Thanks as always to my wonderful beta thebeckert over at LiveJournal.
Disclaimer: I must thank Stephenie Meyer for letting me borrow and play with her characters. Not that she ever gave any of us any permission, but I must thank her anyway.
Check out my profile for some useless but perhaps interesting info on the background of Serendipitous. You'll find out why Bella works at a Senior Center and some information about Forks.
SERENDIPITOUS: Finally (6/?)
The clock on the dash turned over to 9:00 am. Edward removed the key from the ignition and sighed heavily. He was parked outside of the Senior Center, gearing up his nerve to go inside. He couldn't just sit outside all day waiting for Bella. If she wasn't inside then what would he do? Continue to sit outside like a stalker? Maybe someone would be willing to take a message for her. What kind of message would he leave?
I can't get you out of my mind since I sat with you at the deli, please call me.
The deli! Edward remembered that Bella said she'd be in again on Saturday. Would she be there the same time? If he didn't manage to see her today, he'd have to have a little talk with Eugene. After all, he and Helga had encouraged him to seek out Bella.
The Center opened at 8:00 am and that's when he wanted to be here. However, his sister had other plans for him. She got back into town last night and insisted they have breakfast this morning. She was pushy when she wanted her way. Edward tried to explain that he had some place that he needed to be, but she brushed him off. "Whatever it is, it can wait for an hour for your sister!" she pouted with her hands planted firmly on her hips. Bossy little pixie.
Edward slowly made his way out of his car and went to the front door. Smiling, he held the door open for an elderly woman whose arms were full of art supplies.
"Thank you, young man!" she beamed at him. "It's so nice to see the younger population mingling with us. Are you here to help Bella out with the craft class too?"
"I'm here to look into volunteering." It was a lie, but it was the first convincing thing that he could think of to say.
"Oh, isn't that nice!"
Edward cut woman off as politely as possible. "Where's Bella?"
"She's right in the main room at the tables in the corner. You can't miss her." she supplied.
He wished the woman a nice day and then closed the door behind him. At that moment, Edward felt like he could have been knocked over by a feather. He was excited, and yet also deeply nervous to see Bella again. What if she didn't want to see him? He had to take a deep breath to calm his nerves. He was excited and nervous at the same time. His stomach was in knots as he stepped inside the Center. To his left there were couches arranged in a square. Next to the couches, a group of women were line dancing to some country music that was playing through a sound system. Past the dance area, a kitchen could be seen.
Edward's eyes wandered to the right and saw four rectangular tables set up end to end. His heart beat started to race a little fast as he realized that this must be the main room. His eyes roamed the room, searching for the woman who had consumed his thoughts for almost a week. He found Bella as she sat with a group of older women. There were craft supplies strewn all over the table. He froze and watched as she was laughed at something he couldn't hear.
God, she is beautiful.
Her eyes landed on him from across the room and he took a silent moment to watch as she laughed at something he couldn't hear.
"Here goes nothing," Edward mumbled to himself as he made his way across the room, which suddenly felt bigger than it was.
"Oh no, Bella, what do I do?" Alice asked frantically. "Gloria superglued her fingers together! What do I do?"
"Gloria, what did you do that for?!" Bella moaned. "Alice, calm down!"
"I didn't mean to glue my fingers together!" Gloria exclaimed.
Bella laughed as she watched Alice try to pry Gloria's fingers apart. It wasn't Alice's idea for her to visit the Center. For one of their college courses they needed to do some volunteer work helping the elderly. Bella didn't mind spending extra time at the Center as a volunteer in addition to her paid hours. Alice was vehemently opposed to working at the soup kitchen or the hospital. Bella had suggested that she help out at the Center to earn her course credit. She was beginning to regret her suggestion.
"Alice, take Gloria up to the office. Jodi keeps some nail polish remover in her desk for these special occasions like these," Bella explained.
"Come on, Gloria. You'll have to lean on me because you can't use your cane since you glued your fingers together." Alice was annoyed and felt like she was a babysitter at this very moment.
"Shut up, dear, and lead the way." Gloria wasn't going to put up with any of Alice's attitude.
Bella could hear Alice grumbling about 'old people' as she walked away with Gloria. The other ladies at the table shook their heads at the situation before getting back to work on their projects. Bella watched as Alice and Gloria continued up the ramp, bickering the entire way. She couldn't help but laugh out loud when something across the room caught her eye.
Sex Hair was in the building! And he's looking right at you, heading your way!
Run, run! There's a back door right behind you. You can make a mad dash to it. No, wait, it's locked and you don't have your set of keys to the building with you. Crap, you're staring and he's almost to you. Do something, you moron! You wanted to talk to him and now it's time. Stop acting like a chicken and talk to him!
Without thinking, Bella got up from her chair and made her way over to Sex Hair, meeting him in the middle of the room.
"Um, hi, are you lost? This is the Senior Center."
He smiled. "No, I found exactly what I've been looking for. I've been searching for you, Bella."
Bella gasped and stuttered. "Mm… me? Wait, how do you know my name?"
"I overheard Eugene say your name last Saturday at the deli." Edwards green eyes were sparkling nervously at her. "I've been looking for you all week."
Bella was speechless so Edward continued. "Look, I know this must sound like the dumbest thing you've ever heard. We barely even talked at the deli. There was something about you… I had to find you again. I want to get to know you, if you'll let me."
"I've been on the lookout for you all week, too." Bella replied weakly. "I don't even know your name."
He held out his hand toward her and she took it. Those little shocks of electricity that Bella felt last time they touched turned into sharp jolts that ran up her entire arm. "I'm Edward." He didn't let go of her hand. His thumb lazily caressed it.
Edward smiled an adorable crooked smile. "I know, remember?"
Bella cheeks felt warm and she knew that she was blushing. "Oh duh, yeah….I'd like to get to know you, too."
"Bella! Gloria is unglued! Hey, big bro, whatcha doin' here?" Alice's voice interrupted Bella and Edward. Alice made her way over to them and engulfed Edward in a hug. He didn't let go of Bella's hand. "What are you two doing holding hands?"
"Brother? He's your brother? Edward is your brother?" Bella stared wide-eyed at the siblings.
"Wait, you two know each other?" Edward questioned while running his other hand through his hair.
"Best buds for the last six months!" Alice bounced up and down. "What about you two? I didn't forget that you're still holding hands. When the hell did the two of you meet before?"
"We met last weekend." Bella said shyly, biting her lip.
Her head quickly bobbed back and fourth between the two of them. Then it dawned on her. ".God. Edward is Sex Hair, isn't he?"
"Alice!" Bella yelled, embarrassed.
Edward lightly squeezed Bella's hand to get her attention. It worked – she gazed in his direction – and then nervously dropped her head and stared at the floor. "Sex Hair?"
"Um, yeah, he's Sex Hair." She heard Edward starting to laugh and looked at him. "What? I didn't know your name. I mean, come on, look at your hair! It looks as if you just rolled out of bed after a long night of… you know."
He tried to smooth his hair back down but it just popped back up. "You have a point there."
"I'm sorry, Bells," Alice snickered. "I never thought of Edward when you described Sex Hair. He's my brother, I don't think of him that way, you know?"
"Thank God!" Edward muttered and squeezed Bella's hand.
"I think I'll leave you two alone so you can get to know one another." She turned and high tailed it back to the craft tables to help clean up.
"I'm not going to get you in trouble for interrupting your work am I?" Edward pulled on her hand slightly and Bella stepped closer to him.
"We're pretty laid back here. If they really need me for anything they'll get me," she explained and led them over to a piano bench in the corner.
Edward reluctantly let go of Bella's hand as they sat down and immediately missed the contact. He opened the lid of the piano keys and pressed down a single key. The note came out warbled. "It really needs to be tuned."
"Do you play?" Bella reached out and touched Edward's knee. "I love the sound of the piano."
"I do play, but I fear that anything played on this wouldn't sound very good at all."
"Play for me?" Bella lips formed into a pout. "Just a little bit?"
"I warned you." Edward turned and placed his fingers over the keys. "Here goes nothing." He played for only a minute - a tune Bella didn't recognize - but she knew, with only a preview on an old, out of tune piano, that she wanted to hear him play more.
"That was great!" She said enthusiastically and clapped. "We'll have to find a better piano so you can play for me again."
One of the seniors had been listening to Edward's play and yelled across the room, "Hey, play it again, Sam!"
Bella glanced at the direction that the comment came from and waved. "Maybe another time, Fran. The piano is really out of tune." Her eyes went back to Edward.
"I'd like to play for you again." It was Edward's turn to blush at the attention to his skill. "Does that mean you'd like to see me again?"
"Oh, yes." Bella blushed as Edward took her hand in his once more. "Very much."
Jasper stood outside in the parking lot with his cell phone to his ear. "Come on, Edward, answer your damn phone."
He didn't even see what jumped up and snatched his phone out of his hand until he looked down. "Hey! Give me back my phone, short stuff!"
"Short stuff? Well, I-" The little midget never finished her sentence. Instead, she punched Jasper in the gut. Hard.
"Edward does not need to be interrupted right now!"
Jasper was doubled over and finally able to see Short Stuff's face. She was cute. She had also just grabbed his cell, punched him in the gut and caused him some agonizing pain.
Alice stuffed his cell phone into a back pocket in her jeans. "Edward is talking to my friend, Bella, who just might be the woman of his dreams!"
"Edward is your brother?" Jasper was able to straighten up some. He kept his left arm over his stomach for protection. "How's it going with him and Bella?"
Short Stuff's eyebrows were furrowed in anger at him. "What's it to you?"
He held out one of his hands toward her. "Jasper Hale, I'm a friend of Edwards. I was just calling him to see if everything was okay. You know, if Bella wasn't what he thought so that he could make an excuse to leave."
Alice reluctantly accepted Jasper's hand.
That's the feeling that Edward talked about when he met Bella. That stupid tingly feeling.
"Alice Cullen." She answered curtly.
"Can I have my phone back, Alice?" Jasper stood up the rest of the way and brushed his blond locks out of his face. "Please?"
"Get it yourself." Alice said smiling. She jumped back and fourth across the pavement in front of him; twirling in circles as she did so. And Jaspers' phone was in her back pocket. "That is, if you want it that bad."
"Oh, I want it bad."
You fuckin' moron. That was lame. Wait, wait, she's smiling!
Jasper slowly stepped toward her as if he was an animal hunting its prey. Alice batted her eyelashes and tried to escape by backing up. Her escape was thwarted by Jasper's car. He was standing in front her now, hands stretched out on either side of her head. Jasper bent down and whispered into her ear. "Are you going to give me my phone?"
His tongue flicked out and grazed Alice's earlobe and she gasped. His lips assaulted her neck, nibbling and leaving a trail of kisses. Jasper's hands slid down his car and to Alice's tiny waist. His hands glided toward her ass and dipped into the back pockets of her jeans. Jasper heard Alice emit a low groan deep in her throat. He didn't want to stop kissing this girl any time soon. His left hand removed his phone and he put it in his jacket pocket. He quickly returned his left hand to where had been. Jasper surprised Alice when he squeezed her ass and pushed her into him. This time, her groan was more audible and deep.
Standing on her tip toes, Alice reached up and wrapped her arms around his neck. Jasper felt her pull him closer. He flicked his tongue against her bottom lip, silently seeking permission to explore her mouth. Instead of granting him access, she pulled away slightly so she could speak.
"You have your phone, you can leave now." Her voice was shaky and uneven. She was trying not to gasp for air. Jasper knew that she was affected by their kiss just as much as he was.
"What if I don't want to?" Jasper softly kissed her forehead. His lips grazed each of her eyelids before making brief contact with her lips.
The front door to the Senior Center opened and someone cleared their throat to interrupt them. Jasper looked up to see Edward and Bella in the doorway, holding hands.
I can see that things evidently went well with them.
"Love connections are all around us, I see." Edward laughed at his sister's expression of surprise and lust.
"I was just getting my cell phone from Alice." Jasper said innocently. He didn't move or change his position in front of Alice.
Jasper shook his head. "Why the hell didn't you tell me you had such an amazing sister?"
Alice was beaming at Jasper's comment and then looked at Edward. "And why didn't you tell me you had such an amazing friend?"
"Why didn't you tell me that you had such an amazing friend?" Edward asked, pointing to Bella.
"We could keep going all day like this." Bella stated.
Jasper's hand squeezed Alice's ass through her jeans again which made her squeal. Bella raised an eyebrow at Jasper. "What? I told you, I was just getting my phone back from Alice."
Bella looked at Edward and then back to Jasper and Alice. "Oh, so is that what the kids are calling it these days?"
Only one more chapter to go! I was thinking of doing a sequel to Serendipitous but it will be different than how other sequels work. Instead of just an additional story, it'd be a bunch of one-shot like chapters. It would cover major events (important occasions such as their first fight, first time they said 'I love you', etc) with the Edward and Bella I created in Serendipitous. I have some events in mind but if you have any suggestions I'd love to hear them. I am anticipating calling the continuation story Snapshots. I'd also like to hear from you if you'd be interested in reading Snapshots.
I would also like to announce for those of you that don't have me on author alerts that I have posted a new story. I'm very, very, very excited about Legacy. It's probably the best thing I've ever written. It's in first person POV and I'd really like to go back and re-write Serendipitous into a first person POV. It works so much better and the writing flows out of me a lot faster. If I do go ahead and write Snapshots it will be from a first person POV. Hell, I'm really tempted to write the last chapter of Serendipitous in first person POV. That's how much better I write in that POV.
When I got back the first chapter of Legacy from my beta her response was:
"OMG! OMG! OMG! Ok, I read through this (and the edits you sent me). I LOVE this story."
I finished writing the third chapter of Legacy today and have a lot of plans for the story. It is a Drama/Angst/Humor/Mystery combo. I'm using the characters from Twilight but my story was inspired by a plot in a V.C. Andrews novel called Dawn. For any of you Emmett lovers out there he will have a major role in Legacy and he will have depth and personality too.
I hope to see some of you commenting over on Legacy. Here is the summary to entice you!
In his seventeen years Edward Masen grew up in fifteen different states. Now, in his last year of high school, his family has landed in the little rainy town of Forks, Washington. Edward dreamt of being a doctor or musician but his family's low-income financial status has held him back. His boring but normal life is turned upside down when he meets Emmett Cullen and his well-off affluent family. Can Edward survive the web of deception, secrets and lies that his life is so suddenly filled with? Will Edward ever know who he is truly meant to be?