This was originally written for the Team Losh compilation...
I have had many requests for an EPOV outtake of Mechanicward and Bella's first meeting. This is that outtake. It covers key points from the first few chapters of A Whole Lotta Trouble. Enjoy!
When I pulled myself out from under my car, I had no idea that my life was about to change forever. All I could see from my place on the ground are beautiful legs. They are deceptively long, because this girl is tiny. She is wearing the shortest denim shorts that I have ever seen and red high top sneakers. I think I'm in love, seriously. She is gorgeous, and she looks like she wants to say something but she doesn't. I smile at her, and in return she blinks at me repeatedly.
"What can I do you for, gorgeous?" I ask with a smirk .
The look on her face is priceless. She is staring at me with her mouth slightly open. If she's not careful she might drool.
When she starts talking she stammers and I can't help but smile at her. "Huh? I mean, I'm sorry, I... I didn't hear you."
"I asked, 'what I could help you with, gorgeous'?" I repeat and continue to smirk at her.
She blinks at me at blurts out that her name is Bella, not Gorgeous. This actually confuses me for a minute and I point out that it means pretty much the same thing. I can tell that she is not amused.
"Yeah, I guess so. Look, my car is making this tick-tick-ticking sound, and I'm on my way to Vegas and I'm alone. So, I just need to know that the carburetor, or the radiator, or whatever, isn't going to fall out on the way, leaving me stranded and vulnerable to kidnappers and axe murders," she sounds a little frustrated and she speaks without even taking a breath.
I stare at her wide eyed and try to take in everything that she just said. "Why don't you start it up for me and let's see if I can tell you what the noise is? Pop the hood for me, gorgeous Bella."
She walks away from me and I can't take my eyes off of her. I have dreams about girls like her… no, I have dreams of her… there are no other girls like her.
She turns and looks at me over her shoulder, like she can feel my eyes on her. "Should I just bring it over to you?"
I can't help but laugh at her, she's so damn cute. "Yeah, you'll need to bring it to me Bella. Unless the ticking is so loud that I can hear it from across the lot, if that's the case you should be more worried than you look."
"You're the boss... Um... Do you plan on telling me your name or do you prefer to remain anonymous?" She shouts at me while she unlocks her car. This girl has not stopped talking since she got here.
Bella gets in her car and she sits there for a few minutes before she starts it up. I can't believe that I haven't introduced myself yet. What a moron. I can see her fidgeting with her mirror and playing with the knobs on the stereo; I think I even see her talking to herself. See what I said? Cute. She smiles and gives a little wave as she pulls into the space in front of the garage.
Once she is out of the car and I have the hood up, I turn to look at her and find myself almost nose to nose with her. "So did you want to take care of this now, or what? Oh, and to ease your inquiring mind, my name is Edward."
I unzip the top portion of my cover-all and tie the arms around my waste, leaving myself in a wife beater because it is fucking hot. I find it odd that I don't get any response from her, so I start looking around under the hood. I move some things out of the way. I have Bella start the car up so that I can listen to the noise she says that she hears. It is definitely making a ticking noise. When I look back over the hood at her, I find her staring at me again.
"See something you like there, Princess?" I wink at her just to be obnoxious.
"Would you think less of me if I said yes?" As soon as the words are out of her mouth she looks surprised. It makes me laugh out loud.
"Absolutely not, but if you said no... Then I'd probably think you were a liar." I chuckle and fight the urge to touch her.
"Conceited much, Eddie? It's not a good look, trust me." She's a smart ass and I think I like it. I watch in awe as she copies my smirk, crossing her arms over her chest and showing me her delicious cleavage. Well, at least I assume it's delicious. Great, now I'm a pervert.
"I'm not conceited at all, Baby Girl. But by the way you were looking at me a second ago, maybe I should be." I close the hood and mimic her posture.
Bella is scowling at me, and sighs loudly. "So, do you know what's making that noise or what?"
When I smile at her she is not amused. I feel like an asshole, because I'm really not trying to piss her off. This is actually me flirting, though I guess she wouldn't know how awful I actually am at this.
"I have an idea, but it's going to take a little more looking for me to be sure. Do you wanna go have a burger or something while I take a closer look?" I nod towards the diner that my sister and her husband run. There aren't many places she can go without a car here. Maybe I should tell her that Rose is my sister? Nah.
"Yeah, I have to make a phone call anyway. Thanks, Edward." She walks away and I stand there and stare.
What is it about this girl that makes me shamelessly stare at her? I don't want to miss a movement. Bella looks at me over her shoulder and catches me with an eye full of her ass. I swear she puts a little extra sway in her hips, and it makes me laugh.
"Was that for me, gorgeous?" I shout from behind her.
"Of course it was, Eddie. I don't see anyone else back there staring at my ass." She answers, walking backwards with her hands on her hips.
"Touché, sweet cheeks, have a nice lunch!"
I watch her until she is inside the diner, and then I get to work on her car. It feels strange to be so curious about someone after so long. It has literally been years since I can remember being truly interested in a woman. Bella intrigues me and that is surprising. I have accepted the idea that I may never find someone, that I had my chance and I blew that chance. Enough, Cullen, there's no reason to be thinking of that now. There is no way that that girl would ever be interested in someone like you. She's just passing through, they are always just passing through.
Eventually I find the problem with the car. It's exactly what I thought it was, and it makes me smile. I don't have the part to fix it, and I'm going to have to go out of town to get it. That means Bella is going to have to stay the night here. There is a God.
I move Bella's car back to where she had it and return to working on the Chevy I was under when the day started.
"Hey, Mr. Goodwrench!" Bella calls out as she approaches the garage. "I brought you some lunch, are you hungry?"
I'm not entirely sure I heard her right, but she holds a bag out to me once she gets closer. "Well that was nice of you, gorgeous. I could definitely eat. What did you bring me?"
I'm kind of shocked that she did this. I mean, that's not normal, right? People don't just buy strangers lunch, do they? I really shouldn't get my hopes up before I give her the diagnosis on her car.
"Um, I had Rose make you a burger just the way you like it, and I got you a Dr. Pepper. Oh, and lovely Rose threw in some cookies just because she loves you so much." The smile on her face is breathtakingly beautiful. In fact I'm quite sure it's the biggest, most genuine smile I've ever seen.
I take the bag from her and immediately start digging through it, looking for the good stuff. Once I find it, I offer some to Bella.
"Hey, Bella, Would you like one of my cookies?" I hold a cookie out to her in the palm of my hand.
"Well that depends, good sir. Do I need the cookie to sweeten the blow of the news you have to give me?" Her hands are on her hips again, and all I can think is that I want my hands to be on her hips.
I can't fight the smirk as it returns to my face, "Baby girl, I think you're going to need more than a cookie for the news I'm about to deliver."
I watch her expression go from amused to curious and finally concern as she lets my words sink in. A very cute little 'v' forms between her eyebrows as she concentrates.
"What does that even mean, Edward?" She asks, snatching the cookie from my hand.
"Well I suspected it may be your timing belt, but when I got in there to check it out I discovered that you don't have a timing belt. You my lovely Bella have a timing chain that needs to be replaced," I tell her as I open the door to the Chevy.
"Again, I ask you what does that mean. In English, please." Bella blinks up at me. "And why are you getting in this car? Are you leaving me here alone?"
"I'm getting in my car so that I can sit down and eat my burger. And it means that I need to replace your timing chain, but I don't have the replacement piece so it won't be a quick fix," I say as I open the plastic container that holds my burger and fries.
Bella leans her hip on the inside of the door I have propped open, and watches as I start to eat. Her arms stretch across the top of the window and the roof of the car. All I can think is what it would be like if she climbed into my lap. She smiling when I look up at her with a mouth full of burger, and I happy sigh because of how good it tastes.
"Edward, are you really going to eat in this car? Burgers can get kind of messy." She rubs her hand lovingly along the slick black paint.
"Do you have a crush on my car, gorgeous? I built it with my own two hands," I say, wiggling my fingers at her.
"Yes, I have a crush on this car! You built this? Your car is sexy as hell, Edward. You know it is". Her words come out in a rush and her tone suggests that I should already know the things that she is telling me.
"So, the car really does it for you? All this obscene flirting I've been doing, and the car's going to get some action before I do? Man that is harsh. Then again, I guess that's what it's made for."
"Obscene flirting? You've been flirting with me, really? I hardly noticed," Bella giggles, she fucking giggles and pouts. "Well, this car is the best wing man in history, and you still haven't invited me in."
And then it happens. I reach up and run my thumb across her bottom lip. I see the shock in her eyes, but she doesn't move to stop me. I lower my hand and sit very still, waiting for her to freak out on me. But the freak out never comes. Instead she just stands there and stares at me with wide eyes.
"I'm sorry, Bella. That was not premeditated, I swear!" I chuckle from my nervousness, and hope that she believes me. "And please, take this as an open invitation... Get in my car."
She continues to stare at me for a minute before she smiles and walks around to get into the passenger side of the car. She slides in and scoots as close to me as she can get. In the process I see her turn and press her nose to the back of the seat. At first I think that she just wiped her nose on my shit, and I'm kind of pissed. Then she sighs and I figure out what she actually did.
"Bella?" I ask with a mischievous grin on my face.
"Did you just smell my car?"
"Why yes, I think I did," she says, adopting my smirk.
"And?" I wiggle my eyebrows at her.
"And it smells fantastic!" she laughs out loud and so do I.
"Should I leave you two alone?" I ask through my laughter.
"If you'd like, but I'm not sure it will be here in the morning." She nudges me with her shoulder. I swear it is taking everything inside of me to not kiss her right now so I decide to change the subject.
"Speaking of the morning, I'm going to have to go pick up the timing chain if you want me to fix your car. It isn't something I keep around here, but I'd happy to go get one for you if you'd like me to."
"Edward, I don't want you to go out of your way, but if it's necessary so that I can be back on my way to Vegas, I'd really appreciate it."
"Okay, but in case you haven't noticed we are kinda in the middle of nowhere. Going to get the part is going to be about an hour's drive back in the direction you just came from." I pick at my food, praying that she will want to stay.
"So after you get the part, and get back here how long will it take you to replace the part? I mean, about what time will I be able to get back on the road?"
"Well if I leave here around 8 in the morning I can be back and start working by about 12. Then I can probably have you ready to go by... maybe 2...ish? How does that sound?"
I watch her, trying to gauge her reaction. She looks like she is thinking hard about what she should do, and I start to get a little bit worried. How weird is it that I want her to stay? I mean what do I expect to happen? This isn't a fairytale, Cullen; you aren't going to ride off into the sunset with Bella in the Chevy.
"I think that would work out fine. I have to make another phone call and then I guess I'll be checking into the motel. Unless you don't mind me sleeping in your car," She winks at me. I am doomed. This woman is going to kill me.
"I don't mind at all, though I feel I have to tell you, that it's not very comfortable accommodations. You'd definitely be better off at the motel. Um, you could actually stay on my couch if you'd like."
I tried really hard not to look at her after I basically asked her to spend the night with me. What was I thinking? I could feel her eyes on me, but she was silent. I try to think of something to say, but my mind is blank. I want a do over right the fuck now.
"Edward, that's a really nice offer and I appreciate everything you are doing to help me. But I need you to know something..." she takes a deep breath before she continues. "...I'm engaged. And I'm actually on my way to Vegas so that I can get married." Fuck if her words don't stab me in the heart.
I can't do anything but stare at her. I'm pretty sure that I am in shock, but I try to make a quick recovery. "I didn't know, I hope I didn't offend you with the flirting. If I did, I'm really sorry, Bella." I feel sad, and helpless, because there is nothing I can say that will change the situation.
"Don't worry about it, Eddie. How could you know? I'm sorry I didn't tell you earlier. I just didn't think it was necessary. I don't usually go around announcing it. I don't even wear a ring." She wiggles her bare fingers in my face.
"Well I guess it's good to know. Although, I admit I'm a little bummed out that I have to stop all the obscene flirting. Now, let's go get you set up at the motel."
I start to get out of the car, but stop and look back at her with a smirk on my face, "It's too bad. I was just starting to have fun with you, Bella." And with a wink I pop my Bella bubble.
I take Bella into meet Emmett and get checked in at the motel. He gives her a room near mine, and congratulates her on her upcoming nuptials. I've decided Emmett is a dick. I cannot stand the idea that some guy gets love her and marry her and I don't even get to really know her. I know that she is beautiful and funny, and I am almost positive that she is special, but now I'll never now her details. It pisses me off, and it makes me want to go have a drink, if for no other reason than to just get out of my own head. I call down to the front desk and invite Emmett to go to the bar with me. He has to decline because it is date night for him and Rose. I'm bummed, but I decide to go anyway.
After I shower and shave I dress in something comfortable and head out on foot. There is no way that I would ever drive my baby after drinking. When I pass the lobby of the motel I see that Bella is inside, and she looks amazing. I walk in just in time to hear my brother in law explain that he can't go with her to the bar because he's cooking for Rosalie tonight.
"Sucks to be you, Em. I'm taking the lady out for a drink." I take my time to check Bella out. She looks fucking beautiful. Her dress is colorful and her heels are high, it's a winning combination in my opinion.
"Hey, Eddie, you look nice. Care to have a drink with me on my last night as a free woman?" I glare at Emmett when I hear that she has picked up on his annoying nickname for me.
"Thanks sweet face, you don't look so bad yourself. And I'd love to hit the bar with you. Bachelorette parties are my specialty after all." I wiggle my eyebrows at her for effect.
Emmett shoos us out the door. "Have fun kids; don't do anything I wouldn't do."
We head towards the bar after I let her know that we will be walking tonight. She seems pleased when I tell her that I won't drink and drive even the short distance. When I offer her my hand, she only hesitates for the tiniest second before she takes it.
Before I open the door for her, I turn to her and announce, "First round is on me, gorgeous. Let's get to it!"
Bella practically bounces up to an empty table, and smiles at me. She is waiting for me to go and order.
"What would you like to drink?" I ask her, leaning close so that she can hear me over the noise. Well that and also so everyone sees that she is with me.
"Let's do a round of shots to start off with. I'll take vodka, Eddie, and then Heineken." I walk away from her to go get our drinks. As I wait, I look back at the table and find Bella looking at the karaoke stage. She looks back at me with a face splitting smile, and I know that this night is definitely looking up.
Maybe a chance I could have with her
We shared a glance at least I thought we were
And what I've lost, I have found
And, yeah, I will wait around for the girl that is you yeah
You make my heart skip, but how?
I'm scared, what do I do now
I wanna go out I'm stuck here all alone
I gotta get out I'm here all alone
And I'm thinking of you
Girl of My Dreams – All American Rejects
A/N: Thank you for contributing to such a worthy cause. I know from experience that there is no greater heartache than that of a mother when her child is seriously ill. I hope that the donations will ease Aloshua's mothers ache, even just a little. My prayers are with you.
Thanks also go to Maxipoo1024 and Jaime Arkin. Their support and love made this outtake possible. Max rocks my socks with her super-fast beta skills and Jaime is a banner making angel! I love you both more than you will ever know.