Author's note: I am attempting a crazy thing: writing a Twilight fan fiction having never read the books or seen the movie. Yar, call me silly. I'd appreciate your letting me know it you are intrigued and want to read more; I have the story in outline, but only have the first four or five chapters written; there's no point in pushing forward if you aren't gonna read! So review with your thoughts, and I'd appreciate your telling me what you especially enjoy about Edward. Your ideas will help me focus. And who knows: maybe you can convince me to read the real thing!
Looking back—isn't hindsight always 20/20?—I had seen her on campus.
I rarely notice women. They always notice me, and it makes me smile. An uncomfortable smile, to be sure. But since the piano is my companion, I walk around with music as a constant partner and there isn't much room for anything else; I even forget to eat.
But that's exactly why I noticed her: she walked like music. It was so subtle, yet completely obvious. Her strides were long for a small woman (well, small to me; I'm over six feet), her legs moving like a pendulum—perfect rhythm. Her hips had minimal, but delicious, sway. Her mahogany hair bounced just after the beat of her booted feet, and her hands swung easily at her side. Unlike most students, she wasn't carrying an armload of folders and books. I briefly wondered what color her eyes were…
I didn't have time to contemplate my attraction; it was a momentary thing, as the composition I'd been struggling with flooded back into my brain. The working title was "Waiting to Be Whole"—I know, pathetic—and I had come up with the initial theme when I was out running on a misty day just like this one. The snippet of music haunted me now. It was melancholy, yearning, sweet, and incomplete. It wouldn't leave me alone, but when I sat to the keyboard, nothing I tried fit. Just that one small bit, continuously overriding my thoughts. It was maddening.
Those few notes were swirling around my head as I walked into the lecture hall, climbing the steps three at a time—long legs, right?—to my usual seat close to the top. Up here, I could "play" the flip-up desk without bothering too many other students. I shook my eternal bed head like a dog, ridding myself of the ever-present drizzle. As I pulled out a notebook and pen, I heard a sigh. Or a hiss. Or maybe it was just the scrape of papers around me. I wasn't exactly paying attention.
I should pay more attention. This was a class I picked on purpose. I figured "Selling Yourself as an Artist" was useful to someone wanting a career as a composer. I knew movies, TV shows, and the web needed original compositions; also, I thought I wouldn't know the first thing about selling myself. And I sure as fuck didn't want to live in Forks forever.
I liked my family, but I had been dependent on them for too long; I was ready to make my own way. My adopted father was a respected doctor at the big hospital outside of Forks. He had always treated me with kindness and care, and we were close. In many ways, we were more like friends than family, and I was grateful for that connection, having lost my birth parents when I was little.
My dad and his wife had divorced when I was in middle school. I didn't know her as well, but she was a lovely woman and had always welcomed me into her life. I had always felt her daughter, Alice, and her son, Emmett, were my true siblings—they knew me better than anyone, and they never let me get away with anything, telling me when I fucked up, loving me no matter what, and supporting my crazy wish to be a composer.
Delightful Alice, a sort of demented fairy princess, had fallen in love with my best friend, Jasper, when we were in high school, and he was completely smitten with her: I so hoped I would one day find that kind of love. And hilarious Emmett, outgoing and easy with everyone, also had already discovered the love of his life when Rose had moved to Forks all the way from New York in our junior year of high school. Emmett was all done with college now, and he owned his own car repair and detailing outfit in the next town over. He and Rose were expecting what I felt sure was the first of many children. I was excited about having a nephew, and my head was full of snippets of lullabies.
Alice and I would graduate next year, and my money was on her marrying Jasper before we even finished school. I wanted to compose something spectacular for their wedding. I had to confess: I sometimes wished for a partner like my siblings had found, but none of the women who offered me phone numbers and dinners felt like my muse.
I shook myself to bring my mind into focus; we were only two classes into the semester, and I was already vegging out to the drone of the professor's voice—a pleasant enough baritone; maybe he sang in his church choir? I took off my glasses, wiping off the incessant Washington mist with my shirt. My finger pads softly tapped the desk and my head swirled with possibilities for a new piece, as I tried to ignore "Waiting," intruding in that persistent way it had. Knowing I should be paying attention, I nevertheless gave in to the notes crowding my brain. I was only vaguely aware of a woman sitting just a few seats over. What actually got my attention was how completely still she was. Eerie. Creepily still, like the dead. Only, if the dead could… wait. Just as I raised my head to look at her, she turned and met my eyes. Every note of music flew from my head, and I was momentarily disoriented by the silence. Her gaze flowed through my eyes and into my brain, cool water splashing my overworked synapses, before her eyes flicked down to my mouth. She inhaled with a gasp, and her dazzling teeth snagged on her plump bottom lip. I was riveted, and suddenly very, very hot. Just as I grabbed the neck of my sweater and yanked it off over my head, flapping it on the desk, she… groaned? And before my eyes could find her face again, she was gone.
In her place, the lightest scent of flowers lingered. I spent the rest of the class staring at the space where she had been sitting, my brain burning for a change with something besides music: the vision of her deep brown eyes. Well, they weren't exactly brown, more the dark black-red of the inside of cherries from Mount Rainier, or the peppery pinot noir my dad liked. I'd never seen burgundy eyes before, but then, I didn't notice much about the way people looked. Her eyes were cold… warm? Deep, but like a volcano crater, waiting to erupt, and I was lost to the memory until I realized people all around me were gathering their stuff and leaving.
I couldn't remember the last time I'd gone an hour without music in my head. Feeling a little dizzy, I shrugged into my sweater and left.