Chapter 17 ~ S(He)

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Well, he's here now, he thought happily.  It was just them; no other bandmates wandering around, no vocal coaches, no contestants, no one... Well, Lou was going to try and take advantage of the moment.  

"Mmm," Harry mumbled again, eyelashes fluttering against the exposed skin of Louis's neck, and Louis repressed a shudder from the ticklish sensation.  "Feel fine."

"Good," Louis nodded, satsified.  He'd been a little worried back there, and he wondered yet again just what had influenced Harry to expose himself to such horrible cold and weather to the point where he contracted mild hypothermia.  It scared Louis, and he wanted to figure out what had bothered Harry.  He didn't want him hurting; Harry was the last person on earth who ever deserved to hurt.  

"Don't ever do that to me again, Haz," he murmured quietly, his voice whirring through the silence.  "You scared the shit out of me, you know?" 

"Sorry," Harry replied gruffly, this time an immature whine creeping into his tone.  He sounded ridiculously like a child trying to get a stern parent of his back about a bad school mark, Louis realised, and he grinned against the skin of Harry's arm.  "Won't happen again, mum," Harry added in a groggy mutter, and Louis giggled, struggling to keep his volume to a minimum as someone rolled over in their bunk across the room.

Louis's stomach grumbled loudly, and he remembered with a grimace that he hadn't had much to eat the previous night before searching for Harry.  The boy wrapped around him chuckled slightly at the loud sound, sending deep, soft vibrations humming through Louis's torso.  

"Hungry, are we?" Harry mumbled groggily, eyes still shut and heavy with sleep, and Louis smiled reluctantly.  

"Only a little," he replied pompously, and Harry laughed gently, shivering slightly in the cool air of the room and nuzzling his cheek against Louis's shoulder, craving warm.  

"Mm.  You're warm." Harry commented sleepily, and Louis only chuckled, cheeks heating slightly.  Harry, he knew, was still half-asleep, and nothing that came out of his mouth would make any sense until he was up and had showered.  

But this was nice, Louis thought; simply lying here, warm and close, and he wasn't in any mood to acknowledge the day- not yet, anyway.  So, he simply settled for sighing quietly into the air and curling only more closely into Harry's chest, smiling to himself as the groggy Harry cupped the dip of his chin over Louis's shoulder.  

They did this a lot, the two of them.  Often times, Louis had layn awake in Harry's embrace while the younger boy snored like a lawnmower, confusion riddling Lou's mind as he contemplated the situation.  Ordinarily, he would never have let himself be caught dead in such a cozy, intimate position with any of his friends.  He wouldn't cuddle like this with Niall, Liam, or Zayn.  Hell, he'd never even cuddled with past girlfriends like this.  Why was he so suddenly doing this with Harry, and why were they making nothign of it?  Why was it such a small matter?  

Louis had never found any answers.  Whatever relationship he had with Harry confused the absolute shit out of him, but when he was feeling so warm and so safe and so happy, it was difficult to grow too bothered.  

His mood only brightened when the warm, crisp smell of sausage and the tangy scent of grilled tomatoes drifted through the cracked door of the boys' room and towards his nose, and his stomach emitted another embarrassingly loud grumble, causing Harry to snicker drowsily against Louis's shoulder.  

 "I reckon Zoe's cooking breakfast," Louis whispered happily.  "Must be getting late, then."

"Mm," Harry sighed, sounding reluctant to rise and to greet the mornign.  "What's the time?"

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