Strong

Niall, Louis, Liam and I were the best of friends since we were babies. When Niall and I end up together, he is forced to move to Australia for five years. Five years later and he's back and we're all hanging out again. What will happen to our friendship when I meet Harry Styles? And just incase you guys are confused I changed her name from Hinley to Hayley okay bye:)

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8. Chapter Eight

"Happy Birthday Hayley!" Jade yelled, causing me to wake from my slumber.

I groaned, "What time is it?"

"Don't get angry at me, but it's six in the morning. I've got work in an hour so I wanted to say Happy Birthday before I left."

I rolled my eyes. Six in the morning was no time for me to be awake, especially seeing as I hadn't left Harry's until midnight last night.

"Well you've said it, can you leave now?"

Jade let out a sigh and sat at the bottom of my bed, grabbing my hand.

"I know you don't usually like your birthday, but come on! You've just turned twenty-one! That's a big year."

"Birthdays aren't that great anymore after you've had twenty-one of them."

I am like this every year. In fact, I don't even acknowledge my birthday exists. I don't tell many people. I just block it out, like it's nothing. Because it really is. To be honest, I've always thought that your birthday should be a day to celebrate your Mum, for giving a painful birth to you.

"Okay Miss Grumpy, I better get going. I have to catch the train to work today. I've got a surprise for you in the fridge you can look at whenever you want." She got up, about to leave. But then she turned around, "Oh, and lover boy called this morning. He told me to tell you to wake up already, Happy Birthday, and he's got a surprise waiting for you later on in the night." She smiled.

***

I tossed and turned, but found I still couldn't go to sleep after Jade had woken me up this morning. I sighed, getting up from my thick warm duvet and trudging to the kitchen to make my morning coffee.

I checked to see what Jade had left me in the fridge. I opened it to see a homemade caramel and banana cheesecake. I smiled to myself. She knew that was my absolute favourite, especially when she made it. I got it out of the fridge and placed it on the bench, grabbing a spoon in the process. I dug into it. It was my birthday, so I have an excuse for eating cake for breakfast.

I ate about quarter of the cake before getting too full, so I decided to call Harry.

The phone didn't even ring once before Harry answered.

"Happy Birthday to you,

squashed tomatoes and stew,

bread and butter in the gutter,

Happy Birthday to you." Harry sang.

I laughed, "Thank you Harry."

"That's just the start of it babe, I'll be giving you gifts all day, so get used to it."

"Harry, you didn-." I started to protest.

"Ah, no. Today is your birthday. Not only that, it's your twenty first birthday. I'm buying you presents, taking you out. If you try to fight with me about this in anyway, I'll cover your mouth with my hand. I don't want to hear it. I'm treating you like a Princess today." Harry finished.

I smiled to myself. No guy had ever treated me like this before. In fact, I'd never told any guy I'd only known for days my birthday.

"Deal?" Harry asked.

"Deal." I agreed.

"Good. I'll pick you up at eight. Wear something comfortable." And with that, he hung up.

Wear something comfortable? I wonder where he could be taking me.

Suddenly, there was a knock at the door, catching me off guard and causing me to jump. I walked to the door and looked out the peep-hole to see the mail man. It was probably one of Jade's packages from online shopping.

I opened the door and smiled.

"Are you Hayley Dawson?" The mail man asked, looking at a piece of paper on his clipboard.

"Yes, that would be me." I smiled.

He had a hand behind his back, looking like he was hiding something. He handed me the clipboard, asking me to sign on the dotted line.

Once I did, he revealed what he had behind his back was a beautiful bouquet of purple orchids. There was also a note attached to it. It read,

'Happy Birthday Hayley! This is the first of many gifts you will receive today, for your twenty-first birthday. I hope you have a fantastic day and you get absolutely spoilt.

P.s. I remembered you telling me you thought roses were a cliché, so I got your favourite. Orchids, right? Sorry if they're are wrong, I hope you like them.

P.p.s. You're a loser and you stink x

Love, Harry'

I smiled to myself, remembering the time we had that conversation.

"Thank you." I smiled at the postman.

He smiled back and sprinted to his car. I closed the door, leaning against it and smelling the orchids. He was definitely right, they were my favourite.

I walked to the cupboard under my sink, collecting a vase to put the beautiful flowers in. I filled it with water and put them in, sitting the vase on my kitchen window cill.

My phone started to ring in my pocket and I got it out, seeing my Mum's name written there.

"Hi Mum." I answered.

"Hayley! Happy Birthday!" She yelled, obviously not knowing how technology works.

"Thanks Mum."

"So, what are your plans for today?" She asked.

"You know, going out with a few friends, nothing special."

"Nothing special? Hayley, it's your twenty first birthday! Go out! Get drunk! I don't care. Legally, you can now, so go for it." She yelled.

Mum had always wanted to throw me big embarrassing parties as a child. When I hit sixteen, I explained to her my hate for birthdays. She understood, but still constantly pressured me into brining at least one friend over.

"No, Mum, I'm okay. I'll probably end up getting drunk anyway. For the first time, by the way." I joked.

"Don't lie to me, Hayley. I'm not an idiot, I was once your age too. It may not seem like it, but I was. And I had a lot of fun. A lot. There was this one time when-."

"Okay, Mum, I get it." I interrupted her, becoming quickly impatient with her pushy ways.

"Okay, I'm just saying, get out there, live your life. Because what they say is too true, life is short."

"Alright, I promise I'll go out tonight and live my life." I sighed.

"Good. I'm going to put Aria on, okay?" She asked.

"Okay Mum, see you later, love you."

"Love you too." She finished before handing the phone to my little sister, Aria.

"Hi sis. Is Mum annoying you with party and birthday stuff again?" Aria asked. I heard Mum yell a "hey" from behind her.

"How'd you guess?" I laughed.

"It's what she always does. So, how's being twenty-one?"

"Good, I guess. Nothing's changed, obviously."

"Yeah, except you get to legally drink now! That must be exciting."

"Eh, it's not like I haven't before, Aria." I laughed.

"Okay, enough about you." said Aria. She took a deep breath in, "As you know, I've just started year eleven. I just wanted to know about the speech thing we have to do. You know the persuasive one."

I thought about it for a second, and then remembered what she was talking about. At the time, I wrote an assignment about how animal testing is wrong.

"Yeah, what about it?" I asked.

"Well, I'm extremely nervous. Do you still have your speech somewhere? I'm not going to copy, I just what to get the basic gist of it."

I thought about it, then sighed, "Sorry sis, I got rid of that ages ago. When I come over next weekend to see you guys, I'll help you with it. Sound good?"

"Yeah that's fine. Okay, I have to go. We'll see you next weekend?"

"Sure will. Bye."

"Seeya." She finished.

I spent the rest of the day lounging around, waiting until the clock would hit eight so Harry could come pick me up and take me to my birthday surprise. But it was only four, meaning Jade would be home soon.

As if on cue, I could hear the rattling of Jade's keys at the front door.

"Hey, did you have a good day?" She asked, putting her keys into the bowl next to the door.

"Yeah, I guess. I just watched some How I Met Your Mother and painted my toe nails." I smiled, wriggling my toes around for her to see.

She laughed and walked into the kitchen and to the fridge.

"I see you've eaten sone of the cake. Did you like it?" Jade called.

"I loved it, it was so great. Thank you Jade." I smiled.

"It's no problem." She smiled back, going into the cutlery drawer to grab a spoon for herself.

"Who's are these?" Jade asked.

I looked back and found her pointing at the purple bouquet of orchids Harry had bought me.

"Oh, it's just a little something Harry had delivered to me." I said.

"Awwwww!" Jade sang, "That's so cute. You guys have only known each other a couple days, right? That's just so sweet."

I smiled to myself. I didn't know Harry when it was his birthday, which was only six days before mine. Maybe I should get him something. He probably would protest or not even take it, but I should probably do it anyway.

*Knock Knock*

"I'll get it!" Jade called.

I nodded and continued of thinking of what I should get Harry.

"Hello?" Jade asked.

"I have a package for Hayley Dawson."

Jade turned her head around the door, looking at me to indicate I was needed. I shook my head, trying to telepathically tell her my toenails were still drying. She got the message, I think, and went back to the mail man.

I wonder what gifts he was bearing this time. The clichéd teddy bear? Or some jewelry? Okay, I was being a bit grumpy. It was just this stupid day getting to me, as usual every year.

"Here." Jade smiled, handing me a rectangular cardboard box.

I looked at it and found the corner of my mouth creeping up slowly, seeing Harry's named signed on it. I turned it over to rip it open but saw a note,

'Dear Hayley,

You might think this is a weird gift now, but trust me, they'll make sense tonight.

Love, Harry x'

I smiled to myself a bit, enjoying this birthday more than any other in the past. I opened the top of the box, to see a black velvet pouch with something hard and round in it. I hope this isn't what I think it is or what it sounds like. When I put my hand in the box to grab it, I felt something soft touch the tip of my fingertips at the bottom of the box. I took out the pouch and saw underneath it was a beanie.

I put it on. It was nice and warm, I guess, but it was also a strange gesture. I shrugged, I guess everything will be explained tonight.

I opened the velvet pouch to find it was a pair of binoculars. Again, strange gesture, but I guess it will make sense soon.

*Knock knock*

I turned around to see Jade had gone back into her room, so I felt my toenails to see that they were mostly dry. I got up and ran to the door, opening it to see another mail man. I don't understand why Harry didn't get this all delivered to me at the same time, unless this gift wasn't from Harry.

I smiled to the man and signed the package. Once he left, I read the note, finding out it was Harry.

'Dear Hayley,

I hope you have enjoyed all of your gifts. I've saved best for last (I think.)

I remember you telling my this is your favourite movie. If it doesn't fit, I still have the receipt.

Happy birthday babe x

Harry'

I opened the box, excited to see what Harry thought the best gift was. I thought back to anytime I had told him what my favourite movie was and couldn't think of it.

My fingers touched something soft in the box and I pulled it out, relieving a black jumper. I turned it around and burst out laughing. It was a jumper with Gollum on it with the ring. It has the words 'My Precious' underneath it. I brought it into my body and gave it a hug. It was perfect. Harry really knew me well.

I lifted the jumper over my head and put it on. It was big, which is what I loved in a jumper. It was extremely comfortable and fit just fine. This is definitely the best gift I have ever received.

The Hobbit was my absolute favourite movie. My friends and I even have some private jokes about it and plan traveling to New Zealand to see where it was filmed. We are obsessed, but we keep it on the down low because we don't want to seem like dorks.

I ran to Jade's room and barged in with my jumper on, skipping around her room excitedly.

"Look what Harry got me!" I excitedly shouted.

Jade looked up from her laptop screen and to me to see what I was so excited about. She sighed and went back to typing.

"I have no idea what your obsession with that movie is." She said.

"I have no idea how you couldn't be obsessed with it! If you actually look at the dwarves and just see how hot they are. And Legolas! Did you even watch it?" I asked.

"Nope. I fell alseep."

I made a fake shocked face, although I already knew she had fallen asleep the first time we had watched it together in the cinemas.

*Knock knock*

"Huh, that's weird." I mumbled.

"What?" Jade asked.

"Harry said on the card that this was the last gift. Who could that be?"

"Why don't you go find out?" Jade laughed. She seemed a bit on the grumpy side, but I understand. She has a lot of stuff to do for work.

I skipped through the hall and into the lounge room and looked through the peep-hole. I smiled and opened the door.

"Happy birthday Hayley!" Louis, Niall and Liam all shouted.

Before I could answer they all embraced me in a tight and warm bear hug.

I laughed, "Thanks guys."

"So what have you been doing all day?" Liam asked, letting go of our hug.

"Nothing much. You guys know I don't like celebrating."

"That's bullshit! This is your day. You are meant to celebrate and have fun. Do what you want." Louis smiled.

I closed the door behind them, making sure no cold air came into my heated house. The boys all sat on the couch, making themselves at home. I sat on a separate couch opposite them.

"Wow! Cool jumper! Where'd you get it?" Niall asked excitedly.

"Uh, Harry bought it for me." I stuttered, knowing Niall and Harry weren't that friendly to each other.

Niall sunk back down in my couch and nodded.

"Anyway, we got you this." Louis smiled, handing me a wrapped box.

"You know you guys didn't have to get me anything." I said.

"Well, we did. Now suck it up and open it!" Louis yelled.

I laughed and ripped the paper open, becoming anxious as to what they had bought me. It was a thick book with green and blue patterns over it. On the front, there was a photo of Liam, Louis, Niall and I at the beach when we were about three.

I smiled to myself as I flicked through the pages of the album, seeing old photographs from when I was young. The photo that caught my eye was when Niall was just about to leave for Australia, so we took a photo in front of the airport together.

30th of April, 2007

"Well, I guess this is it..." Niall sighed, looking behind him to all the families parting and hugging.

A tear fell from my eye but I wiped it away quickly, making sure I didn't make anyone else upset.

"I'll message you everyday Niall, I promise." I smiled, trying to convince myself. I knew it would be hard to keep our relationship stable if he was on the other side of the world.

"Yeah mate, we will never lose our friendship. You'll be back in no time." Louis patted him on the back and left, knowing Johannah said to be quick.

"I'll always try to keep in contact, mate. I'll miss you." Liam sighed, giving him a hug goodbye.

It was now Niall and I, trying to lengthen our last minutes together as much as possible. A tear rolled down my eye and this time I just let it fall. Saying goodbye to the person you love is tough. I suddenly know how the people on movies feel.

"I'm going to miss you so much." I whispered, giving him a hug.

"I'll miss you too, Hayley. But these five years will fly by. I'll be back soon. I will never stop loving you, Hayley Dawson."

Suddenly, I wasn't just letting little tears roll down my cheeks. I was sobbing into Niall's shoulder.

"I'll never forget you." He whispered.

Present Time

I found while I was recalling the past events from this photo, I had started to cry. Only a little bit though, not enough for the boys to notice. A tear drop splashed onto the photo and I wiped it up with my sleeve before they could see.

"This is amazing guys. Thank you so much." I smiled.

"It's no problem Hayley." Liam smiled.

"Well, we better get going. Right lads?" Niall asked, looking around at Louis and Liam.

They nodded and started to get up, giving me hugs on the way out.

"Hey, would you guys want to come with me to my Mum's next weekend?" I asked.

"Uh, yeah sure. That sounds good." Louis smiled.

"Would it be okay if I bring Paige?" Niall asked.

"Yeah, that sound be fine." I said.

"Okay, count us in." Said Liam, grabbing his coat.

They all left after another five minutes of sorting out how we'd get there and stuff like that. I glanced at the clock to see it was only five. I still had another whole three hours to kill before Harry picks me up. What the hell am I going to do in that time? Today was going so slow.

***

Although the boys had only left an hour ago and since then I'd found something to entertain myself with, I still needed to waste two hours. I'd had a shower, let my hair curly, put a bit of makeup on and left my Gollum jumper on; of course. But I still had nothing to do. Maybe Harry could pick me up earlier?

I decided to call him, getting impatient.

"Hey Hayley, what's up?" He answered.

"Could you maybe pick me up ealier? I'm so bored and I haven't seen you all day. I kind of miss you."

"Uhh..." Harry moaned, thinking about it for a minute.

"You can come over and hang out with Zayn, Perrie and some of her friends if you want?" He asked.

"That sounds perfect." I lied. I wanted to just spend time with Harry. That's all I wanted to do all day.

"Awesome. Be here soon. I'm still taking you out at eight. Okay?"

"Okay." I smiled, although I knew he couldn't see me.

"Good, see you soon." He finished.

I decided to leave what I was wearing on, seeing as Harry said he was still taking me out. I told Jade where I was going and left immediately, seeing as there was nothing for me to do at home.

***

"Happy birthday Hayley." Harry greeted me.

"Thanks Harry." I smiled.

He gave me a light kiss on the cheek and held my hand, leading me into the lounge room.

"That's Zayn." Harry introduced us, although we'd already met.

"And you've met Perrie. These are her friends Jade, Leigh-Anne and Jesy." Harry gestured a hand to each of the pretty girls sitting with Perrie.

"Hi guys." I shyly waved.

"Hi! Happy birthday." The one I knew as Jesy smiled.

"Thanks." I smiled back.

Harry walked to his couch, dragging me with him. I went to sit next to him, but he pulled me down, causing me to fall on his lap.

"I see you're wearing the jumper I bought you." Harry whispered, making sure no one else could hear.

I looked around and noticed everyone else was in too deep of a conversation to even care.

"I am." I smiled, "Thank you so much for everything you bought me today. You know me better than I know myself."

I gave Harry a quick peck and pulled away, but he grabbed the back of my neck and brought me back in. This kiss was much more passionate than the last, and full of hunger.

We pulled away and Harry licked his lips, "I missed you today. And I hated that I couldn't do that to you all day."

"I missed you too Haz." I smiled.

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