A/N – Thank you to Hopeful Wager for all her patience and betaing talents, my lovies for encouragement and comments, and Pack 100 for causing the drabble brainstorm that brought about this story in the first place. Banner here: http: // www . flickr. com/2585/4134605723_aa843a56d3_o. png
DISCLAIMER: Twilight characters and related likeness are owned by Stephenie Meyer,Little Brown Publishing. No profits have been received in the production of this piece.
Chapter 1 – About Face
He was irritated with himself for leaving his license at his Mount Airy home, almost twenty minutes away from the club. Backtracking was not on the schedule, and after the third stoplight in two blocks, he grew increasingly more eager to begin the night of tomfoolery, knowing his friends were becoming ever more intoxicated without Quil and him.
Outings like this were becoming less and less frequent as they settled into their late twenties. Two of them now had wives and children, the rest, time-consuming careers, mortgages and significant others that left little opportunity for extracurriculars.
All he'd have to do is grab his identification - forgotten on his dresser instead of tucked in his wallet - then he and Quil could be on their way back to meet the group.
"You know, Jake," Quil began as he turned the steering wheel into a space just outside Jacob's house, glancing at the large brick townhome, "without getting too mushy, I wanted to tell you, away from the rest of those guys, how happy I am that you and Embry are gonna be my best men."
Jacob turned to his friend searching his face for signs of humor, but finding nothing but sincerity, a smile playing on his lips. "Who else would it be? I mean, really?" Jacob replied with all seriousness; then his smile broke into a full grin.
"No really, dude," he said genuinely. "I'm happy to do it; I know we both are. You're one of my favorite people in the word," he continued, patting Quil on the shoulder.
"I hope that Claire and I are just as happy as you and Rose."
Jacob's smile beamed. "One can only hope."
Hopping out of the Land Rover and slamming its door loudly, Jacob ran to the front door in lieu of his usual garage entrance. He wasn't driving and didn't have his door-opener anyway; Quil had the "pleasure" of being designated driver tonight.
He followed casually behind Jacob and headed for the first floor washroom to relieve himself. Typical Jake, Quil thought finishing and washing his hands, always forgetting something. He headed for the kitchen to find something to quench his thirst before Jacob made his way back downstairs.
The house was dark, and initially, Jacob thought Rosalie had left for the evening after his departure. He remembered that she had mentioned possibly going out with some girlfriends or something of the like, but he heard the softest of sounds coming from the upstairs bedroom they shared.
Figuring she was preparing herself for a night of club-hopping with friends just as he had, Jacob took the stairs two at a time, excited to see his love in whatever satin or tightness she had poured her luscious body into. When he ran down the list of everything he wanted in a woman and wife, Rosalie embodied every trait he desired, and so much more. She was beautiful, intelligent, and great in bed, qualities that ranked pretty high on his list of must-haves. She dealt with him and his flaws; she stood by him while his father was sick in the hospital and supported him while he worked on his doctorate.
All of that was forgotten now though.
Neither of them saw him. Not at first.
He wasn't even entirely certain of what he was witnessing initially - his eyes catching fleeting glimpses of the display, not really piecing together its parts until moments later.
Beads of sweat.
A rounded bottom jutting towards the ceiling.
A mattress yielding under their combined weight.
Then, much like a sputtering car engine, his faltering mind quickly assembled what was before him in a stream-of-consciousness, garbled mess of thought and emotion.
Wha….?...What the fuck?...Can't deal with this shit right now…How could she do this?…...Done nothing but be the best boyfriend…OH MY GOD…I'm gonna kill him. I'm gonna kill him....gotta get the fuck outta here, gotta get out of here...
He stood there, petrified in his shock.
He supposed briefly that, through the soft music and pants and moans, and…movement, they wouldn't have been paying much attention to the opening of the door just a few feet away.
So, for an excruciatingly long nine seconds, Jacob got the displeasure of seeing Rosalie bent, crouching on hands and knees in their king bed, body flushed pink, hair in disarray that only fingers and sweat and being rubbed against a comforter can cause.
Then, her perfect mouth moaned his name the way Jacob had heard her say his countless times. His heart lurched, then broke.
He was not seeing this.
For a brief moment, he attempted to give her the benefit of the doubt, running through any possible explanation that would suffice as to why she would do something like this, and be stupid enough to do it just a couple hours since he'd left - and in their home, no less. Even outside of the anger, hurt and confusion burned fiercest within him.
Her body rocked crazily against his thrusts, her once perfect face grimacing in pleasure. Jacob fought the bile threatening to rise in his mouth when he smelled them, the distinct stench of sex and sweat and heat lingering stiflingly in the room. He gritted his teeth-- so hard he felt and heard the popping-- as he swallowed hard and frowned his unease.
He squeezed his eyes shut for just a moment, attempting to get a hold of the wild rage rising within him. He couldn't let it escape, because he wasn't at all prepared at this moment to deal with the consequences of what his unbridled anger and pain would bring.
Rosalie's study partner from her Master's program.
That piece of shit was fucking his girlfriend. In his bed.
They had had that motherfucker over for dinner. He had played touch football with him, and here he was, stroking her without a care in the world, head thrown back, eyes shut tightly in satisfied bliss.
Rosalie's fingers gripped the sheets firmly, her back arching into an almost painful curve. Whimpering and whining loudly on the verge of her climax, she swung her head wildly in his direction, still not realizing she and her partner in coitus weren't the only two in the room.
She loved Jacob, she did, and he would someday be her husband, but Edward made her feel seductive and carnal and alive. How long could anyone be expected to shirk the constant advances from someone so beautiful, so confident, so inherently sexual? She promised herself the last time would be their last time, but then, he'd come over tonight and grabbed her by her hips from behind, his already stiffening cock pressing against the thin fabric of her stretch pants and her resolution was lost against a wall of the hallway.
"Please," he'd begged her, his cool fingertips teasing at the bottom of her tank, then sliding into the waistband of her pants.
"No…," she said halfheartedly as he whispered sensual vulgarities that heated her in ways she never thought she could feel for someone other than Jacob. They were naked within seconds.
…so close... She felt the delicious tightening within her, as she teetered on the edge of her climax. Through lust-hooded lids and furrowed brows, just as the climax wracked her body, she slowly opened her eyes and caught sight of the surprise, pain, then fury crossing Jacob's handsome face.
He waited there for just that. The shame, the revelation, the shock.
Jacob nodded his head, silently agreeing with her that she'd been caught. He could never bring himself to love her in this way again, to touch her. This would forever be etched in his mind, and that's something he could never forget. Ever.
Clamping tightly onto the doorframe, he squinted his eyes and clenched his jaw, two telltale signs that he was furious, Rose noted for a half-second. She had never seen him look this angry, this hurt.
"Jake!" At least she had the dignity to look surprised. She ripped her body from Edward's, with a slick slurp, searching frantically for something, anything, to cover her naked body.
Jacob didn't wait for anything more; he had to get the fuck out of that room to clear his head. He wasn't gonna just stand there and watch his girl get fucked by another man.
A million questions crossed his mind again as he made it to the kitchen, pacing wildly and running his fingers through his hair.
What would he tell his mother? Her mother? Why did she do this? Was he not satisfying her? No, that couldn't be it. They had sex daily, and she always seemed pleased. Did she love this dude? Jacob had no idea; she was nothing, if not stealthy with her infidelity. How long had this been going on?
"Wha…?" Edward questioned. Confused at Rosalie's now hysterical search around the room, and the abrupt cease of their lovemaking. She didn't bother answering him, finally locating her silk robe and dragging her index finger under her lower eyelids to remove the smudged mascara that circled them. She caught sight of her reflection, all flushed skin, untamed hair and dewy glow.
She looked like sex.
Her tears were already streaming down her face as she saw Jacob reach their spacious kitchen area. He was gesturing wildly and gripping his hair at the scalp, walking the length of the kitchen nonsensically.
"Jake, dude, what the fuck is wrong?" Quil asked, attempting to grasp why his friend was behaving so crazily, walking and muttering to himself.
It just hurt so bad. The worst kind of pain he could think of, because it wasn't going away, seemingly intensifying as his eyes met hers. And, as he unwillingly looped the scene of the woman he swore he would marry sharing something so personal with a man she had only known for a few months, his heart ached even more, if that were possible.
He just wanted it to go away. He wanted it to all go away.
Rosalie made it to the kitchen, pausing at the doorway, before nearing Jacob and reaching out to touch his forearm. He yanked it away violently, and, for a split-second, she thought he would hit her.
"Don't fucking touch me," he said in a threateningly low hiss, his eyes raking disgustedly over her just-fucked appearance as he wrinkled his nose. "I can smell him on you… You look like a whore."
Eyes widening in disbelief, then understanding at that revelation, Quil backed against a far counter, attempting to allow them some personal space. He did know his friend, however, so he kept an eye out for any loss of control. He stepped further away, pulling his cell from his pocket and placing a quick call to Embry, letting him know the details and that they may not make it back to the club.
"Jake, please, let me explain," Rosalie pleaded.
"Let you explain?" Jacob said calmly. "Let you explain! You were fucking someone else in my bed. What the fuck else is there to explain!" Both she and Quil flinched at his tone. She was so completely and entirely mortified that this had to be happening in front of an audience.
She just wanted to go back to two months ago and redo this entire sordid, stupid decision. Why didn't she say no? Why did she allow herself to get sucked into this situation with Edward? Why didn't she get out when she'd first realized how attracted to him she was? Was that worth demolishing two years with the love of her life?
And, at the most inopportune time possible, Edward descended the stairs, buttoning his green dress shirt, and smoothing his bronze hair. If that wasn't enough, he had the gall to attempt to get Rosalie's attention as he walked toward the front door of the home.
"Motherfucker, get the fuck out of my house!" Jacob yelled, launching towards the much smaller, thinner man. Before Quil could get his hands around his friend-- the only person in the house that could do so at the moment-- Jacob had already landed several stiff blows to Edward's face.
Surprisingly, he did get one fair punch into the side of Jacob's head, though he was no match as Jacob pinned him to the ground and began pounding his fists violently into his face and upper body.
At one point, Jacob wrapped his hands around his neck, squeezing with every ounce of strength in him. Maybe if he killed him, the pain would go away. Maybe if he removed him from this world, Jacob could get his own shattered world back.
"Jake!" Quil shouted futilely. "Jake, stop, man, stop! You're gonna kill him!" He attempted to grab him by one massive bicep but was met with enough force to push him to the ground momentarily.
"Jake! Please! Please!" Rosalie screeched, as she saw the blood covering the hardwood hallway floor, Jacob's fists raw and bloody. The once quiet home was soon filled with grunts and yelling and the sounds of scuffling and struggle.
"Stop? Stop! You taking up for this motherfucker!?" Jacob yelled breathlessly. Quil no longer attempted to reason with words; he wasn't going to let his best friend kill this guy and get carted off to jail over a woman. He made his way to the front of the brawl and launched his entire body weight against Jacob's massive chest, forcing him to his back with a loud thud.
"Rose! You better get that motherfucker out of here before I let him go!" Quil shouted, placing a similar hold on Jacob that he had restrained Edward with just moments ago, keeping him prone to the ground. Jacob riled and pushed until there was no more fight in him and tearless sobs quietly racked his body.
"I can't believe you! I can't fucking believe you!" Jacob yelled in her direction. His heart was ripping in his chest, he was sure he would start bleeding emotion and pain at any moment.
Rosalie, now cowering in a corner, eyes wide and disbelieving, helped Edward's broken body to his feet and out of their home. She apologized profusely to the man, running to get him a towel and walking him outside, though, much like Jacob, he didn't have much to say to her.
Quil could think of so many things to say to Jacob at the moment, but opted for silence, waiting, holding him tightly across his broad chest until his breathing slowed to a reasonable rate. Finally, his eyes lightened from the black hue they had distorted to, and Quil's own heart slowed. Rosalie re-entered the house, just as Jacob made it back onto his feet.
He glared at her, longer than was normal, just long enough to make her uncomfortable and be forced to look away. Jacob straightening his rumpled t-shirt and walked towards the stairs, jogging up to their bedroom. He had to get the fuck out of this house. For how long, he didn't know, he just knew he couldn't be held responsible for anything that happened from this point on.
Jacob quickly threw several items into a gym bag donning his college logo, stopping for a moment to search a hanging suit jacket pocket to remove a small navy velvet box. There, nestled in white satin was a simple but large solitaire diamond ring. He felt like a fool for nervously dragging Quil, Embry and his father to the jeweler two weeks before. What now? What happened to their future? Their forever?
He snapped the lid close and threw the box into the bag, zipping it roughly and bounding down the stairs. Rosalie quickly moved out of his path, glancing sheepishly at Quil for a brief moment. How could she look him or any of his friends in the eye again? She'd always be known as the cheat, the one that wasn't good enough for their friend, and who didn't deserve him.
"Jake…" she pleaded. She couldn't just let him walk out the door without a word. Even through her shame and remorse, she wanted him to see clearly. This couldn't be the end of them. She couldn't just stand by and let her perfect, thoughtful, amazing Jacob leave her there without a backward glance.
"Don't," he warned again through clenched teeth, pulling the door ajar. "Get me the fuck out of here," Jacob said in Quil's direction, not bothering to stop to see if he had followed him through the doorway outside to the car.
Quil waited for a brief moment, glancing in her direction and shrugging, then pushed past Rosalie with a pained look. He was at a loss in this awkward situation; Jacob was his best friend, and he was there to catch her naked, and with another man. Not much left to say.
Barefoot, she ran out the front door behind Jacob into the warm Pennsylvania summer night air, attempting one last time to stop him and get him to at least look at her. She just needed to look into those soulful eyes and catch a glimpse of hope, the smallest glimmer that the situation could be fixed - that would get her through all this.
He didn't bother yanking his arm out of her reach this time though, only standing still as a marble statue, tightening every muscle in his body, trying his hardest not to allow the tears just beginning to form to fall in front of her. She couldn't have that. She couldn't know she had hurt him so deeply. Anger was one thing; pain was an entirely different situation.
"Rosalie," Jacob said barely above a whisper, but more than loud enough for her to hear. "I'm a gentleman, but, I'm still a man. Don't. Touch. Me." His tone made no room for discussion or confusion. It was a warning. "I want you out of this house by the time I get back."
"Jake, this is my home too..." she began, refusing to accept that it was all over that quickly. "You can't just tell me to leave."
He turned to face her, tightening his jaw once more, and she saw the lack of emotion in his eyes as he reached for the handle of the car door.
"You already made this decision for me."
I know. This is rough. Stick with me, though. This story is much bigger than just this. Read on...