Chapter 26. The Odd Confrontation
Two rearview mirrors.
Two wheel tires.
Two front seats.
Two back seats.
Bella rubbed her hands twice before starting the engine, her nerves on overdrive. She spent the whole day thinking and dreading her meeting with Leah. Besides the place being disgusting and rat-infested, she just wasn't prepared to hear what Leah had to say. God, she wished she could just read people, especially people who proved to be a threat to her newfound happiness.
The problem with not reading people is that you couldn't control them, couldn't make them say whatever it is you wanted to say to make you feel better, make you feel perfect.
Bella sighed before pulling out of the driveway. Shit, she was doing so well. Jacob was so good for her. Now Leah had to come along and throw a wrench in her perfect plans and fuck everything up. Her and Edward. They can both fuck off for all she cared.
It took exactly twenty-four minutes for her to get to Harry's Fish Fry due to her circling around the edge of Forks for ten minutes straight, thinking up of all the possible things Leah could say to her and her responses. She had four different scenarios and four different responses. Even though that was an excellent number, she needed more- maybe six or eight.
Fuck it. She had to go in. Leah would think she was a wimpy white girl and that was worse than anything.
Bella quickly went through the numbers in her head before leaving her car, making sure everything was in place.
Rock music floated from the restaurant and people's laughter boomed through the thick walls. Clenching her gloved hands tight, Bella took nineteen steps until she was standing right in front of the door. Shit. She took one step in place before opening the door.
She quickly spotted Leah across the restaurant in a secluded corner. Without making eye contact with the hostess, she walked over there, a bead of sweat trickling down her forehead.
"Hey, Bella" Leah said as she motioned for me to sit across from her. Her smile didn't reach her eyes and Bella sat down, slow and deliberate.
"What do you a want?" Bella asked.
"I think we need to have a little talk." She leaned in closer, waiting, in Bella's calculation, approximately twenty seconds before continuing. "I think after what I have to say, you'll stop fucking my boyfriend."
"Ex-boyfriend. Get that in your head. He wants nothing to do with you."
Leah pursed her lips. "Unlike you, I've got my charms. He couldn't resist me before and I could do it again. Easy as pie."
"What- what makes you think I'll let you?" Another bead of sweat trickled down Bella's forehead and her nerves did somersaults in her stomach. This was one of the four scenarios she thought up of and knew exactly what to say, but being a part of this conversation, being right here at this moment, made her want to vomit. Confrontations were the worst, especially with someone as intimidating as Leah.
"You will. Good thing that I was in Forks the other day shopping with my friend. If not, I would've missed the little talk you had with your tall and handsome friend."
For a split second, Bella didn't know what she was talking about. Talk? With Jacob? Well, duh. She did more than talk with Jacob….No, she meant Edward. No, that couldn't be true. It was too much of a coincidence.
"You don't mean…" Bella croaked out. Now this wasn't in one of her scenarios and she racked through her mind for any kind of good response.
"Yeah, that copper haired pale guy you were talking with. I think you macked on him or something. I took pictures." Leah pulled out three pictures from her purse and laid them out on the table.
She was right. As Bella scanned the pictures, she saw what was clearly herself, gloves and all, lip locking with Edward Cullen just outside her Crazies Anonymous meetings.
"Where you following me?" she asked, not taking her eyes away from the one evidence that could ruin her relationship with Jacob.
Leah shrugged. "Does it matter?"
Yeah, Bella thought. But in essence, it didn't. Jacob wouldn't be as concerned in why Leah took the pictures or how except what the pictures contained. And Bella couldn't deny it. She didn't have any Photoshop skills either so she was fucked.
With this new evidence, Bella threw all caution to the winds. The mortifying thought of Jacob ever seeing this made any predetermined conversation she'd have with Leah fly out the window. In other words, she didn't give a flying fuck what came out of her mouth except to prevent Leah from ever leaking out these pictures.
"What do you want?" Bella asked. "What do you want for you to not show them to him?"
"Well, that's easy. I thought you were smarter than that." Leah leaned back in her chair, arms crossed in front of her chest. The slimy bitch was enjoying this, and milking it for all it was worth.
But Bella wasn't stupid, not by a long shot. "You want me to…break up with him."
"Of course. Either you break up with him on your own, or I'll break you two up."
At this point, Bella fiddled with her thumbs and kept rubbing her lips together, not sure what the hell to do.
"Can I get anything for you?" a plump, black haired waitress with tattoos traveling all up her left arm asked her.
"No." Bella couldn't even look at her.
Once the waitress left, Leah pressed her on. "What's it going to be, Miss Prissy?"
"I'll…I'll break up with him."
The words came out of her mouth before she could stop herself. Maybe if Leah showed him the pictures he would come to the crazy conclusion that they were fakes, just like Bella dreamed he would do. But Jacob wasn't stupid either. He would break up with her, and think she was a slut.
It wasn't until she said those words that she realized she would rather break up with Jacob herself than have him think her anything less than the perfect girlfriend.
Leah smiled, a genuine smile. "Good. Tomorrow, I'll make sure you kept your word."
Bella couldn't stand the pretense anymore. She got up and without saying anything else to her arch-nemesis, she left. No way was she going to spend one more minute with this fucking she-witch from hell and no way was she going to order anything from this greasy joint.
Bella focused on counting the thirty-six steps it took to get from her seat to her car and performed her entire routine slowly, trying to savor the last few moments that she was somebody's girlfriend.
When she finally turned on the ignition is when she let the tears she had been holding fall down her cheeks. It was going to be over. She knew it wouldn't last. Anything that made her happy was taken away as easily as it was given. Maybe she was never meant to be happy. Maybe this was somebody's way of testing her.
It took sixteen minutes for her to get to her house. Why she was so quick, she had no idea. On the car ride back, she thought she could easily come up with another solution to solve this. But would Jacob really believe that she didn't want to kiss Edward? What if Edward came over and lied to Jacob, saying she wanted it? Who would Jacob believe? She didn't want to find out.
Once she performed her ritual and got inside her house, she paused over her cell phone. Of course, she could've called Jacob before she drove back, but why would she? Now that she was home, it was inevitable to do so.
Bella took a deep breath, and dialed the now overly familiar number.
The most cliché words came tumbling out of her mouth before he could even say "Hi, Bella."
"Jacob, we need to talk. Can you come over now?"