A/N: Tada! We are back! We would like to apololize for taking so long to update. We have a chapter, a long chapter, so hopefully that would make it up to you a little bit. The next chapters will come much more quickly!! So, on with the show!
Disclaimer: Do not own it!
Surprised?" Edward asked as we walked across the pavement.
"Not really…" I said, looking over the familiar backdrop.
"Oh?" Edward glanced at me sideways and grinned. "And what clued you in?"
I shrugged nonchalantly. "I recognized where we were going."
The memories had already begun to flood back: the dress shopping, the unusual bookstore, getting lost, the assault, and Edwards's heroic rescue. It was also the first time we had openly discussed the fact that he was a vampire. Port Angeles held a special place in my heart.
Edward took my left hand and led me into the doorway of the Italian restaurant where we had our "first date". The cold air rushed out and caused me to shiver. Edward shrugged his jacket off and draped it over my shoulder. A young, female waitress walked over and led us to a table in the center of the room. She looked up and smiled widely at Edward.
"Is this table alright?"
Edward looking the waitress in the eyes, dazzling her, and said, "Actually, something more private would be better."
"O-Okay." She stammered, still shaky after being dazzled by a god, and shuffled to an empty, dimly lit corner of the restaurant. "Is this fine?"
"Yes. It's perfect." Edward kept his eyes fixed on me the whole time, and squeezed me around the waist. The waitress noticed.
"Aw! First dates are always so sweet."
"Actually," Edward said clearing his throat, "we are engaged." As if on cue, my hand instinctively reached out to show her my antique ring. The waitress looked slightly shocked.
"Oh! Well, congratulations. Your server will be with you shortly." As she walked away, I couldn't help but see a hint of disappointment in her face.
We sat in silence for a few moments. The restaurants really hadn't changed. The lamps still shed a yellow glow, red tablecloths still covered the tables, and the waiters still wore black and white. I don't know what I expected to have happened since we were here last. After all, wasn't it only a year ago? It was hard to believe that so much had happened in that short amount of time.
"Penny for your thoughts," Edward said, reaching across the table, taking my hand in his. He looked up at me through his long eyelashes, dazzling me once again. I quickly glanced down, keeping my hand in his, to regain my thoughts.
"Nothing." I sighed. "I mean, I was just thinking about the last time we were here."
I looked fondly at the mushroom ravioli on the menu, but my eyes continued down the list. Edwards hand never left mine as he too looked at the menu – just for show.
A male server approached our table. "Are you ready to order?" he asked, pulling a pad and pen out of his apron. "Can I get you something to drink?"
"Just a Coke, please," Edward requested, handing the server his menu.
"And you, miss?"
"I'll have a Dr. Pepper to drink. And Chicken Alfredo, please."
The young man took the menu from my outstretched hand, noticeably examining my ring. "Your food will be here shortly," he informed us before walking off.
I turned back to Edward, who had an amused expression on his face.
"What?" I asked, knowing he must have read the server's mind.
"The waitress that seated us told everyone back in the kitchens some teenage couple was getting married," Edward explained. "That guy didn't believe her and had to come see for himself."Edward seemed to think that this was funny, but it instantly sent a panic through my system – what were people thinking about us?
The all-knowing Edward sensed my heartbeat pick up.
"Are you alright?" he asked.
"Fine," I lied again. Edward remained silent, but I could feel his eyes boring into mine, trying to unravel the mystery. Instead of keeping him waiting, which aggravated him to no end, I told him what was on my mind. "I guess," I tried to phrase my words carefully to avoid hurting him, "I guess… I'm worried about the wedding."
He brought my hand up to his lips and kissed it gently. "Bella love, it would be unlike you to not worry." His continuing light mood surprised me. "But what, in particular, are you so worried about?"
"Everything," I whispered quietly. I heard Edward laugh softly. When he answered, his voice was darker.
"Bella, you know I won't force you to do anything you don't want."
"I know," I said, unconvincingly.
"You don't have to let Alice plan everything; we can still go to Vegas." He used his free hand to pull my head up to meet his gaze, which had dropped without my knowledge. "You don't even have to marry me."
"Of course I'll marry you. I still want that."
"Yes… but I will give you your demands, without matrimony, if you desire."
My heart sped up again, for a different reason, but I had made up my mind long ago to wait until Edward and I had been married. I would do this right.
"I'm not changing anything."
"Then if you are decided on what you are going to do, why do you keep questioning yourself?"
"That's not everything..."
Edward's eyebrow rose slightly. I was about to answer when the server came back with our drinks.
"Your food will be here shortly," he said quickly, then turned and headed back towards the kitchen.
The silence lasted for a few minutes before Edward resumed our conversation.
"What were you saying before we were interrupted?" he prodded.
"Don't you think people will get the wrong impression, since we are getting married so young?"
"Bella, I'm one hundred and seven years old."
"But I'm only eighteen! You may have been raised in a different era where people got married that young, but nowadays society will jump to the wrong conclusion."
"Bella," Edward said, trying to console me, "who cares what other people think?" As he stared into my eyes, I noticed his own were tawny colored.
"I guess you're right." At that moment, our waiter returned with my meal. Edward let me have my hand back so I could eat, but his eyes never left my face. As if on cue, as soon as I finished my meal, our waiter came back.
"Are you finished?" he asked me.
As the waiter took my plate, Edward took out a few bills to pay for the meal. I watched as the waiter's eyes widened at the denominations. He set my plate back down and reached into his apron to get change, but Edward told him to keep it. The waiter placed the money in his pocket, picked my plate up again, and headed quickly back to the kitchen. Standing up, Edward held out his hand for me as I followed suit. As we walked out of the restaurant, Edward slid his arm around my waist.
"Thank you for coming!" the waitress who had seated us called out as Edward opened door. "Good luck with the wedding!" she shouted. I felt several pairs of eyes turn to stare at us as we left the restaurant.
"That was unnecessary," I grumbled to myself.
Edward's grip on my waist tightened. "She was just trying to be nice."
The sky was black by the time Edward pulled into my driveway. I sat quietly in the car, not wanting to get out and face Charlie. I saw a light flickering softly in the den; Charlie had stayed up waiting for me. I had known he would, but a part of me still hoped he would have been in bed sleeping. Edward pulled me close to him and kissed me on the top of my head.
"He's upset. He thinks he's losing his little girl, but he's not angry."
"Thanks," I mumbled weakly. Sighing softly, I opened the car door and climbed out of the Volvo. Still keeping my hand gripped on the door, I leaned my head back in, finding Edward's face mere inches away from mine.
"When will you come in?" We both knew I was referring to when he would meet me in my room, just like every other night.
"Soon, love," he chuckled softly, "by the time you finish talking with Charlie." His breath rolled over me in a wave of his beautiful scent.
"All right," I said, feeling defeated. The door to the Volvo made only a soft click when I shut it. The night was silent except for the occasional chirp of a cricket. The gravel crunched under my feet as I walked to the door. I fumbled for the key in the depths of my purse. When I inserted it in the lock, I discovered the door was already unlocked. In my rush to leave earlier, I had forgotten to lock it. I stepped into the kitchen.
"Bella, is that you?" Charlie called from the den.
"Yeah," I replied. Who else would it be? I thought to myself. I took a deep breath, trying to calm my nerves. I walked to the den. Charlie was sitting on the couch, reading the newspaper.
He glanced up at me, turned the TV off and asked casually, "How was your date with Edward?"
"Fine," I replied, seating myself in the armchair next to the couch. "We went to Port Angeles."
"Oh," he said. Charlie was not one for deep conversations, and he paused for several minutes before continuing. "Bella, I want to talk to you about Edward."
No surprise there. "Yeah?" I asked, trying to seem nonchalant.
"Are you sure this is what you want? You have your whole life in front of you. You don't need to rush."
Actually, I do, I thought to myself. "Charlie, this is what I want."
"But you're just out of high school! How do you know what you want?"
"Edward and I love each other," I said in a hushed tone.
"I'm sure you do. But what about Jacob or Mike? You never really gave them a chance. You and Jacob got along great, but you left him as soon as Edward came back." I started to object, but he cut me off. "What I'm saying is you've only been with Edward. How do you know he's the right one?"
I tried to quell my anger. "Just because you and Renée rushed into it and it fell apart, doesn't mean it will happen to me! Edward and I have thought it through! And I'm going to college. Isn't that what you wanted?" By now, I was standing, waving my hands about wildly, trying to make my point.
Charlie was still seated, but his eyes were daring. "I want more for you that just an education. I want you to be happy! And what if he leaves you again?" His voice quavered as he said the last line.
"He won't leave me again." I said through clenched teeth.
"How do you know he won't?" Charlie challenged.
"He promised!" I said, shouting. "He promised he would never leave me again!"
Charlie was quiet for a moment, then said in a quiet voice, "Bella, I really think you should reconsider."
"No," I said simply, crossing my arms across my chest.
"Bella, please. Just think about it."
"No!" I yelled. By now, my rage had boiled.
"Bella, you are only eighteen! You are too young to get married!"
"First of all, I can legally get married without your permission. Second of all, you and mom did, why can't I?"
"That's my point Bella," Charlie lowered his voice, "don't make the same mistake we did."
"I'm not making a mistake Charlie, and I am not changing my mind!"
I moved over to the couch and sat down next to Charlie. "Please, Dad, listen to me. I want to marry Edward." By now, the traitorous tears had started to come up, clouding my vision.
Charlie was silent. He hated emotional stuff like this. It wasn't in his nature to confront.
"I think you should spend a little time away from Edward."
I stood up and shouted in protest, but he didn't break stride. "Just a few days to clear you head, to make sure this is what you really want."
"This is what I want!" I declared, the tears flowing feely now. "How many times do I have to tell you?"
"Bella, please. Do this for me. Do this for Jacob," his eyes pleaded with me.
Jacob. The name struck a chord deep within me. Jacob, my other love, and the one I had vowed never to hurt again. I had promised myself, and seeing him now would only reopen the wound, hurt him more.
"I don't see what Jacob has to do with any of this," I said, almost inaudibly.
"He misses you Bella. Don't you think you should go over to his house and tell him that you're getting married?"
"It would make him upset," I said, going with a half-truth.
Charlie paused, looking slightly, puzzled. He continued, "Still, I think you should go over there."
I didn't know what to say. Should I say, "He's a werewolf so he's mortal enemies with Edward?" or, "Jacob doesn't want me to get married because what will happen after the wedding?" Neither of these answers would work. "I don't want to hurt Jacob" was the only truthful answer left, but it hurt too much to say.
"I am going to go upstairs to bed," I said, finally. I felt emotionally drained and tired because of the time, but that was only half the reason I wanted to get away. Edward would be waiting for me in my room. As if I needed another incentive to get away.
I gripped the railing for support as I climbed the staircase. My mind was a blur. I pushed on the door to my room, stumbling blindly as I moved towards my bed. As I sank down onto my bed, I felt his cold breath flow down my neck.
He pulled me close, wrapping his cold arms around me. His mouth kissed my hair repeatedly. My heart pounded sporadically in my ear. With every pump of blood, my heart slammed into my ribcage, threatening to break out. He held me close, protecting me from an invisible, outside evil. Hid hard arms surrounded me in a cage that I never wanted to escape. I let my head rest on his shoulder, his gently breathing slowly rocking me to sleep. My arms were folded in front of my chest, a small barrier between his cold body, but I could still feel him. His sculpted chest rose up and down, his chin res gently on my head and the sweet scent of his body all reminded me that he was here, and that I would be okay.
Eventually, I had to readjust my position to get comfortable again. As I turned to the side, Edward's arms carefully picked me up and laid me out on the bed. He slowly took his hand out from under my head and let it sink into the pillow. With his other hand, he pulled my quilt from the tangled mess of blankets at the end of my bed, flourished it like a magician's cape, and laid it on top of me. His hand reached up to my face and left icy tingles as he brushed a few loose strands of hair from my face. Using both hands to hold himself above me, placed on either side of my body, he leaned his head forward and softly kissed me on my forehead.
"Sleep, Bella," he whispered.
I couldn't argue. I could barely hold my eyes open now. But I was not ready to give in yet; I had one last request to make.
"Stay." I said, struggling to make my voice coherent and audible, but he heard me.
"You wish, my command." he said as he slid into bed next to me and began to softly hum my lullaby.
A/N: Review please! Also, I know that at the end of Eclipse, Jacob had run off, but I think that would have happened after Bella told Charlie because he found out through a wedding invitation. Also, during the argument with Charlie, I know they kinda go around in circles, but I think they would do that because when you are angry you don't always think clearly. Maybe you guys didn't even pick up on that. Oh well! Just wanted to say that.