So Right But So Wrong
Okay, my lovelies, here we have another story, this time an all-human Bella and Edward. The setting, Forks High School, Bella is the new twenty-two-year-old teacher of English Literature. Edward is an eighteen-year-old senior about to graduate, and is gorgeous, sexy and a little shy around girls, even though every girl in the school lusts after him. What will happen when sparks fly between the two?
Please review and recommend my stories if you like them to all your friends. Thank you!
As usual, my grateful thanks to Mrs. Meyer for letting me borrow her delicious characters to play with for a little while, and to Dollybigmomma for polishing this up so it's readable. Thanks for coming back and trying us out again!
I was a little nervous, as I was starting a new job today. As the newest temporary teacher at Forks High School, I would be covering for another teacher on maternity leave, from now until the end of the school year in June. It was only a six-month contract, but it was better than nothing. I was what was commonly known as an "NQT," or a newly-qualified teacher, and this would be my first appointment since qualifying with a first-class honours degree in teaching English Literature.
My task was to teach Literature to all the senior classes, as well as cover absences in the lower year classes. I had been thoroughly coached on the curriculum for these classes, and I was happy to say that the reading list was one of my very favourites. Among the classics being covered was Wuthering Heights. I'd always fancied myself running on the moors, shouting for Heathcliff. Romeo and Juliet was our Shakespearean play, and the romance and tragedy of that always had me in floods of tears. Our poetry was all about romance as well, with the poems of the Romantics, Keats, Shelley and Coleridge to name a few. When I had read the reading list, I almost pitied all the boys in this years' Literature class.
Making my way into the school, where I had attended myself, I did not feel nervous about my subject, only the fact that all my lessons today were with pupils only three to four years younger than me. I had managed to graduate a year ahead of my peers from high school, having been a shy, overachieving book nerd and honour student with no social life, so I was pretty young as teachers went. I just hoped I could gain their respect and trust, and not be seen as someone underserving of being taken seriously. This was what was worrying me most today.
In the staff room, I was met with a very familiar face. The office manager, Mrs. Cope, still looked exactly the same as she had when I had been here some few years earlier.
"Bella, it's lovely to see you again. I must say, love, you're even more beautiful than I remember. Your hair, pretty face and eyes always were what had all the boys drooling, if I remember rightly. Now you've got a banging figure to match."
Blushing from my toes up, I looked at the floor. I was sure she was exaggerating. I had always been too shy around boys, and I certainly never recalled anyone drooling over me before. I had been as flat-chested as a plank, with no arse or hips to speak of. Thankfully, my body had had a late bloom of sorts, and now I sported a healthy bust line, and my hips and arse had finally filled out. I was just grateful my waist hadn't followed suit, and the "freshman fifteen" I had put on in college landed in all the right places.
"Mrs. Cope, it's lovely to see you, too, after all these years, but I think you've me mistaken for someone else. I don't recall any boys ever…"
"No, Bella, I'm sure I'm right," she interrupted. "I specifically remember walking behind...um, I think it was Jasper Whitlock one day when he was talking about you...wait, no, I'm mistaken. Jasper was there, but it was Emmett Cullen who was drooling, Jasper was just listening. They were trying to decide if he dare ask you to the spring dance."
Emmett Cullen...there was no way. He had scared the crap out of me. He was gorgeous, huge and the football captain, the poster boy for rich and hot, wanted by all my female classmates, and even a few of the males. We had only ever said about five words to each other the whole time I had been at this school. Emmett Cullen ran with a whole different crowd to the likes of me. The Cullen's came from money. Their father was a successful doctor, and their mother was an award-winning interior designer. I remembered his younger sister, Alice, who had been sweet, and year behind us, then an even younger brother, whose name I didn't know. Anyway, I was sure Mrs. Cope was mistaking me with someone like Lauren Mallory or Jessica Stanley. They were always the two who got all the boys' attention. My best friend, Angela, had been like me, shy and quiet, and she had dated Ben Cheney since forever. They'd gotten married last year, and I was her maid of honour.
Shaking my head, still disbelieving what she'd said, I was introduced all around the staff room and was pleased to see some friendly faces offering encouragement and a helping hand should I need it. George Bartley, head of the English department, walked me to my classroom. He had interviewed me and was excited to have a person on board with new innovative ideas. He was looking to change the way Literature was taught in this school, and I was his first step in that change. He had given me free reign in teaching the curriculum, and I would be judged on my merits and exam results at the end of the year. I was really looking forward to trailing some new methods, not only to see if they were successful, but to see what the kids thought of them.
My classroom was well-equipped and large, which was good. I hated adult-sized kids being squashed up in small classrooms. When I had been in training, one of my placements had been at an inner-city school that had been cramped to beyond belief. The seniors there really struggled to have personal space, and I truly believed it hindered their learning. The board had not been too happy to hear me voice that concern.
Here, the room was bright and airy, large windows let in lots of natural light, and I had plenty of wall space to create displays and put up prompts and leaflets. My first class was due in soon, so I looked over the register and put out worksheets on the right number of desks.
They were not going to be happy. I had, of course, been given a profile of where each and every one of them was level-wise, but I wanted to get a feel for each of them for myself and see where they were to make my own assessment. I had set all my classes an assignment to be completed this week. I wanted them all to write me a love poem. It could be on any subject, as long as it fell into the category of Romance. True or fiction, love or not, I didn't care. I wanted to see how their creative minds worked.
My first class groaned when I explained what I wanted them to do. The boys in the class shouted, "Aw, Miss Swan..."
I refused to give in. I told them to trust me, work with me. I told them they wouldn't regret it.
The second class pretty much acted the same way, groaning and requesting more time. I stuck steadfast to my timeline.
After a quick coffee break, my next class made their way in. This class had more girls than boys, and I hoped they would be more amenable to my assigned task. A quick register call attracted me to a familiar name. Edward Cullen. He must have been the younger brother of Emmett and Alice I'd heard about.
When I called out the name, I heard a quiet, "Here," but I failed to pick up exactly where it came from, as my head was down, ticking off the names.
Why did I expect any more from this class? The fact was, the girls in this class moaned louder and for longer than all the boys in the two previous classes combined.
This third class was rowdier than the other classes, too, and I had to speak to several of the girls on more than one occasion for talking. And they were not talking about Literature. It sounded like boys, parties and cheerleading routines were their subjects of choice. I finally asked two of the girls, Shannon and Tanya, to stay behind after class. I needed to make sure they understood my class rules.
Just because I was young did not mean I would let them take advantage of me. In my training, my classroom management skills had always scored me top marks. I was deemed to be firm but fair and expected high standards of good behavior, resulting in more focused learning and higher exam results.
"Ladies, stay in your seats, please," I demanded as the rest of the class filed out.
"Miss Swan, we'll be late for our cheerleading practice," Shannon whined, pulling a face like she was in pain.
"Well, maybe you both should've thought about that when you continued to talk throughout my class after I'd asked you to stop. Now, let's set some ground rules, shall we. One, in my class, you pay attention and listen at all times. Two, no talking between yourselves, unless I specifically give you instruction to do so about a topic we're working on. Three, if this continues, then I shall have no option but to have you both removed from the cheerleading squad until your behaviour is of a standard that reflects someone representing this school. Now, I don't like to come down hard on my first day, girls, but you really did give me no choice. You work hard in my class, and I'll support you all the way. Do we understand each other?"
They both looked shocked to the core. I would have been willing to bet that no one had ever threatened them with consequences before. I hated playing the bad cop, but I felt that being young, I needed to set ground rules early. Boundaries were what some kids needed, and I would have bet these two had never had someone tell them no before.
"Yes, Miss Swan," they said in unison, Shannon doing so with an eye roll.
"Good, well, get off to practice then, and give this note to your coach, so you don't get into trouble further. I'll see you both tomorrow, and I look forward to reading both your poems next week."
The gentle reminder of their assignment had them sighing as they went out the door.
Hands being clapped made me raise my head, and Mr. Bartley was stood in the doorway, smiling widely.
"Very well handled, Miss Swan, those two have driven Mrs. White to distraction this year. Only thing they're interested in is cheerleading. We were wondering what to do with them. I like your approach; you scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours. You'll probably get a visit from Coach Clapp for threatening her two star cheerleaders; can't imagine that'll go down well, but I'll back you all the way. They're here to learn first and foremost. Extracurricular activities are a privilege they must earn. It's something as a school we must start pushing. If grades start to fall, their automatic inclusion to teams and squads can be pulled. I'll reinforce it at the next staff meeting. Well done, Miss Swan."
"I don't want any hard feelings, Mr. Bartley. They were talking all the way through the lesson, and I just wanted to set some ground rules. I'm sure they'll have taken what I said onboard."
"I'm sure as well, Miss Swan, although with Miss Volturi…well, let's not stir the kettle while it's dry." With that, he was gone.
He was right about the girl's coach coming to see me. Immediately after my last lesson at three o'clock, there was a knock on my door, and a thirty-something woman in a track suit came in when I called, "It's open."
"Yes, that's me."
"Jane Clapp, girls' sports coach."
"Pleased to meet you, Coach Clapp, I've been expecting you."
"I assumed the girls would tell you what I said, so I expected you to come and talk about it with me, yes."
"No one has ever had the guts to threat to pull my girls from the squad before. How come on your first day you did so?"
"Well, I guess I'm just setting boundaries I don't want crossed. If your girls come into my classroom to learn and listen, we'll get along just fine. If they come in and talk all the way through about boys, parties and cheerleading routines, I'll pull their privileges. I hope you understand."
"Girl, you've got balls! Yes, at last, someone with some metal. You won't hear an ill peep from me. I just thought I'd come along and introduce myself. Shannon can certainly tell a tale. She was sure I'd side with them. Her parents will probably ring the principal and complain, too. Don't sweat it. These girls are used to getting their own way. Bringing them into line and making them do what they're supposed to be doing is fine by me. It was very nice to meet you, Bella."
"You, too, Jane, and thanks for your support."
"My pleasure, girl, it's about time someone knocked the tiaras off these princesses," she smirked. I liked Jane Clapp already.
At home, my dad, Charlie, was eager to hear all about my first day. I told him about my run-in with Tanya and Shannon, causing his brow to rise at the mention of the Volturi name. We both knew the rumors.
After me spending the last four years in school, my dad was thrilled to have me home. He still treated me like I was fourteen, though. That was the age I had been when I'd first come to live with him in Forks. I made dinner, although he had wanted to go to the diner to celebrate my first day. I'd declined, thinking there might be too many kids around who wouldn't want to see their wicked witch of a teacher after school today, given the diner was the local after-school teen hangout.
Exhausted, I had a lazy soak in the bath and went to bed early. Tomorrow, we were starting on Wuthering Heights. I wanted to get in early so I could set up.
The teacher's car park was empty when I arrived. I was able to make myself a coffee in the staff room undisturbed. As I made my way to my classroom, I got the feeling I was being watched. As I glanced around, I saw no one and nothing, figuring it must have been my imagination. I used to feel like that when I had been a pupil here, too, like there had been someone watching me. It never came to anything, and no one else reported that they felt like that. In the classroom, I placed a copy of the Bronte novel on each desk. Today, we were going to watch a DVD of the book, a modern adaptation. We'd have to watch it over a couple of lessons, but I hoped it would get the classes interested enough so that when we started to dissect the book, they would have formed their own opinions. I could only hope.
My classes today went smoother, that was until I got to Shannon and Tanya's class. The girls took their seats near the back of class, and I raised my eyebrows to let them know I'd noticed. Before all the students arrived, I noticed Tanya had moved and was now sitting on the edge of a desk further forward. Her legs were draped rather suggestively, slightly open and facing the boy whose desk she had taken over. She was flirting with the young man, who was ignoring her and trying to mind his own business. He looked positively mortified.
I moved slightly to the left, so I could see who she was trying to seduce. A little taken aback, I noticed how extraordinarily good looking the boy was. He appeared tall, even though he was hunched down in his seat, with very broad shoulders and long limbs. His face was quite beautiful, his skin pale and blemish free. His hair was a shade I had never seen before, brown-come-red and auburn all in one, and the style made him look like he'd just gotten up from a heavy make-out session. With the smattering of reddish-brown scruff on his face, he looked easily five years older than the average high school senior. I was shocked at how much I was noticing about him. Whilst quite breathtaking, he still looked all man to me, and now I was embarrassed about where my thoughts were going.
"Tanya, please go sit down in your own seat. Now," I said shaking my head.
He looked at me and smiled at little, almost in thanks at being saved from Tanya's advances.
I'd managed to secure some blinds today to cover the windows. Any film was better viewed in subdued lighting. When I turned off the lights, the atmosphere in the classroom immediately changed. It became electrically charged, and I wondered why. Teenage hormones were my best guess.
The film seemed to have captured their imagination, as I didn't hear a peep for the next hour. There were a few sighs as Heathcliff came into the story, but no talking. I was pleased with their response. As they made their way out, I stood by the door and took the register. It would help me learn who was who.
Edward Cullen did not surprise me as the last one out of the room. He was the beautiful boy/man that Tanya Denali had been trying to flirt with. He towered over me at well over six feet tall, and he blushed beetroot red when I took his name, smiling up at him.
"It's very nice to meet you, Edward."
I didn't single him out, as I'd said that to each and every one of them. Now I had faces to all the names in my register. I made it my number-one task this week to remember them all. There was one I would not forget any time soon. That boy was too good looking for his own good, and if he was anything like his brother used to be, then he would be a ladies' man and a bit of an airhead. Although it certainly didn't look like he was a ladies' man before my lesson today. He looked embarrassed and positively scared at Tanya's brazen behaviour.
By Friday morning, I had only a small number of poems handed in, and had to remind each class that I wanted them by the end of the day. Groans followed, and some asked if Monday would do. I reminded them all that three o'clock this afternoon was the deadline; and any handed in after that would be classed as an "F" for fail.
After each class today, more and more papers were added to my desk. I was really looking forward to reading them all over the weekend. Tanya Denali surprised me and handed hers in at the end of the lesson. Her friend, Shannon Volturi, demanded an extension. The Volturi's were a notorious force in Forks, known for being bullies and expecting to get their way, also known for doing whatever it took to get it. It looked like the young Miss Volturi didn't stray far from the fold.
I politely declined her demand, re-stating the parameters of the assignment and the consequences for failing to complete it. She threw me a glare that could have killed and stormed out, slamming the door behind her. I was pretty certain I had just made an enemy.
We'd held some interesting discussions following all the seniors watching the film. Even the boys had an opinion. It seemed to have created the right sort of interest I had hoped for. I was a little disappointed that Edward Cullen had not contributed to any of my class discussions. My colleagues told me he was an "A" student across the board. Not a bit athletic, more into the arts and music. They described him as extremely shy and uncomfortable, especially around girls who, because of his looks, flocked to wherever he was.
Mrs. Cope told me, "He's not a bit like his brother, Bella, such a nice young man. Not that Emmett wasn't or anything, just loud and brash. Edward is always so polite, but he's so shy. He plays the piano during every lunch, and he does it beautifully. I often listen to him when he practices. You should come sometime and see for yourself. Although he'd hate it if he knew I was next door listening to him," she said with a small laugh.
Why I was so interested in Edward Cullen, I didn't know. I guess the fact that I had gone to school with his brother could have been one reason. Tanya Denali's obvious attraction to him made me feel sorry for him. She was quite the vamp, word of her reputation had already reached my ears, and Edward seemed to be her next targeted victim.
I hadn't seen Edward hand in his assignment, and I secretly hoped he would not let me down. By the end of my last lesson, I did a quick count of the poems I'd received. I had ninety-one, and there should have been ninety-four. One which I knew was not there was Shannon Volturi's, so that meant two more pupils had not handed theirs in. As I packed up, my classroom door opened and three pupils filed in and asked if it was okay to give me their poems now. It was a little after three o'clock, but I was not going to quibble over a few minutes. That meant all of my seniors, save Shannon, had done the assignment I'd asked them to, including Edward Cullen.
My weekend was spent marking poetry. I laughed at some, cried at others, and cringed at the rest. I had limericks, rhymes, odes and non-standard types, but one in particular stood out. It was so moving and beautiful I gave it an "A+" immediately. I had no choice it was that good. The average grade was a "C+" this go-round, and I reconciled my marks with those of Mrs. White. Moderating the grades gave me a clearer picture of where my students were and how far I could push them to excel in the subject. I emailed my findings and grades to Mr. Bartley for assessment purposes.
My eyes kept coming back to the poem of one Edward Cullen. It was quite breathtaking. It had moved me when I had first read it.
My love for her will never die
As my fingers drift along her
My heart soars, my eyes widen with joy
There is no other love in my life
Every minute I am with her
Every time I touch her
I feel, I really feel
She gives to me in return
That which I crave the most
A voice to be heard
Others take notice when we are together
Not jealous or envious
Thankful and rejoicing
I feel, I really feel
When we come together
Heavenly angels give thanks
I am at peace in my own world
She offers me comfort
I give her a voice
She sings to me
We smile together
I feel, I really feel.
A Poem titled, My Piano, by Edward Cullen.
Most of the students had written about love between two people or unrequited love. Edward had taken his poem one step further and told of his love for his piano, the poem describing their relationship. It was exceptional work. I felt he should have been very, very proud. I knew I was.
I looked forward to delivering the grades on Monday morning to all my students, one in particular.
So, guys, what do you think? Worth continuing? Let me have it right between the eyes. Don't hold back now, I can take it.