked back a sob. He roughly pulled me into a hug. I could sense he was trying to prove that I was his, but he also wanted to show me he was sorry. "I trust you," he whispered into my ear, so that no on but me could hear. 

"Let me walk you home," he said when we pulled apart. 

I shook my head. I didn't want that. He nodded and awkwardly shoveled back towards the sidewalk. 

I waited until he was gone, then turned back to the boys. 

Their faces didn't hide the amazement. No one looked more confused than Harry, who looked almost hurt. 

I stifled another sob, hating myself for letting him and Auguste down. "I'm so sorry..." I began, but they didn't reply. "Paige, Michael, I think we should go."

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