“What time is it?” I asked quietly. Harry came closer, his hand never leaving my face.
I looked up into his green eyes; they were warm and comforting, “Is it weird that I’m tired?”
“No, it’s been quite a day. Do you want to go to bed, Sia?”
I nodded and he smiled just a little, “Alright then.” I moved to hop down from the stool, but Harry’s arms were around me first, one on the small of my back the other under my knees. He lifted me out of the chair, my head cradled against his shoulder. I gasped at first, and even began to protest, but decided against it, his body was so warm. I sighed and I heard a low chuckle resonate deep in his throat. Harry carried me up to the room, and placed me on the soft carpet slowly. I reached around myself to undo the bow, but Harry beat me to it. With one swift tug, it came undone and the sash unraveled. I slipped the robe off, my cheeks feeling slightly warm from his action.
“I don’t think I should keep this.”
He shook his head, his chocolate curls falling over his forehead, “I want you to keep it. I’m certainly not going to wear it. It’s a gift.”
I pursed my lips, but nodded and went to hang it in the closet. I slid the doors open and found a hanger, placing the robe on it and hanging it up. But then something moved in the corner of my eye, and I froze.
I stared at the girl in the full length mirror and she stared back. Her face was shallow; her dark eyes were lifeless and unfeeling. And the ugly marks emblazoned on her arms were screaming at me in a way that was all too familiar.
Harry stepped up behind her, wrapping his arms around her body. He rested his chin on her shoulder gingerly and clasped his hands together just above her bellybutton. His arms covered hers, and for a moment I imagined that the bruises weren’t there. The girl and I were one in the same, just in that moment.
“What are you thinking about?” Harry murmured in my ear. The question surprised me. So much so, there was a long pause before I said anything at all.
“I don’t know,” I whispered, my gaze never leaving the mirror. Harry’s reflection frowned, and I watched as he moved his head to place a kiss on the back of my shoulder, unlocking his fingers and placing his large hands square on my hips. His lips were soft and felt nice against my skin. I took notice of how far apart his hands looked on my reflection and frowned. He watched me in the mirror, cautiously, as he continued across my upper back to my other shoulder, resting his head in the same position on the opposite side of my neck when he was finished. His brow furrowed when he noticed my expression, but I shook my head.
Harry wasn’t having it, “Tell me Sia, what are you thinking about?”
I leaned my head against his, and as I did, I felt my whole body slump against him. Harry supported me with little adjustment to his posture, though I knew my body weight was distributed differently than his. His thumbs brushed my hip bones repeatedly, causing me to become too aware of the motion as I watched us in the mirror.
“I’m thinking about how wide my hips are,” I mumbled, “And how much wider your hands make them look.”
Harry kissed my shoulder again, “Do you know how many women would kill for your hips?” He stood up straight and guided me backward, so my back was flush up against his chest. Placing his lips at my ear again he whispered, “Do you know they pay thousands to have what you have, naturally?”
I closed my eyes and let my head fall against his shoulder; his voice made me shiver, which only made his hold on my hips stronger. I knew what he was doing; we’d gone through my moments of self-doubt before. But never had we talked about my body so explicitly. The conversation was doing things to my brain.
“I know that Harry, but that doesn’t change how wide they are.” He sighed, and flipped me around to face him, his hands only leaving my hips for a split second. He stared down at me, his green eyes shimmering a little. He pulled my hips against him, causing an inhuman noise to escape from my lips at the sudden movement. He smirked, “Well, I love your hips.” I ducked my head as my face grew warm and I pushed against him, trying to get some space between us. My hands looked small fanned out over his chest, and I took notice of how defined he was under the thin fabric of his T-shirt.
I raised my head to look at Harry again, “Thank you,” I said quietly. His smirk turned into a full on smile, “Of course. Alright, now let’s get you in bed, hmm?” I nodded as he detached himself from me, only keeping contact with my hand as he led me to the queen size bed. He moved the pillows and threw the duvet and top sheet back, then moved aside to let me crawl under them. He tucked me in loosely, walked to switch off the lights, came around to the other side, and settled in next to me on top of the duvet.
“Is this okay?” he asked as he fluffed the pillow behind his head.
I nodded, “How am I going to tell you not to lie down on your own guest bed, Harry? This is your house remember?”
He shrugged, “Yes, but this is your room. What kind of host would I be if I overstepped my boundaries?”
I rolled my eyes but snuggled farther under the covers. I watched Harry as his eyes fluttered shut; the moonlight filtering in threw the sheer curtains. He’d changed in so many ways over the last year and a half, but so many things were still the same. He still had the same dimpled smile with the same kid-like laugh. His curls were still the same shade of chocolate; his eyes still the same shade of emerald. He still liked the same music and movies, and he still gave the best hugs. But he had grown significantly, in height and he’d grown into himself as well.
Everything about him was like a security blanket, nothing ever felt wrong with him, no matter how weird it was. And I think he knew this to an extent, he just wasn’t aware how much he’d kept me sane. Sure, I’d briefed him in the bathroom, but I could never fully tell him how he’d saved me. I could’ve written a novel and I still wouldn’t be able to say everything I needed to say. I could never explain how long days full of tears and pain could be cushioned with just his smile or how his hugs could melt away all the soreness in my muscles. It just didn’t make sense, I barely understood it. So I kept it to myself.
“Enjoying the view?” he asked, opening one eye to look at me. I felt my eyes widen, but I smiled, “Maybe.” He chuckled and shifted his body to face me, the moonlight dancing in his eyes. They seemed to glow independently of everything else, like twinkling green Christmas lights on a clear winter night. And it took my breath away.
“Can you sing to me?” I asked shyly.
He smirked, his teeth clearly visible in the dark, “You want me to sing?” I nodded, shifting closer to him while still keeping my head on my own pillow, “Please? You know I love it when you sing by yourself.”
He chuckled, “What do you want me to sing?”
“You pick.” My voice was high pitched like a child’s and it surprised me. It also made Harry’s smile spread farther across his face, revealing his dimple in his left cheek, “Alright,” he said.
He started humming, and I recognized it as the unknown melody from earlier. It was starting to grow on me, and I felt my eyelids struggling to stay open. So, I decided not to fight it and fell into the deepest sleep I’d had in a long time.