Big thanks to my amazing BETA, Phoenix1397; You've been a great help. I greatly appreciate it.
I could not believe what I was seeing. This waitress looks so similar to Riley, it was almost mind blowing: she has chocolate brown hair like Riley, brown eyes like Riley, and some facial features were the same. Only, unlike Riley, her hair had some wave to it; Riley's was straight. Riley had big – if that makes any sense – eyes while the waitress' were small. The waitress is shorter in height than Riley. The really huge difference, though, was that the waitress does not have make-up caked all over her face.
"Excuse me?" Her question brought me out of my reverie.
"Sorry, I was just lost in my thoughts."
"O-okay," she spoke tentatively. "Well, my name is Bella, and I'll be your server. Can I start you off with something to drink?"
I perused her again, still in awe of what I'm seeing. That's when I saw her name tag, it read 'Isabella'.
"Your name tag says Isabella." I took in a sharp intake of breath. Why did I just say that?
She looked surprised with what I said then she did something unexpected; she
"Yeah, that's my name, but I prefer Bella."
I smiled at her. "Isabella is really pretty, though."
She replied to that with another lovely blush.
"Then again, Bella means beauty, beautiful, or a person famed for their beauty." Whoa! I could not even pinpoint where this was coming from, or how I knew that what the meaning of her name meant. Was I flirting with her?
"I'm not all that great… so, can I start you off with something to drink?"
Not all that great? I don't see why she would think that. She is so beautiful.
You're only thinking that because she kind of resembles Riley.
I was guilty of that; right now she was only holding my attention because of her similarities to Riley but there is just something about her. Something about her got me flirting. Maybe this is my chance to meet another person and start dating.
"I'll take a coffee, please," I told her smiling again.
"Okay, I'll be back with that in a minute. Should I give you some time to look at the menu?"
"Yes, please," I told her and watched as she walked off.
In that moment, my plan for just coffee was put aside. I want to be here longer, be here in her presence, and talk to her some more.
I quickly examined the menu to find something to order. I would even get desert if I had to, for it would make my stay her longer. Also, this place being open twenty-four hours really helps.
Bella came back and placed my coffee on the table, I could see the steam emanating from the cup.
"Have you decided, or do you need another minute?" She questioned grabbing her small notepad and pen.
"Yes, I have. I'd like the grilled cheese sandwich with a bowl of tomato soup, if you will." Something simple for food considering it's a quarter after midnight.
"Good choice," she commented. "Small or big bowl of soup?"
"Big," I blurted without thinking; a big bowl would keep me here longer.
"Okay," she wrote on her note pad, "enjoy your coffee." With that, she walked off to go put my order in.
I sipped my coffee at a leisurely pace as I waited for my food.
I got half-way through my cup when Bella brought out my food.
The sandwich was a good size. It was cut diagonally, so both pieces looked like a triangle. A handful of chips sat in between the sandwich and just like with the coffee steam came pouring from the hefty bowl of soup.
I looked over to Bella. "Looks good," And I wasn't talking about the food.
"Enjoy your food." Oh, believe me, I will.
I had eaten half the sandwich and a morsel of the soup when she came back to ask me
if everything was going ok.
"It's great. I have not had food like this in awhile."
Bella did not seem surprised by my statement. "We get that a lot here."
"So Bella," Come on Edward come up with something to keep her here, "do you like working here?" I could hit myself upside the head for that. What a horrible question.
"Working a ten to six am shift does not make me all the happy but its work and I need the money." She exhaled in an exasperated manner, seeming annoyed with my question.
Bad question. Very bad question.
"Do you need anything else?" She asked with a smile. I could tell that smile was forced, because she still looked annoyed.
"May I have some more coffee?"
"Of course, I'll be right back."
Bella was back in less than a minute with a full pot of coffee.
"You're in luck; this pot was just made." She commented as she filled up my cup.
"You're welcome," she replied as she left me again to finish my food. She did not go
Her footsteps stopped at the booth behind me. The couple sitting there had left ten minutes ago.
I heard a rustling noise, which sounded like the movement of the plates and silverware.
"They pay with a fifty dollar bill and leave a dollar tip in quarters. Ugh, looks l will be without heat for another week," she mumbled quietly, even so, you could hear the frustration laced in her voice.
Now I was feeling sorry and concerned for Bella. Another week without heat. I can only assume that means heat in her home.
Bella started to walk past me and I was quick to dig into my food. I did not want her to think I had been listening to her. I had already asked her a stupid question; I did not want to make her night, well morning, actually, worse.
I did my best to not listen or watch Bella as I finished my food, but it was hopeless. A conversation she was having with the other waitress, Rosalie, caught my attention.
"This is getting ridiculous Rosalie. A dollar tip in quarters won't suffice; my cell phone will be shut off at the end of the month, another week without heat, and the rest of the bills piling up on my coffee table…"
"I'm sorry Bella," Rosalie hesitated with what she said next. "Maybe you should talk to your parents."
"No! I am not talking to them."
"Bella, be reasonable. We both know they'd be more than happy to help you out."
"Yeah, and they'd see how much of a failure I am. They'd see that I can't compare to my perfect sister, Alice, who can pay the bills."
"Bella, you're overreacting. Your parents have been nothing but supportive of you with your decisions after college. And I've known you since we were kids. They've never favored Alice over you , or vice-versa," Rosalie stated.
I know I should not be invading Bella's privacy, but I can't help myself. This girl – no, woman- intrigues me.
You can do this Edward. It's time to move on.
I felt even more concerned for her. It seems she is having financial troubles, and has a little too much pride to go to her parents for help.
And now I wanted to help her.
I will help her.
I paid my bill, then, I subtly left Bella with a one-hundred dollar tip.