It takes a lot of internal convincing before I have enough courage to walk into studio 3, where I'll be starting my first shoot.
The room is large and bright, with big bay windows to the far right of me and lots of camera equipment scattered across the room. The whole space is packed with people, some are busy adjusting the lighting, while others compare different colors of fabrics.
Harry is in one corner, getting his hair and makeup done. I try and avoid his gaze as I explore the room, attempting to make myself look productive and occupied. I last two minutes before curiosity gets the best of me and I fixate on Harry, admiring how he leans back, casually swiping his tongue over his lips every so often. He patiently waits as the artists work, scrolling through something on his phone, thankfully oblivious to my stares.
A woman proceeds to scrub mousse into his curls, and another swipes powder over his cheekbones. "Thank you, ladies," he says with a wink as he slides out of the chair. As he strolls away, the girls turn to each other with excited looks, erupting into childish giggles.
I roll my eyes.
"Why so pissed?" Harry asks casually, coming up behind me.
I give him a strange look. "Excuse me?"
How is he acting like nothing happened? Like the last time I saw him wasn't in the women's restroom.
"It's Emily, right?" Harry asks, ignoring my question.
"Emery, actually," I mutter.
Unannounced, he suddenly reaches up and pulls his t-shirt over his head in one quick motion, revealing his highly toned chest and abs.
My eyes immediately train onto his stomach, covered in ink. I didn't expect him to be so fit, and I'm temporarily caught off guard by the curve of his chest to his stomach and his prominent v line. And then there's his biceps too, covered in tattoos - a rose, a mermaid, a ship, and more. My stomach twists into a feeling I can only describe as painful desire.
He notices my stares and stretches teasingly, lifting his arms over his head and casually flexing, exposing toned back muscles.
Oh my god. Who knew I could be so attracted to back muscles? Damn this was hot.
Harry seductively runs his tongue over his lip and crosses his arms, smug with the power he's having over me. "Watch your eyes, Emerson," he says with a smirk. "This is the workforce."
I grit my teeth and resist the urge to roll my eyes yet again.
"I should be going, see you around babe," he whispers to me, turning on his heel.
I watch him walk away, coming up behind a blonde with tiny hips and big blue eyes.
"Hey baby," she coos, standing on tiptoe to kiss his jawline.
I'm startled to see him kiss her back, until it finally clicks in my head. This must be Zoe Aldridge, Harry's "un-exclusive", Victoria's Secret model girlfriend.
She begins to tell him something, her facial expressions prominent, using large hand gestures. Harry doesn't seem to be completely fascinated with what she's saying, glancing around the studio absentmindedly. He locks eyes with me for a split second, emerald eyes vibrantly bright from all the way across the room.
I awkwardly look away, just after he flicks his tongue over his lip with just enough nonchalance to drive me crazy.
And it kind of does. It really does.
The next few hours are extremely slow-moving. As the shoot begins, it takes me forever to set up all equipment correctly, position the lens, and capture the full potential of Harry's supposed 'light'. And that's only the beginning.
YOU ARE READING
/ il·lu·sion / noun. a thing that is or is likely to be wrongly perceived or interpreted by the senses. A story in which Yves Saint Laurent's most popular model and his amateur photographer fall suddenly and unexpectedly in love. **Warning: contain...