Where the Streets Have No Name

I clumsily pulled my dress over my skirts, straining to button every last button on my collar. I straightened the lace on my hemline, patted out the wrinkles and sighed, looking at myself in the mirror.

My wavy brown hair, my brown eyes, and my heart shaped face were hardly beautiful. There was no way I could try to catch the men's attention, as my mother, Renee, wishes me to.

Ah, Renee. She wants me to marry very soon, because she thinks I may not have time to get my life in order. The only reason she says this is because of her lack of order within her own life.

I pulled out a hat to protect my eyes from the harmful rays of the Chicago's spring sun. Luckily, school got out early for the year due to the demand for soldiers and workers for the Great War.

I could only hope that my friends and myself wouldn't be affected directly with this plague of sadness. But, that wouldn't be the case, because such was my life.

I put on my shoes and walked out the door, closing it firmly behind me. I tilted my head back and took a deep breath, clearing my senses. Then I began to walk to the market.

Though there were still several horse drawn carriages turning corners in this city, automobiles were becoming quite common. My family did not own one because Renee did not have enough money as a teacher, and Charlie did not live with us anymore. I hardly ever heard word of him.

As my shoes pounded against the ground along my short journey, my thoughts drifter to Renee. If only she could understand that men had no interest in a girl like me. Fresh out of school, I had only a high school diploma to my name. Renee had a diploma as well, but she was also much prettier than I, attracting the attention of many gentlemen, including Phillip Dwyer, her current love interest.

Lost in my thoughts, I did not notice the crowd in front of me, and I walked right into the back of a young man.

"Oh, excuse me, sir. I wasn't paying any attention. Pardon me," I murmured more out of politeness than to the man I hit.

The man turned around, revealing the most perfect face I had ever seen. Staring into his emerald eyes, I was at a loss for words. He seemed stunned as well, perhaps over my plainness.

"Um, no it's quite alright. I should apologize for standing in your way. Let me make it up to you by escorting you to wherever you're headed," He stumbled over the words in an angel's voice.

I blushed and looked back up into his eyes, tugging on the lace of my sleeves. "Um, alright. If you insist," I trailed off, allowing him the option of leaving, though I would love nothing more than to have more time with him.

He grinned a smile that rivaled a priceless work of art in the Louvre. His smile made me realize that he must be about the age of myself. Perhaps eighteen, considering I was young for my class at only a senior at seventeen years old.

He held out his hand, while I placed my own gently within his grasp. The current that ran between our palms was astounding; I had never felt anything like it. My hand felt strangely drawn to his, like a magnet.

I blushed and sped up my pace to keep up with his long legs. Curse my short stature!

"Would you like to tell me where we are going?" He smiled, looking down at me. I blushed yet again, realizing I had yet to tell our destination.

"Um, just to the market on Lakeshore. It's quite a hike, but my mother prefers the selection there." I stammered, looking down at my ungraceful feet.

He chuckled and agreed that that was the best place to go for selection.

The silence that followed, though not awkward in the least, demanded a new flow of conversation. I took this as a cue to ask about this man.

"So, who are you? Not to be rude, but I have never seen you before, at least not around my neighborhood." I blushed at my poor choice of words.

He chuckled and stopped walking, dropping his hand from my own, and extending his other hand. "Sorry. I'm Edward Masen."

I grabbed his hand and shook it. "I'm Isabella Swan."

We both smiled and began to walk again. Suddenly, I came to a startling realization. "You aren't related to the lawyer, Edward Masen, are you?"

Edward rubbed his neck with his free hand. "Actually, that is my father. I'm Edward Masen Jr., why do you ask?"

I looked down at my feet again, keeping a steadier pace. "No reason, sorry if that was rude." My mother only wished I could marry a rich man to support my eventual family, and myself, and you would be a perfect candidate. "No reason."

Edward looked at me before dropping the subject and turning onto Lakeshore Drive. Stalls from the Farmer's Market were lined with fresh flowers and fruits, fancy skirts and luxurious drapes. Trinkets and indescribable baubles hung on the sides of posts, in a makeshift store. There certainly was a lot of selection.

Edward turned to me with a question in his eyes. "So what do you need to get; I can help you carry your belongings."

I smiled at him before replying, "I need flowers and sugar. I also need to fetch a skirt from a store, not a stall, that my mother had purchased at last week's end."

Edward nodded and turned to a stall that advertized ingredients, probably to get the sugar. I walked to Jonathan's Tailor to pick up the skirt. Luckily there was no line, and the item had been paid for previously, so I only had to ask for the garment.

Mr. Jonathan smiled when I walked through the open door and put the skirt on the counter. "Give my greetings to your mother, young lady."

I smiled and nodded before picking up the skirt. It was stunning. It was a light blue color that was lined with intricate detail at the hemline. I sighed while imaging Renee in this skirt. She would be a vision.

I thanked Mr. Jonathan before walking back into the sunlight of the street. I looked for Edward, who was standing across the sidewalk from myself. I smiled and headed over to him.

"I got the dress, now I only need flowers." I said proudly.

Edward grinned, grabbing my hand with his free one and leading me to a stall decorated with brilliant bouquets. When we arrived at the stall, I reached in my pouch to get change for Edward, to repay him for the sugar, as well as to pay for the flowers.

Edward refused the money immediately, making me grimace and place the money back in my pouch. When we were next in line, a man with a toothless smile asked us what the occasion was for the flowers, so he could suggest flowers perfect for the occasion.

I thought to myself before saying "they are for my mother. Do you have any arrangements with…daisies?"

Renee loved daisies. This would make her very happy, in addition to her skirt.

The man grinned again, revealing his swollen gums, and pointed to two bouquets. Edward leaned over the stall to whisper something to the man, making the man smile an even larger smile. Edward then returned next to my side smiling reassuringly at me.

The man leaned down with a bouquet filled with white daisies and yellow roses, hidden from my view. Minutes later, he reappeared with the same bouquet and handed it to me. "No charge, this man is a great customer of mine. Tell Elizabeth hello, please," he said.

Edward smiled and nodded, taking the flowers from the man and leading me back to my neighborhood. Though he held the bouquet and the sugar, Edward still held my hand, sending shivers up my spine in the greatest way.

Edward then cleared his throat and turned towards me. "Miss Bella," he started. I blushed at his nickname for me. I absolutely loved it. "Excuse me if I'm being too forward, but I'd love to see you again."

When he said this, I realized we were back where we me: only a block from my house. I smiled at him and squeezed his hand. "I'd love that, Edward."

He smiled a breathtakingly stunning smile and kissed my hand. "Until next time, Bella."

He handed me the flowers and sugar, making sure I had a good hold on the items, before walking back down the street. I sighed and walked to my house, letting myself in through the front door.

"Renee, I'm home!" I said, laying the sugar and skirt on the ground after closing the door.

Nobody answered. Perhaps she's with Phillip, I thought. I looked at the flowers, preparing to put them in a vase. I noticed for the first time a red dot in the center of the bouquet. Curious as to what it was, I pulled on the dot, and in the process, pulled a red rose from the bouquet.

A red rose? I didn't ask for this. Upon further inspection, I noticed a small piece of paper tied around the stem of the flower. I pulled on the string that held the paper to the stem, releasing the paper from the thorns.

I smoothed the paper, reading what was written on the paper.

"Thank you, Bella.



AN: I read some Bella/Edward in the past stories, and wanted to make my own, because the concept interested me.

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