11.

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It was one week until Valentine's day, and the loneliness was starting to settle in.

Every holiday I usually spent it alone or at whatever job I had at the time, but I wasn't always single. I've had a couple of non-serious relationships before, but none were ones that I wanted to spend the 'day of love' with. It felt pointless to go out of the way for someone to make them feel loved when we should do that every single day, but there was a stigma around this holiday that never ceased to make me feel lonely regardless of my love life situation. This year, it was even more difficult because of my situation with Harry, aka, my boss.

So far he hasn't mentioned having any plans for Valentines day, and my only plan was to hang out with Eloise. I had a day planned already for us inside of my head, but I knew better than to try and follow a schedule with a toddler now. Eloise was always doing something destructive and messy now, rather it being throwing toys when angry or spilling things in the kitchen, it was just always something with her these days. It was wearing me out, and when I laid in bed at the end of a work day, it never took me long to fall into a deep slumber. I loved this little girl, but she was driving me absolutely nuts.

Sleep deprivation also played a huge part in my frustration and mood changes lately, and that was because Eloise was currently fighting the flu. It was the most pitiful thing that I've ever seen, and Harry was clearly worried about her. I could understand why he was so scared, but Eloise wasn't really that sick. He's even been coming home an hour early each day to take over, and that helped me out a whole lot. It was hard getting anything else done while also dealing with a sick child, but somehow I managed to get everything that I needed to get done, done. Of course that was until I fell asleep one night and woke up all sweaty and congested.

When nap time came around for Eloise, I took a seat on the couch and rested my face in the palm of my hand as I called Harry. I knew that he was probably busy but since we never call each other, maybe he would consider this urgen and pick up anyway.

Thankfully, he did.

"Hello?"

I sighed in relief, holding a tissue up to my nose just in case, "Harry, I'm sick." As if on cue, I sneezed right into my tissue to prove it, and sniffled, "I think I need to go to the doctor."

There was a moment of silence that followed, but eventually I heard him sigh, indicating that he was still on the line. "I'll be there in half an hour." He said to me. "Can you wait that long?"

I nodded even though he couldn't see it, "That's fine."

Harry cleared his throat a little before speaking, "I'll see you then."

I bit my lip, "See you soon." Then, I hung up the phone and laid back on the couch to continue resting. Moments later, Eloise came running into the living room with her pull up on and nothing else, and she made herself nice and cozy right on top of me.

She nuzzled her head into the crook of my neck, and brought her thumb to her mouth. I had one arm resting behind my head for support while the other placed itself around Eloise's back to keep her from falling off, and I finally felt at peace despite being sick as a dog.

Five minutes later, the two of us were fast asleep on the couch.

~~

Harry

"So how long do you need me to watch her for?"

I fumbled with my keys to unlock the front door and slightly mumbled, "I dunno yet." I stuck the key in, turned it, and opened the door for Louis to step inside first. He walked in and I followed, shutting the door before looking for Olsen and Eloise. Usually they could be found in the kitchen so that's where I went first, but it was empty, so I turned around and headed back to the foyer where Lou was.

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