Still Here (Larry Stylinson Friendship, AU)

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He was so fragile. The smallest things could break him. He was a young and innocent soul trapped in an ill-fitting body. Anne thought about this every morning as she began her routine for the day. She got up, brushed her teeth, showered, and made breakfast. The last task of the morning was to get Harry up. It was by far the hardest. She padded her way up the hardwood stairs, and stood in front of Harry’s door. Deep breath, Anne. You can do this. It can’t be as bad as yesterday morning. She walked over to Harry’s bed, and crouched down. Gently, she placed her hand on the only visible part of Harry’s body which she assumed was his head. “Harry, baby it’s time to get up.” She whispered. Harry, whined and violently shook his head from left to right so as to move his mum’s hand away. “Come on Harry, let’s get up, and get dressed.” Anne said with a firmer tone. She did not have the patience for another Harry tantrum this morning. “No, M’sleepy!” Harry yelled back. And so it begins. “I know you are, love, but we don’t have any more time for sleeping right now. It’s time to get ready for school, plus I heard that your class is going to have a very special visitor today!” Anne exclaimed, trying to coax Harry from the sheet cocoon he had enveloped himself in. Harry stopped wriggling around in annoyance, and lifted the sheet to reveal bouncy, chocolate brown curls, wide, emerald eyes, and pouty pink lips. “Really? Who is it?” He asked while nipping at the skin on his finger. “It’s a surprise, bugga-boo! I don’t want to ruin it for you!” Anne said before pulling Harry’s hand away from his mouth. She examined his hand to see that most of his fingers were raw, and red from his biting them. Anne had to repress the bile from rising up in her throat. She quickly calmed her nerves, and began to rub his hand in a way that she knew would keep him calm. “Harry, I thought we weren’t going to do this anymore. Remember what Dr. Flack said about biting your hands, babe? It’s not good, Harry. Do you need to go back and see her?”Anne always hated having Harry see his psychiatrist. They had gone to Dr. Flack ever since Harry’s accident, and granted, she was a very nice lady, but Anne hated having her give Harry so many different medications at once. Now that Harry was showing signs of slipping yet again, Anne didn’t know what else to do but suggest Dr. Flack. “No! I hate her! She thinks I’m stupid, mum!” Harry wriggled back under the sheets. “She does not think you’re stupid, Harry,” Anne sighed. “You don’t have to see her, but we have to nip this in the bud, sweetheart. You may not bite your fingers at all, do you understand?” Anne said while pulling the sheets off of Harry’s crouched form. “Fine, I promise I won’t do it.” Harry stuck out his pinky finger. Anne latched her own pinky finger to Harry’s, and shook them a few times. Anne chuckled to herself. “Sometimes I wonder how old you really are…” Anne thought to herself. “Alright, enough silliness, get dressed, brush those teeth, and then come down stairs for breakfast, okay?” As Anne ran a hand through Harry’s curly hair, her fingers ran over the scar that was left from his surgery. This instantly sent her back to the tragic day that changed her son’s life.

*Flashback*

                Anne watched as the waves crashed onto the shore, and churned itself into white foam. She was so happy to finally be able to take herself and her children on a vacation together. It had been a long year, and everyone needed a break. Gemma was only a couple years away from Uni, and Anne wanted to spend as much time as she could with her only daughter before she became independent. Harry was about to enter Year 9 after the summer was over. He had already become an individual, and needed little help with anything he did. Gemma and Harry had begun to play volley ball in the sand, and each time the ball got hit higher, the farther away the siblings moved from Anne, to ensure that the ball never touched the ground. “Guys, don’t go too far out, please!” Anne yelled after them. “I can’t exactly promise that, mum!” Gemma yelled after her. “Alright, then Gemma, please look after Harry!” Anne hollered again, as her children began to get smaller in the distance. “I’ll have you know that I can take care of myself! Plus, do you really trust her to look after your only son?!” Harry exclaimed from their far distance. Anne shook her head, and chucked. She put on her sunglasses, and closed her eyes, ready to soak up all that the sun had to offer. It hadn’t occurred to her that she had fallen asleep, until her eyes sprang open from the sound of a blood curdling scream. She looked around confusedly, until she spotted what she assumed to be the source of the commotion. There was a large circle of people crowded around a beach patrol truck, all of them gasping in horror. A pang of worry struck in Anne’s chest, as she ran over to the crowed. She turned to one of the bystanders, and asked, “What’s going on?”. The man kept his eyes toward the center of the crowd but began to talk. “A boy’s been run over by a beach patrol truck. I don’t know how he’s going to survive this.” The man finished, and looked at Anne. He immediately saw the resemblance between the woman, and the girl crying in the center of the crowd. “Ma’am, I think you should follow me,” the man said while tugging Anne’s arm, and leading her into the middle of the circle. Anne didn’t have time to react to this strange person before her eyes met Gemma’s. “Gemma?! What’s wrong?” Anne ran over, and hugged her hysterical daughter. Gemma forced her mother’s arms away from herself, and pointed in the direction of the patrol truck. Horror overcame Anne in the full realization of the situation.

*End of Flashback*

                Anne quickly snapped herself out of her thoughts, and looked down at her son, who was leaning into her hand as she pet his curls. “Does the scar still hurt?” She whispered, so as to not have her voice crack from the all the emotions burning in her throat. “Not so much anymore.” Harry replied with a grin, completely unaware of his mother’s sadness. “That’s awesome, honey.” She said before leaving Harry to get ready for the day ahead.

                It’s safe to say that Harry had changed ever since that day at the beach. Whether Harry knew that or not didn’t concern Anne in the slightest… As long as he was still here…

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