just placing this here since i'm probably going to be this jade for some time

agentsokka  asked:

Not sure if you've made posts about it before (sorry if you have!), but could you elaborate more on the alphas not 'getting' each others' main flaws? I'm really curious since I haven't heard their relationships described like that before.

Sure, let me try to articulate what I mean here. 

Basically, the alphas as a group all love each other SO MUCH, which is awesome, they’re this closeknit squad and they’re all so important to each other and their relationships all make me feel enormous sprawling feelings, but the sheer AMOUNT they all love each other sort of blinds them to some of their own needs. They all want to think the very best of each other, and the occasional thoughts they have about each other that aren’t like 100% positive get immediately suppressed and marinated in guilt juice and they try not to acknowledge it and go back to focusing on the good instead. 

So they’re all kind of bottling things up about each other, right? But it doesn’t come from any malicious place, it comes from a place of wanting to be the best they can be because they care about everyone else’s opinion so much but also knowing they aren’t always their best selves – and knowing their friends aren’t always their best selves – but if THEY know their friends sometimes are shitty, that means everyone else might know that THEY are sometimes shitty, too. 

They’re all trying so hard to downplay the bad and upjump the good, which is MUCH MUCH easier to do with online relationships. 

You throw them into physical proximity and suddenly those annoyances you all tried so hard to pretend didn’t bug you that bad and never talked about because talking about unpleasant things is, well, unpleasant, start to boil over. Put that on top of the stressful circumstances that led to several relationships starting the session OFF more strained than usual, and wow. They had no fucking chance. 

I love the alphas so much – they got shit on by a lot of the fandom because their plotline was so internal and cerebral, but that is the kind of shit I LOVE. The betas were all friends, but they never felt like ONE GROUP to me. The full four way group dynamic never crystallized. We always found them interacting one on one and rarely ABOUT one another, because the betas’ conflicts were more or less external. The betas’ story up to Collide was them vs the environment, the game, doc scratch, sburb, the horrorterrors. The alphas’ story is so much about THEM. Their relationships. Them as a group. Their interpersonal issues and foibles and there’s this element of nitty gritty real HUMAN-ness to their struggles that isn’t super present with most of the betas who feel like more fantastical figures that struggle against equally fantastical antagonists. (The betas KIND OF segue into something like this post-Collide, but it’s not expounded upon as much, they’re split into different groups, and also a lot of it got retconned - Jade and John had some interesting moments on the boat but that stuff was probably the biggest victim of the retcon.)

OKAY. 

Here’s an example of what I mean to wrap it up: 

Jane and Roxy are best friends, they love each other deeply, you can tell from their every interaction that they care tremendously about each other’s opinion of them, but. Roxy has a drinking problem. This (I think) clearly makes Jane uncomfortable sometimes, but Jane suppresses it and pushes it down because she wants to think the best of Roxy, she minimizes the issue. No one ever confronts Roxy about this very serious problem she has in any real or effective way (not just Jane, NO ONE does this) because they all want to think the best of her and oh… haha….. it’s just a little foible… just  a quirk…. it’s cool…. not a big deal …. I’m sure roxy has her life under control no big deal!!

Basically EVERY alpha relationship has something like this going on. Everyone downplays how much the AR bugs them because hey I’m sure Dirk has things under control he probably does this on purpose god Dirk you’re so silly jeez Dirk we’d really like to talk to you instead of your fucking hell robot sometimes but oh well I’m sure Dirk knows what he’s doing ho hum let’s all downplay how much this actually bothers us because we want to think the best of Dirk and can’t imagine him ever creating a situation he genuinely cannot deal with or control because well gosh he’s just so capable!

Everyone downplays how selfish Jake can be because oh well Jake is just silly he’s so nice he doesn’t MEAN to be this way I mean it’s JAKE how could Jake English ever do something as vaguely malicious as take advantage of how he KNOWS Jane never really says what she’s thinking if that thing is hard to say and use that to his advantage to give him a perfectly reasonable out on having to tell her he isn’t interested in a romantic relationship with her and then, KNOWING she actually did have a huge crush on him, constantly inundate her with his issues with his boyfriend for months thereafter. Surely Jake could never be that manipulative he’s so nice!! (NOTE: I love Jake English, specifically BECAUSE of things like this, I honestly would not like him if he were actually the way fanon paints him all the time, some weak cinnamon roll that can do no wrong.) 

etc etc etc

This is why I love the alphas! They are a group of fucked up teenagers who are all struggling so fucking bad but all need their friends to believe everything is ok, and who need to believe their friends are ok, who want so bad for each other to be happy that they sabotage themselves both individually and as a group in misguided attempts to pretend at and manufacture that happiness without actually doing the hard work of fixing the underlying issues preventing them from TRULY achieving it. 

(The one issue, as with most things in Homestuck that I have issues with, is that we are not shown the resolution to these arcs and struggles in canon, boooooooooooooooooooooo)

anonymous asked:

Your art and stories are amazing but one thing bothers me. Why do you always make it zelink? Can't you do midlink or malink? Zelda has no personality and you hardly see her in the games. There's no way she's be with Link because they don't interact a lot yet you see Midna all the time. she has a sassy personality and is always with Link. They love each other so much and he's heartbroken when she leaves. I'm just sick of seeing a good author waste her talent on a overhyped pairing.

I guess the easy answer is that I simply like Princess Zelda. I absolutely adore her in every game. She’s my favorite character, even above Link, and I love the idea of her and Link getting together, despite the little amount of interactions they may have. I like the idea that when all is said and done, he goes back to her because whether they remain just friends or grow more romantically involved, she means the world to him, and he to her.

As for the more complicated answer, I admit, I feel very little towards Malon. She’s a sweat girl who gives me a horse, and that’s it. When you actually consider it, Link has far less interactions with Malon than he does with Zelda. There’s a brief scene where you help Malon at the beginning by waking her father up, but after that I only ever went to the ranch three times while playing OoT. Whereas you see Zelda constantly throughout the game, whether as Sheik or herself. I guess it also depends on how often you purposefully go out of your way to visit them. Showing young Zelda the masks, for instance, and seeing her cute reactions was fun. While Malon will just repeat the same things over again.

Now for Midna, I really do like her a lot. She starts out as sort of an anti-hero and softens up close to midway through the game. There is a fondness there between her and Link and he may even love her, so I see the possibilities. Although it doesn’t change the fact that she leaves at the end of the game, and Link will never see her again. But that’s canon. I suppose some fanfics can write it differently, and I’m not opposed to them. They’re just not my cup of tea. His interactions with Zelda may be few and brief, but you can still see the instant connection between the two. They trust each other at once and even fight together at the end. Truthfully though, I see all three of them as only friends during the game.

But seriously, what do you mean Zelda has no personality!!!! That’s actually very irritating how you can just claim that, and to me it’s a very shallow take of her character.

In OoT she has as much personality as Malon! More even. As a child she’s bubbly and bright while at the same time jaded with the intelligence of someone far older. She is trapped in her role as princess and a youth. She’s unable to leave the castle on her own and she has to put up with a father who refuses to believe her because of her young age. But STILL she makes plans and is active, which shows she’s clever and unwilling to sit by while there’s a threat to her kingdom. This she does as a child! And when Ganondorf does take control and Link is put in his seven year sleep, does she sit back and wait uselessly like a damsel??? No! She trains to become a Sheikah, she manages to hide from Ganondorf, a powerful sorcerer, for seven whole years (although I attribute that mostly to Impa). I even bet she went out during those years to help the citizens and protect them from monsters. Then Link wakes up and she’s at once there to make sure he’s not confused and to guide him during his quest. Can you imagine the hurt she must have gone through seeing Link pull his sword on her when she first appeared to him as Sheik? How she had to hide her identity from him to keep her Triforce safe all the while probably aching to go to him and reveal that his childhood friend is right here. Her interactions with him as Sheik are brief, she recognizes that she has to distance herself from him to protect them both. She has an untold amount of patience and willpower, and willing to wait until Link is ready to face Ganondorf to reveal herself. She’s overjoyed when she finally does face Link as herself and when it is time to send Link back to his childhood she is agonized and apologizes for all the unfairness he’s experienced. If anything she is the most dynamic character in OoT. To say she has no personality shows a lack of insight.

Zelda in TP, however, is more difficult to read, but even with the few times you see her you get a feeling as to what she’s like. At first she comes off as reserved and quiet. That may be because of her upbringing and the responsibility put on her shoulders, or it might be because her people are in danger and her country has been taken over by a usurper, but you get the gist. What’s annoying is that you’re essentially saying that these kind of people don’t have personalities! Just because some people aren’t outspoken and bubbly doesn’t mean they don’t have feelings and emotions. TP Zelda is altruistic, putting the wellbeing of her country above her own freedom. When she dropped her sword she knew that she was risking the possibility of being executed by Zant. Lucky for everyone he only locked her up. Since then she’s had the death of her soldiers on her mind and is constantly worried about the fate of her people. Still she doesn’t lose hope. When Midna and Link arrive she blindly places her trust on them even though they are complete strangers and when it comes to Midna, it’s really questionable whether she should trust her or not. She later on gives her own life for Midna because she recognizes that Midna’s life is more valuable than hers and she’s sorrowful when she realizes who Midna is and what she’s been through. In the battle against Ganondorf she shows her complete respect to Link as not just a hero, but a man who fought long and hard to save her country even though he didn’t have to. She’s kind, humble and always caring about everyone else. It may not be an exciting personality, but nonetheless that’s who she is.

I won’t even bother describing Tetra, and SS Zelda’s personality is too cute for words.

I’m not trying to persuade you to change your preferences, nor am I implying I hate those pairings, but please respect that this is my preference. I don’t care that it’s overhyped, I don’t care if people hate the pairing. It’s what I enjoy, and unless you’re willing to pay me, I write and draw for myself first and foremost. I don’t understand why you read them anyways if you don’t enjoy the pairing. I’m sure there are a ton of great authors who write for Malink and Midlink. Just please don’t belittle the use of my writing just because you dislike Zelink.

anonymous asked:

bakagamieru(.)tumblr(.)com/post/120309787573/probably-you-have-already-discussed-this-but#notes I'm relieved that you're able to understand me ahahaha However (if I may say what I think) I think the "relationship" between Niall and Jade is not entirely useless, indeed. If very soon there will be a Zerrie break up, Little Mix, could use  Niall to promote their music and could utilize the connection between Niall and Jade.


Found it pretty funny that Niall span Jade round like that, isn’t there a video of him pulling the exact same move with Melissa!


What are your thoughts on Niall and Jade? I think that it’s really awkward especially since LM has their new single out and 1d is starting their tour up again.


Jade and Niall always hang out after a lm single is out remember when they were together in that festival ?


Jade is single but she was framed as a cheater before btw


I did run across the Jade cheating thing when I was trying to verify whether or not she was supposed to have a boyfriend last night.  I don’t think it’s going to play into anything here though.

As I thought, it’s just promo.  If you pay attention to what’s actually said in the articles, almost all of them are saying that fans are overreacting and they’re clearly just friends.  The only outlier is Fashion & Style really.  

  • Daily Mail article- Niall spun Jade in a video, the vine was from Ciroc, fans are speculating on their relationship, fans think they’re cute and are saying they’re probably just friends, this is what Jade was wearing, this is what Black Magic is about, the album is this summer, Niall praised Black Magic, there’s no rivalry between Little Mix and Fifth Harmony
  • Mirror article- Niall and Jade partied together, Jade’s mom was there so no romance obviously, Jade and her mom came to join so they didn’t go out together, fans are upset about Niall being linked to a girl of any type, Zayn and Perrie are engaged, Jade went to watch Fifth Harmony
  • Hollywood Life article- Niall and Jade partied together, Jade’s mom was there, fans don’t ship it, it’s likely a casual friendship, Zayn and Perrie are engaged, Niall has been linked to Melissa and is introducing her to his friends, Niall is still on good terms with his “ex” Laura Whitmore and loves all the ladies
  • Metro UK article- first one out within 30 minutes, there’s a video of Niall and Jade, other than that there’s absolutely no proof of a relationship, fans don’t ship it
  • Heatworld article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, Zayn and Perrie are engaged, they might have been flirting, but fans aren’t on board, they probably aren’t dating
  • OK Magazine article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, some fans think they’re dating, some fans think it’s laughable, we’ll have to wait and see
  • Sugarscape article- Zayn and Perrie are a thing, the video of Niall and Jade is cute, fans are speculating, there is such a thing as friends
  • Yahoo Celeb UK article-  there’s a video of Niall and Jade, Jade’s mom was there, obviously they’re just friends duh, Jade and her mom saw Fifth Harmony, Zayn is engaged to Perrie, fans are speculating, it’s safe to say they aren’t dating because guys and girls can just be friends
  • MTV UK article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, they were partying with friends, there’s nothing to suggest romance, fans are flipping out, reserving judgment for the time being
  • Fashion & Style article- Little Mix dissed Harry recently, Jade is the next LM girl to eye up a certain 1D boy, neither have confirmed anything, Zayn is engaged to Perrie, some fans think Zayn and Perrie introduced Niall and Jade, Zayn and Perrie should get married late in the year, rumors that Zayn left 1D for Perrie have been shot down and the groups are on good terms, Perrie hasn’t been wearing her engagement ring, but obviously it’s just being cleaned
  • PopCrush article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, fans are speculating, the video is innocuous and friendly only, Zayn and Perrie are dating, Niall was rumored to be with Melissa, has Niall moved on to Jade, it’s probably just friendly
  • Unreality TV article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, they seemed to hit it off, Zayn and Perrie are engaged,  Niall doesn’t go public with his girlfriends, fans are sure nothing is going on
  • Gossip Cop article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, reps haven’t responded yet, some fans think they’re dating, some fans have an “appropriate” level of skepticism, Zayn and Perrie are engaged
  • Her.ie article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, there may not be any truth to rumors of dating but fans are freaking out
  • Cambio article- there’s a video of Niall and Jade, they’re cute, fans are speculating, Cambio thinks they’re just friends,  Niall praised Black Magic

Most of the articles mention Zayn and Perrie, only Daily Mail makes it a point to mention Ciroc at all, and there’s a surprising lack of mention of their single. Only a couple places bothered to mention it even though Zayn and Perrie were brought up consistently.  I don’t know what they’re trying to do if they’re not even getting proper promo for the single.  More places mentioned that Jade went to see Fifth Harmony (implying or straight out saying there’s no rivalry between the groups) than mentioned that Little Mix has a single out.

It seems too convenient for that video to be organic, especially with the Ciroc tie in.  There’s only one other time I can find of Niall and Jade specifically hanging out, so I don’t think that counts as “after every single”. I can see Niall twirling Jade anyway because he seems to just like doing it.  While he did do it in the casino video with Melissa, he’s also done it to Louis and Liam on stage before.  It’s just a thing with him I think (a cute thing).  I was also surprised Melissa didn’t get brought up more.  Only 2 times I think.

It definitely seems planned, but if so, it’s being handled very poorly.  If I were Modest, I would have pushed Black Magic, the Little Mix album, Niall and Melissa, and I would have mentioned the Fifth Harmony connection even more.  Either Modest is really confused about what they hope to gain from this stunt or someone is interfering with the coverage.  

I’m leaning more to the former, but this is just incomprehensibly pointless except for reminding everyone that Jade and Niall aren’t dating and that Perrie and Zayn are engaged.

I'm Sorry. (Harry Styles) #12

Harry and his family were coming a bit earlier than the other guests to help us with the decorations and other stuff from the party, along with one of my aunts. It turned out that mom had already called Anne a few days ago to invite her to the party, and apparently Harry was the only one who didn’t know. Of course, I should’ve expected mom to invite Anne, they were like sisters! I guess I just let that one slip.

When I was finally ready for the party (http://www.polyvore.com/birthday_party/set?id=166482552), I made my way downstairs to help the others. Mom was still making some food while Keith and dad were just moving stuff around. When dad spotted me, he handed me a large bowl filled with chips. “Thank you, this is what I always wanted!” I gasped.

He rolled his eyes. “I need you to put that on one of the tables in the backyard. Do not eat them on your way there, please”

“No promises” I smirked.

“And when you do that, you come back and help us with these other things” he added, right before I started making my way to the backyard.

The tables were already set. There was a bowl of punch, snacks, sodas, and just everything you needed for a small birthday party/family get together. Placing the bowl next to a tray of sandwiches, I went back inside, but not before taking a single chip into my mouth. When I reached the living room, dad and Keith were already taking out the decorations. And at that same moment, the doorbell rang. “I’ll get it” I said, heading to the front door.

When I opened it, I saw my aunt standing there with a big smile on her face and 2 bags in hand. “Well, if it isn’t Henley Jade Mathews”

“Why do you say my whole name, aunt Jessica?” I asked, chuckling.

“Just because,” she said, extending her arms. “Give me a hug because I haven’t seen my beautiful niece in a long time now”

Smiling, I let her embrace me in a bear hug, since I was already being used to getting crushed by my family. When she pulled away, she pinched both of my cheeks before I let her come into the house. “I’m here!” She called to the others.

“Oh, great, hello sis,” Mom was the first one to walk towards her and give her a brief hug. When the other two greeted and hugged her as well, aunt Jessica placed the bags on top of the counter. “I need you here in the kitchen. Henley, dear, Anne called and said that she was close, so leave the door unlocked”

“Okay,” I said, making my way to the living room once more, where dad had a box in his hands and Keith was taking out the karaoke. “Need some help?”

“Uh, yeah, this thing is kinda heavy” Keith said. I went to help him.

“Why do we need the karaoke anyways? Nobody really uses it” I said, the two of us heading to the backyard.

“Yeah. But It’s just in case, I guess. Anyway, they also use it to play CDs so whatever” Keith said.

“They’re probably gonna play Kids music in this” I chuckled, the two of us placing the karaoke down on the ground.

“Can you imagine them playing those kids who always ruin the songs by changing some lyrics? That really dumb group, um… Kidz Bop?” He said, laughing.

“Jesus, gross, no!,” I said, Keith laughing harder. “God, I really hope they don’t! I just hope they play Disney songs, not that!”

“Don’t worry, Jimmy wouldn’t let them” Keith said.

I rolled my eyes. “He’s four”

“So?”

“You’re stupid” I said, grabbing another chip and placing it all in my mouth.

“Thanks” he smiled proudly.

Whilst I laughed at him, I heard mom and Anne’s voices as they greeted each other, letting me know that they had just arrived. “Come on, let’s go say hello” I said.

“Right… I know why you really want to go there” he muttered behind me.

“Shut up” I said, at the same time we reached the others, who were just having small chats.

Dad and Robin were talking whilst aunt Jessica was talking about how long It’s been since she last saw Harry and Gemma, whilst mom and Anne were already in the kitchen as Anne was starting to talk about the traffic. She saw us when she placed her things on the table. “Hello, you two lovelies, good to see you again!” She said, walking towards and giving each other a small hug.

“Good to see you too, m'am” Keith said.

“Oh Lord, please don’t call me m'am ever again” Anne said, pretending to be hurt as we laughed at her.

“Oh my God, you brought donuts!,” I exclaimed, walking towards the small box full of glazed deliciousness. “Thank you, Anne, you’re the best”

“You’re welcome, sweetie” she said, grinning.

But before I could open the box, mom was quick to slap my hand away. “Not yet, Henley”

“Just one, I won’t eat them all!” I said.

“Lily, don’t torture the poor girl” Anne chuckled.

Mom rolled her eyes. “Fine, just one”

“So, that means that I can have one as well, right?” Keith asked, walking towards the now open box as I took out a donut.

“Yeah, yeah, take one,” Mom waved her hand in a ‘Whatever’ way, stirring whatever she was making with the other. As we took a bite of our donuts, she said, “Anyways, I need you two to run to the grocery store and get me some chocolate icing”

“Great” Keith said sarcastically.

“Take Harry and Gemma with you”

“Oh, with pleasure” he said, taking his car keys and walking towards Gemma, wrapping an arm around her as they made their way out the door laughing like a couple in love.

When I made eye contact with Harry, both of us smiled at the same time and I walked towards him. “Let’s go then, my dearest Hazza”

“Of course” he said, copying the same actions as Keith and wrapping an arm around my shoulder, while I wrapped an arm around his waist.

***


While at the grocery store and after we picked up the chocolate icing, Keith wanted to buy a few more things. So, we went home with the required stuff, cookies, ice cream, and Nutella.

When we got home, we helped with the remaining details while having random conversations as we did. It wasn’t much work, we just needed to fill up some balloons, set up the chairs, and place the now finished cake on one of the tables. By the time everything was perfect, the guests were starting to arrive.

Emily was one of the first to arrive. I had driven her home before I got ready, since she didn’t bring any clothes and mine didn’t fit her much. She was curvier than me. So, I just drove her to her house and she came back in her own car. Valerie, Louis, Niall, and Ray arrived a bit later. Liam, Amy and Joseph couldn’t make it for the different reasons, unfortunately. Still, everything was pretty good. The little kids were running around playing with each other; there was music playing in the background; people were chatting happily with each other; others were chatting inside the house; a few of them were dancing; mom, Anne, and two of my aunts were still in the kitchen talking and laughing, and everything was just great.

And us… we were all just sitting in the stairway, each of us holding green and blue cups of soda. “Damn, Henley, you have a lot of cousins” Louis said.

“Yup,” I nodded. “And most of them are little, so It’s quite the handful”

“But they’re all so cute!,” Valerie squealed. Yeah, she was a sucker for little kids. “Especially Jimmy!”

I chuckled. “Not to sound weird or anything, but one of your older cousins was staring at me” Niall said.

“Which one?”

“Black hair, shoulder length, side bangs, brown eyes…” he described her.

“Oh, that’s Jennifer” I said.

“Oh…” he said, nodding. “She’s pretty”

I raised an eyebrow at him. “I thought you had another admirer”

Furrowing his eyebrows in confusion, he gave me a weird look. “What are you talking about?”

“You know, last night, when you guys went out with those girls… and they gave you their numbers” Emily smirked.

“Oh, okay!,” Niall exclaimed in realization. Then, he scratched the back of his neck. “Well, It’s not like we’re in a relationship or something like that! To be honest, I don’t think we’ll ever be in a relationship. But, I’m not saying that I’m gonna go to Henley’s cousin and ask her to be my girlfriend, I was just curious!”

“Sure, Niall” I chuckled at him.

“I’m being serious!”

“We believe you, Niall, chill out ” Ray laughed. “You didn’t do anything wrong

“Anyway, let’s do something else, instead just of sitting here doing nothing?” Harry said, taking a sip of his soda.

“We are doing something. We’re talking” I said, smiling widely at him.

He rolled his eyes. “You know what I mean, smart mouth”

“Hey, now that we’re here, we can play those horror video games you have, Henley!,” Louis said, shaking my shoulder. In a not so gentle way. “I mean, yeah, it sounds pretty anti-social, but we don’t really hang out with these people!”

“Yeah, we can play horror games so the little kids around see them and get scared and then they won’t be able to sleep at night. That’s great” Valerie said sarcastically.

Louis gave her an annoyed look. “Bitch, the kids are outside!”

“Don’t go all sassy with me!”

“Then don’t go all lame on me-!”

“Hey!,” I cut them off. Even though I knew they were just joking around, they were being too loud. “Man, you too can give anyone a headache in just a matter of seconds!”

Niall laughed. “I’ve been saying that for years”

“No, but seriously, let’s go play some video games!” Louis whined.

I groaned, standing up. “Fine, let’s go”

“Yes!,” Louis bumped his fist in the air in ‘victory’ and then pointed at Valerie. “In your face, you little witch!”

Valerie placed a hand on her chest. “Oh my God, I am so hurt. Like, seriously, I wanna cry”

I laughed at her constant sarcasm. “Come on, let’s go to my room. There are people in the living room ”

***


So, we stayed in my room for a long time just playing video games and taking turns. I didn’t even know how long we were there, but it felt like a lot. We didn’t even bother to go downstairs and get some food, but knowing mom, there was probably still food left for us to eat later.

Mom came into the room whilst we were playing Beyond: Two Souls, and she told us that we had to go downstairs because 1) we were gonna sing Happy Birthday to Jimmy and 2) we couldn’t be upstairs “wasting time on those consoles when there are a lot of people in the backyard socializing and having fun”. So, we went downstairs, we sang to Jimmy, they cut the cake, I ate 3 slices, and we just stayed there with everyone else for a while. Niall actually went to talk to Jennifer and they seemed to get along pretty well. While he did that, Emily also took the chance to talk to my other cousin, and Jennifer’s older brother, Andrew. The rest of us just sat in a small circle, admiring little Jimmy who was sitting on my lap. I was feeding him a piece of cake. “Oh my God, I wanna kidnap him and keep him as my little brother!,” Valerie squealed, ruffling his hair softly. “Sadly, all I got were two older siblings”

“Yeah, and I got Keith” I said.

“I got Gemma,” Harry added. “But I would’ve loved to have a younger brother or sister”

“Yeah, well, I’m an only child, so…” Ray shrugged.

“Well, I’m the oldest of all my siblings” Louis said, looking proud.

“Yeah, we know” Valerie said, rolling her eyes.

Before any of us could say something else, I felt Jimmy’s small hand tugging lightly at my cardigan. “What’s wrong, little fella?”

I leaned in close to his face so he could speak to me. “I wanna go with mommy” he said in my ear.

“Is that so? Are you sleepy?” I asked him. He nodded as a reply.

“So, you don’t want any more cake?,” He shook his head. “Well, okay. Let’s take you to mommy”

Handing Louis the unfinished slice of cake, I stood up from my chair with Jimmy in my arms. Harry stood up as well. “Can I go with you?”

“Of course” I replied.

And just like that, we went inside to find aunt Vivian. She was having a conversation with mom, Anne, aunt Jessica, and aunt Jane at the dining room table. “Aunt Vivian,” I called her, her attention turning to me instantly. “This little guy is getting sleepy”

“Oh, is that so?,” aunt Vivian smiled, taking Jimmy, who was already half-asleep, in her arms. “Well then, we should get you to bed”

“You can put him in my bed for now” Mom said.

“Thank you” aunt Vivian said, she and mom standing up and heading to the stairs.

I waved goodbye to Jimmy as they fled. He was the cutest kid ever. Pretty obedient, too.

When I turned back to Harry, he was smiling at me. “What?”

“Nothing, It’s just that…” he shrugged. “I have a feeling that you’ll be a great mom someday”

Letting out a light laugh as I brushed a strain of hair behind my ear, I said, “Well, you’ll be a great dad as well. Don’t think I haven’t seen you playing with my little cousins. It’s the cutest thing ever!”

He blushed at the comment. “Well, yeah, I do love kids”

“I know,” I said, folding my arms across my chest and tilting my head to the side a bit. “You look so happy and cheerful when you’re around them”

As he smiled, the two of us just stood there staring at each other. It was true. Everytime Harry is holding or playing with a child, his eyes just have this tiny sparkle that just makes him look even more beautiful than he already is. And I enjoy watching him spend time with my little cousins, since they adore him. Before we stopped talking to each other and Harry used to come by a lot, there were times when my aunt and uncle would visit with my cousins, and Harry and I would always play with them. It was pretty tiring, but fun. And just seeing him with kids lets me know that he’ll be an amazing father.

When I turned to look at the table, Anne and aunt Jane were staring at us, smiling. Anne’s smile was bigger, as if the view was beautiful to her. When she saw me looking at her, her smile got wider, if possible. “I’m just glad that you two got back on speaking terms again,” she said. “It makes me happy”

When she said that, I looked back at Harry, who was still staring at me. “What?” I chuckled.

He shook his head. “Nothing”

***


It was already dark when people started to leave the party. Niall had gone home earlier because he had to be there early. And then my grandparents left. And then my aunts and uncles started leaving with their children, not before taking a bit of the food that was left. And then Valerie left. And then Ray. And then Louis. And then Emily. And the house was getting quieter.

Mom, dad, Anne, and Robin were still chatting in the dining room; Gemma and Keith were sitting in 2 chairs outside, whilst Harry and I were just laying on the grass side by side, a bag of chips between us. The night was chilly and there was a calming breeze that just made us lie down and just stare at the sky. “So, what are we looking at?,” Harry asked. “Because I don’t really see that many stars right now”

I shrugged. “Just look at the clouds, then”

“You can barely see the clouds”

“Then just stare at the sky that doesn’t have anything in it” I said.


“Okay then” he laughed.

“This is pretty calming, don’t you think?,” I said. “It’s peaceful. I could build a tent and sleep here”

“Yeah,” he agreed. “Maybe there’s a huge frog around here”

I sat up straight quickly. “Oh shit, I never thought of that possibility-!”

“Hey, I was just kidding!,” he cut me off before I could stand up and run inside. “There are no frogs around here, it was just a bad joke. I’m sorry for that”

Glaring at him, I punched his arm. “You’re a jerk. You scared me!”

He laughed a bit louder. “I’m sorry, really. But… you had to see the look on your face”

“Shut up, It’s not funny!” I said as he laughed harder.

“It is pretty funny” he said once he calmed down.

I rolled my eyes, lying down. “Whatever”

He sighed. “You know… I was thinking today… when I saw all these loving people around me, who have known me for a long time now, I thought back to when I started hanging out with Ned and the others… and I just wanna slap myself for being so stupid. Nothing compares to this”

I smiled at the sky. “You were pretty stupid, huh?”

“Thanks” he said sarcastically as I laughed.

“I’m messing with you,” I said. “It’s okay, really. All of that’s passed and now you’re back. And that’s all that matters”

“Yeah” was all he said.

Letting out a satisfied sigh, I extended my arm to reach for the bag of chips. But when I was about to grab some chips, I felt Harry’s hand meeting mine. ‘Oh my God, isn’t this a cliché?’ I thought to myself as I gulped. Slowly turning my head to look at Harry, he did the same, his eyes meeting mine for a brief moment. Quickly snatching the bag of chips from him, I gave him an innocent smile as I brought some chips to my mouth. “Hey, no fair!” He said.

“What? I just want chips” I said, shrugging.

“Well, I want chips too, so give me the bag” he said.

I shook my head.

“Henley, give me the bag, It’s not yours”

“Well, actually, dad bought it, which means that It’s from this house… which also means that It’s mine” I pointed out, smirking at him.

“Well then, share!” He said, trying to reach for the bag.

I laughed. “Nope”

“Oh, so that’s how It’s going to be?,” he said, sitting up and looking at me. I held onto the bag for dear life. “Alright then”

And before I knew it, Harry was almost on top of me, tickling my sides without me seeing it coming. “NO, HARRY, S-STOP!” I shouted, laughing so much that what I just said wasn’t even understandable.

But Harry didn’t stop, he just kept tickling me, and I was already running out of breath. “Give me the bag, then” he said.

“N-no!” I managed to say.

“Oh, well okay, then” he said, resuming the tickling.

As I laughed louder and louder, I couldn’t stand it anymore. But it took me a few more seconds to say, “O-OKAY, YOU WIN!”

"Good to know you learned your lesson” he smiled at me as I tried to catch my breath. It was when I handed him the bag that I realized how close we actually were. His nose almost touched mine and I could see his facial features clearly, despite it already being dark. It was incredible how his eyes looked greener the closer you looked at them. “What?” He asked. 

I shook my head. “Your eyes, they’re… beautiful" 

He let out a soft laugh. "You think so?" 

I nodded. "Yes" 

He kept eye contact for a few more seconds before reaching up and pushing some hair out of my face. "You’re beautiful” he whispered. 

“I’m okay, I guess” I said while chuckling. But it was because I was starting to get a bit nervous. 

“No,” he said, shaking his head slightly. “You really are beautiful" 

Giving him a closed-mouth smile, I felt my stomach turn into knots as he said those words. I tried to convince myself that I would’ve felt this way also if anyone else told me this. And that the butterflies in my stomach were just because a boy was complimenting me. I tried to think that this was just a silly thing, but my mind went completely blank once I saw Harry’s eyes move from my eyes to my lips, over and over again. And I didn’t really know what to do… 

‘Should I say something…?' 

'Should I stand up…?' 

'Should I turn my head…?’

'Should I go with it…?’

It was a pretty confusing moment, because Harry and I have never shown this type of… affection. I mean yeah, we had flirted with each other before, but this was way more. The way he was looking at me and the way I was looking at him was different, completely different. I almost forgot that we were lying on the grass, with our siblings just a few feet away from us. But I didn’t pay much attention to that. 

Harry’s fingers caressed my cheek so softly that it was as if he was afraid that I would break somehow. His touch made me feel tingly, and my heart rate wasn’t normal. What was he doing to me…? "Gemma! Harry! We’re leaving!” Anne called from inside the house. 

Harry and I turned our heads to see that Gemma and Keith were now making their way inside. Slowly, he started standing up, offering me his hand once he did. When we were both on our feet we looked at anywhere but at each other, trying to evade the awkwardness that had built between us. “Um, well, I gotta leave now” he said.

I nodded. “Yeah”

I ended up following him to the door because I had to say goobye to the others. I hugged Anne, I hugged Robin, I hugged Gemma, and reluctantly I hugged Harry. Thankfully, no one seemed to notice how uncomfortable we were. “Thanks again for having us, we had a great time” Anne said, all of them stepping out. 

“Thanks for coming! Let’s meet each other soon, again!” Mom said, the three of them waving at Anne and her family. They waved back, except that Harry was staring directly at me, waving one last time. And I, ignoring the tightening feeling in my chest, waved back, giving him a small smile.

He definitely wasn’t making it easy.