Disclaimer: Stephenie Meyer owns all things Twilight and The Avett Brothers own The Perfect Space title.

As always, thanks goes out to my amazing beta SabLuvsLogan


PREVIOUSLY


Edward paused for a second then, realizing what it meant when they said they had no idea if he was even alive. "So then...that means...you never saw the...pictures?" Edward asked.


Chapter 15


"What pictures?" Alice asked.

Edward and Bella looked at each other as they realized they never asked anybody what had happened to the infamous pictures James and Laurent had taken that fateful day. They had both been so keen on being rescued when those pictures were sent out but when that day never came, they had forgotten about them.

"Um...never mind," Edward said.

"What pictures are you talking about, Edward?" Jasper asked.

"Just...forget I said anything. I was thinking of something else."

They decided to let it go but they all sincerely wondered what he was talking about. They relaxed for the rest of the night until they all left and Edward and Bella were left alone.

"I guess I should head home," Bella said.

"I guess...your dad is home right?" Edward asked.

"Yeah."

Edward was still fairly upset over his recent discovery about what his friends had gone through during the summer. He realized that he had managed to ignore not one, not two, but all four of his best friends' feelings. He had no idea how upset they'd been and he hated the fact that he never even thought about them. Edward knew Bella going home would result in him being stuck in his big house all alone and he really didn't want her to go.

"Do you want to maybe...hang out here for a little while? My parents aren't home so we can...relax or something."

"Sure," Bella said with a shrug. She tried to act like she didn't care whether she stayed or left but she didn't want to leave. She never wanted to leave. An empty house also meant peace and quiet for the both of them. It meant they didn't have to worry about Charlie listening in on their conversations and that thought was very appealing.

"Do you want to...stay in the living room?"

Bella thought about it for a second. "Can we go to your bedroom?" she asked shyly. "I like it there."

Edward smiled and nodded his head as he led the way up the stairs and into his room where they both lay down on his bed. They stayed in silence, enjoying each other's company and the quietness of the house when Edward spoke up.

"So that was an interesting night."

Bella smiled at him. "You're lucky you have such great friends, Edward."

"They're your friends too, Bella."

"I know. But you've known them since you were little. I don't have any friends like that. Sometimes I wish I grew up here with you guys."

Edward smiled and caressed her cheek. "I wish that too."

Another moment of silence passed.

"I wonder why we never asked anyone about those pictures," Bella whispered.

"Yeah, me too. They didn't even know we were alive. If Esme had gotten those pictures, she would have notified the cops then she would have called Alice."

"Maybe he never sent them."

"Maybe. I guess we can ask our parents."

Bella nodded and the two fell silent together. They lay side by side in the comfort and warmth of Edward's bed and they realized how perfect they felt in that moment.

"I really like your bed," Bella said.

"Yeah?" Edward said with a smirk. "You're welcome here anytime you want."

He winked at her and she blushed. "Don't say that, I'll never leave," she said as she wiggled closer to him so she could get comfortable.

He wrapped his arm around her. "I don't think that's a problem."

She giggled and looked up at him. "Are you sure about that?"

"Mmhmm," he said as he pulled her closer. She settled into his side then as she brought her arm up to lightly stroke the hair at the back of his neck.

"That feels really good," he said as he closed his eyes and enjoyed the small caresses.

They stayed like that for a while until Bella looked over at the clock and realized it was pretty late. She suggested she head back to her house before Carlisle and Esme got home and Edward agreed. They both got up, and Edward drove her home.

Bella spent the rest of the week confused over whether or not she was excited for the dance. She truly loved the dress she had picked out and she found herself being excited over wearing it. She also wanted Edward to see her in the dress. This notion confused her because as the weeks went on she continuously wanted to impress him. She wanted him to think of her the way she thought of him.

She loved everything about him.

She loved his personality, his eyes, his hair, his perfect smile and smirk. She loved his voice, his warmth, and his presence. Thinking back to all the guys she'd ever met, she realized she never felt anything for anyone.

She had crushes when she was younger and as she grew older there were some boys who she thought to be cute, but she never felt like she felt with Edward. What was once need for security was now want. She wanted to be near him, to smell him, to feel his hand in hers. And the more she thought of it, the more she wanted him to kiss her.

Bella was experiencing her very first teenage crush without even realizing it.

Edward noticed how nervous she seemed all week but he also realized how all of a sudden now, Bella was blushing a lot more than usual. Sometimes he would grab her hand like he always did and he would notice the light pink tint on her cheeks. He loved the way he made her blush so he started finding all sorts of different ways in order to do so. He noticed that slowly caressing her cheek or brushing the hair away from her face often did the trick so those actions were quickly becoming part of his daily routine.

Edward found himself looking forward to the dance but he was also very nervous for some reason. He was never nervous for anything the friends did together, but he suddenly worried over making a fool of himself in front of Bella. He realized that Bella was the only girl he ever really wanted to spend time with and he didn't know what to make of that. He wanted to impress her and to make her laugh and he didn't want her to think he was strange or anything like that.

When Saturday finally came, Edward and Bella parted ways early in the morning, knowing they wouldn't see each other until he would come to pick her up in the evening.

"I'm going to miss you today," he said as he hugged her goodbye.

"Me too," she whispered back.

"I think it'll be worth it in the end, right?"

"It should be," she said with a wink.

"I finally get to see you all dressed up. I'm excited."

"You should be. Based on what Alice and Rosalie told me they were going to do to me, I'm pretty sure I won't even be recognizable tonight."

"I'm sure I'll know who you are, Bella."

They said their goodbyes and fifteen minutes later, Alice and Rosalie picked Bella up for their hair appointments. They all wanted something very simple since it was only a dance and they were all able to mingle as their hairdressers went to work on their hair.

"So are you excited yet, Bella?" Alice asked.

"Yeah, I guess I am. I'm kinda nervous, though."

"Don't be. Everything will turn out great."

Alice was overly excited for a measly school dance but her positive attitude was starting to have an effect on Bella. As Bella sat having her hair done, Edward sat in Emmett's living room playing video games.

"I can't believe they're already getting ready for the dance," Emmett said.

"They're crazy," Jasper said.

"Yeah but they always go to the extreme for these things, though," Edward said.

"Yeah, but this is different," Emmett mocked. "It's our senior year so every dance matters. They need to look extra good because the pictures can end up in the yearbook."

Edward shook his head. "Whatever. As long as your girlfriends don't plaster Bella's face with makeup and make her look all different."

"Hey, Alice knows exactly what she's doing," Jasper said.

"So does Rosalie," Emmett defended.

Meanwhile at the hair salon, Bella's hair hung in long, loose curls around her shoulders as the woman working on her hair pinned up a small piece on her right side with a small clip. She had been ready to do an elegant up-do but Bella had forbid her from doing so. When they were all done with their hair, they headed back to Alice's to finish getting ready.

When they walked into her house, it was early afternoon so they decided to have some lunch. Alice made sandwiches and they sat down around her kitchen table to eat.

"I'm so excited to wear my dress!" Alice exclaimed.

"I'm excited for Emmett to see my dress," Rosalie said with a wink.

"Your parents aren't home tonight, right?" Alice asked.

Rosalie grinned. "That's right! It's going to be amazing!"

"You're so lucky. I never get to spend any time alone with Jasper. Bella and Edward probably spend more time together and they're not even dating."

"What?" Bella asked as she looked up and away from her sandwich.

"Your dad is like never home at night. Edward could probably be there all night and he wouldn't notice."

Bella let out a low laugh as she simply shrugged her shoulders.

"So Bella, are you going to ask Edward to dance tonight?" Rosalie asked.

Bella blushed as she realized she had already done so.

"We know you want to, Bella," Alice said.

"We agreed we'd share one dance."

"Really?" Rosalie said. "It better be a slow one. You should do this move where you slowly shift your hips against his...it'll drive him crazy. Emmett loves it when I do that shit."

"Yeah...I don't think I'll be shifting anything of mine against anything of Edward's. But thanks."

"I'm just giving you pointers. You two obviously like each other more than you think. Edward just needs a little confidence boost. He needs to know you want him too."

"You don't have to be so forward, Bella. Just lightly brush your hand over his arm or his chest, or through his hair. Give him subtle hints like that, you know? He'll handle the rest."

"Who said I even want him to do...anything to me..."

"Bella, please. We're not stupid. We see how you've been looking at each other lately. We've seen the progression. When we first met you, we believed that you guys were just really close friends. But now...not so much," Rosalie said.

"Come on, Bella. You know you want something to happen. You would be perfect for each other," Alice said with a small smile.

Bella smiled and contemplated what they were saying while reminding herself to remember their pointers. As she briefly thought once again about dancing closely with Edward, Emmett was describing all the things him and Rosalie were going to do that evening.

"Aw man, it's going to be amazing. All night with no parents. I love dances, man. I'm gonna act sweet all night and Rose is gonna be so turned on by the time we get back to her place."

"Alice has been excited all week," Jasper said with a smirk.

"Lucky bastard."

Jasper grinned and Edward laughed.

"When are you going to get some action, Edward?" Emmett asked.

Edward rolled his eyes.

"Rose told me Bella looks fucking hot in her dress, maybe you won't be able to resist."

"Maybe," Edward said with a shrug.

"Ooh!" Emmett and Jasper catcalled after him and Edward laughed. "Shut up, guys," he said.

"What are you waiting for man? She's totally into you. I feel like fucking kissing her for you," Emmett said.

"Maybe Newton will beat you to it tonight," Jasper said.

"Fuck him. He won't go near her," Edward said.

"Possessive are we? Seriously, dude. What are you waiting for?"

"I don't know...the moment hasn't presented itself."

"Okay...I don't believe that," Emmett said.

"Me neither," Jasper said.

"Well fuck you guys. I'll do it when I think it's right."

"But you will do it, right? If you're not willing to give her a full kiss just give her a quick peck or something. You're killing me with your shy glances and hand holding and hugging. Jesus Christ."

The guys spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing while the girls did their makeup and nails. Edward left Emmett's house in the evening to head home to shower, get dressed, and head over to Bella's. Once Alice and Rosalie finished Bella's makeup, they drove her home so she could get dressed in order to be ready for when Edward would come get her.

Edward rang Bella's doorbell at seven o'clock feeling incredibly nervous. His heart was pounding, his palms were sweating, and he wondered if he looked like an idiot or not. Chief Swan opened the door with a grunt and stepped aside so Edward could walk into the house.

"You look good," Charlie said.

"Thank you," Edward muttered.

Edward was begging time to go faster as he stood next to Charlie, waiting for Bella to walk down the stairs. When he saw a figure appear at the top of the landing, he knew his wait was worthwhile. Bella stood in the most beautiful dress that fell down to her knees as she slowly started to descend the stairs toward him. Her hair was in soft curls that cascaded around her shoulders and she smiled up at him, a beautiful pink blush coating her cheeks.

When she finally got to the bottom of the stairs, Edward reached out his hand and as she placed hers in his, he slowly bent over to give it a light kiss. He took a second to really take in her dress then. It was royal blue and it wrapped tightly around her waist, showing the slight curve of her hips. It only had one shoulder strap that came together in a sort of ripple, leaving her other shoulder completely bare. Edward saw the pale skin of her shoulder dotted with a few light freckles, and he immediately felt tightness in his stomach.

He looked into her eyes then as they shined in the dim light of the entrance. She was wearing a light layer of mascara with a hint of blue eyeliner and she looked absolutely beautiful. He looked at the length of her arms, revelling in the smoothness of her skin, and he noticed she wasn't wearing a single piece of jewellery except for the two bracelets he had given her.

As Edward stared at Bella, she stared at him and noticed how his outfit outlined every single inch of his body. He was wearing a plain white button down shirt tucked into a pair of black pants. The sleeves were rolled up his arms, exposing his forearms that had obviously grown since she last saw him. She also noticed how much bigger his upper body looked and how tall he really was. His hair was in its usual perfect mess and a light layer of stubble rested on his jaw. Bella bit her lip as she realized just how hot Edward really was and as she kept ogling him while he ogled her, their moment was interrupted by a throat clearing to their left.

"Hi dad," Bella whispered.

"You look beautiful, Bells."

"Thanks."

"We gotta get going," Edward said as he simply couldn't wait to get her alone.

Bella nodded her head and kissed Charlie goodbye as he told them both to be careful and to have fun. As Edward opened the door for Bella, she stepped out onto the front porch and before Edward could follow, Charlie called out to them.

"And no funny business!" he said, looking terribly serious.

"Dad!" Bella whined, completely embarrassed.

Edward laughed and shook his head and as he turned back toward Bella he knew it would take a hell of a lot of restraint to keep the 'funny business' at a minimum.

They got into his car and drove back to Edward's where the rest of the group was going to meet up with them. When Edward and Bella walked into his house, Esme was waiting there with her camera ready.

"Oh my goodness, Bella! You look absolutely stunning!"

Bella blushed and Esme came forward to give her a big hug.

"Carlisle!" she called out.

Carlisle came into the entrance with a smirk on his face and Bella realized where Edward got it from.

"Tell Bella how beautiful her dress is!" Esme said.

"You look very pretty, Bella," Carlisle said.

Bella blushed again and looked down at her feet. "Thank you," she muttered.

"What about me?" Edward whined.

Esme laughed and gave Edward a big kiss on the cheek. "You'll be the handsomest guy there, sweetie."

Edward grinned and Bella laughed before Esme positioned them for pictures. Bella wrapped her arm around his waist while Edward wrapped his around her shoulder and as his bare hand touched her bare shoulder, he couldn't keep the smile from forming on his face.

The rest of the friends showed up later and they gushed over how great everyone looked before Esme snapped a few more pictures. When she was satisfied, they all headed outside to get ready to leave. The original plan had been to take Emmett's jeep but Edward had been worried about something happening, so he decided to take his own car in case they needed to leave early.

When they walked into the gym, most of the student body had already arrived and were already dancing and having a good time. The gym wasn't heavily decorated or anything grand, but it did look different from their regular classes. Balloons and streamers were hanging from the walls, there were long tables set up along the back wall with white table cloths, and there were speakers and a dance floor set up in the middle.

The first thing they did was find their own table to settle down. Edward and Bella sat down next to each other as Rosalie and Alice deposited their purses and dragged Emmett and Jasper toward the dance floor.

"So it begins," Edward said.

Bella laughed. "They really jump right in, eh?"

"Yep."

"What do you usually do? I mean you used to come with them so would you dance with them?"

"Yeah...I did whatever I felt like doing I guess. I would dance and mingle and yeah. The same thing we'll do tonight," he said.

Bella nodded and they sat for a little while talking and laughing until they got bored and decided to get up and walk around. They said hi to their classmates, talked with them for a little while, laughed at the people dancing, drank, and had a good time.

When Edward had to go to the bathroom, Bella was left sitting at the table alone. She watched the dance floor, noticing Alice and Rosalie dancing with Jasper and Emmett and having a great time. She laughed as Emmett pulled off some amazing moves but was distracted by Mike Newton stepping into her line of vision.

"Hi, Bella," he said.

"Hi, Mike."

He sat down next to her then as he fidgeted with his pants.

"I thought you weren't coming to the dance?"

Bella blushed in embarrassment. "Yeah...well...Alice forced me."

Mike nodded slowly as they fell into a short silence.

"So...are you having fun?" he asked.

Bella gave him a small nod. "Yeah, I am. Are you?"

"Yeah...it's okay."

There was a short silence as Mike kept opening and closing his mouth to talk but Bella kept looking toward the dance floor.

"Do you want to dance?" he blurted.

"Oh...I don't dance...sorry Mike."

Mike sighed and turned toward her.

"Come on, Bella. One little dance and I'll leave you alone." Bella turned to look at him. "One dance and you come right back here and I don't talk to you for the rest of the night."

Bella looked around for a second and realized that Edward would be coming back from the bathroom any second.

"Edward is going to be coming back soon..."

"Edward is over there getting cozy with Lauren," Mike said as he nodded his head in Edward's direction.

Bella turned to look at where he was pointing and saw Edward and Lauren talking by the changing rooms. She continued to look on as Lauren laughed at something Edward said while she placed her hand on his chest and let it slide down his arm to grab his hand in hers.

Bella felt the bile rise in her throat as Lauren grasped the same hand she had been so used to holding. In a moment of clouded thoughts, Bella agreed to Mike's dance. They both got up and headed to the dance floor as a relatively slow song started to play. Bella awkwardly placed her hands around his neck and Mike lightly placed his on her hips and they swayed to the music.

In their own corner of the room, Edward was trying to get Lauren to go back to the dance floor so he could get back to Bella.

"Come on, Edward. One little dance. You've danced with me before. It's been fun."

"Sorry, Lauren. I gotta get back to Bella. She's all alone over there."

"Bella's dancing with Mike, Edward."

Edward laughed. "Right. As if Bella would ever dance with Mike."

Lauren smirked and pointed to the spot on the dance floor where Bella had her arms around Mike's neck. Edward looked over her shoulder and the second he spotted them together, his heart plummeted. He couldn't see Bella's face so he didn't know if she was enjoying herself or not but he couldn't help the nausea that was taking over.

In a spur of the moment decision, he grabbed Lauren by the elbow and dragged her toward the dance floor where he stopped right beside Bella and Mike. He placed his hands on Lauren's hips as she wrapped her arms around his neck and they danced.

As Mike and Bella slowly turned in circles, Bella decided to look up and when she saw Edward and Lauren together, she felt the queasiness return. Lauren was much more forward than she was so her entire body was pressed against Edward's and though he didn't look to be enjoying it, he also wasn't pushing her away. Bella saw Edward's hands on Lauren's hips and when she looked back up to his face, she saw his eyes boring into hers. She didn't know what to do so she immediately looked away, willing herself not to cry.

Edward hated the fact that Lauren was practically grinding on him but his hands firmly kept her hips away from his. As he stared at Bella, he saw her eyes flick toward where he was dancing and he saw the shock register in her features. He saw the pain in her eyes and although he hated that look, he needed her to know that she had hurt him first.

The second the song ended, Edward watched as Bella quickly ran off the dance floor and toward the exit. He immediately followed after her leaving Lauren and Mike alone but neither Edward nor Bella cared about them.

Edward found Bella sitting on a small bench outside. Neither said a word as he slowly sat down next to her and they shared a moment of silence. Bella was staring down at her feet as a lone tear fell down her cheek and she didn't understand what she was feeling. All she could think about was Edward's hands on Lauren's hips. She wanted to erase the image from her mind but she also realized that he wasn't her boyfriend and he was allowed to dance with whoever he wanted. She just hadn't expected him to.

"We should go inside, it's cold out here," Edward whispered.

Bella merely shrugged her shoulders. She wasn't mad at him. She wasn't being grouchy. She simply had nothing to say as she pondered over what she was feeling.

"I thought you didn't dance," Edward whispered. His words were barely audible but Bella heard each one as the cold night air swirled around her bare legs.

"I thought you hated Lauren Mallory," she countered back.

Edward didn't say anything. They continued to sit in silence.

"Why were you dancing with him?" Edward said sadly.

"Why were you dancing with her?"

"Because you were dancing with him."

Bella opened her mouth to say something but couldn't think of anything as she realized her decision to dance with Mike started this whole thing.

"He...asked me..."

"She asked me."

"I didn't want to dance with him."

"Why didn't you say no, then?"

"Because I saw you holding Lauren's hand and I just...said yes."

"Holding Lauren's hand? When was I holding her hand?"

"Well...she grabbed your hand...I don't know..." Bella replied, shaking her head in frustration.

There was a moment of silence before Edward let out a low laugh.

"So...you danced with Mike because I was with Lauren...and I danced with Lauren because you were with Mike?"

Bella let out a small laugh. "I guess so."

Edward laughed and shook his head.

"I'm sorry I danced with Mike," Bella whispered.

"I'm sorry I danced with Lauren."

They stayed in silence for a little longer until Bella slowly slid toward him and he wrapped his arm around her shoulder.

"Should we head back inside?" he asked.

She nodded and as quickly as the misunderstanding had started, they were back to being Edward and Bella. She got up and Edward placed his hand on her lower back as he led her back into the gym. They sat back down at their table and they laughed and joked for the rest of the evening.

"Oh my God! My feet are killing me!" Alice cried out as they all approached the table and sat down.

"Why aren't you guys dancing?" Emmett asked. "Oh right...Bella doesn't dance."

"That's right," Bella said matter-of-factly.

They mingled casually for a little while as they caught their breath but when a song came on that Alice and Rosalie loved, they all jumped back up and headed toward the dance floor.

"And, we're alone again," Edward said with a small laugh.

"I seriously don't understand how they've been dancing all night long. My feet would be ready to fall off."

"Yeah, Alice and Rosalie are like a different breed of human or something."

"Nah...I think they're just girls."

"And you are..."

"I'm a girl too but...not like that. It took a lot of effort to get me into these shoes." Bella lifted her right leg then, pointing her toe to show Edward her shoe. His eyes raked over her leg as he saw the pale, smooth skin leading to her small heel.

"I think they're nice," Edward said, nervously.

"Yeah...I like them too, but I'll never wear them again."

"Why not?"

"Well...I don't know. If we go to anymore dances I figure Alice and Rosalie won't ever let me where the same shoes twice."

Edward laughed and forced his eyes away from her legs as she placed her foot back under the table.

Another slow song came on then as the MC announced that he would be slowing the music down for the end of the dance. Edward knew what that meant and he watched as every girl coupled with every guy and they all joined on the dance floor. Edward suddenly got very nervous as he didn't know what to do. Bella had promised him a dance but he didn't know how to ask her. She clearly hated dancing but she had said yes to Mike Newton, so she should definitely say yes to him if he were to ask.

Throughout the entire first song he contemplated different ways of asking her but he was always too shy. He looked over at her momentarily and he saw the small blush on her cheeks as she bit her lip, nervously staring down and caressing the bracelet he had given her. He thought back to their night together and everything suddenly added up.

Bella told him she wanted to dance with him and only him.

She had been excited to see him when he went to pick her up.

She only danced with Mike because she had seen him with Lauren.

He turned toward her then and lightly grabbed her hand in his.

"Bella..." he said with newfound confidence. "Would you like to dance with me?"

Bella's heart took off at a mile a minute as she shyly nodded her head yes. Edward smiled at the fact that she hadn't rejected him and they both got up as he led her away from the dance floor.

They stepped into a dark corner where no one else was standing as Edward slowly placed his arm around her waist. He pulled her toward him as he grabbed her right hand in his, bringing it up and interlacing their fingers. She slowly brought her left hand around his neck and he started to lead their movements as they took small steps together.

Edward looked down at her with a smile. Bella softly bit her lip and smiled back. She placed her head on his chest as he wrapped his arms tighter around her waist and they continued to slow dance in a small circle.

Bella loved the fact that of all the girls there, she was the one that Edward brought to this corner. She was the one he wanted to dance with and she didn't even have to ask him. He had asked her. She couldn't keep the smile that was forming on her face and she realized she didn't want to anyways.

She remembered what it felt like to have Mike's clammy hands on her waist and she had hated it. Edward's were soft and firm and she felt the butterfly's doing somersaults in her stomach as his body pressed against hers.

She listened to the soothing rhythm of his heart and coupled with the music playing in the background, she was able to fully relax in his grasp. They swayed back and forth and Edward found himself without a care in the world as he held Bella snugly against him. He slowly bent down to kiss the top of her head as he smelled her hair and caressed her back.

She slowly lifted her head to look at him as she smiled and blushed. Their hands that had been intertwined slowly disconnected as Bella placed hers on his chest and Edward slowly brought his forward so he could cup her face while he stroked her cheek with his thumb.

"You're so beautiful," he whispered.

She looked into his eyes and she knew in that moment that she felt something inexplicable for Edward. She wanted him to touch her, to hold her, to be near her. She looked into his eyes and she saw everything he'd ever done for her. He was right there in front of her, being as sweet as he always was, and she needed to thank him for it. She slowly leaned up and placed a soft kiss on his cheek.

"Thank you," she whispered.

"Don't thank me. It's the truth," he said as he swiped her hair away from her naked shoulder.

"Not just that," she said with a small smile. "Thank you for...everything. You're...so perfect and so sweet and I've never really said thank you."

"You don't have to thank me for that, Bella. It's what I'm here for."

"No...You need to know how much I appreciate everything you've ever done for me."

Edward smiled. "You're welcome, Bella."

She smiled and placed her head back on his chest. Edward looked down at her and realized just how right she felt. She fit so perfectly into his arms and it wasn't because she had been there so many times before, it was because that was where she belonged – like she was crafted to be placed right there. He looked at her flawless skin and her soft brown hair. He looked at the smoothness of her shoulder and the slight tint of pink that touched her cheeks. He looked at her pink, soft and plump lips as they lay inches from his shirt and he immediately knew what he wanted.

He wanted her.

He wanted her to be his.

He wanted nothing more than to slowly lift her head upward to place a soft kiss on her lips but he looked at where they were and he knew he didn't want their first kiss to happen in the gym of Forks High School during the October dance.

"Hey," he said as he slowly bent down toward her ear. She looked at him with that same soft smile and he smiled back. "Do you want to get out of here? Go back home?" he asked, desperately hoping she would say yes.

She nodded her head and he suddenly felt the nerves build back up because he knew what he wanted to do when they got back home. He grabbed her hand in his and they slowly walked toward the exit. As they got to Edward's car, he found himself thanking the heavens that he had decided to bring his own car and not ride with Emmett.

They dropped Edward's car off at his house as they walked back to Bella's. She went in first, making sure Charlie was sleeping before letting Edward in and heading up to her bedroom. She lightly closed the door as she let out a big sigh before bending over and removing her shoes. Edward sat on her desk chair as he watched her moan at the feeling of taking off her uncomfortable shoes. He watched as she sat down on her bed, lifting her legs, massaging her feet and sighing in satisfaction. He then watched as she leaned over to grab a hair tie on her nightstand, twisting her long curls up into a high ponytail, exposing the soft skin of her neck and shoulder.

Edward gulped nervously as he tried to control himself. Bella looked up at him with a small smile.

"I feel better now," she said as she lay herself down on her bed.

Edward slowly approached her and took off his shoes as he lay down beside her. He looked over at her as her eyes were lightly closed, her eyelashes resting on that same pink blush that adorned her cheeks all night. He raised himself onto one elbow and twisted toward her before stroking her cheek. Her eyes fluttered open and she smiled at him.

"Did you have fun tonight?" he whispered.

"I really did," she said with a nod.

"Can I ask you something?" he said slowly.

Bella nodded and looked into his eyes.

"You saw me with Lauren...and then you decided to dance with Mike. But Lauren and I were just talking so were you...jealous?"

Bella bit her lip, looked down at her hands, and slowly nodded.

"Why?" he asked.

Bella bit her lip harder as she shrugged her shoulders. She wanted to tell him it was because she didn't want him talking to Lauren. She didn't want him to make her laugh. She didn't want Lauren's hand in his. And she certainly didn't want Edward's hands on her hips.

She wanted him to herself but she was too shy to say it out loud.

"Is it just Lauren Mallory you don't want me dancing with?" he whispered.

Bella shook her head no.

"I don't want you dancing with any other guys either."

Bella looked up at him nervously. Edward shifted closer to her.

"I don't know why...all of a sudden...we're jealous of other guys and girls..." Bella said.

"I think I know why." Edward continued to slowly caress her cheek until he let his hand slowly drift down her neck to her bare shoulder. He was drawing small circles with his fingers on her arm and he could hear her breathing pick up.

"Why?" she whispered breathily.

"Do I have to say it out loud?" he asked rhetorically.

They stared into each other's eyes then as Edward spoke up again. "I...I hated seeing Mike's hands on you."

"I hated them there."

Edward gave her a small smile.

"I hated Lauren's body against yours," Bella whispered.

"I hated it too."

Bella slowly brought her hand up to remove the hair that had fallen in his eyes, a movement they both thoroughly enjoyed.

"You remember when we were talking about first kisses?"

They were so close, and since Bella had never turned the lights on when she walked into her room, the darkness that fell over the room heightened their senses.

"Yes," Bella whispered.

"I...I would definitely hate it if Mike...or anyone else...had your first kiss."

His hand travelled down her arm and back up again. Bella could feel the butterfly's return to her stomach as they fluttered at Edward's words.

"Who do you want to have my first kiss?"

"I think you know who," Edward said as he shifted closer to her.

The air in the room had changed significantly as they both lay on her bed, inches apart.

"Bella," he whispered. "I want to be your first kiss."

Bella's heart took off at a mile a minute. "I want that too."

He lowered himself slowly so his face was closer to hers.

"I need you to ask me, Bella. I need to know I'm not putting ideas in your head. I need to know you want me to."

Bella looked into his eyes as she shifted upward so she was sitting upright. Edward sat up as well and Bella took his hand in hers.

"Edward," she whispered. "I don't want you holding Lauren Mallory's hand. I don't want you dancing with her or making her laugh or any of that stuff because I want you to do that with me. I was so...so jealous of her tonight and I don't want to feel like that again."

Edward didn't say anything. He was waiting for the words he desperately needed to hear.

"Edward, I want you to be my first kiss," she whispered. "I want you to be my first kiss...right now."

That was all he needed to hear. He slowly leaned over then as their noses brushed against each others. His lips ghosted over hers before her eyes fluttered closed and their lips finally connected. Her lips were soft and perfect and when the tiniest of sounds escaped her lips he pressed his against hers more firmly. He slowly took her bottom lip as he laced his fingers through her soft hair. Bella had never felt anything like what she was currently experiencing. The feel of Edward's lips against her own was overwhelming and even though she had no idea what she was doing, she closed her eyes and moved her lips and revelled in the feeling of Edward. The kiss was slow and sweet and perfect and as Edward pulled away from her gently, Bella smiled.

"You're smiling," Edward whispered as their foreheads stayed together. "I take that as a good thing."

"I liked it," she said slowly.

Edward smiled. "Yeah?"

"Yeah," she said with a smile and nod. "I liked it a lot."

"I told you I would let you find out on your own how good of a kisser I was."

Bella smiled again. "I'm really glad I'm not with Mike right now," she whispered.

"Bella...Can we not talk about Mike Newton right now?"

Bella laughed and they stayed together in silence with their foreheads pressing against each others.

"Can we do it again?" Bella asked shyly.

Edward laughed and nodded as he leaned into her. He pressed his lips to hers and she brought her hands up into his hair. They kissed softly and sweetly until Edward placed his hand on her lower back, pulling her closer to him. They both lifted onto their knees then, pressing their bodies into each other. Bella let out a small moan as Edward groaned. He let his hand travel from her lower back to her waist then up her arm and back down to her hip.

They broke apart again and the smile was still plastered to Bella's face.

"I really do love it when you smile," Edward said, one hand still firmly placed on her hip while the other caressed her cheek.

Bella's fingers played with the hair at the back of his neck. "I'm really happy right now."

"Me too," he whispered as he grabbed her face between his hands and leaned in for another sweet kiss.


Good God I hope you guys enjoyed this one. There was a lot of anticipation for this chapter and I hope I've satisfied everyone :)

Voting is still open for the Glosp Awards - The Perfect Space is nominated for Best "drop-everything-and-read" story - Hooked Fic

Here's the link (it's also on my profile): http:/glospawards(dot)blogspot(dot)com/p/vote(dot)html

Review for teasers!