Two Ghosts

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40


As Harry pulls up to the hotel my adrenalin wears out and I feel like melted snow. On the way back my eyes shut multiple times in tiredness but I kept opening them forcefully to stay awake. Harry notices my change of body language and I lay worn out in his hold.

Parking the car he takes the keys out of the ignition and places the dangling set in his pocket. My skirt rode up on the way here but I was too tired to fix it and Harry never took advantage. Im comfortable enough in our relationship to know he would never do anything or look if it wasn't consensual.

He opens the car door and my head still remains weightless on his shoulder. I fight the strength in my body and perch myself up but Harry presses my head back down, "It's okay I got you, I know you're tired."

Silently thanking him I knew I wouldn't have been able to walk upstairs without help. Opening the door and climbing out with me wrapped around him, he holds onto my legs in help to get them in a tight place.

"You'll get used to the wearing off of adrenalin, the first couple times are ruff."

I don't respond as Harry carries me through the lobby. I remember the last time I was so emotionally exhausted and I just cracked into a panic attack from my dreams. I've gone so long without one and I can't go through it again. I clutch Harry just a little harder as he rests down against the railing of the elevator.

Shutting my eyes and even thinking about that door in my dreams causes a small tear to escape my eye. I hate crying. I hate letting them win. Letting them have such a power over my every move.

Sniffling back my cries Harry notices and brushes my hair back, threading his fingers through each strand.

"Darling?" His voice softens and I shake my head, "I'm okay." The elevator bings and he stands holding me securely.

"I'd have to be the dumbest person on earth to believe you're okay." He chuckles to himself lightly to soften the mood and I weakly smile on his shoulder.

"What's wrong baby?" He walks slower down the hallway. "I just haven't felt this exhausted in a really long time and when I get like this I um." I don't bother to continue but the pain in my voice is loud.

"When I picked you up from work that day and you could barely walk. Is this the same feeling?" I nod against his shoulder and he places a kiss against the closest part of my body he can get.

"Nothing going to happen you're just scared because it's the same feeling."

"I think you're right." I simply agree not knowing how to reply without hurting him. I don't want him asking questions.

He takes the scanner card and opens the hotel door. "I can walk you don't have to carry me." I feel like the biggest bother when he does this. I'm capable of doing anything on my own, I've made it this far.

"Whatever's going on in that brain of yours needs to stop. I just want to get closer to you, plus don't you remember that you're a slow walker." I laugh on his shoulder and it feels good to not be completely broken.

Laying me to sit on the bed the clock reads eleven and I yawn. Harry goes to speak but his phone suddenly rings.

"Hello?" He says on the phone and a loud English accent plays through.

"Tonight? Louis im-" He huffs and looks down at me with sadness.

"Yes, I know the rules. It's worth it though but I don't want her seeing it again, I'll be there in an hour." Hanging up the phone I look at him pushing back my feelings. "Where are you guys going?"

"Just have to go visit a Casino," he says as he digs in his bag for an article of clothing.

"Oh. Can I come?" He returns to me with a shirt and a pair of sweatpants. "Not for this one. Try to get some sleep I'll be gone an hour." I just nod too weak to force him to let me go. After tonight I know he was on the verge of his own panic so ill just let him breathe for a while.

He crouches down and places his hands on my knees. My eyes shut from the touch. "Here you can put these on." He places the clothing beside the bed but I just shrug weakly. "I think I might just crash in this im too tired."

Harry just frowns. "Do you want me to help you? I won't look." I try to keep my eyes on him and agree. "Yes please."

Sniffling he reaches forward for the zipper of my sweater and drags it down, I stare into his eyes and his own never leaves me. He peels the sweater off of my arms and runs his hand down my skin along the way. Running his hands back up to my tank top strap he locks his eyes back on mine. "Im not going to look. You're sure this is okay?"

"Yes, this is okay," I confirm and he drags each strap down my shoulder. He grabs the bottom of my shirt and lifts it over my head nudging my arms along the way.

"Just taking care of you before I go. It will let me know you'll be alright"

There's something so trusting about what we're doing. Sitting here exposed with the promise he won't look, not even shred a glance. It's the trust in him that made me so attracted in the first place. He never made me do what I never wanted to. Our relationship went so slow but yet so fast.

Once the fabric is off my body my eyes meet his stare directly in front. He looks into my eyes and never blinks away. He traces a soft bent finger up and down my arm. Looking for any change that I want him to stop but I show none.

"I have an idea for this one, do you trust me?"

"I trust you." I barely allow myself to say because I'm so exhausted. Never looking away his hands takes my arms out of my bra straps but the bra still remains perched on my chest. His cold rings send a shiver through my body.

He places one of his green shirts around my neck and softly forces each hand through. Once my arms are through he leans forward and drags his hands under my shirt until they meet the clasp of my bra. In one motion he unclips it and drags it forward placing it on the floor with the rest on my clothes.

"I can't even do that," I whisper not urging myself to talk louder in the space we've created. Not that I would have been able to anyways.

Harry chuckles, "You always have something to say don't you?"

"Always."

"Can you stand? Grip onto my shoulders," I nod weakly setting my limp hands on his shoulders. I stand and he places a hand on my waist helping me. He looks up at me with those green eyes and reassures he won't look. Pressing his hands to the top of my skirt he lowers it down slowly. The fabric pools at my ankles and he lifts my individual feet out.

Not sparing any touches he reaches for the grey sweatpants and I step into each leg hole. Once my socked foot touches the cold ground he closes his eyes briefly as he tilts his head up to me. Opening them he stands as he drags the material up my body. Once it rests on my waist he still remains crouched as he ties the loose-fitting pants tight.

"You're cold when you sleep so I have to make sure you're warm while I'm gone." My heart almost bursts each time he opens his mouth. I hope he understands the gentle effect he has on me. He's not a bad person despite everything he thinks of himself.

"Wrap your hands around my neck." I do as he says and he grabs my waist standing tall with my legs dangling. He carries me to the made bed and un-dresses the sheets quickly. Removing the hold from my waist he picks me up bridal style and I rest my head against his chest as he places me in the softness of the sheets.

He crawls over and gets into the covers himself. Dragging the cotton white sheets back up he covers our bodies. Once situated, in instinct he drags me closer.

"I'm just trying to get you to trust me. That was okay right, I didn't do anything wrong. I'm trying so hard for you Violet." He brushes my hair and I nudge my face into his chest.

"You're doing everything perfectly but please don't change. I like you just the way you are. Everything you do around me makes me comfortable. You're my person I feel most myself with."

He places a hand against my cheek. It's a chain reaction with us. Whether it's carrying my body, straddling his waist, sleeping, sparing innocent kisses or holding hands it's all a delicate romance with us. we're afraid we'll break each other.

"You're the one person I like darling."

"Don't say that, you like Niall, Louis, Zayn and Liam. they've been your brothers since you were young." I whisper needing Harry to realize the love that surrounds him.

"That's different. They're different to me, like you said that's family. Not you though you're the one person I'd burn this world down for, just to get to you or stop you're hurting. you're the one person that makes my heart feel whole and it's been broken since I can remember."

Harry Styles

I lay with her in my arms as she drifts asleep. I meant every word I said to her and it crushes me that I can't stay. She's so exhausted and it would kill me if she had a nightmare and I wasn't here to help. My sweet girl has been through so much and it tears me apart.

With ten minutes left to spare I trace my hands through her brown locks. My new favourite colour. I rake my hands through her hair all night and she eventually fell asleep no longer able to stay awake.

I was scared to be soft for her but it's my new favourite thing. I was so scared to consume myself in her delicate world but once I did I found it hard to escape. She was my new drug. A healthy addition I couldn't live without.

I could stay up all night simply watching her sleep but the clock reads twelve and I know I have to leave now. I kiss her on the forehead and peel myself away. It was one of the hardest things I ever had to force myself to do.

Standing at the side of the bed silently and listening to the calm pattern of her breathing and get lost in the melody. Blinking I take the messy sheets I left and tuck her in. "No ones ever going to hurt you from now on, I'll make sure of it," I whisper.

Before I leave I fiddle through her suitcase until my eyes land on her teddy bear knowing it brings her comfort. As I stare at this bear, minutes go by and my eyes squint hard analyzing it. My stomach cramps from the thought I believe I've seen this from but I push it away. There's no way.

Walking over to the bed I place the small bear under her arms and as an instinct, she grips on to it.

Putting on my shoes I stroll out of the room as silently as possible and take the elevator down. Walking through the lobby and out the door, I quickly roam my eyes over the area looking for any red flags but there luckily isn't any.

it gives me peace of mind. Climbing into the black honda I hear their voices consume the car.

"There he's here, finally let's go," Zayn mutters and Liam drives away.

"How's Sugar holding up?" Niall asks and I refrain from clutching my fists at that damn name. I know they're just friends but I can't help but be a little protective.

"She passed out in her bed," I say gripping my thigh and Louis laughs. "I can't believe she jumped off a dam roof. Earned my complete respect. I honestly thought you were going to have to throw her forcefully." He plays but noticing my hard reaction he stops.

"What I'm saying is that I like her. I think she suits us all well. We needed a woman here you were all starting to get boring."

"Especially you Styles, you were numb," Louis says and I clench my firsts. My nails cut into my skin. I know he means well but it doesn't make it right to remind me.

"We're all broken I feel left out from this conversation." Niall jokes, "And I completely agree she even looked slow motion in the air. Almost took my back out but I'm glad she was okay."

"We're just giving this order and then leaving right?" I change the subject, anxious to get back to Violet.

"Yeah, it should only take minutes. A simple exchange like always, one of the easier things." Zayn muffles and I grab the gun in my pocket making sure the safeties off. I like to keep it on when Violets around in case she gets her hands on it. That girl trips everywhere and I don't need the gun going off by accident.

"So any word about Dalton's men following us? Why us, how did they even pinpoint us in their plans... were not connected?" Niall toys with his gun.

"Were directly connected to Charles and Wesley." I pull my lips in a line. "We're carrying their drugs for christ's sake they probably think if they stop us they'll be able to steal everything and will lose billions of dollars," I state growing angry at the thought but crack my knuckles in my first from what I would do to them.

They shot at Violet and that's not something I forgive.

Arriving at the Casino bright red lights fill the parking space. Climbing out at the same time we get looks and stares from others around us. "No stopping to fuck around we get in and get out." I mean that literally, I have no time to waste.

"You fall in love and take us down with you is that it?" Louis rolls his eyes and Niall walks beside him.

"Gonna end up giving us all blue balls." He grunts but as we walk inside the Casino we stand a little taller. Everyone who works at these Casinos knows who we are and they show us the elaborate respect and more we entitle.

Cutting to the chase we walk past the poker tables, bar and slot machines that we usually stay and hang out around. We always have fun beforehand but we can't afford to be separated with Dalton following us.

I hate that name. It sounds like a bowling alley or a disease you can't cure and it keeps coming back.

Walking into a pure gold and ruby elevator I hit the ground level and the elevator falls downwards. Reaching into my pocket I place my black sunglasses over my eyes and everyone follows.

With a bing we exit the elevator to the basement, it's as large as the casino but one full space. The cargo bus that carried the drugs from the plane sits perched in the middle and workers unpack it.

Making our way to the very end of the level we step into a small office where three men in suits sit perched on chairs.

"Good evening gentlemen it's a pleasure." One of the men leans forward to shake our hands but I just stare down at him not moving a muscle. His arm wavers back and he takes a remaining seat.

"Do you have the money?" Zayn takes a seat. He normally does all the talking in these situations.

The man seated in front takes a breath. "About that." He laughs and my jaw goes sharp clenching.

"We have your money but we are missing 100 thousand. You can take the millions today and well give you the rest by the end of the week." The man begs professionally but I can see the fright in his eyes. Zayn reads them like an open book and leans back in his chair.

"What makes you think I'll believe that. That you'll take half that shit load of drugs and not run away with it. We've seen it before, In fact, we just came back from killing someone who did that same thing. They thought they could run and were in the clear as it's been years but no. We sneak up on you just when you least expect it."

We killed about ten guys tonight in the basement of the concert. Stormed right in and shot them where they sat. The two men who betrayed us suffered but we had to leave quickly once Dalton's men flooded the room.

"Just one week and we'll be right back here."

"What makes you think I'll have time to come back here? I'm on a schedule, does no one care for my time." He nags as the four of us stand behind him and my hands grip the top of a leather chair.

"So what are we going to do about this? You don't have my money. You know what we do when people come un-prepared and waste our time?" Zayn asks and Niall steps forward holding a knife. "Send them off with a warning and debt or just simply death."

"But I'll get your money I just need a couple of days," he begs and his breathing starts to go rapid.

"No, because I think you have the money but you just wanted a pity discount. You're new here but that's not how we work."

Niall walks over to the man dealing in the chair and covers his mouth. The man fights but Nialls hold is stronger. Pressing the knife into his wrists he cuts upwards and blood immediately trickles down his arm. The man screams in pain into his hand but it only makes Niall smile. Niall digs his finger into the cut which almost causes the man to pass out.

"Hey, this is the big leagues, time to tuffin up."

He presses his knife to the man's finger next and applies pressure. "You have ten fingers and ten toes. I could be here all day."

With no answer, Niall presses the knife down and cuts away half of the man's finger until he yells, "I'll pay full, Ill pay full. I have your money just please stop." Niall pulls away and smiles.

"You see how easy we get along when you do exactly as we say?" Niall slaps his face multiple times in a friendly manner. Blood coats his face and as Niall pulls away the man holds his severed finger to his chest as tears coat his face. I roll my eyes.

The men beside the no-name man's face go completely pale. They reach into their pockets pulling out a check and the injured man fills out the paper completely. "An extra 100 thousand," Zayn mutters and with sheer panic the man obliges.

Handing it to Zayn he pockets the check standing up and turning around. "Pleasure doing business with you, talk to anyone outside they'll get your car loaded."

"Classing it up Malik?" Louis teases.

Exiting the room we walk like the feared men everyone knows who we are. The heartless murderous we were trained to be out of the Casino and into the car. Driving back to the hotel they spark in normal conversation but I don't pay attention.

Once the car parks outside the Hotel we all walk into the elevator and down the halls disappearing into our rooms.

Standing in front of my own an excited feeling courses through my body. Turning the handle after my card scans I walk in and shut the door quietly. Violet lays in the bed but the sheets are ruffled to her hips. I smile at the thought of her just laying in my bed.

Kicking off my shoes my eyes dart to her when I hear a panicked gasp leave her lips. Her head jerks to the side and her breathing spikes. My heart drops and I run to the bed.

"I'll be right back." She silently whispers through the darkroom which the lamp I left illuminates just enough light to see. I place my hands on her cheeks trying to wake her up. "Violet baby you can't do this again, wake up please." I shake her.

Her body jolts in pain and teardrops leave her eyes. "I don't want to go in, please don't make me go in."

I shake her shoulder harder this time not wanting her to re-experience her pain. "Violet," I say louder and her body jolts awake.

Her eyes hammer open and she looks around the room, her eyes going to all the places at the same time. She doesn't look as panicked as last time but it still doesn't mean she didn't experience it.

Her eyes meet with mine and she falls into my hold giving up. I tug her quickly into my chest.

"Harry, I'm sorry, I couldn't stop it." She cries as I lay over her. Each sob breaks my heart even more than the last.

I sit myself against the headboard on top of the pillows and sit her bridal styles on my lap like last time. She clings to my flannel-like her life depends on it and I brush my hands through her hands and down her cheek trying to relax her.

I comfort her as she tried to catch her breath wishing there was something I could do. "I just want it to stop, why won't they stop." She inhales her cries like she does her laughs. I'd give anything to her sweet laugh right now. Her breathing spikes and she starts to hyperventilate.

She grips my flannel threatening to break the fabric in pure panic. "Baby you have to breathe," I speak as calmly as I can knowing she's jumpy. She tries to inhale but it comes out croaked.

Holding her cheeks I tell her to count to ten. "just count with me okay." Eventually, she joins in and her flushed face grows her natural pigment back. "..ten," she says in a rasp.

She eventually catches her breath enough to let air in. She stares into my eyes as tears flood down her face and my thumb wipes each away.

"Violet, where did you not want to go in?" I ask painfully knowing it has to be some form of entrance. She stares at her door in so much trauma. like she couldn't breathe until it was closed.

"The door." she cries and I bring her closer to my chest wiping her tears away. My forehead rests against hers but my eyes never look away.

"They always made me go through the door." she starts to shake and I press a kiss to her forehead hoping she could feel my unsaid words float to her brain.

"Why would they always make you go through the door?" I know we promised we wouldn't ask questions but we've grown so much more than to let the other fall.

"To- to help them. It was always different behind the door. They were different because-." she chokes on her painful sob.

"They needed my help when they were like that but I was never allowed to call anyone. I was so little and I had no idea what to do. Some days they were who they were outside of the door though." her hands shake and she closes them into a fist.

"I never wanted to leave my bed. She would never stop screaming "my body stills as she stutters out.

"When they were like what Violet?"

"Please don't make me answer that question, I can't answer that question." She starts to panic again and I fold.

"I'm sorry you don't have to stay anything. I won't leave you alone at night again." I graze our pinkies and curl them together. Our green and brown nails interlock.

"You make them stop." She cries into my chest and I move our bodies so our heads lay on the pillows. I bring her head to my chest and she grips onto my body like ill disappear at any moment. I hug her neck, needing to keep her safe.

"You won't have to go inside that door and see them ever again. You're safe, I'll keep you safe."

Her rapid breaths go soft as I play with her hair. Once she falls asleep I look down at my sweet girl. Who would ever hurt her? She doesn't deserve any of this.

I'll make her as many promises she needs even if it's to never let her go because I won't.

I don't have to know the whole story to know that who she once was, was left behind that door. She probably tried to get herself back but each time hurt worse than the last. I know this because behind my own door I never came back.

"I wasn't lying when I told you that you were the only person I liked. In fact, I think it's much more than that." I whisper to her sleeping state.

"My sweet girl." I brush her cheeks with my thumb.









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