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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30. Laura's POV

“This is gorgeous, Gemma!” I cried, spinning around in Harrod’s dressing rooms. We’d spent nearly an hour looking through whatever I had in the closet before deciding it was a lost cause. Harry and Louis were in the middle of whatever boys did when girls weren’t around- eat and video games, by the noises from the lounge room- so we’d slipped out of the house without them noticing.

Doncaster had a mall, full of novelty shops and cafes and a vintage dress shop that had nearly made me faint with one look at the price tags. Because I was with Gemma, people turned to look. I could almost hear them asking where Harry and Louis were… thank God we hadn’t bought them two along.

Two hours of tracking through the mall later had led us to Harrods. It was just as pricey as the vintage store but the range was a little more suited to clubbing. And there was a sale, which Gemma claimed would only improve when she showed her member’s card. It had taken us just half an hour to find a mid-thigh dress in black cotton. It was covered with a white flower design- and the moment I tried it on, I’d fallen in love.

“Told you,” Gemma said smugly. She’d been the one to find it and was duly pleased with herself. “And I own a pair of heels that you’ll love. Swing by my place before you go out tonight, I’ll have them ready. Now, get undressed-“

“That’s inappropriate,” I scolded, as Gemma snapped her mouth shut and pointed her phone at me like a sword.

“… Cheeky,” she glared, but was grinning again in the blink of an eye. No wonder she’d been able to handle the fame so well; nothing seemed to keep her down for long. “- Take off the dress, let’s get your accessories, and I want Starbucks. Quick split, girlie!”

Laughing, I disappeared back into the change rooms and swapped the dress for my heels and 5SOS shirt. Five minutes later, I was back out with the dress in hand and Gemma held out her arm to escort me. “We’re off to get some coffee…” I sang, to the tune of Off to See The Wizard.

“The wonderful coffee of Bucks!” Gemma finished, and we burst into the hysterical kind of laughter over almost nothing.

-[-]-

“… and then he leaned over so far, he fell clear out of the boat!”

The table howled with laughter as Louis pouted and Liam beamed, very pleased that the latest Let’s-Humiliate-Louis story had drawn such a reaction. Harry had tears in his eyes and Louis looked at me pleadingly, as I struggled to hide my laughter. “Aww, honey, don’t look so upset,” I crooned, sliding closer to kiss his cheek tenderly. “Your face will get stuck that way.”

Louis snorted and rolled his eyes. “What the hell is this, pick on Lou day?” he grumbled, folding his arms over his chest like a grumpy child. His eyes were sparkling though and it didn’t take long for him to seek out my hand and thread his fingers through mine.

Niall and Kate hadn’t come in yet, which made me glance at the door every time it opened. She’d been acting weird lately- well, weirder than normal for Kate- and that made me worry, too. She could seem so self-assured and smile all day, but she was also very good at faking that smile. I hadn’t seen her fall apart very often, but when she did it was often volcanic.

“Who wants another drink?” Harry asked, holding his wallet high in the air. A cheer rose up, full of good spirits and laughter. He grabbed our empty glasses and wandered off to the bar, leaving our table to fall into our own conversations. I was happy to lean my head on Louis’ shoulder and listen in, watching this group of people that felt as close as my own family.

“I love you guys,” I said to myself. Louis squeezed my hand as if he heard me, kissing the top of my head in response.

My eyes flicked to the door when it burst open, a familiar blonde head appearing to fight his way through the crowd. I glanced behind him, expecting to see Kate, but she was nowhere to be found. As he came closer, Niall’s red eyes and puffy cheeks were in full-view. My stomach heaved as I sat up straight, all of us falling silent as he stopped by Liam’s shoulder.

“She’s gone,” he croaked out, the words sounding- and looking- like he’d been stabbed in the stomach. “Kate’s gone.”

“What?!” Zayn snapped, standing up sharply. “Did you have a fight? What did you do, Niall?”

“Nothing!” Niall growled, eyes sharp and narrowed. “I- I don’t- where would she have gone?” he asked of me, ignoring Zayn glaring holes in the side of his head.

I stood up and squeezed out between Zayn and the table. “I don’t know,” I said reassuringly, pulling him into a hug. “But we’ll find her, alright?”

Niall nodded miserably, his hands snaking around my waist as he let himself cry into my shoulder. Liam clapped him on the shoulder and Louis swapped a look with Zayn, the latter hurrying off to grab Harry from the bar before he came back with a round of drinks we wouldn’t have. “She said she loves me,” Niall mumbled, pulling away and wiping his eyes. He looked shell-shocked, halfway between determined and terrified. “And then she ran… why would she run?”

At that moment, Liam caught my attention and shook his head. “Not here,” he said, nodding behind me. I glanced back, feeling sick, and met several curious pairs of eyes. There may not be cameras allowed in here, but that didn’t stop people from staring. “C’mon, Niall, let’s go home. Maybe she went home?”

Niall coughed and ran his hands over his face, trying to wash away the evidence of his upset. “I fuckin’ hope not,” he muttered. “Ten thousand miles is too far away.”

I grabbed Louis’ hand and he pulled me flush against him, holding me there as if he were afraid I’d run too. “We’ll find her, Niall,” I repeated myself, nodding to reassure him.

Even if I didn’t feel so sure myself. 

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