Always and Never

Ariel Tanner believed that love was nothing but an illusion, a sick prank your brain pulls on you. But when she meets Harry Styles she begins to question everything she has put together about love. This frustrating boy was the only truly genuine person she'd ever met. How someone like him could even exist blew her mind. Harry, on the other hand, was amazed at how closed off Ariel acted. He made it his mission to knock down the walls she'd built around herself, because behind the flirting and the sarcasm, he got a glimpse of a girl that he wanted to become as close as humanly possible to. But did he really want to know everything behind those walls?

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63. Wedding

Harry's Pov.

The first few months were the hardest, especially October. The month that our wedding was supposed to be in. I tried my best to stay away from alcohol, to shower, and to act happy in public... But according to the news articles I wasn't doing a very good job. 

I got through it. I left her stuff out, folded her laundry like she still lived there... If I put it all away that would make it seem more like she was never coming back...

I spent a lot of time trying to figure out what I did wrong... I was sad that I wouldn't be able to see her rosy cheeks when the weather turned cold. It hurt to think that I won't have the opportunity to light fragrant candles and take a nice bubble bath with her... I made up movies in my head, when I lay in bed at night, or I at breakfast alone, about what our life would have been like together.

One that I watched quite frequently, was the image of my Ariel, walking toward me in a flowing white dress. A veil sat atop her beautifully done hair. A shy, happy smile touching her lips. Love filled her eyes. I liked to imagine the feeling of her soft hand caressing my cheek, as the words I do were whispered, right before we kissed, sealing our marriage, and our future together, forever. Half of me assured myself that I'd be able to live out that scene someday, experience it, in the flesh. But the other half writhed in pain, knowing that the first half was probably wrong...

June 1st, 2014. A while since she left. I hadn't heard from her, in the first week I got so desperate to talk to her that I began writing her letters. At least once a week. Sometimes more. It felt like I was actually talking to her, but my brain knew I wasn't.

Even though it'd been so long, the lads still didn't like leaving me alone. I began going to the gym more, a lot more. It helped with the frustration.

“Harry, I don't think this is a good idea.” Zayn insisted.

“I know, you've told me.” I replied as I pulled into Ms. Tanner's parking lot. I hadn't talked to her since the lunch we had with her fiance and Ariel. Today was her wedding day, she was marrying that gynecologist. How did I find out? The power of Facebook (of which, sadly, Ariel didn't have). Zayn and I had dressed in our best clothes, tuxedos with bow-ties. I felt electric course through my body, excitement that I might be able to see my Ariel again.

I stayed awake the night before, imagining what I would say. I came up with a few options, whichever one seemed to fit the moment best would be the one that I went with. They were all along the lines of: Where have you been? I've missed you, the house is a lot bigger without you there. I love you Ariel, I want more than anything to marry you. Come home Georgia Rose, to your Styles.

I didn't have to knock on the front door, I only had to simply walk in through the open gate that led to a decorated backyard. People were laughing and eating. A family gathered before a big night. We didn't stand out, people were dressed up. I'm sure the wedding would begin within an hour.

Zayn trailed closely behind me. I smiled, a brilliant smile, one of pure joy. Today, I felt for the first time in a long time, real hope. I spotted two familiar faces in the crowd. One, Kate, and the second, Scarlet; Kate's girlfriend that I'd met once. When Kate's eyes met mine, they widened to the size of tennis balls. She scrambled to get over to Zayn and I, while I poured myself a nice cup of punch.

“Hello Kate! How have you been?” I smiled when she finally reached me. Mm, good punch.

“Are you insane?! You can't just show up here!” Kate whispered harshly. Scarlet joined us soon also.

“That's my greeting?” I questioned. Not very welcoming. Weddings were supposed to be welcoming.

“I'm sorry, Kate. I can't-” Zayn began.

“Don't apologize! We have nothing to be sorry for! I came to see my fiance, I figured she'd be here.” I stated the obvious. I saw it in both their faces, though Kate hid it well. Scarlet wasn't quite the actress. She was there. Ariel was there.

“She's here. You two know. Where?” I asked, feeling giddiness rise inside me. I stretched up on my toes, looking over everyone in the crowd.

She was likely a bridesmaid, so I scanned for people with the same dress as Scarlet and Kate. There was a group of girls on the opposite side of the yard. I took long strides through the crowd over to the girls, I saw Kate out of the corner of my eye say something in Scarlet's ear. Then Scarlet disappeared into the house and Zayn and Kate were following after me. When I reached all the girls, my spirits fell, along with my smile. She wasn't in the group. I scanned the crowd again, no more of those dresses... I almost collapsed right there. I allowed Kate to pull me back to the drive by my arm.

“You need to leave Harry. None of us know where Ariel went, you'll just make Ms. Tanner sad on her wedding day.” Kate hissed. I nodded numbly, and climbed into the passenger seat of my car. I held my face in my hands, my temples beginning to throb.

“I'm sorry Harry...” Zayn muttered as he started the car. I didn't respond, but I did take one last look at the house.

Through the partially open window, I saw a pregnant woman's swollen belly, and her hands caressing underneath it. A tall, thin woman was bending down to hold her ear against the pregnant stomach. She laughed, and then Zayn turned the car, and the scene was out of view...

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