Hey Guys! I submitted this little fic to a short story contest with a max word count of 1,000. It didn't win anything, but I don't feel too bad - the winner was a published novelist. The names were different when I initially submitted this, but I think we can all guess who I was thinking of when I wrote it...
A big thank you to cocoalvin for beta-ing this for me! Any mistakes from the final edit are mine alone.
Disclaimer: I still don't own Twilight, in case you were wondering.
It almost seemed as if we were the only people on Earth at that moment.
In reality, we were the only people who had wandered past the sand dunes so late at night. Most guests of the campsite were content to sit huddled around their fires, enjoying the warmth they provided after the sun disappeared into the ocean with a fiery burst of orange and red. Behind us, a coastal breeze carried the exuberant laughter of our friends, singing off-key to classic rock tunes strummed haphazardly on a cheap guitar.
Holding hands under the blanket of stars, our toes dug into the cool sand while we carried our flips flops, towels, and a few beers rescued from the communal cooler. Near the water's edge, Edward laid the towels side by side and plopped down unceremoniously, grabbing me around the waist and pulling me down alongside him. The salty ocean air curled around us, blowing my hair from my face as we watched waves crash against the shore, the seascape illuminated beneath the late August blue moon.
Tucking under his arm, I rested my head against his shoulder, the rhythmic rise and fall of his breath drowning out the lively noise in the background.
"We really gonna do this?" he asked, his voice a low rumble in his chest.
"I think so," I replied, a smile tugging at the corner of my mouth as I sat up. "But first," I said, pulling my shirt over my head and tossing it at him, "we skinny-dip."
Laughing, he chased me into the black waves, a trail of abandoned clothing left behind us. Following the initial shock of hitting the water, I dove under an incoming wave, adjusting to the temperature as the water glided over my skin.
Sputtering as my head broke past the surface, I began treading water. With long, smooth strokes, Edward was quickly by my side, winding his arms around me and pulling me flush against his body. Tensing, I looked over my shoulder to double check that no one had followed us onto the beach.
"Don't worry, no one can see," he whispered. Wrapping my arms around his neck, I let him support my weight in the water and pressed my lips to his.
Tomorrow, it wouldn't matter anyway.
The next morning, I woke with a low-grade ache in my head, quickly casting blame on the final beer I drank before we stumbled from the beach back into our tent, leaning against each other for stability and conspicuous in our drunken state. How none of our friends had guessed that we were together by now was a mystery. Stretching my arms overhead, I tried to work out a twinge in my lower back, courtesy of a rock poking me in the side which no amount of half-asleep shuffling would dislodge. Apparently, we hadn't done a very good job of clearing the ground before setting up our tent the night before, anxious to spend time with our friends during this last trip of the summer.
Unzipping and stepping out of the tent as gingerly as possible, I took a deep inhale of the cool morning air, still smelling of smoke from the fire we had put out just a few short hours earlier. I was an early riser, but the rest of our group would wake soon enough. It would be difficult to sleep once the sun rose higher in the sky, casting its light and heat through the thin material of our tents. Pulling a sweatshirt over my head, I made my way to the small circle of coolers that had been christened as our kitchen, and a small smile crossed over my face.
Today was the day.
With an eye on our tent, I kept watch for emerging signs of life. As more and more people woke, and chatter increased, it wasn't long before Edward emerged from the drab green-brown material, stunning despite his bed head. Dark hair against creamy skin, he was all pink flushed cheeks and loose-limbs as he stumbled in my direction. "Coffee," he grunted, guided toward me by his nose. Wrapping an arm around my waist, he plucked the mug out of my hand and took a long sip. I turned toward him, mouth open, scandalized by his audacity.
Placing the mug back in my hand, he whispered his thanks into my ear and pressed his sleep warm chest against my back, dropping a light kiss onto my cheek.
All eyes turned toward us.
"I don't think this was quite what we had discussed," I mumbled lowly.
"Like a band-aid," he replied, voice soft and fond. "Better to just rip it off."
Closing my eyes, I braced myself for whatever might come next. A deep voice rang out from the left. "Uh, what the hell? Is this a joke?"
Heart racing in my chest, I froze. Again, Edward supported my weight, this time keeping me from being swept under by fear rather than the dark ocean waters. His voice didn't waver as he responded. "Not a joke, guys. Jasper and I are together."
The declaration was met by silence. Looking up at my friends, their reactions ranged from stone-faced to gawping. As I surveyed the crowd, Edward's steady inhale and exhale of breath grounded me, and I reached back to grab his hand, proud of who we were.
The quiet was broken by one of the guys sauntering up to us, clad solely in board shorts. "Okay then, tell me the truth," he said. "I'm hot, right? Like, a gay dude would totally be attracted to me."
Chuckling, I shook my head, finally finding my voice. "Sure, Emmett, but you're really not my type."
"Good enough for me," he stated. Addressing the crowd that had begun to snap out of their surprise, he asked, "Who's ready for a breakfast beer?"
Edward and I both raised our hands. Whatever happened next, we were out.
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