The Twilight Twenty-Five
Prompt: 1 (VW bug photo)
Pen Name: bmango
Pairing/Main Character(s): Edward/Jasper
Photo prompts can be viewed here:
A/N: Thanks to LyricalKris for beta-ing this one. This is Edward's POV.
I sit on my porch, one coffee in hand, one coffee waiting on the step next to me, and my surfboard propped against the railing.
Jasper had called just as the sun was thinking about rising and said that the waves 'could not be missed' this morning. And, because I can never say no to my best friend, here I am waiting for him.
I hear his car before I see it, his white VW bug noisily climbing over the top of the hill and his hand already raised in greeting. How he can be friendly at this time of day, hell every time of day, I'll never understand.
He pulls up along the curb, hopping out of the still-running vehicle to help get my board strapped to the roof next to his. I stand and stretch, grabbing the second coffee as he lifts my board and gives me a broad smile, his blond curls dancing around his bright, blue eyes.
"It's not that early, Edward."
I only grunt in response and he laughs, walking back to the puttering car and expertly strapping the board to the rack. I pause, appreciating the bunching of his muscles as he tightens the straps, and I have to shake my head to stop the images that seem to be more frequent as of late.
His arms around me. His muscles tightening for completely other reasons.
The engine gives a particularly loud hiccup and thankfully distracts me from me train of thought. "Car acting up again?"
He shrugs and gives me a smirk. "No more than usual. It's just safer if I don't turn it off right now."
I nod, his car has always had a quirk or two, and climb into the front seat. He climbs in next to me, and I hand him his coffee. His lips purse as he blows across the top of the mug, steam swirling from the hot liquid. I'm mesmerized as he takes a small sip, and his tongue darts out to sweep across his lips slowly.
My chest tightens and I grip my coffee mug and the door handle to prevent myself from doing something embarrassing. Every day this urge is getting stronger, and I don't know if I can take being best friends with the one object of my desire. Problem is, I'm also entirely sure I can't stay away from him.
"Edward? Earth to Edward?"
I blink and notice his hand waving in front of my face.
I feel the blush rise to my face. "Sorry, I'm a little out of it."
"I'll say." Suddenly he turns onto a different street, veering away from our normal beach, and giving me a sly wink. "I think today calls for a change of scenery."
I only nod again, too tired and too wrapped up in my head to even try normal conversation. Jasper turns on the radio and rests his hand on the side mirror, the breeze coming in the open window already warm and salty.
"It's going to be a perfect day," Jasper says when he pulls into the deserted parking lot. "We even have the entire beach to ourselves."
I am once again torn. Ecstatic that we will be alone and that he wants to be alone with me, but scared that I will say or do the wrong thing and end this friendship. He knows I'm gay, and we both know he's decidedly not.
We sit and watch the sun play on the waves as we finish our coffees. Eventually, he prods me enough that I agree we should go in the water. He's right that it's only a matter of time before the some other surfers show up and ruin our pristine beach.
We climb out of the car, the warm breeze greeting me as I unstrap my board, hefting it under one arm and grabbing my wet suit bottom with the other. We take our time once we're out on the sand, waxing our boards and squeezing into our suits as the sun continues it's slow track across the sky. Soon enough, I'm ready to get out into the surf, the one place I feel at peace.
Well, used to anyway.
Jasper's presence used to fit into that feeling of peace, the world ebbing away as I rode wave after wave, nothing but the ocean and me and my board. And Jasper yelling and laughing.
As I follow him into the water, both of us climbing on our boards to paddle out, I have to stop myself from focusing on his body, on his perfection. Instead I concentrate on my breathing, the rhythmic movements of my arms, and the never-ending sound of the surf meeting the land. Once we are out amongst the breaking waves, we sit up on our boards, and I find myself staring at Jasper again as he leans back with his eyes closed and his naked chest glistening.
"The sun feels amazing today."
I chuff, splashing him lightly. "It's amazing every day."
He looks at me then as if to respond, but he suddenly clamps his mouth shut, his jaw tightening as the smile disappears from his face. "Looks like we have company."
I look over my shoulder to see the large red-orange truck that can only mean one thing.
The one guy that cannot seem to take a hint about my level of interest in him. I glance at Jasper again. Perhaps make that the second guy.
"It'll be fine. We'll just ignore him."
Jasper gives me a look I don't understand and then shrugs. "Yeah, yeah. Come on, let's do this."
The next set of waves comes in, and they're perfect. Jasper paddles with them, rising on his board and setting his feet precisely the right moment. I watch him ride the wave in, his body an extension of his board and a purely beautiful thing to see.
The next wave comes in, and I can tell it's going to be one of those. The type that you see once a week if you're lucky, and today I happen to be lucky. I paddle with the wave, catching it at the right moment and shift to my feet, feeling the power under me as I harness it to hurtle across the water. I turn and twist, doing my best to take this wave for all that it's worth.
When the wave finally drops me into the shallow water, I can hear the whoops and hollers of Jasper and Jake, and I can't help but beam at them as they approach.
"Man it's almost as if you should call it a day after that one. It won't get much better than that!" Jasper says excitedly as I paddle over to join them in the shallows.
Jake claps me on the shoulder, letting his hand rest there. "Great ride, Edward!"
I shrug him off. "Thanks. And yeah, maybe I should call it a day." The look of sheer disappointment that crosses Jake's face doesn't surprise me, but it's exact twin on Jasper's face does. "I'm only joking. Let's get back out there."
Jasper's eyes light up. "Man, I was worried you were cutting our day short for a minute there!"
Right. I wouldn't want to ruin his surfing day.
"Do you mind if I join you?" Jake asks, looking only at me even though the question was directed at both of us.
"Public beach, isn't it?" Jasper answers snappily and paddles away before I can tell him to wait up.
When I finally do catch up, he's out of breath and facing away from me. Luckily, I left Jake far behind so I have a few moments to find out what's wrong.
"What's up, J? Why are you acting so off?"
Jasper turns to me, a fire in his eyes like I've never seen. "How can you let that guy be all over you like that?"
My defenses rise, wondering what the hell I did. "What? Jake? What are you talking about?"
"Can't you see he's flirting with you?"
"Of course I can, but I'm not going to be an ass to him because of it."
Somehow Jasper gets even angrier, and I have no idea what I've said. "Why can't you tell him to back off? Do you like him or something?"
"First off, I have. And second, hell no! He's really not my type."
"The friendly, surfer type isn't your scene?"
I stare at him incredulously. "Actually, the meat-head, won't-take-a-hint, grabby asshole is not my scene. What is with you?"
Without an answer he paddles away just as Jake reaches us.
"What's with him?" Jake asks echoing my previous question. He reaches for my shoulder again, and I've just had it with the whole thing.
I flinch away and turn on him. "Jake, not now. Actually, not ever. Just stop."
He looks like I've just kicked his puppy, but really I can't bother to be nicer right now. For some reason, Jasper is pissed at me and I have to know why.
I follow Jasper as quickly as I can, but I still don't reach him until he's already on the beach. His board is propped up in the sand, and he is sitting next to it, his knees bent and his arms dangling over them. His head is down, and he doesn't even lift it as I approach.
I kneel in front of him and lightly touch his arm, but he snatches it away from me. I'm about to leave him here with whatever foul mood he's in, but then I hear a faint mumble.
"What was that?"
He looks up then, his face completely blank. "You said you weren't interested in Jake. Is there someone you are interested in?"
I sit back on my heels, shocked by his question and wondering how much to reveal. I mean, best friends are supposed to talk about this kind of stuff, right? I swallow thickly and say the only thing I can say. "Yes."
His eyes search mine for an instant and then he leans forward. "Who?"
His voice is so deep that I can feel it in my bones. And there's an ache there, an ache I know will never go away if I don't answer this question honestly.
His hand reaches for me hesitantly, wrapping around my forearm, and the heat of his touch startles me. I see the fear in his face, and yet he sets his jaw and asks again. "Who, Edward?"
I take a deep breath and release it slowly, knowing I'm approaching the point of no return. This admission could end everything. "You."
He gasps, and I lower my gaze, unable to witness the look of rejection that I've imagined on his face so many times. Gathering my courage, I straighten my back and prepare to stand. The sharp yank on my wrist pulls me off balance, and I fall forward, landing awkwardly on top of Jasper, toppling us both into the sand.
He recovers quickly, laughing loudly as I try to figure out what just happened. It's then that I realize that Jasper's arm is around me and he's not struggling to get up, to get away from me. In fact, it's almost as if he's pulling me closer.
"What are you doing?" I whisper, surprised at the huskiness of my voice.
"Not letting you go."
And there, on the beach in the warm sun, his lips brush mine in our tentative first kiss.