Niall spent a little more time thinking about whether he should tell Chantelle about Fiona. The thought of not being straight with her about it really didn’t sit well with him. He didn’t feel bad about the fact that feelings were still present for Fiona. They were still present for Vikki so that really wasn’t a big deal for him. He reasoned that the longer he spent with Chantelle the more his feelings towards her would grow and eventually neutralise whatever still lingered for Fiona and Vikki. He was excited about what lay ahead with Chantelle. They’d had two successful dates so far and a third was lined up.
When he woke on Saturday morning, Niall felt good inside. He and Chantelle were due to meet that evening for a night out. He’d received a text from her through the night telling of how much she was looking forward to it. Now that the situation with Fiona had been resolved he could already feel the growing affection towards Chantelle. There was nothing holding him back anymore and he spent the majority of his time thinking about her. He sent her a quick text back to say how much he was looking forward to seeing her too before rising from bed.
The day was spent mainly lazing around the house and playing on videogames online with his friends. He spoke of his upcoming date and was ridiculed about it owing to how many unsuccessful scenarios he’d found himself in over the months. They soon shut up though when he told them of what had happened on the Wednesday.
He got himself ready somewhat early and decided he’d hit the pub prior to getting a taxi to meet Chantelle. Lewis met him and the pair talked about various things, though Niall was decidedly tight-lipped about Chantelle. While he trusted his friend on most things, advice where women were concerned was where he drew the line thanks to Lewis’ blasé attitude to relationships. Niall knew that Lewis would promote screwing around while they weren’t official despite him knowing Niall’s feelings on the subject. He told Lewis nothing of Wednesday either, choosing to have him believe they were each still testing the waters. Lewis seemed to accept that as gospel.
The time eventually came for Niall to jump in the taxi and head for Stacey’s house where Chantelle was. On arrival he was somewhat overwhelmed to see that a whole group of Chantelle’s friends were there too. To say he felt a little out of place was an understatement as they all sat around discussing men they fancied, doing one another’s hair and various other girly things. It wasn’t the most comfortable he’d ever felt; however, he didn’t make a show of it and was happy that Chantelle was at least enjoying herself.
When they were all finally ready a minibus came to collect them and take them into the nearby town. Niall made the mistake of acting a little cocky while en route and immediately wished he hadn’t when one of the girls roasted him in return. Although he spent the rest of the journey in silence, he felt Chantelle give him a reassuring squeeze of his hand. It was a gesture he felt really grateful for and it displayed her more caring side.
They hit a number of bars in town and the mood was pleasant. Initially they all stuck together, though as time wore on they began to fan out and go in their separate directions. Niall, Chantelle and a couple of others ended up in an RnB bar where Chantelle and her friends went off to dance.
Niall wasn’t in a dancing mood and decided to prop up the bar. There he got talking to a few people and he wondered how it must have looked to Chantelle when there seemed to be a different person talking to him every time she came over.
Eventually, an averagely pretty woman found her way over to him. It was clear that she was giving him the come on so he made sure to point out Chantelle and tell the woman he was with her. This evidently didn’t put her off and she continued to flirt. He was somewhat surprised when she suddenly disappeared without word. It became clear why when Chantelle appeared at his side. They smiled at one another before a slow and affectionate kiss. He could see the knowing look on her face.
“Having fun with your new friend,” Chantelle asked.
“Seen that have you,” he retorted with a slightly uncertain grin.
“The woman trying to talk her way into your pants? I’d be surprised if the whole place hadn’t seen it, babe,” she joked with a laugh.
“She soon scarpered when she saw you coming. I’ll get rid of her if she’s bothering you.”
“She isn’t bothering me at all. She can talk to you all she likes. It’s me that’s going home with you tonight.”
Niall felt all of a sudden aroused by the evident seductiveness in her voice and her eyes shined bright as she gave him the come to bed look. The fact she trusted him so implicitly made a wave of feelings crash over him and, in that instant, his affection towards her grew further. All he wanted in that moment was to make her his in every physical and mental way imaginable. She was damned near perfect. His legs were weakened as her ruby lips broke into another smile and she leaned forwards, kissing him again tenderly.
“I should get women to flirt with me more often.”
They laughed and talked some more while Niall bought her and the other girls a drink each. He was then left alone again as she headed back onto the dancefloor with her friends. Amusingly, the flirting woman turned up just seconds after Chantelle left. Niall looked over to Chantelle and they gave each other telling smiles as the woman picked up where she left off.
The night drew to a close at the bar and the punters were asked to leave one by one. Having spent the evening having numerous different conversations with myriad people, Niall was just about ready to get Chantelle back to somewhere comfortable and have his wicked way. He was hopeful she felt the same way, yet it seemed she had other plans as she arranged to go to somebody’s house to continue the party. Niall wasn’t especially in the mood to party anymore with it being the early hours of the morning; however, he didn’t want to leave Chantelle so decided to tag along with her.
Niall conversed with Stacey quietly at the nearby taxi rank. Their attention was grabbed the next minute by the sound of shouting and arguing. Much to Niall’s shock, it was Chantelle who was embroiled in the din with another woman and the pair started fighting. He had no idea what to do as people egged them on. Luckily for him the fight was soon broken up and Chantelle pulled away. Niall approached her and could see the fire in her eyes. Although he knew it was perhaps wrong, her anger turned him on and he felt hugely attracted to her in that moment. Her lip was slightly fat from a punch the other woman had given her. Luckily that was all that seemed wrong with her physically. He attempted to calm her down and while she did indeed embrace him he could feel her tension.
They all bundled into taxis and headed to where the alleged house party was taking place. It was in a place Niall didn’t recognise and that made him feel immediately uncomfortable. He felt just as uncomfortable once in the house too as it turned out not to be so much a house party as a group of people using drugs. Worse, there was no alcohol available that he was prepared to drink.
To say he felt out of place was an understatement, but he didn’t say anything to Chantelle. She looked to be enjoying herself and he took solace from that. While disapproving of the drug taking, he wasn’t judging either. Though he’d never taken them, it didn’t bother him when other people did. Each to their own.
Eventually, Niall got too tired to continue. Without a drink to mull over and nobody really to talk to besides Chantelle when she wasn’t otherwise engaged (Stacey had disappeared and he had no idea where), Niall found a sofa to hide in the corner of and attempted to drift off to sleep, though anxiety was making it difficult. He was relieved when Chantelle finally showed up and cuddled in next to him. He felt pathetic. Perhaps he wasn’t the big party person he’d assumed he was. To Chantelle’s credit, she hadn’t once made him feel out of place or silly. That reassured him greatly, but he couldn’t recall a time where he’d felt more socially awkward.
While there was no real way of telling how long they’d been asleep, Niall could tell from how spaced out he felt that it hadn’t been long. It was definitely no longer than an hour as this sensation was characteristic of an afternoon power nap.
The words were loud and distinct. “You all need to get out. My parents are on their way back.”
Despite his grogginess, the words registered with Niall immediately and he groaned. He didn’t move from where he was, though thought better of saying “just another half hour”. Chantelle remained prone too. He wasn’t sure if her loud mouthed friend had even woken her. That caused him to relax again. Fuck ‘em, he thought.
Just a couple of minutes later and Niall was jolted by the returning loudmouth who yelled louder this time. He could hear voices from upstairs that were obviously telling other sleeping people to get up and ship out.
Chantelle stirred and spoke in a croaky voice. “What time is it?”
“I don’t know. I can’t reach my phone,” Niall replied in a voice every bit as hoarse.
He felt Chantelle rise slightly so he could reach his phone in the pocket of his jeans. He retrieved it and checked the time through blurry eyes. “Just gone 7am,” he said with a trace of antagonism.
“They’re taking the piss!” Chantelle complained.
“You don’t have to tell me that. I could’ve been shagging you ‘til this time rather than fucking about at this so-called house party.”
Chantelle didn’t respond. Although disguised as a joke she knew he meant it. She sat up slowly and rubbed her eyes before climbing off the sofa and getting up onto weary legs. As she left the room and headed upstairs, Chantelle called Stacey’s name.
Niall, now no longer being provided the comfortable warmth of Chantelle’s body, rose from the couch and stood. He felt rather agitated and just wanted to go home to bed. The night hadn’t ended even remotely how he’d hoped.
Within five minutes all guests were out of the house and hanging around outside awaiting the arrival of taxis to ferry them to their respective destinations. Chantelle and Stacey had barely brass buttons to rub together and Niall winced at how much the taxi would cost him, especially as the girls would need dropping off at their house along the way.
The taxi arrived and they climbed in. Chantelle rested her head on Niall’s shoulder and in turn he put his arm around her. There wasn’t a word uttered the whole way. They were all simply too tired to talk. There were even decidedly few words spoken when the taxi dropped the girls off; just muttered goodbyes. Niall and Chantelle didn’t need to reassure one another that they’d be in touch. It was a given.
Once home, Niall crept upstairs in the hopes of not being heard by either of his mum or dad so he didn’t have to enter into any small talk. He got lucky in that respect and slipped under his bedsheets, not even bothering to remove all of his clothes, and fell quickly asleep.
TO BE CONTINUED
Title image from Shine Aloud.