Author: FlubFlub PM
It's Edward's wedding day, and Bella is expected to put on a happy face. Kind of hard to do when she still loves him after all these years.Rated: Fiction M - English - Humor/Romance - Edward & Bella - Chapters: 13 - Words: 37,357 - Reviews: 138 - Favs: 121 - Follows: 188 - Updated: 06-27-12 - Published: 09-17-11 - id: 7390193
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Hey everyone! *Rocks on feet nervously* So I hope you don't hate me for waiting so long for another update. I had to write and rewrite this so many times until I was satisfied… Honestly I think this is probably the hardest chappie I've written so far. So, hopefully you like it. *crosses fingers*
And obviously, I don't own Twilight… Else I'd be sitting on a beach somewhere surrounded by hot cabana boys and every dessert known to man.
"I can't help it." I cut him off. "Tell me how I'm supposed to be friends with the only man that I've ever loved. The same man, who purposefully, cheated on me with some dime-a-dozen slut!" I'm practically fuming by the end of my rant. And Edward, ever the epitome of calm, just nods his head and leans back on the couch.
"I think we need to do this, Bella." I slump down, realizing that he's probably right. If nothing else, I'll finally get the chance to scream at him like I've always secretly wanted to.
"Okay." I agree after awhile. "Let's talk."
"So… do you want to start?" Edward asks, glancing at me shyly from under his lashes.
I snort. "Um, no. this whole talky-talk thing was your idea." I slump down in the chair opposite him, hugging a throw pillow to my chest. "Please, do start." I smile sweetly at him.
"Okay." He nods. "Where to start?" he asks, more to himself than to me.
"The beginning, maybe?"
"Seems as good a place as any." He smiles nervously and clears his throat. "So, picture a guy. No, a kid really. He thinks he has it all. Fresh out of school, great job, plenty of money, a great family, and he's with his high school sweetheart- the woman he loves more than life itself." He lets out a breath of air. "Only, he's still just a kid. He thinks he has it all, thinks he knows it all, bet he doesn't. He doesn't know shit, hasn't experienced shit."
He shifts uncomfortably on the couch, wincing as he moves. "He thinks he's ready to move on with his life, so he does the most obvious thing. He buys a ring. And he waits. A month. And after a month, he finally grows the balls to dig up the ring from his underwear drawer and ask his girl. But he knows how she feels about marriage. He knows and he asks anyway, because how could she say 'no'? But she does say no, and his little heart is broken. His pride is wounded, and he's angry. So he does what he thinks any man in his situation would do; he goes to a bar and gets wasted. Only, he's still a kid. He doesn't know what a man would do."
He takes a deep breath before continuing. "A man? A man would've worried more about how his little stunt made her feel. How she was reacting. He would be wondering how to make it all better for her, after he screwed up. A man wouldn't have smiled at the blonde girl who sat on his lap a few drinks into the night. He wouldn't have taken her home, just to make himself feel better. He wouldn't have woken up half naked, sprawled out in his entryway while the blonde girl made herself at home. And a man would've chased after his love when she found him the next day."
"He wasn't a man then, and he didn't understand the full force of what he just did. How he just ruined the best thing in his life. He didn't chase after her, because he didn't think he had to. But he did have to, because everything that's worth anything doesn't just fall in your lap. You need to work for it, make yourself worthy. And unfortunately the kid didn't learn that until just a few weeks ago. When his past returned with a song and a dance- literally- and made him open his eyes. And as that kid looked around himself, he realized he wasn't a kid anymore, and he needed to stop acting like one."
His eyes finally meet mine. His glassy, soulful eyes that I fell in love with the first day they stared into my own. His eyes, which up until this moment, have never looked so… broken… were pleading with me to understand. "You, Bella. You strode back into my life, and opened my eyes for me. And I didn't like what I saw. I looked at my… fiancé, and saw a mistake that I had made, so many years ago, that should have never happened."
"But it did happen." I tell him, my voice quiet, "You let it happen."
"I did." He nods, never looking away from me. "I regret it. Every second of it. And unfortunately, I didn't realize that until it was way too late. Years too late." He struggles to push himself up. He starts to raise himself off the couch and groans.
"Edward-" I protest, but he holds up his hand.
"I'm fine, Bella." He argues, lifting himself up all the way into a standing position. His breathing is shallow as he takes a small step toward me.
Luckily I'm out of my seat and in front of him, holding him up before he completely collapses. He chuckles, although it is strained. "Look at you, still taking care of me." We're chest to chest, completely pressed up against each other. His face is only inches from mine, his cool breath washing over my face. I can feel his heart pounding in his chest, its fast pace matching my own.
I feel home for the first time in… a long time.
Since that day he walked out of my life. Did he really walk out?
Or did I push him?
"I'm so sorry, Bella." He whispers, his voice cracking as he gently strokes my cheek. "The last thing I ever wanted to do was hurt you."
"What do you want from me Edward?"
His hand stops, resting on my cheek. "I want you to tell me everything. I want you to get it all out. Do whatever you need to do; hit me, scream at me, make me cry." He chuckles. "Get it all out now so we can start over. That's what I want, Bella. A second chance. A chance to prove to you that I'm not a kid anymore. Once chance to show you that I've changed." He wipes away a tear that managed to escape from my eye. "If this were my dream, I'd spend the rest of my life showing you just how sorry I am."
"It wasn't just you." I tell him finally, after a long silence filled only with the heavy beating of our hearts. "I wasn't… ready, then. We were moving so fast, Edward, and I had slowly been pushing you away. I was so afraid, because of what happened with my parents. And I guess… I guess in a way we were both still kids then. Young and unprepared for the real world. I couldn't understand that we weren't Charlie and Renee. I couldn't comprehend the fact that not all relationships would end in hatred and broken hearts." I bring my hand up to trace the lines of his face, and the dark shadows under his eyes from lack of sleep. "I was afraid of us. Of how fast things were progressing. And then the proposal… it was the final nail in the coffin. So I said no. and instead of talking to you… I shut down. I ran."
"But then… I thought about it all. And really, we acted like a married couple anyway. What was a piece of paper really going to change? So I went to your house, and she was there. You can tell me all you want that she meant nothing to you, but what it all comes down to is that you chose her over me." It's silent as we both mull over our thoughts.
"I did pick her over you." He agrees at last. And as much as it hurts to hear, I respect him just that much more for not trying to deny it, and not trying to excuse what he did. "And there's no excuse for that. Like I said at the bar that night; you deserve better."
I give him a small smile as I trace his lips with my fingertips. "And in a perfect world, I would walk out this door and be blinded by the bright, shiny face of my prince charming. He'd hop out of his mint condition '67 Camaro, and we'd drive off into the sunset to our own little paradise. But this isn't a fairytale, Edward. People make mistakes; lord knows I've made enough of those. But the past… it's the past. And I've tried to hate you." He winces. "I've tried so hard, because that's what would be best for me. But the heart and the mind don't always agree."
"What does your mind say?"
"That you broke my heart. That I should run like hell in the opposite direction from you. That I shouldn't trust you."
"And what does your heart say?" he asks, brushing a strand of hair away from my face.
"That I love you. That I have to trust you, because you're as close to prince charming as I'll ever get. That the years without you have been some of the hardest of my life. Harder than my parents' divorce. Harder that having my wisdom teeth pulled."
He laughs softly. "You did hate that dentist after your surgery."
"Nobody's perfect Edward." I tell him honestly.
"What do you want Bella?" He asks quietly, still not breaking eye contact.
"I want you." I whisper, feeling that familiar prickling of tears in the back of my eyes. "I don't want a label. I want more than friendship, but no other word seems to describe us."
"You want me?" he asks, his voice and eyes full of wonder. And want.
Nodding, "I want you." And with that, his lips are on mine. Soft at first, growing stronger as I start to respond to his kiss. I pull back slowly, whispering, "Just show me that I can trust you again. Please, that's all I need."
"I promise you." He kisses me softly, "God, Bella, thank you." And I engage him in another scorching kiss.
Hearts beating. Lips caressing. Tongues tasting.
And with just this one kiss, I'm a puddle of goo. Everything about him that I've tried so hard to lock away comes flooding back to the surface. His smell, his taste, the feeling I get inside whenever he's around; almost like butterflies, only not so daunting. Happy butterflies. It's a feeling like I'm flying through the air.
And I never want to land.
Unfortunately he's still weak, and all too soon he loses his balance, pulling us both backwards onto the couch. I land on top of him and he moans in pain. "Oh! Edward, I'm sorry-" I start to pull off of him, but he wraps his arms around me, holding me still.
"Please, just stay." His eyes pleading. "I don't want to let you go yet."
"Edward, you're in pain."
"No." he groans, pulling me tighter against him.
"Edward? Did you just sniff me?" I giggle as I feel his nose run along the length of my neck.
He pulls back and smiles mischievously, "Maybe."
God I've missed this, missed him.
He runs his hands through my hair gently. "Bella I-" he cuts himself off and smiles nervously. "Thank you." I wonder what he was really going to say.
Given the look in his eyes right now, I'm pretty sure I know what he was going to say. Just three little words.
Three little words that we're not ready for yet.
And I thank him, silently, for not saying them just yet.
"For what?" I ask, snuggling into his side, relishing in the feel of his warm body pressed against mine at last.
"For being you."
Anyone still with me?
Reviews'll make poor Eddie feel better…