The list of things that Liam loves about Niall is a long one. It seems like everyday something new is tacked on.

They five of them are sitting around in a circle as the crew gets setup to film their music video. Niall starts to strum lazily on his guitar, and sings quietly to himself, picking at the strings as he goes, not really realizing that the others have stopped talking and are now just watching him.

Niall looks up, blushes a little, but continues to play. Mentally, Liam adds another thing to this list. Niall’s nubby fingertips and they way they expertly play the notes with just the right sound hovers somewhere around number forty. By this point, Liam has lost count of how many things he loves about Niall.

He just knows there are a lot.

Of course, Niall knows none of this as he strums away, playing bits and pieces of songs that he likes. The boys fiddle around in the sand, singing random lyrics as they know them, but never forming a full song.

That is, until Niall begins to play the soft tones to the beginning of Wonderwall.

Liam looks up at Niall and Niall in turn gives him a little shrug and that signature grin. That grin, and how it shows off half of Niall’s crooked tooth is one of the very first things Liam had added to his list. He’s somewhat disappointed that Niall’s planning on getting that fixed soon. He finds it rather boyish and cute.

The boys begin to sing the song in unison. They’re not quite harmonizing – they haven’t practised it well enough for that. But as the words go on and begin to fall in the middle of their tight circle, their voices blend together, and soon they’re harmonizing without even realizing it’s happening.

Niall glances around at the others as he continues to play. He sings softer than everyone else, allowing them to have their voices be the focus of the song. The sound of the guitar is what he allows as his contribution, but even that is somewhat soft.

The waves can be heard crashing behind them, and for once the boys pay them little to no attention. Liam takes a deep breath as he remembers exactly where they are and what’s going on. It’s somewhat overwhelming, but he allows himself to just get lost in the song as he sings a light “Yeah, yeah,” all on his own.

He can’t help but connect the lyrics to the song to his feelings for the blonde boy that created this moment. It’s true – he doesn’t think that anyone feels the way about Niall that he does, and he certainly has many things he’d love to say to him, but he hasn’t a clue how.

Though he’s not quite sure about Niall being the one who would save him. Save him from what, exactly? The perfect life? Because Liam is sure that’s what he’s got. He’s sitting on a beach in California with four of his best mates, doing the job he’s always wanted.

He can’t help but smile through the lyrics, and Niall notices this and smiles right along with him.

The other boys are completely focused on the song and don’t take notice of this.

Harry, at one point, slaps his knees, and the song stops for a moment while he does this. Liam just has to shake his head at this a little – Harry always has to be the centre of attention. And Niall lets it happen – which is another one of those things that Liam has on his ever-growing list.

Niall begins to play the guitar again, and the song is off in full force. The boys are all singing and adding in their own little additions to it. The harmonies are richer and fuller towards the end as they find their footing.

They all look at each other and smile proudly when the song is over. Without thinking, Liam leans over and rests his head on Niall’s thigh. It’s a simple gesture – all of the boys are affectionate with one another. But to Liam, this touch means the world.

Niall reaches his hand down and ruffles it in Liam’s hair a little, just enough to get Liam to look up and smile at him.

The two of them make eye contact. At least, Liam thinks they do. It’s hard to know and hard to accomplish with the big sunglasses that are covering Niall’s face.

Harry stands up and makes a mad dash towards the water. Louis follows him quickly. Zayn wanders off after them.

It’s obvious that Liam and Niall have been left alone purposefully. Painfully obvious. Neither of them say a word to each other, they just smile and blush easily.

Niall gently places his guitar against the cooler, careful to not let it fall. He kneels down into the sand, now eye level with Liam. Liam takes a deep breath – and now, though he still can’t make proper eye-contact with Niall, he knows what’s about to happen.

Niall does him one better than just thinking about it and anticipating it. He actually does it – he leans over and softly kisses the corner of Liam’s mouth, as if to test if this is okay. They’re breaking new ground, but neither of them seem to really mind.

Liam doesn’t hesitate. He closes his eyes and allows Niall to move his lips perfectly onto his own. He shifts upwards, feeling awkward to be kissing in this position. He wraps his arms around Niall in an effort to steady himself, but just ends up throwing both of them off balance. With their lips still connected the two of them collapse clumsily into the sand before being forced apart by the fall.

They laugh a little and smile at each other. Liam reaches over to touch Niall’s face and brushes a few grains of sand out of his tousled blonde hair.

At this point Liam realizes that there’s another thing he can add to that long list of things he loves about Niall. His kiss.


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