Chapter 23.

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Liam slumped himself down on the bed next to Niall, feeling just as exhausted as Niall was. "You okay?" Liam asked casually, glancing up at his husband who remained quiet.

"I'm fine. Just waiting on the kids to settle down then I'll be out like a light." Niall promised, patting Liam's hand. Liam suddenly reached over and kissed Niall in the most desperate way imaginable.

Niall didn't know what all the fuss was about but kissed him back all the same, letting Liam kiss all over his face. That was until Liam's hand slid under his oversized sweater at Nialls belly. "Liam." Niall protested weakly, pulling Liam's hand away.

Liam pulled back, resting his arm next to Niall. "I thought you wanted sex?" Liam frowned and Niall sighed. "I did, but not when I look like a bloody beach ball." Niall pouted, cheeks flushed as he felt embarrassed. Liam's face was filled with guilt. So that's what this was about. Niall was never one to be insecure with his weight, but this was a different story.

"You look stunning, Ni. As always." Liam whispered, kissing Niall on the forehead. Niall couldn't help the sarcastic snort that left from his lips. "Of course you'd say that. You're my husband." Niall sighed and Liam narrowed his eyes at Niall.

"Well what kind of husband would I be if I didn't say it? You deserve to hear these words, Niall, you're beautiful." Niall ended up crying then at Liam's words, not knowing where the tears were coming from but wrapped himself around Liam and pulled him close. Liam smiled fondly down at Niall, despite the fact that he was crying and hugged him back.

Liam arrived at work the next day feeling slightly useless. He had taken the last few days off with Niall for obvious reasons. Kids pointed and stared at him as they walked past and he didn't like it. He felt as if he were back in high school again, being constantly laughed at. Running a hand down his tired face, he took the stairs up to his class and dumped his laptop case on his desk when the principle stood in the doorway, Mr Smith. Mr Smith was just your average, middle-aged guy around early thirties, late forties with sandy-coloured wavy hair and a scruffy beard and a wife and family of two kids. The only flaw is that he smelt faintly of smoke.

"Liam? A word?" Mr Smith asked, slipping a cigarette lighter in his pocket. Liam nodded and followed him downstairs and behind the reception desk. "I'm sure you've probably realised by now why I've bought you here." Mr Smith began, raising his eyebrows at Liam.

"You've read the papers," Liam stated in a matter-of-fact tone. Mr Smith nodded curtly. "You're a smart man, Liam. I've seen you teach and I know your relationship with Niall is probably safe and secure, but I can't help but be curious. You understand that, right? It's my job." He explained and Liam nodded in agreement.

"Of course, sir. I'd find it unnatural if you didn't." Liam agreed and Mr Smith smiled fondly. "But I'm a man of my word, Liam. I took you in this job for a reason and that reason only it's because you do the job well. That's all that matters. If any of the kids- or their parents, for that matter- have a problem with it, they can come to me." Mr Smith winked at Liam and Liam chuckled.

"Thank you so much sir, I won't let you down." Liam promised, shaking his hand. "Well, you haven't so far and I don't think you intend to either." Mr Smith sighed.

"Of course not."

"If there's anything you need, Liam, you know where I am." He promised with a kind smile, patting Liam on the back. "Actually, there is one thing." Liam said, feeling a little guilty.

"What's that?"

"I'll need a bit of time off to look after Niall. Y'know, maternity leave. It's just...he's not really coping well with things at the moment." Liam shrugged and he nodded.

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