***Reposted 12-16-14***

Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight

After an awkward ambulance ride with Bella I found myself sitting in a tiny curtained off room in the middle of Cook County ER. It wasn't ideal, but the pepper spray triggered an asthma waited with me as I took the nebulizer treatment that Dr. Marcus ordered for me in hopes to ease the wheezing that the pepper spray had created.

"So, Felix said you were looking fine," the girl named Lauren teased Bella with a wide toothy grin that made me uncomfortable.

"Yeah, he always says that," Bella mumbled while giving her a look. I knew that look. It was one I would give my own friends when I needed them to shut the fuck up.

We waited together as I struggled to tell her what I needed to say, yet the words were hard to find. How do you tell someone that you found their long lost love? There was no way, and every time I tried someone interrupted us.

"Hey Bella, I heard you took this guy out," some asshole in scrubs asked as Bella pulled the back the curtains for us to leave.

"She did not," I lied causing Bella to shake her head in disbelief.

"She just stunned me a little," I continued on causing her to snort in laughter over my dismissal of an event that resulted in an ambulance trip to the hospital.

"Whatever dude," the guy said with a laugh as he left us alone to leave the ER in peace.

"You know, all you had to do was approach me like a normal person and you wouldn't be in this mess," she bitched at me as I grabbed her by the shoulders, letting her lead me like a fucking blind man out of the room. My face was still somewhat on fire, and I still wasn't sure if I would die at the hands of a small girl.

"You are crazy," I sputtered, still tasting the pepper spray in my mouth. It was a bitter chemical taste that burned my tongue.

"Keep saying it and I will spray you again," I heard her mutter in anger, causing me to squirm away from her before taking hold of her once more since without her guidance, I was fucking lost.

"Suck on this," she muttered before shoving something in my mouth to silence me once more. The bitter tang of lemon filled my mouth; it soothed the fire a bit, but the tang of it was almost over powering.

"It'll help with the pepper spray that you inhaled," she advised me in a clinical tone as I bit on the lemon harder at her suggestion that it would make it better. Anything was better than the burn that was incinerating me alive.

"Where did you get the lemon?' I asked her as we continued down the hallway to leave.

"I had Seth run to the cafeteria for it," she said with a shrug that caused me to stumble a bit as I walked with my arm around her as if we did this awkward walk all the time.

I waited with a mouth full of lemon while Bella pulled out her cell phone to call for a cab. If I had been a gentleman I would have insisted on making the call, but since I was the victim in this mess, I was in no mood to be a gentleman with this small, yet deadly, assassin. It was in the silence that followed her phone call, while we waited, I felt Bella turn towards me with a sigh.

"Let me see you," she asked softly as she brought her hand up to gently guide my face in the direction she wanted me.

"Do I look ok?" I asked her as I watched the blurry image of this girl look me over with a critical eye.

"No," she replied in a serious tone. "But I think you'll be ok."

After she announced that I would live, an awkward silence settled between us, and rightly so, since the last time I had seen this girl was four years ago when I was drunk out of my mind.

"So, what's this about?" she asked me in a no nonsense tone that reminded me of her brother as we waited in the empty lobby of the hospital.

"Have you always been so skeptical?" I asked her with a wince as the burn slowly started to return.

"I get you're crazy and that's ok, but skeptical seems out of character for you, Little Bell," I sighed as she snorted over my choice of using her nickname. It was a nickname that I had never used since I had always kept my distance from the girl. She was off limits as Emmett's sister, but desperate times called for desperate measures.

"One, don't call me that-only Emmett can call me that. Two, the only crazy person here is the guy who slips out of the shadows to whisper in a girl's ear I've been waiting for you like some creepy ass rapist," she attempted to correct me with her no bullshit response that startled and pleased me all at once.

"What do you want?" she demanded once more as I took the wet wipe that she offered for my eyes that were watering once again.

"Wipe your eyes with it. It will help. I promise," she demanded in a soft tone before taking another wipe to my other eye. The cooling effect was instant as she worked on one eye before taking the cloth to my other eye since my hand was shaking.

"I'm sorry I sprayed you, but if you can't tell me why you're here then you need to leave," she whispered to me in a soothing voice as she held the cloth to my eyes.

I leaned into her touch as she eased the burn on my face with her soft, cool caresses. She was surprisingly tender for a woman who had just pepper sprayed me before kneeing me in the junk.

"Bella, I need your help," I whispered to her slowly as if she was pulling the confession out of me with each gentle wipe of my eyes.

"What kind of help?" she asked me slowly, in a soft whisper that was almost seductive with the rasp of it.

"Help in the worst possible way," I confessed lamely, as she continued to wipe at my eyes and face. I listened to her soft sigh and the intake of her breath since I couldn't see her face. She sounded like she was willing to listen, and that's all I needed her to do. It would be easy from there.

"Open your eyes for me," she whispered soothingly, encouraging me to try to see her, and as if by magic, I suddenly could. She was still a little blurry, but I could see once more and that was all that mattered.

I looked down at the girl who I was wrapped around for support and was instantly taken by her. Bella McCarty wasn't just cute; she had grown into a beautiful woman-a beautiful woman who would mace you first and ask questions later. It was not one of the endearing qualities that I had always pictured her to have.

"Can you see me?" she asked in a worried tone as I looked at the girl who attempted to end my life and nodded.

"Good," she stated as she stepped away from me with an agitated sigh.

"Ok, Edward, let's hear it," she demanded from me, replacing the soft caring girl who had taken care of me with soft touches and sweet whispers with the hardnosed girl that had kneed me in junk.

"There's this guy," I sputtered, suddenly feeling stupid for being there and bothering her.

"He…um... he's been in love with you forever," I managed to say and then watched as her face bloomed a fuzzy shade of red.

"Who?" she asked in a nervous voice that surprised me since I never thought of the girl as being nervous about anything. The Bella I had vaguely known had always been one to be sure of whatever it was that she would decide to do.

"You remember, James, right?" I asked her slowly and then watched her eyes narrow as realization settled over her.

"James DuPuis?" she asked me in an incredulous tone that shocked me.

"You do remember him!" I exclaimed excitedly as she stared at me in horror.

"Of course I do. The asshole got me drunk at my brother's wedding reception, took my virginity and then left me in the hotel lobby passed out with a ten dollar bill pinned to my dress along with a note that it was for a cab so that I would not mistake it for him paying me for sex," she snorted in humorless laughter while I was left gaping in shock at the girl.

"The only good thing I can say about it all was that he was incredibly quick. I mean, we are talking seconds here, not minutes, and he had such a small dick that it didn't hurt at all," she continued on with a flash of anger in her laughter as I stared at her.

"So, yeah, a girl never forgets her first no matter how much we want to," she laughed as I remained silent, watching my plans dissolve right before my eyes.

"What about James?" she laughed in an angry manner that made me cringe and then waited for me to elaborate, but I had nothing to say since there would be no love connection between them and worse yet there would be no me winning the pot and no trips to Europe with Alice.

"Nothing," I sputtered as I stepped away from her feeling more defeated than I had when Alice broke up with me. There was something about having hope only to have it dashed that took the life out of me.

"What?" she demanded again and then looked at me with a look that made me want to confess to murder, so that's what I did.

I confessed to this girl whom I had never really known- everything from my failed relationship with Alice to how she dumped me for elephant balls. I told her about James and his sick obsession with her. I felt no shame in telling her about his elaborate sex story concerning her, followed up with the jack pot and how it all began.

"You see, if I had the winnings I could possibly make things right, you know what I mean?" I confessed as she watched me with dark eyes that made me feel exposed in a not so good manner.

"Do you love her?" she asked me bluntly without a bit of emotion in her voice. It was clear she wanted to know, and while I had been asked this before, this was really first time I had ever really thought about it.

"I don't know," I admitted weakly, hating that I felt weak about it just as badly as I hated the fact that I had even confessed to her.

Bella watched me with a blank face for what seemed like forever before sighing in what could have been defeat.

"I don't think…" she began with a sigh as if she regretted saying no.

"You owe me," I said flatly, pulling out all the stops.

"You owe me after trying to kill me tonight," I repeated firmly as I looked down at the girl and watched her blank expression flash into anger in the blink of an eye.

"I did not try to kill you!" she hissed at me in anger while trying to keep her voice down, as some other people had sat down close to the door next to us.

"You did, and because of it, you owe me. You owe me a favor. And I'm cashing it in, Bella." I stated with a firm nod, refusing to back down to this girl no matter how much of a douche bag it made me.

Bella watched me for a long moment with hard eyes as if she was sizing me up.

"So, let me get this right. You want me to fool some asshole in to marrying me. The same guy whom I'd rather allow myself to be fucked gently with a chainsaw before ever getting back into bed with him again all for a girl that you aren't even sure if you love. Does this sound right or even fucking reasonable to you?" she asked me in a growl, not caring that people were staring at us with her tirade.

"One, I love the eighties reference. You rarely hear anyone talk about being fucked gently with a chainsaw any more and two, yes," I teased with a wide grin that hurt my face while watching her. Her expression was hard with anger, but she was still too cute not to smile at even though that only added to it.

"Bella," I sighed softly as I felt the heavy weight of defeat on my shoulders as I looked at her with a stupid smile.

"How will know that whether or not I love her if I don't try?" I asked her in a soft voice, not giving a damn that I sounded like a lunatic over my reasoning for her help in this fucked up plan of mine.

I wasn't sure if it was my insanity or the fact that I sounded defeated over the issue, but Bella slowly seemed to soften before me as if my words had affected her. It was then that I went in for the kill.

"Besides you owe me," I reminded her with a grin that earned a sharp elbow to the rib that caused me to grunt in her ear as I leaned upon her small frame for support.


Thanks for reading!

Thanks to Tracy for her patience and her red pen. All lingering mistakes are mine.