~“Ah crap, I forgot to do my report again, dangit!” I growled at the clock on the wall. “And my lecture’s in twenty minutes!” My dorm mate giggled hysterically at me, clinging to her boyfriend Niall. I growled at her.
“Shut up, it’s not funny!” She continued to laugh and the blonde Irish teen joined in. “You shut up too, Niall. You’re not on my good list yet!” This caused him to laugh louder. I huffed.
I shared a university dorm room with my best friend since the start of high school, Erin. And yes, she was dating the Niall Horan from the famous boyband One Direction. I was a fan of the boys, but I’d never admit it to their faces. They were really nice boys, and I got to see them quite often, seeing as Erin was Niall’s girlfriend. It was a little awkward meeting the boys at first, but now we were all very good friends. They even managed to somehow put up with my crazy antics and dry sarcasm. I was younger than most of them, being only seventeen when I graduated from high school. Now, in uni, I was in the same lectures as a few of them, so we’d all managed to foster some pretty strong ties.
Today, as before mentioned, I had forgotten to do my report for Media studies. Which meant I was basically screwed for this semester. I was definitely looking forward to that slip of paper with a big, fat, official zero on it. Not. I grabbed my keys out of the fruitbowl and walked out of the dorm, running an agitated hand through my long, curly dark brown hair. I couldn’t afford to repeat this semester of work. In fact, I could hardly afford staying at this university. I, Rina Rivera, had gotten in on a scholarship, and that was all that was keeping me in the university’s doors.
After dad had died last year, our family had been doing it tough. I moved into the dorm with Erin so it was one less mouth to feed back at home. Dad had always been the main breadwinner of the family, and as mum never made it through university, she could only hold a couple of part-time jobs. This wasn’t particularly brilliant when you had seven children. Yes, seven. I was the eldest of the bunch, then there were the older twins, Bill and Edward both fifteen, Flora, twelve, Annie, ten, and another set of twins, this time Rachel and Joseph, the youngest at only eight. It was hard for mum to feed so many mouths, considering only Bill, Edward and I were old enough for work. And then there were school fees on top of that… we weren’t poor, but we definitely were working class citizens.
I held onto the overhead rail as I waited for my train stop. The university dorms were just one stop away, but it took a good ten minutes to get from one station to the other. I was always early, of course, because I couldn’t stand being late. I constantly worry about everything. Its sort of a bad habit I have. I stepped out of the train and into the flow of usual university students that filled the gum-covered platform.
“Hey Rina.” My musings were cut short by a voice I knew very well.
“Hey Harry, what’s up?” I asked. He shrugged and stood next to me.
“Not much, how’s life?”
“Evil.” He gave me a quizzical side-on glance.
“How so?” he questioned. I growled at him, finally bursting.
“I forgot to do the report, and I think I’m going to get kicked out!” I began blubbering in front of him. “I can’t do this anymore! I should just go home and give up. My mum probably needs as much support as she can get… I’ll just be stuck a check-out chick for the rest of my life.” I sighed, resigned. He shook his head incredulously at me.
“You’re already working four jobs as well as lectures, aren’t you?” he asked knowingly. I nodded. All the money I made at my part time jobs here went straight into the eager hands of my mother. I had nothing to my own name, instead handing it all back to the woman that had brought me into the world. She needed it more than I did.
“Well, I’m sure the lecturer will understand that you’re doing it tough.” He told me pointedly. I rubbed my bright green eyes.
“No. I’m supposed to hand in a report and never miss one,” I told him bluntly. “Its part of my scholarship. If I can’t submit, I lose my place.” He nodded, carefully bringing me into a hug. He looked down at me thoughtfully. All of a sudden, he clicked his fingers.
“I know,” he said ecstatic, “you can take my paper and hand it in.” My eyes widened. He was really willing to do something like that for me? Of all people?
“No way, Harry! There’s no way I could do something like that.” He frowned.
“Don’t you trust my awesomeness or something?” he asked cheekily. I growled and whacked him on the head.
“No, stupid. Its all a lie if I hand in your work!” He slipped a binder in my hand.
“Do it,” he said forcefully, “I already have a stable job. I’m doing university on the side. You know that.” I nodded. “And… I couldn’t bear if you got kicked out…” he started getting quieter and quieter as he spoke, as if embarrassed and slightly bemused by his own words.
“Rina… I… I don’t know what I’d do if you weren’t here to go through university with me. I really love being in your company, you’re such a fun person to have around. Actually, I think I’m… falling for you.” I gasped. Well, that was interesting. I thought long and hard at his words. We made our way to the lecture theatre in absolute silence.
When the lecture was finally over, it was time to turn in our reports. The whole hour and a half I had been glancing across at Harry Styles every few minutes, and he had been watching me intently the whole time, his blue-green eyes conveying a longing that I couldn’t understand. Sure, I had had a crush on the boy since I had first met him, but this was something far deeper than just a simple crush. There was pure and undying love written in his body language.
It was now or never. As students got up one by one, Harry marched over to join me at the back of the line. I gave him a wary glance. His eyes looked pained. The more he watched me, the more I came to understand his emotions. And I didn’t want to let him down. I knew I would feel like a backstabber if I didn’t accept his offer, especially after all we’ve been through together and how he had just confessed his feelings to me.
I hate liars. They’re the worst type of scum in the world to me. But if I went ahead with this, I’d become the very evil I hated the most. I would not only be lying to the lecturer, I would be lying to the greater university. I would be taking that scholarship only to end up rubbing it back in their faces. Worst of all, I would be lying to myself. But I would be lying to myself either way. I had lied to myself for long enough, pretending that I didn’t love Harry Styles. If I didn’t take that paper, I’d still be lying to myself about him.
“I’ll do it.” I said. He nodded, folding the piece of paper into my hand.
“Thankyou, Rina.” He planted a soft, warm kiss on my cheek. I nodded and walked up to the lecturer slowly, following behind my peers. Once the paper was placed on the growing pile of reports that sat on the desk, I breathed out a sigh of relief. I was safe, for now. If anyone found out about this I was definitely going to be expelled, that was for sure…
But luckily for me, I never did get found out. Harry just had to walk up to the lecturer after everyone had handed his or hers in to apologise. With his super star status, he got away with little more than a warning, and a promise to have the work on the desk by the next Monday. And he delivered, rewording his work so I wouldn’t get caught.
Harry and I became more than friends. He’s taken me out on several dates since that day, and I have to admit we’ve become a very steady and reliable couple. Because he gets so much money off CD sales, some of it goes to my family. Although I protest and don’t really want to be a scab off him, he gives it all anyway. Now my mother can meet the bills at the end of the month with a smile. Now the school fees can be paid back, and even the younger twins Rachel and Joseph both go to a selective school with higher fees because we can afford it. Now we don’t have to declare bankruptcy. Now we can move into a larger house that actually fits the eight of us, each sharing a bedroom with only one other sibling, not three. Now my mother can put enough food on the dinner table, and me and my brothers and sisters do not go hungry. I could move back in with my family, not troubled by the hassle it could cause.
And I owe it all to Harry. Harry, who solved all my problems. Harry, who I knew would give anything and everything for me. Harry, who I know loves me with all his heart, and who I equally love.