Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight.


Chapter 11- Falling Apart

Maybe it's because I'm crazy,
Maybe it's because I just can't,
Honestly tell you what I want.
It's never enough to stay still and hold you,
To break loose and run the taste of you,
Wild on my tongue.

Am I no good to you now?
Am I no good to you now?
Whoa-oh, whoa-oh whoa-oh
We're spilling over.
Whoa-oh, whoa-oh whoa-oh

We're falling apart.

Falling Apart- Matt Nathanson


Bella POV

Jacob picked me up at the park and took me over to his house for the first time. The whole way to his house, I had been fuming about what Edward and Emmett had done. He listened with interest as I ranted, and I could tell he had a lot of angry things to say, though he wasn't saying them.

Neither of Jacob's parents were home, and that made me just a tad anxious. His house was small and in a remote part of town, closer to La Push but not quite on the reservation.

Jake took me inside and I noticed how cluttered the house was. It smelled like the woods for some reason, and I looked around curiously as he took me up a flight of stairs.

We entered Jacob's room and I gazed around, my eyes wide. The place was a mess; he had stuff all over the floor and his massive bed wasn't made. Posters of skateboarders and rappers were plastered on the walls and the dirty clothes bin was overflowing.

"Make yourself comfortable," Jacob said, sitting in a chair at a computer desk. He turned the computer screen on and started doing something as I hesitantly took a seat on the edge of his bed.

I felt uncomfortable and awkward, not knowing what we were supposed to do now. It also may have had to do with the fact that I was in his bedroom. I had never been alone in a bedroom with a boy before.

You're his girlfriend, I thought. Of course you're going to end up in his bedroom, even if you don't do anything. Suck it up.

"So. . ." I said, trying to make small talk. "What do you wanna do now?"

Jacob grinned at me over his shoulder before turning back to the computer.

"I'll be right with you," he said. I glanced around the small room, a bit overwhelmed by the clutter. I mean, I knew he was a guy and all, but even Emmett had a tidier room.

Thinking of Emmett, I remembered what Edward had said about letting him know where I was. I contemplated that, and then decided that Emmett didn't really deserve to know. Besides, Edward knew where I was going. He would probably tell Emmett for me.

Jacob stood up from the computer and crawled onto the bed, sitting across from me and leaning back on his elbows with his legs stretched out. We smiled at each other shyly before he spoke.

"Can I ask you something?" he said, sounding curious. "Don't be offended. . . "

"Sure," I said automatically. "Why would I be offended though?"

Jake shrugged. "Some girls get all defensive."

I was intrigued. "Ask away."

"Why do you dress like that?" he questioned, his head tilted to one side.

I furrowed my brows at him before looking down at myself. I had on my usual jeans-tshirt-and-hoodie ensemble. I knew it wasn't very exciting but the way he asked made it seem like he was asking someone of a different culture why they dressed the way they did.

"You're not, like, pissed are you?" he asked.

"No, I'm not mad!" I quickly assured him. "Um. . . I don't know how to answer your question. I guess I just don't have much of a fashion sense. I tend to wear what's comfortable. . .and clean. . . " I trailed off, seeing that he was eying my body like he was memorizing every inch of it.

"Hmm. . . " he hummed, still staring. I started to feel self-conscious and shifted in my seat, his eyes meeting mine when I moved.

"You don't feel very good about yourself do you?" he asked, his voice curious again.

I shrugged, not knowing what to say. He was right, but I didn't want to voice my concerns out loud.

"You should," he continued, gently nudging my leg with his foot. "You're adorable." I felt my cheeks grow warm and looked away as Jacob laughed.

"Thanks," I mumbled, smiling.

"But you know… I think you should dress differently. You should show off what you have."

"What do I have?"

"A sexy ass body."

My jaw dropped at the bluntness of his words and he chuckled at my reaction.

"Really," he said. "What you usually wear does nothing to accentuate a body like yours. Girls would kill to look like you; girls risk their lives to look like you."

I thought he was being a little dramatic, but I was flattered nonetheless.

"Well then, what do you suggest I wear?" I asked, interested in his opinion. Jacob seemed to think about it, pursing his lips in concentration as he stared at my body again. I chewed on my lip, waiting.

"Try a skirt," he suddenly said, eyes on my legs. "And I don't mean those long, ugly skirts. I mean a proper skirt, to show off those beauties that I see in your gym shorts." His eyes roamed up to my chest and I felt my face heat up again.

"And something not so loose on top," he declared. "Maybe something sleeveless, and form fitting." His eyes snapped to my face. "Your face is fine for the most part. But I thought all chicks wore makeup. Not that you need much. I still think your face needs color. Just a little."

He smiled then, and I met his gaze as I thought about what he was saying.

Skirts were definitely not my thing, and neither was anything without sleeves. The climate of Forks was far from anything that would make it okay for sleeveless things to be worn. As for something form fitting, I didn't mind that entirely as much but if something was form fitting and sleeveless, I wasn't sure I would be comfortable with that.

The image I kept getting in my head from Jacob's words was of the girls that his friends went out with. The girls with entirely too much cosmetic goop on their faces and skirts too short and tops too revealing or tight. It was not me, definitely not, so I was pretty sure I wouldn't be comfortable with anything that.

"I don't know if I would be comfortable in those type of clothes," I pointed out hesitantly. I thought I saw a look of irritation cross his features before they settled into a blank mask again, but I could have been imagining it.

"Forget comfort," he said gently. "Hobos are probably comfortable in their ratty old clothes, but that doesn't make them look good does it?"

"I don't think hobos necessarily care about how they look," I replied. "They probably care more about having clothes to wear in general."

Jacob rolled his eyes. "Yeah, yeah. Whatever. All I'm saying is, I know what would look good on my girl. You should try my suggestion. Seriously. Find a mini-skirt somewhere and pair it with a cute little top. You won't regret it. You'll look pretty damn hot. I can't just imagine it."

Then imagine it, I thought. You can think about me dressing like that all you want, but it's not happening.

Of course I didn't want to tell him that, so I quickly thought of an excuse.

"Emmett would flip," I told him quietly. It was true; Emmett would not let me out of the house looking like a whore.

Jacob groaned and fell on his back, rubbing his eyes.

"Why do you care?" he mumbled tiredly before getting on his elbows again. He looked me dead in the eyes. "Your brother needs to back the hell off. I know he's protective and shit, but he seriously needs to get the hell out of your business. You're not a little kid. You should be able to do what you want, when you want, with whoever you want."

I nodded in agreement, thinking about the drama that had just taken place less than an hour before.

"You need to stop listening to him," Jacob said with conviction. "I'm not kidding. He's not gonna get the message that he doesn't rule you if you keep letting him control your life. If he tells you not to do something, do it anyway. If he tells you that you can't hang out with someone, hang out with them anyway. If he says you can't go somewhere, go anyway. That's the only way he's gonna get the point."

I could hear the hint of anger in his words as I listened carefully. He was right about me not letting Emmett control my life, but I didn't feel like the way he wanted me to go about it was right. But then again, Emmett had gone really far with the whole spying stuff. I thought he needed a really big reality check. He needed to know that I wasn't a baby. Even thinking about the whole spying business got me pissed off again.

"I know what you mean," I told Jake, my thoughts still centered around Emmett. I wondered if he was worried about where I was.

"Don't let him rule you," Jake said again, and I nodded.

At that point, my life was starting to revolve around Jacob and Jacob only. I needed Emmett to take a step back and I needed to take a step forward into Jacob's life as he took a step into mine.

I had to choose between making Emmett happy and making Jacob happy, and I chose Jacob.


I honestly did not know that I even had a skirt that short. The second I got home from Jacob's, followed by a very awkward and brief conversation with Emmett about where I had been, I ran up to my room to rummage in my closet for things I knew I definitely did not have.

There was no top tight enough and no skirt short enough. Jacob's words had been replaying in my head, and I wanted to make him proud. I wanted him to see that I was serious about us, and that I would do [almost] anything to please him. Because the fact of the matter was, I couldn't do anything that would want him to not be with me anymore.

The last thing I wanted was to be left again.

I didn't want to risk him leaving me for someone who dressed like he wanted, so I needed to dress to his liking in order to avoid that. Sure, it was probably desperation getting the best of me, but what else was I supposed to do? Alice, Jasper, and Emmett, the three people that I thought would always support me, were completely against me.

In a way, Jacob was all I had left and I had to keep him.

I found the skirt in a small bag that had been shoved towards the back of the top shelf of my closet. At first I didn't notice it there, but it fell out when I yanked down a pair of jeans in the hopes that some too-small shirt would be hidden behind it.

I leaned down and picked up the small black bag, curiously peeking inside. I reached in and felt something lacy, my initial thought that it would be lingerie though I would have no idea why I would have it in the first place. I pulled out a heap of black fabric, dropping the bag so I could hold it out with two hands.

It was a short and frilly skirt, but it was attached to a thick pair of black tights. I suddenly remembered where I had gotten it.

Three years prior, when I had just turned fourteen, Alice and I had gone shopping for Halloween costumes. It was the last Halloween before my parents left, and Alice had insisted that I dress as something crazy and different that year. In all honesty, I had wanted to be a clown. I figured it would be fun, but Alice decided that since we had just started high school, we wouldn't want any cute guys looking at us and thinking we were dorks.

Renee had dropped us off at a costume store before going to run errands, and that is where we found the Gothic Ballerina costume.

I had refused at first. The costume wasn't very frightening; it only consisted of the frilly black tutu and tights along with a top that looked like it was a corset. It had really just been a sleeveless velvet top with crisscrossing fabric across the front, but the costume itself was way too dark for my liking.

"That's the point," Alice had said. "It's Halloween, you're technically supposed to be a little dark."

With much persuasion, and also a lot of whining on Alice's part, I ended up being a gothic ballerina that year. I was glad that it was drizzling Halloween night, so I was able to wear a hoodie over the top.

I stared at the tutu-like skirt and decided that it would be much shorter than it had been three years earlier. I was sure I had gotten taller, and the skirt wouldn't still reach just above my knees like it had.

But then again, the skirt being super short was the point of why I was doing this.

Since Jacob wanted to see legs, I was able to rip off the tights that were attached to the skirt. I didn't bother looking for the top of the costume since it was far too ridiculous for school, but I did manage to find a pair of dangerous-looking stilettos. They would be strapped on with the ribbons that would wrap all the way up my calves. Just the sight of them made me nervous, but I would try. For Jake.

On the right side of my closet were a bunch of dresses still in their bags. Some had been gifts from Renee, and the others had been from Alice. I usually never wore dresses, but I decided that if I couldn't find a decent top, I would make one.

I pulled out the several dress bags and zipped them open one by one.

There was one dress, a reddish-pink number, that I felt would be perfect if I ripped the flowing skirt off. The top of the dress had a silky quality to it, though it wasn't completely made of silk. It had tiny rhinestone buttons down the front and short butterfly sleeves.

The dress was old as well, and I knew it wouldn't fit me the same. It would probably be tighter around the chest, since I knew my boobs had gotten bigger since two years prior, and it would probably be tight around my waist as well.

Perfect.

It took me an hour and a half to slowly unstitch the top of the dress from the bottom; I was extremely glad that the dress wasn't made with just one piece of fabric. On top of that, I was able to cut off most of the sleeves off and twist and sow the remaining fabric to make it look like it had spaghetti straps. Because I was definitely not comfortable with wearing anything strapless.

The ending result was a short, tight, silky-ish top and a tutu-skirt that looked more like a skirt and less like a Halloween costume.

I tried the outfit on and gaped at myself in the mirror.

The top was way too tight around my boobs, squishing them closer together and giving the effect that they were bigger than they actually were. The skirt was shorter than mid-thigh but successfully covered my privates.

I looked like a hooker. I truly, honestly did. I felt naked and exposed, and not like myself. It was as though I were wearing lingerie; that was how much skin was showing. I looked at myself, appalled that I would have to dress like this the next day.


I woke up the next morning, determined to do this right.

After pressing the snooze button and brushing my teeth, I threw on the scandalizing outfit and faced myself in the mirror, resolved to do something with my face and hair.

I pulled out all the makeup that Rosalie had applied on me for my date and tried to mimic what she had done. I applied some mascara and foundation, along with some eyeliner. My face felt heavy right away, but I decided that I actually looked a little better. But just a little.

I couldn't find the shade of lipgloss that Rosalie had put on me, so I settled for a color that matched my top a little. That's what girls did, right?

After my face was caked in cosmetics, I picked up the bottle of mousse that Rosalie had left here since Sunday and squirted some of the foam onto my hand. I tried to copy what she had done by rubbing it into my hair, but it just didn't look the same. It was wavier, sure, but it was a poofy kind of wavy. Not a pretty kind of wavy.

I pulled on the deadly stilettos and tied the ribbons up my calves. They oddly reminded me of snakes crawling up my legs as I walked over to the full-length mirror.

My jaw dropped at the sight of me, and not in a good way. I looked absolutely ridiculous. Looking at myself, I wanted nothing more than to pull on a pair of jeans and a hoodie. I looked like I was dressed up to go give lap dances, not like I was going to school.

The makeup made me look much older, and I didn't like it at all. At that point, I was already running a little late and there was no point in turning back. I hoped that Jacob would like what he saw, because this seriously took a lot of effort.

After texting Jacob and asking him if he could come and take me to school today, there was only one last thing I had to do: try and get past Emmett.


I carefully walked down the stairs, one step at a time. My legs were wobbly with the heels and I held on to the railing tightly. How was I supposed to walk in these all day?

Once I reached the foot of the stairs, I slowly stepped into the kitchen where Emmett was pouring coffee from the coffee maker.

He probably didn't hear me at first since I was walking so slowly, but once I stumbled and had to catch myself in the kitchen doorframe, his head whirled in my direction.

The coffee he had been sipping spurted from his mouth the second he saw me. I wasn't close enough to be sprinkled with it, but I did cringe. It was quiet as he stared at me, his eyes wide as saucers as they roamed up and down my body.

He blinked fast a few times before his eyes rested on my face, his expression one of extreme disbelief.

Finally, the explosion.

"WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU WEARING?" he cried, and the loudness of his voice made me flinch again. He set the coffee cup down on the counter and continued to stare at me, a vein sticking out in his forehead.

"They're called clothes, Emmett," I said.

His eyes narrowed. "And where in the hell did you get clothes like that?"

I stuck my chin up defiantly. "I made them. Sort of."

"What?"

I sighed, annoyed. "The skirt is from a gothic ballerina costume and the top is part of an old dress. The shoes are Alice's doing."

"You are not going to school like that," he said with finality.

I had a feeling he would say something like that.

"Yes, I am," I said through clenched teeth. "You need to know that you can't make decisions for me."

"Excuse me?" he said. "I'm not just your brother, Bella, I'm also your legal guardian. And if I say you're not going to school dressed like that, I mean it. There's no way in hell I'm driving you to school looking like a hooker."

"Fine," I said. "You don't need to take me. That's what I have my boyfriend for."

Something that looked a lot like hurt crossed Emmett's face before his expression settled into anger.

"Dammit, Bella!" he cried. "What the hell has gotten into you? Going to see your boyfriend whenever the hell you want to, dressing like a stripper, that nasty attitude- it's not you! Ever since you started going out with that asshole, you've been acting completely out of control."

"I am not out of control," I growled.

"Look at you!" He gestured up and down with his hand. "Don't tell me this isn't ridiculous."

I agreed with him there, but I couldn't say.

"Get used to it," I muttered, unable to say anything else.

"Over my dead body," he growled back.

"I'm not a little kid anymore, Emmett!"

"You sure as hell act like one."

"I do not act like a child; you're the one that insists on treating me like one!"

"Well with the way you've been the past few days, what do you expect me to do?"

"How about you back the hell out of my life?" My tone was sharper than I intended, and his eyes flashed with anger before he took a deep breath, seemingly trying to calm himself down.

When he looked at me again, his eyes were pained.

"I tried," he said quietly. "I promised myself that I would let you be more independent."

"Well you're not doing a very good job."

"I know. . . but I haven't even started letting you go yet and you're already like this. Maybe this is a sign that I should hold on tighter, not loosen my grip. What made you dress like that anyway? It's your boyfriend isn't it? He's the one that wants you to dress like that, right?"

"Stop blaming Jacob for everything."

"Well what other assumption am I supposed to make?"

"You can assume that this is my decision."

"And what's the motive behind your decision? Don't tell me you just woke up today and thought, 'Oh I'm gonna dress like a hoe today, just for the fun of it.'"

I was pissed off that he had a point; Jacob had everything to do with this. Still, I was tired of arguing with him.

"I'm not going to argue with you anymore," I muttered, just as a loud honk came from outside. "That's Jacob."

I hurried into the living room and towards the front door, grabbing my backpack from the couch.

"Wait, don't you want breakfast?" Emmett called from the kitchen.

"Not hungry," I called, shutting the front door behind me.


Jacob was absolutely shocked.

The second I stepped out of the house and slowly walked to his car, he had been gaping at me the entire time. His mouth was open and it didn't close until about a minute after I was already in the passenger seat with the seatbelt on.

His eyes stayed on my chest for a good thirty seconds before they wandered to my legs, which were almost one hundred percent exposed since I was sitting down.

Jacob suddenly groaned and closed his eyes, leaning back and resting his head on the headrest.

"Fuck," he mumbled. I furrowed my brows at him, confused by his reaction.

"What?" I asked. "You don't like how I look?"

"Are you kidding?" he said, his voice hoarse and his eyes still closed. "I fucking love it."

"Then what's the issue?"

His eyes popped open and he looked at me, his dark eyes looking somewhat desperate.

"The issue is that I'm getting fucking hard," he said.

I stared at him, my eyes widening.

"Oops," I whispered. "Sorry. . . I can go change. . ."

"No," he said, laughing and putting the car into drive. "Don't bother. You look really damn hot."

"Thanks," I mumbled, smirking.

"It's a little much though," he admitted, beginning to drive.

"It is?"

"Just a little. But it's fine, as long as it's just for me."

I laughed. "Of course. Who else?"

"That's what I like to hear."

The second I climbed out of Jacob's car, the amount of heads that turned in my direction was innumerable. It made me uncomfortable and I held on to Jacob's arm as we walked towards the school. I had to walk super slowly and he found it amusing.

"Is this your first time in heels?" he chuckled after I almost tripped for the third time.

"No," I said. "But it is my first time wearing them to school."

"First and last," he said in my ear. I looked up at him and he smirked.

"You're gonna get yourself killed in those. As sexy as they are, you're obviously not cut out for them. Let's save them for special occasions, deal?"

"Deal," I agreed, relieved that wearing these death traps was a onetime thing.

Once inside the school, the eyes on me increased in number and I felt myself turning redder with every step. Jacob held onto me tightly, his chin up and a smug look on his face.

"Meet you at your locker in a bit okay?" he said, and I nodded. He gave me a sloppy kiss on the cheek before he walked away, leaving me to take the last few steps to my locker alone. I tried to ignore the whispers at and about me as I walked like a tightrope walker.

Alice was already at her locker, transferring books from her bag. At the sound of the tapping of my heels, she turned and literally dropped both her jaw and the book in her hand. That only drew more attention my way, and I glared at her as I reached my locker and put in the code.

I could feel Alice's gaze on me as I put books into the locker; they were practically burning a hole in the side of my head.

"Say what you want and get it over with, Alice," I sighed.

"What in the name of Diane von Furstenberg are you wearing? And your face!"

"What's wrong with my face?"

"Are you trying to steal Bozo the clown's job?"

"That's mean," I told her, whilst silently agreeing that I had probably overdone it with the makeup.

"I'm being honest," Alice said, and I met her concerned gaze before it travelled down my body. "Thanks for using my shoes, though. Even though they do not belong with this outfit."

"No problem," I muttered.

"Why, Bella? Why would you do this to yourself? I mean I know I've asked you to dress just a little bit better, but this. . . this is just the image of pure insanity."

"Sorry you don't like it," I said, annoyed, as I shut my locker and faced her. "But this is my decision and I'd appreciate it if you kept your opinions to yourself."

I could see the hurt in Alice's face. First I had hurt Emmett with my words, and now Alice. She was my best friend and she didn't deserve this, but I couldn't help but try and convince those close to me to give me a little leeway.

"Fine," Alice mumbled. "If you want me to not tell you what I think about your so-called 'decisions', then maybe it's best that I don't talk to you at all."

With that, she gave me a sad and concerned look before turning and heading over to our math class. I felt a pang go through me, like she had just broken up with me or something. That was the only thing I could classify it as, a break-up.

What was wrong with me?

Before I could hate on myself some more, I felt familiarly strong arms wrap around my waist and a pair of soft lips meet the skin of my neck.

"You look upset," Jake mumbled, and I sighed, just the slightest bit distracted by his mouth.

"I think Alice just broke up with me," I told him. He laughed and pushed me against the lockers, a position I was beginning to get used to.

"Who needs her," he said, molding his lips with mine.

My brows furrowed as we kissed, not liking that he said that. Frankly, I needed her. She was my best friend after all, and without her I wouldn't even have this outfit, despite the fact that it was somewhat of a disaster.

I couldn't say anything as we continued to make out, and I lost all sense of time as his hands travelled to my backside.

"Your skirt is too ruffly," he said against my mouth.

"Sorry," I mumbled back.

The bell rang and when I pushed away, he pushed me back again, my head slamming lightly against the lockers. His lips became more aggressive and my whole body heated up.

"We're gonna be late," I gasped.

"I don't care," he said, crushing his lips to mine again and again.

He finally pulled away after another thirty seconds and glanced around the emptying hallway.

"C'mon," he said pulling me towards the opposite end of the hall.

"Where are we going?" I asked, trying not to trip with my heels. He didn't answer me and instead pulled me into a smaller, dimly lit hallway all the way at the other end of the building. At the end of the hallway was a door that I didn't even know existed. On the front was a plaque that read, "Janitor's Closet".

Wait, what was going on?

Jacob pulled me into the closet and yanked on the metal cord that turned the light bulb on. He shut the door behind him and turned to face me with a huge grin on his face.

I stared at him apprehensively, suddenly scared.

"Baby, don't look so freaked out," he said, grabbing my hips and pressing me against the door. His lips were all over my neck and my body was tense, knowing exactly what he wanted to do.

"Um, Jake?" I said nervously as his lips travelled from my neck to the side of my face. "We might get in trouble. . . "

"Don't worry about it," he muttered, pressing his lips to mine.

My heart was thudding frantically. I did not want this. Not now, and not in a freaking janitor's closet.

"Jake," I said again as his warm hands somehow ended up under my too-tight top. He wasn't letting me breathe; his lips were working furiously against mine.

"Jake," I said more urgently, but he was persistent, his lips never leaving my skin.

I was beginning to freak out slightly, knowing that this was too much. This wasn't right. This was scary.

"Jacob!" I said louder, pushing at his chest. He finally backed up, a look of pure vexation on his face.

"What?" he said. "What is wrong with you?"

"What is wrong with you?" I countered. "A janitor's closet? Really?"

"What does it matter?" he snapped. I was slightly taken aback by his tone.

"I don't want to do this. This is wrong." I couldn't think of another word to describe what we were doing.

Jacob rolled his eyes. "We aren't the first ones to make out in a janitor's closet, Bella. It's not a big deal."

"We're cutting class."

"Whatever."

I was beginning to get really annoyed. His "whatever" response was getting old and extremely irritating.

"No, it's not 'whatever'," I said, and his eyes narrowed. "We're in an enclosed space that smells like dirty water, with mops and brooms and cleaning chemicals. This isn't exactly very classy."

Jacob laughed without humor. "This is funny, the girl talking about class is the girl in the sluttiest outfit I have ever seen in my seventeen years of existence."

I stared at him, offended. I knew the outfit was beyond slutty, but I had done it for him. I did it to make him happy, and he had even told me that he loved it. And now he had just called me a slut for dressing how he wanted me to.

I fought back tears as I glared at him.

"Thanks a lot," I said. "I dress how you want me to and you tell me I'm slutty. Nice, Jacob."

I turned and pulled open the janitor's closet before he grabbed my arm tightly, turning me to face him again as the door closed behind me once more.

"It's not like that," he said urgently. "I didn't call you a slut. The outfit is a bit much, but that doesn't make you a whore and I appreciate the attempt to please me. Trust me, I can't take my hands off you because of this. And look, look what you're doing to me."

He pushed his hips against me and I could feel the bulge that was his erection pressing into my stomach. It made me gasp and turn red, and I became very uncomfortable.

Jacob leaned his head down to kiss me again, but I wasn't in the mood for any of it.

"Stop," I told him, unwrapping his arms from around me. "I want to go to class."

His eyes darkened slightly, but he took a step back.

"Fine," he said. "Go, then."

I knew I had upset him and that was the last thing I wanted, but I couldn't do this. Everything was getting a little crazy.

I sighed and turned around, grabbing the door handle and opening the door. I looked down the empty hallway and took a few steps out, glancing behind me at Jake, who was still standing there and staring at me with that I'm-pissed-off-but-trying-to-control-it expression.

"Are you coming?" I asked him softly, and he shook his head slowly. I stared at him, confused as to why he would want to stay in the closet.

"Go, Bella," he said again.

Feeling strange, I shut the closet door in his face, leaving him in there.

I had only taken but two steps when I heard a loud crash come from the inside of the closet.

What the hell?

I stared at the door, suddenly scared. Did he pass out or something, or did he just knock something down out of anger?

Figuring it was the latter, I quickly hurried to my math class, tripping and landing on my knees twice before I finally reached the classroom.


Math class was a disaster.

I knew I would be stared at, but it was different when all the ogling eyes were concentrated in one room. I had tripped and had to hold on to Edward's desk, but that caused my boobs to be just inches away from his face. Utterly humiliated, I quickly took my usual seat behind him as the whispers continued.

Unable to get my mind off Jacob, I texted him and asked him if he was mad at me. He said he wasn't and that everything was okay, before asking if I wanted to come over after school. Before I could answer him, Varner took my phone and told me I could get it back at the end of class.

As if that wasn't bad enough, he gave a pop quiz. I muttered to myself about how useless the math was, but Varner thought I was talking to someone and gave me an instant F.

To make things worse, he insisted at the end of class that I get myself a tutor. Not just any tutor, but Edward Cullen.

He wanted Edward Cullen to be my tutor.

I was beyond pissed off about that, but Varner wouldn't hear it. Much to my dismay, he left the decision to Emmett and Edward. I was surprised that Edward actually agreed, but that only meant Emmett would agree too.

Not happy at this twist of events, I was cranky the rest of the day.

Alice and I had kinda-sorta made up after she defended me in math, so I was glad that I would still at least get a ride home.

The second I stepped into the house, I pulled the deadly shoes off my feet. I hadn't even taken off my backpack before I had both stilettos in my right hand.

Emmett was at work, so I had the house to myself. I went to my room and the first thing I did was change. I threw off the shameful outfit and pulled on a pair of jeans and a gray Kings of Leon t-shirt. They were one of the few bands that Emmett had gotten me into and they had quickly become one of my favorites.

I washed the horrendous makeup off of my face and pulled my overly wavy hair up into a ponytail, promising myself to thoroughly wash the mousse out that same night.

I was pretty sure that I would not dress like that again, even if Jacob wanted me to. I had tried it and failed miserably. It had done nothing but cause Jacob and I to get into an argument of sorts, and I didn't want it to be that way between us.

So dressing like a floozy was definitely out of the question from now on.

After I had changed and was looking like myself again, I started on some homework. I got most of the stuff done fairly quickly.

And then I got to the math homework.

Everything was a bunch of mumbo jumbo to me. It felt like I was trying to read stuff written in Sanskrit, and my head hurt just looking at the numbers. It reminded me of what Varner had said about Edward tutoring me, and I suddenly wished I was good at math so that I wouldn't need his help. Why did he even bother?

My phone buzzed and I picked it up, seeing that Emmett was calling. I felt my stomach churn, feeling guilty and angry at myself for how I had treated him that morning.

"Hello," I answered.

"Hey," he said on the other end. "Are you home?"

"Yeah."

"Good. Listen, your teacher called. . ."

Oh, great.

Emmett's tone of voice was very serious; it was how he usually got when he transitioned from the big brother role to the legal guardian role.

"Mr. Varner?" I asked nervously. I knew exactly what this was about.

"Yep."

"And. . . ?"

"He said you're failing his math class."

I sighed. "I know. It's the math, it's so confusing."

"He said you always text in his class and that you were cheating on the pop quiz today."

"I was not cheating! I was talking to myself and he thought I was trying to get answers out of someone else."

". . . Talking to yourself?"

"Yes."

"But you were texting though. . . ?"

". . . "

"Bella?"

"I might have been."

I heard Em sigh on the other end. It was like he didn't have the energy to yell at me. He had pretty much given up on me, and knowing that hurt.

"Edward's going to tutor you." He said it as a fact, not as a question or a suggestion.

"That's your decision then?"

"Yep."

I sighed, accepting the fact though I was definitely not happy about it. Because honestly, I needed the help.

"I don't want you to fail the class and the final next week, kiddo. If Edward can help, then that's what we're going to have to do."

"Fine," I muttered, knowing that I pretty much had no say in the matter. "But that doesn't mean it'll be successful."

"It will if you let it."

"No, it will if Edward doesn't act like an asshole."

"He won't, he promised. I already talked to him, he's coming over at five."

"What! He's coming today?"

"Yeah, I figured the sooner you two got started, the better."

I groaned and collapsed onto my pillow, burying my face in it while Emmett continued to talk from the other end.

"He promised he was going to at least try and be nice. So it would be pretty freakin' awesome if you could try also."

"Fine, I'll try," I said, but my voice was muffled by the pillow.

"What?"

I lifted my face up. "I said fine, I'll try. But if he turns into a jerk then he's gonna hear it."

Emmett chuckled. "That's fine I guess. I should be back by six."

"Wait, you won't be here?" I was suddenly anxious; this meant I would be home alone with Edward.

"I can't, I'm in Seattle. They sent me here last minute."

"But what if he tries to kill me?"

Emmett snorted. "Don't worry, I don't think he'll even try."

"I can't believe you're letting me stay home alone with a guy," I told him. "If it were Jacob you would be completely against it."

"That's different," he countered. "Jacob is your boyfriend, he likes you. He might try something. Edward, on the other hand, doesn't like you. He won't try anything Jacob would."

"Jacob wouldn't try and strangle me."

"Stop being so melodramatic. Edward won't try to strangle you either. He wouldn't dare. Look, I gotta go. I guess I'll see you guys when I get home. Oh, and I'll bring dinner. Just focus on your schoolwork."

"Okay," I said. "Oh, and Em?"

"Hmm?"

"Sorry."

He knew what I was apologizing for. "It's all right, kid. I know the cause. But please tell me you aren't going to dress like that again. I'm seriously considering locking you in your room, but then again I don't want to make you miss school because of that."

"I promise I won't dress like a skank again. That was just an experiment. An experiment that failed miserably."

"Kid, if you wanted to do experiments, you should have told me! We could have blown shit up together or something."

I laughed. "I think I'm gonna take a break from any kind of experimenting."

Emmett chuckled. "Okay, that's good. I'll see you later okay?"

"Okay," I said.

After we hung up, I felt satisfied that we had mended things for the most part. I glanced at the clock and saw that it was less than an hour until Edward got here.

I was suddenly nervous about this whole tutoring thing. I didn't know what exactly I was afraid of, but my stomach flipped every time I thought about Edward as my tutor. I kept getting images of him doing a terrible job and laughing and sneering at me when I didn't understand something. So he was pretty smart, but that didn't mean he could be a good tutor.

Only time would tell.


When five o'clock rolled around, I was a nervous wreck. I didn't know what to do with myself as I moved my school books from the living room to the dining room, trying to pick a place where this tutoring thing would happen. I kept glancing at the clock, feeling even more nauseous the closer the minute hand got to the 12. I decided on the dining room because it was rarely used and also because it would just be easier to work at the table sitting on chairs opposed to using the coffee table and sitting on the floor.

Exactly one minute after five, the doorbell rang and my stomach lurched.

Get a hold of yourself, my inner voice said. It's just Edward. Everything's going to be fine.

Yeah, Edward the asshole and the guy that freakin' worked with your brother to spy on your date,another voice said. This is going to be a complete disaster.

"I'm going insane," I muttered to myself as I headed for the door. Hearing voices in my head was not a good sign.

I pulled the door open and saw Edward standing there, his backpack over his shoulder.

I was momentarily entranced by his appearance; his face seemed to glow in the dim light of the sun. He had on his usual leather jacket, but it was his face that I couldn't take my eyes off of.

His piercing green eyes were cautious and his brows were furrowed just slightly. His chiseled jaw line and cheekbones were competition to those of a male model, and his full lips were parted just slightly.

The mess of bronze hair atop his head was like a crown, crowning the unbelievable perfection that was his face.

I was pulled out of my staring when he moved to grab at his bronze locks.

Sex hair, I thought. There was no other word for it.

"Are you going to let me in, or what?" he asked, and from his tone I could tell he was trying really hard not to say it rudely.

I composed myself with mental reminders that I had a boyfriend, and stepped aside to let him pass.

"You're late," I said emotionlessly.

He glanced at his watch as he passed by, and I caught a whiff of cigarette smoke and a spicy type of cologne. It was remarkably appealing.

"Technically, I'm not," he said, turning to face me once he was inside. "I arrived at exactly five o'clock. It took me a minute to get off my bike, lock it, and then to walk up to your front door and ring the doorbell. Another minute was wasted by you staring at me."

My eyes widened at how he had just called me out.

"I was not staring at you," I said, narrowing my eyes. Edward shrugged, not saying anything else.

I shut the door and locked it, feeling like I had just locked myself in a lion's cage and was doomed to be eaten alive. When I turned to face him again, he was looking around.

"So where do you want to do this?" he asked. His voice was deep and velvety, and the English accent only made it all the more attractive.

I immediately hated myself for thinking such things; if he wasn't such a jerk I would undoubtedly be crushing on him.

Big time.

I nodded towards the dining room, where the light from the chandelier was already on.

He followed me in and threw his backpack onto the table, standing on one side of the table while I stood on the other, across from him.

We stared at each other awkwardly before he raised a brow and said, "I'd like to do this while we sit, if you don't mind."

"Oh!" I said, slightly embarrassed. "Right."

I plopped down in the chair and he sat across from me, zipping open his bag and throwing all its contents onto the table. I stared at him as he pulled over a math textbook and notebook before looking at me expectantly.

I glanced around for my bag and saw it in the living room. Sighing, I got up to go get it, feeling oddly self-conscious as I walked to and from the living room.

"KOL fan?" Edward suddenly asked, and I stared at him while I sat back down with my bag on the table. His eyes were on my shirt and I looked down at it, smiling softly.

"Yeah," I said, zipping open my bag and pulling out my math books. "Emmett got me into them."

Edward nodded, his face emotionless. "He has good taste."

"Yep," I said curtly.

It was strange. We were actually getting along. Who would have thought such a thing was possible between Edward Cullen and Bella Swan?

"So. . . " I said hesitantly, and his eyes snapped back to my face. "How do you want to start this?"

Edward shrugged. "However you want to."

I shrugged as well. "I don't know."

"And that's why I'm here."

"Huh?"

"Never mind."

We were both silent, not knowing what to say or do. Then Edward sighed, opening up a notebook.

"Right," he mumbled, flipping through pages. "I guess I'll just have to get things going myself."

"I guess so. . . "

"So, I reckoned that since we're doing this so you could pass the final next week, we should go over everything that he taught us so far." His voice was all business. "We can make sure you know how to do everything, and I mean everything, that he's done. Sound good?"

He glanced up at me then, and I got lost in his eyes briefly before I could nod.

"Yeah," I said. "Sounds fine."

"Good." He sat up straighter and sighed again.

"Shit," he muttered. "Why is it so fucking hot in here?"

"The heat is on," I told him.

"Why?" he asked, like having the heat on was the most ludicrous thing ever.

"It was chilly."

He then proceeded to pull his jacket off and I saw the t-shirt he was wearing underneath. It was black and in green and blue highlights it said, "I'm all for being social, but this is fucking bullshit."

I giggled and he glanced at me as he set the jacket aside on the table, one eyebrow raised.

"I like your shirt," I couldn't help but say. It seemed so appropriate for this occasion.

Edward glanced down at his shirt before smirking.

"Complete coincidence, I swear," he said. He smiled at me crookedly, and I was breathless.

Did Edward Cullen just smileat me?

He seemed to be thinking along the same lines, because the smile immediately went away, only to be replaced by a blank mask.

"Anyway," he said, all business again. "You should probably get your stuff open if we plan on getting anywhere."

"Right," I agreed, pulling open my notebook.

"Did you do the homework?" he asked.

"Yeah."

"Did you understand it?"

"No."

"So then how did you do it?"

"I tried my best."

"In other words, you bullshitted the whole thing."

"Yeah, pretty much."

"Can I have a look?"

I handed him the notebook and he glanced in it. It was silent as he looked at my work, his expression one of intense concentration.

Then he glanced up at me, both his eyebrows raised. His mouth twitched like he was trying not to smile.

"What?" I asked, suddenly embarrassed that I hadn't tried harder on the homework.

"Really?" he asked, unable to hold on to the smirk any longer.

"Really what?"

"This doesn't make sense."

"I know! It was so hard."

"I mean what you did, not the homework in general."

"Oh."

Edward snorted, and I felt like he was laughing at me. Suddenly offended, I said, "You know, it's not nice to laugh at people. Just because you understand something I don't. . . "

His smirk faded. "No one's laughing at you."

"You are."

"No, I'm not. I just think it's a bit funny that you think that the work you did here even looks close to resembling something someone who actually tried did."

"I did try," I lied. It was true I had spent all of but five minutes on the thing, jotting down random numbers and adding and subtracting as I pleased. Just for the sake of getting something written down.

"No, you didn't," Edward said, not buying it.

"Don't tell me what I did or didn't do, Edward Cullen," I snapped. "You think I pulled that out of nowhere?"

"I think you pulled it out of your ass."

"Oh, that's nice." My voice was thick with sarcasm.

"Look, I'm not stupid," Edward said. "None of this makes sense. You might be able to get it past Varner, but you can't get it past me. You're not going to learn anything if you do a bunch of random shit like this."

"Well then tell me how to do it the right way."

"That's why I'm here."

We silently stared at each other before he held the notebook out to me.

"Erase everything," he ordered.

"Sorry?"

Edward sighed. "Erase everything you did there. If we're going to make progress in a short amount of time, we might as well start with the homework and do it properly."

"How long are you staying, by the way?" I asked.

He shrugged. "Not sure."

"Shouldn't we set a schedule of some kind? Like what days you'll be coming over and what time you'll be coming and going?"

"Every day."

"Huh?"

"I think it's best I come every day," he said matter-of-factly. "Especially if finals are next week. We can skip weekends though if you like. . . "

I stared at him, thinking about his suggestion. His face was blank and I thought about having to see him every day for the next week.

"Okay," I agreed.

I wasn't sure if my agreeing had to do so much with learning the material. . .

Edward nodded. "It's settled then. I'll be here every day, excluding weekends. Same time?"

"Sounds good."

"Great," he said.

"Great," I echoed, nodding.

This was so awkward.

"Not that I want to," he quickly added.

I stared at him. ". . . not that I want to either. . . "

Edward cleared his throat before saying, "So, shall I explain to you how to do those problems the non-freakish way?"

I rolled my eyes. "That's why you're here." We had both been saying that a lot.

Edward began to explain how to factor quadratic formulas. He ripped a piece of paper out of his notebook and did the first homework problem for me, explaining what he was doing slowly and step-by-step. The first time he explained it, I was a little distracted. I kept thinking about how crazy it was that he was here, and that he was actually being nice. Kind of. If I wasn't thinking about how strange it was that he was tutoring me, I was staring at his face.

His full lips moved ever so slightly as he spoke, his voice soft and serious. I hadn't even noticed how we had been leaning towards each other; he was leaning forward as he did the problem, and I was leaning forward so I could better see what he was doing.

At one point he glanced up to meet my staring gaze, and he was close enough for me to see the specks of blue in his penetrating green eyes.

His brows furrowed and he leaned back in his chair, away from me.

"You know, the maths is written on the paper, not on my face," he said, looking at me like I was weird.

I blinked and shook my head jerkily, the blood rushing to my face.

"Yeah, I know," I said quickly. "I just. . . " I trailed off, embarrassed, not knowing what to say.

What was I doing? I had a boyfriend and yet here I was, dazzled by a guy just because he was being nice for once. Just because he was probably the best looking guy I had ever seem. Clearly I was pretty damn shallow.

Thankfully, Edward didn't insist on knowing what was on my mind. It looked like he had enough on his own.

He was staring at the table intently and taking a deep breath while grabbing at his hair again. He looked. . . frustrated.

"What's wrong?" I asked, and his annoyed gaze met my confused one.

He suddenly shoved the notebook towards me.

"Just do it," he said, looking away again. What was wrong with him?

"What?"

"Do the damn thing!" he said, his voice laced with irritation.

Taken aback by his sudden rudeness, I looked down at the notebook, seeing the work he had done but not understanding how or why he had done any of it.

"Um. . . " I said hesitantly. "I don't get it."

"Well maybe if you had been paying attention.."

Before I could say anything he added, "Forget it. Gimme the book, I'll just explain it again."

I shoved the notebook back and he leaned forward once more.

"Focus this time," he said, looking into my eyes evenly.

I determinedly looked down and actually listened to what he was saying and watched what he was doing. He had a calm, serious, and slow way of explaining things. It wasn't hard to get what he was saying, and it wasn't long before I completely understood how to do the problem.

I tried a few on my own, and kept screwing up one way or another. Edward was surprisingly patient, unafraid to grab the pen from me and show me the mistakes I was making and how not to make them again.

It took me four tries to get one problem right. On my fourth try, I was able to do it without much of a struggle.

Nervous, I held the notebook out to Edward and he took it from me silently.

I chewed on my lip as he looked at it, unable to tell from his expression if I had screwed up again.

Finally, he handed the notebook back, his face unreadable.

Disappointed, I took the book back.

Then he said, "It's about fucking time."

I glanced up, confused, and saw him grin at me crookedly once more.

"Yes!" I said, bringing my fist back in triumph. "It's really right? I did it correctly?"

"No, I'm just screwing with you," he said, but I could tell he was just kidding.

"Phew!" I said, wiping off fake sweat from my forehead. "That took me long enough."

"Don't get so excited," Edward said, an amused glint in his eyes. "You've still got like five other problems to do."

I groaned. "Don't I get a break?"

He shrugged. "If you want."

I sighed and sat back in my chair, not knowing what to do. I suddenly felt in the mood for a snack, my mind going in the direction of Pop-Tarts.

"Want a Pop-Tart?" I asked.

Edward furrowed his brows. "Pop-Tart?"

He stared at me blankly.

My eyes nearly popped out of my head. "You don't know what Pop-Tarts are? Are you human?"

"Wait, wait, you mean those square sugary things with the colorful icing and shit?"

"Yeah. So you've had them before?"

"Nah, but I must have seen adverts. They sound familiar."

I got up and headed into the kitchen. As I opened the pantry and stepped in, I couldn't believe I was going to be sharing Pop-Tarts with Edward Cullen, who was actually being pretty decent.

Shaking my head in disbelief, I looked at the several different flavors we had.

"What flavor?" I called from the kitchen.

"What?" Edward called back.

"I said what flavor? We have strawberry, blueberry, chocolate chip, smores, and hot fudge sundae."

There was a pause.

"What do you prefer?" he asked.

"Hot fudge sundae! Definitely!"

"Fine."

I pulled open the box and took out two packs of Pop-Tarts, heading back to the dining room once I put the box away.

When I entered, Edward had that strange look on his face again. It was a look like he was thinking hard about something, almost like he was doing a difficult math problem in his head. He clenched and unclenched his jaw a few times and only looked up when I held out the Pop-Tart to him.

He took it from me and studied the pack as I took a seat across from him and popped open mine.

He nodded. "Yeah, I've seen these around. Colorful."

"I know," I said, nodding and breaking off a piece. "It's so good though. It's just gooey and delicious on the inside. What I love about Pop-Tarts is that they can be eaten cold, even though they're technically supposed to be toasted. Best creation in the history of unhealthy breakfasts."

Edward stared at me as I spoke, his expression a mixture of bewilderment and confusion. He glanced at the pack once more before putting it in his back pocket.

"For later," he said.

"You don't know what you're missing, dude," I said.

"I guess I'll find out later, then."

"I guess you will."

It was quiet again and I felt weird, trying not to chew too loudly.

Edward stared at the table in front of him, that odd look on his face once more. I decided against asking him about it, but instead finished off a Pop-Tart and set it aside.

"Okay," I said, brushing my hands together to get rid of crumbs. "I'm done."

Edward nodded towards my notebook.

"Try those other problems," he said. "But do them all before asking me if they're right."

I sighed and tried the problems, feeling pretty confident about what I was doing.

When I had gotten to the second problem, my phone buzzed. I pulled it out of my pocket and saw that it was from Jake.

Wat r u doing? - J

For some reason, my stomach flipped with anxiety. I hadn't told Jacob about my tutoring sessions with Edward. It had totally slipped my mind, especially since I had had no idea it would be happening so soon.

Homework -B

Hey, it's not like I was lying.

"That your boyfriend?" Edward asked, and his tone was a little disgusted.

"Don't start," I warned him as I set my phone on the table. It wasn't long before it buzzed again.

Come over. Want me 2 come get u? - J

Sighing, I decided to tell him the truth.

I can't. I'm being tutored. - B

Tutored? Wtf? By who? - J

I took a deep breath.

Edward Cullen -B

I was nervous as I sent the text and put it back on the table, unsure of how he would react.

"Give me the phone," Edward suddenly said.

I looked up at him, startled. "Excuse me?"

"The phone. Give it to me. You need to focus, and texting your asshat of a boyfriend is one of the reasons you're failing maths in the first place." He held out his hand.

"I don't think so," I told him, but before I could react, he reached over and grabbed my phone from the table in front of me.

"Hey!" I protested. "Give that back."

"Nope," he said, shaking his head. "Not until you finish that."

"What are you, another Mr. Varner? Give it back." I stood up and walked over to his side of the table

"No," he said, standing up and holding the phone behind his back.

"And just when I thought that maybe, just maybeyou weren't such an asshole," I hissed, trying to grab it from him. He kept turning around so I couldn't get it, an amused look on his face.

"I promise you'll get it back when you finish that," he said calmly.

"I don't care, I want it now!" I might have even stomped my foot.

"No need to throw a toddler tantrum. I swear, it's like taking sweets from a baby."

Before I could respond, my phone starting buzzing. He looked at it before glancing at me.

"Your boyfriend is calling," he said.

I successfully grabbed the phone from his hand and threw him a glare before answering it as I walked out of the dining room and into the kitchen.

"Hello," I said.

"Edward Cullen is fucking tutoring you?" Jacob's angry voiced boomed from the other end and I cringed away from the phone.

"Yes," I said nervously. "It's not a big deal, I was forced into this."

"By who?"

"Mr. Varner."

"Didn't you tell him you didn't want that dick tutoring you?"

"I did, but he left the decision up to Emmett."

"I swear, your brother needs to fuck off."

I suddenly felt defensive. "Emmett is just looking out for me."

"Oh, you're on his side now?"

"I'm not taking sides!"

"That's what it sounds like!"

"I'm not, really!"

"So you're telling me that you don't want to come over because you're with Edward?"He sounded absolutely pissed.

"It's not that I'd rather be with Edward, God, what is wrong with you? Of course I'd rather be with you, but Varner is going to fail me if I fail his final next week. He said if I at least got tutored, I would have a chance in passing."

"Who cares? So you fail his class, big fucking deal!"

"It is a big deal to me!"

Jacob snorted bitterly. "All right, I see how it is."

His tone made me nervous. "How is it?"

"You choose school, your brother, and that dickhead Edward Cullen over me."

I was horrified. "What! No! That is not it!"

"That's exactly how it is," he growled."Otherwise you would have been okay with coming over right now."

"Emmett wouldn't allow it, it's getting dark," I said.

"Again with your brother!"

"He's in charge of me, Jake! What else am I supposed to do?"

"How about you start listening tomefor a change?"

"I would, if you were being the least bit rational."

"What the hell is that supposed to mean?"

"I have priorities, okay? School is important to me."

"When are you going to stop being a loser and have fun?"

My eyes welled up with tears and I couldn't say anything. Why was he being so mean?

"You know what, just forget it," Jake said, and my heart lurched.

"Jake, wait-"

"No, I'm tired of waiting, Bella! I'm so sick of you being afraid to just have fun and do what you want. It's always school and Emmett with you, school and Emmett, school and Emmett. And now Edward too."

"Jake, listen-"

"Shut up, I don't wanna hear it!"A tear slipped down my cheek. "I'm done. This is too fucking ridiculous."

"Jake," I sobbed. "Jake you have to listen, it's not like that-"

"Oh God, are you crying?" he asked, appalled.

"N-No," I lied, wiping a few tears.

"Don't lie to me. Shit, girls like you are too fucking sensitive. I don't know what I was thinking."

No.

No, this could not be happening to me. It was like my heart was slowly being torn in half, slowly and painfully.

"Jacob, please-"

"Bye, Bella."

The other end clicked shut, and I stared into space, shocked. I lowered the phone from my ear as tears rolled down my cheeks, in disbelief of what had just happened.

He did not just break up with me.

He couldn't have.

He wouldn't.

He hadn't said, "it's over". Weren't those the deadly words?

He hadn't left me.

No. No. No. No. No.

In a zombie-like state, I walked over to the small round table by the dining room doors. I didn't know if Edward had heard anything, or if he was still there.

I didn't care.

All I cared about was that I had just been left.

Again.

I collapsed into the chair and buried my head into my arms, crying. I couldn't hold it in, this feeling of sudden loss. It brought back memories of two years ago, except this time I was utterly alone.

I had avoided this happening with every fiber of my being. Yet it had happened anyway. I had tried so hard to do what I could to make Jacob happy, going so far as to dress slutty because he had wanted me to. I had tried to prevent this, but I had been doing something wrong all this time without even knowing it.

Hell, I still didn't know what I had done wrong. I had no clue. But that didn't matter. All that mattered was that wrong had been done. By me. Somewhere, somehow, I had screwed it all up.

I hadn't seen the signs that Jacob and I were falling apart. I was blind to everything, all the little things that may have shown that we wouldn't last.

Or maybe I just wasn't good enough for him. I could see the logic behind that.

It was basically all my fault. It was my fault we had fallen apart.

All I could do was cry, not giving a damn that Edward was probably having to hear me sob. My heart hurt, and I didn't know what to do.

I heard a soft noise to my right and could feel someone's presence, knowing that it was Edward. My sobs had quieted by now, though I was still sniffling immensely.

"Um," I heard Edward say softly. "I think I'm going to go now. . . "

I just nodded, my head still buried in my hands. Something about his words made me cry even harder. Just him saying "I'm going to go now" had me crying like someone had just died. It was just the fact that I was being left again. Even though Edward was nothing to me, he was leaving, and I was so tired of being left.

I heard the front door open and close, and an emptiness so deep filled me.

I was alone.


A/N: All outfits are on my profile.