I know, I'm a terrible bitch. But here is your update.
Chapter Four: Meet Alice and Rosalie
The ride there was uneventful. I played the radio loudly and sung to prevent Edward from falling back to sleep on me. He'd grudgingly admitted amusement after our mock fight for the volume control. I glanced at Edward who was throwing back Monsters like nobody's business. "If you get sick, it's not my problem."
He scoffed. "Have I ever gotten sick from drinking energy drinks, Isabella?" I scowled at him. He knew that I hated my full name.
"My name is Bella." I said warningly. "And I was just letting you know that I'm not letting you puke in my car."
"The name on your birth certificate is Isabella Marie Swan."
"Okay, Mr. Edward Anthony Cullen." I scowled at him.
He grinned, unashamed. "Hey, my full name doesn't bother me. I happen to be proud of the name my parents gave me."
Damn it. "Yeah, well, you play the piano."
He snorted, knowing that if I'd resorted to petty insults such as that, then I hadn't been able to think of anything else. "Yes, I do. And you love it."
I couldn't deny that. He'd composed several pieces, all of them amazing. The first thing I ever remember hearing that he'd done had been my lullaby. Back in our freshman year, I'd been having trouble sleeping and he knew it, so he snuck into my room through the tree outside my window and had held me, humming until I fell asleep. A few weeks after, after me begging him to tell me what he'd been humming, he'd admitted that he'd composed it on the piano. I'd been ridiculously proud of him, and forced him to play it for me. It was even better coming from the piano.
He'd apparently realized how much I loved it, because he'd given me a CD recording of it for my next birthday. As soon as I'd gotten my MP3 player, I'd burned the song onto there, but I'd kept the original CD is a special case I'd made, in its honorary spot on my shelf.
"That's besides the point. It's a ridiculously girly instrument," I teased him. I knew it didn't bother Edward, he was at ease with his piano playing, mostly because of me. He'd been so embarrassed about it when he'd first showed me. I'd spent months giving him confidence in his skill, showing him successful, well known, male pianists that were widely liked. It had taken a while, but he'd eventually come to terms and gotten rid of his embarrassment. He'd even admitted it to Jasper and Emmett, with my help, who surprisingly didn't crack jokes at the time. They did now, but it was different when Edward was confident in himself.
He flashed a grin at me. "Ah, now the bird sings a different tune. I remember you begging me to play for you as you showed me pictures of other guys." He snorted.
"Hey!" I reached over to smack him, keeping my eyes on the road. "It worked, thank you very much."
"I do," he said suddenly, his voice serious.
"What?" I shot him a puzzled glance.
"I do thank you. Without you, I would still be sneaking to the music store in the city to play, instead of having my own piano in my room. I'd still be ashamed of it. So thank you."
I bit my lip. "That's not true, Edward. You would have come to terms with it eventually."
"Maybe," he said. "But I doubt it. I mean, come on Bella. Emmett is one of my best friends. I would have never, in a million years, expected him to take it so stoically, without laughing, if I hadn't experienced it myself. I still think you have something to do with that," he shot me a look. "But I can deal with it now." I focused on not looking guilty. I had threatened to maim Emmett, if he so much as made on girl joke. While Emmett would have said it in jest, Edward would have been crushed. I couldn't let that happen.
"It wasn't a big deal," I muttered.
"It was to me," I felt his hand touch my shoulder.
"Well, I guess, you're welcome then. And you're my best friend, you don't have to thank me, regardless. You've helped me out plenty of times. I found out about your piano playing, because you were trying to help me when I was stressed out, despite the fact that you were so embarrassed about it."
"You're my best friend," he said with a shrug, like that explained it. "Of course, I was going to do anything to help you."
"See?" I said softly.
"Yeah, I guess I do," he said with a laugh.
I glanced at him, throwing him a smile. "We've been best friends since we were little, I think all of our thank yous are implied by now."
He grinned, chugging the rest of the Monster. "I'm really lucky to have you as a friend, Bella."
I grinned back, "Duh, isn't that what I've been telling you for years?"
The rest of the ride there was very pleasant.
The airport was ridiculously crowded for six in the morning. What were all of these people doing awake willingly, I wondered. Alice and Rosalie's plane had just come down the runway, so we waited at the gate for them. I had the picture Jasper had reluctantly parted with in order to find them. When the rush of people surged through, they were easy to spot. It wasn't height, Alice was shorter than me, and Rosalie wasn't much taller. It was sheer force of personality.
My stomach dropped, and I gave a self-conscious look at myself. I was wearing ripped jeans and the shirt Avenged Sevenfold shirt that Edward had given me for a birthday a few years ago. I knew my hair was crazy messy, because I hadn't touched it when I left the house. I found myself wishing I had spent some time getting ready, before leaving. I tugged my shirt down, nervously. I had never been so self-conscious in my life, but next to these two works of perfection, it wasn't surprising. They weren't very similar. Alice danced her way over to us, her pixie hair cut spiked and glittering. Rosalie strutted, her flowing blonde hair wafting around her shoulders. They both were wearing what looked like designer clothes and dragging a mountain of suitcases, while wearing stiletto heels. They were the exact opposites of me.
Edward stepped forward first, not noticing my internal struggle. "You must be Alice," he said the the pixie. "And you must be Rosalie." Rosalie smiled at him, while Alice threw herself into his arms. "Uhm," I saw Edward throw me a panicked glance.
"Ohh, you must be Edward," she said releasing him and clapping her hands. "And you must be Bella!" My eyes widened as she set her sight on me and threw herself at me. I flinched, unable to stop myself and saw Rosalie laugh. For such a small girl, she sure packed a punch. I was pretty sure my ribs were going to be bruised once she released me from the hug. "We're going to be great friends," she said earnestly to me.
"Uh, yeah. Hi." I gave her a small smile in return.
Rosalie walked up to me with a rueful grin, "I'm Rosalie. And of course, that's Alice." She dropped her voice, "You'll get used to her."
I laughed. "If she's anything like Jasper told me she was, I'm sure I'll love her."
I glanced back at Edward to see how he was faring with Alice and I smiled. He had grabbed a bunch of the suitcases and was lugging them as Alice chatted excitedly in his ear.
"She's a very friendly person," I commented, grabbing some of Rosalie's suitcases for her.
"Thanks. Yeah, she's a people person. It's hard to dislike her."
"I doubt I will. Jasper raves about her, and if he's that crazy about her, she must be pretty special."
Rosalie glanced at me, taking in my clothes, lack of make up, hair, everything. "It must be really weird, having 3 guy best friends." Ah, so Jasper had talked about all of us.
I tugged self-consciously at my shirt again. "Not really, I'm used to them."
"I'm not insulting you, Bella." She had noticed my movement and interpreted it correctly. "Just commenting. You've led a different life than I have. I really like your shirt by the way." I glanced at her, suspiciously. Was she making fun of me? "I'm serious," she sighed. "Bella, I want us to be friends. I'm not trying to make fun of you, I like Avenged Sevenfold."
I shook my head, with a small laugh. "Sorry, I can't imagine you liking a band like that."
"Why? Because of how I dress?" She didn't sound mad, just inquisitive.
"I guess," I said with a shrug. "Maybe I have some stereotypes."
"Dressing like a girl doesn't mean you have to turn into a girly girl." I shrugged, uncomfortably. Rosalie, noticing my unease at this conversation, stopped and changed the subject. "So tell me about your guys."
I smiled at her phrasing. "Well, Jasper is the quiet one. He's ridiculously polite and has, I admit, a very sexy drawl." I flashed a grin at her, that was returned. "He was over the moon when he met Alice. He called me at three in the morning, raving about how he met this amazing girl who he thought was the one. You haven't met Jasper, but once you do, you'll realize how out of character that is for him." I shook my head. "I mean, he fits in with us, like a piece of a puzzle, but you wouldn't expect it, because he has the least in common with all of us."
She smiled. "Alice was the same way after she met him. She called me, though, while in the bathroom, right after having met him. She thought he was the one at first glance," she laughed. "That's Alice for you. I'll warn you now, never bet against that girl. She'll always win. I don't know how, but she will."
"Thanks for the advice. I'll make sure to pass it on. Hmm, let's see. Emmett is my big brother. He's like a bear." I rolled my eyes with a smile. "A big teddy bear. Sure, he acts tough, but he cried watching Marley and Me." I flashed a conspirators grin at her. "Don't let him know I told you that. He's also the joker. And the player. If he doesn't hit on me some day, then I know there's something wrong with him. Physically, he's just..." I shook my head again, "he's really freaking big. That's why I call him the bear. He's got the body mass of a grizzly bear," I said with a snort. "But the compassion of a teddy bear."
Rosalie was watching me curiously. "What about Edward?"
I paused. "Edward is... Edward." I shrugged before continuing, "he's hard to explain. We've been best friends since pre-school, and I still can't explain him. He's really sweet sometimes. He's like the medium between Jasper and Emmett. He's a quarter like Jasper, quarter like Emmett, and the rest," I shrugged helplessly, "the rest is just himself."
She opened her mouth, like she wanted to ask something, but closed it again. We made it to the car and loaded everything in. It barely fit. How could two girls have so much luggage, I wondered. Once everything was loaded, we piled in. Rosalie took the back seat, at least what was left of it after their luggage was stacked, and Edward insisted on driving on the way back. I ended up in the middle of the front seat, pushed against Edward so that I wouldn't squish Alice.
Who continued to spew spectacularly. It was amazing to watch. I would have never imagined that someone could talk that much without getting serious dry mouth. It wasn't boring, it was just... multitudinous. She acted like we'd known her for years, and were just catching up. Rosalie just accepted it, with an amused look on her face. Edward smiled and answered her back, like they were just two old friends.
"So what about you, Bella?"
"I err," what had she asked me? "What was that?" I could hear Edward snort softly next to me, and I reached over and gripped his thigh, hard. He winced and glared at me. Alice noticed where my hand was, with her eyebrows raised. I yanked it back.
"I asked you if you had a boyfriend," she said slowly. "I didn't realize that you two were.."
My eyes widened. "Me and Edward?" I squeaked out. "No," I gave a nervous laugh. "We're just friends." I saw him scowl at me, and I gave him a questioning look. He neglected to answer it, just stared moodily out the windshield. I frowned, wondering if it was Alice's comment that had upset him. Was even the thought of being my boyfriend so disgusting that he couldn't stand it? I bit my lip and scooted farther away from him, my knee bumping Alice's.
She mouthed the word 'Sorry' to me, obviously realizing she'd hit a sore spot. I shrugged with a fake smile at her. After a few awkward, silent moments, she started the flow of conversation again. "Jasper said that we were staying with you, Bella."
Grateful for something to distract me from Edward's apparent upset, I turned slightly, facing her. "Yeah, I talked to my dad already, he was fine with it." I glanced at Edward, waiting for him to make a comment about Charlie's elation at me having found friends who were female, but he didn't say anything. I frowned and glanced down. "My house isn't very big, but there's a guest room with two beds."
Alice smiled, her hands clasped in front of her. "That's perfect."
"I err." Oh shit. Had Jasper mentioned Bowser to them? That would be just fucking perfect if one of them was afraid of snakes. "Please tell me that neither of you are deathly afraid of snakes." I glanced back and forth between Alice and Rosalie. Edward was laughing softly beside me, apparently over whatever had upset him.
Rosalie answered for both of them. "Nope. Snakes don't bother either of us."
I sighed, "Okay, that's good. I uh, have a snake."
Alice tilted her head. "That doesn't surprise me."
I flushed. Yeah, I get it. You're designer clothes and pocket pets, while I'm ratted clothes and snakes. I knew that wasn't what Alice meant, but I hated feeling like this. Jessica wore designer clothes, or at least what she claimed was designer clothes, and it didn't bother me. But that was because my friends didn't like her. Jasper really liked Alice, who was the exact opposite of me. I was afraid that they were going to become part of our group, and the guys would like them better, because they acted like girls. It was stupid. Completely asinine. I knew the guys would never ditch me. I was just being an idiot. I rubbed my hand over my face, looking at the clock. That was it. It was just way too early in the morning for me to even function correctly, let alone think coherently. Once I went to bed for about 10 hours, I would be okay.
The last thing I remembered from the ride was Alice talking about someone named ChiChi that was going to fly to visit her. But the conversation sounded so weird, as did the name, that I figured it might have been part of my imagination. Next thing I knew, Edward was shaking me gently. "Bella, we're home."
"Hmm?" I sleepily lifted my head off of his shoulder, blearily squinting to try and block out the sun.
"We're home," he repeated.
"That's cool," I mumbled, laying my head back against the seat. "Go on in without me," I mumbled in the direction that I thought Alice and Rosalie must be in. "I'll be in, in a little bit."
I heard Edward snort. "Yeah, right, you will."
Then I was flying. "What're you doin'?"
The hard chest I was held against rumbled. "Taking you inside so you don't sleep in your car."
"Mmk." Too tired to argue, I rested my head against his chest and fell back asleep.
I know it's kind of a weird place to stop, but I have a plan. XD