A/N: Hi! Hi! What you're about to read takes place a few months prior to Bella and Jake deciding to take their "break" before he goes off on tour. At the time, I'd written it to help me get into Bella's head when she was having a hard time just letting go once and for all. It was to help me see some good in their relationship so I'd be able to connect better with her behaviors, and actions; if that makes sense? Anywho, while working on the sequel I remembered it's existance and found it on my old lap top, so I figured I'd share. What happens in this outtake (some of the details) will be tied into Two Makes Five eventually. Hopefully you've been reading the sequel. I'm really excited about where things are going with it and we're almost at the big, "shit meets fan", moment so yeah, good times! If you are reading the sequel, you can expect to see an update early next week.
Even though there's a lot of Jake in this outtake, I hope you'll still like it! :)
Two Makes Three
Outtake: The Promise and The Ring
I'd been lying on the couch staring at the ceiling, watching the dusty fan spin round and round over my head for the last twenty minutes. I could hear Jake in our bedroom. He and his guitar were apparently working on a new song. I'd been listening to him play the same two chords over and over again since the moment I'd settled in on our sofa.
He was getting frustrated and the realization of that was enough to make me smile and then shake my head to myself.
Any second he would come stomping out of the room.
He'd throw his guitar into its case, which was propped against the wall beside the window, and then he'd ram his red plastic pick into his right pocket. After that he'd grumble about riffs, and hooks and the bullshit that they rained over his life when it came to writing music.
Once all of that was out of the way… then he'd notice I was home ridiculously early from work.
After hearing the door creek open I peeked over the back of the couch and smirked at the sight of his rather serious scowl.
"Goddamn Jasper and his stupid goddamn hooks!"
When our eyes finally met he nearly chocked on his saliva.
"Jesus! Bella what are you, shit what time is it? It can't be two already."
I smiled and sat myself up to pull my legs in against my chest after wrapping my arms around them. "It's just after eleven. It was slow at the Tavern so Charlie insisted I head home early since I'd already been there seven nights straight."
"You should have called me to come meet you."
"I'm a big girl, Jacob. I'm perfectly capable of getting myself home."
He took a seat beside me and swiftly brought my body up into his lap to wrap his strong arms around me and kiss my bare shoulder.
"I know you are, Bella. That's not why you should have called me, though. The highlight of my night is getting to walk you home. You know that."
I smirked over his proclamation and playfully rolled my eyes.
"I knew you'd be busy. If you want, though, I could leave… go back to The Tavern, and then have you meet me at our usual spot?" I softly teased as I ran my fingertips down his arms where they were still wrapped in front of my grumbling belly.
I was starving, but eating was honestly the last thing on my mind this evening.
"First off nothing is more important to me than you. Second off, now that I have you here, in my arms, I'd be an idiot to let you leave again."
"Yup... Yup you would be."
He let out a sarcastic laugh and lifted me up off of his lap to toss me over his shoulder and slap my ass.
"Funny girl you are, Ms. Swan."
I kicked my legs back and forth up above me and let out a huff, "Put me down, Black!"
"Jacob Black! I mean it!"
"I don't like it when you take the subway without me at night. Weirdo's and perverts ride the subway once the sun goes down." He declared after gentling setting me back down onto the couch to stand over me with his arms at his hips.
"Um, excuse me but, I ride the subway once the sun goes down." I instantly challenged with a smirk.
"And you're both a weirdo, and a pervert. Seriously woman, just why do you think I love you as much as I do?" he toyed.
I laughed at his remark and shook my head in defiance after sticking my bottom lip out in a playful pout, "I'm not a pervert."
"After a few shots of vodka you sure are."
I smacked his arm with my opened hand and rolled my eyes. "I can't be blamed for Hells Bells actions."
He laughed and dropped down to his knees beside me, "Let's do something spontaneous... I could use a little bit of, Hells Bells, tonight"
"Oh could you now? Well, I certainly could use a shot or two, so set me up!"
Every once in a while Jake would get in these manic moods. While they were fun, they could also be ridiculously exhausting, and sometimes a little frightening. It had been a while since he'd suggested a late night adventure… after downing a few shots at home, but it had also been a while since I'd been home before two in the morning.
"I don't know. Let's get a little tipsy and just jump in a cab. We can head up to the square. Maybe I could make a few bucks on a corner somewhere with my guitar." He suggested as I watched him make his way back to the sofa with a bottle of booze and two shot glasses in his hands.
"Let's leave the guitar at home please."
If we were going to do this, I wanted it to be time spent with each other… without Jake's guitar acting as the third wheel. Much to my delight he nodded his head in agreement and then carefully filled our glasses with some clear potent liquid. I smiled up into his eyes and counted to three before bringing it's rim up to my parted lips. After slamming the glass back down onto the coffee table he quickly filled it back up and then slid it back towards me.
"Batters up, two for two in less than thirty seconds? Can-You-Do-It-Swan?"
I shot my right thumb up in the air and then lifted the shot glass from the table, "Challenge accepted."
After swallowing it down I let out an exasperated breath and leaned back into the sofa. Mind numbing with alcohol was always the best way to numb my internal financial worries… especially after being sent home early from a night at the bar.
Without warning Jake was suddenly lifting me back up into the air to cradle me in his arms. He instantly began walking us towards the front door without saying a single word, all the while looking down directly into my eyes with his panty dropping, insanely contagious smile.
"If we're really going out, I need my shoes, nerd."
He scoffed and slowly lowered me down so that my feet could touch the floor. He cupped my face between his hands and placed his lips over mine. I felt my heart speed up and found my fingers reaching upward to get lost in his hair as he pressed me further into him.
"It was nice of Charlie to let you out early. He must have known I was in need of some time with my girl this evening."
"Yeah well, we'll see if you still feel that way in two weeks when rent is due and we're a few hundred short."
Jake frowned and traced my cheek bone with his index finger before running it across my bottom lip. "We'll be fine. I'm working on something to bring in some extra money for us, and I've got that temp job at the studio coming up, and maybe even that tour if Sam's connection comes through."
I forced a smile and nodded my head.
It was pointless to argue with him when it came to our finances.
As much as we struggled, Jake was right.
Somehow, we always managed to just scrape by… plus our land lord loved me so I could easily get an extension on rent, even though it was something I hated to do.
It always involved some over the top fake flirtatious behavior on my end that would leave me feeling as though I needed to scrub my body with a barbed wire loofa in the shower for two hours, but hey, if it meant keeping a roof over our head, then it was worth it.
After Jake released me from his arms I spun around to slide my feet back into my 'new to me' black leather boots that Alice had given me, and then slipped my hoodie back on to pull the zipper up in front of me. As soon as my hand was free again I found Jake's fingers lacing between my own and felt a slow smile spread across my face as he began rubbing tiny circles over my skin with his thumb.
"So, how many guys hit on you tonight?" he randomly questioned after opening the front door.
"Not many. Maybe two or three… one guy tried to tell me I could make thousands in just one night if I'd come work for him."
"Oh yeah, doing what?"
I laughed and tilted my head to rest it on his shoulder while we stood in the elevator. "I dunno. Charlie kicked him out before I could ask."
"Good. I'll have to thank your boss the next time I see him." Jake instantly replied after we'd stepped out from the lobby of our building.
I snickered to myself and increased my grasp on his hand as he began walking us down the sidewalk once we were outside under the night sky. It was late, but there were still plenty of people out walking around. Summers in the city were always like this and it was only one of the many things that I loved about living here.
"We're not going to walk all the way there are we?" I questioned, feeling a little nervous after realizing he wasn't even attempting to flag a cab down.
"Just for a little bit. Something up here caught my eye the other day." Jake casually explained with a slight smirk slowly spreading across his face.
I scanned our surroundings and quickly realized we were heading towards one of my favorite window shopping stores, Greenwhich Jewelers. There wasn't a damn thing either one of us could afford inside, but it was a fun place to stand and daydream sometimes.
Once he'd stopped us in front of the main display window he removed his hand from mine and turned me around in front of him to pull my back up against his chest. He gently wrapped his arms around me and rested his chin over my right shoulder. I could feel his breath beside my ear. The warm air passing from between his lips raised goose bumps across my arms and curled my toes inside my boots.
"So, what's your favorite this evening, Ms. Swan?" he softly questioned.
I smiled and scanned the glimmering pieces that were carefully positioned over their red velvet beds. The gaudy ruby red pendant caught my eye for a moment, but it was short lived.
Too much bling.
Even if we could afford it, I'd always be too terrified to wear something like that out in public.
That's when my eyes saw it.
I'd almost forgotten to take another breath and suddenly found myself gasping for air.
It looked just like the ring my mother had worn on her left index finger.
The same ring my father had given her on their tenth wedding anniversary when they'd renewed their vows in Central Park.
For a moment I thought I might actually cry.
There was no way I could admit out loud to Jacob that it was an engagement ring that had taken my breath away.
That would be the worst kind of jinx when it came to our future, and we already had enough bad luck in our shared life.
"I had the same reaction when I saw it. I remembered your moms. Crazy right?"
"I'm going to get it for you Bella. You will wear that ring on your finger one day, and I will make you my world, my entire existence… legally. There's just a lot of stuff I need to conquer first, because I don't want us living off of Ramen Noodles, and Kool-Aid forever. You deserve so much more than that and I won't settle for anything less than providing you with everything the world has to offer. I'm going to make you proud; I just need more time, Bells. It won't be like this forever."
I turned myself around in his arms and cupped his face between my hands to look up into his honest eyes.
"I don't need a fancy ring. I don't need fancy things. All I need is you… a happy you. If you're happy, I'm happy. That's all I want. It's all I need."
"But that's just it. Your happiness is what will make me happy and struggling to pay our bills every month is no way to live. I know sometimes I let my music get in the way of responsibility, but I want to do better. I'm really going to try harder… for you… for us."
Just then his hand reached down into his pocket, for a moment I actually thought he might pull out a simpler ring and get down onto one knee. I felt as though the entire block had tilted onto its side and I couldn't breathe, but then I saw him pull his phone out instead, and oxygen quickly returned to my lungs.
Before he'd even taken a breath after speaking his last word, where he'd promised me… promised us, a better future, he was already unlocking his phone to check the text that had apparently just come in.
And like that our moment was over, and my tipsy self was more than annoyed.
"Shit, its Jasper. He's back at our apartment and needs my help with something. He figured I'd be there since you usually work tonight."
"Now? It's almost midnight, and I thought we had plans?" I whined already feeling disappointed over the fact that I was once again being pushed aside for something that I was sure would be band-slash-music related.
"It will only take a few minutes. He needs my help with the logo he's been working on for our new stickers and merch."
Jake had already turned us around to start heading back in the direction we'd just come from.
This was our life though, so I shouldn't have been surprised, or even hurt for that matter.
"Come on Bells. This is what it will take to catch our big break. Once we get noticed the rest will be easy. It's just getting our foot in the door. That's the hard part. Record deals don't just fall into your lap."
I let out a huff and nodded my head understanding what he was saying, even though I really didn't want to. Truthfully I was exhausted and feeling a little more than just tipsy now thanks to my empty stomach. The idea of going home, getting into my pajamas, and going to bed seemed like the perfect ending to a long and stressful week.
As we walked silently down the sidewalk, Jake was still holding my hand, but texting with his other.
I found my teeth biting down on my bottom lip as the realization settled in that we'd just gone from talking about our future, rather seriously, and the changes he planned on making, to him doing a complete one-eighty and once again putting his music before me… before us.
I frowned to myself and took in a silent deep breath.
Things would get better.
I knew they would.
Everything happened for a reason.
Life gave us challenges to make us stronger… to give us something to fight for, and learn from. It wouldn't be this hard forever, and even if it was… as long as Jake loved me, and I loved him… that's all the oxygen we would need in order to keep going.