A/N: Last chapter! :D I hope you all like it! There still might be some mixed feelings, but eh, that's how I like it! Mwahaha :P I just want to thank you all for being so supportive of this fic! Please say hello in a review! It's been so fun writing this and sharing it with you! Thank you again, loves!
Oh, and write in the Public Lovin' Contest if any of you writers feel like writing some public smut! :D Submissions are being taken until Nov. 25! Look at my Twitter for more info!
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If someone were to ask me about my first love, my mind would fail to find an immediate response. Warring thoughts and emotions would battle each other, leaving me speechless.
The answers would rush in like a flood later on, but only in snatches...
She was beautiful.
She was mysterious, ambivalent.
I slowly lost my mind more and more with each second I spent with her.
Yet, I couldn't get enough of her.
She trapped me.
Locked me in a cage of constant thoughts of her. The torment of the knowledge that every other girl I'd meet couldn't possibly measure up to her.
I'd been living in this cage for over a year, since the last time I'd been with her at the pool that night.
The night we'd made love.
It was also the last time I'd stepped foot in that building. The following Monday I didn't show up to work and never showed up again.
Facing her after that was something that seemed impossible.
I was days away from turning eighteen when I finally had the balls to come close to any of the locations where I had seen her during that week we worked together.
I decided to see a movie.
I don't know what drove me to go to that theater, though. Just like the night I followed her there, I had no idea what movie was playing until I was buying the ticket.
This time it was a foreign film called En Kärlekshistoria. And just like the last time, I had no fucking clue what it was about, but I didn't care.
When I thought I'd moved on from her, nights like this night happened, and I missed her. Ached for her. And so much time had gone by that I thought it was safe to venture to a place she'd been without running the risk of seeing her there again. Maybe she was in another city by now. Maybe another state.
This was a chance to be close to her again in some sense. It was a place that held some of our time together. As the lights went down and I entered the auditorium, I spotted the seat she'd been sitting in, now empty.
I sat in the row behind it, just as I had that night. And as I leaned back in my seat, I imagined her in front of me again. Felt the tickle of her hair on my face again. Her lips pressed to mine as I remembered our first kiss.
There were only a few other people in the theater with me, and I strained my eyes to keep up with the English subtitles flashing on the screen.
Sudden movement out of the corner of my eye drew my attention from the movie, and I looked to my right, toward the far section of the auditorium.
And then the world stopped. No, the entire world tipped, throwing everything off-balance.
She was sitting there. Alone.
My eyes took in the lines of her cheekbones, the full, pouty lips, and her brown hair as it fell over her shoulder. Even in the dim light, that bored expression on her face was easily recognizable.
I could only stare at first, dumbfounded by the improbability of it all.
My focus sharpened as I involuntarily straightened up in my seat. This caught her eye, and she glanced over at me. Her brown orbs went wide as they met mine, and just like I did, she straightened up in her seat.
The movie quieted to a hum. Everything seemed to fade out.
The unconcealed look of surprise on her face made me want to smile because I knew she had no control over this. The twisted bond was still there, pulsating between us as each of us waited for the other to make a move.
To my utter disbelief, it was she who got up first. I stood a moment later and waited for her with a smile as she walked toward me.
She smiled back, a completely timid, almost awkward smile that I was not used to seeing on her but loved in an instant.
She stopped in front of me and gestured to the seat next to mine. "This one taken?" she asked softly.
Immediately, I shook my head. "Not at all."
I motioned for her to sit as I settled back into my seat.
A sly grin crept to my lips as we sat down, amused at our twisted, unlikely situation; it was just the way we were, how things worked with us. Nothing had ever been ordinary.
She lifted her left hand to place it on the armrest between us, and I sneaked a glance at it. There was no shimmer, no gold band, nothing. Her ring finger was bare.
Something awakened within me, and I felt a flutter in my previously numb heart.
"Have you seen this movie before?" she suddenly asked.
Our eyes met, and I told her honestly, "I don't even know what it's about."
She smiled softly, her eyes staying on mine as I stared right back at her. "Me neither."
I saw a hint of something in her features that I had never seen before; they were as soft as I'd ever seen them as she regarded me so warmly. It was as if, for the first time, she saw us the way I always had. No teasing. No younger guy and older woman. No wall between us. It was mutual now.
I longed to hold her, to reach out and stroke her cheek and kiss her neck.
The movie no longer existed to either of us. We only saw each other. Her gaze became dreamy as she seemed to take in my features, her eyes going from my eyes to my nose to my lips then back up again.
"Isn't this… crazy?" she asked in wistful tone.
I sighed, and my grin widened. "I wouldn't have it any other way."
It was true. Had we met in any sort of orthodox way, it would not have been as appreciated.
She nodded in agreement, smiling back and glanced down shyly. "So where do we go from here?"
I couldn't find an answer that would sustain the carefree tone our conversation held thus far, so I just said, somewhat sadly, "I wish I knew."
Her eyes flitted back up to mine. We watched each other again, and I was finally aware of how much we'd leaned into each other. Her shoulder was resting against mine. Our hands were pressed together on the armrest.
She swallowed forcibly, as if in preparation for her next words. "You were right, Edward."
I regarded her quizzically. "About what?"
"I did want to end it with him. I had wanted to end it with him for two years. But I was… scared." She stopped as her eyes began to glisten with tears.
I placed my hand over hers and stroked her fingertips lightly. "Why were you scared?"
She blinked, and a single tear fell to her cheek before she wiped it away. "We had been together for almost four years. He was sort of… all I knew for a while. I didn't have a family, not a good one anyway. Everything with him was fine at first but…" She trailed off and intertwined our fingers.
She pulled me closer, and, with my other hand, I cupped her cheek. I willed her to continue, looking at her with a gentle gaze, relishing in the way she was letting me in; her guard completely down finally.
"He started making his money, and then I became property to him, not even a person anymore. But I didn't want to be alone. I didn't know how to be alone, really. And then you came along."
She pressed her forehead to mine and took in a deep breath. My hand went to the back of her head, and I stroked her hair.
"I liked who I was when I was with you. You told me what I already knew, but didn't want to face; that I didn't need him anymore. But… God, I know I was awful to you. I'm so sorry. I'm surprised you don't hate me, even now." She closed her eyes, and another tear fell. This time, I reached for it quickly and, with a gentle touch, wiped it away.
I placed my index finger under her chin and made her look at me.
"Bella, it doesn't matter what you do. Doesn't matter how cruel you could have been to me. I'd always love you. I will always love you. I'll always adore you."
Her eyes closed again, and more tears slid down, but she pulled me to her crushingly, pressing her mouth to my neck. Her hand clung to my shoulder as I glided my lips along her earlobe then to her cheek. I touched her lips with my mouth, just barely, as if it was accidental.
The sensation was just as intense as the first time. I kissed her passionately, and she returned it with just as much force, now with more than a year's worth of yearning behind it rather than a week's. It was as though we couldn't get close enough, even though our bodies felt crushed together.
"Can we start over?" she mumbled against my lips between kisses. "That's all I ask." Her voice was soft, breathy, but I could hear the hidden plea behind it.
My heart started to pound.
I pulled back and looked at her pensively for a moment. I studied the expression on her face; the appearance of loss in her eyes as she waited for me to answer. She could have read my hesitation as indecisiveness. But I felt no such thing. Just as I had done when I was sixteen, I had to convince myself that this was really happening. I took in her familiar scent, her familiar touch, the deep brown color of her eyes…
It was real… and this time, she was asking to have me.
My lips slowly turned up in a smile, and I pulled her into an embrace.
This was good enough for me. Good enough for now.
So I hope this little ending was satisfying, considering how flawed these characters were! :) Please let me know what you think in a review! And again, thanks so much for all the support you've given me through this short story! I'm glad so many have enjoyed it! Not sure when/if I'll write again, but it was fun! :D *love and hugs*