i know i shouldn't be working on a new story but i decided that i was going to try using a first person narrator. i haven't forgotten about "in the enemy's terrain" and a new chapter for that should be up shortly. in the meantime, i wanted to post this story up. feedback would be awesome.

this is an all human story.

disclaimer- twilight, new moon, eclipse and breaking dawn belong to stephenie meyer and so do the characters

"So, have you sent in your application for Bloomington?" Renee asked me as she watched Alice pull the biscuits out of the oven. It was her way of telling me that she wasn't about to interrupt this line of conversation.

I took a bite out of my apple and chewed slowly before I answered, trying hard not to cringe. I'd already prepared for this question and there was no possible way I was going to ruin this. "Yes," I lied.

Alice shot me a disapproving glare but I ignored her. It would be a lot easier for me to lie if I didn't feel guilty about it.

Renee didn't seem to notice Alice's hesitance with the biscuits. Instead, she smiled at me. "It's about time. I'd thought that I would have never convinced you. When are you going to be notified?"

"By July eleventh," I answered in a quivering voice. I was rarely ever untruthful with Renee so I was undoubtedly a bad liar. If I was going to do this, I would do it right.

"Well," she started, "that's not so far off. Just hope for the best, Bella. I know I will be."

"Right," I answered with a roll of my eyes.

For someone like me to get into a school like Bloomington would be as difficult as blinking. Renee had made sure that the education I was getting would be the best of the best. In her family, it was a tradition for everyone to graduate from Bloomington and become successful lawyers. It was a tradition that I was going to break.

I was tired of not being able to make my own decisions, of having my mother direct the course of my life. My dad Charlie, watched sympathetically unable to stop her from being forceful. He understood but he could do nothing to help the situation.

When Renee found out I was returning to Forks after my undergrad years, she insisted that I move back in with her and Charlie. I had declined the moment the words were out of her mouth. Alternatively, I found a small apartment complex that wasn't too far from their home. Both of my parents were grateful for that.

I would break it to Renee later that I was going to go to Seattle for my graduate studies in the fall. She would have to believe me if I told her I hadn't been accepted in Indiana because a small voice in my mind that was getting louder with every passing second told me that Renee didn't think I was ever good enough, that I couldn't live up to our family's standards. I was starting to believe that voice.

Alice waved a hand in front of my face, breaking me out of my thoughts. "Bella, your mother's gone. I swear, she has this 'Bella and Alice' detector that prompts her to come over whenever I'm here. Could you please just tell her to back off for just one day? I haven't had a chance to hang out with you for so long. We should've caught up over two weeks ago!" She pulled off her oven mitts and stacked the biscuits into a small bin.

I ran a hand through my hair. "Calm down. You're being overly melodramatic."

Alice stomped her foot to prove my point. "Of course I am! How else am I supposed to react? I'm seeing my best friend for the first time in two years, you know."

"I'll see what I can do about the Renee situation," I answered. If I were being truthful with myself, there was only one thing that kept me sane in Forks and that was Alice.

"Thank you. Now, let's get going to rehearsal or we're going to be late." She grabbed her keys from the counter and followed me out.

Rehearsal. This was the part of my schedule that I'd dreaded for the last two months. Every following day was more impossibly worse than the last.

I wondered why on earth I had even decided to try out for the role in the play since I knew for a fact that I hated being the center of attention. Maybe it had something to do with Rosalie and Alice and Tanya all being able to show returning war hero, Edward Cullen, why they were perfect for him. I probably just jumped on the bandwagon. Why I thought that would be a good idea in the first place, I didn't know.

I was now regretting my decision. Why should I even care about welcoming Edward Cullen home anyway? I'd never even met him.

Alice grumbled as I drove us to the newly built opera house in my Chevy truck. I suppressed a grin at her facial expression.

The town hadn't changed too much since I had left. It was still cold, wet and sunless. Even now, the police station had only one jail cell. I speculated for the thousandth time as to why I decided to return. Just chancing a look at Alice and all my friends told me that it was worth it.

I parked out in front and Alice raced out, anything to get away from the truck's boisterous engine. In the entryway, Rosalie stood, idly chatting with the play's star, Tanya Callaway. When they saw me they waved but it was Lauren and Jessica, two people I hadn't noticed, who walked over.

"Hey, Bella," Jessica greeted in a patronizing tone. "How have you been? Spending the whole time practicing and memorizing your script while skipping out on the last rehearsal?"

"Bet you were off in La Push hanging out with that Jacob kid and his girlfriend," Lauren's irritating voice suggested. "I swear, sometimes I think you do this on purpose just to make us go crazy."

I bit my lip to keep from saying something I would regret. It wasn't a surprise that they were acting like this. Everyone in this whole town knew how much they hated me. I had grown accustomed to this since high school.

Refusing to look at the smirks on their faces, I answered. "Actually, I had a doctor's appointment with Carlisle and then I went to see Jacob and Ness."

My words shut their mouths. They knew that I was one of the few people in town who was on a first name basis with Dr. Cullen and his wife. That was an insult to them since I'd probably be a member of the select few who got the first chance to meet Edward Cullen directly. It was a blow to their egos and that thought still made me feel indifferent.

Behind them, Alice and Tanya were laughing silently. The smirk on Rosalie's face grew more pronounced. Ignoring the two bumbling women I now felt disinterested in talking with, I made my way over to them.

"That was hilarious," Tanya exclaimed. "You really put them in their place."

"Thanks," I murmured, looking away from her perfect face.

Tanya somehow always brought out the bashful girl in me. Maybe it was because I wanted so much to be like her or maybe I felt lucky that she insisted we were even in the same league. Either way, I realized I could never exude flawlessness the way she did. If any woman caught Edward Cullen's attention, it would be her no doubt.

We'd met during our senior year of high school when she was the new student and the object of everyone's attention. I had hated that year.

All the insecurities a teenage girl would have had piled up in front of me. Rosalie would vent whenever she saw Emmett, a friend she'd had feelings for since we were kids, staring at her. The same went for every other girl in the school. And I was frustrated with all of them for their reasoning to come to me. They thought that since I never dated and hadn't exactly caught any guy's attention, I didn't have much insecurities at all. I took that to mean that I wasn't going to be any competition what with my focus on my education and all.

Tanya though, didn't notice anyone ogling her or glowering at her. She didn't realize that she was every woman's nightmare and every man's fantasy. Instead, on her first day she came and sat next to me at lunch. I'd expected her to be egotistical but what I had seen in her that day amazed me. We became fast friends after that but never very close friends due to Rosalie who softened somewhat after noticing Emmett no longer cared for Tanya.

"So, last practice we ran through scene five of act three which didn't have you as part of it. But today, it's going to be all about you," Rosalie stated, her demeanor businesslike, breaking me away from my reverie.

I felt the blood drain from my face and my palms began to sweat. I wanted to be sick or wish that I was in the future so that Wednesday night would be over with. I was going to humiliate myself just like with every other practice we'd had.

Alice could sense my unease. "Come on, Bella. No one's going to laugh at you. And anyway, if it makes you feel better, we might even shorten your scene."

I gave her a pointed glance. The play was in two days. How was it even possible that she could change my part? I scoffed at her attempt to placate me. "Nice try."

She shrugged. "At least I gave it my best shot."

Forcing a short laugh, I looked over her shoulder to see Emmett waving me over. He stood with his giant hand holding the front door open while Jasper peered at Emmett, looking confused as to why he was being so enthusiastic. When his eyes followed over to where Emmett's eyes were gleaming, they slid right past me and on to Alice. I looked away.

I could hardly see Emmett's face, it was so bright. The sun was rare which was why I hadn't bothered buying sunglasses but today was a different case. Shielding my eyes with a hand, I walked up the steps and Emmett patted me on the back.

"Bella, you had me so worried when you didn't show up on Friday! I thought you were dead or something even worse happened to you!" Jasper's attempt at a joke earned him a flick on the head from Alice, his girlfriend. He was the perfect southern gentleman who believed that an actor should get into character before getting up on stage.

When he'd first talked to me that way, I was speechless. Later, Alice told me that his character in the "theatrical production" was similar to Emmett's personality.

"I missed only one rehearsal," I answered dryly.

"I know." His tone made it seem like it was the most obvious thing in the world. "That's why I thought you were dead. You never miss a rehearsal."

I shrugged. "There's a first time for everything."

"Yeah, well, if you all don't get yourself changed and on stage in the next four minutes, you're all going to have to stay and clean up everything on Wednesday. I bet that's going to be a first," Katie, the assistant director, barked. "Especially you, McCarty. I've had enough."

Emmett, standing in a corner with Rosalie, just shook her words off as if her threat didn't mean anything to him. I looked at him in wonder and wished that I could be a more assertive girl. At least I didn't break when I'd lied to Renee earlier today.

I could hear his whole conversation with Rose. I rolled my eyes at the fact that even after ten years he was still oblivious to her feelings.

He held up his license along with hers and compared them. I saw his eyebrows furrowing in concentration. Angela was standing between them, biting her lip to keep from laughing.

"You know, Emmett. I'm almost a year older than you," Rosalie stated. "There's only a three month difference."

Her words piqued my interest so I whirled my head around and gave the three of them my full attention.

"Yeah," Emmett agreed, brows still creased. "You definitely look it. You're so much bigger than me."

I couldn't hold it in any longer. I laughed as quietly as I could without seeming offensive. Rosalie could still hear me though and shot me daggers. This was another reason why I'd chosen Forks to spend my summer.

Angela did a better job at hiding her amusement. She tilted her face and walked away. Under her breath she muttered, "You never ever say that to a woman."

Wow. That must've been a definite blow to Rosalie's ego.

Before going to the dressing rooms to transform into Eva Smith, I heard Rosalie yell, "Don't talk to me" to Emmett's bemused form.

"Rose, I meant honorable when I said bigger!" His answer was bleak and unconvincing.

Time was sluggish as I awaited the arrival of departure from this foreboding place. Tanya mesmerized the whole team as usual which put Rosalie into an even fouler mood. I was surprised that she wasn't a drama major in high school. Versatility came to her naturally.

Today's rehearsal wasn't so bad, I admitted to myself as I walked over to my rain soaked car. I actually earned a few applauses.

I didn't fall off the stage which was a distinct sign that the rest of my day wouldn't be as ghastly either. Rosalie's day however, was a different story altogether.

Before leaving the building, Jasper told me he'd take Alice home with him, no longer acting his aggravating part. As they were leaving in his car, I saw Alice send me a wink and I couldn't help but groan. Her smile brought me back to reality. There would be no reading books in my bed tonight.

Esme would be disappointed in me if I left her nephew in the airport overnight at Port Angeles. After all, it was my only responsibility other than playing my part as Eva impeccably on Wednesday evening-which seemed like quite a huge task to me-for this giant event. I couldn't let Esme or Carlisle down.

Glancing at the clock on my dashboard, I let out a sigh of relief. I still had three hours until his plane landed which was enough time for me to drive at forty five miles per hour to the airport. Plugging my iPod headphones into my ears and turning up the volume fully to overlap the sound of the Chevy, I headed out of the parking lot.

The closer I got to arriving at the airport, the nervous I became. I knew there was going to be some way I would make a fool of myself with Edward Cullen as a witness.

Only in a town as small as Forks would people welcome a soldier home with a play. I couldn't imagine why he would decide to enjoy his time in the US in a desolate town. Everyone was bustling around to make their homes perfect for him, to make the town as striking as it could possibly be. It didn't take much to get everyone riled up. I assumed it was because nothing exciting ever happened here before.

It wasn't until I reached the airport that I realized I had no way of knowing who Edward Cullen actually was. Esme hadn't ever shown me a photo of him claiming that she didn't want reminders of such a young man fighting in a war.

Renee told me we never met before but my friends had plenty of Edward stories to tell me. Listening to those tales made me feel confused. From one person, I heard of his friendly personality. From another, I heard he was an immature kid who had an anger management problem.

I lifted one shoulder and let it drop. There was only one way to find out. I would figure out how to find him once I got inside. Giving one last glance to the clock and pulling the key out of the ignition and jumped out of the truck and was about to walk away when something in the truck bed caught my eye.

It was a "Welcome back, Edward" poster decorated with an elegant style probably by Alice. I mentally thanked her for being one step ahead of me.

The airport was dry when I stepped foot inside. I saw several people holding up posters trying to catch the attention of the people tugging in their luggage. Instead of waving the giant cardboard frantically, I held it up and tried to see which one of the passengers would remotely look like a Cullen.

I knew without a doubt that he would be a handsome man what with him being Carlisle and Esme's nephew and all.

All of the faces walking toward us were a blur except for one. He had soft bronze hair that lay haphazardly against his head as if he had been running his fingers through them numerous times. His eyes were a piercing green as they watched closely for their own poster. If I looked attentively enough, I could see a hint of exasperation there. His face was smooth with prominent cheekbones. His gaze rested on me and I watched incredulously as his mouth quirked up into a smirk. If Rosalie or Alice were standing here, they would have called him a Greek god.

With my eyes wide, I watched as he walked over to me. Realizing that I must've looked like an idiot to him, I changed my expression and smiled. He was only a few feet facing me when his smirk morphed into a full blown smile. I had to look away.

"Edward Cullen?" I asked. At least my voice didn't sound the way I was feeling.

His smile became softer. He blinked once and nodded. I couldn't help but notice the way his long lashes brushed against his cheeks when he closed his eyes.

Of course, since this first meeting wasn't off to a bad start, I had to find some way to ruin it.

So I unthinkingly decided to make a joke. "Where's the rest of your luggage?" I asked, eyeing the miniscule carryon he was holding.

His shifting mood was instant. I watched as his face hardened and he became stock still. He narrowed his eyes and his glare was condescending. "I was at war, not on vacation."

Those were the first words Edward Cullen ever said to me.

I was too mortified to appreciate the melodious tenor of his voice. Way to go, Bella. Fantastic start.

let me know what you think. reviews make my day. and happy mother's day to all the mothers out in the world