The Ends of a Spectrum

Holly Robinson is shy, sweet, small, stubborn, silent, and socially awkward to the point of no return. Thankfully, she's the smartest girl in her year, so people tend to stay out of her way. Harry Styles is outgoing, obnoxious, overwhelmingly intimidating, outspoken and so outstandingly charismatic he could charm the leaves of a tree. Unfortunately, also more obtuse than a reflex angle. After a whirlwind of coincidences and random encounters, will these two come together? Or will they stay at different ends of the spectrum?

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1. Feisty

"Come on James! I demand that you join me on the balcony!" I declared, laughing into the wind as I twirled in a far-from-dainty manner over to the railing, stopping myself before almost dropping my champagne and spinning off the building. Wow, I thought. It's amazing what a few glasses of champagne can do to you in just a few hours. James closed the door to the Great Hall, where all the royal guests were mingling and laughing, dancing together so gracefully; like they were dancing on air. I turned to James, who laughed at my bright demeanour as he joined me on the balcony's edge. I found myself laughing at him laughing, and he laughed some more in spite of himself, and soon we were both laughing at each other, smiling and drinking and laughing. Everything was so much funnier with him around. The laughing slowly died down and almost instantly I felt his hands wrap around my waist. I turned to smile up at him, but as I felt my feet lift into the air I could do nothing but say his name.

 

"Oh, my darling, kiss me!" James cried, sweeping me effortlessly into his arms and throwing his empty champagne glass onto the floor in the midst of his passion. "I can't stand the distance any longer!" He kissed my cheek, encapturing me with every word. "Every second that I breathe without your lips on mine is another second of emptiness, longing and despair! If I do not kiss you soon, I might as well fade away into dust; for your lips are the only thing that I've ever needed or wanted in my life." James snapped his head away from me in despair, too consumed with his grief. I smiled, pulling his chin toward me. Hesitantly, I raised my hand up to his face, hoping my touch would soothe him in any way possible. He sighed as soon as my fingertips made contact, causing my heart to flutter involuntarily. My fingers knew what to do almost immediately. I allowed myself to take in his perfection, dancing my fingers across his cheeks, tracing them across his sculpted jawline and delicately around his plump ruby lips. He pulled me closer and stared at me with an endearing combination of wonder and worship. He now took the opportunity to gaze at me completely. He was entranced at the way my hair was blowing in the breeze, captivated by my dress shimmering in the ghostly moonlight. He grazed down my body like I was a valley and he a raging fire, and he blazed his way right down to my feet, dangling off his muscular arm that cradled me effortlessly in our embrace. 

 

"Then kiss me, James." I whispered into his ear. Pulling away, I felt him shiver with pleasure, My body flooding with desire in response. He leaned in slowly, his eyes clasping together gradually. My heart began to race in my chest as I felt my body recoil into him. He was tauntingly slow, and my head reeled with anticipation as his breath brushed across my face with the grace of a feather. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up as delightful shivers raced down my spine. He was inches away now, and I tilted my head as I awaited his contact.

 

"Holly, school starts in 10 minutes," He smiled, pulling away ever so slightly. My eyes shot open in confusion, but the abrupt halt was enough to make me whine in automatic response. "Holly, I've woken you up five times, do you want me to come up there again? You remember what happened last time! I've got about..." he paused. "7 eggs! You have been warned!"

 

I opened my eyes for real this time, and gasped to a white ceiling as James evaporated from my view.

 

"7:51!!" I squealed, shooting out of bed and lunging for my glasses. I grabbed my clothes and raced to the sink, simultaneously wiggling into my baggy tracksuit pants and pulling on a singlet whilst brushing my teeth and somehow also combing my hair. I threw my tooth brush back onto the bench and dived for my phone, tossing into my backpack and grabbing my most comfortable baggy-jumper to compliment my cleanest converse runners.

 

"Shit." I cursed, stopping in my tracks. I was about to run downstairs when I managed to realise the one thing I forgot almost every morning; my hair tie. I ran back into my bathroom, cursing all the way, and swept my hair into an awfully average ponytail with a hair tie I found wrapped around the knob of my sink. Looking up, I sighed at my reflection, but without a moment's pause I dashed down the stairs into the kitchen, grabbed an apple and my history paper and leapt onto mum with a hug and a peck.

 

"Bye-bye love! Don't forget to tell that Grace girl that you should catch up sometime!" Mum said into my average hair, handing me 5 bucks for lunch money.

 

"I will!" I lied. Grace wouldn't say yes anyways, Mum just thought that because I didn't know her I had to hang out with her, but she says this about every other girl my age that I'm not friends with, which is really just about every other girl. Grace will say no like the rest of them, knowing Grace. And knowing me I guess. 

 

Or more precisely, knowing what people like her thought about people about me. 

 

Regardless, I strolled out the door with a smile plastered across my face, ready for school. Shortly after I'd left the house, I ruffled around for my phone in my pocket and checked the time. Surprisingly, I was early, with 2 minutes to spare. I brought my hand up into the cold air and grinned. 'Yes!' I punched the air with my fist, but brought it down again quickly when the man across the street mowing his lawn looked at me like I was crazy. I averted my gaze to the ground. Out of sight, out of mind, I thought to myself.

 

I heard a loud honk behind me as a bus loaded with kids from my school zoomed past. Looks like I'm not the only one who was almost late, I thought as the bus driver flipped the car behind him off, eager to get to the next stop. I was lucky that school was a fairly short distance from my place. I'd hate to need the bus everyday, I don't think I could stand it. Somehow, in the rare occasions that I do need public transport, I always manage to get on a bus that's not empty, but rather full. I hop on board, nervous as ever, only to find other people staring at me with blank faces that always seem to say 'We had to stop for you. This isn't the stop I get off at. You've bothered me. I'm judging you."

 

Reluctantly, I shivered at the thought. Or maybe the cold. Either one was bad enough. 

 

After a few minutes I arrived at school. I took a deep breath and headed inside, instinctively lowering my head down and wading through the sea of people, who, as always, didn't even blink. I counted the number of tiles directly in front of me as I made my way to my locker. Again, I reached 43 blue tiles and 42 black tiles when I finally looked up to find Demi running toward me, arms wide open and looking gorgeous as always. 

 

Demi always amazes me with how much she resembles Gwyneth Paltrow. She has the gorgeous blue eyes and the bright smile, the cute, small nose and the smooth clear skin. To top it all off, she dyed her hair a bleached blonde in the summer, which she's managed to tie into a complicated braid that I wouldn't be able to do even if I did have time every morning. She's sporting a miniskirt with semi-opaque tights even though it's the middle of Autumn, and a crop top with a baggy cardigan over, which still somehow manages to show off her killer body. And she's wearing heels. In Autumn. At school. Heels. 

 

"Hey Demi," I smiled as she wrapped her arms around me so tight that when I laughed she literally pushed the air out of me like a literal Boa Constrictor. However, I felt used to it, since she and I have known each other since Kindergarten. I hugged her back even tighter until she shivered as a cold breeze passed through the open hallway. "A crop top, huh."

 

"Hey, well at least I'm not a long-time member of the couch potatoes association. Seriously, that jumper's gotta be at least 2 sizes too big, Holly-boo." She laughed, and I smiled sheepishly. I was about to say something about how I can use it like a turtle uses its shell when I realised Demi wasn't even focused on me anymore, but rather something over my shoulder. I sighed, knowing full well what it was grabbing her attention even before I was staring. Or rather, who.

 

The five of them walked like no one I'd seen before. The one on the far left with the brown, short hair and almost fatherly air about him glanced kindly at the faces around him. He had a muscular build, and these big, bushy eyebrows that just made your heart leap out of it's chest. I knew his name was Liam Payne because he was in my history class, and it's hard not to notice a guy like that. One of his friends nudged him, and I immediately recalled his name from last year's science classes. Niall Horan. He was blonde as hell, and had these great big gorgeous blue eyes, glinting with mischief. He was always such a class clown, he almost managed to burn the teacher's eyebrows off after an incident with a bunsen burner and some sulfuric acid. He always had us in fits of laughter even before Mr Stevens had checked attendance. 

 

While Liam and Niall were talking, I glanced over at a boy with dark, chocolaty hair and mysterious, alluring dark eyes. He had olive skin that complimented them both perfectly, and as he laughed at Niall's joke, I remembered that he was also in my English class last year, and how I'd never really noticed him before, because he sat next to Niall up the back, and I sat up the front. But his name was Zayn Mailk, and he also used to sit with Louis Tomlinson. Louis, now chatting to Zayn, was looking fit as ever. I hadn't seen him in a while, but I think now that he's back from his holiday I can't imagine how I didn't seem to realise that he was gone. He had a way about him that could only be described as politely cocky. Or maybe that was just confidence. Either way, his brown hair and matching eyes were truly welcoming, and I hadn't seen such a happy soul in a long time. Maybe because he hasn't been near this lot for a few weeks, I chuckled to myself. 

 

Louis turned to the guy next to him, and I followed his eyes. The boy walking beside him had gorgeous curly locks and curious green eyes. He smiled, and his dimples shone out like a beacon from a lighthouse. He was handsome, and as I watched the way he walked it certainly seemed like he knew it, too. He brushed past a group of girls who were all legs and no brains and shot them a wink, fearless and flirty. They blushed, and he resumed his conversation with Louis like it was nothing. Like they were nothing. I furrowed my brow. That was pretty cold. I noticed that most of the girls around the room were peeking up at him through their eyelashes. Almost as if when they did that, then he might notice them.

 

I watched the way he completely ignored these girls with shy giggles and twirlings of hair wrapped around their fingers, and concluded that he was an honest-to-goodness stereotypical player. He didn't really care about any of these girls, and he never would. When I turned to Demi and realised she was doing the same thing, twirling and giggling, I felt my face curl into disgust at this guy's careless attitude about those who were desperate just for him to even notice them. It was like he knew they were looking, but he wanted to leave them begging for more. Like a king with starving subjects eating a buffet in the safety of his tower. How did I never see this before? I racked my brain to see which one of my classes he was in. When I remembered it was history with Liam and my current science class, I almost scoffed at myself. I noticed the girls staring at him, but never bothered to look at his reactions because I was too busy worrying about whether or not the girls would then look at me instead. My gosh, how could he treat people like that? If I hadn't seen him wink at those girls, I probably wouldn't've picked up on it either. God, what a prick, I thought.

 

"Who's a prick?" asked Demi, and I realised I might have been vocal with that one. "You mean Harry Styles?"

 

Like anybody would, he looked over at us when he heard his name. I winced with embarrassment, and watched as he looked at Demi's face, then down at her feet, then sliding up to her face again, and almost nodded in approval. I scoffed, and he looked at me. I felt my face go red as he did his 'scan' over me. I blushed even more as he looked at my eyes again. Not because I was embarrassed, but because I felt so vulnerable under his stare. I scowled back at him in defense, and he raised an eyebrow, confused and taken aback. He was more surprised than I expected; It was like no one ever glared at him before. Well other than teachers, because he does seem to get in trouble more than anyone else I've heard of yet. And also other than guys, because all their girls are too busy acting so bloody pathetic around Harry.

 

He kept looking at me, like he thought if he kept looking at me I would turn into another Harry-obsessed bimbo, but I scoffed for about the third time in this past minute and turned my back, waiting until they all walked off before turning to Demi.

 

"He may be a prick Hols, but he's a hot prick. He checked me out, did you see?" She wiggled her eyebrows excitedly and I nodded.

 

"Oh no, I definitely saw that." I murmured. "It's because you're Gwyneth Paltrow's identical twin, separated at birth." I laughed. "It's a wonder you're still friends with someone like me." As I laughed at that, she gasped and shook her head violently. 

 

"I'm friends with you because of that day in Kindergarten when we were making mud pies, and I almost swallowed mine whole. But you, my lovable Holly-boo, stopped me before I had the chance to. And I felt obligated to talk to you, the girl who saved my life." I turned to walk away, having heard this story more times than needed in my lifetime. Demi grabbed my hand and spun me back around again. I groaned in response but she kept going. 

 

"Because of that obligation you began to warm up to me, and became the funny best friend you are now. A friend of which I grew very fond of. We got each other through good times, bad times, and terribly awful times. Yeah, others have wanted to hang out with me, but I'd rather spend time with you than any of those airheads combined. Plus, you wouldn't survive without me. If it hadn't been for that mud pie, you'd be as awkward with me as you are with everyone else." She let me go and I smiled triumphantly. "Now, I believe it's first period. I have math, and you have science. Walk with me to the end of the hall."

 

I put my bag into my locker and grabbed my books, eager to go. When I galloped towards Demi, I was so giddy I didn't even see when Blake McDonald from my PE class ran into me at full speed. Before I could even ask how he got there so quickly, I fell to the floor and dropped all of my books. 

 

"Oh, sorry Holly." he smiled, and I started to gather up my things quickly and sheepishly. "You alright?"

 

"Yeah, I just nearly invented Facebook again! Or... googled Facebook, or something... Or got a poke!" I blurted out. He looked at me confused. "Don't you get it?" I asked, and he stepped back a little, unsure of where I was going with this. "Facebook. Face," I pointed to my face. "Book". For some stupid reason I thought he'd need a clearer view on that, so I started hitting my face with my book. over and over again. Like a metronome. Except it was my face. And a book. And I was laughing. He didn't laugh, and Demi just kinda stood there, watching me and trying to hold in her laughter.

 

"See? Ha ha." I laughed awkwardly, and kept hitting my face. I then realised he was staring at me whilst I hit my face with a book repeatedly in front of him and laughed to myself, and then I wasn't really sure what to do, because he didn't seem to find it funny at all. He pulled my hands down from my face hesitantly so I stopped hitting myself and picked up his books.

 

"I get it Holly. See you in PE." he scurried away. 

 

"Bye!" I called out a little too loudly, and he held his head down and walked faster.

 

"Oh god. Facebook? Did that make sense? My face hurts." I mutter and cover my eyes in embarrassment. Demi looks at me and snorts, then full on laughs. And laughs. And laughs some more. And laughs so hard she's doubled over, pointing at me and cackling 'Facebook!' over and over again. 

 

I walked away from her, humiliated beyond belief. She caught up to me clumsily, trying to compose herself. She gave me a hug goodbye and strutted away to Math after a few more book-slappings. I blushed and looked down, counting tiles again whilst wandering toward the science labs.

 

"Well," I whisper to myself.  "This day got pretty embarrassing quicker than I thought."

 

******

 

"Alright class," Mr Evans smiled. "Today we will be learning about refraction and reflection. This is a harder topic than last, Stephanie, but I think you guys can manage just fine." he peered over his glasses at the blushing redhead who slipped her phone back into her pencil case obediently. He nodded in approval and wrote the page number on the board. I grabbed my textbook off the seat next to me and began reading, grateful I had no one I didn't know sitting there. The incident in the hallway with Blake, though one of many, unsettled me. I preferred to work alone anyways. No one to rely on but yourself. 

 

As I was labelling the incident ray on my neatly laid out diagram, The door to the class opened and closed, and the idle chatter stopped around me. Everyone stopped as they gaped at the person in the doorway. I, however, didn't bother to look up. I found my angle of incidence to be a greater use of m time than observing the latecomer. 

 

"Speak to me after class." I heard Mr Evans mumble to the stranger. "I'm afraid next door didn't have enough tables, so there's really only one seat free." I sighed into my work, getting ready to move my books off the otherwise empty chair next to me. I hope whoever was at the door wouldn't be too annoying to work with. I doubt we're getting that table back anytime soon, so I might be stuck next to this kid for a while.

 

"Are you sure there aren't any other seats, Mr Evans?" 

 

I froze, mid-drawing. It can't be. Not right after what happened in the hallway just this morning! My eyes darted upward and sure enough, it was him. I glared at Harry Styles, and he regarded me with confusion and wariness. If there's one thing that curly-haired heartbreaker knows, it's that I'm not too fond of him. 

 

"I mean, should I really be sitting next to your star student?" He asked, not taking his eyes away from mine. He definitely wasn't used to this. No, Mr Evans, I pleaded in my head, don't do it. Move someone else next to me, even if it's Vicky with her 3-month-old sniffles. Just not that cold-hearted, smooth-talking prick!

 

"Well," Mr Evans continued, flipping through the papers in front of him absentmindedly, completely unaware of the intense staring contest in front of him. I was mentally begging for anything but this, hoping he would at least look up and see the tension. Harry was going to be anything but focused for the remainder of the year. Don't put me next to him!

 

"I'm sure Holly can deal with you just fine." 

 

Fuck, he did it. I scowled at my diagram in defeat, which really didn't deserve my scowling, since it was such a lovely diagram. I chastised myself for being so negative. Already Harry's turning me from super sweet to grouchy and rude. I didn't even move my stuff as he sauntered over, pulling the chair out from underneath the table. I heard giggles around us and I swear Harry stiffened. How is he so thick? Even I could tell they were only laughing because someone like Harry was sitting next to someone like me. It's not heard of very often, I would be laughing too if I were them. Harry cleared his throat and waited for a few moments, and huffed when I ignored him. I assumed he would just sit down and shut up, so I stayed quiet.

 

I jumped when I heard a loud 'THUD!' from behind me. I looked up at him, a stupid triumphant smirk on his face, and then to my books, which he had dropped on the floor. Actually, from the way they were scattered, I would say thrown. I turned and looked ahead of me, pissed off and not wanting to look him in the eye. He sat down in his chair and leaned toward me.

 

"Oops."

 

I nearly shoved him off his chair when I stood up and went to grab my books. as I gathered them into my arms, he picked up my pencil and dropped it to the left of me. I shot him another one of my famous glares and he shrugged innocently. Cocky little prick. I swivelled and bent down to grab my pencil. I could see him from my upside-down position and expected him to be smirking at me. But when I realised why that smirk had been replaced with a deliberate stare definitely not at my face, I nearly hit him. I sat down and faced him fully. I was so fueled with anger that all awkwardness had evaporated from me. The downside was that it was replaced with seething anger.

 

"You stared at my ass"

"That I did, it's a nice one, too."

"Well thanks for the compliment, but I'd rather you didn't fuck me with your eyes while I'm trying to learn from now on, okay?"

"Jeez, I didn't know you were so pissy, Holly Robinson."

"Well, I'd rather be pissy than one of your 'toys' to play with whenever you're bored or lonely. or they're probably a package deal knowing you."

"You don't know me. What makes you think I'd even want you as one of my 'toys' in the first place?"

"I dunno, the fact that you were oogling my hide probably has something to do with it."

"Fair point, hot stuff."

"Don't call me hot stuff, asswipe"

"Ooooh!" He leaned back in mock admiration. I scoffed at him, again. God, if I had a pound for every scoff I made around this boy...

"You're a feisty one, aren't you? I like feisty. Except it's not the hot kinda feisty."

"Yeah, that's because I've actually got a little respect for myself."

"Respect doesn't have anything to do with being hot and feisty."

"Neither do I, and especially not with you." I spat.

"Ah, cheer up love! Even the uptight ones get the hots for me at one point or another" He winked at me and I almost gagged.

"Well thank god I was blessed with a fucking brain!"

 

"Hey you two, that's enough!" Mr Evans shouted. Everyone turned around in their seats to look at Harry and I. Immediately recoiling away from the stares, I mumbled an apology into my book. Harry scoffed and I barely heard him when he murmured "Shy as fuck, she is."

 

The bell could not have gone sooner.

 

******

 

Hi guys! Hope you've enjoyed the story so far. Comment below on some way you can relate to the story or it's characters, and you could be featured in it! See you soon XXX

 

 

 

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