The first thing I hear when I wake up on Christmas morning is Harry belting out the lyrics to "All I Want For Christmas Is You" by Mariah Carey while in the shower. I smile to myself and roll over to go back to sleep when I notice a small artificial Christmas tree in the corner of the room with a box underneath of it.
I throw the covers off and rummage through my suitcase until I find what I got Harry. I place it under the tree and quickly hop back into bed, just as Harry comes out of the bathroom. I pretend to be asleep but Harry isn't buying it.
"Lou, I know you're awake. Your eyes were wide open when I came out of the bathroom," he says, laughing a little. I ignore him, burrowing deeper into the covers. "This is exactly the opposite of what you should be like on Christmas," Harry tells me, yanking the blankets off of me.
"Yeah, I hate conforming to social standards," I reply swiftly.
"I know," Harry says. "Now get up. I got you something." He gestures to the tree, then stops when he sees there's another box under the tree.
"Was that you?" he asks.
"No, must have been Santa climbing in our windows and leaving presents," I say sarcastically. "Yes it was me, Harry. It's for you, and I want you to open it before I open whatever you got me."
He nods and picks it up before shaking it a little and weighing it in his hand to try and guess what it is.
"Get on with it," I say. "You're not going to guess what it is."
Harry slowly and deliberately unwraps it, only smiling a little at my crappy wrapping skills, and pulls the lid off of the box. He looks confused at what's inside until he pulls out the ticket and reads it.
"Good for one stay at the home of Louis Tomlinson," he reads out loud, chuckling. "Thanks Lou, I think this will really come in handy."
I smile and grab his gift to me. "You didn't have to do this, especially since you got me something yesterday," I tell him.
"Yeah, but that was for your birthday and this is for Christmas. Two completely different occasions," he responds.
I sigh. "I'm not going to be able to convince you otherwise, so I'll just shut up and open it I guess," I say. Harry's wrapping is perfect, just as it was yesterday, and I start to laugh when I compare my wrapping to his.
"What's so funny?" Harry asks worriedly.
"Your wrapping is always gorgeous, and mine looks like a five year old did it after eating too much sugar," I say. Harry laughs, his green eyes crinkling adorably.
"You tried, I'll give you that much," Harry replies. "A+ for effort."
I smile at him before ripping off the wrapping paper and opening the box. Inside is a small bear that's holding half of a heart in its hands that says And Always.
"I have the other one," Harry says, pulling out another bear from behind his back. His bear's half of a heart says Forever.
"Forever and always," I say quietly.
Harry watches me closely. "Do you like it?"
"I love it," I say earnestly. I look up and find myself wishing I wouldn't have.
Harry's brown hair is wet from the shower and it's artfully tousled and swept away from his face. He sees me looking at him and I blush, looking the other way.
I feel Harry move closer to me and when I turn around again, he's so close I could kiss him. Which is exactly what I do.
Harry doesn't hesitate to kiss me back. His arms wrap around me and I run my hands through his hair, which smells faintly of strawberries. As we kiss I can't help but think of how much I missed this. When we were broken up, I missed not being able to kiss him whenever I wanted. I missed his stupid jokes and his playful banter. It's as if there was a hole in my heart when I wasn't with Harry, and it's filled up again now that we're back together.
When the kiss ends I'm not entirely sad, I'm mostly just happy to have Harry grinning at me like I'm his whole world.
"Merry Christmas Louis," he says.
"Merry Christmas Hazza," I reply and nostalgia pours over me as I remember the first Christmas Harry and I shared. He must remember it too because he says,
"Our first Christmas together was the first time we said we loved each other," Harry points out softly.
"I know, I remember," I reply.
Harry smiles tentatively at me. "I love you," he says. He says it quietly, but very matter-of-factly, in such a way that it makes me believe him whole-heartedly.
"I love you too," I tell him and Harry's smile could light up the whole city of Paris when he hears me say it back to him.
"Do you want to go somewhere?" he asks.
"I don't know, I'm just kind of sick of this hotel room," Harry says.
"Me too," I agree. "Let's just walk around and if we see somewhere we want to go then that's where we'll go."
When we leave the hotel, a light snow is falling and barely anyone is out and about; most are probably spending time with family and friends.
We walk hand in hand until we find a deserted bench in a small park. We sit down and watch as a few stray people roam past, walking dogs or chattering on the phone.
"I can't believe this," Harry says disbelievingly.
"Can't believe what?" I say, confused.
"It's Christmas and here I am in Paris, with you. If you would have asked me a year ago where I would be now, I never would have said this."
I rest my head on Harry's shoulder. "I know," I say. "I would say things have most definitely improved."
Harry nods in agreement. For a while we both just sit there, taking in the sights that are all around us. "Do we have to go back to America?" he asks, sighing in content.
"Well we have to go back home sometime," I reply.
"I don't think home is one particular place," Harry disagrees.
"What do you think it is then?"
He smiles at me and kisses the tip of my nose. "I think home is where the heart is."