Persuasuion Readers: Okay, so I know you're all probably like "Where in the hell is the next chapter?!" Well I'm still working on it, my brain has been jumbled around a lot lately. But I've taken a short hiatus from that story and decided to put up something for you all to read for now.
Authors Note: I have never been to New York so bear with me. If I don't get everything right I'm sorry but again, thats the way she goes.
Disclaimer: I don't own Twilight. But I can make the characters do what I want!
If you change your mind, I'm the first in line
Honey I'm still free
Take a chance on me
If you need me, let me know, gonna be around
If you've got no place to go, if you're feeling down
If you're all alone when the pretty birds have flown
Honey I'm still free
Take a chance on me
Gonna do my very best and it ain't no lie
If you put me to the test, if you let me try
- Take A Chance On Me - ABBA -
"Bella! Bella are you listening to me?"
"Huh? What?" I asked, looking over at Alice. Her pixie face was scrunched up, her lips pursed and her perfect eyebrows furrowed. Well it wasn't like she was going to be her beaming, bubbly self when I ignored her. Mary Alice Brandon wasn't one to be pushed aside, not that she'd let anyone do that. She always found some way to grab your attention. She'd say something that would make you look up, even if it was a lie. It was true. She told me I forgot to put pants on when we were at a café once. I nearly choked on my coffee I was absent-mindedly drinking. That defiantly got my attention, and not to mention a burnt tongue. She would either do that or resort to physical damage. Pinching, poking, pulling on your hair. She was not one to be ignored that was for sure. But I did that a lot. I was one to get lost in my own daydreams. I have been and always will be I was sure.
But I couldn't ask for a better friend that Alice. She'd been my friend since I started working at the Winter Garden Theater a few months ago. New York had been all new to me and it was like she took me under her very tiny wing, even letting me move in with her. Alice was a tiny little thing, the top of her spiky head reaching just to my shoulders. I felt like a giant around her, which wasn't true, because I was quite short as well. Her inky black hair was short and spiky although always styled to a perfection I could never obtain. Her face was skinny and very small so that her features could barely fit on it, especially her large blue eyes which could make you change your mind whenever she wanted to. That was my weakness.
Then there was what she wore. Alice didn't take anything under twenty dollars. Designer was everything to her. I was surprised she hadn't cleaned me out of my plain jeans and tee shirts yet although I knew that would come sooner than later. She'd already dressed me a lot, buying me clothes and doing my make-up and hair. It was complete torture in my mind but Alice seemed to really enjoy it. She brought out those damn puppy dog eyes as well! Ugh!
"What are you thinking about?" she asked, seeming to forget about my ignorance and going calmly back to sipping her coffee.
"Nothing," I lied. She looked up at me, her eyes narrowed and I knew she saw right through me. I was a terrible liar anyway; I had no idea why I even tried.
"Isabella Marie Swan," she said making me roll my eyes. She always used my full name when she wanted to sound threatening. "You know I can see right through you. Now out with it."
I grumbled under my breath and looked out the window of the café again. It was still snowing; the white flakes collecting on the side walk as the people hurried along. The wind blew harder making everyone pull their coats tighter around themselves. It was warm here in the coffeehouse, Alice and I both having our coats off after becoming to hot with them on. I turned back to her curious gaze and sighed.
"I'm just thinking about what Jackie wants done," I answered. It wasn't much of a lie, just a little. I did wonder what Jackie Richards, the director in the new musical the theater was having, wanted done this week. Although my mind had drifted considerably from that topic.
While I was staring out the window I saw a couple. Both of them huddled together as they walked down the street, his arm around her waist as they laughed. They couldn't be much older than me. Maybe nineteen or twenty? But the reason why I had been staring at them was because of the way they looked. They were so happy together and I couldn't help but feel green with envy. They had found their other half, and I hadn't. I sighed and folded my hands around my warm coffee cup.
Well it wasn't like I was anything special for any guy to look twice at. Plain Jane Bella with her dull brown hair, matching eyes and pale, almost translucent, skin complexion. Guys now a days wanted tanned girls and I was no where near that even though I had lived in Phoenix, Arizona ever since I was a baby. I didn't tan - I burnt. But that might help to cover up my ever increasing blush that always seemed to be on my cheeks. Embarrassment came second nature to me. I was clumsier than any blind bat, tripping over everything.
"Hmm," Alice murmured, bringing me out of my thoughts. "Yeah. More practicing, I guess." She sighed and I smiled to myself. Both of us worked at the theater, myself being the assistant director and Alice being one of the actresses. She was a really good dancer and actress so she matched her career well. Of course she spent a lot of time backstage fixing her co-stars hair or make-up. "I was wondering if she'd let me pick the costumes again. What do you think?"
"Err…I'm not sure Alice," I admitted with a frown. "The last time you offered that you nearly got fired."
"Oh, right," she said, looking down. "Debra got pretty mad at me, huh?"
"Well that is her job, Alice," I reminded her.
She grimaced and I thought I heard her mutter 'even though she sucks at it' under her breath. I snickered at this and turned away again. That's our Alice, always believing she knew the hottest trends.
"Did you hear?" she asked me after a moment as I turned to look at her smiling face.
"What's that?" I asked, smiling in return at her happy mood.
"You know how they're bringing a new play in, right?" I nodded and she continued. "Well Jasp says that one of his friends from high school is in it."
I rolled my eyes and smiled. Of course 'Jasp' knew that. Jasper Whitlock was Alice steady boyfriend. They had been together for a few weeks now and it was difficult to get some girl time with Alice anymore. She had confessed to me that she loved the blond haired beauty many times. I was glad for her but I liked when we had time for just us girls. This was one of the times where it was just us having coffee, a morning ritual. But I liked Jasper. He was nice and always seemed to be aware of your emotions, there to comfort you was what I meant. Although I hadn't got to know him too well since Alice was in and out of the apartment with him a lot.
"Is that so?" I asked in a bored tone, tracing the rim of my cup with my finger.
"Mmhmm," she said, taking a drink before continuing. "His name is Edward something. He's a musician."
"Ah ha," I muttered, still uninterested as I stared at my nearly empty cup.
"Come on Bella," she sighed. "At least show some interest."
"I'm not really into the dating game yet, Alice," I reminded her with a frown, my voice slightly choked.
She sighed as I looked out the window again. "I'm sorry I brought that up Bella," she apologized. "I forgot. Forgive me?"
I looked up at her large pleading blue eyes and could say nothing but, "Yeah."
She smiled again and looked down at her watch. I hated talking relationships with not only Alice but myself as well. Ever since high school I never dated because of…well I couldn't even think about it. It brought back too many bad memories. I winced slightly as the thought cut at the still open wounds inside me.
Alice looked up at me again with a smile. "We should head out," she said, getting up and pulling on her jacket. I did the same. "Jackie isn't going to be very happy if we're late." She giggled and I gestured for her to show the way out.
After dumping our coffee cups we headed out into the windy New York streets. The bitter cold bit at my cheeks as I pulled my hood over my head and stuffed my hands into my pockets. This was going to be a long walk. I could already feel the snow melting in my socks. I grumbled as we continued around the corner. This is what I get for moving to the big city.
I still don't understand fully why I left Phoenix. Oh, wait. Yes I do know why. I shook my head. I was not going to bring those bad memories back again. I looked over at Alice to see her tiny body bundled up in a coat much too big for her. I stifled a giggle as I looked across the street.
The theater didn't look too big from the outside and it surprised the audience every night at the actual size. It seated hundreds comfortably and allowed each guest a good view of the stage. I practically knew the place like the back of my hand, courteous of Alice's grand tour. She'd shown me every inch of the place, including the storage cupboards. I blushed at the thought of the mess I made and the way I tripped over everything, Alice's laughs haunting me ever since.
She started to sprint across the road and I stumbled to catch up to her while trying not to be hit by a car. She laughed at me again as I slipped slightly on the icy sidewalks. I cursed the lazy city workers for not cleaning all this up. She kept up her snickers as we walked into the lobby of the theater.
It was a very warm place, both in temperature and in color. The ticket booth was right ahead although all four windows were vacant or closed completely. This morning wasn't time to buy tickets it seemed. On either side of the ticket booth was a double door, which led into the theater. They were shut as well so the grand stage couldn't be seen. There were large staircases to our left and right, which led up to the upper seating levels as well as the balconies. Both were covered by a rich red carpet making you feel almost royal. I giggled at the thought as I followed Alice through the doors to the theater, kicking the snow off my boots in the process. She pulled open the heavy doors easily and I tripped to keep up with her.
"Why the hurry?" I questioned her as she started down the aisle. The theater was empty and slightly eerie as my voice bounced back to me. At least it was lit up with the warm glow of the lanterns and a large chandelier above our heads.
"No hurry," she called back over her shoulder. "I just want to show you something."
I followed her into the sound booth at the back of the theater. She opened the door and slipped inside the cramped room. The large equipment took up a lot of the space but there were also many CD's and records in boxes and shelves. I'd been in it many times but it never failed to amaze me how these tech guys could work for over an hour in this little room, especially with all the machines working. The heat it generated was mind blowing. Like the Sahara desert!
Alice flipped through a few the CD's strewn on the sound equipment, throwing her jacket on one of the rolling chairs. I watched her, leaning against the door jam puzzled to what she was doing.
"Ah ha!" she finally crowed, picking up a CD and placing it in the machine.
"Alice!" I hissed. "What are you doing?" We weren't supposed to play around with the sound stuff! That action meant one thing: being fired.
"Hush up," she shushed me without looking away from the equipment, her tiny fingers playing with the volume wheel. "Jasper showed me this yesterday."
"Showed you what -"
"Shut up!" she interrupted me with her hand out to me. "It's starting."
I sighed and settled back to listen to the song she put on. I flinched at the voice coming out of the speakers. My eyes were wide as I stared at Alice. She grinned at me before closing her eyes and swaying her head to the music.
Everybody wants to be loved
every once in a while
We all need someone to hold on to
just like a helpless child, yeah
Can you whisper in my
ear, let me know is alright
It's been a long time coming
down this road and now I know
what I've been waitin' for
and like a lonely highway
I'm tryin to get home
Ooo, love's been a long time comin'
I was frozen as the song played. Alice pressed the pause button and smirked at me, smug about something. I glared at her, crossing my arms and letting the silence grow. Finally I couldn't stand it anymore. Damn her!
"Okay, I give in," I muttered. "What was that?"
"Oh," she sighed, shrugging and looking away with a frown. "Nothing."
"Al-ice!" I groaned and she snickered, looking up at me again.
"That my dear friend was our mystery man." She smirked at my clueless expression.
"I give. Who is our mystery man?"
"Le duh!" she snorted very un-Alice like. "Edward."
My eyes darted down to the machines and back up again, wide with surprise. "That…that was him?" She nodded as I blinked a few times. "You didn't tell me he could sing." I accused.
"You didn't give me enough time," she shot back.
I paused, narrowing my eyes at her. "Touché."
"Oh come on Bella," she sighed. "You were totally dazzled there."
"Was not!" I cried sounding like a seven-year-old child.
She smirked. "At least come and meet him," she pleaded. "Jasper wants to introduce him to all of us tomorrow. Just a lunch together, that's all."
I pursed my lips as I stared at her doe eyes, sparkling with those pleading tears. I groaned and looked away. "Fine!" I gave in again. "I'll go. But I don't have to like him."
"Trust me Bella," she snickered. "You'll like him. But guess what that means we can do after work today?" I raised my brow as she clapped her hands together and giggled with glee. "Shopping!"
The song on the CD is Long Time Coming by Oliver James. I suggest you listen to all the songs I give you. I have an awesome taste in music. :D