A/N: For Momma Hen and London Spam. (You thought I forgot, didn't you?) Hope it lives up to your expectation.
Thanks to Gustariana for the Spanish help, and to Jen for her suggestions and editing.
Stare at the phone when it rings, wait to see if anyone else picks it up, sigh and then pick up the phone when no one else does, listen to the incompetent caller's complaint, fix it, log it, and repeat.
This was my life, it seemed.
Fifteen to twenty hours a week, that is what I did.
And how tedious it was.
The only upside was the free access to the connected computers that me and the other guys down in the dungeon took advantage of. Someone had easily hacked around the campus network protocols so we could log onto and install whatever we wanted.
Our "supervisor" didn't mind as long as we answered the phones and occasionally let him in on the games.
Right now I was playing Magic: The Gathering Online with Eric and kicking his ass. He only had two life points left and I was sittin' pretty on ten.
"How does it feel, Eric?" I taunted him, after hearing him sigh at the computer station next to mine.
"How does what feel?" he said bitingly.
"How does it feel to know I'm going to win?"
I grinned when all he did was scowl and go back to looking at his screen, most likely strategizing on how to take me down. I knew he couldn't win with the cards he had left so I was smug in my victory.
The phone rang again and I silently willed someone else to answer it. My prayer was answered when the blinking light and the ringing ceased.
I went back to editing my post on the advantages of open source versus corporate software, which someone had screwed up some time last night on Wikipedia, and reread it to make sure everything was correct once more.
With a satisfied smile, I clicked 'Submit' and leaned back in my chair, flipping over to the MTGO screen to see if Eric had played a card yet.
The phone rang again and I knew I couldn't get out of another call, so I did my job and picked up the phone.
"Hola! Mi computadora no responde y no se como desbloquearla," a female voice said so fast that all I heard was gibberish.
"Um, ma'am? I can't speak Spanish," I interrupted. "Can you hold on while I find someone who can?"
She said something that I assumed was consent, and I put her on hold.
"Pepe!" I yelled, tilting my head up to find that guy.
"What?" was the reply. Pepe popped up from one of the desks down and over one row.
"This caller's speaking Spanish. You're Puerto Rican, you talk to her."
"I'm not Puerto Rican," Pepe corrected. "I'm Dominican. Why do you always get it wrong?"
"Whatever, man. Close enough. Just take the call," I demanded. He huffed and sat back down while I transferred the call over to his station.
My cellphone buzzed next to the keyboard as I replaced the phone in its cradle. Glancing at the screen, I saw Bella had sent me a text message. Reading it, I broke out into a huge grin, and signaled to Eric that I was going on break. He nodded while continuing to look at his computer's screen and waved me away.
Racing up the stairs because the elevator took too long, I headed toward our "spot", which we had claimed as the place we would always meet should we end up working during the same time. Glancing around covertly while humming my spy theme song, which comprised mostly of music from Mission: Impossible, I slipped into the janitor's closet and closed the door.
I turned around and was met with a blur of a person, who sprang at me with a squeal of delight. Relishing her enthusiasm, because I felt the same way, I fell back against the door, holding Bella to me as she grabbed my face and started kissing me like it had been days since we last saw each other, rather than a couple hours.
My hands slid down to her butt, hoisting her up against me before I was able to stop myself and she moaned into my mouth. I turned us around and pressed her back against the door, crushing my body to hers. After more much needed energetic kissing, we pulled apart, panting.
"I missed you," Bella said breathlessly.
"I missed you too," I replied with a brilliant smile. It never ceased to amaze me that Bella could feel the same way I did about her.
We crashed into each other again and expressed just how much we'd missed the other with our actions. Because words only got you so far.
Eventually our fevered tempo slowed and became gentler. I knew I needed to stop soon because the combination of being next to her in a closed-off room with this much sexual tension humming through my body could only lead to certain failure to comply with the restrictions I'd placed on myself.
I had let Bella set the limits and I knew I would pushing them soon, so I broke away, caressing Bella's cheekbones with the pads of my thumbs. She smiled sweetly, and I noticed her lips were red, a clear indication to what we'd just been doing. I'm sure I looked no better since Bella had a habit of pulling my hair every other minute.
Not that I minded.
I rather enjoyed her pulling my hair.
I leaned in for a quick kiss and then smiled. "Feel better?"
"Yes," she answered, biting her lip. "You're too tempting for your own good."
I barked in laughter and shook my head. "I think you have it backwards."
Bella tensed and twisted around toward the door, which made me tense as well. I dropped my hands, confused to what she was doing, until I heard the distinct sound of muffled footsteps on the carpeted hallway outside. This was a fairly isolated hallway, which was why it was perfect for our rendez-vous. Therefore, muffled footsteps equaled trouble.
Bella turned back to me, a question forming on her bruised mouth, but it was too late. I knew what she was going to ask and the answer rushed at me immediately.
I'd forgotten to lock the door.
My mind raced to figure out how to get us out of this situation.
The doorknob twisted.
I spun around and reached for whatever was on the shelf above my head just as the door started opening.
"Was this what you wanted?" I asked loudly, looking behind my shoulder to Bella and willing her to play along.
Her eyes lost their 'deer in the headlights' look when she caught on. "Yep. Three of those, please."
I handed her three legal pads, because that was what I had grabbed, and we both turned at the sound of a throat clearing.
Mike was framed in the doorway, a bewildered look on his face as he took in our appearances.
"Edward. Bella. What's going on here?" he asked sternly, his eyes flashing.
"Hey, Mike. Edward was just helping me get some supplies I couldn't reach," Bella lied.
"Well," I interjected before Mike could say anything. "Guess I'd better get back. My break's almost over."
"Okay. Thanks, Edward," Bella said, continuing our ruse.
"No problem, Bella." I brushed past Mike and stepped out into the hall. Bella followed me while Mike stood in the doorway like he couldn't figure out what had just happened.
Hopefully he'd get distracted by something shiny soon.
I went back to the dungeon after a parting glance from Bella, trying to smooth my hair down along the way. I stopped by Pepe's desk and asked, "What did that caller want?"
He looked up and his eyes widened when he saw me. I guess I looked worse than I had thought.
"The Spanish speaking one?" he clarified.
"It was nothing. Just a pebcak error."
"Oh," I replied with a knowing smile. "Thanks for taking it."
"No es nada," Pepe said.
I had no idea what that meant, but it didn't sound threatening so I nodded and went back to my station. Sitting down, I glanced over at Eric, who was staring at me with the biggest shit-eating grin I'd seen in a while.
"What?" I sighed.
How did he know?
I gave him a confused look and he rolled his eyes.
"Please. You only come back from break looking like a vacuum had a go at your hair on the days when you get a text," he explained. "I'm not a moron."
I smirked, feeling really manly and prideful at the fact that I had a girl like Bella, but I wasn't one to kiss and tell, so I looked at my computer's screen. "I don't know what you're talking about."
"Yeah… sure you don't," he retorted sarcastically. After a short pause, he added, "By the way, I won."
"What?!" I switched over to my MTGO screen and immediately assessed the situation. "You cheater!" I shouted as Eric laughed and shot out of his chair, running away from me. I leapt up after him and we circled the room a couple times, the other guys cheering us on.
Just another day in the dungeon…
A/N: Refs/Defs –
Magic: The Gathering Online (MTGO) – Before Pokemon and that other card game that's similar to Pokemon but somehow looks dumber, there was Magic: The Gathering. I don't know anything about it except what I picked up from skimming its Wikipedia article. (Sidenote: I love Wikipedia.)
Spanish Translations – 1) Hola! Mi computadora no responde y no se como desbloquearla = Hi! My computer is not responding and I don't know how to unblock it. (close enough, anyway); 2) No es nada = It's nothing.
Pebcak error – 'Problem exists between chair and keyboard' error. All credit for that one goes to Momma Hen because she had to explain it to me.