The Little Issue
Sorry to have split this chapter, but I think it works better this way.
Thanks to princesskris for all her hard work on this story.
We get to see Edward's plan in this chapter. I hope it entertains you. I think all that Bella will be doing these next few weeks will definitely be fun.
Chapter 6 The Receptor:
Definition: A binding protein that is specific for its ligand and elicits a discrete biochemical effect when its ligand is bound; (a pair that is made for each other and only together work properly.)
I knocked and waited for a moment before I heard, "Come in, Ms. Swan."
I quickly opened his office door and stepped into the seemingly familiar space.
"Good evening, Dr. Cullen." I greeted him warily, still unsure of why I was here.
"I'm glad you could make it, Ms. Swan. Please come and take a seat." He said as he gestured to the chair that I had occupied the day before.
I walked over to the chair and carefully sat down. I placed my patient chart on the chair next to me unsure of exactly what I should do with it.
"I was a little surprised to hear from you this morning. What was it you wanted to discuss with me, Dr. Cullen?"
"Before I begin I want to make sure you are willing to hear me out completely before you leave again. Twice yesterday you walked out on me while I was trying to talk to you. I didn't like it."
"Well, I am here now. I will stay so that we can finish whatever we started yesterday."
"Is that a promise?" He asked me with a smirk.
"Yes?" I answered, not sure of what I had just agreed to.
"Okay, first have you reconsidered getting the procedure?"
"No, I still want the procedure, if you are unwilling to perform it, I will see another doctor. I already put in a call to a Dr. Smith…"
"He will not touch you!" He roared. "You are mine. I mean my patient until you ask me otherwise."
I looked at him quizzically. I was a little startled by his outburst and oddly turned on. He almost seemed possessive in his statement, and I don't understand why.
"I didn't make an appointment with him yet. I just called to ask when his next available appointment was. I wanted to come see you first."
"Good. Even if this doesn't work out like I hope that it will, he would still not make a good doctor for you."
How he hoped it would? If only we wished for the same things. "What do you mean?" I asked him.
"Just trust me for now."
"Well, it won't matter if you agree to be my doctor and perform the procedure like I want. What else is it you wish to discuss about the procedure?" I asked as I looked up at him. He was looking at me with so many unasked questions in his eyes.
"Ms. Swan, what do you know about the actual procedure?"
"I have read about the general steps, what the dangers are, and what types of materials are used. Why do you ask?"
"For me, you knowing the general steps and having common knowledge of the process is not enough to have me agree to perform it for you."
"Then if you won't agree to do this for me, why am I here?"
He leaned forward and looked deeply into my eyes, "I didn't say that I wouldn't agree to perform the procedure for you but that having a general knowledge of what you are getting yourself into wasn't good enough for me to agree to it."
"Why is this request such a big deal? People get breast implants all the time," I inquired.
"Yes, that's true, but we are not talking about other 'people' we are talking about you. This just doesn't seem to be something that fits you based on what you told me about yourself yesterday. And it definitely doesn't fit my normal business practices."
"If that is the way you feel, then again why am I here Dr. Cullen?"
"I feel very protective of you, as my patient that is. I don't want to do something that you will regret in the future. And I believe this is something that you will regret, maybe not at first but over time. I know the consequences of your decision, but I don't believe you do; not completely yet. Can we maybe come to a compromise?"
"You mean a compromise where you would perform the procedure for me?" I asked, completely confused as to where the conversation was headed.
"Yes, a compromise where you will come to know the consequences as completely as possible. Then, if you still insist on the augmentation, I will be the one to perform it for you."
"Why should I go to all this trouble? I have put a lot of thought towards this. I have been planning this for almost four years. I have worked, saved, and gone without so that I would have enough money. You don't have to worry that this is just a passing fancy or something. "
"I didn't think that it was, Ms. Swan. But you do know that not every decision you made at eighteen was a good one, right?"
"How do you know what is right for me?"
"I don't know for sure, but I have a feeling about what you need. But if you think that any knowledge you may gain from spending time with me is too much trouble, I will understand."
Spending time with him? I started to wonder if this compromise might actually be something that I would enjoy.
"How much time are we talking about here, Dr. Cullen, and what does this compromise involve? I wanted to get the procedure done as soon as possible so I would have time to recover before classes start."
He settled back into his chair and placed his hands behind his head, but never broke eye contact.
"I was thinking six months."
"Six months is way too long, I would be in the middle of my first year in graduate school by that point. I'll give you a week."
"A week is too short; we can't get anything accomplished within that time frame. How about until June 19th?"
"What's the significance of June 19th? Isn't that on a weekend?"
"Yes, it is the day of Alice's engagement party. She has insisted that you come. You wouldn't be able to attend if you have just had the augmentation just prior to then."
"She wants me to come to her party? She doesn't even know me."
"You'll have the next few weeks to meet and get to know her."
"If I agree to your time frame, what is it that I will be doing?"
"You will be my research assistant."
Research assistant, I am so confused. "I thought I was your patient."
"Do I have a patient chart on you? Have I received any payment or a new patient registration forms from you yet?"
"Well, no, they're right here." I reached down to pick them up but his next words stopped me.
"No, you keep them for now. You are not my patient until after June 19th. If you were my patient right now, this arrangement wouldn't work."
"What arrangement? We haven't agreed to anything yet except that you would be my doctor as of June 19th, but now you are saying I'm not your patient. I am getting really confused now."
He reached down beside his desk and picked up a box. He set it on the desk and said, "Here take a look at the contents inside this box."
"What is it?" I asked as I reached for the box and set it in my lap.
"You and I are both people who think logically, taking the time to research and determine long term effects. In this box is what I believe you will need to be able to fully understand what you are wanting from me and this procedure. "
"I need a box full of stuff to convince me of what I already know I want? What is it you want me to agree to Dr. Cullen?" So many delicious things passed through my dirty mind, but I knew that it was just wishful thinking on my part because Dr. Cullen would never want me.
"Well, like I just mentioned I want you to be my research assistant. We unintentionally set this scenario up last night when we were talking with Emmett and Rose. "
"What am I researching?"
"Everything about the procedure you are requesting. You are researching me as a doctor. I want you to learn about the plastic and reconstructive surgeries I perform. I want you to meet my patients and go with me to the hospital. You need to learn what type of doctor I am to really understand me. However mostly, you are researching what you are asking me to do to you. Go ahead and take a look in the box and I will explain further."
I pulled the top of the box off to reveal the contents inside. As I saw the assortment of items in the box I became more confused.
"Just start with the top item and we will work our way to the bottom." Dr. Cullen informed me.
I pulled out a legal envelope with a few forms in it. I read over the title and first few sentences.
"Why would I need a non-disclosure agreement, Dr. Cullen?"
"Well, the only way to truly protect myself and my patients' privacy is to have a legally binding agreement stating that you will not reveal what you discover or see to anyone outside this office. And by office, I mean the office you are in right now. You can only discuss these things with me. And even once the NDA is in place, I will still ask for each patient's consent before you will be allowed to observe."
I simply nodded my head and placed the NDA back into its envelope and set it on the chair next to me. The next item in the box was a leather bound journal. I looked up at him and raised my eyebrows.
"It's a notebook to write all your observations and research in. Some of your observations will be about my patients, me, and your experiences during this process. You need to use it to convince me that you have thought through each and every aspect of what can and will happen to you before, during, and after the procedure."
I placed it on the chair and removed a folder next. I opened the folder to find a series of articles concerning breast augmentations.
"Those should give you a good starting point for your research. They are actual medical journal articles, not ones written for popular magazines. You need to learn about the actual procedure and of issues that have been discovered or have developed long term. You need the facts."
The next item was a medium sized daily planner. I opened the cover to discover that it started on today's date, June 2nd. At 5:30 there was a notation of this appointment with Dr. Cullen. I flipped through the pages to discover that there were notations on nearly each day.
"That is your schedule, Ms. Swan. I have asked that you give me until June 19th before you make your final decision. Seventeen days should provide you sufficient time to complete the research required. On the calendar you will notice that among other things we are scheduled to observe an actual breast augmentation procedure." He watched my reaction closely as he said this. "That won't be a problem will it?"
I felt slightly sick thinking of the blood and tissue that I may see during the procedure and I tried to maintain a calm demeanor as I answered, "No that is fine. But there are so many notations on this calendar." I added as I looked at each day. "Some of these aren't even work related."
"Yes, we will discuss those more in a few minutes."
I set the planner aside and I pulled out a book that now lay on the top of the items in the box. My face flushed red instantaneously. On the cover were the naked bodies of two women. The title was, 'Erotic Book: Erotica Secrets of Sexy Female Bodies for Men and Women' by Sheldon Filger.
"What type of research is this for, Dr. Cullen?" I choked out as the images reminded me of my own desire for the man across the desk.
"The main reason women get breast implants has to do with body image and sexuality. This author discusses the female body and what is erotic to both a man and a woman. I believe that it would be beneficial for you to research that aspect too, Ms. Swan."
What I wouldn't give to explore that area of research with you, Dr. Cullen.
"How would that be beneficial?"
"The author discusses the female body as a whole, not just as individual parts. It would be good to explore how your breasts are part of your body image and sexuality. You also need to research how breasts are responsive to touch and lead to arousal, both before and after the procedure. From what I have learned, most women have sensitive breasts, but the sensitivity varies and could be affected adversely with an augmentation."
"Oh." I replied, unable to adequately come up with words, as the memories of my dream last night replayed in my mind.
I placed the book to the side and reached in the box to find a paid membership to Emmett's gym with personal training and a gift certificate to a day spa for "The Works" package. "And what about these? How are these research?" I asked as I held up the two items for his inspection.
"Well, isn't this all about changing your looks and improving the way that you feel about yourself? So the gym will help you work on any 'problem' areas you may think you have, along with just make you feel better overall. The spa package will allow you to feel better mentally and physically by both relaxing you and relieving stress. I also understand that there are some physical aesthetic changes involved also, like your hair, nails, makeup, etc."
How I looked to others, I thought. "It is not all about image to me. I'm not a vain person." I replied in a huff.
"Then tell me what it is all about then. What do you see when you look in the mirror, Ms. Swan?"
"I see ordinary, plain, and uninteresting."
"Ms. Swan as we established yesterday, you are far from ordinary and plain. Spending time at Emmett's and going to the spa are ways that you can discover that for yourself. And uninteresting you are not, I can assure you. You had me completely captivated yesterday with your ideas, theories, and research."
"What else are you asking of me to do?" I simply replied, not yet understanding why he was being so difficult with what I thought was such a simple request.
"There are a few more items at the bottom of the box. They hold one of the key points in this arrangement." I reached in and pulled out several flat boxes. I looked at each one and gasped in shock.
"Breast enhancers! You have got to be kidding me. You want me to wear breast enhancers!"
"I don't see what the big deal is, Ms. Swan. After all, you are asking me to put a set of permanent breast enhancers into your body. I assume you have never been a larger size than you are right now. So, what better way to research what it will actually be like to have larger breasts, than to actually wear a set of fake ones?" He looked at me and raised his brow waiting for my response.
"Why are there so many boxes?" I finally asked.
"As you know, Ms. Swan, not all women have the same size breasts. You will need to choose what size you want to become and then live that size until the end of our arrangement." He replied with a smile.
"So, when I am with you I need to wear a set of these?" I asked motioning to the enhancers.
"No, your new breasts won't just be there when I am around, so you need to keep these on at all the times, except when in the shower. Plus, in order to wear them you will need to wear a bra. I noticed yesterday that you were not wearing one. That will not be possible after the surgery; therefore, to make it as realistic as possible, you should start wearing the correct size now with your new breasts."
My head began to ache as I tried to process all what he was asking of me.
"So is this all part of my new position as your research assistant?" I finally asked him.
"Yes, I want you to learn as much as possible and have a thorough understanding of will happen before, during, and after the surgery. You will be able to see the procedure, follow that patient's progress in the first days of recovery, learn all the real risks, see what kind of doctor I am, and live the life that you are asking for prior to actually making the change. Do you think that I have missed anything?"
"No, I can't think of anything you haven't covered. You said earlier that we would discuss the schedule some more. What should we talk about first?" I asked as I looked at the stack of items to retrieve the planner.
"Why don't we start with tomorrow's schedule?"
I flipped to June 3, 2010 and looked down. First on the schedule was 9:00am: Shopping for new clothes with a personal shopper.
"I am supposed to go shopping at 9 in the morning for new clothes. What does that have to do with having the procedure done?"
"As we just discussed, you are going to need new bras that will fit your new size. The sooner you get them the sooner you can get started on the 'research'. Plus, there are some other items you will need for over the next few weeks in your new size, like clothing appropriate for working in the office, and the hospital and along with some outings that are scheduled. You will need to look at your closet tonight and make a list of what you have and what you need."
"Dr. Cullen, I don't know if this is such a good idea. I am not a really big shopper and really don't have the funds to spare for a whole new wardrobe."
"Well, that is what the personal shopper is for. She will be there to help you figure out what fits both your body and your budget and she may even have some sample items that may fit you."
"You're really serious about this personal shopper? Who does that kind of thing and how much does a personal shopper cost?"
"She is someone close to me that insists on volunteering her services. She will be personally offended if you do not except her advice and gifts. Trust me; I have learned just to go with whatever she says."
"You will notice that you need to be done with the shopping trip and meet me back here by 4:30. I hope that won't be a problem."
"I believe seven and a half hours of shopping is way beyond what is needed."
"We'll see about that. Just remember to wear comfortable shoes."
I shook my head, trying hard to imagine how anyone could shop an entire day away. I looked down and saw the 4:30 appointment with Dr. Cullen had noted in the appointment book.
"I'll be sure to meet you here at 4:30. What are we doing then?"
"I'll be finished up with all my appointments by then, so I wanted to sit down and talk to you about how your first day went. I want us to establish open communication from day one. This arrangement will only work if we can discuss everything that happens freely. Don't you agree?"
Discuss everything, if only you knew where my thoughts stayed when I am around you. "I will do my best to be honest with you. But right now I am having difficulty processing all this. This meeting has taken on an unexpected turn and I need some time to absorb it all."
Dr. Cullen stood from his chair and walked around the desk. He lifted all the items from the chair and placed them back in the box before sitting down next to me. He turned towards me, reached out, and took my hands in his before he began speaking.
"I understand. I spent quite a lot of time last night trying to find the best way to approach your request. Normally, I would just refer a patient to another doctor, but I am not willing to do that with you. I agree with Alice that I am perfect for you. I hope that you can see that too. I will not let anyone hurt you. That not only includes me but also yourself."
His words seemed so personal and loving. I was once again reminded of my crazy daydream and dreams from the previous day. If only this were true love, love like Darcy and Elizabeth, Westley and Buttercup, the love found only in fictional stories.
"Can you give me a little time to think about all this before I agree? I am not sure if I can handle everything you have requested. Plus, why would you want me around so much? Won't I just be in your way?"
"Ms. Swan, I wouldn't have asked you if I thought you would be in the way. I enjoy your company and find you quite refreshing. You are unlike anyone I have ever met before. I believe that I will enjoy this time more than you could ever imagine."
Probably not more than I will enjoy this time, especially after I look at that Erotica book. "I wouldn't count on that Dr. Cullen. I am sure by the end of this arrangement you will be happy to get rid of me. Is it OK if I call or text you later tonight and let you know what I decide?"
"Why can't you just agree now? What are you scared of?"
That I could fall for you. "I thought this was supposed to be a compromise you were proposing. Shouldn't you give me time to come up with some reply?"
"Ms. Swan, the compromise is that I will perform the procedure for you. You either take what I have proposed or leave it." He stated flatly, but increased his grip on my hands as if trying to prevent me from actually leaving. Not that I had any intention of doing so any time soon.
"So, my first duty as your research assistant will be to go shopping and then meet you here tomorrow afternoon. Is that correct?"
"Yes, that about sums up the first twenty four hours, but remember I need you to go over all the legal documents and review the schedule. We can talk further about all that tomorrow. You will see that I included the times that I will be at the hospital. You can't be there for all the procedures but you can for some. We can also talk about the times you may want to be there when I am on call."
"So, tonight I choose a size, review my schedule to see what you have planned for me and take inventory of my closet." He nodded in agreement. "Where do I meet the personal shopper tomorrow?"
"She'll be at your place in the morning. I think she mentioned something about bringing you breakfast and coffee too to compensate for the early hour."
"How does she know where I live?"
"Rose told me that you lived in her old apartment, is that right?"
"Oh yeah, I forgot about the connection. I still want to read over everything and get back to you later tonight. But I am leaning towards agreeing, so just let her know to show up in the morning and that I like a lot of ½ and ½ with a little sugar in my coffee."
He smiled that beautiful lopsided grin at me before standing up and pulling on my hands. I stood up with him. He stepped forward and let go of my left hand before bringing his right hand to my face.
"I promise that you won't regret this Ms. Swan. There is so much that we each need to learn about each other. I will try and make this as educational an experience as possible."
With his hand on my face and my eyes locked in his stare, there was only one educational experience I wanted at that moment, and it involved him and me naked on top of his desk. And I am certain that he would make a great teacher.
"I believe you Dr. Cullen, but what about Lauren and Alice. They both know that I did not come here to be your research assistant."
"Lauren does not know the reason for your visit yesterday as your chart was unclear. Only Alice knows the true reason you came here and she is the one who helped me put together this agreement. As I said earlier, she is insisting on you attending her engagement party on the 19th. So I don't see any further problems, other than how we address each other, that is."
"Do you want me to call you something other than Dr. Cullen?"
"Well, in front of patients and colleagues, it should probably remain Dr. Cullen. However, when we are alone or outside of work, I request that you call me Edward. Dr. Cullen sounds so formal and I would really like for us to be friends."
"Edward," I said as I looked into his eyes and squeezed his left hand. He cupped my cheek before running his fingers down my jaw leaving that same fiery trail as yesterday. "And please just call me Bella. Since I am dressed today and not technically your patient now, it should be all right." I joked.
He let out a groan, before closing his eyes and stepping away from me. "Bella, it is then. I like how that sounds."
"Me too," especially coming from your mouth. I suddenly felt the need to leave before I got drawn anymore into the spell he seems to have over me.
I took a step away from Edward, let go of his hand, and picked up the box of supplies. I wanted to occupy my hands before I did anything stupid and embarrassing.
"Well then, Edward, I will call or text you later on tonight with my final decision. I really need to go though before it gets any later. It looks like I have a busy night ahead of me."
He stepped closer and reached out and lightly touched my right arm. "I hope to see you tomorrow, Bella. Enjoy the material and remember to take good notes. I am sure we will have many interesting conversations on all that you discover."
I'd say it will be interesting; erotic, breast stimulation, naked women pictures, and fake breasts! "Yes, you did provide me with a good start to the research. I might just concentrate on the schedule for now though. It looks like that will affect my day tomorrow the most."
"Plus, don't forget you need to decide on a size. I look forward to hearing from you and seeing you tomorrow. "
I stepped back from his touch and began walking to the door, but suddenly felt his hand on my lower back guiding me out. The feel of his fingertips on me even though my clothes made my breath catch. I turned my head to see him smiling back at me.
"By the way Bella, how are you getting home?"
"I am walking. It's only a few blocks and will help me clear my head and give me time to gather my thoughts." I replied.
"I am just heading out to the hospital to check on a few patients and I would be happy to give you a ride home."
"No, that's ok really. I need the time tonight to think about this whole proposal of yours. I may take you up on the offer next time though."
"I'm counting on it." He replied as he pressed his hand further into my lower back and walked me to the front door. "It is safer to leave out the front if you insist on walking."
"Thank you though Edward. Have a great night." I said as I walked out and headed home with my box of supplies.
I got back to my apartment and was in a complete daze. I wasn't sure what had just occurred or why, but I couldn't resist him. I just hoped I could behave myself around him. He elicited such electrifying responses from my body.
I decided to take a look at the planner and get to bed early, as it seemed I would have a long day of shopping with a complete stranger tomorrow.
I opened up and discovered that after tomorrow; almost every day was filled with time spent with Dr. Cullen. His hospital and private practice times were highlighted, as well as the augmentation that he had mentioned that I would observe.
I skipped over the weekends and concentrated on each week day: Friday morning at the office; followed by two procedures in the afternoon at the hospital. He was on call Friday night at the hospital. I would need to decide if I wanted to stay with him that night or not. Monday morning was free for him, but he had scheduled an appointment for me with Emmett at his gym. Then on Tuesday morning I was scheduled at the day spa.
I slammed the planner closed. I couldn't look at it right now. I needed to rest or watch some mind numbing television, something unromantic, so I could stop all my thoughts from driving me crazy. It was Wednesday evening so I decided to watch the comedies on ABC. Modern Family and Cougar Town could always make me laugh.
I made myself a snack and sat down to watch the programs. Just as they began, I typed out a text to Edward. I didn't think that I could handle his voice right now.
'E – Tell the personal shopper, I will be ready at 9am and to not forget my coffee. –B'
A minute later I had his reply.
'B – I am smiling at your implied agreement. Get plenty of rest and don't forget to wear comfortable shoes. –E'
Plenty of rest?
'E – Thanks for the advice. I will see you after the day of torture. -B'
'B – Don't let her hear you call it torture. Enjoy yourself. Dinner after? –E'
Dinner? Would I have an appetite for anything other than him?
'E – Sure, as long as I am not too wiped out. –B'
'B – In that case, I will make sure she isn't too rough on you. Goodnight. – E'
'E – You too. –B' Have sweet dreams. I know I will.
I settled down into the couch and covered up with a blanket and watched the shows and relaxed at the banter of the onscreen comedies.
I awoke to the sound of my phone alerting me of a new message. When I looked around I saw that the sun was up. I realize that I must have fallen asleep on the couch last night.
I checked my phone and saw there was a message from Jake. I would reply later because it was already 7:45 and I needed to be ready for my shopping trip.
As I showered and got ready for my day, I was amazed at my night before. I had slept for almost ten hours and don't remember dreaming at all.
I dried my hair and smoothed it out. I decided to just leave it down for now. I put on a pair of khaki shorts and a t-shirt. Edward stressed that I needed to wear comfortable shoes, so I put on my tennis shoes and walked out to the living room.
I opened the box and pulled out the boxes of breast enhancers. They came in three sizes: medium, large, and extra large. After being a barely A cup, I didn't even consider the extra large size, that would be too much of a change. I wanted to be at least a large B cup though. According to the boxes, the medium size would only increase my size a ½ to one cup size. That would make me become an A or barely B and I didn't think that was enough, so I chose the large breast enhancers which would put me at about a B to a small C cup size.
I placed the large enhancers in my purse but added the medium ones just in case I felt too uncomfortable with the larger size.
I picked up the planner again just as there was a knock at the door. I remembered that I hadn't even looked at my clothes to determine what I needed to buy. I hoped that she was willing to help with this also.
I walked to the door and opened it with a smile that quickly faded. I stood there and realized that today was going to be torture in more ways than one. I was going to have to shop for seven hours with Edward's fiancée.
So what do you think? Review and let me know. All reviewers will get an EPOV for part of this chapter.
Don't worry about poor Bella. She will find out in just a few minutes whom she is really spending the day with. It's not all her fault that she wasn't properly introduced.
What I read last night:
The Mail Order Bride by Lady Gwynedd (Edward is a 30 year old bachelor rancher. Bella is a 25 year old 'spinster.' They correspond and agree to meet. Instant chemistry leads to marriage and sweet life on the ranch in the 1880s.)