Pairing: Bella and Wardie
Summary: **Winner of the Readers Pick Award for 'Another Ward on the Barbie' contest** I'll never forgive my mum. I feel like I wanna jump off the Harbour Bridge. I'll have to move to Kalgoorlie where there's no TV reception! I want to be Joy Smithers, and live a life of obscurity as a faceless voice-over for Impulse commercials.
Disclaimer: If you were not an Australian teenager or older during the 1980s then some language and references this one-shot will not make sense. It will be like I'm speaking in a foreign language. I do not own the character names; they are owned by Stephenie Myer. Sorry to bastardize them and make them a little more Aussie. Any resemblance to persons living or dead in this story is completely for real, but don't try and sue me! All I have is my St George Dragon moneybox, full of one and two cent pieces. They smell like my breath after I've eaten Burger Rings. Not sure they would even be classified as legal tender and they probably wouldn't even buy you a can of Mello Yello. I dedicate it to all the Aussie Gen Xer's and to my shit-hot beta Madmum, who rushed this with literally a couple of hours to spare. Needless to say I hit 'send' two minute's before contest cut-off! The original post is still up on the Another Ward on the Barbie contest profile page go to fanfiction. net/u/3048236/# (remove spaces) and read the awesome entries including the Judge's Choice winner Going Under by Anna Faze, which is exceptional! This version of Boofhead is my 12 Remix edition. The songs are real, and I had no permission to reproduce the lyrics.
History Never Repeats by Split Enz
Come said the Boy by Mondo Rock
Crazy by Icehouse words and lyrics © 1987 by Iva Davies, Robert Kretschmer and Andy Qunta.
~Boofhead – The 12 inch Remix ~
The lights were so bright.
I was so nervous; I could feel the blush on my cheeks. I wondered if the heavy-duty foundation the makeup artist slaved on my face would hide it.
Before I knew it, Greg walked out. There was cheering and then Kerrie was introducing the contestants.
"Our first contestant is an apprentice mechanic, who likes fast cars and zany guys. Please welcome Rosie Hale."
The audience–which was full of screeching girls–whistled, cheered and waved at Rosie.
"Contestant number two is a clerk, who loves shopping and aerobics. Say 'hi' to Alice Brandon." More cheers and claps.
"And the third contestant is a bookshop assistant that likes, well, reading and music. Say 'hello' to Isabella Swan."
The audience gave me a cheer as well. I could hear the distinct half-scream, half-shout from my mum. I could feel the heat of my embarrassment singeing my ears.
"Thanks Kerrie. Ladies welcome," said Greg.
He seemed even more confident and engaging in real life. I was nervous and jittery, and he made me feel only slightly more at ease.
My mum's words came back to me... 'You need to get over your fear of speaking in public. I have the perfect place.'
My mum Renee had signed me up to be a contestant on Perfect Match.
I couldn't believe it. I had tried desperately to get out of it. But once my mum had an idea in her head, she was like a bull at a gate. So here I was, sitting in the contestant's seat about to answer stupid questions from an unknown guy behind the screen, to hopefully win a free holiday to Coffs and meet a 'nice young man'.
Why can't I ever say no to my mum!
"Contestant three." I looked up at Greg as he read his cue cards and directed the question to me. "You once went bungee jumping with your mum? What was that like?"
Jesus mum! Talk about bullshitting on the questionnaire! I'm going to strangle her!
"It was as scary as this is, Greg." I said, trying to project my voice, like the producer had suggested not more than ten minutes ago.
"Well, it's great that you're willing to take the plunge Isabella," he laughed. "Welcome to the show, ladies. Please give them a big hand!"
The audience cheered again and I felt sick to my stomach.
"Backstage now is our guy. Max, tell us all about him." said Greg.
The cheesy backing music started and the voice over man came on and my nervousness spiked.
"OK Greg. Our next single is an apprentice civil engineer that enjoys playing the guitar. Meet Edward Cullen!"
I couldn't see a thing that was going on behind the screen; the lights were blinding and angled right at me. I felt like they were burning my retinas. The girls in the audience were wolf-whistling and clapping excitedly. I had no idea whether that was a good, or a bad thing!
"How are ya, Edward?"
"Call me Wardie, Greg. I'm feeling ace, thanks," he said.
His voice was commonly ocker, but had a masculine huskiness that kind of made my head feel light.
"Now, you want to be a famous muso, Wardie?" Greg asked the man behind the screen.
"Yeah mate. Yeah I play guitar. I wanna join a band and become rich and famous!"
"Get into it and make some money, yeah? And what are you looking for in your perfect lady?"
"Um, you know, good personality and looks good in a bikini," he said, which I hoped was in sarcasm, but assumed he was being one hundred percent truthful.
He laughed, my stomach dropped.
"Alright Wardie, take a seat. You know the rules. Please ask the first contestant your question."
"Contestant number one. What's your idea of a ripper night out?"
"Um, going to the drive-in in my restored HK Holden." Rosie said seductively.
There was a wolf-whistle from the audience and I saw two guys in the front row, holding their thumbs up.
"Number two. What's your idea of a ripper night out?" Greg repeated Edward's question.
"Dinner in the city and maybe dancing at a club." purred Alice. The audience again gave a murmur of encouragement.
"Number three. What's your idea of a ripper night out?"
"I'd prefer," I instantly added more volume to my voice, "to stay in and play my records, and maybe read a new book." I said truthfully.
I looked over to see a guy holding up a sign, telling the audience to cheer. The sickness came back.
I didn't want to be any body's perfect match. I just wanted my super pushy mum to give me some peace for, maybe the next six months.
"Well, Edward. You heard the answers."
"Yeah, Greg. I really like the drive-in, and I like eatin', but I'd wanna hang out and play records, so number three."
I blanched when the cheering started again and I felt even more nauseous.
He can't pick me! I can't go on a weekend trip with some guy!
I felt determined now to say really stupid answers to throw him off picking me. I glanced at Rosie the gorgeous apprentice mechanic and Alice the clerk with the funky punkish hair.
He won't pick me.
"Wardie, your next question to contestant number two."
"Contestant number two. What's the most important part of your body?"
"My legs, they keep me active and dancing," said Alice in a sing-song cute voice.
"Contestant number three. What's the most important part of your body?"
I panicked. How to turn him off?
"Um, my brain. It's the most important part of me."
I was hoping he'd interpret that the way I wanted—that I was unattractive!
"Contestant number one. What's the most important part of your body?"
"My hands, because I do lots of things with them."
Greg repeated our answers for Edward.
"Well, Greg, that's a hard one, but I'm going to have to say that I'm a leg man, so number two."
I felt slightly relieved, and determined to answer the next question so completely ridiculously that he would definitely pick Alice.
"OK Wardie, time to ask contestant number three your last question."
"Right, number three. What is your strongest belief?"
My mind was a shambles. I silently thanked Greg when he slowly repeated the question for me.
Something to turn him off! Like throwing ice water over his head.
"I believe in abstinence," I said calmly and with a confident volume.
The audience laughed and cheered courtesy of the man with the sign telling them to.
Greg smiled. "Gotta love a woman that knows her beliefs," he chuckled.
"Number one, what's your strongest belief?"
"I believe in love at first sight, Greg," said Rosie.
"Hmmmm, and number two; what is your strongest belief?"
"That I am the perfect girl for you." Alice purred confidently, but I couldn't tell if she was directing her answer at Edward or Greg.
"OK, Wardie. Number three said her strongest belief was 'abstinence'. Number one said 'love at first sight', and number two said she believes she is the perfect girl."
"Yeah, Greg. I really believe in love at first sight, so number one."
For the first time in twenty-four hours, I felt myself relax. He won't pick me.
I felt so pleased; so happy I had thwarted my mum's insane and drastic attempt to 'get me out of my shell.'
I'm so moving to Mullumbimby to become a cat lady that sells hand woven baskets and knits bong covers for hippies.
"Well Wardie, you have one match with each contestant," said Greg.
The sappy music started, so Edward could decide whom to choose. The audience 'ooh-ah-ooh'ed' and rocked from side to side. I spent the ten seconds willing for him not to pick me.
"So Wardie, times up. Who will it be?"
"Well, Greg. I like a lady that is brainy, yeah, and uses words I don't understand, so I think I'm gonna choose contestant number three."
What? Dead set, I reckon he's an idiot! Who doesn't know what abstinence means? Oh right, an ocker bogan that comes on this completely lame dating show!
Then everything proceeded in a dizzying blur.
Rosie, then Alice, disappeared behind the sliding screen. I couldn't even compute the introductions, all I could hear was cheering and clapping and a pounding thumpty-thump as the blood rushed to my head.
And then it was my turn. The lights, the music, the cheers; I was using all my ability not to faint.
Then Greg was telling 'Wardie' about me.
"You've chosen contestant three. Come over to the 'heart-light'. Let me tell you about your date. Number three is a bookshop assistant that loves music and reading classic romances. She hopes to climb to the very top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge one day. Edward Cullen please meet Isabella Swan!"
The door slid wobbling back into the wall and I came face to face with Edward. He had light green eyes. His hair was the same style and colour as Tom Bailey's from the Thompson Twins. He had smooth looking skin. He was not at all what I was expecting. His eyes were sparkling as he took in my outfit, his eyes roamed my face and then to my chest and waist. I could feel the embarrassment burning through me. He was using this split second meeting to judge me and I felt I'd never live up to any perception. His long arms wrapped around me and he lifted me clean off my feet with a grunt.
"You're off to Hamilton Island!" said Greg.
Edward twirled me around he looked ecstatic. Max, the voice over man, started detailing the weekend we'd be flying off to and I couldn't really comprehend all of it.
Hamilton Island! It was like I'd just won Tatts Lotto!
"You bewdy," Edward said, his smile was boyishly vibrant.
Is he cracking on to me?
No, he meant the holiday.
I regained some composure when I looked over to the camera and saw the red light was on.
"If you go as the perfect match you'll win some great prizes," said Greg.
"To find out about your compatibility let's hear from Dexter."
We stood facing the Dick Smith dodgy, remote-controlled robot as it flashed lights and moved its head.
"Happiness, travel and love intertwine in your future. Wardie, your perfect match with a compatibility score of 89 percent is... Isabella Swan!"
I refused to speak to my mum. However, that didn't stop her from packing my bag and driving me to the airport.
"He seems so nice; you'll have a wonderful time! He's got an apprenticeship, and lives nearby," her enthusiasm was so annoying.
I ignored her and turned up the car stereo.
Eurogliders, 'We Will Together'.
I closed my eyes and imagined I was Grace Knight. Bernie Lynch was making out with me on a bed with satin sheets and there was one of those cool wave machines rolling back and forth. His hand was on my bare thigh as I leaned in to kiss him again.
I jolted from my reverie. My eyes flew open.
I had imagined Edward's hand on my thigh, and his lips on me!
I groaned and hung my head out of sheer embarrassment!
"Bella, really, you just need to let go and have a good time. You're so, stuck up. Live a little."
Nice, mum. Thanks.
"Mum, can you please just stop?"
My tone must have held the type of desperation that made her twig that she'd nearly pushed me too far.
Before I knew it, we'd parked the car. Mum was cuddling me then trying to push me through the terminal.
Then I saw him. He was standing next to the two guys that had been giving Rosie the thumbs-up in the studio audience.
When he saw me he smiled widely and started walking over.
"OK, mum. See ya." I said and gave her a quick kiss. "You can go now." I prodded her arm in a childish and rude push.
"Be safe, have fun!" she said excitedly, before walking in the opposite direction, just as Edward reached me.
"Hi." he greeted.
He had a really gorgeous smile. It was kind of infectious. I smiled back and tried not to visualise his lips on my nips.
"Are you excited?" he asked.
I didn't get to finish as Edward's two friends came up behind him and slapped him on the back and elbowed him. They were checking me out and it made me blush.
"Yeah, these are me mates. This is Macca and this is Cheney. I mean, Emmett," he motioned to the rugby type with the cute dimple, "and Ben," the guy with the dark hair with the long rats tail.
"Hello," I said. I was completely nervous and suddenly overwhelming shy.
"Calling all passengers on Flight 1918 to Hamilton Island. Please go to gate four," said the high-pitched female voice from the overhead speaker.
Edward picked up my carry on bag and said goodbye to his mates.
We walked silently to the gate. He let me go first and when we got on board he stowed my bag and let me have the window seat.
"So, Isabella?" he said hesitantly.
At least he remembers my name.
"Just call me Bella," I said.
"Cool, Bella, just call me Wardie," he grinned.
I fastened my seatbelt.
A hostess with way too much Cedel freezing her perfectly backcombed perm, handed me some mono headphones. I scoffed and pulled my Walkman out of my handbag.
"Whaddya listening to?" he asked me.
"Mixed tape," I said.
I kind of huffed. He was trying to be nice; I thought I'd better stop being a mole.
"Dragon, Eurogliders, The Models, Pseudo Echo, Icehouse, Kids in the Kitchen, um, The Machinations and The Venetians."
"What? No Chisel, Oil's or Choir Boys?"
Is he for real?
"No, I hate pub rock."
"Dragon is fucking pub rock, pardon my French."
"Well, I'm really selective in my taste in music," I tried to justify.
"Well," he mocked my tone, "it sounds to me like you're a music snob," he stated.
I didn't have a come back for that. So I pouted and turned the volume up. I immersed myself in the pulsing keyboard intro to 'Change in Mood'.
Why am I being a bitch?
Because he's a spunk and he seems too nice? He must just want to get into my undies.
I thought back to my first and only boyfriend, Lockie.
His mum and mine played squash every Tuesday. When I was fourteen I was sick, but rather than leave me home alone, mum took me to the squash centre. She gave me a stack of 20 cent pieces and I played Space Invaders for an hour.
Lockie was there too.
When mum and Mrs. Whitlock finished their game they went in the sauna to gossip. Lockie and I were allowed in the spa.
We talked about music. He said I was cute. Then he felt me up and stuck his tongue down my throat.
I kind of couldn't get rid of him after that. We'd meet at the reserve and he'd grope, kiss and lick my boobs and finger me.
It was only a matter of time before he put the hard word on.
I liked him, so eventually I lost my virginity to him on one of the picnic benches. It hurt like hell and afterward I felt so guilty and dirty. I walked home by myself, crying the whole time.
Mum told me a week later that Lockie got busted smoking cones behind the school hall. He was expelled.
I never saw him again.
Why did it feel like, after this weekend, Edward would be off like a bride's nightie?
I started singing in my head.
'His-tor-y nev-ver repeats,
I tell my-self,
before I go to sleep.'
We landed and were greeted by a guy with a Warwick Capper style haircut and a black, boxy video camera.
"G'Day I'm Gazza. I'm going to just film you coming out of the airport with the 'Hamilton Island' sign in the background. Then later today, gotta get some footage of you at the resort pool and then tonight at the dinner, yeah? Then I'll leave ya to it." he raised his eyebrow suggestively at Edward.
Gazza directed us to walk and pose and wave at the camera. It took five minutes and then we were piled into a golf buggy and taken to the hotel.
It was brand new. The island had been completely renovated and reopened not even twelve months ago. It was beautiful.
The Queensland weather was hot in the sun, a little sticky but with a cool sea breeze. We checked-in, Edward and I had adjoining rooms that overlooked the ocean and it was only about a two minute buggy ride to the pool.
"Get your cozzie on Bella. Let's go!" said Edward enthusiastically. "I'll meet you downstairs in ten minutes."
"Fifteen," I whined.
"OK, fifteen." he smirked.
I opened my suitcase. I rummaged through for my Brian Rochford black one piece.
Shit mum, please tell me you packed my swimmers!
Nope. But then I saw a small plastic bag with a note pinned to it.
'Thought you needed a little present. Love you, Mum. xxoo'
It was a bikini, almost fluoro yellow, with white bows and the thinnest straps.
I tried to put it on. I could tie the straps at the back by twisting it around and then twisting it back, but the ones around my neck were too loose and strands of my hair got stuck.
I didn't really think twice. I just banged on the adjoining door and unlatched the internal lock.
Edward was standing there. He was wearing fluoro yellow Okanui board shorts, the trendy below-the-knee ones with the hibiscus pattern, no T-shirt.
Shit a brick!
"Hey," he said, his eyes wide as he took in my semi-nakedness.
"Hi, um, we kinda match," I laughed at our mutual colour scheme. He wasn't smiling.
"Um, sorry, can you do these straps up tighter for me?" I asked.
I couldn't look at his face then. I could feel myself blushing.
"Sure," he croaked and then coughed as though he'd lost his voice. "Turn around."
I turned my back to him and gathered my hair up with both hands in a high ponytail, yanking the strands that were caught.
His warm fingers brushed so lightly over my neck as he untied the loose bow and I felt him pull tight.
"Is that too tight?" he asked.
I looked down to the perfect triangles covering my sunken treasure.
"A bit tighter," I said.
I could hear the faint sound of Edward swallowing as he pulled them a little tighter and did a double-knot and bow.
I let my hair down and turned to face him.
"Thanks!" I said cheerily and walked briskly out of his room, making sure the door was locked behind me.
I sat on the bed.
I was tingling all over.
I like him, even if he's into Chisel and the Choirs boys. I don't mind Midnight Oil though, and he likes Dragon.
URGHHHHH. I screamed in my head.
He'll be like Lockie. He'll get into my undies and then I'll never see him again.
I could almost imagine him bragging to Macca and Cheney how stoked he was he got a free holiday and a free root, all in one weekend.
I finally stirred myself to stand up and pack my sun tan lotion, book and beach towel into my beach bag. I looked in the full-length mirror on the back of the door.
I was bowled over by how flattering the bikini was.
At least mum has great taste in swimwear.
I tied my sarong around my neck, halter style. I put on my roman jellies, wrapping the lace to mid calf.
Sticking my sunnies on my head, I locked my hotel room door and went down the lift to meet Edward.
I nabbed one of the chaise lounge chairs under a huge umbrella and spread out my Humphrey B. Bear beach towel length ways.
I felt my face fame in embarrassment.
"You know," he said softly. "I still have my Fat Cat beach towel at home," his face broke out into one of those heart-warming smiles.
"Really?" I kind of thought he was making it up so I would feel less embarrassed.
He just flashed me that smile again. It made my heart thump faster.
I sat down and started covering my arms in lotion. I watched Edward pull out some Reef Oil.
"You're not gonna put that on, are you?" I asked him.
"Yep. I think I need a tan," he said seriously and looked down at his pale stomach.
I looked too. He had the type of body that made me flush with lust. He was lean with just the right amount of muscle. I had to close my eyes for a second.
"Um, that will not give you a tan, it will just give you killer sunburn and make you smell like someone spewed Malibu all over you," I scoffed.
He laughed at me and tossed the unopened bottle onto my towel with a smirk. I handed him my Le Tan.
He looked at it and then gave it back.
"Don't need it," he stated.
My mouth dropped open as if I was catching flies.
"Slip, Slop, Slap, Edward," I said and tried to hand it back to him.
He shook his head at me.
"C'mon," he motioned impatiently towards the pool.
"You go ahead. I'm going to read my book," I said and rummaged for my copy of Flowers in the Attic.
"You can read a book any time. C'mon we're here, we're on Hamilton Island. You can't just sit there and not get in the water!"
"I'm working myself up to it," I said stubbornly.
"Life," he said cryptically. "Be in it. Bella," he laughed.
I rolled my eyes and I watched as he turned and walked slowly, then broke into a jog and executed a perfect dive into the pool. The cool water splashed up and a few drops landed on my toes.
I sat there, with a smile on my face.
He made me laugh. I felt even more drawn to him. I watched as his swam into the middle of the pool. There was a bar. You could just sit there in the water and drink!
I found myself staring at him as he ordered a beer from a cute blonde and started talking to her.
And that's when I stopped looking.
I recognised it as jealousy. I wasn't delusional. Edward Cullen was attractive. I'd noticed more than a few chicks checking him out.
"Hey, Bella." I looked up to see it was Gazza, the cameraman. "Glad you're here. I need to get some footage of you and Wardie in the pool."
"Um, he's at the bar." I said, and pointed my book towards Edward.
"Cool, OK. Then I need you in there with him."
Before I could protest, Gazza was yelling out to Edward.
"Hey Wardie! Order Bella a West Coast, I'm gonna film you guys at the bar, yeah?"
Gazza turned to me. "OK, just give me a sec and I'll get you to dive in and join Wardie."
I stood up. "Um, I'm not comfortable with that."
"Be a sport love. I've got strict instructions from Channel Ten. If I don't deliver, they sack me. All you have to do is dive on in, swim to Wardie, take a sip of the drink. It's a piece of piss. You'll make me happier than a dog in a hubcap factory."
I should have been insulted, but I closed my eyes and told myself to toughen up.
He's just doing his job.
"Fine," I grumbled. "But I'm not diving in. I don't want my hair to get wet."
I stood up and immediately untied my sarong. I walked with purpose to the edge of the pool where the steps made a gradual decent into the clear blue water. The sun was intense and made me squint. But it was so lovely and warm, I closed my eyes to feel and see the red glow behind my lids.
I stepped down the first step.
"Hang on love. I forgot to set the White Balance," complained Gazza.
I stood and dipped my toes in.
I looked across to Edward.
He was staring at me. His eyes made a slow and deliberate line up from my ankles to my eyes.
I looked down to the tiny, vibrant, flattering bikini, and then I looked back up. He shuffled in his seat.
If looks could kill, the blonde behind Edward would be up for twenty-five to life. She scowled and walked to the other end of the bar.
I felt a certain...what was the right word?
There was no mistaking the look in his eyes. I recalled he said he was a leg man, well, he was getting an eyeful of mine...
He wants me. I didn't know what to do with this knowledge.
Do I want him? He's nice, he's attractive. But, I just couldn't see it going anywhere. Sex, once that's done and dusted, he'll drop me like a hot spud. Especially when we're back to the drudgery of everyday life.
"OK, Bella. In ya go!" directed Gazza.
I looked at Edward and I stepped down the five steps until my breasts hit the cool water. Then I pushed off and glided out.
When I got to within arms reach of him he pulled me into a hug. Intense green eyes locked with mine. In that moment, there wasn't a resort full of people surrounding us, or a broadcast quality video camera filming us.
It was just a boy and girl, and some seriously overwhelming physical chemistry.
I pulled away and sat down on the submerged metal stool. The water swished around my breasts. I looked down.
Shit, my headlights are flashing!
I picked up the drink in the plastic champagne flute.
We toasted. I took a sip.
"OK, great! Got what I need, see you at the restaurant tonight." yelled Gazza across the water.
Edward didn't acknowledge him.
The alcohol was sweet. I felt lightheaded, and I knew it wasn't because of the bubbles.
"Why did you go on the show?" I asked him casually.
I remembered what Edward said to Greg; he was looking for a girl with a good personality and looked good in a bikini.
"Um, I...Why did you?"
"I asked first."
"My mates pressured me into it," he said and took a gulp of beer. "You?"
He laughed. "Is she trying to get you to move out of home or something? Marry you off?"
"Why? Are you offering," I joked and elbowed him. When he didn't say anything I looked to his face. He looked horrified.
"I'm just joshing!" I said quickly.
Then he smiled and elbowed me back, but got me right on the boob.
"Oh shit, sorry. I was mucking around. Are you OK?" he said.
"Um, yeah. I'll live." I tried not to smile when I saw him adjust his boardies.
We talked about parents, work, and music. We talked a lot about music. He talked about his mates. I got the impression they were all joined at the hip. It seemed Macca acted like the big brother Edward never had, and Cheney was the sidekick.
I was a shriveled up prune by the time it was midday.
We ate chicko rolls and hot chips smothered in brown vinegar as we sat under the umbrella by the pool.
Then we lay like waterlogged blobs for an hour.
"Let's go down to the sand," he said suddenly.
For a split second, I started singing in my head. That set off some giggles.
"What?" he asked.
"Let's do what we wanna do, let me be a maaaaaan for you," I sung.
He cracked up.
"It was a part-ty night, it was the end of school..." he serenaded.
I sat up.
He had the most sensual and harmonic voice I'd ever heard.
"Wow, you can sing!" I kind of sounded surprised and elated.
"Er, yeah, not very well."
I watched as Edward blushed.
"Bullshit! Who told you you're not good? That was perfectly pitched. You sounded better than Ross Wilson!"
"Yeah, right," he stood up. "I'm gonna go back to the hotel and have a shower and a kip before I pick you up for dinner, OK?"
"Um, OK, sure. Hey I didn't piss you off or anything did I? You really do have a tops voice," I said
"I'll pick you up at seven."
I watched as he walked away.
That night, I showered, dried my hair, which was a frizz of knots from the humid weather. I put on my black Trent Nathan dress, and the only heels I owned.
I was wishful make-upping. I looked down to my brand new white Swatch; my prize for being Edward's Perfect Match with 'a compatibility score of 89 percent'.
What a fucking joke.
It was twenty past seven.
I sat heavily on the bed; scenario's flying through my mind.
He had it off with the bar blonde. He forgot the time. He didn't wake up from his nap.
I was seconds away from pounding on the adjoining door and giving him a piece of my mind.
Then I heard a knock.
When I opened the door, there stood Edward. He was clean shaven and holding a single red rose, flashing me the most vibrant smile.
"Sorry I'm late."
I forgot why I was mad.
We had a driver take us to the restaurant.
Edward ordered an expensive Riesling. We talked, we ate, we drank. Gazza turned up and filmed us finishing our entree.
We continued our easy conversation through the night, and then the driver took us to a cocktail bar.
There was a guitarist with a microphone. I was a little confused when he waved at Edward, but I didn't really ponder. I was distracted when Edward's warm hand touched the small of my back as he guided me to the low black leather lounge chairs. The waitress removed the 'Reserved' sign.
Edward ordered us Tequila Sunrises.
I was tipsy. I was happy. I'd never in my life been so comfortable and content just talking to a guy.
Then Edward did something so completely unexpected, I almost couldn't believe it.
He excused himself to go 'drain the main vein'. I noticed instantly how suddenly nervous he was acting.
When he walked off, I contemplated. Maybe he's hit a wall. He didn't seem too blotto though, and if anyone should be drunk, it's me.
I didn't have to ponder long, as the reason for his nervousness was almost immediately evident.
He shook hands with the one-man band and 'Stevo' said he was handing over the guitar to 'Wardie' for one song.
The bar wasn't packed, but as I glanced around, all the female patrons were taking notice of a nervous Edward as he sat down, adjusted the stool and microphone. His hands were shaking and the tips of his ears were red.
"Um, testing, two...one... Sorry, I've always wanted to do that." he laughed and strummed the electric guitar.
"I've had a ripper night here. Don't think I can top it, but this will come pretty close. You can join in. I'm sure most of you will know the words."
I was smiling at him. Waiting for him to look across to me, but he didn't. I could tell he was extremely nervous. I didn't understand. He was so cool and calm when we filmed Perfect Match. This Edward was the complete opposite.
He strummed the opening riff to a song that every one in the country would know. It had dominated the 'Top 40' for months.
Then, Edward's smooth masculine voice sent a shudder up my spine.
I've got a pocket
full of holes
head in the clouds
the king of fools
you've got a ribbon of rainbows
the sun in your eyes
could be I'm happy and sad
could be I'm losing my head
His eyes were closed the whole time. His voice held that gravelly huskiness that even Iva Davies would have approved of and I was tingling again.
Before he started to sing the chorus, Edward opened his eyes and focused on me.
well, you've gotta be crazy, baby
to want a guy like me
yeah, you've gotta be out of your mind
I had to put my drink down for fear of spilling it all over my dress.
Sooooo if I'm dreaming
don't wake me tonight
if this is all wrong
I don't want it right
'cause you're the one sure thing
when I get lost in the game
hey, I'm a lucky guy
without a reason and I
well, you've gotta be crazy, baby
to want a guy like me
yeah, you've gotta be out of your mind
Well, there must be some kind of mistake
to give your heart away
yeah, you've gotta be out of your mind
The audience was adding in the 'Oh-Oh's'.
I was in shock. I was in awe and I was aroused. He hadn't looked away from me. There wasn't any expectation. All I felt was his...reverence? Was it desire based on the tropical surroundings? The opulence of the resort? The fact that we were so far removed from the everyday?
When he finished, the room broke out in spontaneous applause. He looked even more nervous and embarrassed.
I stood up. I clapped and wolf-whistled. There was no way he could crap on and say he wasn't any good after that performance!
I was amused by his sudden return to our table. He simply told me we had to go before he sculled the rest of his drink.
Next thing I know he's rushing out the door and I'm following with wobbling legs and damp undies.
He stopped walking and turned. I kicked off my shoes; completely aware that they had given me killer blisters. I picked them up and ran to stand in front of him.
"Why won't you call me Wardie?" he asked, suddenly fierce.
I was taken aback, but I answered instantly and truthfully. "I don't think it suits you. That's what your mates call you."
"You don't consider yourself to be one of me mates?" he raised his eyebrow, his nostrils flared.
"No. Well, not in the sense that Macca and Cheney are your mates. I can be your friend though."
He huffed and started walking across the road to the beach.
"What's the diff?" he sounded exasperated.
I hurried after him in small girly steps.
Fucking stupid dress.
"Mates can sometimes not be...supportive," I said. "Mates can discourage you from being the best you can be. Friends support you in whatever you do. Friends encourage you when you think you're not good enough. They don't laugh at you if you fail."
By this stage we'd crossed the road and I'd hoicked my dress up my thighs.
He continued in a beeline for the water. I kept a quick pace to be a few strides behind him.
The floodlights didn't really light that section of the beach as we were getting into the heavy blackness. Only the lights from the street and the cloud covered moon provided enough illumination to see the scattered beach chairs and upturned canoe's littering the shore.
"Can you slow down please?"
He stopped and turned to me. He looked like he was going to shout at me, but then I could see him notice my dress barely covering my twat and he went from angry to aghast.
"As your friend," I panted. "I can say that your performance was world class. You have a wonderful voice. I can't for the life of me wonder why anyone would tell you differently. Unless they were tone deaf or supremely jealous of your talent."
With that statement I threw my shoes down on the sand and clutched the stitch in my side.
The only sound you could hear was our heavy breathing and the gentle splash as the waves rolled in.
Edward walked up to me. I saw it, even in the dim light.
One of his hands travelled to the back of my head and then he was kissing me.
Well, what I should say was that he was trying to get as much of his saliva on my mouth, chin and nose as he could.
I pushed him off.
"What was that?"
"I kissed you," he snarked at me.
"That wasn't a kiss! That was like a Labrador puppy saying hello!"
"Thanks, friend," he turned and kept walking.
OK, I deserved that.
"Wait!" I pleaded.
He stopped and turned. Now it was my turn to be nervous. I took tentative steps towards him. I was practically standing on top of him, but he was so much taller than me, I just stood in the shadow he cast.
"Please," I said. "Just, can I?"
I reached up and put my arms around his neck.
"Just stay very still," I instructed. "Don't move. I want you to lick your lips and keep them slightly parted and let me kiss you."
His hands grabbed my waist tightly, but I loved the feel of it. Lockie never had the decency to really hold me tight, like he would never let go.
I suppose standing on a beautiful beach in the moonlight, with a talented musician who'd wined and dined me and given me a rose, was worlds apart from the groping and painful fuck I'd endured with guilt all those years ago. Comparing them just seemed ridiculous. I let my senses take over.
"Don't do anything," I whispered.
Then I pressed my lips to Edward's. I pulled away and then did it again and again; each time I varied the pressure, the angle, the position. When I was fully acquainted with Edward's sensual lips, I poked my tongue slowly in, just tasting, just demonstrating what I wanted. Slow, soft, probing. Then a light suck of his bottom lip, and deeper plunge, and then I was drunk on his taste, his smell and the feel of his body as he inadvertently leaned into me.
My hand flew up to pull his head down more.
Edward was a fast learner. He took my lead and now the kiss was soft, then forceful. His tongue tentative and then assertive, but not slobbery.
I can't tell you how long we pashed.
Time fell away. I was hypnotised by the steady sound of the waves and the burning through my body.
Edward pulled me fully against him. I knew he was aroused as much as me.
In our dizziness we both sunk to the ground. Edward was on top of me, slowly rocking against me.
"Fuck," he cursed. "Do you know how much I want you?" he moaned.
I thrust my hips up. "Yes, I can feel it!" I panted.
"Bloody hell, I've had half a mongrel since that stupid fucking screen slid back and I touched you for the first time."
In my mind I giggled and tried to dismiss the feeling of elation. But I wasn't laughing. Edward was dead set.
I can let this happen. I know it's just a weekend fling; a free root on a free holiday. He wants to.
I suddenly felt brave. I wanted to feel him. I didn't want the guilt and shame. I knew it shouldn't hurt this time and I was a grown woman. I remembered Edward's joke.
Life. Be in it.
I was fucking in this, and my body was soaring.
"Edward, do you have a rubber?"
"Jesus, Bella. Yes," he croaked.
"I want you, so bad," I kissed him.
He kept kissing me and then I felt his hand run up my thigh.
Holy shit, this is really gonna happen. Sex on the beach!
My heart was pounding.
Edward's fingers were suddenly in my undies. He slowly pressed them to where I thought he'd plunge, but instead he just teased and slowly and gently dipped one finger just inside.
My reaction was automatic, driven by pure magnetism and want. I thrust up, willing him to push inside; instead he pulled out and dragged his wet finger slowly, slowly with an eerie measured control up to...
He pressed down softly.
"Here?" he asked. All I could do was whimper.
"You little bewdy," he whispered and started circling and stroking and pressing and rubbing and I was going to get off. He was going to get me off!
After he'd built a sure as hell winning rhythm, he kissed me again. Holding his face over mine and gently sucking on my mouth, and moistening just my lips, and nibbling. Then–as the sounds I was making gave away what was inevitable–he pressed his lips forcefully onto mine and moved his finger double-time.
His mouth muffled my cries of ecstasy.
He kept slowly rubbing until the last shudder rippled through my body and disintegrated into the sand.
I was a blob of panting and smiling happiness.
Edward didn't let me get him off. He said that the night was all for me, and that he could wait.
I woke the next morning and Edward was already in the shower.
That girl that felt brave and bold last night on the beach with Edward came back. I got naked and snuck into the bathroom to find Edward feeding the chooks without me.
It was too late to take over; he came as soon as he saw me.
I got in the shower anyway.
"I could have helped with that," I said.
He pulled me into his chest, his heart beating rapidly. "You did help."
We ate breakfast and then went to the wharf for our trip to the reef. The day was spent snorkeling, seeing the most amazing tropical fish and coral. Edward held my hand the whole time.
I thought everything was perfect.
But it was our last day. The dread started to seep in, especially when Edward said he needed some alone time in the afternoon.
Our flight was leaving at four.
He disappeared into his room. I walked to the gift shop. Everything was too expensive, but I bought mum a spoon for her collection, and then I saw a stubbie holder so I bought it for Edward.
I contemplated buying the enormous Ken Done beach towel on display, but knew I couldn't justify it. I probably wouldn't be at another beach for twelve months.
Edward wasn't in his room when I got back.
I could feel the beginning of the end.
He didn't turn up until it was time to meet our driver to take us to the airport.
Edward was sombre.
He didn't talk to me until we got on the plane, and even then, it was just to ask me if I wanted a drink.
I couldn't help but feel rejected. But then I felt pissed-off. I couldn't even blame him for using me to get off, because technically, he didn't, with me that is.
He can reject me all he wants when this holiday is officially over, but as far as I'm concerned, I'm still on it until we land and go through the gates.
I leaned over to whisper in Edward's ear.
"Thank you, for a very memorable weekend," I said.
"You're welcome." he said graciously.
"When you...did that, with your hand...I've never, with another person."
God I'm a bitch.
I could see Edward was getting a hard-on.
"Oh," he swallowed.
I mentally counted the seconds.
One-one-thousand, two-one-thousand, three-one-thousand–
"I'm just gonna take a slash," he unclipped his seat belt and stood. I kept a silent and safe distance as I followed him until he pushed open the toilet door.
"Bella?" he looked confused.
I just pushed him inside and locked the door. We stood standing flush with each other; there was no room to swing a cat.
I didn't speak at first. I simply unzipped his shorts.
"I don't want you to think that this is a one-sided friendship," I said as I wiggled passed him, and sat on the closed toilet seat lid. I cradled him out of his shorts.
No preamble. He was hard as a rock and he was beautiful.
I just 'took the plunge'.
The whole time I remembered how he'd handled me to get me off. Gentle, firm, soft, wet. I'd never even contemplated this with Lockie. Shoving a guy's dick in mouth had never before held any appeal.
But I wanted this with Edward.
I felt him shuffle to get to a better position and when he did I just kept on doing what I was doing.
God, if my mum knew I was giving head on a plane she'd crack a mental!
"Fuck, I'm gonna!"
Edward tried to pull away, but I looked up at him with a furrowed brow and held his hips in place. His eyes were wide and then they drooped as he thrust himself forward at the same time the plane dipped in a pocket of turbulence.
Edward came down the back of my throat at the same time we heard the ding when the seatbelt sign came on.
In a flurry of panic Edward shoved his semi erect dick back in his shorts and pulled me into a quick embrace, his lips at my ear.
Edward and I cuddled close the rest of the flight. So many times I wanted to ask him 'what happens now?'
Part of me didn't want to hear him say, 'it was a great weekend, thanks,' or 'thanks for the epic mile-high head.'
The plane landed, just before we were about to walk out of the gate, I stopped and pulled out a pen and paper.
I scrawled my number and address and handed it to him with my gift.
He smiled and shook his head at me.
"We'll see each other tomorrow at the TV studio for the interview part of the show, ya dill. But thanks, I'll give ya a bell, Bella."
We walked out hand in hand.
Edward did ring me, and we talked for over an hour. We met at the television studio to do our return couples interview the next day.
We were separated and I was led into a room with spotlight, a couch and a video camera.
The producer asked me the standard questions. I answered truthfully. He asked more questions about the island's facilities than mine and Edward's date, but he explained that it's the advertising and word of mouth that kept the sponsors supplying the holiday packages to them.
I was then led into the green room.
"Won't be long Bella, we're just gonna interview Wardie, then you'll both go and have a quick chat to Greg in front of the audience."
I knew how the show worked.
"Just listen to some music, or there's some magazines there," he pointed to a stack of Dolly mags and two sets of headphones, then left the room.
I put on the headphones and cringed.
Rose Tattoo blared out.
Edward is right. I am a music snob.
I picked up the other set.
"I'd be up her like a rat up a drainpipe, man," said a male voice I didn't recognise.
At first I thought I'd picked up some dodgy CB radio signal. Until I heard a voice I did recognise.
"Shut your cake hole," said Edward.
My stomach dropped.
"What? I think Kerrie Friend is totally rootable!"
"Macca, shut the fuck up for five minutes. So any way, Wardie, you didn't tell us, did you get your wick dipped?"
I could feel my face drain of all blood.
"None of your goddam business. I told you, a gentleman doesn't kiss and tell."
"Since when are you a fucking gentleman, you wanker? Anyway the chick said she was obstinate. I looked it up; it means she doesn't put out."
"The word was abstinent, you dickhead. She is the cat's mother, and Bella has a name," said Edward.
"Well, Tanya's really fucking psycho jealous about it. Dimmo told Kate and well, you know how chicks are. Tan's gonna be pounding your headboard tonight man, no shit, you're back in like Flynn."
"Fucking oath, man. Told ya she'd come crawling back if she thought you'd get some new pussy."
I ripped the headphones from my ears and tried to breathe.
He did it to get a girl back?
I was shaking. I just stood up and I walked out, through the maze of corridors and into the carpark. With trembling hands I drove home.
Edward's mates are fucking arseholes.
Edward Cullen is a bloody boofhead!
I let our answering machine pick up all calls. I told mum if Wardie came around to tell him I said to 'go shove it up his Khyber Pass.'
He didn't call. He didn't show up.
The day that mine and Edward's interviews were going to be on the telly I took a sickie. I indulged in a whole strip of strawberry from a four-litre tub of Neapolitan ice-cream, covered in Milo.
I turned the volume up.
Greg said that I'd taken ill, and couldn't appear, but they played my pre-recorded interview.
Then they played Edward's.
'Bella is an amazing person. She was a little fussy at first, but once she got into it, she was really fun.'
'The best part was just hanging out with her by the pool and walking with her on the beach.'
'Yeah, as soon as she's better, we're going out again.'
I threw the brick sized remote at the TV. The batteries fell out on the floor.
I cried because he was probably super happy to have this girl Tanya in his bed. I wasn't even good enough to fuck.
He can have her, and his boofhead mates.
Then I heard the purr of an engine up the driveway. I looked at the time and I knew mum had left work early to make sure I was OK.
I quickly shoved the ice-cream back in the freezer and pulled my dressing gown tighter.
There was a knock. I just knew she'd been in such a hurry to leave work; she'd left her keys in her locker, again.
I opened the door.
It wasn't mum.
"Edward," I said.
He looked so different. It had only been four weeks since we got back.
He'd cut his hair. It was now short at the back, still longish on top, still that Tom Bailey bronze. He had a three-day growth that looked dangerously sexy.
"Bella, you have to let me explain."
I should have slammed the door in his face; instead I unlatched the screen and walked into the loungeroom.
"You don't need to tell me anything. I heard it all. You know if you had a girlfriend, you could have just told me and saved yourself all this...regret."
"You think I have regret?"
"Why else are you here?"
"How much of the conversation did you hear?" he asked.
"Enough to know that you went on the show to get Tanya jealous and it worked! Congratulations."
"You didn't hear the part when I told Macca I didn't give a flying fuck about Tanya? That she never supported me in my singing or my music?"
I turned to look at Edward. I was trying really hard to squash that tiny seed of hope that started to blossom in my chest.
"Did you hear the part where I told them that there wouldn't be other girl for me but you? That I was going to tell Tanya to go to fucking hell?"
He started burrowing his fingers through his hair.
"And then, when Cheney told me that he thought you must have been a good root for me to dump Tanya? Three of the TV station floor staff, and Macca, had to get me off the cunt, because I smashed his fucking face in."
I started crying.
"I told those 'mates' to fuck the hell off. Who needs them? I told Tanya exactly what I think of her. You were right, Bella. She didn't want me to get any limelight. I thought she was an all right singer, but she fucking sucks. She said I was crap to make herself feel good."
"I got a gig with a new band called Johnny Diesel and the Injectors. It's a national tour, starting in four weeks. I'm gonna be on stage doing what I love, because you sparked the idea in my head that I could. I'm rhythm guitar and back-up vocals."
I couldn't speak.
"Bella, I want you to come on the road with me. I cleared it all with their management. They need someone to look after the merchandise, you know, sell T-Shirts and cassingles at the gigs. If you don't want that, I can say no, and they'll still give me a job as a session musician."
All I could feel coming from Edward was positive energy and drive to succeed. The desire was there too. I could feel my body reacting to him. I knew he could feel it.
What do I have to lose? The only thing I didn't want to lose was him.
"Yes, I'll go with you," I said softly.
Then Edward picked me up and spun me around, just like he'd done the first time we'd met. He kissed me, the way he knew I liked.
He set me down and pulled back to wipe the tears from my cheeks.
"Bella, will you go with me, go with me? Be my girlfriend?"
I smiled. "Can you ask me again in the morning? I'm kind of a 'try before you buy' kind of girl."
He looked crestfallen until I nudged him playfully. "I'm just joshing, you adorable boofhead."
Edward lifted me up again and carried me into the bedroom.
We groped and panted as we stripped each other of all clothing. I was so hot for him I thought I would spontaneously combust.
It wasn't soft or gentle as Edward rolled on a rubber and pushed into me. It was rushed and passionate.
The inner springs of my rusty mattress-base squeaked and clunked as Edward and I joined our bodies.
I had no idea what the future would hold for us, but I didn't want to be the faceless, passive participant in someone else's narrative.
I was going to write the fucking book!