Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the authors. No money is being made from this work. No copyright infringement is intended.
Thanks to GenealogyGirl and LakeGirl for their major contributions to this story. Dedicated to the posters at the infamous Twilight Lexicon Vampire Mating thread.
And thanks to Alphie for all the encouragement and the beta-reading! You rock!
Edward has some shopping that Alice can't help him with. Ever been to Wal-Mart at two a.m.?
Attention Wal-Mart Shoppers
(AKA: Packaging Pastries)
by silly bella
Oh, the humanity! If you can call it that. I paused at the entrance into this new frontier. Wal-Mart. Of course, I'd never had any reason to visit one before. However, in this instance, the Port Angeles Wal-Mart seemed like the right choice. After all, Forks was a small town, and gossip would spread fast. I couldn't do that to Bella. It would be worse than the motorcycle when Charlie found out, and Charlie would find out if I didn't leave Forks for this particular shopping expedition.
I walked through the store, trying to get my bearings as I began my quest. A woman with a serious expression wearing pajamas with little yellow ducks and fluffy bunny bedroom slippers shuffled past. It was two a.m., but still. Her cart was filled with Friskies cat food and a large package of men's socks. She looked at me and smiled. Did many people shop in their pajamas? I couldn't help but wonder.
Surprisingly few people populated the aisles. There were two men almost too drunk to think. One of them had on a shirt that said something about the 'crack of dawn' and showed woman exposing her rear because of some poorly fitted shorts. Although how shorts that tight could slide down someone's butt…The other one wore a shirt that stated 'a hard man is good to find' and mumbled something about beer and bait. I hung my head. Maybe this was a bad idea.
I checked out the department signs hanging from the ceiling. They had to have personal items somewhere. I wandered off to the left where I passed a tired, pale woman I could almost have mistaken for a vampire. Poor kid. His dark circles look as bad as mine. I'll bet he can't sleep either. Her cart was filled with a variety of bath salts with words like 'relax' and 'sleep' on the front label, a sleep mask and some frozen eclairs. She debated buying some Nyquil, thinking it might help her sleep. I felt sorry for her. At least I'd been able to sleep when I was human.
Just past the Nyquil, on the wall in the back of the pharmacy area, I discovered my Holy Grail. I took in the enormous display. Hot Rod. Lifestyles. Durex. Trojans. Ribbed. Studded. Flared. Mutual stimulation. Extra sensitive. Textured. Heat sensitive. Climax control. Flavored. Extra strength. Odor-masking. Lubricated. Non-lubricated. Spermicidal. At least I can rule that out. Latex. Polyurethane. Reservoir tip. Regular. Large. Extra-large. Speed-strip applicator. This might take longer than I thought. Of course, I couldn't believe I was here in the first place.
That one looks interesting. Hot Rod. It has a speed-strip applicator. What's that all about? I picked up the box. 'Put on a condom in one second flat.' It looked over-complicated. How much faster could this be than a regular condom? I figured since I was a vampire I already had the speed thing down, so I didn't need any speed-strip applicators. I decided to take a look at some of the others.
'Ultra ribbed.' That sounded interesting. I traded boxes. 'Deeper ribs. Designed to increase stimulation. Golden transparent color.' What does color have to do with anything? What's this? Electronically tested to ensure reliability? How do you electronically test a condom? And if it's been tested, does that weaken it? I put that box down and picked up another.
Polyurethane. Hypoallergenic. Does Bella have allergies?
What about these?Extrasafe. What makes them extra safe?
Could this get any worse? And then I heard it.
Check HIM out.
She was stocking Preparation H. But she had turned to stare at me.
Maybe she knew something about condoms. It was a… delicate… topic. But she was an employee, so part of her job would be to answer questions. It wasn't like I was just walking up to any strange woman to ask about condoms. Ask her. I hesitated. I debated. Go ahead, ask her.
"Excuse me, miss. Perhaps you can help me," I said as I walked towards her with a box of Extrasafe Trojans in my hand.
Is he talking to me? The hottie with the condoms? Does he really have a question? She smiled. A really big smile with shockingly white teeth for a human. I could help you in a lot of ways, honey. Just about any way you want. With a coquettish move, she brushed her bleached blond hair behind her ear. "I'll do my best."
"Well," I started, unsure of how to pose my concerns. I read the name on her ID card. "Karyn, if I milked a rattlesnake into this condom, would it contain the venom safely?" I was mortified. She'd probably think I was insane.
She stared at me, her eyes vacant, for a brief moment. She didn't go the insane route. Rattlesnake venom. Kinky. Wonder what that's supposed to do? She raised her eyebrows. "I have no idea. Let me ask the manager." She turned abruptly and started down the aisle.
Kinky, huh. That was certainly an interpretation I'd never considered. I read some more condom packages while I waited for the manager's response.
Rattlesnake venom. Must be some kind of frat joke. That was probably the manager. Whoah. HE needs help with condoms? "I can take care of this customer; you can go back to stocking."
"I was helping him," Karyn whined. I had him first. You get all the hot customers.
Just what I needed, the two of them debating, drawing attention to me while I stood around in the condom section. As they slipped into an argument about which one could help me, I decided that this really was a bad idea. There had to be a better way. I placed the box of condoms in my hand back on the shelf and walked quickly and quietly out of the store.