My Ch. 1 of Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
by Shizumi Kurohane
"Hold still Bella," Alice said. I imagined her face scrunched up in irritation. She'd probably still be cute. But either way, she'd be working on pinning my hair up for far too long and my neck was starting to hurt.
"Alice, my neck can't take it. At this rate I'll be looking at the floor throughout the whole ordeal because of the kink you're giving it now."
She chuckled. "Done."
"Thank god…" I rubbed at my neck and carefully turned my head from side to side.
"Okay…" Alice said in thought, "Dressed, hair's done, make-up's done... I think you're ready."
"Alice, you never have to think."
She giggled this time. Her visions gave her no real reason to wonder.
"Have I thanked you today Bella?"
I rolled my eyes, "Yes. Three times, if I'm not mistaken."
"Thank you, Bella!" she declared happily once more.
"So what now? What about my bridesmaids and their checklist?"
"Jessica and Angela are already dressed and done up. Rosalie, Esme and I were dressed a while ago…" she grinned.
"And… Edward? Everyone else?"
"Well, the guys have less to worry about. They don't need make-up, for one. Renée and Phil and Charlie are all ready to go, too."
"So what's next then? Do I just sit here and wait?"
Alice literally danced around my room in thought. Anyone could have told then just how happy she really was. A faint smile graced my lips against my will. I couldn't help be happy when actually do this for her had paid off and then some.
A knock interrupted our thoughts. I looked to Alice and she smiled, going to the door. Before she opened it she mouthed, 'Charlie and Renée.'
I relaxed a little. She opened the door.
"Bella!" my mom gushed, "You look so pretty. Did Alice do this?"
I nodded, "Something like that… How's the crowd?"
Charlie smiled and said, "I think everyone's here. It's almost one, are you ready to go?"
"Oh, yeah," I looked to Alice, "Alice? Is it time?"
She gave a little nod and big smile.
Forks High had a population of roughly 300. It was a small town where almost everyone knew each other and their families. One third of Forks High seemed to be here.
"Bella!" Jessica's unmistakable voice called. "I just can't believe you're getting married! And so soon after graduation! Thank you so much for making me one of your bridesmaids."
I smiled at her and spotted Angela and Ben. Angela was also in one of Alice's hand-picked bridesmaid's dresses. Ben was deck out in a suit. It was kind of cute.
Jessica and I walked over to them and said hello. Mike came over to us with Eric and even Tyler. Everyone commented on how pretty I looked. I didn't pry on that though. It was actually kind of funny how I looked for him. My mind told me it was stupid to do so―he would never come―but my heart wanted to believe he would.
Jacob Black was no where to be found. I sighed a little. It was okay if he didn't but, I wanted my best friend there.
It was overcast today―the perfect day for a vampire wedding. We were having an outside wedding. From what Alice had told me, everything was ready to go.
Suddenly, she was there. Charlie wasn't too far behind.
"We're going to start now. It's one and everyone's here. Now, Charlie's going to be inside and when you come in―,"
"Yes, Alice, just like the rehearsals. I remember."
She giggled. "Don't trip. I know you won't but I still feel like I should say it."
I rolled my eyes. Charlie put his hand on my shoulder and squeezed a bit in reassurance. Everyone went inside.
The music began and the two boys at the curtain parted it for me. Edward was suddenly there. Charlie took my arm and I looked at him in near-shock. Edward was grinning at me from where he stood and even though the sun was behind the clouds, he still dazzled me.
"Bella," Charlie said suddenly. We were a good distance from the makeshift alter.
"I'm happy for you. And I want you to know that this is a big step. And if, for any reason, you need me, I will always be there for you. I'm your father, you know. That's my job."
I was quiet for a bit and smiled. "Thanks, dad."
"I mean it. No matter what the circumstances might be, I'll be there."
I nodded. I looked back to Edward. He looked, now, mildly amused. He must know what Charlie was thinking.
I made it safely up the makeshift aisle and was handed off to Edward by Charlie. Edward was stunning and my heart started thumping erratically. I'm sure a blush must have been apparent on my face.
Suddenly none of it mattered. It didn't matter that I was only 18 and getting married. It didn't matter that I was going to become a vampire in a few weeks. It didn't matter that I was going to leave this world filled with my family and friends and even sweet sugardrops. All that mattered was Edward here and in front of me. And I suddenly thought that with this vow, he could never leave me; never abandon me. And that made me happy beyond understanding.
The priest began and I, with a huge smile, turned to face my crowd with just a glance.
That was when I saw Jacob Black. And things mattered again.
He was good, as he had promised before, and so were his friends―he'd brought Embry and Quil. They'd stood in the back at the archway. I couldn't read his expression from so far away but, it didn't look hostile. I had half expected Jacob to say something when the priest said, "If anyone here has a reason for these two to not be joined in holy matrimony, let them speak now, or forever hold your peace."
Edward looked at me and I looked at him and we both grinned a bit. Just a bit. But I still wanted to take my lipstick-covered bottom lip into my mouth and bite down hard for fear Jacob might speak.
I guess he has to hold his peace now.
The priest cued us for our vows.
"Edward Cullen, do you take Bella Swan to be your lawfully wedded wife, in sickness and in health, for rich or for poor, for better or worse, till death do you part?"
"Forever and ever, I do," he said with such absolute certainty that if I had been watching this scene from the crowd, my heart would still have swelled.
"And Bella Swan, do you take Edward Cullen to be your lawfully wedded husband, in sickness and in health, for rich or for poor, for better or worse, till death do you part?"
"Forever and ever, I do," I repeated his words.
"Then by the power invested in me by the Holy Church of the Annunciation and the State of Washington, I now pronounce you man and wife. You may kiss the bride."
Edward gave me my half grin and cupped my face gently before giving me the sweetest sugardrop kiss he ever gave.
And the crowd roared.
The reception was also held outside. No one really changed. Alice did make me more comfortable though. She changed my hair style and removed the veil, train, and a few other things. It was a good thing everyone'd already gotten their photos.
I joined everyone else in the huge, circus-like, tent Alice had undoubtedly put up. And knowing Alice, it probably was a circus tent.
Inside, a huge dance floor had been installed and around the raised dance floor was food and seating. There was a big table with chairs in front of the dance floor and half the Cullens were already seated there. Alice was leading Renée and Charlie there when Edward took all my attention away.
"That's the family table for the bride and groom. Except, only the parents are sitting there. We're a big lot; the Cullens. Right, Mrs. Bella Cullen?"
My face heated up so fast I got whiplash.
Edward touched my cheeks and I thought his cold fingertips surely, must be heated by them.
"He's here and he wants to talk to you," Edward said rather abruptly.
"Will you be mad if I talk to him?"
"It's not him I'm worried about. It's you."
"I'll be fine."
Edward looked wary. "It's not that. There's something else."
I looked confused and Edward just said, "Go see him. But come back to me if you feel… uncomfortable. Please?"
"Of course. Where is he?"
At that particular moment, Jacob and his friends walked in. Something I hadn't noticed before was that there was a girl with them. In that split second, I'd hoped it was Leah or someone else. But it wasn't. It was a girl I had never seen before.
What was it Edward had been so wary about, then?
Why would this make me uncomfortable?
"Jacob!" I called as I walked over to him.
He turned his head immediately. His expression changed to an uneasy one. It was awkward.
"Congratulations, Bells," he said. Embry and Quil smiled and said their congratulations, too.
I looked at the young girl again and said, "Hello, there. I don't think I've ever met you before. Are you from the reservation?"
"Sorry! Where are my manners? Bella, this is―,"
"Esther. I came down from the Makah reservation to live with another relative here. It's so nice to finally meet you! Jacob talks about you all the time. I hope we can become good friends. Maybe even double date."
"Yeah…" I said stupidly. Why would Jacob bring a girl who just moved to Forks here, to my wedding?
"Uh, guys, Esther, can I speak to Bella alone?"
They all nodded and smiled at me and began to walk away.
"Help yourself to the food but leave some for the other guests too guys!" I called after them. Embry and Quil were sure to eat half the tables if they could.
"So what's up?" I said to Jacob, "Or should I say 'what's new'?"
Jacob looked at the ground and bit on his lower lip. "I came because I wanted to wish you good luck. I―,"
"Hey, Jake, am I allowed to know who that girl is?"
He looked up and at me and gave me that ashamed look again.
A sudden lightbulb went off in my head. "You imprinted."
Jacob didn't look up. He stared at his feet.
"That's wonderful, Jake. Why do you look so sad?"
Although in truth, I probably looked the same way. I was sure my heart was losing a chunk of itself. But wasn't it better this way? Jacob could forget me now and I could be happy with Edward. Wasn't this always a possibility? Wasn't this why I didn't want to fall for Jacob?
"You know what it's like; I told you. I just… saw her and everything clicked. I'm sorry Bella. I'm so sorry…"
"You have nothing to apologize for Jake. I'm married to Edward now anyway, right?"
Jacob finally raised his eyes to meet mine and he gave me a forlorn smile. I held out my arms to have him hug me and when he did, it was the sweetest sugardrop hug he ever gave.
Alice got up to the microphone and tapped the receiver a few times to get everyone's attention.
"Hello everyone! Welcome to the Wedding of Bella and Edward Cullen!"
Everyone gave whoops of cheers and raised their glasses.
"First of all, I'd like to thank everyone for coming. I know how much this means to Bella and I'm sure it means a lot to some of you too." She looked at Renée and Charlie.
"Now, I have the pleasure of giving a speech since I'm the maid of honor and this was kind of the hardest part of planning this wedding. As someone must've said before, there're a thousand things I could tell you about Bella and Edward and what makes them a wonderful couple but, to pick the one that says it all was the hardest.
"And if you look at them, it's all there; written on their faces. In fact, the best way to describe it would be gravity―to coin a term." She looked at Jacob for a split second.
"They gravitate towards each other. You can try and force them apart but they just come back together again strong. I know," she said with lots of emphasis so that the Cullens and Quileutes all knew what she met, "That they'll be together until the world ends."
And everyone cheered.
I knew, somehow, that when dawn breaks a week from now, my new world would burst open with it.
And I squeezed my husband's hand before we went off to dance.
Which, was a disaster.