“Remind me why we can’t tell anyone we’re dating,” Harry pants.
Louis - who’s currently situated between Harry’s legs - pulls back incredulously. “Excuse me?”
Harry stretches languidly above her. Her body is a smooth, golden slide of skin, littered with the marks of Louis’ mouth. There’s a shine of sweat on her forehead, pupils blown and laced with jade. A stray strand of hair curves around her neck like a vine, and Louis feels her heart flutter.
“I just don’t get it,” Harry mumbles, voice dragging over the vowels, lips plush and candy floss pink. This girl. Jesus. Louis has no idea how Harry Styles even exists. “Go over it again.”
Louis slaps her thigh. Hard. “I’m eating you out and you want to fucking chat?”
Harry shrugs. Her mouth curls up into a slow smirk, dimpling prettily. “Multi-task.”
Louis narrows her eyes and Harry just beams back and this, this is the problem with them. They know each other inside out, are so incredibly in tune even from day one, when Louis caught a homesick Harry crying in the laundry room. Louis knows Harry’s body like a favourite song - the way her breath hitches and her fingers flex, the way her hips stutter and her hands fists in the sheets.
They orbit each other like planets; Louis can pick up on cues quicker than Harry can, knows when to cuddle her or tease her or push her to edge so she can collapse in Louis’ arms. She’s in every sense Louis’ other half, and it’s humbling, knowing someone as intimately as you know yourself.
Of course, the downside to this is: Harry can read Louis with complete ease too, meaning she knows what a competitive little shit Louis is. And she knows that Louis knows she shouldn’t take Harry’s obscene suggestion and just tell her to shut up, but she also knows Louis really likes sex, so. Dilemna.
“Fine,” Louis snaps finally. “I’ll fucking multi-task.”
Harry gives her a thumbs up. Louis hates her so much.
“We can’t tell people we’re dating,” Louis begins, settling between Harry’s legs. She licks gently over the creamy skin of Harry’s thigh, then bites down on the sensitive skin. She smirks when Harry whimpers; Harry likes the edge of it, the sharp jolt of pain, and she sucks and licks and nips until there’s a nice, violet bruise.
“Because I am a great friend,” Louis continues. Harry’s breath is erratic now, stuttering and hitching, as loud as a heart beat in the tiny room. “And so are you.”
Harry’s shaved, she notes. She looks pink and perfect and Louis wants to bury her face in Harry’s cunt. Harry’s soaked; she can see the way her slit glistens wetly, a mixture of Harry’s own arousal and Louis’ mouth.
Her stomach swoops and she carefully traces Harry’s lips, grazing over her clit just to hear Harry moan. “And as a great friend we don’t throw perfect relationships in other friend’s faces.”
“Perfect,” Harry repeats, and when Louis looks up Harry is beaming .
Louis rolls her eyes at Harry’s pussy. “Perfect to me.”
Harry wiggles happily at that, so Louis curves a hand around her hips and pushes her back down. Harry complies instantly, but Louis can feel the satisfaction and happiness radiating off of her.
“As I was saying.” Louis tugs Harry’s clit in her mouth, sucking it and rolling it carefully with her teeth, wet and messy and so slick, until Harry’s trembling. She abruptly pulls off and Harry keens, desperate and utterly shameless. “Liam only just got dumped by Sophia, and she is naturally very upset.”
It’s intoxicating this, pushing Harry as far as she can go, giving her everything only to pull back. “Lou, please,” Harry grits out, and Louis laughs.
She trails one finger down Harry’s slit, until she reaches her hole. It’s easy to slide it in, Harry hot around her, and Louis has to take a minute to let the fire in her stomach burn out. She adds another one easily, slowly fucking them in and out of Harry.
Harry’s face is flushed pink, eyes clenched shut as she tilts her hips to meets Louis’ fingers. “Fuck - Louis, I - give me another.”
“Give me another what?” Louis says, tone razor sharp, and abruptly slides her fingers out. Harry mewls beneath her, eyes open now and staring at Louis, a shock of jet black with a sliver of jade.
“Please,” Harry moans, bottom lip trembling. It’s candy apple red from where she’s bitten it so hard. “Please, Lou, I can take it, please.”
“I haven’t finished the story,” Louis sighs, but she’s smirking. She leans down to catch Harry’s lips on impulse, a gentle brush of mouths. Harry sighs into it, one hand cupping Louis’ face, and something gold curls in Louis’ spine.
She pulls away and settles back between Harry’s legs, biting her lip at the sight. Harry’s cunt is wet and messy and her hole is stretched open, and Louis did that, and just fuck.
She slides two fingers in again, then glances at Harry before adding a third. Harry is mewling and whimpering, her face red, and Louis increases the pace, properly fucking Harry now, curling her fingers until she finds that spot that drives Harry mad.
“As I was saying,” Louis continues, but she has to clear her throat. It’s a bit much, the sight of Harry and the way she moans, and Louis can fucking hear the sounds her pussy makes as she fucks into her, jesus. “We don’t want to upset Liam, by being coupley and in love, so we’re just going to keep it on the down low for now.”
“In love?” Harry repeats, voice low and hoarse, a sweet drag over the syllables. Louis can’t believe she’s secret dating someone who gets off on domesticity.
“In love,” Louis confirms, and lets the pad of her thumb catch Harry’s clit. Harry shudders around her, coming with a shout. Louis’ fingers are drenched, and Harry’s panting and mewling with the after shock, so she slides them out and pulls her girl in for a kiss.
She manages to hastily wipe them on the duvet, before their mouths crash together. It’s not neat, it’s hard and bruising and their teeth click, but Harry tastes like mint gum and cherry lip balm and home, and she trembles beneath Louis’ hands, and her heart is beating with how much she loves this girl.
They collapse on Louis’ tiny uni bed after that. Louis grabs a flannel to clean them both up, pressing kisses to Harry’s thighs to apologise for the cold water. She washes her own hands when she returns the flannel to her bathroom, then curls up around Harry.
“Our sex is so good,” Harry mumbles, and Louis laughs, presses the giggles into Harry’s naked back.
Harry is taller than her, but she insists on being the little spoon. Louis doesn’t really mind; it means she can pretend she’s taller than 5’6, and she likes having Harry tucked against her chest.
Harry coughs, rubbing her eyes with her fist. Her hair is shoved into a messy bun, one Louis knows will fall out completely over night. She’s still a bit sweaty, and Louis kisses her nose. “Tired, babe?”
Harry shrugs under Louis’ arms. “A bit. I have a early lecture tomorrow.”
Louis pulls a face. Harry picked early lectures because she says she likes to get them over with. Louis is more content to sleep in all the way to 9.53, then book it the lecture theatre with a beanie shoved on her head and only half the notes she should have.
“Lou,” Harry mumbles, pressing her face into Louis’ collarbones. “I think this dating thing is a stupid idea.”
Louis jabs her fingers into Harry’s ribs, tickling her until she squirms away. “Of course it’s not, it’s a Tommo plan.”
Harry flops onto her side, gazing at the ceiling thoughtfully. “Do you remember your last Tommo plan? When you got that girl in your class to pretend she was having a baby, and everyone believed you and then Liam actually called an ambulance?”
Louis wrinkles her nose. “That was a great plan. You were the worst as I recall.”
Harry flushes a pretty pink, glaring at Louis reproachfully. “At least I gave a shit! Niall didn’t do anything.”
“Niall is coming no where near me when I’m pregnant.”
“Or when I am.”
“We’re not being pregnant at the same time.”
“Guess you’ll have to knock me up first then, won’t you?”
Louis cackles, reaches across the bed to find Harry’s hand. She links their fingers together. “You’re so stupid.”
“The Tommo plan is stupid,” Harry mumbles, so Louis shoves her off the bed.
The trouble doesn’t really start until Thursday.
None of them have lectures Thursday afternoon, so they all have lunch in the cheap cafe on campus. Liam slides into their usual booth first, and Louis’ heart clenches when she sees her.
Liam looks completely miserable, little lines around her eyes and lips pushed into a pout. She’s in an oversize hoodie and a snapback, hunched down so the fabric swallows her. “Hi, Lou.”
“Come here,” Louis sighs. Liam doesn’t move so Louis just drags her into a headlock, ruffling her hair and smacking a kiss to her cheek. Liam struggles feebly, but she’s flushing when Louis pulls back and her eyes are a bit less dull.
“I miss Sophia,” Liam mumbles, shoving Louis off her lap. She looks down at her hands. “I have to sit behind her in class.”
Louis slings an arm around her shoulders. “Well, why don’t you move?”
Liam snorts. “That’s the problem, I don’t want to.”
Louis cuddles her closer. “Do you want to get really drunk tonight?”
Liam sniffles. “Yes, please.”
They’re planning pre-drinks when Niall arrives, flopping down opposite them. “Alright, lads?”
“I’m not a lad,” Liam frowns, and she sounds so offended, Louis and Niall can’t help laughing. Liam turns bright pink and tells them to shut up, which only makes them laugh more.
“Are you teasing Leeyum?” Zayn drawls when she arrives. Her dark hair is pushed into a messy bun, black glasses perched on her nose. They frame her amber eyes, and highlight the ashy sweep of her eyelashes. Louis hates her. “Knock if off, Lou.”
“It’s not me, it’s Niall,” Louis gripes. Zayn just gives her a pointed look, so Louis moves over so Zayn can fit in next to Liam. “Why are you wearing your hipster glasses?”
Zayn scowls at her. “They’re not hipster glasses, I can’t fucking see without them, you idiot.”
Louis raises an eyebrow. “If you say so.” She clears her throat. “Where’s Haz?”
That was casual, right? Just a gap pal asking about another gal pal. Louis is casual as fuck. No one accuses her of being in love with and/or fucking the lights out of said gal pal, so Louis will take it as a win.
“She’s coming in now,” Niall says, glancing over to the window. “She’s just tripped over the bin.”
Louis laughs, grinning as she looks over to the door. Harry is blushing furiously. She looks gorgeous; she’s wrapped up in a lilac jumper, feet jammed into brown ankle boots, soft grey beanie covering her dark curls.
Louis’ pretty sure she’s apologising, because her arms are waving everywhere and her eyes are wide and mournful. Harry is so expressive - an open book, and the waiter she’s talking to looks a little overawed.
“Sorry,” Harry babbles when she finally rushes over. “Did anyone else see that bin there?”
“Yes,” everyone answers at once, and Harry pouts. Her face lights up when she meets Louis’ eyes, dimples curving into her cheek and happy lines crinkling around her eyes. Louis beams back, only then she remembers the Tommo plan and frowns abruptly.
Harry looks hurt, only then it clicks. She flops down next to Niall, looks left and right, then winks at Louis. Very obviously. She looks deranged. Louis is so fucked.
“Are you still moping, Payno?” Niall asks, because Niall is as subtle as a brick. Harry is probably taking lessons from her. Thank god Louis isn’t secret dating them both.
“Thank you, Niall,” Zayn says pointedly, narrowing her eyes at her. “Let’s talk about something else, yeah?”
Niall shrugs. “Sorry. I didn’t know if you’d want to talk it out or anything.”
Louis kicks her under the table, because of course Liam wants to talk it out. Liam did after her last break up too, wants to wallow in misery and memories and reminiscing, which is why Louis normally gets her bat shit drunk so she can get it out her system. In a healthy, mature way accompanied by many vodka shots.
She tunes out after a bit, fiddling with the salt shaker. She grins when she hears a low, “Hey.”
She looks up from the table. “Hey.”
The corner of Harry’s mouth tilts up. “How’s the weather?”
Louis can’t help the laughter that bubbles out of her chest. “Pretty shit actually, mate. Think November has finally kicked in the sunshine.”
Harry shakes her head. “Do you think we’ll get snow this year?”
Louis rolls her eyes. “Don’t be dumb, Haz. We’ll get that gross, mushy stuff that gets stuck in your shoes and trips you up. You’re can’t even walk across a cafe, you need to watch out, babe.”
Harry shrugs. “Guess we’ll have to stay in.” She says it so innocently, but there’s a glint to her eyes that makes Louis’ heart flutter. “I’m sure we’ll find things to do.”
Louis eyes flit to the other three - Liam is deep in conversation with Niall, while Zayn just looks bored. She rests her head on her hands, letting her tone drop to flirtatious. “Hm, any suggestions?”
Harry slowly licks her lips, eyelashes fluttering. “We could watch Blackfish.”
Louis facepalms. “I hate you.”
Harry grins stupidly. “Louis - “
“I don’t want to watch a film about psychotic killer whales,” Louis groans, hands still covering her face. “I’ve already watched it once and I cried when the baby got taken from its mum. I even signed that petition you shoved at me.”
“To end the captive breeding programme,” Harry interjects, putting her hands on her hips. Ugh. She looks really cute. “This needs to be the last generation of captive orcas, Louis, it’s not fair that they’re suffering. Don’t get me started on the size of those tanks - “
Louis groans. “I promise not to go to SeaWorld, okay?”
Harry beams at her. It’s a little like looking at the sun. “Thanks, boo.”
“You planning a movie night?” Niall asks brightly, and Louis snaps her head round to look at her. Shit, this stuff is going to get them caught, being too wrapped up in their little bubble of HarryandLouis.
“A group date night,” Louis blurts suddenly. “Me and Harry were saying we should all go out together. All of us. Us five. Especially Liam.”
She can see Harry murmuring especially Liam? out the corner of her eye, but she ignores her. “Let’s all go out together. As mates. We could go see the new Hunger Games film.”
Louis mentally fistbumps herself. Death, death and children being forced to kill each other. Nice. And in no way romantic. Plus there will be three other people there to act as a buffer. Louis is killing it at this secret dating thing.
“The Light do student discount and Wednesday is cheap night,” Liam sniffs. Her eyes are a bit red. Louis kicks Niall under the table again. “And we could go three for a pound sweets from Tesco.”
Liam worries too much about budgeting, but Louis nods anyway. “Great plan, Payno.”
She deliberately doesn’t look at Harry for the rest of lunch.
Harry corners her in the bathroom after lunch. Louis’ washing her hands when Harry stumbles in. She almost knocks herself out with the door, and Louis grins until she realises that she and Harry are alone. In the bathroom. Alone.
“Fuck, what are you doing here?” Louis hisses, hastily grabbing a paper towel to dry her hands. She crumples it into a ball when she’s done and lobs it into the bin. “You have to go now, this will look so dodgy.”
Harry raises an eyebrow, leaning against the door frame. She looks gorgeous, all long and lean, legs that go on forever and cute, little love handles. Louis wants to kiss her so badly. “Boo, we’re in a toilet.”
“Exactly,” Louis snaps, putting her hands on her hips. “What do girls who like girls get up to in toilets?”
Harry blinks. “Um. Pee?”
“Have sex,” Louis clarifies.
Harry gapes at her. “You’re so fucking weird.”
Louis shakes her head. “We’re a walking example. Every time we go out, we end up getting fucked, and then I end up getting fucked, by you, in the bathroom.”
Harry steps forward, easing into Louis’ space like she belongs there. She curves her hands around Louis’ waists, and Louis shivers as she slides her warm fingers under her t-shirt. Her eyes flutter close as Harry gently strokes along her hip bone with her thumb.
“You’re actually insane, you know that?” Harry murmurs. Her tone is soft and fond, oozing over Louis’ jangled nerves like honey. “No one believes that.”
“Go away,” Louis replies, not too proud to beg. “Someone is going to find us.” She blinks. “And right now we sound like a dumb romance novel, so we need to cut that shit out.”
Harry steps back, sighing heavily. “This is so fucking stupid.”
Louis raises an eyebrow. “Excuse me.”
Harry huffs loudly, wrinkling her nose. She looks like a disgruntled kitten. “This is marginally stupid.”
“Better,” Louis grins. “Now go tell them you were checking my tampon.”
Harry chokes. “What?”
Louis shrugs. “We need an excuse. What’s more platonic than checking a girl’s tampon.”
Harry laughs so hard she cries, clutching her ribs and doubling over. She finally sputters out a, “There is absolutely nothing platonic about that,” then starts laughing again. Louis hates her.
Liam is still mopey all of next week, so Louis and the girls drag her out Saturday night. They all hole up in Niall’s room - she inexplicably has the biggest, calls it luck of the Irish, Louis calls it something a lot more explicit.
They have to open the room to get rid of the smell of hairspray, and Louis manages to drop foundation all over the floor, but she throws a pillow over it and hopes for the best.
She squeezes into a short, red dress, grinning when she feels Harry’s eyes burn into her back. The feeling is pretty mutual; Harry is in black skater skirt, with a sleeveless see through shirt, the material gauzy and doing nothing to hide the black bra she’s wearing underneath.
(Harry wanted to go bra-less, which Louis can definitely appreciate, but also makes her stomach curl with jealousy and possessiveness. She’s glad Harry did wear one; a tiny, primal part of her wants to be the only one to see Harry like that.)
It’s an unspoken agreement that tonight is for Liam, so they split when they arrive. Louis and Zayn bustle Liam off, while Niall and Harry snags some drinks from the bar. It’s financial as well as tactical - Niall and Harry know one of the bartenders working tonight, Ed, who’s on their music course, so they’ll be able to snag some free shots.
Zayn cuddles up to Louis when they sit down, snuggling into her neck. Louis slips an arm around her, the affection easy and effortless. Zayn smells smoky and familiar. “Alright, Lou?”
Louis presses a kiss to her check. “Why did I think 10am lectures were a good idea?”
Zayn snorts, shuffling closer. “That’s the latest one you can have, mate. I have one at fucking 8am on Wednesdays.”
The club is filling up now, full of rowdy students. Louis can see gaggles of girls dancing together, and a couple swaying slowly to a song only playing in their heads. There’s a bunch of boys downing shots at the bar, and Louis smirks at the obvious distaste on their faces. The bass thumps in her ears, the lights casting shadows over everything.
“How do you even do that?” Louis laughs, ruffling Zayn’s hair. Zayn squawks, batting her hands away with a glare. “You hate getting up early.”
“Liam comes to wake me up, don’t you, babe?” Zayn grins, eyes flicking to Liam’s. Zayn is wearing a white, backless dress tonight, and it makes her dark skin glow.
Liam smiles. “I drag you out of bed, you mean. And set you about forty alarms.”
“What a sweetheart,” Zayn drawls, reaching across to pinch Liam’s cheek, and Liam squirms in her seat. Louis feels a rush of gold as Liam dimples happily - it’s good to have her girls around her. She’s never pretended to not be fiercely protective, and she’s going to do everything she can to fix this.
She can hear Harry’s voice in her hand, telling her this might not be suffering to fix, but she pushes it away.
Zayn taps her nails on the table. They’re painted a glossy black - Louis always bribes Zayn with pot noodles to paint Louis’, because Louis’ always awful at it. She can paint someone else's, comes with having four little sisters, but her own nails always turn into an awful, splodgy mess.
“Are you and Harry fighting?” Zayn asks bluntly, and Louis freezes.
Zayn frowns at her. “You two have been off all week. Normally you two are all over each other.”
Louis looks at her passively. “I don’t know what you mean.”
She does. She and Harry toned it down this week, mainly because apparently if they’re within touching distance they can’t keep their hands to themselves. Also because Liam had a break down over a packet of skittles in Tesco, and Louis felt so guilty she added an extra few metres between her and her secret girlfriend.
Zayn eyes her suspiciously. “This boy in my class told me he saw you punch Harry in the face.”
Louis blanches. “That’s - okay, that was an accident.”
Zayn stares at her. “An accident?”
Yeah, Harry forgot and leaned in for a kiss outside of class, and Louis stopped her. By high fiving her mouth. Oops.
“She fell into my hand,” Louis shrugs, and it’s a testament to Harry’s clumsiness that Zayn doesn’t bat an eyelid at that.
Niall and Harry stumble over to them, a tray of drinks in their hands, Niall’s arm slung around Harry’s waist. Harry’s whispering something into Niall’s ear, Niall bursting into laughter, and Louis smiles fondly at them.
“We got free shots!” Niall cheers, slamming them down on the table. Half of the liquid slops over the edge, but she doesn’t seem to mind. “Good lad, Ed.”
“Give me one,” Louis demands, making grabby hands. She downs it quickly, wincing it at the way it burns, and wipes her mouth with one hand. “Come on, Payno. Drink up.”
Liam sighs but reluctantly takes a shot. She pulls a face afterwards. “Ew. What was that?”
“You don’t want to know,” Niall answers cheerfully. She wiggles onto Liam’s lap, eyes jewel bright. Liam doesn’t look fazed - she’s used to how touchy feely they all are now, and she just wraps her arms around Niall’s waist.
“Do you - “ Louis begins, then stops when someone coughs. There’s a boy standing by their table, looking down at his feet.
Louis narrows her eyes. “Yes?”
The boy looks up. He’s cute, with swoopy brown hair and dark eyes. “Um, hi.”
Niall and Liam immediately collapse into giggles, and Louis bites back a smirk. She almost feels a bit sorry for the boy - they’re all giggling like little girls playing kiss chase in the playground.
“I just wondered - if I could get you a drink?” the boy asks, blushing. Louis’ about to tell him he’s barking up the wrong tree, when she realises he’s talking to Harry.
Louis freezes, feels the world slow down around her. It’s like plunging under water, everything is muted and dull and there’s a fist around her chest, squeezing her heart until she chokes.
Harry stops laughing abruptly. She’s making her creepy frog face, the one where stares at people like a serial killer. It doesn’t seem to deter the boy. “Oh, um. I - “
She glances at Louis, biting the inside of her cheek. Secret relationship. Right. Who the fuck thought a secret relationship was a good idea? Certainly not Louis. Who is Liam? Louis does not know that name and oh god, Harry’s getting up, shit.
Harry throws an apologetic glance over her shoulder, shaking her head minutely. Louis just watches them walk away, heart crumbling to ash in her chest. The guy isn’t even being a dickhead - he’s keeping a respectable distance and it’s not doing that creepy leer thing fuckboys do. He’s not even looking at Harry’s tits, for fucks sake.
“She’ll be okay, Tommo,” Niall says cheerfully, which is kind but completely missing the point. “We’ll keep an eye, yeah, and remove his dick if he’s too out to be an arsehole.”
“I guess so,” Louis says miserably. “I hope he is.”
She only realises she’s said it out loud when Zayn looks at her funny. “What? Why would you want that?”
“Want what?” Louis replies with a flutter of her eyelashes and the biggest shit eating grin she can muster. “Let’s get trashed.”
“I told you this was a bad idea.”
Louis shoves her head under her pillow. She hadn’t even got fucked up in the end, apprehension and misery buzzing through her veins and keeping her painfully sober. She’d been too preoccupied keeping an eye on Harry and Sam.
Sam had turned out to be quite nice according to Harry, who’d mumbled the admission when she stumbled over a couple of hours later. Sam had brought her a cranberry juice - not that unusual considering it’s Harry - and hadn’t been a complete twat (a phenomenon considering the amount of fuckboys at their uni).
“You going home with him?” Niall had asked, situated in Bressie’s lap at the time. Bressie is somehow also called Niall, but Louis has never managed to get the story out of them, because Niall wets herself with laughter every time it’s brought up.
“Um, no,” Harry replied, flicking her fringe out of her eyes. “We just talked.”
At that point, Louis had spat her drink out all over the table. Considering the other girls were varying levels of inebriated, and the union bar had more than a few sticky tables, nobody noticed. “About what?”
Harry had looked as though she was picking her words very, very carefully. “He’s studying marine biology. We may have mentioned Sea - “
For the well being of all those around her, Louis had left the bar at that point. And now she’s curled up in her tiny uni bed, which probably needs the sheets washing only she can’t be arsed to do it, with her makeup still on and smudging on her pillows, while Harry pouts in the corner and looks hot, and basically it’s not her day, okay?
“Babe.” There’s the muffled sound of footsteps, then a soft pressure on Louis’ shoulder through the fabric. “Louis, come on.”
Louis ignores her. She may possibly be suffocating. Good. If she dies she’ll never have to see Harry flirting with someone else again. And she’ll die without telling anyone she’s dating Harry, a proper secret. It’s like Pretty Little Liars.
The mattress dips as Harry slumps down onto the corner of the bed. “You still have your makeup on, boo. At least let me take it off for you.”
Louis wiggles a little. She really does need to take her makeup off or she’ll get a tonne of blackheads, and then she will be secretly dumped by her secret girlfriend.
“And you can’t sleep in that dress.”
Louis shoves the pillow off her face and glares at Harry. “You just want to see me naked.”
Harry grins. “I’ll take what I can get.” She bends and brushes her lips across Louis’ forehead. “I’ll see you in the bathroom, yeah?”
She slides off the bed, tiptoeing to the bathroom. Louis watches her go, something heavy lodging in her throat, making it hard to breathe. She knows what Harry’s doing - letting her have some space so Louis can get out all the barbs, and mean comments, and little digs that burst out of her like fireworks in an attempt to hide the real problem.
When all the poison has drained out of her system, the venom siphoned out until there’s just raw hurt and longing, Louis slips out of bed. She pads over to the bathroom, leaning against the door frame.
The overhead light washes the room in pale light, licking over Harry’s face and painting her in shadows. It’s a little surreal, a world tinged in silver, just her and Harry and their hearts in their palms.
“Come here,” Harry demands softly, crooking her finger. There are charcoal smudges under her eyes from her makeup, her hair pulled into a sloppy bun with strands curling around her face. She must have changed at some point, because she’s in an oversized t shirt and some black shorts. “I have some wipes.”
Louis eases up onto the counter, wiggling until her back hits the wall. She reaches out and fists her hand in Harry’s shirt, tugging her in between her legs. “Sorry for being jealous.”
Harry’s nose wrinkles. “No, it’s okay. I would be too.” She looks down at her. “I don’t like secret dating.”
Louis sighs. “Me neither.”
Harry’s head snaps up. “Then why do we have to do it? Why are you pushing this so much, Lou?”
Louis wraps her hand around Harry’s neck in answer, pulling her close and sliding her lips against Harry’s. It’s soft and unhurried, and Louis shivers as arousal sparks throughout her body like glowing coals. Harry licks into her mouth easily, brushing her tongue over Louis’ until she’s dizzy with pleasure.
They break apart, lips bruised and hearts pounding. Louis inhales shakily. “I don’t - I just, you know what Liam is like. When she’s sad she’s miserable, she spirals and spirals and I don’t - I can’t make it worse.” She swallows. “You girls are everything to me, you know what it means that I can be myself here and - “
Harry pulls her close, wraps her up in her arms like a favourite blanket, because she knows. She knows how hard Louis found it to be herself back at home, knows about the shit she got from the football team, about how it was awful to like girls and like sports and like skateboarding and beanies, and to be fifteen and terrified and have all these stereotypes thrown in her face.
Simply put, it had been the worst time in Louis’ life and the effects of being called ‘a pervert’ each day in the changing rooms and spiralled and spiralled until she was sick with it. It was only when Jay sat her down and got it out of her what was wrong, that Louis found any kind of closure, of acceptance.
And then she’d come to uni, and no one had cared. Least of all Niall, who had just laughed when Louis mumbled she was gay and said she was asexual and they should start a support group.
Least of all Zayn, who had lazily admitted she's pansexual anyway, and that did anyone really think she would care, and could Louis stop stealing her socks by the way, because her feet are fucking freezing.
Least of all Liam, who had gone all red and blotchy, with that awful sweepy fringe she had had in first year. Liam had blurted that was a lesbian as well and could Louis explain some things to her, please, and Louis had laughed so hard she’d cried.
Least of all Harry - Harry who is everything to Louis. Who had followed her round like a puppy, begging to to have her hair stroked, making Louis peanut butter cookies, and sharing the same bed after nights out. Who held Louis’ hair back when she was sick and cuddled her when she had cramps, who left her secrets inscribed on Louis’ skin in the early hours of the morning.
Louis loves them all so much, so when something bad happens - well, she kind of goes overboard.
Harry cradles Louis’ face in her palms, her hands soft and bleeding warmth. Louis lefts her eyes flutter shut, concentrating on the soft caress of Harry’s thumb over her cheekbone.
“You’re the best person I know,” Harry whispers, the words as tender and beautiful as glowing stars. “We all love you. I love you. I know you feel you have to protect all of us and I love that about you, but let’s do it together, okay? You don’t have to be alone.”
Louis presses her forehead to Harry’s. She feels sleepy and sated, Harry’s words easing all the tension out of her. “Love you too. So much.”
It becomes fun again after that. All the jealousy and worry and anxiety fades away, is smashed into pieces by the steady beat of Harry loves me, Harry loves me, Harry loves me playing in Louis’ head.
Regrettably, they do start acting like a shitty Jane Austen novel. Lots of illicit trysts in bathrooms, and lingering glances in corridors, and trembling fingers when their hands touch. It’s great. Louis’ pretty certain Harry has a kink for being Elizabeth Bennet. She’s keeps fluttering her eyelashes and saying words like ‘bosom’, then bursting into laughter.
Also, their sex has never been better. Louis would 10/10 recommend pretending you’re not in a relationship to improve your relationship. All those marriage counsellors have wrong - Louis might a book. She’ll dedicate it to Harry. And maybe Liam.
Louis is distinctly not thinking about Liam now though, because she loves her but it’s a bit creepy to think about your best friend when you’re about to fuck your girlfriend until she’s crying.
“This is going to be so good,” Harry hums happily, smirking as Louis pushes her back onto the bed. “We haven’t had sex in so long.”
Louis blinks at Harry from above her. “Haz, you literally ate me out in the shower thirty minutes ago.”
Harry frowns at her. “We have to keep the magic alive.”
“Oh yeah, I’m writing a book about that.”
Louis shakes her head. “Um, never mind. Want me to return the favour?” She leans forward, dropping kisses over Harry’s face until she’s giggling.
“Want you to fuck me,” Harry gasps, and Louis’ stomach flips. She beams up at her, jade eyes glinting. Her dark curls are loose, a deep chocolate and spilling over the pillows like a siren. “With the pink strap on.”
Louis smirks. “I’m sure I can manage that.” She slides off Harry’s body, grabbing the toy and a half empty bottle of lube. When she climbs back on the bed Harry is wiggling in excitement, planes of alabaster skin, creamy thighs and dark nipples and pupils blown in anticipation.
She thumbs the lid of the lube, but Harry grabs her wrist before she can pop the cap. “Wait - I don’t need it. ‘m wet enough.”
Louis’ mouth goes dry. “Babe, I - I don’t want to hurt you.”
Harry shakes her head. “It’s fine, we’ve done this before. And I like - “ She swallows. “I like it if it burns a little.”
Louis feels like she’s been set on fire. She reaches for Harry’s mouth hungrily, lips crashing together. Her heart is thumping in her chest, and Louis swallows every little moan Harry makes, feels her clit throb when Harry bites down on her bottom lip.
Louis kisses down Harry’s neck, sucks and nips and bites down hard, until Harry is writhing and moaning beneath her, her neck painted purple by Louis’ lips. They’re both breathing hard when she pulls back.
“Fuck - are you - “ Louis stammers, hands fisting in the sheets. “Are you sure, Haz, I - “
“Want to ride you,” Harry babbles, the words bursting from her lips. “Want to ride you, want to ride your cock, want to be good for you - “
She looks obscene, lips crimson and bruised. Her eyes are glassy, bottle green slivers surrounded by bursts of black. Louis presses a thumb to the mark on her neck absent-mindedly, and Harry gasps. “Always good, love, you’re so beautiful, can’t wait for you to ride me.”
She scrabbles with the strap on, pulling it on and securing it safely. Her fingers slip over the straps, nervous with excitement and shivering with arousal, but she finally manages it. Harry scrambles out beneath her, chest heaving as she reverses their positions. She pushes Louis down with shaking hands, hovering above her.
Louis settles into the pillows, reaching one hand up to slide down Harry’s torso. Her nipples are swollen and begging for attention, so Louis lets her thumb catch on one of the buds. Harry shudders, mewling as Louis pinches it sharply, knowing how Harry likes the burst of pain.
“Up you get,” Louis smirks, letting her hand drop to her side. “Show me how good you are, sweetheart.”
The breath is punched out of her when Harry lowers herself down. She plants one hand on Louis’ sternum, the other grasping the toy as she guides it into her cunt. Harry keens as she slides all the way down, panting and whining, completely lost as she throws her head back. “Fuck, Louis, fuck - “
“Feel good, baby?” Louis asks, and plants her feet on the bed, thrusting her hips up.
Harry cries out, grinding down onto Louis’ lap. It’s frantic and desperate - hips pulsing and moving in the perfect rhythm to meet Louis’ thrusts. “Feels so good, Lou, feels so full, so stretched - ah - “
Louis tilts her hips up, pushing harder and faster. (She says a silent prayer to her footie coach because there is no way she could keep this up without quads of steel.) Harry is falling apart above her, beautiful and overwhelmed with arousal, eyes burning into Louis’.
“Do you like being full up, baby?” Louis pants, knowing her tone is high and breathy. “Like being stretched on my cock, pussy stretched and full and messy just for me - “
Louis blinks. Her head feels foggy, and she shakes it slightly. She could have sworn -
“Louis, can I come in?”
Harry has frozen above her, hands planted on Louis chest. They catches gazes at the same time, and Louis feels her heart sink all the way down to her toes. “Was that Liam?”
There’s a pounding on the door and Louis just - panics. “Fuck, get off, get off!”
Harry gapes at her incredulously. “You can’t be fucking - Louis!”
“I’m sorry!” Louis babbles, shoving at Harry’s hips. Harry has no choice but slide off the toy, and Louis’ throat closes when she’s sees how wet and messy and slick Harry’s cunt is. She struggles with the strap on, ripping it off desperately. “Quick, quick, we have to hide this!”
“Hide it where?” Harry hisses, snarling when Louis throws a t shirt at her. “Louis, what - “
Louis finally steps out of the strap on, almost tripping over and braining herself in the process. She tosses it on the bed, grabbing a shirt and tugging it on over her head. “Liam doesn’t know we’re together, remember? She can’t come in and see us like this, it’ll break her fucking heart!”
“Louis, I’m about to break your fucking face,” Harry snaps. Louis throws a pair of jeans at her face and Harry almost topples over. “Stop throwing clothes at me!”
The pounding on the door gets louder. “Louis, I need to talk to you - “
“Coming, Liam,” Louis yells back hastily. She does the top button of her jeans, but stops when Harry grabs her forearm. “Haz, what - “
Louis sometimes forgets how strong Harry is, how she has more than a few inches on Louis. This is because Harry is constantly demanding to be the little spoon, or fitting herself into Louis’ lap, or snuggling into her shoulder.
Which is why it’s a bit of a shock when Harry shoves her, tightens her grip on her arm and walks her backwards until Louis’ back hits the wall. She gasps as pain rockets through her spine, but then Harry’s shoving a thigh between her legs, and the pressure on Louis’ clit is overwhelming.
Louis feels cut loose, drifting, dizzy with arousal as Harry manhandles her, leaning in so her other hand presses to the wall against her head. A little whine escapes Louis’ lips, cuts through her throat involuntarily, and Harry’s eyes snap to her lips.
“You are kicking me out for Liam,” Harry grits out. The words blur to Louis, too focused on the deep drag of Harry’s voice, like gravel over a cut palm, and the way it burns all the way to her bones. “Rest assured you’re never coming again.”
She leans closer, nails still digging into Louis’ arm, and arousal explodes in her stomach as Harry’s lip just brush hers. And then she’s pulling back, skipping away to open the door to Liam and Louis is just. Fuck.
“Hi, Liam,” Louis hears Harry say, but she’s still struggling to breathe. The sudden space between them, the sudden rush of cool air is like a slap to the face. Her hands are trembling and she’s soaked. Fuck. They’ve never switched it up before, but Louis is definitely having that conversation.
She pinches her thigh and breathes in deeply, before moving towards the door. “You alright, Payno?”
Liam is hovering in the doorway, beaming when she sees Louis. She never comes inside unless she’s asked, always waits for Louis to get up and greet her, even though Louis has told Liam a thousand times she can just come in.
“I have some good news,” Liam beams, eyes crinkling at the edges. “I wanted to come tell you.”
Louis narrows her eyes. She’s not feeling particularly joyous. Turned on and horny, yes. Irritated at how much a cock block Liam is. Louis smirks at that one, because for once a cock was actually involved, albeit a fake one. “Did you bring food?”
Liam holds up a Tesco bag. It’s a fucking bag for life because Liam is like that. “I got a six pack of Snickers and a Gregs sausage roll.” She frowns. “I went to Greggs first, so the sausage roll might be a bit squashed.”
Louis grabs the bag off her, peering inside. She gestures to the bedroom. “You may enter.”
In Louis’ defence, she’s too fixated on assessing how squished the sausage roll is to pay much attention to anything else. Which is why she forgets that Liam has walked in before her, and that Louis’ bed is the first thing you see in her room, and that the fucking strap on is still on. Her fucking. Bed.
“Um, Louis?” Liam squeals, and Louis’ looks up. And promptly wants to flush her eyes out with bleach, because shit, shit, shit. “Is this, um - did I - “
What the hell did Louis do in a past life, because she does not deserves this. Not at all. “I - um.”
Liam is eyeing the strap on like a hand grenade. Louis wants to lay down on the floor and die. Liam takes a deep breath, like she’s steeling herself for war. “Did I - did I interrupt you?”
What the hell, she’s a corpse anyway. “Um, yeah. Sorry, mate. Had to rub one out.” That doesn’t even make sense. Does Liam know what a strap on does?
Liam’s nose wrinkles, brown eyes wide. “Wait, wasn’t Harry just in here?”
Louis says the first thing that comes in her hand. “Yeah, she lent it to me.”
Liam chokes on air. “She what?”
Louis swallows and draws on any acting talent she ever had. “She lent it to me. I mentioned that my vibrator had died and she offered me something else.” That’s at least partially true. She and Harry had a crazy sex marathon last week after an episode of Orange Is The New Black. Louis may be a little competitive, even with fictional prison inmates.
Liam still looks like a rabbit that’s about to hit by a range rover. “Oh, um. Okay.”
Louis cocks her head to one side. “Wait, you’ve never done that?”
Liam stares at her. “What, borrow a strap on? Strangely enough, no.”
Louis shakes her head sadly. “That’s a bit weird, mate. It’s a thing girls do.”
Liam squeaks. Louis is dead and in hell. “It is?”
Louis frowns at her. “Well, yeah. At sleepovers and that. A cheeky game of truth or dare, then swap sex toys. I even borrowed Zayn’s vibrator the other day.” She lowers her voice. “Zayn has my dildo, but between me and you, it’s due to be returned.”
Liam nods once. “Right, well I’m - “
Louis blinks innocently. “Did you want to borrow anything?”
“No, no, that’s good,” Liam shouts, backing away frantically. “I forgot what I had to tell you, I have to go now. Bye, Louis.”
“Bye,” Louis calls cheerfully, and waits until the door slams shut before she collapses on her bed in frustration.
And naturally, lands on the strap on.
Zayn corners her in the library next day. Louis is pretending to be reading her textbook, but she’s got her phone propped behind it and she’s trying to beat Niall’s score on candy crush.
Louis looks up. Zayn’s standing there, lips pressed into a thin line. “Louis, why did Liam politely tell me she’s sorry, but she doesn’t feel up to lending me her vibrator just yet.”
Louis laughs so hard she drops her phone.
Louis doesn’t really think about what Liam wanted to tell her. To be honest, it’s the last thing on her mind. She’s more concerned about keeping their conversations as PG as possible.
They’re crammed into their usual table on Thursday afternoon. Louis is pointedly not looking at Harry, who’s sitting in between Liam and Niall. Zayn had crammed in beside Louis, and she keeps exchanging little glances with Liam. She thinks she’s being subtle, but she’s really not.
“Right, girls, I have a confession to make,” Liam announces loudly. Louis doesn’t bother looking up from the menu. She doesn’t know whether to have onion rings with her burger. She’s a little bit paranoid that if she has them, that her stomach is going to push out some more.
“I’m getting the onion rings,” Harry interjects, and Louis’ head snaps up. Harry smirks at her and Louis beams in return. “Niall, are you going to get onion rings?”
Niall frowns, chewing on the end of her braid. “I don’t know. I might get sweet potato fries.”
Liam clears her throat. “Guys, I’m trying to - “
Louis shakes her head. “Niall, you had them last time and you don’t like them. And don’t chew your hair, you’ll get hair balls.”
Niall scowls. “No, I won’t.”
Louis smirks at her. “Yes, you will.”
“Oi,” Liam says loudly, frowning at them all. She looks like a smacked puppy. “I’m trying to tell you all something.”
“You’re always trying to tell us something,” Louis sighs. “Last week you tried to make me buy a charity calendar.”
Niall nods wisely. “And the week before that it was volunteering at the animal shelter.”
Liam huffs. “That literally never happened.”
Louis shakes her head. “Don't deny it, Payno. You’re worse than Harry and bloody Sea World.”
“Oi,” Harry snaps, kicking her under the table. “I would just like to point out Sea World is an extremely manipulative corporation, and the animals kept in their parks are severely maltreated and shouldn’t be kept in such abhorrent conditions. And none of us are every going.”
Zayn rolls her eyes. “None of us were ever going anyway.”
“That’s what people say,” Harry mutters. “And then a picture of them with a dolphin pops up on FaceBook, what a surprise.”
Louis stares at her. “You’re really weird sometimes.”
Liam slams her hand on the table. “I’m back with Sophia.”
Louis stares at her. Harry stares at her. Niall stares at her. Zayn just looks bored, and a little smug.
Louis swallows. “You’re back with Sophia?”
Liam nods happily. “Yeah, we made up last night.”
Louis closes her eyes briefly. “Right, and you’re happy? Everything is good? Happy days?”
Liam beams. “Yeah, I went to her on Friday and - “
“Zayn, get out the way,” Louis says calmly, and Zayn barely had time to move before Harry Styles in jumping into Louis’ lap and kissing her soundly. It’s all very romantic. They are so in sync it’s ridiculous. Harry manages to knock over a salt shaker and it goes all over Liam’s lap, which is even better.
“Me and Harry are dating,” Louis announces breathlessly, as Harry buries her face into Louis’ neck. Louis’ arms are wrapped around her, pulling her closer and dropping kisses all over Harry’s face.
Harry beams, dimples bright and eyes even brighter. “Yes, we are.”
Liam sighs. “Yeah, we know.”
Louis frowns, peering at Liam over Harry’s shoulder. “What - wait?”
She’s about to ask Liam some more, but Harry cradles her face in her hands. “Louis, kiss me in public, please.”
“We shouldn’t have told them,” Liam mutters, but Louis just kisses Harry again and shoves her hand down Harry’s shirt. She ignores Liam’s squawk of protest. They have a lot to make up for.