Penname: animal8

Title: A Happy New Year

Rating: T

Summary: Bella and Edward meet while shopping and end up talking. What neither knows is that they have both been invited to the same party. What will happen when they see each other again?

Disclaimer: I do not out anything of Twilight, all rights belong to Stephanie Meyer.

A Happy New Year

(EPOV)

I grumbled to myself as I pushed my way through the holiday crowd. The mall was packed today, filled with late Christmas shoppers searching for things for New Years day. I was here myself for that purpose after my sister, Alice, sent me on a shopping errand.

My sister, you see, loved to throw parties. To her it was a crime not to celebrate Christmas and New Years without a big party. Thankfully, at this time of year, her parties were kept to only close family and friends. I didn't think I could handle having the house filled with guests, many of whom I wouldn't know.

I love Alice, of course I did, but sometimes she got carried away with herself. Which was why I usually liked to hide myself away at these times, but this was my family and I knew I couldn't let them down, so I was coming to this party. I had a feeling, though, that Alice was going to try and set me up with a girl again.

I sighed quietly to myself. My family, particularly my mother and sister, were always concerned with my lack of relationships. They claimed to only want me to be happy, and I really knew that they meant that, but their meddling was unwanted and unnecessarily stressful for me.

So, here I was, shopping for my sister's New Year's party. Great. I shrugged my thoughts off, bracing myself again against the crowd as I hauled the full plastic bags that I was carrying along with me.

Something small crashed into me, sending my bags crashing to the ground as I cursed under my breath. As I realised that the object that impacted with me was actually a small, warm and female body, I grasped her shoulders and pushed her away from me as gently as I could with my temper. "Watch where you're going," I growled out before freezing as my eyes met with the most stunning pair of brown eyes I had ever seen.

The girl blushed as she stared up at me and quickly began stammering. "I-I'm so sorry," she said, crouching down to gather my things up for me, "I'm really clumsy and I wasn't paying attention to where I was going."

She was still on the floor as she spoke, but I couldn't move to help her as I gaped helplessly at her frame. She was the most beautiful girl I had ever met. Her skin was smooth and pale, apart from her pink stained cheeks, and her brown hair flowed neatly over her shoulders and down her back. Her eyes were a deep chocolate colour that spoke volumes to me. And her lips...

I snapped back to attention as she stood up before me. Her blush had deepened and she shifted on her feet awkwardly. She held her hands out with my bags and I took them automatically. "Um, I should...go," she stuttered, her cheeks pink.

She turned to leave and I finally snapped out of my stasis. "Wait, please," I called out. She paused and then hesitantly turned back to face me. I saw the cautiousness in her eyes and the way she chewed her lip and realised I had made her uncomfortable. She didn't deserve the way I had treated her.

I tried to ignore her mouth and how endearing she looked biting her lip as I spoke. "I'm sorry. You didn't deserve that," I sighed, "I'm not much of a shopper and prefer to not be in crowds where possible." I gave her a weak smile as I indicated the cramped shops around us.

The woman before me smiled kindly. "It's okay, I can understand that. I don't like shopping myself, though my friend absolutely loves it," she chuckled lightly and I smiled at the sound.

"Would you like to go for a drink?" I offered, "Just a coffee."

She stopped thoughtfully, though it was only for a moment as she nodded at me. "Sure," she agreed, "I'm Bella by the way."

"Edward," I grinned crookedly at her and she blushed again. "Come on, I know a good place we can go to." I led her to the Starbucks across the road from the mall. She had tried to help me carry the bags, but I insisted that I could manage. She had given me a little pout in response and I couldn't help but chuckle. Obviously, Bella was a person who liked to be helpful and was probably very independent.

I held the door open for her, allowing her to enter ahead of me. Once we were inside, I guided her to a table over by the window with a gentle hand on her back. My fingers seemed to tingle where they touched her body and I could feel the heat of her skin through her clothing. I pushed that away, though as Bella and I seated our selves at the table.

"What do you fancy?" I asked her as she looked at me from across the table.

"I'll have a caramel latte, please," she answered with a shy smile. I smiled back at her and nodded, standing up to order our drinks.

At the counter, I was served by a woman who was dressed in rather inappropriate clothing for a coffee shop. She greeted me coyly with what I thought was supposed to be a flirtatious smile, but to me looked more like she was grimacing. "Hello," she simpered, "What can I help you with?"

"I'd like a caramel latte and a double cappuccino, please," I said coolly, trying not to cringe as she gave me a look over with her lascivious gaze. Her smile dropped slightly before she covered it with a more professional look and sorted out the drinks. "Thank you," I said politely as she set them on the counter.

I paid quickly and grabbed the drinks as I made my way back over to the table and Bella. She was watching me with a small smirk and when I cringed in disgust once my back was to the waiter, she had to lift a hand to smother her laugh.

I grumbled half-heartedly as I placed her drink in front of her and gave her a smirk. She smiled and whispered a 'thanks'. As she took a sip of the drink, she closed her eyes and sighed in relief as she sank into the chair.

"Long day?" I surmised, giving her a look of sympathy as she winced in return.

"Last minute shopping for my friend's party," she shook her head and rubbed her hand against her forehead, "I've never liked shopping, but right after dealing with my mother is never fun."

I raised an eyebrow curiously. "Why is that?" I asked, fascinated. This woman had my attention from the minute I laid eyes on her and I wanted to know as much about her as possible. "If you don't mind me asking, that is," I added, realising that it was rude of me to be prying into her personal business.

Bella smiled softly in answer. "I love my mother, I really do," she started, "But she is and always has been a bit of scatter brain. When I was younger, I used to be the one to take care of her, make sure bills were paid and things like that. I even did the cooking." She grinned fondly.

"She was always forgetting things, like where she put the phone, or if she had left the light on. And she was a terrible cook. She's a lot better behaviour wise, though, now that she's got Phil, her husband. But she still worries about me, even though I haven't lived with her in nearly five years. And she's really astute when she wants to be. She worries that I'm going to end up old and lonely, though I keep assuring her I'm just fine on my own. My friend is almost as bad as her as well, always trying to set me up with some guy."

I grinned at her and chuckled. "I know that feeling," I told her with a small smile, "My mom is exactly the same and my sister as well."

Bella looked back at me and smiled. "At least we have something in common, then," she murmured before blushing profusely and trying to hide it by taking another sip of her drink. I smiled at her endearing behaviour.

"Tell me about your friend," I requested gently, wanting to hear her talk again.

"Um, well I've said she loves shopping, which she does," she chuckled, taking more of her drink, "She's an absolute ball of energy, nothing will stop her once she gets going especially if it concerns fashion. But she's a loyal friend and I love how she's always trying to look out for my best interests, even if it does mean she gets a bit pushy with me."

"She sounds great," I noted, admiring the way Bella's eyes lit up with a soft glow as she talked about her friend.

Bella nodded. "She is," she admitted, "She was my roommate in college and we never lost contact."

We were silent after that, but it wasn't necessarily uncomfortable as we both drank our drinks and stared out the window at the passing shoppers. "Tell me something about you," I spoke suddenly, surprising myself.

Bella turned to me and blinked at the unexpected question. "What?" She asked, frowning in confusion.

"What's your favourite colour?" I specified.

She still looked mystified, but then it cleared and she gave me a wry look. "Not sure why it matters, but brown is my favourite colour," she responded, eyeing me curiously.

I smiled at her sheepishly. "Sorry," I apologised, "I just wanted to get to know you. And my favourite colour is blue, by the way." I couldn't help but glance down to the blue blouse she was wearing, enjoying the way it complimented the pale tone of her skin.

She blushed slightly, but smiled back at me hesitantly. "My friend bought this for me," she said quietly.

It was my turn to blush as I realised she had caught me staring at her. Bella laughed under her breath at my discomfort, but it was friendly, though I could tell she was slightly nervous. She looked down to her watch and suddenly jerked in alarm. "Well, I guess I should be seeing you, Edward," she said, frowning in disappointment.

I'm sure my face reflected my own disappointment as I stood up to walk her out onto the street. "I guess this is goodbye then," I said, offering her a sad smile.

She stared at me sadly for a minute before reaching out and taking hold of my hand, squeezing it gently. I felt her slip something in my hand just as she pulled away. "Goodbye, Edward," she whispered as she smiled at me, "It was nice meeting you."

I watched her walk away and only when she was out of my sight did I look down at the piece of paper nestled in my palm. It was her phone number, I realised with a smile before I turned to head back to my home.

It was the morning of Alice's party and I, along with everyone else, was following Alice's instructions as we set the house up in preparation. The last few days, I hadn't been able to think of anything other than Bella. I was yet to give her a call and as much as I had wanted to I hadn't been able to gain the confidence. I had been tempted to invite her to my family's party, but then I remembered that her friend was throwing a party and decided to invite her out after the New Years.

Apparently, I wasn't the only one to notice my preoccupation, though. "Edward, really," Alice sighed as she stared down at me, "You've been distracted ever since I sent you to the mall. What's gotten into you?"

"Nothing," I murmured, picking myself up off of the floor where I had been organising decorations to be put up.

"Edward-" she protested, but I brushed her off. I felt guilty for it, but I knew if I told her about Bella she would try and meddle and I didn't want her to scare Bella off because I really liked her. I had a strong feeling that she could be the girl I would fall in love with.

"Fine, whatever," she huffed, crossing her arms and glaring at me. "But you better sort yourself out before our guest gets here. I don't want you scaring her off with your coldness," she warned and I repressed a groan. I had forgotten that Alice had invited her old roommate to join us for the meal.

I tried to push away thoughts of the dinner where I knew Alice was going to attempt to set me up with her friend and thought back to the drink I had shared with Bella. I smiled and sighed as I rubbed my thumb over the piece of paper sitting in my pocket. I had kept it with me ever since she gave it to me, hopeful that I would be able to use it soon.

The door bell rang and Esme quickly bustled to the door, opening it to reveal my brother and his fiancé. I smiled when Emmett immediately wrapped her in a bone crushing hug before doing the same to me. "It's good to see you too, Emmett," I wheezed, chuckling slightly.

He laughed boisterously as he put me down and I turned to nod and smile to Rosalie. We had hated each other when she first started dating my brother, but since then we had learned to get on and I found that I actually quite liked her. "Doesn't change, does he, Rose?" I asked as I gave my soon-to-be-sister a warm hug.

"No, he doesn't," she laughed with me, returning the hug.

"Come on," Alice said, bouncing into the room, "We need to get everything ready, she'll be here soon!"

I sighed and shook my head. "Alice," I said soothingly, "Everything is ready, the table is set up and all the decorations are up. The only thing we're waiting on is the food and Esme is dealing with that now." I could already smell the delicious meal cooking through in the kitchen and apparently so could Emmett as he chose that moment to disappear into the other room.

"He's going to get in trouble," my sister muttered under her breath and the rest of us chuckled when we heard a smack and Emmett's shout of pain.

A throaty chuckle from the stairs caught my attention and I turned to see my father, Carlisle, descending. "I take it from that outburst that Emmett has already tried to raid the kitchen," he guessed with a raised eyebrow in question.

The three of us laughed again. "You would be right, Carlisle," Rosalie said with a smile as she went to embrace my father. "It's good to see you again," she commented.

"It is," Carlisle agreed before looking over at my sister and me. "So, is everything ready?" He asked.

We nodded and Alice added, "Still waiting on our guest, though." I didn't miss the look they exchanged and rolled my eyes at them. Alice gave me a dark look in return causing our father to chuckle again.

"I can't wait to meet her," he said before moving through to the kitchen to greet my mother.

We sat together in the living room and chatted with Emmett and Rosalie while my mother carried on cooking and we waited for Alice's mysterious guest to arrive.

The door bell finally went, announcing the arrival of my sister's ex-roommate and said sister squealed loudly before jumping up to open the door. "Bella!" She yelled, followed by the sound of her jumping on the unsuspecting girl.

At the sound of Bella's name, I turned in surprise and stared at the girl before me. She laughed her beautiful laugh as she embraced Alice back and I saw her gorgeous brown eyes glowing as she looked at her friend. I couldn't believe that she was here and I was finally seeing her again.

"Bella?" I called in confusion as I stood up, moving over towards her.

She turned towards me and I saw the shock flit across her face as she stared at me. "Edward? What are you doing here?" She sounded as confused as I was, but she bore a gentle smile as she spoke.

"You know each other?" Alice interrupted, glancing between us with a small scowl on her face. I could tell she was upset that I already knew her friend and that she knew nothing about it.

Bella smiled sheepishly at the pixie as she nodded her head. "We met a few days ago at the mall. I was shopping for some present," she explained, holding up a small bag containing neatly wrapped parcels.

Alice turned to me with a raised eyebrow and I gave her a guilty smile. "Wait a minute," she frowned, "A few days ago...that was when you started acting weird...distracted."

I groaned internally, but I was distracted from my embarrassment when I saw Bella blush slightly and a soft smile touched her lips. "Just leave it Alice, please," I said, giving my sister a pleading look and thankfully she dropped it, though not without pursing her lips at me. I knew she would want an explanation from me later for why I hadn't told her about my meeting with Bella.

"Come on, Bella, let's go meet the family," Alice chirped brightly and tugged Bella into the living room where the others sat. I followed behind them and Bella turned to give me a welcoming smile, which I gratefully returned.

"Everyone, this is Bella," Alice introduced as soon as she had everyone's attention, "Bella, this is my brother, Emmett, and his fiancée Rosalie. Mom and Dad are in the kitchen getting the dinner ready. And you already know Edward." She gave me a sly look and smirked as we both saw Bella blush deeply.

"It's nice to meet you," Bella said politely, ignoring my sister's conspiratorial look.

My mom came into the room then, smiling when she saw Bella standing with the rest of us. "Hello, dear," she greeted, pulling her into a soft hug, "You must be Bella."

Bella was clearly not expecting my mother's keen welcoming, but she smiled back, wrapping her tiny arms around her. "Yes. You have a wonderful house, Mrs Cullen," she replied.

"Oh, please," my mother chuckled, "Call me Esme, Mrs Cullen makes me feel old and I am not my mother-in-law." Bella laughed lightly and nodded her head, agreeing. "Now come through, dinner's ready."

Dinner was great. I got to sit next to Bella and we talked between each other as well as with the rest of the family. I found out that she owned a book shop that she spent a lot of her time working in, running it almost single handed. She loved reading, even when she was a child and she majored in English Literature when she went to college.

I was fascinated listening to her talk. She was obviously very happy with her job and I loved the way her eyes lit up when she spoke of what she loved. She had lived in Forks since she was seventeen, having moved to live with her father, the Chief of Police, after her mother remarried. It was clear in the way she spoke about her parents, that she loved them both dearly.

After dinner, we returned to the main room to continue the conversation and share drinks. I took a seat next to Bella again and she smiled up at me. "I never would have guessed that Alice was your sister," she told me, grinning.

"I know," I smirked, "We look nothing alike, huh?" She nodded in agreement and smiled back. "And what are the chances that Alice was the friend you were talking about?"

Bella laughed. "I know," she agreed, "What are the chances?" She turned to face me fully. "You know, you could always pop by the shop sometime," she suggested shyly, blushing a perfect red.

I smiled at her fondly. "I could think of a better idea," I teased, nudging her lightly, "You could always come out on a date with me."

She blushed darkly, but her eyes positively glowed. "I'd like that," she smiled. I smiled back at her and it was then I noticed that someone had strategically placed a sprig of mistletoe on the ceiling above the couch. My sister, most likely, but I wasn't going to miss the opportunity.

"You know that we're sitting under the mistletoe," I hinted, smirking coyly.

She looked up to check and then smirked when she saw the distinctive leaves hanging above us. "I guess that means you should kiss me," she said quietly, her eyes smouldering at me.

"I guess I should," I murmured, leaning closer to her. She moved forward as well, until our lips were nearly touching. I could hear the rest of my family chanting the countdown for the New Year along with the TV.

"5..."

My hand slowly came up to stroke a lock of brown hair back from Bella's face, tracing the shape of her cheek as I went.

"4..."

Her hand moved to my upper arm and her fingers gripped at my sleeve.

"3..."

Our breathing was shallow. I gazed deeply into her brown eyes and she stared back with glazed eyes before they fluttered down to look at my lips.

"2..."

I glanced down as well, watching as her lips parted and the tip of her tongue moistened the plump skin. Automatically, I repeated the gesture and she let out a barely audible moan.

"1!"

Finally, I closed the distance between us and placed my lips onto hers. It was sensual as her mouth moulded to mine and we moved together, blending our spirits into the kiss. She tasted sweet like strawberries and her lips were soft and gentle against my own.

She pulled me closer as she deepened the kiss, licking tentatively at my bottom lip. With a quiet groan, I opened my mouth to her, allowing myself to be assaulted with a burst of her taste as I touched my tongue with hers.

One of my hands was on her neck while the other rested at the small of her back, holding her to me, and her hands were both buried in the fabric of the front of my shirt as we pulled apart. I stared at her in wonder, questioning where such a beautiful creature came from and why I deserved her before deciding that I should just make the most of what I had.

"Happy New Year," I rasped to her.

She chuckled softly and leaned forward until her head nestled against my chest. "Happy New Year," she mumbled back and I felt her smile against my skin.

The flash of a camera went off and I heard my sister's giggling as she ran off, but for once I couldn't be bothered with her antics. I had Bella and I knew I would never need anything else.

THE END.


Author's Note:

Hey guys, got a one shot up, this is for the Under The Mistletoe Contest. Hope you enjoyed it. I also have another entry, 'Her First Time' so check that out. It's my first attempt at a lemon, so feel free to off points of imrovement ;D. The website for the contest is:

mpfcontests . blogspot . com/p/under-mistletoe . html

Voting starts the 26th December until the 30th December and winners are announced January 1st. Can't wait to see what the competition is like ;D

R~E~V~I~E~W~P~L~E~A~S~E

animal8 xx