Actions

Work Header

You Get Admission

Work Text:

Zayn concluded that job hunting as an art student is, in fact, a bitch. After his junior year finished, Zayn decided to stay in California, one of his best friends, Griff, letting him crash at his home for the summer to catch up on cash for his final year. But what he didn't plan was how many other thousand students were also looking for jobs and internships with practical majors like business or accounting. So he spent countless of hours of searching online for any openings and mindlessly filling out application after application, to walking around the city in hopes of passing by a 'Help Wanted' sign. At the end of the week he found an ad, almost too good to be true; what else did he have to lose?

He landed an interview almost instantly.

When Zayn met with Louis, Harry's assistant and best friend, for a housekeeping job he explained that Harry was in the middle of writing another novel after taking a long much-needed break. Harry usually keeps himself locked up in his home or traveling last minute, so Zayn would only meet him on a few occasions. Louis explained that he was only to work two days out of the week, the house being large enough to have a day for each the downstairs and the upstairs, with the exclusion of Harry's 'creative room'. "He thinks the energy in it is the heavens above blessing him with ideas or some bullshit like that," Louis explained with an eyeroll that made Zayn laugh a little too hard. After agreeing on the payment and the work times, Louis grinned as they shook hands and welcomed Zayn to the 'team'.

Zayn's heard the hype that came around the name Harry Styles. He's seen his books sit proudly on the This Weeks Best Sellers at book stores and his school's library when he'd lock himself there during finals week. One of his ex-boyfriends even dragged him to see one of his books-turned-movie films last summer, but slept through most of it since they had gotten high before it. Zayn has never looked much into him, who he was, where he came from, or even how he looked, so it makes sense when Harry crosses through the living room in a pair of short swim trunks and what looks like a black silk robe. Zayn can not help but stare.

Harry's gorgeous, in all his tall and lean glory, the dark silk of his robe complimenting his pale skin; hair wet, curling and reaching just above his shoulders. Zayn thinks he should introduce himself, considering he has been working for him for three weeks and has yet to meet him, but then Harry's looking up at him with eyes wide for a split second before he quickly schools his face into a frown.

"You're the new house keeper, then?" Harry asks, eyes skating over Zayn quickly, making him want to run out the door.

"Yeah, Zayn," he answers, smiles anyway as he takes a step to walk over with a stretched hand, but Harry holds one of his hands up, stopping him.

"Well Zayn, you're not here to stare," he sneers, looking at Zayn once more before turning away and disappears up the stairs, leaving Zayn to frozen and appalled at how their first encounter went, if he can even call it that.

If he was honest with himself, Zayn expected maybe a thank-you after all the work he put in after first arriving since the house was a fucking mess. He almost thought Harry was some college student with the way clothes littered the house, empty bowls on almost every surface and dishes stacked in the sink; Zayn wondered why the hell they didn't hire a housekeeper long before it came to that mess. The first week was the hardest, organizing and reorganizing, doing loads of laundry and throwing away so many water bottles that were found in almost every corner of the house, a small 'thanks' would have been sufficient.

But Zayn brushes it off, turns back to the kitchen and continues to throw out food Harry let sit in his pantry long enough to expire before he can even get to them. It's mainly quick ramen and packaged pasta and sauces, quick easy-to-make meals that aren't probably the healthiest for him. The last day he worked, he threw out so many frozen pizza boxes he wondered if Harry even ate. He can hear Harry moving about upstairs, opening and closing doors before music is heard. Once Zayn's done, he collects his things, the check that is sat in the same spot by the door and doesn't say goodbye as he leaves for the day.

 

He gets the text early in the morning the next day he's due to work, Louis asking him to go in early as per Harry's requests. Zayn can't help but groan, the night before still clouding his mind of tequila shots with his mates that makes him want to hurl and leans his head against the wall as he showers. He doesn't think too much on why Harry would want him there earlier, never has prior to them meeting. By the time he's out the door, time reading nine-fifteen, he stops to get coffee, and grabs one for Harry to lessen whatever blow may come his way.

After Zayn makes it in ten minutes offering Harry the extra coffee he brought with a slight smile to cover the fact he feels a mess. He played it safe with getting just regular coffee with cream, which Harry takes with a grimace as he accepts it and pours the content into a coffee mug. Zayn mainly wants to roll his eyes.

"Probably wondering why I asked you to come in earlier," Harry suggest, tasting a bit of the coffee.

"A bit, but I don't mind," Zayn answers sipping at his coffee. "You're the boss." Harry lets out a dry laugh, which Zayn thinks is probably worse than not laughing at all. Zayn just stares instead, hopes he's giving off a subtle, 'lets get moving' look.

"Right. Well, follow me then," Harry gives him a tight lip smiled and gets up walking through the living room. Zayn can't help but notice the floral floor-length robe wrapped tightly around his waist; he is only slightly jealous on how good it looks.

With the way Harry moved through the house with urgency, Zayn's heart raced with the idea of him mistakenly misplaced something. He tried coming up with anything that could have went wrong the last time he was there, if he threw something out that he should not have. But what he didn't expect was to stop in one of the guest bathrooms, Harry swinging open the closet to show all the towels Zayn had recently washed, folded, and put up. A week ago.

He looks up at Harry who looks back at him expectantly, before turning to the closet again in confusion. "I don't get it."

"Now I should make you do them all over again, but since you didn't know," Harry rolls his eyes, sipping at his mug where he poured the coffee Zayn got him. Zayn rolls his eyes then as well because, why? Zayn's sure the confusion and how taken aback he is written all over his face because Harry answers with, "They have to look all the same and face the same way, Zayn." Zayn really wants to tear them all out, make Harry do it himself, but he doesn't retaliate.

"I can redo them if it really bothers you," he offers, prays Harry doesn't agree, but gets a shrug instead.

"Well, you can do them next time," he huffs.

Zayn wants to know what's running through Harry's mind as he just stands there, sipping at his coffee again after throwing him a shrug. He wants to know who even is he? And why could he not have waited for Zayn to come in when he usually does just to give him a point two second talk. Zayn almost stomps his foot, he could have used those extra two hours to ease the nausea at the pit of his belly, or even eat.

He swallows back his groan, though, deciding he needs the job instead and tries to smile at Harry. "Was that all?"

"Hmm?" Harry hums, turning to him with raised eyebrows as if he forgot Zayn was in the room; like the two did not stand there for almost two minutes in silence.

"The towels, was that all you wanted to talk to me about?" Zayn waves towards the open closet door.

"Oh. Yeah, that is all." With that, Harry finishes his coffee, handing the mug towards Zayn before taking off, moving two rooms away to his creative room.

Zayn doesn't recall Louis mentioning having to deal with a right prick was part of the job, but hopes he's right about Harry staying locked away, and gets to work.

It's an upstairs day, the easier of the two. He pops in his headphones while cleaning up the theater room where blankets are thrown over the couch and re-racks the books that were pulled and scattered in Harry's study. He sweeps, mops, rolls his eyes at the countless water bottles, and does his job. For the most part.

With all the vices Zayn has, being nosey is one of them. He takes a second to look at the few pictures Harry has around his house, most of them being the same two women who Zayn takes the chances of thinking they're his mother and sister, all carrying the same grin and colored eyes. Harry looks a lot younger in most of the pictures, curlier hair and a lazy grin. He looks over the awards he might have skipped the last time, reads the back of books that aren't written by Harry Styles (he has a vast collection of psychological thrillers with creaseless spines, Zayn believes that may be the topic of his next book).

He finds crystals all through out the house that supposedly balance the energies out in each room. It's the same thing with candles, except they're never lit and seem untouched. He leaves shoes everywhere even if Zayn never sees him come or go. He doesn't actively look to find anything on Harry, really just looks to get an idea of who he is, but decides Harry's an enigma that he's yet to find out.

He finishes up, collects his check, and leaves without crossing Harry again.

 

Zayn won't mention how he thinks Louis agreed to pay him a lot more than necessary, but he can't help the pep in his step when he goes to the art store with cash he can spend without having to worry about his next meal. He splurges on a new set of brushes and acrylic paint, even an easel since the one he has is laid under his bed, a leg being held with duct tape. He doesn't even flinch when he checks out, handing over his card as he chews on his lip to contain the grin from spilling. It's his first purchase other than groceries since he started working for Harry and he can't help feeling like a kid at recess.

Griff's laid out on the couch when Zayn makes it back to their small home. He looks up from his phone, throwing a questioning look at all the bags. "So the job's paying good?" Zayn can't help but give him a shit eating grin.

"A bit," he answers, moving to his bedroom to set down his things before moving to make them an early dinner before he locks himself away for the night.

 

"Zayn!" Louis shouts when he walks into the kitchen the next week, sat on a barstool with his laptop in front of him and a bagel. It makes Zayn jump and clutch at his jacket, surprised to see him, the last time being their interview. Louis laughs it off, continues with "Glad to see you're still here."

"Can't stay away, I suppose."

"Good, Harry really needs your help, you saw the house when you first started," Louis reminds him, shaking his head. Zayn wants to say it wasn't as bad as it could be, but it was really bad. He won't mention it, though.

Just then Harry's sauntering with a scowl on his face as he looks over the two of them. "Is it your day already?" He asks, to no one in particular so Zayn keeps shut, looks over at Louis. "You, Zayn."

"Yeah, Harry, Monday and Thursdays," Zayn states, willing his heart rate to slow down from his initial scare.

"How about we move it to Tuesdays and Fridays, so you can get my dry cleaning-"

"Harry that isn't his job," Louis interrupts, shaking his head. He looks over at Zayn giving him an apologetic grimace.

"But-"

"I don't mind," Zayn cues in because he really doesn't. His days are all open, he can probably use the time out so he won't spend too long doing nothing. Or painting.

"Good!"

"You don't have to Zayn, it wasn't in the job description," Louis reminds him before turning back to Harry.

"Louis let the man decide what he wants to do," Harry scoffs, moving to the fridge to grab another water bottle.

"Just tell me where to pick it up, then," Zayn responds, shrugging at Louis' disapproving look before turning to look at Harry who distinctly smiles at him. Zayn feels like he won something. Though it lasts only a second before he's schooling his face into something impassive.

"Louis can give you the address," he nods, and leaves quietly with a pat on Louis's shoulder.

Louis just sighs theatrically, gathering his things and following wherever Harry went to, promising to text Zayn the address of the dry cleaners.

 

When Friday comes along, he's fucking late. It's 9 and he was due to get Harry's dry cleaning before 9 to be at his home at 9:30, something coming up that Harry so happened to need a suit when he had dozens clean. He doesn't bother changing out of the paint stained jeans he managed to fall asleep in and picks up a sweater, quickly brushing his teeth as he slides his boots on and is out the door in five.

He's heaving when he gets to Harry's door, suit in hand. It's five minutes to ten and Zayn hopes he didn't fuck up. He lets himself in with the key Louis gave him, and is greeted with silence beside the door chime. He sees empty coffee mugs as he passes through one of the living rooms and kitchen, gathering them as he goes to put them in the sink. He doesn't hear any noise, everything off almost as if no one's home and Zayn hopes maybe Harry left in another suit and isn't too pissed off at him.

He moves up the stairs, trailing the suit with him incase Harry is still in the house and only was testing Zayn's patience or something, but his room's empty, bed a disarray of blankets and pillows, his MacBook sitting open on his night stand. It looks like he maybe left in a hurry, to busy to fix anything on his own and Zayn feels he can breathe just the slightest. He wasn't in anyway ready of a confrontation after the last block he half-ran.

But, Zayn hears a door open out into the hall then followed with footsteps and he just lets out a small fuck when he turns to find Harry.

He looks a wreck, though. His eyes framed with dark circles and hair sticking out in all sorts of directions like he ran his hands through them one too many times. The white t-shirt he has on is wrinkled and the sweat pants sit low on his wait and he just looks a mess.

Zayn goes to speak, but it quickly cut short from Harry's, "You're late, Zayn." He can smell he stale coffee on his breath; it also explains the empty mugs throughout the house.

"I'm so sorry, I got a bit caught up in the morning," Zayn lies through his teeth, scratching at the side of his neck as he holds up the suit in the other hand. "I got this, though?"

Harry rolls his eyes; Zayn hopes his eyes get stuck like that with how much he does it. "It doesn't matter now," he sighs, taking in Zayn's appearance, stopping to examine his lazy jeans before looking over the suit. It's a basic generic one, black with a white button up, a skinny black tie hung in the inside like the women explained. Zayn wants to question why this suit and not the other hundred similar ones that seemed untouched in his closet.

"I'm really sorry, Harry. It won't happen again," Zayn apologizes instead, eyeing Harry up as he inspects the suit, like he's searching for a sign.

"Well I guess I'll let this slide," his lip twitches, lowering the suit so it drags across the floor as he walks away. Zayn takes a deep breath and counts to ten, reminding himself that Harry is in fact his boss and he can't afford to lose his job. When he exhales he can hear a door slam shut, so Zayn takes it as his indication to get to work.

 

Somehow, Zayn's frustrated. He's never worked for anyone who can not hold a conversation like Harry. Since meeting three weeks ago all of their engagements are Harry saying less than fifteen words to him before disappearing into his creative room with either a mug of coffee or whatever frozen shit he let sit too long in the microwave. Zayn can't comprehend why anyone with money like Harry would voluntarily eat something as gross as frozen pizza. Although he eats it mostly in school, Zayn wouldn't just choose to eat that.

So when he gets to work on a Friday morning and sees an empty hot-pocket sleeve, Zayn cooks. He knows he's pushing it, didn't have the permission to use Harry's kitchen to whip something up, but Zayn's moms need to feed people passed on to him. And if it's an excuse to maybe get on Harry's good side, well he'll do it.

The rest of the house is silent when Zayn looks through the pantry and fridge. He's convinced that Harry probably never leaves his house since no one did a grocery run after Zayn threw out everything that was expired. The only thing that he can really make is French toast with the last two pieces of bread left in the pantry. It's quick and easy, Griff claims it's some of the best he's had, slathers on a thin layer of an organic hazel nut spread and leaves it on the counter to clean up. What he didn't think about when cooking was how he'd give the breakfast to Harry. Was he supposed to take it up to him? Knock and risk the wrath of whatever makeup reason Harry might have on cooking?

Instead he makes all the noise in the world when cleaning. He hits the side of the pan he used against the sink, accidently on purpose slamming cabinets shut. He whistles along to the songs playing on his phone. It's all useless since the food has gone cold and he's done with the kitchen when Harry finally walks in.

He's in a pink robe hanging wide open to show off the tan shorts he probably slept in. Zayn wants to stare, the contrast of the dark tattoos on his pale skin almost too much to not look away, but he keeps his eyes on Harry's face, the possible imprints of his pillow still on his right cheek. But then Harry's looking at the breakfast Zayn made, then back up at him.

"What's this?" He asks, wandering towards it as he chews on his lip.

"Um, I made you breakfast?"

"Why?"

Because you eat like you're on the broke college student diet. "Because frozen food isn't the most nutritional thing to eat," Zayn says instead, shrugging. And by a miracle it feels, Harry laughs, a real one this time.

"And French toast is?" It's Zayn's turn to laugh, because he has a point.

"I guess not, but it tastes better," he claims, smiling up at him as he takes a seat on one of the stools lined against the island. "It's probably cold by now, though."

"Not like I'm not used to it," Harry teases, returning the smile, albeit a small one. Zayn takes whatever he can get. "Thank you, Zayn."

"Yeah, yeah no problem. I'll leave you to it then?" Zayn bites at the inside of his cheek to stop a grin from reaching his ears as he points his thumbs towards the dining room.

"Don't let me stop you," Harry nods, the ghost of his smile still on his lips as he watches Zayn go.

When Zayn's done with the day and Harry's back in his room, he makes a small detour into the kitchen to find he dishes Harry used clean and left to dry. He can't help but feel like he accomplished something, lets himself grin as he keeps the sticky note with 'Thank You' written on it that sticks to his check.

 

So Zayn starts cooking for him when he works. Harry insisted after the second breakfast that Zayn didn't need to, but Zayn couldn't miss out on the look of contentment on his face when he'd find a plate on the island. He talks more, smiles more, still locks himself in his room, and overall there. One morning Zayn even walked in to find the fridge and pantry stocked, Louis there to remind him that he really doesn't need to cook for him, and blushes when offered a pay raise and reminds Louis he genuinely doesn't mind.

Louis still gives him a small raise, "To go grocery shopping, then," he said smugly before winking as he went up to meet with Harry.

 

"Why don't you join me today?"

Zayn jumps when Harry asks. He hasn't before, Zayn usually makes something before Harry even gets out of bed, once he's up they talk for a bit before he takes off to start cleaning. But he's up earlier this morning, or he hasn't even gone to bed with how dark his circles are, Zayn still trying to figure out what to make. He almost wants to say no since they'd actually have to converse, even thinks he just might be in trouble, but Harry's chuckling.

"Definitely not an obligation," he muses, taking a seat on a stool. He's in an oversized sweater this morning, sleeves reaching his fingertips as he sets his chin on one hand. There's a hairband pushing away the wet curls from his face and he looks so young.

"No! I mean yeah, I'd like to," Zayn stammers, wants to slap himself for sounding like a child himself, before faking a cough, hiding his face in his elbow in hopes Harry doesn't catch the how red his face must have gotten.

But when he's done acting Harry's looking at him knowingly, still smiling. Zayn's sure his face goes red again so he turns towards the pantry. "What would you like?"

"Whatever you're in the mood for please," Harry answers.

"Right." So Zayn cooks them omelets filled with vegetables and cheese, throws in pieces of the organic turkey bacon he was eyeing. Harry hums behind him, occasionally stopping to ask what he's adding. It's a little intimidating, but when the omelets are plated Harry offers that they eat in the dinning room. Zayn agrees, handing Harry one of his plates as he follows, but stops in his tracks to glimpse at Harry's backyard. There's a large patio with a table that fits about twelve next to the pool, the weather was near perfect on his walk to Harry's.

"How about we eat outside?"

"What?" Harry turns, eyebrows knitting together as he looks out the window Zayn pulled the curtain from when he arrived.

"Felt good on my way here, think it'd be nice since you lock yourself away all day," once he's said it Zayn wants to slap his hand over his mouth with the way Harry almost breaks his neck to look at him. He didn't mean it maliciously, hopes it came across jokingly.

Thankfully it does, after a second Harry laughs and turns around to head towards the back door. "You're right, can't remember the last time I sat outside." Zayn sighs with relief.

It's a little warmer than when Zayn arrived now that the sun is high in the sky, but the cool breeze makes it bearable. With the way Harry smiles slightly when he steps outside Zayn's sure he can agree.

Once they sit their plates down on the table and Harry takes a seat Zayn goes back inside to pour them juice. He takes a moment, starring down at the cups and can't help the anxiety crawling up his spine. A few weeks ago he didn't think Harry would even give him the time to spit out a few words and now he's having breakfast with him. He snaps himself out of it, though, grabs their glasses and moves back outside to see Harry already chowing down.

"This is really fucking good," he praises once Zayn slides open the door before taking another bite and Zayn laughs, helping him calm down his nerves.

"I'm the next Gordon Ramsay," Zayn jokes as he takes a seat, handing Harry his juice as he almost chokes from laughing.

"I'm sure," Harry agrees with a grin that Zayn reciprocates before taking a bite of his own and yeah, he might as well be. "When I'm mid book I forget what good food is," he shakes his head at himself.

"Yeah man, your fridge was breaking my heart," he says around a bite.

Of course, Harry rolls his eyes at him. "It's just easier to microwave something then take it upstairs than actually cooking something," he explains, shrugging one shoulder.

"For how long though? You can really eat frozen food for months on end?" Zayn can't imagine it, after a few frozen meals Zayn craves anything fresh, he'd scrape up any money he had to be able to cook something.

"Well honestly, I can eat them all the time," Harry admits, quickly taking another bite and it makes Zayn groan.

"That's terrible!"

"A right mess, me," Harry winks, taking a sip from his juice.

Their conversation flows naturally, too naturally for the anxiety Zayn had felt earlier. They talk about food, how Harry's at the ending of his book, Zayn's art and his final year in college. They sit outside well past finishing their omelets and juice, Zayn couldn't make his legs get up right after to get to work, and with the way Harry faces him with his legs crossed, he couldn't either. They don't move until it gets too hot, Zayn's shirt sticking to his back and Harry breaking a sweat, they pick up their things and move back inside.

"I know you're supposed to work today, but I think I've held you up long enough," Harry quirks his lips, dimple deep in his cheek.

"'S alright, I don't mind it." It's true, since Harry lives alone the house isn't too hard to clean, it's just big.

"Nah, you can head out if you'd like, thanks again for breakfast," he smiles softly, reaching a hand out to sit on Zayn's shoulder. "And for listening to me," he adds, squeezes his grip just a bit.

The small touch makes Zayn's heart leap just so, he can feel himself blush. "Always all ears." Harry then grins, giving him a small nod before leaving Zayn alone in the kitchen to ponder what the fuck just happened.

 

Their days go on like that now. Zayn cooks breakfast for the two of them, then makes Harry go outside to enjoy it. He doesn't clean much anymore beside the dishes they dirty and picks up the endless amounts of blankets Harry manages to keep all around his house. Harry still pays him the same, insists since he's taking up some of Zayn's day he feels the need to, and with school approaching Zayn takes it.

The two talk forever it feels like. Whether it's out on the backyard patio or in the kitchen until Harry has an idea of what to add to whatever he's writing and locks himself away. Zayn admits to Harry that he's the same way. Griff's never home since he was promoted at the shop he works at and most of his mates went back home for the summer, so if he's not at Harry's he's at home smoking and painting for hours.

"Maybe you can come paint here," Harry suggests after Zayn complains about the lack of lighting in his room.

"What?"

Harry almost looks nervous when he asks, fidgeting with the ring on his pinky finger. It's the first time Zayn's seen it, or any jewelry really, he wonders if it's maybe just a habit. "I have all these windows, it can get pretty bright in here," he gestures at all the windows with their blinds drawn shut. He's surprised.

"Mr. Harry Styles wants to open the blinds now?" Zayn teases, to cover how bad he really would want to take up his offer. Harry then grins, shaking his head at him.

"Who am I?" he plays along, feigns distress as he looks down at his hands then back up at Zayn with wide eyes. Zayn takes note that his dark circles aren't as bad when he first started and is a little proud.

"A whole new person," Zayn smiles at him from across the island.

Zayn feels like he is honestly. Or it's just he didn't know him before he started having breakfast with him. He's actually quite kind and quiet, makes unhealthy food choices but tries to stay active. He keeps to himself during books because he can't withhold any information once people start asking questions; so Zayn doesn't ask. The jokes he makes have terrible punchlines that still make Zayn laugh. His family lives ten minutes from him, so when he over stresses about the novel he takes the quick bike-ride there.

Louis's really the only person Harry likes to have around because he can't help but feel like people use him. He sings along to Jeff Buckley when he feels down. He explained the suit he had Zayn pick up was for his ex-girlfriends wedding. He couldn't sleep the the whole night before, which explained how much of a mess he looked when Zayn got there. Harry explained that he proposed to her and she declined, which led to a heartbreak that inspired his sophomore book that Zayn saw in theaters.

He gets sad sometimes, doesn't like how many windows his house has even if it was his favorite out of the possible 100 houses he looked at. He had a cat that suddenly gave him allergies, so he suffered for a whole year before his mom took it from him. His favorite hot pockets are the peperoni ones and likes banana popsicles. He could never rethink Harry was a prick

Harry's just odd and Zayn fucking likes him.

"But you should. Paint. Here." He's chewing at his lip, eyes wide as he looks up at him and Zayn wants to just hold him.

"Yeah, sure. You can be my muse," Zayn accepts, earning Harry's laugh that makes him throw his head back.

"I can't sit still for long, but I'll try," Harry promises, a grin so far across his face Zayn wonders how his lip didn't crack.

 

When Zayn gets in that Friday morning with his backpack full of his paints, his lazy jeans on, and his easel in tow, Harry's waiting for him in the living room with an easel and blank canvas set up by the open windows. Zayn feels his heart race, warmth spreading throughout his body the closer he gets and Harry looks up at him. He's in a short lilac silk robe that sits mid thigh, wrapped tightly around his body. It looks like it's the only thing he has on as Zayn indulges in trailing his eyes down Harry's never ending body, down to his bare feet that curl in once Zayn reaches them.

"My feet are ugly, Zayn, don't look at them," Harry whines moving towards him so Zayn looks up at him, to see his smiling softly at him. "I got you these, didn't think you'd bring your own for some reason," he shakes his head, a sort of silly me.

"I'm a slut for a new canvas and easel," Zayn jokes and Harry laughs again, a loud croaking one with his eyes squinting and teeth on full display, Zayn wants to kiss him.

"It's all yours," he nods, gripping at Zayn's shoulder like he always does now and he just wants more. "I'll leave you alone now."

"Wait, you're not staying?" but it sounds like don't go. He cringes at himself.

"Figured you'd want to be alone, let the sun talk to you or something," he teases, something he does all the time now.

"I don't mind the company," Zayn shrugs, tries passing at nonchalant but Harry can see right through him sometimes, just smiles and nods, turns to the blank canvas.

"Would you wanna join me upstairs then?" He asks before his eyes go wide and his cheeks turn a shade that matches his lips. "I mean to my work room!" he slaps his hands on his face and Zayn just laughs, surprising himself when he grabs at Harry's wrist to pull them off.

Harry's looks at him timidly, down at where Zayn hands are around his wrist then back up to stare him right in the eyes. Zayn should say something, pull his hands away, anything, but he looks at Harry's lips, to look up to find Harry glancing down at his and he wants nothing more but to kiss him. He thinks Harry wants the same thing.

Since he's professional, though, Zayn lowers their hands. "You want to show me up to your room?" he wiggles his eyebrows at him, and the tension is gone as Harry laughs so hard he snorts and their hands are right back at their own sides as Harry nods.

Harry's creative room, 'work room' is what he calls it, isn't what Zayn expected. One of the walls is entirely glass that lets so much sunlight into the room it almost explains why the rest of the house is dark at all times. There's candles in every corner, that are actually melted to show they've been used unlike the others in the house, small energy stones on the book case, a plush red love seat that's so bright compared to the rest of the neutral room. Harry claims it's possibly the softest couch in the world (which Zayn can conclude is a fact). There's a grey single chair that sits in front of a large white desk littered with coffee mugs, water bottles and a laptop. The chair behind the desk covered in a blanket because of course.

It's not what Zayn expected, but it somehow fits. It's modern and not, seemingly still fits Harry's fake broody persona.

"You can set up anywhere, I'll go get you a stool," Harry smiles at him, waving his arms out to the room before disappearing back out.

When Harry comes back Zayn's set out his paints, easel and canvas up, and Harry's grin says he's inspired. They agree on listening to H.E.R. and they spend the entire day there, Zayn painting with hues of green and purple as Harry types away on his laptop. It's so soothing, being in Harry's creative room, Zayn can see why he spends so much time in there. Harry even gets up at one point to bring them coffee, which Zayn takes gratefully. It's like they're in their own world that Zayn never wants to leave.

Then the sun's setting and Harry's pushing away from his desk with his hands pulling at his hair, Zayn suggest he makes them dinner. They leave their work behind for Zayn's shrimp and broccoli, the night ending with Harry asking Zayn to return the next day. Zayn agrees.

 

Most of Zayn's days are spent at Harry's now. They eat breakfast then lock themselves in Harry's creative room. It's easy now, being there. They laugh and joke when Harry has to stop writing to watch Zayn paint, or Zayn suggest they work outside. They share more about their personal lives, the way Harry's life changed after his first book and Zayn's family. They talk so much even in silence it feels like they're speaking.

He hates that he's quick to attach himself to people. How easily his life can revolve around someone or something before he can realize. It can be anything, like when he ate at the same restaurant for a week after trying their melon chicken. Or when he met Griff, making time for him like he did no other before realizing they were more best friends than anything. And now he feels himself drowning in Harry. It's different this time around, though. With everything before Zayn knew he had to stop himself before it escalated, that things were not meant to last and be as sweet as it started. But now he doesn't fight, lets himself indulge in the sweetness of Harry for as long as he can. 

With the summer coming to an end Zayn can't help but feel the nostalgia beginning to set. He knows soon enough that the world he's accustomed to will end and he's due to go back to school where most of his time will be taken up. He hopes Harry won't be reminded that outside of his houses walls Zayn was just his housekeeper and not whatever he's become now. He wants to be able to go back to Harry's after class, to work on whatever assignment he has and to just be with him.

 He feels the melancholy set especially when he gets to Harry's on a Monday with three weeks left before from school's starting; until Harry's running down his stairs in surprisingly a pair of jeans and t-shirt, coming straight for him.

"Zayn!" He shouts before he's crashing into him, arms wrapped around Zayn. It's so unfamiliar and familiar, they've never touched like this so Zayn holds him back, laughs as Harry shakes them with his face in Zayn's neck. He smells like an apricot and after shave, Zayn never wants to let go;the nostalgia long gone.

But Harry does, pulling back and grinning widely at him. "I finished my book!" he cheers and Zayn can't help but holler his excitement as he brings Harry back into him, who goes willingly; arms circling around him so easily.

"Congrats babe!" He says into Harry's hair before he even realizes it. And Harry pulls back to look at him with raised brows and Zayn thinks he fucked up.

Then Harry's kissing him. His hand's at Zayn's neck and thumb pressed at Zayn's ear, and it takes a second to register before Zayn's kissing back and it feels so fucking right. He kisses as slow as he talks, lips soft as they push against Zayn's. He tastes like coffee and mint, Zayn can't get enough. He trails a hand up to Harry's hair, still a bit wet as he tugs gently.

Harry's the first to pull away, quickly pecking his lips before leaning his forehead on Zayn's. His eyes are still closed when Zayn finally looks at him, can tell he's trying to control his breathing too. He wants to keep kissing him, keep touching him, to stay close to him. He wants to beg Harry for more. Always more.

"Hope that was alright," Harry whispers, breath crashing onto Zayn's face who just chuckles.

"'Course," he agrees, bringing his hand to Harry's face, thumb tracing at his cheek bone. Harry just bite his lips as he grins, nuzzling into Zayn's hand. "Want to celebrate?"

"What do you have in mind?"

"Whatever you want to do." Harry's smile reaches his ears at that.

Harry makes Zayn literally pop open a bottle of champagne that taste like piss as he sends off his work to his editor and publisher, whooping and hollering as they dance to Cher. They dance and drink until Harry thinks he's going to throw up and announces he hasn't eaten all day. Zayn's fakes an exasperated sigh and says he'll treat Harry for dinner.

They order an uber to take them into the city, Harry's empty stomach has him tipsy and lazy so he leans onto Zayn, a hand gripping onto his thigh a little too tight but Zayn revels in it. He doesn't know how he went the whole summer without Harry's touch like this. It was so quick, one minute Harry's keeping his touch solely one Zayn's shoulder to kissing him every time Zayn looked at him throughout the car ride (so Zayn kept looking at him).

Once they get to the city Harry opts for a taco truck he discovered not too long ago, claims their fajita tacos are, "To die for Zayn, I will literally die if I don't get them," he pouted and Zayn couldn't say no. They sit on the curve as they split ten tacos and Harry gets recognized even under the baseball cap he threw on once by an older lady who pinches his cheek in the picture Zayn takes. It's nice out and they act like a proper couple when they get up and Harry takes his hand in his as they roam the town. There's really not much to see, but Harry mentions he hasn't had a night out in a long time so Zayn lets him drag him around until the sun sets.

When the night comes to an end and they're in the back of an uber again, Harry kisses him long and slow, tasting of the mango margarita they shared. Zayn gets lost in him, pressing him back into the door, he hears the driver lock the doors. Harry giggles into his mouth, like a fucking child, but keeps holding him close to him, hands on his neck while Zayn's grip at Harry's waist. They kiss until the driver clears his throat for them to find they're parked right outside of Harry's gate.

Zayn asks for a second when Harry's stepping out the car, the driver looking at him grimly through the review mirror before nodding.

"That was definitely the most fun I've had in a long time," Harry admits as they walk hand in hand the long way up the drive way.

Zayn hums his agreement, rubbing his thumb over the back of Harry's hand. "Could say it's the best date I've had," Zayn winks at him, recalling earlier in the night when Harry asked him if their rendezvous was an actual date. Harry just cheekily grins at him.

"They can get better," he promises once they reach the door. He leans against the wall of the porch, pulling Zayn closer to him.

"I'll do whatever you want me to," Zayn murmurs before he's reaching up to kiss Harry. He wants to ask him if he can come in so their night can continue. He wants to jog to the driver waiting for him and apologize for the inconvenience but he won't need the ride anymore. He wants it all, but it's too soon.

And maybe Harry might want more too with the way he holds him closer, hands tightly around his waist as his tongue pushes into his mouth. Zayn wants him so bad his head spins and spins, holding on to Harry with an arm wrapped around his neck and the other gripping at his arm.

It ends too soon as they hear the driver honk his horn that makes them both jump away before giggling into each other's shoulders. Harry's eyes glisten as he looks at him when he pulls away. "Come over tomorrow?" he asks with a lazy smile playing at his lips

"Absolutely," Zayn accepts, kissing him once more before they're bidding their goodnights and sleep well then Zayn's jogging towards the car, apologizing with smile that said otherwise.

 

Griff gives him shit when he gets home, the tell-tale look on his face as he recalls the night giving it all away. Zayn only brushes it off because, yeah, his night was fucking great.

 

With their days growing shorter they stay locked away in Harry's home. They have so much to do, so they do it all. They lounge in the pool and soak up the summer sun. One day they decide to bar-be-que and invite Louis who gasps when he walks out to Harry kissing Zayn while he flips the chicken on the grill. Harry blushed profusely when Louis winks at him, tries giving him a subtle thumbs up that Zayn catches but doesn't say anything, continues cooking while biting into his cheek to hold back from smiling so wide.

They touch as much as possible as if making up for all the lost time they could have spent touching. Whether it's their feet under the table or Zayn's running his hand up and down Harry's calf while he lays out and reads. There's a few days where it pours out so they stay in and make muffins (if there's one thing Harry's good at it's making muffins), Harry lets him wear some of his silk robes that helps Zayn understand why he wears them so much, the delicate fabric smooth and freeing to wear.

There's a day Harry calls one of his down days when he's in a funk he can't shake out of. He stays in his creative room while Zayn makes him breakfast and coffee. Once he's done he takes it up to him and asks if he can use the company, Harry accepts with a smile and dark circles. They don't talk much, a quick thank you from Harry as he laid wrapped up in a blanket on his red love seat while watching Zayn paint. Once Zayn's back aches from slouching so much sitting on the stool, he goes to lay on the floor next to the love seat, looking up at Harry while he stares down at him with vulnerable, dull, sad eyes. Zayn just strokes the arm that he drops down to his chest, never taking his eyes away. He wants to hold him, to try to take the sadness away. Like always somehow Harry reads his minds and he's climbing down from the couch and laying next to him with his head on his chest while he drapes the blanket over the two of them. Harry kisses his clothed chest while Zayn runs his hands through his hair, and silently they decide to nap for the rest of the day.

 

Zayn's so done for when it comes to Harry. He's never thought so highly of anyone other than his own family the way he thinks of Harry. He always, always wants to be with him; the days never long enough to satisfy him. When he wakes up the first thing he wants to do is go straight to him and before bed he can't help but think about his lips or eyes or his love for coffee or how much he can talk about crystals. Zayn's so wrapped in him he nearly forgets schools coming up.

Until the first thing that comes out of Harry's mouth after greeting him with a kiss is, "You start school Monday."

Zayn groans, pushing at Harry's shoulder. "Don't remind me," he mumbles. He has three more days, it's the last thing he wants to think about.

"What am I gonna do when you're gone?" Harry teases, letting Zayn kick off his shoes before pulling him by the hand towards the living room.

"Please don't go back to frozen food," he mocks making Harry roll his eyes.

"We should do something don't you think?" Harry says, blatantly ignoring him. They fall onto the couch, Zayn's legs laying on top of Harry's thighs. He can smell the aroma of something cooking in the kitchen, he cocks an eyebrow at Harry.

"You think or have you done something?" He questions, watching Harry blush as he shrugs.

"Just thought you can relax today and not have to be troubled by me."

"Like you'll ever trouble me," Zayn rolls his eyes as leans in to meet Harry half way, but stops right before they meet. "Actually, you were at first."

"Zaaaayn," he whines, pouting until Zayn's finally kissing him. He gives in easily, their mouths moving harmoniously. It's organic and sweet, Harry leaning into him so much he's nearly on top of him, hands intertwined pinned near Zayn's head. Though they quickly pull away when footsteps are coming their way and whatever was cooking smells stronger than before.

It's a man and woman in black chef coats that come to set a gorgeous array of breakfast foods out on the wooden coffee table. There's everything from eggs and hash browns to freshly cut fruit and French toast. Another woman follows shortly after with a pitcher of orange juice, two champagne flutes and actual champagne that makes Zayn turn to Harry to find him wiggling his brows at him. Zayn just laughs, thanking all three of them as they leave the room.

"And this?"

"I told you you didn't have to be bothered by me," Harry reminds him, reaching for the flutes, filling them with mostly orange juice and topping it off with champagne. He passes one to Zayn and raises his, clearing his throat. "A toast to you."

Zayn grins, raising his own glass. "And to you, babe." They clink glasses and Harry steals a kiss first, hand at his neck like he's learned Zayn loves. It's quick, a few small pecks and he's pulling away for them to sip at their mimosas.

Maybe it's all the joy Zayn feels thrumming through him while he watches Harry reach for the fruit first that makes him want to say those the three words he feels. It's fitting, being there in Harry's home early to start their day to spend together, how Zayn always wants to be. Always with Harry now. But he doesn't say it, they've only been whatever they are for a few weeks, he doesn't want to fuck it all up. Instead he lets Harry feed him a piece of mango with a look that says he might reciprocate the same feelings and pushes it away.

After breakfast, they're full, a little tipsy, and lazy, yet Harry manages to convince him they move outside to sit on the swinging bed that he never uses. Zayn laughs at the thought that it was him being the one that would have to force Harry to go outside, and follows him out, bringing along the champagne that tastes like berries and not like piss this time. It's warm out so he pulls his shirt off as Harry controls the sound system from his phone, playing whatever's first on shuffle as he lays spread out on his back and pulls Zayn down to his chest.

"Zayn?" Harry mumbles with a hand trailing down his spine. Zayn shivers when he looks up at him, chin sitting on Harry's left peck where his heart races.

"Hmm?"

"I just-" he cuts himself off when he looks down to meet Zayn's eyes, takes a deep breath before looking back up the shade covering them. "I really fucking like you, Zayn."

Zayn's heart skips a beat of his own before it's racing, matching Harry's as he grins with teeth and all. "Do you?" He teases, finger tips pressing at Harry's side.

"Yeah, like, meet-my-family like you," Harry chuckles at the admission before looking back down at him, his smile matching Zayn's.

Zayn wants that so fucking bad, to meet his family then take him home where his family would eat him up. He knows they'd love him seconds within meeting him, take in the dimple and the slow drawl of his voice and be swept off their feet before they can fully know him. He wants the Thanksgivings, the Eids, the Christmases, and it's quick to want all of that so soon, but Zayn's so sure he wants this for as long as he can.

"Me too," Zayn agrees, gently biting into his chest before going when Harry whines as he pulls him up.

Their lips meet harshly, one of Harry's teeth knock into Zayn's bottom lip a bit too hard but still kisses him just as rough. It's noisy and sloppy, tongues dragging against each other savoring each taste. Harry climbs on top of him then, pushing Zayn's knees apart with one of his legs to nestle right between them. Zayn moans lowly when Harry presses against him, the silk shorts Harry has on holds nothing back; Zayn's finds he's not the only half hard one, and pressing into him.

Harry groans, takes Zayn's bottom lip between his teeth that makes him hiss before his lips trail down Zayn's throat, his hands moving in the same direction. They grab and press into each other, Zayn's back arching off the bed when Harry bites at Zayn's collar bone, right above where his grandfathers name is tatted while his hands ghosts over his dick. Zayn only gets a second to moan when Harry's hands stop and his teeth are just replaced with Harry's ragged breathing across his chest.

The bed swings begin to calm as they lay there attempting to catch their breaths. It's hot and Zayn's already broke a sweat like Harry's back where he hasn't let go. He wants to push at Harry, to keep it moving because fuck did he want it so bad. But he lets Harry kiss him slowly, the hand that was on his fly now reaching for Zayn's hand, knitting them together.

"The chefs are still inside," he murmurs against Zayn's lips, turning his head to look at the windows where the blinds are half drawn.

Zayn groans, slaps his free hand to his face. "You're fucking with me."

"Sorry babe, they should be starting dinner," Harry sighs, looking back down at Zayn and pushes the hair away from his forehead.

"Dinner?!"

"A full roast."

Zayn groans some more, feels his dick softening quicker now. "That'll last all day!"

"Only want the best for you," he smiles, kissing his limp lips once more before laying down on his side.

"Wouldn't have got my dick all hard if I'd known that," Zayn mumbles, holding Harry's hand to his chest as the bed vibrates with his laughter.

"I was in the moment!" Harry retorts, still laughing as he huddles closer regardless of how hot it still is. Zayn lets him, of course.

"It better be a good fuckin' roast," Zayn huffs, feigning his annoyance that Harry sees right through who just smiles, promises it will be.

It is. It's so fucking good Harry laughs at the moan that slips Zayn's mouth when he takes a bite of the lamb the chefs made. There's so much food the whole dining room table is lined with it, Zayn wonders for a second if Harry might have invited other people. They eat and eat, sampling everything the chefs have to offer with a bottle of Merlot Harry claimed to have saved for whatever special occasion came along.

They're so full and drunk once desserts come around, Harry polite as ever, leads the chefs out the door after the two of them abundantly thanked them with drunken tongues. Zayn's already pushing the dessert plates still full with cobbler when Harry's returning to him, pressing him against the table until Zayn's sitting on it, legs wrapped around Harry's waist.

All they do is make out filthily, too drunk to do anything else but grab and breathe into each others mouths. It's hot and Zayn knows if he wasn't as drunk as he was he'd have a lot less clothes on by now, but this is alright too, just being close to Harry has him over the moon.

"Do you want to stay here tonight?" Harry asks when he pulls away, wiping at the spit he left around Zayn's mouth. Zayn, greedy as ever when he's drunk, nods extensively already pulling Harry back to him.

Eventually Harry leads them up to his room once their eyes start to get heavy and they're leaning into each other lazily more than anything else. Zayn's been in there before, all those weeks back when he used to be the housekeeper. The memory has him laughing and Harry looking up at him crazy from where he shuffles through the drawers, Zayn never thought he'd be here.

They brush their teeth and Zayn slips into the small red shorts Harry hands him, teasing him by saying, "They'll look good on you, reckon red's your color," as be slid into bed still in his silk shorts from earlier and a thin t-shirt. Zayn forgoes his shirt entirely, following Harry quickly under the sheets. They gently kiss, wishing each other a good night before they're out within minutes.

 

It's still dark out and the digital clock at his bedside reads five-twelve when Zayn wakes up from his heavy bladder. He feels and hears Harry's hot breath crashing against the back of his neck that almost keeps him from getting up at all, but he tries his hardest to move as little as possible to climb out of Harry's overly large bed. When he's finally out he checks to see if Harry's come to, but he's still asleep so Zayn tries to quietly maneuver his way to the bathroom.

Harry's awake when he emerges, eyelids low as a smile slowly takes ahold of his lips. He scoots over as he pulls back the thick duvet, an invitation Zayn blissfully takes.

"Sorry if I woke you," Zayn apologizes, voice low to not stir the stillness of the room.

"'s alright if I get to see you," he hums, as quiet as Zayn was.

"I'm glad I had to pee, then," Zayn jokes, earning a small chuckle from Harry. He doesn't move from his spot, just stares into Zayn's eyes as he scoots closer.

They're silent for a bit, letting each other trace the tattoos on their arms and torsos. It's sweet for the early morning while they come out of their sleep. They never lose track of one another once, Zayn's looking up to find Harry starring right back and yeah that's all he really needs.

"I can love you, you know," Zayn whispers, a hand tracing down Harry's arm until its in Harry's own hand, bringing it up to his mouth. "Or I do already, actually," he admits into the night, looking down at Harry's hand, looking at each scar on his knuckles that he got from the boxing he picked up, before kissing at them. He's too nervous to look up.

Harry tightens his grip around the fingers that held his hand, whines a small, "Baaaabe," that makes Zayn meet his eyes. Even in the dark room Zayn can see them shining.

"Do you mean it?" He asks, pressing closer into him.

"Yeah," he exhales, nodding at him because, yeah he does, too much maybe. He's sure he has for a while now.

"Good," Harry nods like he's satisfied, lips curling upwards and stretching. "Because I'm yours if you'll have me." Zayn kisses him then.

They kiss slow and lazily, still hazy from their sleep but enough for Zayn to let Harry pull him on top. Harry's hands roam, feeling what it feels like every bit that Zayn has to offer, from his chest to arms, and sits up to pull him even closer so they're sat right in the middle of the bed. There's so much hair between the two of them they break to push it off their faces as they laugh, grazing each others cheek before they fall back into it, their mouths meeting half way; until Zayn feels Harry's cock filling between them and he grinds down.

It makes Harry moan low in his throat, he vibrations passing onto Zayn's lips that encourage him to do it again. He pulls away, leaning back to hold onto Harry's thighs as he circles his hips down where their cocks meet in their shorts, a matching groan escaping the two of them. Zayn even thinks he might come like this, looking up at Harry moan with a slack mouth as if he was actually riding him, as if they were younger and never gotten off before.

But Harry only lets him indulge for a bit before he's pushing Zayn on to his back and crawling on top of him. He holds himself with one arm as the other hand reaches for Zayn's neck, thumb tracing under his jawline as grinds down slowly. His hair haloing around his face and tickles at Zayn's, that makes him chuckle a bit in between his moans.

"I want it all, Zayn," he whimpers, reaching down to press their mouths together. "I want you now and I want you after and the next day and the day after that," he adds, and Zayn nods feverishly, he wants all of it too, but especially now so he's pulling him back down while trying to take his t-shirt off his body at the same time.

It comes off quickly with Harry's help, tossing it off to the side before they're trying to pull off each others shorts down their legs, and once they're bare and Harry presses their bodies together they slow down. Zayn revels in the heat from Harry's skin as they grind against each other and precome leaks onto their stomachs; lips moving in sync with there movements. Once Harry has a hand around both of them, stroking slowly Zayn hisses out, biting into Harry's shoulder.

"'m not gonna last," Zayn admits, chuckling into Harry's neck where he feels him nod, gripping tightly at the base of their dicks.

"What do you want, love?" He asks, moving just enough to look down at Zayn with pleading, dark eyes.

"Want you to fuck me," Zayn answers, Harry groans and bites at his shoulder making him whine as he says, "but I'ma come two seconds in."

Zayn can feel the smile stretching on Harry's lips when he says, "Me too." They set off into a giggling fit into each others shoulders, Harry letting go where he applied the extra pressure on their cocks to grab at his side, holding him closer. "Is that okay with you?"

"Definitely," Zayn agrees surely, reaching up to kiss him before he climbs out of bed to grab the lube and condoms from the bathroom.

When Harry comes back out Zayn's eyes wonder down to his cock, he's thick and long and so mouth watering Zayn wants to wrap his mouth around it. When he gets close enough he reaches out and strokes him gently, listens to Harry's soft mewling before he slaps his hand away. "None of that tonight, I want to have some dignity."

He pushes Zayn back up towards the headrest this time, crawling between his legs to settle stomach down right in front of his cock. Harry takes it upon himself to lick a fat strip from his balls to the tip, right his finger taps at his hole. He appreciates when Harry takes him in, sucking at the tip when he hears the cap pop off and takes more of Zayn when he's pushing a finger in.

It's been so long since Zayn had any other pleasure than his hand he already feels the heat pooling and his chest covered with a sheer layer of sweat, and Harry looking up at him is no help. He's gorgeous, his cheek bones and large green eyes on full display as he slides off a bit to suck at the tip again, pushing his finger further. It has Zayn's back's arching off the bed, taking Harry slightly off guard as he stumbles a bit to catch his breath before his free hand is pressing him back into the mattress. Zayn's loud, writhing against the bed when Harry goes to take more again and pushes the second finger in.

"Babe I'ma come," Zayn manages to warn at the end of a groan when the second finger is down to Harry's knuckle. Harry pulls off easily, looks a right mess when he lets hid dick sit on his cheek while he holds his finger still. It's sinful, how good he still looks and Zayn's grateful. Nods when he's okay and Harry's working him open again.

"You good?" Harry finally asks, scissoring him open slowly. He's kissing at Zayn's thigh now, leaving his dick alone since his sudden announcement.

"Yeah, fuck yeah, please," Zayn begs hands reaching down to Harry's shoulder to try to pull him up. He catches up, gets up on his knees to scoot closer, tearing open the condom and slides it on, lubing himself up in all what seems one breath.

When he lines himself up to Zayn's hole he falls down to hold himself up on his elbow, their chests pressed together and one of Zayns legs hitched on Harry's hip. He pushes in so slowly Zayn can't fucking breath until their hips are pressed together and Zayn feels so full. He hears Harry's small fuck in his ear as they lay there, knowing how soon it'll all be over.

"Baby please," Zayn whimpers once he's accustomed to Harry size, and Harry listens to the unspoken request, sits up to grab at Zayn's thigh before pulling out and quickly pushes back in.

Like promised: it's quick. Once they get a rhythm going, meeting each other at every thrust, Harry pulls Zayn's leg up to his shoulder to bite at his ankle. It makes Zayn hiss, like he might lose it all then and there. They're loud and sloppy, bodies dripped in each others sweat; the sound of their skin meeting, their moans and Harry's whimpers when he looks down at where their bodies meet. Zayn learns Harry does like his hair pulled when he reaches a hand up to the back of his head where his hair curled more from the sweat and earned the sweetest moan when he tugged. It's a push and pull game, and it ends too soon when Harry gently presses a thumb at the base of Zayn's neck and he cries out, streaks of come painting his torso, some even landing on Harry. He can't help but clench down, lost in the heat of it all, and he hears Harry grunt, his hips stutter against his own, and Harry's coming too.

They breathe heavily into the open room, Harry collapsing on Zayn that makes him huff out a laugh, reaching a hand up to grip a handful of hair to keep him close. They kiss slowly once they can breathe again before Harry's warning Zayn that he's pulling out, then he's disposing of the condom in the restroom and reappearing with a damp wash cloth to clean them off. Zayn lays spread eagle as Harry wipes him down with a soft smile on his lips, dragging the towel around slowly before tossing it behind him and climbing into bed.  

"I'm better than that, I promise," Zayn whispers and Harry rolls his eyes, pecking at his lips.

"We still got time to practice," Harry shrugs, knitting their hands together and pulling them to his chest. Zayn raises an eyebrow at him like they didn't just fuck like they never got off before. "Not tonight! I can barely walk and I wasn't the one who was fucked!" Zayn laughs so loud he chokes, lets Harry rub at his back until it passes.

 

Zayn gets to Harry's after his last class for the week, syllabus week already giving him the worst headache of the year. He's exhausted, throwing his backpack and shoes off to the side as he goes straight to the swinging bed out on the patio.

Harry grins up him widely, sunglasses perched on his face and a mug in his lap. He goes to Zayn easily, kissing his greeting before patting the bed for Zayn to join him.

"I got you something," he announces, handing him his mug to hold before he takes off. Zayn takes a sip himself, coffee of course, before laying out waiting for Harry.

When he returns he's handing Zayn a hard copy of a book, the cover all around black, as he takes back his coffee. He flips over to the back to find it blank, then flips it open to the first page.

 

For my muse, for this would not have finished if you didn't make me breakfast every morning. Thank you and I love you.

 

Zayn swears he doesn't get emotional, that it's because the weather's changing that has his allergies acing up and eyes watering. He traces over the printed words, in gold, Harry's favorite color. He has to pinch at his tear ducts, before looking up at Harry who's looking at him like he's the only man in the world.

"I haven't got the cover figured out or what expert I want to use, but that I do know I want in every book I sell," Harry explains, nodding like it's the easiest thing in the world. Zayn fucking loves him.

"Is it true?"

"Yeah, this book was a bitch," Harry shrugs, a fleeting smirk on his lips. Actually Zayn hates him.

"Babe," Zayn whines, feeling himself pout as Harry just chuckles, his free hand goes to grip at Zayn's calf. "That's not what I'm asking."

"I honestly wasn't going to finish this book," Harry admits, his smirk softening into something small and sweet. "I had already sent emails out claiming I was done and couldn't do it anymore and then I slept for about 17 hours. Until I heard all this banging going around my kitchen at 10 AM," Harry laughs fondly, and Zayn remembers the day clearly. The first day he made Harry breakfast, when Harry showed up looking well reseted and exhausted at the same time. "Thought it was a sign to keep moving on, and I'm here, book finished and in love, who would've known?" Harry finishes, his eyes round and honest and Zayn truly doesn't get emotional at that. He's just exhausted. He just drops the book to his side and crashes into him, Harry's coffee mug flying and breaking somewhere off to the side. Harry just laughs and holds him tightly, whispering into his ear that he thought he was the mess, making Zayn laugh wetly into his neck.

"Guess we can be one big mess," Zayn teases, wiggling his eyebrows and gets a laugh in return. Harry just grin wildly at him, teeth and squinted eyes the way he knows Zayn likes and Zayn knows he'll never get tired of him. "I love you, too, you know."

"Good, 'cause how embarrassing would it be to have all my books dedicated to someone who doesn't love me?" Harry teases. Zayn rolls his eyes, something he picked up from and because Harry, and meets his lips half way.