You + Me + Him

Alyssa Rossi has always been in love with Zayn Malik. Zayn has always been her best friend, but never shared her feelings. Harry Styles was Zayn’s pesky step-brother and has always hated Alyssa because she and Zayn always got into trouble together. They were teenagers, now they’re all adults. Things can change in a blink of an eye. And they did.

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2. 2: The one with the cancelled date…


Fall 2015

 

“So, Lyssy…” Zayn said, coming into her room without knocking, like he did on most days. The secrets they kept from each other were few and far between.

“I thought we made a deal where I would move in with you and you would never call me that again,” Alyssa grumbled at him from her closet as she stood in her pajamas trying to find something to wear.

“Okay, Bossy Rossi,” he laughed as he flopped down in her chair in the corner of her room, where he had a perfect view of her.

Leave it to Zayn to drop one annoy nickname, but then come at her with another one that was even worse. He’d been calling her Bossy Rossi since they were thirteen – a play on her last name, Rossi, and apparently her attitude – and it drove her absolutely crazy.

“I will kill you,” she threatened, glaring over her shoulder at him.

“Come at me,” he taunted as he quirked his eyebrow at her.

“What do you want?” She grumbled, rolling her eyes before she turned to sift through her clothing again. For someone who she pledge undying allegiance to, he sure annoyed the hell out of her most days.

“So my mum and Des are forcing me and the family to go with them to this black-tie charity event next week…” He started to explain.

Cool,” Alyssa said sarcastically as she pulled a shirt off its hanger and threw it over her head.

“Not cool. But hey, I was thinking… I know what would make it cool,” he told her, quirking his eyebrow.

“What?” Alyssa said, turning to look at him again, catching the wide smile he was giving her.

“Oh, no. No, no, no,” she said, shaking her head, realizing he meant her – that she’d make it cool if she went with him.

“Come on, Lyss. It’s one night! I need a date,” he whined, sitting forward on the chair.

“I swore off things like that with you,” she told him with her hands on her hips in a defensive stance, her eyes narrowed.

“I can’t believe you’re still holding that against me. It was over four years ago!” He retorted.

“It was my senior prom, Zayn!” She snapped at him, still angry over what he did to her.

 


Spring 2011

 

“Lyssy?” Zayn asked as they lay in his bed trying to fall asleep.

“Yeah, Zayn?” She mumbled against the pillow.

“Do you have a date to prom yet?” He asked, his voice quiet, but not muffled in the slightest, so she knew she heard him correctly. Butterflies erupted in her stomach at the mentioning of the big date looming over them. She knew he hadn’t asked anyone yet. Could this be her shot?

“No,” she said quietly, feeling her heart beat pick up immediately.

“So… do you want to be my date?” He asked, saying the words she hoped to hear all year.

“Are you… are you serious?” She choked out in question, unable to truly believe what he just asked her.

“Yeah. I mean, you don’t have a date and I don’t have a date… we’re best friends. Why not? We can go… as friends,” he explained, and her stomach dropped as he friend-zoned her for the umpteenth time.

“Yeah, friends,” she said quietly, trying to swallow down the lump that was stuck in her throat.

It was all she was to him – a friend. Even though she knew what they did with each other when they were alone meant more than that. She was his friend-with-benefits. She was a girl with low self-esteem who loved a boy who never loved her back, so she gave it up to said boy whenever he came knocking. She was his go-to girl whenever he didn’t have a girlfriend – hell, even if he did have a girlfriend he would still come to Alyssa.  

“Lyss…” Zayn said through the stillness.

“Yeah, Zayn?” She whispered, hoping he meant it.

“You’re my best friend,” he said as she felt his arm wrap around her waist.

“You’re mine too, Zayn,” she told him honestly.

Even with the pain of being friend-zoned once again, Alyssa still fell asleep with a smile on her face. She was going to prom with the boy of her dreams. She was a happy girl.

 

Prom season was upon them. Alyssa found a beautiful dress for the dance – a strapless red gown with a black lace bodice. It was perfect – everything she imagined her prom dress to look like. The night before, she could barely sleep. Zayn was taking her to their senior prom – something she dreamt about for so long. Nothing could take that from her. She would carry the memories with her for the rest of her life.

But when Zayn showed up at Alyssa’s house the morning of prom with a somber look on his face, she knew something wasn’t right.

“What is it, Zayn?” She asked as they walked through the foyer of her house on the way to her bedroom.

“Lyss, stop. I’ve gotta talk to you,” he said, grabbing her arm, preventing her from going any further. By that one act alone, she knew something was up and she wasn’t going to like it.

“What?” She asked, turning toward him.

“Kylie…” He started to say and her heart immediately dropped in her chest.

Kylie was Zayn’s ex-girlfriend. She was a blonde-bombshell of a girl, but she was also a stuck-up cheerleading bitch. Kylie hated Alyssa because she and Zayn were so close. And Alyssa hated Kylie because, for one, she was dating Zayn, and for two, she was absolutely evil.  

“Her parents are letting her go to prom now,” Zayn explained.

It was a big dramatic event in Zayn’s life when Kylie got caught drinking at a party by the police. She was charged with Minor Consumption, causing her parents to flip out, grounding the crap out of her, and also forbidding her from going to prom. During her lock-down at home, she and Zayn grew apart and eventually broke-up. Alyssa rejoiced over single-Zayn, but apparently it was all for naught.

“I told her I’d take her to prom,” Zayn said, letting his eyes fall to his feet.

“You what?” Alyssa whispered as she felt her tears stinging her eyes.

“I’m sorry. I just… I don’t know what to do,” he said quietly.

“Tell her to fuck off, Zayn. You said you’d take me,” Alyssa snapped at him.

Kylie was only a Junior at their high school. She still had a chance at a prom next year. Alyssa was a Senior and it was her last chance at Prom.

“But…” He began and she knew his mind was already made up.

“Fuck you,” Alyssa seethed, feeling her entire heart break in half.

“Lyss, come on,” he scoffed.

“No! Fuck you, Zayn! Go take her. See if I fucking care! I hope she gives you herpes, you piece of shit!” Alyssa yelled at him before storming up the stairs to her room, slamming the door for good measure. He didn’t follow. 

Alyssa cried all day long as her prom dress hung off her closet door, taunting her. She hated Zayn Malik. She should have known he would do something to fuck up all her plans, and her life. Stupid asshole.

At around six, Alyssa’s dad knocked on her bedroom door, jarring her out of the slumber she slipped into after her breakdown over Zayn.

“Sweetie, your prom date is here,” he said, smiling a big goofy grin at her.

“My what?” She asked, feeling nothing but confused. She was still in her pajamas, having completely given up on prom altogether.

“There’s a young man waiting for you in the foyer,” he said, smiling at her.

“No…” She said, but got out of bed anyway.

If Zayn was standing in the entryway for her, she was going to shit a brick. Her heart beat wildly in her chest feeling hopeful for the first time since Zayn crushed her spirits. When she rounded the corner to the stairs, her heart dropped. It was Harry Styles standing in her foyer in a black tux and a rose corsage in his hands.

“Hi,” Harry said, sending her an awkward smile. He looked a bit nervous. 

“H-Harry. What are you doing here?” Alyssa stammered.

“I’m taking you to your prom,” he said matter-of-factly.

“I-I think I’d rather just stay home, Harry,” Alyssa sighed, sending him a pathetic half-smile.

“Alyssa, I’m standing in front of you wearing a tux. Trisha went through a lot of trouble to scrounge up a prom ticket for me. Please don’t leave me hanging,” Harry told her. She couldn’t help but smile. He sounded so confident about it. 

“Go on, honey,” her dad said, nudging her with his elbow.

“Why… why would you do this for me?” She stammered, feeling an ache in her chest because of his stupid brother.

“Because… because, I mean, we were friend at one point, Lyss. I heard what Zayn did, and it made me so angry. Everyone is angry with him. Trisha immediately got on the phone to rent a tux for me, and somehow got the ticket,” Harry said, shaking his head in disappointment.

“You didn’t have to,” Alyssa said quietly.

“It’s your senior prom, Lyss. Just because Zayn is a clueless jerk, doesn’t mean you need to miss out on this,” he told her with an optimistic smile.

“Okay,” she finally agreed, and reluctantly got ready for prom.

She figured it might be awkward being around Harry after all their years of fighting, but he went out of his way to make sure she was having fun – and she was, up until Zayn came to talk to her. 

“Hey, look at you… with Harry,” Zayn said, smiling excitedly at her.

“What do you want, Zayn?” Alyssa asked, straight-faced and completely pissed off at him.

“I just wanted to see you,” he said, and she immediately rolled her eyes.

“So it all worked out in the end, right? You’re here with Harry and I’m here with Kylie. Win-win,” Zayn said, smiling at her.

“You just don’t get it, do you Zayn?” Alyssa scoffed at him. He was so oblivious, it was sickening.

“Get what? You’re at prom,” he said, waving his arms through the air to signify where they were. Alyssa shook her head at him and quickly walked away as the tears began to fall.

“Alyssa!” He called after her, but he didn’t bother to follow and she didn’t expect him to.

Alyssa spent the rest of her prom crying outside of the venue as Harry comforted her. He took her home before prom was even over because she couldn’t stand to go back in and face Zayn.

“Lyss…” Harry said quietly as he cut the engine of his father’s car once they were parked in front of her house.

“What?” She asked through her tears.

“Why do you do this to yourself?” He asked, looking at her with pity in his eyes.

“Last I checked, I wasn’t the one who ditched myself the day of prom,” she spat out bitterly.

“That’s not what I meant,” he sighed.

“What did you mean then, Harry?” She snapped at him.

“Why do you let Zayn treat you like shit? He takes advantage of you and you just let him,” he said, sounding exasperated.

“He’s my best friend,” Alyssa said evenly – like it was enough of an excuse to let him get away with something like that. It was her only answer whenever anyone asked her that question.

“You’ve got to draw the line somewhere, Lyss. I know you feel strongly for him…” Harry started to protest.

“You don’t know anything,” she shot at him. She was taking out her anger on Harry without meaning to.

“I know you’ve been in love with him for years,” Harry said boldly, his eyes widening.

“You don’t know what you’re talking about,” she scoffed, feeling so incredibly uncomfortable. She just wanted to flee.

“Alyssa…” Harry sighed.

“I’ve got to go,” she said, grabbing for the car door handle.

“Just… be careful. I don’t want Zayn to keep hurting you,” he said, catching her arm quickly.

She couldn’t do anything but scoff at his words as she pulled herself out of the car, slamming it hard before running up the front walk and disappearing into her house. She swore after that night she was done with Zayn. She was done for good. But she was so wrong – she’d never be done with him. Zayn Malik wasn’t someone she could just got over in an instant.

Sadly enough, she was right about one thing though: she would carry her memories of prom with her for the rest of her life.

 


 

“Alyssa, it won’t be like that, I promise,” Zayn said, his tone nearly pleading.

“I hate black-tie events,” Alyssa grumbled. Although that was the least of her worries.

“We can get drunk and make fun of people,” Zayn said, smiling brightly at her, like he had the best idea in the world.

“Making fun of people at a charity fundraiser seems a little… rude,” she told him, quirking an eyebrow.

Psssh, sounds like fun to me. Besides, Harold is going to be there. We can make fun of him,” Zayn said with a laugh.

“I feel like I haven’t seen Harry in ages. How is your twerpy little brother?” Alyssa asked with a smile.

“He’s still a pain in the ass,” Zayn chuckled.

“He always has been,” Alyssa retorted, even though she was silently regarding Harry warmly in her mind.

“He needs to get laid,” Zayn snickered.

“Isn’t he dating that bore of a girl, Samantha?” Alyssa asked, pursing her lips together.

“Samantha is old news,” Zayn said, waving his hand through the air with his words.

“Oh, thank god. Talking to her was like watching paint dry,” Alyssa laughed as she picked up her hair brush.

“Harry seemed to like her,” Zayn said with a shrug.

“That’s because most days, Harry has a stick up his ass,” Alyssa said, pulling the brush through her hair a few times before tying it up into a ponytail.

“See, you love making fun of people with me,” Zayn pointed out.

“That’s because you bring out the worst in me, Malik,” she countered, quirking her eyebrow at him.

“Yeah right! I am your better half, Rossi,” he retorted.

“You’re like an inflamed limb I need to have surgically removed,” she shot at him.

“Ouch!” He said, holding his hand over his heart, feigning offense.

You’re the pain in the ass,” Alyssa said, rolling her eyes at him.

“But you love me,” he said, smirking at her.

Unfortunately,” she sighed as she rolled her eyes again.

“So, will you be my hot date for the event then?” Zayn asked hopefully, causing Alyssa to let out a groan.

“I swear to God, if I get pawned off on Harry again, I will see to it that your balls are what get surgically removed. You hear me?” Alyssa told him, pointing her finger at him, trying to show him she meant what she said.

“Yes, ma’am,” he said, giving her a salute with his hand.

“Just so we’re clear…” She tacked on.

“Thank you, thank you. You’re so good to me,” Zayn said, jumping up from the chair, kissing her on the cheek before he darted out of her room.

She was so good to him. And he didn’t deserve it.

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