Title: Eat You Up, Spit You Out
Pairing: PeterxBella with allusions to JasperxPeter but not really.
Rating : M for mature themes, violence, death, and smexin'
Warnings: uh, mature themes, violence, death, and smexin? Oh and an itsy bitsty tiny bit of slash. It's just a kiss. Also, warning for assholeish Peter. It's hot though.
Summary: He had always done what he wanted. She did as she was told, until the day he told her not to.
Beta'd: by MsEerieChastain, of course. She's pretty much my main squeeze. She puts the come in my commitment.
A/N So, this is pretty much a one-shot as is, but I do intend to continue it, after some of my other projects. So let me know if you like it, and if you'd like more!
'The ripest peach is highest on the tree.'
James Whitcomb Riley
"Why am I here, really?" I asked, leaning against the frame of the closet door. Alice was elbow deep in what she deemed suitable wedding attire, all purchased with me in mind. I made shopping difficult, she had once told me, when she couldn't be sure what I'd pick.
Looking up at me with a gray silk tie in hand, she shrugged her shoulders. "For Jasper of course. The family is...hesitant since his incident with Bella's birthday."
She was good, I'd give her that. Her story was solid enough; blame the family for not trusting Jasper. I would have believed her in a heartbeat if it weren't for Jasper's curious glances, brows furrowed faintly as she turned back to the tie. I shot him a look and he just shrugged. He had as much an idea of her plans as I did.
I drummed my fingers along the pretty wood built-in shelving, each rack layered with color-coordinated cottons and blends. "What about my control?" I asked, flicking a black and gray argyle sock with obvious boredom. I hated weddings. I hadn't even bothered to show up to my own.
Jasper called it commitment issues. I called him a fool.
Alice sighed, an exaggerated puff of her useless lungs. I didn't understand the necessities for such theatrics. I rarely bothered to breathe at all, save for scenting a hunt. What was the point?
"You're control is perfectly fine," she reasoned, holding a vermillion striped tie to my chest.
"My control is no better and no worse then Jasper's." I ignored her and the tie in question, reaching over her to pluck a plain black one from the rack. Flipping through the suits beside me, I found a plain black one, labeled neatly with my name, and took it. "There. Was that so difficult?"
"Jasper denies himself, therefore his control isn't on the same level as yours," Alice denied, giving Jasper a sympathetic, and yet patronizing, look. He huffed, the same exhale of useless breath as she. Mouth pulled into a tight moue, her hands clenched hopefully around another tie, this one amber in color. "You'll look like a tax collector if you wear that."
Holding both the boring tie and boring suit, I grinned down at her, watching her flinch in response. Jasper might have been domesticated, but I was still seen irrevocably as a predator. "Good; maybe everyone will leave me alone."
It was not an hour later, freshly bedecked in my nondescript attire, that Jasper cornered me in the bathroom. "Alice is up to something," he admitted. "I don't know what. Try not to eat any of the wedding guests though." His eye twitched, head turning slightly to the left. He frowned, brow furrowed. "This is what they mean by cold-feet."
"The blushing little blood-bag is nervous then?" I followed his line of site, to the wall I assumed separated two bathrooms.
Laughing, Jasper pushed me against the counter, working his fingers carefully through my flattened hair. His nails scrapped along my scalp as he tugged roughly. "I think you mean blushing bride."
"You say potato, I say tomato." I sniffed her out, listening carefully to her slow even breaths. "Is she sleeping in her bathroom? A bit of an odd one, huh?"
"She's meditating," Jasper explained, pushing past me to press his palm to the wall. "She just goes all quiet, breathes deeply and...shuts it all down. I can still feel her, but it goes all...soft around the edges. I think she's nervous."
"She's getting married in two hours," I rationalized with a bored shrug of my shoulders. I plucked the small box of contacts off the counter where Alice had so helpfully left them, and tossed them from hand to hand. Suddenly, a loud thump vibrated against the wall, a little growl following.
"I swear to God, Jasper!"
Jasper withdrew his hand, giving me a sheepish smile. "I don't think she appreciated my help. Maybe I should go talk to her."
"Maybe you should leave her the fuck alone," I replied, rolling my eyes, as I messed up his tie, tugging it loose with a slide of my hand.
Jerking me forward by my own tie, he straightened it, working the knot into a proper Windsor. "Thank you for coming, anyway."
I grinned down, slipping my hand into his hair as he'd done to me, ruffling it up 'til he snapped at me. "What am I really here for?" I asked again, scraping my hands down his neck. My nails skated across the raised lines of innumerable scars and he shivered.
"Alice thought it was a good idea," he admitted. "She said we'd need you."
I moved in, nose to nose in my slow invasion of personal space. "Your control is fine, Major. We both know that." I licked his mouth, smirking when he turned his head. "Why does Alice really want me here?"
"Stop that," he growled, running his hand up my arm to my shoulder, only to dig his thumb into my clavicle in petty vengeance. "You know Alice doesn't like it when you-"
"But you like it." I grinned, sharp and cutting. "She wants me here, she won't tell me no."
He rolled his eyes, keeping his mouth a firm distance from mine. "But I might."
"You might," I agreed with a flippant nod, "but you won't. Now tell me why I'm really here."
His eyes flickered back to the wall, where the girl was still breathing deeply, heart beating so steady a rhythm it was like a ticking time bomb. He said absolutely nothing and everything in that one sly look. "She's locked herself in the bathroom. Maybe I should talk to her," he said again, slowly this time.
"Maybe you should leave her the fuck alone," I echoed in kind. "Maybe I should talk to her."
"Would you?" he asked, eyes flickering down to where our chests were pressed together. "She really is feeling very nervous and I'm afraid I'm not allowed alone with her. Edward's rules, you know. I have no idea where Alice is, but it would probably be wrong to leave her alone like that when I know she's upset."
"Very wrong," I echoed with false solemnity, smile curling at the corners of my mouth. "What kind of upstanding vampire would you be if you let the human suffer? No, no. I'll go. Anything for my...brother."
Looking up with a dark grin, Jasper pushed himself away from me, straightening his tie. "I'll leave you to it then. I should probably find my wife, let her know."
"Probably," I replied, pushing past him for the door. I stopped, hand on the crystal door-knob. "Oh and Jasper?"
"Mmm? What?" he asked, looking up a fraction too slow. I grabbed him by his stupid tie, rudely yanking him forward for a biting kiss. He hissed in my mouth, shoving my shoulder when I bit his lip. "Dammit Peter! I said stop that!"
"No you didn't. You think you did," I replied, licking his venom off my mouth. "But you didn't. Not really."
"Asshole." Shoving me out the door, he snapped his teeth through a rueful grin. "Same old game, huh Peter? You'll always just do what you want."
"Why change?" Shrugging my shoulders, I made my way down the wide open hall of the Cullen house. "Doing what I want suits me just fine."
If only for propriety's sake, I knocked on the door once before pushing it open. The girl was where I had expected her, eyes still gently closed. She was seated on the floor against the wall, wrapped up in white silk-taffeta from head to toe. Her feet were bare, toes curled against the cold bathroom tiles.
"Leave me alone Alice," she said through her teeth, eyes still closed. Her fingers balled into the front of her pretty little wedding dress, and her heart skipped its first beat since I'd been listening. "I wasn't really going to do it."
Shutting the door behind me with a click, I perched myself on the edge of the bathroom counter. "Do what?" I asked, smirking when her heart raced, and her breath caught. "Please, do scream. I wonder how long it would take them to come running."
Her eyes were wide in her head as she scrambled slightly against the wall. "Who..." she began, working her dry mouth to swallow. "Who are you?"
"Peter Whitlock, at your service," I replied in kind, looking down on her with a too-wide smile. Her eyes flickered to my glinting mouth, and she shivered. Predator, always. "Relax. I'm a friend of Jasper's."
Though her eyes narrowed, her shoulders lost most of their tense pull. "Right. I've heard of you," she said at length. "From...before the Cullens. You and your mate, Charlotte?"
I chuckled, dry and slightly rasping. "Oh Charlotte wasn't my mate, you darling thing. She was..." I cocked my head to the side, searching out a suitable word to describe Char. "She was convenient."
"Was?" the girl asked distractedly, as she tugged up the sliding front of her dress. "What is she now?"
Looking up sharply, I watched carefully made-up eyes widen. "Oh! I'm sorry. That was rude of me-"
"Don't waste time being sorry for me, peaches," I said, with a shake of my head and a laugh. "I killed her."
She swallowed again, loud and hard. "Oh...I. Um..." She took a deep choking breath. "Why?" she blurted out, almost as if she hadn't intended.
"Because she tried to kill me first," I cut her off quickly before she could apologize again. "I stopped being convenient for her. Now, tell me what is wrong with you."
"Wrong? Nothing's wrong. I'm getting married in two hours. Everything is great," she said in a rush, giving me a quick grin. "Eighteen and married." Her heart stuttered again, and she took a deep breath.
Narrowing my eyes, I leaned back against the mirror. "When I came in, you thought I was Alice. You said you weren't really going to do it. Do what, exactly?"
Her eyebrows shot up, as she tilted her head up to look at me. "Nothing," she said at length. "It isn't important. Why am I even talking to you? I don't know you."
"Jasper sent me," I repeated. "So clearly you can trust me."
"Jasper once tried to eat me," she snapped back, looking away. "So really, what do I know?"
Taken just slightly aback, I leaned forward, cocking my head to the side. "You're not really afraid of Jasper," I stated, after a fashion.
Looking back at me, she sighed. "Of course not. None of the Cullens would ever hurt me."
Nodding, I slid off the counter, crouching down in front of her. "Then why are you so fucking terrified right now?" Sweat beaded at her temples, and I could practically taste her fear in the air.
She sucked in a breath, shaking her head. "I'm...m'not. Not scared."
"Terrified," I reiterated. "You're not scared, you're terrified. But of what? What weren't you going to do, peaches? What do you think Alice would have seen?" This was important: surely it had to be? Alice had made it clear that my presence was needed, and Jasper had made sure I was with the girl. "Are you afraid of becoming a Vampire?"
"No," she said so firmly I couldn't help but believe her. "I'm getting married," she breathed out, horrified. "To Edward."
"In about an hour and a half yes," I confirmed. "Or so it probably said on the invitation I didn't bother to RSVP to. I'm not seeing the problem here."
Her slender hands shot out, grasping me by the lapels of my jacket. "I can't marry Edward," she hissed, color draining suddenly from her face. "Oh God. I didn't say that. I didn't. I'm marrying Edward."
"Oh but you did," I confirmed, smirking. "I heard it myself. You said it. You said you can't marry Edward."
She was panting now, sharp little breaths fanning directly over my mouth. "No. No I have to. I'm...wearing the dress. I...I'm getting married. To Edward." She nodded resolutely. "I'm marrying Edward Cullen. I'm going to be Mrs. Edward Cullen. Oh my God." Her hands shook where she was still clutching me. "Oh my God. This is a mistake. What am I doing?"
"You're not marrying Edward Cullen," I informed her, dutifully. Her head snapped on her shoulders, dark eyes glaring at me with pure menace.
Growling, she yanked on my jacket. "You shut up. I did not say that. I...I have to marry Edward. He's waiting. They're all waiting. Everyone is waiting."
"I'm not waiting," I said with a shrug, tugging gently at her wrist. Her grip was unyielding, and I let it be, choosing to stare down the front of her dress instead. She had freckles on her chest, thirty two of them in varying sizes and color. "I could care less. Hell, I wouldn't mind bailing early. Wanna come?"
"I can't leave Edward at the altar!" she squeaked, arms trembling. "I have to...I need to get up. I can't—-"
Laying my hands over hers where they were still clenched in my coat, I cut her off gently, speaking in slow precise words. "You can't marry Edward," I explained carefully, watching realization dawn in her eyes.
"I...can't?" she asked, breathlessly. "I can't marry Edward?"
Shaking my head, I pulled her up to her feet. "No, clearly you cannot. No one should be this terrified of their own wedding. So you can't marry Edward. Is that going to be a problem?" I hoped not, for my mind was made. She wasn't marrying Edward.
A knock at the door echoed in the room. "Baby?" A woman asked, clearly human. "Come on honey, you need to open up. Rosalie is wa-"
"Tell her you'll be out in a minute," I whispered into her ear, watching her nod shortly.
Clearing her throat, she took a deep breath. "Um...I'll be out in a minute Mom. I just...I'm okay. Nervous. Give me a minute?"
"...alright baby. Come up to Rosalie's room in ten minutes, she can fix your make-up. Clocks-a-ticking."
"Right," she said, nodding to no one. "Right. Rosalie's. Ten minutes. Love you, mom."
The mother's footsteps faded down the hall, and I clapped my hands together. "Oh, good. That gives us ten minutes."
"Ten minutes to what?" the girl asked, smoothing her hands down her dress. "Look, you've been really nice but I'm okay now. I just...had a moment. Cold feet, you know?"
"Oh no," I shook my head at her. "We already agreed. You can't marry Edward. So...you're not going to."
"What? I didn't agree to that!" she said, eyebrows raised. "Seriously Peter, I'm okay. It was nerves."
Slipping my hand into hers, I tugged her along, pushing open the door to peer down the corridors. Once I was sure they were empty, I shoved her out in front of me. "You were terrified and hiding it and clearly thinking about running. You're not marrying Edward."
Tugging her hand in mine to no avail, she huffed. Dress dragging behind her, she stumbled along. "How could you know that's what I was thinking?" she asked in a rushed whisper. "Hey, let go of me!"
"Do be quiet," I begged her. "I knew because it was obvious. And because you just told me. Come on then, this way." Her dress ruffled loudly, the sound practically echoing in the halls.
"This is Edward's room," she informed me, not that I didn't know. "What the hell- Peter! Seriously, this isn't funny. I need Rosalie's room."
Giving her an incredulous look, I shook my head, shoving her toward the open window. "Seriously, did you not hear a word I said? You're not marrying Edward. You don't want to."
"Don't put words in my mouth," she snapped, kicking at her dress where it caught on her leg. "I never said-"
"Who cares if I put words in your mouth? They were already in your head. Yeah, no. Nope, no. This isn't going to work," I said, grabbing the front of her dress and ripping it in two. The thin silk tore with no effort, splitting half way down the front. The girl shrieked, hands flying up as I lifted her out of the white mess of fabric. It pooled on the ground noisily, almost as loud as the foot steps hammering against the stair case. "We really have to be going now."
Grabbing her around the middle, I held her tight against me, springing out the window. The ground was soft, giving beneath my feet. Mud caked to the bottom of my shoes and pants as I sprinted towards my car, half- naked human in hand.
Maneuvering around her clinging, frightened frame, I fumbled for the stupid key fob in my pocket, unlocking my car with a beep-click. Yanking open the door, I shoved her into the passenger seat, sprinting to my side. They couldn't chase me full speed, not in broad daylight with humans milling about drinking and eating like grazing cattle. I only needed to get to the road.
"Buckle up," I all but sang, peeling out of the Cullen's long and winding driveway. I could see them in my mirror, standing horrified on the bit white porch, dressed in their wedding finest. Edward stood at the bottom step, held back by Emmett, a torn and tattered wedding dress fluttering in his hand.
"Oh," she breathed, hand still sliding the buckle into the lock. She wasn't crying, for which I was eternally grateful. Couldn't stand tears; they made me want to bite. "Oh fuck."
"So you do swear," I commented mildly, swerving onto the road. I let my eyes wander across the tree lines, searching for a possible vampire. I wouldn't put it past Edward to breech the code of secrecy. After all, there was one big breech sitting beside me in her wedding whites. "I'm digging your digs, peaches. Very nice. Alice's touch?"
A peachy-pink stole over her pale skin, straight down to her puffed-up cleavage. She wrapped her slender arms around her middle, covering absolutely nothing. "It's a wedding corset, jerk! It's made for wedding dresses." She grumbled, head falling back against the seat. "I can't believe I left Edward at the altar."
"Technically you left him on the porch," I offered helpfully, ripping the GPS out of the dash and hurling it out my window. She gasped, surprised before I finished my reply. "Also, you didn't leave. If you remember you protested quite admirably. I kidnapped you. It's very different, believe me."
She sucked in a breath through her teeth, hands clenching where she had them still wrapped around herself. "Should I be worried?" she asked, heart slamming hard in her chest now as the first little tendrils of fear crept up into her voice. Even for it, she was surprisingly calm.
Her reply startled a laugh out of me, as I turned my head to grin at her tiny self. "A strange vampire you have never met walks into your bathroom, insists you do not marry your fiancé, rips your dress off, kidnaps you, and you ask him if you should be worried?"
She shrugged, a petulant pout on her over glossed lips. "Well, he probably has a better idea than I do, doesn't he?"
Smirking outright now, I turned my eyes back to the road. "Oh, I like you," I said, with utter confidence.