I GOT A NEW LAPTOP, EVERYONE! I'm so excited right now; it's like a material high. She's huge and beautiful and I've been having problems with getting into writing sense I got it yesterday. I wrote this chapter on paper so it is quite long, compared to some others. However, the beginning of this chapter has been lost of my old laptop with is now totally MIA, so screw that shit, I'll try to remember what it was. For now, read my one-shot, Conversing with a Gay, a little blurb for gay appreciation.
I wrote it fast so it's not perfectly, but I'm kind of satisfied with it. And review it, lovelies.
Now, please REVIEW this chapter for this author's motivation. I have tons more to make up on, so please, do me, you, and every other reader/reviewer a favour and review this chapter.
I worked SO hard.
I closed my locker and clicked the lock in one fluid motion. Apparently that was too much of ease for me, because the second I heard the click, my books hit the floor with a clamp that echoed. Gah. Life sucks.
Jasper was still asleep in a hospital in Seattle. He hadn't woken from that coma yet. Over those month periods, we had a few scares of a low beating heart or some movement, but it all turned out to be nothing. A few times I really thought my dad would order the plug to be pulled on him, but it never happened either. Jasper still slept in the hospital bed. They swore he would wake up one day but I didn't try holding my breath. I mean, I did believe that there was a possibility he would one day wake up, but subconsciously, I just knew that with each day going by, the chances became slimmer and slimmer.
My pregnancy was progressing faster than I would have ever thought a pregnancy could go. It felt like just yesterday, I was looking down at the pregnancy test and wondering what the hell? But, still, I didn't know what I was going to do. Years ago, this was never how I would have imagined what I would feel like or that I would be in a school setting too.
I guess this is what happens with teen pregnancy.
I reached down to grab my books and as I started to stand, two steel-toed boots stepped into my view. "You know, I really wish you would stop bending like this," Edward said slowly, grabbing the top of my arm to help straighten me.
"Well, I wasn't about to kick them to class," I muttered, shifting the books so they rested more comfortably on my hip and watching Edward. He hardly became fazed now a-days by my behaviour. "I'm late," I finally sighed, brushing past him.
He caught my arm before I got that far. "Bella, what's wrong?"
Taking a deep breath and tapping my foot impatiently, I squeezed my eyes shut. All I wanted was to get this day done with and get out of here; but before I could do that, I needed to get to class. "Edward. It's just pregnancy. It's just one of those things, okay? In four months…" I trailed off, because I really didn't know what it would be like in four months. "Edward, I hate this."
He gave me a weary look. "What are you talking about?"
I gestured to my face, my breasts, my stomach, to Edward and the locker-clad hallway. "This. Damn, I hate everything right now." His face was moulded in confusion and sadness, but I couldn't bring myself to care because he had no idea what I was going through. "I'm a bitch!" I whisper-yelled to myself, clenching my shaky hands. "I've turned into a whiny little bitch, and I know it has nothing to do with hormones. I'm lost, Edward. I have nothing to do these days, I'm getting laughed at and teased, Gym class is a hell-brought course, and I don't feel like myself."
This did not please him.
"Damn it, five months along and now you decide to confess this?" he demanded, stepping forward and towering over me. "We are months from bringing a baby into this world and now you tell me this!" His long fingers raked through his hair, tugging and pulling in anger.
"No don't do this," I told him, pointing a finger at him. "I'm going through a life-changing even right now and I am so scared, so…worried, and even insecure. No, I'm very insecure!" I corrected quickly. "I'm not eve myself anymore."
I had no more to add and it seemed he had nothing to rebut on.
Should I stay or go? My absent days and lates were building by the breath. I couldn't keep hanging around. I shifted my books against my side, which were pressing against my baby uncomfortably, and started around his frozen body.
His arm swung out to stop me before I could get far.
"Look, I know the changes you are going through," he said gruffly, not looking at me. The anger was evident. "Physical, mental, emotional, but if you have…concerns we can speak about them at a later date."
"Don't sound so formal," I muttered, gently pushing his hand away.
"Once we get home we'll talk and sort everything out. But not here." Edward's voice was firm, no non-sense.
I shrugged indifferently. "Whatever." When I started walking again, Edward stopped me. Again. "What, Edward, I have to go…"
"Give me your books." Not waiting for an answer, Edward shifted my books on top of his in the crook of his arm. I was about to protest when his free arm went around my shoulders, pulling me against him. The muscles in his arm and side felt unruly tens, but I guess I was quite tense too.
Edward escorted me to my class, pausing outside the door, and when I tried to pull away, the grip only tightened.
"You have Gym next?"
"They making you participate?"
I bit my lip. "Today…yes." Who knew our school had such a low tolerance for teen pregnancy.
"I'll be there before it starts, okay?" he asked, voice still gruff. I hated his no non-sense voice, it was so…non-negotiable. "Don't even change."
With one look at his face I knew there was no fight. "All right," I answered automatically. Through my relief, I still felt apprehension over how much trouble Edward or I could end up in.
To my surprise he reached in front of me and opened the door to English. Everyone's eyes bore over the threshold while conversation became quiet. The stinging of blood in my cheeks was numbing and being frozen in spot, Edward pulled me inside. He, silently and swiftly, ushered me to my seat, ironically in the center of the room.
The way people stared…it hurt. It brought tears to my eyes.
Edward pushed me by my shoulder don in the chair, slid my books on top and leaned down to kiss my head. The fingers of his left hand just barely grazing my stomach. "Love you."
He swiftly straightened and walked up to the teacher, whispering something quietly before leaving.
Voices rose and swirled again, leaving me in the open.
The last few months had changed everything. I used to have friends in English, but they turned on me. Was I dirty for getting pregnant so early in my life? In the whole room I was the only one not talking to someone. The only comfort that I could give myself was that I wasn't really alone. That people weren't staring at me, that I wasn't being centered out like I was some circus animal. I had my baby. I wasn't alone. Mentally at least.
The teacher continued on like nothing happened. Two girls in the front row turned around and gave me the "up-and-down", then bowed their heads together. They're skinny shoulders shook with laughter. My emotions, already picked up, intensified tenfold, forcing me to wipe my eyes on my wrist. I hated being spoken about – not just behind my back but to my face. I didn't want to hear the ridicule.
This pregnancy had nothing to do with them; they've had no part in it. Why do they care?
"Isabella?" I looked up at Mr. Smith hopelessly and he sighed, tapping his desk. This brought more attention. Oh my… "Question fourteen?" he prodded around an exhale.
Did he have the will to fail a pregnant teenager? "I, um, I didn't finish it," I admitted quietly, though it sounded loud in the lacking-of-silence room.
His eyebrows pulled together in an I-am-so-surprised-and-do-not-think-this-is-right kind of way. "And why not?" I didn't answer. "Everyone, who completed that page?" Every hand in my view rose but I refused to torture myself and look around. "Except you, Zach, your good," he added flippantly. Was Zach's excuse any better than mine?
Probably not. Edward and I had been looking at apartments in Seattle, Portland, Phoenix, New York and a few in LA. Edward still hadn't decided where he wanted to go.
"Isabella, I'll see you after class."
I hate him.
If I wasn't low on credits, I would have dropped this class; it wasn't even mandatory anymore.
Mr. Smith didn't bug me for the rest of the class, which seemed like a small gift then, maybe a little eerie. But I couldn't complain. Along with the teacher's silence toward me, my classmate's followed suite and acted like I was just a part of the furniture in the room. For once I felt better.
The second the bell rang I felt my stomach plunge when I met my teacher's eyes. What an angry man. I made my way up to his desk with my books in one arm and the other around my stomach. If anything the bum provided an ample distraction for me.
"Bella," Mr. Smith sighed, taking off his thick-rimmed glasses and pinching his nose with eyes closed. "You need to pull up this grade. I'm serious; I know you need this credit to pass." I nodded weakly. "Please study, please pay attention, that's all. Maybe look into extra-credit," he added.
"I do need to pass," I agreed whole-heartedly.
I left soon after that with Mr. Smith's promise of an extra-credit paper to help bring my mark up, which was exactly what I needed. I'd been apprehensive to bring it up, an extra-credit paper I mean, so I was glad for that push.
Being down to the last period I had a sense of relief in the pit of my stomach, though I knew with Gym it shouldn't have been there. Especially because of the reinforcements behind this choice. Well, it couldn't quite be classified as a choice because I had none ad it was a decision made by the principle. They needed me to complete this course because it was a mandatory credit for all four years, not exception. I really needed to put my best foot forward.
Edward wasn't outside the Gym like I had anticipated he would be. Pushing through the strong of teenagers and catching the Gym door before it hit me in the face, I hear him before I actually saw him.
"No, for Christ's sake, no!" Edward shouted, bringing his hands up to gesture animatedly. I didn't have a doubt in the world this conversation was about me. Coach looked annoyed and frustrated but ready to stand his ground. I'm so confident this angered Edward even more because his hands started getting dangerously close to Coach, though I couldn't bring myself to be worried for Coach's safety because I knew his skills in, er, self-defense. It was unit in grade ten. Edward's safety, however…well, that was debatable.
I quickly made my way over to the other side of the Gym before things got the chance to be serious. "What's going on here?" I demanded, carefully pushing Edward's arm.
His eyes snapped to mine and the raging fire dulled a bit, no doubt his effort for things to seem normal. Like he wasn't bitching out the Gym coach. "Nothing," he replied icily, shifting his gaze back to Coach. "Nothing at all."
"Bull," I said. "What's going on?"
"Well, Miss Swan," Coach said, glaring in Edward's direction with a smug smirk, "Mr. Cullen here has been harassing me for however long. He seems to think you should not be partaking in class today, but he doesn't seem to grasp that you will fail and will be one credit short."
Edward groaned and I was completely speechless. I shifted on my feet when he finally spoke up.
"She'll write a paper!" he exclaimed.
"What?" I shrieked. I already had an extra-credit paper, did I really need another?
Coach frowned but the wheels were obviously turning in his head. "This is gym, Edward, what would you expect her to write a paper about?"
He shrugged, though he was less rigid. "Something related to physical activity," he stated matter-of-factly. "Look Coach, I know I was pretty disrespectful just now, but know that all I want is for Bella to be safe. Would you make your pregnant wife work out?"
And I knew that question was nearly ninety-nine percent stupidity and one percent brilliance. I thought for one second that Edward could lose his life over it, but suddenly, it was like the world stopped spinning and the air just thinned. Like having a life-changing epiphany. Coach's face softened. Actually softened. The lines around his eyes and mouth smoothed, his mouth closed with the lack of stiffness. The veins in his neck weren't visible. His eyes held nothing but…understanding. Now I knew the world stopped.
Coach cleared his throat. "Well, Cullen, as much as I have an mounted distaste for you at the moment, I get it. I…understand where you're coming from. For the safety of Bella and also the baby." He paused for a second uncertainly, before going again. "I'll see what I can come up with, Isabella, okay?"
Isabella. He was definitely serious.
I felt too much apprehension to say anything, even ask what I would be set up to do. A part of me hated that I needed Edward to constantly care for me and support me, even though I probably wouldn't be where I am today without him. I was immensely thankful for him; he did things that I was too chicken to do myself. So I nodded and with my consent the tension seemed to go away. Edward made a run for it after a 'thank you', a kiss and an 'I love you', so I was left alone with Coach. He didn't say anything much, just gestured to the bench. Students had already filed out of the changing rooms and were doing routine stretches. Coach started giving orders on exercises, which pushed my boredom. I pulled out my binder to go over my notes in preparation for my Gym paper.
"So what are you doing your paper on in English?" Edward asked curiously as we walked to the Volvo. A few weeks ago I'd suggested we sell it for extra cash. Edward almost had heart failure.
"Ah, yes. An English paper and a Gym paper. Thanks for the last one by the way, Edward; massive help," I said sarcastically. "All I want to do is relax and now I'm working double time. Not cool, Ed, not cool."
He growled, pushing my head away. "Quit your complaining, I'm only trying to help. Remember the Hamlet study a few weeks back?" he asked, hanging the words over my head. I nodded, wrinkling my nose. "I'll help you rewrite it," Edward offered softly. "Gym, write a detailed paper on healthy living, eating, exercise, throw in some pregnant-women stuff. I'm getting a 94 in English so far, I'll help you, 'kay?"
"Will you do all the work?" I asked hopefully, sticking my bottom lip out for a pout. But I already knew the answer.
"Is that how you want our child to grow up?" Edward asked carefully. I think he's been watching what he has to say around me more often. "With little or no independence?"
"I have independence!" I disagreed, stomping my foot. "I just like to save it for a rainy day!" I stormed over to the passenger side and tried the handle. Locked. I gave him a dirty, level look.
Edward lifted the remote and the car beeped. I opened the door, just clearing the cute little sleek car beside us – which I was pretty gad about – and plopped inside. Before Edward was even in the car, I had my shirt pulled up under my breasts and exposing my skin. Ever sense I had this semi-circle attached to my stomach, I hated the feel of fabric against the stretched skin. It felt itchy and uncomfortable and awkward, and made me feel self-conscious. Running my hand over my stomach I noted that my skin needed some lotion.
"Does the skin look a little purple to you?" I asked Edward as he huffed in his seat.
A small smile played on his lips. "It's normal, Bella. Your skin is stretching. But don't worry; it's not going to turn neon purple or anything."
"And how do you know this?" I asked in a creepy, mysterious voice.
Edward laughed at me. "I've done my fair share of research. And if you edge up with a huge purple belly, well then I guess we make mutant babies."
I frowned, drawling the word "fabulous". Like I wanted a little alien baby – plus, Edward didn't have these kinds of genes. I just knew it. "So," I said, choosing a new subject, "I'm going to polish up my grade and attendance, bring up the whole English and Gym grades for the end of the year, and bam!" I sat back. "Community college," I said proudly.
Edward frowned this time. "But I thought…didn't you want to go to one of the universities in Seattle?"
"Let's face it, Edward. Colleges want students that are remarkable and can shine light on that school for their achievements. I don't have anything special to offer –and don't even contradict it. I'm talking academics." I took a deep breath. "We're nearing the end of the year here and there are so many things I would have done differently here, but I can't change them and this is what I want. I want to at least have a degree for when I decide to work. I just don't know when I'm going back."
"I want to go to UW," he said quietly, carefully taking a turn. He wouldn't look at me.
I smiled at his profile. "That's great, Edward, why didn't you tell me sooner?" I asked curiously. "I mean, I think I want to wait a year before going to college but I just want to be finished with high school right now; this is, like, the greatest news for all of us."
He didn't respond to me so I let it go. I didn't know his worries but I did know he would tell me when he wanted to let it out. He stopped at the pharmacy in town to get me some moisturizing cream and anti-stretchmark oil. The second one I didn't ask for which caused a little verbal disagreement, which made me start crying and repeat my entire speech from before English.
On our way home, Edward finally began talking. "Bella, all I want is to be able to provide for you and her. You don't have to go to school right after high school, but I need to so I can give you both everything you need and want," he confessed.
"Edward, it's a boy," I said, joking to keep my emotional tears at bay.
A/N: Long chapter! Yay! You may not get another one like this, but I suggest you review for the possibility! Tell me what you're thinking because I must say, I really adore this chapter.
So onto something else. Apart from my above rec (my other story Conversing with a Gay), I also recommend you try out my newest story, The Crossroads. It is soooo different from my other stories and 3k 1st chapter. Only one chapter is up but I will be writing a new one with more reviews! Ah, and I'll also recommend Responsibilities, my baby, my most popular story with AMAZING reviewers!
Don't forget to review!