Disclaimer: Please note that Twilight and all characters related to Twilight belong to Stephenie Meyer. I do not own any of it. This one-shot takes place after the Tyler incident. My story was inspired by an episode of "Saved By the Bell". Hope you enjoy it.
The Auction - EPOV
Weeks. It had been weeks since I had last spoken to Bella. It was for the best. At least, that's what I kept telling myself. I couldn't let myself get attached to her. But if I was being honest with myself, I was already attached.
Since the incident with her truck I had no choice but to keep my distance as best I could from the irresistible Ms. Swan. She was growing too suspicious and she was far too observant for her own good. She could never find out what I truly was. But deep down a part of me wanted desperately to tell her, hoping beyond all hope that she would look passed the monster that I was, and love me the way that I have come to love her. Because there was no denying anymore that I was hopelessly in love with Isabella Swan.
It tortured me to no end to see her every day and to not be able to speak to her, or hold her, or to be there for her in any way. I would be there for her even as a friend, if she chose to have me no other way. But even that could not be.
To see how my indifference towards her affected her was like a stab to the heart. It was painful to have to ignore her, especially when she would try and speak to me. I wanted more than anything to respond to her beautiful voice. But if protecting her and my family meant keeping my distance, than so be it.
From what I gathered from her friend's thoughts, she believed that I hated her. To an outsider that's how it would seem. But that most definitely was not the case. How could she know that I was so addicted to her that if she wasn't near me I would seek out the minds of those around her, just to catch a glimpse of her face? And of course she would never know that every night since that fateful day, I have secretly spent in her room watching her sleep. She was my life now, my one reason for existing, and I couldn't bear to be away from her for a second. But she would never know that. She could never know that.
I was at my happiest while watching her sleep. She was so peaceful in these moments. She looked like an angel. She was without a doubt the most beautiful creature I had ever laid eyes on. No one rivaled her beauty, vampire or human, and I longed for her to be mine. I don't think I have ever wanted anything more than I wanted her. I wanted her in every way. Not only did her blood sing to me but her mind and body did as well. She conjured human emotions in me that no one ever has before, and I'm certain that no one ever will again.
I would sit silently in her rocking chair, as still as a statue, just listening to her even breathing and the gentle beating of her heart. My nightly visits helped to tame the beast that her irresistible blood stirred within me. It made it easier to be around her during the day.
Often, she would talk in her sleep. I found it absolutely adorable. She would often complain about the rain and how green it was here in Forks. She worried about her mother too. She was obviously the adult in that relationship. And as for her father, she took care of him as well. I found Bella to be a rarity amongst humans. She was a truly selfless creature, always more concerned with others than herself.
On occasion she would say my name. And I have to admit, it pleased me to no end to know that she dreamed about me. The first time I heard my name fall from her lips it was like nothing I had ever experienced before. Just the tiny whisper of my name made me feel like my dead heart was beating again. Eventually her whispers of longing would turn to begging. In her sleep she would plead with me not go, to stay with her and never leave her. The agony in her voice was unbearable. It shattered my cold heart into a million pieces.
I would do my best to soothe her during those times. I would gently stroke her face, careful not to wake her, hoping in vain my small attempts would help. I would whisper to her of my undying love for her and assure her that I would always be there for her. It seemed to alleviate some of her fears, as she would then settle into a restful sleep for the remainder of the night. I inwardly cursed myself for being able to hurt her even while she slept.
I told her that I would always be there for her, and I would. I promised myself that. Whether I could be with her or not I would always be there. Watching her. Looking out for her. Protecting her. After all, she seemed to be quite the danger magnet. I marveled at how one person could be such a danger to one's self. But that was Bella for you. She was an anomaly. I would settle for watching from a distance since I could never be with her. She would grow old and have a family. She would live a long, human life, and I would hide in the shadows looking out for her. And she would never even know I was there.
So here I was, in Biology class, waiting for my torture to begin. Soon Bella would arrive, most likely escorted by that vile Mike Newton, and I would have to endure the entire class without speaking to her or even acknowledging her presence. This was the hardest part of every day. Though I longed to be near her, it was pure hell being this close to her yet not being able to touch her.
I smelled her intoxicating scent even before I saw her coming. Just one of the many perks of being a vampire, I thought. I immediately reverted into my usual position. With my body slightly turned away from her chair and towards the window, I fixed my gaze on nothing in particular. My eyes may have been elsewhere but my mind was entirely on her.
From my peripheral vision I saw her take her seat and quickly steal a glance at me. She did this every day and every day it made my heart leap. It gave me hope that perhaps she did care for me the way that I cared for her. I knew that I affected her somewhat since she called my name in her sleep, but I had no way of knowing what her affections for me were. Did she like me? Did she care for me? Did she love me? Who am I kidding? Of course she didn't have those feelings for me. I was a monster. I was unworthy of her love. She was an angel. And an angel and a monster could never be together.
I found that over the weeks my resolve was slowly beginning to fade around Bella. With every passing day the wall that I carefully constructed between us was gradually starting to crumble. And I didn't know how much longer I could resist. I didn't even know if I wanted to resist anymore. Whether Bella knew it or not, she had completely and utterly captivated me. I was hers and I always would be.
After letting her eyes linger in my direction a little longer than normal, Bella realized that I would not soften my demeanor, so she settled herself in for class. I chanced a glance in her direction, a stupid move, I know, but I couldn't help myself. The moment I turned to her she looked up, like she was attuned to my every move and knew exactly what I would do in that moment. Our eyes met but neither of us said a word. We just sat there, willingly getting lost in each other's eyes. Here eyes were pools of dark chocolate, matching her silky hair; which I had to restrain myself from touching at this very moment. Her orbs transfixed me, and I couldn't look away if I wanted to. Not that I did.
The saying goes that the eyes are the windows to one's soul. In Bella's case it is entirely true. Her eyes are the only means to which I can ever read her. Her face and behavior never gave away to what she was truly feeling. It is only her eyes that tell me everything she cannot say. She has the ability to convey any type of emotion through them. I could not read her mind, but at least I had her eyes. I was lost in them, in her, and she in me.
Her lips began to move, to speak to me no doubt, and this time, I told myself, I would most definitely answer her. Where had my resolve gone? But just as the words were about to leave her lips, Mike Newton showed up. Damn him! I should snap his neck right now.
I saw her slightly cringe at the sound of his voice and I inwardly cheered that she seemed to detest him as much as I did.
Reluctantly she turned to face him. "Oh, hey Mike. What's up?" She was faking enthusiasm for his benefit. And not very well I might add. I had to stifle a laugh. Luckily they didn't seem to notice.
On the outside Mike seemed calm and collected. He had a smile on his face and showed no signs of distress. But I, with my special gift, knew better. In his mind he was cursing me.
What the hell was that I just walked up on?, he thought bitterly. Did Cullen finally decide to start noticing Bella? Damn, he better not try anything. She's mine.
A growl rumbled in my chest, too low for anyone to hear. Yes, I most definitely was going to snap his neck. Oh, if only he knew how close he was to a furious vampire.
"So, Bella, Angela told me you volunteered for the auction." He had a mischievous glint in his eyes.
Wait. What auction? Was I missing something? There's an auction?
"Y-yeah," she stuttered. "I didn't really want to, but it's for charity so..." she trailed off.
I had no idea what they were talking about. What auction? Then, suddenly, it occurred to me. I had been so preoccupied with Bella that I completely forgot about the date auction during last period. And I most definitely did not know she would be in it. Great.
The school would be auctioning off dates for the dance in order to raise money for a local charity. And now my Bella would be on display for everyone. That's right, I said my Bella. She may belong to another man one day but she would always be mine. Because she would always have my heart.
When it was just the dance I had nothing to worry about. I knew Bella would never go with anyone, if she went at all, and I took great solace in that knowledge. But now she was auctioning herself off as a date. That was typical Bella for you. She was so selfless, always putting others before herself. She never ceased to amaze me. She was unlike anyone I had ever known. She only proved that, when she kept her word about the Tyler incident. Whenever anyone questioned my presence next her that day, she simply confirmed my story of being right there the whole time. She was astounding. She covered for me when I had given her absolutely no reason to do so.
Jealousy roared within me at the thought of her and another man. Though I should get used to this since I was never going to be with her, I couldn't help the sudden emotion. One day she would find someone else. I knew that. Why not now? Because they don't deserve her, I thought.
The saner part of me knew I wasn't any good for her but the selfish part wanted her all to myself. I honestly couldn't stand to see her on the arm of someone else. Especially Mike. His thoughts about my Bella were revolting. He was constantly undressing her in his head and playing different "romantic" scenarios all day long in his mind. I'll be honest. I've come pretty close to killing him quite a few times.
"Yeah, it didn't seem like something you would do ordinarily. I mean, you're gonna be up in front of the entire school." He laughed. Was he trying to piss her off?
She closed her eyes and began rubbing her temples. "Ugh, please don't remind me," she said, clearly annoyed.
"Don't worry. I'll be there to save you. I've got plenty of money saved up to purchase you." He winked at her.
My body tensed at his words and I inadvertently snapped the pencil in my hand in half.
They both snapped their heads in my direction. While Mike looked annoyed, Bella looked concerned. For a brief moment it warmed my heart to see that look of worry on her face; to know that she cared about me even a little bit.
"Is there a problem, Cullen?" Mike said through clenched teeth.
Bella shot him a glare. She obviously did not like his tone. I smiled at that. She was so protective of me, even after the way I treated her. And that thought made me frown. It kills me that I've hurt her. I am an utter fool. This is why I don't deserve her.
I stiffly shook my head in reply. "No. No problem, Newton," I seethed.
"Good." Then he turned his attention back to my angel. "So, I'll see you later then, Bella?"
"Yeah, Mike. Later," she mumbled, as the imbecile made his way back to his seat.
Throughout the entire class we did not speak. She took notes occasionally, but she mostly doodled in her notebook. I would discretely look at her from the corner of my eye, stealing any chance I got to look at her beautiful face.
I so badly wanted to reach over and brush her hair away from her face. She used it as a barrier to avoid me and I hated that. I wanted to take her hand in mine and never let go. And more than anything, I wanted to lean in and brush my cold lips to her warm ones. I wanted to feel the heat of her skin against the coolness of my own. I really didn't know how much longer I could ignore it. Nor did I want to. My desire for her was so strong. My need to be around her was getting out of control. Not for her blood, but for her.
During class I played many different scenarios over in my head. I imagined grabbing her and kissing her passionately for the entire class to see, so no man could ever try to stake his claim in her again.
I also toyed with the notion of whisking her into my arms and running out of the school, taking her to my meadow. There I would profess my love for her and tell her all my secrets. I would let her know what I truly was and then see if she could ever love me.
Both options were extremely appealing and terrifying at the same time. For a second there I actually planned on going through with one of my preposterous ideas. And I swear I heard Alice giggle in her head from her trig class. I bowed my own head in shame for even considering such a thing.
Try it Edward, Alice thought. You might be surprised with the outcome.
My head snapped up at that comment and I startled Bella. I slowly turned my head towards her and she did the same. Our eyes locked into another intense gaze. A few heartbeats passed and we were still drowning in each other eyes, when the bell rang. Neither of us moved. It was as if we were the only two people in the world and nothing else mattered.
This is it, I thought. I need to speak to her. I parted my lips, ready to say something. Anything. I just needed to speak to her. Her eyes widened at her sudden realization of what I was going to do. I was vaguely aware of Newton's thoughts at the moment, which I chose not to pay attention to; they were extremely inappropriate. I remained completely focused on my Bella. She sat there, waiting with bated breath for me to finally speak to her, when Jessica Stanley came bouncing up to our table and grabbed her.
Giggling, she said, "Come on Bella. We have to get ready for the auction. Aren't you excited?" Jessica didn't even seem to notice our silent exchange.
Bella reluctantly let Jessica drag her away, but she kept looking over her shoulder at me with a longing in her eyes that mirrored my own. As soon as she was gone I sunk my head into my hands. "Damn it," I growled. I was so angry I almost punched a hole in the desk, but thought better of it. How would I explain that to the teacher?
"What am I going to do with you?" chimed a very frustrated little voice. Alice.
"Leave me alone Alice. I'm not in the mood," I hissed.
She tugged on my arm and pulled me from my seat. "Come on. We're going to be late for the auction."
As we were walking through the crowded hall I turned to my sister. "What am I going to do, Alice?" I pleaded.
Without batting an eyelash she said, "Follow your heart."
"It's not that simple Alice." I turned to my locker to relieve myself of my books.
"Yes, it is," she stated confidently.
I sighed, "No. It's not. It's too complicated." And I ran my hand through my already disheveled hair.
I shut my locker and leaned my head on the door in frustration. What the hell was I going to do? At this point Alice had had enough of my sulking and whirled me around so that we were face to face. She was glaring at me.
"It is that simple, Edward. You are the one who's complicating it. You always over think things and your letting your mind control everything. For once, let your heart lead. You deserve to be happy, and you and I both know that she is the only one who can do that."
She paused for a brief moment, her face softening to one of compassion. "Just let yourself fall Edward. Don't try to stop it. You don't always have to be in control of everything. Let your heart take over."
She paused again, letting her words sink in. "You two will never be the same from here on out no matter what you do. Now that you've touched each other's lives, no matter how brief a time it might have been, there's no going back to the way things used to be, for either of you. Just ask Jasper." She shrugged. "She wants this just as much as you do. He can feel it."
I just stared at her in amazement. I knew my face no longer looked angry. Placing a comforting hand on my shoulder she said softly, "Let yourself be loved Edward."
I was frozen in shock. I did not expect Alice to say those things. I was completely astounded by her outburst. But it's what I needed to hear. It set something off in me. Could I really be with Bella? For once I had hope.
A smile slowly crept its way onto my face as I gazed passed my tiny sister at nothing in particular. I just stood there, imagining what it would be like to finally be with my Bella. Maybe I could, I thought.
Alice smiled at me, kissed me on the cheek and then danced down the hall. "I'll see you in the gym," she called over her shoulder. I paid her no mind. I was too consumed with thoughts of Bella.
Two minutes later I made my way into the gymnasium. I found my siblings sitting in the back corner, as far away from the chaos as they could get. They all mostly looked bored and their minds were a jumble with other things they could be doing with their time, but Alice was surprisingly chipper. Don't get me wrong, she is always too excited for her own good, but considering what we were being forced to endure, she was way too happy. Everyone else seemed to notice this as well.
"What's with you?" Rose grumbled, sitting in one of the folding chairs with her arms crossed over her chest.
"Oh, nothing. I'm just looking forward to the auction," she chirped.
I wasn't buying it. I was growing very suspicious of my pixie sister. I decided to dive into her head but what I found was most disturbing. She was undressing Jasper with her mind.
I winced. "Ugh, Alice. That was completely unnecessary."
"Well, then mind your own business and stay out of my head," she said indignantly.
"Fine. But you're telling me later," I warned her.
"Oh, you'll find out soon enough," she said with a sly smile and a wink. That can't be good, I thought. But I ignored her for now.
Ten minutes later the ridiculous auction was under way. So far a few freshman and a couple of sophomore girls had been bought. The auction seemed completely barbaric to me, but at least the money was going to a good cause.
The next girl up was Angela Weber, a fellow junior. She was a genuinely nice person and a very sweet girl. She was nice to Bella - a true friend to her - so I liked her very much. She wasn't up there very long. A couple of boys battled it out for her, but in the end Ben Cheney bought her for $100. In their minds they were both extremely happy with the outcome.
Next was Bella. My Bella. Once she was settled on the stage a beautiful blush swept across her pale cheeks. I didn't need Jasper's powers to know that she was thoroughly nervous. She most definitely did not want to be up there.
"Let's start the bidding at $15," the principal said.
Fifteen dollars? Bella is worth much more than that. She is priceless, like a rare artifact. No amount of money would ever be enough.
"Fifteen dollars." Someone raised his hand. It was Eric Yorkie. He was just one of Bella's many admirers.
"Twenty five." Ah, Tyler Crowley. Admirer two.
"Thirty five dollars." Ugh. Mike Newton. Idiot number three. I wanted to rip his arms from his body and beat him with them. How dense is he that he can't see how Bella feels about him?
"Forty dollars." Eric was too cheap to go up more than five dollars. Over all he was a good kid, but in no way was he even near good enough for Bella.
"Fifty dollars." Newton again. The boy has moxie. I'll give him that much.
"Sixty." Tyler. I could tell from their minds that these two would not go down easily. They were both in for a fight.
I'm not certain what possessed Tyler. Sure, he liked Bella, but he mostly still harbored some guilt for the accident. He was still trying to make it up to her. Of course, he was hoping to get a little "action" in the process as well. I guess that's another one to add to my list. If he didn't watch his thoughts about Bella he would be dead before the end of the school year too.
Eric was slowly beginning to realize that it would soon get out of his price range so he gracefully bowed out and sat back down. And Bella was growing increasingly uncomfortable. She hated the attention.
"One hundred dollars." Mike. He had a smug smile on his face. He thought he had Tyler beat.
"One hundred fifty dollars." Tyler. He was glaring at Mike now, and the crowd was getting increasingly excited at the exchange.
"Two hundred dollars." Mike glared right back.
I kept looking into their minds to see how far they would both take this. Tyler had $800 to spend while Mike had $1,000 saved. He was hoping he wouldn't have to spend that much, but if he had to he would. This boy was desperate to get Bella to go out with him, whether he had to pay for it or not.
About seven minutes had passed and Mike and Tyler were still battling it out. By now it was getting rather heated and the price for Bella was up to $555.
"$740," Mike yelled.
"Now boys. Let's calm down here," the principal scolded them. "This is for charity, after all. It's not a competition."
"$800." Tyler was certain he had Mike beat.
Mike had a very triumphant look on his face. "One thousand dollars," he said smoothly.
The crowd went deathly silent and they all looked to Tyler. He slowly backed down and took his seat, a furious scowl on his face.
"Going once." Bella looked defeated.
"Going twice." She would finally have to go on a date with Mike.
"Five thousand dollars."
Simultaneously a loud gasp was heard throughout the crowd as every head snapped in my direction. Everyone was frozen. All of their minds were saying the same thing. Cullen?
My family was going to kill me. I looked to my right. Jasper and Emmett were wearing the same expression, pure shock. Rosalie was pissed and Alice was exuberant. Of course. That tiny little vampire saw this coming. That's what she was so happy about earlier.
Rose was glaring at me, and if looks could kill, hers most definitely would have. "What do you think you're doing?" she hissed at me. "Are you crazy?"
"What does it look like I'm doing?" I responded evenly.
The entire school was silent. Even Bella was frozen in place. Her mouth hung open in shock but her eyes were alight with the unmistakable emotion of happiness.
The principal was gaping at me. His mind was a jumble and he wasn't entirely sure that I was serious, so I stood up.
"$5,000," I said firmly, to get my point across.
The Cullens have way too much money, he thought. But none-the-less, he shook his head and began to speak.
"$5,000 going once."
He paused - a little too long for my liking - and said, "Sold." He turned to my angel. "Well, Miss Swan, you are now promised to Edward Cullen for $5,000."
I felt the corners of my mouth twitch into a crooked smile. As I made my way through the still shocked crowd of students and towards Bella, my grin began to grow even wider. I walked up to the stage and held my hand up to her.
"Shall we?" I said softly.
A beautiful smile spread across her face and she took my hand eagerly. I couldn't help but notice the warmth that radiated from it. It shot right through me and my heart leapt to life at the contact. It also didn't escape my notice the electricity that seemed to travel through my entire body at her mere touch. She was aware of it too. I could tell by the look on her lovely face.
I carefully led her down the stairs and safely to the gym floor. I lifted her hand to my lips, never breaking eye contact, and placed a light kiss on her knuckles.
Straightening myself, I leaned into her, smiling. "Well, Bella. I believe we have a date for next Saturday night," I whispered into her ear. She shivered in response. Whether it was from my cool breath or the intimacy of the gesture, I do not know.
"Yes. I believe we do," she breathed into my face. I was momentarily stunned. Bella had an amazing affect on me and she didn't even know it. She had just dazzled me.
Ignoring the gawking students, we walked out the gym, through the school, and to my car.
"Alice can take your car home," I said, taking her keys and placing them on her back tire. She just nodded in return.
I turned to her and said, "I would like to take you some place very special to me." I looked deeply into her eyes. "Will you come with me?" I asked. I may have sounded calm but on the inside I was nervous that she might possibly refuse me. I would beg her if I had to.
She nodded her head slightly. "Yes."
I opened the passenger door for her and she slid into the leather seat of my Volvo. I eagerly got into the driver's side and sped off towards our destination. It took about ten minutes to reach the edge of the woods that led to my meadow. She was a bit hesitant at first to go hiking, but I assured her that it would be well worth it in the end. A couple of hours later we were nearly at my meadow, and I was growing extremely anxious. It would normally take only five minutes for me to reach it, but I had to match Bella's human pace. My excitement was growing exponentially with the knowledge that we were nearly there - I couldn't wait to see her reaction.
We were at the edge of the clearing now, the entire meadow before us. The circular clearing was filled with an array of wildflowers of various colors. Bella marveled at the beauty before her, but it was nothing compared to her radiance.
"Edward, it's beautiful," she gasped. It still sent shivers through my body whenever she spoke my name. I don't know if I would ever get used to it.
She moved slowly through the tall grass, extending her arms to her sides to lightly touch the flowers as she passed. I followed closely behind watching her take it all in. She turned to me after a few moments. Her eyes bore into mine. And once again it felt as if she were trying to look into my soul. I couldn't break away, and this time there would be no one here to interrupt us.
"Why did you bring me here?" she asked softly. She was merely inches away from me and her warmth enveloped me.
I took her hand in mine and began tracing slow circles on the back of it. "I wanted to share this with you. This place is very special to me. I've never brought anyone here before….until now."
We both inadvertently moved closer to each other. "Thank you for sharing this with me," she said, with a soft smile.
"You're the only one I would want to share this with." She blushed at that comment and it was beautiful. It was the truth though. This place was only for Bella and I. "Bella….." I trailed off, suddenly very nervous.
"Yes?" She squeezed my hand, urging me to continue. It was all I needed.
I pulled her closer to me and wrapped my arms around her waist. In response she placed her hands on my chest. She felt so right in my arms. I never wanted to let her go. It was now or never, I thought. Taking an unnecessary, but much needed breath I said, "There is something I would like to tell you."
A/N: Please review this. It is my first fanfic and I would love some feedback in order to improve my writing. You're opinions would mean a lot to me. Thanks and I hope you enjoyed the story.