Chapter Thirty-Nine ~ Nightmares Can Haunt You Forever

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*Wynter's POV*

"l told you I'd get her if you left, " he growled in my ear. I spun around as sheer terror coursed through my veins. My dad was a few feet away from me, blocking something with his body. "Don't you dare hurt her, " I said shakily, trying to be brave but failing miserably. He smirked and stepped to the side, allowing me to see what was behind him. A strangled gasp escaped my lips as I saw Lauren with her whole body covered in bloody gashes and bruises. Her eyes were bloodshot and distant.

'You promised to protect me, " she said in a creepy monotone voice. "l didnt mean to leave!" I said as I began to cry. "They took me!"

"STOP USING EXCUSES!" she screamed and 1 flinched. She never screamed, and hearing it was like knives in my ears. "l HATE YOU! YOU LET ME DIE! YOU LET MOM DIE! WHY DO YOU GET TO LIVE?! IT'S ALL YOUR FAULT! ALL YOUR FAULT!"

I was woken up by someone shaking me and I screamed, pushing them away and curling up in a ball with my hands over my ears, rocking back and forth. I could still hear her screaming at me and I could still see her bloody body. The tears began pouring out of my eyes and I cried like there was no tomorrow. "Wynter, it was a dream!" Zayn said, cutting through the sound of my sobs. "You're okay." I felt him pick me up and set me in his lap. I instantly buried my face in his chest and gripped his shirt with my fists tightly.

The smell of him and the way he rubbed my back soothed me and I quickly calmed down. "C-can I use your phone?" I asked him as I rubbed away my tears. He nodded and handed it to me. I punched in Wynter's number and pressed the phone to my ear. "Hello?" she asked groggily. I looked out the window to see it was still kind of dark and silently cursed at myself. "Hey, sorry I didn't mean to wake you. I just wanted to make sure you were okay."

"Yeah, I'm fine, why?" she asked. "l just... had a dream," I told her. "l love you."

"l love you too, sis. I miss you."

"Wanna hang out later today?" I asked her, looking at Zayn for permission. He smiled and nodded. "Yeah!" she said cheerfully. "l need more sleep though." I smiled slightly. "Aright, sweety. See ya later." I hung up and gave the phone back to Zayn as I snuggled back into the pillows. "Is this your room?" He nodded. "l wasn't in here, just so you know. Not without your permission. I slept downstairs." I frowned. "l should've slept on the couch. It's your room."

"And your my girlfriend," he replied. I smiled at his sentence. He paused before asking his next question. "Do you wanna talk about it?" I shook my head. "No." He nodded and stood up to leave, but I grabbed his hand. "Will you stay? I'm afraid..." Without hesitating, he climbed in beside me and pulled me against his chest. I feel asleep without a new nightmare to the sound of his breathing.

*later that day*

Her outfit: (Picture above. She's wearing concealer again to cover her bruises and stuffs)

I was eating some ice cream when the doorbell rang. I went to get it and was attacked in a hug by my little sister. I held back a groan of pain and returned the gesture. "Hey, Lauren!"

"Hi!" she said cheerfully and skipped into the living room where the others were seated. Except for Aqua and Niall whom were raiding the kitchen. "Hi guys!" she greeted them all and went over to hug Scarlet and Aqua. I sat down next to Zayn and he slipped his arm around me. "Lauren, this is Hazel and Eleanor," I pointed to them. "And I have a gut feeling you know the boys."

She nodded. "Hi, Harry!" I was confused at first how she knew Harry, then remembered he'd went with Aqua and Scarlet to get her while I was in the hospital. "Hey, kiddo" he said with a smile and hugged her. "What do you wanna do?" I asked her. She seemed to ponder her options.

"ICE CREAM!" she screamed with a big smile. "Aright, what else? Ice cream won't take up the whole day."

"Ummm... TRUTH OR DARE!"

Louis was laughing. "l like her, she's loud like me!" El smacked his arm lightly. "You like everyone, Lou." He shook his head. "Nuh uh, I don't like you. I love you." She blushed and pecked his lips, making Lauren gag. I chuckled and we all got up, heading out for ice cream. We all decided to walk since it was a nice day. Halfway there, I was getting worn out and Zayn let me climb on his back. I rested my head on his shoulder and he began to hum Stole My Heart. How he remembered the little things I loved was probably one of my favorite things about him.

"Zayn, do you like my sister?" Lauren suddenly spoke up, taking me buy surprise. "l hope so," I said playfully. "Very much," Zayn told her and me. I smiled and whispered in his ear, "l like you very much, too."

"Do you like-like her?" Lauren asked him. He nodded and her eyes grew. "Ask her out, silly!"

"Already did," he told her. She cheered and skipped around. "Don't tell, though," he warned her. "Fans might hurt her." My heart melted at how he thought about me and wanted to protect me. We soon got to the ice cream store, ordered, and ate it on our walk home.

When we got home, we all sat around the living room prepared to play truth or dare. Lauren got to start. "Ummm, Wynter, truth or dare?" Knowing her dares wouldn't be bad, I picked dare. "l dare you to let Zayn braid your hair! Boys can't braid well." I took off my beanie and handed Zayn the hair tie on my wrist, facing my back to him. He quickly began to twist my hair while I chose a person.

I got a devilish idea. "Louis, truth or dare."

"DARE!" he yelled loudly.

"l dare you to let Lauren do your make up," I told him. "In the dark." Everyone 'ooohed' while Louis gulped and followed Lauren into the bathroom. As we waited, Zayn finished my hair and everyone surveyed hi work. "Dang, you braid better than I do!" Hazel exclaimed. "l grew up with three sisters," he pointed out. I pushed my braid over my shoulder and put my beanie back on. Louis came out shortly after and his face was, to put it nicely, horrific.

Harry put his hands over his mouth in shook and yelled, "BOO BEAR!" All of us girls and Niall were laughing hard enough to pee our pants and the other boys were giving Lou wolf whistles. I high fived Lauren and Louis sat down with his arms crossed over his chest. The rest of the day continued like that with us all having a blast and laughing our asses off.

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