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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8. 8: The one with the knight in shining armor...

Fall 2015

 

Alyssa wasn’t sure how much time elapsed with her and Harry standing there staring at one another, but she was sure from an onlookers stand point, they probably looked slightly mental. A blush rose up her cheeks as she finally broke their stare, turning back to see if Waliyha was still at the bar watching them. But she quickly realized the spot where she stood before was empty, and she was just being overly paranoid. Alyssa turned back to Harry to see a small smirk tugging up his lips, and she realized she must have looked mental to him. Alyssa let out a small chuckle and looked down at her feet, hearing Harry laugh in response. 

“Harry… that was… that was so amazing,” Alyssa told him, meeting his eye once again. She was at a loss for a good conversation starter and her brain could only come up with the most generic thing possible, apparently.

“Thanks. I’m glad you liked it,” he said, looking rather bashful. And it reminded her of him as a boy. 

“I didn’t even know you were doing a performance tonight,” she admitted, feeling kind of bad for not knowing.

“Yeah. Some people from the charity also work through the church I volunteer at. So I mean… connections. Networking. It was a great opportunity,” Harry went on to explain.

“Oh. Yeah. I didn’t know you were working with the church,” Alyssa blushed. She felt bad. Really bad. She barely knew him anymore.

“Yeah. I’ve been volunteering for a few years now,” he said, nodding his head. It was so like Harry to spend his time volunteering, and at a church no less. He and Zayn really were complete opposites.

“I uh, I saw you… in the crowd,” Harry pointed out, and Alyssa couldn’t help but blush.

“Yeah. Of course. I wouldn’t have missed it. It brought me back. You know, to the days when you used to sing for me. I miss that,” Alyssa confessed.

“Yeah. Yeah, me too,” he said, growing quiet almost immediately.

The two of them stood in an awkward silence for a few moments, and it made Alyssa ache all over inside. She truly missed him. And she hated the way their friendship fell apart.

“Harry…” Alyssa said quietly.

“Yeah?” He asked, looking slightly hopeful.

“I feel like we don’t know each other anymore,” she told him, feeling overly sad about it.

“We kind of don’t,” he said with the same kind of sadness written all over his face, and it made her heart drop instantly.

“But I’d like to… you know, get to know you again,” he added.

“Me too. Do you think maybe we could, I don’t know… start over?” She asked hopefully.

“I don’t know about that,” he said, causing her to look up at him with a sharp eye.

“I didn’t mean it like that,” he laughed, causing Alyssa to smile and shake her head.

“I meant, I wouldn’t want to start over, because wouldn’t it be like our friendship never happened? I had too much fun with you back then to ever pretend it didn’t happen,” Harry said with a sideways smile. Alyssa couldn’t help but smile back at him.

“You’re right, you know. You’re always right, Hazza. How about we just… begin again?” She told him finally.

“Begin again? I like that,” he said with a smile.

“Me too,” she admitted, biting at her lip to stifle her own wide smile.

“Are you going to get mad at me if I have an opinion about Zayn?” He questioned.

“Hmm…” Alyssa sighed, knowing that Zayn was a sore subject for both of them at that point.

“I’ve noticed he’s been a little distant tonight,” Harry said, looking over Alyssa’s shoulder, scanning the crowd for Zayn, no less.

“Yeah, he’s being pissy. He didn’t like it when I told him I didn’t want to be used anymore,” she admitted.

“You told him that?” Harry asked, looking rather hopeful. Alyssa nodded, biting at her lip uncomfortably.

“This may sound weird, but I am proud of you, Alyssa,” he said, looking rather happy.

“It’s been a long time coming,” she said with a passive shrug, feeling a little bit awkward that they were talking about her and Zayn’s relationship so openly.

“It has,” he agreed, with an abnormally wide smile on his face.

“Harry, you’re needed in the back,” Des said, startling the both of them out of the little imaginary bubble they were huddle in.

“Alright, uh…” Harry said, looking back and forth between the two of them awkwardly.

“Go,” Alyssa told him.

“I am so glad you two are getting along. It’s refreshing,” his dad said, smiling at the two of them.

“I’m glad too,” Harry said, smiling at Alyssa.

“Me too,” Alyssa said, quiet enough for only Harry to hear.

“We’ll talk later?” He asked hopefully.

“Yeah, definitely. Take care of business, hot shot,” Alyssa told him, waving him off playfully.

“Okay, Alyssa,” he said, gripping onto her arm before giving it a small squeeze.

Seconds later he bypassed her, heading off with his dad to take care of whatever matters he needed to take care of.  

“Hey, I’ve been looking everywhere for you,” Alyssa heard Zayn say as he came up from behind her.

“Have you?” Alyssa asked surprised as she turned toward him.

“Uh, how upset would you be if I took off? I mean, it’s almost over and you can get a ride in the limo with the family,” he asked as Alyssa heard his phone buzz in his hand. It was probably a text message from some girl wanting to get together for a booty call.

 Alyssa rolled her eyes at him. Typical fucking Zayn.

“What?” He asked incredulously.

“I shouldn’t be surprised,” she said under her breath as she started to walk back to their table to grab her purse.

What?” He asked again, more impatiently.

“It’s so normal. I don’t understand why I let it upset me anymore,” Alyssa said, reaching for her small clutch purse before digging in it to find her own cell phone.

“Why don’t you just stop being so fucking cryptic and say what you mean?” Zayn snapped, getting annoyed with her.

“I always take the backseat with you, Zayn. I always have. And for once it would be nice to be put first. But hey, that’s just how it is with you – every damn time,” Alyssa snapped, finally turning to look at him.

“Stop being so melodramatic, Alyssa,” he shot back at her.

“No, seriously, Zayn. I mean, are we even friends anymore? Because lately all I am to you is a roommate who pays half the rent and a sex object for you to get your rocks off with. We’re not friends,” she spat viciously at him.

“We’re best friends, Alyssa,” he said quietly, looking incredibly hurt by her words.

“Yeah. We’ve been best friends, Zayn. We’ve been a lot of things for each other over the years. But I mean, what are we left with?” She asked him.

“What are we left with?” He asked, looking at her like she just smacked him across the face.

“You’ve always meant something to me, Zayn. You’re the person I lost my virginity to. And that means a lot – at least for me. But for Christ sakes, when is enough going to be enough?” She asked him.

“Alyssa, I don’t even know what you’re talking about anymore,” he told her, his expression left blank, and she knew he was truly oblivious.

“Zayn, I don’t even know what to say anymore. I wish you could be what you used to be to me. I just—” Alyssa started, shaking her head, thinking back on a night when Zayn was her whole entire world.

 

Fall 2010

 

Zayn took Alyssa to her very first party – one where she actually drank alcohol. And well, you could imagine, she was more than a little tipsy by the time they got back to his house.

“Ha. I am pretty drunk,” Zayn said with a little laugh as they walked up his street, toward his house.

“You are,” Alyssa giggled.

“What about you, drunky mcdrunk pants?” He laughed, looking over at her smugly.

“I’m drunk, but you’re drunker,” she said, pointing her finger at him as she swayed back and forth while she walked.

“You’re so drunker than me,” he laughed.

“Nah-uh!” Alyssa protested.

“Shut it, you lush!” Zayn scowled.

“Hey, if I’m a lush, it’s your fault. ‘Let’s play beer pong’. ‘Let’s do a million fucking keg stands’,” Alyssa said, in her very best Zayn Malik impression. He most definitely had peer pressure down pat.

“We did not do a million keg stands. We’d get alcohol poisoning,” he laughed at the ridiculousness of her statement, and Alyssa couldn’t help but laugh too. She didn’t know why they found it so funny, but they were standing at the foot of his driveway laughing their asses off for some reason.

“Shit, man,” Zayn said as his laughter finally subsided.

“You’re funny,” Alyssa laughed, giving him a light shove against the shoulder, causing him to almost lose his balance entirely.

“Come on, lush. Let’s sneak in. But you’ve got to be really, really super quiet, Lyss,” he told her.

“Me? What about you?” Alyssa asked incredulously.

“I’m fucking stealth, okay?” He said straight-faced. Alyssa couldn’t help but burst out laughing again.

“SEE! You can’t even stop laughing,” he snickered at her.

“I’m too drunk for this,” she laughed.

“Calm yourself, Rossi,” he said, putting his hands on her shoulders to steady her. 

Alyssa took a few deep breaths and smoothed out her face. But the way Zayn was looking at her was too much and she burst into a fit of giggles again.

“Jesus, Lyssa! You’re out of control,” he laughed.

“I can’t help it. Too many keg stands,” she giggled.

“Be cool,” he told her.

“Okay, okay. As long as I don’t look at you, I’ll be fine,” she said seriously, really trying hard to make the muscles in her face relax.

“Pssh, what the hell?” He laughed, feigning offense.

“Oh, shut up. Every time you look at me I can’t help but laugh,” Alyssa said, shoving him again.

“I’m so ugly,” he said in a self-deprecating tone, playing the victim so well.

“Oh, shut up! I never said that,” Alyssa scoffed and shoved him again.

“Jesus! And you’re beating me up. I am worthless,” he said, continuing the act.

“Zayn! You’re my best friend,” she told him seriously, feeling like she was about to cry if he kept it up.

“I know. I’m kidding, Lyssy. You’re my best friend, too,” he said, wrapping his arm around her as they made their way to the front door.

“Good,” she sighed. Her giggly mood finally escaped her and they easily snuck back into the house without a hitch.

When they got into Zayn’s room, Alyssa immediately grabbed for her duffel bag to get changed out of the dress she was wearing.

“I need to change, but I don’t think I can make it all the way to the bathroom without causing chaos,” Alyssa told him.

“So change,” he retorted as he pulled of his shirt and jeans, revealing his lean body. Alyssa stood there for a few moments watching on as he pulled on a pair of pajama pants over his black boxer briefs.

“I’m… I’m not wearing a bra,” she admitted.

“Even better,” he said, smirking deviously at her.

“Zayn,” she whined.

“Alyssa,” he mimicked in the same tone.

“Okay, seriously, if you’re going to be in here, then turn around so I can change,” she told him.

“Well, that wouldn’t be much fun though, would it?” He said in what seemed to be his best seductive tone, because it sure as hell was working wonders on her.

Before her brain could process it, Zayn was standing directly in front of her, looking into her eyes.

“No, I guess not,” she said, a little more breathy than she wanted to sound. A moment later, she felt his hands grip onto her hips. 

Her head was spinning. She didn’t know what was going on. Suddenly, it felt like all of her dreams were coming true. During that thought process, Zayn moved even closer. She was hyper aware of his presence. There was a gap between them before, but now all that seemed to be in the way was the dress she was still wearing.

“Alyssa…”

“Zayn…” 

His heated lips met hers a second later sending her in a shock so deep she was sure she would die from it. Oh, god. Oh. Their lips move well together, but not as well as their tongues. He was aggressive and delicate at the same time. She was in Heaven – she was sure she had died. 

Zayn’s hands moved from her hips, only to slide up to her shoulders moments later, his fingertips pulling down the straps of her dress. Oh, God, was he… ohmygod, she thought in fragmented sentences. Everything was happening so fast. She barely had time to process any of it. And when he pulled the front of her dress down, exposing her bare breasts to him, she thought she might faint from true and utter shock. She couldn’t believe it. Her stomach was in knots and she couldn’t believe any of it was even happening.

 Zayn broke their kiss to look down at her and she suddenly felt a wave of self-consciousness. She finally grew a pair of breasts, but they were nothing special. A nice firm B cup. She couldn’t complain, though. There were girls at her school who had yet to see any growth.

Zayn watched Alyssa as she shifted her weight from foot-to-foot and looked anywhere but at him. 

“Don’t feel uncomfortable, Alyssa. You are beautiful,” he told her, sounding so sincere.

“I’ve… I’ve never done anything like this with anyone before,” she admitted.

“I’m glad,” he said immediately.

“You’re glad?” Alyssa asked, feeling confused.

“I’d hate to think of you with another guy,” he told her as his gaze flickered up and down from her face to her chest.

Alyssa took a deep shaky breath in. She was incredibly nervous. The boy of her dreams was standing in front of her, staring at her nakedness and she didn’t know what to do.

Zayn moved toward her again, kissing her hard on the lips. As they stood there making out, Alyssa felt him slowly start to back her toward the bed. She almost couldn’t breathe – she was light-headed. The back of her knees hit the edge of the mattress and she found herself falling backward, Zayn coming down on top of her. She could feel his arousal against her leg and it sent an electrical current throughout her body like a live wire. She wanted to tell him he was affecting her as much she was affecting him, but she couldn’t speak – not with his tongue in her mouth and his hands on her chest. 

She was fully aware, at the age of seventeen, that life would never be the same.

But suddenly, without warning, Zayn pulled himself up to his feet, looking down at her. Her guts wrenched wondering what she did to screw it up. Wondering why the universe would toy with her like that – giving her Zayn, but taking him away almost as fast. She was ready to cry or puke or die. But then Zayn leaned back down and pulled the dress down her body before dropping it at his feet. They were back in business.

Seconds later he reached up and began pulling her underwear down, making her squirm uncomfortably.

“What’s the matter?” He asked, furrowing his brow.

“I’ve never done this,” Alyssa said quietly.

“I know,” he told her.

“I mean… I’ve never been with a guy before,” she clarified.  

Maybe she was being presumptuous in thinking it was about to lead to sex, but she wanted to make everything perfectly clear.

“I’ve never been with a girl before,” he said, and Alyssa was shocked and surprised by his admission. He always had girls hanging all over him. It didn’t make any sense.

“Really?” She asked.

“Really,” he said with a nod of his head. 

Finally Alyssa nodded, giving him the go-ahead, laying back against the mattress. He continued by tugging her panties off her body, and she let him. 

“Aly Cat, you are so beautiful,” he cooed, looking down at her in all her naked glory. Alyssa smiled and blushed as she watched him watch her. 

A split second later, he pushed down his pajama bottoms and boxer briefs, catching her completely off guard. She had never actually seen a real-life penis and honestly, she was a little intimidated. That was supposed to go inside of her? ‘Nervous’ was an understatement. She was nearly petrified.

Zayn crawled up her body. With every move he made, a painful knot twisted in her stomach. She was so nervous, she was almost seeing stars. 

“Zayn…” Alyssa breathed.

“Yeah,” he replied.

“Will you go slow?” She asked.

“Of course, Lyss,” he said, leaning down to kiss her lips.

“Wait,” she said, breaking the kiss, her body going rigid.

“What?” He asked curiously.

“What about… protection?” She stammered.

“Oh, shit. Yeah… uh… damn…” He said, sitting up on his knees. He contemplated their dilemma for a few moments before he jumped out of the bed, throwing on his pajama bottoms. Alyssa quickly slipped underneath Zayn’s blanket.

“I’ll be right back,” he told her as he quickly and quietly slipped out his bedroom door.

Zayn was gone for a few minutes before he quietly returned with a condom in hand. 

“Where did you get that?” Alyssa asked curiously.

“I snuck into Doniya’s room and stole it from her stash,” Zayn said, smiling mischievously as he pulled off his pajama pants again. Alyssa didn’t really want to know how Zayn knew his older sister had a hidden stash of condoms. Besides, she had other pressing matters on her mind.

Alyssa watched as Zayn tore open the condom wrapper and rolled it down himself like he was a professional. 

“Come on, let me see you,” he said, pulling the blankets off of her body as he crawled up toward her.

“Are you ready, Lyssy?” He asked. She didn’t even care that he called her the nickname she loathed, because somehow she was getting what she always wanted – him. She nodded, looking up into his deep brown eyes.

“Tell me if it hurts,” he said moments before she felt him begin to push himself in. 

It didn’t hurt, but rather, it felt incredibly uncomfortable at first. But her body’s natural sensory adaptation kicked in and it didn’t feel so weird – until he began moving inside of her and it went back to feeling weird again. But a good weird. 

“Oh. God,” he moaned lowly in her ear, which was like music to her.

The sounds he was making from above her threw her for a loop. It was sexy and incredibly satisfying that she was making him moan and groan like that.

“Do you feel okay, Lyss?” He breathed in her ear.

“Yeah. It feels… fine,” she told him, for lack of a better word.

“Fine?” He asked, stopping his movements altogether to look down at her incredulously.

“Uh… it’s just a little uncomfortable right now,” she told him truthfully.

“Does it hurt? Do you want me to stop?” He asked immediately.

“No, no. Zayn, please,” she told him. Of course she didn’t want him to stop. Her dreams were coming true.

“Are you sure?” He asked.

“I’m sure. Just please, move,” Alyssa told him, squeezing his hips in her hands. 

So he did. And it did get better. She was gasping for him by the time he finished. She didn’t reach a climax, but then again, she never knew what one felt like so she had nothing to compare it to.

“Oh my god, Alyssa. That was so good,” Zayn sighed, rolling off of her before taking the wet condom off.

“Mmm,” she agreed. She was seriously on cloud nine. She just lost her virginity to her heart’s desire. Zayn was it for her. She was sure of it.

“You’re my best friend and I’m glad it was with you,” he said once he settled back against the mattress.

“I’m glad it was with you too, Zayn,” Alyssa told him, trying to stave off her absolute elation. 

Why couldn’t he see she loved him more than the sun and the moon combined? Was he so blind? How did he not see her? How did he not see her heart? Nothing she did made any difference. She tried to fall out of love with him, but she couldn’t. And this… this act would cement it all. It was sure to hold Zayn in her heart like an iron-clad cage, never letting him out.

Even after Zayn fell asleep, Alyssa laid in bed and relived the previous memories they just made together. She would never forget this night as long as she lived.

 

 

“You’re my best friend, Alyssa,” Zayn said again, as if saying it over and over would be enough to fix their tumultuous friendship.

“Honestly, ’best friends’ doesn’t mean shit these days, Zayn,” she shot at him.

“Alyssa, that’s not fair,” he said quietly.

“Your sense of fair and my sense of fair are two completely different things,” she snapped, her eyes narrowing dangerously at him.

“Lyssy…” He sighed.

“God damn it! Stop calling me that!” Alyssa erupted, feeling like her whole brain might crumble if he called her that one more time.

“Baby, I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry! What more do you want from me? Please,” he begged.

“I want some respect, Zayn. I want to be more than one of your booty calls. You have no idea what I’ve been through just being your friend. You have no idea the heartbreak I’ve been put through,” Alyssa explained as she began to cry.

“I’m so sorry, Alyssa,” he said quietly, hanging his head.

“I’ve been in love with you for almost ten years, Zayn. I would have died by your side if only you would have let me in. But you could never realize that. You never respected that,” Alyssa finally admitted aloud as tears streamed down her face. She was grateful they were standing away from the majority of people that were in the ballroom, because she was having a full-on emotional breakdown.

“Alyssa…” He sighed, but saying her name was not a solution. It wouldn’t help anything.

“Zayn, you’ll always mean the world to me, but right now… right now at this moment, I need some space. I just… I can’t do this,” she told him.

“Please, Lyssa. I’ll be better. I promise. I know I’ve been pretty horrible. I know that. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry,” he apologized over and over again. But Alyssa wasn’t ready to forgive, and she sure as hell wasn’t ready to forget.

“I’ve waited a long time for an apology from you. But seriously, Zayn, I really do need some space,” she told him sincerely.

He nodded, looking down at his feet for a moment before he looked up at her again.

“Are we going to be okay?” He asked, looking genuinely worried.

“I hope so. But… I will not put up with the way you’ve been treating me. I won’t. I’m not one of your little girlfriends, Zayn. I’m supposed to be your best friend. Your better half, until someone worthy comes along. And I’ve wished for you to open your eyes and realized that person could be me, but I think I’ve given up on that. We’re friends. And that’s all we’ll ever be, right? I get that now. I do,” Alyssa explained as she wiped the tears underneath her eyes, trying her best not to smear her perfectly done makeup.

“Lyssa, it’s never been a question – I’m not good enough for you. You deserve so much better than me,” he told her.

“Zayn, don’t just give me a bullshit excuse. I don’t need the ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ crap. I see right through it. I don’t need an excuse,” she snapped at him.

“It’s not an excuse, Alyssa!” He growled, causing people to stop and stare at the two of them.

“I don’t want to do this here, Zayn. We can talk later… in private,” she told him as she continued to wipe her eyes.

“Lyssa, you’re my best friend,” he said again, and she let out a sigh.

“You’ll have your chance to prove it, but not now. Just go. You don’t want to keep Amber waiting,” Alyssa told him.

“Don’t. Don’t do that. Don’t make me feel guilty for being with someone else,” Zayn said with thick annoyance in his tone.

“I’m not. Go,” she said as calmly as she possibly could.

“Lyssa…” He said, giving her a pleading look.

Alyssa stared at him for a few more seconds before she shook her head and walked away from him. If he wasn’t going to give her the space she asked for, she was going to take it, whether he liked it or not.

As Alyssa made her way to the bathroom to fix her face, she ran right into Harry again.

“Alyssa. Are you okay?” He asked, noticing the emotion on her face.

“I’m fine. I’m fine. Really,” she lied as she wiped at her eyes. She probably looked like a fool.

“You’re crying…” He pointed out.

“Harry, I’m fine,” Alyssa said again, hoping he’d just drop it.

Zayn…” Harry said angrily, realizing why she was crying. Alyssa noticed as Harry’s eyes searched the crowd looking for his brother.

“It’s okay, Harry. Really,” she said once more, trying to assure him.

No, it’s not. He made you cry,” Harry nearly growled.

“It’s not the first time. And besides, I… I started the fight. I’m finally standing up for myself,” she explained, giving him a weak smile.

“Well, that’s fine and dandy, but Zayn needs some repercussions brought his way…” Harry said spitefully. Alyssa couldn’t help but giggle through her tears.

“What?” He asked, furrowing his eyebrows in genuine question.

“’Fine and dandy?’” She giggled.

“Shut it,” he said, finally letting a smirk turn up his scowling lips.

“Are you an eighty year old man trapped in a twenty-somethings body?” Alyssa laughed.

“I have an old soul,” he retorted.

“Apparently,” she laughed.

“I’m glad you’re smiling,” he said sweetly, sending a jolt of appreciation through her.

“Thanks,” she said as her eyes washed over his face, taking in every single feature. Every single dimple; every single laugh line; every single admission he was willing to give her.

“Come on. Let’s get out of here. I’ll take you home,” Harry said finally, breaking her out of her own kind of voyeurism.

“And how do you suppose you’re going to take me home?” Alyssa asked, knowing full-well Harry didn’t have a vehicle at the venue to complete such a task.

“We’re in New York. We’ll take a cab, duh,” he said, smiling brightly at her.

“I should have known. Hazza always knows best,” Alyssa said, smiling back at him as he held out his arm for her to take. She linked hers with his and let him lead her out of the venue.

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