This story was written for the Scene Stealers Contest. The instructions were to take a scene from the books and "write it the way it should have been written." I really wanted to enter because I thought some of my stories (specifically She Has Your Eyes and First Time) already fit that description, and this is what I came up with.
Book and Chapter you are stealing: "Complications" Twilight Chapter 11/Midnight Sun Chapter 12
Betas: edward-bella-harry-ginny & Juliejuliejulie, both of them awesome as always
Disclaimer: Characters, setting and the single line of dialogue are SM's
Summary: In the darkness of Mr. Banner's classroom, Bella and Edward both struggled not to reach over and touch the other. In this story, they just can't help themselves.
I couldn't take it anymore. I had to touch him. But that was absolutely crazy. There were so many reasons not to, so many possible bad outcomes. For one thing, what if someone saw me? People had noticed our conversation at lunch. They had all watched us take our seats. The room was dark and our table was at the very back, but we weren't completely hidden. What would Mike or Angela think if they observed me brushing my fingertips down his cheek the way I longed to? My hand twitched at the thought, and I pressed my left arm even more tightly over it, keeping it trapped.
Far worse than disapproval from my classmates was the prospect of his reaction. He didn't want any physical contact— that much was clear. Surely he'd jerk away, slide his chair over, pierce me with a hostile glare and then pointedly return his gaze to the screen. I'd destroy the rapport we had just begun to build. There would be no more answers, no more revelations. I felt my cheeks blaze with the shame of his vividly imagined rejection, and my heart contracted in misery at the idea. I risked a glance in his direction, and when I found him staring at me, eyes wide, I gasped. He responded with a slight smile. I was desperate to know what he could be thinking. His hands were clamped under his arms, his muscles taut just like mine. He was obviously ill at ease, and I didn't understand. My mind wasn't working properly anyway. My senses were overloaded with his nearness and the incredible scent he exuded. My thoughts were so scrambled that I didn't even realize that my hand had escaped until I felt him grab it.
I gasped again with the shock. The cold sent a jolt of sensation down my arm, but throbbing warmth spread in its wake, from the place that he was touching all the way into my chest. My heart was pounding. I looked around the room, sure that I'd called attention to myself, but our classmates were either focused on the movie or slumped in their chairs, practically dozing. We were safe. But I'd almost touched his face! I'd given myself away, and he must be horrified. Edward still held my hand where he'd caught it, inches from his skin. Our eyes met, and there was no anger or distaste in his expression, just intense concentration and the extreme beauty that was so irresistible to me. He relaxed his grip, but he didn't let go completely. His cool fingers rested on my hand, and I understood perfectly. I was welcomed, but I had to be cautious. I could proceed, and he would stop me, move my hand away, if I did something wrong.
Slowly, not breaking my gaze, I closed the gap until, just as I'd imagined, my fingertips were on his cheek. He closed his eyes, and we remained still for an endless moment while I remembered to breathe. Then I slid my hand down. His skin was so smooth and cool. I don't know what I expected, but this was better. All my agitation had dissolved when he permitted me to touch him. Instead I was flooded with happiness. I could do this all day, just caress his satiny cheek in a trance, like rhythmically patting a cat's lush fur. My fingers loved the feeling, and I rotated my wrist to brush the back of my hand against his face. His grip tightened, and I froze at once. Was it too much? Was my time up? I let my muscles go limp so that he could control my movements.
But he wasn't returning my hand. He was gently pulling it towards him as he turned his head, and my hand skimmed over his mouth. His lips were parted, and I could feel his icy breath whispering over my skin and causing it to tingle. My head tipped back, and I probably would have fallen out of my chair, but he caught my upper arm and steadied me. It seemed incredible that I could be touching him and he could be provoking this reaction in me in the middle of a room full of students, but we were floating in our own private bubble. I didn't want to stop. I couldn't stop. I shifted my hand so I was holding his and began tugging it towards me. I let go for a moment so that he could remove his hand if he wanted to…
...Did Bella have any idea what she was doing to me? I had never imagined such feelings, such pleasure, was possible. Heaven would be a let down after this. Her fingers had kindled far more than just the skin she had softly stroked. Her touch was mind-altering, a medicine… able to breathe life into a stone, quicken a rock. My whole body was glowing from the contact. Everything about her affected me so intensely. Even the sound of her rapid heartbeat seemed to inflame something deep inside. But that evidence of her vitality reminded me that I had to take the utmost care. I couldn't surrender entirely. My senses were close to overflowing. The sensations might swamp my control, and who knew what I could find myself doing.
She had released my hand. Had she had enough? Was she repelled? But she didn't withdraw her hand. It hovered over mine, still encircling me with warmth. Her dark eyes were studying me, showing no fear. She was giving me a chance to stop, but I wasn't ready for this miracle to end. I clutched her thumb, hoping she would understand that she could guide me. Her heart thudded even louder. I shouldn't squeeze her too hard. I loosened my hold a fraction, and she resumed pulling my hand towards her.
She lifted my hand to her lips. My fingertip was resting on the exquisite softness of her mouth, and she shook her head slowly and deliberately, so that her lower lip brushed back and forth along my skin. It was so exciting. Her mouth opened slightly, and her heated breath flowed over my hand. She moved my hand closer. My mind was whirling with ecstasy and desire as I felt my finger enveloped between her lips and then surrounded as she puckered and tightened her mouth to press a kiss— This was too much for me to handle. I snatched my hand away.
Her hand fell to her lap, and she bent her head forward. Her heart was beating erratically. I was a clumsy oaf, roughly rejecting her tender and innocent gesture. She must think she'd gone too far. How could I fix this? Tentatively I reached towards her cheek, keeping my hand poised a short distance from her face, just where I'd arrested her first move in my direction. She felt the change in the atmosphere that throbbed around us, and her eyes slid over to see my hand hovering nearby. She smiled, and I could have shouted with joy. Mimicking my earlier motion, she took my hand in a delicate grip and held it as I swiped my fingertips against her face. Her skin was soft, springy, amazing. My fingers, already uncharacteristically warm from being so close, were heated further by the bewitching blood that ran just underneath the surface. Other than a tiny grain of consciousness that cautioned me to restrain myself, my whole being was immersed in this magical encounter.
The moment Mr. Banner snapped the lights on, she dropped my hand. The spell was broken. I would have cursed him, except that his laziness had created the conditions for the most incredible moments of my existence. Looking down at the hand that had experienced the fantastic sensations, I blessed my infallible memory. I could relive those minutes for the rest of my countless days. I knew our interlude couldn't have stirred Bella as powerfully as it did me, but strangely, wonderfully it hadn't been distasteful to her. She'd initiated it, continued it, escalated it. I glanced at her and found her blinking in the sudden brightness, her expression uncertain. She wasn't sure what it meant and where it left us. Neither was I. But I shouldn't scare her with the intensity of my feelings. I kept my tone light.
"Well, that was interesting," I said.
Author's Note: In the movie, Bella is seated on Edward's right. He is near the window and she is closer to the middle of the room. Their lab table has other tables in front of and behind it. In Midnight Sun, however, he sits in "the furthest row in the back" (p. 12). In Twilight, Bella describes his place as "next to the center aisle" and her seat is to his left, as shown by her statement, "I let my hair fall over my right shoulder, making a dark curtain between us." This story reflects the seating arrangement in the book.
A quote from Shakespeare's All's Well That Ends Well (Act II, scene i) appear in the first paragraph of Edward's narration.
Biology came in 6th in the public voting for the Scene Stealers Contest, and I am so pleased that one of the judges, Snarkerella, selected it as her Judge's Choice! Many thanks to everyone involved in the Scene Stealers! It was a great idea for a contest, very well-run and generated some fun stories.
Finally, if you've been following me for a while you may have noticed that I haven't posted anything lately. It's true that I've fallen out of the fanfiction habit, but there are some pieces that I'm writing off and on, and I hope to post some new things eventually.
Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed my alternative version of Bella and Edward's little moment in class.