I stood in the hall way, my bag had been taken by Liam. Moments of bliss that I spent with Zayn only half an hour ago, felt like weeks. He stood at the bottom of the stairs, shirtless, his tattoos glistening.
Niall stood with his arms now around me, “Take care of yourself.” he whispered, and I sighed into him, I often wondered why it was him I never fell in love with. Why I never went back to him? I had fallen in love with Zayn multiple times, gone back to Harry several, loved Louis a little too much, and Liam had taken a part in the back of my mind, so why hadn’t I fallen back in love with him.
Maybe he was just too good for me, I knew his innocence, I knew his smile was one I could never take and break. He let me go, and kissed my forehead.
“Call me.” I heard a voice beside me, it was Harry. I gulped and he engulfed me, breathed me in. I smiled and kissed his cheek, letting go of his skin once more. “I will, look after Hope.” I tell him, remembering him telling me would leave her for me.
“Brook, we need to go.” Liam told me, I turned and begged him for a few more minutes with nothing but my eyes. “I’ll just warm up the car.” he spoke, and excused himself with a final wave to the boys.
“It was a short time but the best time.” Ashton then spoke opening his arms for me, I let a light laugh fall, “I’ll visit, we’ll go out and do something whenever I’m home.” I say to him, and he squeezes me one final time, “Here,” he speaks, and hands me a crumbled piece of paper, “It’s the poem I wrote you.” he told me, and smile and hug him once more.
Louis came next, it was sweet and simple like him, he handed me £10, and I asked him what it was for. “So you can buy some cheap vodka without asking Liam.” he smirked at me, I know he was joking, but there was a serious tone, as he knew there would come a point I needed it. Everyone looked at me, and then Zayn.
“Can I, say goodbye to Zayn in private, please?” I asked, and they all nodded, kissed my cheek and gave me once final hug, Harry’s lasting a little long, as he whispered, “Please don’t fall in love with Liam.” and then he looked at me with those sad green eyes and walked away.
I sighed turning to Zayn, he sat on the bottom step of the stairs, and I joined him. “Here we are again.” he sighed, I nodded. I looked at the walls that surrounded us, “This house once offered so much for us, and now its… it’s just a ray of disappointment, that lies is ash and dust just the other one.” I say, and he grabs my hand, intertwining our fingers.
“It’ll be okay.” he told me, and I nodded. “I know.” I whispered, lying. But so was he, he didn’t know if it would be okay either.
“Please don’t come begging for me back.” he whispered, and covered his face with his other hand, “I just can’t take it.” he almost sobbed.
We were silent for a minute or so. “Will you marry her?” I ask him, and he turned to me, “Marry who? Perrie?” he asked, and I nodded. “Will you love her like you should have loved me? Will you make it to the alter with her? Give her children? Do all the things that you should have done with me, but with her?” I asked, each word making me need another shot of whiskey.
“I don’t know. I don’t know if i’ll even be able to date her, just because I have the simple idea of you.” he told me, “If you are going to love anyone, anyone who isn’t me, love her.” I tell him, frowning as I say it, as the pain in my chest becomes explosive.
“What about Liam do you think you’ll love him?” he asked me, “I already love him, just no where near as much as I need to.” I spoke, “You mean as much as you love me, or Harry.” he told me, squirming when he said Harry, “As much as I love you.” I say.
“I won’t marry anyone, you know?” I say to him, and he didn’t look at me. “I won’t ever be able too.” I said, “Not even me?” he looked over quickly, I shook my head. “Not even you, the simple idea of a wedding make me sick.” I say.
The car horn then beeped twice. I stood up, and blinked away the tears. Zayn stood up and wrapped his arms around me, letting out a breath. “I’m sorry I ruined you.” he whispered, “I’m sorry I let you.” I told him, and he kissed my head. I pull back and touch his stubble covered face, standing on my tip toes to kiss his lips, that I knew this time I would never kiss again.
“I’m always going to want you, okay?” I reassure him, “Please don’t come back.” he told me, and I looked down, “One minute you want me to stay, then you want me to go. Make your mind up.” I smirked, he laughed, “You ruined me once, isn’t that enough?” he chuckled. “I do it a thousand times over if we ended up here, in the moment, every time.” I tell him.
I left then, I got in the car, Liam asked if I was ready, and as everyone stood in the front garden, I glanced over, and then down to my lap. “Yeah, I’m ready.” I whispered, “It’ll be okay, you know that you are safe with me.” he reached across for my hand and squeezed it.
I knew Liam wouldn’t hurt me, I knew that from the start. Even when he said that he would just sleep with me for revenge on Zayn, after that he changed. As soon as I died with him, everything changed. He lived, he told me about his past, and what he wanted from his future. Me. He told me one night in a drunk rage, that he’d only want me.
It was at this time that he’d been seeing Aria, and she’d met someone else, and he’d told me that he was with her, to stop ever growing, fast moving, feelings for me.
We drove a couple of hours. Some in light conversation, and some in silence. Radio noise, which no longer sounded like music to my untuned ears, echoed aimlessly through the four door car.
We pulled up at at hotel around five hours after we’d been driving, it was somewhere near Dover. We were going to get a ferry to France, and go on wards from there.
The problem I had was an overwhelming sadness did not fill me, it didn’t consume me, or even knock me sick like it had done months before, it didn’t make me feel anything. I felt uneasy. But not sad. Uneasy of the one thing, the only that made me feel this way, him. Zayn.
Liam threw the last of our bags on the floor, “We are here for two nights, the ferry has been delayed.” he spoke, plonking down on the bed beside me.
I wanted to do one thing. One thing to fill the empty void that was growing, and rising within me. Was alcohol. Liam almost read my mind, and from the last duffle bag he carried over his shoulder, he pulled out two bottles, threw cans, and three shot bottles.
“Liam, you read my mind.” i smile, picking up a vodka bottle, he smirked his dovish grin, and spoke, “I’m not like them Brook. I won’t forbid you, I won’t stop you. I only ask one thing. That in return for me been boundless, you always come home. Home to me.”.
I stood up, putting down the vodka.
“I can’t make that promise, Liam.” I shook my head, and he smiled, brushing back wispy hair strands, “You can, because even if you break it, you should know by now that i’d still take you back arms wide open.” he whispered, and pressed his lips to my forehead.
“I know you would, you could find someone, Liam. Get out of this life. Why still fight for me? You know how ruined I? Why are you so determined to fix something that is completely and utterly broken?” I whispered.
“Because you are worth fixing. I didn’t know myself, until I knew you.” he told me, and took a step away drinking his whiskey.
“Where are going?” I ask him, changing the conversation, which had soon grown old to me. “I mean, we have as much time as we want, where are we going?” I ask, he smirked at me, “Where ever you didn’t go with Harry.” he teased.
We sat there then, hours went on, and as the liquor moved more freely, the relief washed over me. I mean, I was an alcoholic. I had come to accept that now, only when I was drunk was I able to understand the world around me. Here Liam was adding fuel to the fire, throwing alcohol my way, and grinning with me.
We smoked cigarettes, letting the smoke pour itself into our lungs, and feeling a fire on the inside, that reignited something.
Maybe now we had found something that could slow time down just enough to make it bearable to breath, the lethal combination of liquor and sadness was enough to make me feel the way Liam wanted me too.
“Liam,” I paused, making sure my words came out in correct sentences, “Can I tell you something, something that… even Zayn doesn’t know?” I whispered, he nodded, and handed me the glass with whiskey in the bottom, and I slugged it, moving swiftly on.
“When I was dead, you know, I often thought about the things I think about now? I think about how if my parents hadn’t met Steve, they’d of looked after me. How Jack wouldn’t have gone mad. How everything could have been the same.
But the thing I think about the most, the thing that makes me stay away at night is that all through my life, I’ve been fighting something, or someone. Drake, then my family, and you, Zayn. I only fight the people I care about, but I just got so sick of fighting.
So one night, when you were having a drink, it was a couple of months ago, I told you all I was going to see my parents, but I didn’t. I went to this old cottage, it’s derelict now, but I sat there, and I had a rope, and I was close.
I could have jumped, and it would all had been over. We wouldn’t be here, you’d of met a girl and married her, Zayn would have been with Perrie, but Harry? I don’t know where he’d be.”
There was a moment, a breath, a thought as me and Liam lay beside each other on the bed.
“Why didn’t you do it?” he asked me, I sighed, and sat up, “I couldn’t leave you all. Never hear Harry’s laugh, Zayn’s kiss, Niall’s smile, Louis’s eyes, and you. I just couldn’t leave you, I thought about when I was last dead, and then I remember this would be different. I wouldn’t have you.” I half smile at him, sadly.
Another moment of silence passed by, and we looked around the small motel room, and he sat up, hooked his hands around my legs, pulling them so they were over his. He cupped my face with his free hand, and smiled.
“I think there’s something beautiful about suicide, you know?” he smiled, and I cocked my head, curious at what was so beautiful about it. “Can I tell you why?” he asked.
“I was only seven. I had a sister she was sixteen. I used to walk into her room of a night time… and to spare my mind, she told me she was an artist… but all that time whilst I thought she was carving pictures onto her arm.” he paused, as if he had the memory.
“You don’t have to.” I touched his hand, he bowed his head, shook it, and continued, “Yes, I need to tell someone the fucking secret my parents tried to hide.”
I nodded again, and he sucked in a breath. “My parent’s went out for a meal. I was in the house with my sister, and she came into my room and told me a story about a girl, she was sailing, she was alone in a boat, and one day she jumped in, and the waves got her, and she prayed asking for an escape, she gasped - so did my sister- and then she let the sea consume her… and by the end of the story, she was weeping, and asked if she was sad because the girl was gone, and she nodded, she said she was sorry, and I didn’t know what for.” he shook his head, and he cried, he began to cry, and all I could do was offer him my hand, and a glass of whiskey.
“She told me she was an Artist, Brook. It wasn’t until 11pm that night, when my parents came home and my mother screamed, that I figured it our. I found her then, lying on the bathroom floor, crimson red carvings on her canvas. She truly was an artist, and though she was covered, she had never looked more peaceful, more happy, and the way she looked then, Brook? It was beautiful. It’s how you should look. But, I need you to be breathing and look that way.” he whispered, and touched my cheek, pressing his forehead that was thick with sweat against mine.
“I will look that way, one day.” I tell him, I assure him.
“Promise me?” he asked me. No. he didn’t ask, he begged. I nodded, and kissed his forehead, and wiped away tears and sweat, “I promise.” I whispered.