Hello anon, this is my favorite kind of anon question, and I kinda want to talk about this forever. Let me tell you about how the boys take care of each other, and specifically, about how they take care of Niall. Because Niall is a precious snow flake who deserves only good things in life.
This moment is from the Take Me Home Tour, Aug 9, 2013 at the Staples Center, Los Angeles. The boys are singing Little Things.[x]
Right from the outset, Niall looks overwhelmed and out of it. I don’t know why, I don’t know what upset him, but he just. isn’t. coping. It is clear.
Look at his face when Liam starts singing. This isn’t Niall during Little Things. Niall is usually engaged, cheered because the crowd always sings back, and he is normally strumming along on his guitar like a little boy on Christmas morning.
Not this time though.
The others notice, because of course they do. We forget sometimes, how intimately the boys know each other, how much time they spend in each other’s company. So of course they figure it out.
Harry realizes, and you can tell, because he sings his entire first line with Louis while staring at Niall.
He doesn’t even try to hide it, and in the video, you see Liam catch on by looking at Harry, who is looking at Niall.
Harry gestures at Liam with his eyes to look at Niall, and then leans forward to try and see Niall’s face, presumably to check if he is crying.
When we get to Niall’s part, very clearly, Liam is gesturing to Harry in a “what’s going on” helpless shrug.
My heart breaks when Niall starts singing. His voice cracks on “you will never love yourself half as much as…”
Harry turns around fast enough to give himself whiplash the moment he hears that crack in Niall’s voice, concerned. Caretaker! Styles is in full fledged mode Harry and Liam gesture more to each other, with Harry mouthing “make sure he’s okay”.
Apparently, this is all Liam can take. Because he starts to climb down to come closer. He gives him a moment though, he waits to see if Niall can get himself together without help. He doesn’t want to embarrass him in front of the crowd, so he waits, even though he wants to reach out and *hug him so bad*
Niall sounds upset again, and Liam sits by his side. First, he just smiles at him, leans in closer and harmonizes with him.
When that doesn’t seem to help, when Niall looks like he is about to crack, Liam puts his arm around his shoulders and pulls him in. A silent, comforting gesture, of friendship and brotherhood, saying “I am here if you want to fall apart. I will sing your harmonies for you.”
Finally, it gets a smile out of our boy.
When Harry starts singing again to finish the song, Liam tickles Niall’s ear and presses his lips together in a kiss.
And even when Liam climbs back up, he leans down to whisper something funny in his ear, making Niall laugh out loud, interrupting the final chorus.
When they finish, Niall is laughing, smiling wide, and Liam goes back to his perch, like a man who accomplished a dear mission.
Even though we don’t see it, I am sure Harry, Zayn and Louis from across the stage are smiling as well, happy that Liam could take care of their boy.
You know anon, we forget, admist all the drama that surrounds the boys every day, all the good and bad press, the poor management, everything - we forget that One Direction, at its core, is just five boys who love each other and stand by each other through the craziness that is their lives.