33. In My Arms

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(Zayn's POV)

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(Zayn's POV)

I wake with her in my arms. Her hair is draped over her face from tossing in the night. I don't recall falling asleep but somewhere in between tracing her skin and now, I had.

I gently push the hair out of her face, revealing a peacefully sleeping Isabelle. It feels like forever since I've held someone this way, her body against mine and her head nearly tucked in my neck. If it were not for her sleeping so warmly and close to me, I'd back away slightly to get a better look at her.

When I feel her shuffle and then let a deep breath out, I close my eyes, just enjoying her being in my arms.

"I love you." I admit in the most quiet whisper. I love her, I love her, I love her.

It's such a simple time, nothing new has happened, but I love her. We've been together for such a short part of our lives but it just feels so natural now. What started as a disaster, has turned into the greatest gift of my life. I want to squeeze her tight in my arms until we become one. I never want her to look at me and fear that I may become distant. I never want her to ever think that I do, or ever will, regret her. I could never regret something that has made me as happy as I feel now.

She tosses again, seemingly coming out of her deep sleep. All I want is for her to stay in my arms and never leave.

"What time is it?" She mumbles, groggy from the night before.

"10 am."

"Just a little bit longer." She sighs, nuzzling in closer to me and tucking her head under my chin.

I'm slightly surprised by her level of comfort with me. Last night she was prepared to leave and now she doesn't want to get out of my embrace.

'I love you more than you know' — is all I can think to myself. Just say it, Malik. What have you got to lose?

I know she wouldn't reject it, she isn't rejecting me now. But is it insane to feel love for her now, after so little time actually dating? I know what it's like to love someone but this feels so indefinite, I don't know how to express it. It doesn't matter if she doesn't feel the same as long as she stays.

"I love you." I repeat, waiting anxiously for a response.

Once again, she seems to be asleep as my words are met with silence.

A smile reappears on my face as I question what she might be dreaming about. I hope it's something nice.

But to my surprise, I hear her voice speak.

"I love you too, Malik."

This is the kind of moment I'll never leave behind. The one that, even if we were ever to part, I'll never forget.

In peace, I close my eyes again, focusing on the way she feels next to me, and fall back to sleep.

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