Disclaimer: All characters are the express right of Stephenie Meyer. No copyright infringement intended. Also, I do not hold the rights to any of the songs used.
AN: Thanks to my beta toocute24 and my pre-reader, Bee1982.
BPOV (present day)
I was so lost in the past that I never heard the ringing of the phone. When I felt Carmen's hand on my shoulder, I jolted and came back to the present.
"I'm sorry, Miss Bella. Miss Alice is on the phone."
I nodded. "Carmen, I thought I told you to stop with this 'Miss' crap."
"Sorry, ma'am. It's engrained I guess." Carmen handed the phone to me and turned to go back in the house. She stopped at the door and turned back to me. "Would you like some more tea? You still sound a little hoarse."
"Thank you, Carmen, that would be nice." I watched her retreat back into the house, and then lifted the receiver to my ear. "Hello, Ali."
"How are you feeling, Bella?"
"I'm fine, Alice. How are you? Jasper?" I wanted to steer the conversation away from the reason that I knew she had called.
"We're good, but I didn't call to talk about us. I heard that Edward wrote to you. Are you okay?"
"I'm fine, Alice," I sighed. "He wants me to meet him at the studio on Saturday. I'm guessing that you guys haven't told him the real reason behind my hiatus?"
"No, Bella, it's not our place. If you want him to know, then you can tell him."
I was unsure as to whether I wanted Edward to know what had sparked my sudden departure from the music industry or not. I knew that I would have to tell him eventually, but I wanted to wait. I would have to do it soon, though, since the press would certainly be getting wind of it. Marcus could only keep things under wraps for so long.
"I know that I should tell him, Alice, but..."
"But what, Bella?"
"I can't talk about this right now, Ali. I have to go. I'll call you later." I disconnected before she could protest. As I looked out over the rolling hills of my home, I was once again lost in the past.
Things between Edward and I were never easy, but always passionate. Whether we were singing together, writing songs, or making love, it was always all in and anything but easy.
"Edward! Dammit, where the hell is my shirt?" I hollered down the hall at his retreating back.
"How the fuck should I know, Bella?" he tossed over his shoulder.
"ARHH!" I screamed in frustration.
"Sweetheart?" I turned to see Edward in the doorway, my shirt hanging off of his finger. "Is this what you are looking for?"
I walked over to him and yanked it away before shoving it into my suitcase. "I am not in the mood for your games, Edward. We are leaving first thing in the morning. Tonight, you guys are doing your farewell performance at J's, and I want to make sure that I am ready to go!"
"Relax, Baby, things are gonna be fine. Marcus and Caius have set up this tour so that we are always together. It'll be okay." Edward wrapped his arms around me from behind and pressed his chest to my back.
"I'm not worried," I lied. Of course I was worried. We had just finished recording our first albums and had only released a couple of songs a piece. How Marcus and Caius thought that a small tour—even if it was in small venues—was okay, was beyond me.
"You know you can't lie to me, Bella," Edward informed me as he started placing kisses along my neck. He kissed his way down to my pulse point, nipping and sucking my flesh into his mouth.
I let my head roll back until it was laying on his chest as he continued his assault. "Edward...we don't have...time for...this," I whispered breathlessly.
He paid me no mind and began bunching my skirt in his hands and pulling it up around my waist. I shuddered as I felt his fingers skim the top of my panties before slipping inside the fabric and lower into my slick folds.
"Baby, always so ready for me," Edward murmured as he slipped a finger inside me, curling it toward that spot that only he could reach.
"Edward, hurry," I cried as I ground into his hand, searching for my release.
Keeping up the rhythm that he started, I never noticed when he removed his other hand from my waist. It wasn't until I heard his zipper that I figured out his intentions. He entered me swiftly, causing me to cry out in pleasure.
"Fuck, Bella, you feel so good, Baby."
Knowing that we were short on time, he set a fast and furious pace, all the while pinching and rolling my clit, sending me careening to the edge. When he felt my pussy clench around him, he let go with a guttural cry.
As our breathing returned to normal, I finally got my wits about me. "Dammit, Edward! I told you we didn't have time! Now we're late."
Edward chuckled and pulled his pants up. "I can't bring myself to be sorry, Baby."
I turned to face him, grinning at his satisfied smirk. I leaned forward and kissed his lips before biting his bottom one. "Me either, but let's go."
We arrived at Handlebar J's with five minutes to spare. You would think that with the looks I was getting, I was solely responsible for our tardiness.
"What?" I shrugged my shoulders. "Blame him!"
"Oh, don't worry, Bella, we do." Emmett stood by the door with his arms crossed.
"But not for the reasons you think, Sweets," Jasper piped in.
Before Garrett could throw his two cents in, a high pitched squeal pierced the air.
"Eddie! You're finally here!"
I looked at Garrett, "Are you fucking kidding me?"
Edward groaned and pulled me closer to his side. "Don't even think about leaving me," he whispered. "What the fuck are you doing here Lauren?"
"I needed to see my, Eddie. Why is she here?" Lauren sneered in my direction.
"She belongs here. She is wanted here. You are not!" Edward growled.
"Aww, Eddie, you know you don't mean that," Lauren simpered.
I wanted to gag, but held firm and stayed by Edward's side. I did, however, let him know how I was feeling by digging my nails into his side.
"Actually, Lauren, I do. Bella and I are together, have been for a while now. It's time that you accept that and stay the fuck away from us."
"Whatever, Eddie. It won't last, and when she's gone, I'll be waiting."
Lauren walked to Edward and—right in front of me—kissed him. Actually, it looked more like she was slobbering on him, then she was gone.
"Seriously! What the fuck is that whore's problem!" I screamed. "I am gonna rip every extension out of her bleached head!"
Emmett grabbed me, yanked me away from the door, and all but threw me onto the couch. "Emmett!"
"Chill, Laila Ali. It won't do any good to go getting in her face," he chuckled.
"Yeah, B, don't worry; we've got it covered," Garrett informed me.
Deciding it was better to keep my mouth shut and let it roll off my back, I sat on the couch where Emmett threw me and sulked for a while.
"Are we ready?" Edward asked five minutes later.
A chorus of 'let's do this!' echoed around the room, and then they walked out on stage just as James announced them.
We were halfway through our set when I spotted Lauren making her way toward the stage. Her tits were swinging freely, and I just knew that I was gonna end up with a faceful of lace in about ten seconds. Ready to put a stop to her shit, I stepped up to the mic.
"We want to send this next song out to a very special member of the audience. She has been coming here since we started and has always told us how much she loves us."
"Especially you, E," Garrett piped up as rehearsed.
"Thanks, Gar. Anyway, Lauren, this song is for you!" I took my place behind the keyboard and started singing.
I haven't been to church since I don't remember when
Things were goin' great 'til they fell apart again
So I listened to the preacher as he told me what to do
He said you can't go hatin' others who have done wrong to you
Sometimes we get angry, but we must not condemn
Let the good Lord do his job, and you just pray for them
I pray your brakes go out runnin' down a hill
I pray a flowerpot falls from a window sill and knocks you in the head like I'd like too
I pray your birthday comes and nobody calls
I pray you're flyin' high when your engine stalls
I pray all your dreams never come true
Just know wherever you are, Honey, I pray for you.
The clapping and laughter that came from the audience was awesome. However, the best part was the anger that was emanating from Lauren. Her face was red and she was clenching her fists, and I was pretty sure she was ready to stomp her foot.
I'm really glad I found my way to church
'Cause I'm already feelin' better and I thank God for the words
Yeah, I'm goin' to take the high road
And do what the preacher told me to do
You keep messin' up and I'll keep prayin' for you
I pray your tire blows out at 110
I pray you pass out drunk with your best friend
And wake up with his and hers tattoos
We continued to play and sing and have a great time. The audience was really getting into and had started singing "pray for you" every time we did. Lauren was so pissed off that she did in fact stomp her foot, and with a mighty screech, she left the bar.
After our set was complete and we said our final goodbye, the guys and I retreated to the dressing room.
"I can't believe that's the last time we'll ever be on that stage," Jasper commented as he plopped down on one of the couches.
I sat beside him and leaned back. "I know. It's gonna be so weird to wake up in a different city after tomorrow."
"How's Bella holding up?" Garrett asked.
I chuckled. "She says she's fine, but you know how she gets. She was flitting around the house earlier looking for a shirt and screaming at me because it wasn't where she thought it was."
"She'll be fine," Emmett stated. "Besides, Rose, Kate and Alice will be there."
I bolted upright. "What?!"
"You didn't know?" Garrett asked. I shook my head. "Yeah, Marcus and Caius hired them. Alice is our costume/wardrobe person, Kate is gonna to help with PR, and Rose will be doing Bella's hair and makeup."
"Huh." I sat back and looked around. "I guess we should go—early flight and all."
We walked out into the near empty bar and found our ladies waiting on us. They started clapping and whistling, causing us to laugh.
I held my arm out to Bella, and she ran up to me. I pressed a kiss to her lips and then pulled her to my body. "You ready to go?"
"Yeah, I'm tired."
I turned to my brothers, "Hey guys, we're gonna roll. See ya in the morning."
"Later, Bro!" they hollered to our retreating backs.
I rolled over and stared at the clock on the nightstand. The bright green numbers shining back at me read 2:00 am. I closed my eyes and rolled to my other side.
"Baby, what are you doing?" Edward mumbled.
"I can't sleep." I gave up and got out of bed, pulling on Edward's discarded T-shirt. "I'm gonna go in the living room."
I watched as Edward sat up and rubbed a hand over his face. "Do you want me to come with you?"
I leaned down and kissed him. "No, go back to sleep." I turned and walked to the door.
"I love you, Bella."
I turned and looked at the man that was already half asleep, still sitting up. "I love you, too."
I walked out to the living room and plopped down on the couch, grabbing the remote and flipped on the television. That eerie white glow filled the room, casting shadows in the corners.
I jumped and turned to see Kate standing behind me. "Did I wake you up?"
"Not really. I couldn't sleep."
"Are you nervous?" Kate sat down in the chair beside me.
"Not really. It's more...I don't know...fear, I guess. This isn't the path I chose."
"Bella, do you remember Mom?"
I shrugged my shoulders. "Not really. I was only three when she died."
Kate smiled. "I'll be right back."
I watched her walk out of the room and then sat and waited for her to return. I didn't wait long.
"Look at these," Kate said as she handed me a stack of old vinyl records. Renee Higgins was written on all of them.
"Who is Renee Higgins?"
"That was Mom's stage name, Bella. Mom sang right up until I was born, then she left it all behind."
I stared at the items in my hands and finally realized what my father had always tried to tell me. He had always said that my mother had given me her gift, but I never understood what that meant...until now.
I don't know how long I sat there with the records and my thoughts, but it must have been a while. It wasn't until I felt the couch dip beside me and an arm around my shoulder that I realized Edward had joined me. He didn't ask questions, just held me against him as I processed this new information.
AN: Ok, so a little comedy, a little lemony goodness and they are off. Leave me some love. I could really use some song ideas, so lay 'em on me. 'Til next time!