Three days had passed, and there had been no changes. Except Douglas moving in, and me feeling sicker everyday. Everyone was getting along fine, I dare to say the house was now a home.
The only trouble I had was with Zayn. We hadn’t spoken much, we found it best to leave it all aside. He had taken Perrie out on a date last night, and I was okay with it. Well, that’s what I told him when he asked for my permission, but last night Harry sat with me, after taking Hope home. We watched movies, drank, and slept.
I had lay awake however, until I heard laughs from down stairs, indicating that Zayn and Perrie returned home. A series of ‘That was fun,” and “I had a great time” rang through the hallways of the large house.
This morning when I walked down stairs with Harry’s shirt on, and he emerged shirtless behind me, all pointed to one thing, and I was quick to defend myself, but Zayn didn’t even batter an eyelid, he just smiled and asked if I was doing anything today, he wanted to take me out, he confirmed as nothing more than a friend, I was tempted to say no as the unwell feeling had consumed me over the past few days.
Getting ready, Douglas sat with me. I had grown fond of Douglas, he had opened up to be humongous amounts, and I had to him.
“So, do you not think today with be a little, odd?” he struggled to find the words, I nodded, “It’s going to be beyond ‘odd’, Douglas.” I chuckle, “Well, when you get back maybe we could do something?” he suggested, the bad persona he put up around everyone else, dissolved around me.
“Douglas, are you asking me on a date?” I playfully tease him, and he shrugged, “Call it what you want,” he smirked at me, “I’d love too, as long as I am not this tired.” I flutter my lashes, and he chuckles at me, “Now, go, enjoy yourself with your ex” he told me, and shooed me out of the room.
I got the bottom of the stairs, and Zayn stood with his hair pulled back from his face, in ripped jeans and his signature white shirt, “Ready, doll?” he told me, and like that, he had me. Again.
We drove around for a long time, and the music of the radio played lightly in the background. “How did it go with Perrie last night?” I ask him, knowing that it went well. “Alright.” he answered bluntly, “Come one, give me more detail that than!” I try to be playful, and let him see that I am okay, he glanced over, “You are sure you want to know?” he cocked his head, “Go ahead, I want to know everything, that is what friends do right?” and with that he begun.
He took her to a small restaurant, that served the best crab cakes, they sat at the booth in the corner, so they could be more alone. He bought her a rose, as there was a women wandering around offering them out, they ate under candle light, and when they were finished, he paid.
After, he took her for a stroll through the park, and he swears that he’d never been so nervous. She laughed at his jokes, and him at her, and for a moment he stopped, because the park he had taken her too had Charley in it, and he told Perrie all about our fallen angel.
Then they came home, kissed, and parted ways.
“And, that was it really.” he finished, and my heart was beating out of my chest, where had the Zayn that I had fallen in love with gone.
The boy that started fights, and drank too much. The boy that didn’t ‘date’, and took girls to parties and clubs. The boy that never wore a suit, or even knew his manners. The boy that was sat next to me now driving, was not who I had loved. He was better, but he was not what I wanted.
I caught sight of myself in the side mirror of the car, and wondered, could I be so judgemental. Where was the girl that he had fallen in love with gone? The girl that never touched alcohol, and hadn't had sex. The girl, who was scared of being her. The girl with no family, and nothing but her brother. I know fought, drank enough for us both, smoked pot, and got myself into reckless situations. I was worse, and now I wasn’t what he wanted either.
We had become each other, switched bodies, and he was now the pure one, the one who let down his walls and could fall in love with one singular person. I was the used one, who kept all four walls around her, and couldn’t fall in love with one singular person.
“Sounds like you had a good time” I spoke, and he nodded and a smile danced on his lips, and then he remembered who he was with, and stopped, “Yeah, it was alright.” he stopped.
“So, what is the deal with you and Douglas?” he pried, and I smile over at him, “We’re friends, we are actually going out tonight” I spoke, I wasn’t going to say it was a date, it was a concept I wasn’t okay with. “Nice” he spoke.
We stopped at little cafe, and spoke about nothing, though the impulse to lunge at every girl that fluttered her eyes as she passed Zayn, was hard to fight.
“We haven’t really spoke about the whole Josh thing,” Zayn began, and I took in a breath and placed my fork down, bitting down on my lip, “Are you okay about it all?” he asked me, and smile at him softly.
“Can I tell you something?” I asked him, and he nodded, knowing it was going to be a sensitive subject.
“When me and Josh to kill ourselves for everyone else, it seemed like a good option,” I paused, “Please tell me that you didn’t just admit to me you want to… kill yourself?” he struggled with the words, and I looked down.
“I didn’t want to die, I just wanted it all to stop, the hurt, I ache Zayn. I know this is so cliche, but I just was sick of hurting everyone.” I tell him, and he can seem to process the words I am telling him.
I debated the next words I was going to speak, I knew they would hurt him in a way even I couldn’t imagine, so I go against saying them, but he asked the question himself.
“Please, just say it wasn’t it anything I did?” he begged me, his brown eyes covering themselves in lashes of water, but he didn’t cry. I looked down, and pushed my plate away from me. “Fuck” he whispered, and covered his mouth with his hand, “Zayn, don’t. It wasn’t, look you don’t understand, lets just move on.” I spoke.
“Then make me understand,” he reached across the table and grabbed my hand, I pulled away. “How can I explain it to you, when I can’t even explain it to myself?” I snap at him, and wipe a loose tear.
“Can I ask you something?” he asked quietly, and I nod. “Would you ever try it again?” he told me, “You don’t seem to understand, that the only reason I did was to save you.” I spoke, he shook his head, and pointed at me, leaning in. “You did it to save yourself” he spoke, throwing his keys down onto the table, “Take the car, I’m going to clear my head.” he pushed out his chair and stormed out of the restaurant.
“Zayn, I’m sorry” I stop him, and I feel everyones eyes fall upon us, for a moment I have to catch myself, feeling disorientated. He shook his head, “No, not this time.” he told me.
I went back to the house then, knowing it was no use in trying to find Zayn and talk him down. Douglas was waiting from me when I returned, “Wow, a whole two hours, it must have gone well” he smirked, a smug look hung from his face.
“Don’t even bother trying to be funny, Douglas.” I warn him, and catch Harry’s eye as he comes out of the kitchen, “Brook, is everything okay?” he frowns, and reaches for me, I steady myself on his arm, feeling light-headed.
“I need to lie down” I shake, and he nods, taking me up the stairs. I barely get the chance to walk three steps before everything goes dark.
“She’s waking up,” I heard a low familiar voice, as my vision had burred, I could see bright white lights, and hazed figures. “Brook, can you hear me?” a man in a white coat said to me, I nodded slowly, and steadied myself to the beats of the heart monitor. “Good, I’m Dr.Parker, you remember me, don’t you?” he asked, and I hummed a dry yes, and a cup of water was quickly poured down my throat.
After him muttered something about my liver, and blood sugar levels, he left the room. Liam was sat at the end of my bed, his hand reassuringly placing his hand on my leg. Harry sits in the corner of the room, asleep in an arm chair. Niall and Louis excused themselves for a coffee, and no one had heard anything from Zayn, so Ashton and Douglas went out looking.
“You’re always in trouble, you.” Liam offered me half a smirk, and reached for my cheek, stroking it tentatively with his thumb. “I like to keep things interesting,” I smile at him, he smiled but sighed a heavy breath, “Please, can you stop drinking so much? You’ve just been admitted to hospital for liver failure, is that not sign enough?” he spoke.
“You don’t understand” I moved his hand from my cheek, “I do, Brook. I know what its like to see the world moving around you but being stuck, I understand perfect. I know that the drink makes is momentarily better, but if you want to try and make something better, don’t drown it, pull it out.” he spoke softly to me.
“Liam, I need to ask you something.” I already regretted saying the words, but he was my last chance, I knew he was.
“Anything,” he told me, and I shook my head and laughed a little, “You always offer me anything,” I whispered, and grabbed his hand, and he squeezed mine back, “It’s because I mean it. I would die for you, Brook Green.” he smiled.
“When I get out of here, after a couple days, I think we should get out of here. Zayn, he has a chance at being with Perrie, Harry is already so happy with Hope, and I'm insignificant to everyone else. And you always said you wish I was dead, so why don’t we be dead again, but this time together.” I spoke, and smile grew of his soft face.
“You mean it?” he spoke, “Together?” he smiled, and I nodded.
“There she is!” I heard a voice, and Liam coughed and pulled himself away from me, in through the door came Zayn. He stopped, looked Liam up and down, as Liam paced the floor covering his mouth, rubbing his stubble.
“Can you give us a minute, please?” he seethed at Liam. Liam woke up Harry and dragged him out of the room, everyone else quietly followed.
Zayn stood by the window for a moment or two in silence, looking out at the raindrops on the window. “Where did you-..” he cut me off, “Haven’t we been in this room enough times?” he frowned, I and looked around, taking the familiar scene. I had been in here so many times, all the rooms had started to look the same.
“It’s not my fault,” he turned to look at me as the words left my lips, “It’s always your god damn fault, Brook!” he shouted, and slammed his fist into the wall, it was the first time he had done that in a very long time.
He turned to me, and I could see the whiskey rising in his eyes. He was drunk. “If you let me love you, if you just let me in, and didn’t push me away, if you stayed good!” he shouted, and I turned my head, because of the brutal words he spat. “If you hadn’t consumed all my darkness, you’d be good.” he whispered, and crumbled to the floor.
“I’m sorry” I mutter, “Sorry isn’t going to change anything here, Brook. I’m so sick of it all, of this life, of the boys, of you.” he spoke, and his head fell in his hands, “I just can’t do it, Brook.” he was quiet, and weak. Two things that Zayn never was.
I let him stir in his own mind for a moment or two, before I crawled out of bed. He looked up, “Don’t, you’ll hurt yourself.” he spoke, but the pain medication had kicked in, and everything was going numb.
I sat down beside him on the floor, “You don’t have to worry anymore,” I whispered, and he turned to me slowly, bloodshot eyes gazing into mine, I touched his face, and took it into my hands, “Oh Zayn, why didn’t I notice you were falling apart?” I let a single tear roll down my cheek.
“Cause you were busy falling apart, too.” he sighed, and dismissed my hands from him. “I’m going to leave as soon as I get out of here, pack a bag and travel for a while.” he turned to me with a frown.
“You can’t.” he shook his head, “You can’t stop me, it will be better for everyone, besides, you don’t have to worry about it. You have Perrie to worry about now.” I spoke too bitterly at him, as I stood up.
“Is she why you are leaving?” he was stood up now too, “Because if she is, then she can leave, I want you here.” he grabbed my arms, and for a moment, I saw there was a distinctive madness inside him, which I had placed there. “She’s not.” I confirm.
“She is, I know she is! You won’t leave me because of her, I won’t let you!” he yelled at me, and was now holding onto my arms, and I shook him, and yelled back.
“You will let me go, Zayn!” and he lets go of my arms, and stares at me, “You don’t get to sit there and said you are sick of this life and me, and then not let me leave you so you can have a better one, you don’t get to make that decision for me.”
“I don’t know how to live without” he told me, “And, I don’t know how to live without you either, but it is something we both have to learn.” I reassure him.
“Where will you go?” he whispered, and shrugged, “Liam can choose,” I paused, and then thought of my words, he wasn’t aware Liam was going with me.
“Liam? Why Liam?” he uttered, and I gulped, “Did I not mention he was coming with me?” I say, and he shook his head, “You may have left that part out,” he spoke, and after a moment, he erupted in laughter, “First you run off with Harry, and fall helplessly in love with him for the second time, and now Liam. Please, make sure you send me an invitation for this wedding!” he shouted.
“It isn’t like that with Liam, Zayn” I spoke, and I knew the argument was building. He was going to bring up every new fact he had learnt about me and Liam, right now, in this room.
“It’s not like that, then do you care to explain why you were fucking him when you were ‘dead’?” he shouted, “Exactly, Brook. All those time I felt guilty, or upset, you were taking his cock!” he was many things when he was drunk, angry and jealous, but never cruel.
“I did it cause I missed you,” I tried to defend myself, “Missed me?! You didn’t miss me, you didn’t miss me weeks ago when I was trying to help you get better, and Liam bathed you! You didn’t miss me when you kissed him that night, and nearly fucked him the next morning, did you?! When have you ever missed me, Brook?!” he shouted, and tears were now evident on his cheeks, and after a moment, he turned his back away and shook his head, “I know you don’t miss me… people don’t miss the things they throw away.”
“Can we just face the fact that you aren’t who I fell in love with, and I’m not who you fell in love with? Too much has happened, and we were once again to stupid, and thought we could just move on, well we can’t. Okay? We can’t just ‘move on’, and I don’t want to. I want you to be free from me.” I paused, “I want to be free from you too.” he whispered, and then suddenly threw his arms around me, and sobbed, burring his head into my chest.
I sat on the bed with Zayn in complete silence, this was it. We had now agreed, no more us. I wasn’t ready for it, but hell, neither was he.
“Promise me, you won’t try and kill yourself?” he whispered, as his hands rand up and down my spine, his heart beat copying the heart beat monitor, “Of course I won’t, only if you promise me some thing.” I say, and he hums for me to continue, “Try, and make it work with Perrie, I may not like her, but I know you could love her.” I tell him, and he kissed my forehead.
“I can’t promise I will love her more than you, but I will try to love her a little bit less.” he spoke, and I kissed his jaw, “I love you, Zayn.” I tell him, and he sighed his cherry scented breath onto my lips, “I love you, Brook.” he whispered, and kissed me, and it was easily the sweetest we ever had, but also the most bitter.