Little Steps

Aria Lubianco has been through the worst. Found freezing and sobbing on her doorstep by none other than Liam Payne, she is the definition of a strong but broken girl. As she warms up to the boys, feelings arise for one in particular. However, it is almost impossible for Aria to keep herself together when a mystery person begins sending her threatening messages.

As new people enter the story, suspects are chosen and bonds grow, all due in time.

What will little steps get Aria?

Originally by and all credit goes to lalaladooo:


25. A Real Kiss

Aria’s P.O.V.

One week until tour was over, and Niall and I hadn’t talked in days. Days. We didn’t dare look at each other, but when I did decide to sneak a glance, he was already staring back. Liam had been trying to get us to talk again, and so had Zayn and Louis. Eleanor had been trying to comfort me, but I didn’t want to deal with it. I didn’t want to deal with him. I couldn’t.

I know, I was the one who had walked away, but I was just so shocked, and I was drunk. I would never have wanted to have my first kiss with him when I was drunk. And that was what happened.

I was currently sitting on the deck, which had quite apparently become my favorite place in the bungalow. Tonight though, the stars weren’t out, and the moon was covered by dark grey clouds. The wind was rough, making my hair whip across my face every so often. I didn’t care.

Liam, Harry, Zayn and Louis had all gone out on a “quadruple” date, while Niall locked himself in his room like he had the majority of the past days.

Sometimes, I just wanted to run away from life. But where would I run to? I had nowhere to go. No one to go to. I was alone without these boys, and I couldn’t deny it. Just as my phone vibrated with a text, someone knocked on the glass sliding door, walking out with a plate of spaghetti. Of course, it was Niall.

Silently, he handed me my plate, and I caught him glimpsing down at something. I realized he was looking at the text I’d received on the lock screen. His eyes grew wider and he looked at me, biting his lip. Oh no. He was biting his lip. I would die for sure.

“Mom?” he asked quietly, frowning before he turned around to leave. I glanced down at my phone, and indeed the name “mom” had appeared along with the text.


He turned around, waiting for me to go on. His face was expressionless.

“Um, thanks.” I said, gesturing at the plate of food. He gave me a blank stare, and then walked away. Even just by being around him, my heart fluttered and butterflies occupied my stomach. I could barely breathe. And yet, right now, he was beginning to piss me off.

Then, I remembered my phone, quickly grabbing it to read the text.

Mom: I need you Aria. Please. Help me.

What was with these texts? Were they some sort of threat? I hated to say it, but I was really starting to want to know the truth behind these messages. Who was really sending me these texts? Who were they trying to kid?

Frustrated, I dug into my spaghetti, trying to soak up my sudden fear and curiosity with the delicious pasta. Niall was an amazing cook, though I had known that before. The spaghetti was creamy and rich, which hints of parmesan cheese to top it off. After finishing the plate of food, I set it down on the wooden floor of the deck, lying down. I let unconsciousness wash over me.

Niall’s P.O.V.

It was almost midnight, and the other boys still hadn’t come home yet. I sighed, dragging myself out of the bed and opened my bedroom door, planning to get a drink of water as an excuse to check on Aria. When I entered the living room, I looked through the glass doors to see her lying on the deck, breathing heavily. She must’ve fallen asleep. Smiling a little, I slid open the doors to the large deck, scooping her into my arms. She instinctively wrapped her shoulders around my neck, resting her chin on my shoulder. Her legs wrapped around my waist. Why was she so adorable?

“Niall, Niall I need you.” She mumbled into my shoulder. She was still asleep. I froze in my tracks at her words.

“I’ll always be there for you.” I whispered back, rubbing her shoulder as I carried her to a bedroom, placing her down on the bed. She grabbed a pillow in her sleep and hugged it tightly, pulling her knees up to her chest as she slept. I smiled at her cute actions, covering her body with the duvet and leaving the room.

I collapsed on the sofa, reaching for my phone to see my text to Liam unanswered. They never really told me where they were going. Maybe a club.

After a solid hour of thinking about nothing, I felt my head tilting, and my eyelids closing.

Until I heard a scream.

Aria’s P.O.V.

“Listen up, bitch.” The man spat, slamming me into a wall. My ribs pained badly. “We’re going to make a deal. A person for a person. You come back home, and I don’t kill him.” Then man harshly pointed at the blue eyed and blonde haired boy, making muffled sounds through the tape wrapped around his mouth.

My heart beat faster, as I looked between the threatened boy and the man. I didn’t know what to do. The boy was shaking his head furiously, trying to say something. He looked alarmed.

“Shut up, you Irish bastard.” The man spat at the boy, gripping the knife that rested it his pocket.

“So,” he the man grinned evilly, “what will it be, Aria?”

I stared back at the man. Wordless. I couldn’t speak if I wanted to. I was frozen.

“Speak up, you slut!” the man yelled, his fist coming in contact with my cheek bone. I let of a cry of pain. I could taste the blood seeping out of my gum. Hot tears rolled down my cheeks.

He punched me again, slamming me once more into the wall behind me. I felt dizzy, and weak. The boy stared at me, and I could see his eyes sparkling with tears as well. The man’s foot raised up, jabbing my already bruised rib, producing a cracking sound. I groaned in pain, falling to the ground. I clutched my rib, squeezing my eyes shut.

“I said, what will it be?” he snarled, slowly taking out something else from his pocket I hadn’t noticed before.

A gun.

He pointed it at the boy, the last person I would want dead. I couldn’t take it anymore.

“Take me.” I coughed out. “Leave him alone.”

The boys screamed through the tape, managing to rip it off in that second. “Aria, don’t!” he yelled.

“I’m sorry, Niall.” I whispered.

“I thought I told you not to speak,” the man sneered, looking at Niall. Niall gritted his teeth, staring back at the man.

“You’re a ruthless, disrespectful bastard who shouldn’t even be alive. You’ve mistreated your own daughter, and you think that taking me is going to make her go back with you? She’d never do that!” She would never-“

The man, my father, pulled the trigger of the gun. The blonde boy choked out one last breath, before toppling with his chair, to the cold floor.

I screamed.

I sat up in my bed, screaming at the top of my lungs. My heart was beating at a mile a minute, and I felt dizzy. I scanned the room, realizing I was still in the bungalow. It was only a dream. It had seemed so real. My whole body was shaking for the realistic images that I had pictured, the ones I couldn’t get out of my head. My father’s terrible voice, Niall’s screaming. My teeth chattered as I began to cry.

Niall barged into the room.

“Babe, are you alright?” he shouted, holding his arms out and taking me into his arms. I didn’t say anything, only melted into his tight hold. He stood at the edge of the bed, lifting me up into his arms. I couldn’t stop myself from shaking. I couldn’t stop the tears.

“Don’t ever leave me.” I managed to whisper. “Please.”

“Never.” He said back, kissing my forehead. We stayed in each other arms, until he pulled away, one hand still around my waist, the other hand wiping away my tears.

“Don’t cry, babe.” He whispered, kissing the top of my head again. We moved so that we were lying next to each other on the bed, his arms still wrapped around me. He never let me go. And I was perfectly fine with that.

“What happened, Ari?” he asked, softly stroking my hair. I looked up at him, our noses only a few inches away from each other.

“I had a nightmare.” I shuddered, wiping away the occasionally tears.

“About what?” he asked, completely serious.

“About you.” I answered, gulping down more tears. He stared back at me, looking down at his shirt.

“You’re scared of me?” he asked, his voice squeaking at the end. I quickly shook my head.

“No! Not like that, Niall.” I declared. “You were…you were being threatened.”

Niall looked up again, his eyebrows raised. “Tell me, love.”

So I told him, every detail of my dream, and Niall sat beside me, not talking, only listening. He rubbed my arm when I paused to take a shuddery breath, and then stroked my hair as I spoke. By the time I was finished telling him, I was on laying on top of him, burring my head into my chest.

“Niall,” I croaked, “promise me you’ll never give your life up for me.”

Niall bit his lip, turning away. “I promise.”

But I knew he was lying. So I told him, “You’re lying.”

Niall sighed heavily, looking straight into my eyes. “I wouldn’t be able to live knowing I could’ve done something to save you.”

“I’m not even that important.” I protested, rubbing my eyes which stung from my salty tears.

“Wrong.” He whispered. “You’re my everything.”

I looked up into his blue eyes, which were staring back.


"Mhm?" he hummed, smiling down at me.

"Will you sing to me?" I asked, biting my lip. He smiled again and nodded.

I won't talk

I won't breathe

I won't move till you finally see

That you belong with me

You might think I don't look

But deep inside the corner of my mind

I'm attatched to you


I'm weak, it's true

Cause I'm afraid to know the answer

Do you want me too?

Cause my heart keeps falling faster

I've waited all my life to cross this line

To the only thing that's true

So I will not hide

It's time to try anything to be with you.

I could feel tears, this time happy tears, traveling to my eyes again.

You don't know what you do

Everytime you walk into the room

I'm afraid to move

I'm weak, it's true

I'm just scared to know the ending

Do you see me too?

Do you even know you met me?

I've waited all my life to cross this line

To the only thing thats true

So I will not hide

It's time to try anything to be with you

All my life I've waited

This is true

I know when I go

I'll be on my way to you

The way that's true

I've waited all my life to cross this line

To the only thing thats true

So I will not hide

It's time to try anything to be with you

All my life I've waited

This is true

I let the tears slide down my cheek, only to have Niall press his thumb to my cheek and wipe them away.

We stayed silent for a couple of minutes, until he spoke up.

“Ari?” he asked softly, running his fingers through my hair.


“Why did you run away that night?” Niall asked hesitantly, his grip around my waist getting tighter. I looked at his shirt, then at his sleeve, then at the duvet that we were on top of.

“Because…” I took a deep breath, “because I didn’t want my first kiss with someone that I, that I…actually…like… to be when the both of us were drunk.” I said, blushing terribly. Niall bit his lip again. I swear, if he did that one more time I would die.

“What if I kissed you now?” he whispered, his finger nails tickling my arm.

“Why don’t you find out?” I giggled quietly, biting the inside of my cheek.

Niall leaned in, closing the little gap that there was, pressing his lips to mine. I kissed him back after pausing for a second, letting myself melt into my lips. This time, his lips didn’t taste like alcohol, or anything disgusting. His lips tasted like spaghetti and tomato sauce instead. I could feel the smile growing and his kissed me, the little sparks of electricity bouncing back and forth.
It was a soft, gentle, innocent kiss that meant so much.

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