Contest entry for the Happily Ever After TwiFic Contest

Title: Maybe Next Time He'll Think

Pairing: Edward/Bella

Rating: M

Summary: When Bella catches her boyfriend cheating will a handsome stranger help her forget him?

Disclaimer: Not owned by me! No real cars were harmed in the writing of this!


Most 'they lived happily ever afters' begin with 'once upon a time'. They contain a heroine, usually some naïve girl that some evil villain is trying to exterminate and her hero who swoops in at the last minute to save the day and ride them off into the sunset. The villain gets their comeuppance and all is right in the world.

My happily ever after doesn't begin with once upon a time, though I played the part of naïve very well. My happily ever after begins with a betrayal, a man, a piece of damaged property and two charges of lewd behavior in public.

I am Bella Swan and this is my story.

Seattle, Washington 7:00 p.m.

Rushing around to get ready for our date, my phone chimes with an incoming text message. I put my mascara wand down and pick up my phone.

B – going to have to bail tonight. Marcus is making me work late. I'll make it up to you, promise. - E

I groan in frustration. This has been happening more often lately and I'm starting to really get pissed. It's our anniversary today and I was told that Marcus knew and would be letting him off early.

E - can't you tell Marcus that you have to leave? Tell him you'll work extra next week. It's our anniversary today! – B

B – tried that already. Fucker is making me stay and finish this case I started. I swear I'll make it up to you, baby. - E

E – fine! Want me to at least bring you dinner or something? I don't mind – B

B – no, don't worry about me, he's at least buying us dinner. Don't wait up, I'll be late. Maybe I should just go to my place – E

E – please come here when you're finished. I want to at least see you on our anniversary! – B

I wait to hear back from him but I don't. I'm livid by this point. I thought, for sure, that our one year anniversary would come before his caseload. I guess I should get used to the long work hours given his profession but I never figured he'd have to bail on such a special occasion. When we first started dating, he never worked this many hours. I figured maybe he was coming up for some sort of promotion. It was the only reason I could think of that would suddenly have him working late almost every night and bailing on our plans all the time.

Not wanting to wallow in my own misery for the night, and already dressed to kill, I decide to call my best friend Alice, to see if she wants to meet up somewhere. She answers on the third ring, sounding out of breath.

"What's up, Bella?" she asks.

"Nothing much. I'm dressed to kill with nowhere to go. Please say you'll come out with me?" I can hear the whine in my voice—it's slightly pathetic—and I roll my eyes at myself.

"Don't you and E have plans tonight?" she wonders.

"We did," I sigh, "but he has to work late, again."

"But isn't it your anniversary today?"

"It is, and I'm pissed, believe me. So, what do you say? Drinks?"

"I really wish I could, B, but I already had plans with Jasper. I was just finishing getting ready when you called. You can come with us if you want."

I sigh again, "No, I don't want to play third wheel. Don't worry about it, Ali. I'll catch up with you later."

Alice and I have been friends since we were paired up in high school for a project. Our friendship has even managed to survive me falling for her brother. I wouldn't have ever gone there if she hadn't insisted that we were 'meant for each other' and 'think about it, Bella, if you marry him we could really be sisters'. Not having any siblings of my own, I'm really thankful for her coming into my life.

I flick on the TV and start mindlessly flipping channels. I find a Honey Boo Boo marathon on and stare at the screen. After an hour, I feel as if I'm about to come out of my skin with boredom so I decide to head out to the bar by myself. I might as well, I'm all dressed up and this skirt is killer and shows off my legs. Pairing it with the six inch stilettos I borrowed from Alice makes my legs and ass look amazing and I refuse to sit around by myself all night.

I make my way downstairs after calling for a cab and chat with Aro, the night doorman, while I wait. Aro is a really pervy old man and I swear he keeps checking out my ass but I refuse to call him out on it because I don't want to embarrass him. The cab pulls up to the curb out front and Aro insists on walking me to the car and helping me slide in. He kisses my hand and tells me to have a wonderful and safe evening. I can feel a blush heat my cheeks.

"Where to?" the cabbie asks.

"Jake's bar please," I reply.

I came across Jake's quite by accident one day. I was standing in line to get coffee; as soon as the barista handed me the cup, I turned and slammed into the person standing behind me, spilling the coffee all over myself and him. I blushed and stammered out an apology. The tall, muscular man accepted my apology on the condition that I come to his brother's bar when it opened the following week. I decided to give it a go and have been going ever since when I need a break from writing or when I'm ditched for work.

I haven't told anyone about this place. For some reason, I like to keep it a secret. Maybe it's because the bartender flirts with me and sometimes it's nice to feel wanted. I know E loves me, but we've come to that place in our relationship where the lust isn't as consuming as it once was. It makes a girl feel good to know she's still got it. I know that if I ever brought them here it would cause problems, so I haven't said anything. I don't like when E gets possessive of me and I know the bartender's comments would make the caveman come out.

The cab pulls up to the front of the bar and I saunter inside. I hear a whistle and look up, smiling at Seth behind the bar. He's mixing a drink and his muscles are on display in his tank top.

"Damn, Bells. Look at you," Seth exclaims. "What are you all dressed up for?"

"I was supposed to be going out with my boyfriend for our anniversary. He had to work again," I reply with a roll of my eyes.

Seth chuckles. "I bet my brother is up in the office salivating over that outfit, girl. You should hear him every time you leave. He won't shut up about you."

I laugh. Seth starts telling me about his brother and his lust for me, again. I get this speech every time I come in. He says he probably hides up in his office stroking it and dreaming of me while he drools. I always slap his arm and tell him to quit it. I've never met his brother. Seth tells me it's because his brother is weird and doesn't want to look like an idiot in front of me, so he won't come down into the bar until I'm gone. I tell Seth to tell him I don't bite, unless he wants me to.

By ten o'clock, I'm well passed buzzed and set firmly on the train to tipsyville when a familiar peel of laughter by the door catches my ear. I glance at the door and my heart nearly stops.

"Shit!" I cry out and jump behind the bar, ducking down.

"Bella?" Seth asks with a laugh in his voice. "What the fuck are you doing?"

"Shut up," I hiss at him. "Someone just came in and I don't want them to see me just yet."

I have to be mistaken, I think to myself. There is no way that he and Alice just came into this bar. He's supposed to be at work and she's supposed to be out with Jasper. Why the hell would they be here?

I can hear him talking to her as they approach the bar. I slide myself even further underneath toward the glasses. "So what's up Jasper's ass?" he questions her.

She sighs, "He's pissed at me. He wants you to know he doesn't condone this and refused to come out with us."

"Well, he's going to have to get used to her being around, Alice. I'm not going to end it. I think, well, I think I love her."

I cover my mouth with my hand. Trying to either hold in the puke or the words that want to come spewing out of my mouth. He thinks he loves her? Who? They can't be talking about me that is for sure, because he knows he loves me. Right?

"He just thinks that you should have ended it with Bella before starting something new." I hear her reply. I can see Seth's head whip down toward me, eyes open wide. I frantically shake my head at him and motion for him to do something so he doesn't give me away.

"What can I get you guys?" Seth booms out.

They order their drinks and Seth makes them as I stay crouched behind the bar. I pull out my phone and send a text.

E – haven't heard from you in a while, are you sure you don't want me to come down there? Even just to keep you company? – B

By now I'm sitting on my ass on the floor. Five minutes later my phone vibrates.

B – ah, babe, that's sweet of you to ask. Don't worry about it though. Marcus fed us and I'm too busy for a visit. In fact, I'm going to have to bail on coming over tonight. He's making us pull an all-nighter. – E

Why that lying, sack of shit bastard! I mean, if you don't want to be with me then fine, but at least be honest about it. I knew I wasn't his usual type; all through high school and college with the blondes: Lauren, Katie and Irina. Out of all of them I, liked Katie the best; she was the only one of the three that treated Alice and me like people and not the dirt on their shoes. I never really did see what he saw in me when we got together last year. We were friends, but Alice kept pushing us to go on one date to see where it could lead. Two months later, he told me that he loved me, and I believed him.

I'm pissed that he would lie to me, and I'm wondering how long it's been going on. I peek over the top of the bar. I'm not surprised to see his lips attached to the busty blonde. What does shock me is the look of joy on Alice's face, that and the fact that said busty blonde is his new secretary. It suddenly makes sense and I curse myself for being so stupid. His late nights started around the time she was hired six months ago. What a fucking bastard. To be honest though, I'm more hurt by Alice's betrayal. I get that they are brother and sister but she couldn't warn me? All the times she said that I was her sister from another mister and all that stuff you say when you know you're best friends forever. How could she keep this from me?

I feel a nudge to my leg and see a bottle of tequila being handed to me. I look up at Seth and give him a smile—that is probably more of a grimace—and take the bottle from him; unscrewing the top, I take a big drink. I can feel the burn as it goes down my throat.

Taking my phone in hand, I decide to text Alice.

A – so how's date night going? – B

A minute later my phone vibrates.

B- oh my God, Jasper is so romantic. We're on a dinner cruise! – A

I can't contain the snort that comes out of me. What a lying bitch. I kind of want to text her back with a 'peek-a-boo I see you' but I think I'm more mature than that.

"What's going on, Bella?" I can hear Seth ask me.

I hiccup and proceed to tell him how my ex-best friend, her brother and the skank he's apparently been sleeping with for six months have just entered my safe haven. I show him the texts and he looks really pissed.

"Is there a back way I can go out?" I ask. "Please, Seth, I can't let them see me."

He takes pity on me and blocks me from view as he leads me to the side door that exits into the alleyway. I want to scream and throw things I'm so mad. Then I see it—his car—parked in the alley beside Jake's bar. The car is the source of one of our only fights in our entire one year relationship. Six months ago, he wanted this sporty, hunter green car; he had to have it but didn't have enough for the down payment. So he asked if he could borrow some of my advance from my latest book. We argued about it: me telling him that loaning money in a relationship isn't wise, I mean, I've watched enough Judge Judy to know that; him arguing that when we got married what was mine was his and vice versa. I was so pissed. I loaned him the money anyway but put the car in my name. He wasn't happy about it but if he wanted it so badly that was how it was going to happen.

Suddenly it dawns on me that he probably wanted this car with its personalized ECULLEN plate to impress her, and I blow a gasket. I can hear the screech escape me as I grab a rock and throw it. I heave rock after rock at that stupid car hoping that the dents will be noticeable. The door slamming shut beside me startles me. I'm not fully prepared for who I see.

The man towers over my small frame even in my heels, muscles bulging beneath his T-shirt. His arms are covered in full-sleeve tattoos, the most prominent being the head of a wolf on his left forearm. His eyes are as intense as Seth's as he looks me over, licking his lower lip slowly.

"Now what did that car ever do to you?" he questions.

"Not the car, the bastard that drives it." Is my snappy response.

"He's a fucking fool, Bella."

My head whips towards him. "How do you know my name?" I ask.

He smirks at me and it does something to my insides that I can't explain. He's so tall and so hot and so in my personal space, I realize too late as I'm backed against the wall. He reaches his hand out and brushes his thumb across my lower lip.

"I know enough," he whispers lowly and I can feel his breath on my face. "I know that you've been coming in here for a while and I've been trying to get up the nerve to talk to you. I know that you're fucking gorgeous. I know that your boyfriend is a fucking idiot, and if I had you I'd never let you go."

I stare at him, trying to find words but I can't. I can hear my breath coming out in pants. I don't know what possess me but I stick my tongue out slightly and lick his thumb. He groans and shifts closer to me.

"You want to know what I'd love to know about you?" he breathes and leans his face closer to mine. His eyes are still searing into my own, holding them as captive as he has my body.

"What?" I breathe out in a whisper.

"I want to know what your dreams are. I want to know where you see yourself in five years. I want to know where you live; what your life was like growing up. I want to know everything there is to know about you. Seth's told me some things but I think you edit with him. I want to know you. But there are some things that I've been dying for months to find out and I want to know them first." He rubs my lower lip again and I glance down at his mouth, so close to mine but feeling so far.

"What's that?" I question.

"I want to know what you taste like. I want to know what your tongue feels like sliding against mine. I want to know if your breasts are as full as they look, how they'd feel in my palm and what color your nipples are—if they are as pink as your lips. I want to know what your body would feel like pressed up against mine and what it feels like to fuck you. I want to know what you feel like from the inside, Bella. Will you let me?"

Aside from the fact that he's Seth's brother, I know nothing about this man. I should say no but I'm surprised by the yes that passes my lips.

He tilts his head and leans in that much closer, he slides his hand so his thumb is no longer on my lip but resting just beside my ear, his large hand cupping my neck. Speaking against my lips, he asks, "Are you sure?"

I can only nod in response before I feel his tongue gently lap at my lower lip. I can taste his breath between my slightly parted lips—beer with a hint of mint and tobacco. I whimper as he laps at my lower lip again before catching it between his teeth and pulling slightly. I angle my head a little and move to press my lips against his and he pulls back a little.

"Patience," he chides me gently. "If this is the only night I get to have you, I want to make it good."

The butterflies in my stomach take flight as he leans in toward me again. Tracing first my lower, then upper lip with the tip of his tongue, I can feel a jolt straight to my pussy. I had no idea lips could be erogenous zones until this very minute. The throbbing between my legs is intense and I feel like I could burst into flame at any minute.

After licking at my lips and tracing them several more times, he slowly slides his tongue into my mouth. The taste of him is out of this world as my tongue slides and tangles with his. I bring my hands up and encircle them around his neck, pulling him down a little more toward me. He uses the hand resting behind my neck to tilt my head further and deepen the kiss. I moan into his mouth and rub my body up against his. I can feel his erection pressing into my stomach and it gives me a heady feeling to know that I've affected him in this manner. He grunts in response to my rubbing and grips my hip with his free hand.

Needing to breathe, he pulls away from my lips and slides his nose up the column of my neck to behind my ear where he starts planting tiny kisses, nipping at the skin gently with his teeth, soothing with his tongue. "You taste so good. Bella; so fucking good. I knew you would," He rasps out, capturing my mouth with his again.

The hand he has on my hip slowly makes its way up my torso, his thumb rubbing lightly against the bottom of my breast before he cups me fully in his palm. He groans, rubbing his thumb across my nipple, which pebbles at his attention. I move my mouth's attention to his neck, biting lightly with my teeth, sucking gently. I'm not sure how he feels about being marked but, for some reason, I want to put my mark on him. I suck harder and he grinds his erection into me. "You like that?" I ask him, releasing my hold on his neck.

"Fuck, yes. Don't stop." He pants. I reattach my lips and he grips my breast tighter in his palm, pulling at my nipples through my shirt. I'm getting so heated, even out in the chilly night air.

As if he's reading my mind, he suddenly grabs my shirt by the collar and rips it open, buttons flying everywhere and pinging off the ground when they land. No one's ever ripped my clothes in such a manner and it makes me even more aroused than I was before. Torn shirt, I stand in front of him in my black lace bra. He groans and buries his head in my cleavage. "Your tits are fucking perfect," he says, turning his head to the side and licking up the side of my left breast. "Fucking perfect; they taste so good."

Never before have I been as thankful for a front clasp bra as he flicks it open and my breasts are freed from their confines, they bounce lightly before he cups them both. He licks at my nipple the way he did my lips earlier: first one then the other before tracing one with his tongue and sucking it into his mouth. The ache between my legs intensifies and I swear I could cum from the attention he's given to my breasts alone.

"You look so good in my hands," he says as he releases my nipple with a pop. Palming both my breasts again he rubs his thumbs over my nipples. "I just knew they would match the color of your lips."

Feeling the need for more friction, I raise one leg and wrap it around his waist, grinding myself against him shamelessly. I don't even know this man's name but I want him so bad I can taste it. I want to feel him in my mouth, in my pussy. I'm aching for him to do something—anything—to make me cum. "Please," I beg.

"Please what, baby?" he asks.

"Please touch me," I respond, grinding myself against him again. "I need to feel you inside me. Your fingers, your cock, anything."

"Yeah?" he asks. "You want me to touch your pussy?"

I nod my head frantically. He releases one of my breasts and trails his hand down my stomach, circling my navel with his fingertip causing me to shiver. This man has magic in his fingers, I swear it. He takes his hand and places it on my right leg, moving his hand slowly up under my skirt. He teases the edge of my panties with his fingers and I hiss at the contact; his touch is so light it's barely there and I groan in frustration. He chuckles at this, causing me to scowl at him.

Suddenly, he removes his hand and lowers my leg, placing my foot against the wall. Taking his right hand, he grips my knee and positions my leg so my knee is shifted more toward the wall than him. "Hold onto my shoulders," he tells me. "I don't want you falling over." I do what he says and grasp his shoulders tightly. Taking his left hand off my breast and still holding my right knee with his right hand, he uses his left thumb to circle my clit through my panties.

"Fuck, you're so wet," he groans. Without preamble, he grasps the thin strap of my lace panties and, with one swift tug, rips them off my body. A strap of the G-string rubs my skin in the process and I groan at the pleasurable pain of it.

He slides one finger easily into me and I whimper at the sensation of finally having some part of him inside. "More," I cry out. "I need more."

He pulls his finger out slowly before pushing back in, adding another. His fingers are big and already I'm feeling so full, I wonder how he's going to get his cock in me. "You're so tight," he groans and kisses me, stifling my cries. I'm grinding against his fingers as he's pulling them out and pushing them in at a rapid pace.

"You like that?" he asks. "You like me fucking you with my fingers?"

"Yes!" I cry out. "Fuck yes. Harder."

He starts a steady rhythm and I can feel my orgasm building, but the rubbing my back is doing against the brick wall is starting to become uncomfortable and I cry out in pain. He stops immediately.

"What's wrong? Did I hurt you?" he asks concerned.

"It's the wall," I say frustrated. "It's hurting my back."

He removes his fingers and lowers my leg to the ground, pulling me off the wall gently. "Shit," he hisses. "You're scratching up your back through your shirt." He looks around before a shit-eating grin crosses his lips. "Come here."

He pulls me in the direction of the car. Grabbing my waist, he hoists me onto the hood of the car as if I weigh nothing. "There, that's better." His smug grin is firmly in place. "Now where was I?"

Taking hold of my legs, he positions my feet on the hood of the car. He pushes my knees apart and shoves my skirt up so now I'm fully exposed to him. The lust in his eyes is powerful as he stares at where I'm bare and glistening. He trails his nose up my leg from my knee to the apex of my thighs where he inhales deeply. "Shit you smell good. I want to taste you. Can I?"

"Please," I moan, grabbing his head and positioning it where I want him. "Please, please just make me cum. I need to cum."

He shakes his head gently out of my grasp and pulls back slightly, blowing over my pussy and I shudder at the feeling of the hot breath after the outside cold air hit me. Placing his thumb on my clit, he starts rubbing softly; circling my entrance with his tongue. When he places his tongue inside and wiggles it around my back arches up off the car and my foot slips slightly. I can hear the sound of it scraping against the hood and it makes me giggle. "Oops," I say on a breathy laugh as he chuckles against me. "That's going to leave a mark."

He continues to switch between circling my entrance and putting his tongue inside me. I've never felt this good before and I'm writhing and panting. Telling him it feels so good. When he switches up and sucks my clit in his mouth, shoving two fingers inside and curling them forward, I cum hard and slam my hands down on the hood of the car. I can feel the steel dent slightly under my palms.

With his left hand he's unbuckling his belt and I want him so badly that I sit up to help. The car hood dents further under my ass but I really could care less. I want to see his chest, see if his upper body is as rock hard as it feels and I grasp his shirt by the hem and start dragging it up his torso. Failing in my endeavour, he bats my hands away gently and grasps it at the back of his neck and tears it off over his head. I groan at the sight of him: rock hard abs, glorious chest covered in yet more tattoos. I hope that I can have more than just this one night with him because I want to learn the stories behind them. I can see the deep V of his hips leading down into his jeans, pointing the direction to his cock. I can just see the head of it poking out the top of his jeans, which have slipped slightly down his hips, and I wonder briefly if it will fit.

Noticing my wide-eyed stare, he laughs. "Don't worry, honey; we'll get it in there."

I blush at his words as I watch him unbutton his fly. His cock is gorgeous—thick and long—and again I wonder what it would be like to have him in my mouth, taste him on my tongue. He's still focused on me though, pumping two fingers inside me again, adding a third; the stretching burn feels so good and I moan, my head falling back.

"Jesus, you're so tight," he says. "I bet you've never been fucked properly, have you, sweetheart?"

I shake my head. I've never felt this good. Never felt this full in my life. I grip his shoulders. "Please," I moan. "Please fuck me."

He grips his cock in his hand, stroking it a few times. "I don't have a condom."

"I'm on the pill," I respond and then thinking of him inside with that other girl add, "and he's always used condoms."

He leans over me suddenly and I can feel the head of his cock as he positions it at my entrance, he places his free hand behind my neck and lifts my upper body to him. He kisses me as he starts to slowly push inside me.

Even with him priming me with his fingers, I can feel my walls stretching to accommodate him and I moan at the sensation. He grunts into my mouth. He slowly pushes forward and back, rocking into me gently and pushing himself into me more with each stroke. After several minutes of rocking, his hips are finally flush against mine. He detaches his lips from mine and throws is head back, neck straining.

"Fuck, doll, you feel so good. I just need a minute." He's panting heavily.

He grabs my legs, which have fallen down beside his and positions my heels back on the hood of the car. Grabbing both legs at the knee, he forces my legs wider and slips in that much further. He's hitting a place inside me I never knew existed and it feels so fucking good, I could scream.

Looking between us, he urges me to do the same. "Look, baby, look at how your pussy grips me; we look fucking fantastic together." I look down and the sight of him inside me makes my pussy quiver. He groans and grows harder inside me.

"You ready, baby?" he asks. I nod frantically. "Well hold on, honey, 'cause as tight as you are, I'm not going to last long and it's going to be hard and fast."

He starts out slowly for a few strokes before picking up speed. My breasts are bouncing with the force of his thrusts. He's holding my legs apart and alternating between staring between us and at my face. My back arches as he hits that spot inside me over and over and I meet him thrust for thrust. My feet keep slipping on the hood of the car and he just pushes them back to where he wants them.

"Oh God … fuck ... that …" I'm trying to form words but it feels so fucking good I can't. I settle for moaning instead.

"I know, baby, it feels so good," he says and I wonder how he has the stamina to talk while fucking me the way he is.

I'm keening and writhing against him and he's talking me through everything. Saying things like 'that's it, baby' and 'yeah I'm fucking you so good, aren't I' and 'touch yourself for me, Bella, that's it, just like that' and 'you want to cum all over me, don't you?'

I can feel my walls start clenching down on him harder and he grunts, telling me he's about to cum. I'm moaning and panting and just as I feel him grow impossibly harder inside me and I start to shake from my orgasm, he's forcefully ripped from my body. As he's removed from inside me, I can feel his cum spurt from his body and land on the outside of my pussy, my upper thigh and I can almost swear I hear drops of it hitting the hood of the car.

"That's it, you two. You're under arrest." I can hear the clanking of metal and sit up swiftly trying to cover myself as best I can as I shove my skirt back down to cover myself.

I can see the two officers pressing him up against the wall: one cuffing his hands, the other tugging his jeans up his legs. He turns to me and gives me a wink and I can't help but laugh.

Seattle, Washington 8:30 a.m.

After spending the night in lockup and one humiliating call to my father to bail me out, Seth came to pick us up and drop me off at home. I'm just getting out of the shower when there is a frantic knock on my door.

I open it to see Alice on the other side, a worried expression on her face and two coffees in hand.

"Oh my God, Bella! We've been trying to get a hold of you all night. Where have you been?" She breezes past me and slumps down on the couch. "Why didn't you answer the phone?"

I grab my cell out of my purse and turn it on. A slew of text messages and voicemails light up the screen.

B- call me when you get this. I need you to call the insurance company – E

B- why aren't you answering your phone? I really need you to call; they won't talk to me – E

Noticing the texts are all variations of the same thing, I check the last voicemail and hear his angry voice.

"For fuck's sake, Isabella, this isn't funny. Call me as soon as you can. The car … Jesus, I don't know what happened to the car but it's scratched and dented and … Holy fuck, Alice, is that jizz on my fucking car?" The call cuts off abruptly.

I'm trying to hold in my laughter as I listen to the voicemail. I turn to Alice.

"What the hell is going on?" I ask her.

"Well," she starts, "I went on that cruise with Jazzy last night and when we got back my brother had left a bunch of messages. I met up with him to see what was going on and Jesus Christ, Bella, it looks like some people had sex on his car. He's fit to be tied but no one could reach you. So I told him I'd come over to see if you were here."

"Oh, well, I turned my phone off last night because I went out but then I got tired and came home and must have forgotten to turn it back on," I respond to her. "Let me just call the insurance company. Get your brother on the phone and tell him to call Marcus for the security footage."

I look at her and she looks confused. "What security footage?"

"Well, I assume since your brother was working late last night that his car was parked in the garage at work. The insurance company is going to want to see the surveillance videos along with the police report in order to process the claim." I pretend to start dialing my phone.

Her hands start shaking slightly; I can't help the smug smile that crosses my lips. I am so tired; tired from being up all night and from these games they insist on playing.

I go over to the closet and retrieve her shoes. "Oh, Alice, I'm really sorry but I've ruined these shoes. I'll pay for them of course."

I hand her the shoes and she gasps as she sees them; one heel broken, the other scuffed up. I'm sure she can't miss the hunter green paint on them.

"I'm really sorry, Ali. I don't know what happened to them. I went to this new bar last night, I'm sure you've never heard of it. It's called Jake's."

I can see the moment she realizes exactly where I was, where she was, where he was and the color drains from her face.

Folding my arms across my chest, I glare at her. "Get out of my house, Alice, and tell your piece of shit brother we're through!"

She opens her mouth "I can explain, Bella, please I ..."

"Just get out."

I turn and walk back into my bedroom, slamming the door behind me. My phone vibrates in my hand and I look at the text message.

Can't wait to see you later! Community Service is going to be so much fun ;)

I smile to myself; giggling, I fall into bed. I don't even remember falling asleep.

One Year Later. Forks, Washington 9:00 a.m.

I'm scanning the cereal shelf in front of me trying to pick one cereal that will calm my craving. Two are looking good and I'm rubbing my bump trying to decide if I want to just get them both and mix them when I hear a throat clear behind me.

I turn and see him standing there. I was hoping not to run into him while visiting my father this weekend but I knew it was a possibility. I'd heard he was back living with his parents.

"Hey, B," he says quietly. "Um, how are you?"

I turn to face him and he gasps as he sees my rounded stomach. I swear the thing popped out overnight. I went to bed one night with a flat stomach and woke up the next morning with a beach ball attached to my front. He looks pained as I subconsciously rub my stomach again. This is really awkward.

"You look good," he tells me.

"Uh, yeah. You look good too," I reply. We both know this is a lie; he looks like shit, but I don't want to be rude.

"Hey, E, did you get the …" the woman's voice cuts off as she sees me for the first time since leaving my apartment last year.

"Oh my God, Bella!" she exclaims, her eyes filling with tears.

"Alice," I reply curtly.

"Look at you! You look … You're glowing. You look so happy," she gushes.

I want to snap at her and tell her she knows nothing about me. I understand why she kept his secret for him, they are blood after all and blood is thicker then water, but that still doesn't excuse her behavior. For years, she told me that we were like sisters, but when push came to shove, she shoved me aside. She's a liar, just like he is and I couldn't be friends with her after that.

"Hey, Bella?" he asks. "Do you think we could maybe go get some coffee or something? There are things I need to say to you; things I think you should hear."

My brow furrows. "I don't really think that's such a good idea. I'm in a really good place now. I've moved on; so should you."

"Bella, you're not being fair." Alice pouts at me. "You don't have all the facts. She used him. Didn't you hear what's happening now? She's ruining his life. You owe it to him to hear him out. He still loves you. I still love you."

"I owe him nothing!" I yell. "I owe you nothing! The two of you make me—"

"Everything okay over here?" I hear loudly behind me as strong tattooed arms are wrapped around me, one hand rubbing my stomach in reminder that I'm not supposed to get too stressed. "You okay, baby?"

I melt into his embrace, turning slightly to look into his eyes. His very touch makes me melt.

"Yeah, I'm fine." I hear a throat clear and turn to face the two in front of me again.

"Oh, I'm sorry. I'm being terribly rude. I didn't introduce you. Alice, Emmett, this is my husband, Edward. Edward, this is my ex, Emmett, and his sister."

I can feel his silent laugh through my back and he buries his face in my hair to stifle it. Sobering slightly, he raises his head and offers Emmett a hand. "Nice to meet you, man. I've heard so much about you."

Emmett just glares at him for a minute, not accepting the handshake. "Well, baby, let's say you pick your cereal and we can get back to Pop's. I promised him I'd look at the truck today," Edward says to me.

"Yeah, that's a good idea. I'm going to get these two, I think," I say, handing him a box of Lucky Charms and Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

He turns up his nose but grabs the boxes from my hand. He kisses me and tells me he'll be up front paying. I tell him I'll be right there.

"Well," I say, turning back to the two that would have broken me if not for meeting that man. "It was nice seeing you two again. Have a nice life."

I turn and walk away. Leaving the past behind.

I'd learned a lot about Edward during our community service sessions. It was mortifying having to call in a favor from my dad but I did it. I learned how he and Seth and Seth's brother, Jake, grew up together, and when his parent's died and the threat of foster care was looming, Jake didn't hesitate to beg his dad to take Edward in. They were truly like brothers; the three of them did everything together.

It broke both Edward and Seth when Jake made the decision to join the Air Force and nearly killed them both when he came home from active duty in a pine box. They did the one thing that they knew would honor his memory the best. They opened the bar that Jake had always talked about owning one day and named it after him.

I was attracted to him the first night we met; but over those hours spent along side him doing menial work, I grew to love him. We married just two months after meeting and were pleased to become pregnant almost right away. My dad was thrilled at the prospect of becoming a grandfather.

I was working at Jake's with Seth one night when Jasper came in. He eyed me warily before I beamed a smile at him. He released a breath and came over to the bar. He told me how sorry he was, that he'd broken it off with Alice. He couldn't understand how she could keep Emmett's relationship with someone else from me. She had dragged him out with them before but to him it didn't feel right. He and Edward are really close now and I love his girlfriend, Maria; she brings out a side of him I never saw when he was with Alice.

I heard through the grapevine—namely my gossiping father—that Emmett was recently implicated in an embezzling ring that surrounded the law office he worked for. Not surprisingly, so was his secretary, Rosalie, but no one can find her. Turns out that apparently Rosalie is really Charlotte or Heidi (depending on who you ask) and made off with over a million dollars worth of clients' money. Of course, because she was working for Emmett, all the billable hours had been in his name and since they can't locate her to back up his story, he's in a lot of trouble. I should feel bad for him but I don't. Karma will always bite you in the ass.

So my story didn't start with 'once upon a time', but it did end with 'they lived happily ever after' … well some of us did.


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