FML Contest

Title: Love Stings

Pen name: araeo

Characters: E/B

Disclaimer: I don't own Twilight. All recognizable characters/lyrics/etc. are the property of their respective owners. No copyright infringement intended.

Contains mild drug references, filthy language, immaturity, perverted inner monologue, and adult situations.

To see the rest of the entries in this contest, please visit the FML C2: http://www(dot)fanfiction(dot)net/community/FML_Contest_Fics/77195/

Thanks to EchoesOfTwilight for the beta work and listening to my silly ideas.

Evil, Evil Irish Spring...

"Wake me up, before you go-go!
Don't leave me hanging on like a yo-yo..."

What. The fuck. Is that noise? that my alarm?

Oh, for the love of was. Groaning, I buried my face in the pillow. I was so damn sick and tired of my roommate, Jake. This had to be yet another in the long line of idiotic pranks I'd been subjected to this semester. The fucker had changed the radio station on my alarm clock—again. I was going to have to resort to using my cell phone as an alarm—and I'd probably have to put it down my shorts while I actually slept, because if I left it in plain sight, he'd fuck with that, too.

Jake wasn't my favorite person to begin with, since I initially thought I'd have the room to myself. He'd been late enrolling for on-campus housing, and had only been assigned to my dorm the week before classes began. On probation from his fraternity for—you guessed it—owning a four-foot device for smoking marijuana, he'd been kicked out of the House and needed a place to stay.

I still harbored a fair amount of bitterness about losing my primo, single bachelor pad. Such grand plans I'd had for this place...plans that included my own mini-fridge and quite possibly a plasma TV. Well, I did have those things, but now I had to share them with Jake and his buddies.

He did have two redeeming qualities: his PS3 and the Wii. And no, those are not references to his junk. His gaming systems made him tolerable.

"Wake me up, before you go-go..." Die, George Michael!

Blindly, I smacked the alarm clock off, knocking over an open bottle of water in the process, which promptly spilled over the edge of my desk and straight onto the back of my head. As much as I wanted to blame Jake for that one, I had only myself to blame for the wet hair. I was the dumbass who'd left the cap off.

It probably wasn't the smartest idea to get absolutely ripped before bed last night, I thought to myself, groaning and rolling over on my back as I stretched. But God, after almost two weeks straight of studying, taking finals and writing papers, I'd needed to just fucking relax. Huffing out a sigh, I rooted around on my desk for my glasses, only to end up with a fresh face-full of spilled water.

How refreshing. After wiping the water from my face, I sat up, my back cracking in a disturbingly loud protest. I actually had to throw my hands straight up in front of me to gain enough momentum to sit upright. With a halfhearted smirk, I pictured myself wrapped in ratty linens, rising from an ancient sarcophagus to curse Jake with leprosy or some type of hemorrhagic fever.

I should know better than to hang around when Jake brings out the four foot steamroller...

I really needed to meet some new friends. Jake and his buddy, Seth, were not the best influences on my impressionable young mind, not to mention my GPA. The old Edward Cullen would have never cleared a four-footer the night before his last final of the year. The old Edward Cullen wouldn't have touched pot in the first place, but that was neither here nor there.

So far, the "New and Improved" Edward-Effing-Cullen wasn't so new and improved in the female companionship department.

They—whoever "They" were—always said college was the place for experimentation...and since I was pretty fucking sure I wasn't up for the kind of experiments that involved a stint playing for the other team (sorry, guys), drug use it was. I was currently working on a hypothesis involving THC that required lots of test runs. I was minoring in chemistry…that included intoxicating carbon compounds arranged in aromatic rings.


Cobwebs woven from the remnants of sleep and recreational drug use floated through my brain, tiptoeing through the cooling corpses of the brain cells I'd killed last night. "Tiptoe… Through the tulips…" God. I am one crazy bastard. Maybe I should go back to sleep and try to get rid of this post weed-nap fog. I think my brain's still running on a six-minute delay.

Why, exactly, was I up?

Oh, yes, Finals...tests...shit! The very reason I was awake at the moment suddenly occurred to me, sending me shooting out of bed. Unfortunately, the movement also peeled my tongue from the dry roof of my mouth—which, due to the lethal combination of morning breath and cotton-mouth—probably ripped the first layer of skin from my tongue.

At least my mouth no longer tasted as if I'd been licking the seat of an exercise bike that's been broken in by dozens of sweaty crotches. Of course, that was because all of my tastebuds currently resided in the layer of skin that now decorated my palate.

I blindly reached for the overturned water bottle, praying there would be at least one soothing mouthful. I wondered if this is what Bear Grylls felt like when he was out in the desert with no water.

So. Thirsty.

I'd have gladly squeezed the "juice" out of a pile of elephant dung just for one drop of water...

But, alas, all the water was currently soaking into my pillow or dripping from the back of my head.

What would Bear Grylls do?

After rubbing the grit of sleep from my eyes, I looked around at the empty room, noticing Jake was nowhere to be found. Too bad. I'd have liked to dump some water on his snoring ass.

It was still dark out; it looked like the morning sun was having a tough time burning away the clouds. But what the hell else was new? It was winter in northern Illinois. Clouds, cold rain, snow, and banshee-worthy, testicle-freezing winds were all par for the course for the Chicago area.

With a glance at the digital clock to make sure I still had time, I decided Bear Grylls would take advantage of his (not so) luxurious surroundings and take a damn shower. When you're a survival expert, you never know when you'll get another chance to bathe, right? How much dirtier would you be if you got lost in the wilderness, when you were already dirty to begin with?

I really need a cup of coffee. Half an adderall would be even better...

I gathered my stuff to take to the bathroom at the end of the hall—have I mentioned how much communal bathrooms suck donkey balls? But I had the extra time for a shower and, since I was positive if I learned one more thing my ears would start bleeding, more studying was out.

On the way, I tried to focus on my recall for the upcoming ecology final, but as always, thoughts of that particular class led to one thing—or rather, one person: Bella Swan.

I'd been sitting behind the object of my dirtiest fantasies all semester, staring at her long, shiny waves of deep brown hair. If I had a dollar for every time I'd zoned out to the thought of wrapping that soft-looking hair in my fists…I wanted to use it to hold her down as I did all sorts of dirty, sexy things to her.

Yeah, I'd be a rich son of a bitch. Rich enough to swim in my money, like Scrooge McDuck.

Thank God there was no one else in the hall to see the rather impressive—yeah, I said it—boner I was now sporting. My luck seemed to be holding, as the bathroom was just as empty as the hallway.

When steam was wafting under the curtain, I stepped inside, taking a deep lungful of humid air. It smelled faintly of bleach, which I guessed was better than mildew, considering where I was. The hot water helped to clear some of the haze from my mind, but did nothing to ease the situation caused by thoughts of the quiet goddess that sat in front of me in ecology. Closing my eyes, I let the water pelt my head as I became lost in thoughts of Bella.

Damn, I wanted to carve out a niche with her in our own little habitat. I'd pull out all the stops: mating dances, courting, intimidation…anything to claim her as my mate. I wanted to map out a life history strategy with her...

Jesus H. Christ, I am so lame.

But fuck, today was the last day I knew for sure that I'd see Bella, and now I was cursing my cowardly, procrastinating ass for putting off doing anything more than exchanging a few casual conversations with her after class. Though, to call it a "conversation" was probably stretching the definition of the word.

Now, if I succeeded in asking her to hang out outside of classes, it would be by the hair on my chinny-chin-chin. Thank you, Three Little Pigs.

Or, in the words of the immortal Wayne Campbell: sure…and monkeys might fly out of my butt.

I had no idea why I was such a failure at wooing Bella Swan. What the hell else am I supposed to call it? "Wooing" sounded so much better than what it really was. I wanted to hit on her. Wanted to put the moves on her. I just plain wanted her.

Every Tuesday and Thursday, I tried to hit on Bella. Every Tuesday and Thursday, I failed spectacularly. She didn't have a clue how much I really wanted to fuck her...I much I wanted to get to know her.

Yeah, I wanted to get to know her...but in my perfect world, the talking could wait until later—after I had her naked. Because it was absolutely imperative that I get to know Bella Swan in the biblical sense, soon. And as many times as possible.

Hey, I said it was my perfect world...I didn't say it was realistic. Right now, I'd settle for an innocent conversation of some tangible length. Well...maybe not quite completely innocent...

God, she was beautiful, and it wasn't just her face that drew me; though I was attracted to her like I'd never been to anyone else. It was the way she'd laugh on the rare occasions our instructor said something funny, the sound soft and happy and husky, perfectly matching her gentle alto. The way she always wore her hair down, lazily rippling over her shoulders in thick waves. The way her eyes warmed me with their friendly, earthen-colored gaze.

And Jesus, did she smell good. I had no words to describe it; only that her scent was light, clean and not too sweet. She smelled like girl, not like some overbearing perfume, and I just wanted to bury my nose in her neck and hair and kiss her soft skin all over...

Well, hello down there...I'm guessing you're not going to quiet down when I keep thinking of my Perfect 10. Yeah, old movie, but Bo Derek was smoking. Hey - I was a sheltered kid. Don't judge me. I had to take my soft-core porn where I could find it, and to my adolescent disappointment, my parents caught on to the whole Skinemax situation pretty quickly.

Beneath my eyelids, I saw an image of Bella in a white bathing suit and cornrows, running in slo-mo toward me on the beach. Brown, bouncy little cornrows and other bouncy, not-so little, mesmerizing things framed by white spandex... I think my dick grew a little bit just at the thought.

I could use a little stress relief... After all, I had the time, since I'd budgeted an extra hour this morning. Thinking of Bella while I rubbed one out would send 400 million of my potential children down the disgusting communal shower drain in no time. Plus, it was pretty damn rare to have the bathroom to myself.

A survivalist would take advantage of the situation...

No! This is not an appropriate time to think about Bear Grylls! Even if old Bear would probably tell me to just go ahead and release the tension...

It wasn't hard to clear my mind and fill it with images of Bella. My sex-deprived brain had no problem providing me with many, many, dirty fantasies of the object of all my wet dreams. Though I'd only touched Bella once—the day she'd tripped on her way past my chair and I'd caught her (the best day of my life so far)—in my head, I'd had her in every way possible.

On her desk in the classroom. In my bed. In Jake's bed. On my tiny, wobbly, dorm-room issue desk. Here in this very shower, where I'd have to hold my hand over her mouth so she'd be quiet. I knew it was terrible of me, but the thought of taking Bella in the communal shower while the other douchebags on my floor went about their business without a clue, was really fucking hot. I'd be in Heaven with the hottest girl alive, and they'd be none the wiser...

So yes, I think it's safe to say I spent much of my shower time thinking of Bella. I'd even fantasized about doing her in some flower-covered meadow—sort of girly, but in that one I'd had her on her hands and knees, one hand wound into her that more than made up for the setting fail.

Taking the soap in my hands, I worked up a nice lather before, er...taking myself in hand. I took a deep breath of steamy air and shut my eyes, letting the hot water pelt my back as I pictured Bella's soft, small hand encircling my cock.

She'd look up at me with those big doe eyes, say my name in a hushed whisper as she tightened her grip at the top of her stroke. I gritted my teeth against the moan that crept into my throat, breathing through my nose to keep from making any noise in case someone entered the bathroom.

Tipping my head back into the spray, I worked myself a little faster. In my mind, I was drowning in Bella, in the sight of her hair trailing to just below her nipples. The expanse of bare flesh that, if I was a lucky, lucky man, would surely match the soft, smooth skin that was visible when she was dressed. The clean, mouthwatering scent of her would wrap around me, making me harder with each breath.

I'd kiss her full lips, lick and nibble at that fucking sexy mouth until our lips were heated and tender. I wanted to know what those lips would look like wrapped around my dick, but there was time for that later.

My hands would slide down her back as I pulled her to my chest and pushed her up against the tile. She was so tiny; her bones small but strong. Her legs would wrap around my waist and I would cover her lips with mine, swallowing her moan as I pushed inside her.

My breath came in harsh gusts as my cock grew more and more sensitive, imagining the feel of Bella hot and wet around me. God, I just know she'll feel so fucking good... She'd take all of me, her whole body molding to mine perfectly. Her arms around my neck, her fingers in my hair, her legs squeezing my hips—all of it was fucking perfection.

Oh, God... My balls tightened, my orgasm coiling in wait, and I stroked myself faster, gripping tighter, as I pictured giving Bella everything I had, riding her hard, but never enough to bruise. I pinned her against the wall, pounding into her. Every moan that escaped her lips passed over mine, and I drank them in eagerly.

She'd fist her little hands in my hair, tugging, smoothing. Maybe she'd dig her nails into my shoulders or grip my biceps tightly. Fuck...I wanted to make her scream my name, wanted to make her feel so overwhelmed that she had to dig her nails into me to stay anchored. I wanted to make her fucking toes curl.

I'd work my hand in between us to press against her clit, taking the time to feel the delicate skin stretched around me. Maybe someday I'd be able to lean back and watch as I pushed into her, but right now, I needed her close. I needed to hold her to me, to take the moans she gave as I worked her, my name falling from her lips as she came hard around me.

Oh, fucking good, Bella...

I planted my free hand against the tile as my knees began to go weak, drawing out my stroke and twisting my wrist at the head. I could hear Bella calling my name as she shuddered in release, sending my own orgasm rushing through my whole body, blinding bright and burning pleasure.

But the burning grew and grew, quickly overcoming the orgasm that was just about to make me go blind in delirious bliss. Come spilled over my hand as my body continued to perform its biological function, even though my brain had left the building and taken all the fun stuff with it. Thanks a whole fucking lot, brain. Die in a fire.

By now, Big Eddie was screaming at me, burning like I had the STI from hell and hadn't pissed in two days. Jesus, I'm on fire! Cut it off! No - wait - can't cut it off, I need it! Bella needs it!


I hadn't been in this much pain since Jake had declared it "Kick a Ginger Day." I was the only one around with hair that even remotely resembled ginger-colored (my hair is bronze, damn it), and my ass got quite a workout that day.

Jesus. That really wasn't as gay as it sounded. I just meant, well, I got kicked. A lot. I had bruises. I'm a delicate flower.

I frantically splashed water over my junk, wishing like hell for a bathtub or even a bucket. I could squat just fine, but this splashing shit just wasn't working!

What the fuck would Bear Grylls do now? I thought to myself. Then I remembered that technically, Bear had gotten me into this mess. Yeah, Bear Grylls was dead to me now.

Dead. Man vs. Wild my ass...more like Man vs. Brain.


About an hour later, Big Eddie was no longer screaming, thank God.

Irish Spring was no longer my friend—I was going sensitive-skin formula all the way. No more fragrances or colors for this fragile petal. And I'd never be able to jack-off in the shower without reliving the horror that was The Day the Soap Went in a Bad, Bad Place.

God, I am such a girl.

So it looked like my junk was back in commission, but I was now going to be cutting it very close to get to my final. I had to skip breakfast, which really pissed me off. I was convinced I could hear my stomach growling, even over the howling winds currently battering the Northwestern University campus.

It sure was taking a long time for the sun to burn off those clouds. It was still dim; the morning dark and gloomy, like a summer thunderstorm at sunrise...except it was twelve degrees Fahrenheit and we were in the second week of December. Not many people were out. I chalked it up to the early morning on the last day of exams, and hurried on my way.

A block from my building, I stepped in a pile of fresh dog shit—so fresh, the fucker was steaming in the frigid air—which I didn't see until after I pulled my hamstring and almost busted my ass. Obviously, it was time for new glasses. But still, if I was in my perfect world (the one where I had Bella naked and in my bed as soon as we finished taking the ecology final), there would be no dog excrement on the sidewalk.

Pick up after your dogs, people...I realize it's a little demeaning to follow an animal around and pick up its shit, but don't you think you should've thought of that before you got the damn dog?

As I scraped my shoes clean of steaming dog crap and continued on my way, I wondered if all of this was a bad omen for me. Today was shaping up to be the worst day of my life. I wasn't worried about my grade, but things were not looking well for my plans to hit on Bella.

The door to the Life Sciences Pavillion swung open with a loud screech that never failed to scare the shit out of me no matter how many times I heard it. The lecture hall was empty, and I automatically assumed I was running a little ahead of schedule.

I took my normal seat near the back and unpacked my stuff, figuring everyone else was late as well. It wasn't a very big class, less than twenty people, but my inner Romeo was pretty damn sad that Bella wasn't here yet. I wouldn't have minded seeing her smile at least once before the exam started. Sort of like having a hot girl blow on your dice for your come-out roll at craps, like I was fucking James Bond or something. Not that I'd ever played for real, but those internet sites were pretty fucking realistic.

Slouching deep in the chair, I rested my head on the back and closed my eyes, running through all the random crap I'd studied over the last few days. Thanks to my relaxed state, it was easy.

I stayed alert, a small part of me attuned to the door as I waited. I'd know when Bella came through the door—I always did. She'd be here any minute now...


I woke myself with a snore some time later. Jumping out of my seat, sending my pencil and calculator skittering off the desk, I looked around in panic. The room was still empty. A few stray pieces of what looked like scratch paper were littered over the other desks.

Did I sleep through the final? And no one woke me up? That's just mean!

Had those papers been there when I'd come in? I couldn't be sure. Damn you, short-term memory loss! I grabbed one of them up, my stomach sinking as I found the Hardy-Weinberg equation, a graph of a population in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, and an oscillating species population graph sketched on one side.

Fuck! I missed it!

Grabbing my stuff and storming out of the lecture hall, I decided I would at least go get some damn coffee. And maybe I'd see if I could find Jake's stash when I got back to the room.

As I walked to the coffee shop, I fumed. It was likely I'd fail the class now, as my grade was not as high as it could have been. Never having to crack a book in high school hadn't left me with a whole lot of useful study skills. I'd never studied in my life until I went to college, and had learned the hard way that college was a lot fucking tougher than high school.

I couldn't believe no one had woken me. I couldn't believe Bella hadn't woken me. Surely she liked me enough to at least wake me when I was hungover as hell and sleeping through an important test! Maybe she wasn't the girl for me, after all.

Cutting my way through the blustery wind, I shivered in relief when I saw the soft lights of the coffee shop ahead. Cold air hit my face, turning my longish hair into icy needles that whipped at my skin and lodging pellets of sleet in my eyebrows. I needed coffee - strong, plain old coffee, none of that fancy latte crap. Caffeine was just as important as warmth at the moment, and I knew the darker the roast, like espresso, the less juice you got. I read it in an edition of Uncle John's Bathroom Reader. It was amazing, the plethora of useless but interesting trivia one could learn from those books...

The cold followed me through the entryway in a rush of swirling current and pellets of sleet, carrying the scent of exhaust and the bite of salt treatment. It was soon tempered by blissfully warm air as I got further inside. Bless you, inventor of central-heating—whoever you are. Quickly, I cleaned my feet on the sodden rug and tried to brush the snow from my head as I made my way further into the warmth. The air was heavy with the scent of coffee, and yeah, it smelled good. Even if I was probably smelling some kind of fluffy, girly thing with whipped cream all over it.

I had to admit one thing, however: as a male, I certainly appreciated the way it stuck to the lips of certain females.

Certain females like Bella Swan, for instance. A few times, I'd had the pleasure of watching her sip a drink with whipped topping, some kind of Chai mocha fluffernutter crap. My most coherent thought during those times was that I wouldn't mind tasting that stuff, but only if I could taste it by kissing her. Seeing her lick specks of whipped cream off those lips that I wanted so badly on various parts of my body was like dangling a cigarette in front of someone who'd just quit the day before.

Of course, I'd always been too busy drooling over her and trying to talk Big Eddie down to get up the courage to talk to her. No pun intended. But God, she'd just curled into one of the soft leather armchairs with her laptop, absently sipping coffee. She looked good enough to eat; her tongue and lips driving me fucking crazy. The effect she had on my body was nearly paralyzing—she set me on edge more than any other girl I'd ever known.

But why didn't she wake me up? I thought sourly, my bubble of Bella-induced bliss popped like an old balloon.

No more thoughts of Bella "Traitor" Swan.

I shuffled my way through the line, getting my customary black coffee and a huge cinnamon roll, garnished with a side of stuck-up looks from the coffee snobs around me. Screw them. I wasn't bowing to the fads of the coffee world.

New plan: I was going back to my room, raiding Jake's stash (okay, maybe those parts are the same), and commandeering his PS3. Maybe a date with Assassin's Creed II was what I needed. Assassinating medieval bad guys to avenge the wrongful deaths of my family would definitely let off some steam. Or maybe I could play the new Mario Bros. on the Wii...

Shit. I spend way too much time playing video games. No wonder I couldn't grow the balls to really talk to Bella. Right, I forgotI'm not supposed to be thinking about Belladict Arnold. But damn...I could really take an interest in punishing her in the carnal sense.

Heaving a sigh, still thinking of Bella, I dug into my stale cinnamon roll. I was brooding into my cup of coffee as if it held the meaning of life, and that revelation was incredibly troubling.

Fuck. I was drowning my sorrows in sugar and processed carbohydrates. I should have gone straight for the liquor or weed. Possibly both.

I really am a girl. FML.


I stayed inside the shop for about an hour, not particularly wanting to go back out in the cold anytime soon. Of course, while I lingered, it started spitting snow. That was fine; I had my gloves, beanie and scarf tucked inside my satchel—and yes, it was a satchel and not a man-purse—so I'd survive. But by the time I finished my second cup of precious caffeine, it was full out sleeting.

And why not? What else could possibly go wrong today?

The walk back to the dorm was unpleasant, to put it mildly. On the plus side, I never would have thought a waterproof ski parka would actually come in handy in Chicago. I was only slightly wet, my hair curving at the ends where it was sticking out of my sock cap. I was still fucking freezing, however.

My cheeks burned in adjustment to the warmth as I trudged up the stairs to the fifth floor. I was ready to get baked and spend the rest of the day taking a really long weed-nap. That is, if I could get to sleep and not keep sulking over Traitorella.

Traitorella...that name reminds me of Barbarella. Fuck...that movie was hot, too. It's hard to beat sci-fi and sex...

Shit. I was a lost cause.

Jake's obnoxious laughter was audible as I neared our room. I sighed, unenthusiastically pushing open the door to find Jake and Seth watching me with matching red-rimmed eyes and expectant grins.

Shamus, Jake's four-footer, lay in the exact center of the old shag carpet rug between our beds, as if it had been placed there reverently. It probably had. Well, at least phases one and two of my new plan are a go...

"Hey, man," Jake snickered. "Don't you have a final right now?"

"No, it's over. I missed it." I didn't know what the hell he thought was so funny.

"Dude, are you sure?" Seth asked, drawing out the word sure in a teasing sing-song. Barking out a loud, obnoxious round of laughter, he stomped his foot and slapped his knee, taking obvious delight in my confusion. He looked like a hippie on a bad acid trip with his two jet-black braids, torn-up jeans, hemp sandals, and a t-shirt decorated with a psychedelic mushroom. The burnout was insane for wearing woven hemp flip-flops in the Chicago winter, but I'd never seen him with any other shoes.

With his permanent smile and carefree attitude, Seth always made me think of a hyper Willie Nelson. Those braids and his love for weed culture didn't exactly do much to hurt that image, either.

Jake was the complete opposite. He was a gym rat and worked out more than one of those hairless, orange pro-bodybuilders. The jock/frat boy image was further completed with spiked, stiff black hair, and teeth so scarily white they might damage someone's eyesight if he ever smiled under a black light. He wore popped collars and Abercrombie. Last week, I'd caught him in a polo shirt underneath a v-neck sweater—popped collar waving proudly.

It was just plain wrong. Collars are not champagne corks, and therefore, should never be popped. Not that I cared about fashion...but I did know what made a guy look like a douche. My roommate obviously did not.

"You mean you didn't figure it out that I set your alarm early?" Jake looked at me with exaggerated disbelief. "Are you kidding me, Cullen? I thought for sure the eighties top forty station would have made you suspicious," he grumbled, crossing his bulky arms over his chest as he pouted. "Your final's going on right now, dude."


I swear on Bella's beautiful, squeezable ass, I heard a record scratching sound right then. The one that meant: "Wait! Rewind that shit! I did not just hear what I think I heard!"

For the first time today, I pulled out my phone to check the time. Why I hadn't done this at least once on a day where time was considered fairly important, I had no idea.

Oh, right. Because I am fail at life.

"You set my alarm clock ahead TWO HOURS?!" I uttered, my voice rising with every word. I now had forty minutes left to take my ecology final—and I was a good twenty minute walk away. Jake and Seth were giggling like girls at my reaction. "I'll deal with you two assholes later!" I yelled, running out the door, away from the awful cackling and high-fiving.

I briefly wondered if was possible to program the Brown Noise as someone's ringtone... That would certainly be a prank Jake and Seth would never forget.

It was these thoughts that carried me back across campus in a desperate attempt to salvage my grade. On the way, I realized one thing: I hadn't missed the final, which meant that Bella hadn't ignored me! She hadn't let me hang out to dry like dirty underwear...wasn't that how the saying went?

As I congratulated myself on solving the whole Bella/traitor issue, my dick laughed in my brain's face. It seemed one of them knew it didn't make a damn bit of difference what Bella did, good or bad—I was going to want her anyway.

I ran as fast as I dared through the pellets of sleet that could have passed for pea-sized hail. My jeans were wet to the knee, bits of slush clinging to the cold denim and building up between the hem and my high-top Chucks. I had to go slower than I would have liked, because those shoes turned into ice-skates as soon as the word "snow" was mentioned.

I came barreling up the steps of the lecture hall just as one lone person was exiting. He or she was small and slight, completely covered in a brown hooded parka, and I was going entirely too fast to stop.

"Ooof!" she grunted, the impact knocking her back. It was hard to tell from the sound, but she was definitely a guy was that soft or light, and if he was, I felt sorrier for him than you could imagine. Maybe it was my speed as we collided, but it felt like I could quite possibly bench press her, which would be a pretty big feat for me—I looked all right, but I was certainly no Jake.

I reached for her hand as she teetered backwards, but I just barely missed. The hood of her parka slipped off her head as she landed on her backside.

It was Bella! And her breasts...they'd just bumped right into my chest. Oh, Bella...I forgive you, even if you never actually betrayed me in the first place. Please, come back here and never, ever leave.

I also forgive you for any and all future transgressions. That's how amazing it felt when I plowed straight into you like a drunk driver through a peloton of professional cyclists.

It was hopeless. This is what always happened to me around her. Seventy-five percent of my intellect pulled a Houdini act every time she came within a five-foot radius.

Dear God, please don't let something that offensive actually come out of my mouth around Bella...

It was looking more and more like divine intervention was what it would take for me to actually make a move.

I realized I was just standing there, gaping at her like she was one of those magic eye pictures. Maybe if I stared at her long enough, I'd see the secrets she kept hidden within. And I've officially sprouted a pair of ovaries.

Rushing to her side, I helped her up. "Bella, I'm so, so sorry... Are you okay? I wasn't" Shit! "I'm late for the ecology final," I finally said with a sigh. She was blinking up at me in confusion, likely trying to decipher my brilliantly eloquent speech.

She was silent for a moment, and then her eyes warmed in...relief? A soft smile played at her lips, warming me faster than my mom's famous hot cocoa after a long snow day. Fuck. Could I be any more juvenile?

"Edward," she softly said, "I'm fine. It's good to see you." Her color was high, and her eyes nervously met mine for a precious few seconds before she looked away.

"Really?" I asked in surprise, my mouth leaping ahead of my brain and delivering a painful kick to the crotch of my dignity.

"Yeah." She nodded earnestly, her brows knitting in the prettiest frown I'd ever seen. I nearly died when she nervously licked her lips, the glinting pink curves drawing my eyes with an incredibly powerful pull. I couldn't remember a time when I'd been this close to her. It. Was. Heaven. She smelled even better up close, and to my ultimate mortification, Big Eddie definitely agreed with me. Thank fuck for my parka. It kept Big Eddie hidden.

She spoke again, and I couldn't believe the effort I had to expend to rip my eyes away. "But, Edward... You missed the final. Everyone's gone," she said, the compassion in her tone turning me on way more than it should have.

And then, her words sunk in: I was too late. "You're kidding!" I groaned, trying really hard not to whine. She nodded regretfully, patting my forearm in commiseration. "But I have fifteen minutes left!" I pointed to my phone and its large, lighted display.

Would my bad luck never end today? But I had to admit, the fact that her hand still rested, soft and warm, near my wrist, was helping a whole fucking lot.

"Everyone was finished forty-five minutes ago," she said, giving my arm a little squeeze.

Oh, I was this close to doing something that would make Jorma and Andy proud. Jesus, I cannot let myself jizz in my pants just from her squeezing my damn forearm! My expression must have passed for one of confusion, so she continued.

"The TA proctoring the exam left about ten minutes ago." Her tone was soft and apologetic, warm and soothing, unique and husky and completely fucking sexy... "I tried to get him to stay, because I was sure you wouldn't miss it, but he was an asshole," she said, her tone turning dark as her little brows dived downward over her eyes. "He said it wasn't his problem that my little 'boyfriend' was probably too hungover to make it to the test."

Oh, Bella, you even look good using air quotes.

"I tried to tell him it wasn't like that. That I was just worried because you never miss class." That isn't entirely true—ecology is just the only class I never skip. I wasn't going to miss an opportunity to sit behind her and dream about touching her hair...shit. I am such a creeper. "I mean, I know you'd never be my boyfriend, but..." she trailed off, her cheeks blazing pink below her hesitant gaze. My stomach sunk at her words.

Does that mean she's never even
considered me that way?

Wait... Did she say "boyfriend?" Oh, fuck me. I almost couldn't stand it.

"...It's perfectly normal, nothing wrong with me...but we're going to need a clean-up on aisle three..."

But I wasn't going to let it keep me from trying my hardest to change her mind.

She was digging her fingertips into my forearm, each tiny little pressure point alive with warmth. Our hands had dropped, our limbs hanging in the minuscule space between us, almost like we were holding hands. This almost seemed more intimate, however. I could feel my pulse beating against my skin where she touched me, and I wished she could feel it through the layers of my clothing.

I was seconds away from grabbing her and carrying her away to an empty classroom when she jokingly reached up to lay the backs of her fingers on my forehead. Most of my forehead was covered by my beanie, but I swear there was some skin-to-skin contact.

As soon as her bare skin touched mine—minuscule bit that it was—every hair on my body stood at attention. A choir of angels with gold halos and harps sang the "Hallelujah Chorus."

"Edward, are you okay? I'm really sorry about the test." She was so close, and I wanted her, needed her. Oh, God...did I want her. I didn't care about the test. Maybe I should have been worried for my grade, but it didn't matter when she was standing right in front of me.

When she dropped her hand with a puzzled little frown, I wanted to throw a tantrum to rival one of those mega-fits I used to see in the toy aisle when my mother took me to the store as a kid. With full-on kicking, screaming, throwing myself on the ground, and latching myself to her ankles as she tried to walk away.

Instead, I nodded, giving in to the urge to smile as I watched her in silence for a moment.

"Well, you're a little clammy, but I'm pretty sure it's because you've been out playing in the snow," she teased, a sly little grin curving her lips. It gave her such a mischievous look...and it was one that went straight to my pants. But since I didn't think she'd take it very well if I pushed her against the wall so I could take a closer look at that mouth, I told Big Eddie to settle down.

"I'm sure I'll be fine. As for the test, I can't really do anything about it now, can I?" I shrugged, still unable to tear my eyes from hers. "That doesn't mean I won't kick my roommate's ass for fucking with my alarm clock," I growled playfully, making laughter bubble from Bella's perfect lips, the most pleasing sound I'd ever heard.

"Don't get into any trouble," she warned, her hypnotizing smile curving her lips. "Your parents will probably be mad enough when they hear about this. You don't need an assault charge on top of it." Those deep, coffee-colored eyes held me frozen, but I had no desire to look away.

"I won't, I promise. I'll think of something diabolical, yet totally within the confines of the's sort of like a chess match between us." As if Jake knew how to play chess. "A prank chess match," I elaborated. It wasn't exactly a lie...I just hadn't made any moves yet. What was it that JFK said? "Don't get mad, get even?" Yeah. That's what I was going to do.

"Bella, thanks for trying to get that jerk to wait. I really appreciate it." I grinned like an idiot as she opened her mouth to speak a few times, quietly chuckling at her nervousness.

"It was no problem, really," she said softly, her smile wide and happy and just...beautiful. Perfect.

I shifted my weight back and forth, sending a drop of melted sleet sliding from my hat down the back of my neck. A cold chill swept over me as the icy water trickled underneath my shirt.

Bella brought both hands up to my cheeks, and their warmth felt so fucking good on my face. I closed my eyes to soak up the sensation.

"You're a popsicle!" she breathed, rubbing her thumbs over my cheekbones. "Come on, we're going to get you something warm to drink." Her hands encased my cheeks for a final, brief second, her fingers against my skin feeling better than I'd ever dreamed…and then they were gone as she tugged on a pair of gloves that bared her fingertips. Some kind of knitted flap hooked over them, turning it into a pair of mittens.

It was kind of hot…I couldn't explain it, but Big Eddie was very excited about being able to see her fingertips while the rest of her hands were covered. For Christ's sake, when was I born, the freaking Victorian era? Just the sight of the girl's fingers turned me on.

"I'll buy you a consolation coffee. How does a latte sound?" she offered, adjusting her messenger bag on her shoulder as she turned toward the exit. I couldn't help but laugh at her choice of beverage. "What?"

"I despise lattes...but I'd drink one if you were with me." I held her eyes trapped with mine, watching intently as her cheeks filled with soft, pink color. "I suppose you had to have at least one flaw," I sighed, trying to keep my twitching lips from grinning widely as I teased her. "They do say no one's perfect."

She cleared her throat, the corner of her bottom lip caught between her teeth as she searched for a response.

"Do they?" she finally asked, looking me up and down. "I'm pretty sure I don't believe it."

It was my turn to be speechless. I raked a hand through my hair as I sputtered out what sounded like incoherent caveman grunts.

Is she talking about me? Shit...I think I'm blushing!

She laughed at my reaction, enjoying my flustered state. I could think of a much better state I'd like to see her enjoy...

"Well, lattes are out, then. How about a hot chocolate?"

"Perfect," I murmured, sharing her secret smile and leading her to the door. Outside, ice was beginning to build up on the steps and Bella grabbed my hand for balance. She didn't let go as we reached the sidewalk, and I wasn't about to ruin it. In fact, I was feeling rather brave and slipped my hand beneath the mitten flap, weaving our fingers together.

"You know, I can give you some pointers if you take the class again," she offered with a smug little smile. "And at least you won't have to buy the book. Unless they use a newer edition. Then you're screwed."

"Ha ha." I laughed dryly, gently bumping her with my shoulder. "You want to be my tutor?" I was only half kidding. I might have chanted "Say yes, say yes!" in my head.

"I might be persuaded to say yes," she murmured. "What's your preferred learning style?"

I didn't miss a beat. "Hands-on." I had no idea where this new, somewhat witty me was coming from, but damn, was I grateful.

"Really?" she squeaked, looking away quickly, her smile a mile wide.

"Really," I said in a low voice, looking straight ahead, not even bothering to hide my shit-eating grin. I held her hand the whole way to the coffee shop.

As we walked, I realized three things: one, I was retaking ecology, possibly with Bella Swan as my "tutor." Two, I was sporting a rather inappropriate boner underneath my parka, thanks to said "tutor." And three, Bear Grylls could suck it, because I was going to get the girl all on my own.

Today was looking up. Way up. And in spite of my earlier epic failures, I realized I was a pretty lucky bastard, after all. This turn of events made up for everything I'd been through since I woke up, and I'd do it all over again if it got me this result: Bella, smiling and holding my hand.

...Except for the soap. I could live without experiencing that ever again.

My assigned prompt:

Today, I had my first university exam. I set my alarm the night before, but my roommate thought it would be funny to turn the time back two hours. I showed up for my exam two hours early, thought I'd missed it, and went back. I ended up missing it and I failed the course. Next year, I want a single room. FML.

AmeryMarie, LaraIsAwkward, and nerac: it was so much fun to read your hilarious comments as I experimented in Gdocs. God, I hate conformity, but I still find myself guilty of it. First, those silly personalized candy hearts, now Gdocs...

Anyway, hope you all enjoyed. Don't forget to vote for your favorite entries! I certainly wouldn't mind if this was one of them. It would really make my mom proud if I won something. Kidding. Sort of. ;) I'd love to hear what you thought of this little was fun to get inside this Edward's head.

Big, fluffy thanks to Yogagal, Zigster, Chicklette and SorceressCirce for hosting. FML was one of the highlights of my workday and this was a really fun idea for a contest.

"Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" - Wham!

"Jizz in My Pants" - The Lonely Island

The Brown Noise: a mythical note so low that it vibrates at a frequency said to stimulate the human bowel so intensely, the subject will soil him/herself. Oh, the things you can learn from South Park.

Thanks again for reading!