The next couple of days never felt like a new day; it always became worse and worse as the days rolled by. Every day still consisted of work, singing and question answering; which was draining the energy out of all the boys, but they still pushed through. It was their job after all; they can't just decide to call in sick.
But all though there was a whole lot of stressful work to be done, which wasn't good for Louis, there was something else that was draining the boy. Draining him of his happiness.
Starting Monday, Harry was instructed to meet with Kendall M again. Louis understood, but once he heard that Harry was again staying out until late, he didn't understand. Was there a reason as to why Harry has to stay with her for so long? Harry promised Louis that he would try to get back earlier. But he didn't.
Tuesday was the same deal. Harry was out again and Louis was left in the hotel room with Niall visiting a couple of times during the day. He added a few more lyrics to his new song that he named 'Right Now', he just wished he had an idea of what the music could sound like. He thought that maybe Harry would have an idea. He tried to contact Harry, texting him and calling him, but he never got a response back; so Louis gave up on the song for now, pushing his papers to the side and thumping back onto the bed with a sad sigh.
Wednesday was a little different, yet not so much. Harry had to leave again, except this time to meet with the band's stylist to get fitted into a suit. Apparently, management had planned up a big 'romantic show' tonight for the magazines to write about in the morning. At least, that's what Louis heard from Liam while he was explaining to the interviewer why Harry wasn't with them; of course not told like that though. Niall, Zayn, Liam and Louis had more interviews that day to fill in the time they would miss when Harry's gone.
On Thursday, Harry and Louis hardly spoke. In fact, they only spoke two words to each other. "Hi" Harry said as he went to have a shower that morning. "Hey" is what Louis replied. "Bye" Harry mumbled in a hurry. "Bye" is what Louis sadly said back. And that was it before Harry was once again ripped away from the hotel to visit Kendall. This all seemed ridiculous to Louis. Why was it necessary for Harry to be with Kendall every day? That's just crazy. Louis had the thought that maybe management were trying a bit too hard with this fake relationship, because no real relationship wouldn't let the other be with their friends for a day.
When it came to Friday, it was the worse day for Louis. He and Harry didn't speak a word to each other. Harry had left the hotel before Louis even got out of bed. And that didn't result very nicely for the older boy. Because Louis was left alone for the day, it left him with nothing really to do. So he found himself with his fingers hooking onto the painful elastic on his wrist, snapping it against the delicate skin. He didn't take notice of how red it was becoming. How bruised lines would form on the tan area. He ignored all the pain and continued on with the hurtful action. It continued through lunch. He only stopped for a while when Liam, Zayn and Niall decided to visit his room for a while. But when they left, Louis went straight back to his bedroom and continued snapping the hair tie to his raw skin. When Louis heard the front door open suddenly, he thought that maybe Harry could finally come and talk to him, but he was proven wrong when he heard the slam of the younger boys bedroom door, making him flinch. He would be lying if he said a few tears didn't fall that night.
While days stumbled along, every day now felt like that Friday. No words, just pain. In his mind, he never saw this action as a bad thing. In fact, it started to just feel like an instinct, an action he does subconsciously. And to Zayn's horror, he had caught him doing it sometimes; it worried him massively.
So Zayn brought Louis into his room the next day, saying that he just wanted to chill with him for the day. Louis was happy with that idea. He also liked how Zayn had all the window curtains pulled back to bring in the sunshine and set the fan spinning on low. It made him feel fresh again, a difference to his dark and dull room. Zayn even put up a few recent drawings he did to make the place feel more homely; and it worked.
The two boys lied beside each other on the bed, staring up at the ceiling. Sock covered feet touching the foot of the bed, apart from Louis', they hardly touched. Light giggles flew through the room as they told short, silly stories and remembered a few funny moments of the past. Honestly, it was the happiest Louis had been in almost two weeks.
"How do you like LA?" Zayn asked, stalling for what he actually what he wanted to say, he just had to think of the right words first.
Louis nodded. "It's bright... and busy." Louis pursed his lips a little. "But I like it. Everyone seems a little bubblier over here."
"I guess." Zayn couldn't hold it in anymore. As he noticed Louis rubbing his wrist over his long sleeved black t-shirt, it triggered him to ask, "Lou... are you actually okay?"
Louis didn't say anything for a while, his eyes just scattered over the area of the ceiling as it looking for an answer to his question. When Louis didn't spot any helpful answers, he decided the truth would be the best answer. He needed to get some thoughts off of his mind.
The shorter boy turned onto his side so he could face Zayn directly, curling his arms into his chest for self-comfort for what he's about to admit. His mouth would open slightly, closing a second later, and then open again. Zayn waited patiently.
"Right now... not really..." Louis whispered.
Zayn copied Louis' position, facing the older boy. Worry swam in his gaze.
"I've seen what you're doing."
A look of confusion graced Louis' features, only soon to fade into one of sadness as he looked down to the duvet beneath him. It didn't surprise him really. He wasn't being so secretive about it. He would hurt around others and he would wear short sleeve shirts instead of long. He should have planned everything more carefully.
Cautiously, Zayn slowly reached out with delicate fingers and took hold of Louis' left wrist. So that the boy wouldn't stress out, Zayn kept the look of shock hidden. The sight of bruised, bright red skin was a frightening sight. To know that Louis did this to himself frightened Zayn further.
"W-Why...?" He manned up. "Why are you hurting yourself?"
Louis didn't pull back from the touch, only a frown finds it's way to his lips.
"I-It's just become a habit.. for when.. I'm nervous." Louis admitted slowly. "O-Or sad..."
"Do you feel nervous now?" Zayn asked.
"Are you nervous during interviews?"
Louis sighed softly. "I'm just, trying to be careful about what I say now. I shouldn't have joked around in that first interview."
"Hey, we've all had that happen to us." Zayn reassured to boy with a soft smile.
The two were silent for a while, until Zayn spoke up again.
"Do you feel sad?"
Louis' eyes flickered up at Zayn a little, looking into his golden colour. The rich colour sent him a warm feeling, a comforting feeling. But he didn't answer Zayn's question, thinking the silence was enough to understand what he meant.
The quiet practically killed Zayn inside. He cared too much for this boy, and to see him this way was heart aching.
The younger's index finger hooked onto the hair tie, not pulling it, just holding. "Where did you get this?"
"It was Harry's."
Zayn nodded. "Speaking of Harry's things, why aren't you wearing his necklace?"
"I, uh, lost it..."
Zayn was skeptical about his reply. When he first saw Louis wearing it, he was holding it so gently, as if it meant the world to him. He couldn't just lose it without the fight to find it again. Then a thought came to mind.
"Is that why you're so nervous?"
"Harry's been out a lot recently-"
"Every day..." Louis mumbled, barely audible.
"-Coming back late. And you two haven't been standing next to each other on stage like you usually would..." Zayn noted. "Have you two even spoke in the past couple of days."
Louis shrugged. "Hi. Bye. Good luck. Good show... that's about it." He said softly.
Zayn frowned slightly, pursing his lips as he could see the look of hurt and sadness in Louis' blue eyes. Like Louis, Zayn didn't understand why Harry had to be with Kendall seven days a week. Sure, he's spent a lot of time with the boys, but he's positive that Harry isn't sick of being with Louis. The two are almost joint at the hip most of the time.
Zayn started to take of the hair tie from the boy's small wrist.
"I'm just taking it. You shouldn't be hurting yourself because you're nervous. If Harry isn't an option, come to one of us, okay?" Zayn spoke clearly, slipping the band off Louis' wrist, putting on his own for now so that he knew Louis wouldn't be able to get it back.
Louis nodded with a small smile. He shuffled closer to the younger boy and wrapped his arm around his waist, holding onto him tight. He snuggled his face into his chest, almost like a kitten, smiling a little wider.
Zayn returned the gesture, wrapping both of his arms around Louis' upper body. He dug his nose into Louis' fluffy hair, pressing a small kiss there and held him tighter.
"Love you, bro."
Louis giggled. "Love you too, bro."