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).

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29. Kate's POV

The next few days were awkward. I couldn’t put my finger on just why but there was something in the way I felt with Niall; being alone with him made me nervous and I was almost glad when Louis, Laura and the boys showed up and we all went sight-seeing. Being in a group made everything easier; I could distract myself and keep a distance there that wasn’t there before. I could run ahead with Laura whenever Niall reached for my hand and I hid my silence by teasing Louis- he always returned it and I figured out just how to spark him off into one of his rants.

Several times I caught Niall looking at me, a frown on his face, but I didn’t know how to put into words why, so I pretended I didn’t see and pointed out the next silly little thing to attract my attention. I was, frankly, acting like a two year old, but the fact that I insisted we go to so many places and do so many things meant that by time we arrived home and collapsed into bed, we could only sleep.

If Niall ever noticed that I got out of bed and went to the couch, he didn’t say anything. Being too close to him was killing me, but at the same time, being away from him was even worse. I couldn’t decide if I wanted nothing more than to have him, only him, forever, or if I wanted to be left alone to sort through my jumbled thoughts and string together a reason for how I was acting. At least if I could do that, if I could figure out what to tell him whenever he shot me the puppy-eyes, whenever he reached for my hand and I pulled away… it’d be facing my deepest fear, letting someone in and showing them everything. It wasn’t something I did easily even just with friends, and Niall had never really been a friend, he’d always been something else.

Two days before the Brits, Niall finally cornered me where I couldn’t escape. We’d all gone out to a nightclub with friends of Liam’s, and I’d made my excuses linger outside while the others all went in, trying on my smile to see if it still fit.

On the way into the club, I stopped short at the sight of a blonde boy leaning against the lobby wall, arms crossed across his chest and a brooding look on his face. He pushed off as he saw me, dropping his arms and silently pleading with me to just stay still.

I did, even though I could almost foresee that this was not going to go well.

“Have I done something to upset you?” Niall asked quietly, reaching for my hands. The music here wasn’t as loud as it was on the dance floor, beyond the reception to the hotel rooms above our heads, but it was still loud enough for me to barely hear him.

I used both hands to push my hair out of my face, dodging his grasp and pretending his flinch didn’t hurt me too. “No, why?” I replied, attempting to sound blasé even with my heart hammering in my chest.

Niall’s puppy-dog expression swiftly turned to anger, his eyes narrowing and his hands flying up in helpless frustration. “Because you’ve barely looked at me over these last few days! You barely talk to me unless we’re in a group and you act like being alone with me is the worst thing that could ever happen and I don’t understand- I don’t know what I’ve done and I don’t know how to fix it and-”

“It’s not you, Niall, I swear it’s not you-”

“Oh, it’s not you it’s me? I’m supposed to believe that?” he interrupted me, his voice harder and colder than I’d ever heard it. If I couldn’t see the redness in his eyes, I’d believe he was truly furious with me, instead of just as confused as I was. This was all my doing and even I didn’t know how to put it in words…

“Yes!” I cried, twisting my fingers in anxious turmoil. “You’ve done nothing wrong, believe me, if you had I’d tell you about it. This- all this- is on me, it’s all me!”

His hands rose to his hair while I was speaking, then dropped lifelessly to his sides. His voice, when he spoke, trembled with emotion and his eyes met mine with such a frank honesty I could barely breathe; “Then why do I feel like I’m losing you?” he asked in a small, trembling voice. “Why are you freezing me out?”

“I…” I stopped, my throat tight and the tears threatening. I hadn’t realised I’d been pulling away from him, hadn’t realised he’d been able to read me well enough to tell something wasn’t right when I was trying so hard to hide it from him… “Niall, I…”

“Save it,” he bit out, throwing his hands up in the air. “If you can’t tell me, don’t try to feed me lies.”

He turned on his heel and I had a sudden flash of realisation; if I let him walk away now, something between us would break and I wasn’t sure we’d ever get it back. The rejection of that whirled up inside me so hot and so fast I barely had time to think before the words were flying out of my mouth; “Because I love you!” I shouted. Niall froze, hand on the door, but he didn’t look at me and that gave me more bravery than I’d ever had before. “I should have told you long ago. I should have told you the moment I saw you after getting off the plane. I shouldn’t have let myself think about it because when I think about it, I talk myself down and you make that impossible. Because I love you so fucking much and I don’t know how to handle it, I don’t know how to love you and not be terrified every waking minute of how much you mean to me. Because I’m so insecure about everything I am that the idea of being with someone like you makes my head hurt, because the idea of losing you makes me weak, because I love you, Niall, and I don’t know how to love someone as much as I love you.”

He turned around to stare at me, slack-jawed and open mouthed, but I couldn’t see anything through my tears and I turned on my heel to dash out the front door. If he tried to call me back, I didn’t hear him as I ran into the first taxi I could find and realised I had nowhere to go… except…

“Train station,” I choked out, throat tight. “London Bridge…” I had family in the south… I’d go to them, just for tonight, I just needed to breathe… to think… to work out just what it was I wanted from him, me, us…

“It’ll cost ya, love,” the cabbie warned.

I could see Niall run out of the restaurant, hands tearing at his hair, and I closed my eyes so I couldn’t see him anymore. “It already has,” I muttered, feeling the car jerk as we pulled into London traffic. The further we drove the more I started to realise… what the hell had I just done?

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