Solace ~ h.s.

If he weren't there... I don't know what would have happened.

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32. ⪻ 32 ⪼

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“Belle, hey. There was an emergency at the hospital and I had to go in. Don’t worry about Edward; my mum, thankfully, was in town doing some shopping, so he’s with her at my place. I’m sorry, love. I’ll ring you when I can.”

I’m not sure how exactly I managed to drive the trip from Northwich to Manchester safely. Driving through clouded, teary eyes isn’t the easiest thing in the world, especially when it’s raining outside and it’s become dark.

I couldn’t stand simply staying in that house after reading what the contents of that envelope included. Being overloaded by old memories and then being handed documents that change everything makes staying in front of eyes of strangers difficult to do.

When you find out that you’ve been lied to your entire life and your world completely changes in a matter of one afternoon, you tend not to be able to focus on much other than sobbing and screaming at nothing in particular.

One thing I knew for sure was that I had to find Harry. I didn’t care if he was working with patients, I just needed him to hold me and tell me everything is going to be okay, no matter how selfish it is. He was the only person that helped pull me through the loss of the people that raised me and he was the only person that I feel comfortable confiding in.

Immediately upon pulling up outside the hospital, where Harry left a message saying he was, I stuffed the envelope harshly into my handbag. Tears continued to stream down my face, being wiped painfully away with the back of my hand.

Have you ever been so angry about something that you’re reduced to tears and you just can’t stop shaking and wanting to cry and scream out? That’s my current state.

Shakily, I exit Harry’s car and storm into the hospital through the closest entrance to neurology. I don’t know if he’s actually there, or if he’s in A&E, but I can’t find it in me to interact with someone to ask.

Upon making the journey, I find myself in pediatrics. A new wave of emotions running through me at the memories of me being wheeled into this ward to see Edward. It’s enough to send a couple more tears down my cheeks, only this time I don’t wipe them away. A couple nurses turn their attention to me as I walk past, but I ignore their curious gazes.

I need to get to Harry before another break down occurs.

“Annabelle, hey,” I jump back at the sound of the familiar Irish accent and crane my neck in his direction, “What are you doing here?” He asks, smiling at me despite the obvious distress in my face. But like a switch had been turned, he turns serious as his eyes scan my entire person.

“Where’s Harry?” I ask him, my voice trying to be strong, but only coming out shaky and angry.

“I-I don’t know.” He answers. Niall looks shocked, taking a step closer to me and lightly pushing us out of the middle of the corridor. “What’s wrong?” I shake my head at him, not interested in sticking around here when he doesn’t know where Harry is.

I can feel my emotions begin to bubble over and I know I won’t last much longer without making a big, embarrassing scene. So, without another word I push Niall out of the way and continue down the corridor. Niall calls after me, before catching up and spinning me around by grabbing my arm.

“Annabelle, stop.” He tells me, his voice stern. His he holds me at arm length to get a good look at me.

“Niall, I have to talk to him.” I mutter out, letting a few more tears spill over. Niall nods his head slowly and let’s his thumbs softly caress my arms to try and calm me down. My resolve for feeling angry towards everyone I cross paths with, slowly disappears as Niall speaks.

“Alright, I’ll help you find him, okay?” I nod my head frantically, feeling myself start to break down. It’s only seconds before I’m full-on crying in a pediatrics ward of a hospital. Niall doesn’t make a move to lead me towards where Harry might be, only holding me at arm's length for a bit longer. “I need you to take a deep breath,” I do as he says, at least trying my hardest, “that’s it.”

“I’m fine.” I answer, not convincing anyone.

“You’re shaking.”

Sure enough, my hands are violently shaking at my sides and I feel myself getting more worked up over the fact that I simply can’t calm down. Niall notices my distress and wraps one arm around my shoulders to hold me to his side as we take slow steps towards the direction of the neurology ward.

“Do you want to wait somewhere and I’ll bring Harry to you?” He wonders, his voice soft and still filled with concern.

“No.” I answer immediately. If I’m left alone again, I’m not sure what’ll happen to me. I may finally succumb to the panic attack that I can feel brewing within me. I may boil over with anger, confusion, and sadness, to the point where I’m making a big scene. “I don’t want to be alone. When I’m alone my brain starts to over think and I get all worked up and…” My voice pitters off into silence my cries dry out the words.

“Hey, shhh,” Niall cooes, pulling me closer to him and rubbing my upper arm softly, “let’s go find Harry.”

Our journey to neurology is filled with curious stares from hospital personnel, light reassuring words from Niall that I’ll be okay, and more tears that my body can possibly produce. I’m thankful when we finally make it and Niall is leading us to the nurses’ station.

A nurse, that I vaguely remember seeing when I was a patient here, is sitting at the computer behind the desk, looking concentrated on something written on the screen. Her presence brings back unwanted memories of waking from unconsciousness, only to find out that the worst had just occurred.

“Do you know where Dr. Styles is?” Niall asks the nurse politely.

Her eyes dart up from the screen to look at Niall. She smiles before her eyes fall onto me; a young woman dressed in wrinkled professional attire with messy hair from being tugged at and makeup smeared all over her face from crying. Her smile doesn’t falter at all, despite my state.

“He’s finishing up with a patient, would you like for me to page him when he’s -” The nurse's eyes, that were trained on us, flicker behind us. “Oh, there he is.”

Both Niall and I turn around quickly to find Harry staring down at paperwork in his hands, oblivious to our presence as he begins walking down the corridor away from us.

“Styles!” Niall shouts after him, causing Harry to jump slightly. Harry says Niall’s name, trying to match Niall’s enthusiasm before tearing his eyes from the chart in his hands and ultimately meeting the picture of Niall and I.

His eyes flash to me immediately, a smile wide on his lips before noticing my state. In a matter of seconds, he’s in protective mode and he’s rushing over to us.

“Belle, love, what’s wrong?” He questions, looking me up and down, probably assessing me for physical difference since last he saw me. “What happened?” He questions when I don’t answer him, my body unable to react past crying some more.

“Harry.” Is all I am able to get out as I slither out of Niall’s grasp and practically fall into Harry’s embrace.

His arms immediately trap me against him before he’s handing the paperwork in his hands over Niall and questioning him about me. Niall doesn’t have much information to answer Harry, so he doesn’t. Harry’s attention is back on my sobbing frame, surely drawing the attention of all hospital personnel in the general area.

Part of me feels bad for compromising Harry’s job, but the rest of me can’t seem to actually giving a fück.

“Okay,” Harry shushes me lightly and places a tender kiss to the top of my head, “come on.” He mutters, leading me towards a room on one side of the corridor. He thanks Niall for bringing me to him before opening the door we were heading towards.

He pushes us into the dark room, flicking the dim lights on, in what appears to me a room that looks familiar to the one I stayed in two months ago, and rubbing my back softly. He continues to hold my shaking frame, trying to talk to me with little luck.

“What happened, Belle?” He questions, leading me back towards the clean bed. He pulls away from me and effortless lifts me onto the hospital bed before I’m back in his arms. “Love, I can’t help you if you don’t talk to me.” He softly tells me, pulling back to lift my chin.

His green irises are filled with worry as his thumbs are brought to my cheeks to wipe away the tears that fall. I reach up and grab his arm with my hand, giving it a squeeze as I try to calm myself down again. Instructions on calming my breathing down are whispered from his lips and within about five minutes I’ve calmed down to the point where I can speak.

“I’m sorry.” I apologize, violently wiping more tears away. Harry shakes his head at me before intertwining his hand with mine. He doesn’t say anything, just kisses the back of my hand and silently urges me to go on.

“I told you I was running errands today, but that’s not true. I lied to you.” Harry looks confused, his eyebrows knitted together. I can see a bit more worry in his eyes at what I could possibly have to say next. “Before I called you earlier, I received a call from his lady.” More confusion sweeps across Harry’s face. “She moved into our old house and said she found this important envelope in our attic. So I went to go get it.”

Harry looks slightly relieved at my confession, as if he thought I had done something far worse than simply visit these strangers.

“Why didn’t you tell me? I would have gone with you.” He tells me softly, gently running his hand up and down my arm to keep me calm. I merely shrug my shoulders, letting out the biggest sigh possibly ever.

“Because,” I start, and then realize I really didn’t have a valid answer why, “I don’t know. I guess I just wanted to go there and get it over with, and then just return and forget all about it; like ripping a plaster off your skin.” I answer him, looking up at Harry to see him simply nodding his head to what I’ve said, a small bit of confusion still across his face.

“I understand, Belle.” He reassures me. “But what’s got you so upset then?”

I release another breath, this one coming out shaky, the thought of what within the envelope getting me worked up again. Harry senses my struggle and takes a step closer to me, standing between my legs and holding me close.

“The envelope.” I mutter, my eyes running slowly from his face, down his body, until they’re staring at the shiny floor. Harry sets his hand underneath my chin and raises my face to look up at him again.

“What was in the envelope?” He wonders, his voice dropping to a whisper as I let my eyes fall closed. I feel a single tear drip down my cheek as I point to the floor where I’ve discarded my bag.

I feel Harry detach himself from me and hear him shuffling around to gather my bag from the floor. The contents have probably spilled about the floor, but the large envelope surely won’t go missed.

“They lied to me my entire life, Harry.” I find myself saying as I allow my eyelids to flutter open, releasing more tears down my cheeks.

I watch as Harry sets my bag down beside me on the bed before pulling the envelope out and examining the outside. He glances to me before doing exactly what I had at my old home, pulling the first document out of the envelope.

His eyes scan the page before widening. He inhales deeply, his feet that had him swaying slightly back and forth now have him frozen in place. And then his eyes snap up to meet mine, a look of shock written across his features.

“You’re adopted?” 

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