Hello everyone! This is my second Twilight story, BPOV, all human, rated M for mature sexual situations (lemons). It's a love story between Bella and Edward in which Bella tells the story of her college experiences in Seattle with her friends and the long road to winning over Edward's heart, who she's loved since high school. I took a lot of inspiration from my own college days to write this. I hope you all enjoy.

I'm going to post every week and am expecting it to run about 34 chapters. I love reading reviews so please leave me your thoughts!



My life was changed by a poker game.

I'm not a gambler or even a good bullshitter. I'm a college student. University of Washington to be exact. It wasn't actually the poker game that turned my life upside down so much as the boy I played it with, but I'm getting ahead of myself.

My name is Bella Swan and I moved to a little town called Forks when I was fourteen. My mother remarried and wanted to travel the country with her new husband, Phil. That was when I made the decision to move in with my father in Forks. I suppose that decision set in motion a long series of events that ultimately led to me playing poker with Edward that night. Forks was where we met.

When I moved there from Phoenix I made friends quickly. There was Rosalie, Jessica, and Angela who made me feel welcome in the small town. Among the boys I was friendly with Mike Newton, Eric, Tyler, and Emmett. Of the guys, I always favored Emmett even though he teased me the most. I was quite certain the others had school boy crushes on me. I wasn't interested in dating much in high school. I felt awkward and unattractive most of my time in Forks. I'm coordination-ally challenged as Emmett likes to put it. That means if there's an object on the floor within a two mile radius of me I'll inevitably fall over it.

I was sixteen and a sophomore when Edward's family moved to town. His father was the town's new doctor and everyone was excited for their arrival. The Cullen's were like the Cleaver's of Forks. Carlisle and Esme were warm hearted and refined. They dressed way too fashionable for the Olympic Peninsula. Edward and his sister, Alice, were as well behaved and polite as teenagers came. My father, the chief of police, was especially fond of the new family.

My attitude towards dating high school boys changed drastically after Edward moved to town. I spent two and a half years ogling him with my mouth hanging open like a darn cartoon character. From the first day I saw him I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him. I wasn't the only one, which was the biggest problem I faced in my quest for his attention. Edward was a favorite among my female classmates. I couldn't blame them. He was sweet, and kind, and had the bone structure of a Greek god. The only person besides my mother who knew about my obsession with Edward Cullen was Angela. I tried my best to hide it from everyone but Angela was my best friend and she saw right through me. I disagree when people say that teenagers don't know what real love is. At sixteen, I may not have been able to comprehend the kind of love it takes to stay married to someone for fifty years, or to remain faithful all that time, but in the context of my own life there was nothing for which I felt more strongly. For what I knew of the world, it was love, and it didn't feel any less real just because I was young.

During my years in Forks I was surrounded by a loving father and good friends, and was overall a happy person, even without being able to claim Edward's lips as mine. I was certainly not on his dating radar but he was my friend and I was thrilled just to have him in my life. Together with the others we'd spend our weekends at First Beach or taking trips into Port Angeles. The Cullen's had a big house, of course, and Alice liked to throw parties on the weekends. Esme would buy huge amounts of food and cook for all of us. For some reason she loved having the house full of kids. Sometimes when Emmett wasn't there, Edward would sneak away from the fun downstairs and hang out alone in his room.

I noticed him one time on my way back from the bathroom, quietly reading on his bed. I waved from the doorway and he motioned for me to come in. We held a lot of common interests and from that night forward we'd hide out alone in his room while the others made virgin margaritas with Esme and danced to whatever pop hits were on the radio. I cherished that quiet time we spent together, though I was sure Edward just liked having a little company. We'd argue over music and literature. I liked the classics and he couldn't understand their appeal. My favorite times were when he'd play his piano for me and I'd lie on his bed watching him stroke the keys with his beautiful fingers. A teenager's bedroom is a very personal place and I relished the opportunity to be there in his room, feeling completely surrounded by Edward.

Senior year was probably the most difficult for me. You see, Edward started to date once he got a car. It was a gift for his eighteenth birthday. Did I mention his parents were loaded? I would spend many a night fantasizing about making out with him in the backseat of that shiny silver Volvo. He'd often pick me, Emmett, and Rose up from our houses in the morning and drive us to school. I'd casually glance around the leather interior looking for any signs of recent backseat activity- maybe an earring or a hair band left behind. There was never any evidence but it felt like torture knowing it must have been going on. Like I said, Edward was very popular with the girls.

Alice was a year younger than the rest of us but she started dating Rose's twin brother Jasper that year, and Jessica went on a few dates with Mike. I didn't even try to date since the only boy in the world I wanted to kiss was Edward. Eric and Tyler fought over who'd take me to the prom. The only reason I agreed to go at all was to see Edward in a tux. Even if I couldn't dance with him or be his date at least I got to watch him. Emmett took Rosalie, Angela had started dating a classmate named Ben, and I settled on meeting up with both Eric and Tyler as "friends." I drove my old truck that night and met the boys at the dance. It was humiliating to me but no one else made a big deal of it. Prom really was fun even though I spent the duration of exactly one song on the dance floor. Two left feet, remember? Near the end of the night Edward approached me and asked me to dance. I'd questioned where his date was and he told me she could survive one song while he danced with his best friend. When the song was over he thanked me and kissed my cheek. It was the highlight of my high school career.

Graduation came before I knew it and we were all headed in different directions. It was sort of depressing to me, to think I spent so much time developing these relationships and now we were spreading out all over the country. I knew high school friends always swore to keep in touch but life too often gets in the way. I couldn't bear the thought of never seeing Edward again. I was determined to keep in touch with his sister if it killed me.

Jessica was accepted to California University, Angela to Columbia, and I had chosen University of Washington. Mike Newton stayed in Forks to manage his parents' sporting goods store. Jasper was accepted to Drexel on a scholarship which tore little Alice's heart to pieces, but they were determined to do the long distance thing. Emmett, Edward, and Rose all had big plans for their futures as well. I felt like I was living in a teen soap that summer when one by one my friends' plans changed and by the time September rolled around I was no longer the only one going to UW.

I hated the idea of a dorm so thanks to Rose's last minute fears of leaving the state, we were able to live together at UW. She found a cute little house right off campus to rent and we moved in a few weeks before the semester began. Apparently Emmett's football scholarship at Penn State fell through or something, and Edward was vague about his reasons for his last minute decision to stay close to home. Emmett and Edward both signed up for student housing but were assigned to different dorms.

Regardless of how it happened, I now found myself back in a similar situation to the one I thought I'd left in Forks. I was again in close proximity to the man who unknowingly held my heart. I didn't want Edward out of my life, in fact the thought liked to kill me, but I wasn't sure having him on campus was going to be good for my aching heart.

Here we all were, in this vast holding pen for young adults they call college; my heart fluttering away at the thought of soon seeing Edward again.