I NEED SOME JACK AND PERSEPHONE + overprotective dad Harry (maybr giving them "the talk")
Okay. I love you. Thank you for requesting some Persephone and Jack - I’ve been needing requests for them and you’re a doll for starting this up. Please request more Jack and Persephone - I love them already. x
Dad, did mum tell you about the extra guest we have coming round for dinner tonight? x
She did. x
And what, P? x
Well, are you okay with that? x
Of course. Why wouldn’t I be okay with it? x
Because you freaked out when I brought home my first boyfriend. x
Yes, but you were only 15 back then. You’re 20 now, so, I can’t tell you who to be with. x
I still want your approval, dad. x
And you’ll get my approval when I meet him. x
Please, I’m begging you, don’t be mean to him. x
I won’t. I’ve had this talk with your mother. x
I’m serious, dad. x
I promise. I’ll try and like him. For your sake, P. x
Thank you. x
We’ll see you soon, yes? x
Of course. We left Southampton a little over an hour ago so we should be there in the next hour. x
I’m glad you’re coming back for the week, P. We’ve missed you a lot. x
I’ve missed home a lot too. x
I’ve made sure that I made extra apple pie for tonight. x
Jack really likes apple pie. x
We’ll see you soon, okay? x
Okay. Have a safe rest of the trip, P. x
As the road sign for London came into view, with the wheels rumbling beneath the two of them in the car with the soft melody of the radio playing quietly in the silent car, Persephone couldn’t help but let her stomach fill with nerves and butterflies and she was sure that the breakfast that Jack had treated her too that morning was going to make it’s appearance. As she kept her eyes focused on the passing cars on the motorway, she hadn’t felt or acknowledged the hand sitting on her thigh. A thumb rubbing soothing against her ripped jeans-covered knee, as a hearty yet comforting squeeze was given to tear her attention from outside.
A worried looking Jack, his eyebrows creased and his nose crinkled up, was looking across at her, is eyes diverting between the road and Persephone as he tried to calm her down. His instinct going to her quietness being down to nerves, and he found it oddly confusing yet cute and adorable that she felt nervous. He thought he should have been the nervous one - he was the one meeting his girlfriends family for the first time, he was the one who was being introduced as the boyfriend to the oldest of the family, and he was the one being introduced to a man that his mother and his female family members once found highly attractive and very sex-god like back in the day - and still do to this day. And with many a try of getting Persephone to understand that she had nothing to be nervous about, he still found her biting at her nails or drawing absentmindedly as to take her mind away from the idea that her father - the one she wanted the most approval from - wouldn’t like the boy she most indeed fell in love with.
“Hey, what’s the matter? You’re awfully quiet and I know it’s your nerves and I want you to know that you have nothing to be scared about,” Jack smiled, giving her knee a soft pat as she let out a soft sigh into the silence already surrounding the car. “Not to sound so fantastic and everything, but, your family are going to love me,” he teased, a soft laugh leaving his lips as Persephone knocked at his shoulder.
“S’not the time for games, Jack. M’really nervous for this,” Persephone mumbled, her chin dropping to her chest as she looked down at her entwined hands resting on her thighs. “I’ve never been so nervous for my boyfriend to meet my family before, so, I don’t know whether that means something bad will happen or if I’m just freaking out,” Persephone whispered, picking at the cuticles on her fingers as she heard Jack let out a soft sigh.
“Your mum has already said to you that she’s really excited to meet me and I remember her on the phone saying how you needed to take me home for a roast,” he reasoned, setting both of his hands on the steering wheel as the sat-nav navigated him down a road that looked all too familiar Persephone. “I should be the nervous one, gorgeous. I’m the one meeting your family.”
He would be lying if he said he wasn’t nervous. He could feel it bubble in the pit of his gut but he knew he needed to try and show his strong suit to ensure that Persephone didn’t go into a state of immediate panic. He’d been present in her university dorm room for many stress-enduced panic attacks and he’d been present for a lot of tears and sobbing when Persephone missed home or when she felt like she couldn’t do the task she had been set to do. It was usual for him to be the one to stay together, to make sure that his girlfriend was okay before he moved himself to another room and let out the emotion he would have been holding in.
“But, I love you. They’ll love you, but I just can’t stop thinking that my dad will do something to scare you off,” Persephone whispered, looking at the row of houses the car was passing by. “S’just, my dad, he’ll interrogate you or he’ll make sure he doesn’t like you and he has a really terrifying look and if he uses it, you know you’re in trouble and if he gets really serious with the questions then you’re also in trouble and he just has a really hard time in processing the fact that I’m happy and I have a boyfriend and it’s hard,” Persephone rambled on, her voice full of panic and worry as Jack let out a soft laugh. “S’not funny, Jack! I’m being serious. I’m worried. You’re such a great guy, and I love you, and I want my dad to love you and I want my mum to love you and I want my twin sisters and Alfie to love you. And if they don’t, then things won’t go how I planned and-”
“Stop. Before I pull this car over for you to be sick from nerves,” Jack smiled, his free hand sliding into Persephone’s trembling hand. “Just close your eyes, and remember that everything is going to be okay. I love you.”
Persephone closed her eyes, on command, as Jack coaxed her to let out soft and soothing breathes. As the car kept rumbling down the road, Jack felt the nerves rising to his chest. In just a few minutes time, he would be pulling up to the house that his girlfriends family lived in. The house that had been hers from such a young age, as well a house that he would be getting to know more often - hopefully - in the future when Persephone took him home for weekends because her mother and her father had been begging or because Alfie wanted a football mate to play with in the garden, or because Rose and Darcy wanted him to watch movies with them.
“We’re so close. I should be the nervous one, gorgeous. It just means I must mean something to you because you want your family to love me as much as you do,” Jack smiled.
“I do, I really want them to like you, Jack. You’re pretty spectacular, and I love you and I really see something happening between us,” Persephone smiled, looking across as Jack gave her a warm smile. “That’s not scaring you away, is it?”
And in that moment, Jack swore he saw his life flash before his eyes. He saw Persephone in his future, and he saw the two of them driving down the same road that Persephone’s mother and fathers house was located on. Except in the back of the car, there were two children and a sleeping baby beside them, snuffling softly the three children slept soundly against the comforting sound of the car’s engine. A shining ring was set on Persephone’s finger as well as a golden band around his own finger as the both of them made a trek to London so that Persephone’s parents could see their grandchildren before school started for the two eldest.
“Of course not, gorgeous. if it helps even more, I see something happening between us too,” he grinned softly, looking across at the girl who brought light to his life. “I love you and whatever happens today, I will fight if things go sour,” he chuckled lightly, a smile lifting at Persephone’s lips.
“S’why I love you, Jack. You’re one of a kind,” Persephone grinned, the roof of her childhood house coming into view, as well as her fathers range rover sitting in the driveway. “S’now or never,” she whispered.
Behind the front door of the Styles household, it was quiet than usual. There was no uproar of excitement because Persephone was bringing her boyfriend home, and there was no word or chatter about the big moment just minutes away from happening. With the two twins upstairs in their bedrooms and Alfie in the study up in the attic, it was just you and Harry situated in the kitchen. Occupied with activities to take your minds away from the fact that your eldest daughter - one who you swore was just a baby girl yesterday - was bringing home a boy she was forever gushing about over the phone.
It struck Harry like a tonne of bricks. His little girl had a boyfriend and he was no longer the only man in her life. He was no longer the man who got to snuggle with her when she got upset, and he was no longer the man who got to make her tea in the early hours of the morning because her cramps were playing up, or because she couldn’t sleep, or because she just wanted her daddy’s comfort and a warm mug of tea in her company. He’d met plenty of boyfriends in the past - two, to be precise - and he hadn’t taken a liking to them one bit. Flaws and problems immediately striking him in the face as he took one glance, yet he tried to surpass them because his daughter was happy with a smile on her face that he had seen many a time from his mother, and Gemma and yourself at some points.
“M’not sure how I feel about my little girl bringing home a boyfriend,” Harry sighed, looking over the top of the newspaper. His glasses falling from his nose as he looked over to where you were standing at the counter, steam lifting from the lid of the pot as you let the vegetable settle on the cooker, the smell of chicken filling the room as it cooked in the oven. “She shouldn’t be dating at 20. She didn’t need to go off to university. She could have stayed here. With me and you and our other babies. She could have studied in London.”
And he wished, he so wished, that she had chosen the University offer in London so he could go and pick her up after her last class of the day and that she would always be home for dinner. Her laughter lighting up the kitchen table as she smiled fondly as Harry told his ungodly Knock Knock jokes; a ritual for the family to have when they were settled around the dinner table.
“Harry, honey, she’s 20 years-old. She deserves this. He sounds like a lovely boy and he makes her happy,” you reasoned, turning on your heels as you swung around to look at where your husband was sitting at the dining room table. “You need to understand that she’s living her life happily. Experimenting with boys and seeing what type is her type,” you stated, and watched as his face crumpled.
“Don’t. M’not happy with this. He could be a complete wanker. Every boy she lets enter her life has the possibility of hurting her and she’ll come back home in tears and I can’t see that again (Y/N). I just can’t. It hurt,” Harry sighed, closing the newspaper up. There was one time that Persephone had come home crying that stuck in his mind like a tattoo, permanent on his brain with a struggle to get rid of it.
She was only 15 years-old, a happy-go-lucky little girl as she took things as they came, a boyfriend by her side that made her feel like she was on top of the world; and Harry remembered just how he felt when he first had a girlfriend in his teenage years. What he didn’t remember was how it felt when said girlfriend broke his heart with the phrase ‘I want to break up’. When Persephone had stormed through the front door on afternoon, a half day at her school for teacher training, he knew something had happened in the few hours she’d been away from home and he had never expected her to experience the heartache that such a sensitive little girl would suffer. When she explained through consistent sobs and cries with her tears staining the t-shirt on his chest, he found it in his body to make sure he had enough detail and information on her coming boyfriends in the future to give them the stamp of approval for dating his eldest.
His attention was turned towards the kitchen door as he heard footsteps coming down the stairs, soft giggles and coos coming from the twins as they stepped foot into the kitchen. “There’s my little pumpkins.”
Rose, a complete and utter daddy’s girl, trotted across the tiled floor and perched herself up on his knee. Her arm hooking around his neck as she made herself capable of sitting comfortably on a knee she was all too familiar with. At a young age, it was the knee she would situate herself up when she wanted to sit with him on the sofa and she would forever have her head resting against his thigh as she slept soundly through a movie she had insisted her watched with her. Darcy, however, was a mixture of the two. She was a mummy’s girl when she wanted snuggles and cuddles or help with homework, but she was a daddy’s girl when she wanted clothes or shoes or a lift to school because she couldn’t be bothered to walk down the streets.
“Daddy, P’s home. And she has a pretty boyfriend,” Rose grinned, looking towards Darcy as she nodded in agreement. “Daddy, he looks really nice. You might like him,” she explained, pressing her soft lips to his cheek as he tilted his head to her touch.
“Mum, when will dinner be done?” Darcy wondered, reaching for a carrot slice from the chopping board as you set the knife down on the counter. “Mum, do you know anything about P’s new boyfriend?”
“His name is Jack and he seems like a lovely young man. Let’s give him a break today and be nice to him, yeah?” You stated, looking down at your youngest as she nodded. Her ponytail flitting from side to side as her head moved, a giggle leaving your lips as you cupped her cheek in your palms.“I meant daddy, but, I’m glad you’ll be nice to him as well, poppet. Now, will you go and get Alfie from his study whilst your sister sets the table whilst daddy answers the door?”
“Of course, mummy.”
Dinner was great.
Everyone had seemed to have enjoyed what you had made, leaving minimal leftovers in the bowls on the table. Wine had been cracked open and shared amongst those who would drink, a couple of bottles set on the table spread as the evening went on. There was a comfortable silence, excluding the sounds of scraping metal against the china as you all ate, with an occasional question coming from Darcy or Rose, or Alfie.
Yet, you knew something was stirring around in Harry’s head for he was too quiet for a dinner. A dinner that had his whole family together, with the exception of Jack. He cracked no jokes. He had no smile. And his eyes lost the spark that his green orbs would hold. He was going to crack, and with a twitch to his nose and a furrow of his eyebrows, a crease at the top of his nose, you knew it was coming anytime soon.
“How long have you known my daughter for then, Jack?”
And there it was.
Harry pushed away the plate from in front of him, setting his eyes on the boy sitting just diagonal to him at the dinner table. Beside his daughter and Alfie, who had perched beside him in a haste to finish his dinner to get back to studying for his exams.
“Dad,” Persephone hissed, her head turning to look at Jack as he smiled politely towards Harry. “Please, dad. Don’t do this,” she begged.
“M’not doing anything, love. I’m just getting to know the boy who seems to be bedding my little girl,” Harry stated, a smile on his lips as he looked back to the young lad sitting at the table. A wince left his mouth as he felt your foot collide with his shin, and he was sure a bruise was going to form later on. A look of displeasure and warning filled your face as Harry rolled his eyes, and turned back to Jack. “How long have you known my daughter?”
“We’ve been friends for a while. She’s in the same art class as me, and we got partnered one day for a class project and we hit it off from there,” Jack smiled, looking down at Persephone as a blush formed on her cheeks.
“He’s also in my Science class. He’s so good, dad. He’s a proper brain box,” Persephone giggled, lacing her fingers through Jack’s as he squeezed her hand softly. “He’s getting top marks in it, and I’ve seen his coming project and it looks so good,” she gushed, looking down at her lap.
“You’re getting top marks? That’s pretty impressive. Are you planning on having a well-paid job for your future? Are you capable of providing my daughter with the best she deserves?” He questioned, his stare being cold as he aimed the question he was dying to know at the nervous boy. There was no stopping him once Harry got started, and you felt the best thing to do was to let him play it out. Get the questions and the concerns and the worries out of the way to ensure he got what he wanted to give his stamp of approval to the one making his eldest happy. “What are your intentions with my daughter, young man?” Harry questioned, a stern sound in his voice as Jack looked nervously up to him. “I presume, you’re not just using my daughter for sex now? She really likes you. I don’t want to see you using her for your own pleasure, throwing her away when you don’t want her,” he reasoned, resting his elbows on the table as he clasped his hands together and set them beneath his chin.
“No, no. It’s okay, Mrs Styles. I can assure you both I’m not planning on ever using Persephone in that way. She means the world to me and I really do love her and it would mean the world if you accepted what we have. We’re really happy with the way we are and I’m not planning on throwing her away. I’ll always want her around,” Jack explained, running a nervous hand through his slightly curled locks and tugging slightly on the strands - a trait, that Persephone had noticed, he did when he was nervous and/or uncomfortable in a situation. “I promise, we’ve been together for what? 7 months now.”
“I still doesn’t mean you won’t hurt her like the others have done,” Harry stated, reaching for his wine glass.
“Harry, enough of the wine. You need to stop. I told you to be nice,” you warned, coaxing the half-empty wine glass from your husbands hands and sending an apologetic look towards the boy who was sitting nervously in front of you. “Jack, sweetheart, would you like some apple pie? Harry makes a delicious one. It’s one of Persephone’s favourites,” you smiled towards your daughter, her cheeks flushed and her eyebrows furrowed as she stared towards her father.
It was a tradition that when Persephone would arrive home from university for a weekend - or a week, depending on if she had a break or if she had classes to attend too - an apple pie would be made and ready to be baked in the oven for pudding after a dinner cooked by you. It was also common for Harry to wait until she arrived home so that they could cordon off the kitchen and have father-daughter time, making the pie together and conversing about how her studies were going and how well she thought she was doing.
And Harry would listen with perked ears. His attention turned to her as she spoke about something she was so fond of. Her art studies and her art work being a main topic to their conversations, and there was no word of a lie that Harry enjoyed listening to something that he himself had no talent in. He didn’t mind her talking about something that sounded like nonsense to him, because deep down, it made her happy and having a happy daughter lead to him being the happiest - as well as the proudest - father in the world.
“I would love some, Mrs Styles. I have to admit, apple pie is one of my favourites too,” Jack grinned. And there was always a conversation, in the middle of a nice bakery in Southampton, about how their apple pie didn’t live up to what her father would make when she visited home; a slight change happening when she insisted she would make it for him in the future to get him engulfed in the delicious taste she grew up on. “Would you like any help in the kitchen? I can help wash up or dry the cutlery?” He offered, a smile on his lips as he pressed his palms to his thighs, ready to stand from his seat.
“No, no. I’m sure Persephone would love to take you upstairs, give you a tour of the house and show you where she kept a shrine for her famous celebrity loves,” you teased, laughing softly as your eldest daughters cheeks lit up pink. But you knew, and she knew, that that was a long while back. And Persephone remembered the dreaded day she had to take all of her posters and all of her photos down, packing them into a box to be driven down to Southampton where she then forgot about them and left them in a box in the corner. “Go on. I’ll give you a shout when the pie is cooked. Do you have cream, ice-cream or custard?”
“I have cream with mine, thank you,” Jack smiled, looking at Persephone as she smiled up at him and squeezed his hand as she pressed a kiss to her boyfriend’s cheek. With that, you gathered your’s and Harry’s plates and proceeded to the kitchen, the soles of your slippers scuffing along the tiled floor of the room next to the dining room, your body disappearing behind the wall with the sounds of china being set on the counter top filtering into the silenced room.
“Dad?” Darcy wondered, breaking the silence with her eyes switching from the screen of her phone to where Harry was sitting, his eyes cast to Jack as he peppered kisses to Persephone’s face. “Dad?” She called louder, catching his attention as he looked across at her.
“What’s the matter, Darce?”
“Can we be excused from the table to show Jack the tree house in the back garden that you made for us? We have lots of stories to tell him and they include P as well,” Darcy grinned, a hint of begging laced in with her voice as she gave Harry widened eyes and a pout to her lips. “Please, dad?”
“Oh, can we, dad? That would so cool,” Alfie grinned, punching Jack in the shoulder as he looked at him. “We have some proper embarrassing ones about P, Jack. You’ll love it,” Alfie laughed, watching as Persephone rolled her eyes and dropped her head to Jack’s shoulder. “Dad, can we? And can we eat pudding up there?”
“I’m not sure, lad. Your mother might want us all in here,” Harry reasoned, standing up from his chair and gathering the plates left behind on the table. “Go and check with your mother, and we’ll see what happens,” Harry stated, reaching for the plate in front of Jack.
“Thank you for a delicious dinner, Mr Styles,” Jack smiled, looking to Harry as he gave him a smile. “I’m looking forward to trying your apple pie. Persephone tells me it’s amazing. She’s always complaining how the pie in the bakery in Southampton isn’t nearly as fantastic as yours,” he laughed softly, a smile breaking on Harry’s lips as he shook his head in delight.
She spoke about him, and it made his heart warm and almost burst with love - the constant fear that he’d be somewhat almost forgotten about disappearing from his mind because, from then, he knew she spoke about her father in a way that made her seem proud and fond. Proud of the fact that he was her father, and that he was the one that raised her to be the way she was, and the she had him and no one else to call ‘dad’.
And it crossed Harry’s mind that maybe, just maybe, this boy wasn’t as bad as he thought he was. With his past experiences of Persephone’s boyfriends, and the nearing possibility of Darcy and Rose getting boyfriends, it was his natural instinct to freak out just as much as any other father would.
His natural instinct to worry and question to himself about the boy that she was welcoming to the family, that she would possibly be bringing home for future weekends to have dinner with you all, that she was possibly showing her love to in the comforts of her - or his - bed back at the university. Any father would panic, and Harry panicked in a way that many other fathers would panic. Persephone was growing up, and it scared him because he swore that just yesterday she was a newborn baby settled in the crook of his elbow as she slept soundly, smelling of a new baby and nestling softly against the blanket she was swaddled in against his bare arm. He swore, that in the blink of an eye from the moment she was born and placed into his arms, she was off to college and ready to start the journey to her perfect career.
And it did scare him.
He no longer had a little baby to dote on and he no longer had a little baby to express love for and he no longer had a little baby to watch grow into a perfect and flawless little mix of you and him. And he knew that the next time he would hold a newborn baby, it would be when his eldest was in the hospital all pregnant and in pain as she brought another little one into the world.
He didn’t want any of his children to grow up, and he just wished he could have kept them in the comforts of your home under his wing as he selfishly kept them to himself.
“Honestly, I think if she could eat one meal for the rest of her life, it would be my apple pie,” Harry chuckled. A first proper chuckle and a first proper smile that had lit up his face in the past 2 hours of Jack being present in Persephone’s family home. “I need to give you both the recipe. Take it down to Southampton and make it one afternoon, maybe.”
“That would be so great, dad. I’ve been meaning to ask you for the recipe anyway,” Persephone grinned.
“Remind me after pudding, okay? I’ll write it out for you and maybe, I’ll let the two of in the kitchen one day next week to make it. But that’s only if I trust you won’t burn the house down. Persephone set the fire alarm off one evening trying to melt chocolate, so, we don’t want another repeat,” Harry smirked, turning on his heel and shuffling carefully out of the dining room as he left his three children and Jack to laugh at a blushing and embarrassed Persephone.
As time passed by, the number of people sitting at the dining room table had decreased and no sooner rather later, Persephone and Jack were settled around with full bellies and wine-coated lips with Harry and yourself. In a comfortable silence, the four of you sat on opposite sides to the table, hands holding wine glasses of red wine as you made small talk; yet the silence was enough and it felt comfortable and there was no awkward feeling lingering around in the atmosphere.
For the last hour and a little bit, the tension that was thick and visible and could be cut with a knife had disappeared and not only you but Persephone had felt a sense of relief wash over you. Harry had finally realised that his daughter had brought a good guy home and he was willing to give him a shot if Persephone felt he was good enough for herself.
As Harry felt your palm stroke his thigh soothingly and you presence leave his side, he let out a throat-clearing cough and hunched forward. His green eyes set upon his daughter and her boyfriend who were snuggled up almost slightly uncomfortable between the two dining room chairs. Persephone’s knees were pulled up to her chest, her head resting against Jacks’ shoulder as they kept their eyes locked on the phone that Harry could guess had a game flitting across the screen.
“Jack, can you come with me for a moment?” Harry wondered. Jack’s brown eyes widening as Harry stood from his seat, a smile on his lips as he looked over Jack’s worried face. “Don’t panic. I’ve got something I want to tell you, and I’d rather tell you man to man rather than in front of all these emotional ladies,” he chuckled, nodding his head towards the back garden.
“Don’t be mean, dad. I thought you were okay with this?” Persephone wondered, removing her arm from where it was placed on Jack’s waist, her fingers drawing soft patterns into his t-shirt that covered his full and very stuffed belly. “If he’s mean, yell for me,” you heard her whisper, a soft laugh leaving Jack’s lips as he pushed his chair away from the table.
“I’m not going to be horrible. I want a chat with him. And I want to apologise for my behaviour earlier on. I realised that’s not the best way to handle my fear of my children growing up,” he reasoned, running his hand through his brown locks. “I promise, I won’t keep him outside for long, okay? I won’t murder him, and I won’t be nasty.”
“Alright. If we hear noises or moans and screams, I’m coming out, okay?” You warned, standing up to press a kiss to Harry’s cheek. “I love you.”
“Love you too,” he whispered, your body manoeuvring away from him as you gathered the empty bowls sitting on the table. As he made his way to the back door, he instinctually looked over his shoulder and caught what made his heart and his chest ache. With Persephone’s arms wrapped around Jack’s waist, her head pressed against his stomach, as he ran his fingers through her hair. Letting the strands cascade down her back as he promised he’d be back sooner if she let go of him. A chuckle leaving his mouth as she frowned and gave him a pout which had resulted in a kiss to her lips, before Harry coughed to gather their attention. “As much as I love seeing you all loved up and everything, I would like to chat to Jack before it gets dark and cold out here,” he teased, a smile on his lips as his daughter rolled her eyes and unlinked her hands from around his waist.
As the two of them settled on two chairs around the patio table, Harry smiled softly and crossed his ankles, letting his heels rest against the wooden decking.
“Jack, I really want to apologise for how I was with you earlier. You’ll understand my pain and the fear when you have a daughter yourself,” Harry chuckled lightly, looking across at the old and tired looking tree-house at the end of the garden. “It’s a natural instinct of mine to just, worry about who she brings home and she’s brought bad guys home in the past. Ones that me and (Y/N) just really had a bad vibe off, and we worry about who she’ll end up with in the future. When you walked through the front door this afternoon, I didn’t get a bad vibe from you at all and I felt like, I was trying to pick holes and find flaws in you that I was hoping you had,” Harry admitted, leaning forward and resting his forearms on his knees. “I’m sorry for that. I really do think you’re a fantastic guy and you make my little girl extremely happy and I couldn’t be any happier for the both of you,” he concluded.
“Mr Styles, it’s honestly fine. I expected it to come, if I’m honest,” Jack admitted, a nervous smile on his lips.
“Harry. You can call me Harry,” Harry smiled, patting Jack on the back as he smiled softly. “First name terms. I think we’ll be seeing you around a lot more than we think,” he teased, sending him a playful wink.
And Harry truly meant it.
He wanted to see Jack more. Harry wanted Jack to be the one who came back from university on Sundays for Sunday roasts with the whole family and he wanted him to be the one he gave his daughter away too on her wedding day and he wanted him to be the one he got say was the father of his grandchildren. He wanted Jack to be the one who asked for Persephone’s hand in marriage, who asked for a blessing from him and Alfie one night during a Man United football game in a pub with Louis and Niall and Liam sitting in a booth with them.
And he wanted Jack to be the one who took his place as the comfort in her life, to be the one who was there when she needed a cuddle because she had a tough day or because she didn’t feel beautiful enough or because wasn’t feeling well. He wanted Jack to be the one who took the runs to the store when she needed feminine products and ice-cream and heating pads and chocolate, and he wanted him to be the one who kept him updated on her life when she was too forgetful to give her mother and her father a text.
And Jack felt honoured. The nerves he felt were worth it because no matter what was bouncing around in his mind hours before meeting his girlfriends family, the outcome was the complete opposite. And he couldn’t have been happier.
“I’m really thankful that you approve of me. It’s been a worry of mine for a long time, and I’m just glad you all like me. My family loved P when I took her home for my grandma’s birthday, and she loved them as well. She met all my cousins and everything and they got on so well, and I just, I felt like she’s really special to me,” the young boy smiled, his cheeks pink and flushing. “She’s incredible. And I love her. And she’s someone I really see a future with. And having your approval of me makes me feel so much better about everything.”
“Well, like I hinted towards it, you’re different to the other guys that P has brought home and I’m glad she’s come to her sense and picked one that has potential in life. Not one who likes to smoke or throw parties or even skip class because they find it too boring and uncool,” Harry sighed, rolling his head back as the wind picked up in the air. “I’d love to take you out on afternoon, what do you say? Just me and you, and Louis probably. Has she told you about Louis?”
“Her god-father, right?”
“Indeed. He adores her. I’m pretty sure he tries to take over as her father. She may as well have two fathers. He’s so invested in her life,” Harry explained. “He’ll want to meet you and he’ll be even worse than me, so, I’ll wear him down a little to make sure he’s not so hard on you. If me and my missus like you, then he’ll most definitely like you,” Harry smiled, looking over his shoulder as he looked to his eldest girl standing in the doorway.
It was unlikely for Louis to been uninvested in the life of Persephone - and all of the Styles children - and it was common for her to go to her Uncle Louis if she was having an issue that she felt uncomfortable talking to Harry or yourself about. Louis was her go-to guy when she needed someone other than her parents and there was a sense of contentment that Harry and yourself felt. When you received a call from Louis saying she’d fallen asleep on his sofa and that she had decided upon staying the night because she felt like she wanted her Uncle Louis cuddles more than anything in the world.
“Do you want some tea?” Persephone wondered, her hands rubbing her upper arms as she caught the wind brushing past her.
“I’d love one, poppet.”
“I’d love one, as well, P,” Jack smiled, sending her a wink as she turned on he heel with a giggle. “Thank you for bringing her into this world, Harry. I don’t think I’d be as happy as I am with someone else,” he admitted quietly, his head dropping to his chest.
“Thank my missus for that. She did all the hard work,” he chuckled, standing up from his seat and patting Jack on the back one last time. “Come on. Let’s go inside. You deserve some time to yourself, provided you stay protected and don’t make me a grandfather yet. I may be 45, but I’m still young,” Harry pressed, a smirk on his lips as he followed Jack inside.
“We’ve not been there yet. We’re waiting for a special moment,” Jack stated, kicking off his boots and making his way into the kitchen with Harry hot on his heels.
“More of a reason to welcome you to the family.”