An Officer and A Gentlemen Contest
Title: Forged Through Fire
Your pen name(s): FatesLoveQueen
Branch of Service/Profession: Fire Fighter
Pairing: Edward and Bella
If you would like to see all the stories that are a part of this contest visit the "An Officer and a Gentleman " C2 Community:
Disclaimer: I do NOT own Twilight. Stephenie Meyer owns any and all Twilight characters that may appear in this story. The remainder is my original work. Copyright 2009 by Fates-Love-Queen. No copying or reproduction of this work is permitted without my express written authorization.
Thank you as always, to my wonderful superbeta kyla713. She makes my words look pretty and Americanised! If you haven't read her stories, do yourself a favour and read them, they are amazing!
I had a blast writing this, and I hope you enjoy reading just as much : )
"Eight ball, corner pocket," I called as I lined up the shot.
"Fuck off, man. There's no way you'll get that," Emmett laughed.
"How much?" I asked, knowing full well that Emmett was a sucker for a bet.
He looked at the pool table in front of us, to me, and then back to the table.
"Twenty bucks," he said cockily.
I took my time lining up the shot, especially now that it wasn't just my ego, but also money on the line.
Looking around, I noticed that all of the guys from the fire house had to come in to watch.
Holding my breath, I pulled the cue back and pushed.
I heard the clunk of the balls hit and then the sound of a ball hitting the pocket.
"No fucking way!"
Everyone erupted in laughs and I couldn't help but smile.
"When are you gonna' learn, Em? Never bet against Edward in pool," Jasper said as he clapped Emmett on the back laughing.
I took a bow for theatrics and walked up to Emmett.
"You owe me twenty bucks, bitch."
"Fine," he huffed, taking out his wallet.
Just as he was about to open it, the siren sounded.
"Saved by the bell," I said, dropping my cue on the table and moving toward my turnouts.
Emmett was on my heels as we reached our lockers and I quickly threw on my pants and pulled my suspenders over my shirt.
I grabbed my helmet and jacket and ran for the truck.
"Where we headed?" I asked Jasper, who was our driver and already fully dressed.
"Voltaire Street in Forks. That new apartment complex that went up recently near the school," he said, as I continued to do up my jacket.
"Shit, that's only about a half mile drive from my place," I said.
I prayed that none of my close friends were in that complex tonight…
Ten minutes later, we pulled up out the front of the building.
I jumped out and ran to throw on the rest of my gear as I surveyed the building.
The fire was about three quarters of the way up; god, I hoped the people on the upper floors were out…
Looking around, I noticed there were people everywhere and most of them were in a state of hysteria.
The paramedics had already arrived, treating many people for smoke inhalation.
Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my dad standing next to one of the ambulances. He must have received a call from the hospital and come down to help.
The captain called us over to him.
Fortunately, the landlord had thought to grab a list of tenants and had done a head count for us.
I let out breath of relief, as it seemed that all tenants were out safely.
I turned around to see a man climbing out of a police cruiser and running toward the building.
As I ran to him, I recognized him as Chief Swan.
"Chief Swan, you can't go in there," I said to him, as I grabbed him by the arms.
"Don't tell me what to do, son. My girls could be in there!"
Wait, his girls?
"Your girls?" I asked him, clearly confused.
"Yes. My two daughters moved here last week. Rosie, Bella!" he cried out again.
I saw a platinum blonde running toward us, and she threw herself in the Chief's arms.
Her hair and face were covered in ash and soot, but she was still very attractive.
Obviously, Emmett had noticed as he stood up straight and stuck out his chest next to me.
She openly sobbed as her father embraced her.
"Oh, I'm so glad you're okay, Rosie. Where's Bella?" he asked, looking over her head and panning the crowd.
"I don't know! She was right behind me, I swear! But we must have got separated. I can't find her!" she said, panicked.
"Wait, you say your sister is missing?" I asked.
She nodded at me with tears running down her cheeks, as her father's eyes widened in fear.
"Bella… Bella!" he cried, still holding the blonde.
I ran over to the landlord.
"Sir, do you have a Bella Swan on the list?"
"Uh, let me check. Oh… yes."
"And? Is she out here?"
"No, I'm sorry. I must have missed her on the sheet. I don't have her checked off."
I was suddenly livid.
If the girl was still in that apartment, due to this man's stupidity, she would have been in there for at least half an hour now!
I ran back to the blonde and her father.
"Do you both share an apartment?"
She nodded in response.
"Which number are you in?"
"Four-oh-eight. Oh god, please find her," she said, as she grabbed my jacket in her tiny fists.
"We will, I promise."
I know we weren't supposed to make promises, but the look on both her and the Chief's face broke my heart.
"Ready up guys and let's go!" I yelled, as I pulled on my oxygen tank and grabbed my axe.
As we made our way to the building, I noted what floor room four-oh-eight was located.
It was the floor directly below the fire…
This wasn't going to be good.
An unknown dread filled my system as we entered the building.
I lead up the stairs, with Emmett and Jasper on my flank and Jake and Seth behind them.
The other team, led by Sam, was waiting outside moving the cherry picker and to get us anything we needed.
"Alright, stay sharp, guys. Let's find the girl and get out. We came in together," I said.
"We leave together," the guys finished in unison.
The first three floors were pretty easy, as the fire was mainly higher, but the creaking of the building was making me nervous.
The building had been on fire for longer than I would have liked, for us to be walking around in. Not to mention that girl…
We reached the stairs and entered the fourth floor, only to find the corridor blocked with rubble and debris.
Part of the roof from the fifth floor had fallen in, and this floor was filled with smoke.
It wouldn't be long until this whole floor was overcome with fire.
"Fuck!" I yelled in frustration.
"Alright, let's find another way in."
I knew she would be on the 'even' side of the corridor.
The door to the right was number four-zero-zero.
I put my hand to the door; it was cool.
I took a step back, took out my axe, and swung it at the handle.
As the handle fell to the floor, I kicked at the door and it opened easily.
"Alright guys, let's find a weak spot in the wall and find a way through."
They nodded in unison and started walking through the apartment.
When we reached the far wall, Jasper started banging around.
"Got it!" he said, pointing to the weak spot.
Emmett was by far the biggest out of all of us, so he usually handled the axe work.
We stood back to give him room, as he made a hole big enough for us to climb through.
Thankfully, the rubble cleared outside room four-oh-two and we were able to use the corridor.
We reached the girl's room and thankfully, it was unlocked.
Unfortunately, it was quite a large, three bedroom apartment.
"Alright, let's make this fast," I said.
We spread out to search the rooms, and I found myself being drawn to a room at the back of the corridor that had been converted in to an office.
I didn't know how, but I knew she was in here; I felt it…
But looking around the room, I couldn't see her.
I almost left to search somewhere else, when I saw something pale in the walk in closet; it was an arm.
I ran toward it and found a girl lying on the floor, covered in boxes.
I pushed everything off her and as I turned her face towards me, my breath caught in my throat.
She was beautiful.
She had pale, milky skin that contrasted her mahogany hair perfectly.
Even though one side of her face was coated in dry blood, she was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen in my life.
She looked so small and fragile, and I suddenly had an overwhelming urge to protect her.
"I've got her!" I yelled, as I picked her up and moved her to the desk in the middle of the room.
I noticed that the blood on her face was coming from a nasty gash on her forehead.
She must have been hit on the head from one of those falling boxes.
I quickly removed my glove and checked for a pulse, and let out a sigh of relief when I found one. It was weak, but it was there.
It was then that I noticed that she wasn't breathing.
I had never been a believer in love at first sight, but as I looked down at her small body, injured and not breathing, that all changed.
I wanted… no, needed her to live.
Without even a second thought, even though the room was full of thick smoke, I removed my oxygen mask and tilted her head back.
"E, what the fuck are you doing? Put your mask back on!" Emmett yelled as he and the others reached the room.
I leaned down and pinching her nose started giving her mouth to mouth.
I knew it was wrong, but the feel of her lips against mine was indescribable.
They were so soft and supple, and molded perfectly to mine.
"She's not breathing, Emmett. I don't have a choice!" I called out in between breaths.
"So pick her up and run her out to the paramedics like we do with everyone else. Like we are supposed to!"
I shook my head vehemently.
This girl wasn't like everyone else.
Something deep inside me knew that she was very different.
"I've got a bad feeling about this, Edward. We need to get out, now!"
I knew exactly what Jasper was saying.
The movement and creaking of the building was becoming much more frequent.
She started to weakly breathe on her own, so I placed my face mask over her head and picked her up.
"Alright, let's get out of here!" I yelled, as I reached down and picked up the small rug on the floor, wrapping it around her.
The guys began filing out and I followed with the girl safely in my arms.
The skin on my hand that was touching her was tingling; similar to the feeling of pop-rocks on your tongue, and it was something that I had never experienced before.
As I stepped through the doorway, I noticed that even though she was unconscious, she was holding a photo of a woman in her hand.
Knowing that it must be important to her, I stopped and placed it in the pocket of my pants to keep it safe.
Just as I was about to start running, I heard a loud rumbling directly above me.
"Eddie, the buildings crashing. Run!" I heard Emmett yell, but it was too late, there was no way I could reach them.
The single thought running through my head at that moment was 'not her!'
As I saw the first of the rubble fall above me, I set her on the ground and lay on top of her, making sure to cover her with my body and throwing the rug over us.
I knew there was a good chance I wasn't going to make it through this, so I quickly removed her mask and placed a kiss on her lips.
"I know we've never met, Bella, but I'm so thankful you moved here. Thank you for showing me that love at first sight does exist."
I placed the mask back on her and wrapped my arms securely around her waist as I heard the roof above us collapse.
I could hear a loud beeping, but I had no idea where it was coming from.
I opened my eyes and automatically closed them, as my eyes were assaulted by light.
I heard sobbing, followed by shuffling.
"Edward, can you hear me?"
I opened them again and squinted, and was met by my mother's face.
"Oh honey, you're finally awake! I've been so worried," she sobbed, as she ran her palm over my cheek.
I abruptly felt like someone was hitting my head with an axe…
"Fuck my head hurts," I moaned in pain.
"Just wait and I'll grab your father."
She ran from the room and returned with my father in less than a minute.
"How are you feeling, son?" he asked as he looked over my chart.
"Like I've been run over by a truck."
"Do you remember what happened?" he probed, and I knew it was the 'doctor' talking.
"Ah, well, I remember the fire… We went in looking for someone."
"Do you remember what happened after that?"
I felt my face scrunch up as I tried to concentrate.
I closed my eyes as I sorted through the memories.
I was confused until I saw a flash of mahogany hair.
"Oh god, is Bella… is she okay?" I asked, panicked.
"Calm down, son. She has a broken arm and some cuts and bruises, but apart from that she is well. What you did for that girl was reckless, dangerous, and beyond the call of duty, but thanks to you, she is alive."
I looked up to see my mom in tears, but both of them were smiling with a look of… pride?
I instantly felt better, and relaxed in to the bed.
"You, on the other hand, have a nasty head injury, a broken rib, a broken leg and are covered in bruises from head to toe."
I brought my hand up to my head and winced at the pain.
"How long have I been out?" I asked, rubbing my hand along the bandage on my forehead.
"Three days. We've been monitoring you closely the whole time, but you gave us quite a scare," my dad answered as he walked towards me.
He reached in to his pocket and pulled out a pen light.
"Okay, look here," he said as he shone it in to my eyes.
It was bright and I winced.
He made me follow it from up and down, left to right.
"Well, your coordination is good, still a little photosensitive, but that's to be expected with your injury. Are you in any pain?" he asked and I nodded in confirmation.
"Alright, I'll get a nurse to come in and give you something for it. I'm so glad you're okay, son," he said, as he leaned down and gave me a hug, before leaving the room.
"Mom, what happened?" I asked, as she sat down on the side of my bed.
"Well, your friends are outside waiting. Emmett and Jasper have hardly left since you've been here. They can answer your questions better than I can, do you want me to let them in?"
She placed a lingering kiss on my forehead and left the room.
"About fucking time you woke up!" Emmett bellowed, as he and Jasper entered the room.
I hadn't even realized I'd closed my eyes, until I jumped in surprise from his voice.
"Pipe down Emmett. You're in a hospital, for fuck's sake!" Jasper scolded as he slapped him in the back of the head.
"He's right though, it's so good to see you awake," he said, as he grabbed my hand and leaned in for a 'bro hug'.
"How you feelin', man?" Emmett asked as he followed suit.
"I've had worse," I said as I shrugged my shoulders and winced from the pain.
"Well you look like shit. You remind me of that chick from Willy Wonka. You know that chick that ate the gum and turned purple?" Emmett said as he gave me the once over.
"That bad?" I asked.
"Here," Jasper said, as he walked out of the bathroom handing me a mirror.
I held up the mirror and gasped.
"I'm fucking purple!" I exclaimed as I inspected myself.
There wasn't an inch of skin that wasn't covered in bruises, and I did look like that Violet chick from the Willy Wonka movie.
"Told ya so," Emmett laughed.
I threw the mirror down in frustration and reached for the cup of water; half expecting a bunch of orange skinned midgets to come and haul me away for 'juicing'...
A grown man drinking from a toddler cup; fucking fabulous.
"So, what happened?" I asked as I took a sip.
Em looked like he was trying not to laugh, so Jasper took the lead.
"You scared the fuck out of us, that's what happened! How could you be so irresponsible, Edward?" he yelled.
"You wouldn't understand," I muttered as I took another swig.
"Try me," Jasper said, glaring at me.
"I don't know, Jasper, alright? I can't explain it without sounding nuts! But the moment I saw her, I knew I had to save her. Even if that meant sacrificing my own life. I know how stupid that sounds, but I felt something when I saw her. Would you not have done the same for Alice?"
The room filled with silence, and I saw Jasper's posture stiffen and then relax.
My sister, Alice, and Jasper had been high school sweethearts and married for just over a year now.
"How did you get us out?" I asked, refusing to make eye contact.
"After the roof caved, we ran back. I radioed Sam and told him to bring the picker around to that room and we dug you guys out. We got you out just in time, 'cause just as we got on the picker, the whole building pretty much collapsed," Emmett said, shuddering.
I felt the tears well in my eyes as I looked at my best friends.
Just as I had risked my life to save Bella, they had risked their lives for us.
"Thank you," I said.
"Well, we went in together, we were sure as hell leaving together," Jasper said.
I was about to ask something else, when there was a knock the door.
"Come in," I said.
The door opened and I felt the breath catch in my throat; it was Bella.
She was with her sister and the Chief.
"Ah, we'll give you guys some space," Emmett said, as he got up and gave me a fist pump, winking.
Jasper did the same, and followed him to the door.
I saw Emmett wink at the blonde, Rosalie, and she giggled and blushed.
"Oh, Emmett? Don't forget you owe me twenty bucks."
He rolled his eyes but smirked as he left the room.
The Chief cleared his throat uncomfortably, breaking the uncomfortable silence of the room.
"Edward, I just wanted to come and say thank you for saving my little girl. Thank you. It doesn't sound like enough for what you did, does it? I'm eternally in your debt, son. If you ever need anything, anything at all, please don't hesitate to come and ask me. It's the least I can do."
I could tell he was getting emotional, as he walked over to shake my hand.
He grabbed my hand in his as if it were a lifeline.
"Not many people would have done what you did, and I'll be nominating you for a bravery award, son."
"I'm flattered, Chief…"
"Please, call me Charlie," he interrupted.
"Well, Charlie, as I said, I'm truly flattered but it's not necessary. Her standing here alive is all the thanks I need," I replied honestly.
"You're a good man, Edward. Thank you again."
He released my hand and quietly left the room.
Bella's sister charged at me, wrapping her arms around my shoulders.
"Oh god, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to hurt you. I just wanted to say thank you for what you did for Bella," she said, smiling at me.
"As I told the chief, it was nothing honestly. I didn't even really have to think about it."
"Well, I think I'll go thank your friend, I mean friends. I'll leave you two alone," she said with a wink, before turning and leaving the room.
An awkward silence hung in the room and I had to look up to see if she was still there.
"Um, may I sit down?" she asked timidly.
I smiled at her shyness and nodded.
She slowly walked over and took a seat next to my bed.
She looked up at me, biting on her lower lip nervously. It was such an innocent thing, but it instantly made me hard.
Shifting uncomfortably, I took a moment to take in her features.
The wound on her head had been stitched and she had a sling on her arm, but she still looked beautiful. I noticed that her eyes were a vibrant brown, and they were so expressive that I'm sure with practice, I would be able to read her moods from them.
Way to get ahead of yourself, Cullen…
She had some bruises, but they were fading.
Oh god, my bruises! I don't want her to see me like this; I look like a fucking Ribenna berry!
I tried to cover my face, but her hands stopped me.
I heard her intake of breath, as the tingling became apparent from our touch.
"Please don't cover up," she said.
"But I look hideous, I'm purple…"
"You look perfect to me," she said, as a faint blush covered her cheeks.
"We haven't been properly introduced, but I'm Bella," she said shyly, as she held her out to me.
"I'm Edward," I replied, taking her hand in mine.
"No, you're my axe wielding knight in yellow armor," she giggled.
Her laugh was infectious, and even though it hurt like a bitch, I chuckled with her.
"In all seriousness, Edward, I need to say thank you. I've been told what you did, not only protecting me from the roof, but resuscitating me as well. It overwhelms me that you would do that for a complete stranger."
"As I said to your sister, it wasn't a choice, Bella. I had to save you."
"What do you mean?" she asked, as her eyebrows creased in confusion.
"I can't explain it, but I needed to save you, Bella. The moment I saw you lying there on the floor unconscious, it was as if my body acted on autopilot. I didn't have a say. Please don't be freaked out, but I felt a connection to you somehow, that there was something about you…"
She ghosted her fingers over my hand.
"I feel it, too," she whispered.
We sat there and looked at each hour ages, not speaking, just taking each other in.
"Bella, will you please do me a favor?"
"Anything," she replied with a smile.
"Can you please bring me my pants in the corner?"
She looked at me questioningly, but stood and brought them over to me.
I fumbled through my pockets until I found what I was looking for.
"I believe this belongs to you," I said, as I handed her the photo of the woman.
When she saw what it was, she started to cry.
"Edward, I don't know what to say… Thank you," she said, as the tears rolled down her cheeks. "My mother was very camera shy, so this is one of only a few photos we have of her. She passed away earlier this year. That's why Rose and I moved back to Forks."
"Oh Bella, I'm so sorry. I thought it may have been important, so I kept it for you," I replied.
I had an overwhelmingly urge to touch her, so I wiped the tears from her cheek.
To my surprise, she leaned in to my touch.
"I'm so grateful, for everything, Edward. I wish there was someway to repay you for your kindness…" she said.
"Bella, I know this is backwards, and I'll completely understand if you say no. But would you consider going on a date with me? To dinner maybe?" I asked as I held my breath.
"Edward, any man that risks his life to save mine twice, can certainly take me to dinner," she said with a smile.
I couldn't help but smile in return.
She stood and cupped my cheek with her hand as she hesitantly leaned in and touched her lips to mine.
I couldn't stifle the small moan that escaped as her lips moved in sync with mine.
She pulled back and gave me a heartbreaking smile, her cheeks flushed.
I knew then, in that moment, that I would do anything to keep her safe and make her happy.
I would make her mine.
I couldn't explain it, but in my heart, I knew she was made for me. And if I had it my way, I would be taking the chief up on his offer someday.
Because it was obvious that all I would ever need or want in my life, was the breathtaking woman in front of me. Always.
A/N: Hope you all enjoyed FiremanWard as much as I did.
Voting for this contest has finished. I didn't win anything, but I still loved writing this little O/S.
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Thanks for reading, much love. XoX