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21 June 2012 @ 12:05 am
fic: the lights that lead us there (eleanor calder/louis tomlinson) 1/1  
title: the lights that lead us there
summaryand louis leaves with his number written across her wrist and a kiss pressed to her forehead, and she closes her eyes and pushes her fingers against the digits, memorizing the feel of them (just in case something happens).
word count: ~1500
disclaimer: not mine, not real. title/cut text from the song wonderwall by coldplay.
rating/warnings: r; non-explicit mention of sex, cursing.
notes: this is for novacanes, who wanted el/lou fluff after reading down, down. hope it's adequate, love. : ) read through by the ever-wonderful blondsehun. and i don't even know, man. i am just writing a lot of fic lately. (also i ship the fuck out of eleanor and louis, so.) and i'm trying out this new tagging system i've got going. hopefully i'll organize it all eventually.

it starts something like this -

louis smiles at her, one day, under his lashes, hello, love, aren’t you pretty, and eleanor rolls her eyes because he thinks he can get her, just like that?

and that night they’re kissing. it leaves her breathless, absolutely, and she thinks yes, because he can absolutely get her. just like that.

and louis leaves with his number written across her wrist and a kiss pressed to her forehead, and she closes her eyes and pushes her fingers against the digits, memorizing the feel of them (just in case something happens).

and this is how it begins, but it’s not how it ends; and she knows something’s different, this time, knows louis tomlinson is something more than a little bit special.


she doesn’t meet the rest of the boys until later.

it’s because they met during summer. the summer before everything begins, when it’s too hot to breathe but not hot enough to deter them from anything. they meet and they kiss and they fuck, and it’s a perfect summer, the sort she’ll look back on, in thirty years (fifty, a hundred) and think yes, yes, because there are no other words for a summer like that.

and when she meets the rest of the boys, the tease her, call her ellie and make her roll her eyes. they tell lou he’s whipped (and she looks at him, and he says maybe i am but that doesn’t matter and it shouldn’t be a turn-on to hear him say that, but they fuck in the bathroom, quick and dirty, her moans muffled by his shoulder).

niall presses his fingers to the inside of her wrist, where she wears bracelets instead of the digits she’s had memorized since the beginning; and he smiles.

he leans in, whispers in her ear. “you make him happy,” he says, as though it’s a secret, and then, “really. i’ve never seen him happier.”

and eleanor turns a little bit pink, nods down at her shirt. “i - he - me, too,” she says, and she’s always been shit with words but never sparing with her feelings.

niall laughs, then, and his eyes shine and it sets her at ease, a little bit. “i can tell,” and then he’s pulling her into a hug (and she should have expected it; she’s seen all of the interviews, knows them, but it’s different to be in the middle of it, to have niall horan giving her a hug).

she presses her fingers into his back and holds him tight, close.

(harry is different.

she’s worried about harry; because lou laughs it off every time she mentions it but she’s always suspected there’s something more, something between them.

and he comes up to her, and he says “can i talk to you a moment out there?” and jerks his head to the alley.

and she can’t refuse, so she nods; her hands tremble the faintest amount but she’s okay.

she does trust lou, is the thing, but she doesn’t know harry and she’s not so sure what he wants.

he doesn’t speak for a few minutes, just looking at her.

she looks at him a little bit sideways, raising an eyebrow. “what’s up, harry?”

“i mean - i know, it’s the most fucking cliche thing to say, but - if you break his heart...” and he trails off, a bit, giving her a look.

she frowns at him, now, turning to face him properly. “i’m not going to hurt him.”

“he’s my best friend,” and this feels honest. “this conversation is required,” he pauses, smiling at the ground. “but - he really fucking likes you, okay?”

she raises an eyebrow.

“and i can tell you feel the same. just - don’t hurt him. please. you seem nice, lovely, even.” he grins at her, wide, and holds out his arms. “i think we should be friends.” (of course he says it like that; it’s easy, with people like him.)

and she hugs him back; and now, she feels almost as though she’s part of a group, accepted by them (accepted by harry styles, and even if he’s not in love with lou he’s protective of him to the end, that much is obvious).

“thank you,” she says, quick, before they pull apart, and it’s his turn to frown at her, the rain dancing behind him.


“for - not hating me.”

he shrugs, then, laughing a bit. “dunno if anyone’s good enough for my louis, but you’re the closest thing i’ve found.”)


it’s comfortable, being with louis.

he makes her happy. he’s not her sun and stars, he’s not her everything; but he’s her something of the moment, the thing that makes her smile when she doesn’t want to.

(when he’s on tour, he calls her every night - just for a few minutes, some nights, but it means the world to her.

and on one of these calls - he gets quiet, and then whispers i love you into the mouthpiece, and she feels the words reverberate through her, fill her.

she smiles.

“i know, i know,” he’s saying, “i should wait until i see you - but -”

“i love you, too,” she says instead, and she giggles a bit, soft, pressing a hand to her cheek. “i - i do, i love you. god.”

“it’s louis, actually,” he tells her, and she can hear the smirk in his voice but - beyond that, she can hear the worry, fading away with each moment, and it’s that that makes her bite her lip, nod.

“i just - yeah,” she says, and lou laughs into the phone.

“i miss you,” he says, soft, and she grins.

“i miss you, too, love.”

there’s chatter in the background on his end, and he sounds perturbed when he comes back. “i have to go - i’ll talk to you soon, yeah?”

“yeah,” and she hangs up, looking at her phone for a minute.

she smiles.


being with lou without really being with him is hard.

it’s nights spent pressed against the phone, murmuring small nothings into his ear until they fall asleep (and then it’s waking up and hearing him breathe). it’s being asked time and time again if they’re real, if she’s just a beard, if she really loves him. it’s loving him more than she’s ever loved anyone else (maybe not more than anything else; she’s not a child anymore, after all, but she loves him so, so much) and not being able to see him, to hold him.

but then - it’s the absolute relief when he picks her up at the airport, spins her around, gives her a quick kiss. it’s the hiding away in eleanor’s flat, giggling and eating takeaway.

they don’t really kiss when they’re out. it’s not because it’s not real; it’s because they don’t owe the world anything, not at all.

she wants to kiss lou in public, but she fears that if they do they’ll become the property of them, and she doesn’t want that. (they already sort of are, but for now the touches, the glances, the love is only theirs; the fans can speculate all they want but they can’t have it, no matter how hard they try, how long they camp in front of houses.)

this love belongs to them; it’s late nights and early mornings and skype calls ended too early. it’s beautiful and it hurts, too, but eleanor doesn’t mind. not really, because at the end of the day she belongs to lou and he to her.

she doesn’t believe in owning a person, has never, but she does with him. (she wants to prove to the world that she has him, that the fans can’t, that harry never will, never wants to. but she doesn’t need to with the rest of the world, because she has his head on her chest, his fingers playing with hers.

she has “i love you, el,” whispered into the curve of her skin, has “no one else,” as a promise when it all gets to be too much.)


she doesn’t know what the future holds for them. she wants it to be forever; when she dreams of later, she dreams of lou. (it’s simple, like that.) she realizes that she’s being silly, acting like a child, but when lou looks at her, she lets herself believe.


she and lou move in together.

he doesn’t get down on one knee (they’re not there, yet) but he does say please and a long time and she knows what it means in every beat of his heart.

and she knows that this is now, that this is tomorrow, and that it can turn into a hundred tomorrows, a thousand.

“i love you,” she whispers on their first night living together, into his shoulder. “i love you so much.”

“you too, el,” he whispers, already half-asleep, words slurring.

and she smiles into the darkness, pulling him tight.

Valwendies on June 21st, 2012 06:05 am (UTC)
i love this <333 oh my goodness
rumpledlinen: quinnrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 11:38 am (UTC)
aww thank you : ) <3
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rumpledlinen: louisrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 11:38 am (UTC)
fkafjldk thank you so much, i'm so glad you liked it, love. this made me smile a lot, haha. :)
sanaamongseafarers on June 21st, 2012 07:54 am (UTC)
omg i came across this on archiveofourown and immediately jetted here after i saw you wrote it

this is so lovely and sweet and soft, just these glimpses of their lives together. just, omg bless <3
rumpledlinen: kstewrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 11:39 am (UTC)
thaaaank you, darling. : ) i'm so glad you liked it! (also yes don't read it on ao3 because the coding got all messed up but i can't figure out how to fix it :O ) <33
Kristineinahurricane on June 21st, 2012 07:54 am (UTC)
Oh my God, this was all sorts of perfect. I've really grown to love them as a couple for whatever reason, and this is a good way to imagine them. I especially loved how protective Harry was over Louis <3
rumpledlinenrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 11:40 am (UTC)
:) Aw, thank you! I'm so so so glad you liked it.
BUT HARRY STYLESestrella30 on June 21st, 2012 12:34 pm (UTC)
oh, wow, this is really beautiful. wow.
rumpledlinen: louisrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 10:29 pm (UTC)
thank you so much, darling. <3
colazitron: Louis is too pretty for his own goodcolazitron on June 21st, 2012 12:57 pm (UTC)
I am so glad this exists. It's so sweet and gorgeous. I really like how she fits with them all (but especially Louis) so organically.
rumpledlinenrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 10:30 pm (UTC)
Aww, thank you so much. :) I'm glad you think so!
Christinafragilesymphony on June 21st, 2012 01:25 pm (UTC)
this is so beautiful and sweet and lovely and made me happy sigh. the language of it is lovely, and I love your El, and your Louis, and the bit with Harry especially. This is sort of exactly what I needed to read in this fandom, tbh.
rumpledlinen: louisrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 10:30 pm (UTC)
awww, thank you. :) wow, i appreciate that!
blueasyoureyes: zayn and louis spin interviewblueasyoureyes on June 21st, 2012 11:00 pm (UTC)
Oh this is really lovely. It really captures what their relationship must be like, I liked Eleanor's reasons for the lack of affection in public. And the first meetings with the boys were great too. It all seems very realistic and sweet. Perfect.
rumpledlinen: quinnrumpledlinen on June 21st, 2012 11:05 pm (UTC)
Aww, thank you. :) I'm so glad you liked that; it's what I always think when that's used as an excuse for El/Lou not being real. Thank you so much for this lovely comment : )
force that enthusiasm!: stock; (type) cassettewoo on June 22nd, 2012 08:31 am (UTC)
this is absolutely beautiful. i love your characterization of eleanor so much so that i went back and read all of your other fics with her in it. the way you weave in the difficulty of being the significant other of a pop star (what with all of the hate she must receive) was especially great. fantastic work!
rumpledlinen: quinnrumpledlinen on June 22nd, 2012 11:21 am (UTC)
Thank you so much love! I'm glad you liked my Eleanor. :)
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rumpledlinen: quinnrumpledlinen on June 22nd, 2012 11:21 am (UTC)
<3 <3 thank yoooou
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rumpledlinenrumpledlinen on June 22nd, 2012 12:02 pm (UTC)
if we're being honest, I probably will (I didn't put anything about the minigolf in here, and that was what I meant to do, so). :)