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Beating Heart

s e v e n t y e i g h t - once.

//how did I get so lucky//

//Julianne//

Confusion washes over me as I open my eyes, realizing that I'm no longer on the couch - which is the last place I remember being. My hands feel around me, touching the surface I'm laying upon. Quickly, I realize it's the mattress and I'm underneath the covers. Harry must've brought me up here when he returned, because I know for a fact I was on that couch watching the television while he was gone. I had grown tired of waiting for him, so I assume I fell asleep down stairs.

I keep my gaze on the ceiling as I silently lie here, unsure of what to do exactly. I had a semi-frightening dream. It revolved around a fight that broke out between Harry and Liam, all because of me of course. It was terrible because everyone was present, even the little girls, and they saw it all unfold. The scariest part, however, was when Harry phased - Liam stayed in his human form - and Harry finished him off. Thankfully, I woke up before I could witness how he killed him. If I would have saw that, even if it was just a dream, I might have just had a heart attack.

"Julianne?" Harry's gravelly voice spoke across the room, making me jump slightly. I sit up, pressing a hand into the mattress behind me. I turn my head so that I could look at him as he stood in the frame of the bathroom door. "Harry." I sigh his name out in return, a small smile spreads across his lips a moment later. "I drew up a bath for you." He pushes himself off the wood and begins the trip to where I am.

My mouth can't resist to shape into a grin as he approaches me, his hand extended to me. I place my palm into his. Just as he was about to squeeze my hand, I tugged on his and brought him down to my level. "Babe." He chuckles out, his free hand slamming onto the headboard to support his falling weight. "I missed you." I whisper softly as my eye lids drop and my lips pucker up. Harry's mouth is soon on mine, just for a moment, as he leaves a few pecks on my lips. "I missed you, sweetheart." He replies, lips brushing the corner of my mouth.

"How long did I sleep?" I curiously ask him, I hope it isn't too late. We hardly got to spend time together today, due to the whole situation in the kitchen. "A few hours. It's a little after six." Harry informs me - gosh, I thought I only went out for an hour. My eyes open just to find his stare already on me. He gives me a wink, immediately blush rises to my cheeks. When he does that, the butterflies in my stomach go wild.

"When did you get the bath ready? Hope it isn't cold." I say in a soft tone, pulling him a tad closer. He smirks gently at my movements, probably enjoying being close to me. "Just now. I saw you moving around, and I knew you would be up soon." Harry's lips fall onto my forehead, making me smile in pure bliss. I adore him, honestly. "C'mon, before the water really does get cold." Harry laughs, the sound rumbling in his throat. I nod gently as a response. Before I could think of what to do next, Harry yanks me off the bed, the covers falling mostly on the floor.

Of course, I stumble over my own feet and the quick actions - my body hitting against his. "I love you, pretty girl." Harry's forefinger and thumb work together to grab my chin, tilting my head upwards so that our eyes meet once again. "I love you." I lift the hand Harry isn't clutching and place it on his covered chest. "I don't get a pet name, hm?" He lifts a brow at me, smiling in addition. I bite my lip as I roll my eyes, he's such an idiot. But, gosh, I love him so much.

Feeling a bit nervous, I decide to just ignore him and carry on with what we were doing. I use the tips of my toes to push my height further up, trying to reach his soft lips. He leans down the rest of the way to meet me. A shocked gasp comes out of my mouth as Harry dodges my mouth just as I was about touch our lips together. "Hey! Not fair." I whine out, pouting my bottom lip out pitifully.

"You're not just going to ignore what I said, love." Harry gives me a cheeky grin, of course he won't let this go. "You never call me anything.. besides my name." He states his fact I am clearly aware of. "I did.. once." I correct his statement, I do remember that! "Exactly. Once." He huffs, his entire face settles into a sad expression.

"It's just.. I don't know what to say." I shrug at him, that is the truth. Obviously, I think about them in my head and I try to say them - but I lack courage, even when it's just me and him. "There's nothing to be afraid of.. I won't make fun of you." Harry gives me a soft smile, trying to ease the tension between us. I swallow harshly, trying to clear my throat. "I get.. n-nervous." I mumble, my eyes tearing from his. He grabs my chin again, forcing my head back.

"How many times.. do I have to tell your pretty ass.. to not be nervous around me?" Harry asks with a laugh following his words. He leans down to me, pressing his lips softly against mine. "It's just you and me, baby girl, don't be scared." His words come out in a hushed whisper, almost inaudible. His tongue slides into my mouth for just a few moments, until he ends the kiss by standing straight.

Both of his large hands grab onto my waist, holding me in place against him. "We have a bath waiting on us." One side of Harry's mouth lifts up as he nods his head towards the bathroom. I sigh softly, trying to relax my tight muscles and shaky nerves. Without another word from either of us, he leads me to the open door.

As we enter the bathroom, the smell of strawberries hits me instantly. I'm so glad he packed the soap that I love, he knows me so well. Harry drops my hand, but before I could freak out about the lost of contact with him, he shuts the door after stepping behind me. I let out a shaking breath as his hands slide underneath my shirt, his fingertips soft and gentle against my skin. His hands settle on my stomach as he brings his lips to my right ear, warm breath covering my skin.

"I've been waiting all day for this." He gently says to me, kissing my lobe. I feel myself putting off heat - blush rising to my cheeks, and to my chest, and everywhere else basically. Harry's hands lift from my stomach so that his long fingers can hook around the hem of my shirt. Careful not to be too rough, he brings to pull it off of me - tugging it off my body. I raise my arms to help him, and soon the shirt is discarded on the floor no where near the laundry basket.

"If I do something.. you don't like.. tell me to stop." He informs me while his hands find my waist once again. I give him a nod, letting him know for sure that I both heard and understood what he said. "Hey.." I speak just as his fingers run over the thin waist band of my underwear. He freezes, probably thinking he done something wrong. "No boundaries.. I.. I trust you." I whisper, turning my head so that I could look up at him. He gives me a light smile, placing a kiss on my lips just seconds after. I look back down, watching his hands move across my skin.

Harry's index fingers slide underneath the band, about to grab a hold of the fabric. Surprisingly, I gain a little bit of confidence, and I grab onto both of his wrists, stopping his movements. "What's wrong, baby?" Harry questions, I can easily hear the confusion and worry laced in his voice. "This isn't.. fair.. you're.. fully clothed." I say with the slightest bit of a smirk stuck on my face. He chuckles lowly into my ear, "Hm.. well.. I believe you should do somethin' about that."

Playfully, I push his hands down and turn around to face him, my eyes automatically lifting up to find his stare. He gives me a devious smirk. I decide to play a little with him, tease him a bit. First, I have to get rid of this damn shirt. I grab the bottom of the fabric and pull it upwards, trying my best. It becomes hard once he lifts his arms a little and I can't exactly get it over his head. Harry lets out a snicker as he takes over the job and finishes the project in seconds. He tosses the shirt on the floor, leaving me to finish my game.

I delicately place my hands on his bare chest, admiring the feeling his hot skin against my cool palms. His eyes observe me closely, watching my every move - wishing he could get inside my head and find out what I am thinking. We keep our eye contact, holding onto it tightly - neither one of us daring to blink. With all of the force in my body, I push against him. It takes him by surprise, causing him to stumble backwards and hit the wall, a pleased smirk covers his lips.

"Hm.. I'm so gentle with you.. but yet.. you can just throw me 'round, hm?" He furrows his brows lightly at me, winking once more. I ignore his words and go back to my teasing. This is quite enjoyable on my part. I am having such a good time that I forgot my chest was completely bare to his eyes - my panties are the only thing covering my body.

My body leans closer to his, so that my lips can fall onto his defined chest. His hand touches against my hip as I place kisses across his warm skin. "Not fair, babe.. I didn't get to kiss you there." Harry chuckles above me as my fingertips slide over his nipple - my other hand relocating to the side of his neck. "Shh." I sternly shush him, not wanting to hear his complaining - even if it was cute. "Yes ma'am." He mutters back, his other hand grabbing onto my waist. I slide my hand to the nape of his neck, where my fingers tangle into his loose curls.

"You're so gorgeous, my love." Harry mumbles to me as I lift my head. I give him a smile before taking a few steps back, dropping my hands from his toned body. In the same moment, he frowns at me - not understanding why I left him. "I'm not going to do all the work.." I giggle to him, glancing down at his sweatpants. He sighs with a smile as he pushes the pants down his legs - along with his underwear. "My turn." Harry's pink lips turn into a sexy smirk, his eyes staring at the only thing hiding the rest of my skin from him.

He lunges forward, grabbing my body with those hands I love to feel on me. He wastes no time yanking down my underwear, his right hand immediately going to grope one side of my butt. "Harry!" I squeal, not expecting him to do that so suddenly. "I can't help it, babe." He mutters to me, his lips trailing across my forehead. "The water's gonna get cold." I remind him of this - we both keep seeming to forget. "Mm, you're right. C'mon." He releases a long, deep exhale once he releases me from his grip.

"I'll get in first." Harry throws one leg into the water, sighing at the warm feeling. He puts the other in and soon sinks himself down into the water. I smile gently as I watch him take in the feeling of finally being able to relax. "Going to join me, sweetheart, or just stare at me?" Harry asks with a half smirk, I can tell he was just picking with me.

I copy his actions, but this time I decide to sit differently than what we've done in the past. I position myself facing him, catching his attention immediately. "Baby, I wanted to hold you." He huffs out, throwing his arm on the side of the tub. "I'll let you in a minute.. but first.. I want to do this." I say as I feel each of his legs slide between my body and the tub's walls. I draw my knees up, knowing that I didn't need to have them straight out - or else I would kick him in a very sensitive place.

"So.. tell me." I mumble as I glide my fingertips through the bubbles that are piled high on top of the water. "What are you going to do about.. the whole.. Liam thing?" Almost instantly, I felt the air between us become thick and tense, perhaps saying that was a mistake. I witness Harry clench his jaw, his eyes closing for a few moments as if he was trying to keep himself composed. I wouldn't doubt it - the simplest things can tick him off at times, push him over the edge. God, I hope this isn't one of those things.

"He's the least of my concerns." Harry simply states, shrugging casually as he rests his back against the bath tub wall, relaxing his muscles. "You.. you aren't even like.. worried he'll.. try to kill himself?" I regret asking this, but yet I crave to know why he's acting this way about the situation. How can you just not care about someone so close to you, someone you claim as family? "I don't care about it Julianne. I don't care what he does. If he's stupid enough to do that.. then let him." Harry's response sort of upsets me even more than I already am.

Suicide isn't stupid. If Liam has gotten to his lowest point in life, if he's gotten to where he believes that suicide is the only option - then he needs help and support from the people that he loves. "Harry, don't say that. He needs you to help him.. Do you know how horrible you would feel if he killed himself?" My eyebrows tightly furrow as I stare at the man across from me. How can someone so passionate towards me act so cruel towards another?

"Why do you fuckin' care about him?" Harry snaps suddenly, his entire body tenses in anger as he glares at me coldly, as if he couldn't care less about my feelings. Uncontrollably, my bottom lip starts to quiver. I can feel the tears behind my eyes, ready to spill down my cheeks any moment now. My breathing is disturbed, and I soon find myself slightly gasping for air.

I tear my eyes away from him, not caring to look at him any longer. With all the courage and strength left in my body, I reply to his question. "I care.. because I've been there. I've wanted to fucking die, too. More than once. I know what it fucking feels like to have no one give a fuck about you or whether or not you're alive."

An extremely heavy burden has been lifted from my shoulders - this is what I've been holding in for so long. I feel sorry for Liam, only because I know what it's like - what he's going through, how he feels, what he's thinking - everything. I get it.

Harry moves in the water, the bubbles moving around between us as he leans up. His hand slides against my cheek, and he gently moves my head so that I'm looking back at him again. "Hey.. baby, I.. I'm sorry. I didn't.. mean to upset you." Harry's words are honest, I can easily tell by looking into his eyes. They hold all of his emotions. I can tell he's hurting, he is aware that I'm not very pleased with him at the moment and I know for sure that that hurts him a lot. He hates to upset me, he feels like an absolute monster in times like this. He ought to right now.

"Julianne, you don't understand it all, love." Harry begins with a sigh, his hand dropping to my neck where he curves his fingers around my nape. "I've tried to talk him out of it in the past. He's very stubborn. I can't change it for him, he has to do that. Sophia is the one that needs to help him, not me. Things are.. different for my kind. We.." He takes a pause, his eyes flickering away from mine for just a few seconds.

"We depend on our mate to help us, to guide us, to support us.. everything. Yes, the pack has to support you as well, but the mate is more important." He tries to explain this to me, but I hardly understand it. "For instance.. The house is almost always out of order and control when I'm gone for longer than a few days.. But yet.. I left.. with the intentions of staying away for a good while." I allow my gaze to trail down to his collar bone, I just can't keep myself collected and focused at the same time.

"Your needs are more important to me than theirs. What you want, what you say, what you do.. literally everything revolving around you.. is what I put my attention on." Harry's words are comprehensible, but yet it's still so odd to me. "Now please, can we stop talking about it?" Harry's request seems rather harsh at first, but I soon realize he just wants this to be a relaxing moment for us. And obviously, if we're arguing the entire time then it definitely won't be anything but a waste of our time.


-


//Harry//

Julianne just finished bathing herself. I allowed myself to watch her move the wash cloth along her skin, however I didn't stare too hard. I didn't want to make her uncomfortable. Ever since the short lived argument we had, if one could even consider than an argument, she's been very quiet and so have I. Mostly, I've been observing her, as weird as it seems. She's so gorgeous, every little move she makes is mind captivating.

She lifts her head in time to catch my gaze, I was considering looking away from her but I'm certainly glad I didn't act upon that thought. "S'everything alright?" I mumble, keeping my voice as gentle and low as I can, the last thing I want to do is frighten her. Julianne's lips shape into a barely noticeable smile, but I greatly appreciate the response. She nods in addition, sighing heavily - indicating that everything definitely isn't alright.

"Tell me what's on your mind." I insist, gliding my hand under the water to find hers. Her eyes flicker away from mine, a sign that she's hiding something from me. It might not be anything major, but it's certainly something. I find her hand and with ease I cover it with my own, holding it tight so that she's aware that I'm right here with her - everything will be okay.

"N-nothing." She shakes her head nervously, even in the warm water her hand is shivering from her anxious state. I lick my lips, preparing myself to speak to her. Those beautiful blue eyes linger on my face but avoid my gaze. "You know you can tell me anything.. please.. I just need to know if you're okay or not.. if something's bothering you.. or whatever it may be. I just-I need to know, babe. Please." I squeeze her small hand a few times, trying my hardest to get my point across while keeping my voice calm.

"Are-are you.." She begins but it fades quickly, she's becoming shy with me. I don't want that, I need her to realize that she can be real with me - she can tell me anything, absolutely anything. "It's okay to talk me, love." I remind her of this, just in case she has forgotten. There are so many things I know she desires to say to me, yet she keeps them locked inside of her. Of course, I'm aware of her shy tendencies, she gets nervous but who doesn't? I'm here for her, always, I just wish she'd understand that.

"Are you.. mad at me, Ha-harry?" Julianne's eyes finally lock with mine. I admire the moment, the gleam in her eyes. "No baby, of course not." I assure her with a soft smile, my other hand lifting up to press against her soft cheek. She leans into my touch, closing her eyes in relief, exhaling smoothly. "It's not a big deal at all." I add quietly, my eyes looking over her pretty features. I'm very lucky to have her, she's perfect in every sense of the word.

"You just.. you haven't.. spoke to me." She whispers with her bottom lip quivering. It always does that when she's nervous, or about to cry. God, I hope she doesn't cry - I could just fall apart if she did. It hurts me so much to watch her cry, especially when I had something to do with the cause of it. "I didn't think you wanted me to." I tell her the honest truth, there is no point in lying to her. Her stare returns on me as she opens her eyes, I can't tell if she's shocked to hear me say that or not.

Julianne says nothing as she sits silently, staring straight at me as if she had never seen me before. I gulp out of my pure nervousness. What if I upset her? Does she hate me for being this way, for not trying to fix this earlier on? Before I have any more time to think about it and weigh all of my evidence, she distracts me by doing something I hadn't expected.

Her small hand rises from the water, dripping as she brings it to my face - she covers my scarred cheek. Her thumb rubs over the end of my scar, then over to the corner of my mouth. Her lips part. At first, I suspected her to say something to me. Instead of that, her eyelids drop again, and her mouth is soon against mine. I don't hesitate to close my own eyes, despite being in utter shock that she's making the first move. Sure, she leaves little pecks on my chest or my hand if she gets the chance, while we're getting ready for bed, but I don't recall her making this bold of a move before.

Julianne's lips move in sync with mine, her tongue swiping around my mouth - copying the actions I normally perform on her. I don't mind it though, it's rather nice to feel it this way. To get closer, she positions herself on her knees and slides further towards me - all without breaking the kiss, and keeping my head in place. She releases my hand to cover the other side of my face. I take the chance, while my hands are free, to grab onto her waist.

She moans into my mouth, and she also receives one from me as well. Easily, I was getting erected and I just knew it would be only short moments until she realized, until she came into contact with it. I push aside the thought and only focused on her mouth. God, she's so perfect. Her tongue is so soft, her lips so plump - I would kiss her forever, nonstop, if she let me. Just as it was getting good on my end, she pulls away breathlessly.

Our foreheads fall against one another, heavy breaths fill the small space between us. My hands stick to her waist, while hers slide into my hair - twirling around strands and tugging at them.

"I love you." She whispers softly, her voice like a feather in the wind. My precious girl, oh how I adore her so much. "I love you." I mumble back, kneading one side of her behind. She giggles gently to me, liking the feeling I'm sure.

Without a word of explanation, she moves away from me entirely and stands up, water droplets racing down her skin. I admire the view, smirking gently as I look up at her beautiful face. She rolls her eyes, noticing that I made sure to take the time to look at her bareness fully. Remaining silent, she gets out of the tub and carefully steps over to the shower. She slides the door open and gets in, switching on the water.

I furrow my eyebrows as I watch her closely, not sure what she's doing or why she decided to ditch me. Steam from the water begins to fog up the glass, making it difficult to see her gorgeous frame. "Harry!" Julianne pops her head out of the shower, a grin plastered on her pretty face. "Aren't you going to join me?" I swear I have never moved so fast in my life - within a second I was out of the tub and headed her way, water rolling down my body and straight to the floor.

Just as I reach her, Julianne sneaks back into the shower, the cloudy glass prevents me from seeing her precious body. "Hey, be nice!" She snickers out when my hands roughly grab a hold of her waist. I just give her a smirk as I pull her body close to mine, making sure that we are touching skin to skin. She giggles into my chest, her arms sliding around my waist. Everything she does is amazing, so perfect.

"I'm trying to wash my hair, mister." Julianne huffs out with a grin plastered over her pretty pink lips. I nuzzle my face into her neck, my nose bumps her earlobe. "Well, missy, I'm tryna love on you." I mock her tone as I nibble at the shell of her ear. She gives me a tickled laugh before squeezing me tight with her arms. "Five minutes, I'll be quick." She insists, throwing her head back so that our eyes could meet. I stare down at the beautiful human I get to call mine, and I flash her a smile. "Five minutes, then it's my turn." I let my right eye fall to a wink, blush immediately rises to her cheeks.

She shoves me away playfully and steps underneath the falling water. I lean against the wall, arms crossed on my chest, and I observe her movements. She tilts her head back, closes her eyes, and brings her hands to her head. She brings to massage her scrap, tossing her hair around to get it soaked. Once it was wet enough, she reaches over to the shelf in the corner and grabs the shampoo.

For just a second, I forget about her actual movements and instead focus on those sweet little things she does. I glance down to see that her toes are curled slightly, probably from the water temperature. Her lips are rolled in as she takes in the feeling of being cleansed, no muscles are tense. She seems quite content at the moment. An awe filled smile covers my face as my eyes roam over her beautiful features. From her long, dark lashes, to her cute little belly button.

But, as any man would, I take the presence of her bare body into consideration. Now, don't get me wrong here, I would never disrespect her like that and stare at the spot between her legs. Instead, I decide to center my attention on the area I have already been allowed to both see, and touch. Her chest - dear God, what a woman.

The water is flowing down her breasts, her pink nipples are erected from the sensation. They bounce slightly as she vigorously moves her arms, scrubbing her hair free of the soap. I bite my lip intensively as I stare at the two beauties resting on her chest. She has become so much more comfortable around me, and God I'm so thankful for that. It feels amazing to just do normal things with her. Like kiss her in such a way that it might lean to the more sexual side instead of the passionate. I wish I could give her what she wants, but I'm afraid that won't happen for a long while.

"Staring isn't nice, Harry." Her angelic voice breaks my trance, my head snaps up to meet her amused gaze and wide grin. "My bad, darlin', couldn't help m'self." It's hard for me to contain my smirk, so I just let it out for her. Her cheeks blush lightly at my words, but she gives me an eye roll and continues on with conditioning and rinsing her hair.

How did I get so lucky?


Notes

// super sorry about the delay, once again! The week of and after thanksgiving is hectic for me! Thanks for waiting patiently like you guys always do! More coming soon, I promise!!!!! leave me some feedback in the comments, please! Love you all xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxooo

**i hope this chapter really shows how comfortable they are with each other now, I am so excited for what's comingggggggggg // as well as the sequel - more info on that later, though! Also I have a trailer coming too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! xx**

Comments

@brianna.smith
Absolutely you and Tessa are my two favorite people ever. Tess doesn’t get on anymore she has a baby now. But I admire how you juggle everything with Faith Leah and the twins... you’re an amazing person. :) xx

Allie Miller Allie Miller
3/20/19

@Allie Miller
I've always loved & appreciated your support! xxxxx thank you for all the love honey!

brianna.smith brianna.smith
3/20/19

IDK how i missed this update but it's fantastic the time jump goes in smoothly. I am in love with this sotry too!! and i forgot to tell you congrats on the wins.. I knew when i saw your name on the ballots you'd win for sure!! you never fail to amaze me you're writing is sensational as always. i am so glad that i've gotten to know you more than just a fan but as a true friend the past 4 years. i love you B keep up your great work girl

Allie Miller Allie Miller
3/18/19

Again AWESOME update!! Can’t wait for the next few and the sequel!!! #UberExcited

Allie Miller Allie Miller
3/13/19

Excellent update!!!

Allie Miller Allie Miller
3/13/19