Zayn's POV

The first thing I heard when I walked out of the hotel was, "Are Harry and Grace really having a baby?" The question caught me by surprise to be honest. Since I'd known about the baby from day one, it was hard to imagine that other people didn't. 

Still, I smiled and replied, "Yes! We are so excited for a little baby Styles to be running around." Management told us to act ecstatic about the pregnancy so the fans would do the same, so I put my thumb up to show my enthusiasm. 

In reality, this baby had caused nothing but trouble. Grace was angry at everyone but Harry. Even though all of us boys were talking to each other normally and stuff, it was still painfully awkward, and Louis was still missing. I didn't know why he had left; all I know is he and Harry had fought and Lou had left.

The paparazzi didn't follow me into the small park, which I was grateful for. I didn't much like having them follow me and be up my ass all the time. Most of the things they asked were about rumors created by attention-seeking fans, and when they asked about something that really did happen, management didn't usually want me to confirm it did.

As I walked by the pond by the entryway of the park, I was instantly swarmed by fans. They were almost worst than the paps - shouting at me, begging for me to sign something or take pictures or follow them on twitter. And it wasn't really like I could say no, because they were my fans, and they had gotten me where I was today.

I silently cursed myself for not wearing a disguise, as I usually did when I wasn't with security. Girls were all over me, and I knew that the only thing I could do was tell them that I needed to be left alone. "Guys, I'm sorry, I really can't-" I tried to make my way out of the circle. "Please, guys, I really really can't-" After about ten minutes of that, they seemed to get the message.

FInally I was alone, or at least, for now. My eyes skimmed over the nearly vacant park, looking for a flash of brown hair and a baby bump. I saw her instantly, on the other side of the yard, sitting on a bench under a tree. When I had called Harry this morning, he said she would be here. When I asked him why, he said that she wanted some air. Then he asked me the inevitable question: why do I want to know?

I needed to talk to Grace. I couldn't stand to see her look at me with so much hate that I thought she'd kill me if she ever got me alone. I hated to see her so hostile to everyone but Harry. Now that she hated Niall and Liam for outing the baby, and Louis was nowhere to be found, she was alone except for Harry. He was great, but perhaps Grace needed a friend to talk with everything with who wasn't Harry? I wanted to be that for her.

I sighed as I made my way over to her, thinking how similar that sounded to what I had said before we kissed. But this time, I was determined not to hurt my chances. I wanted to be a friend, someone who could be there for her.

 "Hey," I greeted her, taking a seat next to her on the bench. She looked at me once, then did a double take, scooching away. 

"Go away," she replied, making a face and turning back to the magazine she was previoulsy reading. The page was entitled, "Pregnant at 18: How Grace & Harry are Living." 

"You shouldn't read that shit," I sighed, making a move to snatch it away. She was too fast for me though, and put it out of my reach. She rolled her eyes and ignored me, moving away from me again. I persisted, "It's trash."

"I'm going to tell you again, one more time in case you hadn't heard me correctly," Grace clarified, "Please go away."

"No, I'm not going to. I need to talk to you," I explained.

"I don't want to talk to you. You're a douche." 

I sighed, "But if you'll just let me explain-"

She cut me off. "No, Zayn, I don't think I will. You don't think of anyone but yourself. You're a selfish bastard. Please go away." And then she went back to the article.

"Goddamnit, Grace! I only showed you Marissa to help you!" I shouted. The few people that were in the park besides us looked disapprovingly towards us. Grace looked at me too, a look of utter confusion on her face. 

"What? You broke my heart to help me? Seems a little contradictory," she hissed. Her brown eyes met mine and I was wrapped into speechlessness. 

I spoke after a beat, tearing my eyes from hers. "I am all those things you said. Selfish, a bastard, a douche. Harry isn't," I sighed, looking down. "He's better for you. I had to make you see that."

Grace took a deep breath and looked to the pond. It was filled with birds - cranes, ducks, geese. Wading in the water, bathing, drinking. They seemed so at peace. 

When Grace looked back at me, I saw a tear in her eye. "I'm sorry," she whispered. 

I smiled softly. "I know." I looked back down at the article. "This is bullshit, you know. Please don't read it."

She sighed and picked it up. "I know, but I wanted to know what everyone was saying about me. I googled my name this morning, and all these articles- These terrible lies about how I was in it for his money, and how I had come in between Louis and Harry- Which wasn't a lie, I guess, I did that, and-" she choked on a sob, burying her face in her hands. 

I rubbed her back, hoping to soothe her. "I guess life has a way of showing you things you don't want to see. But the more you resist, the clearer things become."

She chuckled a little, looking up. "That was deep, DJ Malik," she grinned, and I smiled back. 

"I've been getting hate since forever. Before X Factor. You know I got suspended in schools for fighting? But you get used to it. Other people's opinions shouldn't matter. What only matters is your opinion of yourself," I stressed.

She looked at me sadly, shaking her head. "That's just it. I'm starting to believe them," she whispered, tears streaming down her face at a steady pace now. I hugged her, hoping to comfort her, to shield her from the terrible world we live in. We stayed like that for hours until the rain came, trickling down our cheeks to match Grace's tears.

[[A/N: So Grace and Zayn made up! Yay! But still, the question lingers... where's Louis? Leave your opinions below!]]

Nine Months (One Direction fanfic)Read this story for FREE!