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Shot At The Night

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Liam sighed, looking in the mirror. Sure, he had gotten a new haircut, but even that couldn't light up his days anymore. It was always the same thing - long days of sleeping and long nights of work. Over and over, the same thing. And for God's sake, he lived in Las Vegas of all places. He worked at a damn casino! But his life was unremarkable. Years passed, he only got older, and with every day it looked more and more like he would forever be a manservant at the casino and the hotel next to it, cleaning hotel rooms and picking up condoms from underneath the beds, or cleaning up after a guest, who's had one too much, threw up.

 

He rubbed his chin. There was a stubble growing out, not enough for a ful blown beard just yet, but it was getting there. Maybe he should grow it out again? To change it up a little? Again, a heavy sigh rolled out of his mouth, as he looked away from the mirror. It was pointless, wasn't it? His life would stay the same.

His husky dog, Loki, walked up to him and nudged his hand with it's nose. Liam gently patted the creature's head and smiled weakly at it.

"Time for your morning walk. And then to bed."

---

He got into his car and turned the engine on. The sun was setting far behind the horizon, painting the sky in shades of red and yellow. The city's neon lights began turning on, the atmosphere of wild nightlife was born from the sunset's ashes, but it all passed Liam by. He was just driving down the treets, past the palm trees, with only a pressing feeling of unworthiness.

"It must feel good, to brave the streets of Las Vegas at night, pockets full of money and bloodstream full of alcohol, with someone beautiful by your side," he thought, glancing at the neon signs. "Expensive suits, vintage wine, oh, the life."

With a sense of longing he looked at the store fronts, not noticing anything around him, until the car in the lane next to him abruptly stopped. He hit the brakes, his car made a sharp pitched noise, and his heart almost jumped out of his mouth.

A young man, dressed in a blue suit, stood in front of his car, eyes just as wide, hands up in surrender. He was quite good looking, cute, really. Their eyes met, and the man outside smiled. Liam felt compelled to smile back, and even laugh a little. Both of them were oblivious fools, weren't they? He looked down, smiling.

When he looked up, the man was gone. Liam frowned, but he didn't have much time to dwell on it, because cars behind him were honking aggresively. He sighed and continued his way to work.

---

"And today you have to clean the 17th floor, " Louis said, ticking off a box in his papers. "I await you to be done no later than 5 a.m.. Not many rooms are taken on that floor, so you have no excuses to not do your job."

"When have I ever failed you?" Liam asked, curious about Louis's tone. Louis looked at him, his eyes sharp.

"You haven't, but some of your collegues..." His boss snarled, before turning on his heel and walking away to rat out the next employee he would see. Liam sighed and started pushing his cart of cleaning supplies towards the elevator.

Sadly, he didn't get to enjoy being alone in the elevator for long, as a couple stumbled into it on the 2nd floor, immediately pressing against the corner of the elevator and starting to make out. The janitor stood there, emotionless, starring at the gap inbetween the doors of the elevator, trying to ignore what was happening besides him. But longing clenched it's cold hand around his heart and tugged at it, making him feel nauseous.

"Give me a shot at the night, please." He thought to himself, walking out of the elevator, onto the 17th floor. He began his usual rounds - knocking on doors, announcing 'Room service' and then proceeding to clean the rooms, while their inhabitants went downstairs in their posh outfits.

A hour passed, several rooms were cleaned, and Liam stood in one of the rooms, blankets half folded in his hands, as he looked out of the windows over the city. It glistened in many different colors, from the streetlight gold to the neon red of radio antennas and peaks of skyscrapers. The wish to experience a breathtaking night in these concrete jungles was overwhelming. If only he could....if only he could.

"And then I almost got run over by a car!" A male voice exclaimed in the hallway, and hearty laughter followed it. The steps were getting closer and two men and a woman walked into the room Liam was cleaning. He turned to greet them, but was left with his mouth hanging open. It was the same man from before.

For a moment, there was silence. They both looked at eachother, and their lips slowly curled up to form amused smiles.

"It's you!" The man in the blue suit exclaimed. His companions, a short, stout man with blonde hair and a woman with dark, curly hair and a tanned complexion, were perplexed.

"He's the guy that almost ran me over! And I told you, he was damn cute!"

Liam laughed and looked down, continuing to fold the blankets.

"Hey, how long do you still have to work?"The blond man asked, glancing at his friend, who still had a wide smile on his face.

"Until the very morning."

The smile from the blue suited man's face fell, and a frown replaced it. Once again, a sigh escaped Liam's lips.

"Hey, man. " The blond man said, walking over to Liam and placing a hand on his back. "How about we give you one of Anton's suits, and you go out for a night with us?"

"It'll be fun!" Anton exclaimed, running his fingers through his brown fringe.

Liam stood there, silent. First he looked at Anton - the man he had almost run over. He was built smaller than Liam, and a tad shorter, had a full blown beard and short, brown hair, pale blue eyes that lit up in excitement, a dazzling smile...

Then Liam looked out the window, at the crowded streets. This was what he wanted, wasn't it? Why was he hesitating?

"Do you really think his suits will fit me?" After a moment, Liam said.

"We'll figure it out. Alessia, can you fix him up, so he's ready for a night out?" The blond man said to the woman, who quickly walked over and took it upon herself to bring the best out of Liam.

Twenty minutes passed, and Liam walked out of the bathroom in a tight fitting neon blue suit. The blond man, who's name he still didn't know, handed him a pair of blue tinted sunglasses.

"Let's go!"

---

It was a wild night. First, they went to a karaoke bar. Anton pulled Liam up on the stage, and though he was bashful, soon he was belting out the lyrics to various songs, and, oh, how the public loved him, and how Anton looked at him - like he was the 8th Wonder of the world - it all send endorphins running through his system. The crowd bought Liam drinks and kept requesting more, and more, to the point where he considered to just drop his job and become a club singer.

---

Then, the group split up and Anton took him to a casino.

"I'll put a 1000 on...Liam, what do you think?" Anton said, standing by the roullete table.

"A 1000? Wouldn't that be a bit too much?"

"This is Vegas, baby!" Anton said, laughing. "C'mon, take your pick."

"Okay. 27."

"You heard the man!"

The roullete spinned and spinned and the beating of the ball filled Liam's ears...and slowly, it came to a stop.

"Oh no! I'm so sorry!" Liam gasped, covering his mouth, while Anton covered his head with his hands and made a dissapointed noise before hiding his face in shame.

After a moment, Anton peeked through his fingers at Liam and started laughing. Liam's chest unclenched and a wave of relief washed over him. Anton wasn't mad, thank God.

---

"There is no way in Vegas that we are going to miss out on a drunken wedding." Anton said, pulling up to one of those 24/7 wedding places, that Liam thought were a joke.

"Who's wedding though? There is nobody here."

"Why don't we get married?"

Liam just stared at Anton. They literally met less than twelve hurs ago. And he was suggesting getting married. Liam didn't know what to blame it on - too many shots? Infatuation? Some crazy dare he had with his friends?

A voice at the back of his head kept nagging him. "This is what you wanted, wasn't it?"

"Fine. Let's do it. But not without a proposal."

Anton laughed, got off their scooter and pulled the rings he had on his hands off, hiding them in his pocket, before dramatically kneeling down and pulling them out.

"Will you, Liam...uh," he looked lost for a moment. "What's your last name?"

"Payne."

"Yes, of course. Will you, Liam Payne, marry me?"

"Mhm, sure, after 10 shots, I deffinitely will."

Anton scrunched his face. "That is not how you answer to a proposal."

Liam shaked his head and suddenly gasped, clasping his hands together and covering his mouth, trying to do his best impression of a shocked bride.

---

They spent the whole night, riding around Vegas on a rented scooter, until the sun started showing on the horizon. Anton brought Liam back to the hotel, and they sneaked up to the rooftop to watch the sun.

They stood in the middle of the rooftop, shoulder to shoulder, their hands brushing against eachother, in complete silence. The night's events were running through Liam's head. It seemed like a dream.

Something tugged at his hand. It was Anton, lacing his fingertips with Liam's. They both looked down, smiling.

A moment of hesitation, and Liam leaned in to kiss the other man. His beard was rough on Liam's cheeks, but his lips were as soft as silk. Anton let go of Liam's hands and cupped his cheeks, the kiss got harder and more passionate...

A sinking feeling hit Liam's chest. He couldn't stay with him any longer.

"I..." he muttered, pulling back. Anton frowned slightly, but didn't say anything. He let him go and nodded.

Liam turned around and left. But he'd be lying if he didn't feel like the happiest man on the planet.