Hanging On

Katerine Willows was falling in two ways. She was falling into an unfathomable comatose, destroyed after her fiancé’s death and on a path of self destruction. Until her therapist forcibly sends her to Paris to help her pursue her once great career as a singer. Then she falls another way. A way she never expected to fall again. She fell in love. Will she allow the equally damaged Louis Tomlinson to heal her? Or will she continue down the cold and lonely road she started out on?

Hey! My first real writing, so fingers crossed! I know some of the things in here are cruel or messed up, but I don't mean anything against the people in it! It's purely fiction! Please enjoy and leave feedback! I'll update as often as possible. Xx -Alex

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14. Chapter Thirteen

 

    I woke up, stretching and yawning quietly. I rolled over to see Louis still fast asleep. I smiled as he gently snored; he looked so peaceful. I grabbed my phone, seeing a text from my mom. I had finally called her yesterday and we talked for a good two hours about my entire situation. She, being the mother she is, was worried about me being in Paris alone, but I assured her I would be fine; once I built up my career enough I could settle down permanently and gain citizenship. My eyes ran across the date suddenly and my heart dropped, realizing what today was.

    I realized that this would be one of the most depressing New Year’s Eve parties I would be at. Louis left in two days and I still didn’t feel ready. But I had to keep putting on this front for him; I wasn’t about to be the reason that their tour was cancelled. I carefully got out of bed and took a shower. For the first time in a while, I looked in the mirror. I wasn’t pale anymore and my cheeks actually held some color in them. My silvery eyes had a small spark in them and I looked rested. I was happy for once.

    I got dressed and realized it was only around nine. I decided to go out for some coffee. I grabbed my coat and some cash before opening the door and finding myself face to face with Harry. I smiled and gave him a quick hug, shutting the door behind me as I stepped out. “What’s up?”

    “I was going out for some coffee and was wondering if you could join me, actually,” Harry said, chuckling.

    “Looks like we had the same idea,” I joked. “Come on, I know this great little café just down the street,” I said, linking my arm with his. Harry was such a great guy and he understood me. Not to the level that Louis did, but he was always there for me and I appreciated that.

    We finally made our way down to the café and sat down at a corner table, sipping on hot coffee. I looked out the window, watching a light flurry of snow pick up. It was then that I realized this was the exact table I sat at when I had first arrived here. I was so different now; I had such a different view on my life and what I wanted to happen. But without Louis there to help, it wasn’t going to be easy to achieve this. It was going to be a long, cold day. I hadn’t realized that I had sighed so loudly until I looked over to see Harry giving me a look.

    “What did I do?” I met his gaze, sipping on my coffee. His gaze was so intense.

    “You amaze me, Katie you really do. I don’t understand how you can act so okay when you’re so scared.” I looked down as Harry said this.

    “I’m not that scared,” I replied quietly. He could read me so easily.

    “You may be able to fool everyone else, but you aren’t slipping past me. I know how scared you are, Katie; I would be too if I were you, believe me. But lying to Louis? I don’t understand why you can’t just be honest with him about this.”

    “He told me that if he didn’t think I was okay that he wasn’t going to go on the tour.” I looked at Harry this time. “If I can show him that I’ll be alright without him and that I won’t hurt myself again, he’ll go on tour. Don’t get me wrong; I wish with everything inside of me that Louis could stay, but I don’t want to be the reason that the long awaited eight month tour of One Direction was cancelled. I’m going to be building my career and focusing on getting myself the help I need while you’re gone. I can’t do that if Louis is still here. I don’t want him to see me get stripped down to the things I’ve buried deep inside of myself; he’s seen me pretty low but nothing like I could be. Harry, I know I shouldn’t lie to him, but I don’t want to hold him back; this is how he’ll know I’m okay.”

    “Are you sure that’s what Louis would want to hear? If I can see past this exterior of yours, maybe he can too. He’s a shmuck for you yes, but he’s not blind; he knows when you’re hurting.”

    “What are you saying?” I was slightly offended.

    “Maybe he already knows you’re scared.” I was surprised at Harry’s answer. “Maybe he knows what’s going on and he’s waiting for you to come out with it. What if that’s what he means by knowing you’re okay? Tell him the truth and I promise that you won’t regret it.” I met Harry’s smile. I reached for his hand and felt him squeeze mine gently.

    “Thank you, Harry. I needed to hear that.”

    It was around 10:30 when we got back and by then Louis and the boys were up. I gave Louis the biggest hug and kissed him. For today, just for today, I wasn’t going to lie to him anymore. I was going to be completely honest and tell him everything. Harry was right; I needed to tell him the truth about how I felt. This would be the best thing I could do for him before I wouldn’t see him anymore.

    “I was thinking,” Louis began.

    “Were you?” I smirked and kissed him. He ruffled my hair and pulled me onto the couch, sitting on his lap.

    “Yes, I was thinking we could have a lovely evening down at the Square for the ball drop and then go out for a bit, just you and I,” he finished. I looked down at him and smiled.

    “I couldn’t think of anything better than spending tonight with you.” I rested my lips on his forehead, closing my eyes. It was scary to me how much I loved him. I’d never fallen this hard before. Trusting him to catch me if I started falling was scary enough and now I had to be away from him for almost a year. I just needed to trust that everything would be alright like we promised each other.

    We left the hotel room at around ten, running like crazy to the Square. It was packed like crazy already and we could barely keep together. We all were bombarded by fans and even stopped to greet a few, but we had our minds set on getting the best view of the ball drop. The grand stage came into view where performances would be held to celebrate ringing in the New Year. I was glad to be rid of 2013; it certainly wouldn’t be remembered as a fun year. I did however learn so much from it; I’d grown so much and I’d found the most wonderful part of my life again.

    “Come on, let’s get closer!” I felt Louis tug me with him and I laughed at his enthusiasm. We had left the others behind, wanting to scout out all the positions.

    “Louis, slow down! I can’t breathe,” I managed to holler at him through my constant giggles. “Turn left!” He pulled me behind him as he took a sharp left, giving my arm whiplash.

    “Sorry!” I yanked his arm in response, getting a chuckle out of him. “Katie, we’re almost there!” I ran to catch up with him. “Here, get on my back.” We stopped for a moment as he picked me up and carried me the rest of the way. I felt like a queen, seeing the masses of people crowding the Square to see the memorable ball drop. I giggled again as I saw couples pointing at us and smiling. I waved and gave high fives as we passed people, feeling the bubbly energy around me.

    “Louis, go straight; I see a good spot.” He nodded and kept going. We eventually reached the gate, marking the end of our journey. I hopped off his back and took his arm, linking us. “Let’s stay together, okay?” He smiled and kissed my forehead.

    “Where else would we go?” I kept looking at him even when he was fixing his gaze on the countdown clock. He was perfect for me in every way. That’s why he deserved the truth. Tonight; I’d tell him tonight.

    We passed the time by talking with fans and signing autographs. I have to admit; these fans were really cool. I knew some could be harsh and others were pretty crazy, but there were the few in the middle who were really cool and actually sustained a conversation.

    “So, Katie, are you going on tour with the boys?” I turned to see the one that had introduced herself as Kara asking me.

    “I don’t know, actually. I’ll have to see what happens,” I smiled. It was hard to keep such a bright face when asked such a heartbreaking question. I knew I wasn’t going but saying to someone else that there was a possibility gave me a small spark of false hope.

    “Well, if you don’t, you should give me a call sometime and we could hang out! Here’s my number,” Kara answered, handing me a slip of paper. “I don’t mean to look creepy having it ready, but I was really excited to meet you,” she admitted sheepishly.

    “You have no idea how amazing that is. It feels so cool to know I have fans,” I laughed. “I’ll definitely give you a call sometime and maybe we’ll get some coffee,” I suggested. Kara nodded enthusiastically.

    I heard someone call her name and she started walking off. “That’s my boyfriend; I’d better go back to him; he probably misses me already,” she winked and waved goodbye. I felt a pang in my heart. He’s probably missing me already…

    “Katie, the ball’s about to drop!” I turned around at Louis’s touch against my hand and counted down with him. With every number, I gave forth my memories with him.

    10…our first encounter in the hallway after I’d exploded on the security. I’d vowed to hate him after that.

    9…seeing him cry for the first time after the unexpected encounter at dinner. That was the first time I actually felt something again.

    8…watching him stare at me the first time we all went out together and wanting him to be the one dancing with me.

    7…watching in amazement as he defended me in the club against Trent; seeing what he was capable of.

    6…connecting with him for the first time and realizing he understood me.

    5…confiding everything I had inside of me to him and trusting him with my heart.

    4…letting him knock down my walls, knowing for the first time I wanted to give myself to him.

    3…Telling the world about my story and having him being a part of it.

    2…Realizing I never wanted to be apart from him.

    1…Letting him save me.

    As we shared our first kiss for the New Year, I replayed our story over and over again in my head, permanently etching it into my memory. I never wanted to forget about everything we had; it was the one good thing that finally came into my life.

    “Happy New Year, love,” Louis whispered as we pulled apart gently.

    “I love you, Louis.”

    “I’ll always love you, Katie.” I stayed in his arms, letting him fill me completely. This was the moment I would always keep inside of me; this is how I wanted to always remember us. “Come on, follow me.” He pulled me back onto his back and we made our way out of the crowd. We reached the back and started going down the snowy, lamp-lit streets. They were completely empty and quiet, which was amazing. Seeing this side of New York was something special.

    “Louis, where are we going?” I jumped slightly at how loud my voice seemed against the still of the night.

    “Just close your eyes and trust me.”

    “I’ll always trust you,” I mumbled into his neck. I closed my eyes and concentrated on his footsteps crunching through the snow. It was so soothing, so methodical and even. Eventually they stopped and my eyes snapped open.

    We were in Central Park, surrounded by the snow covered, bare trees. I jumped down and walked in front of him in awe of the splendor in front of me. The snow was falling so gently and silently, the wind was still. We were in a small clearing, the only light coming from the bright moon above us casting a gently shadow against the trees. I turned around to face Louis. He was watching me, drinking in every move I made. I walked to him and wrapped my arms around his waist.

    “I love you, Louis.”

    “I love you too, Katie.” He leaned down for a kiss, but I stopped him. “What’s wrong?”

    “I need to be honest with you; I never would have seen us coming to this.” Louis laughed at my statement. “No really just think about it. The first time we met, we were both so low, so angry at everyone for not understanding us. We hated each other because we didn’t understand how two people could fall in love again after being so in love with someone they’d lost. It was impossible for me to think about loving anyone else other than Toby because he was all I’d ever known. When you came along it was like a truck had hit me. I felt like I needed to be near you, to hear you. I do still love Toby, but not the way I love you. You understand every piece of me Louis and I trust you with everything I am. I love you and I’ll never stop loving you no matter what happens.” I grabbed his hand and kissed it.

    “Louis, you’re going on tour tomorrow.” I swallowed hard, trying to stay composed; I needed to say it. “You said that if the past few days went well then you’d leave. I want to tell you that for these past few days I’ve been lying to you. To be perfectly honest, I’m absolutely terrified at the thought of you leaving me. I don’t know how I’m going to be able to get up in the morning without you there beside me. You have been my anchor for the past month and you’ve reopened me to the world. You’re the only one who understands why I am the way I am and you don’t judge me for the things I do. Knowing that you aren’t going to be with me to help me keep moving on makes me so scared,” I whispered, tears falling gently. “I’m scared I’m going to relapse again and I won’t come out of it. I’ve always been scared of that. So I decided to make a promise to you; sort of a New Year’s resolution too. I’m going to get better, Louis. I’m going to focus on my career and I’m going to get actual help. I’m going to rise back to where I was before everything fell apart; I can’t keep hanging on to everything that has brought me down and ruined me. I’m going to rise up above it and I’m going to conquer the fears I’ve been holding back. One of those fears was falling in love again. I thought that maybe if I found someone else then I’d lose Toby too; you proved me wrong and I can’t thank you enough for that Louis. I only want you to know the truth before you leave so you won’t have to worry about me anymore.” I finished and looked up into his eyes. He blinked away a few tears and kissed me so passionately.

    “Katie, I will always worry about you, don’t you doubt that,” Louis answered finally, making me laugh a little. He held my gaze. “Thank you for finally telling me the truth. This is going to be so hard without you, you know. But we’ll talk every day, even if it’s just to say hi. We’ll send the most ridiculous photos to each other and Skype as often as possible. I’m not going to lose you again, Katerine Willows. I promise you I won’t lose you again.” He reached into his pocket, pulling out a small black box. My heart dropped to my stomach. “It’s not an engagement ring; I don’t think we’re quite ready for that yet,” he chuckled, seeing my expression. “Instead, it’s a promise ring. This is my promise to never lose you again. If you should slip away, then I promise to never stop fighting for you. I will stay with you until you wish me away.” The ring slipped onto my ring finger perfectly, right above my old engagement ring. It was brilliant silver, a diamond set in the middle.

    “Louis, it’s absolutely beautiful,” I whispered. “I’ll hold you to that promise as long as you want me to be the one wearing this ring.”

    “I’ll always want you to be the one wearing my ring,” he said quietly, kissing me gently. I don’t think I could ever get used to the way his kiss stole my breath away. 

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