Change My Mind

I don’t know if I’ll ever love someone as great as Harry so that’s why I never want to forget this feeling. That’s why I’m scared of moving on. I don’t want to forget what it feels like to be in love with Harry Styles, especially the feeling I got when Harry Styles used to love me back.

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51. Where It Belongs

Lily’s POV

“Welcome back!”

Eleanor pulls me in for a hug when Ed and I reach her.

“Thanks. It’s good to be back,” I reply. It really is good to be back. Amsterdam was great but nothing beats being home with your friends. I turn to Louis and give him a hug.

Eleanor planned a dinner out with everyone to welcome us back. I sit down in the seat beside her and we wait for everyone else to arrive.

“So, how was Amsterdam?” she asks.

“It was amazing. The movie premiere was awesome. I got to meet so many people. But my favourite part was definitely sightseeing. It’s so beautiful there. You should go there some time. Oh, and take me with you, of course.”

We laugh.

“Glad you had great time. And…how about…you know…”

I look away, my smile fading. I know what Eleanor’s asking about. She’s talking about the main reason that I went there. To think things through and get my head straight. I did think about everything but I don’t think I got to where I wanted to, or at least where I thought I would. I’m also not sure whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing.

I open my mouth to tell her this but we see Zayn and Perrie arrive. We stand up and greet them and before we have a chance to take our seats again, Liam and Niall arrive, Harry following soon after.

I can’t help but focus my attention on him. And I can’t help the smile that has been stuck on my face since the second I saw him walk in. It’s been almost a week since I last saw him, of course I’m a bit excited to see him.

Eleanor informed me on the phone on my way here that Ivana couldn’t make it but there was a part of me that knew that Eleanor didn’t even bother inviting her. Not that I have a problem with that.

I hug Liam and Niall but I mostly keep my gaze on Harry and I see him do the same with me. It’s not until he’s standing in front of me that I’m suddenly nervous. We stand hesitantly in front of each other, Harry with his hands in his pockets. I can feel the tension slowly dissipating, being replaced with electricity.

“Hey,” I say breathlessly, not noticing that I was holding my breath.

His smile widens. “Hey.”

As soon as Harry takes his hands out of his pockets, I take a step forward and wrap my arms around him. He immediately returns the hug and we just hold each other. I close my eyes and feel myself relax against his body. I breathe in his scent and hug him tighter before we pull away. He keeps his hands clasped around my arms as he looks down at me.

“I…I, um…” I stutter. What I wanted to say was that I mis--

“I missed you, too,” he says.

He grins at me and I feel my cheeks heat up. I look down, hiding my blush and my huge smile.

“How was Amsterdam?” He lets go of my arms and takes a small step back.

“Why don’t we have a seat and I’ll tell you all about it?”

He smiles and nods before both of us take our seats. I take my seat beside Eleanor and Harry vacates the one on my other side.

Our waiter comes to take our drink orders before I turn back to Harry.

And I tell him about Amsterdam. The movie premiere, the scenery, the canal. Everything.

Except…

“Oh my gosh, Lily. Who is this cutie that just wrote on your wall?” Eleanor speaks beside me. She has her phone in her hands.

“What?” I ask confusedly.

“Yes, what?” Louis questions, raising an eyebrow at Eleanor.

Eleanor suddenly looks flustered. “Oh…I meant…who’s this normal-looking lad that just wrote on your Facebook wall?”

Louis rolls his eyes with a smirk and turns back to converse with Zayn.

I lean towards Eleanor, glancing down at her phone. I finally understand what she’s talking about.

Leo wrote on my wall.

*Hope you had a great time in Amsterdam. Hope we can keep in touch*

I feel my face flush and a piercing gaze pointed at the side of my head.

“Oh…um, it’s just someone that I met in Amsterdam. We talked for like five minutes.”

“And he found your Facebook profile?” she asks curiously.

“Not really. I kind of suggested it.” I can see Harry staring at me from the corner of my eyes. “But only because he asked for my phone number and I didn’t want to give it to him.”

“Oh, I see.” She leans in. “He’s cute,” she whispers, only allowing me to hear.

I roll my eyes with a smile. “Okay, El.”

“Are you going to message him back?” she continues.

I muster up the courage to look at Harry and see him looking down at the table, his jaw visibly clenching. I swallow the lump in my throat and look away.

Do I want to message him back? If I do, it’s not like I’m going to flirt with him or anything. It would just be friendly conversation. I assumed that Leo understood my relationship status when I told him that things were complicated. And it’s not like he had continued to flirt with me after I told him that.

I look back at Eleanor and give her a we’ll-talk-about-this-later look but she just looks back at me expectantly. Clueless Eleanor.

I know that she just wants me to be happy again and I think that she thinks that me meeting someone will help. Since she sees that Harry’s moved on and got himself a new girlfriend, she probably wants the same for me. It’s too soon for me though. So I know it won’t help. At least not for now.

Harry’s POV

“Maybe but--” Lily answers.

My heart drops in my chest. I look away, feeling the happiness I felt when I first saw Lily today slowly start to fade away.

She met someone. I know that I shouldn’t be surprised with this but it never crossed my mind that she would meet someone and be interested in them. With everything that’s happened, I never expected that to happen any time soon.

What am I saying? Here I am, with a girlfriend and I’m feeling upset about the thought of Lily moving on and meeting someone else. I don’t want her to. She’s mine.

“That’s great. He seems nice,” Eleanor says, interrupting my thoughts.

Lily sighs. “Eleanor. It’s not like that.” I can see Lily glance at me from my peripheral vision before she turns back to Eleanor. “I think he understood that I wasn’t interested.”

My ears perk up at her comment.

She’s not interested? Why not?

“I’m serious. I’m not looking to date anyone. For a while, at least. And especially not someone from a different country.”

And just like that, my smile reappears again. She really doesn’t want to date right now? Am I the cause of that? I don’t know whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing. I should be happy that there won’t be a chance for Lily to date anyone right now but would that include me too?

When I finally have a chance to try and have her back in my life, will be reject me? Will she not want to be with me at all?

I see Eleanor slump in defeat. “Really?”

Lily laughs. “Yes, really.”

This conversation that I just overheard between Lily and Eleanor and at the sound of Lily’s laugh, I can’t help my smile that continues to widen. I have to bite my lip in an attempt to hide it, especially since I see Lily look back at me.

Our waiter comes back to take our order and I decide to talk to Liam and Niall since Lily’s now talking to the girls.

I can’t help but glance at her throughout the rest of the dinner, especially when she laughs or when she occasionally speaks to me.

For the entire night, I find myself always thinking about the fact that Lily still wants to talk with me about everything that’s happened lately, especially with what happened before she left. I’ve been waiting every day since she ran away from me at the mall for this day. I’ve been dying to talk to her, even just see her.

I have no idea what she wants to talk about but I’m just hoping that it’ll happen tonight. However, I start to get a bad feeling. I have a feeling that what we’re going to talk about tonight isn’t going to be what I want to hear.

But I know that, no matter what she says, we’re going to be okay. She seems happy right now. She’s talking to me, smiling at me. Things seem good between us. That must mean that she isn’t really upset with what’s happened and that things will be good with us from now on.

At least I hope it will be.

As our waiter hands us our bills, I quickly take Lily’s from her hand.

“Hey!” she exclaims.

I just smirk at her before I place my card on top of both of our bills. She leans towards me and tries to grab for the bill but I’m faster than she is and I take it and hold it out of her reach. The waiter walks up to me and I hand it to him.

“For both of us,” I say, pointing in between us. The waiter smiles and nods before he turns away with everyone’s bills.

“Harry,” she whines.

“Lily,” I reply in a similar tone, causing her playful glare to narrow even more. I laugh at her.

Suddenly, she stands up with her wallet in her hand.

I look up at her. “What are you doing?”

“Maybe I can catch him before he puts your card through.”

She sticks her tongue out at me before she quickly makes her way to our waiter standing behind a computer screen. I quickly stand up and follow her.

She’s already talking to the waiter once I reach her and I see the waiter looking through the bill books, surely looking for the one containing ours.

Just as Lily is about to take it from the waiter’s hand, I step forward and grab it.

Lily gasps and turns around, her arms crossed in front of her.

“Harry!”

I hand it back to the waiter, who’s looking at us knowingly. He must see this all the time.

“What?” I tease.

“Why are you paying for my bill?”

“Because I wanted to do something nice,” I shrug.

“Why won’t you be nice and pay for Niall’s meal or something? Why mine?”

“Because I wanted to be a gentleman.” She’s about to add in a remark but I interrupt her. “And I missed you.”

Her face softens but it slowly turns into a playful glare once again. “Never again.”

I laugh. “No promises.”

She lightly smacks my arm.

The waiter hands me back my card and I’m about to follow him back to our table when I feel a hand grab my wrist. I turn around and see Lily looking up at me warily.

“Um…are you busy tonight? I…I was hoping we could…talk?”

This is it. This is what I’ve been waiting for.

“No. I mean, no, I’m not busy. We can…We can talk.”

She gives me a small smile and nods.

“I drove here so we can go somewhere, if you want,” I offer.

She nods again. “Alright. Let’s just wait until everyone leaves.”

“Alright.”

I follow her back to the table and we take our seats. I can see Lily is tense as she joins into the conversation with the rest of the table. I don’t even pay attention to what everyone is saying. I can’t take my eyes off of her.

I can’t get enough of her. Here she is right now, sitting beside me. I don’t know how I kept sane going almost a week without her. I missed her. I missed her so damn much.

And she missed me, too.

That must mean that she was thinking about me. Should I be hopeful about that?

“Harry? Harry!”

I shake my head and look over at Louis, who has the biggest smirk on his face.

“Huh? What?” I reply.

“Are you ready to go?”

“Oh…yeah. Yeah.”

I can see him holding in his laughter. I know he probably saw me gawking at Lily. Maybe the whole table did. But only Louis knows that I’m fighting right now to have Lily take me back. He’s the only one that knows that Ivana is my fake girlfriend.

We all stand up and I wait for Lily to put on her light jacket.

Suddenly, I see Ed appear beside her. Lily looks worriedly between the two of us when Ed finally looks at me.

He gives me a stiff nod. “Harry.”

I offer him a smile. “Hey, Ed.”

I know that he’s still pissed at me for hurting Lily that night at Perrie’s birthday party. I don’t blame him for being cold with me. As much as I want to make things right with Lily again, I’m really hoping that I can make things up with Ed as well.

It’s my fault that I messed up our friendship. I broke his promises. Even though I don’t regret asking Lily out after he told me to stay away from her, I wish I hadn’t lied to him about it. It wouldn’t have created this huge mess between us.

Suddenly, I remember that Ed and Lily had had a fight before she left and it was my fault. I know it. I know that Lily will deny that it was my fault but she told me that that was the first time they’ve had a fight that big. They usually didn’t bother fighting or it didn’t even last more than five minutes.

They obviously made up since she went to Amsterdam with him and they’re hanging out now, too. I was kind of jealous that Ed got to be in Amsterdam with her. What I would give to go somewhere with her.

“I’ll see you later, okay?” Lily says. I look at her confusedly. Did she tell Ed that we’re going to talk? Is Ed okay with it?

“Alright,” he says with a nod before he gives her a hug. He doesn’t even acknowledge me as he brushes past me.

Lily turns her gaze from Ed to me, a smile appearing on her face.

“You ready?” she asks.

“Yeah, you?” Why am I so nervous? This is what I’ve been waiting for since she left, right?

“Yeah, I’m just gonna say bye to everyone.”

Both of us turn to say our goodbyes to everyone else. As we all make our way out of the restaurant, I find myself hovering over to Lily, standing beside her and resting my hand on her back. She tenses slightly and looks up at me warily as we step outside.

Now I know why. There’s a group of paparazzi outside, their cameras going off like crazy as soon as they see us. However, I don’t make any move to remove my hand from Lily’s back. I’m just helping her through the group of over-excited photographers.

“Harry, are you back with Lily?”

And here come the questions.

“You were just with Ivana yesterday. Did you two break up?”

“Harry, does Ivana know you’re on a date with Lily?”

I just grit my teeth as I make my way past them, stepping closer to Lily. We reach the car and I hastily open the passenger door, helping her step inside safely. I close the door after her and make my way to the driver’s side. I quickly get in, turning it on and driving away like a madman.

I don’t even bother asking her where she wants to go. I know exactly where to take her. And once we reach there, she doesn’t even look surprised or opposed to my decision.

I park beside the now familiar tree and we exit the car and make our way to the ledge. We sit in silence for while and I notice that she seems to be taking in the view below us. Like she always does every time we go here.

Every day since she left, I came here. I don’t know why but I just felt closer to her just sitting here. I imagine her sitting beside me, holding her hand, just sitting in silence like we are right now.

“I’m sorry.”

I’m snapped out of my thoughts at her voice and I look over at her. She’s looking down and she’s biting her lip.

My eyebrows pull together in confusion. “For what?”

She takes a deep breath. “For not talking to you since…since I left. I just needed to clear my head.”

Why is she apologizing? That’s the last thing that I thought that she would apologize for.

“No, I completely understand. I know that I needed to be a better friend so I knew that I had to give you that. It sucked not talking to you but I knew that you needed it.”

Her gaze slowly trails up to look at me and when our eyes meet, everything around me stopped and my breath rushed out of my lungs. The last time she was here with me, it was the night that I had taken my ring and let her wear it as a necklace. That was the night that she had given me her bracelet that I still haven’t taken off.

“Yeah, I mean, it was good to take a break from everything and get away. I definitely needed it. I…I was able to realize a few things.”

She looks away, a solemn expression overtaking her features.

Oh no.

I swallow but I wait for her to continue, not knowing what to say. Or maybe I’m just worried about what is it that she has to say.

She finally looks back at me. “Look, I know I’ve said this many times before but…we really need to work on being friends. I know it’s easier said than done but I can’t handle it, Harry. I…” She bites her lip and her gaze falters. “I can stand you kissing me and…and saying sweet things to me. The part that I can’t handle is that fact that you have a girlfriend. I can’t stand the fact that I can’t kiss you back, that I can’t tell you how I feel, that I can’t tell you that…that I love you.”

I can see her eyes misting, glistening from the moonlight.

Ever since she left, I started to realize how hard it must’ve been for her. I shouldn’t have kissed her and tell her that she was beautiful without knowing that it was absolutely wrong of me to think that it was okay, that Lily would be okay with it.

I realize that now and I know that I need to stop doing that if I want to stop pushing her away.

“We were able to do it before,” she continues. “I think we can be friends again. I know it won’t be easy, this past week has shown that but…things don’t come easy, especially something that we want, that we need. I leave in less than a month and I don’t want to waste one more day like I did this past week. I don’t like not talking to you or even not hanging out with you. You still mean a lot to me, Harry. I don’t have one ounce of regret in me that I came here and met you. If anything, I’m glad I met you. I’m glad I have you in my life. You’ve done so much for me. You helped me get over my fear, something I never thought I would be able to do. The other things you’ve done for me…” she gives me a sad smile. “Well, I’m sure you know what those are.”

Of course I know what those are. And I know that it would be hard for her to list off those things. I wish she did but I know that things would just go in a downward spiral if we reminisced about the past.

“So, what do you think?” she asks, looking at me warily.

I take a deep breath. “Well, first off, I’m sorry, too. You’re right. I shouldn’t have done those things and expect you to be okay with it. I…I just…I can’t seem to think straight when I’m around you. I’m gonna try harder though. I’m going to try not to mess with your head anymore. I don’t want to push you away any further. I want us to be friends, too. I’d take that over not being able to see you. I mean, I liked how things were even when we were just friends. I want that for us, too.”

Her smile instantly lights up the darkness surrounding us.

“Really? I-I mean, great!” She releases a breath. “You have no idea how nervous I’ve been to have this talk.”

I smile. “Don’t worry. I was, too. I just took into account what you said before. You said that it didn’t work for us last time when we tried to be friends because neither of us knew what we were trying to work for. We didn’t know what we wanted. I think we know now, both of us. I think it’ll be easier this time. At least I hope it will. No, I know it will.”

We smile.

I’m aware of what she wants. She wants us to be friends now. But what I want is to earn her trust again. I want her to trust me and see me as a friend again. It’s only until then that I’ll be able to win her back. That’s what I want.

“We’ll take this one day at a time. We can do things that worked for us before. We work on songs together, that seems to make things easier,” she explains.

I nod. “Yeah.”

Suddenly, I remember finding something in my room before I left for the restaurant earlier today.

“Lily? Can…can you do something for me, though?”

I look up at her and see her looking at me warily. I reach into my pocket and pull out the necklace and hold it up in front of her. She looks down at it, her eyes widening and her body tensing. She looks like she’s…afraid of it.

“Can you promise me that, no matter what, you’ll keep this with you again? I know that it held a different meaning the last time that I give it to you but…I feel better when you have it. I promise it doesn’t mean anything romantic or anything like that. I just feel like it belongs to you and I feel comfort when I see you wearing it.”

She’s still staring at it, her hands tightening as it clasps together in her lap. However, her gaze turns to my wrist when I hold up my arm.

“I’ve never taken it off,” I say, referring to her bracelet. A pained expression fills her features. I can see her breath slightly quickening. “I kept this on because it reminds me of how lucky I was to have met you. It reminds me of the great moments that we shared. I look at it and I know that you’ll always be there for me, no matter what. And…and I want that for you, too. I want you to look at this necklace and know that I will always be there for you, too, no matter what. As a friend.”

I reach my hand closer to her, the one with the necklace dangling from my fingers. “You…you don’t have to take it but I would feel better if you did.”

Slowly, she raises her hand and wraps her fingers around the ring. I instantly feel relief as soon as she takes the necklace from me and holds it in the middle of her palm, gazing at it.

“You don’t have to wear it. You can just keep it with you.”

Just when I think she’s going to hand it back to me, she takes both ends of the necklace and pulls it back around her neck. She clasps it and lets it fall against her chest.

Just where it belongs.

 

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