Written for jandco and withthevampsofcourse's "A Very Cullen Christmas" contest/Co-written by edwardzukorocks & JDSK
In Alice, I couldn't have asked for a better roommate. The housing gods were really looking out for me when they matched me up with my then, relatively, unknown best friend. Once in the same dorm room, we discovered we had tons of things in common and became fast friends. Joining the same sorority helped as well.
Currently we were working through a couple of rum and Cokes while getting our pre-party on. Alice had just amped up my make-up and we were coordinating outfits. I mean, that's a little cheesy but whatever. We would look hot and that was all that mattered.
And believe me. It mattered.
Tonight was the Phi holiday party, and not just anyone was invited. Every brother was allowed to invite one girl, but it was all anonymous and a closely-held secret among the brothers. After the name of the girl was given in secret, a list was posted of the girls who had been invited so the brothers could review and make sure the list was acceptable. The invitations were hand delivered to each girl by the Phi pledges, and then it was up to the brother to reveal themselves or not. Of course, a few invites were totally obvious. For example, Jasper undoubtedly invited Alice. My invite, however, was still a mystery. Naturally, there were the usual suspects, but I really wasn't sure which one since there were about a hundred brothers total in the fraternity. By process of elimination, I could get the list down to a reasonable few, but the problem was that I had no interest in any of them. I was going only because it was one of the most exclusive parties of the year, and because Alice had convinced me.
And, of course, there was always the possibility of seeing him. There was no telling who he had invited, but I would make damn sure I put her to shame. There was no way he'd invited me—I wasn't blond.
I pulled out my newest acquisition from the closet. It was the epitome of a little black dress: sleeveless with a curve-hugging cut, a draped neckline and plunging draped back made from a silky, sinuous material. Opting for Alice's four inch, black Manolo's, diamond studs, a black wrap, I was done. Soft curls were already falling from the pile of hair on top of my head.
Alice was fierce as usual in a curve hugging mini dress with long sleeves and non-existent back. Knee high boots and her signature spiky hair topped off the look. She could have stepped out of a Vogue spread. Typical. For her that is.
"Bella, let me touch up your eyes and we can go make our grand entrance." Alice was on me in two seconds smoking up my eyes and dabbing gloss on my lips.
I grimaced as Alice messed with my face and told her, "I'm dying to find out who invited me. This is killing me." And it was. It was supposed to be a secret, but rarely was it still by this stage in the game. College boys aren't generally known to be the most discrete.
As we walked up to the fraternity house I saw the first miracle of Christmas. The normally disgustingly dirty Greek revival-style house had been freshly painted and a million white lights filled the trees, the walkway and surrounded windows, making it absolutely glow. Red ribbons adorned a huge wreath on the front door and a Christmas tree was visible just inside the house. I heard music thumping inside, and I grew excited despite myself.
With a cocked eyebrow raised at Alice I declared, "Let the reindeer games begin!"
Inside the house, the guys wasted no time. Our wraps were taken, and drinks deposited into our hands.
I took a quick look around the room, looking to see if anyone was particularly interested in my arrival. Whoever had asked me was in the house somewhere.
I told myself that was what I was doing, but in reality, I was looking for him.
Every party, it's the same thing. I search until I find him, we share a look, then he turns away in disgust, and I hate him a little bit more.
But, I needed him to see me. I needed that split-second look where he appreciated what he saw, just before he decided that I was nothing that he wanted.
I lived for it.
Tonight would be no different. Standing off to the side with the requisite blonde slut, the waves of cockiness would just be rolling off him. Never ebbing and flowing, just a constant wall of white hot heat that made me want to slap his face and prove he didn't affect me in the slightest.
Of course, that could have worked if I believed it.
I'd admit I was attracted to Edward. There wasn't a girl who wasn't, and since he was Alice's brother, we did tend to see each other around.
But he was an ass.
Which was partially why I played this game with him. We both seemed to feel the need to assert power over the other. Sometimes we did this by flirting or by ignoring each other, or making out with some random guy or girl in front of the other.
I wanted him to break first. No, I needed him to break first.
I downed my first drink and was ready for a refill. Heading towards the bar I was stopped from behind.
"What's a beautiful girl like you doing with no drink in her hand?" I felt the breath on my neck before I even realized words were being spoken.
"I was wondering the same thing. Why don't you remedy the situation my dear James?" I asked, while batting my lashes playfully.
"As the lady wishes," he said offering his arm. I took it and followed him to the bar and then onto the dance floor. I downed the amaretto sour before dancing with James and a group of my girls. Between songs, James brought over a refill and I made quick work of it as well. He took advantage of the slow song that came on, holding me tight. No doubt he had discovered what item of clothing I was not wearing. His arms felt good and the warm buzz in my head allowed me to enjoy it.
When the music ended, he got another refill and he asked if I wanted to sit down for awhile. It was loud and four inch heels can be tolerated for only so long, so I happily followed him down the hall to the TV room in the back.
"Bella," he started pulling me close to him on the love seat. "Did you find out who invited you tonight?"
"As a matter of fact, no. I have not. But, I have some suspicions," I said breathlessly, touching his chest and flirting with him.
"I have a secret," he said leaning in closer and closer and beginning to plant kisses on my neck and shoulder. "I wish it had been me."
I was surprised at the confession but couldn't voice it because his lips were on mine already. The kiss was a little too urgent but I returned it momentarily before pulling away.
It felt wrong. I liked James fine, but I didn't like him this way.
"No, James," I began but was cut off by another kiss. Pulling away was proving harder and harder as he pulled my head in and then …
Oh hell no.
James' hand had slid down my waist and moved to my ass.
"Get your hands off me!" I screamed and shoved him. He wasn't letting up and his hand was still firmly on my butt when a blur of motion had him across the room in a heap.
I was shocked when I looked up and found myself gazing into a pair of emerald green eyes.
Well, not a pair, the pair.
"Are you alright?" he asked, the words were more of a growl than a question and I was almost terrified to answer him.
I took a deep breath and shot back, "I'm fine, but what the hell are you doing, Edward? I think you knocked him out!" and I gestured to James who was drunkenly picking himself off the floor. He and Edward shared a look and James quickly walked out of the room.
Edward had an incredulous look on his face and he battered me with questions, "You're concerned about him? Are you insane? Do you have no sense of self-preservation?"
I shouted, "I can take care of myself thank you very much!"
I couldn't believe what an ass he was being. I knew Edward was an arrogant dick but this was unbelievable.
"Can't you just say thank you?" he asked spitefully at me. He sat down heavily, dropping his head in his hands.
He wanted a thank you?
I stood over Edward and leaned down, placing my hands on his knees, asserting dominance over his sulking frame. Staring straight into his eyes I pushed forward, giving him a clear view of my chest.
But instead of me controlling the situation, the strangest electrical sensation shot through my hands and arms and straight to my panties, the minute I touched his body.
This was not good.
"Thank you," I said through clenched teeth.
He said something to me in return but I wasn't listening. I was looking for an escape, to get away from him before I did something I regretted.
I gave him one last look and hauled ass out of the room.
I took one last look in the mirror, raking my fingers though my hair, before I walked downstairs where the party was in full swing.
The music was loud, some kind of retro Christmas stuff, since this was our big holiday party, the last one before the end of the year.
The party was different though, not open to everyone, but invitation only. Each brother could invite one girl of their choice, but the invites were anonymous so it was up to you to tell them if you wanted to.
I chose to use my coveted invite on a Phi Dream girl, one of those girls who had all the right assets, who would be desired by any guy in the house. Well, any guy but me. She was hot and added to the life of the party but definitely not my type.
I got a drink from the kitchen and wandered around talking to people, dancing with some girls and felt my eyes going towards the door every couple of minutes looking to see if she had arrived.
Of course, with perfect timing, my sister Alice and her roommate Bella showed up, making an entrance, unaware that every guy in the house was aware of their arrival. The DJ changed the music up, Luda or some lame shit. I glanced past Alice since I tried not to look at her too much at this type of thing. She always showed too much skin and made my over-protective brother vibe come out. I had ruined more than one party defending her. Now she was with Jasper and it was his issue to deal with.
My eyes slid to Bella and I noticed she was wearing a tight black dress that hugged her body like a glove and had a neckline that plunged farther than was appropriate. Wisps of hair framed her face, making it look like she had just gotten out of bed, which clearly she had not. Her long, thin arms were bare and I could almost feel a collective groan from all the guys as they made their way into the house.
Bella was gorgeous. She had a wide-eyed innocent thing going on but her body language told a different story. The one thing that was clear though was she did not want me. And I didn't really want her other than the fact she had become some kind of challenge for me. But she had to come to me.
Edward Cullen didn't chase skirts.
As they stood in the entranceway I noticed Bella was searching the house, looking for someone, and our eyes locked.
I broke contact first, smirking at her before I refocused my attention on the little blonde next to me who was trying to make an impression by rubbing her ass on my leg. I smiled at her and reached down, grabbing her hips and moved with her to the beat of the music.
Needing another drink I was walking towards the bar, passing through the TV room when I heard a familiar voice cry out, "Get your hands off me!" and I instinctively lunged at the guy, yanking him back and shoving him across the room.
Bella stood in front of me with a shocked look on her face, and I ran my fingers through my hair and groaned before asking, "Are you alright?
She glared at me before speaking, anger in her voice. "I'm fine, but what the hell are you doing, Edward? I think you knocked him out!"
I glanced over my shoulder, realizing it was James I had dragged off her body and not really caring. James was a douche, but it wasn't surprising Bella had picked him up first thing; she was an easy target for predators like him.
"You're concerned about him? Are you insane? Do you have no sense of self-preservation?" I spat at her. What the hell was her problem? Did I misinterpret the situation? I sat down on the couch, tired suddenly from all the drama and all the beer, wishing this flighty girl would get out of my face.
I watched her as her face scrunched up and turned red. She was furious, breathing heavy, and her hair was all messed up. It was kind of hot. She was definitely hot. "I can take care of myself," she told me indignantly.
I closed my eyes, blocking her out and sighed before saying, "Can't you just say thank you?"
I felt her hands on my knees and my eyes popped open, feeling a jolt of electricity run through my body at her touch. I forced myself to look into her dark brown eyes to see if she felt it too.
She was angry but I also caught a flash of something else in her eye.
Bella leaned in a little further, gripping my legs and instinctively my eyes fluttered down to her chest and damn, she was not wearing a bra. "Thank you," she finally conceded through clenched teeth.
"Whatever. Next time I won't help," I grunted back, once again forcing my eyes to meet hers. Then I watched, as she spun on her heel, leaving me alone in the darkened room.
"Alice, what are you doing? Do you really think we need all these supplies for the two of us? It's just six hours," I asked as I watched her fill a cooler full of snacks and drinks. Her iPod was loaded with a whole new playlist, and she had pillows and a blanket.
"Yeah, um, about that, Bella, it's not just you and I any longer. We have two more joining us…." she trailed off and I couldn't look at her.
I groaned because I knew exactly who was coming.
Alice took a deep breath before she launched into her defense, "Don't be like that! My Porsche needs a tune-up and Jasper needs a ride too, so, this really makes perfect sense. It will be fun!" She stopped to take a breath and I braced myself for the rest of her revelations. "The ride will give you and Edward a chance to get to know each other better anyway. You are my best friend and he is my brother. Plus, you're spending the whole Christmas break with us so you two need to get past your differences." And with that she returned to her packing efforts.
This was going to be a nightmare. Six hours trapped in a small car listening to the sounds of Alice and Jasper grope each other under a blanket while playing nice with Edward.
I wasn't sure if I could do it.
"Knock-knock. Let's get a move on, sexy ladies," Jasper's sing-song voice rang as he appeared in our doorway. I avoided looking at Edward who was waiting in the hallway. I'm sure the look on his face said it all, the same face I'd seen last night. His eyes were probably filled with hate and disgust.
Which was pretty unfortunate because he had gorgeous eyes.
Grabbing my bag, I made for the door. "See you at the car."
"Front seat, Bella! Jazz and I got the back," Alice exclaimed and I rolled my eyes and tried not to throw up at the thought.
"Can we just go already?" I heard Edward say from behind. I felt my knees buckle slightly at the sound of his voice.
Well, that was new.
I silently cursed my body for it traitorous reaction. Turning to meet his eyes, I granted myself the first look of the day. "Please – we should get going," I said, as my breath hitched and I looked away, irritated with myself. "It's going to be a long ride."
"No silly! It will be fun," Alice prophesized and finally she crawled in. Jazz followed.
As we found our spots in the car, I reasoned that it was natural for me to react to Edward in this fashion. He was totally hot. He had a killer body and the most gorgeous green eyes. Not to mention the most unbelievably fuckable head of bed hair I'd ever seen.
But he was an ass. And I didn't date asses.
Once on the road, everyone settled into easy conversation. Everyone except Edward that was, and he managed to look as pissed off as usual.
Eventually, Alice and Jasper put their heads together and shared a set of ear buds, speaking softly to one another in the back seat, leaving Edward and I essentially alone.
I stared out the window for a while replaying last night's events in my mind. He had come to my rescue, hating every second of it, and yet, a simple touch to his body vibrated through me in unexplained electricity.
Breaking the silence I heard Edward say, "Why don't you turn on some music?"
"What did you have in mind?" I forced out with as little bite as possible.
"My iPod is right there, why don't you just scroll through and pick something."
At first glance, his taste in music didn't totally suck and I quickly settled on one he would not expect from me.
"Debussy," he said in a skeptical tone.
"Claire de Lune is one of my favorites." I said truthfully, but with a hint of smugness in my voice.
"Funny, I had you pegged as a Ludicrous fan," he said with the most comically, confused look upon his face. It made me surge with equal parts and anger and amusement.
"Really? What else do you have me pegged as?" No mistaking the bite this time.
"Ahhh…well, cheesy… pop, Top 40. Something you can grind too," he said laughing.
I felt the blood rush to my face. He was such a condescending dickhead. "Look, Edward, we are going to be in a car for the next six hours, I don't think we have the space to dance," I said internally high-fiving myself. "Why don't you just come out and say what you think. I can almost guarantee you have me 'pegged' all wrong. Let's hear it."
He arched an eyebrow at me and shot me a cocky, smug grin before announcing, "I have an idea. I'll tell you what I think of you if you tell me what you think of me. I'm sure you have me all figured out."
I found myself grinning at Edward, intrigued by the game he wanted to play. I found the button on the side of the seat and shifted it into recline. I wanted to get comfortable for this.
I glanced in the rear view mirror at Alice and Jasper who were asleep in the back seat of my Volvo. Their arms and legs were intertwined and they looked so peaceful.
If only some of their calm could spread towards the front of the car. Bella was sitting next to me and although we were talking, things were still tense.
I snuck a sideways glace at her while she looked in the overhead mirror. I fought the urge to roll my eyes as she brushed on more lip gloss. Bella was the kind of fresh meat guys in my fraternity were always looking for. If she hadn't been Alice's friend, and frankly so completely obnoxious, I would have sealed that deal months ago.
She surprised me when she didn't make fun of me for having Debussy on my iPod and then actually selected it to play.
I was surprised because I didn't think we had anything in common. Other than beer bongs and random hook ups.
Then she asked me tell her my honest impression of her. I wasn't comfortable with this at all. I hardly knew her and what I thought of her was shallow and unflattering. We had five hours ahead of us and I didn't want to make us both more miserable. So I turned it into a game, a challenge of sorts so I could find out what she thought about me as well.
She had settled back in her seat and was looking at me expectantly. So I cleared my throat and started, "Let's see, you're obviously pretty, all the guys in my house like you. But you try to hard. Like that shirt." I said eyeing her chest where she had on a tight t-shirt, with a photo of Santa Clause on the front and the words, 'Dear Santa, Define Naughty.'
I didn't wait to see her response and turned my eyes back to the road.
I heard her take a deep breath and she stated, "Well, Edward, I could say the same to you. You appear to have a sense of style and Daddy will buy you anything you want but for some reason you choose to drive around in the kind of car my mother dreams about."
She did not just insult my car.
My hands were gripping the steering wheel as I shot back, "Well, my taste in cars is better than your taste in men."
She glared at me before speaking, "You know nothing about the kind of men I like. I admit things just got out of hand last night with James." She stopped for a moment and rolled her eyes before continuing, "Like you're one to talk. I see you every weekend with a different bottled blond grinding on your jock."
I felt my jaw drop so I snapped it shut. I stole a look at her and she was sitting in the passenger seat, her face red and her arms wrapped under her breasts pushing Santa forward. Her eyes were tight but instead of anger I noticed a glimmer of excitement swirling around the dark brown pools.
I decided to turn this around, "Fine. Since I clearly don't know anything about you, tell me then, what kind of men do you like?"
I wasn't sure if she was going to answer but suddenly I really wanted to know. I'd never had a problem attracting girls. In fact, I had more options than most, but clearly Bella wasn't attracted to me in the least and I wondered why.
"Seriously?" she asked, not looking convinced.
"Yes. Okay, another deal. You tell me five things you want in a boyfriend and I will give you five back," I blurted out.
She looked at with narrowed eyes and said, "One. No cheaters. Ever.
I smirked to myself. This was a good rule.
"Two. Smarts. I'm not marrying some dumb guy. He needs to know his way around a book or two."
"Three. Compassion, honesty and a good sense of humor," she continued and I noticed she was gazing out the window, turned away from me.
I rolled my eyes towards the window but I encouraged her by saying, "four?"
Still looking away she said, "Tall, athletic, eyes that can look into your soul, a breath-taking smile, and great hair."
I noticed a pink tint travel up her face while my hand was absent mindedly raking through my disheveled hair. I quickly dropped it, grimacing at myself.
She looked my way and gave me a wicked grin, "And five, and if he could play an instrument, it would be the cream-cheese icing on the cake."
"An instrument?" I asked confused.
"Yeah, it's hot. Don't ask me why," she said, clearly ending the discussion.
She shifted in her seat, pulling her legs up and focused all her attention on me.
"So Edward," she teased, "I showed you mine…"
I took a deep breath and said, "Trust."
She held up one finger and gestured for me to continue.
"Second. Independence. I like a girl who doesn't need a guy to make her complete," I explained, looking at the road.
Bella finally replied, "I get that. Go on."
"I agree with you. Smart. Intelligent. I want someone I can talk to." I felt like I was rambling, and yet at the same time exposing myself in a definitely dangerous way.
She smirked at me this time, nodding in agreement.
"Fourth. I need someone who gets along with my family." I waved towards the back seat, "As you know, we are very close."
Before I could say my next one she jumped in, "So what about looks. What do you look for physically. Other than blonde and ummm…well endowed," she said.
I gave her a hard look. She was being such a hypocrite. She thought I was judgmental about her but she had me pegged all wrong as well.
"I'm not going to lie and say I don't like beautiful women but, who's to say what is or isn't beautiful? It's not always about looks but about the connection, you know?" I told her honestly.
I noticed her eyes widened a little. I had a feeling I might be surprising her some as well since she looked a little stunned.
Apparently she was satisfied and I watched her settled down in her seat, propping her feet up and took out a magazine to read.
I took a deep breath and made one final announcement "And, you're wrong." I told her, flashing my flirtiest grin, "I prefer brunettes."
For some reason, probably the sex hair alone, I couldn't stop thinking about Edward. Or maybe it was his eyes or his grin? Maybe the jaw line?
Yes. The jaw line. I wanted to take it in my hands and feel the sharp edges.
And that is precisely why I had to shake this feeling. I needed to get on top of the situation.
Finding the strength to resist Edward was going to require coffee.
Alice's parents insisted I stay with them when they found out I would not be flying to Phoenix. And this morning I woke up to a note attached to my forehead from Alice telling me Edward would take me around town for any last minute shopping.
Merry freaking Christmas.
Since arriving in Forks, and the Cullen home, I hadn't seen much of Edward. He was likely busying himself with finding some Christmas-vacation-ass to chase.
Good for him.
I heard music in the kitchen and the familiar sound of the toaster pop. I froze just outside the doorway and peeked in.
He was there standing at the island, toast in hand, reading the paper and singing…shirtless.
Watching him, I pondered how one got to be a piece of toast in Edward Cullen's mouth.
He must have come straight downstairs, right out of the shower, only bothering to put his flannel pajama pants back on. He stood over the paper swaying slowly to rhythm, immersed in his morning routine. That glorious hair was still wet and even dripping a little.
I leaned against the wall and found myself thinking about running my hands through it and ringing the extra water out. Unfortunately, I also noticed the droplets of water that were trailing down his bare chest and abs.
I watched as they ran down his body, thinking about how he really needed a towel.
Or my tongue.
I easily could see myself running it from the low drawstring, across that glorious V of muscle, up the rippling abs, only to meet a single droplet as it crossed his hard nipple.
Then, I could take my time tasting his skin. Sucking, licking, biting….
I slapped a hand over my eyes, trying to make myself stop.
I had to get a grip. If I didn't Edward would own me and the pair of red Christmas panties I had on.
There was no way in hell I could go in that kitchen and leave with my dignity intact. He could not do this to me.
Quietly and quickly, I turned and bolted back up the stairs to get in the shower, sacrificing my coffee, but resolving not to succumb to his strengths or my weaknesses.
I was standing in front of my closet trying to decide what to wear.
I knew I was acting a little like a girl but I couldn't let her look better than me, even if we were just going shopping. I knew this was childish and egotistical but that was how I rolled.
Last night as I lay in my bed, I kept thinking about Bella being down the hall in the guest room. I'd seen her in the hallway, walking from the bathroom in her boy shorts and tank top, and it took all my strength not to work my Cullen charm on her right then.
Instead I laid there thinking about her, driving myself crazy.
I still refused to approach her but I had no problem at all with her coming to me. So I was going to do everything I could to get her to make a move. Somehow Alice had left me the job of driving Bella around for some last minute gifts. I didn't completely mind helping her out, I just didn't really want to spend all that time with Bella and her attitude.
Finally I settled jeans and a gray v-neck sweater, with a t-shirt underneath. I ran my hands though my hair, not even attempting to tame it, and walked downstairs.
Moments later Bella came down the same stairs and met me by the front door.
Damn. She looked better than me.
"So where do you need to go?" I asked her, as I held the door open for her, determined to play nice.
Bella walked out on the porch and down the front steps and said, "Well, I need to get your mother a gift. I really appreciate her letting me come for the holidays since I couldn't afford to go see my mom in Arizona. Any suggestions?"
"Yes. I have the perfect idea." And we both got into the car and I sped off.
Thirty minutes later I pulled into the parking lot behind an old house that was now converted into a book store.
As we climbed the steps together, I felt Bella lose her balance and slip. Instinctively, I lunged towards her.
"Fuck!" She muttered as she realized she was in my arms and not on the cold, wet pavement.
Blushing she added, "Nice save. I may need you around all the time. You know that happens a lot, don't you?" She stepped away from me, creating distance between our bodies.
Which was too bad because she was warm and soft, and felt nice under my hands.
"Anytime," I told her cramming my hands in my pockets so I wouldn't reach out to touch her again.
We got inside and began walking the stacks. I watched as Bella ran her finger down the spines, touching each book slowly, as she made her way to the back of the store.
This was when I didn't know what to do. Was she flirting with me? Was she just a tease by nature? I couldn't figure this girl out.
"Edward, what kind of book do you think your mom would like?" She turned around and asked me.
I looked at her, and was momentarily entranced in by her big brown eyes and perfect red lips, before replying, "She likes to garden and cook. She also really loves design and restoration. Esme is very talented."
A piece of dark hair fell in her face and before I could stop myself I had reached out and pushed it back over her ear.
She shivered slightly as my fingers grazed her ear and I gave her a slow, lopsided grin, before walking off towards the Home and Garden section of the store hoping she would just follow me.
Score one for me.
I was having an effect on her. I knew it now. I saw that shiver and the red tint creep up her face. It was only a matter of time before I had her where I wanted her.
I watched Edward walk to the back of the bookstore. His long legs sauntering away. He was so tall. Like a tree.
I wanted to climb him.
I knew I was in trouble. He'd felt the betrayal my body revealed when his fingers fluttered by my ears.
And that fucking grin; it should be registered as a deadly weapon.
I knew that every minute that passed I was slowly becoming more and more seduced by Edward Cullen and his Casanova charms. But this game was not over. Not by a long shot.
And I was up to bat.
I followed Edward to the back of the store and in the process took off my jacket, draping it over a couch in a nearby sitting area.
He was thumbing through a book filled with bright flowers and settled in on the couch, not paying me any attention at all.
Well, not yet anyway.
I began combing through the books, reaching up high to grab some that had potential but also taking my time.
Making sure Edward had a chance to see the sliver of skin that was revealed when I stretched up.
Or the top of my thong when I bent over.
I felt his eyes on me.
I didn't have to look to know they were roaming over every inch of my body.
So I stood there, leafing through books, taunting him the best that I could, when I finally heard him get up.
I glanced over my shoulder to see what he was doing but he was gone. Striding this time, down the aisle and out the front door, the little chimes announcing to all he had left the building.
I smirked to myself knowing I had made a little crack.
Even if it was small, it was there.
I had had little direct contact with Bella since our shopping excursion several days before. Alice and Esme planned a huge holiday party on Christmas Eve every year and we all had to help out. I had spent the last 3 days at their disposal, running errands, stringing lights, or whatever else those two had in mind.
The party was tonight so Alice was running around the house like a pixie on crack, bossing everyone around and generally getting on my nerves.
I saw Alice head out the front door to go supervise Jasper while he hung wreaths on the front windows of the house and I took this golden opportunity to take a break.
Who was I kidding.
I was hiding.
From my tiny Nazi Christmas elf sister.
I stole down the hallway, off the den into Carlisle's study. There was a small lamp on but otherwise the room was quiet and calm.
As I started to close the door I felt it push back open, into my back.
"Shit Alice, I was just looking for the…." I reached, trying to come up with an excuse for not setting out the 435 million votive candles she had assigned me to place around the house.
"Shhhh….I'm not Alice. And keep your voice down or she's going to catch us," whispered Bella as she pushed me into the room and shut the door.
I turned to face her and smiled. She was hiding too.
She grimaced at me, "Stop smiling at me. I saw you sneak away and figured I would go too." She sighed and plopped onto the leather couch, before continuing, "Is it always like this? I guess I shouldn't be surprised but gah, it is totally overwhelming.
I sat down next to her and said, "Yeah, it's always just like this. No one comes in here for the party so I thought I may be safe from her decorating madness for a moment."
Bella snorted, "Good luck. She is totally going to find us and then we'll be screwed." She stretched her legs out on the couch and pushed her feet against my legs. "I really just need to take a nap, move over."
I looked down at her feet, and raised an eyebrow at her, irritated, as usual, at her demanding attitude and said, "You wish. I'm not moving. I was in here first."
"Come on, move over.." she teased and continuing to stretch. This time, she pushed her tits out in an effort to stretch her arms.
I laughed at her feeble attempt at flirting.
I grabbed her ankles and pulled her towards me, sliding her back down the seat, while she twisted her body, fighting against me.
She squealed, laughing hysterically, "Stop, you ape!" and she began shoving my chest with her hands.
I lifted up and sat on her feet while grabbing her wrists and pinning them down. We were both breathing heavy from laughing and wrestling on the couch. I couldn't help but look at her flushed skin and full lips and wonder what it would be like to have her under me like this in other ways.
We were still at a stand off when Alice threw open the door and eyed us suspiciously, "What are you two doing?"
I dropped Bella's wrists and scooted back, freeing her legs and I felt her pull herself to an upright position.
"Isn't this a cozy little scene," Alice taunted.
I shrugged my shoulders at her and explained, "We were just taking a little break." I noticed Bella nodding her head from the other side of the couch.
Alice rolled her eyes at us, but I could tell we weren't off the hook yet.
"I am willing to call this a break if you two can own up to one thing for me...," said Alice looking very much like a cat with a stomach full of canary.
I waited, wondering where she was taking this, when she dramatically pointed up to the ceiling and laughed, "Mistletoe, my lovely elves. Look up."
Bella and I both looked towards the ceiling and sure enough we are directly under a sprig of mistletoe. My mother must have placed it there, to catch my father. Was she sixteen?
I looked at Alice, and back to Bella was blushing three shades of crimson and finally said, "I'm game if you are, Bella."
"I...I...," she began and I thought she was going to come up with an excuse not to kiss me.
Then, setting her shoulders and turning her head toward me, she did three things.
First, I saw her lick her lips.
Second, she reached up for my face and pulled me to her.
Then she kissed me.
Our lips crashed for a moment with jolt of heat that seemed to sear us together. We began moving slowly together, and I felt my hands reach around to her back, pulling her closer to me.
Expecting her to withdrawal, she surprised me and did the opposite.
I stifled a groan as our lips and tongues teased and licked.
And for a moment I forgot my name.
I forgot what day of the week it was.
I forgot what color of socks I had on and lyrics to my favorite song.
I forgot everything but her.
Until she pulled away from me, blushing and slowly rubbing her tongue over her lips.
I looked over at Alice who was standing there with a dumbstruck look on her face, eyes darting between the two of us.
She began rambling, clearly at a loss for what to say. "Okay, well, ummmmm….I need you in the kitchen, Bella," she paused, still searching for words, and you, Edward, you can go find Jasper and help him with, ummmm…whatever."
And she shooed us out the door.
It had been hours and I was still flushed from that kiss.
I had spent the rest of the day in the kitchen doing my best to pretend it hadn't happened and hiding from Edward.
I was expected downstairs since the party was about to start but I was taking my time and waiting until the last minute so I could continue to avoid him.
One last glance in the mirror and I knew this night was going to be trouble for me. I had on my tight red leather Christmas pants and a sequined top. I knew I looked hot since this outfit had given me great results before. I just wasn't sure what I wanted to happen.
I made my way down the stairs and was relieved to find the room filled with people and the party starting up. Esme immediately found me and spent the early part of the evening making sure I had met all of the Cullen's friends. I traveled around the room smiling and shaking hands, talking about school and Alice.
Escaping for a second, I found a waiter and grabbed a drink off of a passing tray. Hiding behind the Christmas tree I spotted Edward on the other side of the room, near a huge piano. He was leaning on it and talking to some guests, smiling and laughing.
He was gorgeous.
I tipped my drink back and went to look for another. The night was young and I was going to need liquid courage to get though it.
I saw Esme and ducked again behind some people but noticed she was not coming towards me but over to Edward. He leaned down to let her speak in his ear and he nodded and gave her a sweet smile.
I watched as he walked behind the piano and sat on the bench. He settled in for a moment and began playing. I had no idea Edward played.
I felt my heart drop when the first notes floated across the room.
Claire de Lune.
It was mesmerizing.
I felt my feet moving under me pulling me from my hiding place towards the music. I couldn't pull my eyes away from him. His movements were so fluid and calm. He looked like a totally different person behind the piano.
The confidence was there but he was not cocky nor was there a trance of the arrogance that normally filled his eyes.
I was watching as he moved with the music and several pieces of his ridiculous hair fell into his eyes. It was all I could to do to not reach out and brush it back.
At that moment Edward looked up and locked eyes with mine and I felt the room evaporate around me.
So I stood, in the middle of the room, party goers mingling around me, gazing into Edwards eyes for a countless period of time.
Until he stopped.
And I watched him as he rose and strode across the room grabbing my hand and weaving me through the crowd towards the stairs, pulling me with him as he took them two at a time.
At the landing he stopped and pressed me to the wall. I pushed my toes up to meet his face and he bent down towards me.
His fingers brushed my hair over my shoulder and he leaned his forehead into mine, his deep breaths matched my own.
"Bella, you're driving me crazy," he whispered near my cheek.
I turned my face up and grazed his jaw with my lips.
I'd wanted to do that for months.
He groaned and placed light kisses down my throat, stopping only to suck on the piece of collar bone revealed by my shirt.
His arms snaked around me and he lifted me up, eye level.
"I don't know what you're doing to me, but I can't resist you any longer." And he kissed me gently on the lips.
"Then don't," I breathed.
Still holding me up he carried me down the hall and walked into his room. The room was dark and his hands were full of me so he kicked the door closed with his foot and walked me over to his bed.
I waited for him to put me down.
Spread me out.
Crawl on top of me.
But he didn't.
He just stood there holding me in his arms, teetering over the bed, face to face, furrowing his brow and not looking very….happy.
He sighed but didn't put me down and let out another deep groan, "I'm not sure what to do. I mean I like you. A lot. But if I throw you on that bed, and rip off those fucking sexy as hell leather pants, you and I both know we are going to have a problem in the morning."
He dropped his head down and his bushy hair was in my eyes and tickling my face. I grasped his chin and pushed his face upward and said, "Edward. I like you too but the reasons aren't just because I want to fuck you senseless. I want you because you make me laugh, and you love your family, and every time I touch you I feel weak inside. And every so often you let your guard down and I can see you for the sweet guy you really are."
His lips curved into that stupid, glorious, seductive grin.
"You think I'm sweet?" he teased.
I leaned forward and licked his lips. I nodded and confirmed, "definitely sweet."
He looked like he may have a stroke for a second but he shook it off.
"Well, I like the fact you love my sister, and you challenge me by not taking any of my shit. And the fact you do surprise me. You were right. I didn't know anything about you," he confessed.
"Put me on the bed Edward," I directed.
His eyes never leaving mine he gently placed me on the edge of the bed. I scooted back and motioned for him to join me.
He crawled onto the bed and sat next to me.
"Do you know when I saw you for the first time?" he asked me grabbing my hand, which I happily gave him because I wanted to feel his skin next to mine.
I shrugged and answered, "I don't know, Rush week? In our dorm room?"
He brought my hand up to his lips and kissed it gently, sucking for a second. This simple gesture sent a chill down my spine.
"No. I saw you during Orientation. Before school started, in the summer. I saw you walking around campus, with a pack of other freshmen. But you stood out. You were confident and had a look of excitement in your eyes. I knew right then you were going to be trouble for me," he laughed as he said this.
I felt my mouth spreading into a grin.
He took a deep breath and continued, "Then you were paired up with Alice and it was a blessing and a curse. I mean, I had the perfect opportunity to get to know you but it complicated things. I didn't want to interfere with your friendship. So I backed off. Completely. And it drove me wild seeing you around campus and at parties with other guys."
I was more than a little shocked by this confession and I found him more attractive than ever.
It was making more sense.
The aloofness, the waves of hostility at parties when I was with other guys and the whole James situation.
It wasn't because he hated me.
It was because he liked me.
I got up on my knees and pushed him back, on the pillows. Straddling my legs over him I sat down on his body so I could look at his face.
I felt his hands settle on my hips and I had to resist the urge to press my body into his.
I leaned over brushed his hair back kissing his forehead and making my way down to his mouth.
I sucked his lower lip into mine and pulled, our mouths working slowly, yet with a building intensity.
I pressed my hands on his chest and this time, ground my pelvis into his, causing him to jerk and moan under me.
"Bella, are you sure this is what you want to do?" his voice rough.
"Edward, I have wanted to do this to you since the first time I laid eyes on you." I laughed.
He cocked an eyebrow and I pressed my fingers on his chest, skimming over the buttons that ran down the front.
I started unbuttoning them, one by one, before continuing, "I walked in on you and Alice in our dorm. She was crying about something and you were hugging her. Your love for her was so real and at that moment your guard was down and I was stunned by your beauty and your grace."
I looked into his eyes so he knew I was being sincere and I could see a slight blush running up his cheeks.
I rolled my eyes. "Of course, I walked in the room and you were a total ass, as ususal. Until this week, I thought I'd imagined it."
I noticed a slight smirk on his face as I finished with the buttons and pushed his shirt to the sides feeling the warmth of his chest on my hands.
I had seen him before in the kitchen without his shirt on but I wasn't sure what to do now that I was touching him.
"What?" I asked, cocking my head to the side.
He shrugged but the grin stayed.
I ran my long, manicured nails down his chest, making him shiver. I could feel him becoming hard under me, straining through his thin pants.
"Tell me," I demanded.
But he shook his head and reached out for me to pull me down into another kiss.
I lunged back, out of his reach and got off the bed. The smirk slid off his face as he scrambled up.
"Where are you going?" he sounded slightly panicked.
I looked at him with narrow eyes, "You said you liked independent women. Well, tell me what you are thinking or I'm out of here." And I started walking towards the door.
"Shit. No. Come on." And he grabbed out for my hand and spun me around.
He kissed me hard.
And I could do nothing but kiss him back.
I had her on the bed.
And I couldn't keep that stupid grin off my face.
Because, well, I'd wanted her for so long and now I had her.
So of course I did something to blow it.
I ran after her and spun her around pulling her to me and kissed her, no waffling.
And thank God, she kissed me back.
"Bella," I said, my mouth covering hers. "I was thinking how fucking hot you look in those leather pants."
I put my hands on her waist and tugged them down and she wiggled her feet out of them.
She pushed my shirt over my shoulders and fumbled with my belt and pants.
I was panting by the time she was done.
"And I was thinking I really wonder what color bra you are wearing," and I lifted her shirt over her head, causing her hair to fall over her shoulders.
It was red.
I reached in and rubbed the soft fabric, feeling her nipples constrict under my touch.
I dropped to my knees to further my inspection.
She was wearing the same thong she had taunted me with days before at the book store.
I had dreamed about that thong.
I clutched her hips and placed kisses on her hips. I felt her legs quiver and I tightened my grip on her waist.
"I was also thinking of all the things I wanted to do to you, on my bed, the one you just ran away from." And I steered her towards the bed letting her knees hit the edge before they buckled and she fell back.
I leaned over her and moved her hair over her shoulders, and ran my fingers down her neck and her chest.
She slid back on the bed and leaned on the headboard but before she could get there I grabbed her ankles and pulled her back towards me.
Bella watched as I climbed up her body with my hands.
I kissed her feet and her legs and up her thighs.
I had my hands on the strings of her panties and was about to yank them down when I saw it.
Across the front, in glitter.
All I Want For Christmas Is You
I heard her laugh and I looked up from my position to see her beautiful face filled with a huge grin.
"It's true you know." She told me and I closed the gap between us and dove into her mouth, kissing and biting and licking my way inside.
I growled in her ear, "You may be the best Christmas present I've ever gotten" I found my hands on the clasp of her bra, releasing her breasts, which I immediately covered with my hands.
I heard Bella's soft voice moan and I couldn't take it any longer.
Before I could do anything though, Bella had wiggled her way out from under me and was now hovering above me.
She smirked down at me and said, "Oh I don't think I 'may' be the best Christmas present," she laughed her voice thick, "I am the best present you will ever get."
And with that she ducked her head and I felt her tongue on the tip of my dick.
Her tongue traced down the sides and finally her lips surrounded me while she used her hands to stroke my balls.
I squirmed under her, barely able to take the sensation fearing I may come right then. Too soon and too fast.
My hips bucked forward and I reached for her hair and pulled her up on top of me.
I wanted to be in her.
Understanding, she spread her legs wide and sat on top of my engorged, stiff dick and slid down slowly.
I watched her over me, hair splayed around her shoulders, waving down her glorious tits, I realized in that moment that Bella was a Goddess.
I felt her shift under me and we both thrust forward, pushing in, meeting in the middle, fighting to find a rhythm
My thumb found her clit and I rubbed in circles, increasing the pressure as she rocked me harder.
I could feel her quick breaths on my face as she leaned forward and clutched my chest. Her breasts were bouncing in front of me and I realized I didn't have enough hands.
I wanted to touch all of her.
I needed to touch all of her.
And just then I heard her gasp, and moan and breathe my name and when my name came off the lips of the elusive Bella Swan I completely lost control.
I grabbed her still quivering hips and flipped us over. I repositioned and found myself pounding into her, fisting the blankets by her head.
One final thrust and I poured myself into her and collapsed on top of her limp body.
I laid there as long as I could, knowing I was squashing her little body under mine but wanting to feel her breaths as they slowed.
I rolled off her and laid flat on my back, sweating and hazy from the sex.
I heard her shift next to me and she rested her chin on my chest. I grabbed a fist of her hair and she said, "That was the best Christmas present I have ever gotten too."
We both burst into laughter and I pulled her up to kiss her.
I felt the blanket pull out from under me cold air fill the space where her body was as she started to get out of bed.
I reached for her and caught her leg, panicked.
"No way." I said, dragging her back in the bed, pulling the blanket over both of us.
She gave me a questioning face and started, "Edward, the party…"
I put my finger under her chin and looked her in the eye, "No. It took me forever to get you in my bed, there is no way I'm letting you out now. They'll get over it."
She relented and I wrapped my arms around her chest, spooning her from behind.
She giggled, "But if Alice comes in here looking for us, you'll have to explain."
I thought for a minute, burying my nose in the back of her neck and said, "No problem. I'll just tell her I'm busy unwrapping my Christmas gift right now. She can come back when I'm finished."
Sunday evening the air was light and cold. The wind was whipping around the car as we made our way back to school. The seating arrangement was just the same with Edward and I up front, while Alice and Jasper manned the back. The mood in the car was decidedly different from the last trip however. While the two lovebirds cuddled in the back, Edward rubbed circles and laid kisses on my hand.
"Hello, earth to Bella," he teased me out of my daydream. "What's on your mind, beautiful?"
"You," I responded with a wide smile. "And how I never expected this trip to end like it has. It's been a very nice surprise."
"Well, even though I didn't have much faith it would happen, I did hope," he said with that crooked grin I'd made him promise to use only on me now. "I actually had hoped to make an impression on you the night of the Phi Christmas party. But I never got a chance."
"What do you mean?" I asked baffled, remembering the awful fight we'd had about James.
"I never got the chance to tell you...I invited you, Bella. It was always you," he said stroking my cheek.
My heart swelled and soared. I closed the little distance between us, leaning over the gear shift.
Planting little kisses and across his cheek and neck I whispered back, "Yes, it was always you."