The Pursuit of Happiness


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2. Chapter Two.

Chapter 2

 

Tessa's POV

Work wasn't too slow today, as far as a flower shop goes. There was a steady amount of customers coming in and out of our shop, which kept me on my feet. My co-worker, Alex, caught the stomach virus last night so I guess that also had something to do with it.

That only left me and Sophie to manage the shop. It wasn't too bad but I really didn't feel like working today. My feet were killing me. And besides, I had other things on my mind.

 

It's been over a year since I met Harry on the cold streets of London. For the four months he was home, we spent every minute together. He left to tour over eight months ago, and although I knew he should be home soon, I don't know when. We haven't spoken in a while, which I understand, because he's really busy. But on days like these, I really start to miss by best friend. And it becomes really difficult not to think about him. Although I loved the fact he gets to pursue his dreams, I really wished I could see him more often.

 

Hey babe, I can use a little help around here!” Sophie called.

 

I made my way over to the counter and started arranging flower bundles. Tomorrow, four people were having a wedding. And we needed to make over 100 flower arrangements. Plus, 200 chocolate lollipops for another wedding. The work itself wasn't difficult, however it was very time consuming.

 

Do you mind if I take an early lunch break?” She looked over at me.

Not at all,” I smiled. A big grin covered her face as she got up and gathered her things. It was like she was almost too happy to go on a lunch break... I hesitantly looked over at her; she just winked and walked out the door.

I laughed and got back to working on the flower bundles, my mind aimlessly wandering.

 

Are you gonna miss me?” His raspy voice rang clear in ear. I could feel his cool breath tickling at my skin. We had to be a bit quiet when we talked, since the boys were asleep next to us. We've been at the airport since six in the morning, waiting for their flight. I looked over at him to see a playful grin etched into his face.

Not really, no.” I teased. He laughed and licked his lips, playing with his fingers. It was something he did when he was nervous. There was a silence between us, except it wasn't a good silence. We were both really upset. Harry wouldn't be back for another eight months... And that only just sank in as I looked over at him again. Harry was looking at the floor, running his thumbs in circles.

I'm not gonna miss you either.” He gave me a breathy laugh. His obvious attempt to tease me failed.

 

I looked over at the four boys sleeping across from us. Niall and Louis were leaning against the wall, sharing a blanket. Zayn had his head on Liam's shoulder, both snoring softly. I spent a lot of the past first four months in England with these boys, and they meant a lot to me. Not because they're in One Direction, but because they were the most amazing people I ever met.

Harry had the biggest hold on me. We just clicked from the start, becoming best friends within the first hour we knew each other. A woman’s voice interrupted my thoughts; she announced their flight was ready to board. Harry looked up at me with sad eyes. I was about to return the look when the boys woke up from their nap. They looked up at me with disoriented gazes and somehow managed to smile. I got up and helped them with their bags, making sure they weren't forgetting anything.

We said our good byes and I watched as they went to board their plane. There was only one person left to say good bye to: Harry. I turned around to look at him; it was the first time I felt tears well up in my eyes today.

Harry wrapped his arms around me, tears staining both of our shirts.

I'm gonna miss you so much.” I cried. He wrapped his arms tighter around my waist, pulling me in closer to him.

I'm gonna miss you too, babe.” Another tear landed on the soft fabric of my t-shirt.

Please don't go.”

I have to,” a small smile formed on his face. Obviously, Harry was right. But I never would have thought that watching your best friend live his dream could hurt so much. I pulled away from him, knowing I needed to see his face one more time before he walked onto that plane.

Call me every day, Harry Styles. Don't you forget about your best friend!” More tears fell from my eyes. He smiled and wiped them from my cheeks, pulling me into another tight hug.

I couldn't if I tried...” We just held each other for a while until the woman's voice interrupted us again. This was the last call to board the plane.

I love you,” I said, looking into his eyes.

I love you too,” he kissed me on the forehead and walked away. I waited until I couldn't possibly see him anymore to leave the airport. Whether he knew it or not, Harry took a piece of me with him on tour. I wiped a few more small tears from my face and turned around, heading back to a life that would certainly be dull without my best friend.

 

A single tear hit the counter as I replayed the memory over in my mind again. I unknowingly put together more than two dozen flower bundles in less than a half hour. My hands were shaking and my face was burning. The more I thought about Harry, the more I would cry. He managed to become my best friend in four months and I can't even remember the last time I talked to him. He's on tour, he's busy, I get it. But there's always a small part of me that wishes he was back home again, spending his Friday nights with me, watching stupid movies like we used to.

 

Why are you crying, babe?”

 

At first, I thought the raspy voice that rang in my ears was just my imagination. But when I looked up, I saw him; that familiar head of messy curls and green eyes that's been haunting my thoughts for over eight months now. Harry was leaning against the wall with watery eyes. He was wearing that dumb crooked smile he always wears when he's happy about something.

 

Harry!” I screamed and ran to him. He just laughed and pulled me into a tight hug. My head nuzzled in the crook of his neck. I could feel my tears running down his skin. We were standing there for a long time, just holding each other. No words needed to be exchanged, we just enjoyed the moment for what it was.

 

I knew you would miss me,” he winked.

Obviously, you idiot! How long have you been home?” I smiled and pulled away from him.

Like ten minutes. I got something for you!”

 

He reached behind him and pulled out a box with wrapping paper covering the outside. I looked up at him and smiled as he handed me the gift. Like seeing my best friend wasn't enough, he got me a present too. I ripped the wrapping paper off, letting it fall to the floor. Inside the box were a sweatshirt and a stuffed turtle. My mouth fell to the floor as I pulled it out of the box. Harry knew how much I loved turtles; I've been obsessed with them since second grade. And the week before he left for tour, I told him how much I needed a new sweatshirt. And then he gave me one of his and promised he would buy me one when he was away. I just can't believe he remembered...

He laughed as he watched my face.

Harry...” I said. A big, goofy smile spread across my face. This was the best gift anybody could ever give me... like ever. I loved little things like this. I would take a stuffed turtle over a diamond necklace any day.

It's from Australia. I saw it and thought of you. And you said you needed more sweatshirts, so I bought that too... Do you like it?”

Like it!? Harry, I love it! Thank you!” I pulled him into another hug and smiled.

 

***

Harry's POV

 

She was crying when I saw her standing in the flower shop. I don't know why she was crying, but I didn't want to find out and ruin her good mood now.

Her face lit up when she saw the turtle. I knew she would love it. And the sweatshirt only made things more perfect. I was just happy to see her again. We lost touch while I was on tour and I felt horrible about it. That was part of the reason why I bought her the gift; it was sort of like an apology. The other part was to show her I didn't forget about her while I was away, even if we didn't always keep in touch.

The truth is, Tessa never left my mind. I always wondered about what she was doing, and if she was thinking of me. But I never got the chance to call her. The lads would joke and say that I was in love with her. I just laughed it off and went back to whatever I was doing. Tessa and I weren't like that, we were just good friends. Regardless, I always thought of her and how much I missed her.

 

But none of that matters now. I was home and I got to be with her again. And of course we already had plans to hang out tonight. I was gonna go home and unpack, then meet Tessa at her flat and we would rent movies all night. It was a tradition we've grown accustomed to. If there was a new film out, or one we both wanted to see, we would rent it and watch it together. Sometimes, we would make fun of how awful they were, other times we were crying our eyes out.

 

I was excited for our movie night tonight. I could be myself and not have to worry about paparazzi, or people judging me. Tonight, I could just relax. It was really easy to be myself around Tessa. She was really down to Earth and I loved that about her. It made having her as a best friend become really enjoyable.

I parked my car in the familiar lot right outside her flat. It was another cold November night, it reminded me of the day Tessa and I first met. I looked through Tessa's window to see her running back and forth through her flat, setting up various things. As she was running towards her couch, she slipped and fell on her bum. I burst out laughing in the middle of the lot, watching her scramble to pick up whatever she just dropped onto the floor.

 

She was so cute.

 

Tessa's POV

 

It was the first movie night we were having in a while and my apartment was a mess. For the past half hour I've been obsessively cleaning and arranging Harry's favorite foods on the table in front of my TV. When he texted me and told me he was almost at my flat, I started freaking out. While I was running to put sour patch kids on the table, I fell and dropped the bowl. Luckily, not many fell out but my butt really hurt after that...

 

I buzzed Harry inside and waited for him to get up to my flat. Tonight was going to be amazing.

 

***

We rented four movies throughout the course of our night. It was nearly one in the morning and we've been watching movies for hours. Three were absolutely ridiculous and we couldn't stop making fun of them. But then we decided to rent Remember Me, because I have an undying love for Robert Pattinson.

It was one of the saddest, yet most romantic movies I've ever seen and I couldn't stop crying. Even Harry was beginning to shed a few tears. He wrapped an arm around my shoulder and pulled me closer as he wiped more tears from his eyes. I wrapped my arm around him and rested my head on his shoulder. Of course, there was a giant bowl of sour patch kids on his lap, because they are our favorite candy ever. I got him hooked on it.

 

The movie was just about to end. They just found out Tyler, Rob's character, was killed in 9/11. I sniffled and watched helplessly at the TV screen, unable to look away.

Harry, this is so sad.” I said. Usually, he answers right away, agreeing with me. But he stayed silent. I think it was because this movie was so incredible.

The worst part about watching movies like Remember Me is the fact that they only show single people how forever alone they really are. Which is 50% of the reason why I was crying. Tyler and Ally's love was so beautiful and it was ended because of a tragedy. It's the basic cliché for all romance movies, but it never gets old... And here I was, just some nineteen year old girl in London with nobody to call her own. Depressing, right?

Harry, isn't this sad?”

Still no answer. I looked up at him to find his eyes shoot quickly from me to the TV. The light illuminated the tear stains traveling down his face; his swollen, red eyes became more prominent. He sat up quickly and cleared his throat. It was obvious he was trying to hide the fact that he was looking at me, but I didn't see what the big deal was. I sat up and pulled his face towards me. He froze and watched and I wiped the tears away from his face. Harry's eyelashes acted as a blanket to his green eyes that refused to meet mine.

For some reason, I couldn't focus my attention back to the TV. My eyes stayed solely on Harry's face, studying his features. I brushed away a few loose curls hanging over his eyes. He looked back at me, his heart pounding fiercely against my chest. Right then, something inside me changed. The edges of my fingers were tingling and my head began to spin. It felt as though electricity was coursing through my veins.

 

Yeah.” He croaked. “Really sad.”

 

I quickly let go of him, realizing how close we were. A part of me didn't want to pull away. I wanted to stay right there and watch Harry all night. We didn't even have to say anything; just sit there in each other’s arms. But this was Harry. He hangs out with models and other celebrities I could never compare to. All I would ever be to him was a friend, so I should just get that idea out of my head before it becomes something more.

My attention turned back to the TV in an effort to forget about the boy sitting next to me. But it became increasingly difficult to pay attention as the aroma of his familiar cologne filled my senses. I picked up a handful of sour patch kids from the bowl and placed them in my mouth, taking in the sour taste. My eyes were starting to grow heavy, making it hard to stay awake.

My focus shifted to the storm outside. I could hear the rain hitting my window, along with the occasional crack of thunder and lightning. For some reason, rain storms have always brought me a sense of comfort. I liked the sound of the rain hitting the street, and the smell that's left outside right after the storm ends.

My heavy eyes finally closed as I focused in on the sound of Harry's breathing and the rain outside. I felt relaxed.

 

Harry's POV

 

She fell asleep on my shoulder just as the movie ended. Just like before, I found myself helplessly staring at her. Her breathing was slow and she looked so relaxed. I didn't know if I should move her to her room, or stay here. But the last thing I wanted to do was leave her all alone tonight. Or any night, for that matter.

I could still feel her touch against my skin. When she pulled my face towards hers and gently wiped away the tears from my face... It sent sparks though my entire body. And I felt like if I looked at her in that moment, I would have kissed her... I thought about how everyone kept teasing me, saying I was in love with Tessa. It wasn't difficult to picture us being together, now that I think about it. She's smart, and funny, and I could be myself around her. Not to mention she was the most beautiful person I know. Her brown hair falls in the middle of her back, and her eyes are as blue as the ocean. Whenever she smiled, I felt warmth shoot throughout my entire body. And I thought that was normal to feel when talking about your best friend, but she was more than that to me. At least I wanted her to be, anyways.

I want to kiss her every day, and spoil her with gifts, and hold her every night, just like I am right now. I want to be the one she calls when she feels alone, I want to hold her hand wherever I go, and show her off to everyone, so the world knows she's mine. I want to be everything she wants and needs in life, the one that can make her smile even if the world is ending in that very moment. And when she talks to me, I want the Earth to stop spinning. I want to make her feel like we're the only two people left in the world, I want to make time stop in its very tracks and hold her in my arms for as long as I exist... I think I'm falling for my best friend, but I don't know if that's wrong or not.

 

All I know is, Tessa has to be mine.

 

***

Tessa POV

 

I woke up to the sound of Harry snoring softly. We were lying down on the couch, our bodies entwined. My hands were pressed against his chest, his lay protectively around my waist. I looked up at him and watched, he was so peaceful when he slept. And just like last night, a small part of me liked how close I was to Harry. More importantly, I loved the fact that he actually stayed the night here. He could have left if he wanted to, but he stayed right next to me. Protecting me.

 

I felt him stir and watched his eyes begin to flutter. Curious as to what he would do, I quickly closed my eyes and pretended to be asleep. For a moment, there was just silence, as he realized where he was and who he was lying next to. He took one hand off my waist and pulled the loose strands of my hair behind my ear. I repressed a smile and held my breath, hoping he wouldn't notice I was awake. I felt his hand return to its original position as he slowly pulled me closer to him.

He awkwardly cleared his throat, trying to wake me up. I slowly opened my eyes and looked at him, pretending to just wake up. He smiled at me.

 

We fell asleep.” He chuckled, stretching out his body. I felt his stomach muscles flex against me, sending chills throughout my body.

 

No. You can't fall for him. He won't ever feel that way about you, and liking him will only ruin what we already have. You can't do this...

 

I simply nodded and smiled at him, beginning to sit up. I wasn't sure if Harry noticed or not, but his hand was still touching my waist. Once again, I did nothing to protest.

 

Do you want breakfast? I have waffles.” I said, looking back at him. He looked at me excitedly, making me chuckle. Knowing it was time to get up; I started to stretch off my morning stiffness. I raised my arms high above my head and arched my back, Harry's hand still didn't move.

 

As much as I wanted him to keep it there, I knew he needed to let go.

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