A/N: This was originally a feature of SFFR, so happy to share it with my lovely readers. Tons of love to Mizzdee, my beta and wifey, and Rosalynn, my banner maker and friend, for their work on this story, I couldn't have done it without you!
Check out my profile to see the new stories I will be starting next year and the charities you can get a first glimpse of them in. Four great causes, four great stories, at least, I like them.
And now, let the magic begin…
Bella Swan's not my favorite person.
Now I'm sure she's nice enough to most people, and somehow, we have the same circle of friends, but we've always been on opposite ends. She's a brain and I'm a jock. She's a kiss-ass and I'm a smart-ass. And probably the biggest issue standing between us was this simple fact: I come from money and she doesn't.
It's not as if I asked to be the son of a successful doctor and a whiskey heiress, but hey, it definitely had its perks. Those things tended to impress people, the money, the name, but Bella hated me even more because of it.
And now we were sitting next to each other on the first leg of an eight-hour trip to the happiest place on earth…somehow, I doubted even Mickey could keep us from fighting sometime in the next ten days.
It was moments like this that I wished I hadn't broken up with Jessica, but I wasn't going to marry the girl, and she was already picking out baby names…who does that at 18?
Bella shifted beside me and I finally turned to notice her white knuckling the armrests.
"What's your malfunction?" I groaned and she looked over at me.
"I'm not a very good flyer," she mumbled.
"Obviously," I snarked, "but didn't you ever learn in one of your AP Honors Super-nerd classes that planes are safer than cars?"
"Yes, but that doesn't mean that it's easy for me to get over my fear. It's irrational, that's the nature of fears," she quipped back.
"Well, do you think you can get a grip on it for the next seven hours and," I looked at my watch, "forty-two minutes, because if you not, I'm switching with Alice as soon as the seatbelt light is off."
"Why did you even invite me on this trip?" Her eyes were narrowed as she asked, and I was operating on too little sleep to filter myself now.
"Jess and I broke up and Alice said it would be nice to have the whole gang together, like it was fate. I just didn't want the money to go to waste. This shit cost a fortune."
Bella stiffened beside me just as the light dinged in the cabin, signaling that we could use our approved electronic devices. She quickly pulled out a neck pillow, an eye mask, and her IPod, shoving her bag under the seat in front of her and settling in. She fell asleep quickly, or at least she appeared to, I couldn't tell with that mask on.
Trying to forget about the disaster that today was, I pulled out my kindle and started reading, but my eyes were too damn tired. I had to be up for the car service to get us at 4am, then the three-hour drive to the airport, only to have Jasper and Emmett both refuse to let their girlfriends take my seat next to Bella.
I felt the gentle nudge beside me and looked around to see people starting to move around the cabin. "What the hell?"
"We're in Dallas, you fell asleep." Bella was already packed up and waiting for me to do the same.
We shuffled off the plane and Emmett steered us towards the food court, bitching about his stomach the entire way. Alice and Bella were huddled together, so I didn't mind it too much when the two of them and Jasper sat at one table and we took an open one about forty feet away.
"Why did I agree to let her take Jess' spot?" I moaned and Rosalie smacked me upside the head.
"You did it to show her that you're capable of basic human kindness. She's our friend too, but somehow you manage to make her feel so self-conscious that she doesn't come along on half of the things we do." Rosalie was giving me bitch-brow, but I was surprised to see a similar expression on Emmett's face.
"Don't act like I'm the only one to come from money, because you and Jasper both have shiny Mercedes back in Forks, and Alice drives a fucking Porsche." I nodded to emphasize my point, but Emmett shook his head.
"Yeah, the Hale's and the Brandon's are loaded too, but they'll eat at some dive restaurant, or go to a concert at a club that only has $20 tickets. The last time you planned a 'group event,' there was a $500 a person bill. Rose's parents got me the tickets for my birthday and I paid Rosie back for the dinner and the car and everything from my job at the garage, but Bella was left out in the cold."
"Exactly, you seem to enjoy leaving her out of things," Rosalie said matter-of-factly.
"That's not true," I argued.
"Really, then why don't you prove it on this trip? Don't throw your money in Bella's face fifty times a day and make her feel like shit. She's going to be the only friend you have within a hundred miles come September, so you may want to think about that." Rose stood up, effectively ending the conversation.
Emmett and I met up with the rest of the gang and made our way to the gate for our connecting flight. After making a quick call to the hotel to confirm that we were still scheduled for a late check in, I turned my attention back to the group. Bella and Jasper were playing war off to the side, so I pulled back out my Kindle and read until they started boarding. I looked over to Emmett, but Rose was there shaking her head, letting me know I was sitting next to her on this flight too.
Grumbling softly, I walked behind her, and was able to catch her when she tripped over nothing and nearly face planted into the rolling walkway between the gate and the plane.
"You okay?" I asked, trying to sound sincere.
"Yeah, thanks," she muttered before continuing down to the plane.
I settled into the seat, my bag stowed and flipped through the ridiculously priced magazine filled with "As Seen on TV" shit that they could over-charge for because you bought it off the plane. It wasn't long before we were in the air and I once again sought to finish the book I was reading.
With not even a word spoken between us, the plane started to make its approach into Orlando. We hit an air pocket during the descent, and Bella's nails were suddenly clawing into my thigh. It took a moment for her to realize it before she retracted her hand as if it had been burned.
A whispered apology was all that was said and fifteen minutes later, she was one of the first people off the plane. I saw her eye mask on the floor, forgotten in her rush to get off the plane, so I picked it up to return to her once I found her.
I could feel the evil eye burning a hole in my head, but Bella was quick to tell everyone that she was freaked out and that was the reason behind her hasty departure.
"By the way, you dropped this when you vaulted over my lap," I winked and Bella actually laughed as she took it back, tucking it into her bag. That single act seemed to soothe the harpy for now.
It took damn near an hour for the six of us to get out of the terminal, collect our bags and pick up our rental cars, making it nine-thirty at night here, but after the long morning, I was tired no matter how early it was back in Washington.
The thirty-five minute ride was uneventful, but when our bags were loaded onto the three separate carts and the valet took our cars I realized something that should have come into my head a while ago.
Marching across the stone floor to the concierge desk, I prayed that Kelly, the girl behind the desk, could help me.
"Welcome to Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge, are you checking in?"
"Yes, Kelly, but I have a bit of a problem. You see I reserved a room months ago and asked for a King bed in the room, is there any way it could be switched to two Queen–sized beds? The reservation is under Edward Cullen."
"Let me check." She searched through her computer, but soon started shaking her head. "I'm sorry we're fully booked, and the rooms that were booked with you were all for King beds. There's a daybed in the room, but until we have an opening there's nothing I can do."
"Thank you, you can go ahead and check us in. The other two couples are coming in right now."
"What's wrong?" Bella asked, her eyes watching me nervously.
"There's a slight problem with our room," I told her.
"What's the problem?" she asked.
"It only has a King-sized bed," I whispered.
"Are you kidding me? What made you think that I would share a bed with you?" Bella's shriek echoed off every fucking surface in the giant open space, making her turn seven shades of red.
"I didn't do it on purpose. I got this room for-"
"You and Jessica, I get it. I'm not the person you want to spend the next ten days in a room with, well rest easy, I don't want to be in it with you anymore than you do." Her voice sounded more hurt than angry, so I figured the best way to fix it was to at least ease the embarrassment.
"We'll catch you guys tomorrow at seven-thirty, night," I said, grabbing Bella's hand and motioning for the bellhop to follow us up. He brought us up to our room on the third floor, leaving our bags and making a quick exit after I tipped him.
"Can I use the bathroom before you get in there?" Bella asked, to which I agreed, letting her take her toiletries with her while I unpacked.
Fifteen minutes later, something that shocked the hell out of me, Bella walked out in a towel. I almost made a comment, but decided she was embarrassed enough in the last half hour, so I simply grabbed my shaving bag and a change for bed and jumped in the shower.
The water felt good against my back as I tried to let my frustration wash down the drain, but eventually, the water just turned cold. Climbing out and changing for bed, I walked out to see only a small light on by the bed, but was surprised when Bella wasn't anywhere to be seen. It took a moment to notice her tucked up under the blanket on the daybed, her eye mask on and her headphones resting on her ears.
I hadn't planned on making her sleep on that cramped-ass thing, but hopefully I could make some of this up to her tomorrow…after all we had another nine days together in this room.
I woke up around six forty-five and surprisingly; Bella was already up and dressed. I headed into the bathroom to change and when I came out, she was braiding her hair into two loose braids that hung over her ears. I texted Jasper, who let me know they were already in the lobby, waiting for the rest of us to come down.
"Alice and Jasper are downstairs if you want to head down. We have another half hour before the reservation."
Bella looked up, almost confused by the civility and nodded. "We might as well go down now; you know Emmett will be annoyed if he has to wait because we took too long."
I laughed because Bella was right about that, Emmett was particular about his food. "Okay, bring whatever you'll need for the day, because we're heading straight to the park from the restaurant."
Picking up a tiny wallet and her ancient phone, she slid them into her pockets and then sat her sunglasses on the top of her head. We headed down to see Emmett and Rosalie coming out of another elevator.
"How was the rest of your night?" Rose asked as we walked to meet Alice ad Jasper.
"We went to bed pretty quickly, but there wasn't much room to spread out," Bella said, rolling her neck.
"You're a bed hog too, eh Edward?" Emmett laughed, but Bella was already squashing that idea.
"I slept on the daybed."
Rose hit me and I turned to her as she started bitching. "You made her sleep on the daybed?"
"I didn't make her do anything," I defended myself. "I took a shower and she was already asleep when I got out. I wasn't going to make her sleep on that thing, it looks damn uncomfortable."
Rosalie looked between the two of us and decided I wasn't lying. "Okay, I'm sorry for hitting you; it looks like you did listen to me."
With that minor disaster averted, we met Alice and Jasper and were seated at one of the tables in Boma, the hotel's restaurant. The buffet style meal looked great and we all got a laugh out of how much Emmett managed to pile onto his plate, but soon we were too busy eating to care. About halfway through the meal, Emmett pointed to his plate and broke into the quiet conversation.
"This French toast is pretty good, but they don't hold a candle to my Little Bit's orange French toast with chocolate flavored maple syrup."
"Oh damn, now you've got me craving them. I swear, Bella, if you weren't going to school to be a vet, I'd pay for you to go to culinary school in New York on the condition that Alice and I were your test subjects." Jasper got a misty look in his eyes, like he really would do it if he could.
"What are you talking about?" I asked, feeling like I was missing something.
"You've never eaten Bella's cooking? Oh man, if I wasn't in love with Rosie, I'd marry Bella for her hush puppy chicken alone." Emmett got that same damn look about him and I huffed.
"When has she cooked for you guys?"
"When you were too busy sticking your dick in Stanley to do movie nights or go to the beach with us. Bella's been feeding us since she's been tall enough to see over the burners. She's seriously gifted," Rosalie finished, shooting me a pointed look.
"Okay, I get it; I'm a piece of shit. Your point's been made, Barbie," I growled.
"You're not a piece of shit, Edward. It's just you fit in sitting at my dining room table as well as I do at one of your fancy dinners or expensive trips." It didn't escape anyone's notice that she was currently on one of those trips, with me footing the bill.
"You belong on this trip, Bella. I wouldn't have told Rose and Alice to invite you if I hadn't wanted you to come with us," I said, hoping she wouldn't fall into one of her moods right before we left for the amusement park.
"Then why wasn't I invited along to begin with?" She pushed.
"Would you have been able to afford the trip alone?" I asked.
"No," she responded.
"Would you have let us split the cost of your expenses for you?" I fired back.
"That's why. Asking you would have only put you in the awkward position of once again seeing how much money we're allowed to pretty much piss away on trips and nights out. Honestly, I was trying not to be a dick when I mentioned it, plus with seven of us, you would have been the only single. I guess no matter what, I screw up when it comes to you." I finished only to get hit by both Rosalie and Jasper.
"Way to play the martyr card and be a prick at the same time, you once again astound me with your ability to be a multifaceted douche." I stared at Rosalie, amazed that she'd said that with a straight face.
Breakfast ended with Emmett signing for our bill and we made our way to the buses.
Bella sat between the girls on the ride to the Magic Kingdom, but the moment we stepped off and entered the park, it was as if all of the tension was forgotten. I quickly looked at everyone, but Emmett was already yelling for us to go to Space Mountain.
We got in line and thankfully, it only lasted twenty-five minutes, which we easily spent chatting. When it was time to board our rocket, Rose insisted that Emmett "anchor" the ride and sit in the back. Alice was next, saying she wanted to be in the middle, so Bella and I were left in the front. I really didn't care if I sat in the first or second seat so I gave her the choice.
"You won't be able to see past me if I sit in front, but if you don't want to be in the first seat, I'll take it."
She smiled and moved ahead of me. "Thanks, I'll take the front seat."
We all climbed into the ride and then it shot off through the blue tunnel and we went careening around the track. Alice and Rosalie both screamed like girls, but I was impressed that Bella was screaming because she was really enjoying herself.
When the three-minute ride came to an end, we exited the building and headed straight for the Tomorrowland Speedway. This was one ride where Rosalie and Alice took over, each picking out their cars. Alice dove in the yellow one while Rose took a red, with Jasper and Emmett both getting into red cars as well. I picked one of the blue and white cars as Bella went ahead of me in the green and white one.
They gave us the green light, and we rode around, Alice and Rose steering like they could come off the track and really get out ahead while the rest of us took a more relaxed approach. Emmett pulled alongside Bella and teased her about feeling like she was flying compared to her truck at home, which I instantly laughed at because the thing was a rust bucket that barely did the speed limit.
The cars crossed the finish line and I checked the app on my phone to see if there was anything around that didn't have a long wait time.
"Hey guys, the Stitch show that replaced the Alien Encounter has a short line, want to check it out?"
We continued that way for most of the day, but after lunch Bella started to get agitated. We kept checking out the different rides, that way we knew what we'd want to try again when we made our last pass at the end of the week.
After Splash Mountain and The Haunted Mansion, we decided to check out the Carousel of Progress, mainly because Jasper had wanted to go on it. It was interesting, considering it was something that Walt Disney designed himself, but it was over and Jasper was happy. Bella was not.
"What bug crawled up Swan's ass?" I asked Alice.
"She said she wasn't feeling too great, she thinks the heat and the crowds may be too much for her."
"Doesn't she visit her mom in Jacksonville? How can she not have some ability to deal with it?" I said, evidently a little loud.
"Because I haven't gone to see her in years. And besides, sitting on the beach is one thing, walking around a park with no relief from the sun for nine hours is completely different."
"Okay, whatever," I said. "Everyone said that they wanted to go on Pirates before we headed back for dinner, right?"
We all agreed and Bella followed behind us as we got in line. It took a while, but we were able to get onto a boat and head into the ride. Alice squealed when the animatronic Johnny Depp first appeared, but soon we heard a loud groan as the boat came to a stop.
"What the fuck was that?" Rosalie questioned aloud.
"Excuse me; could you watch your language, there are children on this boat?" Some random lady in the back of the boat asked.
The music and animation continued as the minutes ticked by and everyone slowly lost their patience. Some faster than others. I looked at my watch and saw we'd been in there for almost twenty minutes.
"Oh my God, I'm about to swim my way out of this ride," Bella moaned.
"Yeah, I'm with you, Bella. Robot Johnny Depp is officially starting to freak me out," Alice agreed.
It was another ten minutes, but finally we saw a light and then heard splashing and turned to see two men in wading through the water. They brought a thick piece of wood from the side wall and rested it on the boat, leading up to the side where the dioramas were.
"No way," Emmett and some six year old on the back of the ride said in unison, causing the rest of us to laugh.
It took a few minutes, but eventually they got to us at the front of the boat, at which point Emmett was vibrating in his seat.
"Emmett, what's got you ready to piss yourself?" Jasper asked.
"Are you serious?" Emmett asked in disbelief. "We're being taken off the ride and seeing backstage at Disney, but even more important, they're making us 'walk the plank' to get off the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. This is fucking sweet!"
"You've got to be kidding me," Bella griped and took the offered hand, nearly falling off the wood, but luckily, the guy standing in the water caught her.
It took another few minutes and a personal escort from a 'cast member' but we were finally back in the park and Bella was done. "Can we go to one of the rooms and order room service or something? I just want to change into my pajamas and relax."
Everyone seemed to be cool with that, so we headed off to the buses so we could put the plan into action.
The ride to the hotel was quick, and we split up in the lobby, agreeing to meet at Alice and Jasper's room when we were done. I could tell Bella was still really grumpy, so I decided to try to get back on her good side.
"Bella when we get back, do you want to use the bathroom first, or do you want me to jump in quick so you can take your time?"
Bella turned around and eyed me for a long minute before sighing, "You can go first. I may need a few more minutes."
"Okay, cool," I responded.
When we got back to the room, I grabbed my shorts, wife beater, and some boxers and headed into the bathroom to shower. I was finished quickly, but after I got dressed, I realized that I'd unknowingly been eaten alive today at the park. It didn't surprise me with how fucking huge the bugs were down here, but I couldn't stop itching.
Bella was once again in and out of the bathroom in record time for a girl, but as soon as I saw her, I knew we had a problem.
She walked out of the bathroom in paper-thin pajama pants and a tank top, her bra was visible through the fabric as it clung to her skin. Fucking traitorous body.
"You ready to go?" Bella asked, pulling me out of my dirty thoughts and reminding me of the reality of our situation, not to mention how damn itchy I was.
"Yeah, let's go."
We grabbed our room keys and phones and walked out, walking over to the elevator and heading up to Alice and Jasper's room.
Emmett was already sitting on the daybed, pouring over the menu so he could find what he wanted to order. Rosalie and Alice were sitting on the edge of the bed and Jasper had made a run to the ice machine.
We placed our order and waited the twenty to thirty minutes for the food to arrive. Bella was sitting with the girls while Emmett and Jasper flipped through the on-demand movies trying to find something we could all deal with. I was sitting there, waiting for them to make a movie pick when I heard Alice gasp.
"Bella, what are all these dots on your back?"
"I get freckles in the sun sometimes," she brushed her off, but Rose persisted.
"No, these look like bug bites or … Ali, do they look like chicken pox to you?"
"Chicken pox? Great, now I'm going to get them too." I moaned, but Jasper shook his head as he pointed to my arm.
"From the way you're scratching, if it is chicken pox, you already have them."
"This is such bullshit," I continued to gripe, but Alice just rolled her eyes.
"Why don't you call your dad and send him a picture, he'll know what they are and he'll be able to tell you what's best."
"Fine," I grumbled, dialing my father's cell.
"Edward, how's your trip?" My dad was cheerful, which meant that he was likely at home enjoying the fact that I wasn't home. Gross.
"Okay, but we may have a problem."
"What is it?" I heard the change in his voice immediately.
"Well Bella and I are both itchy and Alice noticed some spots on her back, but we don't know if they're bug bites or something serious, so if I sent you a picture of her back and my arm, could you tell us?"
"Can you go outside, so the lighting won't be yellow from the incandescent bulbs?" he asked.
"Yeah, we'll step out on the balcony; call me back when you've looked at them."
"Okay, Son. Talk to you in a few."
I hung up and Bella and I went outside, where I snapped a picture of her back and then one of my arm and sent it on to my dad. It was only a four minutes later when my phone rang.
"Edward, it looks like you both have chicken pox."
"Great," I yelled, "I guess this is what I get for sharing a room with Bella instead of one of the guys."
Bella sat on the chair at the far end of the balcony, while my father started responding to me. "Actually, it takes ten to twenty-one days for you to get the actual illness after exposure, and considering that Eric Yorkie came into the hospital a few days ago with an infection from scratching with dirty nails, he is likely the culprit. Most of your class, who didn't have it as children, or didn't have the vaccine, like you, now have it." My dad sighed and then spoke again, "As much as you'd like to believe, all the ills of the world do not begin and end with Isabella Swan."
"Whatever, Dad," I muttered.
"Apologize to her, Edward. I know she must be within hearing distance of that little outburst."
"I will, Dad."
"Both of you have to stay inside, no more going to the park until the pox have scabbed over completely, which can take five to ten days. You're going to be itchy and you may get a fever, the most important thing is to take Advil and drink plenty of water. And try to keep cool. Sweating will only make the itch worse. Call me if you need anything."
"Sure, Dad, talk to you soon."
"Feel better, Son."
I hung up and looked at Bella. "Sorry I blamed you for this; it seems Yorkie got half of Forks High with this."
"It's fine, whatever," she said, brushing passed me into the room.
"I'm trying to apologize for being a dick, why do you have to be a bitch about it?" I hollered.
"Because, Edward, you treat me like I'm a pebble you can't seem to get out of your shoe and you make damn sure I know it. Your sincerity's forced because Carlisle told you to apologize. If it were up to you, you wouldn't have said a word."
The knock at the door broke up our fight and we sat around for a tense dinner before Bella bolted from the room, barely a good-bye for everyone else.
I gave her a few minutes and then caught up with her as she was digging out her eye mask and I-Pod. "Are you okay sleeping on the side facing the balcony?"
Bella looked at me and then to the bed and shook her head. "That's fine."
She climbed into bed, put on her headset, and fell asleep. I, however, lay there for a while realizing that we were now in this room together, alone, until we were better. How in the hell were we not going to kill each other in the next week?
The next morning I woke up to find Bella sitting on the balcony, a cup of coffee in her hand. I climbed out of bed and opened the door to join her.
"Where'd you get the coffee?"
"Emmett brought it by, there's one for you too." She reached over and handed it to me.
"Thanks," was my brilliant reaction.
We sat there for a while before she looked at her phone. "Did you want to order breakfast?"
"You have to order it with the card on the doorknob. I could call down and pretend we did put out a card and see if they'll send something up."
"No, because someone will get in trouble for us not thinking ahead."
"So what are we going to do for breakfast?" I asked.
"It's nine thirty; can you wait until eleven when they start serving lunch? We'll order first thing and get a bunch of food if you want." She looked at me with these pleading eyes and I couldn't pick a fight with her, so I agreed.
"Do you want to put on a movie or something? If there isn't anything on the list you can order one." I handed Bella the remote and she began searching.
"Would you kill me if I put on a Disney movie?" Bella asked just as I saw the opening credits to The Lion King start.
"No, it's oddly appropriate. And we couldn't have timed it better if we knew that it was on."
The next two hours passed with us laughing - and Bella crying – through the movie until our lunch arrived.
I pulled the cart into the room and Bella and I started eating. She picked at her side salad while I ate my burger.
"You're not eating," I stated lamely.
"I'm not that hungry, it's why I got a smaller salad," Bella answered as she started coughing.
"I'm going to take a shower, but we should crank the AC, it'll make it more comfortable. Dad said that we'll itch more off we're hot."
"Okay," was all she said as I went into the bathroom.
Twenty minutes later, she was sound asleep and I decided to read for a while, seeing as I couldn't do much else.
I woke up to the bed shaking violently, rolling over to see Bella coughing and I reached over to shake her. "Jesus, get out of bed if you're going to have a fucking seizure."
"I can't control my coughing," she yelled.
"And I can't do anything about my fucking headache," I screamed back.
"Oh, so you're ailments are more important than mine," Bella snapped.
"Mine aren't driving you crazy," I sneered.
"No, but you are." And with that, Bella grabbed her sleep mask and IPod and went out onto the balcony, putting on the mask and relaxing into the chair out there.
I curled up on the bed, hoping to finally get some uninterrupted sleep. It seemed to work, because I woke up after six-thirty, Bella was sitting on the daybed, reading a worn out copy of Pride and Prejudice.
"I'm hungry, do you want something?" I asked, but Bella just shook her head.
"Okay, I'm ordering for myself then," I muttered and placed my order, turning off the air to give myself a break from the constant cold.
Bella was silent through dinner, and I preferred it that way at the moment. But soon she was itching pretty badly and she walked over to the AC control, turning it back on.
"Hey, I turned that off for a reason."
She turned to glare at me. "Well I'm hot."
"Then maybe you shouldn't have spent the afternoon out on the balcony with the heat and humidity the way it is down here," I scoffed as I pushed my room service tray outside.
"It's always about you, isn't it? You're cold, so I have to be hot. My coughing is bugging you so I have to stop. I'm just as sick as you are, so why are you more important?" she wailed.
"Because this is my room. My money paid for the AC, and the lunch you didn't eat and the breakfast you'll probably stick your nose up to in the morning. I got badgered into letting you come and now I'm stuck in this room with the last person I want to spend ten days with." I was breathing heavy after that rant, but what surprised me was the fire that she responded with.
"Oh, and you're such a fucking prince! I've spent most of my life only getting half of my friends because you use your money to exclude me, to make me feel like I'm less than you. The only time you ever talk to me at all is either out of pity or because you're forced to, but stupid me, I saw this as some olive branch because we're going to be at the same school next year. Well I guess I really must be a fool. You know, it's amazing … for someone who barely seems to notice my existence," Bella sucked in a stuttered breath and I noticed her tear streaked face, "you've made me cry more than all of my boyfriends combined."
A sob escaped her throat just as she ran for the bathroom door, locking herself inside.
"Bella, let me in," I called as I pounded.
"Go away," she said, crying harder now that there was the wall between us.
I don't even know how we escalated that fast, one moment we were silent, the next she was in tears. And what the hell was that bit about me making her cry more than those assholes she dated in school? I barely talk to her outside of our group, how can I make her cry?
My head was killing me and I felt like shit, but her crying was still going on pretty hard on the other side of the door. I knew an apology wouldn't do me any good right now, so I waited for what I knew would eventually come.
Thirty minutes later there was no noise coming from the bathroom. I popped the lock with my Forks High ID and saw her tiny body curled up on the tile floor. Careful not to move her too much, I carried her to bed, making sure the AC was pumping. It wasn't until I picked her up that I realized she was hot, probably running a fever.
I moved quickly, taking her purse, cell phone, and room key and locked it in the safe. Then I called Rose to ask for a favor.
"What do you want, Edward?" she moaned into the phone.
"Always so polite to the sickies, Rose."
"If you wanted nice, you would have called Alice," she shot back.
"True, if I text you a list of things to pick up for Bella and me, would you?"
"More Bella than you, but sure," she said with a laugh.
"Thanks, Ice Queen."
"No problem, dip shit."
I started texting her as soon as she disconnected and then ten minutes after that I called Alice.
"How are you guys feeling, Edward?"
"We've been better, but I have something I need to ask you."
"Shoot," she offered.
"Do I make Bella cry a lot?" I asked.
"Define 'a lot.'"
"It's that bad?" I pushed.
"At times, yeah. Like when she broke up with Tyler and on the night we took her out to cheer her up, you spent all night dry-humping Jess. Or how you always manage to sell Esme as 'mother of the century,' when you know that Bella is still sensitive about Renee."
That had me responding, "Wait, so we're not allowed to talk about our moms because hers bailed?"
"No," Alice said. "But there aren't that many divorces in Forks and coming from one of those families is rough. You seem to bring her up more around Bella and that always makes her sad. Do you know that her mother hasn't contacted her once since she left? Not a phone call, or a letter, nothing."
"Shit, that's harsh." I admitted, moving into the bathroom.
"You two were as thick as thieves when we were small and then her parents broke up and you started treating her different. You kind of pitied her, and Bella doesn't take that well. So she got bitchy and you wrote her off. Then it was all about the money, the one thing that clearly separated you. She lost two people that were important to her that year."
"How do you remember all of this?"
"I don't understand how you could forget," Alice replied.
"What can I do to make this better? I feel bad after what she said. I mean, she talked about how I made her cry worse than all of her boyfriends, but were they even bad breakups?" I don't know why I wanted context, but at that moment, I needed it.
"Jake was the worst, because he was also her friend, after that she didn't have many friends outside of us. Mike embarrassed her when he dumped her, so that was pretty rough, and Tyler cheated on her with Lauren."
"How do you have Bella, and then go to Lauren?" I asked disgusted.
"I don't know, how can you disregard her so completely?" Alice's pointed question had no clear answer.
"I don't know, but I plan to make it right. Thanks Alice."
"You're welcome; don't let me regret telling you all of that. Feel better." The line disconnected before I could say good-bye.
I thought about what we'd want and sent a list of basic food and drink items that would be too expensive through room service and then added in Advil, calamine lotion, icepacks, a first aid kit and anything she could think of to make Bella and I feel better.
I went over to the desk and rolled the chair next to the bed, watching Bella as she slept. Her words were really eating away at me. I knew we didn't get along, but that didn't mean I enjoyed knowing that I'd made her cry.
She seemed so peaceful in her sleep, her guarded expression was wiped away, which I now realized was probably my doing. But more than that, she was beautiful. Not a pound of makeup and a can of hairspray beautiful like Jessica or Rosalie, she was already there straight out of bed. What I had to do now was work on removing that scowl.
It was almost ten-thirty when my phone beeped with a text from Emmett.
I walked to the door and waited a few minutes, knowing it was a long ass walk from the lobby, and opened the door to see Emmett with a rolling suitcase while Rosalie held a few bags from the pharmacy.
"She's still sleeping," I said as I let them in, Rosalie's eagle eyes looked around the room and then back at me.
"Why do you have the chair pulled up to the bed like some type of creeper?"
"I was watching TV until I got the text," I answered plainly, but I knew she wasn't buying it.
"We got you both crackers and stuff in case your stomach is acting up and a bunch of oatmeal bath packs, because it will sooth your skin once it starts to itch. Everything you asked for was easy to find, so it's here. The suitcase is the food. That was Emmett's idea."
"What," he looked between us incredulously, "it made us look less sketchy walking with a suitcase than like ten bags from Winn Dixie."
"Okay, thanks guys. I'll let you know if we need anything else," I said slipping Emmett enough cash to cover what they'd gotten.
Rose and Emmett turned to leave, but she stopped just shy of the door. "Oh, and we got you a box of rubber gloves, for when you have to go get ice or something."
"Thanks again," I said as they closed the door, leaving me alone with Bella again.
I started with the food, thankful that the room had a fridge I it. I got some of the drinks and the perishable shit away before organizing the suitcase and leaving it out so we could get to it easily. In the bathroom, I laid out the medication and put the boxes of bath stuff in the cabinet so they weren't just stacked on the counter. I knew we'd have to leave the room tomorrow so housekeeping could do their thing.
It was eleven-thirty when I crawled into bed, my last task was ordering breakfast ad leaving the tag on the door.
I woke up the next morning, itching like a fiend. It was only six-thirty, so I decided to test the oatmeal baths that Rosalie got us.
As I settled into the water, I felt it immediately. My skin was soothed and I didn't feel like peeling off my skin to get some relief. I relaxed until the warm water turned cool and then showered off the residue, making sure I'd cleaned the tub good enough for Bella.
I threw on some clothes and walked out of the bathroom to the sound of Bella's cough. I grabbed a bottle of water and handed it to her.
"What am I doing out here? Didn't I lock myself in the bathroom last night?"
I sighed, sitting on the foot of the bed. "You did, but I jimmied the lock and carried you out here."
"You must have really had to use the bathroom." She laughed, looking towards the balcony.
"No, I just felt like shit. Contrary to popular belief, it isn't my mission I life to make you miserable."
"It doesn't always feel that way," she whispered.
I could have commented on what she said, but it would have turned into a fight and I was trying to avoid that right now. Instead, I got up and turned on the TV.
"I had Rose and Emmett run to get us some supplies. There's an oatmeal bath in there that works wonders and a thermometer in case you wanted to see if you still have a fever."
Her head turned to look at me; her brow furrowed in what I'm guessing was confusion. "Thanks. Did they pick up anything we could eat for breakfast?"
"Breakfast should be here in about forty-five minutes or so, so by the time your bath is done you'll have a hot meal."
Bella nodded and got her clothes together before heading into the bathroom. I found some daytime game show to watch and soon I was letting in our breakfast.
"Food's here," I hollered through the door and soon I recognized the sound of the shower starting up, so I wheeled the food cart over to the daybed and then pushed the computer chair to the other side.
The bathroom door opened and Bella walked out in cotton shorts and a tank top, her bra peeking out from under the thin fabric.
"What did you get?" She asked, shifting from one foot to the other.
"French Toast and eggs, you can pick what you want and I'll take the other," I told her, gesturing to the cart.
She looked at the plates before sitting in front of the eggs, leaving me with the plate of French Toast. I sat on the daybed and we started eating. We ate in silence, which was an improvement from the fight we had the last time we ordered food.
We finished breakfast and I pushed the cart out into the hallway. I'd closed the door when Bella had another fit. I walked over and started rubbing her back, not missing the slight tensing I felt when I touched her. Her coughs quieted and she looked up at me, "I know I've said it a lot this morning, but thanks."
"No problem, whenever I'd get sick, my mom used to - " I froze and pulled away, realizing what I'd just said without even thinking of it. "Shit! Fuck, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to … grr!"
Bella walked over to the bed and sat next to me, obviously not understanding the outburst that had me flopping down on the mattress. "Okay, did Carlisle call you back and tell you that I'm dying or something? Because I don't get this, at all."
"Christ, I can't even be nice to you without you thinking that you're dying."
Her hand reached out and grabbed my wrist. "It is a little out of character for you. Now how about you explain where all of this is coming from."
I looked up into her expectant eyes and knew I wasn't getting away without telling her about my conversations last night. "After our fight, I called Rose and Alice. Rose had been telling me this whole trip that I was an asshole to you, but Alice gave me some perspective."
"Perspective on what?" she asked.
"On what happened to us. We used to be the closest two out of our group and now we can't even be in the same room together without fighting. I always thought it was puberty, or us just becoming different people, but Alice kind of killed that theory."
Bella grumbled, "What did Alice tell you?"
"That I was a complete piece of shit to you after your mom left, rubbing my mom in your face. And I'm always throwing the fact that I have money in your face … oh and I turned my back on my best friend, leaving you all alone." I thought back to the phone call, feeling I'd basically covered all the areas of my inadequacy.
"I wish she hadn't opened her mouth," Bella whispered.
"I'm glad she did. It had always been a mystery, not that I'd taken much time trying to solve it." I continued to stare at the ceiling until Bella's face was looming over mine.
"We were eight, Edward," she sighed.
"Well, we aren't now, and in September you're going to be the only person I know within one hundred miles."
"Until two days after you get there. You're a charismatic guy; you'll make a ton of friends." Her eyes travelled to the glass doors again.
"It wouldn't be someone who's known me my entire life," I added. "Bella, please tell me I can make this right."
"We've got another six days together; I don't see why we can't try." She smiled and I would have given anything to know what was going through her mind at that moment.
The sound of a vacuum coming from the hallway startled us both. I opened the door and saw the cart two rooms down from ours. "We're going to have to go hide somewhere for a bit, grab two pairs of rubber gloves out of the box in the bathroom, I'm going to get your stuff out of the safe."
"Why is my stuff in the safe?" She stopped suddenly in the bathroom doorway.
"Honestly, I didn't want you to wake up pissed at me and run off." I looked at her remorsefully and then smiled when I saw her roll her eyes.
"I'm just surprised I slept through the night without my IPod," Bella said as she handed me the gloves.
I wanted to ask her about that too, but knew there would be a better time. She grabbed her purse and phone, and I got my stuff and we ran off into the stairwell. There weren't many places we could go and not interact with people, so we sat in there, waiting to hear the housekeeper move beyond our room.
"What do you want to do today?" I asked her.
"I know this is cliché, considering where we are, and the fact that we've already done it once but -"
"You want to watch more Disney movies?" I asked.
"Only the good ones, the ones that came out in the nineties."
"Sure, but if I ask to watch the game tomorrow …" I left the question hanging.
"I was raised by Charlie Swan; I think I can handle a baseball game." She laughed.
Before I could think better of it, I said what I'd been thinking since Alice gave me this particular piece of information last night. "Bella, I don't know what happened, or if you even know what happened, but the fact that your mother hasn't contacted you in the last ten years is her loss, not yours."
I saw Bella's hand reach for her eye as she whispered her thank you.
I peeked my head through the stairwell door and saw the housekeeper's cart far enough down the hall to let me know that we were in the clear, so after grabbing two extra ice buckets off the cart, Bella and I went back to our room.
"Which movie should we do first?" I asked as I scanned through the listing.
"Aladdin?" Bella offered.
"Only if we watch all three, the later ones crack me up," I told her, clicking on the first title and hitting play.
"Fine, but tonight is Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid," she countered.
"Deal, now let's turn on the AC and get comfortable."
The next several hours were filled with the movies we watched as kids, the humor in them catching us by surprise at times, but it was a fun afternoon. We ordered in for lunch, but Jasper and Alice brought us food back from a local restaurant so we'd have something else for a change.
I was still itching like crazy and despite Bella's constant swats and threats of getting me big Mickey gloves, we were really having fun. She was coughing less, which made me happy. If one of us was going to be doing better, I wanted it to be her. Let me suffer a little longer for my arrogance.
We'd showered and changed for bed as I turned on The Little Mermaid and Bella was ready with a bag of buttered popcorn and some soda.
During the movie, I kept looking over at her, amazed at how far we'd come so quickly, and really not wanting to fuck it up.
My eyes travelled back to the TV just as Prince Eric's date took Ariel on an evening boat ride. It was a perfect date, and he was trying so hard to get to know her, learn her name … it made me realize I'd wasted so much time with Bella.
Sebastian began singing "Kiss the Girl" and it was what I wanted to do. My eyes moved to see her watching the movie intently and I couldn't hold off any longer. I inched closer to her and then whispered her name, drawing her attention from the screen.
My lips touched hers and she gasped, allowing me more access, but I still kept it slow. I wasn't going to push forward until I knew she wanted me to. Her lips were soft against mine and I felt her fingers thread into my hair, but she used the leverage to pull me away instead of holding me close.
"Edward," she breathed and I slipped off the bed, giving us both some distance.
"Bella, it's okay. I'm sorry, I shouldn't have -" I started, but she cut me off.
"Shouldn't have what? Kissed me without talking to me about what it is that's going on, or let your hormones get the best of you." Her shoulders were hunched and I moved back to where she was sitting on the bed.
"I don't regret kissing you, but we've gone from barely talking to making out in thirty-six hours and I wanted to make sure you were okay."
"As long as we don't go back to how we were, I'm okay. I've missed my friend. But are you sure that this is what you want?" She was still doubting it; I had to make it clear to her.
"Bella, you're beautiful, smart and sexy as hell. We were kids when we let things beyond our control push us apart, but I've always assumed it was you pushing me away out of resentment for the things that made us different." I stroked her cheek, drawing her eyes to mine. "Now I know it was the fact that we're two of the most stubborn people on the planet that kept us from getting that back. I want to have my best friend on campus with me next year. Though I'd be a lot happier if you were something more."
"You're impossible, but that's part of the reason I loved you when we were little. And I'm starting to see that boy again, just let him run the show, because he was the one that kept my tears at bay."
"No more tears, Bella. This is our new beginning." I gave her one more peck on the lips and then we turned back to the movie, rewinding so we could pick up where we left off.
I went to bed that night with Bella feeling a lot better about us. She'd been so eager to have me back in her life that I needed to prove that she'd made the right decision to do it. I couldn't hurt her again.
The next morning, Bella was the first to shower, and I heard her answer the door while I was taking mine. I definitely planned to take another bath today, because the itching was driving me crazy. The calamine lotion only helped so much, even though having Bella and I do it for each other last night had been fun … and hot. I was so fucked if she wanted to move slowly.
The door slammed shut and I turned off the water, stalking out into the room to see Bella setting up the breakfast cart. A blank look came over her face when she turned around, but she shook it off before I could ask what was wrong.
I continued to scratch during breakfast until finally; Bella got up and went into the closet after the cart was returned to the hall.
"I got you a present, but we have to wait until after housekeeping is done first. You ready to go skulk in the shadows?"
"I am," I told her, kissing her forehead and then pulling back. "Your fever broke?"
"Last night. I'm feeling so much better now. The coughing is even gone, now it's just the itching." She smiled.
"But you're not scratching," I challenged. I couldn't do anything but scratch for fucks' sake.
"Mind over matter, Edward, now grab your crap and let's get out of here."
I followed her this time, and soon we were hiding back in the stairwell. I backed her into the shadows and kissed her, figuring we could make the most out of our time here, but as soon as we started getting into it my phone rang.
"Don't answer it," Bella panted across my neck.
I looked at the display, "My mom will just keep calling if I don't."
"Tell her I said hi," Bella told me as I answered the call.
"Edward, how are you feeling? It must be so horrible to be sick like that on vacation." My mom was very upset over it and I wanted to ease her mind.
"Mom, really its fine. Bella and I have been keeping each other from going to crazy and Emmett and Rose got us supplies so now it's just a matter of killing the boredom until we can go out."
"Are you feeling any better?"
"We are. Bella's fever broke and I'm itchy, but honestly, we could be a lot worse. I think it might be starting to clear up."
"Your father said it should be. Call us and let us know if you're still feeling sick close to the end of the trip and we'll move your flights back and find you a room someplace else until you're better." My mom was always two steps ahead with that stuff and I loved her for it.
"Thanks, I'll let you know. Look I've got to go, cause Bella and I are avoiding the housekeeping lady and I'm standing here ignoring her at the moment. She says hello and I'll talk to you soon." I tried to cut it short, but of course, Esme Cullen had to drop in one last thing.
"Tell her I said hello also, and I'm glad you finally woke up and realized that she was too special to let get away."
"Bye," I hung up quickly and turned to Bella. "So she said hi, and that she's happy I took my head out of my ass."
"I'm sure that wasn't how she put it," Bella said with a smirk.
"Sentiment was the same. I've been an idiot but I'm working to fix it."
I felt her hand on my cheek as she tipped up to kiss me.
"Don't worry about all of the stuff we said before, just focus on now," she spoke against my lips.
The sound of the cart rolling past the stairwell door was our signal that we were in the clear so Bella and I made our move. I sat on the bed while she went to the closet and came back with a pair of Donald Duck slippers.
"Okay, so I asked Emmett to get me the Mickey gloves, but you see how well that worked. But anyway, here's the best I can do from in here." She slipped the slippers onto my hands and then took out some medical tape and wrapped it around the bottom of the slippers until I was trapped in them.
"How am I supposed to piss and not make a mess in these?" I asked.
"I don't know, turn on the water in the shower and pee in there, less chance of you missing." Her smile was undeniable and I watched as she picked up a copy of Wuthering Heights and settled in to read it.
I did fine for the first hour or so, but when Bella went to use the bathroom, I lost my patience. Sitting on the side of the bed, I began itching myself with the gloves, hoping to get some relief, but as the bathroom door opened, I lost my patience. "Fucking ducks!"
"Edward, don't scratch!" Bella was next to me, trying to pull my duck covered hands from my body.
"Easy for you to say," I called back, rolling away from her until she jumped on me, her hips straddling mine, her hands pinning my wrists to the bed.
We were perfectly aligned and I couldn't resist bucking up into her. Her entire expression changed as her eyes closed and she pressed down, grinding into me. "Fuck, you feel good."
I was amazed to hear her say it, but I'd be damned if I didn't agree. "I think I found a way to forget about the itch for a while."
"I'm not taking the slippers off your hands," she warned.
"Take off your shirt and I think I'll survive."
Once again, Bella was willing to trust me, and soon I was face to face with her breasts. I rolled her over on the bed and started kissing her, straddling her left leg so that my right thigh was pressed against her. Moving my hands up her sides, Bella shivered at the sensations the non-slip little dots were creating and I knew these slippers would turn out to be a very good idea.
I massaged her breasts through the fabric of the slipper and she moaned and giggled at how it felt. When I began moving my thigh, rubbing it against her center, she arched into me and I knew that it was what she needed. I kissed her hard, letting my body work hers, pressing her into the mattress as she gasped and held onto my biceps. I could feel the effort she was taking not to dig her nails into me and I couldn't wait for these damn chicken pox to be gone so I could feel her nails run along my back while I was inside her.
Oh god, how I wanted to be inside her.
But this was working for the moment and the minute I felt her body shudder under mine and her thigh vibrated against my cock I exploded in my pants like a pre-pubescent boy.
I rested my forehead to hers and mumbled about needing to clean up; her only response was to place a kiss against the corner of my mouth.
My shower was quick, but when I returned Bella was sound asleep almost exactly where I left her. She had a serene smile on her face and it felt good to have put it there, as cocky as that sounds. I put the slippers back on my hands, forgetting about taping them this time, and then took my Kindle out and lounged on the daybed, glad that it was an older model and it had the giant buttons on the side so I could actually turn the page in my duck gloves.
Gloves … shit.
I got up and started digging through the suitcase of stuff that Emmett had gotten for us at the supermarket, hoping he'd either thought he was being funny, or had forgotten to empty his bag well enough and given me the one thing I needed but didn't want to call someone and ask for. Going through all the little pockets on the inside, I finally felt a cardboard box and nearly ripped the zipper open to see what was inside.
Jackpot, a box of condoms.
I slipped them into my dresser drawer and tried not to think about it, because if I did I just might wake her and see if she wanted to.
Bella slept for a few hours and by the time she woke up, we were ordering dinner. I'd killed a little time with an oatmeal bath and noticed that Bella must have used one this morning also, because another box was empty.
Our meal came and we joked about what we'd want to do when we were free of this damn room. After dinner, Bella got up to shower and I turned on the television. It was only a few minutes later that I realized I had to pee. I took off the slippers and went into the bathroom, trying not to look at the open side of the curtain. I was almost out when I heard Bella curse.
"You okay in there?" I asked.
"I just got shampoo in my eye, can you help me out?"
Not wanting to seem unchivalrous, I went over to the shower and striped, climbing into the back end of the shower. Only Bella wasn't squinting into the spray trying to get shampoo out of her eyes, she was staring at me with a devilish grin on those plump lips of hers.
"I thought you needed my help," I asked, stalking towards her.
"I do," she said, reaching past me to grab something off the built in shelf. It took me a minute to recognize the logo on the foil package.
"Where in the hell did you get that?" I asked, more surprised than anything.
"I was raised by a single father, so he was adamant that while any grandchildren I had would only be through immaculate conception, I needed to be protected and couldn't rely on the guy to supply them."
"I never thought I'd say this, but I love Chief Swan," I proclaimed as I pulled her to me. "You're sure?"
"I brought a condom with me into the shower; I'd say I'm pretty okay with the idea." She laughed as I tore open the paper and sheathed myself in the latex.
I moved us further under the warm spray, leaning Bella into the wall and then picking up her leg, "Hold on."
She watched as I lined myself up with her and then pushed inside, feeling her grip me as I moved.
"Oh Edward," she panted as I began to move.
I was careful of my footing as I moved with her, the water pelting us as I kissed her hard. Her hands were in my hair and the short tugs were going straight to my dick. I tried not to slam into her, but she just felt so damn good and it had been so long since I'd had sex with Jessica's bullshit that I was overwhelmed by how right this felt.
I exploded just as Bella clamped down around me, nearly falling to the tub floor at the weight of the sensations that were coursing through me.
We cleaned up and got dressed for bed, using more calamine lotion before I went in search of a game on one of the sports channels. Settling on the Mariners game against the Devil Rays, Bella came to join me on the bed. She looked around before spotting her IPod on the floor and placing it on the nightstand, the question I'd put off asking her was now staring me in the face.
"Do you always listen to your IPod to sleep?"
"Normally I use the dock in my room, but yeah." She shrugged, but I felt her tense up.
"Is it okay if I ask what you listen to?"
"Comedy mainly, or an audiobook, but no music." Her eyes were avoiding mine and I squeezed her into my side.
"You don't have to explain it to me, I was just -" I started, but she was already telling me.
"When I was little, my mom used to talk to me until I fell asleep. Sometimes she'd read me stories, other times she'd just tell me about her day. I always fell asleep to the sound of her voice. So when she left, I couldn't fall asleep without it. The house was too quiet and my dad works a fair amount of night shifts so I started borrowing his comedy cassettes and fell asleep to them. When I was older, he got me some CD's and eventually I got the IPod. It's soothing, feeling like I'm not alone."
"If I held you tonight, do you think it would help? I could talk to you if you wanted," I offered.
"I think it would. You wouldn't mind having to hold me?" She asked.
"I want to hold you," I whispered. "Come here."
She snuggled into my side for the rest of the game and when we finally turned off the lights, she lay in my arms as I whispered comforting words to lull her to sleep.
Thankfully, I woke up feeling much better. Most of the pox were crusted over and some of them were gone completely. Bella was soft and warm against me and I leaned closer, smelling the fruity aroma of her shampoo. The shampoo she'd lied about getting in her eye so I'd join her in the shower. Little minx.
The knock for room service surprised me until I realized what time it was and got up to answer the door. Bella rolled over and I wanted just jump back into bed with her, but when her stomach growled at us, I decided it was better if she ate.
Today Bella put the "do not disturb" door sign up and proclaimed that we were staying in. We'd been in for the last four days but who was I to argue. After my daily run to the ice machine with our three buckets, I came back in and decided to take a bath.
I left the door cracked and had brought a condom with me in hopes that she'd intrude on my relaxation. Sure enough, Bella came in to put on some calamine lotion, but I got her attention first.
"There's plenty of room in here if you want to join me," I smirked at her as she turned around to eye me.
"I wouldn't want to bother you," she said as she went to exit.
"Bella, I wouldn't have asked if it would bother me."
She giggled that carefree laugh I'd heard so much since we'd started whatever this was and stripped out of her clothes. She settled between my legs and I wrapped my arms around her and kissed her neck.
"Now this bath is perfect," I murmured against her skin.
My hands started roaming her skin as she melted against my chest. Bella turned so that she was kneeling in front of me.
"Too bad you weren't as prepared as I was," she said and I reached for the condom. "Cocky much?"
"Damn straight," I told her as I tried to put on the condom, but the water and the oatmeal were working against me.
Bella could see I was having problems and she took my hand. "I'm on the pill."
"I'm clean, my dad makes me get tested," I blurted out.
"I believe you," she told me, taking the ruined condom and flinging it towards the garbage.
Bella moved so that she was straddling my lap and I helped her as she lowered herself over me. I groaned as she started to rise up and then lower herself again, rolling her hips into me as she came down onto my lap. The water was miraculously low enough that it wasn't splashing out and I found myself focusing on Bella's amazing tits that were bouncing in my face at the moment.
My hands continued to roam her skin as my lips captured her nipple. She was glorious and I was seriously in awe of how free she was with me. I knew that I wasn't going to last long with her moving over me like that so I moved one hand down to brush her clit. Bella jumped in surprise, but her head fell back as I moved with more purpose over the spot above where we were connected.
Bella slammed into me a little rougher as she grew closer to her climax, her hands white-knuckling the sides of the tub as I split my attention between her breasts and her clit. I felt the beginning of her climax before she called out my name, the sound echoing around the room as I came hard.
We rested in the water for a few minutes before standing up and taking the mandatory shower the oatmeal required. It was quick, and soon we were ordering lunch and talking about school.
"How are you getting down there?" Bella asked.
"Well I have to drive because of the Volvo, so I was going to pack as much into that as I could and then anything else I could buy there. Its moments like this that I'm glad I let my dad talk me into the crossover, cause if I'd gotten the sporty one I'd have been screwed." I let my fingers aimlessly trace shapes on her arm as I continued. "What about you?"
"I'm driving down in the truck; it'll hold everything I'll need. Charlie can't take off a week to drive down with me and then help me move in so I convinced him I'd be fine." She shrugged it off, but I wasn't that happy about that idea.
"Bella, will your truck survive the drive to California?"
"Big Red has character, don't mock her," she sassed me, but I wasn't giving up that easily.
"I'm not mocking her; I'm just pulling the boyfriend card and saying that I don't like the idea of you driving down by yourself. Let me talk to my parents, maybe I can talk them into driving my Volvo down, that way I can ride with you. They were going to come with me, but now it gives me a little bit more room to fit crap in the car."
"Boyfriend card?" Bella asked, a stunned look on her face.
"Yeah, I mean you're not getting rid of me already, are you?" I tried to come off sounding cool, but I was shitting bricks on the inside.
"No," she yelled a little too loudly, "I just didn't know you saw us as … I don't know what I thought," she rambled off, but I pulled her face to mine.
"I don't fuck around, Bella, never have. If I'm with someone, then I want to be with them for as long as I can. That means the whole thing, dates, inappropriate PDA's, and road tripping to college together."
"Thank you, baby," she said, kissing me before hopping up to call her dad.
I wasn't sure I wanted to witness this conversation, but I was about to. She was on for a few moments before she walked out of the bathroom and handed me the phone.
"Edward," Chief Swan said as I took the phone.
"Chief," I answered him.
"Bella said that you two have been sick for most of your trip and that you've been taking care of her."
"She's a special girl, it hasn't been hard looking after her," I admitted.
"Listen, Son. I've always liked you, I thought you had your head up your ass these past ten years or so, but that's being young and stupid for you. But I'm giving you this one chance to be good to her, don't blow it."
"Yes, Chief," I told him.
"Hell, Edward, you're clear across country and are dating my girl, call me Charlie," he said with a chuckle.
"Okay, Charlie. I'll see you when we get home."
"Feel better," he said and I handed the phone back to Bella so she could finish the conversation.
After the big relationship conversation yesterday, Bella and I were doing even better. We woke up today and the itching was gone. Bella and I looked over each other, for strictly medical purposes, and saw that all the pox were all crusted over, meaning that we weren't contagious anymore.
I called my dad after sending him pictures of the pox that had been itching yesterday and he agreed that we'd grown past the point where we had to stay in, but told us it was smart to play it low key for today at least.
Taking his advice, Bella and I decided that today we'd stay in the room, but tomorrow we were going to explore the hotel and see everything we hadn't while we were locked away. The pools and water parks were still off limits, as we didn't want to push our luck and get half of Orlando sick if we were still somehow able to get a lone blister or something.
Bella's animation when we heard the housekeeper had to be the funniest thing I'd seen all week.
"Edward, come on, this is the last time we have to hide from her. Let's make the most out of it."
Laughing with her, we went to our stairwell and made out for a good twenty minutes before she was past our room. The day moved by quickly and during Bella's nap I took a moment to sneak off and take some photos with my phone of the stairwell and the newly cleaned bathroom, so we'd have them to remember how we'd begun. I know, Bella Swan has turned me into a sap, but I fucking love it.
With one more room service meal, we put on a movie and relaxed so that we'd be fully rested for our first day back out in the world.
Our morning started with a group breakfast, which included a shitload of catcalls and smart remarks. Bella smiled slyly and dealt with all of it, her hand finding my thigh a few times. Everyone was genuinely happy for us, which they told us near the end of the meal.
"Seriously, it's nice to see you guys all cutesy like this. You're both smiling like-" Alice was trying to be sweet, but of course, Emmett broke in.
"You got lucky last night."
The sound of the back of Rosalie's hand connecting with Emmett's arm gave her the opening to level her warning. "I'm glad you opened your damn eyes, but if you hurt her -"
"You'll be in line behind Chief Swan. But I don't plan on giving you a reason to form that line." My eyes met Bella's and she blushed.
"Okay guys, we have places to go and a whole other half of the World Showcase to eat through before finishing Epcot. We've got the water parks tomorrow and the morning before our flight." Jasper said as he started to stand up.
"I still think you're stupid to go to the park the morning of our flight," Bella told them.
"We'll be back by noon and then we're gonna shower and get out before check out at two," Emmett assured us.
"Well, we'll be packed and checked out and at the park until three." I told them, "We're still meeting up at the shops to drive to the airport, right?" I signed the receipt so the check would be added to the room bill and we went our separate ways again.
"Yeah. We'll let you know if we change our mind about our game plan for that day," Jasper told us and then we were alone again.
The day was filled with time at the arcade and walking around the hotel's savannah viewing areas. We'd seen the one savannah from our room, but to see other parts of it as well as all the other animals in the other one was cool. Bella's face lit up, so I knew she'd enjoy the Animal Kingdom Park tomorrow.
That evening we looked over the maps of all the parks and decided what we wanted to see, until about an hour before dinner, that is.
I knew Alice had talked her into bringing one nice dress, so I asked her to get ready for a nice dinner and put on my slacks and my dark blue dress shirt. I was more than a little nervous about how tonight would go, with it being our first real date, but I tried to push that aside.
That was before Bella came out of the bathroom.
She was wearing a dress that hugged her curves and had a deep V-neck, but thankfully didn't show off too much. Her hair was down, only about half dry, so she'd still be cool even with all of her hair on her neck.
I took her hand and pulled her towards the door, to keep us from ordering in and eating after I peeled her out of that dress.
"You're gorgeous, Bella," I told her as we walked towards Jiko, since we'd had plenty of the other restaurants food from room service and it was fun to experiment with the African flavors.
"I think Alice tipped you off on my dress, cause we nearly match, handsome," she whispered.
"Believe me, no one is looking at what I'm wearing, Bella."
"Unless they're female," she joked.
We were seated quickly and Bella began to look over the different choices. I was trying to narrow down what sounded good as well, but I couldn't keep my eyes from her face for long.
"Edward, you're staring," she teased me when she'd looked up for the second time to find me doing just that.
"I must be the biggest damn fool ever. There aren't any other words for it," I said.
"Edward, stop dwelling. We're here now, and here's pretty amazing." She smiled. "I'm thinking of getting the Peri Peri Chicken, what about you?"
"I'm torn between the Braised Short Rib and the Barbarie Duck Breast," I told her.
"I was considering the Short Rib too," she admitted.
"Then I'll get it and you can try some of it."
We placed our orders and continued to talk about anything and everything. We had ten years of catching up to do, all the things we hadn't shared through our friends that we were now learning.
When the food was delivered be both stopped talking and just enjoyed our meals and our company. Although the little moans that escaped her mouth as she tasted everything did a good job of planning the remainder of our evening.
Finishing off the meal by splitting a cheesecake, Bella and I wandered back to our room to enjoy all the benefits of being healthy again.
We woke up early, wanting to get to the park as soon as it opened. Bella was literally vibrating with excitement about going to the Animal Kingdom Park, and I had to admit, I was psyched too. This was what she loved, and I'd get to bring her that much closer to it.
"What day is it? We've been trapped in that room for so long, I don't remember," Bella joked as we got onto the bus that would take us to the Park.
"Wednesday," I told her, happy that we were at least going during the middle of the week, even if it was summer.
There was almost no talking to Bella, but as we walked in, she lit up like Vegas and started pulling me towards the exhibits right at the entrance to the park. I knew that we could work our way around the park easily enough and get to the safari a little later, because she was worried that they'd be feeding the animals or that they wouldn't be running around yet if we went there first thing.
So we started with Dinoland USA, which only had one rollercoaster we wanted to go on, and then moved past it to Asia.
In that section of the park we went to Expedition Everest, an awesome rollercoaster that had Bella screaming when the yeti popped out near the peak, but overall was a great ride. We used the FastPass to get on a second time, and it was a great ride the second time too.
Next, we moved to Kali River Rapids, which had us banging around the river getting pretty wet as the ride brought us through the ruins of India. Bella and I walked hand in hand off that ride, with me very happy that she'd gone with a green shirt this morning as she was soaked through on top.
The Maharajah Jungle Trek brought us closer to some animals than I'd ever thought I'd be, including a gorgeous looking tiger.
We were able to run over to Flights of Wonder just in time for their first show, and Bella was once again buzzing. The show was pretty amazing, with all of the exotic birds performing and everyone ducking like the bird might swoop out and land on them. I was more worried about stray bird shit, but I've never been a bird person.
The next two areas were the ones I wanted to spend the most time in, Rafiki's Planet Watch had three exhibits and all three were made for Bella. Habitat Habit! was a trail that showed the importance of conservation while showcasing some more amazing animals. Bella seemed to be moving us through this a little faster than I'd anticipated, but her gasp when she saw the entrance to the Affection Section gave her away.
I honestly thought she would cry when we had to leave, after she'd fed a few animals and brushed a goat Bella wanted to get an application to work here and forget college, but I reminded her that they'd probably give her a cooler job with a veterinary degree.
The Conservation Station literally had Bella in tears. The "cast member" that was showing us around looked a little freaked out, but when Bella explained that she was going to school to become a Vet in September, the perky little girl ran off and came back a minute later with one of the parks Veterinarians.
Garrett brought us on a guided tour of the facility, a lot more than the normal visitor and explained how the diets are all controlled and the way they monitor the animals health and well-being in a park this large. Bella was living on his every word, and when we were done, he gave Bella one of the staffer t-shirts, and told her that if she was interested, she should apply to work at the park when she'd finished school. I thought he'd been pretty cool to take time out of his day to do that, and the shirt would likely be something Bella slept in, she'd wear it so much.
Finally making it to Africa, we got onto the Pangani Forest Exploration Trail and were once again amazed by all the animals. Bella's squeal was adorable when she saw the meerkats, but I couldn't help but think of Kim Possible when we went into the hut that showed the naked mole rat colony. What, I watched Disney growing up?
The Trail ended and we got over to the Kilimanjaro Safaris, which somehow had no line as the last trolley car – or whatever they called it – had just left. FastPass once again got us on the next ride and I was surprised that there was an actual story to it.
The animals were beautiful, and Bella was snapping more pictures as we rode around, but when they informed us of the poacher that had stolen a baby elephant, it turned into a race against time, with Bella cheering when the baby was saved.
I'd seen more animals today than I'd even seen in my life and as Bella and I walked to the Tree of Life to see the amazing artwork carved into the tree before we headed to the car, I knew it would be a day neither of us would forget.
We drove to Hollywood Studios, Bella still chatting away at a mile a minute about everything we'd just seen, but when the car was parked, she was once again all business.
The park had a natural flow to it, so after grabbing some lunch, Bella and I went to the American Idol Experience so she could have her fun before we went on a bunch of the movie rides. There was even a pretty cool show with Drew Carey that was made up of sound effects after a glitch knocks out the video.
After The Little Mermaid started it all for us, we had to go on the fifteen minute Voyage of the Little Mermaid. Bella's arms were around mine the entire time as she giggled at what this movie now meant to us.
Getting to the far edge of the park, we made our way to the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, which blasted Aerosmith at us while we flew around the ride.
Last on our list for Hollywood Studios was The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, which left your lunch on the top floor, but the view was great, for the five seconds you got it. Bella surprised me this time, by dragging me back to the FastPass line, so we could go on it one more time before we left.
Leaving the Park, we went back to the hotel to change and clean up before our trip to Downtown Disney. We started with a nice dinner, because we were both starving and then I took Bella to the first of our two stops in this part of Disneyworld.
For what felt like the fiftieth time today, Bella gasped when we walked over to the Characters in Flight hot-air balloon. It was a ring, with a fence to keep you safe as we rode 400 feet into the air, giving us a beautiful sunset view of the area.
When we touched back down, Bella and I took advantage of our only real chance to shop, since we'd have to pack everything tonight and be ready to leave in the morning, since we were meeting up with them after we'd already checked out.
I'd packed an extra duffle type bag for any souvenirs I got, but now, I'd have a few things in there for Bella as well. She was a bit of a hard-ass at first, but after she realized that I was going to get her something, she conceded, missing when I went back and got some of the other things she'd been gawking at. Thankfully, she wasn't trying to work out a payment plan for this trip, like I'd half-expected her to, she was content to let it be my graduation and a combined birthday, Christmas, whatever-else-I-could-add-on-to-make-her-stop-thinking-about-the-money present. I knew letting someone pay for her was not anything she was used to, so it meant a lot that she was letting me.
The last place we were going in this marathon day was the Cirque du Soleil show, La Nouba. I'd been to a Cirque show before, but like so many other things, Bella's child-like wonder made me enjoy it so much more. These weren't things she got to see on a whim, and I was so grateful that I was the one to open her eyes to it.
I drove carefully on the way back to the hotel, and as we sat down our things, Bella nearly tackled me to the bed.
"Thank you for today. That was the most amazing thing I've ever done. I love you."
I gasped and kissed her quickly, blown away that she told me that, but knowing in my heart, that it was the truth for me too. "I love you, Bella; I think a part of me always has."
Our last day in Florida dawned with Bella in my arms and another full day. We packed everything into our bags, a little room left in my extra bag in case we picked up a few last minute things at the park today.
I snapped a few last minute pictures of the room and then we took our bags to Alice and Jasper's room before we checked out. Getting on the bus to Epcot, I noticed that Bella seemed a little down.
"Bella, is everything okay?"
She nodded. "Yeah, I'm just sad to be leaving this all behind."
"We can come back sometime, plus, Disneyland isn't too long of a drive for us to make for a weekend." I hoped the sincerity rang through; this wasn't a short fling in my eyes.
"That's true," she said with a smile.
We entered the park just as it was opening and we started out the morning with Mission: Space and the Test Track. Those rides were pretty cool, but Bella was all for the World Showcase as soon as we exited the car.
Mexico and Norway each had rides that featured their culture, but by the time we got to Germany we were both hungry. We did some shopping in Italy and Japan and explored the different sights, taking plenty of pictures in front of the scenic backdrops.
Coming out by the United Kingdom area, we checked out the last two things Bella had wanted to see at Epcot. Land of the Living was first, but my favorite thing of the morning was Soarin', a ride that had you hang-gliding through the clouds.
Taking the monorail to the Magic Kingdom, we had already been on some of the rides here, so this was a chance to check out the things we'd missed and ride our favorites one more time.
The Swiss Family Treehouse was our first stop, where Bella and I hung out among the treetops. It was one of my dad's favorite movies, so I'd seen it a lot over the years. We went on the Jungle Cruise and Liberty Square Riverboat rides and took a chance on Pirates of the Caribbean, thankfully getting through it without any problems.
It's a Small World was Bella's request, as was The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh ride, but we also got to go on the Mad Tea Party and Peter Pan's Flight. We were also sure to revisit all of the Mountains: Splash, Thunder, and Space.
Alice texted us as we made our way to the bus for the last time, asking where we were. I shot her back the answer and was shocked to see the car waiting for us when we got off at the hotel.
"Rosalie is freaking out because she thinks we're going to miss our plane," Alice explained as we put our purchases in my duffle and zipped it up.
The ride to the airport was a pain with all the traffic, but as we got on the security line, Rosalie finally took the stick out of her ass.
Ten days ago, I sat in an airport thinking about how Bella wasn't one of my favorite people and I was about to be stuck with her on this extended vacation. But as we travelled back to reality for our last summer together as a group before heading off to college, I couldn't think of anyone else I'd want beside me.