zee (thediamondskies) wrote,

fic: baby you should stick around (harry/zayn) // r.

baby you should stick around
4165 words. r. harry/zayn.
summary: harry doesn’t know what it’s like having zayn’s burdens to carry around, and therefore he doesn’t understand why zayn can’t deal with the idea of them being out.
warnings: strongly alluded racism, as well as one instance of a homophobic slur.
author’s notes: basically this started as fic talk with lizz and turned into 4k of angst and coming of age feelings. title taken from dark doo wop by ms mr.  as usual, locked after three days.  also thanks to julia for the beta!

zayn doesn’t remember bradford much anymore.

he remembers his favorite park, and he remembers skipping rocks on the sidewalk with doniya. he remembers the walk to school, but only because he had to hold her hand every day and she used to get mad at him when he wouldn’t let go until they waked into the building. he remember the smile of a teacher whose name he can’t recall and he remembers his room because the window faced the city.

he remembers these things and these things alone.

he dreams about them sometimes in his sleep, but the trouble is he always wakes up in this small town he doesn’t belong in.

he gets up and showers for school.


zayn doesn’t have any friends.

it’s not for lack of trying. it’s just. people stare at him here. and they don’t outright say or do any anything rude to him, not usually, but they’re not welcoming either. people make sure all the seats are taken at their tables, or say “this seat is saved” in class when everyone knows that it isn’t. the thing is, zayn doesn’t care enough to fight it. he’s soft-spoken at best, and quiet and reserved at his worst. he’s never once given any indication that he’s anything less than harmless, and still everyone stares at him like he might snap at any moment.

“they’ll stop soon enough,” his mum had said.

that was ten years ago.


zayn likes to go down to the pier and draw.

if there’s one thing the move was good for, it’s that zayn now has a quiet place that’s all his own. even in this small fishing town, there are places people don’t usually go. this particular pier is far off down the coast, way out of the way of the beach and towards the end of the harbor full of smaller boats.

he likes the quiet swish of the water, the way the bells and buoys all clang and makes quiet sounds. it’s here that he rest his back against the wooden pole of the pier and draws. sometimes he just doodles, but other times he does comics strippers or characters. he makes up his own superhero kamran kassar whose superpower is flight.

kamran’s strips always end with him flying up, up, and away.


it’s a quiet saturday morning when he hears the roar of a moving truck outside his bedroom window. zayn knows the sound immediately, because people have been moving in and out of the house next door ever since he could remember. this was the third family to buy the house in the past year alone.

he groggily pushes himself out of bed, opening his window to peek out and inspect the new neighbors.

they’re a small family. a curvy older woman with long black hair, a burly older man with short grey hair, a thin and tall girl with brown hair that blows in the wind. and a boy, tall and gangly with wild curls. he walks with his feet pointed inward, but even from here zayn can see his smile, pink lips stretching so wide zayn thinks they might take up his whole face.

the boy looks up at him then, catching zayn by surprise.

“hi!” he shouts, waving in a grand manner.

zayn blinks and him and shuts his window.

what a strange kid.


twenty minutes after zayn’s laid back down to return to his normal saturday routine of sleeping until 5pm, he gets a knock at his door. which is odd on it’s own, considering no one ever bothers him on saturdays. saturdays are his day.

“zayn?” his mum says softly, “there’s someone here to see you? a friend?”

there’s an element of hope in her voice that makes him wrinkle his nose.

“i don’t have any friends,” he shouts back, irritated. honestly, the last “friend” she’d let in had been the footie team’s striker, and he’d taken pictures from his room and made copies to post all over school.

he resists the urge to flat out growl when his bedroom door opens, light trickling in from the hallway and bringing in light not otherwise found in his room. the curtain, as always, are pulled closed and zayn’s alarm clock is set to the lower brightness setting.

“mom, seriously, go away,” he whines, grabbing a pillow to hold over his head.

“but you were looking at me,” a deep voice says, gravely and thick.

zayn peeks out from under his pillow, eyes wide as he finds himself staring at the boy from earlier. he looks more awkward in person, limbs too long in some places and too short in others. his curls are tight around his face and loosen the farther back they fall. but his eyes. zayn can see them, even now in the fluorescents. they’re a cloudy, dreamy color of green zayn’s never seen before. a green-blue to the untrained eye, but zayn knows pigment and hue like the back of his hand and harry’s eyes are the most brilliant shade of celedon he’s ever seen and wow.

“people look at me every day. doesn’t mean they like me,” zayn replies. most the time it means they don’t, he thinks to himself, rolling onto his side. with his back to him it’s easier to distance himself from his beauty, or the way just looking at him seems to make his stomach flutter.

the boy doesn’t say anything for a long time, and eventually zayn feels his bed shift with the weight of another person. he furrows his eyebrows, turning over to give the boy a look.

“what are you doing?” he asks incredulously. it’s now been ten minutes since he was drifting off to sleep and he’s very much like his day to continue being spent comfortably in bed.

“sleeping,” the boys says, smirking at him. he’s got his hands tucked underneath his head like a pillow, grinning widely.

zayn opens his mouth to say something, he does, but the boy’s eyes slip closed and he doesn’t say anything for ten minutes after that. so zayn thinks, fuck it, and turns over, letting the boy’s quiet breathing lull him back to sleep.


“zayn, is your friend staying for dinner!”

zayn groans as he comes to, glancing at his alarm clock for the second time that day. it’s a little after half-five. still groggy, he rubs his palm against his eye.

“what?” he replies, frowning deeply. what friend? zayn doesn’t have any friends.

she sighs, exasperated, “your friend! from earlier? he’s not snuck out the window, has he?”

zayn makes a face at the door, finally taking a moment to look down beside himself and, oh yeah. strange boy from next door who took a nap with him.

“yeah, whatever,” he replies.

zayn sits with his back against the headboard, looking down at the messy curls currently digging into one of his pillows. his thumb is pressed against his mouth, like he’s grown out of sucking on it but still holds it there out of habit. zayn can’t help but smile at that.

he pulls his sketchpad out from underneath his bed and starts to trace an outline of the boy, tongue between his teeth as he begins to fill in all his features. the sharp yet gentle curve of his cheekbones, the jut of his chin. the way his lashes rest against his cheeks when he sleeps. the slight smile that’s on his lips, even while unconscious. it doesn’t take him long to draw the boy, spurred on by something he can’t put a name too. he finishes the boy’s face and body quickly and begins to work on the little details in his face when the bed finally starts to move.

“are you drawing?” he asks. zayn wonders if he can draw they way his voice sound after sleep, all raspy and thick with lack of use. he wonders if he can draw the way he clears his throat and licks his lips before speaking again. “are you drawing me?”

“no,” zayn replies quickly, shoving his sketch pad underneath the bed.

harry laughs, long and loud, and zayn can’t help but laugh too, even though he’s laughing at himself.

“i wasn’t mad, i just think you should know my name if i’m going to be your new muse,” the boy beams, sitting up. he crosses his legs, extending one of his large hands, “i’m harry.”

“zayn,” he replies, tentatively take harry’s hand in his own. harry doesn’t seem to mind, shaking firmly enough for the both of them.

“i know,” he says as he hops out of bed, “your mom said so when she let me in.”

zayn snorts, giving harry a look. “why did you come over, anyway?”

harry’s smile falters for a moment, hand resting on the doorknob.

“you waved at me,” he says, voice soft, like he’s holding something precious and delicate.

zayn feels something akin to intimacy, but he drops the feeling as his mother calls them down for dinner.


harry wants to know everything about zayn.

he wants to know all his favorite foods and his favorite color. he asks him what moves he likes and if he watches any good tv. he asks him about how his dad ended up fishing for a living, and why he doesn’t ever see him at school.

“i just... i like to be invisible,” he replies one day when they’re laying in the grass sucking on a shared bag of jolly ranchers.

harry shakes his head as he slurps around his candy, “but why, though? you’re more beautiful than everyone in that place. you should have everyone kissing at your feet.”

zayn props himself up on his elbow, looking over at harry skeptically, “okay, hazza.”

harry mimicks him, turning to fix him with a look once he’s sat up. “i’m serious, zayn. you’re gorgeous. everyone should see that.”

harry stares at him with his big celedon eyes, and there’s such a severe look in his gaze that zayn has to lay down and look up at the sky to get away from it.


it’s exactly two months and two weeks after meeting harry that he doesn’t get the peace of being invisible.

the day starts out like any other, with people avidly avoiding him and whispering once his back is turned. a boy from his chemistry class makes a deliberate effort to check him with his shoulder, forcing his books to the floor in a loud clatter as the whole of the student body watches zayn shuffle to pick everything up.

and then at the end of the day he opens his locker and a giant can of yellow paint falls on him.

it’s quiet for a long, long time before the quiet rumble of laughter starts. the rumble turns into a white noise, which turns into a roar, and zayn has to clench his teeth to stop himself from crying. he won’t ever let them see him cry. but he’s going to have to find a way to pay for the three books that are now covered in paint and this was the jean coat that his mom gave him for his birthday last year and just.

and there’s a soft hand on his back that startles him, pulls him down to the world and anchoring him into the ground.

“c’mon, let’s go home,” harry says softly, shutting his locker.

no one’s laughing when harry walks him down the hall, hand wrapped tightly around his waist. no one’s laughing, but everyone’s staring.


zayn doesn’t cry often.

he can remember three times in his life where he allowed himself to cry. once when he looked back at their old house as they drove away, once at his grandpa’s funeral in the comfort other people’s tears, and now, as harry sprays down his cloths with the detachable shower head in his bathroom.

zayn lets himself sit in harry’s tub and cry because he’s so tired of being alone, of being a target and being a fucking joke that people can reuse whenever entertainment runs low. because that was his shirt that he payed for, and his pants and his fucking trainers, and his mom saved up for that jacket for months. and now he’s staring down at them and the yellow tint that refuses to come out, even as harry’s tries his damnest.

he cries until his eyes fucking hurt because it’s not fucking fair.

harry gets him out of his cloths, leaves them all in a wet puddle in the corner of the bath, and takes him to his bedroom. he pulls the covers over the both of them and lets zayn cry in peace, lets the dark swallow up his sorrow and kisses ear tear he can catch.

“i’m so sorry,” harry says, like it was him, and zayn wants to snap and tell him to shut up, that this was never his fault, but instead he cries harder and clings to harry when he wraps his arms around him.


when he comes home that day his parents are angry with him for getting paint on his clothes. at least until harry tells them why, and then zayn is pulling harry up towards his bedroom because he knows how this conversation goes and it gets ugly and loud very, very fast.

zayn starts to shake when his father’s voice booms through the floor, tucking himself underneath the blankets and shutting his eyes. harry crawls in with him, laying on top of zayn with a weight that subdues his shaking limbs.

“you’re beautiful,” harry whispers as he kisses him on the cheek.

“you’re beautiful,” he hums as he kisses his jaw.

“you’re beautiful,” he murmurs as his lips graze his neck.

“you’re beautiful,” he promises as he kisses zayn on the lips.

you’re beautiful.


there’s no school, so zayn takes harry to his pier to watch the boats as they leave the harbor. harry seems fascinated by the water, talking nonstop about how he wants to have a boat one day, how he’s sail away with no destination and just live off the sea.

“you’re insane,” zayn supplies, pencil moving over his sketchpad lazily. he’s long since lost his apprehension of drawing around harry.

harry shakes his head, smiling mischievously, “i’m adventurous.”

“oh really?” zayn drulls, not bothering to look up from his sketchpad to raise an accusatory eyebrow.

harry props hand hands on zayn’s tiny knees and leers over him, grin still troublesome, but softer. zayn feels his breath catch in his throat, watching the way harry’s necklaces dangle between them. he wants to thread his fingers through them and pull him down for a kiss, wants to be the brave one for once and make a move. but zayn’s never been brave before, he’s always been safe, and harry’s the one who shrinks the space between them. harry’s the one who dips his head a little lower and brushes their lips together for the first time.

harry’s the one who’s brave.


harry wants to kiss all the time, but zayn is much more cautious.

it’s easy for harry, being an outcast. he doesn’t mind people giving him weird looks when they go to the local cafe and he squirts ketchup onto his fries exuberantly, raising his arms so that the ketchup thins as it pours before bringing it back down again and making a mess. he doesn’t mind that people at school whisper things about them, thing that start with fa- and -got.

harry doesn’t know what it’s like having zayn’s burdens to carry around, and therefore he doesn’t understand why zayn can’t deal with the idea of them being out.

he’s been the different kid his whole life, but to be the different gay kid would be a much bigger struggle.


harry always asks zayn what he’s going to do after they finish college, where he’s going to go. zayn’s smart, he knows this, but he can’t think of anywhere outside of this town that he could be. he’s not got a clue about how to find the money and he’s not even sure that his mum could handle his little sisters without him around. doniya left home, sure, but she did so because she was married, already pregnant within six months of tying the knot.

“you should come to london with me,” harry always replies whenever he tells him these things, “you’re the smartest, most beautiful person i know, and you should come to uni with me.”

“maybe,” zayn always says, and they both know that maybe mostly means no.


“i think we should go to the dance together,” harry says one day, skipping rocks on the water while zayn draws the curve of his lip.

he stops then, giving harry a cross looks. “what? why?”

“because,” harry frowns. it’s set deep in his face, a sure sign that zayn has upset him, “because you’re my beautiful boy, and i want to go to a dance in fancy dress and kiss you to slow music.”

zayn worries his lip, watching harry pointedly not look in his direction. because maybe they’ve been kissing a lot, and going on food dates to the cafe, and even rubbed off against each other the nights harry sleeps over, but a dance is something entirely different. all those things, they’re zayn’s. they’re his memories of harry to keep all to himself, memories that no one else can ever have. but a school dance is something that belongs to everyone. a room full of people who judge and stare and mock, and he’s not so sure he’s ready for that.

“maybe, hazza,” he says softly, pursing his lips.

“why don’t you just say no?” harry snaps, slamming the last rock into the water before standing up.

he stomps down the pier with his arms crossed, but when he rounds the corner zayn can see him wiping his cheeks.


zayn holds his arms around himself underneath the blankets that night, squeezing his eyes shut. if he holds them that way, maybe he won’t have to cry. maybe then he won’t feel like such a coward for being unable to love harry the way he needs. maybe harry would still love him then, maybe harry would be here sleeping with him like he always did on friday nights. maybe tomorrow he’d be waking up at five pm with his best friend beside him instead of an empty bed.

his door opens and closes quietly and, “oh, zayn.”

and zayn can’t stop himself from letting out a dry sob, clawing at harry’s shirt when he finally slips underneath the duvet.

“i’m sorry, i’ll go, i’m sorry, please don’t leave me,” he cries, kissing every inch of harry’s perfect, pale skin.

harry wraps his hands around zayn’s shaking fingers when he tries to undo his belt, flipping them over. “shhh,” he murmurs, kissing his fingertips.

zayn knows harry, knows how he wants something with his whole being and never stops, shakes his head when he dismisses the topic without hesitation. “no, i’ll do it, i’ll do whatever you want if you stay,” he whimpers, keening when harry starts to kiss his salty cheeks, “no one ever stays, please just stay.”

“stupid dance doesn’t matter, you matter,” harry says, kissing zayn until he’s drunk with it, brain cloudy and tears stunted.

zayn shivers as harry’s pushes his sleep shirt over his head, mouthing at his happy trail as zayn pushes it from under the blanket. he mouths at the fabric of zayn’s boxers, sucking the head of his dick and waiting until zayn whimpers and tugs on his curls to curl his fingers around the elastic.

he can feel harry take his shirt off between his legs, almost wants to pull the covers off and see, but he’s too afraid to look at him, even now, just moans when he wraps his mouth around his cock and sucks him earnestly. zayn closes his eyes, breathes in deep and just feels harry, bucks his hips into the tight heat of his mouth and prays that he never leaves, that he can have him in this way forever.

he whines when he pulls off, but grabs him tightly to yank him into a kiss when he sits up, reaching out towards zayn’s side table. when he sinks back down zayn can feel a wet slid between his cheeks and gasps, rocking into harry’s touch as his fingers tease his hole.

“is this okay?” he asks, and his voice seems to boom in the darkness of zayn’s room.

he nods his head before he lets out a hum of approval, fingers tangling in the sheets.

“relax,” harry whispers, free hand massaging the junction where his thigh meets his hip.

zayn gasps when he finally slips a finger past the tight ring of muscle, wrinkling his nose at the unfamiliar feelings. it’s a weird hurt at first, the kind that’s just a tad bit uncomfortable, before it turns into a hot burn that makes his stomach curl and his back arch. he rocks back against harry’s fingers as he slips in another, panting and moaning quietly into the thick, hot air beneath the covers. he can feel himself sweating now, hips twitching in harry’s grip, but harry only spurs him on with kisses and whispered words, sweet sounds that zayn will keep forever.

“you’re so beautiful,” harry mumbles, a third finger squeezes beside the rest, and zayn keens high in his throat, leg twitching when harry brushes his fingers over something sweet.

“so beautiful,” he says as he slides up his body, covering his palm in lotion before working it over himself. there’s a little sliver of light filtering under the covers as harry sits on his knees, and zayn can see him working his hand over his dick, can see the way his shaky breath makes his stomach tremble.

so zayn doesn’t think twice about folding the blanket down harry’s back when he finally slides between zayn’s legs, hand holding himself steady as he pushes in. zayn’s fingers curl into the fabric, locking harry in close as he sink in deeper and deeper, filling zayn up and making his body ache in the most delicious way.

harry bottoms out and zayn gasps, eyes wide and looking at the ceiling before they slip closed, harry’s lips peppering his skin with wet-mouthed kisses. beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, harry whispers, over and over again until it’s all zayn can hear, it’s all zayn can think. beautiful, harry rasps, even as his hips lose rhythm and zayn’s nails scratch red lines down his back. beautiful he whispers, even as zayn’s hand covers his own mouth, back arching off the bed as harry’s fingers bring him to a blinding orgasm, legs kicking out on the mattress. beautiful harry groans, white streaking zayn’s caramel colored skin as he comes in thick spurts, trembling with the effort to hold himself up.

beautiful, zayn thinks while harry cleans them up, already drifting off to sleep, i’m beautiful.


“okay, one more on the stairs!” his mum exclaims excitedly, camera at the ready.

zayn groans as she licks her thumb and runs it over his eyebrow for the fifteenth time, swatting her hand away, “mum.”

he looks over at harry with an apologetic look, but harry only smiles at him, pulling him in closer with a firm hard on his hip. he looks gorgeous in his dark blue tux, curls tamed by what was undoubtedly a painful hair brushing session in anne’s master bath.

“you’re beautiful,” harry whispers to him just as his mum presses the shutter button. he’s not sure he’s ever smiled wider.

his dad has the job of driving them to the dance, grumbling a “be home by midnight” before he pulls out into the road and drives off. he’s not as chuffed about all this as zayn’s mum is, but zayn can’t bring himself to care about what anyone else thinks anymore. harry is his, and he is harry’s, and he’s going to hold his hand and walk into that dance with all the confidence in the world. he’s going to drink shitty fruit punch and take a dumb couples photo, and he’s going to get a kiss at the end of a slow dance.

and in the fall he’s going to board that train with harry, and they’re going to go to london together, and he’s never going to look back once at this shitty little fishing town that never once looked at him.

zayn’s going to be brave, and he’s going to brave with harry.

“how do you feel?” harry asks nervously, worrying his eyebrows as he fidgets with his coat. zayn places his hand on top of harry’s where he’s messing with his buttons, leaning in for a soft kiss.

“i feel beautiful,” he whispers, and the words swell in his chest, make him feel stronger than ever before.

“you are beautiful,” harry replies.

zayn believes him.
Tags: fic: one-shot, rating: r, ship: harry/zayn
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