Bella is a graceful dancer at Julliard in NYC. She is the arm candy of Mike Newton, a bigshot money-maker. What Newton says, goes. Newton loves to show off Bella, but Bella has no feelings for Mike, she just uses him to keep other men away so she can focus on her dream: to be a professional ballerina. What happens when Edward Cullen starts working for Newton and Bella and him start to fall for each other? Mike has staked his claim on Bella, much to her dislike. Now they have to sneak around and not let anyone know their secret. Will they be successful in keeping quiet about their forbidden love affair? Edward's and Bella's life depends on it. Mike Newton is not a forgiving guy, what will he do IF he finds out? AU AH OOC. Lemons in the future!
Bella, Boys, and Ballet
Yoplait or Activia?
Yoplait or Activia?
Yoplait or Activia?
I weighed both options in my hands, almost as if I was a human scale, letting each item raise and lower on both sides of my body. They weighed the same, thought I didn't know why that was a factor in my decision. They both tasted fine. They were around the same price, Activia was a little more expensive, but not my much. I didn't prefer one or the other, I mean, it was yogurt. I scowled at my indecision. I resorted with the childish "Eenie Meanie Minie Mo" trick and put the Yoplait in my basket.
I was at the local grocery store, doing my weekly shopping, in between my classes at Julliard. I was always proud of myself for getting into my dream school to become a ballerina. It had been a dream of mine since I was a little girl, I started classes when I was nine, and by the time I was 18, I was getting the acceptance letter in the mail. I had originally lived in Forks, Washington with my father, Charlie, the local police chief. But as soon as I got the official acceptance, I packed my bags and started my journey to the other side of the country, New York City. There I took numerous ballet classes, strengthening my body in fluid motions and graceful steps. At first, it had been very hard to get used to the rigorous classes. My teachers being some of the best ballerinas the World had come to see. They knew exactly what each student needs to work on to become the best dancer they could be. But that may or may not be the kind of dancer that will make it in the magnificent world of dancing. My teachers knew the importance of the precision of a movement, the light and feathery atmosphere a good dancer should give off, and they were always adamant about dancing being the number one thing in a dancer's life. Should a dancer not put their heart, soul, and spirit into their dancing, they mind as well as pack up and go home. Ballet is made beautiful by how the dancer interprets his or her emotions and feelings into defined balletic movements. The discipline does not restrict the ability to use unlimited amounts of energy to reach maximum height in jump and confidence in performance. Effort is not shown in ballet; everything must look effortless and weightless. Being a ballet dancer was not for the faint-hearted. It took patience, practice, and most of all, heart. I had all those qualities. I had developed them when I was quite young and saw a ballet with my mom; it was one of her crazy "hobbies" of that moment. She always picked up new hobbies, faster than I could dance to the Nutcracker's Trepak in Act Two. But as soon as I saw the glorious dancing, the swan-like movements of the ballerina, and the gracefulness she presented; I was instantly connected.
"Bella, look what I got, Poptarts!" My best friend Alice interrupted my thoughts. She was a pixie-like, black-haired, more or less erratic young woman. She was always hyper and cheery; she was like my personal dose of Prozac. She never let me dwell on wallowing; it simply wasn't allowed to be sad in Alice's world. I admired that she could make anything look warm and refreshing. She was my roommate, along with my other best friend, Rosalie Hale. I met them my first day at Julliard a nearly two years ago. They were new, just like I was, and were exceptionally splendid dancers. Out of the three of us, there was no better dancer than the other. We all brought different things to dancing; Alice brought her ability to make the dance come alive, like you were right there with her dancing to Swan Lake's Danse des Petits Cygnes. Rosalie brought her almost-perfect technique; she had the best turn-out, posture, and musicality. Her movements, if studied down to the most precise detail, were breathtaking. She was built to be a ballerina and she worked hard to keep the doting teachers adoring her, also the fact that she was breathtaking to look at helped. She is tall and statuesque, standing at 5'9", with a figure that rivals a model's. She has wavy honey blonde hair that reaches the middle of her back, Rosalie is usually described (from other students who were beyond jealous, it was more of a painful desire to be as beautiful) as a woman who had beauty, elegance, class, and eyes like violets. Then there was me, plain-looking Bella Swan. I had brown hair, that had a nice slight curve at the end, allowing it to shape my face and easy to do; my eyes were chocolate-colored, and my skin was pale. It wasn't a pale like Rosalie's or Alice's porcelain-looking skin, or any New Yorker had from the harsh long winters, it was a creamy ivory. The charm I brought to my dancing was my ability to look extremely graceful. I was clumsy as a child, but as I started ballet, I wriggled out of my awkward, ditzy body and matured into, no pun intended, a graceful Swan. Rosalie's movements sometimes looked robotic, almost overly rehearsed. And Alice's dancing sometimes lingered on the line of almost being over-the-top. I had a nice medium, I didn't have the best technique or the ability to bring the audience into my dance, but I had the ability to make the audience hold their breaths in anticipation of my dancing. They were drawn in by my dancing; I exerted my soft, feathery, light movements and almost teased them with the promise of wonderful steps.
"Ready to go?" Alice asked, tapping her foot along with the dull music that came from overhead.
"Yea, I'm about done, where's Rose?" I asked,
"Right here," I whirled around at the voice and saw the epitome of all things beautiful, all rolled up into one sleek, thin human being. "I just saw Kate and Charlotte, they were giving me the Heebie Jeebies again." We all laughed, Kate and Charlotte were, well to put it nicely, drama queens. They were also wide-eyed at Rosalie's physical appearance and thus, gossiped about her like old women. They were the basic kind of girl everyone disliked: brownnosers, Drama-thriving, and shallow. Kate and Charlotte loved being the teacher's pet, and whenever they weren't in the spotlight or the doting eye of Madame (one of our teachers, she was a favorite of mine. She had this way to teaching that made you fall in love with ballet all over again. Her voice was calm and sweet, like a good piece you could dance to, allowing the music to guide you through pivots and leaps) they pouted. They were the girls who would go quiet in front of you when you walked in, giving the not-so-subtle hint that they were just talking about you. Charlotte was known for being the mean, snippy one; Kate was her follower, she followed Charlotte like a lost puppy. It was sad that we still had immature girls like this, but when are you going to ever get away from the high school immaturity.
"Did they give you the death-glare again?" Alice joked.
"Worse, stink-eye." Rosalie mused.
"One day, they are going to have their faces stuck in that expression," I added. Alice followed by giving her impression of the stink-eye, which looked like a cross between a crippled T. Rex and a bad twitch. We all gave our own impressions of the childish stare. We all cracked up again and started walking toward the front.
"Oh, shoot, I forgot to grab some cereal," I said as I was mentally going over my list of groceries. Water? Check. Yogurt? Check. Shampoo? Check. Conditioner? Check. Cereal? Uh oh.
"We'll meet you at the check stand," Alice said, her and Rose still discussing Kate and Charlotte and their, "lack of style." Alice continually said they had no taste, and should be stuffed and mounted for thinking they could get away with a plaid jumper. I was no style expert like Rose and Alice were, so I let them converse while I ran to get some cereal. I walked quickly to the aisle where the morning-goods were located. I surveyed the varieties, but chose Fruit Loops as my choice. They had been my favorite for as long as I could remember, and they always made my think of the different colored tutus I had seen throughout my life.
As I was walking toward the check out stand, my eyes glued to the box of fruity goodness, trying to solve the "kid puzzle" on the back. I was about to turn the corner towards the area where Rose and Alice were I suddenly walked into a concrete wall of body.
I stumbled back and was about to fall back, crashing down a pyramid of canned soup, and crushing my fruit loops in the process, when two strong arms caught me. One was behind my back, the other behind my head. I blinked a couple of times, waiting the impact of the solid floor but instead felt pressure on my head and back. I realized it was from someone's hands. I looked up to see my savior when I was met with the most beautiful green eyes. The eyes were a deep emerald, almost glowing with brilliance. The eyes were burning with concern and compassion. I felt my cheeks flush when the eyes blinked and drug me back into reality. I assessed the man who was now gripping me closer to his body in awe.
Watch out Rose, this man was incredibly good-looking.
His bronze hair was a perfect mess on the top his hair, it was in every direction, but it looked to be like that on purpose. It was perfectly imperfect. His face was porcelain-looking, like Alice and Roses'. His jaw line was defined and perfectly constructed. His lips reminded me of Shakespeare's line, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand, too smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss. They were a deep pink, almost red, and were, like all of his other features, perfect. His hands felt strong and protecting, his body was firm and muscular. He wasn't a big guy, but he wasn't as lean like Alice's boyfriend Jasper.
"I'm sorry," I stammered. I was painted red with embarrassment.
"I think I should be the one apologizing," his velvety voice rang out. His words almost made me melt; all his words flowed together and made you want to close your eyes so you appreciate the glorious sound that came out of his lips.
"For what?" I asked, now coherent.
"For almost creating an accident that would have made the numerous New York car accidents look like child's play," he mused.
"It wasn't that bad," I mumbled. I started to get up and with realization, he pulled me up to a standing position.
"If you think taking out an entire aisle isn't bad, I'd hate to see what you think is a 'bad' accident," he teased. His smile was a crooked-smile that I could have spent days staring at, if I was not so keen on getting away from him so I could forget this embarrassing situation.
"I'd hate to make New Yorkers look any less dangerous," I said with sarcasm.
"I'm offended, I'm a New Yorker, born and raised."
"I rest my case." He smiled at my witty banter and could tell I was getting irritated with this man.
"You going to be okay?" He asked, trying to hide his smile at my clumsiness and irritation.
"If I stay out of your way, maybe you won't plow over me again," I retorted. I didn't know this Greek God, but his remarks had made him on my bad side instantly. He seemed smug, almost overconfident.
"I'll try not to run over any more beautiful women." Was he flirting with me? Or just giving me a compliment? I didn't have any snide comment to reply so I nodded and started to turn to check out my things. I picked up my basket that was sitting on the ground untouched. The Fruit Loops were lying next to it, so I grabbed both and started to make my way from the beautiful creature.
"Wait," he spoke after me, I stopped in my tracks and turned around curious with what he wanted. "I'm Edward Cullen." I continued to stare at him trying to figure out what he wanted me to do with his name. He seemed to sense my confusion and said, "And you are?" I smiled and walked up to him, putting my hand on his left bicep, it was firm and toned, I gave a squeeze to measure his definition. I was impressed; he was more muscular than he looked. I smiled a devilish grin as I leaned up into his ear.
"Your worst nightmare," I said seductively. I was impressed with how confident I sounded, I made sure to give me a mental pat on the back. I turned my back on him, I could see that his mouth was dropped and his eyes burned with interest at me. I laughed at the man's expression and ran to catch up with Rose and Alice.
When I got to the check out stand, Rose and Alice were waiting for me by the front door, still talking about fashion. This is going to be a long walk home, I said to myself.
I grabbed my grocery bags and made it to where they were standing. They were discussing outfits for the party on Friday night, today was Thursday evening.
"What about my red halter-top with sequins?" Rose asked. I knew the question wasn't directed to me, so I remained quiet.
"Oh," Alice squealed with delight and clapped her hands together. "With the skirt that we went salsa-dancing in?" Rosalie nodded and Alice quickly added, "That would be perfect! Emmett won't be able to take his eyes, or hands, off of you." I giggled at Alice's prediction, it was truthful in every single way.
Emmett was Rose's somewhat of a boyfriend. They weren't official, I think that was part due to Emmett's lingering eyes and Rose's concentration on dancing; all three of us had the same priorities. Dance first, boys later was a mental motto that we stuck by. Emmett was a big guy, brown hair, looked like what a typical jock would look like, but at times he looked like a teddy bear. He usually looked like a snuggly animal when Rose was around him, he would melt at the sight of her, but at the comments of his buddies, he would "be a guy" and turn his interest toward another girl for a couple of seconds. I'd be bothered if I was Rose, but she didn't really seem to mind, probably because she was too focused on ballet to let Emmett interfere with her dream. Emmett was really good friends with Alice's boyfriend, Jasper.
Jasper had been in Alice's life since high school, or that's what I was told. They'd been in love since the minute they met, and everyday after that. He was a tall, lean, blonde-haired man. The way he looked at Alice was uncanny, like she held the fountain of youth, or she was the Messiah. They had such a special relationship that they didn't need to show their physical attraction, they said it with just a stare. When Alice moved here from the south, Jasper followed her. He was waiting for her to live her dream of dancing to ask her to start the rest of her life with him. She knew she would marry him someday, but at the moment she wanted to dance professionally more than she wanted to breathe.
"Bella, what do you think?" I heard Alice say. I snapped back from my thoughts of my best friends beaus.
"Sorry, I was in La-La Land. What did you say, Al?"
"I said that I hear you and Mike are doing the dirty," I stopped dead in my tracks at the sick thought.
"What?" I asked disgustedly. Rose and Alice started howling in laughter at my response.
"You should have seen your face," Rose choked out, holding her stomach. Alice was gasping for air between fits of laughter. I stood there annoyed at Alice's joke. That was something that was never going to be funny, I don't care who you are.
When they both got control of themselves, we started the walk toward the apartment.
"Mike isn't that bad," Alice said absent-mindedly.
"Al, that's like saying food poisoning isn't that bad," I retorted.
"Oh come on Bells, he's okay looking, he is usually polite to you, and he is one of the most powerful men in New York City, beside Donald Trump himself!" Rose hissed. She was angry that I had not found a boy to call my own, it was her mother-instinct coming in now. She wanted me to be happy, but I was. I was happy dancing, not dating.
"Thanks mother," I said acidly. I hated when Rosalie got defensive when I told her I didn't want to see men. She said it was not normal that I didn't flirt, date, and have crushes; I just had my mind set on dancing. That was number one, always has been, always will be until I'm too old or I'm too crippled.
"I just think you should give him a chance, that's all," Rose stated.
"I agree with Rose, Bells. You should give Mike a chance. He's been good to you, to us." Alice spoke with a manner that made her sound snobby.
"But, he's Mike." I whined. They both gave me a glare at my illogical statement. Sure, Mike Newton was okay-looking, if you liked that schoolboy look. But don't let that fool you, Mike had a dark side, he was very powerful and respected in what he does. Emmett and Jasper were even under his employment. Alice told me once that Jasper was getting paid extremely well for what he had to do, which was something about being the "whiz-kid" for Mike. Emmett was Mike's wingman, he was the protector. Try to touch Mike and you had to go through Emmett, which was something that was very hard to do. Mike had a reputation of being big, bad, and somebody you don't want to cross. He could finish you in this town for good. What does he do?
Mike is the head of a gang.
No one really knew which, but they knew better than to ask. Mike had a temper problem, something I'd seen but never experience. He was scary when he was mad; I shuddered at the thought of his angry outbursts. Mike had once broken a dining room with one hit of a baseball bat. He wasn't as big as Emmett, or as smart as Jasper. But he was clever, cunning, and most of all, determined.
I met him about a year ago, Alice was going to a party with Jasper after he started working for Mike, and Alice asked us to come. I was the hesitant one, but Rose said that it was good to take a break from dancing; I never could fathom that idea. Anyways, we went to this party, it was in an old apartment/warehouse. The floors were wood, the glass had a nice view of the city's lights; the walls were brick. It was a dump, but with a few speakers, a keg, and some couches, it became the party location. It wasn't too bad, it had a sort of "wrecked" debonair. Rosalie met Emmett and made out with him for the rest of the night, I was pretty sure she and him had done much more than that, for I remember not being able to find them for a while, they had disappeared somewhere. When they had come back, Emmett's shirt was missing a couple of buttons and Rose's shoe wasn't strapped correctly. Rose was very detailed, she was also a perfectionist, so when something wasn't perfect, Rose knew. Her stiletto not being strapped correctly was a detail Rose would not have missed.
Mike had been eyeing me since I walked in. I stuck close to Alice and Jasper, feeling safe with them. When Mike nodded towards Jasper, Jasper looked back at me and then led us to meet Mike. My first impression of Mike was that he was cocky. He seemed to know that he got what he wanted, taking no prisoners, and didn't matter what the consequences. He always landed on top.
"This is my good friend, Isabella Swan," Jasper spoke carefully to Mike. He was trying to read his expression, I wasn't aware that this was actually a test for Jasper from Mike.
"Isabella?" Mike sang out, his voice made me felt like I was being violated. He was creepy, but once you got past the outer shell of Mike Newton, he had his charming moments. I nodded at him and he continued, "What brings you to the Big Apple?" He sounded uninterested, letting his eyes follow a redhead's backside that was walking past. I ignored the rude remark and told him I was there to dance ballet for Julliard. I was clearly bragging, and in a weird way, that seemed to interest Mike.
"Julliard?" I nodded again. "My, that's impressive," his voice carried like a snake. "Tell me something, Isabella—"
"It's Bella," I corrected him. A couple of people looked at me nervously, no one had ever corrected Mike Newton, and I guess I was a first.
"Aw. Like I said, Isabella, what do you think of the city at Christmas?"
"It's beautiful," I stated. Jasper nudged me so I would go farther into detail. "The Nutcracker is amazing, you should see it," I said politely to Mike.
"I have, I didn't like it." I was flabbergasted. Who could not love the Nutcracker? I had seen the girls practice; they were magnificent, if not perfect.
"You didn't like it?" I stammered out. I was in complete shock. Alice had even inhaled sharply at his opinion.
"Not at all, the girls were much too serious, there was no action, drama, or even a creative plot. Just a Mouse King to be hated, men in tights, and sugarplum fairies running a muck."
"You aren't viewing it correctly." This was the second time I corrected him.
"What do you mean? I should be interested in guys who run around in their underwear?"
"You didn't see the grace? The poise? The beauty of the dancers dancing melodically to the music was breathtaking. And you were interested in Rats and men in tights. Hm. Looks like I had you figured you wrong, Mike," I taunted. I was so astonished that the guy's behavior that I was just trying to piss him off. "You should really see it again and look for the actual point of the ballet. You might actually find something to put in that empty head or yours." I heard a few people gasp and shush other people.
"I think I shall," Mike said, his tone hinting at something else. "Would you like to accompany me to a private place to enlighten about the ballet, Isabella?" He placed a hand on my arm and started to pull me towards a door that I assumed led into another room. I remember thinking about being alone with Mike and cringing at the thought of the things he could do to me with no witnesses.
"No thanks," I stated pulling my arm back. Before Jasper could yell at me in a hushed whisper, I walked away towards the door. I didn't want to be here anymore, I'd rather be back at the dorms, practicing my plies and tendus. I heard Mike snarling, and then starting to laugh as I closed the door to the frigid outside. I hailed a cab and since then, Mike had had a special interest for me. I think he thought of it as a game of "Cat and Mouse".
Mike had tracked me down a couple of days later and practically forced me to go to the ballet with him so I could "enlighten" him. I ignored him the whole time and marveled at the dancers. By the end, Mike had told me he'd enjoyed himself and then started on a story about him. I didn't listen; I didn't need to hear that much bragging about someone.
Mike had been "chasing" me ever since then, and whenever I needed something, Mike was there to give it. I always had tickets to the ballets, the best seats at restaurants, and I was treated with respect at the gatherings Mike held. People thought we were together, an idea I did not give them. I tried to tell people differently, but people will believe what they want to believe. I soon grew tired of trying to clear up the confusion, so I just stood by Mike as his arm candy. No one bothered me, and Mike showed me off every chance he could. Whether it was dancing with me, having drinks delivered to us, or taking me out to dinner; Mike was making sure everyone was watching. I told him we were just friends. Platonic, nothing else. He nodded and then would wink at me. I didn't try and figure out his sick thought and I just let him believe what I wanted. If this kept boys away, Rose happy I was "dating", and Alice happy not to have to leave me home when Rose and her double-dated; then I was fine with it.
So Mike became like a rich Uncle. Giving me pretty much anything I needed, money for rent, utilities, and groceries. I hadn't asked him for the money but discovered he had "friends" that we wiring money into my account from his. I tried not to find out too much, I turned my shoulder. I tried to ask him to stop a couple of times, he'd nod then wink. That was that.
"Bella, Earth to Bella!" A small hand was waving in front of me frantically. I shook my head to reality, I was having quite the time trying to focus today.
"Sorry," I mumbled. I was getting tired of apologizing.
"S'okay, we decided what you are going to wear tomorrow!" Alice squealed again in delight. This time Rose accompanied her with a gleaming smile and a raise of eyebrows.
"What is it?" I asked cautiously.
"You'll see…" Alice chimed and headed in the doors of our dorm building. I hadn't realized we were here; and stepped into the warm, cozy home I had come to love and fretted about what Alice and Rose were planning to do with me tomorrow.
I stepped into my room of the apartment. It was a four-bedroom apartment. I was massive, who do I have to thank for that? Yep, Mike. He was handy sometimes. I met Alice and Rose in the dorms our first year, Personally, I found the dorms to be quite smothering because the rooms are very small and you have about eight suite-mates. It's hard to find your own space and those quiet moments we all need. I also found the cafeteria food to be somewhat monotonous after a while, and we did not have any access to a kitchen. So Mike found us this massive apartment and we all lived together. Rose had her room, Alice had hers, and I had mine. And we had a bonus room that we used as storage. Alice's and Roses' rooms were decorated beautifully and posh. Mine was simpler: I had a queen bed, with an antique white bed frame and matching furniture. I had a matching vanity also, I was an old-fashioned kind of girl. The room suited me. Simple and plain. I also had a desk, widescreen TV on the wall facing my bed, many throw pillows, lamps, a laptop perched on the desk, and a couple rugs. All from Mr. Newton.
I put away my groceries on my assigned shelf of the refrigerator and headed to my room. Alice went into her room to call Jasper; and Rose went to go to her room to look at outfits for tomorrows events. I fell on my bed from the strenuous day of practicing; I laid my head against my pillow, looking up at the ceiling, thinking about my scandalous exchange with Edward Cullen. I wondered if I'd ever see him again...
I sure hope so.
what did you think? Should I continue? It'll get more interesting as I continue. But I needed a new project to work on. Please review and let me know your opinion.