Disclaimer: I don't own Twilight. I do own a black cat named Sirius, a purple iPod, and two sets of gaming dice.
Because you had a bad day
You're taking one down
You sing a sad song just to turn it around
You say you don't know
You tell me don't lie
You work at a smile and you go for a ride
You had a bad day
"Bad Day" Daniel Powter
Surviving High School
Sur·viv·al: the state or fact of continuing to live or exist especially or in spite of difficult conditions.
And that right there defined my life. I know, dramatic much? My school career had been spent trying to survive these hellish times. Some people say that high school is the best time of your life. Obviously, these people don't go to high school, at least not to Forks High. Yes, Forks High was a small school in a small town, but that didn't exempt it from being hell on earth. I'd done a fairly decent job of flying below the radar of the mean girls, but nothing in life is guaranteed except death and taxes. Little did I know that today would be the day that would ruin my life. I was having a perfectly clumsy, drama-free morning until I got to English where Mr. Mason then proceeded to ruin everything.
Standing at the podium in the front of the class, he excitedly told us that we were going to be doing some creative writing. We were to write a short story, and once it was completed, we would read an excerpt from it in front of the class.
I made a face at that. It was bad enough that I was going to have to write creatively, now I was going to have to read it front of my peers. Kill me now. I spent the class period staring at a blank piece of paper in hopes that words would magically appear. Sadly, they didn't. The girl sitting next to me must have noticed my lack of enthusiasm because she leaned over and whispered to me.
"You know, Bella, this isn't that hard. Just write something down."
I gave her a glare. She was my best friend, so a little help or sympathy would have been nice. She ignored me and went back to writing a list of ideas that she apparently had. Some days, I hated her. Angela Weber and I had been best friends since kindergarten. She was pretty, smart, creative, and very good at ignoring the death stares I had sent her way. Letting out a sigh, I continued to stare at my paper. By the time class had ended, I'd mastered the art of doodling crooked hearts with the words I love Rob Pattinson in them and had attempted to draw some plot bunnies. That was promising. No, really, it was. Or not. The idea of banging my head against my desk until I died from a self-induced brain injury was looking more and more promising.
Once the bell rang, I gathered up my crap and followed Angela out into the hallway where she proceeded to go on and on about her ideas. She asked me if had managed to come up with any ideas, and I told her that I was going to marry Rob Pattinson, but that was it. I was about to ask her what ideas she had when someone slammed into me from behind.
"Sorry, Bells," came the voice of my other best friend, Ben Cheney.
I turned and gave him a glare.
"Learn to walk, would you," I told him.
"Oh, that's rich coming from the girl who can't walk across a flat surface without tripping," he snapped back at me. Jerk. I couldn't really be mad at him, though. Ben and I had been tight since second grade when he saved me from a terrible fate involving a slide and some swings. Ben and Angela had become best friends through me, and though neither of them would admit it, they were both in love with each other. It would be interesting to watch that romance unfold.
"So, whatcha talking about?" he asked us as we continued down the hall.
"Our stupid creative writing assignment. I can't believe that he's making it half our grade!" I ranted.
They both shook their heads at my ire and laughed at me. I really needed to perfect the art of the death stare, especially with those two as my best friends. We turned around a corner, and then I saw him. Edward Cullen, the most gorgeous man to grace the planet, or at least Forks High. He was tall, built, and had this beautiful bronze hair, green eyes and perfect white teeth that I'm sure Mommy and Daddy paid a fortune for. It didn't hurt that he resembled Rob Pattinson a little bit. Every time I saw him, time came to a standstill. I did my best not to stare at him as he walked down the hall with his circle of friends, but I was unable to resist. Something about him called to me. Just then, Ben nudged me with his elbow.
"Geez, Bells. Stop staring at him. Do I need to get you a bib so you don't drool on your shirt?"
"Shut up, Ben," I growled at him, all the while checking out Edward's ass.
The rest of the morning passed slowly and without incident, except for the fact that I almost killed Mike Newton in gym class. I would say, though, that he totally deserved a badminton racket to the back of the head. I hadn't tried to hit him; it just happened as do most accidents in gym classes involving me. You'd have thought that Coach Clapp would have kept me away from the other students to prevent bloodshed, but he kept throwing me into the fray. Maybe he got some sort of sick satisfaction watching me maim other students.
After smacking Mike in the back of the head, you'd think he'd want nothing to do with me, but sadly that wasn't the case.
"Hey, Bella. Got any plans for tonight?" he asked me.
"Gotta work on that stupid English assignment."
He chuckled at the venom in my voice. "It's not that difficult. I've got my idea and an outline to go with it."
Seriously? Mike, I'm a douche-bag, Newton had his done. Huh. Well, how hard could it be then? Did I dare ask him?
"So what's this idea of yours?"
A huge grin broke over his face. "I'm gonna write about vampires. Or aliens. It's gonna be this epic tale with lots of fighting, blood, and death."
Face palm. "Sounds interesting," I lied.
"Now don't go stealing my idea, Bella."
"Oh, you don't have to worry about that, Mike." Like the world needed another vampire story, particularly one written by Mike Newton.
We continued to walk toward the lunchroom with Mike by my side going on and on about some sporting event that he watched on TV last night. I wasn't paying attention to him or my surroundings when I smacked into something. WTF? I had collided with something warm and solid. Oh no. This was going to be bad; I just knew it. I looked at the shirt of the person I had collided with, and it looked vaguely familiar. It was a dark-green cotton knit, and then I remembered where I'd seen it before. It belonged to Edward Cullen. Oh, God. Just kill me. Let the earth swallow me up; let me get eaten by giant alien bugs. Anything. I felt my face turn bright red and was confident that I resembled a tomato. I stumbled back and almost tripped over my own feet when his hand reached out to steady me.
"You okay?" he asked.
I mumbled that I was fine while keeping my head lowered and my gaze adverted. There was no way I could make eye contact with him. I was too embarrassed. Of all the people for me to run over, it had to be the one guy that had dominated by dreams and fantasies.
"Of course she's fine. It's obvious that she was trying to get your attention. Why else would you walk right into someone? Talk about pathetic," came the sneering voice of Victoria Laurent, Edward's girlfriend. Head—cheerleader, homecoming and prom queen, and overall bitch.
I stammered out an apology and did my best to quickly walk away without tripping over something. My face was still red as I got in the lunch line, and I prayed no one said anything to me about it. I scanned the food that was available and made a face. Why did cafeteria food always look so unappetizing? I quickly grabbed an apple and a lemonade and headed toward the table where our small band of misfits gathered. Angela and Ben were already there, sitting next to one another and arguing about something or another. They had a very Ron/Hermione relationship. They liked each other but didn't have the guts to tell each other. Huh. Guess that makes me Harry. Let's just hope that there isn't an evil dark wizard out to get me. Across from me sat Mike, Lauren, Jessica, Eric, and Tyler. While I got along with most of our group, Lauren and I had our differences. The girl thought that I had designs on Tyler, which I didn't. I'd told her time and time again that I wasn't interested in him, but she refused to listen to me.
"What's wrong with your face, Bella? It's all red," Lauren snidely commented to me after I sat down.
"Nothing," I mumbled.
Mike let out a loud, obnoxious laugh. "It's because she ran into Cullen. I mean, ran right smack into him. It was too funny."
Oh, he's so dead. Tomorrow, in gym, I'm killing him. Death by badminton. The table all started laughing as Mike mimed what had happened. Bastard. Angela gave me a sympathetic look as she leaned over to whisper to me.
"Are you okay?"
I gave her a small smile. "I'll be fine. It was so embarrassing running into him like that. And to add insult to injury, Victoria witnessed it, and you know how she can get."
"I'm so sorry."
Mike eventually stopped reenacting my humiliation and started discussing some football game that was coming up. Before I knew it, lunch was over, and I was heading to Biology with Angela. Whoever thought it would be a good idea to have Biology after lunch was beyond me. Did they really want us puking while trying to dissect some animal? I asked Angela this question, and she had no answer for me. We were about halfway to class when I realized that I would be seeing Edward in Biology. I grabbed Angela's arm and pulled her to stop, informing her that there was no way I could go in there.
I gave her a disbelieving look. "Are you kidding me? Edward is going to be in there. I can't face him after I nearly took his ass out."
"Bella, it'll be fine. You don't sit near him, and you don't have to talk to him or make eye contact. Now let's go," she said, shoving me in the direction of the door.
We walked into class, and I did my best to avoid looking in Edward's direction as I passed by his seat. Mr. Banner started in on his lecture and informed us that we were going to be starting our dissection section of the class. Ugh. He then mentioned that he was going to be assigning us new lab partners. I was cool with that. My lab partner, Jane, was this creepy, depressed emo. Mr. Banner started handing out the labs to each person, then headed up to the front of the room.
"When I call your name, gather up your stuff and move to the table where your new lab partner is sitting." And off he went, calling names and changing partners. I hoped that I would get paired up with Angela, but Mr. Banner squashed that hope when he paired her up with Edward's twin sister, Alice. And what he said next would forever change my life and ruin any chance I had of surviving high school unscathed.
"Bella Swan, you will be working with Edward Cullen."
Fuck me! I was completely floored. Me? I was going to be working with Fuckhot Cullen? No way. I pinched my arm to make sure I wasn't dreaming. I wasn't. I slowly gathered up my stuff and headed toward Edward's table. Just as I reached his table, I tripped and went down, banging my head on the corner. Everything after that was pretty much a blur. I remembered hearing people calling my name and feeling a horrible pain in my head. After that, everything went black. When I came to, I was in the nurse's office lying on a cot. The grandmotherly nurse sat next to me, dabbing away a bit of blood that had formed from the small cut I received when I face-planted into the table.
"Well, dear. I think you're going to live. You'll probably have quite the headache for some time, but the wound is shallow enough that you won't need stitches," she said, placing a bandage over the cut. She handed me a cup of water and some Tylenol and then mentioned the fact that she had called my dad, Charlie.
"Oh no. That wasn't necessary. I'm fine, really," I assured her while slowly sitting up. My head was throbbing, but I was far more embarrassed than I was in pain. Last thing I wanted was the whole school knowing that, not only did I crash and burn in front of Edward but also that my police chief father had to come get me from school. It made me feel like I was in grade school, having my dad come get me because I got sick.
The nurse, however, was not to be swayed. She told me, in no uncertain terms, that I was excused for the rest of the day and to go home and rest. As I sat there and stared at the mint green walls, I realized that someone must have brought me there. I highly doubted I crawled here myself. I was almost afraid to ask how I got here.
"Oh that nice Edward Cullen brought you in. Said that you tripped over the leg of the stool and hit your head. He was very worried about you."
I lay back down on the cot, faint at the idea of Edward Cullen hauling my ass here. It was worse than I thought. Could this situation be any more embarrassing? Hold up. Wait a second. Edward Cullen carried me! And I wasn't even able to enjoy it. Damn it! The one chance I had to enjoy feeling his arms around me, and I was unconscious. Just my luck. I was so busy mourning over the fact that I wasn't able to enjoy Edward's arms that I didn't notice Charlie walk in.
"Way to go, Bells. Knocking yourself out just to get out of Biology seems a bit overdone," he said, walking into the room.
Ha, ha. Charlie the comedian.
"You know me, Dad. I love being the center of attention."
Looking at his watch, Charlie told me that he was going to drop me off at home and head back to work. He mentioned that he'd pick something up for us from the diner for dinner. Oh goodie. Diner food. Yum. Charlie helped me off the cot, made sure I was steady on my feet, and grabbed my bag. The car ride home was quiet, and I texted Angela and Ben to let them know that I was going home and that I'd talk to them later. Knowing Ben, he would want to talk about the glory that was my epic fail. Angela, on the other hand, would know that I wouldn't want to talk about it and wouldn't press the issue.
Charlie pulled the cruiser into our driveway and asked me if I was going to be okay. I looked at him and told him that I'd be fine. "It's just a small cut, and I have a massive headache, but I promise I'm fine. Really."
"Are you sure I shouldn't take you to the hospital? What if you have a concussion?" Leave it to Charlie to think the worst. You'd think that after years of head trauma and hospital visits, he'd be laid back about the whole thing.
"Dad, I'm fine! I won't do anything too strenuous. I'll lie down and probably work on my homework. I'll call you if I need anything."
That seemed to appease him, and he left soon after. Now that I was home, I was able to reflect on just how embarrassing today was — first running headfirst into Edward and then nearly killing myself walking over to his table. He's going to think that Victoria is right and that I'm trying to get his attention, although I can think of less embarrassing and less painful ways to do so.
Hmmm...Edward Cullen. So hot. Those muscles, the sex hair, and the gorgeous eyes. I admit that I'd been in love with him since he and his family moved here two years ago. Granted, most of the female population of Forks High has been in love with him as well. Sadly, Victoria was the one who snagged him.
I spent the next few hours working on my English assignment, struggling fruitlessly to come up with some ideas, but soon gave up. I turned on my iPod and started listening to some music in hopes of getting my creative juices flowing but was interrupted by the ringing of my phone.
"So, Miss Bella. Throwing yourself at Cullen once today wasn't enough?"
"What the hell? I didn't throw myself at him, and you know it, jerk," I seethed at him.
"Chill, Bells. I'm just fucking with you, and you know it. Although, someone might want to let Victoria know that you aren't after her man. She heard about the Biology incident and was pissed."
"Well, that's just great. I've managed to avoid being on her radar all this time, and in one day, I've gone to being number one on her shit list. She's going to make my life hell from now on, isn't she?"
I heard Ben let out a sigh on the other end. "Yeah. She's not too fond of you. She cornered Edward after your biology class, demanding to know what was going on. He explained that you had knocked yourself out and that he carried you to the nurse's office, but she wasn't having it. She was screaming at him in the parking lot after that."
Huh. I didn't understand why she was upset. It wasn't like I was competition. I was just Bella, a bit on the short side, average weight, boring brown hair, and boring brown eyes.
"So if I were you, I'd just avoid her tomorrow," Ben said.
"I'll do my best. It's not like Forks High is all that big. I don't think I'll be able to avoid her wrath forever," I told him.
After talking for a bit longer, we finally hung up, and I heard Charlie's cruiser pull into the drive, carrying takeout containers from the diner.
"Burgers and fries okay with you?" he asked, setting the containers down on the counter.
I said, "Sure," since it was a bit late to be asking.
We sat down at the table and dug into our burgers while Charlie began questioning me.
"How are you feeling?"
"So, what exactly happened? The nurse told me that you fell and hit your head."
"Yep. I tripped over my feet and smashed my head onto a desk."
He winced. "Ouch. Well, I'm glad you're feeling okay."
Neither one of us were big talkers, so the rest of dinner was relatively quiet. I cleaned up while Charlie went to the living room, plopped down into his recliner, and turned on some game that he had been looking forward to watching. I headed upstairs and turned my computer on. Twenty minutes later, I was checking my email and noticed that Renee, my mother, had sent me a message. I wrote her a quick note and then spent some time scouring the Internet for creative story ideas. Nothing really appealed to me, so I logged onto Facebook and spent some time playing games. Once I was done, I got ready for bed, climbed in, and opened up my battered copy of Wuthering Heights, my favorite book of all time. Even though I've read it a million times, it never failed to capture my attention and draw me in. Soon, my eyes were starting to droop, and I hoped that I would have a restful night. Unfortunately, all I could think about was Edward Cullen and how Victoria was going to make my life hell.