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Stars & Stripes

What happened to your mum.

It was Wednesday. Olivia had arrived at her father’s apartment early to try to speak with him about the other day but he wasn’t home. There was a note on the counter stating that he went to the store to pick up a nice dinner and would be back by seven. Since the boys were at a concert until then, Olivia was left alone for an hour.

She wandered around the familiar flat. Olivia had grown up in the large space. It was always clean and quiet when her father wasn’t home. He hated the silence, always having one or more of the televisions on throughout the two-floored apartment. Olivia didn’t mind it so much. And after three straight days with One Direction, she welcomed the foreign silence.

But after five minutes of sitting on the long, plush tan couch in silence, Olivia found herself turning on the television like her father, putting the volume on low. Some crime show popped on. Olivia’s parents had been Law and Order junkies. Olivia could never stomach the show, sometimes it hit too close to home. Charles kept watching it after his wife was gone but Olivia refused to join him.

It felt strange to be back in her childhood home after two months of life on her own. She hadn’t visited in those two months but occasionally saw her father at NYPR or talked over the phone. They weren’t estranged but they weren’t as close as they used to be.

With nothing else to do, Olivia stretched across the comfortable couch and rested her eyes. She thought she was only out for a minute when a 130 pound body slammed down on her, causing a yelp to erupt from Olivia’s mouth.

Jesus Christ,” Olivia gasped, shoving Louis off the couch. A quiet umph sounded from the ground but the room was filled with easy laughter. Olivia sniffed, rubbing her tired eyes. The cushion next to her sank and a curly head of hair met her gaze. “Hey, Olive.”

“Hi,” Olivia answered shortly. They hadn’t spoken much since Harry’s drunken confession. He didn’t seem to remember they had even had a conversation but Olivia couldn’t forget. He gave her a close-lipped smile before a clap sounded through the room.

“Alright, who wants to help me cook up some pasta?” Charles grinned, breaking the tension.

Niall shot up immediately, “Me!” and bolted into the large, spacious kitchen. It was much like the kitchen in their apartment at the hotel but bigger and full of more, expensive tools. Charles loved to cook for his family and made everything from scratch. Tonight was no different. He had planned a big dinner: ravioli, filet mignon, spinach, and potato crips. Frozen yogurt and various toppings were for dessert. They were all Olivia’s favorite food items.

“Me, too!” Louis cried, bounding after the blonde. Zayn and Liam hurried after them, stopping by the table filled with crackers, dips, and cheese to fill up.

Harry stayed next to Olivia. Charles grinned madly; it was nice to have company over for once. Usually it was just him and Julia. Having Olivia over with these boys was a nice change.

“Well, why don’t you show Harry around while we get dinner started?” Charles proposed, winking at the two before practically skipping off into the busy kitchen.

The last thing Olivia wanted to do was show Harry around her childhood home. It felt too personal for a guy she had known less than a week. There were things she wasn’t ready for Harry to know and that he probably should never know since their relationship would only span three weeks.

Harry’s green orbs stared expectantly at the girl. Slowly, Olivia rose from the couch and walked out of the living room and down the dark hallway. She flipped on the light switch a quarter of the way down the hall, knowing the place from memory in the blackness. The hall was forced into relief, showing the red, Persian carpet, the pale lavender walls, and the memorial shrine at the end of the hall. Olivia kept her head down as she walked down the hall, listening to Harry’s footsteps close behind. The T-shaped hall ended at the large wooden podium covered in photos and newspaper clippings and a piece of shrapnel. Olivia veered off to the right where her room and the home theater were held on the adjacent hall. It didn’t take long for her to notice that Harry had stopped walking.

Olivia halted, silently begging Harry to keep moving. She didn’t want to talk about what he was about to bring up. Olivia turned around wordlessly and Harry was staring up at the pictures. Crossing her arms, Olivia leaned against the side wall. She waited until Harry glanced over at her, his mouth agape.

“Is this—?” His voice was quiet, like he was afraid of being overheard.

“My mom?” Olivia offered, nodding her head, “Yes.”

“What is this?” He asked, pointing at the shrapnel. Olivia’s throat felt swollen, she didn’t want to talk about it. She hated talking about it.

“A piece of a building.” She answered thickly. Harry looked back at the wall, glancing over the articles and pictures.

“Olivia,” Harry furrowed his thin brows, his pale face full of concern.

“Harry,” Olivia pursed her lips, her tone slightly mocking.

“Olivia,” He repeated, more forcefully, “What happened to your mum?”

“It’s all right there.” She answered shortly, “Do you really need me to fill in the blanks?”

Harry gave her a sympathetic look and it was just the thing to set her off. She let out a cruel laugh, shaking her head. “Don’t patronize me, Harry. It was eleven years ago. I don’t need the ‘I’m-so-sorry-for-your-loss’ bit. I’m over it.” Harry blinked at her hateful glare.

“You’re over it?” Harry asked disbelievingly. Olivia didn’t blink. She pressed her lips together in a tight line, telling Harry to drop it. But, he wouldn’t. “Your mum didn’t just die. I remember watching this on the telly in Holmes Chapel,” Harry pointed to two tall buildings burning to the ground. Harry shivered to think Olivia’s mother had been in there. “Your mum was murdered in a terrorist attack, Olive. That was nine-eleven.”

“I think I know exactly what day it was, Harry.” Olivia snapped angrily, “I was there. You weren’t.”

Olivia shoved passed the Brit. Having no intention of showing him around anymore, she stormed down the hall. Harry didn’t call after her. Olivia wasn’t sure if it was because he didn’t want to draw any attention or he knew better than to keep up the conversation. Either way, no one followed her back to the kitchen.

“Hiya, Olive!” Niall yelled, washing vegetables in the large stainless steel sink. Olivia looked at him before seating herself next to Louis on the five person island. One glance at his daughter and Charles knew Harry had confronted her about her mother. He side hugged her warmly before distracting Niall with food.

Louis peered over at the American, cutting up spices with a butcher knife. He couldn’t help but notice that Harry hadn’t come back from wherever he was. This was the second time Harry had upset Olivia with his advances (as Louis referred to them without the whole story). Louis vowed to put a stop to this tonight after they left the Mann’s.

“What did he do this time?” Louis asked, his voice barely above a whisper. Olivia had grabbed a knife of her own and began chopping with unnecessary force.

Olivia let out a small, humorless laugh but didn’t go into it. If she did, she would have to explain why she was angry and that involved delving into the untouchable topic of her mother.

Harry wouldn’t be allowed alone with her if Louis knew he had kissed her a few nights ago. Olivia wasn’t totally sure why Louis was so intense on Harry’s ways with woman. Sure, he didn’t particularly like Harry’s current fling (who—now that Olivia that about it—had been slightly cheated on), but who gave him such a big say in Harry’s life? What Harry did in his personal life shouldn’t have been any of Louis’ business.

“Nothing, Lou,” Olivia answered as Harry slinked back into the room, avoiding Louis’ glare, asking Charles what he could do to help.

“You missed a good show tonight, Olivia,” Liam grinned, rolling pasta at the end of the marble counter, in between Niall and the stainless, double-doored refrigerator. Olivia forced a smile onto her face.

“Yeah,” Zayn happily chimed in, setting the table in the open dining room off the kitchen. “Harry slipped on some cake a fan got us and fell flat on his arse. It was the funniest thing ever!” He gave a bellied laugh, reminiscing fondly.

Harry rolled his eyes, “I’m glad my pain and embarrassment gives you enjoyment.”

“Oh,” Liam set a hand on his friends shoulder, “it does.”

Harry nudged it off, smiling lightly as he pulled a few glass plates from the white cupboard.

Charles changed the subject, asking the boys how they liked New York and America so far. That conversation lasted until dinner was ready about an hour later. It was mostly just Niall discussing what foods he liked best. That was an endless rant in it of itself.

Just as they were about to sit down for dinner the door bell echoed through the lively apartment. Charles grinned happily and hurried to the door. Julia stood smiling on the welcome mat. “Charlie,” She hugged him before letting herself in.

“Julia?” Olivia questioned, in the middle of pushing out her chair to take a seat.

“Don’t sound so surprised, Olive,” Julia tutted, making her way through the dining room, her heels clicking loudly across the mahogany floor. “I spend more time here than you!” And she engulfed the teen in a hug.

“I figured if we were going to have a family dinner we couldn’t not invite her.” Charles replied good-naturedly, pulling out the seat in between himself and Harry. Everyone took their seats at the long, rectangular table. Niall was about to dig in when he noticed Charles bow his head and pull his hands into his lap, falling silent. Niall looked around, seeing almost everyone copying his gesture to pray. Everyone but Olivia.

Olivia sat quietly in her seat next to Louis and her father, eyes wide and head staring straight ahead. It always made her feel uncomfortable when her father prayed before a meal. He used to do it out loud. Her mother and Olivia would hold hands with him and recite some dinner-time hymn. After her mother died, Olivia stopped praying. She was only seven and had already lost faith.

“Let’s eat,” Charles said brightly when he was finished. Sounds of utensils scraping against the bowls and plates and groans of approval filled the room of hungry friends.


Thanks for the love, loves! (:



I can't find it on mibba did you change the name?
Lovingly lonely Lovingly lonely

Could you post it on here?
HopelessDream HopelessDream
I apologize! I thought I had put up the first chapter! RuthlessAdandon is correct. It is up on my Mibba page.
oh ok thanks :)

It's on her Mibba page under the same username.
RuthlessAbandon RuthlessAbandon