Eucatastrophe ~ h.s.

This isn't how I planned any aspect of my life to occur.

The plan was simple: Finish university with a 4.0 GPA, Get a well-paying corporate job that's more intense than the assistant job I've now, Find a man that loves me for me, Get married at a gorgeous ceremony, Have beautiful children, Grow old with the man of my dreams and watch our kids mature right before our eyes, and Then fall deeper and deeper in love with our time together.

That Night wasn't supposed to happen. My life wasn't supposed to turn out like this.

*Contains: Language, mild sexual content, and a bit of violence. Content could be triggering for some.*

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SHAY

3 Days Later ~ 25 April

I had been released from the hospital this morning, after assuring the doctors that I was fine and that if I needed anything I would come back. The truth was, I'm never going to go back to the hospital. I was constantly being tested and checked up on by so many doctors I lost count. Then there was the whole psychologist visit on the second day, whom wanted to speak with me about my mental and emotional health. But I didn't want to visit with him, so I simply didn't talk.

I want nothing more than to go straight home and curl up on the couch, but instead I'm sitting in a cab outside my parents' home in Chelsea.

My parents are something else... rich, arrogant art lovers. Unfortunately, they love art more than they love their only child and they're the only family I have left. I rarely see them since my eighteenth birthday three and a half years ago when they told me not to go and get an education but instead stay at home and marry some rich bachelor. We were to marry and have several children all by the age of twenty-two. Since then we speak on very limited terms. But my mother insisted that I come see her after hearing I was in the hospital. She didn't ask questions, didn't visit me, just said I should stop by after I was released.

"Ma'am?" The driver of the cab is clearly growing impatient since I have yet to get out of the car, but I don't care. The more time I spent in here, the less time I would have to spend around them. But I know that if I don't get out now I never will.

"Thank you." I finally say, stepping out of the cab with my purse and small bag with a change of clothes.

I hadn't seen Harry since I told him to leave, which I felt a bit guilty about. I did think his gesture of being there for me was sweet, too sweet. But as you can imagine I was in no mood for visitors, especially male visitors. It's like that incident has changed my view on the male population. I know every man on this earth isn't bad, only a select few, but I'm still far too traumatized to pick out the good and bad. Harry did have somebody bring me a couple changes of clothes and a new phone since mine was MIA on the second day as well. There was also a note for me to call him once I was ready and to take as much time as needed.

It was a kind gesture for somebody I had told to sod off.

I walk slowly up to the front door of their ginormous home, which is bigger than Harry's home, and knock lightly on the front door. A cool breeze whips through my hair as I stand, huddling with my own body as I wait. My eyes scan the walk behind me, seeing no one in sight, a relieved sigh leaving my parted lips. This day can only get worse from here, especially since my parents are involved.

"Ah, Miss Nichols!" I jump at the sound of my parents' head maid's, Julie, voice. I don't understand the need for a maid, but apparently my parents see the need for six. "My, I haven't seen you in such a long time. You look well darling!" If only she knew. "Your hair is getting so long!" I wince when she brought her hands up to my face and take a discrete step back.

"It's nice to see you as well Julie."

"Come in dear, I heard you were in the hospital." I nod my head, not really wanting to talk about it. "Is everything alright?" No, everything is far from alright. Instead of speaking the truth, I simply nod my head. "Shall I get you cuppa then?"

"No, I just need to see mum, she wanted to meet with me." Julie wraps her arm around me, resting her gentle hand on the small of my back, surprisingly after the shock of her touching me if feels quite nice. Julie leads me to the back of the house, where my mother often kept herself. She likes to sit in the morning room and search the Internet for the best art finds, I don't quite get it.

I spot my mother at the far end of the room, her beautiful blonde hair is pulled back into a high pony. For being round fourty the woman looks to have never aged after twenty-five. If I didn't know her personally I would say she's a model with her skinny frame and piercing looks. She made be beautiful on the outside, but she is ugly on the inside.

"Mrs. Nichols, look who has arrived!" 

My mother looks up from her laptop and greets me with a far from warm smile when she sees me. In fact she holds up one finger motioning for me to hold on a moment before turning her attention back to the computer in front of her.

No matter how hard I try not to feel hurt, it still stings.

She and my father are always doing this, no matter if I'm twelve years old still or twenty-one. When I was in sixth form I would come home with big news about a test or a paper that I wrote and it would take me nearly an hour just to tell them because they wouldn't give me the time of day. During those days I rarely told them anything. It's simple: my family just doesn't care about me.

"My girl!" My mum coos, walking over to me with open arms. That's all it takes for me to break down in tears and run into her arms. I really just need a hug from my mother, even if she is quite inconsiderate and rude. "My dear, what seems to be the matter?" She asks as if she has no clue. "Is this about being in the hospital?" No shit mother! My mother pulls away and cups my face in her hands, wiping away my tears with her delicate thumbs.

"Yes, of course it is." I weep, my bottom lip severely trembling. The woman shakes her head and takes me by the hand, leading me to a couch at the edge of the room. From her facial expressions she looks as if she actually cares for once in her life.

"There, there." She "comforts" patting my arms lightly. "What exactly landed you in the hospital then dear?" She asks, taking me hands in hers. I drop my things onto the ground beside me and take a deep breath.

"Mum, something really bad happened to me." I mumble, crying a bit still. I don't think I will ever not feel the need to cry after what has happened.

"Well clearly, you wouldn't be in the hospital if nothing had happened." She jokes, laughing to herself. I stare back at her in disbelief; of course she's trying to joke at a time like this. "Were you doing something stupid again? Because the last time you landed in the hospital it was for that broken wrist of yours that you got from falling onto the pavement." I clench my jaw at her words, making me more angry than sad at the moment. "Oh no, or was it the ice skating accident that was the last time? Ah, I can't remember there's been too many incidences."

"Mum," I cry out, pulling her out of her own world, reminiscing on how many times I've landed myself in the hospital. I was a clumsy child, who unfortunately grew up to be a clumsy adult. But all I need right now is a hug from my mother, not her going down memory lane.

"Oh dear, stop with the tears. Worry and sadness will bring wrinkles." She says, pulling the skin my eyes tighter before massaging the center of my forehead. I scoff at her and push her hands off my face.

"I was raped!" My mother's face grows still and her jaw falls slightly ajar. For once I think she's going to say something nice and soothing, like a normal mother would to her only child. But alas...

"Nonsense. Are you sure you weren't drinking too much again?" What?

"Mother!"

"Dear, all I'm saying is that this isn't the first time you've been drinking and one thing led to another and-"

"Mum, stop!" I yell, jumping up from the couch and detaching myself from the woman I must call my mother. She looks shocked my outburst. "How can you say that? It happened, I have about a million tests from the hospital to prove it, not that I should have to prove it to my own mother." I take a moment to breathe though I'm not in the mood to breathe. "I cannot believe my own mother has the nerve to call me out." I bend down and pick up my things, storming off into the direction of the door.

"Darling-"

"No, don't darling me! I need you right now, mum! I've been in the hospital for three whole days and you and father did nothing! Not one of you visited or called to ask what happened or if I was all right. Instead I come here and my own mother doesn't believe a word I say to her." This gets my mother angry.

"Don't you dare speak to me in that way, young lady!" She seethes, that temper of her's coming out.

"Shay, Libby, what's going on here?" I turn my head to see my father, staring between us. 

He doesn't seem fazed at all, mostly because every time I'm over a fight is started between one of my parents and I. Honestly though, he knows me more than my mother does, and he understands me a bit more, still not enough to really want to help.

"I don't know, dad, why don't you ask mum. Oh, wait don't do that she doesn't believe me either!"

"How could you be so stupid?"

It takes everything in me not to storm back over to my mother and smack her in the face. I gaze up at my father, who still stands unfazed by it all.

"You're blaming me for this?" I yell, my voice hitting a brand new octave that it has never before. I'm livid at the moment. I can probably start throwing things, which is nothing like me. If my own mother doesn't believe me or want to comfort me, then who will?

"Ladies, what is going on here?"

"Our daughter says she was raped." My mother simply says, placing her hands upon her slender hips and raising an eyebrow at me. She still thinks I'm lying.

"Shay, is this true?" My father asks, his blank expression turning somewhat saddened. I roll my eyes and sniffle harshly.

"You know what?" I breathe out, wiping the tears from my cheeks. "The fact that you need to ask me if I'm being truthful is complete bullshit. I can't say that I'm surprised though!" I laugh at them. "Have a nice life."

And with that I forcefully push myself passed my silent father, passed two horrified maids, and out the front door without another word aside from my father's persistent pleas for me to come back. Only I can tell his words are half-assed, they always are when it comes to me.

I find myself walking down the road until I'm about ten meters from their home. I plop down on the curb, getting ready to call myself a cab. My parents surely aren't going to lend me a car or call me a cab. They're probably in there chatting over a cuppa about what just went down; probably deciding whether to completely disestablish themselves from me. Honestly, I will be perfectly fine if they do.

I don't need them.

But honestly, I don't know what makes me madder; the fact that they don't support me or the fact that no one chased after me and tried to get me to stay.

My phone begins to ring in my cold fingers after a while of just sitting in complete silence, overthinking as always. The tone is annoying as hell and is beginning to give me a headache so I answer right away.

"What?" I harshly answer, not bothering to look at the caller id beforehand. I'm in no mood. If it's a friend, which I highly doubt it is because I don't have many, then they can deal with the attitude. If it's a coworker then quite frankly I don't give a shit at the moment. I won't be surprised if everyone knows by now. Either the tabloids tipped them off with a stupid headlining story like CEO Harry Styles Saves Assistant, or Harry and his big ego did.

"Shay? This is Harry Styles, you're, um, boss." I breathe out deeply, shaking my head and trying not to cry again. He's the third person I have no desire to see or speak with today, scratch that fourth. My mum would be first, then my father, then Melissa (because I never want to speak with her), and then Harry. No matter how much I really don't want to speak to him, he's still my boss and if I want any part of my life to go back to normal I'm going to have to suck it up.

"I'm sorry for that." I clear my throat and sit up straighter on the curb, trying to compose myself. "What can I do for you Mr. Styles?"

"Well, I, uh-" He's stuttering and stumbling over his words a lot more than he usually does, "I was just calling to see how you were doing." I sniffle lightly so he can't hear me and wipe away a couple of stray tears.

"I'm fine."

"Oh, well that's good." He says, clearing his throat awkwardly. Usually our phone calls go way smoother than this. This is the first time there's any awkward silence between us. Not that I blame him, I wouldn't know what to say to me either. "Is there anything I can do for you?"

"No, I just need to get off the line to call a cab-"

"Where are you? Are you still at the hospital because the nurses said you were released a few hours ago." Of course he came by and of course they told him I left. Harry is still in fact my "fiancé" as far as the medical personale knew. I have to give him credit for his annoyingly impeccable trait of caring for the wellbeing of others.

"No, I'm sitting outside my parents' house."

"I'll pick you up." He offers right away and I begin to here shuffling on the other line. As much as a I want to accept a ride, I know I just can't be anywhere near him. I have spent three days in the hospital, ignoring him, composing myself, and trying to figure out how on Earth I'm going to face him one day. I'm not ready for that day to be today.

"Mr. Styles that's not necessary."

"No!" He hollers, as if I'm going to hang up on him. I'll be honest, I had thought about it for a half a second. "I'll pick you up just tell me where exactly you are." I sigh and shake my head. "I still feel awful that it was my party you left the other night and that I did nothing to try to prevent this. Please just tell me where you are." Harry is very persistent so I know that if I keep telling him no, he'll keep arguing with me. He also has his ways of finding people, so I'm sure he can figure out where my parents' live.

"Um, Cathcart Road, Chelsea." I answer, shivering lightly. "I'm sitting out on the curb."

"No!" Harry immediately exclaims again, causing me to jump lightly in my spot. His mood and tone are freaking me out right now. He's never like this, always calm and professional, for the most part. "Um, go back inside and I'll let you know when I get there." I shake my head and roll my eyes.

"I am not going back inside." I say through gritted teeth. I know if I went back to my parents house there will only be more tears and screaming matches. I'm not strong enough to do that today.

"Fine, I'm really close anyways. I'll be there in five." And with that he hangs up on me.

Five minutes later a black Range Rover pulls over to the opposite side of the street that I'm sitting on. I merely look up from my spot on the curb to see him. I can see Harry sitting in the driver's seat with a worried look on his face and as soon as he pulls to a stop he hops out. I don't move though, just continue to stay right where I am.

"Shay, are you alright?" He asks, approaching quickly.

"Yeah," I mumble, wiping the tears from my face.

In the span of five minutes, I had broken down yet again. Thankfully, there aren't any people out at this time of day to see me. Harry reaches his hand down and grabs underneath my arm to aid me to stand. His touch makes me wince away in fear for a moment, but I soon relax. Its just Harry. "Thanks." I mutter lightly. I guess he's worried about the fact that my eyes and cheeks are red from crying over something I have been dealing with since I was a kid... my relationship with my parents.

"Come on, let's get you in the car." He says, picking my bags up from the ground. "You're freezing." He points out, placing his free hand on the small of my back. I cross my arms over my chest and allow Harry to lead me towards his running vehicle.

He helps me into the warmth of his car before setting my things into the backseat. I watch as he runs around the outside of the car and opens his door. A large gust of wind hits my face, causing me to shiver again. Although right now I'm not necessarily worried about the cold.

I stay silent as he begins to drive, ignoring Harry's presence all together. As I said before I'm not prepared for this day. This silence is so uncomfortable that at the moment I would rather be locked away in a room with my mother and father or rather tuck and roll out of the moving vehicle than sit here. Every time I glance in Harry's direction I witness him pull his eyes from me and focus back on the road, another thing that was making me uncomfortable.

"Um," I clear my throat and settle into my seat, trying to get the least bit warm, "Aren't' you supposed to be at work?" I glance at the time on the dash, seeing as it was half noon on a Monday, he should be at work. He never misses work.

"Took the afternoon off." My eyes widen slightly at his words.

In all my years of working for Harry, not once did he take an afternoon off. He did take a day off like a year and a half ago due to some personal thing, but I believe it was for his mother's wedding or a friend's mother's wedding. I'm not really too sure.

"Well, did you ever get into contact with Mr. Francis?" I ask, trying to spark a conversation that doesn't revolve around me. Harry glances over at me, his eyebrows knitted together in confusion. He's probably thinking that I'm too much of a workaholic.

"Yes, we're set up to meet tomorrow." I purse my lips together and nod silently. "But I don't expect you to attend the meeting, I can handle it on my own. You take as much time off as needed."

"That's very kind of you to say. Thank you." We fall into silence yet again as he continues to drive. "May I ask where you're taking me?" I mutter, watching as he drove. He pulls up at a red light and finally looks over at me to the point where we make eye contact.

"Your flat."

"Oh," I have no idea how Harry knows where I live in London. We live separate lives. He lives in a five-bedroom home in Holland Park, whereas I live in a very nice one bedroom flat in Convent Garden. I suppose where I'm living is listed somewhere at work, possibly my file which Harry has access to. "How do you know where I live?" I feel as if from now on I'm supposed to be very weary around any one I come into contact with.

"Relax Shay. I'm not going to do anything, you know me." I nod my head, taking a deep breath in through my nose and out through my mouth. He's right; I need to relax.

"Right, sorry." Harry smiles over at me and chuckles lightly.

"No need to apologize." We fall into another bout of silence, this one even more uncomfortable than the last. I'm beginning to think I'm better off with my parents again, at least there would be talking with them. "Okay, I can't take the silence anymore."

"Me neither." I breathe out. "Would it be too much to ask that we forget all about what happened?" I know there's no possible way either of us will forget.

I'm going to be forever raked with fear to leave my apartment alone or to walk down the street, or to go anywhere at night. And Harry's going to remember me on his doorstep in the middle of the morning covered in blood, he's going to remember waiting in the hospital for hours whilst the doctors were with me, and he definitely is going to remember the look on my face when I kicked him out of my room. What happened is going to be unforgettable.

"Are you sure you don't want to talk about it?" He asks lowly. His deep voice sent shivers down my spine; either that or he has turned on the air con or opened a window on accident.

"Nope, definitely not." I quickly state, bringing my attention to the outside of the vehicle where I stare silently out the window.

"Shay, I know it's hard to think about, but I think you'll feel a whole hell of a lot better once you-"

"Will you stop?" I exclaim, slamming my hands down on my thighs. Harry stares over at me, unfortunately not having to look at the road because we were stopped at yet another stoplight. "I understand that you care and I can't ever thank you for what you did, but you have to understand that I don't want to talk about what happened. I don't really remember all that happened, thank God, and you bringing it up every time we see each other is not helping in the least. So either you stop, or I get out of the car." I threaten.

Harry stares back at me in disbelief. This is only the second time I have ever lashed out on him and I'm beginning to feel like it isn't going to be the last.

"You're right, just please do not get out of the car." He pleads. It's as if he really didn't want to agree, but has no choice. "I'm sorry for saying anything." I let out a deep breath and nod my head.

"It's okay. I'm sorry for snapping. Let's just not talk about it any further."

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