AN: So yes, this chapter is sort of a different feeling from the past ones but I was in a different mood and I really, really, really (yes three really worthy) wanted to try a little bit more conversation. I love quipping back and forth sometimes.
Thanks for the reviews they are addictive like chocolate milk which I'm going to go find because now that I mentioned it I'm starving for it. Run on sentences, how I adore and overuse thee.
Snapshots in Reverse
"I don't understand why Alice forced us into this," Bella whispers. She doesn't waste time with 'good morning' or even 'hi;' no Bella goes straight to the point.
I'm sitting by the window, across the room from her, have been for over an hour. The window's fixings are pulled back an inch so there is just enough light for me to pick up the curves that make up Bella. "Alice likes to gamble." Bella's body shifts under the tan sheet, her face hidden under, hair escaping wherever it sees fit.
"So why are we here," she prods.
I laugh anxiously, "I like to gamble as well." I refuse to explain any further so to bypass her questions I push through another avenue, "Are you going to get up or do I have to get in there with you?"
"Come in here with me," she says and I can hear a smile behind the request.
"You don't want to enjoy the city?"
"It's Las Vegas, there's nothing I want to enjoy here. Well," she persists, "Nothing here to enjoy that I couldn't enjoy anywhere."
"Anywhere," I snort already deciding to play hard ball with her. I start buttoning the boring white dress shirt instead of following Bella's hormonal decisions. Her eyes peak up from under the sheet, she looks dazed, still tired, but she's watching me with earnest eyes.
"Don't." Her tone implies that I've upset her but I want to be selfish, just this once; just this whole day, actually. "Please come back to bed."
"Why not? You don't want to be near me?" I chuckle because we both know the answer.
"Can't you humor me; just this once?" I throw the curtains back; hearing her scrambling to ensconce herself back within the holds of the sheet.
"I'm drowning in these possibly dirty hotel sheets and you won't even come in with me to further sully them," she whimsically announces from her prison.
"No, I won't," I scratch my chin as I watch her shape contort around, she's uncomfortable without me in there with her, it does something to my ego to realize this. It was enlightening to watch her for that hour previously, watch as she slowly deteriorated by herself.
How her arms looked for some warmth that wasn't there, how her body seemed devoid of emotion, the frown that formed on her lips.
Her body basically turned ridged when I fled to stare at her like I was some perverted stalker. And like a stalker I got satisfaction preying on her weakness.
Her face usually cuddled against my chest but without me there she'd found herself pulling back from the harsh breeze of reality. That was the worst part; when her contented face had turned to stone and then altogether disappeared.
"And they probably aren't dirty anyway." I laugh as she again pops up from her veil. Her hair looks incredibly tangled while her eyes scold me, glare at me, and tell me to drop the asshole guise I've decided on.
Her mouth pulls into a pout, the most convincing pout anyone, ever, has seen. It smashes into me with the colossal force of a tsunami. I brace myself on my morals, on my beliefs, on anything that can keep me from giving in.
"Give me some credit," my words sweep past me sounding controlled and flippant; two things that I'm not, at least not when it comes to Bella.
"You have loads of credit, why won't you spend some on me," she's kidding and egging me on. Regardless of how much I want to give in I refuse to let her play her games with me.
"No," simple and direct.
Her eyebrows pull down, I've wounded her.
"Because you have better things to do," I know she wants this to sound sarcastic but it doesn't, she's deflated by my denial and it therefore comes out sounding serious. I don't have better things to do, not exactly. I just have my plans; that's all. Bella's capricious and I'm, well I'm, the kind of man who carries a planner with me at all times.
"Don't you dare look sad," I warn her. Bella doesn't look surprised at my loaded words but I am. I'm not used to being so assertive, it's not that Bella has me whipped, no, I would never say that. In fact I'm usually the one deciding what we do, where we go, but that's only because she's fairly passive. Whenever- or usually whenever- she asks for something I give it to her. I give in to her. I love giving in to her.
She turns my words in her head, I see them pricking through her nerves and when she comes up with a response her lips have twisted into a smirk, "Look, I just want you; don't you want me?"
And she knows she has me there, of course she does. "Yes I want you."
"Then why aren't you with me?"
"I'm here, with you," I point out.
"No you're over there, looking adorable in formal black slacks and a crisp white shirt, all the buttons done up but two," her eyebrows scrunch as she relays my attire back to me, "It looks like you're dressed up for a wedding."
I shrug just as casually as if she told me I had a splotch of blue paint on the old shirt I use when I work under the car.
"Is something important happening today?" she asks and she blushes like she's scared she's forgotten something basic, something she should remember.
"Nothing planned," I tell her and that's a complete, huge, lie because of course I have something planned.
"But I'm cramping your style," she laughs, throwing off the sheet so that I get to see what I missed in refusing her. She's not naked, no, thank God, she's wearing a light blue cotton bra and matching panties but that's enough to stump me.
I stop to fantasize about what I've passed on. Surely I have the time…
But no, no, I remind myself letting the quick foray pass before realigning my goals. What I've planned is more important.
Bella slips on a blue gauzy dress before working on detangling her hair. She walks as if on a cloud and I wonder if when she learns of my scheme the cloud will become cerebral and she'll slip through.
"What do you have planned?" she asks, just like that; just like she can hear my monologue with myself.
"Everything you come to Vegas for."
"This sounds like a bad cliché decision," she laughs.