Rock 'n Roll Boots & White Collar Roots

Summary: Edward Carlisle Cullen III- ruthless CEO of Cullen, Inc. Masen Whitlock- crooning lead singer of The Idle Rich. Two very different people inhabiting the same body, he's living the best of both worlds. When family drama threatens everything he's kept secret, he must decide whether to come clean-or risk losing the woman he loves. A story of deception, falling in love, and realizing what's most important.

Disclaimer: I don't own Twilight, the music used in this story or any long ago soap opera storylines which this is based off of.

This story is full of angst, drama, some humor and a whole lot of flawed characters. Reader discretion is advised.

Special thanks to Dawn and Stephanie for pre-reading. And to Jamie for all her encouragement during NanoWriMo(which I failed miserably at) and to Cheryl, Ausha, Mandy, April, Erin, Ciera, and all the others over at So You Think You Can Sprint for hosting writing sprints. Without y'all this would not be anything.

Chapter 1

Edward

I'm high off of a successful closing and decide to head for the lounge situated in the hotel I'm staying in. My competition owns it but I'm flying under the radar tonight. At least, I hope I am. Ass kissing gets tiring when you want to be left the hell alone.

I take one last look in the mirror. Nice clothing but not too nice- screaming traveling businessman. My usually tame hair is in its naturally unruly state. Prescription blue contacts to cover my green eyes, leaving my usual wire-rimmed glasses in their case. Dark slacks, medium blue button-down with some left slightly open, sleeves rolled up. Dark shoes complete the ensemble.

Belonging to a high-profile family means being instantly recognizable- in the business world at least. After all, I can't swoop in for the kill if they know I'm coming.

As soon as I leave my room, my phone rings. I answer already knowing who it is.

"Hello, Grandfather. How are you this lovely evening?"

"Cut the crap, Edward. Did you close the multimillion-dollar deal or not?"

"Of course, I did. That's why I'm the CEO." I smirk a little as I say it.

"No, you're the CEO because your grandmother made me take a step back and I don't say no to your grandmother."

"That, too." I smile at the blonde eyeing me as I enter the elevator. She winks and licks her lips. I wonder if she can smell the money my family has. Then again, this conversation isn't exactly private.

"Edward! I'm talking to you!"

"And I'm listening. I did what I came here to do, and I will be back in Tacoma tomorrow."

"Do you have somewhere you need to be?"

"As a matter of fact, yes. I am heading down to the lounge to have a couple of drinks before I turn in."

"I don't know why the hell anyone would allow one of those in a decent hotel. It takes away from the sophistication and elegance to have a bunch of drunks gyrating all over each other to bad karaoke music. If we decide to take over this hotel that is the first thing that is going." He blusters.

The doors open, and the blonde slips me a piece of paper before sashaying towards the lobby. Room number 853. I slip it into my pocket as I let myself think over her unspoken offer. After all, it has been a while, but honestly, I have too much to deal with at the moment to even entertain the thought.

"Edward!"

I turn my attention back to my phone call.

"Everything is as it should be and now, I am entering your version of hell. I'll see you in the office tomorrow. Goodbye, Grandfather." I hang up despite his demands to do otherwise.

I stride to the bar, passing the stage where the band is. A young woman is barking orders enthusiastically at them.

"Scotch on the rocks." I give my order to the middle-aged bartender. He starts making my drink as I start making conversation. Always get on a bartender's good side- you get less watered-down drinks that way. "Hey, is the band much of a draw?"

"Yeah, we do pretty good until about ten and the locals come in for the second set. Then we change the lights, beef up the amp and the place really hops."

Ever mindful of Grandfather's rants, I then voice his earlier concern. "But doesn't that detract from the tone of the hotel?"

"Uh uh. Most of the guests are businessmen. If they don't hit the sack early, they come in here for a nightcap. I figure you might fit that category." He smiles at me knowingly.

"I stay up late, get up early," I confirm.

"What's your business?"

"I'm in real estate." Not a lie, but not the whole truth either.

The enthusiastic lady from the stage bounds over to the bar and sits next to me. She's a curvy brunette with brown eyes and a thick East Coast accent, slightly nasal but not in an off-putting way. Kind of reminds me of Mona Lisa Vito. "Virgin Mary, Frank."

"No tequila?" Franks asks.

"Nope, need my veggies." She laughs at her own joke.

The band starts up making it difficult to hear myself think.

"Tell you what, listening to this music, I might have to see if you have any ibuprofen behind that bar," I call out to Frank, who raises his eyebrow at me.

"That's the first time I ever heard someone rag on a group before they even really start to play." The young woman chimes in.

"Yeah, well, I'm very particular about my music."

"Like you know somethin' about it?"

"I know it hurts my ears."

"I love an uninformed critic." She says while rolling her eyes.

"So, what is your association with this band?"

"I'm their manager." She states proudly.

I snort. "Sure, you are."

"What, a woman can't manage a band?"

"No, but it just seems a little strange for a girl your age."

"I'm precocious." She deadpans.

"And I'm Masen Whitlock from Tacoma." I give her the name I use when I'm undercover before extending my hand.

She takes it with a sly smile.

"I'm Bella, Bella Swan, from Forks by way of Bensonhurst. That's in Brooklyn."

"So, Bella, how did you get into the music business?"

She takes a bite of the stalk of celery out of her drink and chews quickly before answering. "Oh, I got born into it. My father was a drummer then he woke up with five kids to support and now he owns Swan's Sporting Goods in Forks. He was born here in Washington and met my mom while touring in New York but moved us all here so we kids could have a less crime-filled city to live in. And my grandfather died and he came out to help his Ma. His words, not mine." She rolls her eyes and takes what I'm guessing to be a much needed breath.

"Do you play?"

"Play what, exactly?" She smirks at me.

"A musical instrument, Bella."

"Oh! A little keyboard, a little drums for fun. I try to stay out of it though because, for one, it's really hard on the fingernails." She wiggles her hands at me, and I don't know how I didn't notice them before. They're certainly longer than I feel is necessary and decorated with designs. Looks like today it's musical notes. But she's pretty so I'll humor her.

"Very impressive," I tell her.

"Yeah, you like 'em?" She asks as she examines them. "They're kind of my hobby, ya know? That and numbers. I'm an obsessive-compulsive personality so I try to focus on my fingernails, so I don't drive everybody crazy around me."

"What about the numbers?" I'm trying to keep up but she's all over the place much like her hands.

"I like them. I was a math major over at Bellevue College."

"Figures." Like I thought, she was young.

"Oh yeah, figures, integers, radicals. I like all of 'em."

"No, I mean it figures. Musical ability and mathematical aptitude normally go hand in hand."

"Yeah… the right lobe thing."

We smile at each other. I notice she has a beautiful smile.

"So, you can't be old enough to have finished college."

"I started at seventeen, dropped out at nineteen."

"Why?"

She looks at me suspiciously. "Why you interested?"

"Well, because I have never met a teenage mathematician from Brooklyn who also happens to manage a band."

"Well, what would you say if I told you I was twenty-two?"

"I'd say that was even more interesting."

She grins and looks away, shyly.

"Alright, alright. I'll tell you the story. I fell in love with Mikey Newton, lead singer of the OxyMorons. They were playing random gigs and getting absolutely nowhere. So, I shaped them up and introduced them to this music guy, who signed them. Only for them to break up five months later when Mikey and the drummer, Stefan, get into a fight. Now, Stefan is volatile even for a drummer and lays Mikey out with a blow to the head that gained him 46 stitches."

"What was the fight about?"

She grins again. "Me."

"Oh, I see."

"So anyway, the music man asked if I wanted to work for him and I had nothing else to do, so I said sure. Came to Port Angeles to organize a concert for three of our bands and bam! His company goes bust and I'm stuck out here. I mean, I could've gone home but I don't do pity well, so I looked up this band that had auditioned for the company but didn't make the cut, but I thought they had potential, so I stuck around to help them out."

"So, have you?"

"Yeah."

"Maybe not enough." I wince at a particular off keynote from the lead.

"Why is it you are so negatively gratuitous? I mean come on, give 'em a break."

"What are they called?"

"The Idle Rich."

I laugh as the band finishes Summer of '69. Everyone claps but me.

"What's the matta, don't you like Bryan Adams?"

"No, the problem is that I do."

"And what's that supposed to mean?"

"It means, your lead singer has a promising future as a bartender." I look at Frank. "No offense."

He just laughs and pours me another drink.

She takes a deep breath and smiles at me again, a scary calm smile. Like she's trying hard to tamp down her irritation towards me.

"I think it is very discourteous of you to negate someone's creative effort. Especially when you can't get up there and do it yourself."

"Isn't it a little presumptuous of you to assume I can't?" I challenge.

She narrows her eyes as she searches my face then puts one finger up to me as she walks away.

"Interesting girl." I murmur to Frank.

"You have no idea." He shakes his head but the tone of his voice is pure awe.

She clears her throat as she gets up on stage. "Aren't they great? However, tonight we have a very special treat for you by the name of Mr. Masen Whitlock!"

I choke on my drink and turn around to face her, incredulous.

"This guy thinks he is really somethin' special. Alright? Why don't y'all help me out and welcome him to the stage. Give it up for Masen Whitlock!" She starts some sort of demented chant that the audience takes her up on.

Okay, if that's how she wants to play it.

I reach the stage and she smirks as she hops off it and settles to the left of the stage, her arms crossed, all smug- no doubt wanting front row seats to my failure.

As if that's going to happen. Little does she know.

"We'll just play that last one again since you all know it."

They all agree. I gesture for the lead's guitar and he hands it over with no fuss.

"Take it from the top. One two three…"

'I got my first real six-string

Bought it at the five and dime

Played it 'til my fingers bled

Was the summer of '69'

***B***

Holy. Smokes. This man- Masen- was a musical genius. His voice was like velvet and leather had a baby and made this new luxurious fabric that I just want to run my hands all over. He is owning this bar, well, like he owns this bar. I literally have no words and I'm Italian so if my mouth don't have words then my hands do but, in this case- I got nothin'.

I gotta admit, he didn't look like much walkin' up in here. Standard businessman fare- slacks, button-up, shiny loafers. I can smell the businessman on him- that and some really enticing cologne but I digress. I'm only interested in his voice.

Okay, so I'm lyin'. Whateva.

I look around to the other patrons who are eating him up. They're dancing and clapping unlike anything I have ever seen up close and personal, and I like to think I've seen it all.

'Standin' on your mama's porch

You told me that it'd last forever

Oh, and when you held my hand

I knew it was now or never

Those were the best days of my life'

I am mouthing the words to the song as he makes love to that microphone.

He finishes with a flourish and takes a cheeky bow to the cheering audience. With an equally cheeky grin, he hops down from the stage and strides over to me with his long legs.

I figure he is about to gloat, and I'll let him. So, imagine my surprise when instead he pulls me into his arms and plants one right on my smacker. My hands and brain both flail as I have no idea what to do with either.

He lets me go as suddenly as he grabs me and turns to Frank. "Get the lady another drink and charge it to Room 782." He waves to the band. "See you later, Boys." And exits the bar.

Where the hell does he think he's goin'?

"Masen!" I chase after him and yank him back into the bar. "Where ya goin'?"

I am interrupted by his adoring fans and I shoo them off. "Yeah, yeah. He's great. Excuse us." I lead him right outside the lounge.

"You were incredible! I apologize."

He looks at me oddly. "For what?"

"Well, I… where did you learn to sing like that?"

"In the shower."

"Oh, come on. You hustled me, didn't you?"

"I hustled you?'

"Yeah, you're a pro right? Just passing through town?"

"Yes, I am a pro… a professional businessman. I'm in real estate."

"I don't buy that."

"Wanna see my portfolio?" He grins that grin that makes my insides tingle.

"You're really just a boring old businessman?"

"Sorry to disappoint you."

"I am disappointed. You should be selling records, not houses."

"You see I have this nasty little habit… I like to eat."

"Come on, you had to have thought of it."

"Yes, in high school."

"Well, I am about to make you an offer."

"Bella…"

"No, you're right. Peter tries but he's a joke. I know it, you know it, he knows it."

"Why don't you just get a lead singer?" He asks as if it's soooo easy.

"That's what I'm trying to do but I'm finding you most stubborn."

"Excuse me?"

"I'm offering you a job."

"No thanks."

"You can do both. Just make some night gigs and rehearsals when you can. I should point out that I'm Italian. We don't take no for an answer."

He pauses then takes a breath. Oh, I've got him. "No."

"Wait, what? You can't say no. I'm talking major cash here."

"Playing in bars?" He asks incredulously.

"I'm talking future here."

"My future is in real estate but again, thank you for the offer. I'm flattered."

"Are you nuts or you just plain stupid?"

"Neither, I'm realistic."

"You see, reality is what you make of it. I say you go for it."

"And I say, good night."

And he just leaves me there.

How rude.

But he hasn't seen the last of me. After all, I know his room number.

I go back into the lounge to inform the guys.

"Y'all take a break. I'll be back in a jiffy." I tell the band as I grab my coat and head to the elevators. I have no idea what I'm going to say to convince this guy but I'm gonna give it my all.

I tap my fingernails against the metal wall of the elevator as it climbs the floors to my destination.

I look at the plaque on the wall to see which way I go then stride with confidence I don't feel to his room. I take a deep breath then rap on the door.

"Who is it?" I hear him call. I don't answer for fear he won't open the door. He does and promptly rolls his eyes. "I have already turned you down."

"You don't seem the type to pass up a Golden Opportunity." I point out as I lean back on his bed. His eyes rove up and down my body.

"It's late, Bella."

"Think again, Honey. You have another set to do."

He laughs in frustration.

"Another set. That's really funny. Okay, I'll walk you to the door."

"Face it, I am relentless when it comes to the pursuit of excellence. And you, Masen, are excellent. So why don't you just give up now and save us the time and energy."

"I already have a job and it's not gyrating up on stage for fifty bucks a night."

"That can not be your priority in life. And you make it sound like I'm asking you to be a stripper. That ain't my line of work."

"Bella, I have known you for an hour and although I appreciate your enthusiasm, intelligence, and appreciation of fine talent, you don't know me well enough to define my priorities."

He hands me my coat which I throw back on the bed. "I simply don't understand it."

"What don't you understand?" He's yelling a little bit now.

"How you refuse to see this incredible opportunity standing in front of you."

He looks me up and down and our eyes lock; mine narrowing in meaning, his widening with understanding.

"Correct me if I'm wrong but suddenly I see more than just one opportunity."

Now he's gettin' it.

"Very good. But I'm talking about the Idle Rich. I mean, you took my breath away! I don't even want to go downstairs if you aren't going to join the band. I'm staying right here. I'm planted."

He chuckles nervously. He should be nervous. I do not like being told no.

"Bella."

"Why you laughin'? You're the total package. You can sing, play the guitar and boy, can you move. And it goes without saying that you are extremely cute."

"Cute?"

"Oh, absolutely. I mean, that hair and smile and those fingers. Are you married?"

"Not anymore."

"Good."

"Bella, it's not going to happen."

"Nah, no no no no. This is a very precipitous decision. So how am I gonna convince ya?"

He pushes his hand through his hair and paces a bit before he turns to face me. "That performance tonight was for fun. It was a challenge, a game."

"It was great."

"I have a career already."

"Your career should be music! You had such an impact on that crowd. On me. You not singin' is a horror."

"Well, I think you and the world will survive. Hey, don't you have a set right now?"

"Yeah, well, let it start. Let me ask you somethin'. Am I wrong in assuming that real estate is something that occupies mainly your daytime hours?"

"Mostly." He looks at me suspiciously.

"Let me tell you what you're gonna do. You're gonna start showing your little properties later in the morning and perform with us at night and on weekends. The other guys have jobs and they manage just fine."

"You know there are a lot of other people out there that can sing."

"Oh, I know but they haven't been discovered yet."

"Maybe they don't want to be discovered!" He raises his voice.

"Please." I scoff. "I don't buy that for a second. Did I mention you would have your very own groupies? Now you tell me that doesn't appeal to you."

He smirks.

"That's what I thought."

He flops back on the bed and I join him. "Look just sing with us tonight. One set."

"Bella…"

"What's the harm? I bet you wake up feeling like a new man. No obligation. What's the worst that can happen?"

"Alright. One set. And then we go our separate ways."

"Deal." We shake on it but what he doesn't know is my other fingers are crossed.

***B***

'Look into my eyes

You will see

What you mean to me

Search your heart

Search your soul

And when you find me there, you'll search no more'

I grin and pat myself on my back at my glorious talent finding. My Ma was right. You can find the one thing you need most when you're not actively lookin' for it.

I spent the next hour watching him work the crowd into a frenzy. Word of mouth has traveled, and it is more packed in here than I've ever seen it. Before I know it, it's over. And though I have no intention of giving up, if he walks out of this hotel tomorrow, I may never find him again.

He's so energized when he gets off the stage and I find myself going back to his room with him, all laughter and singing and chanting as we enter his room.

"Oh, Masen, Masen, Masen! I can still feel the energy. Do you know how rare that is?"

He's still singing under his breath and I place my hands on his face to get his attention. "Do you have any idea?"

"I'm guessing you liked it?" He grins before opening bottled water and swigging it.

"Liked it? I loved it. And if God forbid, I never hear your voice sing again, I will never forget this night."

He sighs. "I'll never forget it either."

"Then how can you stand there and tell me you don't want that again?"

"Of course, I do." He admits sadly. "And I thank you, but I just can't."

"Is it because you're scared? Cause I can understand if you are. I mean, you get that kind of reaction and you're scared it might never happen again or if it does, will it happen after that."

"How do you know all that?"

"Masen, I'm not an insensitive person. But I can tell you, it will happen every time."

"I appreciate your confidence in me, and I appreciate your sensitivity but you're still missing the point. This isn't my life."

"But it could be."

He looks at me pleadingly.

"What am I gonna do? How am I gonna convince you?"

I lock eyes with him, and I bite my lip. There's no doubt we have some sort of crazy connection what with our banter and all. And lordy, that kiss earlier… my lips are still tinglin'.

"The hell with logic." I move towards him.

"Bella… Bella. Wait, how do you even know I'm this kind of guy?"

I ignore him and push him on the bed. "Everything about you tells me you are."

"That transparent, huh?"

"Mmmm hmmm. Now you might not believe this, but I am not this type of girl." I say as I straddle him. "However, this is an exceptional situation."

"And then some."

He shuts up when I kiss him.

Well, I guess that's one way to win an argument.

My Ma was right about that as well.

I have a playlist. Link will be in my bio and I will add to it every update.

Man in the Mirror- Performed by Michael Jackson. Written by Glen Ballard and Siedah Garett (1987)

Pretty Young Thing- Michael Jackson. Written by James Ingram, Quincy Jones (1983)

Summer of '69- Performed by Bryan Adams, written by Jim Vallance and Bryan Adams (1984)

Everything I Do, I Do It For You- Performed by Bryan Adams. Written by Bryan Adams, Michael Kamen, Robert "Mutt" Lange (1991)

All Star- Performed by Smash Mouth. Written by Greg Camp (1999)

Hands All Over- performed by Maroon 5. Written by Adam Levine, Jesse Carmichael, Sam Farrar (2011)