Disclaimer: I own nothing about Twlight or any other copyrighted "thing" I make reference too.
"Annie is late; assuming she shows…" I seethed under my breath.
Lisa, the bartender, came over pulling my empty glass away from me. "Want another?" she grinned at me.
"Might as well." I had been here for half an hour waiting for Annie and one more drink, and the time it took to devour it, wouldn't ruin my night.
I waited for her to make her rounds to the other few customers around on this Tuesday night and watched her as she made my second Rum and Coke. She slid it to me and popped a cherry in it before my hand hit the glass. "You okay, Bella?"
I smiled after my first slip; damn, she knew how to make a good drink. "Yeah; just the usual. What about you? How's your arm?" She laughed and I was relieved to see someone else blush for a change.
What happened on Saturday night was common knowledge to the usual cliental. Lisa was a sweet twenty two year old, but she got involved with a "committed" guy. His girlfriend frequents the bar and when she found out that they had a little thing going on, she flipped out. She and a few friends came into the bar when Lisa was working and began throwing beer bottles and glasses at her; along with throwing many choice expletives around. Lisa ended up in the kitchen hiding and the cops were called. I think it was the first night the bouncer was ever actually needed; with the exception of throwing out teenagers wielding fake ids.
Yup, this place was clearly low-brow, but I loved it. It was trashy and the people looked scary, but seriously… I just loved it. You will never look at a biker the same after you see a group of about twenty of them doing the electric slide on a Thursday night. They don't seem that scary after that.
Lisa blushed again and leaned over the bar. "It's not a secret, is it?" I shook my head. Granted I didn't get all the details, but I knew the story… and so did everyone else. She sighed deeply. "I'm fine, and my arm is healing pretty good." She held out her forearm to show me. It was a shallow cut; I definitely had had worse. "It was completely insane. I was hiding in the kitchen for like three hours because she wouldn't leave the parking lot and she didn't even get taken in by the cops."
"You're kidding?" Lisa may have walked right into the problem, but she didn't deserve to have beer bottles hurled at her head.
"Nope, she was banned from the bar for life, but that's it." I shook my head. "Wow."
I laughed at her face. She looked like she had seen a pot of gold. "What?"
"Hottest. Man. Alive," she whispered. "Can I get you something?" She called seductively. I guess it's time for the rebound.
"Not yet, I haven't decided what I want." The mystery man said as he walked up behind me. God, that voice sounds familiar…
He sat down beside me as Lisa nodded her head; she also noticeably threw me a wink. I rolled my eyes as she walked away. When did I ever flirt in this bar? Oh right, never.
"Well well, do you come here a lot?" The guy said coolly. His voice was familiar, but I was distracted by the obvious pick-up line. Either he was a regular and knew exactly how often I came in here or he was a newcomer who couldn't read body language.
I turned to face him to politely, yet forcefully, tell him to leave me the hell alone, but I froze. Oh, for the love of God… seriously?
He just sat there completely at ease unleashing that spectacular crooked grin of his, along with his honey coated eyes, on me.
I lost all coherent thoughts. He was here; looking just so damn beautiful and completely unchanged from the past five years.
It just wasn't fair. I was older and looked different and he looked exactly the same.
"What are you doing here?" It came out in a whisper; I barely heard it, but he would have heard it loud and clear.
"Well, I was supposed to meet Alice and Jasper here… but I'm starting to think that she's not going to show up." Ah, Alice is meddling. She probably saw Annie standing me up and took the opportunity, but where exactly did he come from?
"Do you live here now?" I was freaking shocked. He could not be living here.
"…Just outside of the city; you?"
Oh, are we on friendly terms again? Are we just pretending that the last five years and the conversation in the woods never happened? Oh, okay, now that I'm caught up… If only I could speak my sarcasm considering I was starting to drown within it in my own mind.
"About ten minutes from here…" Yeah, that's just vague enough to work. Lisa walked by staring at Edward and I nearly jumped over the bar to grab her. "Another; make it a double!" She looked at my half full glass and just nodded.
"And you?" she asked Edward; flirting shamelessly, I might add.
Edward never even looked away from my direction, even though I refused to meet his eyes again. "I'll have the same… and a water."
I was waiting for the standard reply from Lisa. Tracy and Bill, the owners, didn't serve water, except to the kids that came in during the day. The cheapest non-alcoholic drink you could order was a soda. "Sure thing." Traitor!
Lisa was back with his drinks before she even attempted to start mine. Bitch.
Once she finished my drink, I downed the one that was in front of me and traded glasses with her.
"Wow, you really like rum, huh?" Edward questioned. I could feel the concern and I wanted to tell him exactly where he could put that, but all I could reply with was a 'yup' as I started greedily sipping my next drink.
Edward was quiet for several minutes before he turned to me fully. "Bella." I tried to ignore him and continued to sip my drink. "Bella," he repeated, but louder.
"What?" I said curtly.
I looked at him and immediately saw his eyes darken a shade. "I… I'm…" He never was at a loss for words, ever. "I'm sorry."
He's sorry. He's sorry. He's sorry. What is he sorry for?
"Bella, come on, you must know."
Well, gee, could he be sorry for coming here and surprising the hell out of me? Or maybe he's sorry that he hadn't seen me in five years. Oh, maybe he's sorry that he broke all his promises to me, including the one about him not existing. Although I'm hoping that he's sorry for leaving me in the woods, or for even being around me in the first place.
I shook my head and Edward growled his frustration. "Bella, I'm sorry I lied to you. I'm sorry I left you like that; that I left you at all."
Wait… what? I understood if he regretted leaving me the way he did five years ago; in fact, I hope he regretted it, I certainly did. But what does he mean that he lied; what did he lie about? "What did you lie about?" I gaped at him.
"Isn't it obvious, Bella?" I shook my head. Maybe it was the alcohol, but nothing seemed obvious. "Bella, I lied to you when I said I didn't want you. I lied about nearly everything that day."
He lied. Oh my god, he lied. He loves me. He wants me. Just like I want him, but… "But why?"
"I lied because I wanted to protect you. I wanted to protect you from my world. I constantly put you in danger, even during times of complete happiness." My birthday. "I couldn't do that to you anymore. I wanted you to be safe and have a normal life, but, Bella, god I miss you so much."
He misses me.
Well, that's convenient; I missed him too. I missed him because he made the decision to take himself away from me. He made life-altering decisions that directly affected my life and didn't even feel like I deserved enough to know why he was making them.
"Go, Edward; just leave."
"No, I want you to go and not to come back." I looked away from him and back to the bar and fused as much confidence into my voice as I could. "Goodbye Edward."
Edward sat there for several moments. Finally he stood up. "I'm not going to say goodbye to you, Bella, because I will see you soon. I'm not going anywhere this time. Bella." He took the Rum and Coke he had ordered, and never touched, and poured it into the sink behind the counter. He pushed the water towards me. "Don't drive too soon; your reflexes will be hindered."
With that he left. I sat there in silence for several minutes when Lisa finally came over to me again. I pushed the glass of water over to her. "Here, he didn't want this."
"Where'd he go?" She asked happily.
"I don't know." I downed the rest of my drink. "Can I have another double?"
She looked at me questionably. I had been coming here for over a year and I never had more than three drinks, even when I stayed for hours with Annie; and I never had doubles. "You okay? Did he upset you or something?"
"Something like that," I said under my breath. "Keep them coming."
Lisa nodded. "I'm cutting you off at midnight either way, just so you know Bella. You're not driving out of here as anything more than sober." Okay, that gave me an hour and a half to drink all the rum I could. That's fair.
Author's Note: I got this story in my head about three months ago and wanted to make a one-shot out of it… Now I'm not sure, it will at least be a two-shot, possibly more.
I wasn't going to put it up until I finished Give Her Some Credit but my darling puppy chewed my computer cord and I've been without computer access for two weeks. So I decided to put this up as a reprieve. Enjoy and let me know what you think…
By the way; Yes, it's based on "Need You Now" by Lady Antebellum.