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My Heart Skips A Beat

Chapter 35

It was 4 AM, and I still haven’t fallen asleep. I was just lying here, staring up at the ceiling, and wondering what to do next. At some point in the last few hours Harry had moved over closer to my side of the bed, nuzzling his face against my shoulder, making it much more difficult for me to feel anything but Love towards him when I’m going to have to confront him tomorrow. I absentmindedly twirled one of this curls around my pointer finger, trying to shut up the voices in my head that were telling me that whatever happened tonight, or whatever it was that had been happening for the past few weeks, wasn’t just going to go away.


When I woke up the next morning, the apartment was quiet. I heard a slight rustling in the kitchen and got up and walked in to see Harry making breakfast.
“Hey” I said, my voice groggy.
“Hey. You sleep alright?”
“Eh, kinda. But Harry, can you please tell me-“
“I know. I’m sorry. I’ll explain.” He picked up a plate and mug, handing it to me.
“You made me breakfast?”
“I was hoping it might make you slightly less angry with me.”
“I’m not angry. I’m just…confused.”
“I know… Okay, well, basically, Jake wanted me to do all this ‘damage control’ after our interview. He wanted me to apologize, lie, just – basically undo everything that I did. And Anna, I just couldn’t. I couldn’t do it because I did what I did for you. For us. And if I went on TV and started saying I didn’t mean it and I overreacted, I would be lying. And you deserve better than that form me. So, I guess I was just frustrated and gutted and so, I got drunk. It was stupid, I know. But, I mean, you know me, I always just act before I think.” He was looking at me desperately, clearly trying to tell what I was thinking.
“Harry, the last thing I want is for you to suffer from just trying to defend me. So I just, I hope you know I wouldn’t blame you if you did have to try and fix it or something.”
“But that’s what I’m telling you, I don’t want to. I just, for once, want everyone to accept what’s happened, and stop worrying about my bloody ‘image’!” He was clearly frustrated, I could tell by the way he was sitting; hunched over, brows knitted together, his jaw set.
“You know how you’re always worrying that you’re making my life difficult and how much easier it would be without you?” I asked, taking his hands, which completely covered mine. “Sometimes I think about the exact same thing, just, the other way around. I hate how much pressure you’re put under because of me, and how much you’re forced to deal with. You should be focusing on your career, on having the time of your life. Not on defending some girlfriend that no one likes anyway.” He looked at me with a mixture of shock, anger, and sadness in his eyes. His hand found my cheek, cupping it in his palm.
“Babe - don’t – I don’t even want you thinking that way. Because if you weren’t in my life I wouldn’t care about the fame or my career or any of that. You make me so happy and I love you so much. And I will do whatever I can to defend you or to help you because it’s what you deserve; it’s as simple as that. So I don’t want to hear any more of that nonsense, okay?” He came in closer, his lips barely touching mine.
“Okay.” I whispered before putting my hand on his neck and pulling him in closer for another kiss. “Thank you for the breakfast.” I giggled against his lips.

We were doing a show this Friday, so all week we’re going to be having rehearsals and things to make sure we’re ready. It’s a pretty big show so we all want everything to be perfect. Which is why we were currently at the venue doing a complete run through of the show.
“That was great boys, why don’t you take a quick break and we’ll be back in a few minute for ‘Moments’.” The director said. We all filed into the backstage greenroom, collapsing onto the sofas and raiding the craft services.
“So, is Anna coming to the show on Friday?”
“I think so. I mean, I told her about it a while ago so I’m not sure she even remembers. But uh, yeah…”
“And how did the little talk about the other night go?”
“It was… fine, I guess. She’s just, she said that sometimes she thinks that I would be better off without her in my life, that it’s like, too much to deal with or whatever. I just wish that wasn’t even an issue, you know?”
“I hate to tell you this mate, but that never really goes away. I mean, it’s still there for Dani and me. We love each other, but neither one of us can ever stop thinking of how easy the others life would be if we just weren’t together. But then I remember how horrible that sounds and get over it pretty quick.”
“That’s what I said! I just hate it, you know?”
“I hear you.” Liam nodded. I appreciated his advice.
“So she went back to school today?”
“Yeah.” I couldn’t help but wonder how that was going, after everything that happened over winter break. I didn’t want to say it, but I couldn’t imagine that it was good. So, just in case, I sent Anna a quick text right before we were going back onstage.


Hope your day is going well. I’m thinking of you. Xx. Call me later?

The text had been a pleasant surprise. So far, it was the only thing pleasant about my day. From the second I got back to school last night, it had been nothing but awkward conversations, uncomfortable stares, whispers when I walk by, and snide comments that seem to appear out of nowhere. It was hard, to say the least. And even though Molly, Keenan, Bryce, and Oliver were trying to act like everything was normal, it was so clear that it wasn’t that it wasn’t really even worth trying. I hadn’t gone to breakfast, I was too nervous. And then after I saw how terrible my morning classes were, I decided to skip lunch too. It was just too much to deal with. I could just imagine walking into the dining hall and all eyes falling on me as I try to go through the lunch line and find a table, all while trying to pretend that I don’t know what everyone is whispering about.
Now, it was finally the end of the day and the only thing I could think about was getting out of the overcrowded hallway, away from the judgment of all of these people, and to see Harry. Maybe I was treating him as a sort of security blanket, but maybe that wasn’t such a bad thing. He was the one person who could help me and understood this. He was the one person I felt like I could trust right now.
When I finally was able to walk out the door of the building, the cold air hit my face, waking me up. I immediately pulled out my phone and called Harry.
“Hey babe.” He said, answering after only one ring.
“Hey, thanks for the text. It actually was just what I needed.”
“Good, good, I’m glad. How was the first day back?”
“Are you home?”
“I am.” He said, a small laugh in his voice.
“Good. I’ll be right there.”

When I arrived outside Harry’s door, I knocked for just a few seconds before it swung open and he stood in front of me. He was wearing jeans, a white t-shirt, and a grey Jack Wills zip up sweatshirt.
“I’m glad you’re here.” He said, pulling me in for a hug. “So do you want to tell me what happened today?”
“I just, I don’t even know where to start. I’m trying to ignore it the best that I can but it’s just… not that simple. It sucks, okay? And I don’t blame you or us or anything. I just need to vent and say that it sucks. It sucks that people care about my life this much and need to know everything and judge me and it’s just hard. But, I don’t want you to get worried or angry. I just needed to get that out of my system.” When I was finished with my little rant, I looked up to see Harry watching me intently. His thumb was circling my cheek while his other hand was on the small of my back. I suddenly felt intimately close to him. I moved my hands to touch his face, his features softening.
“I wish there was something I could do.” He whispered, that intense stare boring into me.
“There is.” I whispered back, moving my hand to the zipper of his sweatshirt, undoing it. He still didn’t move, even as my hands traveling to the bottom of his t-shirt, pulling it up slightly to feel the muscles of his chest, tensing under my touch. Finally, he moved his body to be even closer to mine, our hipbones pressed against each other. I could feel him get goose bumps as my fingertips grazed the top of his jeans where the band of his boxers showed a little. I felt his strong, steady hands undo the buttons of my jacket, then his hands touched the small sliver of midriff between my jeans and shirt, I got goose bumps too. I couldn’t help but giggle.
“Sorry, forgot you were a bit ticklish there.” He said, smiling.
“Don’t be sorry…” I said quietly, letting his hands move upwards, my shirt going with them, eventually it too hit the ground.
“You’re the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen. Come here.” He took my hand and kissed the palm, moving his lips to my eyelids, then my jaw line, and finally my lips. I didn’t see Harry like this very often so I was enjoying every second of it. His lips grazed over my ear, a hum escaping his lips and I pressed myself against him, the heat of his skin radiating off of him. It felt so good, being close to him. We went into Harry’s room and I laid down on his messily unmade bed and immediately pulled Harry so he was on top of me, his strength was evident as he held himself just above me with one hand on either side of my head, as to not lie right on top of me. His eyes wandered across my face, and then the corner of his mouth turned up into a half-smile. He gently brushed a lock of my hair away from my face, tucking it behind my ear.
“I love it when you do that.” I heard myself say, really just thinking out loud. This time he gave me a real, full smile. And then, without giving it a second thought, I wrapped one leg around his waist, intensifying everything about the moment. Harry took that as an invitation. I was then forced to fumble with the top of his jeans, the zipper getting stuck which I couldn’t help but laugh at.
“You’d think we would’ve gotten a little better at this.” I joked.
“I think we’ve done quite well for ourselves.” Harry said with a smirk. He placed small kisses across my collarbone, his hands on my back, finding the clasp to my bra, which he unhooked with ease.
“Had a lot of practice?” His eyes widened and I cracked up.
“Oh, shut up!” He said quietly, laughing.
After that, neither of us said much. I just let myself get lost in the movements of his body, the feeling of his lips on my skin and his hands holding me. My fingers laced in the soft curls at the nape of his neck while his hands never stopped moving. It was, as usual, perfect. And it was the perfect way to forget about the day I had, at the place I was starting to loathe, with the people who didn’t understand me. Now I was with the one person whom I felt really knew me, and this place, more and more, was starting to feel like home.

Unfortunately, by 7:30 I was forced to leave Harry’s and go back to school. While kissing him goodbye, I realized how much I didn’t want to go back there. I didn’t want to have to handle the criticism, or the judgment. I didn’t want to even have to explain everything to my friends.
“I wish I didn’t have to go…” I muttered into the soft fabric of his t-shirt, breathing in the scent that is just so ‘Harry’ to me that there’s no other way of describing it.
“Me too…” He gripped a little tighter around my waist. “But you’re coming to the show on Friday, yeah?”
“Of course! I can’t wait. It’s actually weird that I’ve never seen you guys live.”
“I’ll make sure it’s a good show for you.” He said, smiling down at me. I laid my head on his chest, closing my eyes for a second to take in this moment. I knew this was something I needed to do, I needed to enjoy the happier moments in my life, mostly to counteract all the less the perfect ones I was having to deal with.
“I love you, Anna. We’ll get through all of this together.”
“I know we will. I love you too.”

By Thursday we were all just really really excited for the show tomorrow. We had spent pretty much all day every day this week preparing and even thought I was completely knackered, it was all going to be worth it tomorrow. I was also really looking forward to Anna being there. I felt like it was only going to make me more determined to make it a perfect show.
We were all just relaxing tonight, saving all of our energy for tomorrow night.
“So, you lads excited for what tomorrow could bring?” Zayn asked.
“What do you mean?”
“I mean, it could bring even bigger things for us. You never know.” I honestly hadn’t been thinking that far ahead. I had only been worrying about tomorrow, the next thing that was happening. I hadn’t even considered something else in the future.
“Oh, yeah. Of course.” I muttered, trying to make sense of this. How could things get even bigger than they are now? I couldn’t even imagine…

When the day was finally here I actually felt a little nervous. It wasn’t even the idea of performing in front of thousands of people; it was the fact that Anna was going to be one of them. We arrived at the venue at around 5:00 and there were already tons of people waiting outside. We signed autographs and took pictures, making sure everyone knew how appreciative we were that they were here to support us.
We don’t have any super crazy pre-show rituals., we just like to make sure we’re all really pumped up for the night.
By 7:00 we could hear the scream of everyone out in the venue, it was the most incredible sound and feeling in the world, knowing they were all there to see you. We didn’t have long until we went on, so I went to get dressed, finding a new message from Anna on my phone when I picked it up.

Good luck tonight and try not to forget too many words. I can’t wait to see you up there doing what you love. I’ll see you after. Xx.

Eleanor and Dani had told me they were getting kinda dressed up for the concert, so I decided to wear this short pink dress with a zip- on peplum skirt with black tights, and then to make it slightly more casual, I paired it with my favorite black biker boots. It seemed appropriate for the occasion. I curled my hair loosely, brushing it out so it looked more natural, and swiped on some mascara and a light pink lip gloss to finish everything off. I was really excited for tonight, it had been the one thing that has kept me going this whole week. The boys had scheduled a car to pick up all three of us, and according to Danielle’s text, it should be here any minute. Walking out into the cold night there were a few of the photographers that have been there all week, ever since the interview aired. They asked a few questions, took a few pictures. But thankfully, the car pulled up and I was able to slide into the backseat with its tinted windows and friendly faces.
“You ready for this?” Eleanor asked. I smiled.
“Yes! I’m so excited!” It felt good to be with them, it felt normal, unlike everything else in my life lately.
Pulling up to the venue a while later, there were tons of people milling around, but we were brought around the back, through a locked door, and were lead through several dark narrow hallways until it finally opened up into a huge arena filled with thousands of screaming fans. The sound hit you like a huge tidal wave, taking over your entire mind. I couldn’t help but smile. I knew they were big but this was… incredible.
“Liam just texted me and said they can’t see us before the show, but they’re sorry and they want us to come backstage after.” Danielle said into my ear so I was able to hear her. We were ushered over to 3 front row seats that were sort of off to the side. Automatically, I felt several pairs of eyes on me. I saw a few girls whispering to each other and looking in our direction. Eventually a few of them approached us and we took a few pictures. They were all really nice and polite and this whole moment was starting to feel really surreal. Who knows, if I hadn’t met Harry, one of these crazed fans at the concert could so easily be me. I’ll never know. And honestly, I didn’t want to. I want to be here, with El and Dani, about to see my boyfriend and his band perform. I want this to be my life, I really really do. I just don’t want to have to handle the backlash. I wished, more than anything, that things were simple. But for now I couldn’t think about that. The only thing I wanted to focus on were the five boys who have become my family, and who I knew deserved all of this fame and adoration. Because I could see how hard they worked, and how much they really loved what they were doing.
And then, as the house lights went down and the shrill screams erupted, my heart swelled. There was a countdown, and when it finally hit zero, I felt just as excited as everyone else in the room, and I could tell Eleanor and Danielle did too. We were all standing up, cheering and clapping along to the beat of the first song, ‘Na Na Na’.
And then, 5 boys came running onstage and I was just so incredibly happy, and everything that has been stressing me out all week melted away and I was 100% in this moment. The boys were so into it, running and jumping around the stage, singing to their fans with the biggest smiles on their faces. I was so glad I finally got to see all of them in their element. When the song ended, Harry was over on our side of the stage. I didn’t want to assume, but it seemed like he was scanning the crowd for someone. Then, his eyes landed on me, and a wide smile filled his face, his dimples visible from where I stood. He waved and I waved back, giggling. He looked amazing as usual in a ‘typical Harry Styles outfit’ in white jeans, red converse, and his signature navy blazer.
The next 2 songs, ‘Sand Up’ and ‘I Wish’ all went perfectly. They were working the crowd and clearly loving every minute of it. Then, the music stopped and a light fell onto Harry.
“Is everyone having a nice time so far?!” He asked, the crowd screaming at the top of their lungs. “Good, good. We’re having a great tonight, you’re all amazing. I just wanted to take this time to say a few things. First; a massive thank you to all of you for coming out tonight, and supporting us! It means the world and we just wanted to say that, everything we do is for you. And second, I just wanted to say that we have some, uh, some very special people here tonight, and that we couldn’t be happier that they get to be here and see us. And yes, just, a special thank you to them as well for putting up with us and for just, being themselves. We love you.” Harry was pacing across the stage, stopping when he was practically right in front of me with a smile and a wink. I couldn’t help but laugh and mouth a subtle ‘i love you’. I felt Danielle squeezing my arm.
“So, basically, when me and the boys first got together, we spent a lot of time at my house with a guitar, ‘round a fire, singing some of our favorite songs. And that is exactly what we’re going to do for you right now”. When the stage lights came back on, all the boys were sitting in a semi circle, with Niall holding a guitar. Zayn sang ‘I Gotta Feeling’, Niall sang ‘Stereo Heart’, and then when it was Louis’ turn, and the first few notes of ‘Valerie’ were played, I turned to see Eleanor, with a massive lovestruck smile on her face. And then, transitioning into ‘Torn’, all three of us couldn’t help but sing along. We might’ve looked ridiculous, but I didn’t really care.
Okay, I knew Harry could sing. I mean, really sing. But being here, listening to him live, it took my breath away. His voice, his face, his…everything. I could hardly believe that this was my life. You’d think I was used to it by now, but it was impossible. Things like this just don’t happen in real life. But somehow, by complete and utter luck, it happened to me.

When the first song had ended, I had been looking around the front row, trying to fin her. And then, when I noticed that blonde hair and bright smile, everything felt like it had fallen into place. I probably looked like an idiot in love, which I guess was exactly what I was. But I wanted Anna to be proud of me, and I wanted her to be able to see me doing the one thing I thought I was actually good at.
“HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYBODY!” I yelled once the song was over. I had been told to talk a little, work the crowd, until the next song began. “We all had a lovely New Year, just a small get together, but it was great. We hope you did too and that you’ve stuck to all of your New Years resolutions. Yes, so, this next song is one that is very special to all of us, because it was written by one of our very god friends, Edward Sheeran. And it’s called ‘Moments’.” As the music starts, I look over to my left one more time. I see Anna, and without thinking, I point at her discreetly, letting her know I know she’s there and that I’m singing to her.

The song ‘Moments’ had to be one of my favorites. Listening to it, hearing the words, I was able to understand what it was really about and take it all in. All of the boys looked and sounded incredible, but I couldn’t take my eyes off of Harry. And then, right in the middle of the song and completely unbeknownst to me, I felt my eyes fill with tears. Maybe it was just the magnitude of the moment, or maybe it was the amount of pride I felt for him right now. I don’t know what it was, but I couldn’t help it. I looked over to see Danielle and Eleanor at me and I couldn’t help but let out a little laugh. They thought I was crazy, most likely so did most of the people standing around us, but it was just so incredible to be able to see.
When the song was over Niall was standing over on our edge of the stage. I’m pretty sure he caught me wiping my eye and started hysterically laughing. I covered my face with my hands, trying to get a hold of myself.
The next 45 minutes passed by in a blur. They played almost the entire album, plus a cover of ‘Use Somebody’ by Kings of Leon. It was funny, because there were times when I felt like Harry was actually much older than me, more of a man than a boy. And then there were moments, like during ‘Up All Night’ where he was running and spinning and jumping around the stage, and he just looked like some 17 (almost 18) year old kid who had somehow been allowed to get up onstage. I liked seeing that, it made me feel more connected to him in a way. Because I knew he had been forced to grow up faster in certain aspects, having to be able to handle all of this at such a young age. But when I saw him like that, just being himself, I realized how similar we really were and how we were going through the same time in our life, just in very different situations. I was dealing with boarding school and family drama; he was dealing with contracts and fangirls. But honestly, it was all relative.
After the boys ran offstage after the last song and everyone was going completely nuts, a huge guy wearing all black with ‘STAFF’ printed on the back of his shirt came up to the three of us, motioning for us to follow him. We were again, lead through several dark hallways to a door that was labeled as ‘Greenroom’. We could hear voices inside and when we opened the door, it was a whirlwind of all of the boys bouncing off the walls, throwing things, laughing, yelling and talking.
“ANNA! Did I happen to see you CRYING?!?” Niall said, embracing me into a hug, laughing his signature Niall laugh.
“Oh, shut up!” I said, poking him in the ribs. A split second later, Niall was on the ground, being attacked by Louis, and Harry had his arms around me and my feet were being lifted off the ground.
“Babe I’m so glad you’re here!” He said, happier than I’ve seen him in a long time. I giggled, loving seeing him like this.
“You were AMAZING!” I said giddily, kissing him on the cheek. “I’m serious, that was incredible.” My arm wrapped around his neck, his hair was matted to his forehead with sweat. And now, even after almost 2 hours onstage, he managed to give me butterflies in his stomach just with a certain look.
“It was for you.” He whispered, lacing his fingers with mine and kissing me on the cheek too. “You know you look very fit this evening.” His other hand fell to my hip, his thumb moving in circles.
“Thank you.” I said quietly, nibbling on his bottom lip. We were sort of off to the side, away from everyone else with my back against the wall and Harry’s tall frame blocking the view of anyone else in the room seeing us.
“These a party going on… at this bar.” Harry began between kisses.
“Mmhmm.” I hummed, my lips traveling down his neck and across his jaw line, the way I knew he liked.
“Or, you know… we could always just go back to the flat” He said this with a sly smile.
“I think that sounds like a pretty good idea. Because I’m pretty sure that what you’re thinking isn’t exactly appropriate in public, am I right?” I giggled, only half joking.
“That would be correct.”


@notarealhipster Who do you imagine anna as?


I'm from the US, outside of Philly :)
Where are you from? My side of the pond (United States) or the other one?
I love this story it's my favorite one I've read so far! :)