Chapter 4 "In His Room"
Bella wasn't much of a drinker. In fact, Emmett always teased her for being a lightweight. It didn't take much, but Bella usually ended up falling asleep.
Such was the case after she had her second shot. She tried to defend herself later by saying that she had a beer before. She had only made it forty minutes into the movie when she passed out.
She stirred in her sleep when the urge to relieve herself became apparent. She groaned and heard a voice, "Are you alright?"
It seemed Edward would always be asking her that tonight.
She groaned again. "Yes."
"Are you going to throw up?"
She shook her head. "My bladder's going to explode."
He helped her up and she let him lead her around. It was dark and he was about to reach for the light when she waved him off. "No lights."
"Um...do you need help?"
"I think I can find the toilet."
He hesitated before he let her inside and shut the door after she was in.
Fortunately, she did find it and when she was done, she washed her hands and swore to herself at how cold the water was. She dried her hands and went back outside where Edward was waiting.
"Did you throw up?" he asked again.
"No, but if you keep asking me about throwing up, I'm going to punch you."
He let out a small laugh and said, "Well, you don't sound drunk." He led her down the hall.
Once they returned to the room, he sat her down and passed her an aspirin and a bottle of water. "Take this and drink as much as possible."
She took it without arguing and when she was done, she passed the empty bottle to Edward. Then she lay back down.
She settled in, but after a minute she said, "Is the movie over?"
He settled down next to her. "Yeah."
"How long was I asleep?"
"Pretty much for the rest of the night."
She groaned. "Emmett is not going to let me live this down."
"Don't worry about it. He passed out too."
She let out a small laugh. "I know we said we weren't going to celebrate Valentine's Day, but I didn't mean to sleep through it either."
"It's okay. No one really seemed to notice."
"Alice is going to be annoyed with me especially since we planned this together."
"Her attention was taken up by Jasper."
At this, she opened her eyes. "Jasper? Really? I didn't think he was her type."
He shrugged. "I don't really know her type either, but she kept staring at him."
She couldn't help letting a small laugh escape. "Just staring? She didn't try to talk to him?"
"No, but it's probably because he was talking to Emmett. When they found out their dates bailed on them for the same reason, they started talking more about it and it turns out the girls are friends or something."
"Whoa. That's weird." She closed her eyes again.
"Yeah. Emmett thinks something's going on. Jasper's willing to give them the benefit of the doubt."
"What do you think?" She turned on her side and snuggled onto the cool side of a pillow.
"I think there's definitely something going on, but I have no idea what."
"I just hope Emmett doesn't get hurt. He's been burned too many times." She hesitated before she said, "It seems he kind of has a thing for Rosalie."
"Yeah." He wondered if that bothered Bella, but he didn't ask. She had an unusual relationship with Emmett and at times he couldn't help being a little jealous. However, that was not what he wanted to talk to Bella about right now.
"So..." he started, and then forced himself to say the rest. "It seemed like Ben and Angela got along pretty well."
"Did they? I had a feeling they might."
"You're okay with that?"
It was a few minutes before she said, "Yeah. I am. I...Ben and Angela would make a good couple."
"So, you're not...sad about it?"
"Why would I be sad?"
"Well, didn't you invite him here? I thought you..."
She was choosing her words carefully. "I did invite him, but I...I wasn't expecting anything from him. He's..."
Bella didn't know what to say. She did like Ben, but she also felt that he could be happy with Angela. Bella certainly didn't think she could make Ben happy, so if he could find happiness with someone else, she should be excited for him, right? She was. Angela was perfect for him.
Then why did she feel like she was being left behind. Despite the fact that this weekend no one was looking for romance or anything of the sort, it seemed everyone found it.
It was quiet for some time. Edward assumed she had fallen back asleep.
Bella took in a short breath, taking in the familiar scent. She couldn't place it, but the smell of clean laundry and soap gave her a sense of comfort. Then she asked, "Where are we anyway?"
Edward hesitated before he said, "My room."
It took a second for Bella to process the information and when it registered, her eyes flipped open. "What?"
Back in high school, Bella had only been in Edward's room a few times. Each time, she had accompanied Alice to get something in his room. She had been in Emmett's room dozens of times and even fell asleep there too. However, Edward's room was an entirely different area. Edward did not usually have many people in his room. Sometimes he'd study with a friend and there were those rare occurrences when he'd have a girl too.
She'd always wondered what it would be like to hang out in his room, but because Bella never dwelled on things for too long, it was usually just a passing thought.
Until now and for some inexplicable reason, she was nervous as hell.
"We're in my room," he said with amusement.
She struggled to push herself up. "How'd I end up here?"
"Well, you fell asleep on my shoulder and pretty much stayed there the rest of the movie." The amusement in his voice returned when he said the next part. "Alice was afraid that you might wake up sick, so I told her I'd take care of you."
"Ugh. Some best friend she is." She lay back down with a flop.
He couldn't help laughing. Then he said, "Emmett and Jasper are downstairs asleep. Rosalie and Angela are sleeping with Alice in her room. Ben went home after the movie." He hesitated before he said, "I could go to Emmett's room or you could go to Alice's room if that would make you feel more comfortable. I mean, you don't seem like you're going to be sick, so I think Alice will probably be okay with that."
It was Bella's turn to laugh. "No, I won't bother Alice."
"Then..." He made a move to get out of bed.
She lifted her head off the bed. "Where are you going?"
"I thought you wanted...I was going to Emmett's room."
She hesitated before she said, "You don't have to go."
There was an awkward silence before he returned to the bed and said, "We should probably go back to sleep then."
She settled back as well, careful not to touch him. That excruciating feeling of excitement and confusion returned and she wasn't sure how to handle it.
"What's wrong?" he asked.
"What? What do you mean?" She said a bit too quick.
"It's just...I don't know. Ever since what happened in the kitchen...Did I...Are you upset?"
She reached up for the pillow under her head and tugged on the corner of the pillowcase. "No. I'm not upset."
He caught her movement. "You're not doing that girl thing where you say one thing, but you really feel something else, are you?"
She elbowed him as a reflex reaction. She felt a sharp burst of energy on her elbow and quickly rubbed the spot. It took her a minute to say, "No, I'm not upset at all. I'm just...thinking things over."
"Oh." He ran his fingers through his hair and reached for the drawstrings on his flannel bottoms.
After a moment, she said, "Did you feel that?"
"When I elbowed you." She shifted in her spot. "Did you feel anything?"
He dropped the drawstrings and placed one hand under his head. "What do you mean?"
"Nothing." She felt her cheeks grow warm. "Forget it."
He shifted his body so he was lying on his side facing her. "Tell me."
She avoided his eyes. "It was like an electric shock or something."
He hesitated before he said, "Yeah, I felt it."
"But it wasn't like the normal electric shock you get when you've been dragging your feet around on the carpet." Her eyes strayed toward him, but when she saw him studying her, she was quick to avert her eyes again. "It felt...I don't know. Different."
"Yeah." He almost reached for her, but instead he put his hand on the bed between them.
Her voice was small. "What was that?"
"I don't know," he said. Then after a second, he added, "Does it bother you?"
She thought about it. "No. It's just...confusing. I guess."
He wanted her to look at him, so he could see her face and what expression she had, but she kept her face turned away. "Why is it confusing?"
She shrugged. "You've touched me before and I don't remember that happening."
"What do you think is different now?"
She hesitated again before she said, "It's dark."
He bent his elbow so he could prop his head on his hand. "Dark?"
She squirmed in her spot. "I'm not sure why, but things are different in the dark." In a low voice, she added, "With you."
His body moved closer. "Bad different?"
She shook her head. "I don't think so. It's just...at times it's unbearable."
He was caught off guard by the comment and how his body was making its way toward her. Instead, he flipped on his back and had one hand under his head again and the other across his chest. "I'm sorry."
"No. I didn't mean...But, do you feel anything?" Bella felt so exposed. "Or is it just me?"
What could he say that wouldn't scare her away? Words, phrases, and sentences floated in his mind, but none of them sounded right. Then she interrupted his thoughts.
"Please. Tell me the truth," she said.
He let out a long breath. Edward decided that he would try to answer her with as much honesty as he felt comfortable sharing for the moment. "I feel it too, but I'm sorry it makes you feel uncomfortable."
Her brow furrowed. "How do you deal with it?"
He returned her expression. "I...I just do."
She looked at him for a moment before she said, "But you seem so...calm."
A small smile tugged at the corner of his mouth. "Well, I've had a lot of practice."
Her face turned toward him. "What?"
Even though it was dark in his room, he could still see that her eyes flashed at him like headlights. "I...this isn't the first time."
Surprise occupied her face. "It isn't?"
He let out a small laugh, amused by her reaction. Could he share more? His expression sobered and he said, "This happens whenever I'm near you. It doesn't matter if it's in the dark or not."
Bella blinked in astonishment.
He lifted his head. "Bella?"
"Did I...did I just say something wrong?"
Her head did a little shake. "No. I'm just surprised, that's all."
He studied the astonished look on her face and realized that before tonight, he was just another person in her life. He was probably perceived as just another friend like every other guy. He wasn't special or different. He knew this was a possibility, but having it confirmed made his heart heavy. He also told himself that if Bella didn't see him as anything more, then he would cling to their friendship. It was better than nothing, and he already reconciled himself to the idea that he would be content with being just friends.
It was a long moment before Edward said, "Bella, I don't want to lose our friendship. I'm sorry about what happened in the kitchen and...well, I know you don't feel the same way, and I'm okay with that. Just...I don't want you to feel you have to act differently around me."
"It's okay, Bella. I should've just kept my mouth shut."
Bella turned on her side and looked at his profile in the dark. "I admit that I'm a little surprised about all this. I'm still processing it, but...I can't lie and say that I don't feel something."
He was still, waiting for her to continue.
She let out a long sigh before she continued, "I'm so dense. I am the most clueless person when it comes to guys." She took in a deep breath. "I never got the impression that you thought about me as more than just as a friend, so I just buried any thoughts about it."
He tried to hide his disappointment. "Why?"
"I guess I didn't want to lose our friendship either."
After a minute, Edward said, "So...what does this mean?"
Bella said, "I...I don't know. I'm a little confused, but I'm also curious, too."
He felt his heart beat faster at her admission. "What are you curious about?"
She felt herself blush and she was thankful it was dark in his room.
When she didn't answer, Edward flipped on his side to look at her. "Bella?"
She was flustered. "I...nothing. Never mind. We should go back to sleep."
He let out a small laugh. "Tell me." Then he raised his hand and rubbed her arm gently.
Bella gulped. "I...I was curious about what it would be like to...do...stuff?"
Edward's eyebrows shot up. "Stuff?"
Bella knew her face was probably glowing red. "I didn't mean--I don't want to rush into anything. I just...maybe if we take things slow?"
Edward was quiet for a moment.
"Edward?" She tried to keep the frantic tone out of her voice. She was sure he thought she was out of her mind.
After another moment, Edward asked, "I was just wondering what kind of stuff...what exactly did you have in mind?"
Bella took a deep breath. "I..."
He dropped his hand from her arm, but gave her a small smile of encouragement. "Why don't you show me?"
"Okay." She studied his face again. It was familiar, yet so new to her in the dim light of his room. Bella hesitated before she reached out and ran her fingers through his hair next to his temple. "I was surprised by how soft your hair is."
Edward closed his eyes and savored her gentle touch.
Then she rubbed her thumb on his cheek. "Your cheek is rougher than it was earlier."
He smiled, but his eyes were still closed. "I don't usually shave when I go to bed."
Bella giggled. "Right."
Her fingers made a trail across the strong line of his jaw and then her thumb swept across his lower lip. His breathing became unsteady.
"Does this bother you?" Bella was mesmerized by the fullness of his lower lip and the scattered sensation welling up inside her.
His lips moved against her thumb. "No. It feels...nice."
She smiled and said, "Your lips are soft too."
Edward stifled a groan at her comment. This was not how he thought his Valentine's Day would end. He thought getting to kiss Bella was enough of an amazing experience. The fact that Bella Swan was in his bed, touching and caressing his face, telling him how soft his lips were, was something out of a dream.
"Edward?" Her voice was low.
"Hmm?" It came out more like a content hum.
"Are you...holding back right now?"
"Uh, what do you mean?"
"Well, you're so calm, but being here with you...like this...I don't think I..." She felt so much, and her brain was just as overwhelmed. She bit back the word vomit that threatened to spill out.
His voice was rough. "You don't think what, Bella?"
"This is making me think about other stuff. And I don't think I..." She hesitated. These feelings were so new, but not unwelcome. She was nervous and excited at the same time. To calm her nerves, she took in a steady breath and took comfort in her surroundings. She was lying in Edward's bed next to him, covered in darkness. At this realization, the words spilled out of her mouth.
"I don't think I can hold back." She felt her face flame at the admission, but she couldn't help being honest.
Edward's eyelids scrunched tightly and he let out a gust of air. He knew better to keep his eyes shut than to look at her at that moment. If he looked at her now, he knew he wouldn't be able to hold back. He took in a deep breath and let it out, feeling his face relax. It took him a moment to find his voice, and when he did, his voice was low.
"Then don't, Bella. I told you... just show me."
But damn he wanted to do so many things to her.
Edward waited. A minute passed and he started to worry that maybe she changed her mind. He was about to open his eyes when he felt soft pressure on his lips.
Did she just kiss me?
He didn't dare move or say anything for fear that maybe he imagined it, but a second later the familiar sensation returned and he opened his eyes just a crack to make sure.
Bella was kissing him. Her lips were moving over his not because he initiated it, but because she wanted to.
Or maybe this was just more of her satisfying her curiosity? But if that was true, he wasn't doing a very good job of making sure she enjoyed it. Then again, he promised her that he would hold back his own feelings until she was ready. Was this a test? Was she testing him to see if he really could control himself around her?
He was about to pull away before he completely lost himself, and as if sensing his thoughts, Bella snaked her hand up his neck to keep him in place, her kisses became more enthusiastic. When the tip of her tongue touched his lower lip, Edward couldn't help letting out a low moan and Bella took that opportunity to deepen her kiss.
Bella moved her body so her chest pressed down on Edward's chest. The sensation of her breasts pushing against him was almost too much for Edward. His right arm was bent upward next to his head and his left arm was by his side, fisting the blanket. It was exhausting fighting the urge to wrap his arms around her and to kiss Bella back, but he knew he had to show her that he meant what he said about restraining himself until she was ready.
But for the life of him, he couldn't remember why he made such a stupid promise in the first place.
Oh, right. Because they've been friends for so long and Bella is trying to figure out if being more than friends would be alright.
He groaned at the way she was relentlessly licking and sucking on his lips. Then, her hands started to wander through his hair and rub his chest. It was such bittersweet torture. He wanted it to end for the sake of his sanity, but if it did end, he would be upset that she stopped.
Bella's hand trailed down Edward's chest and settled at his hip. Her fingers grazed the bare skin just above his hip, causing a low rumble to come out of Edward's chest. The throaty sound caused Bella to become bolder. She explored that expanse of skin, enjoying the feel of the light dusting of hair on his stomach.
Then next moment happened in such quick succession that their bodies reacted before their minds caught up with what they were doing.
During Bella's exploration, the heel of her hand brushed against the tip of the very prominent bulge in Edward's pants. Before he could think about what to do, his hand that fisted the blanket reached up and cupped Bella's breast.
She pulled away, realizing what she had just done.
Edward spoke through broken breaths, releasing her. "Bella, you're going to be the death of me."
She licked her lips. "I'm sorry I got so carried away. I didn't realize...I didn't mean to force myself on you."
She pushed herself away and jumped off the bed.
Edward sat up and moved off the bed as well. "Bella--"
"I'm going to go sleep in Emmett's room."
She turned to leave, but Edward stepped in front of her. "Wait, why? What are you talking about?"
Bella looked away, her face burning. "Please, just let me go. I'm sorry I ruined everything."
Edward placed his hands on her shoulders. "Why do you think you ruined things?"
He was making her admit her humiliation. She didn't mean to give him such mixed messages. "It's probably better if we just stay friends."
A look of confusion and disappointment crossed his face. Then he dropped his hands to his side. "But, I thought...I thought you wanted to try--"
She held up her hand. "I did and now I think it's probably best if we just...forget--"
He reached out for her and touched her face. "I don't want to forget. I won't forget."
"Edward." She pulled her face away, feeling her throat tighten. "I'm sorry." She turned away and left his room.
Edward stood in the middle of his room unable to move. One minute Bella was fulfilling his fantasy and the next he was alone, wondering how it all ended before it even began.
Thank you again to mrskatycullen and sherylaf for polishing up this chapter for me. Thank you to Beautiful_Distraction for validating this at twilighted.
Thank you all for indulging me by reading this bit of fluff. It's been so fun sharing this story.
Only two chapters left! (Maybe three.) Don't worry. This is all fluff. No angst here.