Author's Note: Well, I just got an email saying it was okay to go ahead and post this to my profile. So, here it is…my entry from A Picture Says it All Anonymous. I was pretty proud of it myself and was pleased with how much it seemed to touch some people. I was never teased like this Bella was, but I was never thin and caught more than a few snide comments. I love writing strong empowered Bella's. I hope you like this one too! Thanks to my pal AgoodWITCH for her beta skills and for Twilightmommyof4girls and Sarahscriptor who picked me out of the crowd. You girls rock my world!

BTW...the song that is the main theme of this story is something I made up. I'm the first to admit I'm no poet, so I apologize if it lacks a little something, something. LOL

BREAKING NEWS: This fic won Kharizzmatic's Choice for the Contest. I am so excited and walking on the moon right now. My favorite author ever chose my fic for her contest pick! This has officially become the BEST DAY!

Have you ever looked in the mirror and wondered what the world thought when they saw you? Did they think you were pretty or plain? Did they notice that your right eye was slightly larger than your left or that your nose was a little too big for your face? Were you someone that would get a second glance or so forgettable that they never saw you in the first place? These were the things my best friend Alice and I were discussing in my bathroom the weekend before the first day of our senior year of high school. Even though the kids there made it hell for me, I still wondered what life would be outside of our piece of crap borders.

"Oh, and I hate the way the skin of my stomach folds up when I lean over like this," my perfect, size four best friend Alice said hunching her back and pinching at the teeny, tiny rolls of skin that the position created. Alice could eat anything she wanted and still look perfect. Of course, her metabolism had to be running full out even while she slept since she never sat still. Even at night, she tossed and turned like the Tasmanian Devil, which really sucked when you were her best friend and often shared a bed with her when you would have sleepovers.

I rolled my eyes with a snort. "Please, Allie! You're killing me here. You've got, what, a millimeter of skin there? I can pinch several inches of fat roll if I did that. Please don't make me want to murder you in your sleep by trying to act like you're fat. You start getting pants in the double digits and then we can talk."

I sighed, running my hand over my less than perfect stomach. I always battled with my weight. I was a scrawny kid, all knees and elbows, and then I hit puberty and my body sort of went 'balomp' and suddenly I had chunky problem places everywhere. The one consolation, I had the boobs to go with it, which pissed Allie off to no end. While she was wearing a size known as 'nearly A' I was pushing up from a B to a C this summer and beginning to wonder when this 'growth spurt' would stop. I was already getting square boob jokes from my cousin Emmett, who was convinced I was stuffing because my Mom was built more like Alice than me. That should have been his first clue, since I was built just like great Grandma Swan, with the wide ass and the Gazongas to match, but then again I never accused Emmett, the stereotypical jock, of thinking.

Alice and I turned from one side to the other, trying to see how we looked from all angles in our new clothes for the school year. Every year, Alice insisted we partake of our yearly fashion show the weekend before school started. We would try on every outfit we had and picked out what we would wear each day of the first week, color coordinating more often than I dared to admit. It wasn't necessarily of my choosing though, Alice was like a hurricane, there was just no stopping her. You just had to let her go and do her thing until eventually she'd just sort of peter out. By the third week of the school year, I'd be back in my jeans and flannels. Clothes never really made any difference there anyway.

Allie would whine at me for it, telling me that I needed to hold out longer and the teasing would stop, but by then she'll be up to her elbows in whatever boy would be her escort to every event for the year, not to mention cheerleading, yearbook, and whatever other clubs she joined. I wasn't joking when I said she was full of boundless energy. The girl made the energizer bunny look like a lazy bum.

I, however, was a lazy bum. Well, maybe not lazy, but I just wasn't a big fan of the people in our school and didn't care to do things with them that weren't required by law. Allie caught all kind of shit for being besties with a social reject like me, but as with most things, she would simply tell them to mind their own business and they didn't know the first thing about me. Then she would leave the social elite, swooping by to hug me with promises of our Saturday friend day plans for that week before jetting off to go join the Key Club meeting, or whatever was going on that afternoon.

Meanwhile, I'd walk home for the day on my own, often stopping off to sit along the edge of the big concrete lined canal that ran through the city and enjoy a little peace and quiet. It was my place and I never really had to share it. I liked having a place to be alone with my thoughts, considering my Mom would be on me like white on rice as soon as I walked in the door, following me around and telling me all about her day. I loved my Mom, but I really was a loner. I liked having some time of my own.

It was September 13th, my oh so sucky birthday. It was always worse when I had to go to school that day. Inevitably, I would be haunted by jokes about eating my whole cake by myself and listening to happy birthday day sung by my cousin Emmett and the rest of the jocks, except with oinks being inserted between the small phrases. There was a time when Emmett was a nice guy, but Freshman year, he joined the football team and became a class 'A' jackass.

I heard all kinds of rumors that there was a hot new guy who was starting that day, but I didn't really pay much attention. Any hot guy who everyone here approved of was most likely just one more person who would love to pick on me.

Normally I didn't let the elitists get me down, but today, my birthday, made everything that much worse. I barely even looked up from my shoes as I shuffled through the hallway. Alice found me and gave me my present while she sat with me at lunch. I opened the small package to find a silver charm bracelet, every charm dangling around the chain proving just how well my best friend really did know me. Once she absorbed the only joy from my day, she lifted her wrist to show she had one too with only one charm, the one that matched mine, ying and yang, the timeless symbol for balancing opposites and what we always declared as a perfect representation of our friendship. We were both so different, but we were just meant to be together, friends for life.

The afternoon was horrible, ending with the topper of all birthday shittiness, I opened my locker to grab my stuff at the end of the day, only to have an avalanche of tampons fall out all over me, each one colored with red marker. I suppressed my tears and I rushed to fill my hobo backpack and hurry out of the building, people laughing at me along the way. I was almost out when I heard the high pitched yells of my best friend behind me, begging me to wait for her, but I just couldn't. Just as I reached the door, I heard her calls turn into screams as the pixie unleashed all of her power on berating the assholes who were hurting me on my birthday.

I ran as fast as I could, skidding to a stop on the side of the Canal. I threw my book bag down and melted, my face falling into my hands as I sobbed. Without a doubt, that had been the Worst Day Ever!

I don't know how long I stayed like that, hiding from the world, but suddenly a sound made me look up in surprise. A few feet to the right of me and further down the bank, near where my bag landed, sat a boy with hair that reflected in the sunlight with hints of red and brown. He faced the water with a guitar in his hand and strummed it quietly. I watched in awe as he began to sing, his warm vibrant voice echoing hauntingly off the concrete and water surrounding him.

"When you're down and all hope is lost, just remember life is short.

Shallow people break your heart, beat you down and make you hurt.

But time will pass quickly dear, before you know you've moved on,

To a place and a time not dictated by the small people you have fought."

Stay strong, stand tall, be beautiful, you see,

Because no matter what they say, you're beautiful to me.

Don't crumble dear, stand strong and clear, be who you want to be.

Be individual and free.

And someday they will all see what only a few of us can see."

He continued to strum, never looking at me, and yet it almost felt like he was singing for me. His tune continued on before another tune intermingled a moment before it swapped out completely, his fingers nimbly plucking out the tune of Happy Birthday. I gasped, staring with wide eyes with my hand over my mouth as he glanced over his shoulder with a small smirk.

I stared for a long moment before finally he stopped strumming and nodded his head, as if he were trying to tug me over with the motion alone. I faltered for a moment before slowly rising to my feet and carefully moving the few feet to stand beside him. He looked up with a smile as his hands returned to strumming.

"I was beginning to think you weren't going to actually come over here. Would have been a shame to not get to meet the girl that inspired in the course of a few seconds the first song I've actually been able to write on the spot in years."

I reached out to grab my bag, tugging it toward me awkwardly, not knowing what to say. He just chuckled at me before stopping his hands again to reach his right one over toward me.

"I'm Edward, nice to meet you."

I reached a shaky hand out to grasp his as my face went hot with the blush I knew was there. "Bella."

He smiled with a nod before strumming again. Finally, after a long stretch of silence I looked over in confusion.

"What did you mean when you said I inspired your song?"

He chuckled, moving his hands to make his notes come out higher. "Just what I said…I saw you walking around all day at school, never even looking up from your feet. It was lunch before I even heard it was your birthday. Happy Birthday, by the way."

He leaned closer as he said the last bit, elbowing my arm with a smirk before sitting straight again. "Didn't understand it all day…still don't actually. You're cute, you seem nice enough, and you're not like disfigured or anything, so why do they all treat you so badly?"

I shrugged with a sigh. "Other than my fat ass, I guess I'm an easy mark. My cousin, Emmett, gives them ammo, and my Dad's the Chief of Police. He's busted more than one of their raves. Guess that means they take it all out on me? Hell if I know, honestly…that's just all I can figure."

He nodded as the song he played turned melancholy, a steady rhythm in the beat of the music. "The little sprite girl seems to care about you. Only time I saw you look someone in the eye or smile all day was while you guys talked during lunch."

I smiled, reaching to my wrist to spin the bracelet she had given me with a sigh. "Allie's been my best friend since Kindergarten. Thankfully she doesn't care about all that crap."

He smiled with a nod before gently reaching to take my arm and examine my bracelet. He nodded as he eyed each charm. "You seem like a pretty well rounded girl, if this bracelet means anything. Reading, art, music…do you play?"

I blushed and chuckled, shaking my head quickly. "No, but I love to sing."

His smile brightened. "Are you in chorus or anything?"

I sighed, closing my eyes again as I remembered the disaster that had been chorus Freshman year. Lauren, Jessica, and Victoria had been in my class and they tortured me. I loved to sing, but not that much. I dropped it second semester of Freshman year and never looked back.

"So where do you sing now?" Edward asked, looking concerned after I shared my memory.

I shook my head. "My bedroom, the shower, my back yard, wherever I hear music and don't have an audience."

He smirked again as he changed the tune coming from his fingers again. "Will you sing for me?"

My eyes grew wide. "Here?"

He chuckled and nodded.

"I…I don't know."

He continued playing with raised brows. "I take requests if this isn't your cup of tea."

After a while, I sighed, realizing he wouldn't let it go, and that I really didn't want to leave, which was basically my only other recourse. "Know any Evanescence?"

He cocked his eyebrow again, looking a bit impressed before he nodded.

"My Immortal?" I whispered.

Seconds later, his guitar plucked out the notes that the band played on the piano. I closed my eyes and sang, getting lost in the feeling of the song, yet not completely, thanks to the ever so dominant knowledge that the cute boy was watching me.

Once I hit the chorus, I lay back against the concrete incline and shielded the sun with from my eyes as I continued to sing, letting go in front of this stranger and just enjoying the feeling of singing again. It was strangely freeing, having an audience outside of Alice and my parents.

When the bridge hit, I found myself sitting up, lifting my hands above me and smiling in spite of the sad words. It felt so good. I glanced at my audience/accompanist to see him smiling widely at me, his eyes twinkling. When we finished, he rested his guitar in his lap and clapped loudly, before whistling through his fingers, the sound bouncing off the concrete around us. I smiled and blushed, thanking him for that. He shook his head. "The pleasure was all mine, Miss Bella."

He walked me halfway home that afternoon before we had to split ways so he wouldn't be walking the wrong direction. As he walked away from me, striding backwards as he still looked at me, he called out. "Meet me tomorrow? Same place, same time?"

I felt the shock on my face as I nodded slowly. The next day at school, I noticed Edward all around me, and every time we would lock eyes, he would smile. He was even in two of my classes, not that I had noticed the day before. It was amazing how much confidence our little impromptu concert had given me, as I walked around tall and proud at school, not even showing the slightest bit of emotion when the bullies teased me relentlessly.

At the end of the day, Edward was already waiting for me when I reached the Canal. He smiled as I walked straight over to sit down next to him. He didn't miss a beat in his strumming as he beamed at me.

"Now today was much more like it. Don't you dare let them beat you down. Show them all that Bella is your name and it's exactly who you are."

I cocked my head at him in confusion as he chuckled.

"Bella means beautiful, or didn't you know that?"

I rolled my eyes and sighed as I smirked at him. "Yeah…I just didn't get what you were saying."

He shrugged as he continued strumming. "Today you totally owned that name of yours…that's all."

Every day that followed, I met Edward at the Canal, and each day we would stay later and later. Each week at school, Edward made more friends, but also found time to spend with me. A week after we started talking after school, he came and asked if he and his brother, Jasper, who transferred in with him could sit with Alice and I at lunch. Our table got a lot of strange looks that day.

Two weeks after the beginning of our friendship, he convinced the teachers to let him move next to me in the classes we shared. Normally the teachers never allowed us to change seats, but Edward was very persuasive.

By week three, we were passing notes in class, working on song lyrics and I was constantly turning down Edward's incessant pleading for me to make a band with him. His brother could play drums, so all we would really need would be a bass player. I resisted with everything I had. There was a time when I probably wouldn't have batted an eye at the idea, but ever since entering high school, I rarely put myself in a position to easily invite public ridicule.

As I knew they would, the girls flocked to Edward, as did many of the boys. I was so grateful though that he wasn't interested, especially in the case of Lauren and Jessica. He told me one afternoon at the Canal that he could never date someone who was as cruel to another human being as those girls were to me. I had smiled and felt so happy, his words just made my day.

The weather was beginning to chill come late October, and it was starting to get difficult to hang out on the Canal. I hated to say goodbye to our time together, but unfortunately, Mother Nature was not easily stopped. I was sad as I walked into school that morning, knowing that soon we would lose our hang out, only to find Edward leaning against the wall in the alcove with a smile.

"What's the pouty face for, Bella?"

I sighed, hugging my books tighter to my chest as I walked to stand in front of him. "I hate when it starts getting too cold to chill at the Canal. I still go there, but it's usually too cold to stay too long."

Edward's smile widened, confusing me, as he reached forward and took my books from my arms before hooking a hand over my shoulder and leading me down the hallway. "Don't sweat it, Swan. I've got a huge house and the 'rents don't care if Jasper and I have people over. We'll just start chillin' at my place. No big."

I looked up at him through wide, blinking eyes. First of all, Edward never really showed any affection at school, and secondly, did he just invite me to his house? I was overwhelmed by a flurry of emotions that made very little sense while Edward's arm rested around my shoulders.

He smiled and talked as we walked while the people around shot double takes in our direction. Edward didn't even seem to notice as they all watched with wide, confused eyes. They'd gotten used to seeing us sit together at lunch and talk, but nothing like this.

As we reached my locker, Edward waited for me to open it before shoving my things inside and leaning on the locker next to mine with crossed arms as he waited for me to organize my morning supplies, chatting all the while. I looked up when he asked a question to see Lauren and Jessica attempting to kill me with their laser vision over his shoulder. I just rolled my eyes at them, making Edward look over his shoulder at them before looking back with a sarcastic eye roll and smirk.

Once I had my things organized, I closed my locker and leaned against it, continuing to talk to Edward as I wondered when I was going to wake up. This day was just too awesome so far, and extremely confusing. It had to be one of those really awesome dreams that leave me depressed when I wake up the next morning.

Alice bounded up next to me, slipping her arm around my waist as she gave me a quick side hug before smiling up at Edward just as Jasper wrapped his arms around her waist from behind. They'd been inseparable since that first day the boys had sat with us at lunch. She had a devious twinkle in her eye as she addressed Edward, making me wary.

"So, EDwarrrd, have you found a date for the dance yet?"

Edward gave Alice a look of warning. "I hadn't gotten the chance yet, Pixie. You interrupted me."

Alice bowed in contrition as she pulled Jasper away, beaming at us. "I do apologize. By all means, please continue."

I frowned in confusion at Alice's retreating figure before glancing at Edward feeling totally lost. He sighed, gripping the bridge of his nose with his eyes closed before opening them again slowly.

"Does she always feel the need to butt her nose into everything?"

I chuckled and nodded, shifting to lean my back against the locker, propping my foot up behind me. "Always. You just met her. A year from now, she'll probably start trying to dress you."

Edward laughed, shifting a little closer and reaching to take my books again. I tipped my head to look at him again, trying to sort out what he was doing. He shifted them in his arm before moving a little closer, leaning in so that he was only a few inches away from me. Behind him, the hussies grumbled and stomped their designer heels, making me smile again.

Edward crooked a smirk at me before reaching out to push a bit of hair that had fallen out of my pony tail back behind my ear.

"Well, before Alice interrupted me, I was trying to get my nerve up to ask you…uh, Bella?"

I nodded slowly, trying to figure out what was coming next and never expecting the words that escaped his mouth.

"I'd really like it if you would go to the Homecoming Dance with me. Would you…you know…want to go with me?"

I know I looked like a freaking fish as I stared, my eyes bugging out and my mouth hanging open as he stared down at me looking nervous and incredibly embarrassed as his cheeks pinked up. His eyes made my heart pound hard in my chest. It took forever for my body to catch up to my brain.

"Y…you want to go to the dance with ME?" My voice was ridiculously high pitched, making me sound like I'd huffed helium or something.

He kept his eyes on mine as he nodded slowly. After a few more seconds of silence, he sighed and reached out to rest his hand on my forearm. "I know you're not into dances and all that, but I really want to go and I don't know anybody else in this whole town I would want to go with but you."

I felt my heart drop. "So you just want to go as friends, so you don't miss the dance."

Edward frowned and cocked his head to the side, moving closer and grabbing my shoulder to turn me to face him fully, holding my shoulder in his arm. "No, Bella. Did you even listen to my song that first day we talked? From the first second I saw you walking through the hall, I thought you were beautiful. Then that day I started talking to you, I realized you were so much more than just beautiful. You're smart and funny. You don't take any shit from me, Alice, or anybody you actually respect. You take the shit people dish out around here with such grace. You are the strongest, most amazing person I know."

I ducked my head, unable to take a compliment to save my life. I blinked in surprise as he smiled, lifting a hand to tip my face back up to his before brushing his thumb across my cheek.

"I wake up every morning, excited to go to school just to see you. I twiddle my thumbs all day long, anxious to get the lunch and the classes we share, and then I rush through the end of my day to spend time with you at the Canal. You are the best friend I've ever had Bella Swan, and you're so much more than just a friend to me. I'm crazy about you, and I'd really, really like for you to be my date for the dance, and maybe my date for everything else that might come up too, if you want to be."

I couldn't see anything, thanks to my stupid eyes being all teary. One tear slid from my eye and down my cheek where he swiped his thumb quickly to catch it, still watching me warily.

"That is the nicest thing anybody has ever said to me in my whole life."

He smiled sweetly with a long drawn out sigh. "I didn't say it to be nice, Bella. I said it because I mean it."

"But….but look at me! Why would you want this?"

He frowned, moving to rest his thumb over my lips to stop me from talking. "You are beautiful, Bella. No, you might not fit in with the anorexic cover models on those stupid magazines, but that doesn't mean you aren't beautiful. I think your curves are so sexy." He smirked, "You don't even know…"

I felt my cheeks burn as my lips curled up behind his thumb. His eyes locked on them as he softly drifted his thumb across them before leaning in so close I could feel his breath on them. "So what do you say, Swan? Are you going to be my date?"

I smiled a teary smile at him, my gaze drawn back down to his soft looking lips. They curled up slightly before they touched mine. I closed my eyes as bright colors flashed behind my eyes in showers of pink, purple, blue, and yellow, like my own private fireworks display in my head. I heard my books fall to the floor as his other hand found the other side of my face, holding me close as his lips parted slightly. I gasped and then sighed. It was like my best dream ever come to life. Somewhere deep inside, I still worried if I was going to wake up any minute and then bawl the whole time I got ready for school because it wasn't real.

I could hear whispers and chuckles around us before I heard a deep voice that made me cringe behind Edward. "Swan, Cullen, five discipline points each for PDA. Now break it up."

Edward pulled away, his cheeks slightly pink, but his smile and the twinkle in his eyes spoke of nothing short of happiness. I guessed my face probably looked exactly the same. He didn't even break his gaze from me when he responded to Mr. Varner.

"Sorry, Mr. V. I'll try not to let it happen again." He winked at me before finally releasing my face. He bent quickly to pick up the books that had spilled on the floor before standing back up and taking my hand.

"May I escort you to homeroom, Miss Swan?"

I chuckled before stepping forward to grasp the elbow above our clasped hands, smiling up at him. "Why thank you, Mr. Cullen. That would be ever so kind of you."

He laughed, leaning forward to rest a quick peck on my temple before leading me through the hall, the crowd who had gathered to watch, parting like the Red Sea, in order to let us pass. Some of the faces look confused, others looked angry, and then, to my surprise, several looked happy for us. I smiled and nodded, my head held high, as Edward led me down the hall to my classroom.

That was the first day of the rest of my high school career. I'd like to say that I became just as popular as Alice, and I never caught shit again, but that sort of thing only happens in the movies. The girls that hated me still hated me, and a lot of people still ignored me, but I made a few friends through Edward, and nobody dared pick on me openly or stuff tampons in my locker again. I was no longer quite the lost, lonely girl that I had been at the start of that school year.

Eventually, Edward and Jasper did talk me into joining their band just before the end of Senior year. Emmett even came around, apologizing for being a douche bag and asking if we'd let him play bass for us since we still hadn't found a bassist. The following fall, we all ended up at the same college, just an hour away from the Podunk town we were living in.

A new town, a fresh start, and getting away from the hell hole that never saw me as more than the Chief's chubby daughter meant a whole new life for me. The band started playing gigs at the local bars, and before long, we ended up with a bit of a name for ourselves. We were doing so well, we even stayed in the city that summer, working gigs every weekend. The name we made for ourselves made it back home the summer after our second year of college, when our parents convinced us to come home for at least one month of our break. After a lot of begging, the local bar that appealed to a younger clientele finally convinced us to play a special gig for one night only.

I glanced out at the crowd before the start of the song, and suddenly I felt all the self esteem drain away from my body. My body had changed some, my face leaning down a bit, some of my problem spots smoothing out thanks to hauling equipment and hoofing it all over campus. Alice had even started convincing me to dress a little more revealingly, to showcase my new form, and it felt awesome. I had grown proud of myself at school, but seeing the faces of those people that had harassed me for so long in front of the stage sent me right back to that brow beaten girl that did her best to stand tall, even when she really didn't feel like it. I was seconds away from turning tail and running when two warm familiar arms wrapped around my waist, his nose burrowing into the long slightly curled hair hanging down my back.

"Don't you dare let them have that power over you, baby. You are so much better than all of that...than all of them. You are my hot, sexy, badass girlfriend that rocks the house every night you play. You go out there and show them what you really are."

I sighed and tilted my neck with a smile as he nosed my hair to the side, and began trailing kisses down my neck, his hands gripping my hips as he rubbed against me, reminding me just how sexy he thought I was. I pushed back into him with a moan before turning my face to capture his mouth with mine, massaging his tongue vigorously. After a moment, he turned me to face him, pushing me against the wall as he ground his hardness into my core, our mouths completely devouring one another. He finally broke the kiss to move down my neck and across my collarbone, his hands roaming up my sides as I panted and moaned. Edward had opened me up so much in our relationship. There had been a time I wouldn't have dreamed of making out like that, pretty much dry humping in public, but Edward freed me, let me be who I wanted and needed to be, and I loved him even more for it.

I felt Edward tense, knowing he was going to cum soon if we didn't knock it off. I knew I needed to stop it, but I didn't want to. Thankfully, or maybe not so thankfully, Emmett walked by just about them, groaning and covering his eyes.

"Dude…stop dry humping my cousin and get your ass ready to get on stage."

Edward whimpered as he finally pulled away, adjusting himself as he tried to find some relief. I smirked, sliding my hand down to cup him as I leaned forward and whispered in his ear. "I promise to take care of THIS at least twice tonight if you can be good."

Edward whimpered again, resting his head against my shoulder as I rubbed him up and down a few times until Emmett growled behind us. I nipped Edward's earlobe before kissing his lips. "Thank you for helping me, now let's get out there and get this over with so I can help you out once it's over."

He smiled that heart stopping smile at me before walking over to grab his guitar, adjusting the strap to make sure his little problem was completely concealed. I chuckled before sliding my boots back on and checking to make sure my boobs were staying in place in my low neckline brown pleather tank top thing Alice had insisted I buy to wear on stage before reaching for my wireless microphone waiting in the wings.

Jasper walked in the darkness to settle at the drums as Edward, Emmett, and our new addition, Demitri took their places on either side of center, Edward strumming the first riffs as he walked. The crowd started yelling as soon as he began, and my stomach jumped wondering how they would react to me. My stage name was Izzy, so unless they attended our university, which very few of our classmates had, they probably had no clue I was the lead singer of Concrete Canal.

We did several originals, but usually started with covers. Tonight we had started off with Flyleaf's So Sick. I slinked my way slowly across the stage as I sang the first lines, only a low light behind to outline me as I made my way to center stage by the part where I scream "I will break," just as the spotlight flooded my spot middle stage. I could only see a few of the faces toward the front, Lauren and Jessica included. To say they were shocked was an understatement. I smiled and continued to strut my stuff across the stage, enjoying the freeing feeling it always gave me.

The song ended to uproarious applause as I smiled, and bowed slightly. Edward walking up to kiss my cheek, and grab my ass, before whispering in my ear, "I think we should do Someday." I nodded and he moved to tell everyone else while I greeted the crowd.

"Thank you, Thank you. You know, it's so great to be back home. I'd like to thank you all for coming to hear us tonight. You know Concrete Canal was formed nearly two years ago, but it's roots came from the day my Edward and I met, sitting at the old concrete canal way running through the west side of town. That's where we came up with the name, and that's where our first song first came into being, sitting along the side of that waterway on my eighteenth birthday. Edward wrote it for me, but we worked on it together and turned it into what it is today. So we humbly give you, SOMEDAY.

Edward started to quietly play the opening chords as I sang softly into the room those first words I ever heard him sing when he attempted to reach out to me that very first day. The song began on a somber quiet note, but would soon change.

When you're down and all hope is lost, just remember life is short.

Shallow people break your heart, beat you down and make you hurt.

But time will pass quickly dear, before you know you've moved on,

To a place and a time not dictated by the small people you have fought.

Edward took over the second part of the opening, looking me in the eye as he stood next to me, ignoring the room full of people, and singing only to me. My heart melted, just as it did every time he sang those words to me.

Stay strong, stand tall, be beautiful, you see,

Because no matter what they say, you're beautiful to me.

Don't crumble dear, stand strong and clear, be who you want to be.

Be individual and free.

And someday they will all see what only a few of us can see.

Emmett, Jasper and Demitri all jumped in with a crescendo reminiscent of Evanescence in My Immortal as the music picked up pace and power just before Edward and I jumped back in, harmonizing perfectly.

Someday my Love, you will see

Just how amazing you are to me

In your eyes all I see

Is the future meant for me

By your side, for all time

I will hold your hand in mine

Someday you, Someday Me,

Someday all that we can be

As long as you're beside me.

Edward leaned forward, swinging his guitar behind his back and pulling me to him, kissing my lips in a surprise move while the other three boys played the bridge. It took me by such surprise that I nearly dropped the microphone. Definitely something I didn't want to do…those suckers were hella expensive. I melted into him as my hands found his hair. We didn't have long till we had to sing again, and I knew we had to break soon, but I didn't want to. Finally, he broke the kiss, panting into my face as he smiled.

"I love you, Bella Swan. Marry me. Please, please marry me."

His voice echoed around the room as his impromptu proposal was picked up by the mic in my hand. I stood frozen, knowing I had to speak and yet, totally speechless. I pressed my lips together as the guys improvised, seeing I was not going to be jumping in anytime soon. After a minute, I squeaked out a 'yes' and jumped into his arms again for a passionate kiss, as the room erupted in screams and catcalls.

I finally found the will to break away, nodding to the boys who then wrapped up their improv to go back to the song, the music softening again for the second verse. I smiled at Edward, cupping his cheek in my hand as I sang.

I look to you for strength, you are my best friend,

I found you in my darkness and can't bear to let go again.

I hope with all that's in me that we'll never see the day

When we have to be parted, that the good Lord takes you away.

Of all that's good in this world, Your face is all I see,

I'll spend the rest of my days, making sure that you believe

My heart and soul forever, rests before you on these knees

My beautiful, my Angel, the Someday of my dreams

Someday my Love, you will see

Just how amazing you are to me

In your eyes all I see

Is the future meant for me

By your side, for all time

I will hold your hand in mine

Someday you, Someday Me,

Someday all that we can be

As long as you're beside me.

Ohhhhh, as long as you, my love

Stay beside me.

Edward added the last line on impulse, his warm voice echoing through the room. I couldn't help but grab his face and kiss him again as the room broke into deafening applause.

We went on to finish our sets, sampling more Flyleaf, Evanescence, and the duet Broken first done by Seether and Amy Lee. I wanted to run off and reward my fiancé as I had promised, but we had a room full of people begging to buy us drinks and congratulate us on our kick ass band and set.

We had made it to the bar, about to order two more before we took off, when we overheard the two biggest pests of my high school career talking about me as they sat side by side on their barstools.

"She's such a poser. I bet she paid Edward to do all of that just to show off. She's lost a little weight, but she's still a fat cow." Jessica sneered into her glass

"Ugh, I know! I'd kill myself if I ever let myself go like that. She's got to wear double digits at least. Who does she think she is strutting around the stage in those little jeans and tight ass tank top? Have some self respect! She's still the same mousy person on the inside, just hiding behind her fuck hot guy."

Edward tensed, about to go give them a piece of their mind, but I put my hand on his arm to stop him as I leaned forward and ordered two long islands and two shots of Patron. I handed one to Edward, both of us drinking it down in our usual way before passing him his long island and leaning against the bar, smirking over at the girls.

"Well lucky for me, my man likes my curves, and likes for me to show them off. Matter of fact, if I had wanted to play the field, several guys at school tried to pick me up, so he must not be alone. As for the rest of what you said, I think it's sad you put so much stock in your own body image. To think your life is only as valuable as your jean size is a sad state of affairs and must be a miserable way to spend your life. I actually feel a little sorry for you."

I tipped my drink and glugged it down before sitting the empty glass in front of them. "I wish the best of luck to you girls. I probably won't see you around, since I don't come back often. I'd much rather move on with my life than live in the past."

Edward smirked at me as I moved forward to hug him around the waist. I smiled wider as he grabbed my ass with a small growl. "Are you ready to go home and reward me as you promised, my future wife?"

I laughed, trailing my hand up and down his back before cupping his butt and squeezing. "Bet your cute little ass, future husband. Let's go!"

We got a lot of smiles and winks as we made our way out of the bar and back to Edward's parents' empty house. Tonight we would indulge in some loud, animalistic, engagement sex, and we would enjoy every second. Almost three years had passed since I first met him along the edge of the canal, but very little had changed, and thankfully, I knew I could count on him being by my side for many, many years to come.