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Fans were shocked when Zayn Malik announced he was leaving One Direction in March 2015. But as astute Directioners know, the signs were there all along. While his bandmates have been all smiles over the past five years, Zayn began showing signs of discontent as early as 2011. Click ahead to see the photographic evidence.
Zayn tried to hide his sadness in September 2011.
Zayn was unable to muster a smile to promote the group's new album in March 2012.
Zayn struggled to make it through the 2012 Kids' Choice Awards.
"I flew all the way to Australia for this?" Zayn seemed to think in April 2012.
Zayn attempted to channel his discontent into a brooding bad boy stare in September 2012.
"How did it comes to this?" — Zayn in October 2012
Zayn was a buzzkill in October. 2012
"I think I'm a JT, but what if it turns out I'm actually a J.C.?" - Zayn, weighing his options in Nov. 2012
"Why so serious?" — The Joker/the rest of One Direction in Dec. 2012
"I can't believe I let Simon Cowell do this to me." — Zayn at the Teen Choice Awards in Aug. 2013
Here's Zayn feeling trapped by his obligation to his millions of tween fans in August 2013
"For the rest of my life, this is what I will be known for" — Zayn in August 2013
Zayn realizing there are no amount of awards to make this worth it in November 2013.
":(" — Zayn in November 2013
Zayn wearing a beige turtleneck, the ultimate cry for help, in December 2013.
Correction: Zayn, wearing an ascot, the actual ultimate cry for help, in February 2014.
"I'm empty inside" — Zayn in August 2014
"Maybe if I emulate Harry's hair, I can also get some of his joy?" — Zayn in September 2014
Zayn, imagining his future Dancing with the Starsappearance if he stays in 1D forever, at the BBC Music Awards in Dec. 2014.
"Everyone makes mistakes when they're 17." — Zayn in Dec. 2014
Niall, Louis, Harry and Liam in Dec. 2014: :)