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I found myself inexplicably drawn to Josh as time went on. We began to hang out every second we could, and I found myself more beat up about the fact he wasn’t a Slytherin, something he both agreed with and hated. We would sit every meal with our backs to each other, just so we could sit close and enjoy each other’s company and talk. Most people looked at us strangely as they walked past. The Slytherin and the Hufflepuff, chatting away over their shoulders and occasionally brushing hands like there was nothing in the world that would be against this.
What Josh had said on the first night we met still weighed on my mind, and I wondered if he had meant that he agreed with EVERYTHING I said.
Everything. Meaning you hope he is also… like you
HE IS NOT LIKE YOU
HE IS NOT YOU
NOT YOU
NOT.

Neither of us had heard from our families regarding our house placement, which I took as a sign my parents heard and are refusing to acknowledge it. Josh, however, took it as a sign that he would have no home to go to when holidays came around. As classes came and went, we still hadn’t heard. Eventually, we were being asked if we wanted to stay for the holidays. I put myself down to stay without a second though, and Josh asked for another day to decide. A day turned into a week. Finally, he was given 24 hours or else he had to go home.
That day, we met at the main hallway and headed in for breakfast. While sitting there with toast at the Slytherin table, I watched the owls fly in. As expected, nothing for me. I peered over my shoulder to look at Josh, staring in disbelief as an owl landed in front of him. I watched him pick up the envelope.
Oh shit. Howler.
JOSH IS ABOUT TO GET BROKEN
AND YOU CAN’T HELP
WORTHLESS.

He stared at the envelope as if it wasn’t real, as smoke began pouring out the edges. Unless he opened it in the next few seconds, it was going to start screaming anyway. I saw his face go red, and I swivelled around to face him, pulling him around to face me.
“Josh, no matter what this thing says, you’re going to be o-“
“JOSHUA WILLIAM DUN. YOU HAVE BOUGHT DISGRACE ONTO THIS FAMILY. YOU HAVE SHAMED YOUR ANCESTORS. YOU’RE A FUCKING MESS. FIRST, YOU RUIN OUR CHANCES OF CONTINUED LINAGE BY BEING A HOMOSEXUAL, AND THEN YOU END THE FAMILIES REIGN OF SLYTHERIN. THINK. THINK OF WHAT YOUR COUSINS WILL THINK WHEN WE HAVE OUR NEXT REUNION. THINK OF YOUR GRANDPARENTS. WE DO NOT WANT TO SEE YOUR FACE UNTIL THIS CHANGES. ALL OF IT. YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO LET JESUS IN WHEN YOU LIVED HERE. WE HAVE JESUS. WE HAVE HIM. WE BELIEVE IN HIM. WE BELIEVE IN OUR MAGICAL HERITAGE TOO. YOU ARE A BLASPHEMOUS MESS OF A CHILD WITH NO RESPECT FOR WHERE HE HAS COME FROM AND WHO HE BELONGS TO.”
With that, the letter burst into flames in front of us. Josh’s eyes were filling with tears, as snickering began from my table and the whole hall started to buzz back to life.
“What the fuck was that?” one voice let out.
“Umm… We have Jesus?” another voice cried out through strangled laughs.  Josh let out a strangled cry and let his head fall down.
“Josh. Joshie.” I said, reaching for his hand. He slapped it away.
“Don’t.” he mumbled, getting up and running from the hall.
YOU’RE FUCKING WORTHLESS.
THE GUY YOU LIKE IS DYING INSIDE AND YOU’RE WORTHLESS

“Josh, wait!” I said, running after him.
“Tyler, fucking stay there. I just want to be alone.” He spat, and continued to run. I ignored him, only running faster as he made his way out of the main doors. We both made it out of the hall, Josh bumping into Professor Sprout and falling a few steps back. I caught him before he went down.
“Oh, Joshua! Have you decided if you’re staying for the holidays?” she asked, the smile on her face faltering as she took in the sight of him crying.
“Yeah. Yeah. I’m staying.” He whimpered, and I felt his hand grip my arm.
“Oh… alright Joshua.” She smiled a wry smile, and continued on her way, not asking any questions. Josh’s grip on my arm tightened as I felt him begin to sob again. I sat down on the floor, letting Josh lean on me as he sat down too. He twisted around to hug me, and his body heaved with each cry.
“Josh. Josh. Breathe with me. It’s ok.” I mumbled into his hair, rubbing his back.
IT’S NOT OK
ITS NOT OK
NOT OK
OK
NOT OK

“It’s not ok, Tyjo, it’s not fucking ok! My parents just… they… they just outed me in front of the whole school.” He cried, gritting his teeth together to try to hold back some tears. My eyes widened as what he said finally dawned on me, and I felt the world slow down. All that felt concrete was Josh in my arms, crying, and the words he just uttered.
So… He is like me.
BUT HE WILL NEVER LOVE YOU
NEVER
NEVER LOVE
NEVER
Shut the fuck up a second, will you?

“I know, and that’s so shit, but what can you do about it now? Just… you’ve got the whole holidays ahead. Some time with most people gone. You can breathe a bit, get used to it. Plus, you’ll have me!” I smiled, trying to calm Josh down. “You’ll always have me.”
“For real? You don’t hate me for this?” he sniffed, looking up at me. His eyes sparkled with tears, tracks running down his face to his chin. Something about it seemed so… comforting. Like it was good to know Josh had feelings… Attractive, almost.
Holy shit.
YOUR BEST FRIEND IS FUCKING LOOKING FOR SUPPORT AND YOU’RE WORRIED ABOUT HOW HOT HE IS.
SELFISH
SELFISH
SELFISH

“Josh, you remember the first night we met?” I grabbed his arm as I looked him in the eyes. “I fell over and you helped me through my panic attack. I told you about me? If I hated you for being gay, I’d be the biggest hypocrite on the planet.”
He smiled a little.
“You’ve got a point. But… aren’t you worried people are going to assume about you now?” he asked, his smile dropping again.
Should I be?
YES YOU SHOULD. YOUR PARENTS.
PARENTS
YES YOU SHOULD

I quickly shook my head, trying to dispel the thoughts running rampant through my brain.
When has what they thought mattered when it’s come down to how I feel?
IT ALWAYS HAS
ALWAYS
ALWAYS WILL

“Let them.” I said, rubbing his arm, “They’re not wrong if they do. Besides, it’s only a mess if you make it one.”
I jumped up off the floor, picking Josh up as I went.
“Do you think… do you think we could go down to the forest again?” Josh asked, the tears starting to slow as we walked back towards the hall.
“Tonight, yeah. Tonight we can. Once we see everyone off.” I smiled, grabbing his hand real quickly and giving it a squeeze.
“Awesome. It’s a date.” He said, and I stopped dead in my tracks as he continued to walk towards the hall like nothing had happened.
Did he just… did he fucking just?
IT’S A FIGURE OF SPEECH YOU DAFT MORON
MORON
MORON
MORON
HE WILL NEVER LOVE YOU
NEVER LOVE YOU
NEVER LOVE
NEVER.
I kept my head down as I thought hard about what had just happened in the Great Hall.
I’m a Slytherin.
YOU’RE WRONG
YOU’RE WRONG
YOU’RE WRONG

I struggled to get the thought out.
I knew that it had been a long time since being a Slytherin was a bad thing, but I couldn’t help but think about how my parents were going to react when they found out. Both were proud Gryffindor. I was so fucked. It had been hard enough for them to accept who I was outside of Hogwarts. I continued to look at my feet as I walked, slowly making my way to my new home under the lake. I finally looked up to see my new housemates, to see if they were judging me, only to find nobody with me at all.
Shit, Tyler. You’ve been here less than half a day and you’ve already gotten so lost you don’t even know where you live.
I felt my chest begin to cave in.
Fuck. I need to get out of here.
I turned back the way I came, bolting with no direction.
KEEP RUNNING
KEEP RUNNING
KEEP RUNNING
KEE-


*****

I heard footsteps running towards me, but I was too lost in my own thoughts to care. A whole line of Slytherins, and I had to come along and mess it all up. I was never going to make it in, I knew that, but I had hoped I would at least make Ravenclaw. I stood with my head against the wall, breathing heavily. What was going to happen to me? I got enough shit at Muggle School for being gay, now I’m going to get shit at home and school for being a fucking Hufflepuff.
A gay Hufflepuff.
When did I become such a cliché?

“Just… just go to bed, Josh.” I mumbled to myself, before pushing off the wall and straight into a human. They fell straight to the ground with a small “oomph”, looking up at me with brown eyes that seemed to sparkle in a way that made my stomach jump. It took me a second to realise they were tears.
“I’m sorry, man!” I exclaimed, reaching out a hand to help the guy up. He took it, a small smile forming on his lips.
“Not your fault. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a panic attack to continue and I’d prefer to be out of the building when it gets bad.” He said, gearing up to run again.
“Wait, won’t you get in trouble for being out of your dorm?” I asked, placing a slight hand on his. He faltered, and I heard him let out a sigh, followed by a sharp intake of breath.
“Won’t you?” he mumbled. I let go of his hand as I realised I could be in trouble out here too.
He has a point, Josh.
“Let me come with you then. I’ll just tell them you needed to leave or else you’d… I don’t know… blow up your dorm.” I said, starting to walk out towards the main doors.
****

He wants to come outside with me? Risk getting detention? On our first day? With someone he only just met?
“Uh… Alright.” I said, and began to follow the boy towards the main doors, silence taking over the both of us. The castle was surprisingly quiet for the time of night. We finally made it back out, walking down the stairs and out towards the forest.
“I’m Josh, by the way. “ the boy said, turning around and walking backwards with a smile, “I was supposed to be a Slytherin but I guess I fucked that up somehow and now I’m a Hufflepuff.”
“Oh, so I’m not the only one having an identity crisis?” I raised an eyebrow, “Gryffindor family, Slytherin house.”
“Mess. It’s so much fun to be doubting myself all over again. I thought I was comfy, y’know? I knew who I was.” Josh mumbled, as he turned back around, his cloak billowing out as he spun.
That… that looked kinda cool. Josh looks kinda cool.
TYLER. YOU KNOW YOU’RE NOT SUPPOSED TO FEEL LIKE THAT IF YOU CAN AVOID IT. YOU KNOW.
YOU KNOW.
YOU KNOW.
YOU KNOW.

“Yeah?” I asked.
“Yeah.” He said, shoving his hands in his pockets. “Didn’t catch your name, though.”
“Tyler. Tyler Joseph.” I said, through gritted teeth. Saying my family name felt wrong. I wasn’t a Joseph anymore. Not if I was a Slytherin.
“Come on Tyjo, lets go find somewhere to sit down and talk.” He said, spinning around again to show me a massive grin. He seemed so happy to give me a nickname.
He’s cute when he smiles.
BUT YOU CAN’T TYLER. YOU LET YOUR FAMILY DOWN ENOUGH ALREADY
ENOUGH
ENOUGH
ENOUGH
ENOUGH

“Sure, Josh.” I smiled lightly as I looked towards the ground, trying to block out the repeating thoughts. The repeating thoughts almost always got the better of me, but something about Josh helped me ignore them.
This kid… this kid is going to save my life.
IF YOU DON’T KILL YOURSELF FIRST
KILL YOURSELF
KILL YOURSELF
KILL.

“Oh, shut up.” I whispered under my breath. I looked up to see Josh sitting on a fallen log, just on the outskirts of the Forbidden Forest. I made my way up, sitting down next to him, staring at the stars for a minute. I felt the last little vestiges of my panic attack leave me, and now I could finally breathe properly.
“Thanks, by the way.” I said, staring straight ahead, focusing on one star.
“For what?” Josh asked. I could feel his eyes on me, with a mild look of confusion running across his face. It was all through his voice.
“You kind of stopped my freak out dead in it’s tracks. So yeah. Thanks.” I said, finally looking over at him. He nodded, a piece of blue hair falling into his eyes. I felt my breath hitch once again as I watched him run his hand through it to place it back.
Tyler, you are so gay.
TOO GAY
TOO GAY
TOO GAY
TOO GAY.

“So… why is the Great Tyler Joseph so cut up about being different to his family?” Josh asked, snapping me back to reality once again with a light touch to the shoulder.
“Oh… I don’t think it would have been as bad if it were another house… or if we hadn’t gone down this road before with… other stuff. But, you know. I’m going to be ok in the end. Much like last time, they either can accept it, or not. It’s not gonna change it.” I said, reading Josh’s face. He understood, but was confused by something.
“When you say ‘last time’ and ‘other stuff’, what do you mean?” he questioned, with finger quotations. “Unless you don’t wanna tell someone you just met that knocked you to the ground.” He petered off, looking down quickly.
“Oh… yeah umm, I’m… I’m gay as all heck.” I mumbled, watching Josh’s jaw drop slightly. “It, umm, it didn’t go down so well. They accept it now, but I feel like this is going to be much of the same.”
“Tyl-“
“I should have known, y’know? I should have known I would be too fucked up to be a Gryffindor. I’m a bit too mentally twisted to be anything but a Slytherin. I just want to see myself a bit too much to have wound up where I needed to be. I like watching myself suffer enough that I just HAD to like the same sex.” I interrupted, as if a floodgate had been opened.
“Tyle-“
“It just couldn’t go my way for once, just FUCKING ONCE.” I exclaimed, hearing birds rustle along with my scream. I felt my chest heave with breath and realized my anxiety was flaring up again. I went to move, to stand, to run, only to feel Josh grab me and pull me into his arms, hugging me extremely close.
“Me too Tyler, me too. Everything you just said is everything I’ve been feeling. “ He said, his chin bumping up and down onto the top of my head as he held me.
Wait.
Did Josh just say what I think he said?
NO
NO
NO
HE’S NOT LIKE YOU.
NOT LIKE YOU.
NOT LIKE YOU.
NOT.
NOT.
NOT.

We sat there for the rest of the night, just staring at the stars in various states of holding each other as we spoke about our lives. It was a comfort knowing I was going to make it till morning. Maybe, just maybe, I would survive all of this. I sure as hell knew having Josh nearby was going to help.
Who knows? Maybe Josh and I will end up taking on the world together. I dunno how, but it feels like he was supposed to come into my life
HE WILL NEVER LOVE YOU.
NEVER LOVE YOU
NEVER LOVE
NEVER
NEVER
NEVER.
1. Repeating
this is a mess i'm not doing anything official with this its for a gc but it might end up on AO3 eventually 
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I was about 9 the first time I did this.
I felt gross after dinner. Felt wrong. Like the food I ate didn't belong there. I wasn't the only one who believed this either. The constant struggle between wanting to be thinner so people would just leave me alone, and wanting another plate of steak and baked potatoes floated in my head like a ghost haunting the rickety old building that is my body. It was all on off for years and years, a bad day would set me off but I could live with food. I liked food. I liked playing sport.
Then came my first job.
The fat emo kid working at a fast food place? Easy fucking target. I'd eat my break meal, then promptly get it out of me like it was a foreign disease. I wouldn't eat breakfast at home, ensuring my mother I was eating at school, and wouldn't pack lunch, claiming my bag was too full of books. To be fair, it wasn't, but thats another story.
Eventually I stopped that but took up another vice: working out. I'd go to the gym in the morning, with nothing in my system. I wouldn't eat after. I'd push a little too hard. A little too fast. I was always in pain. Short of breath even hours after a workout. I knew it was supposed to make me feel good to put on my formal dress after losing 10 kilos, but it just felt so wrong.
Honestly, my coming apart was all my fault. No food, no sleep. Sometimes I think I caused everything that is wrong with me, fucking up my metabolism beyond repair, damaging organs, ruining my relationship with food no matter how hard I try to convince people I still love it. ever being able to think of working out without feeling a hollow feeling in my stomach Even when trying to get better, I still find myself sitting on the floor of the bathroom, utterly desensitized, to my now empty stomach, feeling nothing but the pound of my brain against the pressure. The tears rolling down my face mean nothing. It all means nothing. I don't feel anything when I run. When I lift a weight. I feel empty, hollow. I feel no different than I did when I was a child, still hoping that being thinner would mean more people loved me.

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My eyes fluttered open, and Josh’s face was right next to mine. Panic settled in for half a second, and then I remembered I didn't sleep in my own bunk. I looked around for a minute and gathered it was still night time, so I settled myself back down to go back to sleep. The bus was moving, and it supplied a little hum to let myself get lost in. I looked at Josh while my eyes fluttered back to being closed.
His face had a little smile on it. I laughed at his face, and sighed. He looked so happy when he was asleep. I could only think that it was rare to see a smile that genuine on his face when he was awake. I finally drifted back to sleep, the negative thought running through my mind that I was the reason Josh never smiled anymore.

I was awoken by Josh stirring, and I had to let a little yawn escape and let my eyes adjust to the sunlight now filtering through.
"Hayley." Josh said, and I finally shook the last of the sleep from my brain to look at him.
"Morning fucknugget” I smiled, dropping his gaze to stretch my body out under the quilt. The outside air was chilly on my face, but the rest of my body was warm next to Josh’s
"How'd you sleep?" he asked, and I re-met his gaze.
That feeling. I guess sleeping hadn’t affected my thoughts I had last night.
"Yeah ok, I guess. Sleeping in jeans isn't exactly my favourite thing to do though." I grimaced.
"Why were you in your jeans?" he laughed, and I giggled.
"I've been in them for 5 days now, I have next to no clothes, remember?" I pointed out. His eyes widened.
"Oh crap! We should have stopped somewhere to get you some. Worst hosts ever.” He groaned.
"I have plenty of money, I'll just get some new stuff to last me the tour, then we'll head back to Tennessee and I'll get all my stuff from Chad's house. Don’t know where I’ll go after that, but I’m sure I’ll think of something.”
"Taylor or Jeremy would be bound to take you in for a bit, right?” he asked, his voice seeming to lose its usual charm.
"Yeah, I guess. What's up with you?" I asked. The happy look from his sleep had faded. I could see pure hurt and anguish in his eyes, and I was determined to find out what was wrong.
"I had a nightmare last night. I woke up at about 2 in the morning, crying." he said
"What about?" I asked, grabbing his hand. That niggling feeling returned, and I tried my hardest to shut it out.
"Well, when you were on the street, I imagined we didn't get there before Chad came looking for you. Basically, he killed you. When we got there, we found you on the ground, the last of your life bleeding from you. I held you one last time, cried over you, and then you were gone. Next thing I know, I'm staring at my bunk roof with tears in my eyes. I had to check you were still alive, and you were.  I decided I would just lay here a while and think of positive things. Yknow, PMA."
"Positive mental attitude? You guys still do that?" I smiled
"Yeah. But anyway, I began to think of that time we played Hide and Seek around Sydney, and you all thought you lost me."

“Oh yeah.” I mumbled, chuckling at the memory. I felt the bus slow and eventually stop. All the others began to emerge from their bunks, groggily wandering around the bus to fully wake up.

“SOUNDCHECK IN 20, BOYS, WAKE JOSH UP NOW WOULD YOU?” their manager yelled from the front of the bus, and I heard Max grumble a response and Chris yell something about having a shower and how the manager should wake him up himself, the prick. I chuckled.

“You better get up, Josh.” I laughed, and he finally took his arm off from around me and climbed over me to get out of the bunk.

“Well, while we’re soundchecking and such, how about you go shopping and catch up with us after the show or something?” he suggested.

“Sounds like a plan, my man.” I smiled, climbing out of the bunk as well, wishing good morning to everyone as I walked towards my suitcase to find something that didn’t smell like days old sweat to wear into town. My knee still burnt, but I could handle it for a little while. The boys all clambered off the bus as I finally chose something. I got changed, brushed my hair and pulled it up into a pony, making a mental note to grab some hair dye. I grabbed my wallet out of my suitcase, put on my shoes and headed off into town, grimacing at every second step I took.

“Knee brace, Hayley. Knee brace.” I mumbled to myself, adding to my list of things to get. I went into about 5 different shops, getting various items of clothing and underwear, before I wandered into a supermarket to grab shampoo and shower gel and the like. All the ones in my suitcase were running extremely low after being used all tour. I grabbed some food too, remembering the pitiful state of the guys fridge. I’m sure the boys would love this more than having me around. I finally finished up, and wandered off to get some lunch, running into some fans.
“HAYLEY, HAYLEY!” I heard a bunch cry out from behind a shop counter.
“Well I guess I’m eating here then! How are you all?” I asked, smiling at the excitement in their eyes as they all mumbled along the lines of good. A few went off to make me some food, assuring me they knew what I liked, while a purple haired girl came out from behind the coffee machine, wiping tears out of her eyes, a huge smile on her face.

“Holy shit this is the best day of my life!” she cried out, her body basically lifting off the floor in excitement.

“What’s your name?” I asked her

“Clarissa.” She said, trying to stop more tears coming out of her eyes. 

“Do you like You Me At Six, Clarissa?”  I asked her, and finally more tears came streaming down her face, as her smile dropped.

“Yeah. I was supposed to go but I couldn’t get the day off work.” She sighed. “My boss rostered me on even though I took the night off and no-one could replace me.”

“So you’re stuck here all night?” I asked, an idea bubbling to mind. She might not miss this gig after all.

“Until 10, yeah.”

“Would your boss mind if I worked for you? I don’t have anything to do until the boys finish.” I smiled, watching her eyes light up.
“I mean probably not, but thank you for offering! That’s insane!” she squeaked.

“Wait, I know what we can do, as long as none of your other workmates dob us in. Quick, I’m your mum. Go get your boss. You’re coming to the gig. Or, rather, a family emergency.” I laughed, as all her workmates agreed to not dob us in while they passed me my lunch. 

“Hayley, no way!” she cried, walking away from the counter to get her boss. I quickly scarfed down my lunch, and eventually Clarissa jumped out from behind the counter, her bag in hand. 
“He just let me go! He said he knew it was his mistake I was rostered today and if I was willing to fake emergencies to go to this gig then he couldn’t keep me here!”

“Good work! Come on, lets go drop this stuff off at the bus and then go see the boys.” I smiled, and we walked back to the van, talking back and forth about Clarissa’s life in New York and what touring life was like.

“Hayley, I’ve been meaning to ask, I saw this picture of Josh carrying you the other day online. People think you’re cheating on Chad with him. That’s not true is it?” she asked, and my blood ran cold. 

“Where did you see that?” I asked, staring straight ahead.

“Well Chad retweeted the picture with the caption ‘true love will carry you no matter how wrong it is’ and people all just guessed that’s what it meant.” she babbled, and I felt my hands curl up into a fist.

“That rotten bastard. Trust me on this, Clarissa, he is not who he says he is.” I sighed, and told her the whole story leading up to this point. By the time I had finished, we were back at the bus, and Josh was wandering out to head to the show. I introduced him to Clarissa and left them to talk while I unloaded the food and chucked my clothes in my suitcase. I wandered back out, and lead Clarissa to the side stage. She gripped onto my arm the whole set, tears basically streaming down her face. Finally, I took a photo of her and the band, and Josh took a photo of me and her. She bubbled off home after hugging us all and thanking me for being the ‘best mother ever’.

“What was that about?” Dan asked as she bounced out the venue doors.

“Well, I kinda pretended to be her mum to get her out of a shift so she could come tonight. Her boss rostered her on.”
“Hayley, that is so fucking cool of you.” Josh smiled, “and now, we drink.” He laughed, and we wandered back to the bus so everyone could get changed.
I grabbed a shirt and jeans out of my suitcase and quickly waltzed into the bathroom, knowing the boys had no trouble in getting changed in front of each other. Halfway through pulling on my jeans, I heard the door open. I threw my arms around my chest, even though I still had a bra on.
"What are you doing, dude? I'm getting changed!" I exclaimed, looking over to see Josh at the door. He walked up to me, grabbed me by the arms, pulled me up to him, and kissed me. Right then and there I knew.
He smiled, letting his eyes close again. My mind raced as I thought about how long I had known Josh, and how everything around him had felt.

A sudden realization came to me as sleep threatened to overtake again. 
There is every possibility that the person Josh Franceschi had been in love with was me.

Oh my god. I pushed back against him, looking into his eyes and seeing that I was right.
"Hailes, I can't hold this back anymore. I’ve tried so hard to wait a little longer but I just can’t.” he said, as if he was pleading with me.
"What the fuck, Josh! My fiancé cheated on me, less than 5 days ago, and you're already trying to jump in?” I yelled, throwing my shirt on over my head so I could storm out past him. He stuck out his arm to stop me going any further.
“Hayley, just hear me out. I’m not already trying… I’ve been waiting 4 years for the chance and now that I have one, I guess all sense of time has left me.”
“What…? 4 years? That means…”
"Yeah, 4 years, Hayley. 4 years I sat there and waited for you to wise up and leave him! You didn't believe anyone, not even me, and you ended up getting your heart ripped to pieces! I hate seeing you like this, I want the Hayley that had always been my best friend back. The happy Hayley I fell in love with." He grizzled, mostly through clenched teeth. My fists clenched again, thinking back to what Clarissa said today, the whole situation, and how this would not be a good idea.
"Josh, this just isn’t a good idea right now. Just… give it a few months and we’ll talk about this again, yeah?" I asked him, and watched his face crumple in defeat and anger.
"Oh fuck this.” he mumbled, turning to walk out of the room. I realized how upset he would be that I just rejected him after all this time, and that it’s not like I haven’t recently been having this niggling feeling in the back of my mind I felt the same way. I walked out, finding him just about to step off the bus. I grabbed his arm and pulled him back on. I saw tears running down the side of his cheeks, and felt a pang in my stomach.
"What?! What do you want, Hayley?!" he yelled through the tears. I reached up to hug him properly
"I want you to be happy. It’s all so soon, and I think you know that deep down. I’m not saying no, I’m just saying not right now.” I mumbled into his ear. I kissed him on the cheek, and took a few steps back.
We stood in the middle of the bus for a while, just looking at each other, waiting for someone to say something. The tension was so high, it pushed down on me like a deadweight. He walked the few steps forward, as if to grab me, and then walked straight past me to get off the bus.

“Not right now… Alright, Hayley. I guess I’ll hold you to that. Now, let’s go get drunk.” He said as he walked out the bus door. I turned around, following him, hoping he really understood what I had meant. We walked for a bit, until we saw a figure sitting on the side of the road, his head in his hands. It was Max.
"Thanks for this, Josh. I think best friend time is all I need right now. " I smiled, looking over at my best friend, finishing up the last of my ice cream. His blue eyes pierced me, and he raised one of his eyebrows quizzically.
"Is it? You looked like you were going to burst into tears the whole time." he stated, and I felt my meal shake in my stomach as if it didn’t want to be there anymore. Did I really look that upset? Am I really that messed up about this?
"I… did?" I questioned, and he stopped dead in his tracks to turn me around and grab both my arms.
"Hayley, there is no need to pretend to be fine around me. You loved the guy, and he fucked you up! Don't try and get over it too fast, or you'll just hurt yourself." he said, rubbing my arms.
Fuck, I’m gonna have to tell him, aren’t I?
"Its more than that, Josh… Before we went on tour, we decided… we were gonna get married. Just run off and have a cheesy as fuck elopement. Now I don’t get that." I cried, and he pulled me in. I felt his chin on top of my head, and his hand rubbing the back of my hair. I gripped his jacket as more sobs overcame me.
"If I saw his face right now, I’d throw a brick at him. I want to make him hurt as much as you are now." he whispered in my ear, and I half smiled through my tears.  
"Come on, lets get back to the bus before it gets any colder.” I sighed, pushing myself off his chest. We kept walking, and I shrank back into my own head, trying for the millionth time to answer the question that had been ringing in my head.
“I don’t know why this happened to m-“ I started, before I felt my foot plunge lower than ground level. A pothole, Hayley. Fucking hell.
I let out a little squeak as the rest of my body fell forward, and threw my other leg out so my face didn’t hit the concrete. I hit the ground harder than expected, and my leg jarred. I screamed louder, as I heard Josh yell out my name, doubling back the few steps he had in front of me.
“You dumbass.” He laughed, and I looked up from the ground, hoping to hurt him with my stare. He helped me back up, and the pain in the knee that hit the concrete hard was searing. I whimpered, and fell back down.
"Josh… my knee… I cant move it." I said, looking up at him. I expected him to lift me back up and help me hobble back to the bus. I felt his arms under the crook of my legs and across my back, and then cool air rushing past my face. Then I actually looked, and saw the ground far away.
Josh was carrying me. I huddled my face under his jacket, trying to forget the pain pulsing through my leg. Suddenly, Josh stopped walking.

“Fuck. Hold on Hayley, we’re gonna have to run.” He mumbled.

“Why, whats going on, Josh?” I asked, pulling my head out of his jacket to see a bunch of people with cameras. All along, someone had been taking photos of everything. I wasn’t sure if it was fans, or paparazzi, but all I knew is that none of this had come to light yet, and I sure as hell didn’t want the online storm to start now. My stomach began to boil again. I didn't need this. The van was a good 100 metres away, and I felt Josh’s body tense up as he took his first step.
"MAX! OPEN THE DOOR!" Josh roared, and I winced over how loud it was in my ears
We barreled through the crowd of cameras. Luckily, they all got out of the road before Josh could hit them with my body. The door flicked open as the boys figured out what was going on outside. He kept running till we got to the bus doors, jumping up the internal stairs as fast as possible. Josh, however, tripped over the last stair, and I went flying out of his arms. My body hit the floor, and I let out a little yelp as I began to roll a little bit. I felt another searing pain down my leg, and I swore under my breath. Chris and Matt jumped up from the front lounge to grab me, as Dan and Max walked over to check on Josh.
"Hayley, you ok?"  Matt asked, as Chris helped me up off the floor
"Yeah… I guess. My leg is fucked though.” I mumbled, looking over to the stairs as I heard a groan come from Josh.
"Shit, Josh!" I limped away from Chris, sliding to the floor where he lay, half on the stairs.
"Hay… fine." he smiled weakly, “Just winded myself.” Dan helped him off the floor, and over to his bunk. I limped over, intent on going to bed and sleeping off my leg pain.
"Are you ok, Joshie?" I asked, and he nodded, pulling himself into his bunk.
"That just effing hurt a lot, but don’t worry, I don’t think they got any clear photos, whoever they were.” He chuckled, poking his head back out of the bunk.
"Yeah. Small comforts, hey? Alright, get some sleep, Josh.” I smiled, and climbed into the bunk underneath him.
"Hayley?” I heard him ask. I poked my head back out to look at him.
“Yeah, man?”

“Umm… can you sleep up here tonight? I guess you could use some best friend cuddles after the last few days you’ve had.” He shrugged. I smiled, and clambered up out of my bunk and into his. We both wriggled around till we had covers and were comfortable. The bunk was filled with a comfortable silence as I felt Josh’s arm snake around me, and I felt the calmness of sleep wash over me along with it. Then, a question bubbled up in my half asleep state, and my brain filter couldn’t keep it out and it rushed forth from my lips.
"Josh. Have you ever been in love?" I asked.
"Yeah." he said, quietly.
"Who was it?" I whispered, wriggling around so I could see his face. He cracked open one eye to look at me.
"I'd rather you didn't know." he sighed.  His eyelid drooped back down. Now, I was curious and more awake.
"What did it feel like? To you, anyway?" He lifted both of his eyelids again to look at me.
"When you looked at that person, and all you feel is hope, passion. They’re your best friend, but they are also that something more, as if no matter what happens in life, you will always be there. Their arms around you feel more safe than a bomb shelter. Their breath on the back of your neck at night feels more calming than any summer breeze. Everything feels as it should when you look in their eyes. For a minute, nothing feels wrong.” He smiled, letting his eyes close again. My mind raced as I thought about how long I had known Josh, and how everything around him had felt. A sudden realization came to me as sleep threatened to overtake again. 


There is every possibility that the person Josh Franceschi had been in love with was me.
Yeah, I'm taking ANOTHER crack at Youtube.
Going back on my antidepressants has boosted my motivation levels and seeing as I am on uni break I feel I need to do SOMETHING with my time. So if you could all go to www.youtube.com/user/piercethenicole and subscribe, and watch a couple of my old vids in prep for new ones, I would be happy as fucking Larry.
  • Listening to: We Don't Believe Whats On Tv- Twenty One Pilots
  • Watching: RuPauls Drag Race (TEAM VIOLET FOREVER)

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NicoleMeAtParamore
Nicole... duh.
Artist | Student | Literature
Australia
This one time a teacher in Year 5 told me I had a gift and to use it so now I post crap on the internet...? Anyway, I'm pretty angry a lot and sometime writing helps with that so yeah, come check that out.

List of bands i love: nicolemeatparamore.deviantart.…
list of bands i have seen live nicolemeatparamore.deviantart.…

Twitter: @kawaiistringDTD
Youtube: www.youtube.com/user/piercethenicole
Facebook: www.facebook.com/chasingnini
Kik: SleepingWithArcee
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:iconwanderersdaughter:
wanderersdaughter Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2014
thanks so much for the fav! it means a lot to me! 5 seconds hug 
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:iconnicolemeatparamore:
NicoleMeAtParamore Featured By Owner Jul 28, 2014  Student Writer
not a problem :D
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:iconapsilpastille:
apsilpastille Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks for the Watch!!! :)
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:iconnicolemeatparamore:
NicoleMeAtParamore Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2013  Student Writer
not a problem :)
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:icontae-rai:
Tae-Rai Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Ah, fuck, thumbs don't work in comments... Anyway, something you might like: [link]
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