December 13, 2009
I picked at the imaginary fuzz for the millionth time. The car was uncomfortably quiet; mom and dad just having gotten over an argument. She insisted on wearing her beat up clogs repeating over and over "No one will see them under this dress!" He on the other hand "would not be embarrassed by her appearance. He was the police commissioner and she, his wife, should dress the part."
I gazed out the window watching the sleepy city of Seattle fly by me as the snow drifted from the sky. I couldn't wait to be clear across the country again, back in the safe confines of my apartment and away from the Hell they call Forks. I fucking hated breaks. It meant I had to come home.
"We're here, Commissioner Swan." The chauffeur announced, breaking me out of my reverie.
Phil was a kind older gentleman, maybe a few years older than my dad's ripe age of 56. His wife and son were killed in an automobile accident twenty years ago. He never remarried. Instead he drove around a hippie, a self-entitled glorified cop and an overzealous twenty something year old. Apparently he was a masochist, torturing himself with this Podunk job every single damn day.
"Thanks Phil." I muttered as he extended his hand to me and helped me out of the Cadillac.
He tipped his ridiculous chauffeur's hat and offered a warm smile, very different from the hard line that rested across my father's lips as he offered his hand to my mother.
The three of us walked quietly up the steps of the Seattle Hilton.
Put on a happy face, Bella.
Be polite, Bella.
Watch the drinking tonight, Bella.
I could hear my father's voice in my head, replaying the lecture he gave me earlier before we left for this stupid Christmas party. What he really meant was…Don't embarrass me, Bella.
I shrugged off my thick velvet coat and offered it to the woman behind the coat check. She was sweet and young. Her medium length black hair was pulled into a half ponytail and her brown eyes were hiding behind thick rimmed glasses. I glanced at the shiny gold badge resting upon her crisp white shirt.
Angela. Nice and sweet, just like her.
At some point I lost my parents amidst the sea of uniforms, tuxedos and evening dresses. I imagined my mom was forcing a smile and small talk while my father played the ever humble enforcer of the law and protector of life. What a façade. Couldn't these other stiff shirt mother fuckers see through that?
Of course not.
Because those stiff shirt mother fuckers were just like him.
Needing this night to go by quickly I pushed my way through gaudy holiday wear and chintzy decorations, right up to the bar.
"Dirty martini with a pickle, please." I sighed to the bartender.
While my life elixir was being prepared, I glanced around the room internally repulsed by the phony laughter. These people with their perfect hair, perfect clothes, perfect shoes, perfect fucking offspring…had they no sense of humility?
"Here you go."
I smiled sweetly while handing over a twenty dollar tip to the older man behind the bar and sipped off the cold, bitter refreshment. The burning in my throat brought on a sense of calm.
"You look like you're out of your comfort zone." I heard a rich, deep voice say.
I turned around to face a pair of stunning jade eyes. Perfect lips spread into an uneven smirk as long fingers ran through a sea of bronze.
"Is it that obvious?" I finally managed to choke out after taking another swig of confidence in a glass.
"I hate these things too. I'm not sure what displeases me more; the tuxedo or being in a room filled with arrogant bastards. I'm Edward Cullen by the way." He said as he extended his hand.
"Bella Swan." I replied placing my small hand into his much larger one.
I expected a firm handshake.
I expected a light touch.
What I did not expect was for this Adonis like man to bring my hand to his velvety smooth lips and place a chaste kiss upon the top.
"Swan, huh? Your dad is Charlie?"
"Yeah. Look, can we not talk about my parents right now?" I said, wincing when I realized how harsh that came out.
"Trouble with the parents, too? No worries, I'm happy to forget about them for the evening." He responded, bringing an unnoticed drink to his lips.
"So what brings you here? You a cop?"
He offered a small chuckle and his eyes twinkled.
"No, Miss Swan, I am not a cop. I'm a doctor actually. I live in Massachusetts, just visiting the parents for the holidays. My dad is Carlisle Cullen. He's an ER doctor at Forks General. Sorry, I know we said we wouldn't talk about our parents and here I just spit out two entire sentences about them."
"Well, I'll forgive you. But only because you've piqued my interest. What are two established doctors doing at a policeman's ball?" I flirted shamelessly.
"My dad works very closely with Forks PD. When they bring in any crime victims, Carlisle is the one who oversees their care."
"That explains why Dr. Cullen, Sr. is here but what about you, Dr. Cullen, Jr. Why are you here?"
He smiled a panty dropping smile and ran his hands through his hair again.
"You caught me, Miss Swan. I'm actually here at my father's insistence. Both of our dads have raved about the beauty and grace that is the commissioner's daughter. I had to see for myself. And forgive me for being so straight forward, but their words of your gorgeous face and charming personality don't do you justice."
My heart fluttered like a hummingbird and I felt a blush rise to my cheeks. Suddenly, this room was very hot.
"You're obviously drunk. I swear like a truck-driver, have the attention span of a gnat and sit like a frat boy. My father had to tell me a million times before I left to mind my manners." I laughed without humor.
"Well, Bella, I think those traits are…refreshing. It's nice to meet a woman who has an opinion and a bit of rebel in her. I'm enjoying your company so much, I was wondering if you'd grant me the honor of a dance."
"Alright Casanova but be prepared to have your shiny shoes scuffed."
He simply smiled as I rested my palm against his. He led me out to the overcrowded dance floor as the band played an instrumental version of At Last. I rested one hand on his broad shoulder as he gently entwined my other hand with his, bringing it to rest against his warm, hard chest.
"You know a little about me and I know nothing about you. What do you do, Bella?" He spoke softly into my ear.
I ignored the shiver that ran through my body.
"I'm finishing my master's degree in education at Dartmouth. I work at a center for under privileged high school students. They go to school year round to keep them from getting in trouble. If I can inspire even one of those kids to do something better with their lives, then I've served my purpose. I can go to sleep at night knowing there will be one less kid on the streets turning to a life of crime as a means of survival."
"I think that's extremely admirable, what you do. It's people like you that can save the world, one lost soul at a time."
"They aren't lost souls, just misguided. It's a very stressful and often underappreciated position I'm in but I wouldn't change it for the world. Those kids need to know there are better options available to them. Just like your patients need to know that if they are sick or hurt, there's an extremely charming, suave doctor they can go to."
"You think I'm suave & charming?" He chuckled.
"Psh, don't act surprised. You know I do. Otherwise I would've told you to fuck off when you first approached me at the bar."
"Ouch, Ms. Swan. That hurts. And here I thought you were a damsel in distress and I, your knight in shining armor…err…tuxedo."
I couldn't help but through my head back and let out a deep guffaw.
"Dr. Cullen, sorry to disappoint you but I make it a point to not need a knight. I have a tough ass reputation to uphold, you know. Can't have my students back home get wind I have a soft side."
"Is it safe where you work? I mean, if you're working with the under-privileged I have to imagine it's not in Hanover."
"You are correct. It's not horrible; mostly just a bunch of punks and drug dealers but Manchester isn't as nice as it used to be. This is all the more reason I am dedicated to my career."
I dared look up into his face, his smile warm and radiating as he stared at me intently.
"I'm sorry, didn't mean to go off on a tangent. I'm very passionate about what I do." I mumbled as I buried my head into his chest, my cheeks aflame.
His fingers gently grasped my chin, raising my face up as he said, "Never apologize for having passion. You are an incredible woman, Bella Swan. Do you think I could be a selfish asshole and ask you for one favor?"
I gulped audibly and nodded my head, our gazes never breaking.
"I want to kiss you."
It took a matter of two seconds and my eyes were closed, lips spread slightly apart. I pushed myself into his form as his mouth sought mine and a sweet satiny texture covered the tender skin. At first the kisses were sweet and chaste, his hands taking residency on my ribs. It took a matter of moments until it turned into a mad passionate make out session. Soft moans escaped as his hands crept further down and slowly grasped my derriere.
"I'm usually not this straight forward, but do you want to get out of here?" He whispered in between lip locks.
"I have a room upstairs in the hotel. This may be really presumptuous but I really couldn't give a damn at the moment; I can't wait to have you under me, on top of me, in front of me…" He blew the words across my ear as he places kisses along my neck.
"Now. We have to leave now. Please…" I begged. I wasn't beneath begging at this point.
Edward grabbed my hand and pulled me through the ocean of phonies, my breathing starting to become steadier but my body still incredibly fucking aroused.
"For later…" He turned to me with a mischievous smile as he grabbed two bottles of champagne off of an unattended server's cart right next to the doorway of freedom.
At this moment, I prayed for two things to happen;
I prayed there wasn't a wet spot on my dress, an obvious indicator of how this gorgeous fucking man turned me on.
I prayed his bedroom skills were as hot as he looked.
I awoke with a pounding headache and a rancid taste in my mouth. My hair was a hot mess and my make-up was a disaster. Carefully I pulled the large, possessive arm off of my waist, careful not to wake its owner.
It was still dark out, the sun just starting to peak up over the horizon. I walked around the room oh so quietly trying to find my discarded clothing in the charcoal hued room. As I stumbled into my underwear and zipped up my dress, I dared take a peek at the sleeping man still lying in the bed.
His lips were in a slight pout, eyebrows furrowed. He must be dreaming about something intense. I felt a smile tug at my lips as I thought back to last night…the parts I could remember anyway.
I sat down at the small table and chairs across the room and found a notepad and pen. What do I say? Thanks for last night, had a great time?
It was a pleasure meeting you last night. I haven't done a one night stand in a long time; I'm not that kind of girl. I'm willing to move on if you are. You looked so peaceful this morning I didn't have the heart to wake you before I left. Have a wonderful holiday and a safe trip home.
I folded the note in half and laid it on his night stand. Slowly leaning over, I placed one last kiss atop his forehead. My heart held a dull ache as I looked at him one last time. This couldn't work out. My leaving is for the better.
I made it over to the door and quietly closed it behind me, leaving the man of dreams behind it.
June 13, 2010 (6 months later)
"For your homework assignment, I want you to re-write the constitution. Really think about what you would change and why." I said as I wrote down the assignment on the whiteboard.
"Aw, C'mon Swan Lake. It's summer vacay, why we gotta have homework."
I knew that voice coming from the back of the room. Tyler Crowley was a good kid, a bit lazy but overall a nice young man. His dad was doing time for possession and his mom worked two jobs to keep a roof over his head and food in his stomach. If he would just apply himself a little, there wasn't a doubt in my mind he could get into a decent university.
"First of all Mr. Crowley, it's disrespectful to call me anything other than Miss Swan. Second, in case you forgot I have to be here too on my summer vacay as you so eloquently put it and lastly you have to have homework because you are still in school. Anything else I can clarify for you? Good. If you guys can really impress me with your superb writing skills and excellent research, I'll throw you a pizza party. I'm giving you all week to work on this in and out of class."
I happened to glance up to look out of window facing into the hallway. A familiar shade of bronze was waiting outside my door.
"You guys are free to go. Stay out of trouble!" I dismissed them anxiously.
As my twenty-six students rushed out the door eager to enjoy the warm weather and sunshine, a tall form cruised past them and into my empty classroom.
"Can I help you?" I asked, my voice quivering.
"I take it you don't remember me." He said his face void of all emotion, voice flat and cold.
How could I forget? You've only plagued my thoughts every moment of every day.
"I'm sorry. Perhaps you have the wrong room."
"Don't play stupid Bella. You're a horrible liar. I need five minutes of your time and then I'll be gone."
His harsh words struck a nerve with me.
"I'm so sorry Edward." was all I was able to whisper.
"It's a little late for apologies now, don't you think?" He laughed humorlessly.
"I freaked out. I kept telling myself over and over it would never have worked out. That doesn't excuse what I did but I hope it does offer a small understanding."
"It never worked out because you never gave it a chance to! That was the best night of my life, Bella! Do you have any idea how it felt to wake up to an empty bed and heartless fucking note? I felt something for you. In fact, what I felt for you was so strong I thought it was a fan-fucking-tastic idea to make it legal." He shouted at me.
"What are you talking about? We met, we danced, we drank, we fucked. And then I left."
"Somewhere between the parts of us drinking and fucking we also got married."
"What kind of sick, fucked up joke is that?" I yelled.
"It's not a joke! I have the marriage license right here if you don't believe me. I also have the divorce papers too."
He wants a divorce.
It took all of five seconds to feel like the wind got knocked out of me. He doesn't want me.
He doesn't want me.
"Why would you wait six months to tell me?" I whispered as tears filled my eyes.
"Because I only recently found out. I went to apply for a marriage license with my fiancée and they told me I was still married to a Bella Cullen. Imagine the look on her face trying to explain that."
Bella Cullen. God, that sounds nice.
"I'm not going to make any trouble for you or your fiancée. Hand me the papers. I'll sign them now so this will be done and over with."
"I appreciate that Bella." Edward said with a small smile as he handed me a manila folder.
I had just sat down at my desk when I heard a loud commotion outside. That could only mean one thing…a fight.
I jumped up from my chair and ran as fast as I could down the hallway, throwing open the large metal doors. Meandering my way through the crowd of kids, I made it into the inner circle where Tyler and another student were throwing punches at each other. Tyler's nose and lip were bloody and the other kid's eye was swollen shut.
"Hey! Break it up!" I shouted as I tried to separate the two.
I'm not a tiny woman by any sense of the word, five feet nine inches, 140 pounds. I can hold my own. But I was no match for Tyler's fist making contact with my face. I fell to the ground, a sharp ringing in my ears.
"Bella!" I heard Edward yell.
I ignored him and stood up, attempting again to break up the blood bath. Edward grabbed Tyler, effectively pulling him away from myself and the unknown student. Moments later, two other teachers came out along with the principal and two cops.
Each officer grabbed a kid and followed the principal inside the building.
"Jesus Bella, you're bleeding." Edward said as he looked at my face.
"I'm fine. I'll put some ice on it."
I noticed my shirt had gotten ripped somewhere between the punch and breaking them up. The buttons were missing all the way to my belly button.
"Here." He said as he wrapped his suit jacket around me.
It smelled like him; aftershave and leather.
"Let's get inside so I can take a look at your cheek. You might need stitches."
"I have to make sure Tyler is ok first." I said in a tone that meant don't even think about fucking arguing with me right now.
I walked into the school, Edward's hand around my waist. The cops were escorting the other student out as we approached the office. I felt his hand tighten around me, pulling me closer to him. We walked into the school office like that. As soon I saw Tyler, I shrugged away from Edward signaling with my hands to stay where he was.
"Tyler?" I said softly.
He was hunched over, his head resting in his hands. When he heard my voice, he slowly sat up with a small sniffle.
"I'm so sorry Miss Swan, I'm so sorry." He cried as he bolted out of the chair and wrapped his arms around my neck. He sobbed into my shoulder and I stood there and held him.
"It's ok. I'm fine. You have one hell of a right hook." I tried to smile as he composed himself.
"I was on my way out the door saying good-bye to James when that punk ass Felix showed up. He said my mom made a living as a whore and he was coming over tonight so he could…you know. No one talks about my mom that way, Miss Swan. I told him to take it back or he'd be sorry. He didn't. He just kept taunting me so I pushed him. That's how the fight got started."
"I understand what he said was mean and hurtful. Hopefully he gets a good punishment that is well deserved. Remember when we talked about working on anger issues and how even though people can say very inconsiderate things, they're still just words. You need to work on letting them roll off you. You need to be the bigger person and walk away. I'm going to have Mrs. Cope call your mom to pick you up."
As I turned to walk towards the secretary he shouted, "No! Don't! She'll get in trouble from her boss. I can make it home."
"I want to make sure you do. Wait here while I have my friend Dr. Cullen stitch me up ok? I'll drive you home myself."
"You don't have to do that Miss Swan I-"
"Crowley, you're already in deep shit. Don't push it. Wait here, I'll be back in a few minutes."
He plopped back into his chair as Edward and I walked back towards my room.
"You're not driving him alone, Bella."
"Oh for God's sakes Edward, I'll be fine. I'm going to make sure he gets home ok."
"Then I'm coming with you."
"Fine if it'll make you happy." I huffed.
"My bag is in my car. I'll be right back." He said.
When he walked out of my classroom, I walked over to my desk looking at the papers glaring back. I flipped through each page until I landed on the one. I couldn't hold it in anymore; I started sobbing as soon as I saw it;
This marriage license is to verify the legal union of Edward Anthony Cullen and Isabella Marie Swan on this day December 13, 2009.
Signed: Edward Anthony Cullen
Signed: Isabella Marie Cullen
I am Bella Cullen.
AN: Another little short story I'm going to dally with now. BTL is back on a hiatus because I lost my groove again. That shit sucks major, lemme tell ya. Nothing worse than starting a story and not finishing it. I don't like it when authors do it to me, so I feel like a damn hypocrite right now doing it to you. I know it's been awhile since my last update/story but my beta had her baby in April. A little girl named Lyric Kathrina. How pretty is that?
I'm doing a fundraiser in July for stem cell research. I won't gain any monetary prize for each review like I have in the past, but if you want to send me one anyway for moral support, that's worth more than any amount of money.
I'm going to put this here once (and it applies for the whole story), even though it's pretty obvious:
I don't own anything Twilight related including characters, etc. I'm just utilizing my over active imagination. So I'd really appreciate it if there was no suing going on.
Until next chapter, happy reading!