Chapter 44 - Soapy suds & pretty purse

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Harry's POV

I never thought I'd be comfortable, or even remotely happy to wake up with a mouth full of hair and with my left arm completely numb. Yet here I was, tangled up over Norah in a position that probably shouldn't be relaxing, feeling more content than I had in a while.

The alarm was going off across the room, so I reluctantly unwrapped myself from her warm shape and trudged towards the kitchen to shut it off. It was almost 8 o'clock, and I already had seven missed calls, over one hundred emails, and fourteen texts from my secretary.

I dialled the office number back in annoyance. The usual cheery voice that belonged to her -- Laura? -- answered almost immediately. "Harry Styles' office, how can I help you?"

"This is harry," I snapped. "What the hell is going on over there?"

"Oh -- oh. Uhm, well you have a meeting soon and you have lunch with Mr. Malik and his girlfriend. And you weren't here I just called to make sure you weren't sick. Uhm, yeah?"

I dropped down into a bar stool. "What time is my meeting?"

"9:30, Mr. Styles."

"Great. I'll be there. Thank you, Laura."

"Y-you're welcome."

After starting a kettle of tea and cursing myself for giving Jennifer a day off when I couldn't figure out how to work the damn coffee machine, I warily stepped back into the living room to wake Norah. She was curled up into a ball in the middle of the couch.

I couldn't help but smile as I sat down, fingers tracing up the skin of her bare arm, followed quickly by the tip of my nose, and then my lips. She let out a low groan and snuggled further against the couch, which only provoked me further.

"Get up, get up, get up," I whispered, now kissing across her shoulders. "I have to go to work, and I am assuming you do as well. We need to shower."


"Hm, I am going to take that as a yes." With that, I picked her up, arms tucked underneath her thighs and back to carry her upstairs. She let out little, sleepy groans of protest and beat feebly against my chest for a few seconds before giving in and letting her head droop.

Norah let out a quiet yawn. "There are better ways to wake someone up, y'know?"

"I tried kissing you awake, Norah."

"Whatever." She ducked her hand forward as we stepped through the doorway into the bathroom. "I don't have to go to work today anyways. Jace and I got the day off for being the best employees over."

I set her down with an amused smile. "Really now."

Norah glared at me with what must have been an attempt at intimidation, but it didn't really work out for her. Only when I burst out laughing did she give in with a sigh. "Fine, fine. The office is closed today for something. Dunno. As soon as I read 'office closed', I excited out of the email."

Smiling, I ducked into the shower and switched it on full blast. Her tiny hands slipped around my waist from the back, forehead bumping in between my shoulder blades and breath warm against my back. She pushed us forward until we were both under the warm flow of water.

We cleaned up lazily, failing against each other out of lack of caffeine. I washed her hair and kissed behind across her shoulders, then the back of her neck, then the knobs of her spine. She arched away from my touch with a giggle, only to be caught quickly and turn back around into my arms.

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