Life Without You (Part Two)
As Harry and Niall sat across from each other in Harry’s living room, there was an uncomfortable silence. The tension could be felt by both and was only growing as time passed. From the moment that Harry had called, Niall knew that something was up, and he had wished that he was better at hiding his emotions. His eyes darted everywhere around the room, completely avoiding meeting Harry’s intense gaze. Niall’s leg bounced up and down as a way for him to calm his nerves. He could tell that Harry was upset; he was fuming. Niall couldn’t help but to notice the way that Harry’s breathing was uneven, how he kept clenching his fists, clear indications of his mood. It was obvious Niall already knew why Harry had demanded he come over so urgently- he had kept a very big secret hidden from him.
“When were ya gon’ tell me?” Harry asked, finally breaking the silence.
“Tell yeh wha’, mate?” Niall responded, trying to play it cool.
“Don’ play stupid wit me, Niall. Ya know exactly wha’ ‘m talkin’ about. When were yeh gon’ tell me that (Y/N) moved to America?” Harry was losing his patience, and Niall knew that it wouldn’t be smart to keep pressing the matter.
“It wasn’ my place to say anythin’. She made it clear tha’ she wasn’ changin’ her mind on leavin’. Plus, yeh were still wit Megan when she moved, didn’ think yeh would care to be honest.”
“Are ya bein’ serious right now? Yeh know more than anyone that I will always care ‘bout (Y/N), doesn’ matter who ‘m wit.” Harry growled, gritting his teeth as he tried to contain his anger.
“‘m sorry, ‘arry, but I only did it because she said she didn’ wan’ yeh to know. I couldn’ go behind her back like that, ya understand tha’ right?” Harry felt his heart nearly stop when he had heard this. She didn’t want him to know? It was now clear as day that (Y/N) wanted nothing to do with him, when all he wanted to do was to have her back in his life.
“Yeah, I get it. Would‘ve done the same thing. ‘s just weird how she didn’ tell me yeh know? I thought she wanted to be friends or somethin’.” Harry admitted. His anger had dissolved, and now all he had felt was sadness. He had hoped that one day maybe you and him could start over and be friends or at least civil with each other.
“Who knows. Maybe she doesn’ wan’ to talk to yeh right now. Or maybe she doesn’ want to be friends.” Niall told Harry, trying not to sound too harsh about the possibility of (Y/N) not wanting to speak to him again.
“Suppose so.” Harry said, sounding completely defeated. He was done talking about you, and he wanted to get off his mind, “Man, ‘s trip is gon’ be a disaster, innit?”
“It won’ be. Don’ worry, ‘arry, it’ll be fine.” As much as Harry wanted to believe Niall, he could shake the bad feeling he had in his stomach.
San Francisco was absolutely amazing. You felt like an entirely new person. No stress, no worries, and most importantly, no Harry. Life was easy here. You enjoyed living alone in a small apartment not too far from the beach. You enjoyed the beautiful weather as opposed to the cold you were used to living in London for a large majority of your adult life. You enjoyed that there was enough to distract you from thinking about Harry.
You’d asked Niall to let him know that you were moving away, hoping that he would want to at least say goodbye. However, you were only given disappointment as Niall told you Harry said he didn’t care that you were leaving.
At first, you were hurt by what Harry told Niall. It hurt that he didn’t even want to see or talk to you again, but you could understand. You weren’t even talking to each other. Of course he wouldn’t care if you were moving away. You decided to stop trying to fix something that was broken beyond repair and to finally let Harry go. Although, he was acting totally out of character for the Harry that you once knew and loved, and you couldn’t help but to think that something wasn’t right.
It had been about four months since your move, and you were really enjoying your new life. You’d made sure to keep in touch with Niall and the other boys. It was nice to know that they still cared about you despite everything that had happened, and they were adamant on making sure you knew that they were here for you. A gesture that was greatly appreciated but entirely unnecessary.
As great as life was, it all changed when the boys had told you that they were coming to visit in two weeks. They said that they missed spending time with you, and they were in need of a holiday. Whenever you had asked if Harry would be coming too, they would completely avoid the question and change the subject. That was enough of an answer for you.
You began to lose your mind upon learning that Harry would also be in attendance while the boys were visiting. You were coming up with a thousand different questions that were all left unanswered. Was he married now? Was he going to bring Megan with him?
As the days came and gone, it got closer to the day where the boys were supposed to fly in. And as the day neared, your anxiety about facing Harry only grew with it.
“Don’ worry, (Y/N). Everythin’ will be fine, promise.” You were currently one the phone with Louis, telling him all about your worries surrounding their visit. You weren’t sure how to act around Harry or how he would act around you. You didn’t know if you should pretend nothing happened and be friendly or if you should ignore him.
“I can’t help it, Lou. I mean, Harry’s always been so nice. I just thought that he would at least want to say bye to me. It didn’t even have to be in person, a text would’ve been fine. He’s completely changed from when we were together, it’s weird.” You were still bothered at the fact that Harry didn’t care that you were moving. It was just something that you never thought would happen. He’s always been the person who was mature, polite, and kind beyond belief. So the fact that he felt that he didn’t have to say bye to someone who he once considered a lover, and before that a friend, was peculiar.
“People change, love. ‘nd sometimes it isn’t the best, but maybe he just thinks ‘s awkward between you two? I mean ‘s a lot of history there. I bet ‘s hard for ‘im to pretend it isn’t there.”
“That’s exactly my point though. Shouldn’t he want to get some closure because of our history? We haven’t really had a decent conversation since I came to get my things from his apartment. Even then, that was almost three years ago, and that definitely didn’t go as planned.”
“I don’ know, (Y/N). I really wish I did, but I haven’t got a clue what’s goin’ through his mind.”
It had been a week since you had officially called things off between you and Harry, and you thought that it was time to come and get the rest of the things you had at his place. Because you’d purposely given him a couple days to think everything over and to calm down, you hoped that this entire situation would be more civil than your last encounter with him.
You had shot him a quick text telling him that you were coming over, only to receive a notification showing that he had seen your message, but there was no reply.
Over the course of the last week, you had slowly built the courage to face him and to talk again, which landed you where you were right now. You’d be lying if you said you weren’t even a little nervous, but you shook the feeling aside, and put on your bravest face. As you opened the front door with your key, you wanted nothing more than for Harry not to be home. If this were the case, you would be able to avoid having another screaming match with him, the last thing you wanted.
However, this hope was broken once you saw Harry standing in the middle of his kitchen, fully dressed, looking like he was just about to leave.
“Didn’t think you’d be home.” You admitted, hoping that this conversation would be kept to a bare minimum, “I’ll be quick, don’t worry.” You began to walk out of the kitchen, making your way towards the stairs and into his bedroom, realizing quickly that you were still not ready to face Harry.
Before you even started to walk up the stairs, Harry had stopped you, “Wait, (Y/N). Can we talk ‘bout it? I think I need some closure.” Harry stated, lightly grasping your wrist to keep you from walking away from him for the second time.
You avoided keeping eye contact with Harry and instead kept your gaze locked onto where he held your wrist in his much larger hand. You thought that a week was enough time apart, and you believed that you would be ready to talk to Harry. Although, you now know that you were definitely wrong. The moment you had set your eyes onto him, everything from that night had came rushing back. Seeing Harry this soon and having him touch you only added salt to the still very fresh wound.
”You can talk while I pack up.” You say, practically in a whisper, “I don’t have anything to say to you at the moment.” You wished that you had the courage to look at him while you talked, but it was just too hard to face the reality of the situation. This was the end of a chapter that you’d both hoped would never end.
”Wha’ do yeh mean ya don’ have anythin’ to say?”
”What I mean is, there is nothing left for me to say to you, Harry. I said everything I wanted to say that night, and it changed nothing. So why would me repeating the same thing over again change anything now?” Your emotions were getting the best of you. Your voice cracked, and you tried your hardest to keep your emotions at bay. You felt weak, not even attempting to get Harry’s grip off of your wrist. All you felt was sadness, but under that sadness you felt anger. Pent up anger that was finally coming out.
“We‘ve both had time to think things over, ‘nd this time I really am ready to listen to yeh. Had some time to calm down too, yeah? If yeh don’ wan’ to talk to me then ‘s fine. I just wan’ to say what’s been on my mind.” The desperation in his voice was obvious. Even though you weren’t looking at his eyes, you knew that they were pleading you to at least hear him out.
With a sigh in defeat, you agreed, “Fine, but don’t expect anything else except for talking. I’m not going to get back with you just because you suddenly want to talk about our relationship.” You retorted, finally looking him in the eyes. His face fell slightly at your response, but he reluctantly nodded his head in agreement.
As you both made your way to his bedroom, it was silent. Harry was obviously hesitant to talk to you, but you couldn’t figure out why. You weren’t sure if it was because he was still gathering his thoughts or if it was because he genuinely didn’t know what to say despite telling you that he had a lot he wanted to tell. However, you chose to ignore it, enjoying the silence because you knew that it wouldn’t last once you both started to talk.
The first few minutes of you packing up the remainder of your clothes and other belongings remained the same. Silence. All Harry seemed to be able to do was watch you gather your things from his position seated at the end of his bed. He wanted to tell you everything that had been on his mind for the last couple of months, especially the last week, but he had no clue how or where to start. His mind was working a million miles a second, and Harry couldn’t even process the whole situation.
“Look, I know ‘s hard to be talkin’ to each other right now, but I just wanted to say that ‘m sorry for bein’ a proper dickhead to yeh that night.” He felt that the best way to start was to apologize because he knew that the most important thing was for you to understand how sorry he was for putting you in this position.
”Harry, I’m just confused. I thought that marriage would be a topic we could talk about, but apparently, I was being delusional and presumptuous.”
”I know, love. I know. I still don’ quite know wha’ I was thinkin’ tha’ night. Should’ve told yeh how I felt about marriage in the beginnin’, but I didn’ and ‘m sorry for leadin’ ya on like tha’.” There was a long pause after Harry had finished apologizing to you. You had thought that he had more to say than just that he was sorry. An explanation maybe?
”Is that all you have to say? You told me that you wanted to tell me everything that was on your mind, so all you were thinking about was a half assed apology?” You were seething at him. Yet again he had failed to explain his feelings to you, even when you had given him the chance to do so. His eyes dropped to the floor, unable to keep eye contact with you. He was ashamed that this was all he had to say to you. Even when there were thousands of things running through his head about what he could say, none of them came out.
“I’ve got to go, but if you want to talk about this when you’ve had more time to think, call me, okay?” You softly spoke, calming yourself as you got closer to him. Harry still couldn’t meet your eyes as you talked to him. You stood there for a little while just staring at him, wanting nothing more than for him to stop you from leaving and to give you an explanation. That, however, did not happen. With yet another sigh, you said goodbye and left.
That day you walked out of Harry’s house hoping that one day he would call to tell you that he was finally ready to talk about your relationship, but he never did.
The day that the boys were supposed to arrive in California had finally come. You had told them your address as they were eager to see you the moment that they landed. There was still an uneasy feeling in the pit of your stomach, knowing that you had to see Harry again in mere hours.
You spent the entire day trying to occupying your mind. You vacuumed your house, cleaned all your bathrooms, mopped the floors, and dusted nearly every surface in your apartment. Unfortunately for you, nothing you did seemed to work. All you could seem to think about was Harry. He was making you a ball of nerves, and you hated that he still had control over you.
After all of your pointless cleaning, you plopped down onto your couch and relaxed for a little while before the boys arrived. It was odd to think that Harry would even want to come when he knew that the boys wanted to spend time with you. You had come to the conclusion that he would be spending his time elsewhere, with his other friends in and around the area. That would mean that you would only have to see him for one day, when they arrived. You just wished that day wasn’t this one.
Sometimes you wished that you and Harry never dated in the first place.
You didn’t realized that you had fallen asleep until you were awoken by pounding on your front door. As you made your way to the door, you rubbed your eyes, trying to wake yourself up.
“(Y/N), love, we’re here! Open the door ‘fore I break it down.” Niall yelled, sounding slightly muffled as a result of the door. You could hear the other boys giggling at Niall’s comment, and you couldn’t help but to roll your eyes at them.
The moment you opened the door, you were engulfed into a hug by Niall. “Good to see ya, lovely.” Niall said, as he gave you a tight squeeze.
“I’m glad you guys are here. I missed you.”
You could feel a pair of eyes practically burning holes in your head with their intense stare. It was obvious who this was, and you did everything you could to avoid making eye contact. However, you couldn’t help but to notice that a certain girl was not present. She wasn’t holding his hand or cuddling into his side, so where was she? Pulling away from your embrace with Niall, you continued to hug each of the boys one by one, inviting them inside.
Harry stood behind the rest of boys, looking awkwardly at the floor, shifting from one foot to another, suddenly stopping his gaze on you. When it was finally just him standing outside of your apartment, he looked up at you and gave a shy smile. A wave of relief rushed over your body as you realized that he was being friendly. Deciding to return the favor, you gave a genuine smile back and motioned for him to come inside.
You led the boys to your living room where you were previously taking a nap. “Are you guys hungry? Thirsty? I can get you something if you want.” You offered, trying to make them as comfortable as possible.
“Just a couple of waters will do, love. Anythin’ yeh want to give to us ‘s fine.” Niall said, giving you a smile.
“I’ll help yeh.” Harry spoke, swiftly arising from his spot situated on the couch. You didn’t feel like being rude to him, so you simply gave a short nod of your head and made your way into the kitchen, Harry following closely behind.
“How’ve ya been?” Harry started, as he helped you gather a variety of different snacks and water bottles for all the boys.
“Good, stressed, but good. What about you?”
“‘s good. ‘m doing well, thank yeh.” After that, there was a bit of awkward silence as both of you didn’t know what to say. All you could do was pass Harry the food while he made a pile of everything you had given to him on your counter.
Gathering all of the food and water bottles, you started to make your way back to the other boys. However, Harry had other plans as he began to speak again. “Hey, can we talk?” Harry asked you, a slight nervousness detected in his voice.
“We can talk in the living room.” You responding, already feeling the nerves and anxiety start to build up.
“Boys, could you give Harry and I a minute, please?” You requested once you both had gotten to the living room and placed everything on the table.. The boys nodded their heads and got up to give you and Harry the space you asked for. As they left, they gave you reassuring smiles and gave your hand a quick squeeze.
“We’ll go fo’ a walk ‘round the block. Text one of us when ya done, alrigh’?” Louis softly spoke to you. You shook your head at him, not feeling like talking. The boys gave you both one last look before they shut the door and left.
And once again, you were left alone with Harry.
You and Harry sat at opposite ends of the couch, staring straight ahead at the wall in front of the two of you. The tension in the room was quite prominent, and it was making you both fairly uncomfortable. There were so many words that could have and needed to be spoken between the two of you, yet all you could do was sit there in silence as you did all those years before.
“Where’s Megan?” You started off, trying to refrain the inevitable conversation.
“Doesn’ matter where she is.” Harry quietly replied. He seemed to be out of it, as if he had no energy at all, and this wasn’t because he had just gotten off a series of long plane rides. No, this was an emotional toll that Harry held with him on his back. One much bigger than you could ever understand. His response, although, confused you beyond belief. Why didn’t he want you to know where she was? “I won’ tell yeh considering we aren’t friends.”
“Oh,” you say, a little surprised at his quick change of mood, “Well, I thought we could start over some day, but if that’s what you want then okay.”
“Yeh wanted to start over?” Harry let out a humorous laugh, “I doubt that, (Y/N). If yeh wanted to start over wit me, yeh would’ve told me yeh were moving away.”
“Harry, that doesn’t make any sense. Me telling you about me moving would not signify us starting over. It’s more like us ending.” You were so upset at the tone he was using with you that you didn’t actually think about what he was saying. If you did, you would’ve realized that what he was saying was entirely wrong. You did tell him about your move.
If you had taken a second to stop and process everything Harry was telling you, you would’ve realized that there was something wrong. You would’ve gotten answers to why he didn’t say goodbye to you before you left London. You would’ve learned that none of this was his fault, that he wasn’t as bad as you had cut him out to be, and that he was still the same Harry you knew. You would’ve learned that you had both been lied to, played, by one of your closest friends. But of course, you didn’t. You didn’t stop to think about anything but your anger towards him that had been building up inside you for years.
“No, yeh’ve got it all wrong. It would’ve done somethin’ for our relationship, our friendship, but no yeh were so eager to get away from me yeh didn’ even think ‘bout yeh actions ‘fore ya did it.” By now, you were both standing on opposite sides of the room, facing each other. Your voices had turned as loud as they did that night as you both desperately tried to get your point across to the other.
“Don’t be ridiculous. You know what’s funny? All those years ago you told me that I had lost my mind for thinking that you would want to get married, but now, you’re the one that has lost their mind. Let me ask you this, Harry. What would you have done had you known about me leaving? Would you have came running to my apartment, begging me to stay? Would you have come over to congratulate me and helped me pack my things? Would you have tried to fix something that can’t be fixed with one simple conversation? What would you have done that was so monumental that you’re so upset about this?” You rambled, throwing up your hands to make ridiculous gestures out of pure frustration and irritation.
“I’d ‘ve tried, (Y/N), but yeh didn’ even let me do tha’. Sometimes yeh can be so fuckin’ reckless. All yeh seem to care ‘bout ‘s yehself, and yeh don’ care wha’ ‘appens in the process. Yeh try to pretend that ya are carin’, but I know the real person yeh are.” Harry had turned into the exact same person he had been on the night you stormed out. He was saying the first thing that came to his head, and his filter was gone. Of course he didn’t actually mean all the things he was saying to you nor did he believe that any of it was true. He was just completely fed up with the way that your relationship had taken such a negative turn so abruptly.
“Fine, Harry. If that’s the way that you really see me, as some sort of toxic, deceiving, manipulative bitch, then so be it. You don’t know me anymore, and I don’t the validation from someone I never talk to. I can’t change the way you think about me, and frankly, I don’t care. If you want to hate me the rest of your life, go ahead, no one’s stopping you. I just hope that one day you can learn to move passed all of this.“ You put in your last word, done with this conversation and Harry.
“I don’ hate yeh, love. ‘m just confused, and I wan’ to start over.” Harry was trying his best to try to calm himself down because he knew that if he didn’t, you would run off again. “I know ‘s hard for both of us to pretend tha’ nothin’ happened between the two of us, but yeh too important to me to jus’ let ya go.”
You had both stopped yelling at each other, and the conversation had turned into one with soft whispers that could barely be heard by the other.
“I don’t think that’s true. If you really wanted me to be in your life, you wouldn’t have said that you think I’m fake or that all I seem to care about is myself. You sure do have a weird way of showing people that they’re important to you, and I’m not sure that I want that. I’m sorry, Harry, but I think that it’s best if we don’t talk to each other. There’s always going to be that tension and resentment, and that’s something that can’t be brushed under the carpet only to pretend it isn’t there.”
“(Y/N), ‘s not true. I can promise yeh that. I would never do that to yeh. I would never hold a grudge ‘gainst ya. The tension will go ‘way some day, jus’ need time. I mean sure it’ll be difficult for us to get passed this bump in the road, bu’ I really want to try again. As friends.”
“Harry, I’m sorry. I just can’t. Seeing you and talking to you is too much for me to handle, even now after all those years of us not talking to each other.” By now, you were crying as all the emotions you had been holding in had finally come out. You brushed passed Harry to get away from him as quickly as possible.
“(Y/N), wa-” Harry tried to stop you, however you were already gone. He wanted nothing more than explain everything to you.
But it didn’t matter what Harry said to you in order to try to change your mind. Because Niall had gotten what he wanted and he won.
Hello, my loves! There’s part two! I really hope you all liked this, and I’m so sorry that I made you wait an extra day to read it. This is the final part of the series because I quite like how it ended. Thanks for reading, and your feedback is always welcome. :) Much love- Emily xx