Are you going to kill me? I know, I know. I deserve it. Well, not really. I'm too young to die. Anyways, I'm not going to try to make excuses for the extreme delay... Well, maybe one. You see, my dad accidentally deleted this chapter when it was almost done, and I had to type it out all over again ;_;!! So yeah... The long-awaited third chapter!!! PS. TWO REVIEWS for the last chapter!?! Meanies!! Apart from krazikeo, WENDYCLARE and rosiiebuck123. You guys are awesome. xD

Edward's POV

I drove home in a daze. Today had been... Well, incredible, to say the least. I had gone a year thinking I would never see Bella again, and now we had a date for tomorrow. Not a date, I chastised myself. We were just friends now. Of course, that was fine by me. Just seeing a glimpse of her in a crowd would be enough to satisfy the gnawing pain that ached at my still heart.

But even that pain was nothing compared to the anger I felt towards Jacob Black. It was bad enough that he'd taken Bella from me – that anger was almost nothing because I knew I couldn't act on it without hurting Bella. The anger of him hurting her, however, was unbearable. How dare he take for granted the fact that he could lay a hand on her?

I knew she would forgive him – she never held a grudge – so I couldn't kill him for that either. But I would love to rub in his face the reason I wasn't ripping his head from his shoulders – See, I'd say, much as I'd love to cheerfully murder you, I would never do anything to hurt her. Not that I'd ever see him...

Bella's POV (next morning)

I awoke slowly, blinking, waiting for the unfamiliar scene before me to shift back into my room. When it didn't, I almost panicked.

Where am I? I thought, groggily raising myself to lean on my elbow. It took me a few moments to recall the previous day, and the shock made me drop back onto the pillow. I couldn't believe I had called Edward Cullen, of all people. He must surely hate me.

Although... He hadn't behaved in any way as if he hated me. More as if he had discovered something wonderful, but didn't want to become too attached because he wasn't prepared for the fall that would unquestionably come with it's departure.

The final thing I remembered was that, at eleven a.m. today, he was going to drive me home to retrieve my truck.

"Crap," I muttered as I glanced at my watch. It was 10 o' clock – I'd forgotten to set my alarm. I leapt from the bed, meaning to get ready, but then remembered that I had nothing to get ready with. I would never take a toothbrush for granted again.

Splashing some cold water on my face, I resolved to buy one on my way... Well, not home , because I could never consider this hotel to be my home, but my old house certainly wasn't home either. The concept of 'home' implied a sense of sanctuary.

After doing the best I could to erase the shadows under my eyes, I had nothing better to do than to sit on the bed and wait.

The time ticked by slowly, each second dragging painfully, so that when it was time, I felt like I had gone mad. I probably had, to be honest. The very fact that I was following through on my plans was solid evidence to support that.

But, mad or not, my heart still leapt when Edward gracefully slid from his car and opened the door for me. I got in silently, not knowing what to say.

"Thank you," I managed, "For coming."

He looked at me quizzically. "I told you I would, didn't I?"

"I suppose you did."

I wasn't surprised that he didn't reply – there's not much you can say to that without a not-so-subtle subject change. It was regrettable that the rest of the journey passed silently, but I had used up my limited quota of conversation topics. I was almost glad when the time came to say goodbye – the silence was deafening.

"I'll... see you," I told him, hoping fervently that I would.

"Yes," he replied absently. If this was the only goodbye I was getting, I would be severely disappointed. And it bugged me that I didn't know why.

"Bye," I muttered sourly, more angry at myself than at Edward, who had done nothing wrong.

"Bye."

I looked towards the gap in the trees where my former home had been. Former, because I had no intention of returning – permanently – in the foreseeable future.

Peering from the trees, I surveyed the scene. The house looked empty, but Jacob could have been in any of the back rooms. I was willing to take the risk, though – having a vehicle equaled freedom to go where I wanted, and freedom sounded great right then.

I ran in a low crouch, crossing my fingers behind my back in the hope that I wouldn't trip. I made it to the truck without seeing any people. That was good – I didn't want to explain myself to anyone. I slid into the cabin and was driving off, wincing at the roar of the engine, when a familiar voice called my name from somewhere behind me. I stamped on the accelerator, knowing it wouldn't be fast enough. What I didn't expect was a sharp thud reverberating through it.

I realize now that I wasn't angry before. No matter how I thought about it, I couldn't bring myself to be mad at Jacob. Up until now, that is. Now, when he would not let me drive away, somehow I felt a sudden, unexplainable surge of fury. How dare he treat me as if I were the one who had done wrong?

"Bells, wait up!" he yelled again. I stormed out onto the damp grass.

"What?" I demanded. He looked dumbfounded for a second, and then spoke.

"I'm sorry. Stay. Please."

"You just don't get it, do you?" I whispered, slipping back inside the truck. He didn't reply, confirming what I said. He didn't get it, and he never would.

Jacob stared after me as I drove away. His expression was so mournful that it made me want to drive back and console him, but I resisted.

My hotel room hadn't improved in the sunlight as I had hoped. It was still dingy – in fact, the peeling wallpaper was even more depressing in daylight.

I was getting hungry – I hadn't eaten since the previous day – so I headed to the store to pick up food. I went through the motions of my day methodically so I wouldn't have to think. I was on the edge of a serious migraine, an I didn't wish to go any deeper. The problem was, there wasn't much escape from thinking when I had nothing remotely interesting to do.

I was walking through the parking lot when I heard a high voice behind me.

"Bella!" squealed Alice. I whirled around.

"Hey, Alice –" I began, but was cut off by a tight hug. I embraced her back awkwardly.

"I just knew I'd see you here!"

"I wonder how you knew that?" I asked sarcastically. Light humour was exactly what I needed. Scratch that, Alice was exactly who I needed.

Bit of a short chapter, really. Don't worry, I won't take as long to update next time. I'm looking forward immensely to the next chapter. And the thing with Alice, well, I actually didn't plan that. My thoughts ran away with me, but I think it's a pretty good ending to this chapter. Please, please, PLEASE review!!! :)