3.

BPOV

Nice move there, Bella. Flirting with strangers in the middle of a freaking bus stop. You're awesome, I think to myself, rolling my eyes, as I make my way to the ice cream shop.

No use in waiting in that overcrowded, germ infested hellhole for another two hours. I may as well get acquainted with a banana split. Or maybe a milkshake. Gah, I wonder if they make Blizzards. Or are those only available at Dairy Queen?

Sidling up to the counter and taking a seat, I decide on a banana split. I haven't had one in forever and the yummy caramel, chocolate and strawberry syrups mixed together with chunks of banana and sweet vanilla ice cream are calling to my inner child.

I order my ice cream dream and watch Marge as she dutifully arranges my treat. By the time she sets it in front of me, I'm practically drooling. The cherries on each mound of ice cream are clearly mocking me as they roll down their frosty tips and into the pools of savory strawberry-chocolate-caramel coated goodness.

"That looks good." A not-so-unfamiliar voice appears behind me and I almost choke on one of the cherries.

"Are you stalking me now?" I ask, turning on my bar stool to face him. Jesus, he's cute. I was a few feet away from him earlier, but now, looking up as he's towering over me, I can appreciate his good looks.

He's tall, but not too lanky, and once he removes his Blackhawks baseball cap, I notice how his hair is this wild mess of light auburn which is a nice contrast to his bright, green eyes and long, dark pretty eyelashes.

And the way his lips curl up I'm worried I may have said that out loud. Well, damn.

"Nope, not stalking," he says and takes a seat next to me. "Hungry and bored." He takes a menu and opens it while I go back to eating my cool treat.

"Oh. What happened to all the people watching?" I inquire teasingly.

"The interesting people were gone." He shrugs and sets the menu down. "Whatcha having?"

"Banana split. What does it look like?" Seriously, I think it's pretty obvious what's in my dish, jeez.

He rolls his eyes. "It looks good, actually."

I eye him carefully then ask, "What are you having?"

"Hmm, I don't know," he muses then looks at some of the posters on the wall. Bringing his attention back to me, he points at my scrumptious snack. "I didn't think girls were supposed to eat those."

I frown. "Why not?"

He shrugs. "I don't know. All the chicks I dated ate salads and worried about their weight."

I take a spoonful of ice cream, cramming as much of it into my mouth and turn to face him, smiling and chewing, while mumbling, "Mmmm, so fruckin goog." Once my mouth is clear, I smile and continue, "You were definitely not dating the right chicks. This shit's delicious."

His grin is heart stopping when he responds, "Obviously not."

This flirting is kind of fun, and part of me sort of wishes I'd met him back in Florida, but then who am I kidding? Guys like this - that shamelessly flirt with girls they've just met - are usually only after one thing and I'm not that kinda woman.

"So, what are you having, sweetie?" Marge asks Edward—or was it Edgar—while I return to quietly eating my orgasm in a bowl.

I get lost in the flavours melding together in my mouth and miss whatever it is he orders.

"So, are you gonna tell me your name?" Edwin asks from beside me, and I decide to screw with him a little.

"I did, don't you remember?" I deadpan.

"No, you didn't. I would remember something like that." He smirks and it's really cute. I can't help smiling as I stuff my face again. He'll have to wait for an answer, and I can tell he's getting impatient as he watches me carefully almost as if he's afraid I'll say it and he might miss it.

I have to admit, his attention is kind of nice and a welcomed distraction to this disastrous waste of time.

I make sure to wipe my mouth thoroughly before extending my hand. "Bella. Nice to meet you, Ed-crap, I can't remember..."

He shakes his head and rolls his eyes. "You look way too young to be forgetting things so easily. It's Edward."

I nod. "Edward." I chew my lip and smile. "Well, Edward, I'm not that young."

"Well, you're not old," he teases.

I shake my head and take another spoonful of ice cream. "So, are we really going to talk about how old we are?"

"No. We could talk about the weather."

I make a face. "Nah. I'm leaving the sun to live in the rain. Let's skip the forecast."

Marge settles a large brownie Sundae in front of Edward and he grins, turning and waggling his eyebrows at me before digging in. "This looks good. Thanks, Marge." She smiles at us before walking off to wait other patrons.

I return to eating my dessert with gusto and try my damn best to ignore the man sitting beside me. He's seems kind and harmless, and he's certainly nice to look at, but I don't want him to get any ideas.

Except, when he starts humming and smacking his lips, I can't help but to turn to him and watch those lips wrap around that spoon. Jesus, he makes eating ice cream look like porn. Food porn. Yum...

Clearing my throat and shaking my head, I go back to eating my slowly melting dessert.

"So, age and weather are out, what do you want to talk about?" Edward asks and I almost choke on my melted ice cream.

Wiping my mouth, I turn to him. "Hmm, I don't know. Where are you headed?"

"Seattle. My sister's getting married. You?" He cuts into his brownie with his spoon, and it makes me wish I'd thought of ordering that.

"I'm moving back to my hometown where I'm starting a new job in September," I tell him, eyeing his dessert. I don't comment on the fact that I'm headed only about four hours north of him, heck we're probably not even taking the same bus.

"Yours sounds way more interesting mine," he says wistfully. "I am going to have to wear a tux." He gives me this horrified expression and I laugh loudly.

"That doesn't sound too bad. I bet you look great in a tux." I wiggle my eyebrows and scoop up some of the remaining banana-ice cream mixture.

He watches me for a few seconds as I chew, swallow and lick my lips. His eyes dart around my face and his lips curl up into a soft smile before he takes a spoonful of his own ice cream and shoves it between his parted lips. Now it's my turn to stare.

I'm not sure what's going on here, but my spidey senses are tingling, along with other parts of my anatomy.

"So, what kind of job are you moving back for?" he asks between spoonsful of his own decadent treat.

"I'm an elementary school teacher and I love the town I grew up in. I've always wanted to go back, so this is me going back." I grin, thinking back to how happy I'd been when I'd found out that I'd gotten the job.

"Oh wow, that's actually pretty great," he compliments and I nod in agreement. "Now, I'm just wondering why you're taking the bus instead of flying."

I explain to him how I wanted some adventure before starting my real life. He, in turn, goes on about his own fear of flying and how he's never really left Chicago. I don't poke fun at him for that, but it gives me some insight on the kind of guy he is. Going through all of this just to attend his sister's wedding is very sweet, making me wish I had more time to spend with him.

After what seems like only few minutes, I notice the time and tell him I have to go catch my bus. I really need to use the bathroom too, but I don't tell him that.

With a quick, but awkward goodbye, I wish him good luck on this journey and leave the ice cream shop feeling like I should have gotten his number or something, but then I remember that this is what it is. I can't get attached to people I meet on this trip, no matter how endearing or attractive they are. Doing that would be like bringing home every stray cat I found whenever I went out to play as a kid, and Mom always hated when I did that.

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