I had messed up. I had messed up so bad it’s not even funny. I betrayed the only man I’ve ever loved and now I may lose him forever. It was safe to say that I was falling apart. I know all this may have meant very little to you but to me, this love story meant the world. I was the girl who never fell in love but always wanted to. I’ve given you the abridged version. I remember every conversation, every laugh, every smile, every tear, every hug and contact of skin between us.
I always wanted to feel the kind of love that was consuming. I always wanted to know what it was like to feel so much for a person that it scared you a little bit. And now I know. He was everything I ever wanted and more. He obviously wasn’t what I expected in the beginning and I loved it. I still love it. I will always love him.
I finally understood why there were so many love songs. Happiness and sadness and anger and fear are such little emotions compared to love. Love is all of those wrapped into one. It’s scary and intense and euphoric and you just feel so much. If I fell in love more often I’d have a much more successful career, which is saying something.
All these thoughts and more went through my mind as I tried to speak. I felt as though the world had stopped spinning because this was the burning question on everyone’s mind.
"Are the rumors that you and Niall broke up true?" The woman asked in a tone that was too cheery for my taste. I looked at all of these faces staring at me, waiting for a response.
"Yeah," I said trying not to sound very upset, "But I’ll probably get a good album out of it." I mustered up a laugh that was painfully believable. It was amazing how well I could lie to my fans. The live studio audience laughed at my joke and so did the host. "For now though I’ve got one," I smiled, casually changing the subject.
"Ah yes, your second album, "Up, Up, and Away" is out now. Actually it reached number one in seventeen different countries the first week of release." The crowd cheered and I continued on as normal. As if my heart hadn’t just shattered into a million pieces and I had to collect it and carry on like nothing was wrong within a millisecond. "Now your hit with the One Direction lads, "Miss You More", also had a wide array of success. Won for best new single and best collaboration at the AMA’s and the Brit awards!" More cheering, "It looks like a sad day for you is coming up, however, the last date of your tour is in just a couple of days now isn’t it?" My jaw clenched. I’d been trying not to think about that.
"Yeah, tomorrow actually, tomorrow is our last show. I’m really going to miss the boys but we’ll always be fantastic friends. We’ve become incredibly close and I know this won’t be goodbye forever." I nodded and smiled like some barbie doll. That’s what I felt like these days. I fell like a little doll being controlled by strings. Painting on a smile every morning and having to maintain it until the evening. Life was exhausting at this point. But I did it like the good little soldier I was. I marched through the rest of the interview and Oscar came up to me immediately after.
"You’ve finished it now, you know that?" He asked me running his fingers through his thinning hair.
"What?" I asked totally spent. I rubbed my head and chugged down a water bottle.
"You can’t go back to Niall now, it’s confirmed, your break up is now official. This is no longer ‘a break’ you and Niall are over. You understand why I can’t let you come back to him right? The publicity would be horrid. The fans would be rabid." He tried explaining to me but I was too tired to hear it. I looked him dead in the eyes,
"I accepted that this wasn’t ‘a break’ a long time ago and right now I really don’t need you telling me how to live my life. I am not your little play thing, I’m a person and frankly, I can do what ever I damn well please. If I want to break up will Niall and make up with Niall ten billion times I will because it’s my life, not your business." He pursed his lips at me in that disapproving way of his as I turned to go be alone in the dressing room that was still available to me.
"Jess, your life is my business.” He tried. I didn’t even turn around as I walked back to the room and waved my hand flippantly at him.
"Oscar, fuck off." I was angry and irritated and I did not feel like dealing with his businessman bullshit. I retreated to my dressing room where I collapsed into a chair. A million different thoughts were running through my head making it spin. God I needed a break, I needed a fix. I collected my things quickly knowing exactly what I was about to do. I opened my phone and texted someone I hadn’t in quite some time.
I found myself wondering what kind of place I would find myself in tonight, palace or sewer, just to get a little privacy. Luckily it was a palace. A party at a friend of mine’s house. I narrowly avoided Louis and the others. God I was grateful to Louis for all he’d done but tonight nothing was stopping me from losing myself.
It all came back to me from years ago sitting in a room full of people I barely knew, watching the smoke rise and make the air muggy and thick. I felt the burn of the smoke fill my lungs but I didn’t care because the rush of the high came quickly after. I felt ok for the first time in weeks. My world was flying away from my finger tips and laughter filled even my thoughts. I found myself relishing in just the bounce of my head as the laughter came bubbling out of me, which only made me laugh more.
I was an airplane flying high, high up in the sky.
No, I was a bird. They’re more free than airplanes. I was high and I was free.
I semi-hated my filthy habit. It was rough on my voice and I always said I didn’t need stuff like weed to have fun and be happy. Luckily it never brought me into anything heavier or more addicting but it did bring me around the crowd that fell prey to that. I didn’t like it then and I don’t like it now but I didn’t care. I needed this.
Hell I deserved this.
I needed more though.
I needed Niall so badly.
I stumbled up, thanked my friend, said goodbye to my new acquaintances who’d I’d probably never see again, and was on my way out. I had my driver pick me up inside the gates of the house and take me back to the hotel. I had to talk to Niall. I missed him so much.
I ran into a couple of fans who were still outside hoping for a glimpse of one of us. I signed some things and said hello but I wasn’t interested in being friendly at the moment, I was more interested in Niall.
My body ached for him to be close to me. Even though the high intensified my happiness it intensified my sadness too. I needed him more than anything right now and nothing was stopping me from taking him back. Well one thing stopped me: I passed Zayn in the hallway. He looked like he might have been crying. I waved but he didn’t wave back, he just rushed past me. I wish things weren’t so tense between us. But now nothing was stopping me from taking Niall back.
Except maybe Louis.
"Hey Jess, where have you been?" He asked in such a friendly tone. I smiled widely at him.
"Oh I just went out for a bit. Now I’m going to talk to Niall, I need to talk to Niall." I felt something bubble up in me and I tried my best to stifle it. My efforts were to no avail as I began giggling. I quickly tried to cover it up.
"What’s got you so happy hm?" Louis asked smiling at first. Though his smile faded as he looked closely at my eyes. I knew my pupils had to be huge right now and I probably had red eye and a flushed face. I was caught. "Jess…Jesus are you high?" He hissed harshly. I shushed him trying to hold back a smile.
"No of course not Louis, that’s silly." But my giggling gave it away.
"Jess, you can’t go talk to Niall like this. You’ll probably just make things worse. Come on let’s get you back to your room," He sounded so disappointed in me. I wanted to cry but I was laughing too hard. He grabbed my wrist and I flinched back at his touch. It was weird being touched. I hadn’t smoked in over a year so it was hitting me pretty hard.
"No, Louis, you don’t understand, I need him so bad right now,” I pouted as he carefully led my vacant body towards my room. He just sighed and shook his head,
"Not tonight." He said sympathetically.
"Louis…" I begged as his took the hotel key from my clutch and slid it in the lock.
"Come on Jess let’s get you to bed." I shook my head.
"No way! I don’t want to sleep!…Well I do want to sleep but I don’t want to sleep yet. I want to stay awake. I want to feel like this forever!" I laughed grabbing hold of his arms and twirling with him to a silent melody I’d made up. He smiled. I suppose he liked seeing me happy for once. I hadn’t been happy since the break up and today had not been a good day for me. Confirming it in the press had to be one of the hardest things I’d ever done. There was no one in the world who wanted it to be ‘just a break’ more than me.
"I’m glad you’re happy, Jess." And I could tell, even through my haze, that he meant it.
"Louis…" I whimpered realizing we weren’t spinning anymore.
"Yeah?" He replied.
"I’ve lost him haven’t I?" I stared at Louis and I would have been tearing up if my eyes weren’t so deprived of moisture.
"I don’t know," He said honestly. I stared at the floor.
"You’re my best friend, I love you," I wrapped my arms around his neck and buried my face there.
"I love you too Jess," He held me for what felt like an eternity. I leaned on him and I could’ve sworn I fell asleep at least once but he never let go. He didn’t try to sit down, he didn’t move. He stayed with me, perfectly still.
"What if I never get him back?" I sniffed.
"Then Niall is a complete idiot." He squeezed me tighter and a tear fell a couple inches down my cheek before meeting with Louis’ shirt and making a small dark blot.
"I’m in love with him." I mumbled.
"And he’s in love with you, Jess," He pulled back, finally, to look at me, "He’s just hurt,"
"I hurt him," I whimpered.
"And I can’t go fix things like this. I’ll mess it up,"
"Stay with me tonight? Like that first night, when I had a nightmare and you let me sleep in your bed. Lately my whole life has kind of been a nightmare and I really need you right now." I could barely form words as I held back the tears. Louis just nodded and smiled.
"Come on, let’s go to sleep." He took my hand and led me to bed. I didn’t protest this time. I was exhausted. I hadn’t slept well in who knows how long and I needed to go to sleep. I needed to dream. I didn’t even care if it was a nightmare, anything would be better than waking up without Niall another morning.
I knew though, with the day ahead of me, I would be waking up without Niall, without Louis, without anyone for a very long time. Tomorrow was our last show and I was going to have to let my best friends go and the love of my life go as well. It was time for us to take our final bow and go our separate ways. Obviously I would see the others again, but Niall…Niall I don’t think I could bare to see him after all of this. I need a clean break.
It was time for me to say goodbye and I knew it would be the most difficult thing I had ever done. I need Niall like I needed air to breathe and yet, I would have to go on without him.
I wondered how long I could hold my breath.
When I woke up it wasn’t even light outside. I felt my best friend lying next to me and felt semi alright. It wasn’t the same as waking up to Niall but it was better than waking up alone. I laid there half asleep for a long time. The last thing I wanted to do was wake up.
I knew what I had to face today. Even though I knew this wasn’t goodbye forever, I definitely got used to them always being there.
When I felt Louis wake up, I knew it was time to begin.
"Thank you." I whispered.
"No problem," He croaked sleepily.
"Seriously, I-…you’re my best friend…" He just laughed once.
"Don’t get all mushy on me now, the day’s not over yet…plus if you start crying I know I’ll start crying," he joked in a girly voice pretending he was on the verge of tears. I laughed a little then it was silent for a moment. "You’re my best friend too Jessica." He kissed the top of my head, lingering in my hair. Finally he rolled over and sat up. I groaned unwilling to do the same.
"Louis I don’t want to get uuuuup…" I whined into the pillow. I was surprised he understood me.
"Come on Jess, I know, but you know you have to." He said getting up and walking around the bed. He grabbed the covers and flung them off of me. I was still fully clothed from the night before, which was a weird feeling for me. I made a protesting noise but didn’t move. He grabbed one of my hands and began pulling me out of the bed. "Come on you lazy bum!" He complained yanking at my corpse.
"No," I humphed shortly and resisted his pull, "I don’t wanna," I realized that I sounded like a child and accepted that fact.
"I will literally pull you off of this bed." He threatened. The bed was pretty high but I still was way too tired to get up. "Well alright," He shrugged and nearly ripped my arm out of socket. half of my body was hanging off of the bed and getting ready to fall onto the hard, wooden floor. I scrambled awkwardly to get up and narrowly caught myself before I fell. I could only compare what I looked like to a baby deer walking for the first time.
"Damn Louis I was gunna get up!" I laughed. He probably didn’t hear me he was laughing so hard though. "Oh my god, shut up Louis, let’s go get some breakfast." I rolled my eyes at him finally getting my balance and heading towards the nearest phone. I ordered breakfast for me and Louis before I picked up a couple of stray clothes on the floor that hadn’t yet made it into my luggage. I stuffed them inside while Louis put on his shirt. Then I went to make a cup of tea. It was quiet for a while, the whistle of the kettle changed that and I suppose prompted Louis to continue the broken silence.
"Jess…" Louis began. I knew it would come up. I smoked last night and I told myself I never would again, not only for my voice but for my image to my fans. I don’t believe it’s really that bad to be honest but I never wanted to send the message to my fans that drugs, even tame ones, were in any way a good idea.
"I know," I groaned, "But yesterday was…" I placed the bag in the cup and let it sit for a moment, as if to get the courage to continue, "I confirmed it." I said finally thawing myself. I poured the two packets of sugar in, "On that talk show, I confirmed our break up. I mean it won’t actually be out for another like two weeks or something but there was a live audience," I said solemnly. Confirming something in the press was putting some sort of permanence to it. Because when it became something people needed to know, you knew that was the end. I gingerly slid my finger around the rim of my mug unable to look up from the swirling, greenish liquid. I was too afraid to see what Louis’ face would twist into. Sympathy, sadness, pity, I didn’t want to see any of it.
"I’m sorry Jess…" I cracked a small smile.
"I’m fine," I lied, "Now look who’s getting mushy, you’re gettin’ soft on me," I picked up my mug and took a sip as I turned to face Louis. I took two steps forward and planted a kiss on his nose. "I’ll go on, I’ll live, but for now we’ve got a stadium full of people to worry about. Not to mention we’ve got to work on Harry and Zayn hitting my notes. They’re so hopeless, they can’t sing it like I can," I boasted jokingly. I wasn’t sure but I could have sworn I heard him say, ‘I know’. I didn’t ask him to repeat himself because I knew it would bring things down again.
Just then there was a knock on the door. I skipped happily to it to collect my food. I opened it and saw Liam standing there instead. I beamed at him,
"Liam!" I squeaked excitedly, like I hadn’t seen him in ages. I threw my arms around him and he hugged me tight.
"Hey Jess…and Louis?" He looked quizzically at his mate and I quickly jumped in.
"I’ve been having a bad dream," I said looking back at Louis. I smiled brightly, "We have big day ahead of us," I tried to sound cheery.
"Yeah we do," Liam replied, sadness lacing his tone. I forced a smile.
"It’ll be the best show yet," I hugged him again, not wanting to let go. I released him quickly however, "Alright, alright, it’s 7 am we’ve got the whole day, let’s not get emotional now." I shook my head and smiled at Liam.
"You know I haven’t seen you smile this much in weeks," Liam commented cheerfully. I stifled a laugh knowing exactly why I was so cheerful.
"Must be an adreniline thing," I shrugged.
"I’m excited too!" Liam beamed. "We’re getting the van packed up I thought you might want some help with your bags like you always do," I invited him in, accepting his offer.
"You know me so well," I joked. I went to grab one suit case and he grabbed another. "Come on Lou, you can grab my carry on," I smiled at him smugly as I ordered him. He raised his eyebrows accusingly,
"Why of course your royal highness, I live only to serve you," He bowed grabbing my carry-on nonetheless. I just laughed.
We brought the things out to the van and went back up for the breakfast we’d ordered. It had arrived and I shared my bacon with Liam, grateful for his help. Of course I ate quickly and quietly not leaving room for any conversation. We left shortly after and got on the road together for the final time. After the show today we’d probably have a celebration but then be on our separate ways, continuing our lives as usual.
How was I going to bear saying goodbye…
Before I even blinked our time on the road was over. We were in our last city. Normally the time ticks by so slowly and I can’t wait for it all to be over but today…everything was moving too fast. I watched the world race by me as I raced with it and the hours passed. I eventually had a little free time that coincided with Zayn’s so I took my chance.
"Zayn!" I called over and he looked up from his phone. His brow crinkled, confused as to why I would be calling him over. We hadn’t really spoken in a while. It was a shame too, Zayn was such a good friend and I didn’t want to lose him of something that did so much good. He made his way over to me finally,
"You need something?" He asked shoving his hands in his back pockets, shifting uncomfortably. I couldn’t say I was any more comfortable. I sighed,
"Zayn, we need to talk, come on," I took his hand and headed off to my dressing room. I could tell he was surprised at the touch. He and I had been sort of avoiding contact. Honestly the only reason was because Niall might see and he may think something was actually going on between us. Or at least, that’s what we told ourselves. I pushed open the door and led him inside closing it quickly. I took a deep breath and faced him to speak,
"I miss you," He stated simply before I could get a word in. Honestly that was what I was going to say too, I would’ve probably danced around it a bit and dressed it up but essentially, he took the words right out of my mouth. I just closed my mouth, paused for a beat, and finally took two short steps and flung my arms around his neck.
"I miss you too," I mumbled into his shirt. And I did. I missed Zayn terribly. He would always listen when I babbled on about my day. That may have been because he was in love with me but he always seemed to be genuinely interested. He was funny and was always up for one of mine or Louis’ pranks. Which wasn’t always fun for me when I was the target. I missed the pranks the most though.
After a long silence he finally spoke, “I’m glad we had this talk,” He said solemnly. I laughed cutting through the silence that had filled the room. He laughed too and for a solid two minutes we could not stop laughing. We were making up for lost time I suppose. Our laughter finally died down and my smile faded into a sad smirk,
"This is our last show…" I swallowed the lump in my throat.
"Yeah it is…" He seemed to do the same. We suddenly found ourselves wrapped in each other’s arms again. God I was going to miss these guys.
"Remember that time we put blue chalk in Niall’s hair while he was passed out drunk and put on a fake tattoo and tricked him into thinking he dyed his hair blue and got a tat while he was drunk?" I laughed as I held back tears.
"Yeah," I sniffed, still laughing, "Remember when we filled Harry’s car completely to the top with toilet paper because he wouldn’t put another roll in when he finished it?" Zayn’s body shook with laughter and I felt the vibrations in his chest and neck. Finally we pulled back. I wiped a tear that was falling down my cheek.
"His face was priceless. He was so fucking pissed," Zayn continued to laugh while taking his palms to his glassy eyes.
"It took him days to get it all out. I’ll bet you anything there’s probably still some in there!" I could barely finish my sentence we were cracking up so hard. I was going to miss these guys so much.
"Jessica, we need you on stage!" I heard someone call faintly. Shortly after I heard,
"Zayn, we need you man!" Seems like our time for reminiscing was up. We collected ourselves and left to face the rest of today. As I was walking I saw something lying on a coffee table that caught my eye. It was the latest issue of some tabloid with Niall on the cover. My brows furrowed. I walked over to see splattered all over the cover: ‘NIALL WITH ANOTHER WOMAN? MOVING ON QUICKLY AFTER HIS BREAK UP PAGE 67’ I looked at the cover photos. I knew tabloids were notorious for being wrong 98% of the time but these two looked awful cozy.
I turned to the page number and saw more. I could tell when someone was trying not to be seen, and Niall was trying not to be seen with this woman. I tried to tell myself it wasn’t true but the photos didn’t lie. He was holding her hand, leading her away from the press, he met her at a restaurant we had a date at once. I felt like I had been punched in the chest. I was finding it hard to breathe. I slowly put the tabloid down and walked away from the table. I felt empty, like a husk. And just at the worst time,
"Hey Jess! Wait up!" He called to me. It would have surprised me if I wasn’t already stunned. Niall hadn’t spoken two words to me in weeks. I dared not turn to look at him for fear my lungs would collapse. He finally caught me and touched my shoulder which I had to fight not to flinch away from. I faced him without a word. I didn’t know what would come out.
"We need to talk, I have something I’ve been-"
"Jess! Now!" A stage hand shouted. I looked back mechanically at the direction of the voice. I faced Niall again and I saw his his eyebrows pulled together in frustration, looking in the same direction I was before looking back into my eyes.
"We’ll talk later, at the after party ok?" I bit hard on my bottom lip and nodded. The after party, oh god. I don’t think I could take another minute with him. My face twisted in pain as soon as I wasn’t in Niall’s line of sight. I let myself cringe only for a moment before I had to compose myself for my crew. I finished with the sound calibration and left as soon as possible. I needed to get out of there.
"Oscar," I began, interrupting whoever he was talking to.
"Hold on one second," He said holding up one finger to me. I took hold of it and put it down.
"Can I leave immediately after my last performance? Can I pack up and go? I don’t want to go to the after party. I just want to gather my things, get in a car and go to my next hotel," He looked at me quizzically, unsure. "Please, Oscar." I begged. He sighed and nodded.
"Alright fine, you can go I guess, I’ll have the crew pack up everything in the bus and meet you there later," He shrugged and went back to talking to probably the sound guy. Finally I made a bee line for my dressing room. Hopefully I could get there without any interruptions.
"Hey Jessica!" Harry shouted, I groaned. I didn’t know if I could hold myself together right now. I kept walking down the hall, maybe he won’t follow me back here. God I was only feet from my door when Harry caught up to me. "Hey, didn’t you hear me back there?" He asked pointing his thumb towards the back stage area. I shook my head no.
"Well I was just coming to ask, you’re going to be at the after party tonight right?" He beamed excitedly. God he looked like a happy puppy awaiting my expected yes,
"Yeah, definitely." I lied. I couldn’t answer all the questions he would have if I had said no. I gave him a halfhearted smile and before I could turn to see if I could make it to my dressing room now Harry pulled me into a bear hug. My eyes squeezed shut trying to hold back the sobs that were clawing up my throat desperate to escape. "I know it’s been hard on you these past few weeks and I’m glad to see you’re doing better." I felt the lift of his cheeks on my temple as he smiled, "I love you, Jess," He said and that was it. One sob came out and tears overflowed onto his shirt.
"I love you too Harry." I said through the tears. He just rubbed my back.
"Hey it’s alright," He cooed, but I pulled away from him. I ran back to my dressing room and slammed the door shut, leaving him standing in the hallway confused. I hoped he would chalk it up to my fear of crying in front of people. I slid down, my back on the door. I couldn’t hold it together I was gasping for air. Niall could already be moving on. Either way he was done with me. I felt like nothing but a piece of trash and I deserved every bit of it. I decided I couldn’t leave without saying goodbye but I couldn’t do it to their faces. So I did what I do best. I wrote it.
I sat and wrote a letter to each of them. I saved Niall’s for last. I tucked them all away for when I would stash them. I would place them in each of their dressing rooms just before the encore of Miss You More. My last performance. I wouldn’t have enough time to put them in after so it’d have to be before. It’s funny how my first and my last performances are associated with so much pain. The first I was conflicted on who to choose and now I’ve lost my choice. Only this time, there is no grand finale, there’s no grand gesture in front of everyone. It’s this performance and then I lose him. He’s gone.
I went out, got changed, got hair and make-up done, went through the motions. I could almost feel the strings tied to my hands and feet as I moved. I was running on empty and I didn’t know how much more of this I could take. Finally it was time, final sound check had been done, doors had been opened, people filed in, and suddenly I’m listening to the last song of the opening act and I’m in the wings getting ready to emerge.
I take it all in once more. The enormus stadium filled to the brim with thousands of screaming fans, the rush of air when I came from behind the stage. I could feel them fill me up…
Even on stage, the hole Niall left me still rung hallow. I could still feel the cold leak through the cracks. I brought the mic to my lips and waited. I felt the hole so heavy in my chest, the music swelled and I froze just before my cue. In that milisecond of time I felt myself about to choak, I looked around me and found something that saved my show.
A face. Just the face of a girl in the front row. Her face was bright and gleaming. Her eyes shone with hope. Her face was so eager to hear me perform, like a dream had just come true. I looked at her and felt her depending on me. I didn’t feel the weight of thousands depending on me. Just her. But it was enough. I decided to do this show for her, and her alone. She looked kind of like me when I was younger, so full of admiration and hope. I remembered being disappointed more than once when meeting my idols and them turning out to be a wash out. I belted out the first note right in time.
The show thankfully went off without a hitch after that. I said my usual goodbyes and got their apetites wet for the boys. When I came back the rush died almost immediately. I was empty, that was it. I was rushed back to be pampered and I jsut wanted to sleep for days. I didn’t feel like moving or singing or dancing. I wanted to be done. Unfortunately I had two more performances.
I felt them try to move me but I wasn’t having it. I was so tired. Finally I forced myself up to change. I survived the first performance of Miss You More and and rushed back to get my letters. I took them and rushed to their dressing rooms. I nearly ran right in but they were still changing. I hid behind racks of clothes outside the door until they rushed out and past me. I ran quickly into the room and left a letter with each of their piles of things before sneaking back out.
I couldn’t help but cry as I walked away.
God…I really need to talk to Jess soon. Tonight may be my only chance for a while. I conteplated how I was going to say this tonight while I rushed back to get changed. I rushed to get my sweaty clothes off and my fresh clothes on. I wondered what she would do. I wondered what she would say. I wondered how she would feel. I didn’t have time for that right now, however. Well I would have plenty of time tonight. I trotted out of the room and out to back stage before I realized I left my tie back in the dressing room. I ran back as fast as I could. I heard the five minute mark and rummaged through my things quickly.
I almost missed a piece of paper with my name on it, all folded up. I picked it up confused. Opening it I realized what this was:
I love you more than words could ever express. I wish I could tell you how much you’ve changed me but I’d never be able to keep you that long. Over this past year, you’ve taught me how to love, how to fall in love. You showed me things I’d always wanted to see. I suppose after all this time I was due for heartbreak. I won’t be seeing you tonight. I won’t be seeing you for a very long time. I couldn’t bear to see you with someone else. So I’ve left, I’m already on a long car ride to my next location. I’ll save you the guilt of saying goodbye.
All my love, Jessica.
Finally it was time for my final song. I found the other boys waiting to go on stage. Niall was no where to be seen but maybe it was better this way. I gave Liam a hug, Harry a hug, Zayn a hug, and lastly Louis. We all shared meaningful looks and synchronized our periods and blah blah blah. It was all very moving of course.
I stepped up to my mark. The boys were already on stage by now and I was waiting to be announced. I heard my cue and hopped on stage, cheery and bright. I waved and they all roared and cheered. Suddenly I heard a noise.
"Jess!" I looked over and Niall was trying to get my attention.
"Now I think we should do one last song together don’t you?" Zayn asked the crowd and they all cheered. I turned back to the crowd shrugging it off.
"Jess!" He hissed again. I turned and he walked towards me. I was confused. Why was he getting my attention now? To the best of his knowledge he was seeing me later. "Jess we need to talk, I read your letter-" The music began to swell and the lights went down.
"Niall, not now-" I sighed and was planning on continuing but Liam began the song. "Look you don’t have to explain anything to me, I saw the pictures of you at that girl-" I barely got the sentence out before Niall and I began harmonizing with Harry on the into to the chorus. I sang the chorus which helped me avoid Niall for a little while.
"Jessica it’s not what you think, she was a jeweler-" He started but a harmony part interrupted what ever he was about to say next..
"What? Why were you being all illusive with a jeweler?-" I asked when he was finished. Just then he walked towards the crowd as he began singing the second intro. I readied myself for the chorus and finally it was time for the bridge Niall and I sung together. As the music led in Niall faced me,
"That’s what I’ve been wanting to talk to you about!" He said angrily. I couldn’t imagine a single explanation that would keep me from leaving right after the show. No matter what I wasn’t going to have him and I didn’t realize how hard that goodbye would be until today.
"Niall I’m leaving right after this song you can’t stop me. It’s too hard, I can’t-" Our cue interrupted me and we sang the bridge to each other just like we always practiced. I knew this would be the last time we would. They would fill my bits in with something else when they performed it alone. I tried using my pain to my advantage. I sang harder into the mic as I fought the catch in my throat. A tear slipped silently down my cheek and I saw his eyes go soft.
His gaze bore into mine hot and sharp. I had to look away as we finished it out. God I would miss that look. Liam had a small solo before the next chorus. There was no time to talk after this. Right now. All I had to do was not listen and I could make it through the rest.
"Jess-" he started,
"Niall stop please I can’t-" I fought losing my voice. I tried walking away but he caught up to me.
"Jessica Grace Wright I’m not dating her I went to see her about an engagement ring!" He said finally grabbing my arm and pulling me around to face him. I froze. My brain would not function. All I could see, all I could hear, all I could feel were the words "engagement ring."
"Niall I-" I was speechless. What on earth possessed him to propose after everything. A smile a mile wide spread across my face and he seemed to mirror me. As we belted out the last chorus and the harmonies He leaned over to me and whispered, "So is that a yes?" I brought the mic away from my lips and stepped back unable to compose myself. I brought my hand to my mouth looking at everything but Niall. I knew if I looked at him I would burst into tears. I couldn’t have been more happy in my life. He grabbed my hip and pulled me close to him as I finally got the voice to sing out the last notes. As the music began to fade I riddled his cheek and neck with kisses and finally pulled his lips to mine and relished in his lips. It was like taking a breath of fresh air for the first time.
I went back stage and cleaned up my running make-up in my dressing room while they finished up the final encore. Oscar burst into my dressing room,
"What the HELL was that out there! Whispering with your little boyfriend. You couldn’t even finish the last notes!" He screamed infuriated. His anger didn’t sink in though, I was too stunned.
"Oscar," I said quietly.
"I mean Jessica what were you thinking! This is the last show! What was so important that it couldn’t wait!" He continued.
"Oscar," I giggled calmly once more.
"And Jesus Christ through the whole damn song! I mean-"
"Oscar," I said more firmly a final time.
"WHAT!?" He finally answered.
"He proposed." I explained turning to him teary eyed. "Oscar, he proposed. Why? I have no fucking clue. We’re going to talk about it, but…" I let it sink in, in both of our brains, "I’m getting married." I took deep breaths. I couldn’t explain what was bubbling inside of me. Suddenly I wasn’t picturing the days and months and years I’d have to live without him by my side, suddenly I saw our future. How it would be once we were married. I didn’t know when we would actually get married, may be years from now. I was picturing all the time we’d spend together. It was a life I thought I’d lost.
"Jesse…congratulations," He laughed incredulously. He pulled me into a hug and it seemed he didn’t have anymore to say about my behavior. The boys finished their last song and ran back stage. I watch for Niall and ran into his arms when I saw him. I grabbed hold of his face and kissed him repeatedly. Making up for lost time. I couldn’t get enough of his lips.
"Niall," I said suddenly pulling away, "Why now? Why after everything?" I asked finally, my curiosity getting the better of me.
"Well you can thank Zayn for that one. He made me realize what I was throwing away," He cupped my face soaking in every inch of me, "I’ve been miserable these past few weeks and it only got worse as time passed. I was so bitter though, what you did really hurt me and I wouldn’t let it go. I couldn’t let it go. Once it was put into perspective though I realized…in the grand scheme of things, how small it was and what it meant to both of you. I was making both of us miserable for pride,"
"Then…this is going to sound really dumb but the thing I missed the most was…waking up to you. I ached for it. I couldn’t bare for you not to be the first thing I breathed in when I woke up in the morning. I knew then that there was only one thing left for me to do, and that was, well, marry you." He shrugged beaming from ear to ear. "I had this whole thing planned at the after party, I got a couple of the boys involved, it was all very elaborate." He laughed. I just kissed him.
"Well we’ll just have to celebrate there because WE ARE GETTING MARRIED!" I screamed so that everyone around could hear.
"To Jessica and Niall!" Louis said loudly as we struggled to talk over the multitude of people and the music playing in the background. In that moment I could not have been happier. The glass of about thirty different alcoholic drinks clinked together for what seemed like five entire minutes. Niall stepped in, however, making a rather large realization.
"Now I’m afraid, you are not my fiance yet," He looked at me sadly. He took a deep breath as I gave him a confused look, "I never really did ask you properly," He smiled devilishly at me and I couldn’t help but smile in anticipation. He reached out his hand and Liam came up with his guitar. I raised my eyebrows, oh man what is he doing. "Now everyone, everyone I’d like your attention please!" He called out to the whole bar, "Would you, turn that music off?" He asked the bar tender quietly. When he did as Niall said he played the first note.
“It’s a beautiful night…" He began in the now quiet bar. "We’re looking for something dumb to do…" Niall smiled widely at me. He got up real close so that his nose was touching mine, "Hey baby, I think I wanna marry you…" He sung so sweetly I closed my eyes and smiled. Suddenly Harry turned me around, taking my hand. He drew me close with one hand on my waist and one hand holding mine out.
“Is it the look in your eyes?" He continued and I couldn’t help but laugh as he swayed me, "Or is it this dancing juice?" He sung as he spun me around, "Who cares baby, I think I wanna marry you…" Harry smiled lovingly as tears pricked my eyes. I just shook my head,
"This is such a stupid song," I laughed as Harry spun me off to Liam.
“Well I know this little chapel, on the boulevard we can go, no one will know, Oh, come on girl," Niall picked up the tempo and Liam started dancing with me more quickly. I couldn’t help but laugh the whole way through. He smiled so wide his eyes crinkled together in that way they do that’s so cute. Then suddenly I was in Zayn’s arms.
“Who cares if we’re trashed, got a pocket full of cash we can blow," Zayn could barely get through that one he was laughing so hard with me, "Shots of patron, and it’s on girl!" He sung loudly as the whole bar was starting to get into it. Zayn passed me off to Louis then,
“Don’t say no, no, no, no, no!" He sung dramatically only making me crack up more, "Just say yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah!" He got down on his knees likes he was begging and I nearly fell over, "And we’ll go, go, go, go, go!" He took my hand and got up now with only a loving gaze as he passed me back to Niall on his last line, "If you’re ready, like I’m ready…”
“Cause’ it’s a beautiful night…" He sang to me as the bar went quiet and he held me close his chest. I rested my head on his shoulder and closed my eyes just listening to him sing, "With you and I it’s plain to see…" I smiled at the lyric change, "Hey baby, will you marry me?” He pulled back and looked me in the eyes. At that moment, everything we’d been through, every challenge meant nothing. Here, he was standing in front of me asking me to marry him with the dumbest song and somehow it was perfect. His forehead was against mine and the bar was quiet. I was surrounded by my closest friends, and I was in love. I was completely totally and fully in love.
"I love you so much, and we’ve been through a lot this past year. But none of that could separate us, I don’t know what could. I want to wake up next to you every morning and fall asleep next to you every night. Now I know I won’t be able to, we’ve got our separate careers but…if I know you’ll be waiting for me at the end of everything, it’s like every time I see you I’ll be waking up. You wake me up. I don’t even know I’m asleep until I see you from across the room smiling, lighting up my whole world," He took his thumb and wiped away the tear that had slipped down my cheek, "I promise to dry every tear, to share every laugh, to do my best to make you the happiest woman alive. Jessica Grace Wright…will you marry me?" He got down on one knee and opened a small wooden box.
It was that moment you waited for your whole life. He opened it up and the ring inside could not have been more perfect. It was simple, modest, not too flashy. It was a thin silver band that branched out and twisted around the single round diamond in the middle. I barely looked at it, however. Because the ring didn’t matter. All that mattered was who it tied me to.
"Yes," I said simply. Niall took the ring out and slid it on my finger kissing it slowly before standing back up and kissing me. Everyone clapped, Oscar cried, we all got incredibly drunk.
I’d be that person I hate if I did one of those flash forward what happens next kind of things so I’ll leave it to your imagination. All you need to know is we were happy, and we were together and that was all that really mattered to us.
Ok! This is your author speaking, I hope you enjoyed the ending. Now this is not the end of Jessica and Niall’s tales. I will be doing at least one bonus chapter after this, their first Christmas, and who knows what else. I will probably get inspired to do several sparse and random bonus chapters. Also I’d like to ask if anyone would be open to me starting a new fan ficiton? I know I’m not that good at updating but I hope the updates are worth the wait. This time you won’t have to go through this awkward bad writing period either! Yaaay! (let’s face it my early chapters were kind of shit) So please, I would love for you to take two seconds to tell me how you liked this chapter, if you’d be open to a new fanfic, or just any questions, comments, or criticism. Love you guys, thank you for reading!
Oh my goodness. I wanna know what happens to Jess and Niall! And i think you should write another fanfic as well but i wanna know what happens!(: i dont have a tumblr but i love your fanfic!:D -Jana
Omg get one. We can be best friends seriously. I need someone who reads my fic to talk to about it. Anyway, I’m almost done with the last chapter darling but it’s got a lot in it and I want it to be perfect so it’s gonna take a little time. Not much because I’ve got most of it written, at least half, but I’ve also got a lot of projects and stuff due and finals are coming up so I don’t have too much time. I’ll get it up asap!
I know I was bad with the last chapter and I lost 3 followers for it. I’ve been so busy with school and I’ve got all these new friends and there’s been so much drama and it’s been so consuming. I’m really sorry I didn’t get to it sooner. I’ve been having to write a lot of essays for English and that’s taken up a lot of my creativeness as well. I love you guys and I’ll finish up these last chapters and end this fan fic well. I’ll make the ending perfect for everyone because it will be ending soon and I don’t want anyone disappointed :)
I loved the chapter, I think I started reading right after you posted chap. 13! I was just searching for new fanfics to read and I stumbled upon yours! I had to go back and start from the beginning!!(:
I loved the last chapter! I dont have a tumblr but I have been reading you fanfic from the beginning! It is so good! I really wanna know what happens next and if she is okay!(: -Jana
Glad to know there’s still readers from the beginning :) seriously you don’t know how much that means to me. Even after my near month long hiatus it means a lot that you like my story enough that you’d go out of your way to get on tumblr and read.
As we drove to Charlotte my heart pounded in my chest. I didn’t know how my brothers were going to behave. I didn’t want them to mess this up for me. They had witnessed my hysterics all those years ago over the boys. How obsessed, not dedicated let’s be perfectly honest with each other here, obsessed I was. My brother Jeremy saw me run around the house screaming because I got tickets to their show. Jason watched me blog about them day and night. They saw all the art work I’d done I mean they had seen some pretty crazy stuff. I have obviously gotten over that now however I don’t know if they are going to tell the horror stories of those days. I don’t know how Niall is going to recieve that, he’s been pretty accepting of my flaws but up until now I have just had some character flaws. My god, what will happen when he finds out I’m full on crazy? Will he be quite as accepting?
As days turned into weeks we started to get into our groove a bit more. Jessica and I had plenty of time together but rarely alone. She has been battling her bad natures and I have been helping her. The only problem is every time she slips she goes into a self encouraged sulking. She doesn’t give herself enough credit. Even with how tired I know she is, she still manages to smile her biggest smile and give every bit as much energy into the fans as ever. She always cuts out time to reply to fans on twitter and she occasionally gets on that secret blog of hers. Somehow she’d managed to keep her old tumblr a huge secret knowing if it ever became common knowledge she’d have to delete it seeing as some of the posts were incredibly personal and not flattering to her public image. She’d kept it under wraps well enough.
The next few days went by like a flash, every night there was a new stage a new crowd to hear the same songs, see the same routines. It was the nightmare of touring. It was great to see their happy faces each and every time and feel the rush of the cheers, the lights, the music, but it was a mess of sleeping, eating (occasionally) and working, mostly working. And when you were burnt out? They gave you a B-12 shot and sent you on your way. Sure it took the edge off and gave you a big boost but this wasn’t natural to your body and you felt it. You felt it in your head. Your brain was tired, all the time. Niall and I got a little time and I fell asleep in his arms more than once which made me smile every time I woke up buried in his hoodie.
"She kicked me out of our room." I complained as I stared at the door, shut, in front of me. Zayn turned, saw my dilemma, and laughed.
"You could come to my room if you want?" He offered. This was against my better judgement. Jessica and Zayn had history, he’d just been heartbroken today, he couldn’t possibly be over her in the blink of an eye. He thought he was in love with her for God’s sake. However I was drunk and my better judgement was drowning at the bottom of a half bottle of vodka. Besides I really didn’t have anywhere else to go, I honestly didn’t want to be in there while they do…what ever they are planning on doing.
Louis, Harry, and Niall had ordered copious amounts of alcohol from room service, much more than I think we’d need. I sighed as they forced a night of drunken truth or dare upon me and in my hotel room none the less! When it all arrived I gulped. I wondered if I got hung over? My brother would brag to me about how he never got hung over no matter how much he drank, hopefully it ran in the family because if there were ever a morning I’d be hung over tomorrow would be it. They set it out in the middle of the circle we’d all formed and dimmed all the lights.
I stood looking out over the crowd as we finished the song. I clung to my anger and turned it into passion as we sang. With all the lights of the stadium on me I somehow still felt like I was in complete darkness.
Here’s a little something to tide you over until I post the next chapter. This is the night by the fire in the crushes perspective. So don’t read if you haven’t read the last chapter! Wouldn’t want to give anything away ;D
I woke up to a loud pounding noise. It took me a moment to register where I was, then it clicked. Niall had woken up with me and I found myself in his arms which made me strangely warm inside. We were both a little dilerious but the loud banging came again which we now figured out was someone knocking on the hotel door.
"Damn she’s cute when she’s tired," Niall sighed to Zayn as he walked down to the living room after carrying the sleepy pop star to her bed. The bonfire was great bonding time for all six of them. Even though Niall and Zayn were tired neither wanted to go to sleep, Niall because he was more hungry than he was tired.
"Don’t I know it," Zayn bit his lip and thought back to the sweet moment they had in her bedroom. He was more confident than ever with Jessica, whether he was the crush or not.
"I like her," He laughed a little. She was funny and straight forward. Even though she could be a tad dramatic and eccentric she was still very down to earth. She was weird but in a cute way.
"I do too," Niall smiled. Zayn sat next to him.
"I can see why Justin gushed about her. I mean I heard she was flirty and charming but…I can see why so many of the people we know who’ve met her fancied her at some point, come more than others, she’s just," Niall paused looking for the right words, "That girl.” He said finally.
"She’s easy to fancy…" Zayn smirked. He knew that, "that girl" was a dangerous thing. He couldn’t hep thinking about how there was never any news about her dating anyone. So all those guys that had a crush on her previously, they were left in the dust. He’d be spending a lot of time with her and he was afraid of liking her more than he did already.
"Mate." Liam entered the kitchen where Niall was sitting eating, like usual. "Did you see that?" Liam asked referring to the pantless pop star that had just cat walked into her room.
"Sure did," Niall shook his head. What he’d just witnessed drew him to her like nothing he’d ever felt. One second she was sensual and seductive and then at the drop of a hat she was bubbly and innocent. "And what I’d give to have her fancy me."
"Hey, you don’t have to be her crush to have a shot. It’s who she connects with that really makes a difference." Liam smiled confidently, as cheesy as his statement was, it was also true.
Niall had drifted to sleep once or twice lying there with Jessica. His stomach fluttered with more than an insatiable hunger now. He had always thought she was beautiful, there was no doubting that she was, charming too, though something else was beginning to develop. He wasn’t just attracted to her, he was really beginning to like her. That seems like it would be nice but it wasn’t. It was no secret that he wasn’t the normal favorite, his odds were a bit less when he was running against Harry and Zayn. Harry had always been the most sought after in the group and Zayn was, well, Zayn, not to mention she was taller than him no matter by how small an amount.
Though in this moment with her lips resting comfortably on his collar bone, one hand knotted in his, the other on his back tracing lightly, along the fabric of his cotton shirt, little patterns with the very tips of her fingers that made him shiver a bit, he thought he had a fighting chance.
Niall had been dreading tonight all week long. Tonight was the night of Jessica and Zayn’s test date. He decided to stay in his room all night sulking. The other boys had gone out and tried to convince him to go with them but Niall didn’t feel like doing much of anything tonight. He felt a bit of Nando’s might lift his spirits….and by a bit I of course mean a whole hell of lot. His stomach felt nice and happy but his heart didn’t. He loved Jessica. He wasn’t afraid to admit it to himself anymore. He loved her more than words could say.
After Jessica left, Harry flopped onto his bed and let out a sigh. How close he was to getting her into this bed. Probably would have changed her mind then, Harry smiled smugly at the thought. Though he knew she loved another, there was no denying it. Maybe he had known it long ago, but he was surprised Jessica didn’t. To him it was so obvious, the chemistry they had and lord knows he-who-shall-not-be-named feels the same. Though the last thing Harry was going to do was tell either of them. They needed to find each other. They needed to have their love story.
But what about you? Harry asked himself. Where’s your love story? Harry sighed. I’m young, I don’t need a love story quite yet….I don’t think they even realize what they do. The lingering looks the extra affection and attention. How do they not see it?
Though Harry’s thoughts drifted to the more recent events then, putting the other thoughts out of his mind. He remembered Jessica’s teeth on his bottom lip so vividly he could almost feel it. He closed his eyes and let the scene progress as if she had said yes. He would have had her hop up rapping her legs around his waist propping her up on his hips, laid her on the bed going first for her shirt, then down underneath her-STOP THAT! You’re band mate loves her! Harry scolded himself. He sighed and rolled over trying not to think about it. However his dreams betrayed him.
Zayn couldn’t stand this part. Niall always got too close to her than Zayn might have liked. Though even now a couple feet separated them and he almost couldn’t bear it. He wanted Jessica to be his no matter what. He realized that, when his heart sank into his stomach when he saw her kissing Liam, even if it was nothing, he almost had a heart attack. He felt that sinking feeling of doubt creep into his core when Niall stepped up close to her. The way she looked at him….the way he looked at her….and he was just so close.
It wasn’t very long ago that I was told I was to tour with One Direction. Even though I’ve often met celebrities I previously adored this was a bit different. There was a time I was desperate to meet them, and now they want to meet me and write with me. Being so famous is still very surreal to me, even though it was always my dream and, in my mind, the inevitable future. It still gives me chills and butterflies to perform in front of so many dreaming eyes; to give millions the same feeling I had every time I went to a show and saw my favorite band or musician.
They told me of the world tour and the writing project we’d all be a part of in the upcoming months. The idea of a British boy band touring with an American female pop-star was certainly new, but both of us were wildly popular in both countries and all around the world and the song was anticipated to be a big hit. The pair was fitting seeing as we both had similar styles though I had a more dance based sound than the love songs One Direction produced to appeal to their infatuated female fan base. I suppose you could say they are a guilty pleasure of mine. I’ve never liked that style of music but when they came along I fell in love.
I sat in the bus on my way to finally meet them for the first time. We would be working closely for a long while. Late nights, early mornings, long hours all around. I couldn’t suppress the nervousness I felt. I wondered if any of them knew who I was really, if any were fans, if any had a crush like I had….I wanted to think they might but for the first time in a long while I felt out of my league. However, I swore to myself that I would treat this like any other meeting. Well at least I would try.