I do not own any Character names nor do I own Twilight or anything pertaining to it.
My Life as a Trophy Wife
When I was fifteen years old my Aunt paid me and my best friend at the time, Katie Kerman, to babysit my little cousins while she went to the mall to Christmas shop with my Mom. My cousins wanted to watch The Little Mermaid and because Katie and I didn't have anything better to do, we joined them.
At the end of the movie, I was left thoroughly annoyed. I explained to Katie my frustrations with the storyline, but she disagreed. I for one couldn't understand how Ariel claimed to be in love with Prince Eric after only seeing him for two minutes. Not only that, but she also decided that she was ready to marry him after only knowing him for three days. The whole thing seemed idiotic to me. She didn't even know this man, and she was willing to put her soul on the line for him.
Katie told me I was the idiotic one. She said I was immature and wouldn't know romance if it hit me in the face. She insisted that once a girl found her soul mate, she would just know. She seemed decided that courtship or maybe even just a fucking first date were unnecessary for a happily ever after.
After six more years of dating experience, I believed now more than ever that Katie Kerman was very wrong. Long story short, I didn't question why the number of lesbians in this country was going up.
If you haven't noticed by now, I'm not a very optimistic person. But then again, I don't really have a reason to be. Life had dealt me a lot of lemons by this point and seemed to have forgotten to throw in the sugar for me to make lemonade with.
I hadn't lost enough hope to actually join the lesbian community, but I had pretty much lost all hope in men. My vibrator, Alejandro, was the only man that I could depend on.
My woes with the male species were only part of the cause for my pessimism. I was also pretty much broke and struggling through my hardest year of college yet. Due to my pathetic financial status, I was also enduring violation in the form of nightly ass groping by creepers at the bar that I worked at to make ends meet.
I should forewarn you before I start to tell you my story that I'm not a very pleasant person. While things aren't always rainbows and sunshine through my eyes, I do have an interesting tale to tell. And it's all thanks to a man named Edward Cullen.
It all started with me being humiliated at my local grocery store.
"Ew, seriously? Aren't celebrities supposed to have stylists? Why the fuck would someone with a stylist go out looking like that?"
I glanced up to see what Alice was talking about. She was holding a copy of the National Enquirer with an unflattering picture on the cover.
"It's Britney Spears, Alice. You can't expect her to abide by normal rules of society. She's a fucking nut job."
Alice Cullen was my best friend and we did absolutely everything together…including our grocery shopping, which explains why we were currently in line at the grocery story unloading our groceries onto the belt. She shrugged and put the magazine back on the rack while I put a divider down between our grocery loads.
The cashier turned to me with a cheery smile while she started to scan my shit.
"Hi! How are you today?"
"Fine, thanks" I mumbled.
Cashiers at grocery stores really rub me the wrong way. They're too enthusiastic about their job and it annoys me how they act like they genuinely give a shit how my day is going. It also annoys me when they ask me if I found everything I needed. If I hadn't found everything I needed then I wouldn't be in your fucking line and on my way out of the fucking store.
Don't judge me for my ranting. My life kind of sucks right now and I'm bitter about it.
"Did you find everything you needed today?" She asked with the same chipper smile.
"Yup" I said, popping the 'P'.
I think she caught on to my bitchy mood, or more like personality, because we stood in silence for the remainder of the time it took her to ring up my order.
"Alright," she said when she'd finished. "That's gonna be fifty nine dollars and seventy six cents."
I sighed and fished my debit card out of my wallet. The price of food was going to be my demise.
I handed the cheery bitch my card and she took it with another happy smile.
I fumbled with my car keys impatiently while she swiped it. It seemed to be taking a long time.
"Um…" She started as she looked up at me with an apologetic expression.
Fuck. Not now. Please, God, not now…
"Your card has been declined."
I sighed and ran a hand through my hair, trying to think of what to do.
"Do you have another card I could try?"
"No." I said quickly.
I already knew that my credit card was maxed out.
"It's not a problem." Alice said, picking up the divider and putting it aside. "Just add it to my things, please." She said to the cashier.
"Alice, no, I don't want you paying for my groceries…"
"Shut up, Bella. Just let me get this and we'll forget all about the second we walk out of those doors." She said, gesturing to the sliding exit doors ahead of us.
"Alice, I'm not going to le – "
I was going to protest but she cut me off before I could finish.
"Well I'm not going to let you go without food so I don't want to hear about it."
I sighed, took my debit card back from the cashier, and put it away. I knew there was no point in fighting Alice, she wouldn't have it.
"Okay, but I will pay you back Alice Cullen. As soon as I get my next paycheck…"
"If that will make you feel better" She said with a shrug.
I knew that Alice didn't need the money but it really would make me feel better to pay her back.
Actually, saying that Alice didn't need the money was an understatement. From the surface you would never guess because she totally doesn't flaunt it, but Alice Cullen was so fucking rich I didn't even know why she was in school. She would never have to work a day in her life if she didn't want to.
Alice was the daughter of Carlisle and Esme Cullen. To be honest I wasn't sure where exactly their wealth came from, probably multiple revenues, but I did know that they had a lot of it. The whole family was well known in the Seattle area for their philanthropy and social status.
I was impressed that Alice hadn't let her wealth go to her head and I really respected her for it. She knew that she was set for life but she still had personal goals and ambitions. Never once had she made me feel inferior for not having the same privileged life as her.
The next night after the Bella's-poor-and-can't-afford-her-groceries-incident, I accompanied Alice to her parent's house for dinner. Excuse me, I meant I accompanied Alice to her parents' mansion for dinner.
Maybe mansion was a tad bit of an exaggeration, but house didn't cut it either.
The Cullen's had a big family dinner every other Sunday. I had been invited a few times now, but this was the first time I had actually accepted. Alice said that she really wanted me to go, so I gave in.
"Bella, dear! It's so nice to see you!" Esme said softly as she gave me a hug and kissed my cheek.
"Nice to see you too, Esme. Thanks for having me."
"Oh course…you know you're welcome here any time."
I walked with Alice and Esme from the entry way into the living room where Carlisle and Alice's older brother Emmett were sitting. They were on the couch and sipping on what looked like scotch. As soon as we entered the room they both rose to come greet Alice and I.
"Hey, Bells! How have you been?" Emmett asked as he pulled away after kissing my cheek.
Emmett was another one of those people who was always a little too perky, but it didn't annoy me like it did when the grocery store cashiers did it. Something about his enthusiasm just seemed more genuine.
He was a lot like Alice. He was rich as shit but you would never guess just from being around him.
"Where's Edward?" Alice asked. "I thought he was coming?"
Edward was Alice's other older brother and the Cullen that I knew the least. Unlike Alice and Emmet, he was flamboyant about his wealth and liked to flaunt his lifestyle. He was a prestigious lawyer and an investor in several small businesses throughout our area. I didn't particularly like him, but I didn't not like him. I was indifferent. I didn't really know him that well. I'd been around him countless times since I had known Alice but very rarely did I ever have a one on one conversation with him.
The first time I ever met Edward I remember thinking he was insanely attractive. I had gone out with Alice's family to dinner to celebrate her eighteenth birthday and I certainly wasn't expecting her sexy older brother to come in and make all of my girly parts tingle. However, his rudeness kind of ruined it for me. He spent the whole time on his blackberry and barely contributed to the conversation. He was rude to our waiter and kept complaining about petty shit.
"Oh, he should be on his way. He said he got held up at the office." Esme informed us.
"That means another two hours." Alice said, rolling her eyes.
"Wanna make bets on how late he is this time?" Emmett asked with a smirk.
"Oh stop it, you two." Esme said. "I'm sure he'll be here like he said he would."
"Yeah…eventually" Alice huffed.
"Come sit down, Bella." Esme said, changing the subject. "How is school going?"
We all filed back into the sitting area where we sat done in various places. Alice, Emmett, and I were on the couch. Esme and Carlisle were in their own seats.
"School's alright. This year has been pretty tough but I knew that it would be."
"How many hours are you taking this semester?" Emmett asked.
"Fifteen" I answered.
"And you're still working?" Esme asked.
"Yeah, but only part time"
"Well you certainly are a hard worker, Bella." Carlisle said approvingly. "It takes a lot of drive for someone to take on such a full load of school and work. That's very impressive." He added with a smile.
"Thanks." I mumbled.
Impressive isn't quite the word I would use to describe me while sitting in your fucking mansion, Mr. Cullen.
We chatted casually for a while until it was announced that dinner was ready. We all took our places around the long table in the fancy dining room while we were served by Carmella, the Cullen's live-in housekeeper.
I was a little intimidated. I didn't know how to react to the proper and elaborate table settings and I couldn't quite figure out why I had two forks.
Esme kept assuring us that Edward would be there any minute, but apparently he had more important things to do because he didn't show up until we were half way through eating.
"Nice of you to join us, son" Carlisle said curtly as Edward sat down.
"Thank you, Carmella." Edward mumbled as the housekeeper sat Edward's plate down in front of him.
"Of course, Mr. Cullen" She said with a smile before returning to the kitchen.
"Sorry, I'm late. I got held up with a client." He apologized, although he didn't sound at all remorseful for his tardiness.
We proceeded through dinner with small talk and true to form, Edward was on his blackberry the whole time. By the time we were finished I had to excuse myself to the back patio for a cigarette. I enjoyed the Cullens but sometime everything in their house was just too proper and formal for me. I needed some fresh air and I also needed to talk to my dad.
I made my way outside and sat down on one of the patio chairs, pulling out my cigarettes and my cell phone. I lit up and dialed my dad's number.
"Hey dad, it's me." I said as I took a drag.
"Hey, Bells. What's going on?"
"Nothing, I'm over at the Cullen house with Alice."
"Oh, that's nice." He said approvingly. My dad loved Alice. "Why are you calling then from over there? Is something wrong?"
I sighed and took a long drag before answering.
"Nothing drastic, but I need to ask you a favor."
"What's that?" He asked, sounding confused.
"Well, my debit card got declined at the grocery store yesterdday and that was literally the last of my money. I don't get paid until Thursday."
I heard the back door open behind me and looked over my shoulder to see Edward coming outside while shoving a cigarette into his mouth. I forgot that he smoked. He was the only Cullen who did.
"So you're calling to ask for money, then?" My dad asked, pulling my attention back to my phone call.
I turned back around to face forward and ignored Edward's presence as he sat down in one of the other patio chairs.
"If you could just wire me some I promise to pay you back when I get paid."
I heard him sigh on the other end and that made me tense in anticipation. That was probably a no.
"I don't know, Bella. I'll see what I can do. I might be able to give you a little something but I'm running pretty dry over here myself."
"Well, anything would help dad. And I would really appreciate it."
"Yeah, I know. Listen, let me see what I've got and I'll call you back okay?"
"And why don't you try giving your mom a call?"
"You know just as well as I do that mom has no money to give me."
"Yeah, I know." He huffed. "I just wish she would help you out a little more."
"Yeah, me too. But it's not because she doesn't want to…she just doesn't have the money."
"Alright, well, I'll call you back in a little bit…"
"Okay, thanks dad."
By the time I hung up with my dad I was already almost done with my cigarette so as soon as I put it out I lit up another one. I wouldn't normally consider myself a chain smoker, but this was a special circumstance. I was stressed as fuck.
"Money problems?" Edward's smooth voice asked from somewhere to my right.
I looked over at him as I took a long drag. I had been too stressed while talking to my dad to care if Edward was listening but now that I was looking at him I realized that I had just had a pretty embarrassing conversation in front of him.
Yes Edward, your sister's poor and chain-smoking best friend can't afford her fucking groceries.
"Uh, yeah," I mumbled. "Things are just kind of tight right now and I was sick last week so I missed a bunch of work and I'm kind of behind on my bills."
I don't know why I felt the need to justify my financial turmoil to him, but I did.
"You could ask my parents for a loan, they adore you."
"No," I said, shaking my head. "That's humiliating. I hate asking people for help, even my dad. I wouldn't have called him if I didn't have a sixty five dollar electric bill that's two days overdue."
He nodded his understanding to me as he exhaled his smoke through his nose.
"I'm sorry. I shouldn't be bitching to you about my problems."
"It's alright. Everybody needs somebody to bitch to."
We sat in a comfortable silence for a few moments until Edward spoke again.
"You really shouldn't be smoking, you know. It's bad for you."
I raised my eyebrows at him and gestured to the cigarette in his hand.
"Doesn't that make you a hypocrite, Mr. Cullen?"
He shrugged and took a long drag. He paused and exhaled through his nose before bothering to answer me.
"This won't be the first thing to kill me. If it is, I'll consider myself lucky."
"Well that's not a very good way of looking at things."
"You don't think so? Hmm…I consider it optimism."
"Sounds more like pessimism to me."
"Maybe to you," He said with another shrug. "But sometimes short, rash occurrences and experiences can have a greater impact than one could ever dream of. I would rather live a happy and full, short life than a long and miserable one. I prefer to live in the moment."
He raised his cigarette as if making a toast and then lowered it to his lips again.
"Maybe I do too."
"I don't think so." He said as he put his cigarette out in the ash try on the end table.
He stood up and started walking inside, leaving me to think that he was ending the conversation, until he called back to me over his shoulder.
"If you were living a happy and full life, Isabella, you would have a way to pay your electric bill."
And with that he walked back into the house, closing the door behind him.
I didn't know whether to be more confused or offended by his last statement, but I was leaning toward offended.
Poor people could be happy, right?
You're poor. And are you happy? No. Case and point served by hot shot lawyer Edward Cullen himself.
I told my more rational inner self to cut the monologue short, and I headed back inside.
Alice and I both had early classes the next day so we didn't stay over very late. Esme had Carmella put on a pot of coffee and then we all sat around in the formal living room sipping it. While the Cullens discussed things like current events and foreign affairs, I just sat there. My immature, stressed out, and low-class mind was seemingly just not on the same wave-length as theirs.
Once we were done with the coffee Alice and I gathered up our stuff and announced our departure. The only person who had left earlier than us was Edward. Apparently he didn't feel the need to arrive on time or stay long enough to even have a proper conversation with his parents.
"Bella, dear, you are coming to the party next weekend right?" Esme asked me as we stood at the front door to bid our farewells.
Geez, Bella…'bid our farewells'? You've spent too much time tonight in the fancy Cullen mansion. Back to our trashy apartment it is for you.
"Yeah, I will definitely be there." I promised.
Next week was Esme and Carlisle's anniversary party and since they had informed me about it a long time ago, I was kind of obligated to go.
"Great, I'm looking forward to seeing you there then."
"Me too, good night" I answered.
"You girls drive safely." Carlisle said before giving Alice and I each a kiss on the cheek.
As soon as we were outside and the Cullens were back inside with the door closed behind them, I dug around in my bag until I found my pack of cigarettes. I opened it up and internally gasped.
There, rolled up and placed in line with all the cigarettes, was a crisp one hundred dollar bill.