A/N: This is something I've been sitting on for awhile that I've finally gotten around to finishing...this is part one of two...Part Two will be up in a few days. Hope you enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight nor do I make any money off of turning the characters into horny, human perverts.
We all know fate can play tricks on us, leading us to believe that things are going well, only to pull the rug out from under us and smack us right in the face with a good dose of reality.
Sometimes fate can lead us down a path full of weeds and obstacles, and just when we think we can't face anything else, it can open our eyes to see that we had a beautiful meadow waiting for us at the end.
In my case, the strange and horrible string of events leading up to the summer after my junior year of high school were just about enough to make me want to lock myself in my room forever, writing angry and nonsensical poetry about the injustices of life.
Thankfully I didn't, because that summer turned out to be one of the best of my life.
Shortly after my seventeenth birthday, an innocent and routine night out with friends led me to make one of the best decisions of my life.
I had been sitting at the food court in the mall, munching on a huge soft pretzel, killing time before our movie started. My best friends, Lindsay and Brett, were sitting with me as we critiqued the fashion sense of the Friday night mall crowd.
Unfortunately, our movie plans were thwarted when Brett's older brother called him, announcing that he had to come home right away because his mom had "found the magazines." Since he was our ride, I was hastily dropped off at my house twenty minutes later by a visibly sweaty and fidgety Brett, who then sped off to go face the wrath of his overprotective and very religious mother.
Walking into the house, I saw something no teenager should ever have to be subjected to.
There, right on our living room sofa, was my mother.
Wearing nothing but a hot pink cowboy hat, riding my stepdad like a cowgirl.
Making sounds that I honestly can't even describe without throwing up in my mouth a little.
I was suddenly envious of Brett, because even though he was probably in the midst of a very heated and embarrassing discussion about pornography, I'm fairly certain Mrs. Warner had never screwed Mr. Warner out in plain view of their precious, church-going kiddos.
To be fair, I tried to do the whole "let's pretend this never happened" thing, but the week after the cowgirl incident proved that it just wasn't going to happen for me. My stepdad turned bright red whenever I entered the room and absolutely refused to make eye contact with me. My crazy mother didn't even seem fazed by the whole thing and even made me sit down for at least three giggle-filled sex talks before I finally blew up and asked to call my dad.
Exactly one very awkward month later, I sat on a plane heading to Seattle, waiting to start my new life with my father, Charlie, in Forks, Washington.
Having spent the majority of my childhood in the Phoenix desert, moving to Washington pretty much shocked my rain-deprived system into a complete panic.
Because in case you didn't know, it rains in Forks. A whole fucking lot. All the damn time.
Within days of my arrival, my once golden and glowing skin had turned a pasty, translucent white color. My hair, once shiny, silky brown, and accentuated with pretty auburn highlights, now hung in frizzy, sorta-waves around my face thanks to the ever-present humidity.
My immune system had apparently decided not to make the trip with me, choosing rather to soak up the rays back home. Within the first month of living with my dad, I had suffered through one sinus infection, one horrendous cold, and some kind of grotesque rash on my right armpit. Not only did I now look like a fucking vampire, I also quickly earned a reputation at Forks High as the "freaky new girl". Because let's face it – having to blow your nose and scratch yourself several times a day is just not cool, no matter where you are or where you came from.
My first few weeks at Forks High School were completely awful, full of stares and whispers. Having never been one to hold my tongue, I had to fight the urge to lash out on more than one occasion. But in the end I figured my best bet was to play it cool and lay low, hoping that eventually things would blow over and I could somehow learn to fit in here in this oceanic wasteland.
My brain-to-mouth filter finally gave out one Thursday in Biology, when it became apparent that our enthusiastic and sometimes spastic teacher, Mr. Banner, had apparently not gotten the memo that I was to be avoided like the plague.
"Bella, can you tell me what the two major types of cells are?" Mr. Banner asked, pushing his gigantic glasses up his nose as he called on me.
"Prokaryotic and eukaryotic," I answered after a brief pause, ending my answer with a slight huff of irritation at having attention drawn to me.
"Good job, Bella! You've got spunk!" Mr. Banner clapped three times like a seal before turning back the whiteboard to continue his lesson.
Mr. Banner was obviously not aware that the word "spunk" has a very different meaning to high school students than it does to high school teachers. And he had just enthusiastically announced to our entire class that I had the aforementioned spunk.
Jessica Stanley, the resident bitch and reigning queen of everything at Forks High, was unfortunately sitting to my left when this fun little show began. She let out a ridiculous snort of amusement before turning to me with an evil smirk.
"How does it feel to be full of spunk, Bella?"
Although I was internally fuming and was quite ready to jab her right in her water bra with my recently sharpened #2 pencil, I simply rolled my eyes and ignored her.
Unfortunately, she just wouldn't drop it, giggling like a complete moron for the remainder of class while whispering various unimaginative insults revolving around jiz. Ironically, the rumors I had heard in my short time here might lead someone to believe that spunk was actually Jessica's beverage of choice.
By the time the bell finally rang, I had reached my limit.
Smiling sweetly, I turned to her as I packed my bag.
"Hey, Jessica. You look good today. I don't think I've ever actually seen you without a dick in your mouth. Obviously it makes talking a lot easier, eh?"
A red-faced and slack-jawed Jessica now stared at me through narrowed, angry eyes.
A low chuckle beside me forced my gaze away.
I instantly locked eyes with Edward Cullen, the hot boy who sat to my right, who had apparently been watching our little exchange with captivated amusement. Having never actually spoken to him, I had admired him from afar on plenty of occasions and judging from the looks the other chicks in my grade gave him, so did most of the female population here. Although beautiful beyond belief, with a killer body, bright green eyes, and crazy dark sex hair, he was actually quite a loner, preferring to limit his social interactions to his younger sister and older brother.
He held my gaze for what I'm sure was a beat longer than what would be socially acceptable, offering me a quick wink before standing to gather his things.
Unfortunately for me, after that fateful Thursday, Jessica made it her mission in life to destroy me. Fortunately for me, she was a complete idiot who clearly lacked in the department of witty repartee, which pretty much guaranteed that I always had the pleasure of getting the last word in. I could almost picture her sitting at home on her computer, scrolling through urban dictionary websites trying to find some new way to outsmart me.
I guess her overindulgence of spunk might have interfered with her conversation and debate skills.
That fateful Thursday also turned out to be the beginning of my friendship with Edward Cullen and his siblings, Alice and Emmett.
Our friendship started off slow, but progressed as the year went on.
Our lunchtime chats and biology study sessions revealed that Edward had only just moved to Forks the year before when his dad took a new job at the local hospital. He and his siblings also received a rather cold reception upon arrival – it seems the lovely residents of Forks just didn't take too kindly to new folk, particularly those who come from big cities, such as Chicago, where the Cullens were born and raised. In my weird, germ-infested case, I can almost understand being shunned immediately. In the Cullens' case, I was at a complete loss for how the Forks High students didn't immediately drop to their knees and declare them their leaders. All three of the Cullen siblings were beautiful, smart, and damn-near perfect – surely that would account for some type of immediate climb up the social ladder?
Edward was like a male version of me. Ok, maybe not quite like me, but there were some similarities. He was definitely more attractive and less socially retarded than me, but he and I just hit it off instantly, our personalities meshing and colliding in just the perfect ways. He was relatively quiet, but underneath his calm exterior held a spark of pure crazy. He was funny, charming, fearless, and overall a fucking awesome friend.
Edward was the peanut butter to my seedless raspberry preserves. The Nutella to my toast.
And I may have harbored a slight crush on him. And by slight, I mean I had one of those head over heels, sex dreams every night, tingle every time he touched me kind of crushes.
Basically, I loved the guy. But how could I not? He was freakin' perfect in every way imaginable. And he understood me as I understood him. He just got me.
Unfortunately, I was too afraid of scaring off my new best friend to ever pursue anything beyond friendship with him.
So I figured if I couldn't show my love for him out in public, I could sure as hell compensate with a lot of self-loving in private.
Which I did.
I'm honestly surprised I didn't get carpel tunnel that year.
Once in a great while, I'd catch him looking at me in a way that would give me hope that maybe he felt the same way about me as I did about him. But it was always fleeting and always gone before I could ever really be sure it happened in the first place.
As I grew closer to Edward, I also came to love Alice and Emmett Cullen. Not in the same way, of course, but with the three of them, my Forks transplant progressed from awful to bearable to awesome over the course of the rest of my junior year.
We hung out and did all the crazy shit teenagers do. Well, as crazy as a cop's daughter and a bunch of surgeon's kids would dare in a small town. Alice forced me to act like a girl occasionally, helping me redecorate my room and overhaul my wardrobe. Emmett took it upon himself to be my life coach, trying to teach me what he deemed necessary out in the real world, such as poker, hitting a bong, and watching baseball. Although I certainly never minded Alice or Emmett taking me under their wing, no matter how ridiculous their various ventures were, I loved the fact that Edward never treated me like a project. We just hung out, talked, played video games, watched movies, listened to music, and anything else you could imagine to fill up the time. He never forced his likes and opinions on me, a very rare and wonderful find in a friend.
The next several months just flew by. I had had friends in Phoenix of course, but none of them even remotely compared to Edward. He was my rock, my happy place, my one reason for not hopping on a plane and moving back in with the crazy-couch-sex-people.
When the school year finally ended, my crazy fantasies of spending time at the beach and seeing my old friend, the sun, whom I had missed dearly, never really came to fruition. I kept waiting for summer to actually start.
But it just never fucking did.
It rained. Still.
It was cold. Still.
It was cloudy all the time. Still.
What the hell?
Where I came from, the end of May meant bikinis and tan lines. Apparently in Washington, May means a slight temperature increase, a slight decrease in measurable precipitation, and an abundance of snails and banana slugs.
Fun, right? Yeah, not so much.
The Cullens, having come from Chicago where summers are hot and muggy, were also pretty heartbroken over the lack of heat and sun.
I'd never had to deal with a summer where nearly every activity was "weather permitting." What exactly does one do if they can't lounge beside a pool all day?
Every night that summer, I prayed for heat and sunshine. I loved my new friends and I loved my father, but nothing made me feel as homesick as the lack of warmth.
For the entire month of June, no matter where I was or what I was doing, any time the sun peeked out from behind the clouds, I'd make a beeline outside and stare up at the sky, trying to absorb that feeling that only sunshine can provide. As soon as the gray returned, hiding the sunshine back behind its blanket of mist and cloud cover, I'd return to whatever activity I had interrupted, dejected and sad all over again.
Divine intervention is the only thing to which I can attribute what happened three weeks later as July was coming to a cool and cloudy close.
A heat wave.
And not just any heat wave – we're talking a true freak of nature, will be talked about for years kind of heat wave. The entire third week of July brought with it continuous sunshine and daily temperatures in the mid-nineties.
I think many banana slugs met their demise that one balmy week.
As air conditioning just wasn't necessary in Forks, and therefore not typically available in most standing structures, most of the population was reduced to a bunch of grumbling assholes in light of their now hot and muggy surroundings.
I, on the other hand, was in a constant state of bliss that week.
That second hot day, Edward and I loaded up his Volvo with mountains of summer supplies – towels, sunscreen, beach balls, sunglasses, drinks, food – anything and everything we could think of to sustain us for a full day at the beach down in La Push. He and I had promised each other that we wouldn't let even one second of the sun go to waste.
After we had arrived, we made several trips from the car to the beach to deposit our supplies at what we had staked out and laid claim to as the perfect spot on the beach.
Unfortunately or fortunately – I'm not quite sure which – what was supposed to be our perfect summer day together started off weird and just kind of went downhill as the day progressed.
It all started when I took off my clothes to reveal my poor, neglected red bikini. To be fair, I may have gotten a little bit overzealous with my little strip show. All I could think about was getting a damn tan and in my haste to do so, I basically stripped off my shorts and tank top in about two seconds flat, followed by another ten seconds or so of jumping and squealing in excitement—in a bikini that was over a year old. Had it been this tight last year? Nope, didn't think so.
Luckily, my nipples stayed fairly safe in the confines of their little bikini cup houses, but a fairly generous upper portion of the ladies bubbled its way up and out. When I finally looked down and realized I had a little overflow problem, I tried to do a little discrete reach-in-and-adjust type of maneuver.
Once I was satisfied that the problem was contained, so to speak, I happened to look over at Edward, who sat on his towel staring at me with his mouth hanging open, looking horrified but strangely entranced.
Was my Edward, the one and only star of my masturbatory fantasies, checking me, Bella-average-Swan out?
This little revelation definitely needed some further brain power assigned to it.
Did Edward like me? Or was this one of those "oh, I didn't realize you were actually a girl" type of moments? I mean, come on – he had to have known I had breasts before this, right? I certainly don't wear push-up bras or anything, but the girls do bounce a little bit when I walk. If I happen to break out into an all-out sprint, we're talking some serious figure-eight action going on.
Did Edward think of me while he worked on his own case of carpel tunnel?
Or, oh my God, what if he's staring because he's horrified at having to look at my pasty, translucent self all day? Damn it. What the hell is wrong with him?
What exactly would be the socially acceptable response to almost flashing your best friend right before catching him staring at your ta-ta's like he wants to milk them? Hell if I knew.
"Sorry," I said with an awkward smile, "I bought this bikini last year when I was still a B-cup."
He continued to stare at me, his eyes growing wider by the second. Yep, mouth was still open.
Ok, so maybe talking about cup size wasn't the best way to break the tension here.
"You ok?" I asked, because now I was really starting to worry about him. I would have said something smart-ass to him about catching flies, but honestly one of the over-heated banana slugs could have inched its way up his body and into his mouth by now since he appeared to be paralyzed. I don't think the phrase "close your mouth, what are you, a banana slug trap?" has ever actually caught on.
In seemingly slow motion, his mouth slid shut and his eyes blinked several times before finally looking into mine. He cleared his throat and shook his head ever so slightly.
I was torn between being embarrassed as hell and wanting to reach down to give the ladies a hug and a kiss. I had honestly never seen the benefit of having large jugs, but now it seemed that maybe, just maybe, they could go on a pro list somewhere.
"Yeah…um…yeah…sorry." He smiled sheepishly up at me, his cheeks staining a light pink.
"Um, you should probably put on some sunscreen," he said gruffly as he harshly thrust a large bottle of sunscreen at me.
Well, alright then.
If we were in a movie, this would have been a great time to ask in a low, seductive voice for him to rub my body with sunscreen. And then we'd declare our love for one another before having amazing, multi-orgasmic, unprotected teen sex right here on the beach.
But since this wasn't a movie, I mumbled a soft "thanks" before starting to slather myself in goo.
And he watched. Again. With his mouth hanging open. Again.
When did my sweet Edward turn into such a freakin' perv?
Not that I was complaining.
Hell, I'd probably rip off my bikini and go jogging down the beach while humming the Baywatch theme if he asked me to.
And so our day continued. We walked the beach, looked for seashells, drank root beer and ate sandwiches. For whatever reason, several times that day, Edward reverted to his awkward staring and strained silence.
I'm not too ashamed to admit that I took a little joy at the fact that he seemed to be full of raging teenage hormones. I may or may not have bent over at the waist unnecessarily a few times – once providing a frontal of my cleavage pushed together and the other two times offering him a good ass shot.
I also may have applied sunscreen a few more times than actually necessary. Extra slowly, of course, and with a few moaning sound effects.
At one point, I did entertain the thought of lying on my stomach and untying my bikini top under the guise that I needed to avoid tan lines. I quickly squashed that idea, though. Mainly because 1) I'm sure it would have made no sense since I had multiple layers of sunscreen on and tanning just wasn't realistic, and 2) I'm sure I would have somehow made the gesture seem ridiculous and awkward, like the wind would pick up and blow my top right off or something and I'd end up completely topless and embarrassed, because shit like that just always happens to me.
By mid-afternoon, we were bored, hot, and tired and reluctantly decided to end our beach day and head home.
The ride home was quiet and awkward, which had never happened to us. We always had something to say to each other. I didn't know whether to be fucking ecstatic or regretful that Edward had realized I had boobs today. I mean, sure I wanted him to see me as a sexual being, but if it meant we couldn't even talk to each other without awkward tension, it just wasn't worth it. I'd happily settle for self-induced orgasms for the rest of my life if it meant our friendship stayed intact.
It took us a good hour to get home and the car unpacked. We'd decided to hang out at Edward's house, since his family members were all out for the evening and we'd have the house to ourselves.
He stood in front of his bed, fidgeting nervously. After a few awkward moments, he rested his hands at his hips decisively and cocked his head to the side, his eyes staring intently at my face.
"Um, wanna watch a movie?" he asked me with a shy grin.
His eyes flickered down and back to mine so quickly I almost missed it. Was he checking out my rack again? I'd like to hope so.
I glanced covertly at the bed behind him and then back at him.
Slowly, I grinned back.
"I would love to watch a movie."