MY ENTRY FOR THE CURVACEOUS AND BODACIOUS CONTEST. VOTING STARTS 15TH APRIL. CHECK IT OUT HERE: www(DOT)fanfiction(DOT)net/u/2729331/CurvaceousAndBodacious
Story Name: Oranges and Lilac
Rating: M (for raunchiness)
Pairing: Bella/Jasper AND Bella/Edward
Word Count: 4635
Summary: Big and Beautiful Bella has the promise of a bright future, if only she can let go of her past.
NOTHING IS MINE - IT ALL BELONGS TO STEPHANIE MEYER.
Love to my awesomely fantastic beta, PortiaKhalo - couldn't do it without you sugar.
To avoid confusion, I am Scottish so any reference to clothes will be in UK sizes.
Here she was, sitting in an embarrassingly posh restaurant, waiting for Jasper damn Hale. Whitlock! Damn it, Whitlock! Bella grimaced at the heavy white linens laid out beautifully in front of her. Her stomach, as much as she tried to pretend otherwise, was churning like a whirlpool. She shook her head irritably. Who changed their name anyway? The annoying part of her brain piped up with several answers but she viciously shushed it.
That deep, lilting voice threw her back into her memories so swiftly she had to grip the table against the surge of dizziness. She remembered that voice, laughing with her on the cusp of their teenage years. She remembered talking dreams and plans with that voice on a thousand warm Texas summer nights. She remembered that voice, whispering darkly delicious fantasies against her ear the summer before they both turned eighteen.
"Oh my word, is this Bella?"
That beautifully tinkling voice, like Bollinger trickling over crystal, made Bella's stomach churn for an entirely different reason. She stood, forcing her mouth into a wide smile, and turned.
Oh hot damn he looked good. Bella tried valiantly to look at him for the socially acceptable length of time but that same annoying part of her brain was busy calculating how good his upper body looked wrapped so sinfully tightly in white cotton. After an embarrassingly long time, her peripheral finally picked up on something bouncing in and out of her vision.
"I can't believe I'm finally getting to meet you," the tiny beauty chirped eagerly, "You have no idea how long I've wanted to. Jazzy talks about you all the time!"
Bella nodded and smiled, turned and sat, joked and ate. The entire evening she felt like a marionette puppet. Physically she was there, but someone else was pulling the strings. Alice was everything Bella was not, and Bella couldn't stop herself from cataloguing the contrasts. Where Bella was sarcastic, Alice was sweet. Where Bella cleared each plate laid in front of her, Alice left at least a third. Where Bella was voluptuous and reserved, Alice was petite and vivacious.
Jasper's drawl pulled Bella's mind back from whatever plain it had vacated to. She blinked, surprised to find just Jasper and herself at the table.
"Where did the pixie go?" she asked without thinking, then cringed. Jasper's eyes crinkled in amusement.
"To freshen up."
"You mean she went to pee," Bella snapped irritatedly, "You know I hate euphemisms."
"Not all euphemisms as I recall." Jasper raised his eyebrows wolfishly.
Bella blinked. Was he…? Oh the hell he was. She tightened her expression and leaned forward across the table.
"What the hell are you doing?"
Jasper, having unconsciously leaned forward too, mirroring her movements, sat back with a huff and gave her The Eyes. She hated it when he used The Eyes. Unfortunately for him, she was no longer the plump kid with the self-esteem of a toothbrush and that shit did not wash.
"Give me a break Jazzy," she mocked, "You think you can waltz into town, throw some charm my way and I'd roll over and let you scratch my tummy?" She stared him down until he dropped his, inconveniently sexy, eyes and sat back, satisfied with her Jasper Hale smackdown. Whitlock. Damn it!
"I've missed you Bella Beautiful."
"Have you now?" Bella kept her voice level to disguise the welt his affections raised on her heart. "What with all the photographs that kept turning up in the gossip columns, I doubt you could have picked me out of a line-up."
"Don't be like that," he pouted, dipping his voice in dark chocolate for her. Bella shivered. Then cursed herself for it. "Bella, it's Hollywood, they make up stories about everyone." He shrugged and looked at her through his lashes.
"And did you pose happily with your tongue down those girl's throats or did they force you?" Bella could hear the ugly tone in her voice but was powerless to curb it. "What about your fiancée Jasper? Are they forcing you to marry her too?"
Jasper dropped his eyes and slumped forward.
"And I had to read about it in the fucking National Enquirer." Bella felt the tearful anger threaten and sat back abruptly. She was damn well determined she wasn't going to cry. Not tonight; not ever. Well, maybe later whilst watching something suitably heartbreak, but not right now damn it, and not in front of The Stepfords.
As soon as Alice returned, Bella made her excuses. They stood outside, the cold night air hanging awkwardly around their shoulders. Jasper stood next to Alice, his body angled to Bella whilst Bella turned away from him, refusing to meet his eye.
"I hope we get to meet again before we have to head back." Alice smiled. "Or at least before the wedding!" Bella made a non-committal grunt. Silence descended, heavy with unspoken frost-laden words.
"Well, we should go." Alice pulled Jasper's arm lightly. "It was lovely to meet you Bella."
Bella nodded and turned away, heading in the opposite direction, determined she wasn't going to look back.
"How was it?" Angela looked up from the couch when Bella huffed into the living-room. Kicking off her shoes, she collapsed on the sofa and gave Angela a baleful look.
"Oh Bellarina," Angela cooed, patting her lap. Bella obligingly lifted her feet and set them down on Angela's thighs. "Tell Angie all about it."
Bella took a moment to enjoy the feel of Angela's fingers kneading all the tension from the soles of her poor, tired feet before speaking. She'd always tried to convince Angela that she's missed her calling as a chiropodist.
"It was awful." Bella could hear the barely-held tears in her own voice. Angela rubbed soothing circles on the pads of her toes sympathetically. "He looked amazing. Like A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I'm pretty sure my panties tried to drop of their own accord. He was all 'Hi Bella Beautiful' and I was all 'droooool". " Bella sighed. "It was pathetic."
Angie let her wallow quietly for a few minutes, massaging the tension from the balls of her feet, before nudging her on. "And the fiancee?"
"Horrendous. Hated her."
Angie glanced at her over her black-rimmed glasses, momentarily looking like Mrs. Cope, Bella's first grade teacher. Bella sighed dramatically.
"Fine," she huffed, "I wanted to hate her. But Angie she was so damn perky and bubbly I just couldn't do it. I loved her okay? I wanted to kidnap her and make her live in the cupboard at the bottom of my bed." Angela laughed quietly as Bella threw her arms over her face and wailed.
"Why couldn't he have looked like Meatloaf? Why couldn't she have looked like Meatloaf? Why did they have to look like something out of Martha Stewart Living?"
"Umm," Angela screwed up her nose prettily, "Isn't that a food magazine?"
"You know what I mean," Bella humphed. Angela massaged harder. They remained silent until Angela cleared her throat delicately.
"Now isn't a good time to tell you that The Wicked Queen has requested your presence at her dinner-dance tomorrow then?"
Bella groaned. "Guest or lackey?"
Angela snorted at the idea there would be any question as to which list Bella would have landed on. Of course it was lackey. The only reason Rosalie invited her at all was because she was the best damn photographer in the state and Rosalie only wanted the best.
"At least Emmett will be there," Angela pacified quietly and Bella couldn't help but smile. Emmett was her favourite cousin. Brawny and sweet, she was amazed (and, privately, a little dismayed) when he caught Rosalie Hale's attention and was a married father-to-be within the year. Of course Rosalie, Jasper's glamorous older sister, went way back with Bella and none of that background was pleasant.
Rosalie, statuesque in her beauty, was punishingly cruel of Bella and her larger-than-a-size-six frame. Jasper did his best to shield her, but girls were harsh when it came to other girls and Rosalie had more reason that average, believing 'burly Bella' far beneath her. It incensed her that Jasper, her adored baby brother, insisted on spending time with a girl she just didn't see as up-to-par. If it wasn't for her getting her talons into Emmett, Bella would have cut her losses with that particular Ice Queen long ago.
"Fine," Bella grumbled, "What time does The Horror want me?"
Bella had been ensconced in the private parlour, taking softly lit photographs of the semi-famous in all their finery for the first half of the party. Rosalie had come and found her once everyone had arrived and told her sniffily that she expected some candid party shots and that Bella was to take photographs without being intrusive. Rosalie had glanced at her bare feet (for balance, the fact that it annoyed Rosalie was a welcome bonus) and the pale green chiffon dress Bella had chosen for the occasion, leaned in close and whispered "I know it'll be hard for a girl your size but try not to get noticed too much." She leaned back, her mouth twisted unprettily, but before Bella could snap a retort, a familiar voice floated over The Ice Queen's shoulder.
"Rosie, that's no way to talk to one of my oldest friends." Jasper's voice was light but his eyes held a clear warning. Rosalie squealed and hugged him, effectively blocking Bella out.
"Jasper, you came! And you brought your fiancée, finally!" Rosalie gushed over Alice's deep red cocktail dress and, clearly finding her acceptable, whisked her out of the room on her broomstick. Okay, maybe not a broomstick.
"I see she's still ragging on you," Jasper stated close to her shoulder. She felt his warm breath stirring her hair and stepped forward, out of his reach. She turned but no amount of telling herself she wasn't bothered prepared her for the sight of him in a tuxedo. He was at once elegantly handsome and mercilessly roguish. He smiled a predatory smile, the soft lighting glinting off his teeth and turning his eyes amber, and slid toward her.
"You look ravishing Bella Beautiful," he purred, eyeing her dress appreciatively, "Ravishing." The last part he murmured against her ear, fingertips slipping slowly over the softness of her hips. Bella caught her breath and closed her eyes against the influence of him on her body.
A squeal and a crash from just outside the door had Bella leaping away from the temptation of Jasper Ha…Whitlock and scurrying like a frightened mouse from the room. She felt rather than saw the raffish grin spread across his face as he prepared to chase her down. Just as Bella couldn't help but run, Jasper Ha…Whitlock couldn't help but pursue. He had told her one blazing August afternoon, with a look that she had been waiting for since she had turned fifteen, that she brought out the hunter in him. Then he had kissed her, possessively deep, tasting of oranges and honeydew, making her toes curl unforgettably.
Bella shook off the lingering memories clinging sweetly to her and threw herself into photographing the soiree with gusto. All around her, ladies in understatedly expensive dresses and men in tuxedos whirled and laughed, drunk on champagne and the illicit atmosphere. Only Rosalie could make an ordinary house party into something enchantingly magical, haunted with the promise of something darker for those who dared.
All the while, Bella kept a vigilant eye out for any glimpse of Jasper, making sure to keep a clear distance between them. Whenever he tried to creep closer, she would twirl out of his reach, camera clicking near-constantly.
After her third glass of stolen champagne, Bella began to feel a distinct fizzing in her general bladder area. She was dismayed to see the queue of women waiting to use the bathroom.
"Hey little cousin!" was all the warning she got before Emmett picked her up and swung her around, a trail of chiffon swirling around them like a soft jade cloud. Bella giggled delightedly and he placed her gently back on her feet.
"Emmett!" The time between their meetings always seemed too long. Emmett, her staunchest defender growing up, always could make her feel good with just one action. Growing up it had also helped that next to his bulk she had looked positively elfin. That one word reminded her of Alice which, in turn, brought Jasper back to the forefront of her mind. She looked around quickly but couldn't see him. The pang that accompanied the thought that maybe he had given up on the chase made her shift uncomfortably.
"Need to pee?" Emmett winked, well-versed in her hate of all things euphemistic. Bella nodded, gesturing glumly to the queue.
"I hope these carpets are ammonia-proof," she joked. Emmett hunched closer to her conspirationally and pressed something cold into the palm of her hand, curling her fingers back over it before letting go. Bella raised her eyebrows questioningly.
"Walk to the end of the house then up to the third floor. It's the second door on the right. Don't tell Rosie," he whispered, winking and melting into the party. Bella flashed a grateful smile and hurried away.
The higher she climbed the further behind she left the party. The third flood was blissfully tranquil after the hectic flurry downstairs. Bella slid the key into the lock and turned until she heard the hushed click of the bolt giving. Pushing the door open, Bella stepped into the most opulent bathroom she had ever seen.
The carpet she stood on was deep red and made her feet practically groan as they sunk into it. Just beyond the dressing space, soft yellow tiles invited her into the bathroom area. Stepping forward, tiles cool under her toes, Bella suspected she was about to have the most glorious pee she would ever have in her life, made all the sweeter for taking place in what was clearly Rosalie's private bath and dressing room.
Afterwards, Bella took her time washing her hands, trying each of the six liquid soaps like an excited child and admiring herself in the full-length, angled mirrors. When she could stall no more, Bella sighed and moved to the door. She took one last look around, memorising the sheer luxury of her surroundings, and opened the door.
An arm encircled her waist and something hard pressed against her, the swirling air enveloping her senses in a familiar heady mix of leather and saddle soap. A hand prised the key out of hers, pushing her back into the beautiful bathroom and locking the door with a definitive click.
A warm tongue slid against her lips, filling her mouth with the taste of sun-drenched oranges and heat, as supple fingers slipped beneath her dress to bury themselves in the soft white mallow of her inner thigh.
"Oh Bella beautiful, how I have missed your softness," Jasper growled into her mouth as Bella whimpered, her body surging from the want of him. He kissed her deeply, slanting his mouth against hers, the stroking of his tongue on hers matching the caressing fingertips between her thighs, climbing slowing higher.
Bella squeaked as his hand found the lace of her high-cut boy-shorts and glided underneath. His fingers followed a familiar path, teasing and promising, as he crooned in a voice full of rain lilies and wild azaleas, "Do you remember our first time Bella beautiful? Do you remember the way we touched? The way we felt?"
Instantly Bella was transported to that late summer night just before her eighteenth birthday, Jasper wrapped around her in the hot heavy darkness of the tent Bella had slept in every night of that scorching summer. He had come to her each dusk, his eyes growing darker with every passing moon until the night he had climbed into her tent, into her sleeping bag and into her clothes.
She felt present-Jasper's thumb graze her sweet spot as she heard past-Jasper's soft words of adulation. She had been so stunned that someone like Jasper, someone so effortlessly accepted, so painfully gorgeous, was interested in someone like her dumpy self. Jasper had chastised her gently on her view of her body as he kissed his way across her generous breasts, kissed down her soft stomach, nibbled her roundly fleshed-out sides and came to settle between her legs, biting the rich clotted cream of her inside thigh. Serious, sexy Jasper had been the one to teach her comfort in her own skin, his worship of her body too powerful to be withstood.
"Bella beautiful…" the past and present sighed against her ear and she felt the delicious friction of exploration and experience press into her. She moaned wantonly as present-Jasper worked his hand on her body and past-Jasper worked his tongue on her memory. She remembered the heat and the friction and it felt exactly the same, teasing her eager body along the impatient line of desire. She felt the shuddering in her stomach matching the memory of long-ago shuddering and she clung to him now as she had then, the wild aching explosion taking her from the inside, making her keen as ferally now as she had that first time. Jasper tipped her head back in the same way he had done that night, hungry eyes soaking in the hot twist of her features as she fell apart for him, willingly and unreservedly.
"Bella, Bella, Bella," his rough voice chanted as he pressed against her, the ghost of the past on his breath as he let her know, in the same way he had before, just how ready he was to take her.
The shrill scream of a phone tore Bella from both the ethereal adoration of past-Jasper and the very real-time ministrations of present-Jasper. She tugged away from the weight of his body, pulling her clothes straight as he fished the phone from his trouser pocket, eyes never leaving her blushing face. Something passed through Jasper's eyes when he glanced at the flashing screen and Bella dropped her head defensively against what she knew was coming.
Bella fled, twisting out of his grasping fingertips, flying down the wide staircase like a bolting Cinderella, escaping through the press of guests and out into the cold night with the rushing flush of her uncoiling guilt to keep her warm.
When she answered the doorbell at 4am that morning, her heart nearly ruptured at the sight of pretty little Alice daintily wiping her Louboutins on her welcome mat. In her arms she held a matte-black box, tied beautifully with a matte-black ribbon.
"May I come in?" Alice smiled an almost-genuine smile and Bella stepped aside to let her pass. She followed the tap-tap-tap down the hallway and into the living-room where Alice perched on the arm of the sofa and looked at her expectantly.
"Would you like a drink?" Bella asked, fighting not to stammer under Alice's unflinching gaze.
"I know, Bella," was all the answer Alice gave.
"What?" Bella tried to laugh but it came out sounding like a koala fart. And not a cute koala either. "I don't know what…"
"Bella," Alice cut her off, "I know."
Bella stared at her, unsure of how to proceed. She was seriously hoping that the box Alice held didn't contain anything sharp. She wasn't sure she could deal with any Kill Bill this evening.
"I understand Bella, I really do."
Bella's jaw dropped. That was unexpected.
Alice leaned forward, radiating sincerity. "You guys go way back. He was your first love, you were his." Bella started. Alice tsked. "Oh Bella, you must have known." She shook her head delicately.
"That as it was, Bella, he's mine now." Alice stared at her and Bella was afraid to drop her eyes. "Understand that if anything happens again, you and I? We're going to throw down." And beautiful, dainty Alice bared her teeth in a way that had Bella scooting backward swiftly. Alice sighed, her face back to its normal graceful elegance.
"Bella, you're beautiful and refined and a million things I'm not. You'll always hold a part of him that I can't reach, a part that I can't access but," her voice became low and her face pleading, "He's my forever and I know I will make him happy. But you have to let me show him. You have to let him go." Alice pinned her with her eyes. "Please," she whispered.
Bella couldn't stop herself from crossing the room and pulling Alice into her arms. They clung together, Bella putting as much remorse and acceptance into the embrace as she could, whilst they both cried for the boy Bella had loved and the man Alice did.
After a lot of tissues, face-washing and genuine conversation, Alice announced that she had to get back to the hotel before Jasper woke and realised she had gone.
"Oh, before I go," Alice handed Bella the box, "This is for you."
Bella looked at her questioningly but Alice merely indicated that she should open the gift. Gingerly, Bella pulled the bow and lifted the lid. Inside was a riot of delicate black tissue paper that Bella peeled back slowly. Layer by layer, it parted to reveal its secret.
"Oh my, Alice it's beautiful," Bella breathed, holding up a silk wraparound dress in the most divine shade of lilac. It whispered gently in the air and Bella could practically feel it wrapped around her like a second skin.
"It's for your date," Alice replied, bringing Bella back to earth with a resounding thump.
"I'm sorry, my what now?"
"You have a date tomorrow evening."
Bella stared at the pixie, who stared back completely unashamedly.
"Alice I'm sorry but…"
Alice held up a hand and eye'd her hard. "I think you owe me Bella, don't you?" Bella could only nod.
"Same restaurant where we met, 7pm," Alice paused at the door, "Oh and Bella? Don't be late. My brother hates tardiness."
Same restaurant. Same linen so beautiful Bella was loath to touch it. Same Bella. She sighed, trying to control her churning stomach. She was not built for blind dates. Inadvertently her mind slipped back to the reason her stomach was churning on her last visit to this fine establishment and she had to briefly close her eyes against the damagingly beautiful image of Jasper that danced across her occipital lobe. Silently she cursed her perfectly undamaged brain.
"Bella I presume?
Bella felt that voice like honey, warm and sticky, trickle through her ear and drip soothingly into her head. She could have sworn her brain purred in response. She stood and turned slowly, savouring the memory of that voice before the reality did a number on her and ruined…oh my.
Bella knew she was staring but it was hard to care when the man in front of her was David come to life. With better hair. 'And hopefully a bigger penis' part of her brain whispered. Involuntarily her eyes slid past his broad shoulders, past his solidly sculpted chest, past his perfectly tapered waist and on down to rest at his crotch. His deep chuckle brought her back to the room; the room in which she was standing shamelessly ogling a complete strangers genitals.
"See something you like?" he asked playfully, raising an eyebrow in an arch so wickedly flawless that Bella had to fiercely squash the urge to climb up his beautiful frame and lick it. She blushed hotly, dropping her eyes to her shoes. "Because I certainly do."
Her head popped up and she stared at him in astonishment. His startlingly green eyes were raking the lilac-coloured silk encasing her flesh. She watched as he catalogued every curve, every rise and descent of her body. He stepped closer and she nearly stumbled at the scent that enveloped her; honey like his voice, lilac like her dress and the sunshine she felt must be radiating from her skin as he stared at her.
"My beautifully blooming Bella," he murmured, touching her silken waist with his fingertips, "Look at you all wrapped up like a present, just waiting for me to undo you."
Bella made a small noise in her throat, fairly sure that something further south had exploded at the carnal growl his tone hinted at. Possibly an ovary. She stared, open-mouthed, as he stepped closer until she was inches from his outlandishly sensual body. He wolf-smiled at her.
Bella stumbled backward, nearly tipping herself over the table in her haste. A pretty girl two tables over sniggered only to have it die in her throat when Edward glared at her. He turned his grass-green eyes back to Bella as she felt her body blaze with mortification.
"I…I…" she stumbled over her words, her brain feeling as liquid as her legs.
"I apologise beauteously bewitching Bella," he dropped his head to catch her eye, "My dearest sister usually sets me up with rather…delicate young ladies. This is the first time she's actually sent me someone I could sink my teeth into," he paused to flash his teeth, "and I suspect I got a little too…excited."
Bella stared at his absurdly chiselled face and couldn't think of a single thing to say. This morsel of man-god was looking at her in a way that declared her a banquet he wished to feast upon and her brain refused to form a single sound more complex than 'meep'.
"I've made you uncomfortable," he stated and his faultlessly carved face fell in such a way that Bella almost tripped over her own feet in her haste to reassure him. She laid her hand on his arm.
"No, not at all…" she trailed off under his skeptical gaze and amended, "Well, maybe a little, but only because I'm not used to that kind of…attitude." She trailed off, embarrassed, but his fingers found her chin and tilted her face up to his.
"I can't possibly imagine what other attitude there would be, bodaciously banging Bella," he murmured softly, his eyes pulling her in…wait, what? She took a step back and eye'd him.
"I thought you might appreciate some beach bum channelling." He grinned impishly at her and her whole body dimpled in response. "May I take you somewhere for dinner?"
Bella looked around, confused. "Umm, where do you think we are exactly?" Edward waved a hand dismissively.
"Pretentiously tiny portions," he stated, "I've seen the menu and we'd have to eat half of it to be even close to satisfied." He leaned into her and winked, "There's nothing sexier than a woman who eats."
"You aren't a feeder are you?" Great. Her brain, M.I.A for the last ten minutes, decided to return with that little gem. Edward grinned at her rakishly.
"If, by 'feeder', you mean making sure my woman keeps her scintillating curves, baby-bearing hips and dazzling booty, then yes. If, by 'feeder', you mean turning my woman into a heart-attack waiting to happen, then no."
Bella merely nodded, her brain once again vacationing in no-soundy-soundy land. Edward smirked like the cat that got the cream and reached for her, tucking her hand into the crook of his elbow.
"I think we shall," she countered, matching him step for step, "No more alliteration though or you're eating on your own."
"Scouts honour," he replied, pressing her tightly into his side and leading her out into the sparkling night.