I looked at myself in the mirror. Never one to dress up, I was wearing black skinny jeans and a simple gray shirt that showed a little cleavage. I had let my long brown hair down, not bothering to straighten it, let the naturals waves stay as they were. As I wasn’t comfortable doing any make up I just put on my usual lipstick and was doing the final touches when Liam came in, or to be more accurate burst into my room.
“Aren’t you done?” He asked impatiently walking to me and eying me up and down.
“I am. let’s go.” I said, quite uncomfortable under his stare.
“Are you coming with this?” He raised an eyebrow with the usual smirk I was getting so used to it on his face. That remark was enough to make me feel self-conscience.
“Yep! Anything wrong with it?” I tried to sound casual, not letting him know he has gotten to me.
“No, I just thought you’d wear a dress for a date.” He shrugged his eyes fixating on my neck.
“Yeah well, I’m not really the dressy type!”
“Obviously! They’re going to say things again though, you know?” He said referring to his fans and took one step closer to me.
I just shrugged trying to show that I didn’t care. I couldn’t change myself for anyone. If they didn’t like who I was, that was their problem, not mine!
“well I say…” He said in a low voice getting closer to me with every word. “… If they wanna talk…”
He was so close to me I had to take a step back but was terrified when I found my back hitting the wall. What the fuck was he up to this time?
He put his hands on the both sides of me on the wall, leaving me with no place to escape and brought his face closer to me. “… Let’s give them something to talk about.” He almost whispered the last words as he bent his head and put his lips on my neck, sucking hard on the flesh and biting it. I was paralyzed at first, not exactly able to recognize what was happening. But it didn’t take me long to come back to my senses I pushed him hard enough to make him take several steps back and struggle to keep his balance.
I looked at him furiously wanting to slap the grin out of the bastard’s face. Who the hell did he think he was doing whatever the fuck he wanted?
This time I took a step closer to him putting one hand one my neck. “What the fuck man?”
He just laughed at my choice of words and that got me even angrier. I got closer to him with my left fist clenched, ready to punch the hell out of the son a bitch. I raised my fist wanting to smash his perfect features but I knew that would get me into trouble, what would the fans do if they knew I had punched their precious Liam Payne in the face and had broken his nose? But I couldn’t let him get away with this so I did what any other sane person would have done and punched him in the gut with all my might. He let out a groan and doubled over, holding his stomach.
I crossed my arms, satisfied with myself and enjoyed watching him in pain. After a few seconds that he got his breath and he managed to get back to the standing position he shot me a look and that was when I thought maybe I had gone a bit over board. I mean the kid was violent. Who knew what he would do to me for hitting him like that.
“Okay that was called for.” Liam said his voice still a bit shaky.
I let out my breath, relieved. “Heck yeah! Now you’d better explain what that shit was all about!”
“Look, the fans are getting suspicious. We have to give them something to think that we are real and we have to do it now as we have the chance”
“Something like a hickey?!” I knew he was right. Everyone was talking about that we weren’t real and that was starting to freak me out. What if the management decided that I was useless and just broke off the contract, leaving me with nothing ? What if they cut the money for my dad’s treatment?
He simply nodded as he came closer and inspected my neck.
“I did a real nice job.” He said the grin back on his face again.
I closed my eyes and took a deep breath, trying to calm myself and not kick him this time.
“Let’s go! We have a reservation for 7:00.” He said as if nothing had happened and walked out the door. I went after him. he was about to open the front door of the house when he turned around, looked me in the eye with a dead serious expression in his face. “Act properly, Alex.” And with that he opened the door, letting the cold wind blow on my new made hickey that felt so hot on my skin.
The dinner with Liam in that classy restaurant was eventless but awkward as we had to face each other the whole time, with none of us having anything to say. So I was really thankful when we decided to get out of there where I didn’t have to look Liam in the eye and not let him know what was going in my head which was a hard thing to do because as my mom has always said, I was an open book.
The weather was so cold I couldn’t feel my hands. I cursed myself under my breath for forgetting to bring my jacket with me. We were walking to Liam’s car when we saw camera flashes from everywhere. Instinctively my hand went to my hair trying to use it as a cover for my neck but Liam stopped me with an apparently kind smile for the cameras and without breaking that smile lowered his head and brought his lips to my ear. The paps must have thought he was whispering sweet nothings to my ear but what he really did was: “Don’t you fucking dare, Alex!” And with that he put my hair in its place exposing my neck again. He wanted to make sure that the fans would get a good look of that.
To paint complete the picture of a couple in love he took my hand in his as he walked me towards his car.
“Fuck Alex, you’re so cold. Where’s your jacket?”
“I left it at home.” I muttered under my breath.
Much to my anger I saw Liam taking off his jacket and putting it on my shoulders. It would have been so sweet if it was a genuine, kind action but we both knew it was just an act for the cameras. He was using me in order to get his old kind and caring image back among his fans. I closed my eyes for a second, reminding myself that was exactly what I was here for and had agreed to.
We just waved and smiled for the cameras until we got to Liam’s car, he opened the door for me and seconds later was in the driver’s seat himself. He started the car and asked me to turn the radio on. The first few songs were all pop songs and I wasn’t exactly the biggest fan of pop songs, which is ironic considering my “boyfriend” was in a pop boyband. But the next song that was being played got my attention. Take It Like a Woman by Alice Cooper.
“I bet ya never thought
That it would never turn out like this
Mama's little girl
Daddy's little princess”
I could feel Liam’s gaze on me through the rear view mirror. I just ignored it and hummed along with the song.
“But somewhere in your fairy tale
Everything went wrong
Now the sun don't shine
The words don't ryhme
You're out of time
You've been beaten down
Kicked around on the ground
But you took it like a woman
Victimized, terrorized, paralyzed
But you took it like a woman
Pushed too far pulled too hard
I know you must have felt the pain
But you took it like a woman”
It was funny how this song described my new life. Suddenly I felt bad for myself. It took a lot of effort for me to fight the tears that were brimming in my eyes. At first the fact that I hated I hated Liam had helped me put up with everything, somehow it made everything seem easier, it gave me a reason to fight for, but now I didn’t hate him anymore, in fact I felt exactly the opposite, I… I shook my head to get the thought out of my head. No, I couldn’t feel that way towards Liam. It wasn’t right.
Liam looked at me again and was about to change the station when I stopped him. “I liked this song.”
I’ve always liked this genre of music and this new connection I felt with that song made me love it even more. I savored every moment of that song, not caring how awkward it was for the both of us. Every now and then when the music was being played I would look at Liam and I swear to God at one point I saw guilt in his eyes. Somehow that made me calmer. It made the pain more bearable.
After the song was over he pulled over and got out of the car. Seconds later he came back with a bottle of water in his hand, taking a sip out of it and then offering it to me. I just shook my head, not really thirsty.
“Alright, don’t look back. Just check it out through the rear view mirror. See that black car behind us?” He said casually.
I did as he said and nodded nervously.
“They’re paps, hoping to catch us off guard and take a picture without us noticing.” He said with the never fading smirk on his face.
Did these people have a life? Why couldn’t they just leave us alone?
“So?” I asked him confused. I couldn’t understand why Liam would pull over because of that.
“Well, I say let’s give them what they want!” He nearly whispered, pulling his face closer to mine.
I wanted to back down but he put his hand behind my neck and pulled my faced closer to his and suddenly crashed his lips into mine. I made a protesting noise but he didn’t pay any attention to me. He just kept kissing me, trying to get me to open my mouth. I refused to do so. He pulled my hair slightly, in a way that was not visible to the paps and bit my lips hard. I opened my mouth in shock and pain. I could feel his triumphant smile against my lips. As much as I hated to admit it he had complete control over me, my body was trapped between his and the door and I had wait until he decided that they’ve got enough pictures of our make out session.
I hated myself. I hated myself for being so weak, for not being able to make him stop, for looking like a worthless toy to him and most of all for not hating that kiss.