Spring 2017 – London
Elise couldn’t believe what she just, not only agreed to, but suggested. When the words came out of her mouth, it was like it wasn’t even her who said them. It was like she was having an out of body experience and someone else took over momentarily. Except, deep down she knew that wasn’t true. Deep down, she wanted this – all of this. Deep down, it was always Harry. It would always be Harry. No one would ever be good enough for her. But she was determined to shake him – to rid him from her life for good. She would rather be alone for the rest of it, than be broken apart, completely shattered like Harry left her. She wasn’t going to go down that road again. Tonight would be the end of it all. She was determined.
Elise followed Harry to the lift and got in when he prompted her to. The ride up was completely silent, but she could feel all of the tension. It was undeniable. She tried hard not to focus on him. It would be better if she didn’t focus on anything having to do with him.
Once they walked down the hallway and stopped in front of his door, he opened it, letting her inside. She was actually pleasantly surprised with his flat. For someone with his kind of money, his level of celebrity, he lived in a small condo on the tenth floor of a forty floor building. She was certain he could afford the penthouse and then some, but there he was, living below his means. She was actually impressed.
“This is it?” She asked, looking around the small flat.
“This is it,” he said, smiling bashfully at her.
“Hmm. I-I don’t really know what to say,” she said, looking around at his furnishings.
“What?” He chuckled.
“I mean, you’re a rock star, Harry. You’ve got money coming out of your ass,” she said, looking at his record collection that hung on his wall.
“This is all I need. It’s just me and Stella right now,” he said, pointing to the kennel.
Elise looked over to see a stout little English bulldog whimpering for attention in a small kennel.
“So this is Stella, huh?” Elise smirked as Harry let the dog out.
“This is Stella,” Harry smiled as Stella darted out of the kennel straight for Elise, shaking her bum happily as she sniffed her.
“Hello, Stella,” Elise cooed at the dog as she pet her.
“She likes you,” Harry chuckled.
“What’s not to like?” She said dryly as she stood up.
Harry was still smiling at her and it was sort of unsettling, so she looked away.
“So, where else do you have these little flats around the world?” Elise asked, still looking around the small area.
“Uh… well, New York and Los Angeles. Both are a bit more extravagant than this one,” Harry told her.
“Really?” She asked.
“Yeah. It’s actually a house in Los Angeles on the coast. And the condo in New York has two stories and is probably three times the size of this place,” Harry told her.
“Rock star,” Elise said quietly as she walked up to a gallery wall of artwork.
“Yeah, uh… listen, I’m going to let Stella outside again quickly. Do you mind waiting here?” He asked.
“Mm-hmm,” she nodded, staring at the paintings.
Soon Harry disappeared out the door with the dog and Elise was left in silence in Harry’s mini bachelor pad. She sat down on the couch, observing the decorations that the now adult Harry picked out for his home. She clearly could see he hadn’t changed much. He would always have an innocence about him and she envied him for that. Her innocence was taken away long ago and she was left feeling nothing but empty most days.
It didn’t take long for Harry and Stella to come back, finding Elise on the couch.
“Do you want anything to drink?” Harry asked.
“Uh, I’m fine,” she told him as she fidgeted on the couch, feeling incredibly out of place. She just really wanted to have their conversation so she could leave – so she could be done.
“This means so much to me, El – that you’re here. That you’re willing to hear me out,” he said, coming over to sit on the other end of the couch.
“I just… can we? I mean, can we just talk? I just… I’m tired,” she told him.
“Yeah,” he said, letting his smile fade from his face.
Elise’s gaze fell to her hands, which were placed in her lap as she picked at the skin on the side of her thumb. She was doing it more and more and her thumb was beginning to crack and bleed.
“Elise, when I… when I ended thing, I wasn’t in the right state of mind to be what you needed,” he started, finally getting somewhere with his words.
“You have no idea what I needed, Harry,” she breathed, feeling a sense of anger wash over her.
“You were just so sad all the time, Ellie. I didn’t know… I didn’t know how to handle you,” he admitted.
“So you left!?” She asked incredulously, as her eyes blazed into his.
“I… I didn’t know it would be for good. I had every intention of coming back to you,” he said, hanging his head.
“But I wasn’t what you wanted then? When you realized there was nothing better out there, you would come back to me?” She asked angrily.
“It wasn’t like that,” he said quietly.
“Bullshit,” she growled, looking away from him.
“Okay, maybe it kind of was like that, El. But, God. I loved you so much and I just… I couldn’t sit there and sink with you. I didn’t know how to bring you back up to the surface, not when you were so happy drowning,” he said sadly.
Her mouth dropped open, as her eyes looked up to the ceiling. Her blood was boiling in her veins. It might be easier to let him go after all – after hearing what he really thought and felt about her.
“’Happy drowning’? How can you even say that?” She said as she felt the tears stinging her eyes.
“El, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to upset you,” Harry said, scooting a little closer to her on the couch.
“From what I remember, I tried… I tried hard to keep us going. You were the one who was giving up, Harry! I needed you! I fucking needed you and you left!” She yelled at him, meeting his sad eyes.
“I know! Fuck, Ellie! I know. I… I regret it, okay. I messed up and I can’t take it back, okay. I just… I want to so badly, but I can’t. I know you needed me and I wasn’t there. I just want a chance to make amends. I want you to be able to forgive me,” he said, pushing his fingers violently through his hair as he pleaded with her.
“I may be able to forgive, Harry. But I’ll never be able to forget. You and your family were all I had and you cut me out. Things got bad, Harry. Things got really bad and I had no one to turn to,” she told him as she wiped at her tears.
“Ellie, I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I’ll never be able to forgive myself,” he said, shaking his head.
“I just… Harry… I just can’t. I can’t go down this road with you again,” she admitted out loud.
“Why not? Ellie, why can’t we be friends again?” Harry choked out.
“We lost that, Harry,” she told him honestly.
“But we can find it again. It’s not lost forever. I want to be here for you like I wasn’t before,” he said, moving even closer.
“It’s not that easy,” Elise said, shaking her head.
“I have something of yours,” Harry said as his eyes lit up. She looked at him confused as he stood up from the couch.
“Come here,” he said, grabbing her by the hand, leading her into his bedroom. He dropped her hand and quickly disappeared into his closet.
“Harry, what are you doing?” Elise asked skeptically. Why did he bring her into his bedroom? What would he have possibly kept of hers?
When Harry walked out carrying an old familiar shoebox, Elise’s heart began beating a little faster.
“Harry…” She breathed as tears welled in her eyes.
“They’re all here,” he said, opening the top of the box.
“You… you kept them,” she stammered as she sat down on the edge of his bed.
“You asked me to keep them, so I kept them, El,” he told her, sitting down next to her.
Elise reached in the box and pulled out a handful of photographs – photographs of her brother, Edward.
“Oh my god,” she said, holding her hand over her mouth as tears slipped from her eyes.
Edward had so much life left to live. It was all ripped so unfairly from him. He never did anything wrong and he was taken from her. Her big brother. Elise shut her eyes tightly, squeezing out the tears.
“El, are you alright?” Harry asked, putting his hand on her forearm.
“I’ll be fine,” she said, wiping at her eyes.
“I didn’t want to make you sad,” he said, letting out a sigh.
“You made me happy,” she said as she replaced the pictures back in the box and put the cover back on.
“I’m glad,” Harry said with a wide smile.
Elise looked up into his jovial eyes and saw the boy she used to know. He was a man now, but his eyes hadn’t changed. They were still the same beautiful green as she remembered – the same eyes she got lost in for hours. Feeling things she hadn’t felt in years, she quickly pressed her lips hard against his. She didn’t know what she was doing, but she couldn’t just do nothing.
Harry’s hands came up to cup her face, kissing her back with just as much passion as she was giving. Estrogen engulfed her. She was seconds away from tearing off all of his clothes. His shoulders were broad and she could just see the muscles under his white t-shirt. It reminded her of how badly she used to need him. How she would need him to touch her just to make her feel better – to make what her father did to her more bearable.
Winter 2012 – Holmes Chapel
“Turn that music OFF!” Her father yelled, drunkly as he threw open her door, startling her.
“It’s not even that loud,” Elise pointed out as she sat on her bed with her small CD player playing the ‘Take Me Home’ album by One Direction.
“Do not argue with me, Marianne,” he growled, pointing his finger at her.
“I’m Elise,” she pointed out, annoyed that he was so drunk that he couldn’t tell the difference between her and her mother.
“What did I just say!? DO NOT TALK BACK TO ME!” He yelled, stalking over to her, grabbing her by the shirt collar.
“DAD!” She screamed as he pulled her up off the bed and slammed her hard against the wall.
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?” She yelled at him.
“DO. NOT. TALK. BACK to me. You know what happens when you talk back, Marianne,” he said, pressing his body against hers, holding her jaw tightly with his hand.
“GET OFF OF ME!” Elise screamed, pushing against him, hoping her mother would hear her. But she never came to save her.
“MARIANNE! I AM WARNING YOU,” he grumbled as he pressed his face into the side of her cheek. Tears stung her eyes.
“Stop. Just stop,” Elise cried.
That was when he slapped her hard against the face and pushed himself harder against her. She screamed out, but she went unheard. His hands – they were touching her where a father should never touch his daughter. She was crying and she couldn’t break free of him. Her home life had been fucked up for as long as she could remember, but never like this.
“Get off of me,” Elise pleaded as tears streaked down her face.
“Just stop fighting it, Marianne,” he said, his booze-filled breath making her sick to her stomach, among other things he was doing.
“I’M NOT HER!” Elise screamed at the top of her lungs, completely terrified.
He was about to wind up and hit her again when she swiftly pulled up her knee, getting him right between the legs. He fell to the ground with a groan and Elise ran as fast as she could out of her room and out of the house completely. She didn’t stop running until she was at Harry’s window. She was thankful he moved his bedroom down to the lower level. His light was on, so she knew he was there. She wiped her tears before she knocked, not wanting him to see them.
Harry let her in with a smile and a crack about how the tables have turned and she was now at his window. Elise let out a forced laugh before he noticed the red puffiness of her eyes.
“El, what’s the matter?” He asked.
She bit her lip, feeling embarrassed about what just happened. The last thing she wanted to do was plague Harry’s world with that kind of imagery.
“I’m just sad. I just… I need you. I need to stay here tonight,” she told him.
“Okay. Yeah, sure,” he said, wrapping his arms around her.
“Harry, I need you,” she said as the salty tears dripped down her face, burying herself in him.
“I’m here, El,” he breathed in her ear.
“No. I need you. I need you to touch me. I need you to love me. I need you,” she told him, feeling so incredibly desperate to wash away her father’s unwanted touches. She needed Harry to make it all better. She needed his hands on her. She needed to remember how he felt. She just needed him.
“El…” He breathed.
“Don’t sigh and say my name. Just touch me, Harry. I just need you to fuck me,” she said, getting angry, looking up at him.
His eyes went wide at from her bluntness, but she didn’t care. She began taking her clothes off before he could even comprehend what she just asked of him.
“Please get naked,” she told him as she grabbed for the hem of his shirt and ripped it over his head.
She leaned up and kissed him hard on the mouth to get him started. It worked. He got into it right away, which she was grateful for. His weight on top of her helped for the moment to forget her father’s weight pressing her against the wall. His hands touching her heated skin helped for the moment to forget her father’s hands touching her the way he did.
Harry calmed her and cleansed her. He was everything she needed. He was her safe haven.
“Oh god, Harry,” Elise moaned, suddenly needing him more than she’d ever imagined. She needed to feel him, she needed him to touch her, and to envelope her with himself.
“Elise, you have no idea,” Harry breathed against the nape of her neck, sending an electrified current all throughout her body.
“Please, just please,” she moaned as she pawed at his chest.
She wanted them to be naked more than anything. She want him to give it to her like he used to, when he used to make her feel better. Before all of this.
“Just, Harry— get naked,” Elise commanded, pulling his shirt over his head, before she began removing her own clothing in breakneck speeds.
Harry didn’t argue. He didn’t ask if she was sure. He just knew she needed this. It was familiar to him. It happened all too often back when they were together.
They were kissing heavily as he pawed and gripped onto her skin. And she needed him to make her feel anything but the shit she was feeling. She pulled him roughly on top of her as her fingernails dug into the skin on his back.
“Ah, El…” Harry groaned out in pain.
She let up a little, but she wanted to make it perfectly clear what she was looking for. She wanted it raw and rough. She wanted to feel it – every part of it. But Harry – he had other plans. His movements slowed down, when she wanted them to speed up. He wanted romance, when she just wanted to be fucked.
“Oh my god, Elise,” he breathed, looking down at her naked body below him.
His hand moved down the expanse of her chest, down to her stomach, and then back up again in soft sweeping motions. She was getting impatient, but she kept telling herself when he finally entered, it would all be worth it.
“Please, Harry. Please,” she begged, not caring even a little about how desperate she sounded.
His eyes looked straight into hers. They were soft and swirling with lust and love. A small smile played across his lips before they came down meeting with hers.
“Harry…” She growled against his lips.
“Alright,” he breathed, getting up to grab a condom.
“I’m on birth control. Just please, now,” she said, pulling him back into top of her.
“Okay,” he agreed as he slowly positioned himself to enter.
When he did, she let out a low moan in her throat as her hands came up to pull at her hair. She needed this. She needed the familiarity. There were so many one night stands over the last few years or so before she left Cheshire. She was searching for the feeling only Harry knew how to give her. And there it was right at her fingertips.
His give and take was slow and steady. But as her body got used to the feel of him inside of her, she realized it just wasn’t what she needed.
“Faster, Harry. Just… faster,” she breathed as she grabbed onto his hips trying to help him along.
“El…” He grunted as he moved a little faster for her.
He wasn’t making her feel any better. He was just plaguing her with his feelings. She didn’t want to feel emotionally. She wanted all of it to be physical. And she knew it wasn’t right. It had to stop.
“I-I can’t do this, Harry. Just stop,” she said, pushing up against his chest.
“Elise, what’s the matter?” Harry asked, looking down at her with concern written all over his face.
“I just can’t, okay. Just get off of me,” she said, pushing him away.
“Elise,” he sighed, pulling out of her as he got off of her as requested. Elise quickly scrambled from the bed, grabbing up her clothes.
“Elise, please. Tell me what’s going on,” Harry pleaded as he threw on his jeans without bothering with his underwear.
“This is wrong. It’s all wrong,” she said, throwing her shirt on her body.
“It’s not wrong. It’s not,” he said, coming over to her, grabbing her by the arms.
“Let go of me,” she growled, letting her eyes glare into his.
He dropped his hands immediately, looking frightened. But she couldn’t be bothered with it as she finished dressing.
“Please, just stay. We don’t have to… we don’t have to finish. Let’s just talk. Come on,” Harry pleaded.
“I should have never come up here. It was stupid. So stupid,” she mumbled, more to herself than to Harry.
“Ellie, please,” she heard Harry say.
“I’ve… I’ve gotta go,” Elise said, rushing to the couch to pick up her purse.
“Elise! Don’t you fucking leave me!” Harry bellowed desperately. She stopped in her tracks, but she didn’t turn to face him.
“Don’t call me, Harry. We’re over. I need this to be over,” she told him, only loud enough so she knew he heard her.
“Ellie…” He said softly. She could hear the emotion in his voice, but it didn’t stop her.
“Goodbye, Harry,” she said before she left his flat.
Spring 2017 – London
Harry stood frozen in his flat after the door slammed with Elise’s goodbye. What in the fuck just happened? How did something so amazing go so terribly wrong? It was like she was two different people. There was one side of her that was willing to get close to him again. But then there was the other side that built up a brick wall faster than he could imagine, blocking him out from ever getting through to her.
Harry tried calling her, but after ringing only once, it went right to voicemail. The same thing happened the next three times he called. She was shutting down, shutting him out. He didn’t know what to do.
He made himself a strong vodka tonic, downed it in one gulp and then collapsed onto to his bed. The tears came faster than he could wipe them away. And before he knew it, they carried him off to a restless night of sleep.
Winter 2012 – Holmes Chapel
Elise was in a good mood. Her face shone with her laughter as he spun her around on the dance floor at the winter formal. She looked incredible in her sparkling blue dress his mother and Gemma helped her pick out. It was the most he saw her smile in a long time.
“Aww, Harry. I love you,” she breathed out listlessly.
“I love you, Ellie,” he said, pressing his cheek against hers as they danced.
He was so glad to have her in his arms, so glad he could come home for this instead of being on the road like he was supposed to be. He took a red-eye home the night before. He would leave in the morning, but he was there to take Elise to her first school dance.
After the dance, they walked back through the neighborhood together, hand in hand. El had her heels in the other hand with boots on her feet as she continued to dance around, pulling him every which way.
“I love you like this. I love seeing you smile. I love you, El,” Harry told her as he pulled her body flush against his, stopping in the middle of the street.
“I love you, Harry Edward Styles,” she said, smiling dreamily at him, kissing the tip of his nose.
“Are you like, on drugs right now?” Harry giggled.
“I feel like I’m on drugs when I’m with you,” she breathed airily.
“I feel that way too, El,” he told her sincerely.
“Come on,” she said, pulling him quickly in the direction of her house.
Harry giggled as she tugged him along to the side of her house, not bothering to even go in the front door. She jimmied open her window and pulled herself inside, giggling the whole time.
“How do you even do that all the time? Jesus,” she laughed.
“Easy,” he said, swiftly making his way inside, closing the window behind him.
They left a trail of snow and ice on the carpet, discarding their boots and jackets in a heap on the floor.
“Don’t your parents ever get suspicious of the trail of footprints in the snow leading up to your window?” Harry smirked at her and she shrugged.
“They don’t care,” she said as her hands went behind her neck, undoing her dress.
“El, what are you doing?” Harry asked, swallowing hard as he watched her.
“I have to get out of this dress, Harry,” she said, eyeing him.
“Oh. Okay,” he stammered as he tried not to stare as the dress dropped to her feet.
She was standing in front of him wearing only her bra and panties. He and Elise hadn’t done anything but kiss at that point, so seeing her so indisposed was sort of shocking to his system.
“Are you nervous, Harry?” She asked, her voice coming out lower than usual. Her eyes stared into his.
“Uh… I guess,” he said, swallowing hard. He’d traveled all around the world, met millions of people, but could barely hold himself together when he was alone in a room with his half-naked girlfriend.
“You’ve seen me in a bikini, Harry. It’s the same thing,” she said justifying it, still looking at him with that intense stare.
“It’s different. It’s more… intimate,” he told her.
“Because we’re standing in my bedroom… alone?” She asked.
“Y-yeah,” he admitted. Harry watched her hips sway as she walked over to him.
“Have you ever thought about it, Harry?” She asked.
“What?” He choked out.
“Touching me,” she breathed lowly.
“Y-yes,” he confessed.
“I think about you touching me… a lot,” she breathed against his lips. Harry swallowed harder than ever. Holy shit.
“Seeing you onstage, Harry. I just… I keep thinking, he’s mine. He’s my boyfriend. He’s all mine,” she said, smiling with a dreamlike quality in her eyes.
“Yeah?” He asked.
“Yeah. And I get… I get worked up,” she said, smirking at him.
“Worked up?” He asked for clarification.
“I imagine what it would be like if you touched me, Harry. If we… you know, had sex,” she admitted. Harry’s eyes went wide as he tried to swallow the massive lump in his throat.
“Have you thought about it, Harry?” She asked.
“All the time,” he admitted.
“Do you think you’re ready for it, Harry?” She asked.
“I… I think so,” he told her.
“I think I’m ready for it,” she told him.
“Ellie, are you sure?” He asked, his mouth so entirely dry.
She pulled away from him and tiptoed across the floor, opening up her jewelry box. She pulled out the removable shelf, taking something out before replacing the shelf and closing the top of the box. Turning to Harry, she revealed a condom between her thumb and forefinger.
“Where’d you get that?” Harry asked, shocked that she would have something like that hidden in her room.
“It doesn’t matter. All that matters is that I have it,” she said, smiling at him.
“Wow. You thought of everything,” he said, running his hands through his hair.
Harry was nervous, but her unparalleled confidence made it easier to deal with. El was never like this, it was odd that she was like this now – when they were about to do something so life-changing.
“Harry, I love you,” she said, walking toward him, placing the condom in his hand.
“I love you, El,” Harry told her sincerely.
“I’m ready,” she said as her hands snaked around herself and unhooked her bra.
Harry’s eyes automatically dropped from her face to take in the view as her bra fell from her arms and hit the floor. Dear God. He quickly pulled her toward him as his lips slammed into hers.
Harry would never forget the way she took control that night. Especially since it was such a contrast to all the rest of the times they slept with each other thereafter. She was always so submissive, always wanting him to take over – to dominate her. He was okay with it, but it seemed like it was just an escape from the things she was dealing with – like it was a cop out. Instead of facing whatever it was head on, she would try to forget it all by using copulation as an escape. Harry knew it wasn’t healthy for her, but he didn’t know how else to help her. She wouldn’t talk to him about it. And now all he wanted, more than anything in the world, was for her to open up to him – for her to tell him all the things that plagued her. All he wanted to do now was help her move on from what seemed to be destroying her all these years. He wanted to help, but he didn’t know how.
“She told me not to call her. She just stormed out,” Harry said, finishing telling Louis all about what happened with Elise the previous night.
“Wow. That’s crazy,” Louis said, sitting across from him in their chairs at the studio. Harry called him to come in because he needed to talk to him about Ellie.
“But I think there might be something bigger going on with her than just me leaving five years ago. She was really freaked out, Louis,” Harry told him.
“I think you should just stop. You said your peace. She gave you her answer. You should respect that,” Louis said, shaking his head.
“But…” Harry started to protest.
“Harry, this isn’t a good idea,” Louis said.
“I still have her pictures… of her brother. She forgot them at my flat after I gave them to her,” Harry pointed out, remembering how he found the shoebox sitting on the floor next to his bed that morning.
“Send them to her,” Louis said, giving him a glare.
“You know I can’t leave this alone,” Harry said, giving him a knowing look.
“Why did you even ask my opinion?” He asked, throwing his hands up.
“I needed someone to talk to about it. And you knew her back then and know everything that’s been going on now,” Harry told him.
“You needed someone to give you their opinion so you could completely disregard it?” Louis smirked at him.
“You didn’t give me the answer I wanted,” Harry said, smirking back.
“Ellie’s not the only stubborn one, you know,” Louis pointed out.
“She gets it from me,” Harry chuckled.
Elise had another thing coming if she thought he was just going to lay down and died like that – that he would just give up that easily. It wasn’t over. It would never be over. He was absolutely sure of that after what happened the night before.
And soon, she would see it too.