Edward Cullen was having a bad day.
First, his alarm went off an hour after he'd set it. Then, upon arriving at work, he had to placate three angry board members who were not happy with some decisions he'd made. Now, the heavy Chicago traffic was making him late for his lunch date.
"Dammit," he cursed under his breath as he looked at his expensive watch. It was half-past twelve – thirty minutes past the time he and his date agreed to meet for lunch. "Rose is going to kill me,"
Edward wished he was exaggerating with that thought. The last time he kept his fiancée waiting was about a month ago, but the embarrassing memory of her screaming at him at the restaurant was still fresh. And that time, he'd only been late for ten minutes.
Edward sighed as he patted his pockets for his phone. Upon checking it, he was surprised to see that he only had one voice mail from Rose registered.
"That's strange," he murmured. It wasn't like Rosalie to call just once; he was expecting something more along the fifty range. Well, Edward certainly wasn't complaining. He placed the phone at his ear and listened to the message.
"Hi sweetie!" Rose's high-pitched voice came through. "You will not believe who I just ran into - it's Kate Miller! You know, like, my old sorority sister Kate Miller? Well, I haven't seen her in ages, so we're going to catch up over lunch at Le Chef, then after that, we're getting mani-pedis. You're not mad that I'm cancelling our lunch date, right? I promise I'll make it up to you tonight. Love you!"
And with that, Edward released a long sigh of relief.
"Thank you, God," he praised out loud at the same time his stomach growled.
Might as well get some lunch, he thought. He was about a minute into contemplating his lunch options when the car in front of him finally moved forward, ending the traffic jam that seemed to have lasted for eternity.
Edward decided that he'd go with Mario's where his date with Rose was supposed to be. He was craving their steak and prawns something bad; his mouth was practically watering at the thought.
He reached the bistro in no time, but was having a difficult time finding a parking space. Looks like I'm not the only one who came up with the brilliant idea of eating here, he thought wryly as his Aston Martin circled the parking lot for the second time. He finally found an available space, but then something else caught his attention.
Is that Rose's car?
Edward blinked and looked closer. The vehicle looked exactly like his fiancée's red Porsche Cayman, even down to the customized plates.
"I thought she was meeting Kate at Le Chef," he murmured. Quickly pulling into the empty parking spot, he stepped out of his car and brisk walked to the restaurant.
The first thing he did once he entered the posh lobby was to scan the dining area for Rosalie. Sure enough, he spotted her blonde head amidst the other diners. It looked like she decided to spend time with Kate at Mario's, too.
Edward was about to walk towards her, but stopped when he realized who she was with.
It wasn't Kate Miller, long lost sorority sister, but Jacob Black, his best friend and business partner.
The two of them looked cosy together; if he hadn't known any better, Edward would have assumed that they were a couple very much in love. As he remained frozen in his place, Jacob kissed Rosalie square on the lips, and she giggled happily in response.
At that moment, only one thought came to Edward's mind.
She's cheating on me.
He bolted out of there like the flames of Hell were right at his heels. His mind was still struggling to process everything, but he knew he had to leave.
With tires screeching, Edward drove away from Mario's in a speed way above the limit. He didn't care, though. In fact, the adrenaline rush it was giving him was…amazing. He stepped on the gas pedal harder as he zoomed through the streets, leaving Chicago in his dust.
"How can she do this to me?" he asked angrily to no one. "She's my fucking fiancée! And with my best friend?! That bi – "
Edward's rant was cut off as a man crossing the street was suddenly in front of him. Panicked, he turned a hard left and collided with another car.
Or at least, he thought it was another car. All he could see was a blur of colours that slowly faded into darkness.
When Edward woke up, he was lying on the street. Nothing hurt though, and after feeling his head for bumps, he didn't feel any. His arms didn't even have any bruises.
Slowly, he stood up and took in his surroundings. There appeared to have been an accident on the street he was on – his shiny silver Aston Martin had crashed into a black SUV. Police cars fenced the area while some officers tried to keep curious civilians at bay. EMT's and an ambulance were there as well.
Edward felt a rush of guilt. It was his fault the SUV's passengers were dragged into the accident, and yet there he was, perfectly healthy and without a single scratch.
He watched silently as two EMT's carried the other vehicle's driver on a stretcher. The man looked badly hurt and appeared to be unconscious.
"Wow, Cullen, you are one lucky son of a bitch," he huffed a short, humourless chuckle. "The one time you get into a driving accident and nothing happens to you."
Or so he thought.
As he turned his attention back to the scene, he noticed two more EMT's approaching the wreckage. At first, he supposed it was because the SUV had more passengers, but when it was his car they approached, he knew that wasn't the case.
Edward's eyes widened as he saw his body carried out of the mangled Aston Martin. His head was bleeding profusely, and his eyes were closed as the EMT's hurriedly transferred his body onto a stretcher and eventually, brought to the ambulance.
"What the hell happened?!" he fisted his hair in confusion. "That can't be me! I'm right here!"
"Actually, that is you. Or, your body, anyway."
Edward spun around at the voice. What he saw was a petite girl with spiky black hair and the most ridiculous outfit he'd ever seen.
Seriously, who wears gold tights with a pink tutu?
"Like you haven't seen women in eccentric clothing before," the girl scoffed as she came closer.
"Who are you?" Edward asked warily.
"You can call me Scheduler," the girl grinned. "And I'm here to help you."
"Help me? Help me with what? Figuring out what the fuck just happened?"
"Among other things," she replied as she took his wrist. "First thing's first, though. We have to get to the hospital."
"What–" Before Edward could say anything more, he suddenly found himself in the middle of the emergency room. An operation was taking place, and he could do nothing else but watch in horror and confusion as multiple doctors worked on the body lying on the operating table – his body.
"What's happening here?" he whispered. "How am I…how is that me?"
"It's pretty straightforward," Scheduler answered. "You got into an accident, and…well, your body and your soul got separated."
"Separated?!" Edward yelled before glancing at the other people in the room. When no one looked his way, he continued in a quieter tone. "How is that even – I mean, does that mean I'm…I'm…"
"Not really. And you can relax, they can't hear or see us," Scheduler said as she sat on a nearby counter.
"What do you mean 'not really'?"
"I mean, if you were dead, then you can't go back to your body. But since you still can –"
"Wait, wait. I can go back? That's great! So, what do I do? Do I just jump back into it or –"
"Alright, hold your horses," Scheduler laid a hand on his shoulder. "Yes, you can go back, but not now."
Edward groaned and pulled his hair. "Let me guess – this is the part where you tell me I have to complete some sort of mission first before that can happen."
Scheduler laughed. "Right you are, mister. And they say TV and movies can't teach you anything, huh?"
"Heh, yeah. Hardy-har-har," he rolled his eyes. "What's my 'mission' then?"
"It's pretty simple. All you have to do is gather three tears of pure love cried for you within fifty days, and voila! You'll be back in your body perfectly alive."
"And if I don't?"
"Then it's fifty days till heaven, buddy."
Edward groaned again, and buried his face in his hands.
Yes indeed, he was having a bad day.