Disclaimer: We own nothing. Stephenie Meyer owns the characters in this story. We are just bending them to our will and having some fun with them.
Summary: Bella and Edward were high school sweethearts. They separated for college, going off in different directions…both agreeing to see other people. Now they are thrown back together 5 years later…as neighbors. Both are happily married to other people…or are they really? Can these two former lovers resist temptation and each other? Probably not…and is Edward still the same Edward that Bella remembers? Probably not.
August 21, 2003
I squeezed his hand harder when I saw his brother, Emmett, put the last bag in the trunk. This was it. I looked behind me to see Charlie standing awkwardly with his arms crossed, his brow furrowed in a way showing that he was thinking hard about something.
Emmett walked up to me and gave me a huge bear hug as he said, "Guess this is it Bells."
I cringed at those words. I had never really wanted anyone to say them out loud.
"Ready for Purdue College in Indiana?" Emmett asked as he backed out of our hug and nudged my shoulder.
I swallowed and nodded slowly. I then took a look at the boy next to me. The beautiful, smart, funny boy next to me, Edward Anthony Cullen. His eyes looked hallowed out. They weren't the green color of reassurance that I was looking for.
It was if he was begging me not to go with those green orbs, but his mouth told me otherwise. When he spoke he said, "Go on Bella, call me when you get off the plane."
He pulled me into a hug and kissed my forehead. How was I going to do this without him?
It seemed like just yesterday that we had graduated from Forks High School and this summer had just come and gone way too fast.
I had gotten accepted into Purdue for business while Edward was going to attend UCLA to become a script writer. We had gotten everything we ever wanted, except for each other.
We were going to be on two separate sides of the U.S. So we decided that it would be better if we both saw each other people and just remained friends.
This was for the best, right?
We were friends before 9th grade. Then I decided I was madly in love with my best friend, the one who had always been there for me.
I sighed and pulled out of a hug that lingered a little too long. As I did this, I couldn't help but inhale his scent one last time. I was going to miss that…a lot.
We were doing the right thing, weren't we?
Then why did it feel wrong? I was going to miss him so much. He had been a constant in my life for so long. First crush, first kiss, first boyfriend, first love, first lover.
And oh God what a good lover he was!
I don't think any guy would ever be able to do the things to me that my Edward could. Would I ever feel this way about another ever?
Edward's voice shook me from my thoughts as he ran his fingertips across my cheekbone, smiled at me and said, "You stay safe. And be smart! I don't want you flunking out or getting raped."
I nodded and smiled back at him.
"Promise to call me all the time?" I asked. I needed that much. He nodded and hugged me again. Charlie cleared his throat so I walked over and hugged him goodbye.
He kissed my forehead and sighed, "Be good Bells, see you at Thanksgiving break."
I started to tear up. Stupid tears. I looked at Emmett, and he nodded towards the car.
I waved at them one last time before I walked around to the passenger side. But just before I got in, I looked at the two men I loved the most, in two completely different ways. A few tears escaped and I climbed in.
Emmett started the car and the tears were still coming as I reached to change the radio station. There was a knock on my window. I turned to see Edward standing there, motioning for me to roll it down.
Of course I did it…I could never deny him anything.
I rolled the window down and he leaned into the car. I burst into sobs. It was embarrassing listening to the noises that escaped my lips. But I couldn't help it and I really didn't have the energy to try.
I tried to focus on listening to his velvety voice, memorizing the sound of it as he spoke. "Don't cry Bella. I'll love you forever, in whatever way possible. Have fun in Indiana. Forks will be waiting for you."
He caressed my cheek and wiped the tears away as they fell.
Emmett's voice pulled us from our moment. "Sorry to interrupt, but Bella, you're going to miss your flight."
I sighed. Edward smiled a small smile that didn't reach his eyes. He leaned in further and we gave each other a semi-hug.
I rolled up the window and Emmett pulled away. I don't know why I did, but I turned around to watch Edward and Charlie through the car window.
Charlie was waving. Even from a distance I could tell that Charlie was smiling a smile that people smile when they are crying happy tears. Charlie wasn't one to show emotion, so that got to me. But then I saw Edward.
He was still standing in the middle of the road. He was staring blankly at the car as we drove away from them. Then he slowly waved, turned around, and started walking.
Emmett rubbed my shoulder as he said, "Bella." I looked at him as we drove off of my road. He continued, "It's all going to be okay."
I slightly smiled. My surrogate big brother always knew exactly what I needed to hear. And in that moment, those words were exactly the reassurance that I needed.
Finally, about an hour later I was getting ready to board the plane. I hugged Emmett goodbye and started bawling again. He squeezed me really tight and patted my back as he whispered in my ear, "Bye Bells, I love you."
I responded, "Love you too Em." And with that, I walked down the long walkway to get onto the plane.
I left Forks. I left my life, my Edward, my friends, and my dad, all to go college.
When I turned back to look at Emmett one last time, I just glanced at him. But if I had known that it would be 5 years before I would see him again, I would have looked at him much longer.
And if I had known that I wouldn't even speak to Edward for 3 years, I would have made him swear instead of promise to call me every single day for the rest of our lives.
September 16, 2008
I woke up to the sound of a truck loudly backing up and a hand on the small of my back. "Babe, I'm headed off to work. The new neighbors are here." Then I felt Mike's lips on my cheek and heard him leave our room and head out the front door to work.
I stood up and stretched, then walked over to the window. I pulled the curtains back and saw a moving truck pulled up in the driveway next door.
Poor people. That house must still smell like both cats and cat pee. Not to mention the leftover cat hair in the carpet. Poor Mrs. Carter couldn't afford the house so she had to move to a small apartment that wouldn't allow cats.
She tried to give them to Mike and me but I refused, telling her I was allergic. I used that excuse so I never had to go over to her house either, but she was a nice old lady. I guess.
Then I saw his face. I fell into shock and froze. I didn't know what to do. But one thing I knew for sure…I definitely had to meet the new neighbors.