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Title: Jake's piece

Picture Prompt Number: 43

Pairing: Bella/Edward… but does she change her mind?

Rating: M; no actual sex, but talk of it.

Word Count (minus A/N and Header):2530

Summary (250 characters or less, including spaces and punctuation): Bella and Edward have a delay in their travel arrangements to South America. Bella thinks things over.

Warnings and Disclaimer: Horror themes. Disclaimer: the characters and all recognisable situations belong to Stephenie Meyer - this is a work of fan fiction,

Jake's piece.

Bella Cullen sat in the rattan chair and held a tea cup in her hand. The table was only set for one. She looked out over the sea and inhaled that distinctive tropical odour of humidity, salt and sand.

She was glad to have the chance to just breathe. The last few weeks had been extremely emotional and stressful. Finishing school had been the least of her issues. But now she was married. She was Mrs Edward Cullen. So why was she sitting here alone?

The wedding was a blur. So many people, so many friends and family and all too emotional for her. She was like her father in that way; they both hated such things.

Edward had whisked her away from the reception before Alice ruined the surprise and told her exactly where she was going. Alice had to threaten him with that to get them to leave.

They had changed planes in Houston. Then moved to the international counter to catch a flight to Rio de Janeiro. The flight was long, but they were comfortable in the wide first class-seats. At least until they hit the turbulence.

There was a small bump and then an extremely loud bang. The whole cabin had gone dark; all the lights went out and the plane fell several hundred feet. Passengers that did not have seatbelts on literally hit the ceiling. Drinks and small items were thrown all over the cabin. People screamed. Some prayed out loud. Most thought the plane was crashing. It was the longest ten seconds of her life.

The emergency lighting came on and the flashing light made the scene even more surreal.

It was so extreme, that the plane had to make an emergency landing in Costa Rica, at its second international airport, the Daniel Oduber International Airport. It was located in the north of Costa Rica in the Guanacaste province. Edward was upset. His perfect planning was ruined. Evidently they had missed their next travel connection. She assured him that he could not control the weather. And it was better that they be safe. Also some passengers had been quite severely injured. Edward had made sure that she had stayed in her seat, but others were not so lucky as to have a supernaturally strong man in the seat next to them. She felt a little guilty that she was uninjured. She had taken her seatbelt off to sleep.

Continental was the only airline that did flights from Houston to Rio and they had no other planes available. All the passengers had to be deplaned. They were asked to wait in the terminal until another plane arrived to take them to their final destination. Really, they were lucky the pilot had managed to get the plane safely to the ground.

But the real issue was the sunlight.

Edward could not travel in the daylight in South America. He arranged for a private plane to take them on a night flight to Rio. They had the day to fill while he hid from the sunlight.

They caught a taxi to a local hotel where they would spend the day. The sun rose, luckily just as they were checking in. Edward was confined to the room but he had encouraged her to have some time to herself. She had been unable to convince him to have sex with her. She thought that was a grand way to spend the day, but he insisted on waiting until they were at their final destination. "It's only another day, love," he told her.

She had slept on the plane and didn't feel like sleeping now.

So she changed into a light dress, tied her hair up into a top knot on her head and decided to walk down to find the breakfast area. The food service on the flight had been completely disrupted by the incident and she was hungry. Edward was on the phone to Alice; of course, she had known something had happened to them, probably before it actually did.

Edward had passed her phone to her, as she left the room. She had kissed him quickly; he was still talking to Alice. She walked towards the beach and located the café tables. There were comfortable rattan chairs set up under the shade of the palm trees, overlooking the beach. An attentive waiter took her order.

She ordered tea and toast for breakfast. It arrived with a large china pot; not a cheap metal one. Nice hotels put your jam in little glass dishes with tiny spoons. Cheap ones had jars on the table. She wondered at her new life of cloth napkins and five star hotels. The toast was big hand cut slabs of fresh bread.

She sat, sipping her tea, eating her toast and staring pensively at the ceaseless ocean.

The build-up to the wedding and the wedding itself had been so emotionally exhausting. She didn't know how normal people did it by themselves. She had a wedding planner who literally didn't sleep and the whole process was still a trial.

But Jake had come. She had cried when she had seen him. And thrown herself at him. In front of her new husband.

Jake had asked her, 'This is what you want, right?' and she had just cried harder. 'I'll see you this way in my head. Pink cheeks. Heartbeat. Two left feet,' he had told her.

She had thought at the time, that Jacob was even more obsessed with her humanity than Edward was. She had told Jake that she would be human for her honeymoon. Initially he was pleased; made jokes about her playing checkers. Until he had understood that she intended to have sex with Edward while she was still human.

He had freaked out so badly that he had almost phased. Seth had wrapped his arms around him and wolf Sam and human Seth had dragged Jake away. Their last words had been an argument. He had told her she was stupid and had lost her mind. He had told Edward that he would kill him.

She had told the chocolate wolf that she thought was Quil, that she was sorry. But sorry for what? She had been a mess of chaotic panic and grief; but Edward had shepherded her back to the reception. She had been seconds away from following the wolves into the forest.

A squeal from the beach broke her concentration. There was a family; a father with two little boys. They had buckets and spades and they were busy building a big sand castle. From their conversation she got the idea that their mother was asleep. The little boys were clearly excited to have their father's attention. The elder one kept showing him things he had found on the beach; sticks, leaves and worn shells. His father was dutifully effusive but he kept an eye on the baby too. Occasionally the elder child ran in and jumped on the waves where they crawled up the beach towards them.

Bella watched them and she thought about playing on the beach with Jake when they were both little kids.

So what was the big deal with Edward and her having sex? She tried to think about it from Jake's point of view. Edward was extremely strong and not human. She wasn't sure how he managed to pick up a fine glass, without crushing it in his hand; but he did that. Was touching her so different? She didn't think so. But there was one major issue: she was a virgin. She'll bleed. What if he lost his self-control? And then she thought of a bigger issue, Edward had never had sex either. He didn't know what he was doing, or how it would affect him. Playing the piano was a delicate thing but ultimately pianos are repairable. And he had practised for decades.

He hadn't ever touched a woman sexually. At least that is what he had told her.

He already admitted that her scent was like heroin to him. What if it overwhelmed him? What if he overdosed? Did she smell better when she was aroused? Assuming he even knew what he was doing enough to get her aroused. An orgasm was a complete loss of control. It was an involuntary response that took over your brain. Your limbic system, the primitive part of your brain controlled it. So what if Edward had a physical reaction as well; what if he grabbed her too hard or worst case scenario, what if he bit her? That was what Jake was worried about.

She was being silly. Edward was a mind reader. He could learn what to do sexually from looking inside other people's heads. And as if she knew what she was doing too?

She thought about the only real kiss she had ever had. And it wasn't from Edward. It was Jake outside the tent in the snow. A kiss so intense, that she couldn't feel anything that wasn't Jake. She had even had a vision of her future. Her future with Jake and in it she had two small children. She almost completely lost herself in him. And in his warmth.

She had admitted to herself, in that moment, that she loved Jake too. That a part of her heart belonged to him. She had felt that smaller part of her heart break away. Jake's piece.

As she sat there in the sun and the warmth of the tropics, she felt that piece of her heart reflect back some warmth. That tiny piece of her heart pulsed in her chest. It felt like it lived and grew.

When she became a vampire, her heart would die. The larger part of her heart would atrophy. It would die. What would happen to that small part that belonged to Jake?

She shivered as she sat in the sun. Warmth. Sun.


She had told Jake that she didn't choose him. He had said that Edward was better at playing this game than he was. She had argued that it wasn't a game… but maybe it had been? Even Angela had said that Edward behaved just like a jealous boy. He had disabled her truck, he had asked Alice to kidnap her and he had pretended not to be upset about her kissing Jake. He had been ready to kill Jake before, when he had stolen a kiss. Why wouldn't he be more upset after Bella had asked Jake to kiss her? He should have been livid.

She touched her lips with her fingers.

She watched the father on the beach, playing with his kids.

A figure approached them.

'Mummy!' the smallest child squealed. The larger one ran to her. She scooped him up and gave him an Eskimo kiss; rubbing their noses together. He laughed; that delighted child laugh as he held her cheeks with his little hands. The smaller one held their hands up to her. The father took the other child without prompting and sat him back down in the sand. They went back to building their castle together. The mother picked up the smaller child and hugged him too. Then she shifted him to sit on her hip. She placed her hand on the top of the father's head. He turned his head and he kissed her stomach.

Bella inhaled sharply. She just knew the woman was pregnant again.

'How are you feeling?' the father asked her.

She smiled at him. "You know, nauseous and flat. Thank you for the sleep in."

"You deserve it," he told her.

Bella blinked. For some reason she felt like crying.

Her hand twitched. Her muscles clenched spasmodically and she crushed the delicate tea cup in her hand.

Blood welled up out of the as yet invisible cut. It was deep; one of those cuts that only started to hurt after you actually looked at it. She grabbed for the cloth napkin on the table and wrapped it around her damaged hand.

She thanked her lucky stars that Edward wasn't here with her; the scent of her blood would be too much for him.

That sent her mind reeling back to remember another moment when she had been bleeding. Jake teaching her to ride a motor bike along the road next to the swamp. She had crashed; distracted by Edward's voice in her head and she had hit her forehead on a rock.

She had sat there feeling euphoric, because she had heard Edward's voice, as Jake fussed and worried over her and gave her the shirt from his back to stem the blood flow. She had apologised.

And Jake had asked, 'Why are you apologising for bleeding?'

Because she was apologising for being alive.

She was so used to being around vampires, that she was apologising for not being already dead. For the fact that blood still flowed in her veins. That she still had a heart that beat; eyes that cried tears and lungs that needed to fill and deflate to keep her alive. She was apologising for feeling the cold. And for needing to sleep. And to eat. She looked at the crust remaining from her breakfast and she felt nauseous.


Dead people didn't breathe, eat, sleep, dream, or cry. Dead people didn't carry life like the mother on the beach with her family.

Rosalie had told her she was choosing wrong. Rosalie thought she was throwing it all away. Her chance for a normal life.

Children should be your chance for immortality.

She studied the little family. The other baby was too young yet to see who he took after. The elder boy had his father's hair, but his mother's eyes. They both lived on in him. It was the way things were supposed to be.

The Cullens were beautiful and perfect and immortal.

She was plain and flawed and human.

And Jake loved her for it.

Edward loved her; but he literally wanted to change her. At least he did now, because she had convinced him. But when she recalled that night, when she had forced his family to all vote on whether she should join the Cullen family, the only ones who had voted 'no' were Rosalie… and Edward.

She couldn't sleep the night before her wedding. She had had a nightmare. A nightmare about a vampire child. Dark, cloaked figures that her dream self knew were the Volturi, were hunting that child. She also knew, in her dream, that the child was somehow hers. She had tried to rescue that cherubic child with the light brown curls; she had pushed the cloaked figures aside, but came to a complete halt when she saw that the little hill the child was sitting on was made from the dead bodies of her friends. She had recognised the faces of Angela, Ben, Jessica, and Mike. And directly beneath that adorable boy were the bodies of her mother and father.

The contrast with the vision of her life with Jake, compared to this vampire child with the blood red eyes was stark.

She sat.

She thought.

Her phone rang. It was Alice's ring tone.

1/02/2012 6:56:00 PM