A/N: This is my first fanfic on this site so I'm totally open to any and all suggestions and feedback.
I'm a little bored with the whole, "Bella is lovably insecure" character trait, so my Bella will be a little more, I don't know, real I guess?
I moved the story from Washington to Florida because I know Florida, plus I thought they could use a little change of scenery as well.
At almost 22 years old, this was going to be my first summer away, truly away. From everything. I'd lived my entire life in a town in northern Washington State where more than half of the population were college students attending the local university. If you were between the ages of 18 and 24 the town was great, the picture of school spirit- nothing but bars, night clubs, and sporting events. Of course, if you weren't into that sort of stuff, I guess you'd be kind of screwed.
My parents were both professors there. In fact, my dad had a building named after him in the new medical school. So my making their alma mater my own was pretty much just inevitability. Hell, the name Edward Cullen had practically been on the student roster since I was old enough to read. So when I graduated high school, I already had the next four years of my life laid out ahead of me, with every minute detail planned. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed my first couple of years of college. I was pre-med, which made my dad happy, but was also what I'd wanted. I'd done my fair share of partying and dated around a bit. Nothing serious, mostly because the girls you meet in bars and clubs tended to not be the kind that you can really get too serious with anyway. I certainly wasn't opposed to being serious with someone, but I wasn't one to force the issue either. I'd had to endure years of ribbing from my guy friends when I'd complain about how a girl I'd been talking to couldn't hold a decent conversation. They'd say that decent conversation didn't matter as long as she could give a decent blow job.
Finally, my 21st birthday rolled around and my buddy Derek insisted that we hit the bars and that I get sufficiently trashed for the evening. We started at a little pub called The Warehouse and that's when I saw her. Derek and I and I few of our friends had pre-partied a bit before heading out, so by the time we reached the pub I was definitely riding a good buzz and was feeling more than a little emboldened with liquid courage. I walked right up to this girl shooting pool with another guy and struck up a conversation. She seemed a little taken aback by my obvious attempts at hitting on her and she quickly forgot about the guy she had come with.
She wasn't the most beautiful woman I'd ever seen by any means, but she was the only non-bottle blonde in the place, so I had to work with what I had. She was cute enough though; about 5'6", auburn hair, hazel eyes, thin. A little too thin for my liking, but by far the most interesting looking girl in the bar that night. She told me she was 19, a sophomore Psychology major who had moved in from some hick town in Iowa. She and I talked for a while, the bar was loud and I had to lean into her a lot so she could hear me, which lead to a lot of giggling on her part, and me ordering round after round of drinks even after Derek had insisted we move on to another bar. She got cuter and smarter the drunker I got, and I thought to myself, "Man, I've really found someone different." Don't get me wrong, Kayla was cute, and she really was smart; smart like "I can play scrabble and not try to pass off bajillion as an actual word."
Needless to say, I took her back to my apartment that night and we had sloppy drunk sex. It was good, I guess, as far as sloppy drunk sex goes. In the morning, she was still there, and I really didn't mind that. The only problem was that, after that, she never left. I was never one to give girls the complete brush-off, but I knew it wasn't going to go anywhere with this girl. So I humored her when she asked for my number. I humored her when she wanted to hang out. I humored her when she wanted to hook up.
I guess I really did bring it all on myself. I should have just been a jerk and told her that I wasn't interested right from the beginning. But no, instead I strung the poor girl along simply because I was lonely. It was nice to have a warm body in my bed, it was nice to know that somebody out there cared about me, even if I couldn't care for her the way she cared for me.
Finally after about 4 months my conscience couldn't take it anymore; I had to break it off with her. Though she and I had never officially declared ourselves anything, I felt like I was getting ready to dump her. I went to her apartment when I knew her roommate wasn't home and told her we needed to talk. I told her as delicately as I could that I didn't feel the same way for her that she did for me and that I couldn't see her anymore.
She cried. She screamed. She threw things. And then she told me that it wasn't over. I insisted that it was, in fact, over and I let myself out.
That's when the constant emails, text messages, phone calls and random knocks on my door started. I felt awful for what I'd done and I knew I'd brought the entire mess on myself, but that didn't change the fact that sweet little Kayla had all of a sudden turned into a raging psychopath. That was pretty much the beginning of the end for me in Washington. It really wasn't a secret that I didn't really find the school exactly academically challenging and had been kicking around the idea of transferring to someplace new for a while. That, coupled with the fact that I now had a bona fide stalker on my hands, made my decision to transfer as far away as humanly possible a really easy one.
So after 4 months of "dating" Kayla, and 7 months of dealing with her ridiculous possessiveness and obsession, I made the move from Washington University to Florida State; thousands of miles from my parents, anyone who knew me, and any girls who wanted to skin me alive and/or have my babies.
I packed up my apartment into as few boxes as possible and loaded it into my Volvo. The rest could be shipped when I got settled in. I made the cross country drive by myself. And I rented an off campus apartment, by myself. I needed to just be on my own for a while, I had seen what kind of trouble involving other people in my affairs could bring and I needed a break.
It was the beginning of July, and I knew I'd be bored out of my mind if I didn't do something, so I found an accelerated online course on Ancient Mythology. It wasn't a class that was expressly required for my major, but it seemed at least mildly interesting and would give me something to do while negotiating a new city.
The one thing I had on my agenda to do today was to get registered and start living my new life.
"My schedule is already packed for the fall, but that still leaves me 3 credit hours short of graduation, ugh!" I screamed when I looked at my transcript. This is utterly ridiculous! Why did this school have to make it so damned difficult just to graduate? There were so many hoops to jump through.
"Calm down, it's not the end of the world," my roommate, Alice said soothingly, placing a hand on my shoulder.
"I know," I grumbled, "its just one more thing I have to deal with. As if I don't have enough on my plate."
"Just go down to the registrar's office and see if there's a summer class you can pick up," Alice offered, and I knew it was either that or spend another semester here for just one stupid class. I didn't like the idea of having to wait until the following spring semester to graduate, but I'd also planned on having a relatively responsibility free summer too.
"I guess you're right, Alice," I conceded. "I might as well get this over with."
I trudged into my room to get dressed and gather my things. Pissed as I was at my current situation, creating the perfect ensemble was the last thing on my mind so I just threw on a pair of jeans, a white "wife-beater" tank top, and my favorite boots. I also grabbed my leather jacket out of the closest and grimaced at having to wear it in 90 degree heat. As uncomfortable as it was to wear a leather jacket in the peak the Florida summer, it was, however, a necessity when I decided to ride my motorcycle.
My Ducati GT1000, my baby. (Picture in my profile) I loved that thing but usually reserved riding it for the fall and spring months when it wasn't too hot or too cold. I didn't have much choice in the matter as of right now, even though it was the beginning of July, because my car was in the shop after being side swiped by some frat boy in a pick-up truck. Despite the fact that I knew I'd be drenched in sweat by the time I reached my destination, I looked forward to getting some of my frustrations out on the open road.
I don't know what it was about my bike that I loved so much. Maybe it was the sense of freedom it gave me, or the sense of power; there was nothing like gripping a couple hundred pounds of steel between your legs to make you feel in control. Plus, a girl on sleek motorcycle like mine seemed to get the attention of every guy on the road, which I couldn't complain about. Jake certainly liked the idea of me riding it, but I didn't really care much about what Jake liked any more.
Jake was my boyfriend, well… is my boyfriend. We've been together for a little less than a year and he really is a great guy. He was one of the starting tight ends on our nationally ranked football team; 6'5", dark skin, black hair and eyes, muscled in places I didn't even know anyone could be, completely solid. Seriously, he was like a brick wall personified, except unbelievably hot and incredibly sweet. So hot, in fact, and I'm not ashamed to admit, that he'd even been the star of a few of my shower head fantasies before we'd even officially met.
We'd met through a friend of a friend at some ridiculous Hawaiian luau. I was hanging out by the keg feeling out of place and awkward amongst so many frat boys and sorority skanks. Jake walked up looking about as uncomfortable as I did. I couldn't help but laugh at how pathetic he looked, he laughed right back at me, I guess deciding that I looked equally pathetic; we laughed at each other and just like that we hit it off. The entire night he never left my side. We talked and joked and flirted, and everything was incredible. Never in a million years would I have thought that a jock could be so articulate and genuinely sweet. He drove me home and we made out in his car in front of my apartment. I was actually pretty surprised that he didn't even try to push it further than that, he just asked if he could call me sometime and walked me to my door.
Jake really was… is a great guy. The problem is that we're just really better suited as friends. He can make me laugh like no one else in the world. He's one of the few people in the entire world who know me, and I mean really know me. It's just that over the last month or so we've really been more like friends with benefits than an actual couple. He does his thing and I do mine and our lives really don't cross much except when we want to have sex. Believe me, sex with Jake is incredible and I'm really, really going to miss it when I finally get up the nerve to break it off with him. It just really isn't fair to either of us to keep pretending like that same old spark is still there, when it so obviously is not.
God, I think it's extra hot out today, thought as I pulled my bike to a stop at a red light near the registrar's office. I pushed the zipper on my jacket down a little to get some air flow onto my neck and chest. As I waited for the light to turn green, I couldn't help but feel like someone was watching me. It wasn't uncommon for me to get stares while zipping around town on my motorcycle, so I looked around to see who the unabashed culprit was.
I saw him right away sitting behind the wheel of a shiny silver Volvo in the lane next to me. He was extremely handsome with coppery colored hair, chiseled features, a strong jaw, and piercing green eyes. A surge of pride welled up inside of me having caught such a hot guy's attention. His eyes kept darting from me to the bike and back again, so when the light finally turned green I lifted the visor of my helmet, winked at him, and sped off, leaving him in my dust.
I was sitting at a red light when I heard the distinct purring of a Ducati engine. I'd recognize that sound anywhere after I'd pined away over my dad's GT1000 for years. I looked to my left and saw the source of the purr idling right beside me. It truly was a beautiful piece of machinery, silver and chrome, sleek and powerful. But my attention didn't stay locked on the bike for too long, it was beautiful woman riding it that stole my gaze. I guess I couldn't really say "beautiful" because her face was hidden behind a sleek black helmet, but what I could see certainly was impressive. She had a petite figure, but she was curvy in all the right places. She wore a pair of jeans that were slung dangerously low on her hips and clung to her hips and thighs like a second skin. The jeans dipped low enough to reveal a swath of tanned skin between the denim and the hem of her fitted leather jacket. She also had a plait of chestnut brown curls that cascaded out from under the helmet. I couldn't help but stare, but was totally surprised when the helmet covered face turned to look at me. We stared each other down for a split second, me not being able to see her face through the dark visor. She then flicked up the visor with a quick flick of her wrist, revealing a pair of warm chocolate colored eyes. Then one of those eyes winked at me, before its owner sped off through the intersection, leaving me stunned in her dust.
Wow, that was probably one of the hottest things I've ever seen, I chuckled to myself. I think I'm going to like this place. No, I've gotta quit thinking like that; girls are bad news right now. Doesn't hurt to look, now does it? I argued with myself. No, I guess looking, and probably drooling, was allowable.
I put the car in gear and sped off to the registrar's office to finally get myself registered. To my surprise, there was the little motorcycle hottie parked right up front. I parked a couple of rows back from her so I could watch her with the pretense of walking towards the building.
She stood with one leg on either side of the mass of steel and rubber, her legs just barely long enough to reach the ground. She pulled off the black helmet and revealing even more of her cascade of chestnut colored hair, parts of it matted to her forehead and neck with sweat. She slowly slid down the zipper of her jacket to reveal a flimsy white tank top that covered the most perfect looking breasts I've ever seen. Without paying me any attention, she swept her sweat soaked hair into a loose knot at the crown of her head, in the process revealing a small black tattoo on the back of her neck. But it was her face that really stopped me cold. There were those warm chocolate colored eyes, paired with a small straight nose, and full, pouty lips.
I gulped. This girl, whoever she was, was my every fantasy rolled up into one. She still didn't pay any attention to me, despite my obvious staring, as she shoved her jacket into her helmet and walked briskly toward the door of the registrar's office.
Headed to the same place? It's definitely a sign…
Shut up, brain. No girls. Not even insanely hot ones who ride incredible motorcycles.
I walked up the stairs after her, barely three steps behind, without her noticing. Or maybe she did notice and was ignoring me on purpose. That seemed about right. After all, I didn't know this girl and she certainly didn't know me. What reason would we have to strike up a conversation?
I took a deep breath before walking through the double doors and refocusing on the task at hand. I couldn't help but sneak one last glance at her gorgeous face as she walked up to one of the desks.
"Name?" I heard the woman behind the desk ask.
"Isabella S-" Wham! Suddenly I'd forgotten about the girl and what I was there to do. All I could focus on was the pain in the side of my face that ran from my jaw to my forehead.
"Hey sorry man, didn't see you there. You okay?" A huge guy with curly brown hair asked.
"What? Oh. Yeah, fine. Sorry. I guess I wasn't paying much attention." I said trying to shake myself out of the fog the collision had put me in.
"I'm Emmett McCarty. Hey, didn't you just move in to the apartments on 7th avenue?" he asked, all too jovially.
"Uhh… yeah. Couple days ago. I'm Edward. Cullen. Nice to meet you."
"Yeah, I thought you looked familiar. My friend Jasper and I live a couple doors down. Saw you moving in the other day.
"Yeah, I just transferred from Washington U," I replied. For some reason it was easy to talk to this guy. Despite the fact that he was enormous, a huge bear of a guy, and could easily leave some people shaking in their boots.
"Hey listen, I'm sorry about running in to you, but I've gotta jet. You gonna be around your apartment later? I think me and some of my boys were gonna hit up a party tonight. You can come with us if you want. It'll make up for me almost giving you a concussion." He smiled widely at me, a genuinely friendly expression on his face.
I knew no one in this town, and I had absolutely nothing going on, on my first Friday night in town, so I figured, why not?
"Sure. I'll be around. Just knock on my door…whenever."
"Cool, good to meet you, Edward." He said before turning and jogging off down one of the halls.
"Yeah, you too, man," I called after him. I started to look around the room for the girl I'd followed in, but she was nowhere to be found.
I couldn't get around it, this girl was stuck in my head now and all I knew about her was her first name.
Woo! Bring on the reviews!
Musical inspiration for this chapter is Ready to Roll by Jet Black Stare (/watch?vwzPX7YtEWSM) It's all about driving fast, I think its pretty fitting.
Also, Bella's Motorcycle (/Ducati/Images/Bikes/SportClassicGT1000/13800.jpg) It really is a beautiful piece of machinery, I want one myself