I was 17 when I auditioned for the dance division at Julliard, and I was 17 when my spirit died along with my best friend. But I was 18 when my best friend's brother showed me how to live again...

July 13th2007 8:08 pm

"ALICE!" I yell out as I watch her body hit the cold, wet ground. I run to her through the rain, sobbing. I pick up her lifeless body and rest it in my lap, spotting our friendship bracelet that I made for her in the 7th grade still on her wrist. I shake her roughly, hoping that by some miracle she will wake up. "Alice, please! Please wake up," I whisper to her, inching my face closer to hers. "Please, Ali Cat.."

Blood trickles from her body and lands in the puddle next to us. Her green eyes no longer shine with life, so I slowly close them. I can hear sirens approaching and people surrounding me, but all I can think of is my best friend and how I should have never dragged her out here.

July 10th 2007 4:09 pm

"Bella Bee!" Alice shouts as she jumps on my back. I grunt and grab her legs. "Ali Cat," I say lower than my normal voice. We giggle as she jumps off and stands next to me as we walk home. "How was practice?" She questions.

"It was okay, the same as always. My instructor got on my nerves again," I tell her, kicking a rock with my tennis shoe. Mademoiselle Heidi has always been out to ruin my life. I never did anything right in her eyes, or I was a 'disgrace to ballet', as she liked to put it.

"What did she do this time?" Alice questions, knowing very well how much I hate her.

"She got onto me for not doing a demi-pliƩ correctly, which I know how to do perfectly," I say while demonstrating just how well I know how.

Alice claps and yells 'bravo' as I bow and tell her thank you.

We round the corner to our block, and I walk a little faster, excited because the mailman had just passed our house.

"Hey, why are you in such a hurry?" Alice questions, catching up with me.

"I'm waiting for a letter to come," I inform her. "I applied to Julliard," I say just as we arrive at my mailbox. I open it carefully and take out two white envelopes. I turn to Alice, who is smiling at me."If I get in, you're coming with me." I smile back at her.

July 13th 2007 7:45 pm

"Bella?" A lady with black hair calls out. I raise my hand and grab my duffle bag. "They are ready for you now." I get up and walk down the long hallway to what I hope will be my future. The lady with black hair guides me through a giant door, telling me to wait just a second. I set my bag down, silently praying to not mess up and to remember my routine. I stretch and quickly put my ballet shoes on.

"They are ready for you now." The lady with black hair repeats. I nod and thank her before I take a few deep breaths and make my way behind the red curtain. It opens, revealing two women and one man sitting at a table. A bright light shines on me, causing me to squint.

"What is your name, dear?" The man yells out to me. I step forward with a smile. "Isabella Marie Swan," I tell him.

"Welcome, Isabella. My name is Felix," he says pointing to himself. "These two lovely ladies are Victoria and Jane," he says pointing to them. The ladies kindly wave to me, and I return the pleasantries.

"What song will you be auditioning to tonight?" The lady with the red hair asks me. "I will be dancing to Debussy's Clair de lune," I tell them. They nod, and I get in position.

I stand in the middle of the stage and wait for the music to begin. I watch as the man at the table named Felix signals for them to start the music.

The music starts off soft as I lift my arms to the side, bringing them in towards me and back out. I move to the side of the stage and gracefully lift myself up on my toes.

July 13th 2007 7:50 pm

"Thank you so much," Felix says right when the music ends. "We will let you know your result soon."

I nod, walking back towards my duffle bag to remove my ballet shoes from my feet and replace them with some flip-flops. I walk out to the hall and spot Alice pacing the hallways.

"Ali-Cat!" I yell out to her, making everyone else in the hall look at me like I was crazy. I ignore them and watch as my best-friend smiles at me, running up to hug me.

"So how did it go?" She questions as we exit Julliard. I immediately grab my umbrella from my bag since the rain is falling down a lot harder than it was earlier.

"It went good...I hope," I say, unsure about it. "They said they will let me know soon." I open my umbrella, and we start walking down the street, straight for our hotel room where my mom is waiting.

"I know you did good!" Alice says, trying to stay positive. "You always do."

We laugh and begin to plan what we are going to do the next day. As we cross the street, two cars zoom by us, and a sudden gunshot rings out by my ear. I look around me, stunned, and notice Alice

holding her stomach with both hands. She stands still in the middle of the street. Her hands begin to slowly drop, revealing her blood stained shirt.

"Bella Bee..." she chokes out.

July 23rd 2007 3:00pm

"I am sorry, but I must decline your offer. I will not be attending Julliard in the fall," I whisper to the person on the other end of the phone.

"You're sure about this?" They question.

I pause. "Yes, I'm sure. Thank you for your time." I say, hanging up the phone quickly and retreat back into the living room.

"Who was that, sweetie?" My mother asks me. "No one," I tell her, making my way upstairs to my room.

I slam the door behind me and roughly yank open my closet door. I throw everything that I once loved from ballet into a pile in the middle of my floor. It took the one person that I loved most.

July 25th 2007 7:00pm

I grab the black trash bag that has been sitting by my door for 3 days now and take it downstairs to throw it away.

"Where are you going, Bella?" My mom questions me. She has been on my case all week, telling me to cheer up already because that's what Al..that's what Alice would have wanted. I wipe my eyes before the tears start to fall and turn to face her with a smile gracing my face.

"I'm going to take some old clothes to Goodwill,"I tell her, getting out the door before she could question me any further. I get in my car and take off to a field I had found previously where I can easily burn my things. They will never be able to ruin my life again.

I pull into the field that was once a meadow and grab my black bag and the matches. I empty the bag and throw the clothes into a deserted trash can and light a match.

"This is for you, Ali Cat." I toss the match into the trash can and watch the flames devour what I once thought would become my destiny. One silent tear falls from my eyes as I pull out Alice's bracelet from my pocket and slip it on my wrist.

"I miss you," I whisper.

August 17th 2007 9:00 am

"Bella, it's time to start the day. Get up, sweetie," my mom says, rubbing my back.

"I don't want to!" I yell, flinching away from her. I don't care about today or tomorrow or any day. I just want to be left alone.

"But sweetie, you have a visitor," my mom tells me as she gets up and shuts the door. I hear a chair squeak behind me, so I turn and am met with familiar green eyes. I start to sob and bring the covers back over me.

"Oh, no. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to make you upset," a velvety voice calls out to me as I feel someone touch my shoulder.

"Just leave me alone, Edward," I tell him. "You remember me?" He questions. "I didn't think you would."

"You're my best friend's brother. Of course I remember you," I tell him, removing the covers from my face to stare at him.

"Oh, Bella Bee..." he says slowly, looking at me. I cry as I get up to wrap my arms around his neck. "I miss her so much," I sob, letting my tears ruin his black shirt.

"I know. I miss her, too," he tells me, bringing both of us down on the bed. He wraps his arms around me as I lay my head on his chest.

"Please," I manage to choke out. "Please don't leave me," I beg. He pulls me closer to him and plants a kiss on my forehead. "I'm not going anywhere, Bella."

September 13th 2008 10:45 am

"Happy Birthday, Bella," Edward whispers in my ear then kisses my cheek. He steps back and hands me a box with a pink ribbon on top. He then walks over to my radio and slips a CD in it. I start to unwrap the box but stop when I hear the song that is playing.

"Why are you doing this?" I question him. "You need to do this, Bella," he tells me moving closer to stand in front of me. "Do this for Alice."

As Debussy's Clair de lune plays over the stereo, I unwrap the box and remove the paper inside. Before me lies a brand new pair of ballet shoes.

"I...I can't," I whisper as I sit on my bed. "I just can't," I repeat, setting the box down beside me and dropping my head to stare at my feet.

"Yes you can, Bella," he says as he sits next to me and takes my hand in his. "Alice knew how much you loved to dance. She would be furious right now if she knew you gave up." He gracefully lifts my chin up with his finger. "Please, Bella Bee."

December 23rd 2008 5:00pm

"Are you nervous?" Angela asks me as we get ready for the grand finale of The Nutcracker. I look down at the friendship bracelet that I had once made for Alice. I smile, happy that I can have a piece of her here with me.

"No, I'm not," I tell her just as the music begins. Excitement swells within me, and I say a silent prayer. I know that this time, Alice will be looking down on me, making sure I don't make a fool out of myself. I watch as my partner, Mike, starts to dance. He holds his hand out, which is my cue.

"Good luck," Angela whispers to me.

The smile is still on my lips as I nod to her and then leap out onto the stage. Before I grab Mike's hand though, I lock eyes with the boy who saved me. Who made me realize just how deep my passion for dancing is and how much I needed it to survive. Edward winks at me from the audience and holds up his wrist, showing me the bracelet I made for him in September. I smile, feeling lucky that I had fallen in love with my best-friend's brother.


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