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Stars & Stripes

You can always tell when Harry has sex.

Harry and Olivia didn’t talk about the night at her father’s, and what he learned about her mother, and it appeared there was some unspoken promise to not tell any of the band mates because none of them acted any different, not the way Harry did. He looked at Olivia with some sort of new recognition. She wasn’t just a over-achieving, serious-all-the-time girl with dead eyes. He respected her a little more even though she didn’t need to prove anything to him, but he respected her all the same.

“You look tired.” A voice rumbled from across the room. Olivia rubbed her eyes in the direction the body that was blocking the kitchen light stood.

Loud shouts of obscenities, and cheesy video game music echoed from living room.

“I’m exhausted.” Olivia mumbled, sitting at the counter of their new room in Massachusetts. “Taking care of a headliner is exhausting.”

They made brief eye contact. Your mum was murdered in a terrorist attack, Olive. That was nine-eleven.

It was like a flash of light, the way Harry’s voice intruded her mind. Olivia blinked and looked back to her itinerary for the next day.

“Olive,” Harry’s voice was suddenly soft. Olivia flashed her eyes to his face and it was void of that snarky smirk that irked her so whole heartily. They hadn’t had much time to talk in the past three days and all Harry wanted to do was bring up her mother and learn more about Olivia.

And that was the last thing Olivia wanted.

“You should get to bed.” Olivia dismissed his advance, shuffling papers uselessly. “Another long day.”

“No longer than usual.” Harry shrugged, taking a seat next to the American at the bar. “Olivia,” He tried again.

Olivia pressed her lips into a colorless line. Her cold grey eyes warned Harry not to go there. But, Harry loved nothing more then doing what he wasn’t supposed to.

“What was your mum like?”

“I don’t know.” Olivia answered shortly. “What’s yours like?”

“I’m being serious, Olive.” Harry tilted his head, a few curls fell forward.

“Me, too,” Her demeanor flipped three-sixty. Her tone was light and suddenly Harry wasn’t sure what kind of territory he was in.

Harry didn’t know where to go from here. He didn’t want to upset Olivia but his curiosity was getting the better of him. This was none of his business and Harry had no idea what he would do if he lost his mother. So, that’s what he decided to talk about.

“See this?” Harry rolled up his sleeve suddenly, showing Olivia his inner arm. Olivia humored the Brit and eyed a small ink in the form of an ‘A’. Olivia stayed quiet. “I got this for my mum. ‘A’ for Anne.” Harry smiled lightly, “She’s probably my favorite person in the world.”

“Probably?” Olivia quirked a tense brow.

“Yeah, unless you wanna audition for the role.” Harry tried to smile playfully but went on seriously, “She’s the one I call when I’m having a bad day or read something horrible online about myself or the boys. She’s the one who took care of me, made this dream,” He gestured to the room, “Made everything possible. She believed in me when even I didn’t. When my cockiness couldn’t get me through X Factor, she did. And if I ever lost her, I don’t know what I would do.” His eyes were brimmed red with sadness, his chest heaved heavily, like he had just taken a huge load off his shoulders. Harry’s bright green eyes stared at his tattoo briefly before settling on Olivia.

Her expression was unreadable but her tone wasn’t. “That’s heartwarming and all, Harry. Really, it is. But, I’m exhausted so can we not do this right now?”

Harry wetted his lips, watching as Olivia got up without an answer. “Sleep good, yeah, Olive?”

“You, too, Harry. Try to get to bed before the sun comes up, okay?” She said.

“Sounds reasonable.” Harry nodded, staying put as he watched the distracted teen walk down the hall.

Talking about mothers reminded Olivia of her dad and how he never did tell her what he promised he would.

+ + +

Louis and Zayn stood in their joining bathroom, staring in horror at the ripped article of clothing in both their hands. There was silence for a few moments before Louis let out a high pitched yelp. Olivia, Harry, Niall, and Liam were in the door frame within seconds.

“What happened?” Olivia breathed, nudging past Niall.

They both held up half a beanie with the same painful expression clad on their countenances. Neither of them seemed to be able to form words on their predicament, it hurt too much.

“Louis, Zayn, what is going on?” Olivia tried again.

“You ripped Louis’ lucky beanie? The one Eleanor gave him?” Harry offered. They both nodded, their eyes wide with shock.

“Oh, no.” Niall muttered. “Oh, no he didn’t.”

Olivia looked wearily at Harry. “What does this mean?”

Harry shrugged. “He’s lost it before but we always found it.”

“I just wanted to wear it…” Zayn finally muttered. That seemed to click something in Louis.

“I’ll kill you!” He shouted, jumping comically on top of Zayn. Zayn shrieked, covering his hands over his head to protect his hair. Harry wrapped his arms around Louis, easily pulling him away from the vane teen.

“How about we make a compromise?” Liam said responsibly.

“I get to mess up Zayn’s hair and he never touches my hats again?” Louis pouted.

“I think that’s only fair.” Niall shrugged.

“Well, until we get it fixed, I need a new beanie.” Louis decided, crossing his arms definitively.

Harry rolled his eyes.

“Well,” Olivia sighed, “You do have a free day. I can take you…shopping.” The last word pained Olivia to say. She was hoping they’d just want to stay in and not cause trouble, or at least not cause trouble publicly. That apparently wasn’t going to be the case.

Louis brightened up immediately. “I’ll grab my sweater!”

“I’m coming!” Zayn rushed after Louis.

“Me, too!” Niall grinned, hurrying out to the front door to wait impatiently.

Liam pushed his hands into his jeans. “I guess we’re all going shopping for Lou’s new beanie.” Liam snorted, eyeing what was on Harry’s head, “Speaking of beanies, who was she?”

Harry blinked, glancing nervously at Olivia. He shrugged as Olivia furrowed her brows, unsure what Liam was talking about. “Who was who?” She asked.

“The bird Harold shagged last night.” Liam nodded to the beanie. “You can always tell when Harry has sex. He always wears that bloody beanie.” He laughed to himself, “It’s like you want the public to know.” And Liam skipped out of the room, running after Louis and Zayn who had just clamored by.

There was an awkward air between Olivia and Harry and neither were quite sure why.

Olivia cleared her throat uncomfortably, “You coming, too?”

The curly-haired boy shrugged nonchalantly, “I guess.”

“Okay,” Olivia said slowly, “Nice beanie.” It was the same one Harry wore when she had picked them up from the airport a week ago.

Harry took it off, his cheeks tinted rosy. He had never once been embarrassed about wearing the ‘morning-after’ beanie before Olivia. He wasn’t sure why. Olivia worked for him. She was barely a friend, if that.

But, sometimes Harry wasn’t so sure if that was how he really felt.

“We’re leaving in five minutes.” Olivia muttered, slinking out of the room without making eye contact. “Don’t take the hat off on my account.”

+ + +

H&M,” Niall smelled the warm Bostonian air, “It’s like being back home.”

“If you live in a colorful department store,” Liam nodded, “Then, yeah, it’s like being back home.”

Niall rolled his bright blues and strutted into the store indignantly.

“I think you hurt his feelings.” Olivia cracked a smile.

“I’ll buy him a pretzel,” Liam grinned, “he’ll get over it.”

Louis lowered his Ray Bans. They had all taken to wearing hoodies in the heat and sunglasses indoors. It was a red flag if Olivia ever saw one but so far it had worked.

“Let’s see what they have in store for us.” Louis pursed his lips, snorting loudly.

“Hilarious.” Harry rolled his eyes behind his shades. His beanie was back atop his curly mop. He hadn’t showered yet so he had to wear it. That’s what he told himself.

“I thought so.” Louis pouted, throwing a lazy arm over his best mate’s shoulder, “But I’ll forgive you for your lack of understanding of great comedy because you’re wearing that wretched beanie and still limping from that dirty lass last night.”

Harry gaped at Louis before shoving him playfully and heading off into the store. Zayn and Liam walked in with Olivia close behind.

Olivia waded through racks of discount items whilst keeping an eye on the boys. A few people had recognized them, asking for pictures and autographs but it remained pretty low-key. Louis easily became distracted from his beanie search with clothes and was in the dressing room with the rest of the band, trying on the entire store.

Olivia waited patiently, checking her phone for any messages. She had hoped her father would call but he didn’t. There was a text from Julia asking how the boys were. Olivia ignored it and pocketed the device. When she looked up, Harry was staring down at her.

Olivia started, “Jesus, Harry.”

“Sorry,” He cracked a small smile, “Didn’t mean to make you say something religious.”

The American eyed him questioningly. “I saw you when your dad was praying at dinner. That’s all.”

“Alright,” Olivia muttered before looking around Harry for the others.

“They’re still trying things on.” He told her.

“Right,” She nodded, looking around for something to say or do. They stood in silence as something ebbed away at Olivia. Without meaning to say what she was thinking, Olivia blurted, “So, who was the dirty lass from last night who’s got you limping?”

Harry was taken aback. For a moment, he forgot how to respond. “I—uhm—sorry?”

“Forget it,” Olivia said quickly, her pupils dilated. She shook her head profusely, “Forget I said anything.” She shoved past him to see Niall coming out with a pile of clothes.

“Find anything?” Olivia said casually.

“Nah,” Niall shook his head, earning a stare from a nearby customer in result of his thick foreign accent. “these are Zayn’s ‘no’s’. I’ve still got loads more to try!”

Damnit, Olivia thought. She could feel Harry’s unwanted presence behind her. She had half a mind to grab the nearest clothing item and run off to the dressing rooms but there was a mile long line and she couldn’t escape Harry. He was like a leech you couldn’t burn off.

Olivia glared directly at Harry, hoping to scare him off (and having no other response to his irritating presence).

“Do you want to grab a bite to eat?” It caught Olivia off-guard. That was the last thing she thought Harry was going to say. “The lads are going to be awhile. We might as well keep ourselves occupied.”

“You sure you don’t need to add another twelve outfits to your never-ending wardrobe?” Olivia muttered smartly.

“Nah, I’m good.” Harry said cautiously, “But I could go for some of that frozen yogurt.”

“I can’t just leave them here, unattended.” Olivia declined, “God knows what havoc they’ll wreak if I’m not around.”

Harry sighed, testing a smile, “Honestly, Olive, if they’re going to ‘wreak havoc’ they’re going to ‘wreak havoc’. You won’t be able to stop them.”

“And that’s your brilliant speech to get me to leave Britain’s most wanted alone in a store full of desperate teenage girls?” Olivia snorted sardonically.

Harry restrained from rolling his eyes, “I’ll talk to the lads. You do know we’re all older than you? And that we can behave appropriately without a babysitter?”

There was a slight accusatory edge to his voice that Olivia didn’t particularly care for. She bit her lip, mulling it over. Olivia knew she was treating them like idiotic children, but sometimes that’s how they were. He couldn’t blame her for doing her job or being rightly cautious.

“It’s not you,” Olivia sighed finally, “It’s everyone else. Julia’s like my aunt, but if something goes wrong I’ll still have my ass handed to me.”

Harry nodded sympathetically. “Well, she can’t get mad at you for doing what I want you to.”

“What?” Olivia questioned.

“I, Harry Styles, demand that you, Olivia Mann, accompany me to a frozen delicacy—or so help me God, I will report you for being insubordinate.” He grinned, knowing he was safe for now.

Olivia shook her head. “If Louis and Zayn get in another fight, it’s on your ass.”

“And what a lovely arse it is.” He held out his arm but Olivia ignored it. Instead she walked briskly past him, texting the missing Brits that they were leaving for a few minutes and she trusted them to not burn down the department store in the mean time.



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