Title: The Edge (Part 1)
Rating: PG-13 (some light sexual situations)
Disclaimer: All characters are owned by Stephanie Meyer. I'm just borrowing them.
Summary: One night when Edward is out hunting, Alice drops by Bella's room to keep her company. Only, things don't go quite as planned.
Notes: Takes place during the summer at the beginning of "New Moon". Sequel to "Golden Slumber"
Bella sighed heavily and closed her eyes.
She was so bored.
Sighing dramatically, she dropped her head down onto the pages of the open book in front of her and moaned piteously.
Utterly, completely, mind-numbingly bored.
Bella shook her head back and forth and she released another pained groan.
Face still planted firmly in her book, Bella decided that she needed a hobby. It was simply too hard to find something to do to occupy her time when Edward was out hunting without one. Of course it would have to be a hobby that didn't require much physicality or co-ordination – or else she would end up spending her free time in the emergency room – but a hobby would be perfect.
She thought for a moment. Maybe knitting (or crocheting, she wasn't sure which … probably which ever one posed the least threat of allowing her to stab herself), or painting would be good for her, even scrap-booking could be taken under consideration. Really, anything that didn't land her in the hospital and would give her something to do on these dull, boring Edward-free evenings would do.
'Hobby', Bella thought to herself, 'what a good idea'. In fact, if she hadn't been so bored that she was incapable of movement she would have patted herself on the back. Bella's eyebrow lifted thoughtfully. Trying to actually pat herself on the back would probably give her something to do, at least for a few minutes.
She shifted on the floor, preparing to take on the arduous task.
"What a strange way to read a book."
Bella lifted her head as the soft, lilting voice registered with her, her heartbeat picking up and her lips curving into a smile as she turned towards her window.
She knew that it had been a good idea to leave it open.
"You really are the oddest girl," Alice said smiling widely as she stepped lightly onto the carpet of Bella's room, and then began to prance over towards the other girl.
"Oddly wonderful," Bella said grinning happily as Alice made her way towards her.
Alice wasn't the nighttime visitor she had been hoping would stop by when she left the window open, but she was very, very, ridiculously happy to see her. Just the sight of Alice filled her with joy and laughter, and gave her a light, airy feeling that almost made her feel as if she could float away into the clouds at any moment. She was, she had realized a month before, quite smitten with the petite vampire. And, on some strange nights (probably when she had had cheese before going to bed), the thought would come to her that it was lucky for Edward that she had met him first, because Alice could have very easily swept her off her feet.
Alice's laughter tinkled through the room, the sound warming Bella until she could feel a tingling all through her body. Bella leaned back on her hands, watched as Alice gracefully lowered to the ground, her expression almost dazed. She was absolutely intoxicated by Alice, as usual.
"Well, this is wonderful," Alice said a moment later, laughing airily. There was a touch of surprise in her voice as Bella flung herself in her direction the moment she was seated, but despite the suddenness of Bella's actions, Alice caught her easily and immediately wrapped Bella in her arms, hugging her with just as much enthusiasm as she was being hugged.
"'Cause I'm warm," Bella murmured against Alice's cool shoulder, where her face was pressed.
"Delightfully so," Alice breathed out, her voice dreamy and far away as she pressed her hand to the small of Bella's back, a contented purr vibrating from her chest as Bella's warmth soaked into her.
They sat like that for a few minutes, breathing softly as Bella rested in Alice's lap. However, as Bella found her eyes beginning to flutter shut, she realized that she would have to move or else she would fall asleep in Alice's arm. And, while falling asleep in Alice's arms was delightful, she wanted to talk to her friend and enjoy her company for a bit before that happened.
"Alice," Bella said seriously, pulling back from the lovely brunette enough that she could see her face.
"What is it?" Alice asked softly, her hand reaching out to touch Bella's face as her eyebrows crinkled in concern.
"You," Bella began concentrating very, very hard to keep her voice somber as she looked at the lovely creature in front of her. "You love me for more than my body heat, don't you?" Bella continued forcing a curious and vulnerable note into her voice.
Alice's eyes narrowed at Bella as she realized that she was being had, and Bella bit down on her bottom lip to stop herself from breaking out into a wide grin. Alice was adorable when she acted disgruntled. It really should have been illegal for someone to look so cute when they were being disagreeable.
"Not this moment I don't," Alice grumbled good-naturedly, a smile touching her lips as she placed both of her hands on Bella's torso, pointedly warming them up. "But I'll forgive you because you're adorable, and smell really, really good," she went on, inhaling discretely.
"I'm not adorable," Bella protested, pouting in the most adorable fashion. Alice was adorable, she was just … Bella, plain and ordinary.
"You are!" Alice exclaimed happily, pointing an elegant finger in Bella's direction. "That," she pronounced, "was extremely adorable. Really," Alice said, her voice lowering as she became more serious, "you're cute as a button," she pronounced extending her hand until her cool fingers brushed against Bella's cheek.
She let them rest there for a second, enjoying the feel of Bella's soft skin, and then her fingers moved and began to lightly pinch the soft flesh, as a smile broke out across her face.
Bella flushed and lifted her hand. She wrapped her fingers around Alice's wrist and tried to muscle her hand away, but Alice's arm was immovable, steady and solid as a brick wall. However, even after determining this, Bella continued to struggle, and eventually Alice began to giggle at her futile attempts.
Bella removed her hand and pouted again, staring at Alice with a disgruntled expression. Alice's eyes were alight, and a sound escaped her throat that Bella could only describe as 'cooing'. Bella sighed, realizing that Alice also found this display this display to be precious. She could not win.
"Okay, stop teasing," Bella sighed finally, marginally pleased when Alice lowered her hand. "We both know that I'm the human equivalent of beige, so we can stop with the adorable talk," she continued shifting uncomfortably as she looked down at her lap.
She was fairly certain that Alice wouldn't find sulkiness adorable.
"Bella," Alice said softly, "look at me, please," she continued when Bella continued to stare at her lap.
When Alice spoke so softly, with that sweet, melodic, angel voice of hers, Bella was powerless to resist her, and reluctantly, she raised her head.
"There is absolutely nothing beige about you," Alice said, taking Bella's hands in hers as she spoke. "You are lovely," Alice breathed out, "so lovely," she added almost as an afterthought, her voice hitching slightly as she spoke. "Utterly and completely alluring," she went on blinking rapidly, "never think otherwise."
Bella breathed in, the emotion in Alice's voice touching her deeply. She knew that it was utter hogwash, that compared to Alice and Edward and Carlisle, and especially Rosalie that she was practically a troll, but it warmed her heart to hear Alice say otherwise with such conviction. In fact, with Alice holding her hands so sweetly, speaking in that soft, quivering voice, Bella felt beautiful, and for a second almost believed that she was.
"You're sweet," Bella whispered, smiling at Alice as her thumb stroked the chilly back of Alice's hand. "But you're my friend. You have to say that."
Alice sighed, and glared at her for a moment. Bella would have been worried that she had offended Alice, but the vampire allowed her to continue holding her hand, so Bella figured that Alice couldn't have been too upset with her.
"I am your friend," Alice began carefully, her words silken and musical as usual, but also firm and precise, "but I do not have to say anything," she continued, her eyes flashing from their usual warm honey colour, to amber and then almost mahogany before they shifted back to honey once more. "I said it because it's true, and I'll say it again and again until you believe me, you stubborn, stubborn girl," she said, the fondness in her voice taking away any sting that there might have been in her words.
Bella was silent for a moment. She felt ashamed of herself, and embarrassed by her childish lack of self-confidence. Of course Alice wouldn't lie to her, not intentionally at least. She could tell that Alice meant what she said no matter how much that confused her, and she should have respected that. Whether it was a result of Alice being such a good friend and seeing the best in her, or maybe a result of their friendship combine with her warmth and scent, which Alice so intoxicated by, for some reason the petite brunette really did seem to think she was beautiful and she should have accepted the generously offered compliment.
"Two 'stubborns'?" Bella asked lifting her eyebrow, a tentative smile coming to her lips as she tried to steer the conversation into a less seriously direction.
"Be grateful it wasn't three," Alice responded, but she was smiling that wide, playful smile that Bella loved so much, and Bella knew that they were fine.
"So," Bella said smiling openly now, "what brings a girl like you to place like this?" she asked, remembering that while Alice stopping by was a very pleasant surprise that it was a surprise nonetheless.
"Oh, I don't know," Alice began thoughtfully, turning her head towards the window. "It's just such a lovely night out, warm, but not too much so. Perfect weather for … despoiling virgins," Alice continued grinning, lifting her hands up in front of her and curling her fingers into a hideous caricature of claws.
Bella laughed, and for a second Alice did too before remembering that she was supposed to be in character.
"I'll get you my pretty," she cackled once she had recovered herself, and then before Bella could do more than blink, Alice was on top of her, pretending to claw at her with her fingers as Bella laughed and struggled beneath her, (not really) trying to free herself from Alice's 'tyrannical' grasp.
They continued to roll around on the floor like that for minutes until Bella finally became winded and lay still, giving herself over to Alice's fake claws to do what they willed. Alice continued to 'claw' at her for a few seconds, but with Bella laying prone beneath her it wasn't as much fun, and she stopped.
"That was," Bella said, panting a little as she tried to catch her breath. "Without a doubt," she continued as Alice straddled her, looking down at her smugly, "the worst Wick Witch of the West impression I have ever heard," she continued smiling as Alice's expression turned from a smug grin into a pout.
"Says you," Alice grumbled, scrunching up her nose. She thought that it was a pretty good Wicked Witch of the West impersonation.
Bella laughed at the schoolyard response, and wondered just how long 'says you' had been floating around as an expression.
"Are you going to tell me that my father's a garbage man next?" Bella asked smiling up at Alice, her heart tightening as her eyes roamed over the goddess sitting astride her.
Alice shook her head seriously. "I was going to go with, 'I'm rubber and you're glue, whatever you say bounces off of me and sticks to you'."
Bella laughed again, the sound light and blissful. "So, what would that mean exactly in this case?"
"That your impression of the Wicked Witch of the West was the worst, I had ever heard," Alice said poking a finger against Bella's chest.
"But that doesn't make sense, Alice," Bella said with mocking patience, as if she were speaking to a very small child. "I didn't do a Wicked Witch of the West impersonation."
"You will, one day," Alice said very seriously though her eyes were alight. "And when you do, it's going to be terrible. Laughably bad. Fruits and assorted vegetables will be thrown. Criminal charges may even be laid."
"You're so full of it," Bella said, her voice much softer than she intended as Alice's fingers trailed lightly across her sides. She thought that perhaps she had planned on saying more, but she couldn't really think of it had been at that moment.
"Full of wonderful," Alice murmured softly, smiling a little as she copied Bella's retort from earlier.
Bella rolled her eyes, but smiled a little nonetheless, and then neither of them spoke for a while, leaving Bella's room silent for the first time in almost an hour.
With no conversation to concentrate on, Alice's senses began to attune themselves to her surrounding. She realized far too late that this was a horrible idea, and quickly closed her eyes and stopped breathing.
It became painfully clear to her, that no matter how much she had wanted, and how much fun it had been, that she shouldn't have wrestled with Bella like that. She shouldn't have gotten so close to her. It was stupid. It was a very, very stupid thing to do. It was true that on numerous occasions over the summer she had enjoyed physical contact with Bella and Bella enjoyed physical contact with her, but this was different to snuggling up on the couch and resting their heads on each others shoulders. Now, Bella was beneath her sweating, her scent twice as strong as before, while her heart thundered in her chest and blood stampeded through her veins.
Move. Alice thought, willing herself to disengage herself from Bella. Go to the window, inhale deeply, and try not to be a complete moron! Go! Alice lifted a hand up to tug at her pixyish hair. Her brain was a good brain. It was giving her sound advice. But her body, her body was a traitorous body, it was decadent and disobedient, and absolutely didn't want to move away from Bella's wonderful warmth. In fact, her body wanted to get closer to Bella, it wanted to stretch out along side her, and rub against the length of her like a spoiled cat.
"You know," Alice said softly, finally breaking the silence that had come over the room. "You should be nicer to me," she continued. Her voice was rich, almost creamy and more alluring than Bella had ever heard it before. "I'm a very scary monster. If you anger me it could lead to consequences so chilling and blood-curdling that if I were to give name to the possibilities, you would never have a peaceful night of sleep again."
Bella stared up at Alice's somber face and smiled. "Is this the part where I'm supposed to get scared?" she asked saucily, a thrill of excitement running through her though she wasn't exactly certain why.
Teasing Bella, she now realized, was a very dangerous proposition. She hoped that Bella would laugh at her words, and then swat her hands at her until she moved off of her, and that they could have placed some distance between themselves. But Bella was still lying beneath her, and her heart was beating faster again, and a challenge had been issued, which called to the predator inside of her like the song of a siren. Excitement began to bubble up inside of her, and she knew that she was moving into very, very dangerous territory.
"I can see this is going to require a demonstration," Alice said her voice silky, even as she wondered at the words that were coming out of her mouth. They were not the words she wanted to say. They were, in fact, the opposite of what she wanted to say.
Bella watched fascinated as Alice's eyes began to swirl again. Then, the sight of sharp teeth flashing momentarily distracted her. Bella breathed in deeply, the combined sight of Alice's increasingly dark eyes, and her pearly perfect teeth actually causing a shiver of actual fear to run through her.
"Bella Swan," Alice began, her voice a buttery purr, "I, Alice Cullen, do hereby sentence you to … two minutes of tickling," Alice continued, her words coming out naturally enough though she still had no conscious control over them.
Bella relaxed, Alice's playful pronouncement calming her. And then Alice's were fingers were running all over her as she laughed and swatted at Alice's hand, swearing under her breath, and then laughing some more.
Bella wheezed. Alice had only been tickling her for maybe 30 seconds, but she was already finding it hard to breathe and knew she couldn't survive another minute and a half of the sweet torture. She was giving serious thought to throwing in the towel and begging Alice for reprieve, however before she could humiliate herself, Alice stopped the tickling of her own accord.
Bella grasped the cessation of tickling eagerly and sucked in a few deep breaths, only becoming aware of Alice's utter stillness above her when her heart began to calm down.
"Ali …" Bella began to say, her eyes widening as she caught sight of irises as dark as the night sky. However before she could finish saying Alice's name, Alice shifted, lowering her head towards Bella's neck, her movements gracefully and agonizingly slow, as Bella began to sweat, heart triple hammering in her chest.
Alice pressed her nose against Bella's neck and inhaled deeply, her small frame shuddering as she did. Alice began to purr and breathed in again, and again, and then, just as Bella was beginning to wonder if Alice would ever stop sniffing her, she felt something cool and wet against her neck, and realized with a start that Alice was licking her.
Bella shivered, a strange but electrifying tingle running through her body. Warning bells began to go off inside of her head, bright red warning lights flashing brightly inside of her cranium. Danger, Bella Swan! Danger! She had to say something, to do something. She had to get Alice away from her neck. She was, quite literally in mortal danger. Do something! Bella yelled at herself. Do something! Move! Act!
Bella moaned and tilted her head to the side, her body arching into Alice's body as the petite vampire began to suck on her pulse-point, her small delicate hands running up Bella's torso as she did until Alice was cupping her breast through her t-shirt.
Not that you idiot! Anything but that! Bella yelled at herself. Her mental voice was furious, but it didn't stop her actual voice from moaning softly, and it didn't stop her body from arching up into Alice's hand.
Bella lifted her hand to tangle her fingers in Alice's short hair, but before she touch the raven-haired beauty, Alice had disappeared. No more gentle weight on top of her, no more icy hands on her side and cupping her breast, no more tongue flicking against her throat. Just Bella, on the floor, head tilted back, panting.
Blinking slowly, Bella sat up, bracing her hands behind her on the floor. She took a second to gather herself, and then panic hit. Quickly she began to scan her room for Alice's petite figure, wondering if Alice had not just moved from sitting on top of her, but had left the house as well. However, before she really begin to worry, she spotted Alice standing by her window, leaning so far out of it that if Bella didn't know how graceful Alice was, she would have been afraid that Alice would fall out of it.
"Alice," she said softly, her voice shaking a little as she watched Alice's body move up and down as she took in great gulps of Bella-free air.
"Just a minute," Alice responded, her voice sounded weak and far away. She stayed leaning out of window as she spoke, and Bella quieted down, giving her the time she needed. "Sorry," Alice said a few minutes later, turning around to face Bella though her eyes were facing the floor. "Sorry," she repeated, sounding lost and confused.
Bella stared at her for a moment. Alice's tone broke her heart, but there was something else that worried her, only she wasn't sure what it was.
She continued to watch Alice, and then it came to her. Bella gasped.
"Alice, you're shaking," she breathed out, rising to her feet automatically, taking a step towards Alice, her only thought to comfort her friend.
"Bella don't!" Alice said quickly, extending her hand in a warning gesture, motioning Bella to keep away. "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry," she said shaking her head. "I need a little more time. Your scent," Alice moaned, the sound was half aching and half pained. "Oh god, Bella your scent," she murmured, and then she turned around and stuck her head out the window once more.
Bella stopped where she was, and watched as Alice began to breathe in the fresh night air once more. She wanted so strongly to comfort Alice, to hug her and rock her until she felt better, to kiss her temple and tell her that it would be okay, but she forced herself to stay where she was; knowing that her closeness would only cause Alice more pain.
"Bella," Alice said softly a long minute later, her head angling to the side though she didn't turn to look at Bella head on.
"Yes," Bella whispered, feeling absolutely horrible for putting Alice through this, and feeling absolutely useless for not being able to do anything to help her through it.
"I have to go," Alice said. Her voice was full of sadness and regret.
The side of Alice's face that was tilted towards her was illuminated by the moon, and Bella could see a dark pupil flashing at her. She knew that Alice needed to hunt.
"Okay," Bella said softly, dropping her eyes to the floor. She didn't want to let Alice go, but she knew that she needed to, for both of their sakes. "Will you come," Bella began a second later, but when she lifted her eyes, she found Alice gone, "…back?" Bella sighed into the empty room.
Bella turned around and stared at the open book on her floor. It was even more unappealing than it had been before Alice had shown up.
She sighed and moved over to her bed, flinging herself down on it. Reaching up towards her head board, she grabbed one of her pillows and dragged it towards her, holding it close to her chest, snuggling against it as she waited for Alice to return.
To be continued …