so. this just happened. completely unbeta'd or preread.

chapter title:

With a Girl Like You by Dave Sitek

chapter songs:

Ten Thousand Words by The Avett Brothers
My Heart by Paramore
Just Say Yes by The Cure

After finishing the French toast and downing the last of the orange juice, I stumbled back to Bella's bed, intent on sleeping just a bit more. Enough to get rid of the headache and overall sick feeling still lingering in my stomach, but not so long that I was still around when Bella got back. I figured that screamed a little too loudly of desperation. And holy shit, what would happen if Jacob got back before Bella to find II was in their bed? No doubt I could kick his ass, even on my worst of days, but it wasn't something I even wanted to worry about at the moment.

But Bella's scent, so concentrated on her pillows and sheets, was comforting. I buried my nose - as best I could while still allowing me to breathe - in the cotton bedding and stopped thinking altogether. I drifted off, smiling as I thought about how we'd shared the same bed last night.

I woke with a start, not knowing what had managed to disturb my sleep. When I sat up and looked around, I spotted Bella, guilty look on her face, with an armful of clothes.

"Sorry," she said quietly. "I didn't mean to wake you."

"Hey," I paused when I heard how hoarse my voice was. I didn't think I'd been out that long. Coughing a bit to clear it, I sat up and tried rubbing the sleep out of my eyes. "What are you doing back already?"

"Uh, Edward, it's four o'clock."

That couldn't be right. No, really. That could not be right. No way I slept for a solid eight hours.

My face must have registered disbelief because Bella walked toward me, reaching out for the small alarm clock on her bedside table. "You must've been really tired." She picked up the clock and held it out to me so I could see. Sure enough it read 4:06.

"Shit," I groaned while resisting to sink back under the covers of Bella's bed. Even with all that sleep I still felt exhausted. "I didn't mean to sleep so long. I didn't want to still be here when you came home.

Bella's face fell. "Oh."

It took me a minute to realize how that must've came across. "Oh hell, Bella, I didn't mean it like that."

"Like what."

"Like, I wanted to sneak away. Like you were some kind of one night stand I didn't want to face in the morning."

Bella turned so I couldn't see her face. "Like the one night stand you snuck away from last night?"


"Or did you forget you told me about that." I didn't like the way Bella's voice had grown all hard and distant.

"It wasn't like that, Bella." It looked like she was about to interject, so I quickly continued. "That chick took advantage of me. No. Really." Even though I couldn't see her face I knew there was a look of disbelief there. "I was drunk and she came on to me. She's the one that kicked me out."

Bella made a small sound of dissent.

"Right after telling me she was engaged."


Oh. I hadn't meant to say that out loud. I didn't want to draw attention to that fact. Especially since Bella was engaged too. Even though I hadn't had sex with Bella - not from lack of trying - I had slept with her. And I'd do it again. In a heartbeat. To hell with Jacob.

But fuck, I didn't want to be that guy. Not for Bella. Even if Jacob deserved it.

Shit. Jacob.

"Where's Jacob?"

Bella must've been on the verge of speaking because I saw her clamp her mouth shut abruptly. "What?" she asked after a beat.

"I should get going."

I left the warm cocoon of Bella's bed and went in search of my shoes. They weren't in her room and I wondered if Bella had placed them out by her front door when she left this morning.

"But why?" Bella's voice sounded far too close behind me.

My eyes scanned the hallway, living room and the small, tiled entry way. There, nestled right next to Bella's Chucks, were my shoes. They looked good there; right where they belonged. It almost seemed wrong to pick them up, put them on, and walk away. But.

"Don't think Jacob would take kindly to coming home and finding another man in his bed."

I stooped down and grabbed my shoes, slowly slipping them on without bothering doing up the laces.

"Edward -"

"I really appreciate you letting me stay here last night."

"Edward -"

"And today too. I guess I really needed that sleep, huh?" I gave a wry chuckle.

"Edward -"

"Now I'll be out of your hair." My hand was on the door knob when I felt Bella's on my shoulder, stopping me.


"What, Bella?" I couldn't look at her, even though she was tugging at me, hoping I'd turn around.

"Do you not remember?"

That got me to turn around. Did I not remember...what? Something I said? Something she said?

"Jacob and I broke up."

Did she just say what I think she said? I needed to sit down. My knees weren't going to hold me. Oh god, was I going to faint?


I shook my head as I walked toward her couch. I needed a minute to process what she'd just said. Bella and Jacob. Not dating. I sat down, well more like sprawled all over the damn couch, and tipped my head back until I was staring at the ceiling.

"Are you going to say something?" Bella sounded nervous.


I wasn't very straight forward but she got the gist of what I was asking. "About a week ago."

A week? Jesus Christ, they'd been broken up for a week? And meanwhile I was slowly losing my mind thinking they were one step closer to marriage for absolutely no reason.


"I'm sorry?" Now she sounded confused.

My head tipped forward until I was looking straight at Bella, my Shortcake, sitting on the coffee table opposite me.

"I didn't mean to say that out loud."

"You have a bad habit of doing that."

Tell me about it. "What happened?"

Bella took a deep breath and looked away from me before answering. "We just kind of grew apart. I don't know. We haven't been getting along like we used to and things were so forced."

"I'm sorry." Not really.

"Don't be. It's for the best. I couldn't stay with him when my feelings have changed." There was no hiding the pretty pink flush that was spreading on her cheeks.

I wanted to ask just how they'd changed. And maybe if it had anything to do with me. But on the off chance it didn't, there was no way I was going to ask and feel humiliated when Bella told me so.

So what did I say?

"I bet you're looking forward to all the awesome rebound sex out there." God, if I could've gotten away with discretely smacking myself I would've done it.

There was a small choking sound, followed by Bella coughing violently. She was bright red and I was beginning to worry she wasn't able to breathe.

"You okay?"

"Oh my god," she gasped. Bella looked at me and I saw tears in her eyes even though she was smiling now. "The things you say."


Bella started laughing.

"Um," I scratched at the back of my head wondering what was so funny. "I guess not all rebound sex is good." This was getting uncomfortable, to be honest. Talking about Bella going out and having one night stands with someone other than me? No thanks.

"Handsome, I'm not interested in reboundsex."

No. No, I guessed Bella wasn't the type of girl who'd be down for that. "Right."

"Do you want to stay for dinner?"

That was some non sequitur. But I was grateful to get off the topic of Bella and sex.

"I'd love to but," I looked down at myself, "I'm not exactly, er, at my freshest right now."

She looked me over. Slowly. I didn't know what she saw at that moment but I hoped it was something good. I...really liked Bella. I wanted her to like me too. Even if I was a stinky, dirty, hungover (well not really anymore) man who'd had sex with some random slut the night before.

When I thought of it that way, I doubted she'd ever see anything worthwhile about me.

"Why don't you take a shower. I've got some of Jacob's old clothes you can borrow."

I didn't feel very comfortable in the loose sweatpants and t shirt Bella had pulled out for me. Of course, I hadn't felt comfortable since the moment I was alone in the bathroom. Bella's bathroom. This was where my Shortcake stripped off her clothes, stepped inside the hot, steamy shower and rubbed herself down with the soap that made her smell like strawberries.

It was far too easy imagining what Bella would look like; thick lather sliding down her creamy skin. I definitely didn't need help fantasizing about how I'd use my hands instead of a washcloth. They'd work her over from top to bottom, spending extra time on her sudsy breasts and between her legs until she was moaning against my bare chest.

There was no way I was going to jerk off in her shower, no matter how tempting it was to grab her strawberry body wash and wrap my hand around my cock. I wanted to, fuck but it would've felt good. But it seemed a little creepy. Besides, I wasn't too sure I could keep quiet and I didn't want Bella to hear me. Not like that.

So I had resolutely ignored my cock, despite the way it throbbed and jutted out away from my body and seemed to knock down every stray bottle that managed to get in its way. Problem was, I still had a problem and the sweats were doing nothing to hide it. How was I supposed to face Bella with a boner tenting my pants so obviously?

"You almost done in there?" I would be if I could only get myself off without feeling like a total sleaze. "Dinner's ready."

Sighing, I shifted my dick around and tucked it into the waistband of the sweatpants. It was fucking lucky Jacob liked big, baggy clothes because the shirt would at least be loose enough to somewhat hide the issue in my pants. That would have to do until I could escape home and take care of business.

Bella was standing in the kitchen when I finally managed to leave the bathroom. At some point during my shower, she must've slipped into her bedroom to change out of her scrubs. The thought of her naked on the other side of the door was enough to make me want to retreat to the bathroom.

Think unsexy thoughts, man.

"Hope you like stir fry." She smiled as she turned from the stove.

Bella was wearing a plain grey hoodie and blue pajama pants. Somehow she made it look sexy. It was mind boggling. No one had the right to look that good without even trying. Besides me, of course.

"Stir fry sounds excellent."

It was getting late. Bella looked exhausted sitting at her small kitchen table; as if at any moment she'd slump down, face in her dirty plate, and fall asleep. It was adorable, really. But I did feel bad. Because I was the reason she was so tired, wasn't i? I was the one that had stomped into her place late as hell last night and then kept her awake with my puking and rambling and shit. She'd had to work early. Instead of getting a nap like she deserved, she came home to find me still at her place and proceeded to make me dinner.

"You're kind of amazing, you know that Shortcake?"

Bella visibly startled out of the daze she'd been in. "Huh?"

"I thought you should know you're amazing."

My words must have come as some surprise because Bella sat there, speechless, with her mouth hanging open.

"I should get going." Bella looked like she was about to protest, which really fucking warmed my heart. But, "you're exhausted" I stood up and took my plate to the kitchen sink. "Do you want help with the rest?"

"No, you're right. I am tired. I'll just leave that until the morning."

"You sure?"

Bella nodded and stood up. Instead of clearing her own plate, she pulled me into a hug. She smelled wonderful. God, I thought i could probably be okay with staying like that, breathing her in. Only, I didn't want her to hear me, like, sniffing her. Creepy. I pulled away and smiled at her.

She didn't say anything but held onto my hand and led me to her door. I felt...something. I wasn't sure. It seemed like anticipation, like I was hoping for something. Expecting something. Which was ridiculous. But with Bella still touching me, I couldn't help it. There was definitely something there. Something. Some. Thing.

Christ, I was losing it.

"Will you be all right getting home?"

Oh right, I hadn't driven here, had I?

"I'll catch a cab. No problem."

We stood there, facing each other and I kept waiting. Waiting for that something that I couldn't shake off.

"So." I didn't want to leave yet. Just in case.


But Bella just kept standing there.

"I guess I'll see you later."

"Sure." Bella smiled, but it looked off. "Okay."


The door was opened then. There weren't any other excuses for me to linger. Fuck. I stepped out, just on the other side of her door, ready to walk away. But Bella was still holding my hand.

"The answer is yes," she said without preamble.


"The answer, in case you were wondering, is yes." Which didn't clarify things at all. "In case you were thinking about asking if I'd like to go out with you."

I opened my mouth to respond but nothing came out. I think I'm going into shock. Did I hear that right?

Bella let go of my hand to touch my cheek, very briefly. And then, seriously going into shock, her lips followed - just as brief - to press against the same spot.

"Goodnight, Handsome."

And just like that, she slowly shut the door, leaving me gaping in her hallway. I turned around and started to leave when my common sense kicked my ass for me.

What are you doing? Get the fuck back there and ask her out!"

I jogged back to her door, knocked, and when there wasn't an immediate answer, knocked louder. Pounded was a good word for what I was doing.

Bella opened the door. I opened my mouth. But still, no words.

"Was there something you wanted to ask me, Handsome?" She looked like she was hiding a smile. Probably taking pity on my poor, confused self.

"Yeah. Yes. I was wondering if you'd like to, uh," Christ it all sounded so juvenile in my head. Might as well drop her a note reading: Do you like me? Check yes or no.

"Mhm?" Now she was smiling outright.

"Would you like to go out to dinner?" Was that what people on dates did? I wasn't used to actually dating anyone anymore. Just taking girls out for the eventual night spent having sex. "Or...something?"

"Dinner sounds lovely."

In my head, angels were singing hallelujah.

"What day works best for you?"

Her gaze shifted up and the left, her lips quirking in thought. "How about Saturday evening?"

Saturday. I could do Saturday. I could do any day. "Sounds perfect."

"Great. Pick me up at seven?"

I nodded, in a trance. I was going to take Bella out. This Saturday. Me. Not Jacob. Hell yes. I was the fucking man. "See you then."

A part of me was hoping for another kiss, even a quick, chaste one. But Bella just continued to smile, saying a soft goodnight before closing the door again.

It wasn't until I was outside, waiting for a cab, that I realized she was expecting me to pick her up and take her out. In a car no doubt. And I still couldn't face driving.

Fucking fuck.

bob is to thank for this. thank you, bob.