Change Your Life

“Holy shit,” I breathed out, feeling sick with excitement and nerves. Louis Tomlinson was in our hotel... Co-authored by Lozza (author of Laura's POV) & MisfiredSynapse (author of Kate's POV).


27. Kate's POV

“This, Niall, is the best bed I’ve ever felt,” I sighed, bouncing slightly as he grinned sheepishly at me from the doorway. He’d given me free reign to go anywhere, ask anything, and instantly I had felt a little giddy with power and abused it accordingly. I’d been like a two-year-old running around, pretending to fangirl over the littlest things… oh my God, is this were you eat? I’ve touched Niall’s cutlery… you don’t have spoons- you’re so sweet… and I had saved, as I claimed, the best for last, and had kicked my shoes off as he nodded his permission for me to leap onto his bed.

That bed, despite how rarely he used it, was the most comfortable thing in the world. By the smug look on his face, I knew he was almost reading my mind as I flopped back, legs crossed and my arms spread-eagled across the mattress. My fingertips could barely touch the edges, and I was lying right in the middle. Huge and comfortable- I was faintly jealous. This was a nice bed and twenty-three hours in the air without one only made me appreciate it all the more. “Nice, isn’t it?” Niall asked, and when I craned my neck up I found him standing by my crossed legs.

Humming something in agreement, I held out my hands and pouted as he grabbed them and pulled me upright again. I uncrossed my legs, still holding his hands, and I swear I saw Niall hold his breath as I looked up at him, perched on the edge of his bed. “Do I still get to ask you anything?” I asked, my voice low and quiet. Niall had to stoop to hear me as he nodded, sticking to the promise he’d made all of twenty minutes before. I tugged his hands and lay back again, gently coaxing him to crawl on top of me, knees digging into the mattress by my hips and his hands propping him up above my face.

My cheeky smile faded as my bottom lip disappeared into my mouth, my teeth worrying the soft flesh in a nervous habit. Niall remained completely still as my hand traced his face, fingers running through his hair. I had missed this boy more than words could ever describe- it didn’t feel real, that I could have known him for such a relatively short time and feel this strongly about him.

He dipped his head so I could scratch his scalp properly, gooseflesh springing up at the feather-light touches. I’d done this before, rubbed his neck and his scalp when he couldn’t sleep, but somehow… it felt a little more intimate when it was just the two of us… lying on his bed.

“Katie, love…” he breathed, eyes shining at me. My index finger pressed against his lips and he licked it to make me get off. I giggled, one elbow sliding beneath me to raise my torso up. I was close enough for him to count my eyelashes, if he cared to, close enough to see the tiniest detail of my skin; close enough to hear me softly breathing, the sound shallow and shaky. The last time we’d been this close… Niall’s eyes fluttered closed as he started to smile, recalling the feeling of lips on his…

… I watched his reaction to my proximity, my thumb running across his mouth. His lips dropped open just slightly and I heard his exhale hitch a little; it made me smile, to know that I had as much of an effect on him that he had on me. I remembered that kiss- the first, and last, proper kiss we’d shared, though it had been weeks since it happened. That first kiss hadn’t been planned, had happened on a whim and a dare and hadn’t happened more than once… but now that I had gone without Niall for just a few weeks, I knew what I wanted.

I’d known what I wanted from the moment I stepped off the plane in London. I’d known what I wanted the moment I set eyes on him, from the moment I felt his arms around me, the moment I’d been warmer than I had in weeks. I’d known what I wanted from the moment he’d whispered I missed you in my ear.

“Niall…” I murmured, one hand snaking around the back of his neck and pulling him in. To hell with teasing and wishing and waiting for him to move first. I knew Niall; he was shy, he was reluctant, he took forever to make up his mind, he was so damned frightened of scaring me off that he’d just wait and wait and drive himself mad overthinking things.

The kiss was soft at first, chaste and searching, and I hesitated for just a second as Niall tensed and relaxed once again- and suddenly he was everywhere, one hand in my hair, the other on my hip, his body pressing down on mine as the mattress supported us both. I smiled into the kiss and he followed suit, the sensation making it hard to stay connected but somehow we managed through laughing and mumbled, mocking insults. A fever rose between us, the tension and heat making the rest of the world blur, turn to static and disappear. A tongue swiped over my lips and I chased it with my own, the kiss deepening as the passion soared and sent my head spinning. I couldn’t think, couldn’t breathe, couldn’t feel anything but Niall, Niall, Niall… everything I was, am and could be was focussed on Niall Horan.

I had never felt anything quite as overwhelming as this, never felt myself be swept away in a tsunami of feelings for another human being. No boy had made me tremble inside and out the way Niall could with just a smile, no boy had made me feel so wanted and loved and cherished the way Niall did every single day, just by holding my hand.

A burning need for oxygen finally broke us apart. Niall’s hair was mussed, his lips reddened, his cheeks flushed and his eyes shining. I’m sure I didn’t look any better, but we were both smiling so wide we threatened to do ourselves an injury. “Alright?” Niall asked in a whisper, hardly able to believe the last few minutes had just happened. “That… that was… pretty freakin’ good,” he added, tone cocky and full of mock-arrogance, and he grinned even wider when I nodded and tried to remember how to speak.

“Oh, yes,” I whispered back at last, tilting my head back to press my lips against his again. “Yes it was…” Niall’s breath caught and his pulse raced under my fingers, kissing back as much as I could without breaking my neck stretching up. It was so terribly tempting to just get carried away and stay inside like this all day… he was so tempting… “Niall,” I murmured, my legs shifting beneath his.

Only then did he realise he was practically crushing me and flipped himself over, lying on his back beside me as I shifted, the mattress dipping until I was hovering over him again, one leg hesitantly settling over his and my chin on his chest. “Hmm,” Niall murmured, unable to stop the stupid smile playing across his face. “I quite like this…”

“Me too,” I replied, stretching up to kiss the underside of his chin. “But we can’t stay like this all day.”

Niall huffed. “Why not?”

“Because,” I said, rolling off him and landing with a light thud on the ground- the edge was closer than I expected and my legs were doing their best impression of a bowl of jelly, and I took a moment of silence to steady myself and stand up. “I’m in London, at last, finally, and I want to see London…”

“London’s not going anywhere,” Niall muttered, still lying on the bed. He rolled onto his side as I smacked his leg lightly and walked to the window, leaning against the wall beside it and looking out onto his balcony. Obama’s statue looked placidly back at me and I beamed at him; I’d forgotten Niall owned the ridiculous thing, though I had to hand it to the sculptor- it was pretty lifelike. “Kaaaate,” Niall groaned, dragging out my name like a child denied sweets at a store. “C’mon, aren’t you jetlagged at all?”

“Yes,” I replied instantly, fighting off a yawn. “Thanks for bringing it up, by the way. Shall I go straight to sleep then?”

“Sleep?” Niall repeated, catching the grin on my face as he rolled his eyes and finally got up. “I get it,” he laughed, walking over to stand behind me and rest his chin on my shoulder. “Either I play tour guide or you’ll go to sleep on me, right?”

“Niall, darling,” I replied, a smile fighting to make itself known. “You know me too well already.”

He chuckled, the sound muffled by my shoulder as he turned his head to nuzzle the skin behind my ear. “Hmm,” he hummed, laughing again when I shivered and tried to wriggle away. “Come on then, let’s at least get you fed before I’m accused of girlfriend neglect.”

“Girlfriend?” I asked, eyebrows rocketing up to my hairline as I spun around to watch him. He was halfway to the closet and I watched his shoulders tense then fall, his movements becoming deliberately casual even though he wouldn’t look at me.

“Well, yeah,” he said quietly, pretending to pick lint out of his jacket pocket. “I know we never really talked about it but… I’m not the kind of guy that does… that…” he gestured at the bed, the sheets still a little rumpled, a blush blooming over both our faces- “With just anybody. And I’m going off the hope that this feels as special to you as it feels to me, because… I’d like you to be. If you want.”

“Yeah,” I blurted out instantly, my mind taking a moment to process his words and reboot itself into rational thoughts. “I- I kind of assumed we were a thing, y’know, but I didn’t know if we were labelling it or just going wherever it takes us, but… yeah. I… I like the girlfriend thing.”

Niall’s smile could have powered half of London with how bright it was and he dropped his jacket as he crossed the room to kiss me; I returned it eagerly, hands on the back of his neck to tug lightly at his hair. “If you keep that up, girlfriend, we’ll never get out of this room,” he warned.

“Fine, boyfriend,” I mocked his tone, unable to stop myself from bursting into laughter when he grinned that goofy grin again. “You mentioned food?”

“I hope you’re hungry,” he warned, grabbing his jacket and waiting until I’d searched through my suitcase to do the same. We headed down to the garage- which was luckily underneath the building, rather than down the street like so many others were- and Niall made a beeline for a pair of near-identical black Range Rovers. One on the left had a small turtle air freshener hanging from the rear view mirror, while the other looked like it had barely been touched; “Harry’s,” Niall said when he caught me grinning at the swinging turtle. “We had to tell them apart somehow.”

“You couldn’t have tried remembering the license plates?” I asked, hopping into the passenger side as Niall shook his head, texting Paul to let him know we were heading out- this was going to be something to get used to, having to tell people where we were at all times, just so the security guys- also in a black Range Rover, parked in front of a Starbucks down the road from the building- could follow and be close by.

“Darlin’, I can barely remember what I ate for breakfast,” Niall grinned at me, text messages sent and reply received. Laughing, we set off into the streets of London… if I’m honest, we spent the majority of the time just driving around and talking before winding up back where we began. Niall called for pizza, and I kicked off my shoes and collapsed on the couch as my jetlag made me long for nothing more than silence and sleep.

I woke some time later, my nap giving me just the boost of energy I needed to not be a dead fish. Something smelled really good and I rose off the couch to follow the smell… Niall was at the dining room table, playing a game on his iPad with one hand while the other absently fed himself pizza.

“The pizza came, I see,” I said quietly; nonetheless, he jumped and grinned when he saw it was me. The chair beside him was kicked out and I took it gratefully, leaning my head on his shoulder. The game was paused and he shifted his pizza into the other hand, the other finding a new home on the back of my chair. “… were you planning on sharing?”

“You were asleep,” he defended himself, as I pulled the pizza box closer. Meatlovers, half with pineapple… I’d mentioned once that I loved pineapple on pizza; the fact that he’d remembered it made my entire body feel a pleasant shade of warm. “And besides, there’s no ‘we’ in pizza… but there is an ‘I’.”

“Jerk,” I mumbled, still half-asleep and feeling like it was 3am instead of just gone 9. He chuckled and pressed a kiss to the side of my head as I lifted it to eat- Niall disappeared into the kitchenette and returned a moment later with a bottle of orange and passionfruit J2O- by far my favourite juice. I’d been having it shipped home for months, since I tried it during my last visit to England. “Have I told you lately that you’re my new favourite person?” I sighed, smiling widely as he handed me the cold bottle.

“Yeah, but it never gets old,” Niall replied, picking up his pizza as the two of us ate in silence. “Louis rang earlier, said they got home okay.”

“Great,” I replied, somewhat guiltily, because if I was honest I had barely thought about Louis and Laura since they dropped us off that morning. They’d taken the BMW back to Jay’s house, where they’d spend the night before driving back in Louis’ smaller Porsche. That, too, I was planning to drive even if I had to beg, borrow and steal his girlfriend until he let me have the car. “Is it bad that I almost forgot they exist?”

Niall choked on his pizza and laughed so hard I thought he might break something; when he finally calmed down, it was my turn to cackle at the flush across his cheeks and the glazed look in his eyes. Shrieking, and pizza forgotten, I fought my way away from the table and fled his tickling, making a beeline for the bedroom in the hopes of shutting the door before he could get me.

No such luck. He caught my round the waist and fell back on the bed; his momentum was enough to pull me down with him, though I missed the mattress by about an inch and ended up on the floor, still laughing and being half-held up by Niall’s grip on my arm. “What’s the matter? Falling for me already?” he teased as I awkwardly picked myself up and he tugged me down beside him.

Just a little, said my brain, and the words were on the tip of my tongue… I could say it now, right? I could tell him that he made me feel things I don’t even have names for yet… I could tell him that his smile was like a streak of sunlight on a rainy day, that seeing him was like seeing home after a long journey, that his hugs made me feel like every stupid cliché was suddenly true and invented just for him and me… I could tell him all of that, couldn’t I?

“Hey, you still with me?” Niall asked in a whisper, thumbing over my cheek with a small grin. I realised I’d been staring and holding my breath and I hoped to hell he couldn’t see the blush I felt crawling up my cheeks, and would put my weirdness down to jetlag and not down to the fact that his presence made my heart do unnatural things in my chest.

“Yeah…” I smiled up at him. “I’m with you.” I closed my eyes, shoving everything back into a small corner of my mind, locking it away because while I should tell him everything… the words wouldn’t come out. Not yet. Niall waited with me until I was faking sleep well enough for him to buy it, and he kissed my forehead as he gently pulled me up to the pillows and tucked me in.

“I’m so glad you’re here,” he whispered. I wanted to cry with how sweet he was being, and thought I would legitimately break when he kissed my forehead and I felt him smile against my skin… as the door closed softly behind him I turned over and buried my face in the pillows that smelled like him. The realisation that I loved him (so much more than I had any right to, so much more than was logical and rational and proper) hadn’t been gentle, and it left my heart feeling like a World Cup football… kicked and battered but still tightly inflated.

It was definitely the jetlag that pushed the first of the tears out of my eyes. Definitely the jetlag.


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