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in love with the thought of you

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When Niall figures out he likes lads too, it's really not a huge revelation. He's sitting a hotel room in Los Angeles, his eyes flicking between the telly playing Iron Man and Harry and Louis making out in the bed to his left. Louis' on top of Harry, sprawled between his legs, smiling into his lips and sucking on his tongue. His gaze lands on Niall, smirking. "See something you like, Nialler?"

Niall laughs, shrugging, his eyes meeting Louis'. "Maybe, yeah."

Harry raises his brow, quiet. "Yeah?"

"Yeah," Niall says, nodding. "I think so."

--

Niall's not really cool, he knows that, but he tries to pretend sometimes anyway. Like when they're in the studio with Justin Bieber. The way Justin jumps around, yelling and singing and smiling. He's so real and right in front of Niall and Niall has to grip the arm of the chair he's seated in just to keep from screaming. Harry notices, taking pity on him, pulling him up out of his chair and giving some excuse about finding water. Niall releases the breath he didn't realize he was holding once they're outside, letting out a pathetic scream and curling into the brick wall, sliding down it.

"He's actually perfect," Niall says, absolutely in awe.

Harry laughs, taking a seat in front of Niall, shrugging. "He's kind of a huge dork, Niall. He keeps saying swag."

Niall groans, clutching at Harry's leg, shaking his head. "You don't understand. He's like, a real person and we're in the same room. Fuck."

Niall belatedly realizes he kind of sounds like some of their obnoxious fans, but he can't really bring himself to care.

"Do you remember last night, when you were snogging Louis?" Niall asks, after a beat.

Harry nods, pushing the curls out of his eyes. "Yeah?"

Niall shrugs, looking down at the hands, huffing out a laugh. "I think it'd be really good to do that with him," he admits, a blush creeping up on his face.

Harry smiles, leaning back to lie on the ground, looking up at Niall. "You should. I bet he's a good kisser."

Niall groans, swatting at Harry. "Shut up."

When they go back inside, Niall spends a lot of time staring at Justin Bieber's lips.

--

Niall opens twitter on his phone during the plane ride home, drafting tweets to Bieber and deleting them. Finally Louis snatches his phone, hopping up and running towards the back of the plane, out of Niall's reach. Niall groans, bringing his knees up, hiding his face in them.

"He's going to make me sound like an idiot," he grumbles, his chest tightening at the thought.

"You're overacting about it, Niall. He's just having a laugh," Harry says.

Louis sends a stupid tweet telling Bieber to DM him and Niall forgives him because Bieber actually does.

--

Niall doesn't have a google alert set up for Justin Bieber and even if he does, no one can prove it.

He casually checks his email on his phone at a signing and has to hide his face in his hoodie to keep from making an embarrassing noise when he reads that Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez have officially called it quits. Before he can think better of it, he's opening up twitter and sending a DM to Justin.

u ok bro??? u shld com 2 nyc!!!

--

Justin doesn't come to New York, but he does meet them in Chicago a few days later and Niall still has trouble dealing with his life sometimes.

"You sure it's cool?" Justin asks for the 700th million time and Niall laughs, nudging him towards the bus. "I'm sure. If anyone says anything, I'll beat them up."

"Defending my honor," Justin teases, smiling wide at him.

Niall shrugs. "Something like that."

--

They're having dinner at a seedy Mexican restaurant that's empty enough to give them some privacy. Harry's basically in Louis' lap which Niall doesn't mind, he's used to it, but he keeps darting his eyes to Justin, trying make sure he's comfortable. Justin doesn't seem to mind, just keeps digging into his nachos, scrolling through twitter on his phone. "You want to try mine?" Niall asks, sliding his plate over.

Justin nods, breaking off a piece of Niall's quesadilla and popping it into his mouth, moaning softly as he swallows. "Damn. That's really good, bro."

Niall swallows hard, nodding, looking anywhere but Justin lips.

Louis breaks the silence, making a loud, appalled noise. "I can't believe you shared your food. You never do that!"

Niall rolls his eyes, shaking his head. "Sod off."

Harry laughs, messing up Louis' hair, elbowing him in the side. "Shut up, you're ruining his game."

He can't help the blush that's coloring his cheeks, his head falling to the table.

Justin just laughs, nodding at Louis' guacamole. "Can I try that?" he asks, reaching for it without waiting for an answer. Louis shakes his head, slapping Justin's hand away. "I'm not the one trying to get in your pants. No guacamole for you."

Niall really, really hates his life.

--

It's later that night, everyone fast asleep in the bunks when Niall hears Justin's tenative voice. "Niall?"

"Yeah," Niall says, shifting in his bunk, sitting up on his elbows.

"You awake?" he ask. Niall can hear him moving around in the bunk opposite him.

"Yeah. Can't sleep," he mumbles, pulling back his curtain, smiling when he sees Justin doing the same.

"Me neither. We should watch something," Justin suggests, already crawling out of his bunk.

Niall nods and follows Justin in the lounge, looking through the DVDs. "Have you seen the new Teen Wolf? Louis just bought the box set."

Justin shakes his head, curled up on the couch in a pair of sweats and a tank, his hair messy, blanket wrapped around his shoulder. "No, we can watch that."

Niall nods, looking back down at the DVD, swallowing hard before putting it in and climbing onto the couch next to Justin.

"You cold?" Justin asks, draping part of his blanket around Niall's shoulders, scooting closer to him.

Niall nods, closing his eyes.

Justin falls asleep halfway through the first episode, his head rested on Niall's shoulder.

--

When Niall wakes up, Louis Tomlinson is in his face with an iPhone. "Say hello!" Louis says, grinning. Niall groans, moving to stretch his legs, but stops when he feels a weight on top of them. Frowning, he shifts, looking down, seeing his legs tangled with another set. Justin fucking Bieber is curled into his side, head rested on his chest and Louis is filming it.

Justin shifts, waking up, and makes a sound of protest, swatting at Louis' phone. It falls to the ground and Louis squawks. "Someone's grumpy in the morning," he says, bending down to pick up his phone before skipping back to the front of the lounge.

--

 

When they finally kiss, they're in a hotel room in Los Angeles, a bottle of whiskey being passed between them.

"Never have I ever kissed another bloke," Liam says, laughing, taking a swig of whiskey even as he says the words.

Harry rolls his eyes, grabbing the bottle from Liam and taking a sip before handing it to Louis. Louis takes a shot, raising his eyes, looking around the room. "Anyone else?"

Justin snatches the bottle from Louis' fingers, takes a quick swig and sets it down in the middle, wincing at the burn.

Niall looks at Justin with wide eyes, unable to form words. "You-- what?"

Justin laughs, his cheeks colored in red and Niall can tell he's tipsy. "Doesn't leave this room, right?"

Niall nods, shifting closer to him on instinct ‘til their thighs are pressed together.

"A few times. My best friend back home?"

Louis claps his hands excitedly, crawling over to Justin, wrapping his arms around him in a hug. "This is the best news," he says.

Niall groans, holding his face in his hands. "Am I seriously the only one who hasn't kissed another lad?"

He hears Harry whispering something, but doesn't catch it because he feels someone nudge him and lifts his head, coming face to face with Justin. Justin grins, tilting his head to the side. "Pause, bro. We can fix it."

"Yeah?" Niall asks, ignoring the way his heart is about to beat out of his chest.

"Yeah," he says, nodding before fitting their lips together. Niall lets his eyes fall shut, ignoring the catcalls he hears in the background. He has the best life.