Hello, my awesome readers! Notice how it hasn't been four months? SUCCESS. Haha. I'm still blown away by the responses that this story has gotten- you guys, I can't tell you how much your support means to me. Thank you, really. To those that reviewed the last chapter: Wragziez, JessTalksAlot, JustForgettheWorld09, EdwardC.-RPattzluver343, xxDancing-With-Starsxx, Guest, [second] Guest, Engelhaft Albtraum, ZzDejavuzZ, [third] Guest, Peth, Just a person, Alice J. Nightshade, trainette10, stillstanding13, manic-mania, and anonymous.
Just a person: Yes, U.S. History is basically just normal history, but of America. How the country started out, how the government developed and changed, and all of that good stuff. No worries- I totally understand! :)
Anonymous: I think I squealed/teared up a bit when I read your review. Thank you so incredibly much. I really can't describe how honored I am to have written an OC which is realistic, and that Edward is in character. I count the number of words he says for each chapter, simply because of the fact that, like you said, he only said 130 words in the movie. I think my limit is 20 words, tops, per chapter. Not sure where that exact number came from, but I figure it's one way to help keep him in character. Thank you so very much.
This chapter has not been read by my Beta, but she still deserves a big hand for putting up with me. Thank you, Christine Writer! :)
Alright, on to the chapter! While I own a pair of Doc Marten's knee-high boots, I do not own Edward Scissorhands. :/
"Woo-hoo. Nasty nugget Wednesday." Sarah grumbled, dropping her tray of gourmet food on the plastic lunch table. I hid my smile behind a generous bite of peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Ezra chuckled openly, dipping his own soggy chicken nuggets into his elf-sized portion of barbeque sauce with gusto. Jenica may or may not have heard the commotion at all, face hidden by a blue curtain of hair while she finished the last few chapters of her novel. Lunch had pretty much become reading time for her over the past few weeks. For the rest of us, it was 'Sarah-and-Ezra-have-a-boring-conversation-while-Lucy-watches-like-the-mute-she-is' time. On several sad occasions, both of them had tried to get me to speak, but to no avail. I love you, Sarah, but there are some things I will not do for you. I speak on my own terms, and when I feel comfortable doing it.
Thus far? Uh, yeah, no.
Now, don't get me wrong, Ezra had been pretty nice since the first day of school. Always sat next to me in U.S. History, helped me pick up a book if I dropped it, helped me up if I tripped (okay, that was ONE time, and I didn't see the milk before I stepped in it), and all of that good, friendly-friend stuff. But…I just couldn't trust him. Don't ask me why, 'cause I don't know myself. Maybe it's the fact that I know nothing more about him than his name. Sure, sure. I know what you're thinking: "but, you talked to Edward…"
I honestly don't know why I felt compelled so strongly to talk to Edward. Maybe it was because he just oozed loneliness, and I could sense it. Probably not, but hey, thinking that makes me feel way more intuitive than I actually am. Maybe it was because somewhere, deep down, I hoped that he wouldn't leave me like…
Dr. Jane had told me it was very common for people my age to stop talking after their parents had gotten a divorce. It made them feel like they still had control over some aspect of their lives.
Edward had been a risk worth taking. I'm glad I did it.
And I'm glad that he talked to me.
Speaking of Edward, things had gotten only a little bit weirder between us within these past few weeks. Okay, that's a lie. Things in my mind had gotten weirder, but we were pretty much the same. Well, except for the fact that Mom and Ellie knew about him now, and constantly asked questions about him and his well-being.
"Why doesn't he have hands?"
"What's his favorite food?"
"Why don't you invite him over more often?"
Yeah, the list goes on. I was still getting over the reaction he had invoked, too. Acceptance. I had expected Mom to be protective of me, mistaking Edward's scissors for weapons of destruction instead of beauty. She was kind of concerned about the ordeal with Jim all of those years ago. And to be honest, I couldn't blame her. If I had found out that my daughter's best friend had killed someone, I would be a little on edge, too. Okay, that's an understatement. I would be freaking armed with a rifle at all times. But, after I explained the circumstances around Jim's death, and how he had a gun pointed at Kim, she began to understand that it was an act of self-defense. She's still a little wary of his scissors when he comes over, but I can't blame her. I just hope that she warms up to him as easily as I did. Or as Ellie did, for that matter.
Ellie is constantly attaching herself to Edward's side, asking questions (until I shoot her a 'calm-the-frick-down' glance), showing him her drawings, and proudly talking about mine. She tried to have a tea party with him and her porcelain demons- er, dolls, rather -once…which didn't end well. No, Edward didn't mess up the tea set, if that's what you're thinking. He actually didn't get that far. I put my foot down as soon as the words 'tea party' left her rosy lips. She had wanted to invite Gracie over, for one, which was a huge no-no where Edward was concerned. No more people could know about him- it already felt alien having three. I couldn't handle five (because Gracie would definitely tell Aunt Maggie about him), and I doubted Edward could, either. Call it a hunch, but he seemed uncomfortable at times in my house. It was just the way he looked around like something was gonna jump out and grab him while he was there, the way he was so cautious when eating at the table. I think he was worried that Mom would report him to the police if he did something even the slightest bit wrong. It hurt to see him so nervous. Didn't he know that I would never let that happen? That I would always be there?
"Luce." Sarah snapped her fingers in front of my face, whistling. I shook my head as my train of thought de-railed. Not even cool, man.
I shot her a spitefully expectant look, as if to say, "Well, what do you want?"
"Third period, sunshine. Let's go." she replied, standing. Ezra was quick to be by her side as we dumped our trays in the trash. Jenica was behind me, scrambling to finish the last sentence of her book. I smiled faintly when she closed it with a triumphant fist pump.
"Great story." she muttered to herself, catching my gaze when she looked up. I quickly averted my eyes and focused on the trashcan, hoping that she wouldn't try and engage me in conversation. I liked Jenica, I did. To be honest, I was probably more drawn to her than to Ezra, for some reason. Still, I couldn't make words in her presence. I blamed the aforementioned control issues, even though I had never really thought of myself as a control freak.
Okay, deep and thought provoking revelations could wait until after school. Right now, I just wanted to get through English.
By the time fifth period had dwindled down to its last ten minutes, I was ready to go home, maybe take a nap, and then head over to the mansion. I'd never been so happy to see a Friday in my life.
My good mood reflected in the project I was currently working on, I thought. A little stuffed animal had been propped up against a Jack-in-the-Box on my table three days ago, when the assignment had been given. We were to sketch the still life in front of us and then pointillism-ify it. Is that a word? I guess it doesn't really matter. The point (wow, pardon the pun) was, I hate pointillism with a burning passion, and placing each individual dot with a Sharpie is far from my idea of fun, but today, none of that mattered. I finished the shading on that toy elephant with gusto.
"Impressive." was all Kristin- known as Ms. Grape to everyone but Jenica and I (in my mind) -had to say when she began her rounds, looking over shoulders and commenting as necessary. I wasn't sure if that meant it was terrible, or incredibly and totally awesome.
Only Jenica looked up from her work as she walked away, offering me a congratulatory wink. I smiled faintly back, probably looking like a jerk in the process. But hey, could I help it if my face muscles refused to work right? Okay, don't answer that.
"Okay, guys, you all can start cleaning up. Wait in your seats until the bell rings when you're done." Kristin's voice was the sweetest music to my ears. I practically threw my Sharpie into the bin at the end of the table.
Unfortunately, this caused the sleeve of my jacket to catch on the corner of my project.
For the love of everything that is good and right in this world, don't let that be-
Yep, it was my paper ripping. My FREAKING paper.
Closing my eyes, I took a deep breath. Okay, just a peek to assess the damage. Then, it's off to the house to cry into a tub of ice cream.
Hesitantly, I cracked one eye open.
The page was ripped completely in half. Diagonally. Normally, I would've marveled at the precision of the rip, but today, I felt like punching that stupid stuffed elephant off the table.
"Wow, that sucks." Jenica muttered to me, slowly reaching out and patting my shoulder for comfort. I flinched out of reflex, causing her to draw back.
"Sorry." was all she said before the bell droned its once heavenly tone throughout the room. I collected the shattered remains of my drawing, closing them inside my sketchbook before trudging out of the room.
I'd never been so sad to see a Friday in my life.
The wind on my face felt really good. Nothing helps calm a broken soul like the wind.
My messenger bag was slung in such a way that it rested on my back, so as not to get caught in the pedals of my bike. Believe me, it had happened before- can you say "eating pavement?"
Looking around, I figured not many students had gotten home besides Sarah and I, having taken the bus. Ah, the days of the bus. Nope, don't miss them at all.
Anyway, the fact of the matter is that no one was around when I pulled up to the winding dirt road that would inevitably lead me to my best friend. I breathed deeply before pushing off and pedaling forward. Since Mom had found out the real reason I had been going to the mansion, she had allowed me two unaccompanied visit's a week. It felt like I was on probation, but hey, I kind of was. I don't think she was completely over the fact that I hadn't told her about Edward. I couldn't blame her, and thus, couldn't argue when she laid down the law on my privileges.
A sweaty Lucy and a few mosquito bites later, I found myself at the gates to the mansion. They no longer appeared menacing, but welcoming, like that ancient grandparent who used to have a smoking problem, but is really a beautiful soul, but still sounds like E.T., you know? No? Okay, just me, then.
Well, at least something was going right for me today. The gates opened as soon as I pushed them. I inhaled sharply at the thought of seeing Edward after a long day, the thought magnified in appeal by how crappy the rest of it had been. At least, that's what I told myself. In reality, I'd been battling over my feelings about him during the past three weeks. I hadn't come to terms with anything, because I didn't need to. Edward was my best friend, and only that.
It didn't hurt that he was a teensy weensy bit attractive. Okay, that much I had accepted. But nothing else. Nothing else was true. I didn't like Edward like that.
But- my mind tried to protest. I hit it over the head with a skillet and continued walking toward the mansion door.
Edward was not in the attic when I entered the mansion. Oh, no. He was in the freaking foyer.
I jumped when I saw him only five feet away, trying to forget that I had had a girly debate about him just ten seconds ago.
"I'm sorry." he murmured, seeing my panic. I shook my head.
"Don't be, I just…." Okay, think of something, Luce. "Wasn't paying attention, is all."
It wasn't a lie at all- it was the truth without the truth.
But hey, he didn't question it. Instead, he smiled shyly at me. I returned it gladly, momentarily forgetting just how bad of a day it had been. And that was fine by me. I'd rather get lost in dark eyes than 'in-mourning' ice cream any day.
The door behind me closed with a THUMP. I jumped again. Stupid reflexes. Stop trying to help me.
"So," I chewed my lip, trying to think of a normal conversation starter. Of all the times to be semi-anti-social. "How was your day?"
"Good." Edward replied. Then, after a pause, he asked, "Can I...show you something?"
I nodded, dropping my bag at the side of the door. Well, I wasn't gonna carry it around while I was with him. Practically skipping to his side, I watched, curious, as he headed toward the room that held all of the inventions his father had made. We had never really gone in, but he'd told me enough so that I knew what some of them did. The largest one, the one that stretched across the majority of the room, made cookies. That one I knew for sure. Okay, so I lied. I only knew what one machine did.
But we weren't headed for those. Instead, Edward just walked around the hulking equipment. I followed, three strides of mine matching one of his. I hated being small for that reason. No speed at all. Nada.
We ended up standing at a workbench, with papers and diagrams strewn about. My eyes roamed over the bills, letters, and charts which held no meaning to me with interest. Why was Edward showing me this?
"Look." he raised a blade to something at my right. I followed the gesture almost eagerly.
A large sketchbook was propped up on an easel, it looked like. I approached it warily, wondering what I mind find within. From here, I could see a drawing of Edward. I frowned, wondering why the simple sketch had intrigued him so much. It was accurate, I had to admit. Probably more so than any of mine. Even the emotion in his eyes had been captured- quite a feat for a slew of ink.
Turning back to Edward, I looked at him questioningly. He nodded once at the book.
"Turn the page."
I did as I was told.
And I think that's when my heart dried up and fell into my stomach.
There, in color, was a sketch of Edward with hands. Human hands. I covered my mouth as tears sprung to my eyes, reaching out and touching one of them with shaky fingers. The page merely stared up at me, taunting with its promise. How it must've felt to see that he had been so close, so close, to being finished before his father died…
…I couldn't begin to imagine. Dealing with the loss of a loved one is bad enough, but then finding out that your only chance at being normal has been ripped away with them is…wow.
I thought of all of the things that could've been avoided had he been finished. No hate-filled townspeople, no murder…
…No lost love.
For some reason, that last thought both tugged at my heart and pained it. I felt so sad for Edward, to have had the only woman he had ever loved be taken away. I'd never experienced love, but from what I've read, it's pretty powerful stuff. Not to be messed with.
And then I felt guilty, because something about the thought of Edward and Kim together made me sad.
It's probably just because you never would've met him, had they not been torn apart. I reasoned. Yeah, that was it.
So why was I still crying and feeling guilty?
Turning away from the page, I caught Edward's gaze. He was in the same state as me, tears rolling silently down his cheeks. I wondered how he did it. Cried silently, that is. I would be a sobbing, weeping mess if the roles were reversed. He was much stronger than I was, and I don't think he would ever realize how much I admired that about him.
"Lucy?" he said quietly.
"Yeah?" I responded, voice hoarse.
He paused, looking to the ground in search of the words. "Can I…?" He opened his arms to me, obviously hoping for a hug. I laughed despite my tears.
"Yes, Edward, you can."
And with that, I closed the distance, wrapping my arms around his middle. He encircled me with his own. I felt a strange warmth in my chest, but didn't question it. Because if I was being honest…
…I liked it.
"And then it ripped in half." I sighed, gesturing to the two pieces of paper on the floor. Edward sat across from me in the attic, brow furrowed. We had moved to the attic about ten minutes ago, which happened to be when he asked how my day had went. Bad choice, Edward. Bad choice.
Still, he didn't look too miffed about my dramatic telling of the Art class failure. Squinting at the torn page, he was silent and in thought.
"Does it have to be in one piece?" he asked finally. I raised a brow.
"Um, I guess not." Where was he going with this?
He met my eyes, worry shining brightly in those dark irises. It was as though he were asking permission for something radical, something I would definitely be angry about.
Of course, I gave him said permission. A nod was my response.
And that's when he cocked his head to the side, studied the pages for a moment, and went to work. Paper flew around us in a frenzied cloud. Furious snipping was the soundtrack to the scene.
And my wide-eyed response was probably very funny. But hey, could I help it? My best friend had just started shredding my broken art project. How was I supposed to react?
No, not shredding, as I found out. Because in seconds, the madness stopped, and I was left with a collection of strange and intricate shapes, each embellished with a piece of my pointillism. They were beautiful, like snowflakes. Each had their own shape and size about them.
"It's a puzzle." I breathed, looking at the pieces in wonder. Edward nodded. "That's a great idea!"
He seemed pretty proud of his work. I smiled, collecting all of the pieces before the wind could carry them away, and tucked them into my sketchbook. My phone buzzed a second later.
It was from Mom.
You guys having fun?
I was quick to reply.
My mother was never a technology person, so her response came around five minutes later. Edward hadn't spoken at all since she'd texted me. I looked up at him.
"Want me to tell her you said 'hi'?" I asked, waving the phone a little. He nodded.
I was forced to look away from his smile when my phone vibrated again. Stupid phone.
Just fine. Ellie and I are watching a movie. If you guys want to join us, feel free. It's almost time for you to come home, anyway.
I checked the time on my phone. Crap, she was right. Almost nine o'clock.
Edward says hi. I'll ask him if he wants to come with me. Thanks.
"Um," I looked up from the little screen. "It's almost time for me to go."
Edward looked a little crestfallen, but nodded. I continued.
"But, if you wanna come over and watch a movie with us, you can."
He hesitated. It hurt to think that he didn't believe someone like him could be wanted somewhere.
"Are you sure?" he questioned timidly.
"Absolutely." I answered. He finally nodded. I grinned. "Alright, let's head out, then."
Kicking an empty beer can away from the doorframe as I passed it, I followed Edward down the stairs. The place was still slightly trashed, though we had gotten rid of a good chunk of the mess. Stupid Jeff. Stupid parties.
Before I knew it, we were walking down my street. I wheeled my bike as we did, looking around for any other people. A few were out on their porches, so I made sure to keep us closer to the shadows in case they saw us. If anyone started flipping out over Edward, I would personally kick him or her in the kneecap. Okay, maybe not, but you get the idea. I would be enraged.
In the dim light, I spotted something rectangular lying on our side of the road. It was crumpled and damp, yes, but that didn't change anything. Alexander Hamilton's face still stared up at me from the ground. I stooped to pick up the ten-dollar bill, shoving it in my pocket. Hey, no one had cared to pick it up yet, so I hoped it wouldn't be missed all that much.
The minute I looked up at Edward, I read the question in his eyes. I pulled the bill out of my pocket.
"Ten-dollar bill." I replied simply, replacing it in my jeans. He looked perplexed, but said nothing. I knew what he wanted to say, though.
"But, it's not yours."
Yes, I knew that much. But you know what? It was going to a good cause.
I made a mad dash for my room as soon as Edward and I stepped inside my house.
"Be right back!" I assured everyone, already in the doorway. My trunk lay just to the side of my bed. I opened it with some difficulty, withdrawing a large, glass jar. Screwing the lid open, I jerked the ten-dollar bill out of my pocket and dropped it inside to join the rest of its kind.
"Thirty dollars." I muttered to myself, examining the small collection of bills with a frown. "Not even close."
And with that, I replaced the jar marked 'Edward's Hands' in the trunk.
"What movie are we watching?" I shouted to Mom and Ellie, making my way back to the living room. To Edward.
"Enchanted." Mom forced a smile to please Ellie. I smirked, flopping down next to my best friend.
Alrighty, that's all I have for now. The next chapter will definitely be out soon! This one hasn't been edited by anyone other than me, myself, and my fifty personalities, so I'm anxious to see what you all think.
Did you like it? Hate it? Would you be so kind as to leave a review? That would mean so much. Thank you all for reading!