Michael was fuming, his harsh grip on the steering wheel turning his knuckles a milky white colour.
You watched him intently, unsure of exactly what you should say to try and ease his intense fury.
Michael broke the silence first.
“Why do they do that? What gives them the goddamn right to talk to you like that?” he said, his voice quiet, and strained.
You nibbled on your lower lip, unsure of what to really say. You avert your eyes to the road instead, fiddling with your fingers in your lap.
An exasperated sigh escapes the man beside you.
“I just - it breaks my heart… Why do they want to hurt you? I feel like every time I’m truly happy, someone wants to destroy it.”
You turn your head back around to look at him, and you felt a pang in your chest as you saw his eyes were tearing up.
Michael pulled the car into the drive without a further word.
You followed him meekly into the house.
You didn’t know how to comfort him. What could you even say about it? That you didn’t mind? Of course you did. Having people rip into you everywhere you went simply because you fell for a man in a band was hard. You and Michael never once lied to each other… it was like an unspoken pact the pair of you shared.
Having to disable replies and comments on social media because all that anyone seemed to say was how worthless you were, how ugly you were, how Michael could do better.
Hate accounts dedicated to you were scattered everywhere - on Tumblr, Instagram, Twitter… even on Facebook.
You managed at first. You loved Michael, more than you ever thought you could have loved someone; you knew he reciprocated - he looked at you as though you were the one that put the stars in the sky.
It was when you had made the mistake of wearing a short sleeved shirt, and fans were quick to zoom into the photos that the press had managed to snap of you and Michael.
Posts dedicated to your left forearm were everywhere - some filled with support, but most filled with hatred. ‘Damaged goods’, they called you.
The scars that littered your arm had become a part of you. You were so used to them now that you were always confused when people’s gazes shifted from your face, to your arm, and back again. Until you remembered.
You and Michael were leaving the club after a night out together - the pair of you felt carefree and elated.
Yet as you made the descent from the club doors to the car, a fusillade of flashes greeted you, along with shouted questions about cheating rumours, comments intended to set one of you off.
One in particular stood out to the pair of you, however, and was the cause of Michael’s frustration.
“Any more scars on your arm, (Y/N)? Looking for some more sympathy and attention?”
You had gripped Michael’s forearm tightly as he began to hurl verbal abuse at the culprit, his initial instinct always being to defend you.
You didn’t let go of his arm until you were both seated safely in the car.
Which brings you to now. The silence between the two of you says all that your words couldn’t.
You and Michael sat beside each other in bed, so close to each other, but not touching. You hated it… You wanted nothing more than to reach out to him, wrap yourself around him and rest your head into his shoulder, knowing that he made you feel safe like nothing else ever could. For some reason, it felt like there was a barrier between the two of you. Something stopping you from getting close to him.
“You deserve better,” Michael mumbled. It was the first words he had uttered since you arrived home.
“There’s nothing that could ever be better than you,” you whispered into the darkness.
“You’re it for me. I… I can’t imagine a life now without you in it.”
A heartwrenching sound tore from Michael’s throat, as he began to let out loud, shuddering sobs.
Suddenly, the barrier you felt before melted away, and you pressed yourself as close to him as you could, trying to soothe him, desperate to take away his pain and hurt.
You held his shaking body in your arms, and you dreaded what would come next.
“I love you. I fucking love you, and I know it hurts you. I see it in your eyes, I see it in the way your body stiffens. As if you’re building up that wall again, trying to keep people out in case they hurt you. You do deserve better than me. Better than what I can give you. I can’t protect you from them! I can’t stop them, baby… I’ve tried so hard,” he gasped between his shaking cries.
“Please, Michael… don’t. You know I only ever want you. Please don’t do this. Don’t leave me. I know that’s what’s going through your head right now, but I swear, that would kill me. I’d rather take people saying things like that every bloody day of my life than have to live without you.” Tears of your own were spilling now.
“I fucking hate it!” Michael suddenly yells, breaking away from your pleading embrace, getting out of bed and running a hand through his wild, unruly hair.
“This isn’t what I wanted! I wanted to live my dreams, I wanted to be in a band with my brothers, I wanted to tour the world and make music that fucking meant something. I wanted to make people happy… and those people who claim I’m their goddamn sunshine, their saviour, the person who inspires them and makes them happy… they’re the people breaking my love’s heart every fucking day! I can’t take this anymore, I…”
Suddenly his yelling stops, and he’s back on the bed, leaning over you, wiping away tears you didn’t know had been shed.
“Seeing you like this breaks my heart. I - I’ve been thinking about this for a while, and I… I know I’m living the dream I had as a teenager. I fucking love my life and what I do, but not at the expense of my relationship. When I met you, my dreams shifted. I still wanted to do all the things I’ve always wanted to do, but with you right beside me. I want you with me always. Being with the woman I love is more important than being a ‘celebrity’. I’m leaving the band. Don’t argue with me, my mind is made up. I can still write and help produce… I’ll still make music. Behind the scenes, this time. I don’t wanna be out on the frontline and have you being hurt day in, day out. You mean more than I could ever have believed possible, baby. It’s cheesy and it’s not usually what I’m like but I just really fucking need you to know. I don’t say it enough, I’ve never been that guy. I’m not good with words unless I’m writing a song… but you’re everything to me. You’re my happiness. I can’t lose you, and I can’t stand by and watch you be hurt. I love you.”
You were full out sobbing, and you pulled him closer to you. You needed him close. There was no way in hell you were going to let him leave that band. You were strong, you could handle it. He loved what he did, and you wouldn’t be able to live with yourself it you were the reason he left it all behind.
You decided to speak in the morning, when things were a little less raw, painful and needy. When the anger subsided, if only slightly.
You’d make him look at the situation rationally. You knew you could.
For now, the pair of just held each other as close as humanly possible, whispering declarations of love and sweet nothings until sleep came and took hold of you.
A/N: So this was a different take on prompt, I hoped you guys liked it. It was extremely fluffy, but I picture Michael like that anyway really. Every so often, everything he feels just comes rushing out.
Hope you liked it!