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For Better, Worse And Mischief (I'm All Yours)

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After traumatising the poor receptionist (who has a world-class pokerface; Louis is impressed) by asking for directions to local sex shops (two in the surrounding area), fetish clubs (fifty miles away for the closest one) and nudist beaches (only a couple of miles away—handy, that), they head down to the beach again. Louis surfs while Harry falls off his board a lot, and while they’re in the water, everything is just as it should be, with Harry’s smile bright and genuine as he demonstrates some fifty thousand different ways of ruining a pop-up.

Once they’re back in their room again, however, Harry’s mood changes, and when Louis suggests they go down to the pool bar for happy hour, he claims he’d rather stay in and read. Since Louis is a great friend who leaves his friends alone when they need space, he takes the hint and buggers off down to the pool by himself, spending the night playing billiards with some German girls.

When he gets back, Harry is deep into what Niall calls his ‘solemn mood’, meaning Harry goes off into his own head and starts looking at the horizon a lot. He usually puts on a happy face well enough for strangers, but Louis knows the difference. Really, if Harry thinks Louis can’t tell his moods apart by now, well—he’d be rather offended, actually.

The next four to five days are much the same, and by the sixth, Louis is genuinely sick of it. They’re in Mexico on holiday, for crying out loud. There’s sun and sand and waves everywhere, and to top things off, they just played a truly epic prank on most of the world. So unless something’s happened at home (which it hasn’t, one of the other lads would have phoned him), Louis really doesn’t see a reason for Harry to look like he has a million and one difficult things on his mind.

Unless he’s already thinking about what will happen when they get back to England, of course.

Louis is a very firm believer in procrastination. Would be fully prepared to enter a religion devoted to the concept, in fact. Nothing good ever comes from thinking about bad things before they happen, because either things turn out just as shitty as you predicted, and then you’re going to be miserable about it anyway, or things turn out better than you feared, and then you’ve just been fretting for no reason. So carpe diem and all that.

Still. Harry is his friend. And as of a little more than a week ago, also Louis’s husband, so Louis feels he has a rather strong moral obligation to help him pull his head out of his arse.

Luckily, Mexico just so happens to be about the perfect place for staging the kind of intervention Louis has in mind. The local liquor store alone stocks 53 different kinds of tequila, by Louis’s last count. Harry needs to stop worrying so much, and Louis has an idea to remedy that, which, if he does say so himself, is really rather brilliant.


The Mexico sunset is beautiful. The ocean below is almost still, and there are a hundred differents shades of red, pink, gold and yellow melting into the regular blue. Zayn would have found some great way to describe it, Harry thinks.

He’s been looking at it for a while now, just watching the play of colours over the sky and enjoying the stillness of early evening. Louis is moving about inside the suite, doing whatever it is that he’s doing; Harry’s been listening with one ear ever since he came back from the pool. It’s comfortable, knowing someone’s close by, ready to keep Harry company if he wants it, but otherwise content to go about his own business.

Right now, Louis’s business seems to have something to do with food, because there’s a smell of barbeque floating out to where Harry’s sitting, which gets stronger when the door to the balcony is opened and Louis steps out, pulling a small cart behind him.

“Room service!”

He’s looking exceedingly pleased with himself. Harry hides a smile behind the book he’s been reading on and off for a couple of days. “You got me dinner?”

“That I did,” Louis replies. “Never let it be said that I don’t provide for you, Styles. And I come bearing gifts, as well.”

He reaches beneath the cart and pulls out a bottle of tequila with the kind of flourish usually reserved for rabbits coming out of hats. Harry raises an eyebrow.

“Really?”

“Really, really,” Louis says. “We’re in Mexico. It’s the Mexican way. You can’t say no to that. It’d be shunning a great culture.”

“Do you remember what happened the last time we drank tequila together?”

“I do,” Louis says. And then he winks at Harry. “It was very nice.”

“I—” Harry starts, and then realises he has absolutely no idea what to say. “Nice? I could barely walk the next day.”

“Harry, Harry, Harry.” Louis shakes his head. “What a filthy mind you have. I was obviously referring to making Liam do the Macarena.”

“Obviously.”

“Might have managed to film it, just saying.”

Harry makes a show out of rolling his eyes, but can’t keep himself from smiling. “All right, pour me one.”

“Your wish is my command,” Louis says, and fills two shot glasses to the brim with golden liquid. He sits down on the sunbed next to Harry’s, hands him his shot and then reaches over to the cart and grabs a saltshaker and two slices of lemon. “Now, tilt your head to the right.”

“No,” Harry says. “Tequila, fine. Taking shots off my body, no.”

“Spoilsport.” Louis’s pout could rival a puppy’s. Worse, it could rival Zayn’s.

Harry takes the salt from Louis’s hand and sprinkles some on his own wrist. “I know, I know. I’m old before my time, no adventure left in me etc etc.”

He taps his glass to Louis’s and downs it in one go, then bites into a slice of lemon and closes his eyes in pleasure as the tequila burns its way down his throat. Louis is already holding up the bottle for refills when he opens them again. Harry shakes his head and reaches for a plate and some cutlery instead. “I said one, remember?”

“I maintain that with shots, the counting system starts at five,” Louis says, grinning as he takes another one himself. Harry shakes his head at him and lifts one of the domes that’s keeping their food warm.

Barbequed ribs. Louis really does love him best, Harry thinks with a happy sigh.


“Look, the bottle is spinning,” Louis says. Or maybe there are two bottles spinning. He frowns and tilts his head, narrowing his eyes to get them to focus better.

“Let’s just hope it doesn’t fall off the ledge,” Harry says. “Bit hard to explain to hotel management if someone gets hit in the head and dies.”

Louis nods, then gets a brilliant idea. “We should play.”

“Play what?”

“Spin the bottle,” Louis replies, pointing. “Look, it’s already started without us.”

“I think the point of spin the bottle is that you won’t know who it’ll land on. Bit useless with only the two of us,” Harry says. He’s too far away, Louis thinks. All the way over on the next sunbed, a whole yard, maybe even one and a half. And—why is that, again? Louis is sure he meant to go over and join Harry a long time ago. He starts to sit up and then promptly sinks back down. Right, moving. Tricky thing, that.

“Truth or dare then,” he decides. “Come on. You’ve said no to body shots, and now you’re vetoing my splendid bottle idea. Just, give me something, okay?”

“Fine,” Harry says. “Truth.”

“What’s the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?”

“African or European?” Harry asks, and mimics a person being catapulted high into the air.

“European,” Louis says. “Didn’t see that one coming, did you?”

Harry is silent for a minute, fiddling with his something in his lap. Louis would like to think it’s his prick, but, well, the movement is all wrong. Louis knows these things.

“24 miles/hour,” Harry says sounding very smug. “What? I know how to google.”

“Cheating,” Louis says firmly. “Definitely cheating. You’ll have to pay a penalty now.”

“Really?” Harry replies. “Says who?”

“I initiated the game,” Louis says, and, wow, ‘initiated’ is a very difficult word to pronounce when you’ve gone through half a bottle of tequila. “So I’m the sole king and ruler. Everybody bow down to me.”

“Oh, I don’t know,” Harry says, and, wait, is that a smirk? That’s definitely a smirk. “What if my knees can’t handle it?”

Louis immediately has a hundred lovely images of just how good Harry looks on his knees playing on the inside of his eyelids. He takes a deep breath. Game, right. Louis should try to focus. Then again, Harry really is terribly far away…

“Kiss me,” Louis says, holding his hand out in Harry’s direction. “Come over here and kiss me.”

Harry looks weirdly hesitant for a moment. Louis adds a pout.

“All right,” Harry says, swinging his ridiculous legs off the sunbed and practically stalking over to where Louis is sitting. “Okay. One kiss.”

One kiss. Right. Louis does his best not to let his own smirk show.

He expects Harry to sit down next to him, or perhaps even go so far as to straddle his hips and drape himself on top of him. Instead, Harry sinks to his knees on the balcony floor, right by Louis’s head, then leans in and presses the sweetest of kisses to his lips.

Louis is too surprised to react quickly, meaning Harry’s touch is gone again before he can start to kiss back. He reaches for Harry to pull him back down, and a low, needy whine escapes from his throat in the process.

Harry leans back in, kisses Louis again, and Louis feels like he’s floating. He’s too hot all of a sudden, restrained like his skin is suddenly on too tight, and every touch of Harry’s lips is a moment of relief. He reaches for Harry’s shirt and starts working on the buttons. Before he has managed to get the first one undone, Harry pulls back, out of Louis’s reach.

“You’re absolutely sloshed,” Harry says. “And I’m not. So this isn’t happening. Just… go to sleep, okay?” He sounds conflicted. Louis pushes himself up, manages to get his body into a sitting position. He reaches out a hand and touches the side of Harry’s face, just resting there against the warm skin.

“Haz.” It comes out sounding like an invitation and a plea all at once. Harry’s eyes fall closed, and for one, wonderful moment, he leans into Louis’s touch like it’s the only place he’d want to be. Then—

“We can’t,” Harry says. He covers Louis’s hand with his own briefly, nuzzles into the contact once more before pulling away. “I’ll see you tomorrow.”

“Wait,” Louis tries, catching Harry’s sleeve before he can move away completely. “What—”

“I just can’t,” Harry says, which makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. “Not tonight. I’m sorry.”

He pushes himself to his feet and walks around Louis and back into the suite. Louis blinks, then does it again for good measure. Harry just left. He shakes his head once, trying to clear it a little and stop the world from spinning around him.

Harry’s still gone.


Harry wakes up to an empty bed. A quick look around the suite confirms that, yes, Louis never made it off the balcony the night before. He’s curled up on the same sunbed where Harry left him, shivering slightly in the cool morning air. Harry wants to wrap him up in a million blankets, climb inside and live in a little nest of just the two of them forever.

Yeah. He’s in trouble, all right.

Saying no to Louis last night was the right decision—Harry is even more convinced of it now—but a major part of him keeps insisting that it wasn’t. That he could have handled it fine, just needed to get into the right frame of mind. Casual might not be a thing that comes natural to him, but he’s managed friends with benefits perfectly well in the past. He enjoys the intimacy that comes with really knowing somebody, but he doesn’t let himself get carried away. Hasn’t, up until now.

He has a feeling that all of that is changing. More than a feeling, really. Harry knows he can be just as blind to things as anyone else, but he does make a point of trying not to lie to himself if he can help it. Shit, they should never have come up with this whole marriage idea. What the bloody hell was Harry thinking?

He needs some air. More air, whatever. He leaves the duvet he wrapped around himself with Louis and goes inside the suite to find a pair of joggers and some clothes. He’s already smoothing the shirt down over his front when he realises that it’s not one of his.

Fuck everything.

He grabs his mobile and heads out, calculating the time difference as he rides the lift down to the ground floor. 6 AM in Mexico means it’s noon back home. Nick should be awake then. And if he isn’t, well, Harry will just have to wake him up and apologise for it later.

Nick picks up on the third ring with a cheery, “Harry! Love of my life who’s abandoned me so cruelly. How’s the honeymoon?”

Harry clears his throat. “Why didn’t we ever fall in love?”

“What are you on about?” Nick says. “We’re absolutely mad for each other. I am weeping into my pillow every night, making voodoo dolls of the dastardly villain who’s stolen you away from me.”

“Nick, I’m not joking.”

There’s a pause on the other end, then Nick’s back again, sounding suddenly serious. “What, really?”

“Yeah.”

“Shit,” Nick says. Harry fully agrees with that assessment. “Shit, really? You and Louis? Again? Really?”

“I know,” Harry says. He’s made it down to the beach now. It’s beautiful—the perfect setting for celebrating being madly in love. Harry wants to laugh at the irony. “I think I’m really fucked this time.”

“Literally and figuratively, I assume,” Nick quips, which puts a small smile back on Harry’s face. “But being honest here, I can’t say it’s a complete surprise.”

“It’s not?”

“Well, see,” Nick starts, then hesitates. “I’m not sure you want to hear this part.”

Harry isn’t either, but well. “Tell me anyway.”

“Why did you and I never fall in love?” Nick starts carefully. “I’ve given that a lot of thought, actually. I thought it would happen last year, with you living with me, us falling into bed together on the regular and not really seeing anyone else. I started to kind of expect it. Freaked me out good and proper, if I’m completely honest. Started thinking all sorts of things like, was I ready to be in love with a teen sensation? Ready to be in love at all? Turned out I needn’t have worried.”

“Why?”

“Because it was never going to happen,” Nick says with a sigh. “You, Harold, have been emotionally unavailable for as long as I’ve known you. You’re just not someone who gives their heart lightly, and once it’s been taken, well... Yeah, I think you’re really rather fucked. Sorry about that.”

Harry slumps down into the sand. That’s pretty much what he was afraid of. “Shit.”

“I take it he’s not on the same page?” Nick asks gently. “Or you wouldn’t sound so bloody miserable.”

“No, it’s—” Harry says, then pauses, because what is it like, really? Harry isn’t even sure. “It’s pretty much like it was,” he decides on. “He wants me when he’s had too much to drink, acts like nothing’s happening the rest of the time. Except sometimes, there’s a moment, and I think—I don’t know, Nick. I have no bloody clue what I’m doing right now.”

“Story as old as time,” Nick says sagely. “Well, you’ve got two options. Or, three, really.”

“Right.”

“Door number one,” Nick says, “is the one of bravery, emotional maturity and all that jazz. Meaning you sit him down for a nice long chat, lay your heart on the floor and hope that he doesn’t panic and trample all over it.”

“Tempting,” Harry says dryly. “What’s my second choice?”

“You cut your losses and run,” Nick replies. “Granted, that might be a bit tricky since you two just got hitched and everyone and their nana wants a piece of you at the moment. Speaking of, I’ll be needing you to come in for an interview sometime next week, or the show execs will have my hide. Hazards of being best friends with a hot, scandalous pop star.”

“Fine,” Harry says. “Third option?”

“You wait and see,” Nick says simply. “Keep it casual for a while. Test the waters a little where you can. Use the fact that you now have the perfect excuse to act like a besotted idiot around him in public to let things simmer a bit. Throw out a few hooks. Pull him in slowly.”

“He’s not a fish.”

“Harold,” Nick says, in that special way of his that Harry knows means he’s smirking. “Louis Tomlinson is your bloody white whale.”

Harry groans and drops his face in his hands.


Louis’s day is turning out absolutely lovely, hangover from last night aside. He woke up to the sound of waves, wrapped up in the gorgeous duvet from the bed, and the view of Harry pouring them both a cup of tea and pushing a deliciously buttery scone in Louis’s direction. After that, he took a nap, had lunch and went surfing. And now he’s curled up on the bed in their suite, reading a magazine in Spanish that he understands about 5% of, with Harry right next to him, reading a book and carding his fingers through Louis’s hair.

He seems happier than before. Louis is the master of alcohol-fuelled interventions.

“So, I’ve been thinking,” Harry says.

“That doesn’t sound too good,” Louis replies. Harry’s still playing with his hair, though, so he’s not overly concerned. “Planning on divorcing me already?”

“Shut up, I’m serious.”

“So am I,” Louis says, grinning. “Please don’t divorce me, Haz. I can change, I promise.”

Harry cuffs him over the head. “I’m trying to be practical here. Would you work with me, please?”

“Always,” Louis says, rolling over on his side so he can fix Harry with his best lascivious glance. “How about working together right now?” He puts a hand on Harry’s thigh and strokes the inseam of his shorts playfully.

Harry bats his hand away. “I’ve been thinking that maybe I should keep living with Nick.”

That definitely pulls Louis out of his drowsy, happy mood. “What?”

“I know it’s not ideal with our story,” Harry continues. “But maybe it’s better that way. Less blurring the lines, you know. I just—you know how things tended to end up when we were living together before. And now it’s the same, here, and it’s not that I don’t want—because clearly, I do—I mean, I did—but it’s. It could get messy, you know? With us having to act in love and mad for each other as soon as we’re in public. I just think that maybe we should keep our private time more… rational.”

“Rational?”

“Well, yeah. You know.”

“You living with Nick instead of with me is rational? Isn’t that going to blur the lines, as you put it?” It comes out angrier than intended. Louis finds he doesn’t really care.

Harry ducks his head. “I’m not married to Nick.”

“Would the two of you still fuck?” Louis demands. He has a sudden flashback to waking up on the sofa after one of Nick and Harry’s parties, finding Harry in the kitchen making breakfast, fresh lovebites all over his back that were definitely not Louis’s work. He feels a little sick at the memory. “Would you cheat on me like that? Is it all so fucking easy to you?”

“What are you—I don’t even know what you’re on about right now,” Harry shots back. “Yeah, sure, I’ve slept with Nick. So what? We were both single, and it stopped being a thing months ago. I don’t get why you’re so upset.”

“I’m not upset. I just don’t want to be cuckolded in every paper in the country by fucking Nick Grimshaw, all right?” Louis replies. “I do have some pride.”

“Really? ‘Cause it sounds like you’re being a possessive arse.”

Oh, fuck this shit.

“I’m a possessive arse?” Louis says angrily. “I am? You would find the flimsiest excuse to pull me to your side whenever you and El were in the same room when we were dating, but no, I’m a possessive arse. Honestly?”

Harry flinches and then looks away. He slides off the bed and walks over to the glass doors leading out to the balcony and just stands there, stiff and unhappy-looking. “I’m sorry. I was just trying to be practical.”

He sounds defeated, somehow. Louis feels his own anger deflate. He closes his eyes and tries to focus on the facts. Harry said he wanted to be practical. Maybe he’s right. Except—

“Don’t stay with Nick,” Louis says quietly. “I’m not sure what got you worried about moving back in, but we’re a team, yeah? We’ll figure it out. Come live with me.”

“I do want to,” Harry says, still facing away. “It’s just—I don’t know, Lou. Maybe I’m just being stupid.”

“You’re never stupid,” Louis insists. “And I get what you’re saying about not blurring the lines. I do. It’s just—can we think about that when we get back? Postpone the discussion, like?”

“Yeah, sure.”

He doesn’t sound very sure, Louis thinks. So he gets off the bed and walks over to where Harry’s standing, wraps his arms around him from behind and puts his chin on Harry’s shoulder. Harry leans back against him, relaxing his body into Louis’s hold. Louis smiles. Regular Harry-whisperer, he is.

“Hey, let’s go out to dinner tonight,” he says. “It’s our last night here, and we’re heading back to a bloody mess of furious suits, who probably have a promotion schedule from hell prepared for us. So let’s just enjoy being here, before we go back to that.”

Harry nods and relaxes further into him. Louis slides one hand under the hem of his shirt, lets it rest against Harry’s stomach. He’s warm, and firm, and smells absolutely lovely, and Louis can’t resist tracing the waistline of his shorts for a moment, letting the tip of his first finger dip in slightly, just a quarter of an inch.

“We’re on a break from everything right now,” he says, turning his head slightly so he can trace the line of Harry’s neck with the tip of his nose. “I just want to enjoy being here with you, and just being us, before we head back to reality. So let’s go have dinner. And if we should happen to fuck ourselves into a coma afterwards, then so be it, you know? Rather decent way to end your holiday, if you ask me. We probably shouldn't shag anyone else for as long as we keep this marriage thing up, anyway.”

Harry looks out at the ocean for a long time, clearly considering. He’s being a bit overly dramatic at the moment, Louis thinks, because, honestly, they’ve managed just fine not to complicate things until now. So what if they end up in bed together every once in a while when they both need release and the other is there to give it? Isn’t that what best friends are for?

(All right, Louis does see the flaw in that particular argument, but sod it. He and Harry have always been special. They fit. It’s easy. Having drunk sex every once in a while is just the icing on the cake.)

“Okay,” Harry says. “Let’s have dinner. On one condition: neither of us drinks tonight.”

Louis feels a small sting of something unpleasant at that, because he might, subconsciously, have given the whole ‘last holiday shag’ idea a bit more thought than he’d originally meant to, and just thinking of sitting at a small table opposite Harry, feeling alcohol gradually cloud his brain and open up door after door of endless possibilities is making him half-hard in his shorts. Then again, if Harry really doesn’t want to sleep with him anymore, plying him with alcohol to change his mind wouldn’t be very cool. It’d probably be considered date rape actually, which no. Louis winces. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to—”

“Louis,” Harry says gently, and, wow, his face is really close all of a sudden. “I didn’t mean I wouldn’t shag you. I just don’t want to be pissed doing it, that’s all.”

Louis must look just as confused as he feels, because Harry takes pity on him, rolling his eyes and planting a smacking kiss on his cheek before pulling back. “Stop looking so wounded. We’re just fine.”

“You don’t mind us having a shag, but you want to do it sober?” Louis asks, double-checking. It doesn’t make any sense to him, but hey, maybe Harry has some kind of secret kink he’s never told Louis about. Maybe he’s got a craving for something that actually requires balance. Maybe it’s Louis taking him standing up against a wall. Louis could definitely get behind an idea like that.

Then a horrible thought hits him.

“I didn’t do something awful last time, did I?” he asks, a million embarrassing scenarios popping up all over his mind. “Like, forgetting to cover my teeth or something? Fuck, I totally did, didn’t I? I bit your prick because I was too pissed to give a proper blowie. Jesus, I’m so—”

Harry’s face crumbles, no other word for it. There are actual tears forming at the corners of his eyes from how hard he’s laughing.

Okay, honestly now.

“Don’t worry, you didn’t bite me,” Harry manages once he comes up for air. “Well, not anywhere I didn’t want you to.”

Oh, that little piece of—

The high-pitched squeak Harry makes as Louis tackles him to the floor and starts tickling him with all his might is very satisfying.


Harry spends roughly a million years picking out what to wear that night. It’s silly, he knows. Most likely, nothing is going to happen. But he’ll give it one more chance, all the same. See if there’s something more to what they have than convenience and lowered inhibitions. It’s possibly one of the most stupid choices he’s made when it comes to Louis, but.

He just needs to know, that’s all.

In the end, he picks out a white shirt, short-sleeved and airy, perfect for a warm Mexican night, and a pair of jeans that will definitely be too hot, but which does very nice things for his arse and legs. He styles his hair, puts on a little bit of cologne and steps out of the bathroom. Louis is lounging on a sunbed out on the balcony, still in surfer shorts and the shirt he was wearing down at the beach earlier. When he sees Harry, he does a double take, and there’s a moment when they’re just staring at each other, before Louis looks away and pulls a hand through his messy hair, looking suddenly uneasy.

“I, um,” he says, gesturing towards Harry and then down at himself. “I should, um. Change. I should go change my clothes. One sec.”

He walks past Harry into the suite, goes over to the wardrobe and starts flicking through the hangers with unusual speed, before grabbing what must be half the clothes in there and making a beeline for the bathroom. Harry swallows. Making Louis feel underdressed and uncomfortable was not the impression he’d hoped to make.

He’s of half a mind to follow Louis into the bathroom and tell him to forget the whole thing. Suggest they order room service instead. Watch a string of bad films until they crash, and then wake up just in time to swear over not having done their packing tomorrow. Before he has a chance to go through with it, though, Louis comes back out, dressed in a pair of tight jeans of his own, paired with a black shirt that makes Harry want to push him up against the wall and kiss bruises into his collarbones.

“You ready?” Louis asks, grabbing his wallet from the back pocket of his shorts and throwing a quick look in the mirror.

Harry can’t say that he is, but he follows Louis out the door all the same.


Louis is nervous. It’s completely ridiculous. He’s just having dinner. With Harry. Who’s sitting next to him babbling on about whether he should get his next tattoo on his right or left calf. All in all, a very normal evening in Louis’s life, so the sudden butterflies in his stomach can kindly bugger off and leave him alone.

It’s not like it’s a date.

It’s not. And even if it were (but it’s not), why would dating Harry even make him nervous? Harry would be a lovely date; Louis is very certain of this. He’d be attentive and funny, and they’d probably have a wonderful time. Not to mention that he’d have a very pleasant end to his night to look forward to.

Actually, that might be part of the problem, right there.

Shit, why did he agree to the whole no-alcohol thing? Now he has a brain that’s actually alert and able to think about things. Like how Harry is eating fresh grilled shrimp in a manner that’s probably illegal in several countries. Or how he keeps leaning in close to whisper things in Louis’s ear, even though they’re quite alone in their corner of the restaurant patio. He keeps stealing little bites off Louis’s plate as well, knowing full well how Louis feels about people doing that. In fact, Harry is one of only three people who Louis will let get away with that kind of deplorable behaviour. The other two are toddlers; this has made Harry think that he has some kind of special status at the dinner table, apparently.

As though to prove his point, Harry leans over and steals a slice of avocado from Louis’s plate. The back of their hands brush on the way, and Harry lets the contact linger, holding Louis’s gaze as he brings the bite to his lips and takes extra care to suck his thumb and finger clean after putting it in his mouth. He’s grinning at Louis, clearly enjoying the hell out of seeing him off balance like this. Louis narrows his eyes.

Two can play this game. And since Harry explicitly stated that sex wasn’t off the table for tonight, Louis really has nothing to lose, now does he?

Jesus, it feels like he hasn’t shagged anyone in months. Which he knows for a fact is not true, what with exhibit 1A sitting right in front of him and all.

“Hang on, you’ve got a little something—” he says, indicating a general spot in the vicinity of Harry’s mouth. No points for originality with that one, but then Louis has always been one to appreciate the classics.

Harry gamely wipes the corners of his mouth with his napkin. “Better?”

“Not quite,” Louis says. He takes Harry’s napkin out of his hands and leans in close, makes sure to tilt his head just enough so that Harry will feel the warmth coming off his skin as he runs a corner of the fabric around the contour of Harry’s mouth. “There. Got it.”

“Thank you.”

“No problem, let me just…” He trails off deliberately, moving his touch down to Harry’s jaw, then his neck, keeping every movement feather light and teasing.

He sees Harry swallow—with some difficulty even, it looks like—and Louis congratulates himself on his smooth seduction moves. He looks up into Harry’s eyes and notes a definite dilation in his pupils. This is very good. If it’s a game of chicken they’re playing, Louis is going to win, hands down. Hell yes.

“I think you missed a spot just behind my ear,” Harry murmurs, tilting his head to the side to give Louis better access. There’s a small, fading bruise marring the skin there, and Louis suddenly has a vivid flashback of putting his lips to that very spot, sucking hard while fucking into the tight, perfect heat of Harry’s body.

He realises he’s been staring, when Harry not-so-subtly clears his throat.

Bugger. He definitely lost a few points there. Harry raises an eyebrow at him teasingly, tilts his head to the other side, and Louis sees additional marks there, right below the hairline, remembers leaving them with his teeth.

Fuck. Harry is far too good at this. And Louis is clearly out of practice. He pulls back a little and picks his fork back up, shovels some food into his mouth mostly to have something else to focus on. He’s pretty sure the food is excellent, but right now, he can barely taste it. Harry leans in and touches his forehead to Louis’s, and Louis promptly forgets how to breathe.

“You said something about fucking ourselves into a coma?” Harry says quietly. “Wanna get started on that?”

It’s a hell of a good thing that they’re both filthily rich by now, because Louis doesn’t even want to know how much money he throws down on the table. He takes Harry’s hand and pulls him towards the exit. Seconds later, they’re running together towards the hotel.


Louis has slept with exactly five people in his life to date. Four of them were girls, the fifth one’s Harry. He likes sex. Has always thought of it as really nice. Very satisfying. Grand old way to pass the time. He’s been more or less pissed for all of it, because alcohol makes him horny and removes that pesky fear of the other person rejecting you. He hadn’t thought much of it before, though, because, really, how different could it be?

He’s revising that opinion now. Oh wow, is he ever.

Harry’s got him on his back in the middle of the bed, arms stretched out over his head. He’s been touching Louis for what feels like ages, mapping every single inch of his body with his teeth, tongue, lips, hands. Only to reach the last remaining spot and start all over again. Louis is close to shaking, conflicted between wanting what Harry is doing to him to go on forever and telling him off for being a bloody tease.

Harry’s hands are exploring the inside of Louis’s thighs now, circling steadily closer to where Louis most wants them to be. He sucks in a sharp breath as one finger brushes the underside of his balls, holds it as the finger slides further back, stroking gently.

“Can I—?” Harry asks, looking up at him as the tip of his finger traces the rim of Louis’s hole. “God, you’re so gorgeous like this.”

Louis swallows hard. “I’ve never.”

“I know,” Harry says. His finger gets a little more inquisitive, pressing against the opening just firmly enough to give a hint of everything that could happen if Louis let it. “Do you want to?”

“Yes,” Louis croaks, straining to lift his hips just a little bit more. Harry’s finger presses just a little harder, and Louis feels it like a surge of liquid fire all the way up his spine. “Oh, fuck, yes.”

“Sorry, was that a ‘yes’?” Harry asks, because he’s a little shit, and Louis is going to get him back for this. He is. As soon as he gets enough blood flow back in his brain to think of something excellent.

Harry shifts his weight where he’s lying between Louis’s legs, giving himself a better angle. He leans in and puts his hand around the top of Louis’s prick, playing with the ridge right below the head in that way of his that never fails to make Louis fall apart. Louis is about three seconds away from coming when Harry suddenly pulls away, moving his hand down to squeeze the base of Louis’s cock almost painfully tight.

“Don’t come yet,” he says. “It gets really sensitive after, and that can hurt pretty bad. And I don’t want to hurt you. So. Tell me to stop if you get too close.”

Don’t come. Right. Louis has no idea how he’s supposed to comply with that. He can feel himself leaking, which he didn’t even think was something his prick did, and his balls are tight and heavy between his legs. A hand on himself right now, and it’d be over in seconds. Frankly, he’d be surprised if he got more than a single stroke in.

“Breathe, Lou,” Harry says. He’s moved back a little, giving Louis some room to breathe, stroking his hands up and down Louis’s thighs in steady, calming motions. Louis swallows hard and does as told, breathing in deeply through his nose and letting the air out again through his mouth as slowly as he’s able to. It takes him a while, but eventually, he feels his body start to respond, pulling him back from the edge. He gives Harry a small nod.

Harry lowers his head back down, nosing his way up the inside of Louis’s thigh. Louis tilts his head back and stares up at the ceiling, does his best to keep his breathing slow and even as Harry’s mouth gets closer and closer to his aching prick. He’s had Harry’s mouth on his cock before, has loved it every single time. With the way his body is responding now, though, with every nerve fully functional and a clear brain to let him in on every little detail, he’s almost afraid of letting it happen.

“Just relax,” Harry says, which funny. Real stand up comedian, Harry is. Louis opens his mouth to tell him so, and gets rudely interrupted.

By Harry’s tongue. Licking a path down past his balls and flicking lightly over his hole.

Jesus Christ, Louis is going to actually die.

A loud moan escapes him when Harry flicks his tongue again, then another one when Harry shifts impossibly closer and starts rimming him in earnest. He loses his sense of time completely as Harry opens him up, has to ask him to stop twice when his orgasm comes so close he can taste it. When Harry finally climbs up the bed to get the lube and condoms they put on the nightstand earlier, Louis is an absolute wreck.

“Hey,” Harry murmures, right next to Louis’s ear. “You still want to do this?” He presses open-mouthed kisses against Louis’s neck while Louis tries to formulate a reply.

Truth be told, he’s not 100% sure he’s ready. Everything that’s happened since they came back from dinner has been overwhelming in the extreme. Add to that the concept of surrendering what little control he has left over his body and putting it entirely in Harry’s hands—

It’s a little daunting, is all. And by ‘daunting’, he means ‘fucking terrifying’.

Then again, he is completely and utterly sure that if he doesn’t do this now, he’ll regret it horribly. Because he does want it, is the thing. He more than wants it—doesn’t have a word for the relentless pull he’s feeling, the positively greedy heat in his whole body that’s so much more than want or need.

He tilts Harry’s face up and tries to put everything he can’t say into a kiss. By some miracle, Harry seems to get the gist of it, because he pops open the cap on the lube and smears some on his fingers. He kisses Louis again as he slides the first one inside, and Louis is grateful to have the familiar feeling of Harry’s mouth on his to distract him a little. Harry adds another finger, and he’s being so bloody gentle with his touches, getting Louis used to the stretch by increments and fuelling the need inside him to impossible levels.

“Harry, please,” Louis manages, reaching down Harry’s body and feeling a surge of almost relief as he wraps his hand around Harry’s cock. “If you don’t start fucking me within thirty seconds, I’m gonna—”

Harry leans back in and cuts him off with another deep kiss, and then he’s finally, finally tearing open a condom and putting it on. Louis helps. Or tries to. He’s only just started trying to slick Harry up when Harry bats away his hands and gives Louis’s hip a little shove.

“Turn over.”

Louis does. He grabs a pillow and puts it under his chest, suddenly needing something solid to hold on to. Harry keeps going maddeningly slow, just hovering above him for-fucking-ever before positioning himself and starting to push inside. The almost painful stretch as the head breaches him makes Louis’s head spin, and he props himself up on his forearms, trying to get some leverage so he can push back, take in more. God, he feels so deliciously greedy.

“Jesus, Lou,” Harry moans. “Please stop doing that, or I’m not gonna last.”

Louis ignores him and pushes back harder, throws his head back at the gorgeous slide and stretch of it all. How is it even possible he’s never done this before? Bloody hell, he’s been missing out something wretched, that’s for damn sure.

Harry lets out a pained-sounding whimper, but starts moving his hips. Louis can tell that he’s still trying to go slow, be gentle. Which—enough is enough. Seriously.

“More,” he demands, moving his hips experimentally in a small figure eight. “I’m good. Haz, I’m so, so good. Please just fuck me already.”

“Jesus, you’re going to be the death of me,” Harry pants, picking up the pace at last, grabbing Louis’s hips with both hands and fucking into him with deep, perfect thrusts that make tiny pinpricks of pleasure erupt all over Louis’s skin.

Yes

God, yes.

Louis buries his face in the pillow and lets himself go, lets Harry move him where he wants him, use his body however he needs. He doesn’t realise one of his hands has started to wander until he has it wrapped around his cock, and after that, it’s all wave after wave of pleasure, pulling him under and bringing Harry with him over the edge.

They lie panting, side by side, for a long time afterwards. Louis can’t feel his legs; he’s not even sure he’s still got a pair. Maybe he can stay in bed with Harry forever, he thinks sluggishly. Never have to walk again. That would be good.

He turns around gingerly, curls into Harry's side. Harry pulls him closer and buries his right hand in Louis's hair, playing with it sleepily and scratching Louis's scalp in a way that makes him want to start purring like a kitten.

He leans into the touch and sighs happily, feeling himself drift closer to sleep.

Yeah. Forever seems like a solid plan.