The next fortnight in Europe was repetitive; we did an interview, posed for photo shoots, played a show and went to bed. Woke up, got on a plane. Landed, did a show. Repeat. Repeat. It was a stressful enough schedule already, only made worse by the fact that having Tamara by my side increased the number of paparazzi chasing us down the pavements tenfold. We might as well have turned it into the Tamara tour; she was all anybody was interested in, the centre of attention. I couldn't quite tell whether she adored it or despised it.
The nights were the only time we really got to be alone together. I knew I needed my rest - I had to be at my best for the shows, the days were long and tiresome, and I couldn't really afford to have bags under my eyes - but it felt like I always lay down to sleep at around twelve, and glanced up again to find it was four am and I'd been talking to my pregnant girlfriend about everything from desserts to the meaning of life for several hours. It was important though that we had this time together to talk. I felt like I was really properly getting to know her, inside out and back to front. I wanted to know every tiny fact about the girl who was carrying my baby. Plus, she looked really beautiful at three in the morning, curled up next to me, duvet wrapped at awkward angles around her as her big blue eyes stared up at me sleepily. Hair in tangles and hanging wild around her face. An old t-shirt of mine just barely reaching her tanned thighs...she was perfect. Despite the protrusion of her swollen stomach, I was constantly overwhelmed with lust for her. Even on the nights when we didn't waste time talking, I lost sleep anyway as did the other boys most likely, if they could hear the headboard banging against the wall as loudly as I could.
I was glad of all the late night bonding we'd done on the continent when we got back to the UK because me and the boys were spending hours at a time in the studio together. Poor Tamara was forced to sit in the apartment on her own, not that she really minded; she enjoyed her own company over that of most other people.
"You should get out sometime," I told her one morning as I sipped my hot water and honey, preparing myself for the strenuous day of vocal recording ahead, "You could catch up with Danielle and El. That'd be fun."
She simply rolled her eyes and pouted. She was shovelling Frosties into her mouth straight from the box. "I don't plan on doing anything this week that requires more clothes than I am wearing right now."
I glanced down her frame, covered only by a baggy checked shirt that I was certain belonged to me, and couldn't keep the smirk from my face. "Sounds good to me, babe!"
She still texted me during the day, teasing me, letting me know what she was up to. Mostly what she was baking, seeing as it was a hobby she'd taken up to pass the long hours of solitude. I came home at night to chocolate cake, rice krispie buns and homemade muffins iced with each letter of my name, so that when you lined them out they spelled 'Harry Styles'. I tweeted a picture and received a bus load of hate in return. I couldn't understand how they could respond to the fact that the girl who was carrying my baby had made me cakes by calling her names. Wasn't it a sign that she cared for me? That I was happy? Wasn't that what they were supposed to want?
I didn't let it annoy me, and I didn't mention it to her. Instead, I tucked into my buns and kissed her, and told her she was beautiful. Nobody else needed to be satisfied with my life but me, and I was more than content with the way things were going.
It was Thursday afternoon, after four long days of recording and being cooped up in that same dim room with a microphone in my face for hours on end, when the news came. For the moment that Brenda, a stout, friendly woman who was head of our Communications and PR team, interrupted our day I was pleased; any break was a relief at this stage. It was only when she pressed a copy of the daily paper into Louis' hands that I realised there was a problem.