Author's Note: Hey All! I just want to say thanks to all of the people who reviewed this story! You all are amazing! I also want to give a shout out to two people:
First, my amazing beta NikCul. Thank you so much for sticking by me when I took forever to post this story!
And, of course, to my wonderful friend BellaCullenSwan17, who is responsible for the title of this story. She's truly an amazing writer and a girl I'm glad to call my friend. BellaCullenSwan17, you are an amazing person, thank you for all the support and inspiration. Love you!
On with the story!
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters, settings, quotes, or plot lines linked to Twilight or any other recognizable media. They all belong to their respective owners. Sorry!
Chapter One: Finally
As I walked through the bustling streets of New York City, my eyes were not on where I was going. My eyes were taking in the amazing scenery. The skyscrapers, their tops hidden by fog. The crammed streets full of traffic, that seemed to move only one inch a minute. The generic yellow taxi cabs, always within your sight. The people, so many people, all going different places for different reasons, wearing a wide variety of clothing, from business suits to athletic gear. The bright lights. The wonder. All things I had waited practically my whole life to see.
I had always wanted to come to New York. I first heard of this glorious city when my mother Renée had taken me to a community theater performance when I was six.
I remember being entranced by the way that the actors moved around the stage, reciting words, singing songs, portraying emotions not their own. At the end of the show, there was a meet and greet, so you could meet the actors and have them sign your programs. I was shy and I didn't want to go to talk to them, but Renée pushed me forward enthusiastically. I stumbled forward towards the lead actress. She was very friendly and she asked me what my name was.
"B-Bella," I spluttered.
"Well hi, Bella," she said animatedly, emphasizing her words with overly flamboyant hand gestures. "Did you like the show, sweetie?"
"Um… u-uh…" My bashfulness took over and I couldn't form a coherent thought. Did I like the show? I glanced back over my shoulder at Renée and she smiled encouragingly at me.
"What was that honey?" The actress bent down so her face was level with mine.
Suddenly everything came back to me. The play. Oh.
I don't remember what happened next exactly. I'm very good at blocking out painful, embarrassing memories. I do remember though, that I said something along the lines of "It was great! Your were great! You are the bestest actor ever!"
Immediately after I blurted out these words, my mind caught up to my over excited mouth and I realized what I'd said. I felt a crimson blush spread over my cheeks.
The woman just chuckled. "I'm glad you liked it, and thank you for the complement. I'm glad you think I'm good. I'm not nearly as talented as the actors on Broadway."
"Broadway?" I echoed. "What's Broadway?"
A dreamy look came over her face. "Broadway is a street in New York City. All along the street are different theaters where they put on shows every night. The shows are much cooler than the show we did here, believe it or not. The actors all get paid to perform. That's what I want to do when I get a job." She took my program from my hand, flipped to the cast page, and scrawled an elegant signature next to her picture. "Here you go, Bella. Maybe I'll see you here at another show?"
I nodded my head vigorously and skipped back to Renée, somehow managing to trip in thin air on the way.
My mom had taken me to that same theater for years after that first show. I had seen that actress, whose name turned out to be Anna, many times after that. She began to recognize me at the shows and we soon became friends. I remember Anna running over to me after a show, six years after our first meeting, and telling me that she had been accepted to the Julliard School in New York, a famous school for the performing arts. She was so excited and kept telling me how much closer she was to her dream of performing on Broadway.
Six months later Anna hopped on a plane to NYC, on her way to Julliard. I never heard from her again.
I always told myself that Anna was perfectly fine, that she was just so busy with her new life performing at Julliard. That's why she had not emailed. Or called. Or written.
But even though Anna was gone, my love for theater hadn't faded. I had tried acting, but I couldn't lie to save my life, so I decided that I would be better suited to be a spectator in the world of theater. I was determined to go to New York and see at least one show. But it took a little longer than I'd thought.
I hadn't really realized it when I was younger, but Renée and I weren't that well off. We weren't starving or anything, but money was certainly an issue. We had enough to get by, but not enough for an expensive trip across the country.
Over time things changed. When I was fifteen and in ninth grade, Renée met my step dad Phil and a year later, they were married. Phil was a baseball player, and her traveled around a lot. I could tell my mother missed him when he was gone, and she would have gladly traveled with him except for one issue. Me. So Renée stayed with me while Phil traveled, and I watched her mope around the house when she thought I wasn't looking.
After a year of this, I put an end to it. One evening at the dinner table, I told my mother I wanted to move to Forks, Washington to live with my dad, Charlie.
Renée and Charlie had gotten divorced when I was one year old. They had only been married two years. Renée and Charlie were high school sweethearts. They got married right after senior year was over, and Charlie got a job with the police. Three months later, I happened. A year after Renée had me, she decided enough was enough. She was "done with this stupid, dreary, depressing excuse of a town! I'm sick and tired of it Charlie! I'm sick and tired of doing all the work around here, while you just come home with takeout from the diner, grab a beer, and sit your butt on that ratty old couch every evening! Is that fun for you; do you enjoy it? Because it sure as heck isn't any fun for me! That's you Charlie, not me." Or, at least, that was the interpretation I eventually put together from bits and pieces Charlie and Renée had told me over the years. For some reason, in my head, I imagine a lot more swearing. So my mom took me, left Charlie, and headed to Arizona. We lived in a motel for a few weeks before my mom found a cheap apartment. She mailed my dad the divorce papers.
But that doesn't mean I'd never really met Charlie. Starting when I was six, I vacationed in Forks for two weeks during the summer. When I was younger, Charlie would drive over to Phoenix a few weekends a year (as the police chief of a small town, it was easy to give himself a weekend off every now and then) and spend them with me. Plus, I got a phone call from him every Christmas and Birthday.
So I was going to live with Charlie. In Forks.
The truth was, I detested Forks. It was an absolutely miniscule town on the Olympic Peninsula of Washington state. Everyone in the town had know everyone else since the day they were born, whereas I would be the outsider, the daughter of the police chief's irresponsible ex-wife. Moving to Forks wasn't a decision I would enjoy, but I knew it was the right thing to do. I had never been one to put my own needs in front of others, even if it meant I was going to be unhappy.
Renée had convinced me to wait until I'd finished tenth grade, but I was adamant on going to forks at the end of summer break. But for Christmas that year, Renée surprised me with plane tickets to go to New York for ten days. Ten days. Before, Renée had told me that we couldn't afford to go for one weekend. Something seemed off about this, but there was no way I was going to complain. I also got tickets to go to three shows, In the Heights, Billy Elliot, and Xanadu. I couldn't believe it. I was finally going to go to New York. I was finally going to see a Broadway play. Finally.
So that was how I ended up here. In New York, the place I've always wanted to go.
I was headed to find a Starbucks, Renée had insisted on sleeping in, and said she would have breakfast when she woke up, so I was left to find my own food. This wasn't a problem. After almost seventeen years of living with scatterbrained Renée, I had learned to fend for myself.
I decided just to wander, making mental notes of my route until I found a franchise. I figured that there were so many, that it wouldn't take me long to find one.
I had just turned the corner when I heard the music.
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