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29 April 2012 @ 08:24 pm
fic: in the lining of your skin (lady!zayn/liam)  

title: in the lining of your skin
pairing: liam/zayn (lady!zayn)
warnings: um. swearing. slightly sexual themes.
word count: ~2200.
summary: Zayn is – everything, he thinks sometimes, when he’s feeling lonely, and he feels absolutely pathetic but it’s usually when he’s in bed, so he pulls the covers over his head and lets himself sleep.
notes: title from pablo neruda's oda a la bella desnuda (ode to the beautiful nude). um. this is genderswap, so tread carefully. hopefully it's okay! :)

As horribly cliché as it sounds, Zayn isn’t like any other girl Liam’s met. She’s loud and laughs too much and flirts with everything that moves but in the best possible way.

Vas happenin’?” she asks Liam, sometimes, sidling too close to him on the couch, and he has to distract himself somehow, has to try his hardest to do anything except kiss her until she can’t breathe.

(He’s not sure, but he thinks that might be a bad thing – because Zayn gets handsy when she’s drunk but she’s never even touched Liam, and he thinks that has to mean something.)

Zayn is – everything, he thinks sometimes, when he’s feeling lonely, and he feels absolutely pathetic but it’s usually when he’s in bed, so he pulls the covers over his head and lets himself sleep.


He wakes up to Zayn’s shouting.

Harry!” he hears, and then the sound of them wrestling, or something.

He groans, sitting up, and runs a hand through his hair before deeming it a lost cause, and getting up. He pulls on a pair of pajama shorts without really thinking about it, because now he’s awake, he might as well be up and about.

Zayn’s sitting on top of Harry, his arms pinned to the ground, and she looks up at Liam’s entrance. “Hey, Li,” she says, and she fucking giggles.

Liam makes a noise that might be a response in some parts of the world, and goes to the fridge, grabbing himself a glass of juice.

He doesn’t hear what exactly is said but there’s more giggling, and Harry’s low rumble – and of course. He closes his eyes, sipping his drink, slow, trying not to let the hurt overwhelm him.

Zayn wants Harry. Which is – it makes a lot of fucking sense, really, because there’s not a straight girl alive who doesn’t want Harry (and Liam’s sure there are some boys who want him, too (Louis certainly does, even if he won’t admit it)), but his heart kind of breaks for her, anyway.

It doesn’t surprise him, really. It won’t end well for her – for either of them, really. Zayn’s used to getting what she wants, to proving herself (that’s why she has so many tattoos – and Liam really shouldn’t be as turned on by the thought of them as he is, but), but Harry – he doesn’t like her, not like that. He’s only got eyes for Louis.

She’ll be hurt, he thinks, pseudo-idly taking a sip of his drink, and his heart sort of hurts for her, too.


Zayn kisses him, one night. She’s got her head resting against his shoulder, thumb tracing patterns on his trousers, and this is when he’s comfortable – this, right here, with Zayn not putting up any sort of front, just them, breathing together.

He’s comfortable – he wants her, but it’s a dulled sort of want, the sort that’s pleasant instead of painful.

She leans up to him, smiling, and presses a quick kiss to his jawline.

It’s nothing that hasn’t happened before, and he tries vainly to calm himself down, because this is Zayn, and he’s usually (sometimes) so good at pretending that he doesn’t feel anything.

Harry comes in, then, and he’s laughing and tipsy, and Zayn stiffens, frowning. Her hand clenches on Liam’s thigh and he swallows, starting to pull away – because he doesn’t want to get in the middle of this, of whatever she’s got into her head is going on.

“No,” she whispers, and she’s staring at the screen but he sees the corner of her mouth quirk up. She shoots him a look, and her smirk is dirty, and he just bites his lip, and stays where he is.

(He’s not immune to her. He imagines anyone wouldn’t be.)

“’lo,” Harry slurs, grinning at them, and he stretches, back popping. “What’re you watchin’?”

Zayn sits up properly, fixing her hair a bit, and she gestures to her side. “Shit reality shows,” and her voice is a little bit strained, “care to join?”

Harry shakes his head, and he’s squinting at the screen as though trying to find some deeper meaning than two women ripping at each other’s hair. “Think ‘m gonna go to bed,” he says around another yawn, and waves at them, sleepy-smiled and heavy-eyed.

Zayn looks at Liam, then, hands folded in her lap. She opens her mouth a couple of times, and just shakes her head. “I should really be getting to bed, too,” and she bites her lip.

Liam smiles, trying for normal and (probably, he thinks) failing. “You sure? This is riveting.”

She hesitates for a brief moment and then she’s leaning forward, pressing a quick kiss to his lips. She tastes like smoke and the Oreos they’d been eating, and he freezes when their lips press together, short and sweet.

There’s something a soft and sweet and a little bit sad in her eyes when she pulls away, and she opens her mouth, to say something – Liam doesn’t know.

“No,” he whispers, and he kisses her again, hand resting on her thigh.

She makes a startled sound but leans into him, smiling against his lips, and her arm reaches around him to pull them closer together, just barely licking at his lower lip.

“Li,” she whispers when they pull apart, and looks down, smiling, still looking so sad.

He loves her, like this, and he wants her, too, and he doesn’t know what to do with any of this.

He swallows, and opens his mouth – he should go for broke here, he knows, he should tell her everything, and the guilt about using her is already setting in – “Zayn,” he starts, but he’s cut off by a quick shake of the head.

“I’m going to get some sleep,” she says, standing up, and when she does she’s back to herself, smirking at him, raising an eyebrow. “You, too, you’re the one who’s got to get us all together at fuck-all in the morning.”

Liam half-smiles, and nods. “Sure, sure.”

She leaves.

And then Liam’s alone.


 Zayn doesn’t talk to Liam much the next day.

She’s not obvious about it, but – she doesn’t touch him like she usually does. She keeps her hands to herself and Harry, smiles only at them, and when they walk into the area for the interview she refuses to answer Liam, just smiling at him, lips tense.

He tries to get her out of her mood – but she’s stubborn as fuck and barely gives him the time of day, and after they’re free, when they can just lounge around, she doesn’t. She makes stupid excuses to leave the room and ignores him as much as she can.

And – it hurts, because she knows, because she’s angry and hurt and he shouldn’t have kissed her back, knew he shouldn’t, but it isn’t as though she’s going to get what she wants, who she really wants. He’d taken the chance.

He watches her retreating back and almost regrets it – but he remembers the feel of her arm on his waist, of her lips pressed against him, almost shy, and he can’t regret anything.


He doesn’t properly talk to her for a couple of days.

He doesn’t really get the chance to – she’s always leaving, evading his touch, his words, and he wouldn’t have noticed but he’s always, always watching her, and he notices everything. The lack of contact from her, even the little things, is making him sort of crazy – he turns around to say something to her and she’s not there, she’s off with Niall or Louis or Harry, and the thought makes him sadder than it probably should.

This is your fault, he tells himself, stern, but that doesn’t make it hurt less.

He misses her in all of the small, stupid ways, and when he sees her, looking almost vulnerable – her arms are wrapped around her waist and her hair is down, for once – he jumps at the chance, sliding out onto the balcony without a second thought.

She smirks at him, though it seems a bit off, and blows a stream of smoke off to the side, the cigarette  dangling from her fingertips. “Liam,” she breathes out, and her voice is rougher than he’s used to.

He frowns at her. “Why’ve you been avoiding me?”

She laughs, humorless, and grinds out the cigarette, shaking her head. “’m not.”

“Oh, don’t lie to me,” Liam snaps, “we both know you can’t do that.”

She looks up at him, then, and her eyes are full of heat, her stance widening, becoming more menacing. “Oh, yeah?”

“Yes,” and he’s not sure what he’s answering but he hasn’t seen her be this emotional toward him in days.

She smirks at the ground and straightens, eyebrow cocking as though on reflex. “I’m not avoiding you.”

“Then what are you doing?”

“Did you ever think that maybe you’re not the center of my world?” and the words are sharp but her tone is almost teasing. She raises her eyebrow again, breathing out, and licks over her lower lip. “You know – never mind. I’m sorry if I’ve offended you,” and she manages to make that sound like a dirty word.

She goes inside, and Liam’s left alone.

Harry, he thinks, she wants Harry, and he feels like he’s taken advantage of her, somehow, which – makes him feel like shit, to be honest.


It takes him another two days for him to really talk to her.

She’s sitting at the table, writing something down, and he slides into the chair next to her, swallowing, hard.

She looks at him, and she’s almost scared – he sees it, before she straightens as though on reflex, her face forcedly casual. “Yes?”

“I know I’m not the center of your world,” he says, which, what the fuck, not what he meant to say.

Zayn’s eyes widen almost imperceptibly and she closes the notebook she’s writing in, turns to face him properly, tucking a leg up underneath her. “Oh?”

“Yeah,” and he leans forward, scooting his chair in a bit. They’re close enough that they could maybe kiss if they both just leaned a bit more, and he bites his lip because he’s not doing this again.

Her gaze flicks down to it, for a second, to his teeth dragging over his lip, and she widens her eyes before looking back at him.

“You kissed me,” he says, then, because he can think of nothing else to say.

She looks hurt, almost, and shakes her head. “You did, too, you kissed me, too,” she says, sounding like a small, terrified child.

“You kissed me even though you want Harry,” he says, then.

She frowns at him, looking genuinely confused. “What?”

“It’s all right, he isn’t here – but you should know, he doesn’t –”

Zayn laughs, sounding not so much amused as perplexed. “That’s – you’re wrong, I don’t want Harry,” and she sounds like she’s trying to say something else, something more.

He smiles, wide, because he thinks he knows what that means. “It was a nice kiss,” he whispers, leaning in that further bit, until they’re closer than they probably should be.

“You twat,” she whispers back, and then she’s kissing him, hard, hand reaching across to grab his, lacing their fingers together.

She pulls back with the slightest whimper and gets up, pulling him away, to the couch. She falls backwards and he follows, almost lying down on her, barely supporting his weight on his elbows.

She’s wearing shorts and a tanktop, and he pulls away to rest their foreheads together, smiling.

“You sap,” but she sounds delighted by this, and anyway as though she didn’t know already.

She reaches for him, then, tangles her fingers in his hair, and she’s smiling, wide.

“So you want me, then,” he says, raising an eyebrow, and he’s half-teasing and half-sort of afraid because he’s not dealing with radio silence again and he’d go without kissing her at all if it meant they could still talk.

She doesn’t say anything, just presses her lips together and nods, looking delighted. She drags him back down, and lets out a soft sigh into his mouth, and he smiles, and lets himself settle more fully against her.

“We should go to your bed,” she whispers, smiling into his mouth, and all but drags him there, pushing him down against the sheets.

They should talk – they need to discuss this, make sure they’re on the same page, but that can come later, because now there’s kissing, and more, and more.

She falls asleep next to him, head pillowed on his chest, and he wants to ask her to stay but doesn’t know how.


(In the morning, he wakes up slowly, almost afraid to see her gone.

She isn’t; she’s sprawled out over her side, one leg dangling off the edge, and he smiles, feeling a weight lift off of his chest.

“Zayn,” he whispers, kissing the side of her neck, nuzzling her until she stirs.

“Mm, what are you doing?” she asks, and she sounds as though she’s trying and failing to sound petulant.

He just smiles at her, and she rolls her eyes.

“You’re a sap,” she says, again, but pulls him down to kiss her, so he’s not sure she minds at all.)

Current Mood: tiredtired
Current Music: skinny love - bon iver
foreverlarrupforeverlarrup on April 30th, 2012 03:06 am (UTC)
This fic was so adorable and cute, plus I have a huge weakness for genderswap!zayn. :)
rumpledlinenrumpledlinen on April 30th, 2012 03:25 am (UTC)
aww, thank you so much! :) i have a weakness for genderswap everything, ahaha.
♔: people » zaynwinterhearts on April 30th, 2012 05:35 am (UTC)
aw, i really enjoyed this :) and i thought you did a very good job of keeping zayn very um, zayn-like despite the different gender.
rumpledlinenrumpledlinen on April 30th, 2012 11:06 am (UTC)
thank you! i was worried about that, so i'm glad you thought zayn was still zayn. :)
inthenameofjucinthenameofjuc on May 1st, 2012 09:44 pm (UTC)
love how you showed how saaad and angsty liam is over harry touching zayn.

excellent work!

][ sana ][santabutt on May 10th, 2012 05:37 am (UTC)
Oh god, you don't understand how long I just sat on my bed staring at my screen, after I finished reading this.

Idk what I was expecting but it surpassed EVERY ONE. Just....girl! Zayn is so perfect and lovely and liam omg I just want to hold him and the way you wrote him so confused but resigned to the fact that Zayn wanted to be with Harry ughhhh it broke my heart.

because Zayn gets handsy when she’s drunk
but she’s never even touched Liam, and he thinks
that has to mean something.


She shoots him a look, and her smirk is dirty

This is so hot omg she knows exactly what she's doing, and I can totally see guyZayn pulling shit like this to Liam

She looks at him, and she’s almost scared...her
face forcedly casual. “Yes?”

Dfghsjjfjnebjknbre that whole bit is SO PERFECT and then they go back and forth abt who kissed who and its so REAL and lovely and then the next morning how he doesn't want to wake up in case she;'s gone but she's not and it's so tender and fuzzy just how early mornings are and ugh sorry for my probably inane rambling due to how late it is here but I just LOVE THIS SO MUCH.
rumpledlinenrumpledlinen on May 10th, 2012 06:14 pm (UTC)
:D Thank you so much, oh goodness, this comment made me smile so hard.

I'm so glad you like my lady!Zayn! And also Liam, I was worried about writing him.

I... may have a thing for drunk people hitting on sober people and them having to fight it. Maybe.

Gahhh. Thank you! :)
portions_forfox on May 30th, 2012 11:52 pm (UTC)
jasmine your fic is perfect and you are perfect and genderswap is perfect and this is perfect ugh.
rumpledlinen: glassesrumpledlinen on May 31st, 2012 03:28 am (UTC)
aww you are so niiice :) thank you so much darling!