I know I've been AWOL for a while but here I am with a new story. This one is actually set loosely on my own life as I've just moved to Dublin to become a Nanny for a year. I don't know a soul in the city so what do I do? Go out and make friends? Nooo – I go write a FanFiction based on my own experiences. It gives me something to do and also a way to live out my Edward fantasies.
This story is going to be heavy E/B. Stick with me through this chapter – I have to set up the story.
Let me know what you all think! I've missed you guys so much! I hope you like it.
Traditional Rose xx
"One ninety-five." I say, slamming my bus card down on the pad. The barcode is scanned and I hear the beeping conformation as the driver nods his head in my general direction.
I sling my bag higher up on my shoulder as I squeeze past an old ladies walker. I barely make it to the first step before the bus lurches forward, causing me to press my body against the wall to prevent falling. Waiting a few seconds to adjust to the buses rocking motion, I climb to the top deck and dump my bag on a seat.
My fingers tuck a curl back behind my ear as my teeth inadvertently work at my bottom lip.
Not for the first time I wonder what, exactly, am I fucking doing?
This has got to be chalked up as the biggest cock-up of my young life. And I have done some not-so-stellar things in my nineteen years. But no. No, no, no. Moving to a new job, new city, new country without any forethought has got to take First Place.
Of course I had had some forethought. Just nothing beyond Working Visas, lining up a seemingly decent job and packing lots of socks.
But I'm here now. In Dublin. A grin breaks out fleetingly across my mouth – giving my bottom lip needed respite. Despite the awful feeling in my stomach and the growing sense of horror, I keep it there.
Dublin. I did it.
The fifteen minute ride into the CBD gives me time I need to think. And freak.
I had spent last year trying to figure out exactly what I wanted to do with my adult life. Most of my friends went straight to University after graduation. While I'd been working, I had a front row seat to their complaining, bitching, stressing and crises. I had only intended to have twelve months off to save for school before enrolling. But after my seventh friend changed their degree and third friend dropped out, I thought I might need to reevaluate.
I knew I wanted to go to University. I even had a general idea on what I wanted to study. But then, so did they. And if I was going to spend all that money and still end up in debt at the end, I wanted to be damn sure on my degree before I began. So I decided to take yet another year off.
And it was partially due to those complaining, bitching, stressed out friends – the same friends that I'd had since I was ten – that I decided on a new local. I had always had a bit of an obsession with Ireland. The history, the politics, the passion. The food, the drinking, the music. And oh yes, the accents. And I love Dublin; majority of the population is under 35 with the second most spoken language being Mandarin. Diverse, intelligent, cultured. With multiple pubs and bookshops on every street. What's not to love?
I'd just been staring at the world map hanging on my wall, listening to music late one night. A friend was texting me about yet another one of her break-ups and I just thought… No. Maybe I should have just gotten a new job or maybe some new friends. But no – I've never done things by halves. New country it was.
So all the money that I'd been saving for Uni turned into a Travel Allowance, and two weeks later I had a Visa. My mother was more than a little shocked. My darling, confused mother. Her only daughter packing up and moving across the globe. The only thing I could offer as assurance was the stable job/accommodation I had lined up.
Nanny. A live-in Nanny position where I take care of two little girls for nine hours a day. I got my own room, got to eat their food, use their internet, appliances, and still got a salary.
Not a bad gig….
Well. That's what I'd thought when I read the profile provided by the agency.
Married couple, early thirties, require a loving, mature-minded Nanny for our darling girls… Three and one years old… Own room provided… Parents work fulltime in the Bank Of Ireland… Duties include caring for the girls; cleaning, cooking, washing, play dates…
So I'd gotten on the plane and looked for a card with my name at the airport in Ireland. Bella Swan. The woman who was holding it looked exhausted. Short, frizzy hair, stain on her jumper.
"Bella?" She'd asked as I walked up, pulling my suitcase behind me.
I nodded. After a thirty hour trip I definitely wasn't at my perkiest.
"Oh thank god," She gave me a really blatant once-over. "We have to hurry back. The neighbors are minding the girls. Come on. I'm Jessica by the way."
Nice to meet you too, I thought.
I really, really had tried to give her the benefit of the doubt. Maybe she was having a bad day. Maybe she had to fight some jerk for a car park when coming to collect me. Maybe the kids had been really shitty all morning… Wait, what if the kids were just really shitty?
I tried to quell my nervousness as I stuffed my bag into the back of her car. As soon as she'd navigated out of the parking lot and onto the highway, Jessica launched into a detailed day-by-by timetable of the girls routine. And when I say detailed, I mean detailed to the minute.
"Mike will usually get the girls up and you're to be on the bottom step by 0715 to take over. Get the girls dressed and eating their breakfast by 0730. We don't let them have any sugars, sodium or processed food. They usually have porridge for breakfast so you'll need to weigh out the correct amount. It's very important to ensure that they eat all of their breakfast. On some mornings, particularly when it rains, they can be a little cranky and not want to eat…" Particularly when it rains? We're in Ireland! Doesn't it rain like, every day? 'You need to do a nappy change for Abbey at 0815 and then take both girls for a walk. There's a large park near our home and you're free to take whatever route you'd like, just make sure you stick to the actual paths…"
I tuned out. I had just gone through three airports, a lot of bad food, people with hygiene issues, bag collection and customs. It wasn't my fault at all. I managed to smile and nod along for most of her explanation but I think she caught on to my drifting towards the end.
"It all sounds great." I tried to reassure her even though a military-like schedule wasn't exactly sound great for me, let alone for two small children. "I think I might have to write it all down though. At least until I get into the rhythm you know?"
Jessica glanced over at me as she paused at the traffic lights. "Well of course. We have a timetable printed out and stuck to the back of your door."
We'd pulled up to an adorable modest townhouse in a suburb of South Dublin. It had a wrought iron gate opening into a little green garden with dozens of dainty flowers sprouting from flower boxes in the windows. It was three stories, grey brick and exactly what I'd pictured. I couldn't help my smile.
I carried my own bag from the car and up the two flights of stairs to my room. It was tiny. Like tiny. And I'd been mentally preparing myself for the shortage of room that most European houses had. There wasn't enough room for me to open my suitcase up fully so I had to haul it onto my bed.
"This used to be Tirana's' room when she was a baby. Now the girls share the bigger room and we converted this into the Nanny's' room. They're right across the hall for quick access. You have a Baby Phone plugged in next to your bed as well. Apart from that you have your own tv, cupboard, bed, bookcase, desk. You'll share a bathroom with the girls. Mike and I have a bedroom and the floor below so you know, we're able to have decent sleeping hours. Taylor usually sleeps through but Abbey can be up at all hours."
I stop taking off my shoe as she's speaking. I didn't realize I would be required to take care of the girls at night. I knew Taylor was three but Abbey was eleven months. Didn't that mean she woke multiple times during the night? Or was it just once for a feed? Did I have to get up every time with her?
Jessica either didn't notice my expression or chose to ignore it. Then she displayed the first bit of consideration I'd seen in an hour, saying how I would probably like to unpack and rest. She said she was going back to the neighbors for dinner and would be back later.
I didn't bother with unpacking. I just grabbed a fresh pair of sweats from my bag and searched for the bathroom.
After a scalding hot shower, I brushed my teeth and ran a brush through my hair a few times. Thinking I had the place to myself I ventured to the bottom floor in search of the kitchen. I was opening cupboards, looking for a cup when a noise startled me from behind.
"Shit! Sorry!" An older, blonde guy in a suit was standing by the door. "I didn't mean to scare you. I didn't realize anyone was home."
I nodded, my hand going to my chest in a desperate attempt to calm my heartbeat. "Its ok. Me neither."
Blonde guy smiled. "I just got home. You must be the new Nanny..?"
I blushed, feeling stupid. "Yeah, I am. Um, I'm Bella."
"Ah Bella." He smiled again. He gave a more subtle once-over than his wife. But I still noticed and I was suddenly hyper aware of the fact that I had just thrown on a tank top without a bra. "I was hoping Jess would choose you after reading your profile. I'm glad she took my advice for once."
I smiled softly, not quite sure how I was supposed to respond.
"I'm Mike by the way." Blonde guy - Mike, came forward and offered his hand. I shook it. He was wearing a grey suit, his tie loosened around his neck. He wasn't bad looking at all. Early thirties, tall-ish. Maybe a little soft around the edges. No wedding ring.
There was an awkward pause. My eyes drifted back to my surroundings. The kitchen was nice. Lots of finger paintings decorating the fridge, a highchair and a big table filling the centre. A family kitchen.
I felt Mikes eyes on me still and forced myself to speak. "Um… I was just looking for a glass?"
"Oh! There's just here," Mike moved to the side, towards a set of shelves above the stove. He reached up and grabbed me a cup.
"Thanks," I said, taking it.
"Hasn't Jess showed you around?" He asked.
"Um no." I answered. "I only really just got here. She showed me my room but then she said something about the neighbors and dinner…"
"So she's abandoned you on your first afternoon," Mike shook his head, part of his fringe falling across his forehead. "Would you like me to give you a tour now?"
"Oh no, that's ok. I'm actually completely beat. Would you guys mind if I took a nap?" I asked.
Mike laughed. "Of course not Bella. Tomorrow is the weekend anyway so both of us will be home. You can get to know the girls and the place then. You should just relax this afternoon."
"Thanks." I said, turning the tap on and filling my glass.
"We have cold, bottled water in the fridge if you prefer," he motioned to the metallic fridge on the far side of the kitchen.
"No, no, its ok. Tap water is fine. I'm nothing special," I assured him.
He laughed again. "Oh I wouldn't say that." I had my back to him as I turned off the tap so I couldn't see his expression. "Well, I suppose I better go next door and see what the family are doing. I'll see you soon Bella."
I nodded as he turned and walked back out. Waiting a few seconds after I heard the front door close, I grabbed my drink and climbed the stairs back to my room.
I shut the blinds, closed the door and managed to lean my bag between my bed and the heater. Downing my drink, I then collapsed onto the bed.
Maybe this wasn't such a good idea. Crazy work timetable. Tiny room. Self-interested female boss. And Mike… Well he was friendlier certainly. But… I don't know. He seemed kind of off… Shit. Was this a mistake?
Come on Swan. You're exhausted. Of course you're being a bit precious. The timetable – well it is a job. And the pay is good. The room is tiny but you don't have to stay in it all the time. Maybe Jessica wasn't self-interested. I only really had an hour with her and she could have been having an off day. And Mike probably was just being friendly.
The weekend is tomorrow and you can get to know the kids and the parents a bit better.
Things will look better in the morning.
Give it forty-eight hours and then freak out.
Well, it was forty-eight hours later now. The Sunday afternoon after what has got to be the worst weekend I've endured in some time.
So I escaped. And I caught the bus into town. I just needed to think and see whether or not I was ready to throw in the towel and book a flight home.
The rain had started during the journey, which was fine as it suited my mood perfectly. I was exhausted too, which didn't help. My body has yet to adjust to the new time zone. That, mixed in with the stress and the complete awkwardness of the past two days had me realizing I needed to find somewhere to sit down to have to my big Freak Out.
I hadn't even been paying attention to where I walked as I got off the bus. But I spotted the word Café above a door so I made my way over. The Red Rose Café. Sounds sweet, I thought absentmindedly as I shook the rain off my coat. I could use some sweet.
Ta-Da! I know – I did warn you this chapter would be dull. But Edward makes his appearance next chapter. There will be lots of fluff and smut I believe in the future, so bare with me.
Update soon. Fare the well lovelies!