No. No no no no no. Liam could not be here. I trudged up the stairs because I knew he wouldn't leave until he saw me. Right as my mom was saying I wasn't home, I rounded the corner and looked at him. Boy, he's changed. Fame does that to people. Toned muscles, shorter hair that wasn't too short. He just looked more... grown up.
"Brandin?" He whispered.
"I'll be upstairs." My mom practically ran from the room. Thanks a lot, mom.
All of a sudden a boy with brown hair tapped Liam on the shoulder.
"You said you'd be a minute, mate. It's been five. We gotta go." I gasped. Louis.
"Louis?" I asked. He looked at me funny, then seemed to realize who I was.
"Bing!" He gave me a big hug. "It's been a while." I giggled.
"I know." I said. Liam looked a bit hurt that I'd spoken to Louis like that. Like we were friends, because we were.
"I'll just tell the lads you're busy." Lou said and winked at me. He walked back to the car and I turned to Liam.
"Hey." I said quietly after a few seconds. He opened his mouth.
"OH MY GOODNESS IT'S LIAM PAYNE!!!!" Came a scream. I yanked Liam inside and slammed the door. I had forgotten about the neighbors.
"Looks like you've become pretty famous." I said.
"You haven't been keeping tabs on me?" He asked with a grin.
"Tried not too." I said leaning against the wall and crossing my arms.
"So you did, then." He said smiling still. I shook my head no with a smile I couldn't hide. Truth to be told, I knew where he went, who with, and how long he'd be there. I did be sure to rat on their music so people wouldn't think I still liked him because he was famous.
Why was I letting myself fall for him again?
This year actually hadn't been as bad as it seemed. It was only the last 2-3 months I started thinking about Liam again. Everything was fine and dandy until Liam showed up at my door. He took a step closer.
"Brandin, I'm sorry." He said. I could see the sincerity in his eyes.
"I know." I gave into my feelings and hugged him tightly.
"Will you come with me to my house with the boys overnight?" He asked. "We have to catch up." I smiled.
"On one condition." I said. "I get to pick the movie we watch." Liam's face fell. We wouldn't be watching Toy Story then.
"Fine." He said. I squealed and ran to pack my clothes and told my mom where I was going.
"Are you sure you're ready for this again?" She asked me.
"I'm positive." I said. "He's different now."
"How can you know? You've seen him for five minutes and you already know he's changed?" Mom questioned me.
"I trust him." I said. But did I really? Time to find out.
I walked downstairs and smiled at Liam.
"Ready." I said. We walked to the van and I threw my bag into the back. I opened the back door and saw that the five boys were in there too.
"Boys!" I smiled. "I missed you guys." I hugged Zayn who I ended up sitting by. Liam sat in the front by Louis who was driving.
"You took forever to come out, what were you doing in there?" Niall asked winking. I reached over and hit him.
We spent the first part of the car ride singing to the radio and teasing each other. Half way there, my phone buzzed. It was a text from my best friend Lex.
Lex: Where are you?
Me: In the car with Liam
Lex: Wait. THE Liam?
Lex: NO! Brandin, he broke you.
Me: I know, he's changed though.
Lex: How can you know?
Me: I trust him.
Lex: Just don't get to close. Don't let him hurt you again.
Me: Ok, thanks. I have to go... love you <3
Lex: Love you too. Be careful.
"Who was that?" Zayn asked.
"My friend Lex." I said.
"Oh." He paused. "What does she think about this." He whispered. Only Zayn would know what we were talking about. I laughed inwardly.
"She told me not to get to close again. She doesn't want me broken again." I said for Zayn's ears only.
"Again?" He asked.
"You know he hurt me. We'll talk later." I said. I joined in singing with the other boys who'd been singing the whole time.
We pulled up to Liam's house, or should I saw apartment building. We walked into the lobby and into the elevator with our bags. Liam hit the button for the top floor. I looked at him.
"I live in a penthouse... top floor." He said quietly. I nodded. Makes sense, he was famous. He could afford this while me and my mom were scraping by. We walked into his house and Liam showed me where I'd sleep. I shut the door behind me.
I sat on the bed, which was huge. I glanced at the cream colored walls and the dresser and saw a door. I stood up and opened the door. It was a full bathroom. Then I opened another door and saw a closet.
"Nice place." I said which was a huge understatement.
"Thanks." Liam said quietly.
"We can catch up a bit now, I guess." I said. "I'm sure you have quite a bit to ask me because I have a lot to ask you." I didn't let my guard down one bit. I was obeying Lex's wish and not getting to close.
"Well I'll ask you questions first." Liam said.
"Shoot." I said.
"Where was your dad? He's usually home at dinner time." I closed my eyes and sighed.
"He left us three months ago." I said flatly.
"Gosh, Brandin, I'm sorry." Liam said hugging me.
"It's ok, I'm over it." I said. Lie. Lie lie lie. And Liam knew it, but he let it go.
"Your turn." He said. I thought for a bit.
"What's it like to be famous?" I asked him. He laughed.
"That's very general." He said. I just shrugged. "It's very different from home. It's very busy, and you're on a very tight schedule that we have to, and I mean HAVE to, follow." He paused.
"Sounds like the life you wanted before you tried out for X-Factor." I said quietly. He nodded.
"It's still great, though. I get to do what I've wanted for my whole life." He said. Seemed like he was catching himself from what he'd just said. He was having doubts about the whole famous thing.
"Liam, I know you're having doubts, but you can pull through this." I said. "Just think about when you're singing on tour when it's hard."
"That's what I try to do. But really, I love this." He tried to persuade me. I changed the subject.
"How's your family?" I asked.
"They're great." He said simply. I liked his family and I wanted more, but I didn't press.
"Still single?" Liam asked me. And it wasn't weird like he wanted me, but just a friendly question.
"Um... yeah." I said with some shame, which came from no where. I was never ashamed of my single status. "You?"
"No, I have a girlfriend." He said.
"Yeah, her name's Paege. She's great."
"I'm happy for you." I said. Lie. Lie lie lie. 'I have a girlfriend'. That just tore me apart. I just wanted to shake him and yell at him that I loved him.
"I'll leave you to put your things away. I'll be in the living room, hopefully you'll find it." Liam said. I nodded.
I started putting my clothes away into the dresser when Zayn knocked on the partly opened door.
"Yeah?" I looked at him.
"What the heck were you saying in the car?" He asked me. "That you broke?" I looked down.
"I figured you'd know. When Liam left with you guys and never called me-" My voice caught. I couldn't think about this.
"How'd that break you?" He asked. I was shocked.
"You've never felt what it's like to be forgotten." I felt my voice raising. "You became all famous and I sat at home and lost my best friends and my father. I couldn't deal with it." I lifted my arm up and pulled down the sleeve of my shirt showing him my wrist. He gasped.
"Brandin..." He said.
"Yup, I cut. It got rid of the pain." I said. "Until it became to much. I..." I looked away.
"Brandin, what is it?" Zayn said. I felt like I could tell him, so I did.
"I attempted suicide, Zayn." I said. He listened, but I could tell he was shocked. "I overdosed, but had second thoughts and called the police before I passed out. Zayn hugged me.
"Swear to me that you will never do that again." He said into my hair. I realized tears were streaming down my face. I nodded.
"I promise." I whispered. "I'm sorry."
"No, don't be sorry." He wiped away a tear of his own. "Does Liam know? It's his..." He trailed off realizing what he was about to say. It was his fault. It was, though I never liked to admit that he almost caused my death.
"No, he doesn't, and you won't tell him." I said. He nodded.
"I missed you Brandin. We all did." Zayn said.
"I missed you guys too. You're my best friends." I said hugging him.
"Let's go to the living room." He said.
"I just have to finish unpacking." I said. Zayn nodded and left the room. When I finished unpacking I walked into the living room and saw all five boys by the TV. "We watching a movie?" I asked.
"Yup, and like I promised, you get to pick." Liam said. I grinned and grabbed The Woman in Black.
"NOOOO" I giggled. I loved horror movies, and Liam hated them.
"You promised." I wagged my finger at him. I glanced at the other boys. They were all smiling except for Harry. He was looking at the ground. He glanced up at me and our eyes met. We stared at each other until it was awkward. I looked away and put the movie in.
What was that all about? There was an expression in his eyes that bothered me. I'd have to find out. Soon.