A/N; so after this story is over, i'm leaving wattpad. i can't afford to still be on here when school starts. between freshman year homework, two-hour swim practices every day, and everything else, i just don't think I can handle it. so this chapter is going to get things started with Niall & Allie. i'm tired of dragging it out, so here you go.

dedicated to SmilinSince98 for being a great friend and a lovely person. (:



The clouds slowly darkened the sky by the time the boys arrived at the house. It had been a few days living here, and it seemed to just get better and better. I'd found a bunch of little nooks and crannies around the house that were like little tunnels leading into other rooms, which was more than enough to subdue my curiosity for a while. I still hadn't explored the whole house by the time the boys rang the doorbell on the fifth day.

"Still loving this old place?" Louis asked, crinkling his nose as he let himself in. Of course the diva had wanted to spend every penny to get Lucy and I a nicer place to live, but a nicer place wouldn't have held all the happiness I found here.

"Of course," I told him firmly. "No other home could've been better."

Louis said nothing, but just raised his eyebrows, making room for the other boys to enter the house. Harry said a cheerful hello to me, pointedly ignoring Lucy; Liam made a sad attempt at a joke about the creaking front step; Zayn just grinned, pulling his hat over his head; and Niall swung his arm around my shoulder, leaning me inside, and throwing his matching hat to Zayn's up in the air with a smile as wide as the Thames. I felt my cheeks blush as I tried to hide my face in my hair.

"You know, I see the appeal of this place, Lou," Niall said thoughtfully, grabbing his hat from the sofa. "It's not much for looks, but it's...interesting. Keeps you entertained."

I felt a surge of appreciation. Someone liked my house.

Louis held up both his hands in surrender. "Whatever; who listens to me anymore, anyway?"

"I do!" Harry cried, as if he were saying so at a wedding. "I think what you have to say is brilliant, Boo."

"Bullshit," Zayn coughed, and he was attacked by Harry on his left.

"Swearing is not allowed," Lucy called, smiling delicately at Harry--obviously waving a white flag. But Harry just glared at her. I glared back at him, forcing him to drop his gaze from Lucy.

"Harry...come here." I motioned for him to follow me outside. Reluctantly he followed and I shut the door, ignoring everyone else's knowing looks.

"What?" he asked, clearly irritated.

"Apologize to Lucy," I demanded.

"What?" he spat. "No."

"Yes!" I glared at him. "She did nothing to deserve this. You're mad at her for liking Josh! Are you serious?"

"I'm not--!"

"Don't be a baby!" I interrupted, staring him down. "Apologize."

"So, what, don't deserve an apology?" Harry shouted, losing it. "I knew you would take her side, Allie!"

"She hasn't done anything, Harry!"

"You're right! She hasn't done anything about what she did to me."

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