Disclaimer: Alright kids, this is getting old. You know who Stephenie Meyer is, right? Yeah…me neither
Author's Note: This chapter is in Edward's (E) point of view, it says so next to the date and that's how you will be able to decipher who is thinking, speaking, and acting. The date is placed because it may seem confusing with how things flow from him to Bella, as the things will be happening at different times for the both of them. Anyhow, happy readings!
Misadventures in Online Dating
Chapter One: Of Getting Started and Older Brothers
Tuesday, May 13th (E)
My mother had to be the most infuriating woman on the planet. I understood where she was coming from, but signing me up for that sort of thing was extremely irrational. I have resentment towards the internet in general and find the concept of online dating to be completely ludicrous. How are you supposed to meet someone to love and cherish forever on the internet of all places? It was a surreal environment and in reality, the person on the other end of the computer could be an axe murderer.
Yes, I am a twenty-four year old man that hasn't been on a date in probably four years but that doesn't mean anything—I've simply been busy, establishing myself in my line of work. It was unnecessary—I knew that. My parents had money and having a job was not needed but I hated depending on anyone for anything. I liked being a self-established person; I liked being independent.
As you can see, when I went to see my mother for a late Mother's Day visit, I figured things would go smoothly. I bought my mother, Esme, roses, chocolates, and a three hundred dollar gift card for that home shopping network she liked to watch so much. That wasn't enough. No, no. She had to start telling me how good Emmett, my brother, was doing with his girlfriend and how I should try dating.
She was probably just desperate for grandchildren but, really, pressuring me to find someone like my life depended on it? I still considered myself to be pretty young.
"I'm just worried that you will get too lonely; too caught up in your job and not find time to date. This way is simple, Edward. All you need is access to a computer with the internet and you can find that anywhere, especially since you have a laptop. I've written down a list of all the websites you can look on. Please, promise me you'll give it a try?"
Now she was going to make me promise?! This woman knew no boundaries. She frowned, slightly. "In exchange for that gift card?" I countered, wondering which she wanted more.
"That doesn't really matter to me, Edward…I just want to see you happy." I should have known she would say something along those lines.
I nodded my head. "All right, mom, I'll give it a try but if my body turns up on a deserted road somewhere..."
"Edward, don't be ridiculous. You will just have to be very careful with what you do, and besides, you're a big boy. You can handle yourself, can't you?" she teased, nudging me playfully with her arm.
I rolled my eyes, which I had a habit of doing. "Of course, but I have to get back to my office now."
"Now? Edward, it's seven thirty in the evening," my mother scolded me; she had a habit of doing that.
"I know, I know but there are some potential buyers coming in; and they're looking into buying a silver Rolls Royce, Mother," I explained.
"Edward, honey, you know I have no idea what that means. However, I suppose it involved the same hype surrounding that expensive Ashton Kutcher you drive," she attempted.
I bit back a laugh, but couldn't keep myself from smiling. "Definitely." I didn't bother to correct her. I leaned down, placing a soft kiss on her cheek. "I'll be over Friday night, right?"
"Yes, Emmett has something to tell us."
"Great," I muttered sarcastically. "I'll see you then, mom, and tell dad to call me when he gets home. There's a new shipment coming in of those Mercedes he's been wanting to take a look at."
"Pish posh," she said, quickly turning me around and pushing me toward the door.
I left the house and got into my car, the Aston Martin Vanquish, and started up the engine. I stayed in the driveway for a moment, listening to the sound of the sweet engine purring to me. I rubbed the steering wheel before putting the vehicle in reverse. As soon as I was on the street, I didn't hesitate in slamming my foot on the gas pedal, speeding off into the direction of my dealership.
That night when I returned to my home, I couldn't have been more pleased with myself. I had a way with cars—the way I talked about them, the passion I had for them—and it often rubbed off on customers. Tonight was no different. Frank Santini didn't even appear to hesitate before saying he wanted to purchase the car and have it delivered to his home. Success.
Anyways, my house was empty, save for my dog that came abruptly running up to me as soon as I stepped through the garage door. "Grizz," I said, rubbing the top of his head, having to push him back a little so I could get into the actual house. Once inside I set my keys down on the counter, loosening my tie as I browsed through the mail I'd left sitting there last night.
Grizzly barked at that moment, his tail wagging as he stood at the sliding door that led to the backyard. "Right, sorry," I apologized, going to the door and opening it, allowing him to exit the house and take care of his business. I left the door open for him to come back in when he pleased. He was a good friend of mine, truly. The best dog on the planet, in my eyes. He was a mix between a chocolate lab and a rottweiler. The most loyal pet I could have asked for and he was very protective of me. He was a gift from Emmett, actually, and I found it a very fitting gift because it was like having Emmett here at the house with me all the time.
I grabbed a cold beer from the freezer and went into the living room to turn on the television before sitting down. I put my feet up on the black coffee table, my laptop just a few inches away. I glanced at it, remembering what my mom asked me to do and shook my head. I popped the cap off the beer without too much effort, but I knew my mom would be calling me tomorrow, nagging me about it. Or even later tonight if she got the chance. I could always lie about it, but I hated lying to my mom, even over something as trivial as online dating.
I opened the thin, grey laptop and turned it on, taking a drink of the beer as I waited for it to load. I dug through my pockets for the paper my mother had slipped in; it had a list of various websites and I didn't even know where to start, or how to know which one to choose. She put a circle around the one called match dot com and I figured that it was the one she already made me a profile on. I didn't even want to see what it looked like; she would either be completely correct or embarrassingly incorrect.
Once internet explorer was up, I typed in eharmony dot com and was immediately brought to the home page. For some reason I was embarrassed that I was even doing this and became slightly paranoid that Emmett or someone would walk in and start laughing their ass off. I shook the thoughts from my head; Emmett hadn't pulled any surprise visits as of late, he was too busy with his new girlfriend to come visit his brother.
Grizzly came back into the house, but I didn't get up to shut the back door; we could use a little fresh air for a bit anyhow.
The homepage started off asking me to fill out my name, e-mail address, and password—the typical things. I filled it out easily and then the next page came up and I groaned. I hated questionnaires—or anything similar to it at all.
Are you male or female?
Please enter your birthdate:
June 20th, 1984.
How important is your match's age to you on a scale of 1-7, seven being crucial:
What is your marital status?
How many times have you been married?
How many children do you have that are 18 years or younger living in your home?
I paused, just staring at the screen. Already the questions were annoying and redundant.
Aside from any children you or a new partner may already have, would you like to start a new family and have or adopt a baby?
Maybe, I haven't decided yet.
Would you be willing to accept a partner who has children 18 years or younger living full time in their home?
Choose the category that best describes your highest level of education.
Associates, major in business.
How important is your match's education to you, on a scale of 1-7, 7 being extremely?
What is your personal income?
More than 250,000 dollars.
Over 250,000 dollars. That was always the highest any survey or any questionnaire would go. In reality, I could really make that much in a month, depending on how many cars I sold. I suppose it was good I couldn't put my actual salary, I wouldn't want people after me for my money.
How important is your match's income, on a scale of 1-7, 7being extremely?
Describe your occupation:
I am the owner of several luxury car dealerships, selling some of the priciest and most exclusive cars in the country.
Please enter your height:
How important is your match's height to you, on a scale of 1-7, 7 being extremely?
What is your ethnicity?
Well could they be anymore bland about it?
I was quickly growing tired of all the questions, so I proceeded to breeze through all the rest without taking into too much account of what I was answering. It got stranger as it went on, asking me to rate how sexy, beautiful, and stylish I was. Then there was a grid, asking me to pick 1-7 on a series of questions ranging from if I did things based on a set plan to how often I get angry. There were even more grids after that, though just one word and I hate to rate myself on it. Intelligent, cold, affectionate, loyal, witty, content, etc.
I had never hated grids more in my life than at that moment. Grizzly stared at me with a quizzical look on his face. I suppose I was in a daze, just reading and clicking, reading and clicking.
Once the grids were done and I was on the last page, they asked for my city. Seattle. And where I would prefer my matches to live. I put about a 10-120 mile radius. I was then asked to upload a picture and so I opened my picture folder and began to browse through it. There was a picture I had taken at a company dinner, dressed in a nice tuxedo with a quirky little grin on my face. It was the most decent picture I could find, to say the least. In others I was either making a strange face or I had been drinking.
The website then congratulated me on finishing and told me to read over my personality profile and then start looking into matches. I browsed through it all rather quickly, placing my empty beer bottle down on the table once I started looking through possible matches. It was…interesting to say the least.
There was a list of women, their location and a link to their profile. I realized I hadn't made one. I clicked on the link that would allow me to do so and stared at the page for a moment, wondering what to type in.
My name is Edward Cullen. I am twenty-four years old and I have a slight obsession with automobiles. It's my line of work, my line of interest—but I do find time for other things. I enjoy being around my family, being outdoors, and having a good time with my friends. I am looking for a female that lives in or around the are of Seattle, Washington; someone that is compatible, but even if our personalities don't 'match' on here, you can't really trust a computer based-anything to be completely right, can you?
So…it was lame. I knew that, but it worked. I saved it and leaned back into my couch, my eyes flickering up to the television where a movie was playing, before I heard the telephone ring.
I wasn't expecting a call at this time, since it was nearly ten and anyone with anything important to say would have known to call my cell phone. Or, so I thought. I went to the phone and picked it up off the charger, pushing the talk button. "Hello?" I spoke into the receiver.
"Edwaaaard," the voice drawled back.
I rolled my eyes. "What the hell do you want, Emmett?"
He laughed. "I was just seeing what you're doing tomorrow, after work?"
I shrugged my shoulders, though I knew he couldn't see the action. "Nothing really, why?"
"I have to go to this gig and watch someone play. Apparently he's really good and the company wants my opinion on him."
"Come with me, you idiot. We'll watch the show, throw back a couple of drinks; we haven't spent a lot of time together lately."
"Why don't you take your girlfriend with you?"
"Hey. Edward. Why the hell are you being so hostile? Just be ready at nine and I'll pick you up, alright?"
"Fine," I muttered, drumming my fingers on the countertop lightly.
Emmett was quiet on the line for a moment and I knew I was acting like more of a jerk than necessary but it really bothered me when he would blow me off for weeks at a time and then just call me up out of the blue and force me into hanging out with him. He's two years older, and a lot bigger than I am; stronger, too. I suppose the fights from when we were younger were still imprinted on my mind and I feared being pulverized by him.
"Okay, I'll call you tomorrow if anything changes. Love you, bro."
"Love you, too. Goodnight." I pressed the talk button once more and set the phone back on the charger.
No matter how angry I was with anyone, I never failed to tell them—if the situation was appropriate—that I loved them. It was something crucial, and you never knew what could happen to them. Basically, I just hated leaving anything off on a bad note with those I cared about.
I shut the door to the backyard before returning to the living room, my eyes fixated on the screen that was alerting me of a new message sent from .
That was quick, to say the least.
I opened the message and immediately began to read it over.
My name is Cassandra, and I'm twenty-two years old. I live in the Seattle area, as well, and would love to meet you, or talk to you more, whichever you are most comfortable with. Read over my profile and let me know if you're interested.
Hope to talk to you soon!
It was formal…and awkward. For some reason, I didn't write back. I just shut the system down and closed the laptop. I put the laptop back on the table and sprawled myself out on the couch, one hand falling over, which Grizzly proceeded to sniff and lick. I rubbed his nose and the top of his head, wondering just what the hell I could possibly be getting myself into with this online dating game.
So, there is the first chapter, and I hope you enjoyed it. This chapter would NOT have been possible without the help of wonderful beta-readers. Honestly, amazing people that I have come to adore, haha. Katy, thank you so much and Michelle is the epitome of awesome, as I've told her. Now for my lovely readers, please review and let me know what you think, truly. This was a whim of an idea, and sorry if it's a bit short but sometimes I just have to end chapters in certain places so the next work out and such. Enough reviews can bring the next chapter faster ;)