In Transit || Harry Styles AU

When Mason meets a mysterious guy at a club and goes home with him, she doesn’t ever expect to see him again. But when their paths cross again two years later, they both instantly feel the undeniable force between them. Mason is desperate to forget the demons of her past, while Harry lives a life fighting off his own. But after a life-changing revelation, he is determined to free them once and for all, and hopes he can help Mason in the same way she has helped him.

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5. Five


February 2018

 

When Mason heard the obnoxious pounding on her apartment door, she was certain April was behind it bouncing with news she just had to tell her. It wasn’t unlike her to surprise her at home with something random – usually something Mason couldn’t literally give two shits about. But it never seemed to phase her if she cared or not. Although, Mason usually didn’t let it bother her too much because April had always been such a good friend.

When the pounding became louder and longer, Mason grumbled to herself as her feet dragged across the floorboards. She wasn’t looking forward to her peppiness. She hadn’t been in the mood for much lately. She hadn’t seen Harry since the night they spent together in New Jersey, which was over a week ago. She tried her best to calm herself down whenever a panic attack rose in her chest so she didn’t have to bother him, and she seemed to be doing a pretty good job at it. Harry didn’t text and she didn’t have the nerve to ask him how he was doing. She was too scared to find out he was so far gone that even she couldn’t fix him. She knew she was a coward. But she never wanted her nightmares to become a reality. She couldn’t bear it if Harry was that unreachable.

“Mason!” She heard, and she stopped in her tracks realizing it wasn’t April at all. It was Harry.

“Mason, I know you’re in there. Your car is parked out front,” she heard him say. She took a deep breath and carried on to the door, unlocking it and pulling it open to see him standing in front of her looking distraught but relieved.

“Hey,” he sighed, his eyes roaming up and down her frame.

“Hey,” she said quietly, looking around behind him instinctively to make sure no one saw him standing outside her apartment.

“Can I come in?” He asked expectantly.

“Of course,” she said and stepped aside to let him in, closing the door behind them.

Mason watched as Harry immediately began a quick pace around her living room. He was worked up over something, almost frantic. It was the liveliest she had seen him in a long time.

“I-I talked to my mom,” he said, stopping to look at her.

“Okay,” Mason said quietly.

“About… you know… everything,” he said awkwardly, his eyes darting away for a moment, embarrassed.

“Yeah,” she whispered.

“And she told me the truth,” he explained, looking back into her eyes.

“What did she say?” Mason asked, her eyes widening with wonder.

The truth of his situation plagued her ever since that night. The situation was filled with so many missing pieces – he was so distraught when he tried to explain. And she was certain he didn’t get much out of his dad when he spat out the truth so viciously.

“I was born in New Mexico. And… and my real father was… he used to work with my… my dad,” Harry explained almost breathlessly.

“Wow,” Mason gasped.

“And… I just… I need to figure this shit out,” he said as he began to pace again.

“Figure what out?” She asked him.

“I need to… I need to find out who I am. I’ve always felt like a burden. I need to know that I’m not,” he said sadly.

“Harry, you’re not,” Mason told him, and meant it.

“I’m going to New Mexico,” he said as he stopped pacing and looked straight at her.

“What?” She choked out, feeling her life slipping apart with those five words. How did she become so dependent on him?

“I’m going to New Mexico and I’m going to find my father,” he explained.

“Wow. Holy shit,” she breathed as she too began nervously pacing, trying to push back the panic attack that was building in her chest.

“Mason, I want you to come with me,” he blurted out, and she stopped in her tracks staring at him, her mouth dropping open with surprise.

“I want you to come,” he told me again.

“What? Harry… no,” she immediately protested, shaking her head at the absurdity of his request.

“No, Mason. I need you to come. I… I need you. I can’t do this by myself. I can’t go there by myself. I need you,” he spoke fast and frantically as his feet began to carry him back and forth across the floor of her apartment, and she knew he might be falling apart.

“Harry,” Mason said firmly. He stopped pacing and looked up into her eyes.

“I need you to come with me, Mason,” he said again, his voice and his eyes pleading with her. And she knew she couldn’t say no.

“Alright,” she agreed quietly. She was certain she hadn’t thought it through – but she couldn’t help but be affected by the desperation in his plea. 

“Now,” he said after a few moments.

“Now!?” She gasped, looking at him incredulously.

“I have to go now, Mason. I have to,” he told her, looking as if his panic attack was about to return.

“Harry, I have a job. I have responsibilities,” she told him, feeling completely overwhelmed.

“Can’t you tell them it’s an emergency? Couldn’t you tell them it’s an emergency and you’ll be back? You could take a leave,” he suggested, his voice pleading with her.

“Harry,” she said hesitantly, shaking her head lightly. She had no idea how it was going to work.

Please, Mason,” he begged. She stared at him for a moment or two longer before she felt all her walls cave.

“Fine,” she nodded, agreeing to it all. 

Harry took a large step toward her, gripping her face in his hands as he pressed a hardened kiss to her lips.

“I borrowed my brother’s car,” he told her.

“We’re driving?” She gasped.

“Haven’t you always wanted to go on a cross-country road trip? Just get away from everything?” He asked with a smirk tugging up his lips. There was a light in his eyes she never saw before. He was excited.

“Just get away, huh?” She asked as she thought about how she always daydreamed of running away from the shit storm of her life.

“Just get away,” he repeated.

“Alright,” she nodded, finally sold on the idea.

“Thank you,” he said seriously and all Mason could do was nod, feeling completely shell-shocked at what they were about to do.

It took Mason less than thirty minutes to pack and call the café to request her emergency leave. Luckily her boss liked her because she worked like a race horse for her, so she excused her for the rest of her shifts that week and told her to give her a call when she was ready to come back to work.

“Harry… what are we going to say to our friends, to Casey when they realize we’re both gone?” Mason asked after they got into the car, before he pulled away from the curb.

“I don’t know. I don’t really care,” he said, shrugging his shoulders passively.

“You don’t care that Casey will chop your balls off the next time she sees you?” Mason asked him incredulously. His girlfriend was a straight up banshee.

“I don’t care. I don’t care what she says or does. It doesn’t matter anymore,” Harry said, shaking his head as he gripped tightly onto the steering wheel.

“Does she know that?” She choked out.

“I don’t care,” he said again.

Ohh-kay,” Mason muttered, knowing this impromptu road trip was going to come back and bite them both in the ass. Hard.

There wasn’t much spoken during the two hours it took to make it out of New Jersey into Pennsylvania, where they stopped for gas. Mason didn’t know what to say. She didn’t know how to carry on a conversation with him – not when they spent the past two years fucking instead of conversing. She wasn’t used to this kind of closeness with him. At least the silence didn’t seem to affect him any. It was peaceful. They were both content – and that was saying a lot, being the people they were.

...

Mason stood outside the gas station eating a small bag of chips as she waited for Harry to finish up in the bathroom. All she really wanted to do was change into sweat pants and put her hair up into a messy ponytail. It really didn’t matter how Harry saw her because she knew he already saw her at her worst.

“Hey,” she heard Harry say. Her head snapped in his direction, not realizing he came out of the bathroom.

“Hey,” she replied, swallowing hard as her eyes danced over his body. He changed into a black North Face zip-up and a pair of black sweat pants with a grey beanie on his head. And she couldn’t help but notice how utterly attractive he was so dressed down.

“Here,” he said, handing her the large block of wood the gas station bathroom key hung off of.

“Thanks,” she said quietly, giving him a small awkward smile as she grabbed her bag off the ground and headed toward the bathroom.

Once she was safely locked away inside, she took a deep breath and let it out as she looked at herself in the mirror. Her face was flush and she felt like an idiot. She wasn’t used to this. She wasn’t used to sharing that much confined space with another human being. It felt weird, and made her act weird. And she hated it, but didn’t at the same time. Her mind was always so conflicted – especially when it came to Harry.

Mason pulled off all of her clothes and replaced them with new ones – grey sweatpants and a red New York Giants hoodie that used to be her father’s. Without combing through her hair, she gathered it all up on the top of her head and knotted it up with a hair binder. It looked ridiculous, but she didn’t care because it helped her feel comfortable. That was until she came out of the bathroom to find Harry leaning against the car smirking at her. 

“What?” She spat at him.

“Nothing,” he said, shrugging his shoulders as his eyes wander up her frame.

“Don’t judge me,” she huffed, but couldn’t help the smirk that turned up her lips.

“No judgment. You look good,” he said, smiling at her as he gripped the handle of the driver side door and opened it, watching her walk around the car.

“Whatever,” she said, rolling her eyes at him, opening her own door and getting in.

“So, I figure we can just drive until we get tired and then just stop at a hotel or something,” Harry said with a shrug as he started up the car.

“Sounds good,” she complied, nodding her head.

The rest of the drive that day was less silent – but that was because they filled it with music. They switched between their iPod’s because they didn’t really have the same taste in music – which was okay with both of them. He put up with her heavy doses of pop-punk and angsty screamo music, and she put up with his hip-hop and mellow-dramatic radio friendly music. And sometimes their tastes would collide and they found they were both singing along.

“’Today is gonna be the day that they’re gonna throw it back to you. By now, you should’ve somehow realized what you gotta do. I don’t believe that anybody feels the way I do about you now,’” both Harry and Mason began to sing Wonderwall by Oasis.

Harry broke out laughing as Mason bit her lip, trying to push back her smile, her cheeks heating up with embarrassment.

“This song is so good,” Harry said, smiling over at her.

“It is,” she agreed with a nod, looking away from him onto the road ahead.

“’There are many things that I would like to say to you, but I don’t know how. Because maybe, you’re gonna be the one that saves me. And after all, you’re my wonderwall,’” Harry sang, loud and to the point of being referred to as obnoxious, but Mason couldn’t help but find his voice beautiful. She focused on that instead of the actual lyrics he was singing, because that just made everything awkward.

Harry continued to sing the song and Mason continued to laugh awkwardly at him as she sang quietly to herself. She couldn’t help but notice how carefree he seemed, like he wasn’t the same boy she was around for the past two years. She slowly started to wonder if finding out his true identity was what was actually going to save him from his sadness in the end. 

By the time they hit Knoxville, Tennessee, it was nearly midnight and they were both beat from the long spontaneous drive, so Harry pull off the road to get a hotel room. Not much was said as they settled in. There was only one queen sized bed, but it was nothing they hadn’t dealt with before. Only this time it was completely different. This time they were in a bed with a purpose to sleep, not fuck. As Mason curled up on her side of the bed, the light from the TV making awkward patterns on the wall in the darkness, she felt all wrong.

...

“Mason?” She heard Harry’s voice echo in her head.

“Harry?” She called back, confused.

It was warm. She was definitely warm. The climate change was baffling to her, because wasn’t it the middle of February? Wasn’t it supposed to be frigid ass cold outside? But she could feel her bare feet against the pavement as she ran down the deserted highway. The ground was warm. 

“Mason? Where are you?” She heard again, breaking her out of her thoughts.

“HARRY!” She called, knowing where this was leading. She could feel the panic weighing her down already.

“Mason, I need you,” he said firmly, his voice ragged and aggravated.

“I’m coming, Harry. I promise!” Mason shouted through the darkness as her feet picked up their pace on the winding pitch black road. She could barely see two feet in front of her through the darkness, but she kept running.

“’Maybeeeeee, you’re gonna be the one that saaaaaves meeeeee. And after alllllllll, you’re my wonderwallllll,’” she heard Harry singing in the distance, and she knew he was singing those words for her.

“God damn it. God damn it!” Mason growled in frustration as her feet slowed on the pavement and she doubled over with her hands pressed against her knees, trying to catch her breath.

“Why do you make it so hard to catch you!?” Mason yelled into the darkness.

“MASON!” Harry screamed.

...

Mason’s eyes opened wide, before she blinked to try to clear away the blurriness. It was morning and she was lying in the hotel bed alone, the blankets and her sweats cocooning her into a heated embrace. She threw off the covers quickly and sat up, rubbing her hands across her face, feeling unsatisfied with her sleep because of the dream she just awoke from.

When she looked up, she saw Harry sitting in the chair across the room from her with his face in his hands. When she saw his hands fiercely swipe through his hair a few times, she knew he wasn’t okay.

“Harry?” She cooed as she stood up from the bed, quickly making her way over to him.

He turned around to see she woke up, and she saw the redness in his eyes – he was crying.

“Harry,” Mason sighed as she reached his side.

“God damn it,” he groaned, wiping at his eyes, trying to hide his emotion from her.

“Harry, come here,” she said, gripping onto his arm as she helped him out of the chair.

“Mason,” he croaked, looking into her eyes.

“Just—” She said, her voice faltering. She pulled her sweatshirt off of her body and dropped her sweatpants to the floor, offering herself up to him.

“Come on,” she told him, leading him to the bed, ready to help him in the only way she knew how.

Her methods must have appeased him because he gripped onto her tightly and tossed her down onto the bed before he slithered up her body, capturing her lips with his own. His moves were fast and heated, and it made her feel better about the night they just spent not doing this. 

The rest of their clothing was shed quickly before he pushed inside causing her to gasp. His thrusts were unrivaled; his aggression on a whole new level, but this time she was ready for him. This time she could be what he needed – for now. He didn’t last long, which was fine with her. But even so, they were both left fighting for breath by the end.

Harry didn’t say anything afterward. He just got up from the bed and went to the bathroom. After a while she heard the shower start up, and she hoped he’d be okay. Even after they were both showered and ready to get back on the road, there still wasn’t much said between them. And once they hit the highway, the silence was so deafening that Mason almost wanted to scream. 

“Harry, are you okay?” She finally asked. He looked over at her for a few moments before he nodded lightly.

“I just had a rough morning. I panicked,” he admitted.

“Over what?” She asked, almost feeling like she was stepping out of bounds with her questioning.

“About the answers I’ll find once we reach New Mexico,” he said quietly as he stared out onto the road ahead.

“I’m sure everything will be fine,” she said and hoped like hell it would be.

Harry looked over at her with a stupid smirk on his face and all she could do was furrow her eyebrows at him in question.

“Optimism looks good on you,” he said, letting out a light chuckle. She could do nothing but smile embarrassedly and roll her eyes at him.

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