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28_ I hope I don't fall

Niall's eyes flicker open seeing one of the most cutest scenes.

Emma waltzing around in the room with a hairbrush in her hand as if it is a microphone and sing funnily.

He couldn't help but smile at her innocence and wholesome.

She is so goofy.

Suddenly, the way she sings changes. And he thinks he died.

Her voice takes on the high note and it cracks in the middle.

He has no idea that she could sing like a dying goose but it is funny listening to her. Niall sings along with her in his mind and chuckles lightly.

Oh, I'll let you set the pace
Oh, 'cause I'm not thinking straight
Though my head's spinning around, I can't see clear no more
What are you waiting for?

Love me like you do, lo-lo-love me like you do (Like you do, oh)
Oh, love me like you do
Touch me like you do, to-to-touch me like you do, oh
Oh, what are you waiting for?

Love me like you do, lo-lo-love me like you do (Like you do)
Lo-lo-love me like you do
Touch me like you do, to-to-touch me like you do, oh

She sits back on the bed laughing to herself but momentarily stops when she hears Niall chuckling.

"I know that my singing is bad, don't remind me," she pouts.

He gapes. Did she hear me laugh?

"No, you were good. You woke me," he jokes.

She walks over to his side rolling her eyes. "Are you okay now?"

He grins. "My nurse is awesome at what she does. So, yes. I'm feeling a lot better."

She stifles a laugh. Niall frowns sitting up. "What?"

"I never imagined that you'd fall in love with Stefan in such a small time." She breaks out laughing falling on the bed.

He pulls a weird face and gapes. "That son of--"

"Don't say that," she laughs again. "He studies in the med school and he was the one who was looking after you and I just came in."

Well, it's not entirely true but I don't want him to think that I'm simping over him.

"What did he do to me?" he asks pulling another pillow placing it on his lap.

"Checked the blood pressure. Gave you an injection of glucose."

He visibly relaxes.

Sylvesto explains what happened to give him the anxiety attack.

Niall lost at the game of playing cards to drive top clients to his side. Annually, in the mid of England, a grand tournament takes place.

One of the best clients appears that day and Niall probably won't be able to attend it. He couldn't play them.

Losing is not in his vocabulary.

One of his worst enemies will be there and his chances of winning the clients are down to a 50%

Calvin and his lads will be there. They'll play an unfair game with a lot of cheating.

Calvin knows to play his games. He played well with my mind, driving me into him more and more.

The possibility of Chase being there is very low. He is sick, obviously in pain.

He'll let his brother go and play. Well, it's not like Calvin will let him play this time anyway. Chase usually loses the game on purpose just to give it to Niall and Nick.

Chase doesn't play over his friendship so Calvin takes the wheel this time.

And that scared Niall a bit. It wasn't entirely about losing but about not having Nick by his side.

Chase is a barking dog but Calvin is a biting dog.

The younger one is most dangerous than the older one.

Niall needs to pull his cards carefully.

The tournament is the dumbest to way get clients, Emma thinks.

But Sylvesto explains that they need people who can smoothly run a business and Parker's CO is one of the most popular and successful companies in the world, they expect a whole lot of big deals from Niall.

Emma is in turmoil. So that's what caused him an anxiety attack. But was that the only reason?

Niall enters the room with a yawn, wearing a dark blue turtle neck t-shirt pairing it with brown pants.

As soon as his eyes notice Sylvesto and Emma, his posture straightens and he clears his throat.

Both of them stand up and Niall smiles. "I'm sorry about that Mr. Kuznetsov, I had no--"

"Oh no no, it is all fine Mr. Parker. Everyone can feel sick, it wasn't your fault", interrupts Sylvesto and pats on his shoulder. "And call me Sylvesto."

Niall laughs nervously and nods. "Yes, Sylvesto. Thank you."

Sylvesto nods politely and says, "I'll leave you both to talk." And before Emma could say that she didn't want to talk, Sylvesto is gone. Just like that.

Now it is them. He and her.

Niall sits down on the sofa and asks her to sit beside him. Hesitantly, she sits down. Ok, now what does he want?

"Emma." He calls but she doesn't answer.

"Emma", he calls again and she looks at him. "Yes?"

"I'm sorry."

She gapes at him in surprise, an amused smile playing on her lips. "For what?", She asks him giving him her entire attention.

"For everything?", He says looking at her with an unsure smile.

"You don't sound so sure about it."

He rubs his temples and sighs. "See Emma, I know that I was rude to you all the way along. Even at the fashion show that took place 2 years ago and on the day of the interview, I made you carry the files on your own and when I asked you to drive me to the meeting that day and shouted at you for getting late when it wasn't your fault but the traffic."

She listens carefully and nods at him at certain points remembering them.

She never forgot that day when he asked her to drive.

Flashback from Chapter 10s ending scene.

"I own a Royce", she said proudly and drove out of the building.

"I didn't ask you", he spat rudely and she winced.


Emma didn't talk back and drove silently. She didn't know where she was supposed to drive to and waited till he told her. He connected to the GPS and she followed the routes as it said.

"Can you drive any faster!?", He spoke through his gritted teeth, and Emma but back a yell.

What is this asshole thinking about himself? The last time I checked, he wasn't my father. How am I supposed to move faster when there's a freak of many cars around us?

"I'm trying", she said instead looking for cars around them. Nobody's moving forward.

She pressed on the horn and it produced a weird noise. Sounded like him.

Emma waved a hi at the driver in the car next to her and asked why there's terrible traffic. He explained that there was some road construction and the tar was spilled onto the road and they are struggling to remove it.

Niall groaned in frustration. "Emma, I'm gonna be late!"

Her patient was growing thin. "Bro, this car doesn't have wings or you can just fly to the place with that chicken wings of yours. How does that sound?"

Niall was taken aback as well as angry. Emma bit on her tongue. What the hell did I just say?

"Are you trying to make me fire you right on spot?"

She swallowed hard.
"You are so infuriating, noted." He said and glanced out with a scary scowl stuck on his handsome face.

Emma pinched herself. Why did I even say Yes to Ethan? Asshole.

When the traffic was finally cleared, they were 30 minutes late. Niall shouted in her face for being late for straight 10 minutes as if she was the one who spilled tar all over the road.

They drove back to the company after a brief five minutes of him stalking some people in there.

End of the flashback_________

Niall shifts in his seat and takes her hand in his hand and she breaks awake from her trance.

"If I'm being frank, I lied to you."

She blinks in confusion. "On what?"

"I had no one to meet at that time. I just wanted to see how well and fast you can drive. But there was this f#cking traffic and I was more than disappointed. I took out my frustration on you. That's what happened."

Her mouth falls open. "So you shouted at me for nothing?"

He nods awkwardly looking away from her.

She pulls her hands away from his but she already misses his soft, warm hands.

"Wow, you were such an idiot", she mutters and he looks at her in surprise.

"I know, I'm sorry about it. I can see that you are too forgiving and that angered me a bit because all I wanted was to get some kind of reaction out of you and I was enjoying making you frustrate and wanted to see if you'd actually shower with curse words but you bit back."

"I was like a kid sometimes, irritating his mum to get her attention and scoldings. Trying to be a brat. And I'm sorry for everything. And when I'm saying sorry, I mean it. Even if it's crushing my ego."

She couldn't help smile inwardly. "Alright fine, stop."

He quickly shuts his mouth looking at her expectantly.

She continues, "I forgive you. It wasn't a big deal anyway. So, yeah."

He didn't believe that entirely. He had made her angry, frustrated, sad.


"Thank you, Emma. That means a lot."

She smiles and takes a hold of his hand. "Does that mean we are friends now?"

He is caught off guard at her question.
So that's it? You forgave me so easily? What is your heart made of? Cotton candy?

She looks at him with puppy eyes and a cute pout forming on her lips.

He laughs softly at her cuteness. "Of course you are. Call me Niall now onwards."

Her eyes widen in surprise, her lips splitting into a billion-dollar grin. "Are you serious?"

He nods with an adoring smile. She is cute when she does that.

She jumps in excitement and squeals, "Thank you!" And ambushes him with a hug.

Niall gasps in surprise and his breath hitches against her hair. His heartbeat escalating from 1 to 1000 in a split second.

He'll probably have a heart attack. Her scent forms a layer of fear and guilt on him, and he wants nothing but to ask her to stop wearing that scent on her body.

It isn't only her scent that makes his heart beat like this.

It's her existence.

A sudden wave of desire grows in the pit of his stomach as he feels her cheeks against his own, her long arms around his torso, her breasts pressed against his chest.

Her breathing hitting behind his ears sending shivers down his spine.

Where is this coming from? I like the idea of her caring for me but this is taking me somewhere else. She will never want me and she's too good for me. It's like that I don't care about her past anymore. She acts so differently with me and I'm not sure how to feel about it.

Emma pulls away and smiles at him with a shimmer of delight and gratefulness in her eyes. She runs upstairs squealing like a little girl who got her favorite toffee.

All of that thoughts came in a second and the hug only lasted 10 seconds. But it felt like 100 lightyears for him.

What is going on with me? She has her charms but I'm not supposed to feel high with her gaze on me.

I feel so stupid and teen-ish. I should learn to control myself. I'm glad that she is so goddamn tall that her ears weren't anywhere near my chest or else she would've surely heard my drumming heart. And I'm not sure what I feel about her. And one thing I'm sure of is that she will drive me crazy one way or the other.

I don't know, but I hope I don't fall.

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