Author: Jess620 PM
Two completely different people find themselves stuck sharing a dorm room with each other. The player and the sweet girl; one bad idea, a painful rumour and mixed feelings. Not a good combo. AH, OOC.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Drama - Bella & Edward - Chapters: 5 - Words: 13,590 - Reviews: 1,203 - Favs: 570 - Follows: 484 - Updated: 02-12-12 - Published: 03-19-09 - id: 4935080
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: I do not own any aspect of the Twilight Series. Any/all inclusive material copyright to Stephenie Meyer.
~Robyn. This story would be updated a hell of a lot less if you didn't enjoy it, and you're kind of cool. Kind of.
~Amy, Never Too Latte ;) that's so awesome that you spotted that!
For the record, I love getting feedback on the story, the characters, my writing, everything. Please take time and just let me know what you think :) I love where I'm headed with this story, and I'm so glad to be writing and updating again. Enjoy!
Chapter 5: Fabricated Infatuation
I've never been the outgoing, super-liked girl in school, or anywhere for a matter of fact. Really, I always figured no one liked me much at all, but I never minded. I loved being alone, keeping to my thoughts loyally. Now, though, things had changed. With becoming more social, I'd gained ten times more problems than I'd had before. With more problems come less sense and more advice needed. Hence needing more than just my own thoughts to help me. I needed Alice.
When I saw her pull into the parking lot, I felt a weight lift off of my chest, making it feel easier to breathe. How pathetic had I become?
"Bella," she breathed as she entered the small café and sat across from me at my table. "What the hell happened to you?"
She eyed my bruising and the small cut just above my left eye, where my prominent black-eye had presumably become more than fully developed by now. "I was actually hoping you would be able to tell me."
Her lip parted slightly as she scrutinized every injury on my body. I'd dressed in clothing that was very skin-shielding, but apparently it wasn't enough.
"Bella I know little more than you do," she said nervously. "I didn't see anything really, too many tall people were in my way."
She stared straight into my eyes, and refused to look away. I didn't break eye contact either, noticing that something was off.
Her eyes widened momentarily, then relaxed after a second. She looked at me now, not with defiant eyes but with regretful ones. I shook my head and looked down at my empty plate and coffee. "I'm sorry," She whispered.
"Yeah," I chuckled cynically. "So am I."
"It's just there was so much blood, between you and Jake and that other kid. And I was worried sick about Edward, and-."
"So, why didn't you step in to break it up?" I looked at her, noticing how defeated her demeanor had turned. Honestly, I didn't want to attack her or make her feel shitty. I just needed answers, and a bitter part of me wanted to know why I had to break it up, not her. She had the right motivation after all.
"Look at me," She said quietly, gesturing to body, "I would have been killed, I'm the most fragile person on campus."
I stared at her, and eventually sighed. "Alright, just please tell me everything you remember about last night. From the beginning."
She looked around, her eyes catching on the people in the café. "Fine," she nodded. "But not here."
We collected our belongings and headed out in her small car, driving down many unknown, quiet roads in the middle of fields. For a minute I thought she'd be taking me to Jake's lake, but she wouldn't have known about it at all. Instead, we pulled into a random open field, about the size of a football field, with thick forest line surrounding it. We went from the outside of the field on foot until we reached the middle and sat on the tall, slowly swaying grass around us.
"So, I met you at the stairwell… wait, how much do you remember?" She began, looking up to the sky.
"I remember going into the fight. When I got hit the first time is when I passed out, I guess," I muttered, frustrated because of not knowing for sure. Many people will have prejudiced opinions about memory, or lack thereof. Not many people know exactly what it feels like to lose it—and honestly, it's the most impeding, irritating, helpless thing I'd ever experienced.
She sighed. "Well, after we got to the crowd you completely blanked out on me, I kept calling your name but it was like… like you couldn't hear me, even though I'd been right next to you at the time. So I called after you, then you randomly dove into the crowd. You shoved anyone out of your way that you could get your hands on, and I followed behind you closely because I wanted to check on Edward and make sure no one other than the two guys were getting hurt."
The wind pulled through my hair, brushing it lightly away from my face as I examined our surroundings, listening intently to Alice's version of the story. I made mental note to ask Jake and Edward about their versions later. My mind momentarily hovered over what she'd just said—other than the two guys. As if Jake meant nothing to her, which was probably the case, but I still couldn't help but think that was pretty selfish to say. Really, that other guy, Brandon, had no soft spot in my heart either, but I would have tried to stop that fight had Edward and Jake been involved in it or not. Everyone matters.
"Then, before I could stop you, you decided to run into the fight. Jacob was mid-punch for the other guy and accidentally ended up hitting you right on your eye I guess," she winced, gesturing to my ridiculously sexy black eye. "Then Edward kind of stalled for a minute then tackled Jake to the ground, football style. The other guy got kind of caught in the massive tackle, along with you, and you ended up in the worst shape, so if you're sore on your upper back and getting dark bruises, I wouldn't be surprised." She shook her head disbelievingly.
"Well, that explains the shiner and all the pain I'm feeling in my shoulders."
"Bella, I'm so sorry you had to go through that. Sometimes my brother makes stupid choices, but his heart is always in the right place." She said sincerely, looking at me with apologetic eyes. Take it she didn't know about how much of a dirt bag Edward was when it came to girls?
"No, no Alice," I said, forcing a smile. "It's not your fault." As much as I'd wanted to raise my arm, point blame on someone and scream at the top of my lungs, I couldn't. It wouldn't have been fair to anyone, especially Alice—she'd done nothing wrong. I'd been the idiot who thought running in the middle of the fight was a great idea. Regret was not an emotion that was very familiar to me, until now.
"I may have not tackled you, Bella, but I'm related to the dipshit who did."
I laughed lightly, looking at the beautiful early morning skyline. The trees swayed beautifully, in perfect harmony with the long, soft strips of grass around us. "So what happened after the tackle?" I asked her, not sure if I really wanted to hear the answer.
"After they realized you were badly hurt underneath them all, Jake and Edward put their differences aside I think and just grew up long enough to carry you back to your room. That cut, above your eye," she said, pointing to it as she ripped some grass out of the dirt, "Was bleeding a lot more than you would think. Half your face was blood red; it scared the living shit out of all of us. So we cleaned you up, and noticed it was only a small but deep cut, and just put you in your bed. Edward said it wasn't deep enough to need stitches."
That's how I'd gotten the cut. It must have been the tackle… or not. Though, how would Edward have known whether or not I would have needed stitches?
"How did I get the cut in the first place? And how would Edward know whether or not I needed stitches?" I scoffed, worried about the cut now more than I'd been this morning.
Alice looked at me, her expression unreadable. She opened her mouth, with intent to speak, but said nothing, and instead shut it. Her expression slowly shifted from worried and apologetic, to indifferent and unreadable, then finally settled on almost faintly disgusted. We sat in the grass for a few moments before she spoke, her voice barely above a whisper. "Bella, what do you think about my brother?"
I blinked, not knowing what she wanted me to say, or what she wanted to hear. "What do you mean?"
"In general, what kind of a guy do you think he is?"
Dammit. Worst question to ask. "He's okay," I lied.
Dammit! Well if she really wanted honesty, then I owed it to her to give her just that. "He's a heartless jerk who thinks he's got it all figured out when really, he's desperately searching for a girl who will fit his description of perfection, or at least be willing to bang him with no emotional ties. I think your brother is really childish and very selfish."
I really shouldn't have said that.
"You got the cut," she started slowly, not looking at me. "From falling on the pavement when he tackled Jake. He tackled Jake, because he was trying to protect you. He was there in the first place, trying to pry Jake off the other guy to help him. He carried you to your room, and treated your injuries and sedated you so you could sleep without pain."
I opened my mouth to speak, but she stood from the grass and looked down at me.
"He's a pre-med student. That's how he knew about your stitches. And based on what he did for you and your friend last night, I think calling him selfish and childish is a little out of line. I'm sorry for what happened to you, Bella. I really am. But Edward didn't start that fight. Jacob did."
With that, she spun on her heel and slowly made her way back through the grass toward her car. I sat there, speechless, feeling like the stupidest person on the planet.
A conversation was definitely needed with Edward and Jake when we got back to campus.
We drove back in thick, tense silence. The tension rose to the point that made me want to strangle myself with it, and take back all the things I'd said about Edward. This, evidently, was why I'd spent most of my school days alone and without friends—I'd driven them all away. I deserved one hundred percent of the misery, pain and loneliness coming my way. Really, I was at fault. I had no one to blame but myself.
When we got back to campus, she dropped me off at the front of my building, and without leaving a chance to turn and say something, she drove off. Not a word was said since we'd been on the field.
I took the elevator up to my room, and took my time for the sake of ridding the headache that had gradually developed to incredibly painful and distracting at this point. When I opened the door, Edward was sitting at his desk, hunched over. He held his head in his hands, his elbows propped up on the surface of the desk. The sight made me stop for a second and analyze what the scene reminded me of more—either a man who'd just lost everything or a very guilty, very remorseful being.
My counter-productive thoughts were pulled when a sudden nausea hit me like a wall of bricks, making me drop my bag from my place at the door and run into our bathroom. I stopped paying attention to Edward and let my body just take over, letting whatever was hurting my stomach out and feeling almost refreshed after every heave. Each time the contents of my stomach emptied into the toilet, my head throbbed more aggressively. Seconds after I'd started, I barely noticed Edward run in after me, bend down and hold my hair back as I continued being violently sick.
When I was done, and was positive I was about to pass out, I relaxed back onto the wall next to the toilet and flushed it. Edward stood, then quickly bent back down in front of me again and wiped my mouth with a wet cloth. My eyes focused, noticing the small ripples of skin between his eyebrows that had furrowed in concentration. His eyes focused on mine, but not relaxed. He was searching for something, trying to identify something. That's when my mind finally clicked in—he was pre-med. I was borderline beaten to shit. Obviously he'd be wondering if the episode of sickness I'd just had would connect to my injuries from the fight.
"Do you have a headache?" He asked flatly, as he felt the glands around my neck.
I gently pushed his hands away, closing my eyes and wishing for sleep to take over. "Yeah."
He raised his hands back up, feeling my forehead and face. "You're not running a fever, and your pulse is strong. Are you having trouble remembering anything, or having trouble with your speech?"
I opened my eyes slowly, glaring. When he noticed the irritation in my eyes and my wincing when he gently touched my cut, he backed off and sat a few feet from me. "Edward, stop trying to figure out what's wrong with me," I pleaded breathlessly.
He nodded slowly, and narrowed his eyes curiously at me. "Have you lost your balance much today? Having trouble sleeping?" He asked, then slowly scooped me into his arms and carried me to my bed. I felt limp, like there was sludge in places of my body where muscles should have been. My mind, aside from the headache, was worn and exhausted already—and it was only noon. I felt dizzy as he set me down at the side of my bed, and kept me sitting upright.
He retrieved his thick pen from his desk and bent down in front of me, hitting just below my kneecap. My leg didn't move at all. He did the same to my other leg, and got nothing.
"Bella, I think you've got a mild concussion," he said, as he set his pen down and walked to his desk. I slowly crawled to my pillow as he dug around in his desk drawers, and finally finding something. He approached me as my eyes began to close, and nudged me awake, with a water bottle in one hand and a couple of pills in the other.
"Acetaminophen," he said quietly, handing them to me. I took them and washed them down slowly, trying to ease my headache.
"That won't help the nausea, will it?" I asked, sitting up again. He sat on the edge of my bed, looking at me.
"Are you still nauseous?"
"Come to think of it, no. I feel fine. It won't come back?" I asked, knowing nothing about concussions.
"Probably not for a little while. It's not like your average stomach virus or anything, it's purely neurological."
We were quiet for a while, as I wished my headache to go away. The medication would have taken about twenty minutes to set in, and there was no way I'd be able to rest with a headache this severe. Know was the perfect time, I decided, to get Edward's story.
"Edward," I whispered, twirling my thumbs around each other in my lap, "I need you to do something for me."
"Sure," he said, his elbows leaning on his knees as he sat on the edge of the bed.
"What happened last night?"
He looked over his shoulder at me and sighed. "I thought that's what Alice explained to you."
Confused, I furrowed my eyebrows and he noticed, adding, "I saw Alice drop you off about fifteen minutes ago."
"Just please tell me your side then."
He stood and paced. "Well after Jacob hit you, I kind of lost it and went for him without thinking. You and the other douche fell too, and your head hit the ground pretty hard, witch explains the concussion. I think that's also when you got your cut, because you were instantly bleeding pretty bad…"
"Keep going," I urged, needing to remember and losing my strength to stay awake.
"It's a really long story, maybe I should just let you sleep," he said, shaking his head as his cell phone began to ring.
"No, Edward, please." I said, the sound of my own voice irritating me.
He looked at me, thinking about something hard, then answered his phone. "Hey. No, she's still awake. Has minor bruising, a black eye, and a minor cut just above her left eye, and vomited. No, she doesn't feel nauseous anymore. I thought about intracerebral hemorrhaging, but her symptoms would be much more severe, so I figured a minor concussion. Her balance is okay, she seems dizzy and very fatigued. Yeah, I will. Acetaminophen. Yeah, and thanks Emmett."
With that he hung up, and watched as my face turned very quizzical. He sat down again, and scratched his head. "I called a friend of mine last night, he's in the middle of studying human kinetics. He's going for brain surgeon," he explained slowly. "He's in a few of my classes, but he's second year and knows a bit more than me. He thought your brain may have been bleeding, which is intracerebral hemorrhaging, but your symptoms don't show anything that serious, everything's pretty minor."
"Acetaminophen?" I asked, forgetting what that was.
"Tylenol," he reminded me, sighing again. "Anyway, he told me to keep him updated about you, so I did. Right now I think your meds should be kicking in, how's the headache?"
I noticed how suddenly tired I felt, and how odd Edward was being. The first impression of him seemed more like he'd be hateful toward me for the entire semester, not playing doctor when I was sick. What the hell had happened last night, and why was Edward being so damn caring all of a sudden? "My headache's died down a lot," I noted out loud, and Edward nodded. He motioned for me to lie down, and I complied happily.
"Thank you for helping me, Edward." I murmured, closing my eyes and loving the warmth of my bed and the break from my headache and nausea.
"Sure," he said quietly. He stayed on my bed for a moment, shook his head and stood, gathered his bag, wallet and keys, and practically ran out the door. He was gone so fast I wondered briefly where the fire was, and what had been running through his mind three seconds ago.
He still hadn't told me what had happened, but he couldn't avoid it forever. He was going to tell me, whether he liked it or not.