A Promise Made in LoveĀ©
By Genevieve Lee

Genny's Note: This doesn't take place in any specific time in any of the three books.

"Are you sure you don't want me to stay here with you?"

I groaned. What was it going to take to get Charlie to actually leave? "No, Dad. I'll be all right. I'll just be in bed the whole time anyways. Seriously, just go to work." I lifted my face from the pillow just long enough to see him sway worriedly in my doorway.

"Okay, but if this flu gets any worse, call me and we'll take you to the doctor."

"It'll be fine," I reassured him, all the while knowing I would go to Carlisle rather than our family doctor.

Finally, I heard Charlie go downstairs and leave the house. It was only after I heard his cruiser pull away that I let myself fully relax. I flipped over my pillow, so that the cold side was facing up, and sagged against it. The cool cotton felt good against my fevered skin. My eyes drooped and I caught sight of the oatmeal Charlie had managed to make for me sitting on my nightstand. Just the smell of it made my nausea climb higher, and I groaned before turning away from it.

My blinds were pulled closed, although there was no sun to block out, which was typical in the small town of Forks. But it being the regular overcast day, I knew that Edward would be at school, and that he would worry about me when I was not there. He was leaving this afternoon with Jasper and Alice to go hunting, so we had agreed last night I would drive myself to school. That was before I had woken up with a hundred and two degree fever.

I figured I could expect Edward here at around lunchtime, if not earlier to check on me. I knew he had his cell phone with him, a new one from a better company, but I had not yet memorized the new number. I knew it still sat on a scrap of paper in my truck, and leaving my toasty bed to retrieve it did not appeal to me in the slightest. Instead, I snuggled down deeper in my covers and shivered when a chill went through my body. I would let Edward do the worrying.

I sighed in contentment as I began drifting off into unconsciousness.

A while later, a shrill ringing woke me from my stupor and it took me several moments to recognize that it was the phone. I did not open my eyes, but instead felt blindly for the cordless that was sitting somewhere on my nightstand. Finally, my fingers came into contact with it and I pressed the talk button and held it to my face, annoyed at whoever was disturbing my peace.

"'lo?" My voice was groggy and probably incoherent but I could not find the patience to wake up enough to have a conversation. It was quiet on the other end for a moment.

"Bella?" the velvet voice on the other line finally answered.

"Edward?"

I could hear his audible sigh of relief before he spoke again. "Why aren't you at school? Are you okay?"

"Sick," I said simply, before stifling a yawn.

"Are you all right? Do you want me to have Carlisle come over and take a look at you?"

Even though I was half-awake, his concern for me was still endearing.

"No. Just the flu. I'm fine," I answered, proud that I emitted more than one word to him. I heard him laugh, and I could envision his crooked smile.

"Your voice is thick with sleep. Why don't you go rest and I'll see you later?"

"Kay." I didn't need much convincing.

He said something I didn't quite catch and by the time I responded the line was already disconnected. I clicked the phone off and dropped it somewhere on my nightstand, already almost asleep again.

The next thing I was aware of was something cold being pressed against my forehead. The iciness felt wonderful to the heat of my skin and I instinctively bent closer to it. Suddenly, I felt that the cold was all around, I could feel it radiating through my flannel pajama bottoms and the tank top I had chosen to sleep in the night before. I willed my eyes to open and was face to face with Edward.

"Oh!" I breathed in surprise, jumping just a bit.

"Sorry..." he mumbled, but he seemed to be preoccupied with something else. His hand moved from my forehead to my cheek. "You are really hot, Bella."

"How can you tell? I'm always warm to you," I argued groggily, trying to gather my bearings.

"Yes, but I can tell that you have a fever. You are a lot warmer than usual." He pressed his free hand to my other cheek and despite my fever a chill ran through me.

"It's just the flu," I said, waving off his concern. Unlike normal people, I got sick a lot when it was cold. In fact, during the winter, it was more common for me to be sick than it was for me to be healthy. "My immune system isn't the best out there," I informed him as I laid my head back down.

"Did you mean to do that?" he asked suddenly.

"Do what?" I followed his curious gaze with my own to my nightstand where I saw the phone I had dropped earlier...right into the bowl of uneaten oatmeal. I felt a blush creep up my face as I leaned over and lifted the phone out of the goopy mess. I held it over the bowl as the remains dripped back into it. "No, I did not mean to do that." Although I guessed he knew that already. I heard him chuckle and quick as a flash he had taken the phone from me, and was back with it, and it was clean. However long I was around Edward, getting used to his inhumanly speed seemed impossible.

He set the phone in its cradle, and it beeped to indicate it was charging. I was actually amazed it was still working.

"You should really tell me when you aren't going to school," he murmured, settling next to me again. "You had me worried there for a while when you didn't meet me before first period."

I turned to face him and I snuggled into his chest, his cool skin feeling good to the heat of my own. "I'm sorry. I don't have your number memorized yet. There's really no need to. You're usually always with me."

"Do you think if I wrote it on your forehead you would remember?"

I scowled. "Point taken. I will work on trying to remember it."

He laughed at me and pulled me closer, stroking my hair in silence for a few minutes.

"What time is it?" I finally asked.

"It's around four thirty," he answered. "I've been here for a while."

I reluctantly pulled away from his embrace to look into his coal black eyes with worry. "You should have gone on your hunting trip with Jasper and Alice."

"I can resist it for a while longer."

"That's not the only reason I want you to go...," I whispered gently as I played with a lock of his hair.

"You want me to leave?" he asked, obviously wounded, but trying to hide it from his voice.

I smiled at his worry. "I like your eyes better when they're topaz. It means we don't have to be so careful," I replied simply, settling into his chest anyways.

I felt him relax at my easy answer. Although it would be better if he went hunting, I knew I wanted him to stay with me until I felt better.

"You're just going to have to live without them for a while. I'm not leaving your side until your better," he said softly.

"You swear I had cancer," I teased gently, but I was internally relived he wasn't leaving.

"Don't joke like that." He spoke in a gentle voice, with a stern undertone. "You're the most important thing to me. Even when you have a cold, it shakes me. Anything that means you aren't one hundred percent well scares me." We both laid in the silence that followed in his little confession. I knew I had to wait for him to gain control of his emotions, although his worries were preposterous. "How are you feeling?" he finally asked, brushing my hair off my sweaty forehead.

"I'm all right. Just a little nauseous is all."

"Good." He planted a kiss to the top of my head and hugged me closer. I could feel myself getting more and more sleepy, but I tried to stay awake a while longer.

"You know, it's a good thing you're a vampire," I muttered.

"Oh? And why is that?"

"Well, if your were human, you would probably catch my flu from being this close to me."

"Even then, I wouldn't leave."

"I know." I closed my eyes and sighed. "I love you."

He gave a small laugh then as he ran his fingers gently through my hair. "I love you too, Bella. Now get some sleep. I want you to be better."

"Okay. You better be there when I get up." I said, trying to put a threatening tone to my voice, but with sleep taking over, I could hear my words beginning to slur.

"I'll always be here, Bella."

"Promise?"

"I promise."

And with that final note, I finally let the unconsciousness overcome me, knowing that Edward would be there when I woke up.