I've Moved on Or Have I?
Thanks go as usual to SM who owns all that is the wonderful Twilight.
Hello and welcome all to my new story. Written some 4 years after Edward's departure from Forks. Bella is now living in Portland, Oregon where she attends university.
My name is Isabella Swan, I'm a graduate student at Portland State University. I am half way through a Masters in English. I still don't really know what path I will follow once I achieve this milestone. I am not a Oregon native I come originally from Forks, Washington but have lived in Phoenix Arizona too. My Dad Charlie is Chief of Police back in Forks. I could not wait to leave. All the reminders and the memories. I just needed to get away for my sanity. I had considered various location throughout the US but I needed to be somewhere green somewhere the weather was not too different from the dank grey skies of Forks. I just needed that bit of comfort.
I live in a small two bedroomed apartment near Tyron Creek Park just a short drive away from the university campus. The view from my lounge and bedroom offer me peace when I need it the most. I live alone, I prefer it that way. I am not good company most of the time and to have someone put up with that is unreasonable. I get by, most days I'm actually okay. I can function as a 22 year old woman. Anyone who didn't know would assume I was just a shy, quiet girl from a backwater town in Washington state. If only they actually knew...
It was my 18th Birthday, the day had been wonderful, I had spent the day at school with my then boyfriend and love of my life Edward Cullen, his sister Alice and her husband Jasper. They had treated me like a princess that day. Edward was always attentive but that day was even more so. I was kissed thoroughly whenever the occasion allowed. Alice and Jasper gave me presents and made me laugh when they argued at my lack of enthusiasm. They had thrown me a party at their house. I hated parties, always had even more so now. I knew nothing good would come from it. True to form it hadn't... it was the beginning of the end.
A shudder runs through my body remembering. It still hurt like hell, my heart ached still even after four years. The love of my life you see was actually a vampire. I know I know you think I'm joking believe me I wish I wasn't because if it were not true maybe we would still be together now and still madly in love and I would not live my life like a hermit.
Jasper you see is also a vampire and one who unlike my Edward was not as self disciplined when it came to drinking human blood. I had gotten a small paper cut opening up one of the many gifts the Cullens had gotten me. Then bang Jasper attacked, Edward went mad a fight ensued and I was hurt in the melee that followed. Not badly just a cut on my upper arm it needed a few stitches. Wow...
Then Edward reacted, he sulked for a couple of days distanced himself from me and then dropped the bombshell.
"Bella we're leaving Forks."
"No Bella you can't come with us."
"Because I don't want you to."
"You don't belong in my world Bella."
"I'll always love you in a way."
"It'll be like I never existed."
I even asked him to clarify.
"You don't want me?"
He'd casually replied
In that moment my heart ripped apart. My whole world fell apart from the moment he walked away. True to his word I had heard nothing from him or his family since. They all left me, not even a goodbye. It hurt a lot especially from Alice, she was my best friend and she couldn't even stay to say goodbye. I missed them all of course. Carlisle his Dad, so kind and gracious. Esme his Mum, she had willingly taken on the roll of Mum to me too in the absence of my own. Emmett, Edward's older and bigger brother who treated me like a baby sister, even his beautiful wife Rosalie I missed, even though she never liked me. Alice my sister almost, we shared everything and even my Dad adored her, her husband Jasper always cautious around me up until the party. It was not his fault I'd never wanted a party. Bad things always happened to me. Edward, what can I say about Edward Cullen. Gorgeous of course, sex hair the most lovely browny copper colour. Eyes like topaz when he wasn't thirsty and like onyx when he was. His smell was quite breath taking. Everything about him was perfect. He was too perfect for someone like me. I missed him the most of all. I missed his strong arms which wrapped around every night in bed. No we didn't sleep together every night in the real sense of the words. He stayed with me every night and held me close. It was more than enough. I missed his cold hard lips on mine and his dazzling stare that often took my breath away. I missed him all of him.
I missed them all so much even to this day. My Dad would go mad if he knew how I still felt. He hated Edward for treating me like that. He hated what I became after they left. Poor Charlie he tried his best, it can't have been easy dealing with a catatonic 18 year old. I know I was unresponsive to everyone. Even when my Mum came to take me back to Phoenix my only reaction was screaming and refusing to leave in case he came back to me.
Promising I would try harder to get back to normal they allowed me to stay so I got up every day and went to school. I studied hard, I spoke when I was spoken to and smiled when it was expected but no more. Never did I do more than I absolutely had to.
When I graduated Dad was so proud, he knew the world was now my oyster. He actively encouraged me to move away and travelled with me around the country looking and considering other universities. We actually had a great time. We both saw places we've never dreamed of. We climbed the Statue of Liberty when we went to New York and even saw a show on Broadway. We walked the hall of fame in Hollywood, looking at the names of all the stars as we walked. We went to Denver Colorado, Miami Florida, Boise Idaho and Columbus Ohio. I struggled to decide where to go but what won out in the end was how like Forks Portland looked. The greenery, the climate and the peace and quiet. I was more than happy with my choice I had done very well in Portland the course I had chosen suited me perfectly. I excelled and came out with a first class bachelor degree. The staff almost begged me to stay and complete a masters. I was a dream student. Always delivered work in on time, I was enthusiastic and polite. I was so easy to teach and I pushed up their averages. I had a feeling they may offer me a job at the end of my course.
Dad didn't visit much and I didn't go home much either. It was all still too raw. Dad knew this and didn't push it. We understood each other perfectly.
Now four years later I still struggle to understand why he left me. Months after he'd gone I'd found all our mementos hidden under my floor boards. He hadn't removed himself from me totally. He'd left the cd he'd made me for my Birthday that year, the photo's of us taken throughout our relationship and the tickets Carlisle and Esme had bought us to go visit my Mum in Phoenix. Also in the small box were notes he'd left me throughout our relationship. His elegant script tore at my heart strings even now. His words were always perfect for every occasion.
I can only sigh now at the perfect memories. I still love him I realise now that I probably always will.
Life has to go on as my Dad would say. I just knuckled down and got on with it. Today I'm going for an interview for a job. I need to work to increase my income. I had bled my Dad's and my own savings dry. I needed to support myself in order to complete my studies.
At three o'clock hours today I was having a meeting with the owner of a local coffee shop. It was a well known gathering place for student at my Uni. Whilst only small it was large enough to be popular and always busy. They had advertised for a part time waitress come server who would work flexible hours to suit both parties.
I dressed carefully, decided smart casual was better than too smart. The black trousers and white button down blouse I decided looked perfect. Black ballet pumps completed my outfit and I actually felt quite confident. This was not a usual state of mind of me.
I drove into town, the roads were quiet and I liked that. I had noticed that the coffee shop stayed open until nine o'clock every evening. Good not too late. I was going to offer a mixture of early and late finishes hoping my show of flexibility would stand me in good stead.
Parking was easy near the coffee shop. The area had a high volume of pedestrian walkways and the car park out the precinct was not overly busy ever. People here tended to walk a lot or use their bikes.
Walking to the coffee shop I rehearsed what I was going to say. I hoped they would have a series of questions so that I did not have to talk about myself too much. Inside I announced my arrival to the only waitress who was stood by the counter. She smiled at me and walked into the back.
"Take a seat Bella, Tom will be with you shortly." she said
I sat down not too far from the door. Tom who was Tom the advert had asked for applications to be sent into Penny. I had arranged this meeting today with someone called Penny over the phone so who the hell was Tom.
Tom I soon found out was the owner Penny's son. He was probably a few years older than me, blond, huge blue eyes and cute. Penny was not well and had asked Tom to step in today. She hoped I didn't mind. Were interviews not bad enough without having to sit opposite some cute guy you didn't know and talk about yourself.
"Bella, I'm Tom please come this way." he gestured for me to follow him.
We went into a back office, the room was unexpected in a coffee shop. Penny obviously ran a tight ship and did so from her office. On the occasions I'd been in the shop the staff had been young, I assumed students from my Uni. I had not seen Penny or at least I assumed I hadn't. Looking at Tom now I would guess she must be 40 ish so I definitely had not seen her.
"So Bella tell me about yourself."
Could I get a worse question? I went through the basics, I told him about my studies and a brief family tree.
"Why do you want this job and why should I give it to you?"
Now that one is easier to answer.
"Well I'm reliable, hard working and able to be really flexible in my working hours. I can change my shifts to suit as long as they don't clash with a lecture. I'll work around you. You should give me the job if you want someone who is conscientious about everything shedoes. I want this job to help me pay my way through my masters and also to help me make new friends and socialise more."
I was proud of that answer although I wondered if the socialising thing would make them think I was going to stand and talk to friend my whole shift. Oh well too late now.
"So Bella if you were successful would you ever consider flirting with the customers?
"Only on my time and not the shops." I say with a small laugh.
"What about flirting with the owners son's?"
My face was beetroot now and I didn't know where to look or even if he really expected me to answer him.
"Don't worry Bella we'll have plenty of time to perfect your flirting technique in the coming months. Welcome onboard."
He stood up and offered my his hand. I nearly did a usual Bella and nose dived over the desk. Fortunately he had my hand in his which steadied me.
"Really, really you want to offer me the job. Wow thanks Tom. When do I start?"
My shifts were confirmed as Monday 4-9pm, Weds 10-3pm and Friday 4-9pm. I had agreed to work additional ad hoc hours as and when they required if I could.
I was ecstatic. The pay was more than reasonable at twenty dollars per hours plus tips. I would be expected to do everything, wait on, serve, cashier and cook. I was looking forward to the cooking part. We served several pastries and I when on shift would be expected to make them. I loved cooking and baking was included in that.
Driving home I sang loud. I could not remember the last time I was so happy. I blushed again as I remembered Tom flirting with me. I shake my head I would have to watch myself around him he would not stop at flirting of that I was sure. I wasn't sure how I felt about that. Flattered for sure, he was tall and handsome and his Mum owned the best coffee shop in Portland.
Dad was really pleased when I told him of my success we chatted for a while about the usual. Billy, Jacob and fishing. God love him. I hoped he'd never change.
My first shift was looming. My early lecture went as I would expect. I was able to take loads of notes and wasconfident the paper I had due would achieve top marks. I decided to stay in town and go to the Library to ill time before my shift. I had last week taken delivery of my new uniform. Navy trousers and a cream short sleeved blouse edged in navy piping. Very smart. Two of each were delivered to my home along with a pair of very comfortable looking clogs. Penny had assured me my feet would thank me in the long run. I'd laughed at that.
Ready and about on time I walked to the shop. It was quite busy even though it was only three o'clock. I was to be shown the ropes by the assistant manager a woman called Shirley. She was lovely, very helpful and I knew we would get along from the outset. Her patience was tested as I dropped cup after cup. She laughed at me and said she would have to think up an appropriate nickname. She made me feel at ease and my usual clumsiness disappeared. The time flew by. I served several of my fellow students who all spoke and were friendly.
I was exhausted when I walked through the door to my apartment shortly after nine fifteen. I crawled into bed after a hot shower and did not stir again until the alarm woke me at seven thirty the next morning. I definitely had not slept that well since ...
Lectures were thick and fast on a Tuesday. I loved every minute of them. Each one held my interest and mycreative juices could not wait to start on the dissertations due before the end of the semester. I had loads of ideas and lots of notes to get me started. I even spoke to some of the other English major today. They even seemed surprised when I started the conversations. Some of the girls even invited me out after work on Friday. They were going clubbing and wondered if I'd like to join them. I explained I'd just started my new job so was still adjusting and would be too tired but maybe another time. They told me they go out every Friday and I was free to join up with them anytime. Things were really looking up.
When my mobile phone rang later at home I did not recognise the number flashing before me. I answered cautiously.
"Hello Bella speaking."
"Hi Bella its Tom, is it convenient to talk or are you busy?"
Oh hi Tom, no I'm not busy, how are you?" I was blushing to the roots of my hair.
"I'm good thank you. I've been thinking about you a lot since we met last week at the interview. I was hoping that you will agree to go out to dinner with me sometime. Will you?"
"Oh Tom I don't know I don't really date. I'm not good company on a date."
"Are you gay Bella?"
"No I'm not gay silly I just don't do dating very well."
" Okay, how about we start as friends and see where that takes us. No pressure just friends enjoying each others company. No dates just friends spending time together. How does that sound?"
He wasn't going to give in easily, he made me laugh at his persistence.
"Well I'll certainly consider going out with a friend. Let me think about it and get back to you. Is that okay?"
When I hung up I hugged the phone. Why was I reacting like this. He was a guy and he wanted to take me out. Nothing good would come out of this. Why would he be even interested in me. It was something I always used to ask myself about...Edward and Tom wasn't even in his league.
Maybe I should lighten up and just let whatever happens happen. What harm could going out with a friend do. He was certainly nice enough and easy on the eye. I wasn't interested in him romantically. I mean I could never do that to Edward. Listen to me again, did Edward Cullen give a crap about me NO he left me. Would he care if I dated other guys? Why the hell would he. What the hell has it to do with him anyway. I'll do what I like when I like with who I like.
That night I toss and turn in bed and don't sleep very much at all. Edward never very far from my conscious thoughts and even more in my dreams.
Wednesday at work was really busy. It was a day shift and I realised now that student popped in and out all day. They were always hungry and the pastries went down a treat. Penny was thrilled when I told her I liked to bake. She gave me some recipes she used for the usual pastries we offered but also gave me free reign over some ideas of my own. I made a small number of my own cakes and biscuits and was delighted when Shirley told me we'd sold the lot. Penny asked me to write down the recipes so that the other cooks could bake them in my absence. The shift flew by, after I stayed on and baked some more for tomorrow. I was fed and watered along the way and went home happy and tired. Once again I slept like a log.
Thursday was my free day. No lectures, no work. I got to do what I liked Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Today I intended to take myself out onto a trail. I loved hiking, even when I fell over which was often I loved the sense of freedom it gave me. Loading my backpack with a sandwich for later and plenty of water as well as my new digital camera I set off.
It was warm but overcast, today I was headed to the Eden Park / Cairn Basin area and up to Vista Ridge where the wild flowers and views took my breath away. When I had first stumbled across this area it reminded me of our meadow back in Forks, especially the wild flowers. I had cried and cried the first time I had gone there after that it offered me peace and a sense of calm.
My love of photography took me on many trails. My computer now full of thousand upon thousand of pictures of wildlife and flowers. Some are of people I love to people watch too. Some thing I learned from my vampire family. How to read people.
The trail is quiet today, I suppose being a midweek day everyone is at work. It is not the season for tourists too late in the year. I love the overcast weather back in Forks it meant we could go out together, he could not be seen out in the sun. he sparkled and I loved it but it would give their secret away and we couldn't risk that.
Sitting amongst the wild flowers I take in the stunning views around me. My water has stayed cold in the special cooler compartment of my backpack. A present from Charlie last Christmas. Rabbits frolic all around and I spot the occasional deer in the distance. I must fall asleep because when I come to the light is fading and I can here coyotes n the distance. Its still light enough to walk back safely of that I am sure.
The scenery takes on a whole new look and feel at this time of day. It's only just after six but the light is fading fast. I cannot help but get the feeling of eeriness. Why I don't know. The hairs on the back of my neck stand up and I'm sure I can hear twigs cracks in the forest surrounding the trail. Crime is low in this area so I'm not too concerned about that and I always carry the good old pepper spray my Dad got for years ago. I take it out of the side pocket of my backpack just incase. Its probably just an animal and my over eager imagination playing tricks with me. For god sakes I hung out with a family of vampires for over six months I shouldn't be scared of a few noises in the trees.
When I reach the main road I cannot help but breath a sigh of relief. I laugh quietly to myself. I still cannot shake the feeling of something stalking me, not in a threatening way, watching curious. Who knows.
Safely back in the apartment I load today's pictures onto the laptop. There are some stunning ones and I email them to Charlie and Renee telling them all about the hike. My eyes are drawn on one of the more scenic pictures. Its of the forest, I'm looking down on it form the ridge above. The tree line is stunning but what is that? Is that a person hiding behind one of the trees at the edge of the forest. It looks like it but it could be my eyes playing tricks with me. The shot is from too far away. Its only a shape, it looks small child like almost, peeping out looking straight at me from behind a tree. Even a magnifying glass does not reveal much else. What did I really expect to see? My stalker? No just my imagination working overtime.
A long hot bath relaxes me and soon it is time for bed. I have two lectures before work tomorrow and I'm told Friday's are the busiest day. Getting into bed I notice that my mobile is flashing that I have a message. Funny I didn't hear the message alert going off. It must have been when I was in the bathroom.
No numbed was registered it actually said with held I didn't know anyone who with held their number not even my Dad and Tom's number was now in my phone from his previous call.
What I read on the message stunned me it simply said
I miss you Bella
Was this some kind of joke? Why would someone send me a message like this. Only a handful of people knew my number. I had changed the mobile number when I came to Portland so other than my Dad no one in Forkshad it. The Uni had it incase it needed to contact me about a change in lecture times, work had it, Tom had it and two other girls on my course had it. I was confident it was non of them. If it hadn't have had my name at the end I'd have thought it was a wrong number.
I tried to respond but my message came back as undelivered. I even checked to see if I had any missed calls. I didn't.
Unable to sleep I turned my laptop back on and stared for hours at the picture with the possible figure in it. The size and shape hinted at what or who it could be. Would it be worth ditching classes tomorrow and going back for a closer look. Would I dare get closer to the forest down from the ridge to see if who or what was still lurking. Would I be safe. If it was in fact a person and who I thought it possibly was. I would be meant no harm.
'No Bella you are being ridiculous. Stop this now. You are imagining things.' I knew it was only because I desperately wanted it to be real. I wanted it to be Alice up there in the forest watching over me. How stupid was I? Why would Alice Cullen be in Portland? Why now, why had I not felt her presence before now.?
Finally I drifted off on the sofa. My laptop was still on when a woke up feeling rough and very irritable. Even along hot shower did not help my mood. I vowed not to hike again or take picture again until my mind stopped imagining things.
After school I showered and changed for work in the ladies washrooms. Kayla and Julia were there too. Still trying to persuade me to go out with them clubbing. I agreed to think about it some more and took their numbers agreeing to call them after my shift if I was not too tired and fancied meeting up with them. Two more people's numbers added to my phone now.
Work was hectic, I never stopped. Latte after latte cappuccino after cappuccino. I didn't have time to think about going out after I was run ragged. When we finally closed at nine o'clock everyone looked like me done in. There were six of us on shift, me, Shirley, Penny, Billy, Pete and Lisa. We all decided we deserved to go grab a drink next door at the pub. Penny insisted on paying taking were up fifty percent this week and she joked it was down to my new recipes and attractiveness. I actually liked spending time with these people. There was no pressure the conversation was easy and I felt it was the start of something good.
We must have been there an hour when Tom joined us. I blushed when he sat beside me. I could feel his mother's eyes watching our interaction. I received a text from Julia asking me if I was joining them. I replied truthfully that I had gone out with work colleagues.
"Well Bella how does this evening feel being out with friends? Tom asked.
"Good Tom just what I needed after a long and very busy day."
I knew what he meant. He wanted to know if I classed this evening as a night out with friends because he was there.
The light hearted conversation continued and we all laughed for what seemed like hours. One by one we all said goodnight. Tom walked me to my car which was parked right in front of the shop next door. He opened the door for me after I'd unlocked it. I hesitated before getting in not knowing how to act with him. My mobile phone messaging tone broke the awkwardness for us.
He leaned over and placed delicate kiss on my right cheek.
I swear I heard the rumble of a growl in the distance. A quick scan of the surrounding area revealed nothing. Wishful thinking again. The text was from my Dad hoping I'd had a good first week at work. He went on to say he loved the pictures I'd sent via email and would talk to me over the weekend. I was a little disappointed that the text was from my Dad and not my mystery texter.
The phone went off again when I arrived home. It was Tom.
Would you be opposed to drinks with a friend tomorrow night?
I text back
not at all. I'll see you at the same place at eight.
I quickly pressed send before I changed my mind. I slept really really well tonight. Don't know if it was the tiredness or the alcohol or a combination of both. Who cares it was the best nights sleep ever.
Saturday was spent washing and cleaning. I stripped the bed and linens and washed the lot. I moved all the furniture and hoovered everywhere. Where the energy came from I don't know. The place looked immaculate. If by some stretch of the imagination Tom came back with me tonight I could be proud of my home. It was only early afternoon and was done. I had at least a few hours to kill.
I was up at Vista Ridge before I could think about it. There were more people about today. Some were faces I recognised as regular hikers and some were from campus. I sat in the exact same spot as I had earlier in the week. Today children ran in and out of the trees below. She would never show herself when others were around. I knew that, they were all far too secretive to be out and about on a busy weekend.
Dark clouds rolled in and most people took that as sign to rush off home. I stayed glued to the tree line. The thunder clouds hovered overhead but I didn't rain. The storm when it came was spectacular. I sat and watched as the lightening danced across the blackened skyline. Thunder clapped close by. I wasn't afraid. How could I be when ths sort of weather had brought me closer to him. Once again I lost track of time and had to jog the trail back home. As I entered the apartment block my phone buzzed in my pocket. A thrill ran through me as I looked at the message and saw once again it was from the with held number.
You always did like danger Bella. What were you thinking up there today in the storm? I know you have thought about who this is Bella. Don't look for me... please
My breath catches in my throat, Alice it must be Alice. Only she would know that I had thought about who was sending me the messages. It wasn't Edward. The words weren't right for him. It was Alice for sure but how and why I would have to wait and see if she would stay in contact with me as I had no way to reach her by phone at least.
I now only had an hour to get ready to meet Tom. I didn't need to dress up but I wanted to shower and feel the best I could. After a long hot shower I decided on black jeans and a petrol blue sweater. The combination looked good. It suited casual but was smart enough if required. I decided against trainers and slipped on black ballet pumps. I was ready, my hair was done, I had applied a small amount of make up and a dash of perfume.
He was already stood outside waiting for me when I pulled up.
"Bella you look lovely." he said leaning over to kiss my cheek.
I automatically blushed as he ushered inside. I grabbed a table in a booth whilst he went to the bar. When he returned with two beers I was more than relieved. He hadn't asked what I wanted to drink and I was afraid he'd go with wine and wine and me were a definite no no.
We talked and laughed with ease. People both he and I knew passed by and all stopped to say hi. I felt comfortable and unpressured. Just how I wanted it. He had me bent over double with laughter telling stories of his youth. He was 25 studied law at Yale and was in the process of starting up his own practice here in Portland. His mother and father were helping him fund it. He was a lucky guy and very nice too. As the beer flowed freely everyone in the pub loosened up and the dance floor filled. I was never a dancer always had two left feet. Tonight I found it easy to go with the flow. I refused anymore drink knowing I was gonna have to call a taxi home having had too much already.
When the bar man called time I was actually sad I was having a ball. Dancing with Tom was fun, he was good company and I could feel we were going to be fast friends. Tom had only had one beer and insisted on driving me home. I was a little tipsy to say the least and freely invited him for a coffee. You see that is what happens when an innocent has alcohol. Things get misinterpreted. I really only meant come in for a coffee and nothing else. Tom wasn't like that anyway he had been nothing but a gentleman when I'd explained about me and dating. He was happy to be my friend.
In the apartment I put on some music and headed for the kitchen. With two cups of coffee in my hand I headed back into the lounge. Tom was flicking through the pictures on my laptop which I had left open and on from earlier. Sitting down rather heavily next to him I showed him the picture of the tree line and asked him if he thought someone was stood there. We debated for ages. He gave a very good argument against it being a person and a very good argument for it been a trick of the light.
"Good to tell you are going to be a lawyer." I say stifling a yawn.
I sit back relaxing into the soft cushions on my sofa and close my eyes. The next minute I feel soft lips on mine. What the...
I push him off and get up.
"Tom I thought I'd told you I don't want this."
"Bella come on we've had a great night and I was just kissing you."
"Well I don't want you kissing me or anyone kissing me for that matter. Will you please leave now."
"Okay Bella I'll go but please reconsider because when I kissed you then it felt great and I'd really like to do it again."
A loud knock on my door released the tension in the air. It was way passed midnight who the hell could be knocking on my door at this time of night. When I opened the door there was no one there. Tom stepped out and looked around. He shrugged his shoulders and took off. We hadn't imagined the loud knock of that I am sure. I wonder...
"Alice you can come out now he's gone." I say to the empty corridor outside my apartment.
Just as I'm about to turn and go back in a movement catches my eye. Dare I approach. What if its not Alice, what if it's a stalker, what if its Edward. No Edward would have been inside the apartment the minute I protested about the kiss. Tom would be dead now that's for sure. I just stand and wait, eager to see if she will show herself to me. Again I am about to go back in when a small voice says
"Hello Bella, its me Alice. It really is."
She steps into the light and she looks exactly like she did four years ago. I am too stunned for words. My alcohol induced stupor is not helping me with reality here. Everything goes black.
When I wake up I am in bed, undressed and in a pair of satin pj's I have never seen before. If ever I needed proof Alice had been here these pj's were it. I wasn't going mad. I must have fainted last night when she appeared and she must have brought me back into the apartment and put me to bed.
On the table at the side of me a note reads.
Don't drink around men again. Your innocence astounds even me. I don't think your new beau believes you only want to be friends.
He will go mad when he reads my mind about this. He still loves you Bella. He still hurting too just like you. Give me a sign if you want to talk some more.
Fuck what I am supposed to do now. How can they be here. How long have they been nearby. Does he watch me like Alice does? I'm going to go crazy wondering. I need to speak to her and soon. I also need to speak to Tom. How he could have misunderstood my words I don't know but now he has a choice to make. Friends or nothing. I don't want him trying to kiss me again. I also don't Edward to get the wrong impression. What the hell why does what Edward Cullen think matter to me. He left me, he wanted me to have a full and normal life surely that means other men proper relationships. I'll show him.
Up and dressed in no time I open my lounge window and shout
"Alice if you can hear me we need to talk... now."
The knocks comes to my door after only seven minutes. She really is very reliable.
When I open the door this time she is stood looking like she just got off the catwalk. I throw myself into her open arms sobbing
"Oh Bella I had almost forgotten how exuberant you are. Good job I've fed recently."
Dragging her inside I close and lock the door.
"How long have you been in Portland Alice?"
"Not long really, maybe seven months. We live a good few miles away in Northern California but our hunting range covers where you hike and I saw you again about five months ago. Walking taking pictures. I was so excited, Jazz made me promise not to tell Edward. He still so upset over everything that happened I didn't want to make him worse. So Jazz and I bought a little place close by in the mountains. I get to see you most days Bella and it feels wonderful. I never meant for you to see me. I knew you had that day you were taking photo's that's why I sent the text."
"Where is he Alice?"
"He's with Carlisle and Esme in California. He knows I've seen you Bella he read my mind when I visited them last. He doesn't know I've contacted you though I haven't seen him snce we made contact. I hoped he thought it was just a passing thing. His face when he saw. Bella he is so stupid I could kill him. He has tortured himself for four years now and for what. You are both miserable."
"I'm not miserable Alice. I get by, I had just started to move on, make new friends, I've even got a job. I like it here I'm settled Alice I don't want you or him disrupting that. Please."
"I'm not here to cause you problems Bella I just miss you and would like to have you back in my life."
"Really, you missed me. You have no idea how much I missed you. Almost as much as I missed him. You left without even saying goodbye Alice."
"I know Bella and I can never apologise enough for that but Jazz was a mess and Edward made us all believe it was for the best. I'm so sorry Bella."
"Never mind you're here now. So tell me what you've been up to."
We talked all day. It was Jasper's phone call later that made us realise how long we had been talking. I hadn't eaten and it was now almost five o'clock. Alice looked uncomfortable at something Jasper told her but waved off my concern with a nothing for you to worry about.
We agreed to meet up again at my apartment on Tuesday after my lectures were done. I couldn't believe Alice and Jasper were so close. She had promised to bring him with her next time. I was looking forward to seeing him again.
A while after she had gone my mobile phone buzzed with a message. This time it was another private number but not with held.
Why would you want her in your life again Bella?
I felt I had to reply and wrote simply.
Because I love her like a sister that's why.
My phone didn't buzz again.
Well girls what do we think of the first chapter? Let me know.
I am sure he will be making an appearance in the not too distant future. Especially if I get lots of reviews and begging emails. Lol