Disclaimer: Twilight belongs to Stephenie Meyer. No copyright infringement is intended.

This story was originally presented as an entry to the "Pick a Pic Contest" - now continued as a small drabble.

Thanks to the multi-talented FatesLoveQueen for generously allowing me to keep the banner that originated this story's cover.

Thanks to dazzlingrockstar and BedeliaJane for betaing this chapter.

" ... in the space between dreams and reality, there were no constraints to our spirits. Lying on the grass, gazing at the sky, we were more than an overused romantic cliché, for our feelings went beyond the superficial love of the form. On an ethereal level, my soul reached for yours and their passionate embrace sealed a love that our flesh would never consummate. At your tentative touch, an entire existence flashed before my eyes. In that idyllic construction of my lovelorn mind, we were happy and you were eternally mine. The words I longed to say will forever remain a mystery to your ears, but inside my weary heart I never stopped declaring my devotion for you. My sweet, dear friend, the one who got away, the sugar to my bitter self, how I loathe the day we said goodbye. To me you will perpetually remain beautiful and seventeen, waving me away, the unsuspecting holder of my heart."

As the author's voice faded away, the enraptured audience was left with the same sense of loss her character had experienced. Some tears were shed amidst the heartfelt ovation delivered to one of the most poignant authors of her generation. Her novels, raw and chafing tales of unmentionable love, were far from being editorial successes, but they garnered enough attention due to the quality of the writing as well as the shocking personality of the author. Rosalie Hale was a very private person, but whenever she decided to go out, she did it in style, using herself as a showcase to her dearest causes. And no cause was closer to her heart than the right to be different, hence her choice of attire for that evening. Wearing a very masculine suit, softened by very feminine stilettos, she made perfectly clear where her sexual inclinations lay.

Rosalie Hale was a bold, self-assured woman who bore little resemblance with the socially awkward Isabella Swan. However, they were indeed the same person, as Alice was pleased to observe. Perhaps, her disguise would have been sufficient to fool a less knowledgeable person, but Alice had spent the last twelve years dreaming of the luminous green eyes that betrayed Isabella's secret. For all the aloofness Isabella intentionally projected, her eyes were still terribly expressive, providing an entry to her well-guarded soul. Isabella had always been reluctant to divest herself of her defences, but when she did, oh, what a glorious sight to behold, as Alice was well aware. Alice begrudged so many things, but her rancour never touched the woman she was destined to love for the rest of her days. Staring at Isabella, she whispered prayers to gods who never cared, asking for a sign that she should keep on her quest to recapture a moment of beauty that had been prematurely lost. When Isabella raised her eyes, she looked directly at Alice, mumbling the name of the one who got away. In those sizzling seconds, their entire story flashed before Alice's eyes.

Alice had been conceived as a miracle of a capricious destiny which saw fit to gift an aging couple with the last missing piece to complete their blissful marriage. As a result, she turned into the pampered, demanding daughter of over-indulging parents. By age eight, she was a monster in the making, throwing tantrums for ridiculous reasons just for the sake of having her way. Other children tended to avoid her company; not even owning the best toys could convince them to interact with the she-devil. She was the lonely child, the one who was never invited, the one systematically ignored by her peers. Many times, Alice had asked God why He had made her different from the other kids; perhaps, if she were more like them, they would play with her and she wouldn't be lonely all the time. She asked her Heavenly Father for a friend: boy or girl. A person to bring light to her colourless life.

It took Him months to answer, but eventually her wish was granted. The new neighbours had a daughter who happened to be just a year older than her. Alice was determined to befriend the girl and wouldn't take no for an answer. Squaring her shoulders, she marched across the street, a sunny smile on her face. As luck would have it, her new neighbour was tiny and unattractive, her eyes too large and her hair unkempt. Sighing, Alice decided to do the best she could with the only prospective friendship she had. However, the little brat had more spirit than Alice had anticipated and refused to shake her extended hand, running away after making an obscene gesture. Disappointed, tears threatened to spill from Alice's eyes until she was comforted by the brat's mother. The nice lady made excuses for her daughter's appalling behaviour, asking Alice to be patient when dealing with Isabella, for she was an unruly child.

Somewhat appeased by the kind woman's words, Alice decided to be less conspicuous with her attempts at befriending the girl. So, she made herself shamelessly available, always lurking in the front yard trying not to cast longing looks towards the new girl who, all too soon, had become popular amongst the other kids. Feeling depressed, she sat on the curb and wept miserably, her body trembling with barely suppressed sobs. That sad display attracted the attention of Isabella's caring mother, who ordered her child to soothe Alice's bruised feelings. Begrudgingly, Isabella planted herself in front of her pathetic neighbour.

"My mother told me I had to play with you."

"Y-y-you d-don't have to. It's o-okay." Alice didn't want to be a burden to an unwilling stranger; she wanted a friend, someone who truly liked her.

"Look, if you don't play with me my mom will think I did something wrong. I'll get in trouble. If you play with me, you'd be doing me a favour."

Alice nodded her acquiescence and, from that day on, they became inseparable, regardless of their numerous differences. Isabella was vivacious and curious; she liked to play with the boys, spurning the more girlish entertainments Alice was so fond of. Her only concession was to Alice's tea parties which were held every afternoon at precisely four o'clock. To Isabella, the idea of arranging dolls and stuffed animals on a table was tedious and wasteful, but she liked Alice the same way she might have likes a younger sibling. Sometimes, Isabella persuaded Alice into taking part in one of her mischievous enterprises. The other children often complained, but Isabella silenced their protests with the promise of immediate retaliation should they upset Alice. Under Isabella's expert tutelage, Alice became more of a human and less of a stereotype. She still had her "diva" moments, but they were few and far in between.

Against all odds, they remained the best of friends as the years passed. Isabella's rebellious ways landed her on more than one scrape. Even though she was inevitably compared to the perfectly behaved Alice, Isabella managed to keep from resenting her friend. Alice grew into a good student, a well-behaved daughter, and a loyal friend: someone well-adjusted to the life of a god-forsaken little town. Isabella, on the other hand, felt restless and impatient, itching for excitement and adventure, never giving a thought to the consequences of her hasty actions. When puberty hit, Isabella, the untamed was replaced by an introverted girl who dared not raise her eyes or her voice. She no longer felt comfortable in her own skin. Instead, she felt detached and unhappy, her body playing havoc on her psyche.

Meanwhile, Alice flourished into a delicate beauty, attracting a great amount of male appreciation. The boys, who had avoided her company throughout childhood, were desperate for a shred of her attention. The girls, who had disregarded her, now courted her friendship, for she was beautiful, rich and suddenly, quite popular. But Alice wasn't fooled. She chose to stand by Isabella and rebuff all the vexing, superficial beings trying to invade her life. Some admired Alice for her loyalty. Some called her a fool for wasting her time on the ugly swan when she could do so much better than Isabella. More than once, a mystified Isabella tried to set Alice free from any obligation to remain her friend. Alice just called her stupid and laughed it off.

Having no one but each other, the girls spent all of their free time together. Between Alice's expansive personality and Bella's timidity, they found a balance. Through makeovers and reading philosophy, shopping and gazing at stars, they managed to keep each other happy. Alice derived an enormous amount of pleasure in brushing Isabella's hair and applying makeup to her lovely face. Isabella had many misgivings concerning her appearance, all of which Alice dutifully tried to eradicate, for she truly believed her friend to be prettier than words could ever express. Besides, Isabella's body had abundant curves. Too bad she hunched her shoulders and wore overly large sweaters in a vain attempt to disguise her beauty. Alice loved to put her friend in tight dresses, even if she refused to go out in public wearing anything but her old, baggy jeans. Touching Isabella tugged at a part of Alice that she was not ready to acknowledge.

Their relationship started to change with the arrival of the new boy, Jasper Hale. Blond, handsome and athletic, he was the embodiment of Prince Charming. He was gallant and polite – a genuinely good guy. Alice was swept off her feet by the boy's attentions and soon they were in love, consumed with the first stirrings of sexual awareness. In the high school hierarchy, they became the royal couple: the shinning role models to which everyone aspired. Jasper truly enjoyed mingling with the other students, and Alice didn't have the heart to deny her boyfriend any of his heart's wishes.

Dazzled by her new circumstances, Alice failed to realize that Isabella was fading into the background, silently slipping away from her life. Abandoned by her only friend, Isabella started to seek the company of the disreputable crowd, which happened to meet by the dumpsters. There, they used forbidden substances and indulged in lewd sexual behaviour. Sickened by her carelessness, Alice tried to reach out for Bella but was rebuffed at every turn. Isabella was beyond her reach, deeply sinking in the filth to which she didn't belong.

Alarming rumours reached Alice's ears, but she chose to disregard them as malevolent gossip. She defended Isabella's honour until the day she was confronted with the irrefutable proof that everything she had been told was true. Confused and upset, Alice couldn't make sense of the vision assaulting her. Isabella was kissing a girl behind the gym. Pressing the girl's body against the gym's wall, Isabella fondled the girl's small breast. Moaning softly, Isabella hitched up the girl's skirt, caressing her inner thighs. Tearing her eyes away, Alice sobbed at the pain of betrayal and the strangeness of being aroused by such a horrendous scene.

Profoundly affected by the experience, Alice couldn't help but feel detached from her body – an intruder in her own life. Jasper's kisses no longer evoked the same bodily responses; those delicious feelings of anticipation only came late into the night when Alice dreamed of things she dared not voice. Panting and ready, she always woke up before the ultimate satisfaction. Resorting to the relief provided by her own hands, Alice called for the name of her former friend. After the deed, she lay in bed, trying to understand the nature of her feelings. In the light of day, she pretended to be the same, but she stopped trying to reach out to her friend. After months of enacting the same charade, Alice convinced herself that the bedtime fantasies had been an aberration. After all, she was content with Jasper.

July was looming on the horizon when Isabella approached Alice. It had been ten months since they last spoke. Though no harsh words had been exchanged, both of them were aware that it had been the end of their friendship. Pleased and afraid, Alice agreed to meet Isabella after school. Alice didn't know what to expect, but when Isabella held her hand, all doubts flew away and together they walked to the little meadow where so many of their childhood days were spent. Stripped from prejudices and bitterness, they tacitly agreed to let the world and its traps slip away. Talking only of the future and dreams, they were old friends sublimated by the added feeling of overwhelming longing. Alice touched Isabella's face, letting her defences crumble, her eyes showing the emotions her brain wasn't ready to process. The next morning, Alice stood by the driveway, waved to her departing friend and moved on with her life.

Isabella went away to art school where she spread her wings, finally free to become herself. Alice was left behind for another year of school, before marrying her sweetheart and becoming the mother of two beautiful kids. It would have been the end of their story, just like Isabella's book suggested, had it not been for Alice's long journey towards self-awareness. What had been an inkling of discomfort in adolescence grew into devastating agitation, driving Alice to seek the cure for her malady in another man's arms. Discovered by Jasper, Alice made no excuses. She simply filed for divorce. After a long legal debacle, they agreed on the terms of their settlement. When it was time to rebuild her life by re-entering the dating scene, Alice shied away from doing so.

Aware of her bodily needs, Alice could no longer pretend to find satisfaction within a man's arms. She yearned for the light caresses of a subtle lover whose body was a mirror of her own. Unprepared to deal with the implications of being true to her nature, Alice found escape in literature, imagining herself as the woman living the torrid scenes described on the books. One day, perusing the shelves, she came across "Sixteen" by Rosalie Hale. Devouring the short story of a girl exploring her sexuality, Alice fell in love with the crafter of such soulful words. Becoming a fan, she bought every book written by Rosalie Hale.

There was an aura of mystery surrounding the author. Her public appearances were sparse, with the public carefully selected. In addition, no pictures of Miss Hale were ever released. In spite of this, Alice felt like she knew Miss Hale as though they were lifelong friends. She could almost anticipate every one of the characters' reactions. It was a passive kind of love, until the day Alice read Miss Hale's latest work, Love: Unfulfilled. The book was about a small town girl falling in love with her oblivious friend. It detailed events that were too close to Alice's own memories.

At first, she thought it was an illusion of her conceited mind. After carefully re-reading the dedication, she was convinced. It was short and to the point just like Isabella had always been: "I should have taken your hand. For A: my best friend, my only love." Crying the tears she had withheld for too long, Alice's last barrier fell. At last, she accepted her feelings. She couldn't pinpoint the exact moment when friendship had turned into love, but the truth was that she had been in love with Isabella for a long time.

Dismayed, Alice had the gut-wrenching feeling of having lost her chance at happiness. For weeks, she was consumed with self-pity, descending into hopelessness and anguish. Help came from an unexpected source, in the form of an invitation to an exclusive reading of Rosalie Hale's latest book. It was an olive branch offered by Jasper, who happened to notice his ex-wife's preference for the author. Thankfully, he was unaware of the books' theme. Since the author would be present, Alice took the opportunity with both hands, eager for the chance of confirming her suspicions and the prospect of being granted her heart's most ardent desire.

Coming back to the present, Alice saw the wariness marring Isabella's incomparable eyes. Beneath the refined veneer, Alice could still see the self-conscious teenager Isabella had been. Propelled by a violent wave of protectiveness, Alice walked towards her. Unlike the pro-active image she projected, Isabella stood as an impassive observer of Alice's actions. However, when Alice repeated the same gesture of so long ago, Isabella didn't hesitate. Taking Alice's hand, Isabella held it against her heart. With that simple gesture, she showed all of the feelings that words were inadequate to convey. There they stood, surrounded by people oblivious to the significance of the moment, but reality intruded and Isabella was whisked away.

An hour later, they held hands while walking to Isabella's hotel. Surprisingly, no words were exchanged. They were simply enjoying the peace of being free of pretences, finally allowed to love and be loved in return. Explanations would come later, for it was time to let their bodies speak the ancient language of lovers.

Now that the time had come, Alice was nervous and a bit skittish. Having tasted the charms of only two male lovers, she wondered if she would be able to enjoy sex with another woman. All questions flew away when Isabella placed one hand around Alice's waist and held Alice's hand with the other. Together they waltzed to the silent melody of love found, their bodies swaying gently, giving Alice the opportunity to get used to Isabella's luscious body. The kiss that followed came naturally, their eyes locking and their lips seeking each other.

The first feel of Isabella's lips robbed Alice of breath. She had imagined it a thousand times, but reality surpassed all expectations. Moaning softly, Alice cupped Isabella's face and adjusted the angle, deepening their kiss. Isabella's Isabella's hands trailed slowly down Alice's spine, eliciting a shiver of delight from the tiny woman in her arms. Letting the apprehension slip away, Alice caressed Isabella's side, working up the courage to touch her breast. Sensing the other woman's intent, Isabella took Alice's hand and placed it on her full breast. It was all the incentive Alice needed, she cupped it and ran her thumb over the engorged nipple.

Grunting at the realization that Isabella wasn't wearing a bra, Alice made quick work of the buttons, freeing her lover's breasts to her hungry gaze. Admiring the view, Alice gently took one nipple into her mouth, alternating between suckling and tonguing it. The other nipple was roughly rubbed and painfully pinched by Alice's fingers. Isabella gladly suffered Alice's ministrations, knowing that her lover needed to discover the joy of touching a soft body.

Falling to her knees, Alice unbuttoned Isabella's pants, letting them fall to the ground. Before her eyes, Isabella's pussy glinted with wetness: a berry ripe to be consumed. Tentatively, Alice ran her nose down Isabella's slit and drew a sound of urgency from the depths of Isabella's being. Parting the outer lips, Alice's tongue sought Isabella's clit. It wasn't hard to find it, because it was swollen and throbbing, straining for the touch of Alice's tongue. Consenting to Isabella's desire, Alice took it past her lips, suckling it while her fingers entered Isabella's tight passage.

Tasting Isabella was the most erotic experience of Alice's life. It made her bolder – daring enough to penetrate Isabella with her tongue. It was enough to send Isabella over the edge into an orgasm that went on for what felt like hours, days, a lifetime. Grinning like the Cheshire Cat, Alice kissed her lover. When Isabella tasted herself on Alice's tongue she knew they were only getting started.

Relaxed after a mind blowing orgasm, Isabella decided it was time to even the score. Unzipping Alice's pretty dress, Isabella admired the pretty blush covering the upper half of Alice's body. Combined with the sexy red lingerie, it was an image taken right out of Isabella's wildest dreams. Pressing Alice against the wall, Isabella aligned their bodies, an erotic brush to which Alice was powerless to resist.

"Do you like it baby?"

It was a rhetorical question, for Alice was beyond coherent thought. Isabella kissed Alice with all the longing that had been repressed for more years than she cared to count. It was harsh and conquering: an assault to the senses especially designed to leave Alice completely helpless against the waves of desire washing her body.

"I saw you, you know. That day, watching me. I pretended she was you – that I was kissing your mouth, touching your tit. All of my lovers ... they were always you."

Alice didn't know how to respond to such a heat felt confession. Fortunately, no response was required. Isabella resumed their kiss.

As tempting as Alice's lingerie was, Isabella wanted to behold the naked flesh of the woman she had always loved. Infusing the task of undressing Alice with an abundant amount of eroticism, Isabella skilfully enhanced the raging anticipation tormenting Alice. Aroused beyond endurance, Alice begged for Isabella's touch on any part of her body.

Smiling sassily, Isabella licked one rosy, perfect nipple, following it by a warm blow of breath. Tired of being toyed with, Alice gripped Isabella's head and shoved her breast on Isabella's mouth. Chuckling at Alice's eagerness, Isabella happily complied to her demand, suckling the other woman's soft flesh into her watering mouth. After giving the same treatment to the other breast, Isabella lovingly kissed Alice while her hand descended to her lover's most intimate flesh.

Gentleness was superseded by roughness. Alice found bent over the table, her breasts crushed against the cold, unyielding wood. Pressing her front to Alice's back, Isabella overpowered the smaller woman, relishing the power of controlling her lover's pleasure.

Tangling her hand into Alice's hair, Isabella pulled her hair, whispering naughty words in her ear.

"You are so pretty bending over like this: a little slut eager for a good fuck. I will give it to you babe. I will have you mewling like a cat in heat and then you will no longer be able to deny that you are mine."

After biting Alice's earlobe, Isabella moved her mouth up to lick the ear's shell, feasting on the taste of Alice's skin. Isabella caressed the rim of Alice's ass, promising that one day she would show her lover the delight of feeling a tongue invading her hole. Enjoying the crude words, Alice was mad with desire, sobbing the need for release.

The only warning Alice received was the feeling of Isabella's fingers drifting down before she was surprised by a violent penetration. Unlike the gentle touch of Alice's former experiences, Isabella's lovemaking was intense and domineering. The unforgiving plunge of her fingers caused Alice's inner walls to clench painfully. But it was a delicious kind of pain: one that Alice had been craving all of her life. As she surrendered to pleasure, Alice's orgasm was more than a physical experience, for it was a consequence of her beloved's touch.

Panting and exhausted, Alice laughed softly at the delicious tangle of limbs they currently presented.

"Well, Miss Swan, if I'm your sugar, you surely are my naughty, saucy, shameless spice."

Months later, an epilogue was added to the second edition of Love: Unfulfilled. The heroine no longer mourned a promise of love, for she had found her happily-ever-after.

Thank you!