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It's Complicated

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Don’t touch her, don’t touch her, don’t touch her or I swear I’ll kill you
Harry’s thoughts were full of menace, each word full of meaning. He watched through narrowed eyes as Zayn stretched his hand out to brush Gemma’s hair behind her ear.

His hands balled into angry fists by his side and his teeth clenched together in annoyance. A part of him noted that this was not the time or place to pick a fight with his best friend, but the other, greater half won out. This was his sister they were talking about. His own flesh and blood.

The music seemed to get louder, pounding and thumping through the floorboards, the shrill voice of the vocalist leaving his ears ringing as he walked impatiently to where Zayn and Gemma were standing together by the bar. If you’d call it walking. He wasn’t exactly moving at cheater speed, but it was definitely faster than a walk.

He grabbed Zayn by the collar; yanking him far enough away that Gemma wouldn’t be able to hear their conversation. He made sure to tug hard enough to let on that he was upset with Zayn, but not too hard because, even though this thing, whatever it was, that was going on with Gemma and Zayn was bothering him, Zayn was still his best friend. Gemma looked concerned, and she stepped tentatively forward, beginning to walk over and break up the fight, until Harry shot her a warning glare and she spun back around, flopping into a nearby chair as she fiddled anxiously with her hands.

“What the hell, Haz?”

“You know what the hell” Harry muttered through his still-clenched teeth.

“Look, if this is about your sister…”

“Of course it’s about my sister! She’s my sister, Zayn, and you’re my best friend! It just can’t work like that”

“Oh really? Because last time I checked, there was no law about who I can and can’t be with . She’s an adult now, Harry, and she can be with whoever she wants. I like her, Haz, and you and I both know she likes me too”

Harry’s heart sank because he knew Zayn was right, and somehow, that only made him angrier.

“You know what, Zayn? You may be older than me, but that doesn’t mean that you can control me. This is none of your business, so how about you get the hell out of here and leave my sister the fuck alone”

“None of my business? Would you listen to yourself, Harry?”

Zayn’s voice had turned malicious and his eyes had a feral glint to them. But this was always like Zayn, Harry thought, always using people’s words against them.

“If anything, this is more my business than it is yours!” He jabbed a finger angrily in Harry’s face.

“This is my family we’re talking about, Zayn, and you’re gonna destroy it. You may be my best friend, but I can’t let you do this! I won’t let you”

“Oh, come off it, Harry. Why are you making such a fucking big deal out of this? It’s not bothering anyone else in your family, so why should it bother you?” Zayn looked so confused at this point.

“Because I don’t want my sister to get hurt, Zayn. I’m trying to protect her here”

“So, what? You’re saying that I’m not good enough for her? That you think I’m going to hurt her? Come on Haz, I’d never dream of hurting her deliberately, or anyone else for that matter, but hey, it’s nice to know what you really think of me”

Zayn looked genuinely offended now, and anyone who knew Zayn knew that he didn’t often let his emotions show, preferring to keep them to himself, but now his eyes were glassy with tears, his mouth turned down into a frown, and Harry felt a stab in his chest at hurting his best friend.

“Zayn… you know I didn’t mean it like that” Harry began, his voice softening as he tried to fix his mistake. Zayn wasn’t having any of it.

“No, Harry. Just stop. You don’t get to apologise. You don’t get to stand here and tell me that I’m not good enough for your sister and then make up some scrappy little apology. Because I don’t accept, Harry. You can apologise all you want, but I won’t listen. I’m not gonna take anymore of your crap. You can’t control me, or my relationships, any longer. I won’t let you do that. I’m going to be with Gemma, whether you like it or not, and there is nothing you can do about it. So I’m done here, Harry. Have a nice life”

Harry was just a little bit shocked at what he was hearing. Zayn was such a loyal friend, one of his best, and Harry couldn’t believe that he was just going to give up on their friendship so easily. He could understand, though. Zayn had every right. Harry had been such a dick.

“Zayn, come on. Stop. Please don’t do this. You’re my best mate” Harry choked, his voice getting stuck in his throat as he reached out and latched onto Zayn’s heavily tattooed arm.

“No, Harry. I was your best mate. But you fucked up”

He removed Harry’s hand from his arm, striding over to where Gemma was still sitting, and Harry watched as they slowly moved away.

They’d had their fair share of fights before, but Harry didn’t see this one ending happily.