Forty Eight.

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I notice the decorations and lights strung over the streets for the first time.  I don't know how long they've been up, but now that I'm more than excited for the holidays they catch my eye.  The lights aren't lit yet seeing as it's only eight in the morning and the sun is out, but imagining their bright colors and the way they'll shine against a dark sky makes me smile this Monday morning.

"Ready for another day?" Harry asks, holding the big glass door open for me.

"Yes," I smile up at him.  He dips his head down to kiss me before we walk hand-in-hand over to the elevators.

The days have been all the same, the past week was the same routine day in and day out.  As they pass, I'm getting more excited to leave and break out of the pattern of pointless meetings and stressed out bosses, being drained of energy and wanting nothing more than fresh air.  I'll be glad to relax away from the city and the people who seem to cause me nothing but trouble and grief.  I'll be glad to get some time to think for once, some air to breath.

Only three days and I'll be traveling down to Washington with Harry.  Three days until I finally get a chance to do something for myself.   Three days until I get to be alone with Harry in a new city.  The last part is the most exciting for exciting for me, we've never been out of New York City together except for Jersey.  We spent a year here creating our own hell, making memories that no one would want to keep and spending our days together in a toxic relationship.  Nothing I can do will ever completely rid me of those days, but maybe being away from this place with Harry will help me see who he is now without having the shadows of a past I don't want to remember mocking me.

When I get to my desk, Liz and Zayn are already working so I sit down quietly and boot up my computer.  The office is quiet, hushed voices floating through the air from time to time.  Everyone seems to be still half asleep or chocking down coffee to keep them awake.

"Hey," I say quietly to Zayn, leaning toward his desk and giving him a smile.

"Hey," he smiles back, a kind glint in his eye.

I'm relieved to see that he's no longer angry or annoyed that I ran out on him last weekend.  He spent an entire week faking a smile or avoiding my gaze completely.  Whenever I would be with Harry, I would feel his eyes on us and couldn't help but feel guilty.  I apologized a few times, but he lied and said it was fine.  I know it wasn't fine, I've been spending my entire life using that line to get people to leave me alone.  Near the end of the week, he was saying a few words to me and actually looking me in the eyes.  I'm glad that we're back to normal now, even though I still feel guilty for leaving him so suddenly for the third time since we've met.

"Can I ask you something?" Zayn whispers after a while, leaning across his desk.  His light eyes flicker around the room briefly to make sure no one has noticed us talking.

"Yeah, sure," I nod, leaning in closer to him and holding my chin in my palm.

"Am I in trouble?" He asks seriously, and I stare at him for a moment processing his question.  There are a lot of answers and explanations I could give him, and also a lot of situations he could be referring to.

"I don't... what do you mean?" I mutter, furrowing my brows and shaking my head slightly.

He sighs and runs a hand over his jaw and chin, shutting his eyes momentarily.  "I'm afraid that I've done something wrong," he says slowly.

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