Turn This Around

He was beautiful, like an angel, handsome like a god, but what he possessed within was frightfully dark, dangerous and deceiving. You look into his eyes and you're staring into hell itself and you realise he is the demon in which haunts you in you're sleep.

When Natalie Carter, the new girl in town catches the eye of the biggest asshole in school she soon discovers she's going to need more than a feisty attitude and snarky come backs to get rid of the male who stalks her. Challenged with school, making friends and trying to find her place in the world, she really doesn't need Harry Styles on her plate. Harry Styles was not good, in fact he was far from it. He was a demonic creature who had crawled from the fiery pits of hell in Natalie Carters eyes.

There is no escape once your being hunted.

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64. Chapter Fifty-Six

Chapter 56

***NATALIE***

A deep frown was set in my forehead, lower lip taken between my teeth in concentration as I struggled to do the clasp up on the pretty charm bracelet Harry had given me as a birthday present. My fingers fumbled with the silver chain, the clasp clamping closed again before I had the chance to attach it to the opposite side, securely circling my wrist. A grunt of frustration left my lips as the silver bracelet fell to the floor.

The sound seemed to draw Harry's attention and I watched as he propped himself up on his elbows, peering over at me from where he lay sprawled out on my bed. I was grouchy due to lack of sleep from the previous night but catching a glance of Harry seemed to lighten my mood. He had done his hair differently today and I must admit he did look very attractive with his hair pushed back off his forehead styled atop of his head in a quiff. The new look made him look older, sexier, yes but I couldn't help but love his curls that little bit more, there were times where they would give me glimpses of the frightened little boy that his within him, reminding me he was beautifully fragile. His usual pair of tight black jeans adorned his legs, this particular pair of his three identical pairs of jeans was clearly loved due to the worn out knees which now sported gaping holes, revealing tanned skin. I watched as he sat up, giving me a better view or the clothing in which covered his toned abdomens. A simple white t-shirt was warm beneath a red and blue plaid shirt which covered the extent of his muscular arms giving him a look which I found incredibly alluring. A smirk spread across his lips causing an embarrassed pink to creep up my cheeks as I looked to the floor realising I'd been caught out.

Warm breath fluttered on my cheek as two large feet came to stand just in front of mine. Sheepishly I peered up at him, my cheeks still hot with embarrassment as he gave me his winning grin. God he was beautiful. Harry stooped to retrieve the bracelet I had dropped on the floor. He picked it up carelessly, pinching the chain between his thumb and forefinger as if he didn't want to touch it.

"Seriously you don't have to pretend you like it anymore, it was stupid to get you it. I don't know what I was thinking." Harry muttered.

I'm not exactly sure why he thinks I hate the beautiful charm bracelet he put so much thought into but I had a hunch. I think Harry is just too embarrassed to admit he spent a lot of time and probably money too to make each of the three charms have a special and significant message of their own. He appeared as tough as nails on the outside but on the inside he had a part of him that was squishy and cute. He was my squishy.

Quickly I grabbed the bracelet before he had the chance to throw it out the window or flush it down the toilet. He was constantly waiting for me to tell him I hated it and to give him the green light to destroy it. I didn't hate the bracelet, I adored it but what I did hate was the fact I could never seem to put it on alone.

"I don't hate it, Harry, I think it's really beautiful. I love how you put so much effort in to the charms and I love it and I love you." I spoke softly. "I feel awful because you give me these beautiful gifts and I don't get you anything."

A small, shy smile curled at the corners of Harry's lips as he peered down at me through long lashes. I had obviously been correct, he was embarrassed about the effort he'd put into the bracelet holding some form of significance and I thought that was absolutely adorable.

Warm fingers gently took ahold of my hand, lifting it from where it hung at my side. He brought it to his mouth, delicately pressing kisses to my damaged knuckles. Harry's lips carefully caressed my damage skin, the softness of his kisses was calming and soothed the searing pain that burnt across my hand. I carefully watched his expression each time his mouth met my skin, his beautiful eyes closed as he deeply inhaled through his nose.

My heart fluttered, tingles of pleasure sparking through my body as I watched him show me his loving affection. Despite Harry's usual harsh exterior which threatened most, he was so gentle with me and I loved how he was so different with me. The way both of us had opened up to each other had made me feel as though I could tell him anything and trust him with anything and I hoped he finally felt the same.

Harry's eyelids fluttered open as the warmth of his lips evaded the back of my hand. I watched as he pinched either end of the silver charm bracket between a thumb and a forefinger before bringing it up around the underside of my left wrist. The silver chain was cool against my skin as Harry wrapped it around the circumference of my wrist. The clasp was easily pinched between his fingers the little metal device opening before he slipped one of the small metal loops inside it. Once securely within a loop he let the clasp close, the bracelet hanging alone on my wrist as Harry's fingers fell away.

Disappointment washed over me like a tidal wave as his warm touch fell away but the feeling was soon subsided when I felt the expanse of his large hands catch hold of my hips. Fingertips lightly dug into my sides as Harry drew me closer, bringing me into the warmth of his auscultation chest. I cuddled closer, wrapping my own arms around his torso, burying my face in the crook of his neck.

Breathing deeply I inhaled Harry's heavy scent. His aroma was a comforting one, it gave me the feeling of being safe and also being cared for with the utmost love and passion. He smelt like home. I don't know quite where I belong in this world or where home is because I am still trying to figure that out but one thing is for certain...

I belong with him.

I smiled upon feeling his loving lips tenderly press over the red mark with purple flecks he had left the night earlier. My hands fisted the back of his plaid shirt as I attempted the impossibility to bring him closer. With virtually no space remaining between us that was possible at this moment of time my attempts failed, much to my dismay.

"You don't have to get me anything." He whispered. "Your heart is more than enough."

Butterflies erupted within my stomach as my heart did a little happy dance involving heart convulsion and possibly a heart attack, the affect he had on me was indescribable. What he said only made me want to give him something deep and meaningful as the bracket he had so beautifully crafted. He didn't have to get me anything because as like he had said, his heart was plenty enough for me. The bracket he gave me was beautiful though and meaningful and I love it almost as much as I love him and now I want to give him something special.

I leant back a little to gaze up at his beautiful face. He was smiling widely, his eyes alit with honesty and love as our gazes met. Harry was such a lovely person despite the way he had been treated throughout his life. Behind the mask he wore to frighten people and push them away was an amazing man who never had the chance to truly express himself as who he really was. I think the people who suffer the most always turn out the best.

Harry's nose sweetly rubbed against mine as his minty breath fanned out over my lips. I squeezed at his back as our lips softly touched in a loving kiss. Our lips moved together in perfect synchronization as they molded together like two pieces of a puzzle that formed a heavenly whole. Harry was my angel, my beautifully broken angel who was slowly being mended and finding meaning to life again. He is the strongest person I have ever met both mentally and physically and I know that deep within him he has the power to save himself and I will be right there to hold his hand every step of the way. Harry is not alone this time, we will fight the world together.

Lips retracted, breathing slightly heavy as our foreheads pressed together, noses still brushing lightly against one another's as we gently nuzzled into each other. I smiled shyly as I received a small peck to the corner of my mouth, followed by an s second one to the lips. I loved being in this way with Harry, when he would randomly display his affection by showering me in sweet kisses and whispering his words of love in a raspy whisper.

Fingers gently combed through my hair as I nuzzled into his neck, wishing we could stay like this forever. It was completely and utterly undeniable that I had fallen head over heels in love with the broken boy who was rebuilding himself and becoming the real man he truly was behind those high walls he used to keep everyone out. Who knew to cracked and scarred individuals could find a form of twisted yet unconditional love in the darkest of places.

"We've been doing this a lot." I giggled as I let my hands wander over his back, exploring the muscular expanse through two layers of clothing,

"Doing what?" Harry questioned.

"Cuddling and making Jai wait." I answered smiling. "He'll probably come break down the door in a minute, patients is not one of his virtues."

Harry let out a chuckle, his chest vibrating against mine as the beautiful sound rumbled from the back of his throat. I pressed a small kiss to the crook of his neck as I reluctantly let my arms fall from around his body. The lack of contact caused Harry to release a heavy sigh, his own arms uncoiling from around my body, his warmth evading me.

When I peered up at him a frown was creased into his forehead, the cute little frowny line peeking out from between his eyebrows. Harry was clearly disappointed about the abrupt release from our embrace and if I didn't know better he was a little annoyed. It was only to be expected though, I knew Harry wasn't comfortable around Jai, I hadn't even introduced them properly and clearly he wasn't pleased about my mind being on my impatient best friend rather than him during our loving hold, even if it only was for a brief second.

As if to make it up to him, I gently till hold of his hand, entwining our fingers, interlocking them at the knuckles. His cloudy green eyes stared at me in frustration, the colour lightening at the touch of my skin as I lightly squeezed his hand. Neither of us were I. The greatest of moods. We were both hungry which was rather depressing as there was nothing to eat in this house as we hadn't gotten as far as visiting a supermarket. Exhaustion was also one of the feelings we were experiencing due to lack of sleep and the energy we used fighting with each other last night. Neither of those two things were currently doable so I went with the next best thing to brighten Harry's pouty face.

"I like what you're wearing and you did your hair." I whispered in his ear.

I watched as Harry subconsciously lifted his free hand to run his fingers through his chocolaty curls in which had been pushed back atop if his head. A small smile quirked on his lips due to my comment, the corners of his mouth eventually pulling up into a wide grin.

"Is that so?" He rose an eyebrow teasingly.

I took a hold of his bicep, the lean muscle beneath my fingertips rippled with power as he squeezed my other hand. Harry's muscular body was a constant reminder of how much power he possessed and how easily he could snap someone in two if they get on his wrong side. Most importantly his muscle reminded me of how he had promised to keep me safe and I knew that was true.

"Oh my, your muscles have gotten even bigger." I cooed. "Have you been working out?"

Laughter escaped my lips as I playfully pointed out things about Harry that I already knew about and loved about him, his muscular biceps being one of many. A smirk played across his lips as he took a step back. His fingers slipped from mine as he moved away, the warmth of his body evading me.

"Mmm..." He purred, playing along. "I work out just for you, baby."

Harry took a few steps forward before he burned abruptly to stand right in front of me. His eyes danced with playful excitement as grinned wryly at me. I wasn't exactly sure of what he was doing but clearly he was up to something.

I watched carefully as Harry's pink tongue slipped from the warmth of his mouth, slowly gliding across his full lips in the most seductive way possible. My heart rate increased dramatically as I witnessed him pucker his lips in a mock kiss. I couldn't prevent the giggles from escaping my lips as Harry dropped his right eyelid in a teasing wink.

His fingers wrapped around either side of the red and blue plaid shirt he was wearing. Harry pulled the coloured material back over his shoulders and I watched as it fluttered to the floor. My eyes wandered the newly revealed fresh, enjoying the sight of his muscular arms. Harry's biceps increased slightly in size as he flexed his muscles, showing off the strength that rippled beneath his tan skin. I batted my eyelashes at him, lifting my hand to fan myself, playfully swooning.

I moved towards him until I stood barely an inch away from him. My fingers touched over the front of his white shirt, feeling the hard muscle hidden behind the thin layer of white as I let them wander his chest. With every breath I felt Harry muscles contract before he breathed out and the muscles loosened slightly. I let my hands investigate the landscape of his chest as I had done many times before. His chest vibrated with a chuckle as my curious fingertips slipped under his shirt, delicately palming over his stomach.

"I can take all my clothes of if you want to explore some more, babe." Harry teased.

I felt heat flush across my cheeks at his comment as he released another chuckle. I opened my mouth about to make a witty remark before I was cut off by a voice which did not belong to Harry.

"Are you two quite finished with your little strip tease or do you want me to get some heavy music?"

My hands quickly retracted from beneath his shirt as both out heads snapped in the direction of the voice. I could feel my cheeks burning with colour as I noticed Jai leaning against the doorframe a coy grin spread across his face. He had done exactly what I hoped he wouldn't but knew he would, barging into my room out of boredom.

Jai was never one to have patience and manners weren't a strong point either. I mentally cursed myself for leaving the door unlocked, I should have known he would eventually get impatient and charge into my room whether I was decent or not. He's done it before and after being walked in on halfway through getting changed for the third time I started to lock my door whenever he was around. I've been away long enough to forget all the things I used to do hear and know their coming back to bite me in the bum.

"Have you ever heard of knocking?" Harry sneered in annoyance.

Gently I lay a hand on his back in an attempt to calm him down before he did something he'd regret. I had been pleased with how he'd reacted to meeting Jai first off and I really didn't want him to wreck that. It was understandable for Harry to be pissed off about Jai walking in uninvited, I was too but he didn't need to make a scene.

"Nope, never." Jai grinned.

I watched nervously as Jai propelled himself from the doorframe using his shoulder. His legs casually carrying him across the room towards my bed. I felt Harry's body tense as Jai flopped lazily down onto my bed, his body sprawled out like a starfish as he lay on his back.

Harry's breathing was heavy as he tried to keep himself from grabbing Jai by the legs and swinging him off the bed. Worry crossed my face as I glance down to see Harry clenching and unclenching his fists. I didn't want to be in the middle of a fight where I couldn't pick a side and where both of them would hate me because I couldn't. The palm of my hand carefully rubbed circles in his back, soothing the anger raging inside of him as it desperately tried to break out.

There was a dramatic change in his posture as I touched over his strong back, relaxing the tense muscles beneath his skin. Slowly his breath evened out and his muscles loosened, indicating to me that he was alright now and wasn't about to go into combat mode.

I stooped down to collect the plaid shirt Harry had deliberately dropped on the floor earlier. I wanted him to put it back on because I couldn't help but love the look. I handed the material back to Harry who carelessly shrugged it on, rolling the sleeves up a little. I envied the way he could so carelessly look flawless, he didn't really give a damn about the way he looked but all I could think was that he had to be an angel, nothing else was possible.

A smile graced my face as I leant up a little to press a small peck on Harry's cheek. This didn't seem to satisfy Harry though as but a second after my lips left his cheek he had leant in to connect our lips. His mouth was warm against mine, lips soft and tender as he gently moved his lips against mine. However the kiss didn't last long due to the fact Jai was making gagging noises from behind us.

"Guys! Please, no public display of affection." Jai groaned.

"Sorry, mate but it's your fault for walking in on us." Harry remarked wittily.

I couldn't help but let out a laugh because Harry’s comeback was remarkably true. Though I don't plan on to much PDA as I don't want to make Jai feel like the awkward third wheel, on this occasion he deserves it. I watched worriedly as both boys eyed each other for a moment, sizing each other up, searching for weaknesses. The way they were watching each other made me anxious, I was frightened that at any moment one of them was going to snap and we were going to have a full on brawl in my bedroom. I have no idea what I would do if that were to happen, getting between them would be dangerous as neither of them come under the category of weak. You have Harry who boxes and Jai who is the schools bloody sports star and could probably lift me over his head one handed. Neither of them were the type to back down, Harry especially.

I almost had a heart attack as both boys abruptly burst into laughter for no apparent reason. Relief soon washed over me as I realised it was because they were both staring at each other like weirdos. Shit, I need to sit down before I collapse from the panic attack I almost had. A breathed out a heavy sigh, relieving myself from the worrying thoughts in which had been running through my mind with a simple exhale of breath.

"So you're Harry, right?" Jai asked as he sat up from his starfish position on my bed.

Harry nodded watching Jai as he got up, moving across the room towards him. A hand was extended towards him with the intent of being shook as my best friend and boyfriend properly met. Harry took a hold of Jai's hand, shaking it firmly

"I'm Jai."

I couldn't stop myself from grinning like an idiot as the two males became acquaint. The happiness I felt was due to the fact they were both still in one piece and seemed to be getting along just fine now. This was the way I wanted it to be, Jai, Mitchell and Harry getting along but sadly Mitchell hadn't shown up and I had a hunch that it was because he didn't want to meet Harry because he refuses to believe Harry isn't the asshole I first made him out to be. I don't know if Mitchell will come round because he is a stubborn fool but I can only hope he will.

Jai and Harry released each other’s hand from their firm grip as I sauntered over to my swivel chair, collapsing down on top of it. Both the boys' gaze followed me as I crossed the room to take a seat. I couldn't help but roll my eyes at both of them, Jai was like my protective brother and Harry was my overprotective boyfriend trying to work on that issue. I felt like a five year old who was constantly being watched over to make sure she didn't do anything stupid. But I guess it does feel nice to know that people care about you and want to make sure you’re safe, it can be overwhelming at times though.

"So, do you guys have plans today? Or do you want to get some lunch because I'm fucking starved." Jai asked.

*

After a short drive into town the three of us found ourselves standing outside the Starbucks I used to work for. Harry took my hand as we stepped inside, I was immediately hit in the face with the warm smell of coffee and a buzzy atmosphere. It looked exactly the same way as it had before I left, black leather chairs lined the walls, tables placed between them forming small booths. A single wall light was attached to the wall in each booth whilst black lamps dangled from the ceiling above the simple wooden tables and chairs that filled the centre of the coffee shop.

The atmosphere was warm and friendly, alit with the buzz of conversation between customers. It was such a welcoming sight, one I'd been very familiar with. My eyes wandered to the service area where I spotted 2 familiar faces working behind the counter and a couple of new ones.

Harry lightly tugged at my hand, pulling me after Jai who was already waiting in line to be served. My eyes wandered the assortment of muffins behind the clad window until they landed upon a double chocolate muffin, my favourite. I desperately needed something to eat, I was almost certain I was going to faint if I didn't get food in my rumbling stomach.

"Oh my god! Natalie!" Someone exclaimed.

I peered over the counter at Katrina, one of the two friends I had here that were female. Katrina was a year older than me, she had finished school last year and was taking a gap year as she was still trying to decide on what she was going to study at Uni. Kat was really beautiful, she had dark skin and jet black hair in which was tied in a slick pony tail atop of her head today. She had a perfect figure, her body curved in all the right places and she was at least six foot but that didn't stop her from wearing heels. Kat had a friendly smile and her chocolate brown eyes were warm most of the time but when one of the multiple guys that hit on her got a bit too friendly they were hard and angry, Kat had a real kick in her. She's a very boisterous, witty girl who doesn't take shit from perverts who prey on her or any girl in fact. Some guy from another school slapped my arse when I was wiping tables down once and he got a knee to the groin from Kat. Katrina is like an older sister to me.

"Hey Kat." I grinned widely.

Her head snapped from left to right, glancing around the coffee shop for any sign of the manager I presume before gracefully sitting on the counter and swinging her legs round. She hopped off quickly, her feet barely touching the ground before she practically tackled me in a bear hug. My hand was torn from Harry's as the force of her body nearly knocked me backwards.

By some miracle I managed to keep myself upright, spreading my feet a little to aid my balance before I wrapped my arms around her. Her slender arms squeezed me so tight that I thought my ribs were going to crack. With Katrina Grey there was never a dull moment in your life, you were either watching her beat some pervert up till they cried, watching her dance on top of the coffee tables when we were shutting up for the night or just having a good laugh with her. I swear if ninety percent of the customers didn't just come here because of her she would have been fired ages ago. She was the kind of person who made you smile no matter what and people loved her for that.

"What are you doing back here?!" She asked shaking my shoulders slightly as she pulled released me from her bone breaking grip. "I thought you moved to Cheshire!"

"I'm visiting for a couple of days." I replied, gently taking hold of her wrists to prevent her from giving me whiplash.

"Dammit, I thought you were back for good." She sighed in disappointment.

I shook my head sadly. I wish I could come back but now I'm torn between here and Cheshire. Harry and everything I left behind when we moved from Doncaster. I actually dread the day I finish school, I don't know where I'll go or what I'll do from there on out. I still have time though, things could happen that might help me decide what I'll do but right now I just don't know.

"Nat?" A husky voice asked from behind me.

Kat peered over my shoulder, her eyes studying the male standing behind me. I turned around to look at Harry, giving him a smile as Kat continued to try and link Harry and me together. I could almost see her wild brain ticking away as she tried to remember if she'd seen him around before, if he was one of my friends from round here but her mind was blank.

Before Katrina strained her brain trying to figure out who tall, dark and handsome was, I decided to introduce them.

"Harry, this is Kat, Kat this is my boyfriend, Harry."

"Hi." Harry awkwardly scratched the back of his head.

"You hurt her and I will hunt you down and personally cut of your dick." She spoke before a grin broke across her face and she smiled. "Nice to meet you."

Harry took a step back, eyes wide with surprise after hearing Kat threaten him in such a way. I covered my mouth, trying to prevent the uncontrollable giggles from falling from my lips as I watched Harry stare at her in horror. It was quite amusing, I've never seen Harry looked so scared in my life. Katrina has that effect on guys, she loves to scare them shitless.

I almost died of laughter when Harry shuffled up the line, slipping in front of Jai just to put that little but of distance between him and the girl who was threatening to cut off his manhood. Poor Harry, he'll probably have nightmares for a day or two. Katrina let out a laugh to join mine, her fake seriousness evaporating after scaring my boyfriend shitless.

"I was just kidding." She called to him, a warm smile on her face and eyes twinkling with amusement.

He glanced back at her in terror along with Jai who looked as though he'd seen a ghost when he peered at her. The look on his face made me wonder if she had threatened him for some unknown reason.

Sometimes I wonder if Katrina is going to ever find a boyfriend who is scared she'll chop his balls of during the night. That guy's got to be fearless. She really is a bit of a handful, she's a free spirit who absolutely loves life and doesn't let anyone push her around. Kat reminds me of my father sometime, she's an optimist just like he was.

"I love how both of them are terrified of me." She smiled proudly as if it was her life goal to terrorize the whole male population of the earth. "I told Jai the exact same thing when Evie told me she was dating him"

My eyes widened in surprise hearing Jai was going out with Evie, the other female friend I have here. I had not been informed of Jai no longer being single. I know we haven't talked much about what's been going on in our lives yet but I would have expected him to tell me about her earlier considering its kind of an important event in his life.

I couldn't help but look between Jai and Evie who was currently in the process of making someone's coffee, quietly whistling to herself as she did so. Evie was sixteen and in the year below Jai and I. She was a sweet girl who was a little on the shy side before you got to know her and found out how fun she could be. Both Kat and I are very protective over her as she is the youngest of the three of us and guys pry on her because she's so innocent looking and they think it's alright to say absurd things to her because she's too shy to fight back.

Today Evie had her dirty blonde waves tied in a messy bun atop of her head, she kept having to push a few strands back behind her ear as they had fallen from her bun onto her face. Her deep blue eyes caught mine for a moment and she sent me a smile and a small wave which put me under the impression Jai must have told her something about my visit earlier.

I liked Evie and Jai as a couple, they were a perfect match. Jai is a gentle guy and know he'll take good care of her. It's funny how it feels like only yesterday that Evie and I were working a late shift together and there weren't many customers so we talked. Our conversations would vary from things like if we'd ever get boyfriends and what it would be like to have sex. We both liked to vent our issues to someone who actually cared. I was stuck with a bunch of boys I couldn't really discuss other guys with and she doesn't have a lot of friends due to the fact people avoid her because her brother has Down syndrome which I think is really sad. People shouldn't be judged like that, Evie is a lovely person and I've met her brother a couple of times, she's so kind to him and he's really sweet as well. People these days are so cruel and judgmental, no wonder why our society is so fucked.

"Your boyfriend is cute and kind of awkward." Kat chuckled as we witnessed him trod on Jai's foot.

There was a playful tousle between them for a moment which brought a smile to my face. They looked as though they were a pair of good mates play fighting and that made me really happy. Harry peered back at me anxiously as if he'd sensed we were talking about him and didn't want the scary Kat girl to chop of his balls. I mouthed a quick 'I love you' to him which brought a sheepish grin to his face.

Kat's manager suddenly yelled her name, ordering her back to her work station. I watched as she rolled her eyes in annoyance knowing all too well that she didn't want to oblige to his commands, she wanted to do the opposite. A humph of annoyance left her mouth as she debated between potentially losing her job or doing as she was told so she could get her pay check.

"We have to catch up before you leave, okay." She spoke. "And you can tell me all about curly."

I let out a laugh and nodded my head whilst mentally I was thinking 'shit I need to by a pair of sunglasses so by eyes don't burn out when she uses a bright light to interrogate me. A small hug was exchanged between us before she hopped back over the other side of the counter, much to her manager’s dismay. Smiling to myself I slipped back into line, slotting myself between Jai and Harry.

"Your friend frightens me." Harry spoke in barely a whisper as if afraid she might hear him.

Gently I took a hold of his hand, entwining our fingers until they interlocked at the knuckles. I squeezed his hand in a small sign of reassurance before planting a quick peck on his left cheek. Katrina isn't as scary as she seems but it is a hell of a lot of fun watching her terrorize men rather than it being the other way round.

A few minutes later Harry, Jai and I were sitting in the comfortable leather seats in the back of the coffee shop with our drinks and lunch. I snuggled into Harry's side as he lazily slung his arm over my shoulder as I sipped at my iced coffee. Jai sat on the opposite side of the booth, he wore a stupid smile on his face as he stared down at the container in which his girlfriend had scrawled his name across the front of it along with a message I had tried but failed to read as Jai had noticed and turned it away from my curious eyes. I thought it was cute how Evie and Jai had a cute little coffee shop relationship, Harry and I were never going to be anything like that and I knew it never would. I didn't mind though, well not really but I guess every girl wants their boyfriend to be somewhat romantic. Harry just isn't the romantic type, he has his cute little moments but he is the way he is and I'm fine with that.

"So, Kat tells me you and Evie are together." I rose my eyebrows.

I took a bite of my muffin as Jai nodded his head, setting his Caramel frappe down on the table. There was a hint of pink dancing across his cheeks at the mention of Evie's name making it blatant that he liked her a lot. I cocked my head to the side, sneaking a peek at a various X's, O's and heard a drawn on the cup before he twisted away from me again. I am so nosey but I always have this burning curiousness within me that just has to know everything.

"Yeah, so?" He shrugged.

"When did you get together?"

"Guys don't talk about shit like this, Nat, go ask her. I know girls go on and on about that sort of stuff." He groaned.

I rolled my eyes, this is one reason why having guys as friends suck. They refuse to discuss their love in a little more detail than just who they are with or who they slept with. They think they’re so big and tough and act as though they couldn't care less when their out in public with a group of friends. I could almost grantee that if it were just Jai and I here he would probably tell me everything but Harry's here so he's trying to act all macho when really he's a big softie. Boys and their bloody ultra-egos piss me off the most by far.

I wanted to know how he and Evie had gotten together but I wasn't going to go interrupt her during her shift. I was just going to have to wait until I see her again or squeeze it out of Jai a bit later. Deciding not to push it anymore I let out a sigh before slumping down in my seat, tentatively nibbling on my chocolate muffin as Harry and Jai began discussing the football match played the other night.

I sat quietly, listening to the two males talk, they were getting in really well and I almost couldn't be any happier. But there was something nagging at the back of my mind and the thought frightened me. As hard as I tried to push it away it would always pop back up and I couldn't get rid of it. It had haunted me the past three days but today was by far the worst as I was slowly realising my fears might just come true.

I was losing one of my best friends because he refused to give Harry a chance. He was avoiding me because I was with someone who he presumed was an player who wanted nothing more than a good fuck before he moved on to the next girl. He is wrong though, there is more to Harry than meets the eye.

There was a burning pain in my chest where Mitchell was ramming a blunt knife through my heart. It really hurts because he's supposed to be here, supporting my choices and at least trying to be friendly to Harry. But he's not, no, Mitchell is probably sitting in his room sulking and deliberately avoiding me so he doesn't have to meet Harry. It really irritates me because ever since my dad died I've had a gaping hole in my heart and he and Jai have desperately tried to make me feel whole again but it has never worked, there's always been a hole in my chest. I've finally found someone who can fill that hole and Mitchell should be happy for me but instead he's trying to pressure me into a place I don't want to go a place where he's trying to pull Harry from me and opening that hole again making it a hundred time a worse. It kills me to know he doesn't want to see me when I came back to see him but he is being hurtful and cruel. The thought of hi destroying our friendship like this makes me want to cry.

Why does Mitchell have to make my life any more difficult? I know it's never going to be a walk in the park with Harry, that's for sure but I never expected one of my best friends to hurt me and that was the worst part. Like all friends we'd had our disputes and arguments and on a few occasions there would be a day or two of silence between us but that was like all friendships. We fight, we argue but then we make up. No one’s perfect and I understand that more than anyone else in the world does. But this is inexcusable. Mitchell is not being a friend by acting in the way he is and I don't understand why he can't swallow his pride and give me the wonderful smile that makes everything okay. Why can't he get to know Harry a bit and discover the amazing guy who can sometimes appear harsh and intimidating in the same way as Katrina does? Maybe he will be surprised by what he finds because I know I sure was when I found the boy beneath the mask.

When I spoke to him the other night to inform him I was coming to visit with Harry, I could hear the pure hatred I his voice as he asked me

Why I was bringing the prick who wanted nothing more than sex. A tear slipped down my cheek that night, the way he spoke to me tore me from my delighted mood and brought me down to rock bottom again. Mitchell didn't even directly need to say he hated Harry because his tone of voice practically screamed out I despise him with every bone in my body.

What saddened me most was the fact my best friend hated the person I love more than anything in my life without even knowing the real him. No one deserves to be hated, no matter how awful they are or how bad the crimes they've committed are. Harry doesn't deserve to be hated, after having so many people hate and despise him in his life he doesn't deserve any more. Everything Harry ever had was taken from him and he was left alone with nothing but torn, blackened wings, scars of his haunting childhood and a cracked heart that was almost so broken that he couldn't be saved. He deserved love more than anyone else in the world and I'll be the one to give him that.

My stomach churned with the thoughts running through my head and suddenly I lost my appetite, I wanted to be sick. Once again I felt as though the weight of the world was pressing down on my shoulders trying to crush me beneath it. As hard as I try I can never make everyone happy, someone is always unhappy and there's nothing I can do about it apart from bare the pain that comes with every stab of the knife they send to my chest.

"How's Mitchell." I blurted out unintentionally.

Jai's gaze momentarily flicked to me, before he averted his gaze to the half-eaten cheese scone on his plate, picking at it nervously. I immediately regretted asking, knowing all too well that Mitchell was not good and as I had suspected was avoiding Harry and I at all costs.

"He had to babysit his sister." Jai lied, not for my sake but for Harry's

I was trying as best as I could to keep the reason of Mitchell's lack of presence from Harry. He didn't need to know about that shit. I was trying to get him to stop feeling so insecure and Mitchell hating him quite frankly wasn't going to help. It was only going to make things worse. Harry already has enough he had to deal with, he doesn't need someone else hating him on top of all that.

Jai looked up, his eyes meeting mine briefly as he gave me a small sad smile which read it all. He had tried to convince Mitchell to come along but he was stubborn and refused, knowing all too well that his actions were hurting me. My lower lip was taken between my teeth as I stared down at my chocolate muffin. Harry kissed the top of my head, completely oblivious to the silent exchange between Jai and me. He thought I was merely disappointed because Mitchell couldn't make it but little did he know there it was more than just that and his sweet gesture borough tears to my eyes.

Here I am again, my heart being torn to pieces.

"My parents are having a barbecue tonight with a few people." Jai spoke in barely a whisper. "He'll be there."

I gave a small nod of my head in reply, unable to trust myself to speak as I was afraid of the tears threatening to spill down my cheeks. I didn't know if I wanted to go to that barbecue, I didn't want to see Mitchell because I didn't know what to say, the only thought in my mind was 'fuck you'.

Suddenly my stomach twisted in a sickening way that brought bile up the back of my throat. I shoved Harry's arm off my shoulders as I hurriedly got to my feet, clamping my hand over my mouth. My feet rapidly carried me towards the bathrooms, tears falling down my cheeks as Harry desperately cried my name, panic and worry both evident in his voice as I slipped into the girls bathroom.

A young woman washing her hands at the sink glanced at me in confusion as I darted into the nearest cubical. I slammed the door shut, my fingers fumbled with the lock until I finally managed to turn it. My knees hit the tile floor with a sickening crunch as I leant over the toilet bowl. The contents of my stomach I'd been desperately trying to keep down finally came up. My coffee, my muffin and half my stomach acid spewed into the toilet, burning my throat as it evacuated through my mouth.

My head pound in the way I would expect it to if I were ever hit by a bus. My forehead was pounding and my body felt as though it were swaying as my head spun. I heard the bathroom door slam against the tile wall as it was forcefully shoved open. The woman who had been in the bathroom yelped in fright as who I could quite accurately presume was Harry barged in through the door. I felt sorry for the woman as she had to witness a part of the constant drama in my life. I think I could have my own TV show and it would simply be called 'Natalie' the girl who doesn't have a clue why her life is full of so much confusion and hurt and drama.

I wrapped my arms round the toilet as another wave of nausea washed over me and since my stomach was empty it was only acid. It tasted vile and burnt my throat on its way up. My body trembled as I spluttered violently into the toilet bowl.

"Natalie! Baby? Let me in!" Harry cried out desperately, his fists violently banging against the cubical door as he tried to get in.

Whether I wanted to let him in it not, I felt too weak to move. Harry's Cries echoed around my head, bouncing back and forth off the walls of my skull as I threw up for the third time. A string of cuss words soon followed as the toilet cubical shook around me. I was unsure if it was just my spinning head causing the movement of the compact space but I soon discovered I was wrong.

A small thud echoed around the bathroom briefly as Harry jumped from the top of the cubical, landing on his feet. His presence was felt directly behind me as he knelt down, his chest pressing to my back. I felt one arm slip round my waist, his other hand moving to gently pull my hair back from my face. I leant forward again, my fingers crunching around the white porcelain as I threw up yet again. Harry's fingers slipped under my shirt, the warmth of his skin finding mine as he gently rubbed my churning stomach.

My coughs soon turned into chocked sobs as fat tears dribbled down my cheeks. My throat burnt painfully and my whole body shook as Harry held my hair back, whispering reassuring words in my ear. Harry drew me nearer, his arms completely enveloping my body as I nuzzled into his chest.

"Harry." I cried, grabbing a fistful of his shirt between my fingers.

"It's okay, beautiful." Harry gently whispered. "I'm here, I've got you."

Harry pressed small kisses to my temple, his lips tender and loving as he tried to comfort me as I quietly sobbed, trying to figure out what good deed I had done to deserve someone as imperfectly perfect as Harry.

 

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