Alice was pretty sure she liked the way Bella would chew on her bottom lip a little too much. She would catch herself staring, sometimes, and would have to wrench her traitorous gaze away, pretending to be endlessly transfixed by whatever happened to be playing on the television. It was that or have to explain to Bella why she was doing so, and she couldn't exactly admit to her less-than-sisterly thoughts, not without losing said sister completely. And that just wouldn't do. Because Alice really, really liked the way Bella would chew on her bottom lip.
Bella's hair had a spectacular way of falling, without fail, into her eyes. No matter how it was styled, whether it was up or down, it would invariably find its way in front of her face, only to be brushed away again with either an absentminded gesture, or an irritated sigh. While it wasn't a new habit, as her hair hadn't changed at all from before her transformation, what was new was the way Alice had the almost irrepressible urge to reach out and tangle her fingers tightly in the brown locks. The desire caught her unawares the first time, and her hand had found itself inches away from the hair spread haphazardly over Bella's forehead before she managed to regain control.
Amber eyes, formerly deep brown, had gazed at her and her straying hand curiously, but, Alice managed to determine after a few seconds of frantic searching, without suspicion. Luckily, because otherwise there might have been panic and excuses and grovelling and she may have just ended up kissing those lips that she would so studiously try to avoid gazing longingly at after all. Which, Alice told herself sternly, could never be anything but a bad thing.
When Bella first kissed her, Alice could hardly plead ignorance. She had seen it coming, not due to any visions, but through glances and touches and lingering heated looks that turned her knees to jelly and made her gaze flicker nervously to either Bella's, and her own, wedding band, or whichever spouse was present. Sometimes they both were, and the guilt that turned Alice's cold stomach colder was so painful that she couldn't see how Jasper hadn't picked up on anything yet. Actually, it was more likely that he had, and was merely suffering his heartbreak in silence, as he was wont to suffer everything else.
So when Bella first kissed her, Alice didn't kiss back.
Edward had a way of brooding whenever something was truly bothering him. The last time Alice had seen that specific frown of his was when he was contemplating abandoning Bella in Forks to her own, often reckless, devices. For her own good, of course. She had therefore known something was up when, for weeks on end, his face was etched in what she not-so-fondly referred to as The Scowl. The whole household was tense, as it inevitably managed to pick up on the vibes, and most conversations bordered on curt, and so when Edward finally asked to speak to Alice in the woods, alone, she agreed instantly purely out of relief that something was going to happen, despite whether not knowing if it would heal or hurt the situation.
He explained to her, without once making eye-contact, that Jasper and he had noticed just how much Alice and Bella looked at each other, and felt for each other, and yearned for each other and that they had better do something soon, or else the two brothers, in essence if not blood, would double think their decision to skip town for a while and let the two women's relationship grow.
Alice hadn't expected just how much she didn't feel she had lost.
Bella had explained, patiently, that she wanted to do it right. That there would be no undying declarations of love until after at least the second date, and that Alice deserved a deer and a movie, or, at the very minimum, a long undisturbed walk on the beach. Alice had merely gone along with it all because she thought Bella was cute. It was only until after Bella had fiercely stared down all of the teenage boys who dared approach the duo that Alice reconsidered her opinion, and decided that chivalry itself really was very attractive.
As Bella's tongue worked diligently behind and below her ear, drawing small murmurs, Alice wondered how she had ever managed to write this off as a bad thing. Because it was beautiful and powerful and weakening and all sorts of other descriptions that Alice just didn't have the eloquence to express right at that moment. But even if she had retained the ability to express it, she wasn't allowed to, because undying declarations of love were only permitted after the second date.