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Chapter 25 : Revelations, Good and Bad
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Then he moves back.
"Not tonight," he whispers.
I let him go. "Well, that was just mean."
"I know what you want, you've wanted it for weeks." I roll my eyes; understatement. "But you're only reacting to what your body is telling you you want. What your body wants and what you're ready for are two completely different things. Soon."
"I hate you when you're rational," I stick out my bottom lip. I learned from the best (Carrie) and I can sulk for a long time.
"You'd hate me even more if I weren't," he promises me. I shrug; we'll never know.
...I'm okay with that.
Our next kiss is short, but undeniably hot. I'm left breathless and leaning against the bedpost Louis pushed me to. Somehow my shirt ends up on the floor anyway. "I'll see you in the morning, Key. Good night."
"Yeah, night." The door closes shut behind him and I shake my head in rapid movements, as if that'll make the current feelings I have go away. "Okay."
It's gonna be a long night.
I toss and turn, I count sheep, I even sing myself a lullaby my mum used to sing to me when I was little, but nothing works. I just can't sleep. My body is wired, I feel like it's still day and I should be up and doing something instead of lying in bed, which is extremely odd, considering how lazy I can be and I usually love staying in bed.
Sighing, I push the covers away and get up. I remember the way to the kitchen well enough that I don't need to wake Louis and I take slow, almost cautious steps down the stairs so not to make any noise. I keep my hand against the wall to guide my way and I find the sink easily enough. Next the glasses; that's the tricky part. I check the side first and it seems luck is with me tonight. I turn the tap and let it run, and then fill my glass. I take a sip and pour the water out and try again; luck doesn't like me that much. Yeah, I want cold water, not hot.
My second try is a lot better and I drink slowly, in no rush to go back up stairs. When I finish, I put the glass into the sink and my walk back to the stairs is even slower than before, this time for a very different reason; I know I won't be able to sleep when I get back into bed. What will I do besides lie there?
I get to the stairs and lean against what I think is a wall, but is actually a door, catching myself before I fall flat on my ass when it opens on me. I remember stopping at this door after Louis had shown me to my room; it's the music room, with the piano. I turn to where the stairs are when I think I hear faint movements coming from above, but decide to chance it. Playing has helped me to sleep a few times, it calms me.
I shut the door behind me and find the piano. I miss playing when I'm at Hogwarts, the school doesn't have a piano and I can't bring my keyboard. I wonder briefly if the Room of Requirement would conjure one if I asked it to, I've never tried. I practise with my fingers, as Louis pointed out once, but it's just not the same. I realize this every time I run my hands over the keys.
It's a moderately fast song, an old song. I love it and it definitely fits my mood sometimes, especially tonight. I play two verses and a chorus, barely noticing someone's come in until a pair of arms wrap themselves around my waist. I jump slightly, calm down quickly, but stop playing.
"How come you're up?" Louis murmurs sleepily, his head resting on my shoulder and his legs either side of me as he squeezes onto the seat to sit behind me.
"Couldn't sleep. You?"
"I went to the bathroom, heard the music. It could only have been you playing," he says.
"Did I wake you?" I ask, worried.
"No," he reassures me with a squeeze. "Every room has a Silencing charm around it, you can't hear anything until you leave the room. Keep playing, I've never heard you play before."
I hesitate for a second, not used to having an audience, then I remember when he showed me his art. That was hard for him; I kind of owe him for that. So, I play the song again, picking up where I left off.
"I don't know the song," Louis says into my ear. "What is it?"
I open my mouth to tell him the name of the song, and then close it again. I have a better idea; I can kill two birds with one stone if I let him hear me now.
"You know I'd walk a thousand miles if I could just see you tonight," I sing softly. I continue to sing the rest of the song while he listens, silent apart from his light breathing. I can feel the rise and fall of his chest against my back. I get to the end of the song and remove my hands from the keys slowly. "You like?" I'm nervous about his reaction, considering the lyrics in the song I chose to sing.
"Hmm," is all he says, his tone suggesting he's not entirely happy about it, but is willing to let it go tonight. "Play another?"
I nod and start another favorite of mine. This one is slower the first and I let him know that it doesn't have words to it, so I can't sing it. I just want him to listen. I get through the first couple of minutes without any trouble, focusing on the music, it's after that when I start to lose focus. Louis runs his hands slowly up my back, which is bare as I decided to only wear my pyjama bottoms, while his lips and teeth graze my neck and right ear lobe. It's very distracting, I should really tell him to stop.
He keeps going, his hands stopping at my shoulders and then moving down my arms. He leaves open mouthed kisses along my neck, biting and sucking at the bit of skin that connects my neck to my shoulder, and I know he's intentionally left a mark there. "This song might be my favorite," he whispers.
I don't answer him. His hands stop at my wrists, his mouth moves to my jaw. I finally get to the end of the song and Louis curls his hands over my own, bringing them to rest across my stomach. I turn my head to the right and kisses me.
I could get used to this.
"That's never happened before," I say when he pulls back.
"I should hope not. Coming back to bed?"
Shivers of excitement run down my spine when I hear those words, like we're together, home, and sharing a bed. He makes it sound like it's our bed we can go back to. That's what I want. "Yes."
Louis doesn't let go of my hand after he helps me up and he comes into the room with me. A good sign.
"Will you be staying put this time?" he asks with a chuckle.
"Maybe," I answer.
"I'll see you when you wake, Key."
I grab his hand before he can turn and leave. He starts to speak and I stop him quickly, pressing my thumb over his lips. I know what he's going to say and that's not what I'm about to tell him. I can't believe I'm going to do this, I was so sure I'd win, but it's one of the last hurdles we have until we're at that point where we know everything. I know he already knows, but I was never the one to tell him; I need to do this. I know that now. "Ciaran. My name is Ciaran."
"Key-ah-ran," he sounds it out slowly. Most people do when they hear it, making sure they've heard right.
"Yes. My mother still had a French accent back then, apparently my name came out like that and she liked it, so she kept the pronunciation," I explain. "Most people just pronounce it 'Keer-an'. Not Lucy, though, hence the admittedly growing on me nickname, Key."
"I love your names. Good night, Ciaran."
I hold back my surprise at how odd my name sounds now that I've heard him say it, but I love hearing it at the same time. Weird.
I don't let go of his arm. "Stay with me."
"Not to -"
"Not for that," I promise. "Just stay with me. Please."
I lower myself onto the bed and move across, lying on my left side like always. Louis is behind me moments later, his arm wrapped around me tightly. He whispers good night one last time and I do the same, my eyes closing. This is what I want.
I fall asleep almost instantly.
The alarm clock rings right by my ear, waking me up from what little sleep I had. I stretch my hand upwards and find the button to switch it off. Then I turn to lie on my back. Louis must have moved in his sleep; his arm is still around my waist, but it's stretched. There's a gap between me and him. When I turn, he falls forward, his chin hitting my shoulder with a thud. I wince, he groans and he moves upwards, so his head is closer to mine and I can feel his warm breath around my mouth, but he doesn't wake up.
I've never been awake before Louis, being near him while he slept. I have to wonder what he's like when he's asleep. Does he sleep with his mouth open? Does he snore? I fell asleep too quickly to know that one. I always fall asleep on my left side, does he have a sleeping position as well?
I move my hand along his arm gently, so not to wake him, and continue up, threading my fingers through his hair. Maybe the action tickles him because his next sound is more like a chuckle, and he moves closer to me, his arm wrapped tighter around me. I find his lips and give him a small, barely even real, kiss, much like the one's he'd give me.
"Nice wake-up call," he whispers. "It's only seven am, Ciaran, you can go back to sleep."
I turn to lie on my right side, my forehead touching Louis'. "There are so many better things we could be doing."
"When I said 'not tonight' I didn't mean you could try again the next morning," he says, laughing. He sounds very surprised by my sudden want to stay awake. Does he not realize how long I've wanted this? Waited for this? I complained about it to him often enough.
"I wasn't talking about sex, it's not all I think about, you know? Do you have something you need to share?"
"Ciaran, I haven't had sex in almost a year; it is all I think about."
"Then your self-restraint is something to be admired." Louis hmmm's in agreement. "Until you believe me when I say I'm ready, I'm going to test that self-restraint."
"You're so mean to me," he murmurs huskily. He sounds so sexy when his voice is low like that; it definitely wakes up every part of my body.
"Yes, but you'll let me anyway," I state with a smile.
With my hand still pulling his hair, I bring him closer, deciding to ignore my usual hatred for morning breath. I just miss his mouth, but I don't care. Despite my enthusiasm, as he would call it, and the fact that I initiated it, Louis quickly and, admittedly, quite easily shows off his experience and takes control, rolling me onto my back to lie on top. "You're getting better at this," he says, pulling back ever so slightly.
"Well, I have been told numerous times by numerous people that practice makes perfect, I've decided that it's time I take their advice." I don't say any more about that; going into detail would just ruin the mood.
"Ciaran James taking advice from another human being, I never thought I'd see the day," Louis gasps, feigning shock.
I pull him to me.
The door opens. "Have you seen - Louis!"
Louis jumps up and I join him; he's still sitting on top of me and I balance on my elbows with my head close to his heart. "Grandma!"
"I'll be downstairs," she mumbles. Well, I say mumbles; she manages to make her voice abnormally high-pitched while still keeping it low. I have never heard a sound like that from another person before.
"I should go talk to her," he says after a few moments, moving away from me. I'm honored with a quick, soft kiss. Then long, hard, very thorough snog.
Ha. That sounds like such a British word. It's very funny, actually saying it makes me want to laugh.
"Stay," he makes me promise. "I'll be back. Stay."
"I am a human being, not a dog," I remind him. "But since you asked so nicely..."
He follows after her, leaving me alone. I find it oddly discomforting, like the room is suddenly unfamiliar, almost wrong. I've started to get used to staying with Louis at night and waking up with him in the morning; he should be here.
I lift myself up further, balancing on my hands rather than my elbows, and stretch across the bed. That's when I hear the voices; they're close enough for me to hear their voices, but not enough to hear exactly what they're saying. I try to do as Louis wanted, but curiosity gets the best of me completely; I crawl off the bed without making a sound and tip toe to the door. Louis left the door open, I understand now why I can hear them when Louis said they have Silencing charms, and I sneak out. I hear them clearly now, they're by the bottom of the stairs, yelling in French.
"Stop it! You do not get to dictate my life!" Louis suddenly yells in English. "Ciaran is my boyfriend! If I want to be with him, I will! You have no say!"
"It's not about Ciaran's family. I'm sure he's a good boy, but can you see yourself and him together? You have different lives, Louis, can you put yours on hold to help him because of his... Condition?"
My knees almost buckle when I realize exactly what it is she is trying to say to him. Recently my biggest fear has become being resented by Louis because I've held him back. He's helped me to believe in myself and I know that there are plenty of things I can do, but he's wrong when he says I can do anything. I'm a realist; there are plenty of things I can't do. I need help, I need Louis.
What if I can't have him?
What if I shouldn't have him?
"Do you hear yourself?" Louis' voice sounds incredibly quiet, almost far away, even though I know he's yelling. He's absolutely pissed. "I don't care that he can't see, I don't care that you obviously think he's not good enough. If he needs me, I will be there, no questions asked, and I will do it gladly because I will do anything for him. Because you will do anything for the person you fall in love with."
That does it. I fall to the floor and grasp the banister so tightly my palms hurt. He loves me. His voice softens, even though he's still angry; he seems to just be realizing that he loves me.
"I'm not letting him go just because you think he can't manage and will bring me down with him," Louis says, no longer yelling. Maybe he just doesn't have the energy. "He knows how to look after himself, even when he doesn't believe it himself. He's more than capable and I believe in him, so does his friends and his family. We always will, until the day comes when I can give him everything he wants. I have to go upstairs, we leave soon. We have to go. I'll be -"
"No. I haven't felt this way about another person in a long time. I won't make the same mistakes again."
The creak of the bottom step forces me to get up and I get back into the bedroom before Louis can notice I left. I drop myself onto the bed automatically, feeling completely empty. It's still a while before Louis comes back inside, a small part of me wonders how long it will for him to compose himself. There's a soft click of the door finally.
"I love the whole 'just got out of bed' look, with the messed up hair, the casual pose and the very low pants. It's extremely sexy."
He sounds exactly like his old self. I'd be worried if he weren't; it did take him two hundred and forty-eight seconds between him coming up stairs and coming inside to pretend everything was. I ended up counting.
It's not really his voice I pay attention to, it's the words.
Louis stands over me, his lips just touching mine. I move my head to look down. "What's the matter?"
"Nothing," I lie. "I was thinking about school tomorrow; Abby will kill me if I haven't got my wand work perfect when she sees me. NEWTs are soon, you know. I just want to go home now."
I'm aware my voice is shaky, but I pretend that I don't notice anything. It's crucial at this point that I control myself quickly; if I take as long as he did, he won't just have suspicions, he'll lock me in a room and make me tell.
"We'll leave soon. I'll set your clothes on the bed, we'll get dressed and have breakfast," he promises, sounding confused and worried.
I don't want him to set out the clothes for me... Even though I need him to. "I'm not hungry," I mutter. "I just want to go."
"You have to eat, Key. Besides, the train doesn't leave for another four and a half hours. We'll go out for breakfast, I know how much you love the croissants from the café in town."
"I do love those," I admit.
I don't move when he kisses me again and he doesn't try to push it. "I'll get your clothes." There's absolute silence between us while he goes through my bag. When he's done, he places his lips on the top of my head. "Please tell me what's wrong."
I don't say anything, I don't know what to say. Too much has happened in such a small amount of time. He loves me, yet he shouldn't be with me.
I hear the door open and close and I sit frozen. I have no idea what will happen after today.
I mean, how do you tell the one guy you might just be in love with that it's over?
A/N: Dun... Dun... Dunnnnn... *hides*
*From magic corner where you can't find her...* So... This was more or less a make out, drama-y chapter, all completely needed for the end (*sobs*) and the next chapter. Because Ciaran knows Louis' feelings! And things are going badly, they're in for a bit of a bumby, rollercoaster ride...
Song one and the lyrics you know I'd walk a thousand miles if I could just see you tonight is A Thousand Miles by Vanessa Carlton. Sone two is The Portrait by James Horner from the Titanic soundtrack. I love that song, definitely recommended if you haven't heard it.
I hope you, er, enjoyed.
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