Zayn Malik Tweets For First Time Since Leaving One Direction, But Who Was He Really Thanking For The Support?

We used to live in a world where we could take social media posts at face value, for exactly what they were, but then Zayn Malik left One Direction, and everything changed. In addition to probably never being able to trust again, we also have to scrutinize everything a lot more intensely — from Facebook posts to tweets to Instagram photos and beyond. On Monday, Zayn tweeted for the first time since leaving 1D, and I was forced to do some intense detective work here. After all, we've already proven that we can miss the signs of an impending tragedy like Malik's departure, so there's no telling what other social media clues are lurking out there, ready to avert disaster if we only discover them in time.

So, for that reason, I've been keeping an especially close eye on Malik's Twitter recently. Mostly to make sure he doesn't post a message like "Alexis, this is all your fault", which is my secret fear (I knew I should've done the dishes more as a kid without being asked), but also because I can't stand to lose another 1D lad. I refuse to get burned again, and I'm clinging to the hope that I have some kind of power in this situation to prevent that from happening. (Please don't burst my bubble.) So when Malik put up a tweet earlier today thanking everyone for their support, my eye was pretty quickly drawn to the mysterious last letter he included at the end:

"X"? Who is "x"?? And even though Malik pretty quickly followed that tweet up with another, clarifying that "x" wasn't actually a person at all, but a sentiment... I wasn't fooled.

I refuse to believe there isn't a puzzle to be solved here, so I put together a list of the seven people Malik could be thanking with his subtweet, even if he isn't.

Simon Cowell

The dude made you who you are today by putting you with the other four guys on X Factor, y'know? He is your god now, and always will be. Praise him.

Louis Tomlinson

Without Tomlinson, you'd be the least popular person in 1D right now for walking away from it. Make sure to show some appreciation.

The Jonas Brothers

They didn't just have a member leave the group; the entire band dissolved. So One Direction is still looking pretty positive in comparison.

Perrie Edwards

Malik's fiancee, presumably made of pure, distilled patience.

Geri "Ginger Spice" Haliwell

Pioneering the art of walking away from a super successful musical group (in her case The Spice Girls ) since... probably before Malik was born. That's depressing.

The Wanted

Always gonna be the poor man's 1D, keeping that bar just low enough to jump over on your way out.


"Shoutout to banks for holding so much of my money that I can afford to retire at age 22!"

Images: Giphy (7)