It all started one Saturday morning at the supermarket.
"Oh, I'm sorry," Bella hears as her cart collides with another shopper's. She hears a deep chuckle and glances up from her list, her own apology at the tip of her tongue. She stops when her and the stranger's eyes meet. He is taller than her — taller than most people, really — and muscular. His eyes are a deep brown, a shade or two lighter than his smooth-looking tan skin and his smile is one containing perfect teeth so white and shining that Bella thinks she might go blind.
"I—Um, it's my fault," Bella manages. "I wasn't looking," she says as she half-heartedly lifts her shopping list that had been holding her attention during the accident.
"No way. I take total blame."
"Were you distracted by something, too?" she asks.
The stranger smiles. "Only by a very pretty woman who was distracted by her shopping list."
Bella doesn't expect the compliment and blushes, not only because her skin flushes red at the slightest flattering remark but also because it came from him — this man that has the body of a god and the smile of an angel. She opens her mouth to thank him but is interrupted by an elderly woman behind her with a cart of her own.
"Excuse me, young lady! Other people are shopping, too!"
Bella quickly apologizes to the woman, as does the man still standing in front of her. He quickly moves to one side of the aisle, allowing Bella to exit and she turns the corner into produce.
"Nice crashing into you, Beautiful," Bella hears called after her. She doesn't turn back around, but smiles as she examines the fruit.
Twenty minutes later, Bella finds herself still thinking of the stranger who had crashed into her cart. His eyes are the most prominent thing in her memory — the way they seemed to be able to dig into someone's soul and find answers to questions she never even thought existed. She also finds herself thinking of his long, strong arms that she suspects have the power to hold something so broken together until his sweet smile manages to bind it back together. With this man still on her mind, Bella turns into the frozen food aisle and reaches for a lean-cut steak the same moment another hand does. They reach the package at the same time, their hands touching momentarily and somehow Bella know it's his hand. She lets go of the package and straightens her posture to look up at the man before her.
"Ah, we meet again, Beautiful."
"Yep." Bella could slap herself for how ineloquent she sounds.
"So," the man says, "now that we've bumped into each other a total of two times in less than half an hour, what do you say we introduce ourselves? I'm Jacob." He sticks his hand out and Bella accepts it, noticing how firm his grip is. Jacob seems like the perfect name to describe this man. Strong; sweet; memorable.
"I'm Bella," she offers in return.
Jacob seems to muse this over in his head, thinking hard on something. "I took Italian in high school and it's been a while, but I'm pretty sure your name translates to beauty. If that's so, I'm now very convinced that I have some type of psychic powers."
Bella thinks back to her more recent Italian courses in college and recalls that yes, this is correct and blushes once again. She nods and says, "Yes, that's right."
Jacob smiles triumphantly to himself. "Well then I've rightly nicknamed you, Beautiful." He smiles again and his brown eyes smolder. She's not sure if this is something he does intentionally, but Bella is entranced by it all the same.
At a loss for words, Bella simply shrugs and offers a "Kudos" and a smile. She picks up the package of steak they had both been interested in and places it in Jacob's cart. She grabs the next one in the row and places it into her own cart and then turns to the opposite end of the aisle. "Well, it was nice meeting you, Jacob. I've got to get the rest of my shopping done before my shift at work."
"Wait, hold on a second." She feels the weight of Jacob's hand bringing her cart to a stop. "Aren't you going to give me your number?"
"Excuse me?" Bella is caught off guard by his bluntness and the fact that he's even interested in obtaining her number.
"Shit— uh, sorry. What I meant was I'd really like your number." Bella starts to answer, even though she has no idea what her decision is. "Please," Jacob adds on quickly.
"Well, why does any guy want a woman's number? I'm interested in you. I want to get you to know you more. There's something about you that in the two five-minute conversations we've had today had captivated me. Have I convinced you yet?"
"Mmm, I don't know." Bella has to admit that there is something about this man that draws her to him. From what she's seen, he's funny and charming and he's obviously beautiful. Despite all this though, something in her mind is telling her that this is a little too good to be true. This is the kind of thing that happens to women in romantic comedies and Bella has never believed in any of that stuff.
"Come on, Bella. Two meetings in a big supermarket? What are the odds? It's fate."
And it's that answer that helps Bella make her decision. This is all too gushy and lovey-dovey to be the foundation of a good relationship. It would fall to pieces in an instant and while Bella would like to be one of those women that believed in fate and destiny and love at first site, she was just too logical to be one of those women.
"I'm sorry, Jacob, but I can't." She pulls her cart out of his grasp and leaves the aisle.
Bella moves about the supermarket, successfully crossing everything off of her shopping list and pays for her groceries. She tips the teenager that bags her food to take it out to her car and as she's directing the acne ridden adolescent on how to properly stack them into the trunk of her car, she hears a voice.
The voice is excited and slightly higher pitched than the last time she heard it due to disbelief, but she knows exactly who it is. She turns to her left and squints through the sun at the man putting groceries into the car adjacent to hers. "Hello, Jacob."
"This is fate, I tell you!" He quickly puts the last bag into his trunk and walks over to her. "You can't possibly tell me you don't think there's some supernatural force at hand."
With all that's happened in the last hour, Bella honestly can't tell Jacob that, despite how much she wants to. "I don't know what to say, actually," she admits.
Jacob doesn't miss a beat and says, "Well I know ten things that would be perfect to say right now."
"You're relentless, aren't you?"
"My middle name is persistence," he says.
Bella snorts. "Seriously?"
Jacob's smile drops. "Okay, I know that was an impossibly corny line, but really, I'm trying hard. Did I give that bad of a first impression?"
Bella isn't sure if it's the smile he's giving her, or she's pitying him, or if some teeny tiny part of her is maybe starting to believe in all this destiny crap, but one second she's rolling her eyes at his advances and the next she's prattling off her cell number to Jacob. They part ways and Bella goes home to put away her groceries then heads to her shift at The Georgian, a restaurant in downtown Seattle. She expects Jacob to obey the normal seventy-two hour wait to call her, but soon after she returns home that night from her shift, her phone rings and Bella has a date for the following Friday night.
A/N: Hey there, readers. I know what you're all probably saying. "She's starting ANOTHER multi-fic! She hasn't even finished KIC." I know, I know. BUT! This fic idea appeared out of no where and demanded my attention and is very fresh in my mind. After I finished the first chapter, I outlined the entire thing (something I usually fail to do right after the first chapter) and I'm very confident that I will finish this in a good amount of time. Have faith in me, readers! Thanks for reading this and I hope you enjoyed.