Little Border Town Pt. 3
Summary: It begins with a man and a woman, as it always seems to. One lives in France and the other lives in Italy, technically, but they’re also neighbors. Various issues arise between these two and they can’t ever seem to see eye to eye on anything. Will they ever move past their petty fighting or is the little town they live in doomed to only gossip about what Harry and Y/N are fighting about today?
Part 3: the one with the boat and the beginning of a storm
IT’S BEEN AGESSSS I AM SO SO SORRY I LOVE YALL SO MUCH AND EVERYONE WHO HAS EVER READ THIS THANK YOU FOR BEING PATIENT
also harry is wearing this fit in this part just no tie?? i think i cant remember
college has been incredibly crazy this year already and i just dont have time to write like i did before i went back. i honestly had this mostly finished and i havent reread so i have no idea what even happens so lmk what you think, i can’t imagine that it will get a lot of notes but if it did id be very happy about that - anyways lots of love and feedback appreciated as always...pls enjoy
Word Count: 6.6k | Warnings: ?? Swearing? idek, more yearning bc slow burn
Catch up here! part 1 | 2 |
“Isn’t the weather not ideal for boat sailing today,” she ponders as her face looks up at the sky. She’s walking into Harry’s store again after running back to her place to grab a jacket and lock up. She placed a notecard in the door’s window that says “closed today, see you tomorrow” with a smiling face as punctuation.
Harry grins, bouncing on the balls of his feet. He had sailing boots on his feet with a smart big-collared printed shirt and marigold trousers. Instead of a belt, he had suspenders that matched the color of his pants and a pearl necklace as his final accessory other than his rings. He must have repainted his nails this morning because they were a light lavender shade that hadn’t been noticeable last night.
“It’s just fine. We’re entering fall and the sun is out today!” He gestures to the sky above them and she nods in agreement that the sun is indeed out. However she wasn’t sure if she’d categorize it as a nice day to go out on the sea still. With the sun there were also many clouds, they were mostly white and fluffy, but she was sure they could turn sinister any moment.
“Ready?” He beams.
“As I’ll ever be.”
On the boat, Y/N felt her stomach churning. Was she giddy or unnerved? Likely, both.
Harry was tying the boat off the dock after helping her onto the deck. It wasn’t a huge boat, not a yacht or anything, but it also wasn’t a tiny sailboat. It had an upper deck where maybe four people - at most - could comfortably be. Then a lower deck, inside a hatch in the upper deck. She couldn’t discern how much space was down there, but she was sure Harry would show her. He was talking through everything he was doing on the boat. Ad nauseum for an extremely nontechnical girl, such as herself.
Still, she sat in the spot he had directed her to next to the closed hatch and watched him move gracefully around the boat. Maneuvering the sails and different parts of the boat was a dance for Harry. Each step, each twist and knot, moved by a song unknown to her. It was beautiful. He was completely in his element, surprisingly. Again, Harry surprised her. She knew he had a boat, but whenever she thought of a jerk with a boat she didn’t think of what she was seeing with her own eyes. It was beautiful - or at least, it would be, if he’d shut his big mouth that was now making her roll her eyes as he made a pun about boats.
“So,” Harry starts finally, finishing up whatever he needed to do to get the boat off the dock and on the path he wanted. They were moving out into open water, she could see the little town, but it was growing smaller by the minute. Her stomach churned again as she looked up at the man she had just trusted to take her out onto the ocean. She grimaced slightly at the thought.
“Do you want to see the inside?” he continued.
She nods eagerly, “Finally!”
He chuckles lightly before opening up the hatch and gesturing for her to go first. She looks at him hesitantly.
“This isn’t a trap right? It’s not going to be all...murder-y down there?” Her voice is pitched higher, she’s almost completely serious.
This time Harry’s laugh comes from his belly, almost doubling over at the word ‘murder-y’. Between laughs, he tries to reassure her. “God no...oh my god.” More laughter, then a deep breath. “The only evil entity on this boat is the diavola I invited on here,” he gestures to her standing in front of him and her eyes narrow. Displeasure washing over her features.
“You’re ridiculous,” her hand swats at his sternum before she turns from him and climbs down to the underdeck area.
When she’s down, she’s surprised with her surroundings and she doesn’t notice Harry follow quickly behind her. It’s neat and stylish. Well, she’s not completely surprised, Harry was very fashionable. But the neatness dissipated all thoughts of the improbable scenario where Harry had lured her on his boat to murder her. It was what she had been freaking out over when she had at first refused to enter.
There was a small daybed at the end of the hall that doubled as a couch, a door to a bathroom, a dining area, a kitchenette, and then the random area they were standing in. It wasn’t super spacious, it was a hallway with things around it, but it was clean and it smelled nice. Everything had a place and they were neatly put in their places. After a moment, she turned at the feeling of Harry’s presence behind her.
He grinned, scanning the areas her eyes had just taken in for the first time. His green eyes were filled with admiration. “Do you like it?”
“Yeah, smells like you.” She nods matter of factly.
“Huh?” His head whips to her, sure he hadn’t heard her right.
“The whole place is very you,” she looks away from him and walks down the hall to the daybed and takes a seat, “Styles-ish.”
He follows quickly behind, shaking his head out of his own thoughts.
He mumbles a thanks, not catching the play on words she’d used with his last name. She smiles to herself, pleased. He stands in the doorway, not really wanting to sit beside her. Maybe he didn’t trust himself with being in such close proximity with her anymore. No, not after last night.
Her eyes widen slightly when he leans against the doorway and crosses his arms. The sleeves of his button-up had been rolled up when he had been working with the sails. Her lips suddenly are dry and she wets them with her tongue, eyes moving to the fabric of the blanket she’s sat on top of.
“I meant to say,” Harry breaks the silence, obviously not a fan of the quiet. A hand leaves his pose and runs through his hair, rings classically tugging at his curls. He swallows before he speaks again, “Thanks, uh, for stopping me last night. That would’ve been weird…”
He trails off and her eyes go wide again, but now they’re trained on his face. His eyes are downcast now, watching the way light plays off his rings. She tries to make out the sound in his voice, the expression he’s trying to hide with indifference. Her teeth tug her bottom lip into her mouth as she thinks, silence once again taking hold of the small, small room. The air is tense, static, unmoving, the complete opposite of the water that rushes just outside the walls of the boat.
She clears her throat and Harry locks eyes with her, “No problem...alcohol and atmosphere, clouds the head. I get it.” She did, but she also hadn’t wanted the gratitude Harry had just placed on her.
“You booze, you lose,” he smiles, straightening up and she looks at him quizzically.
“That’s such an odd phrase.”
“No it’s not!”
“It’s a play on ‘you snooze, you lose’ right?” She leans forward, face looking smugly up at Harry’s offended face.
“Well, yeah,” Harry admits.
“I can’t believe you made that up and got it tattooed,” She states breezily and then stands. She brushes past him to look around the rest of the cabin.
Harry scoffs, not even noticing the way her fingers had brushed over his naked forearm as she passed, too focussed on his indignation. “How’d you know about the tattoo?”
“Naked neighbor? Never closing his shade? Do you seriously need a refresher course already? Seriously, boat boy, I really thought you were smarter than that,” She talks as she snoops around the different parts of the cabin. She pokes at figurines and looks at little photos and paintings. Her head looks over her shoulder and she laughs happily at Harry’s face of irritation. It was so easy to push his buttons.
“Don’t call me boat boy,” he seethes, but she knows he’s not really mad. More like he’s a child who got told no dessert before dinner. A laugh rocks through her body again and bubbles to the surface. It causes Harry to soften, this time there’s no alcohol in his system to account for the feeling he just felt. He mirrors the smile she has. That is until she reaches the kitchenette and finds a rack of CDs sitting beside the sink.
She turns from him and begins to leaf through them, most of them are artists she recognizes. But then she reaches some that are just titled “Demo” with various numbers beside the word. Her fingers nimbly pick out “Demo #1” and turn back to Harry with an inquisitive gaze. His green eyes are bigger than usual, the smile gone from his face.
“These from the boy band days?” She smiles wider as he turns a little red. She crosses closer to him, remembering the sight of a cd player in the main area where the entrance to the cabin was.
“Erm..no.” She flips around again, confused again, but then it dawns on her. “Demos for my solo work.”
“That you put on hold to take over for your Uncle.”
“Great Uncle.” He corrects.
“I know.” She waited a second, where she was about to be quick to play the CD, she now wanted to get Harry’s permission. It might be a little more personal than she had first thought. “Can we listen to this one? You’d technically be taking me up on the request to play for me sometime.”
“Yeah, they’re rough - obviously. So if you could try to not bruise my ego, at least not more than you usually do,” he grins and she looks at him with dead eyes. A smile cracks on her face quickly, still.
“I wouldn’t...this is different,” she struggles to find the right words. She would never make fun of something he cared a lot about, not now. She wasn’t that person, it was odd to think he maybe saw her like that. She shook away the thought and focused on placing the CD in its player correctly.
The first song begins to play, he’s right it is rough, it’s a demo. There’s no backing vocals or beat of any kind. Just a voice and a guitar. And it’s amazing. After the guitar intro, she lets out a breath she had been holding when she hears the voice. His voice. It’s beautiful. And she’s shocked, her eyes flash to Harry. He’s nibbling at his bottom lip, watching her hear it for the first time. His voice from all those years ago.
“Brooklyn saw me empty at the news, there’s no water inside this swimming pool.”
Her eyes light up again at the lyrics and she smiles, finding it melancholic yet slightly funny at the same time. It was interesting, the words, his voice, the meaning. Some bits of information eluded her, but she knew she enjoyed the song.
“And I’ve been praying, I never did before.”
Even as the song moved on from this one lyric, she felt it replaying in her head as she watched the singer in front of her. Years older than he had been when he had written this song. She was filled with questions and paused the CD as the guitar faded out.
“That’s it?” Harry laughs, “Just one song? It was really that horrible?”
“Oh my god, no!” She is emphatic, needing Harry to understand she’s serious. She takes a step closer to his figure. He had traveled closer to her while the song had played. They were almost chest to chest and her hand goes out to touch his forearm. “I really liked it, genuinely. I just needed a moment before the next one.”
“Stop, I’m serious. It was beautiful. Your voice is wonderful, Harry.”
His eyes sparkle at the praise, finally believing she’s not taking the piss. Then his eyes dropped from her gaze, “I was a lot younger then, was 21 I think when I recorded this demo.”
“So? A voice like that doesn’t just disappear, dude.” She looks at him with a finality in her expression before dropping the hand that was firmly gripping his tattooed arm and turning back to the CD player.
Harry bites his lip as another one of his early songs plays over the shoddy speakers. His voice repeats “Meet me in the hallway” over the solo guitar. There’s no echo or bass, no count in like the final song was supposed to have. It’s just him and his guitar, before he chose to leave it all behind.
His voice is sadder here, she notices and she visibly winces at “just take the pain away” and “just let me know, I’ll be on the floor” and his repetition of “gotta get better.”
How did this man, who seemed fazed by practically nothing, have so much hurt in him to write both of these songs? Her eyes welled with water, but she blinked them back still staring at the singer before her. He was watching the CD spin in the player as his voice came through the speakers. He was lost in thought, in memory. Maybe she was lucky, these weren’t memories for her, she was only hearing his interpretation of his life. She hadn’t had to live that pain first hand. This time she doesn’t pause before the next song.
The next one seems more produced than the last two. This one starts with drums, a step up from the last two acoustic demos in respect to production. A big crash and then a wailing guitar and an accompanying voice. His voice is stronger here, more sure of himself. And then it changes again, melancholic once again and her heart strings are yanked at again.
“We’re not who we used to be, we’re just two ghosts standing in the place of you and me, trying to remember how it feels to have a heartbeat.”
The guitar continues that sad tone for a riff and then goes back to strumming beneath his voice. She shifts her eyes to him again and sighs softly, it weighs heavy on her soul that the man next to her has seemingly been through so much heartache. He looks up at “We don’t see what we used to see” and she holds his gaze, brows knit together in confusion and sadness. She pauses this time, finger reaching out without looking.
“This is depressing, please tell me they’re not all sad songs or I might as well have turned on a pet rescue commercial.”
His smile etches on his face, in a small knowing smirk and he crosses into her personal space. She’s about to step back, but he reaches out and softly bats her finger away from the pause/play button. She smiles back, shuffling to lean against the counter beside him. It was unusual for them to be on the same side of the counter, much like last night at the bar.
“There’s six songs on this demo. Three sad, three…” he trails off, looking at her expectantly. She nods. “You gotta learn to be a little less impatient, hmm?”
“Not impatient, just trying to brace myself for more sadness. I thought I had been promised a day of fun,” she grumbles.
“I wasn’t the one who suggested a demo listening party,” his brows raise and she twists her mouth to the side at his smug response.
“True,” she finally concedes with a murmur.
He presses play and a new song comes on that is more upbeat than any of the other’s that have played so far. It also seems to be a bit more produced than the first two. Her hand rests on the countertop and begins to tap, she quirks her brow at the first lyric “she’s got a family in carolina, so far away, but she says I remind her of home.” A girl who likened Harry Styles to the South of the United States, interesting. As she listens to the lyrics, she smirks at the massive crush he must have had to write this song. The “good girl” lyrics bounce around in her mind and her mind drifts back to last night. Would it have felt good? To kiss Harry?
Then, she’s brought out of her reverie with “I met her once and wrote a song about her”. Her eyes widen and look to Harry again inquisitively as his past self muses over how good this girl felt. He wrote about a one night stand? That woman must have been magic. That was all she had to say about that.
“Really?” She asks incredulously, folding her arms over her chest. His gaze flickers at the movement, human nature. He presses pause.
“A one night stand earned that?”
He looked at her seriously, like the answer was obvious. She laughs before continuing.
“You’re a simp.”
“I’m sorry?” He sputters at her statement immediately.
She raises her brows as a response now. Nothing else to say.
“She wasn’t a one night stand,” he defends, “She was a blind date...and it had been after a dry spell.”
She starts to laugh, about to give another snarky response, but he adds, “And I was twenty-one.” The numbers specifically enunciated.
“You’re still a simp in my book...but I liked the song. It was catchy, rock vibes in there. I don’t know about her telling you remind her of Carolina - north or south, I don’t see it.”
He eyes her warily, still not happy with her titling him that gen z term that was super popular all over the internet. He took her in and he knew she was only three years younger than him, he was pretty sure, yet she used ‘simp’ and ‘vibes’ like they were lexicon words. He didn’t hate it, it was just different than what he usually heard in the little border town. Italian not having translations for things like that, English was so interesting, internet language was so interesting.
“I-” He starts and stops. “She said it. Was she right? That’s not my place to judge.”
“I don’t know,” Y/N pressed, words dragging out playfully, “Personally, I wouldn’t want to be a reminder of the U.S. South, but okay...simp.”
“I swear to god if you call me that one more time, I’m throwing you overboard and I won’t feel bad about it.”
Her eyes widen and then she smiles, he cracks a smile too. They huddle back around the CD player, ready for the next song. It starts with a strong guitar and drums, again well produced compared to the acoustic earlier ones.
His voice in this is far more shaky, unsure of himself again. “Let me take my medicine, take my medicine, treat you like a gentleman,” comes through the speakers. She shivers and looks at him, her fingers tapping along to the beat. The instruments are strong where his voice is soft, it doesn’t exactly fit, but she likes the lyrics still. When it gets to the pre-chorus, that’s when she knows she loves the song.
“I had a few got drunk on you and now I’m wasted, and when I sleep I’m gonna dream of how you (tasted)”
When his voice pitches high for ‘wasted’ she loses it. Her body moves with the instruments and her eyes close and her head wiggles. Harry smiles happily as she dances for the first time to one of his songs. The last word must have been shouted by his bandmates, because she doesn’t hear him say it.
Then the chorus hits and she wonders how it got even better. Her eyes shoot open and she just stares at Harry, her jaw slightly dropped.
“If you got out tonight, I’m going out tonight cause I know you’re persuasive! You got that something and I got me an appetite now I can taste it”
His past self sings of getting dizzy and his voice moans into the mic the demo was recorded on. She’s blown away. It sounds so hot, his voice gaining confidence during the pre-chorus and the chorus to have an all around rockstar sound.
The present Harry just taps his rings together as he watches her, studying her reaction with an even-tempered expression. Why isn’t he screaming like she is on the inside? When it gets to the second verse she’s bracing herself for what’s to come. This song has her pulse racing and blood flowing wildly around her body. She’s buzzing from it.
“The boys and the girls are in, I mess around with him and I’m okay with it”
The electric guitar follows the line up and she thinks she’s going to pass out on this boat right now. Flamboyant Harry. Was this what Marie had been talking about. The wild side of Harry she really had never seen, embodied in one song. She wanted more of it. Still all she got was the Harry on the demo rocking out to his song. She can hear him smiling through the recording, the sad boy from a few songs ago was now feeling euphoric. She just wanted to dance the night away with him.
Then another pre-chorus: “I’m coming down, I figured out I kinda like it, and when I sleep I’m gonna dream of how you (ride it)”
His voice goes high again for ‘like it’ this time and her question of what is to follow is quickly answered with the bandmates screaming ‘ride it’ into the mics they must have had. It’s punctuated with the drums and other instruments. A noise escapes the back of her throat and Harry looks at her both smugly and amused. She rolls her eyes in response, trying to convince Harry that she hadn’t just had images of him singing about how good someone rides him flash in her mind. Even more so with the images of someone, namely her, being the object of his dreams. Doing the things he said he’d dream of. That, that was definitely not what she was thinking about. Definitely not. Her throat was dry and she swallowed hard. Harry’s eyes never left her face. Watching every reaction, gauging it and storing the information elsewhere for the time being.
She sings along to the chorus, trying to focus on the song, it was easy to pick up, but then the damn moans. And then there’s a guitar solo that sounds like sex itself and she’s baffled that this was an unreleased demo, not a famous rock song. Harry in front of her can’t stop himself from tapping his feet at this part, a little dance forming on his body as his eyes finally leave her figure. They close as he feels the music, the memory of his friend playing the riff clear in his mind and how much he had loved it. It builds up again and then there’s a final chorus. She watches him now as he dances in the confined space. His mouth opens to sing along to the “la la la’s”
It ends and goes straight into another upbeat song. It seemed like a complimentary song to the one that had just played.
“I don’t want your sympathy, but you don’t know what you do to me, oh Anna!”
His voice sings strong again. Harry before her composed himself again, going back to his watching position. He took in her tapping and smiling to the song. He also mouths the words slightly as it plays, the lyrics clear as the day he finished writing them almost 4 years ago. One of the final ones for this demo.
“Hope you never hear this and know that it’s for you, don’t know what I’d tell you if you asked me for the truth”
She smirks at him, now, with the earnest lyrics, about to say something, but then notices the change in the guitar. It switches from the epic riff that was going to a more familiar tune, “Faith” by George Michael. She looks at him, a cheesy grin on her face as the voice begins to sing the chorus of that song. Her body begins to dance to it, like an old man doing the twist. She’s not ashamed and Harry loves it and joins her by mirroring the movements.
When the song comes to an end, they’re one large giggling mess. She falls into his arms and he holds her steady, their laughter coming out with freedom.
“Thanks for making me be patient,” She looks up at him, “it was worth it!”
He smiles, backing up slightly, “It’s like I knew what I was talking about.”
“Ok smart guy,” she teases with a silly voice. “I’m assuming whoever Anna is, isn’t actually named Anna then...?”
Harry hums and makes a twitch of his brows, but doesn’t respond. Instead he grabs her hand and she squeaks slightly, he pulls her to the ladder and prompts her to go up. She obliges silently and lands back on the top of the boat now. She looks out and sees the little town to be off in the distances now, shining blue water all around the creamy white boat.
Harry stands behind her now and shuts the hatch easily. She looks at him warily, confused by his silence. He extends his hand to her this time and she takes it. He leads her to the front of his boat. They’re moving, but so slowly you’d barely notice. There’s a loveseat of sorts right at the front and Harry sets her down in it. She smiles at him with caution, still bewildered. He leans against a part of the boat that stands in front of the seat.
“It’s beautiful, right?” He asks.
Her eyes have been looking around her, but they’ve mostly been trained on Harry. She was mesmerized by him now. His music, his boat, his clothes, his everything. She was seeing him in a new light. In a completely brand new way that had her unable to take her eyes off of him.
She nods finally when Harry looks at her expectantly. “It’s amazing,” she breathes.
His smile is the half-sided grin again. Beautiful big teeth on display with a little part of space between them. His dimple pops out and once again her eyes are on his face. She realized going on this boat with Harry might not have been such a good idea.
He folds his arms, her eyes flicker down. Every movement he makes, she doesn’t want to miss it. Even if she also is telling her mind to shake it off, she can’t. It’s like a spell.
“Obviously Anna is a pseudonym,” he says finally, eyes watching where the boat was taking him. She nods in approval. He pauses, watching the little waves, but she knows he has more to say.
“What did you think of the rest of it?” He asks quietly, gaze never going back to her. He knew she’d teased him a little and had danced along to some. She’d looked at him with wide eyes at some lyrics, but he wanted to know what she really thought.
She can tell he’s nervous, but she doesn’t understand why. They were all very good songs, his voice was beautiful, the lyrics were interesting. She didn’t understand his lack of confidence. His first time not exhibiting his usual self-assured - self-absorbed, even - personality. She bites her lip in confusion and his brows knit together, further showing his apprehension. The wrinkles in his forehead show up more prominently and she’s reminded that Harry is 26. He’s a different person now then he was back when he recorded that demo. Maybe there was a reason he kept them on the boat. She felt unsure in her response now.
“They were all great, Harry.” His face softens immediately. “Each one was beautifully written and sung. The ones that were acoustic sounded wonderful as did the ones with your whole band. I’m honored to be someone who got to hear those masterpieces.”
She wanted to tell them they should be famous songs, but she had a feeling that might not have the effect on him that she wanted. He had chosen a little quiet life in the little border town. She didn’t think he would want to hear how his music could have made it big time.
“Thank you,” he murmurs, just about the sounds of the sea. He lets a closed mouth smile twist onto his face, but it feels like he doesn’t fully believe her. She wants to kiss his worry away, but again, she knows it’s not possible. His words from earlier rang in her head. It would make things weird. Yeah, you’re right. Ugh, why had she agreed. She didn’t agree, not at all, not anymore.
“Did you have a favorite?” He stands up straighter with his question.
She laughs slightly, “I liked the second to last one a lot. It was hot.”
“Hot how?” He steps closer, smirking.
She jumps up from her reclined seat, in indignation, “Oh come on, you know it’s hot. Now you’re just looking for me to stroke your ego! It’s obviously about sex.”
“And? You’re the one who’s saying it’s your favorite and blushing.” He arches a brow at her, arms going to his hips and looking at her teasingly.
“Well, you’re the one who was singing about sucking dick and dreaming of how someone rode you.”
“Is that what it’s about?” His voice raises as he purses his lips and raises both of his brows.
She realizes just how worked up he’s gotten her in such a short amount of time. She huffs and turns away from him with a flick of her hand. “You’re infuriating.” Is all she can say. She looks out at the waves now, ignoring Harry even though he’s less than a foot away.
He’s laughing behind her for a little. Then when she doesn’t turn around, he quiets and she’s not quite sure where he’s gone. Then his breath fans over her neck and right shoulder, where her jacket hasn’t managed to cover her. It’s warm and a little minty as the scent travels over the salty sea air. She doesn’t turn or move a muscle for that matter.
A hand reaches out to her shoulder, but still she makes no move to turn. It rests there for a minute and she simply huffs again, letting her shoulders rise and fall dramatically. A single laugh slips from Harry’s mouth.
“C’mon diavola, don’t be like that. S’all in good fun.” His voice is low in her ear, sultry even. It reminds her of his voice in that song once he got into it. His voice sounds like sex in her ear and this time when she sighs it’s not because she’s irritated with him. No, she wants him. The sigh has an undercurrent of that desire and she hopes Harry doesn’t understand that. But otherwise she stays quiet, letting him murmur into her ear with his hand on her shoulder and his chest pressed to her back now. The only witness of this exchange is the ocean before them.
His head leans closer and if she didn’t know any better it felt like he was about to press a kiss to her neck. Instead all she feels is the brush of his mustache, it tickles the shell of her ear and she can’t keep in the giggle. She twists away from the sensation and Harry is grinning at her when she faces him.
His hand still on her shoulder and his body still pressed close to hers. He’s so warm and so close and so shiny new in her eyes, even if he still manages to irritate her. Her eyes flicker up to his as their laughter quiets down. She realizes her own hands have gone to his waist to steady herself and she follows his feet as he backs them up from the edge of the boat that she had brought them too.
It’s quiet again. They’re staring at each other intently. Her eyes are swirling with emotion because she just wants to know what’s going on in the brain of the man before her. She wants to know everything about him, but she knows that’s not how he feels about her. Sure, they’re friends now, but nothing else.
Why did she have to come on this stupid boat and find his stupid amazing music? Why did he have such a stupid amazing face?
These questions and other silly things were racing around her head as she gripped his waist. He didn’t mind her quietness, he found her gaze to be a little unnerving, but he was just glad he had made her laugh. He found that he didn’t enjoy her anger at him as much anymore.
Just as he was about to start another conversation, there was a cloud that drifted over the shining sun. It was her original fear come to life. Harry’s brows furrowed as he looked up at the clouds. They were turning grey. Fast.
“Shit, shit, shit,” He began mumbling and released his hand from her shoulder. He pulled away from her hold and began moving swiftly around the boat. He needed to get them off the water, there was a storm coming.
Her eyes went wide as she noticed the approaching storm as well. Her brows furrowed with worry as she watched Harry begin working on the boat, his only words being curses to himself at first.
Then he enlists her help, asking her to hold onto a specific part of the boat for him after he threw her a life vest and made her put it on. She wore it with great dissatisfaction. He only shrugged as he continued to move nimbly around the boat, turning them around, back to the dock.
The boat moved much swifter into the shore than it had on their way out. The waves were growing choppier by the minute and she would admit she was more than a little scared. Thankfully, Harry knew what he was doing and got them there quickly and safely. Once at the dock, he tied them there and then helped her off the boat. She stood on the dock uncomfortably as the rain started to come down.
“Give me your lifevest!” He gestures from the boat.
She quickly takes it off and flinches when the first bout of thunder sounds from far off. He takes it from her and throws it haphazardly down the hatch along with his own before jumping off the boat himself. He surveys the boat from the dock to make sure he hasn’t forgotten anything. Then he looks at her. She’s wrapped her arms around herself and is ducking her head, looking like she’s attempting to ward off rain but failing miserably.
She looks up at him and he offers a soft smile of reassurance.
“Take my hand!” He shouts slightly over the growing sound of rain and thunder. He wants to get them out of the rain, but he’s also apprehensive to leave his boat to the mercy of the weather. Still, that’s all he can do.
She puts her hand in his and his fingers weave with hers. Then, they’re off racing back to their street in the little border town.
“I should go back to my place!”
“Don’t be silly! France is much too far for you to go in this weather!”
She laughs and grips his hand tighter as he fumbles for his key. His wet hand slipping as the rain droplets soak their clothes and skin. Even though her door is a mere few feet away she allows Harry to pull her into his shop. The warmth and dryness appreciated after running a few blocks in the now torrential downpour. There weren’t storms often in the little border town, but like the old adage said ‘when it rained, it poured’ quite literally. The less she had to travel in the rain the happier she was, even if it was three measly feet.
It also occurred to her that she’d be able to sit out her first storm with someone by her side. And she would admit that didn’t sound like the worst thing in the world. She wasn’t necessarily a fan of storms and being in a new place with a storm she’d never weathered before was daunting. Harry inviting her in was a blessing. She didn’t have to be asked twice.
Once inside the little shop, their wet frames begin to form puddles beneath themselves. Harry sighs and takes off up his rickety stairs. She looks after him in confusion but stays put when he calls a quick “Wait there!”
She shakes a bit of the rain from her and shivers as she listens for Harry’s movements barely audible above the crashing of the rain water. When he returns, her breath catches in her throat, like she just choked on something, yet there’s nothing.
As he walks down the steps, far slower now, his wet hair shakes out around his head forming some ethereal halo. The light from upstairs illuminates him and the darkness outside casts an ominous darkness as he descends.
“Un ange…” She whispers after finally catching her breath.
If he hears her, it doesn’t matter. He’s already beginning to smile widely just from seeing Y/N before him.
He skips the last step and crosses to her swiftly. “Let’s get you dried a little more,” he begins to dote. A matching smile spreads on Y/N’s face out of appreciation. She still can’t manage to fend off the shivering and Harry’s smile falters. His hands leave the towel and trace her exposed skin. Her cheek feels like ice, only slightly warming under his touch.
“You need dry clothes,” he mumbles.
Her eyes widen as she looks up at him. He’s so close and so attentive and she wants to ask him to kiss her because they’ve been going back and forth all day, but he’s right she’s freezing. His eyes are so intense though she can’t even maintain eye contact. Instead her gaze flits up to the droplet beginning to swell down one of his rogue strands of hair that flopped over his forehead moments ago.
She doesn’t respond as she watches and Harry begins to worry more. Her eyes seemingly unfocused, her shivering, and her silence. He thumbs over the apple of her cheekbone and finally breaks her reverie. The droplet splashing between them without her as its audience.
“C’mon,” he tugs her hand now to bring her upstairs.
something like “i know” (ben hardy x fem reader)
genre: FLUFF FINALLYY
summary: sometimes making tiktoks with ben doesn’t always turn out the way you plan, but by no means is that a negative.
warnings: age gap (not dramatic, reader is like, idk, 23 maybe?), kissing, i think that’s it but lmk!
a/n: hi! so i’ve had this idea for ages and wanted to write it so here it is! the end of it is far sappier than i planned but meh whatevs. also ty to cici and eva for helping me pick the moodbard hehe. k enjoy!
Having an age gap was never something that put a large damper on their relationship. The conflicting personalities of the two balanced out quite nicely, and the similarities that drew the two of them together in the first place (apart from the aforementioned) made sure they never had a lack of interesting things to talk about that weren’t generational.
Until TikTok, that was.
Now of course, there were some other millennials on the application, but Ben just for some reason couldn’t get it.
“Yes, I know that, babe, but why do they do dances?”
“They lip sync too!”
“But what is the point?”
And that’s how the conversation would end. Every single time. So Ben would sit on the sofa, watching as she danced about in front of the small screen, occasionally playing some cruel (ok, that’s a large exaggeration, they’re somewhat mean, at best) joke on him, claiming it was a trend on TikTok? That just did not sit right with him.
He didn’t remember hearing “mean pranks” in the initial description of the app when she had described it to him all of those times.
Ben tried to tune it out, he really did. He would wear his headphones, blasting Zeppelin as loud as he could while reading scripts or a book. But somehow, those catchy little tunes always managed to worm their way into his ear, being stuck in there for days and days on end.
He would waltz around the house humming Megan Thee Stallion, the occasional Flo Milli or underground indie artist also making an appearance often.
He was pouring a cup of coffee for himself one Tuesday morning in the kitchen before going on a run, Y/n watching fondly from afar. Rain was softly rolling down the windows, barely coming to a cease. The air was chilly, and fog floated through the early morning sky, a sense of calm washing over their shared South London home.
The room was kept somewhat warm, though, from the fireplace that she had insisted the house had to have, which Ben ended up being grateful for on more than one occasion. He looked over his shoulder briefly, smiling at the sight of his beloved wrapped up in his seafoam jumper, watching him move about contently.
As he turned back to where he was working on filling the two mugs in front of him, he began to oh so quietly sing the lyrics to what sounded like a familiar tune off of the app. Watermelon Sugar, maybe?
He turned, his eyes growing wide and his hands flying to his hips as he leaned against the countertop behind him.
“Mhhm, yeah, w-what’s up, babe?”
She couldn’t hold in her giggle at the sight of her boyfriend’s red face and disgruntled appearance, one of his hands now scratching casually at his gold locks.
“What’re you singin’, pretty boy?”
His blush only increased at the nickname, eliciting another laugh from his girl.
“Y’know, just somethin’ I heard on the radio the other day.”
She immediately recognized his lie, he refused to listen to the radio, only using either Bluetooth or the aux cord, his music taste too pretentious for mainstream stations. She didn’t mind, though, always finding it quite funny how much of a music snob he was.
But rather than call him out, she only nodded and smirked, standing up and bringing her phone with her over to the windowsill where she usually filmed her TikToks, pulling Ben along with her.
He sipped from his mug, eyes slanted as she scrolled through something on her phone, various sounds emitting from the speaker.
A little smile showed up on her face when she (apparently) found what she was looking for, leaving her to set the phone down, allowing a video under the sound to play on repeat.
“Sweetheart, what’s going on?” He asked, ever so cautiously, taking a step towards her. She walked towards him, engulfing him in a hug which he (yet again) cautiously reciprocated.
“I am going to teach you a TikTok dance.”
He had to do a double take.
She pulled on the elastic waistband of her sweats, grabbing Ben by the arm.
“Come on, I know you wanna. And if nothing else you’ll do it to make me happy.”
He rolled his eyes, slightly irritated at her confidence and that she was so incredibly correct, he would do mostly anything to put a smile on her face.
“Yeah, you’re right.” He grumbled, moving to stand next to her.
She clapped once in excitement, joy flooding her entire body. The music started up again, but this time, she began to dance along to it.
“Ok, so just try to do what I’m doing, alright?”
“No! Not alright, can I just stand here, I think I should just stand here-“
“Ben, it's literally not that hard, 8 year olds can do it!”
“Well, I’m an extremely confused 29 year old man, thank you very much!”
And that’s basically how the next 15 minutes went until she finally gave in, allowing Ben to stand behind her, occasionally doing a little move of sorts. The two were in a fit of giggles now, struggling to keep enough composure for long enough to get even one successful video.
“Benjamin Jones! This is the last one, okay?”
He put a hand on his stomach, both of the pair attempting to catch their breath.
“Yes, yes, right okay, got it, last one.”
The little timer button counted down, the sound echoing throughout the property.
The music then started, and she could barely keep a straight face for the 15 seconds. Bored of the routine, but never of her, Ben decided he would grab her and throw her onto the sofa, as payback for all the “TikTok pranks” she would pull on him. He waited for the perfect time to strike (one where she wouldn’t hopefully be too infuriated), restlessly shifting from foot to foot.
Nearing the last few seconds, he made his move. He swooped forward, a high pitched shriek falling from her lips as he wrapped his strong arms around her waist, running and jumping onto the couch, crushing her. He rolled off quickly, and she moved to be on top of him, her hair wildly astray. She sat up, straddling his thighs with a bright smile plastered on her face.
“You little jerk.”
He only smiled boyishly in response, a lovesick gaze set in his eyes.
The song was still playing on repeat as she leaned down, positioning her hands on either side of his head in order to place her lips gently upon his.
“That’s your reward for putting up with me today, Jones.”
He scoffed, taking her by the shoulders and bringing her to his chest. She looked up from where she was now comfortably lying, meeting his homey emerald gaze, his eyes like sea glass that had washed up on white sands, waiting to be rediscovered.
“I feel as if I deserve something more for all of that.”
“Oh, do you?”
He hummed and nodded, closing his eyes. She reached up, placing another peck on his plump lips, before scurrying away to retrieve the phone. He sat up rather quickly at the sudden loss of her body weight, smiling at the sound of her laughter coming towards him.
“Ben, look, it turned out so well.” She managed to slip out before basically throwing him the phone. A grin erupted on his own face soon after, along with the hearty chuckles to match.
He made some commentary on how wonderful it was, before handing her back the device. She moved so she was once more essentially laying on top of Ben, the screen in both of their views.
After sharing a few more laughs over the video, she captioned it and posted it, throwing her phone to get lost in the couch cushions as the likes and comments began to roll in.
She looked up at him once more, and he met her gaze, as he always would, bringing a hand up to tuck a lock of hair behind her ear.
It didn’t leave her cheek, resting there and lightly caressing her skin. The two were most serene then, almost appearing as two felines that had decided to nap during the morning showers, most comforted by each other and the steady sound of the droplets as they pattered.
He was whispering now, the rambunctious energy of the room fading into a much more tranquil and stolid vibe, wrapping the two up like a warm embrace.
“Y’know I really would do anything to make you happy, my love.”
She closed her eyes, taking hold of one of his hands.
He then heard her mutter something like “I know”, and all was well.
it was fitting for the theme. but anyway i hope u enjoyed, pls reblog and like if u did :) go drink some water, eat some protein, and take an electronics break!
love you bunches! xx hj
Hi friend! This is mha-adore; I'm on my main blog because my mha blog is a side blog and I can't send a question from that blog. Just to prove it's me - you came to me asking about a matchup exchange and I asked you to explain what it is and I agreed, and the day after I wrote my side matching you with Shoto, and in our personal messages your recent message is, "I'm so excited to do your matchup!" something to that idea. I hope that's enough to prove it's me.
I'm asking for a matchup with mha please.
I'm a quiet and well mannered person who strives to appeal to everyone I meet. I happen to have a personality disorder and as such, some people get a different idea of who I am. I consider myself friendly but emotionally distant, a friend of mine has accused me of not caring at all because I'm naturally a distant person. I'm mostly very respectful and try to avoid any conflict or fights, but the moment someone insults or fights a friend of mine or my partner I drop my friendly exterior and hone in on the person, insulting them, spilling any tea I know about them, I say whatever comes to mind that I know will make them feel terrible, and I end it by stomping on their foot. With close friends or my partner I'm more talkative - not loud or boisterous, just more talkative. I insert my opinions more, I hold a conversation and I openly give my thoughts about different topics without worrying that I'll upset them.
I'm a trans male who uses he/him and they/them pronouns; I'm pansexual. I'm 19 and a Leo sun, Aquarius moon, Virgo rising. The only characters I don't feel comfortable being matched with are Endeavor, Dabi and All Might.
My hobbies involve drawing (I'm working on a comic), I love to play both Pokemon and Animal Crossing, I enjoy writing fan fiction, studying and playing card games. (Like Old Maid, Go Fish, Crazy 8s, Blackjack, Solitaire, you get the idea.)
My love language is to show my love in subtle ways. Cooking someone a meal they love without being asked to, spending time with them doing whatever they want, giving them hand made gifts and giving them cute pet names like love bug, sweetheart, sweet tea (a different way of saying sweetie). I offer genuine advice to them, even if I know it'll hurt or upset them. I want the best for my partner, even if it means taking the path of most resistance. I want someone who can aim an arrow into my heart. I look for someone who shares my taste in music and who will listen to music we both enjoy together. I like the area of Melanie Martinez, Billie Eilish, Ricky Montgomery, lofi beats and some of the older country music, like from the 80s and 90s. Generic, I know.
As for anything specific, perhaps my matchup's opinion on having children? I'd really like to have a child someday.
Thank you again so much for the matchup exchange offer, it's very kind of you 💗
— matchup exchange
ty sm again for doing this exchange with me! you seem so nice i’m v down to be mutuals/friends with you (only if you want ofc)! also, what would your quirk be? i’m v interested in what it would be since i mentioned what mine would be on my submission to you. i hope you enjoy your match!
i match you with...
| hi yes i matched you with a human marshmallow. one of the reasons why i matched you with taishiro is because of the difference in your personalities and the way he would work well with your personality because of how much he cares. the way you’d meet him would probably be by working at his office. he’d find you to be so sweet that he wants to get to know you better. he actually doesn’t mind how proper and emotionally distant you are because he understands that everyone is different and present themselves differently.
| you’d take some time to open up to him and become friends but he’s completely fine with that! he understands reserved people because of tamaki & only wants you to feel comfortable around him. because of that,,, taishiro definitely always starts the conversations. “how’s your day?” “what did you do over the weekend?” “what did you think of that movie?” once you become more talkative with him and have your conversations, he’d be so happy because he sees it as a new level of friendship.
| that’s when he starts realizing he actually has a crush on you. he’d confess at the end of a long work day and explain that he’d like to be your partner,, “i really enjoy your company and i want to be your partner for a long time- oh i just realized what i said, only if you also want to be my partner- or i mean would like to give me a chance to prove myself-“ idk how he managed to get himself out of that one but it would end with you accepting to have dinner at his house.
| like i’ve said before, taishiro doesn’t mind that you’re emotionally distant. he knows you care and just show it differently than others. the first time he saw you angry at someone he was very scared & shocked because he’s never seen you that way before. he just stood behind you as you absolutely slaughtered the person you were angry at and watched with wide eyes before trying to diffuse the situation. he asked if you were okay and that it wasn’t a big deal that that person was insulting him but he expressed how grateful he was for you standing up for him. he never wants to see you like that again but he’s glad he got to see every part you.
| HE IS VERY RESPECTFUL ABOUT PRONOUNS!! that was probably the first thing he asked you! “oh! he/him and they/them? i go by he/him too!” he’d even write it down to remember because he doesn’t want to make any mistakes or offend anyone.
| taishiro would be so supportive of your comic! he’d check up on you when you’re working on it and bring you cut fruit and water. he’d genuinely be so interested in your drawings and writings— he’s not artistic so seeing it come so easily to someone would be so cool to him. he’d only read and look at what you’re comfortable with sharing though! if you ever ask for any creative help, he’d be 100% down to help you. he comes up with the coolest ideas too and you wonder why he says he’s not artistic.
| on his days off you guys either stay indoors and play animal crossing or walk around and collect pokémon. his island would be so messy so he’d always try to copy your island. island visits & he always leave you gifts. he’d have so many pokémon because he plays when he’s on parole (oops!). he’d jokingly brag about it to you and would offer to take you with him next time but he doesn’t want you to get hurt. he seems like the type to be secretly very good at card games?? he’d just surprise you with how good and competitive he is when you play together and with other people.
| taishiro listens to old country music. he knows every lyric to every dolly parton song and sings when he thinks he’s alone. you’d have to introduce him to your other favorite artists & he’d absolutely love their songs! ricky montgomery makes him cry a little but he’s fine! he swears! even though there’s tears rolling down face!
| PLEASE COOK HIM FOOD! the first time you cook him food to show your love he just blushes and smiles the whole time. he can’t. HE CAN’T! HE JUST LOVES YOU SO MUCH ALREADY HOW IS IT POSSIBLE FOR HIM TO LOVE YOU EVEN MORE??? every other food is ruined for him after you cook for him because your cooking is the absolute best to him.
| he’d love the small gifts you give him, he’d treasure every single one of them and display them around the house. sweet tea would be a perfect pet name for him- he loves it so much. he’d call you love bug in return and cook you dinner and give you small gifts. he’s definitely an acts of service and quality time guy. just being in the same room as you doing separate work is good enough for him. your presence just soothes him and he has a blast!
| taishiro values your opinions very much. he always tries to be the best partner for you and listen to you because you have so much insight. he also trusts you so much and knows you mean well when giving him advice. he just loves you so much, he doesn’t want to disappoint!
his opinion on having children
| he basically already adopted tamaki & kirishima, of course he wants kids!
| you’d have to be the one to bring it up because he doesn’t want to seem like he’s forcing you into anything.
| he’s so relieved once you do bring it up though! “yes! i want to have a family with you!”
| it doesn’t matter if you have them biologically, adopt, or have a surrogate— he loves his child so much and cried because he was so overwhelmed with love and finally being a dad.
| he’d be the best dad! (although a bit clueless) he wouldn’t imagine having a family with anyone other than you. you’re just perfect for him.
| he’d also ask if you could adopt a dog
| he is so protective over his family too. if anything were to happen to either of you, he would be so upset because you’re his life.
| overall, taishiro would try to give you and the child the best life!
i hope you enjoyed! pls lmk if anything is inaccurate or if you want me to make it longer.