Chapter 23

599 18 2

                It had been about fifteen minutes since Anne got off the phone with Des, so she decided to calm her nerves by making a mug of tea and sitting on the couch next to Harry who was gently sucking on his teether. “When your Papa gets here, I want you to listen to him, okay?” She asked and patted his knee.

                Harry nodded absentmindedly and pointed to the TV, wanting to watch Disney Channel. Anne shook her head, not wanting to go back on her punishment. “Nope, you’re grounded. No electronics, no TV, no toys.” She hummed and sipped her tea. Harry frowned deeply and rolled his eyes, to which Anne raised her eyebrow. Before she could scold him for his attitude, there was a knock on the front door.

                Anne made her way to the door and opened it up, revealing her weary looking ex-husband. “Hey Anne,” Des hummed and stepped into the house, pulling Anne in for a hug. Anne smiled and patted his back. “Good to see you.” She hummed before pulling away from the hug and pointing to Harry on the couch. “He has his Chew-Chew, so he should be calm enough for you to talk to him.”

                Des nodded and made his way over to the couch, sitting down next to his son. “Hey, bud.” He hummed and wrapped his arm around Harry’s shoulders. Harry just pouted and stared straight ahead. “Mum told me that you had a bit of a fit today. Wanna talk about it?” He hummed.

                Harry started talking with his teether still in his mouth, making his words sound muffled and slurred. Des chuckled and gently took the ring out of Harry’s mouth, which elicited a whine. “That’s mine!” He tried to reach for it. Des shook his head and held onto it. “Be a big boy and tell me why you gave Mum a hard time.” He said seriously.

                Harry sniffled dramatically, trying to get sympathy from his father. “Well, Mama was taking me to camp and I got scared. So I called Louis and he’s gone for two weeks and I got sad, then I got mad.” He mumbled and rested his head on Des’ shoulder.

                Des rubbed Harry’s back soothingly. “I think you know better than to scream at Mama like that, bud. She’s trying really hard to make sure you have a good summer and it’s not nice to treat her like that. What do I always say about treating others?” He quizzed to make sure Harry remembered.

                “Treat others the way you wanna be treated.” Harry recited with a pout. “I don’t wanna be grounded anymore, Papa.” He frowned sadly and let a tear slip from his eye.

                Des frowned sympathetically, but knew he had to enforce Anne’s punishment. “I know you don’t, but we can’t let you off the hook for this. If you decide to give Mommy a hard time, then she’ll do the same to you. So I suggest you don’t scream at her anymore, understand?” He asked firmly.

                Harry sniffled and nodded slightly, feeling more upset that he didn’t get his way. “This sucks.” He whimpered and rubbed his eyes with his fists. Des let out a chuckle and rubbed Harry’s back. “You’ll be fine, bud.” He hummed and kissed Harry’s forehead. “Go give your Mum a hug.” He said while pointing to Anne.

                Harry looked up at Anne and slowly walked over to her, wrapping his lanky arms around her torso. “Sorry Mama,” He sniffled. Anne smiled and hugged Harry back, feeling happy that he was able to understand why she had to ground him. “It’s alright, sweetie. I’ll always love you, okay?” She felt Harry nod against her shoulder and smiled.

                Shortly after Des left to go home, Harry grabbed his Chew-Chew and ran upstairs to Gemma’s room. Gemma was lying in bed, watching TV when she saw a head full of curls peek through the door. “Sissy, can I come in?” Harry asked.

                Gemma chuckled and patted the spot next to her on the bad. Harry smiled and crawled onto the bed, curling up snugly into her side. “So what’d Dad have to say?” She asked curiously. It wasn’t like Gemma didn’t trust her Dad’s judgment, but she didn’t want him being too hard on Harry. Gemma often saw Harry as a little kid and wanted to protect him from anything that made him unhappy. She wasn’t exactly the best sister towards him before his accident occurred and now she felt like she had a responsibility to look out for him as best as she could.

               “He said to not scream at Mama,” Harry hummed and scooted closer to her, resting his head over her heartbeat, making him feel calm instantly. Gemma smiled, remembering how Harry used to do that even when he was little. She wrapped her arms around him securely and hummed a lullaby while he sucked on his teether. “When is Papa coming home again?” He asked quietly.

                Gemma frowned, having been asked the same question many times before. She remembers the last time vividly; Harry’s screams of denial, the crying, the kicking and worst of all, feeling like she broke her brother’s heart. What’s a sister to do?

Still Here (Larry Stylinson Friendship, AU)Where stories live. Discover now