Welcome to my latest stab at FanFiction. I hope you enjoy the ride. This fic will alternate POVs, think of the movie Love Actually. All chapters are short and drabble-ish. There's zero angst/drama, just pure sexy fun (I hope - this is my first time writing romance or humor). CTA Dreams is almost entirely pre-written and beta'd. I will post two chapters (maybe more if I feel it's needed to complete the scene) at least twice a week.
To those who have "Sensory" on alert. I apologize for the delay. This plot, CTA Dreams, invaded my mind and pushed all other story lines to the back burner. I have tons written but have been struggling to organize Edward's thoughts. He has a lot of stories to tell. Thank you for your patience.
Thanks to my incredible team: Jparke19 & hmmille are my betas. The incomparable Lolo84 was gracious enough to pre-read.
*All publicly recognized characters are the property of their respective owner. No copyright infringement is intended. This storyline is my own.
CHAPTER 1 - BELLA
I climb the stairs to the train platform at the ass crack of dawn, keeping the same routine for the past six months. This rickety piece of shit station probably should have been condemned or something. For the life of me I don't know why the CTA doesn't have this rat-infested stop on their "To Deep Clean" list. It reeks of liquor, urine, and sweat every single morning. What do people do in this stairwell in the middle of the night? Forget it—I don't want to know.
I take a deep breath, holding my life's blood close to my nose, wishing the coffee could better mask the grotesque stench. Four-thirty every morning, I race up these godforsaken stairs. I mean, really? Would it kill someone to retread these bad boys? They are a death trap, thank God there's an awning covering them.
Once I reach the platform, I can finally breathe again. I'm grateful that Chicago is the Windy City because, DAMN. I'm just saying. The breeze is welcome right now even though the cold, damp September air is cutting me up. Thankfully, it drives the wafting scent of human excrement away from me.
I sip on my steaming travel mug, hoping the caffeine will kick start my comatose brain cells as I slide my fare card into the slot on the turnstile.
A reddish-brown blur sits behind the glass, if you can even call it that. There is a funky, scratched up film that makes it seem like it is intentionally smoked. It isn't. The CTA sucks, that's all. I feel bad for the station attendant that's stuck inside that tiny booth.
It's kind of eerie, though. I know someone's in there but I can't see them. Most mornings I'm at this station alone, except for the phantom in the booth. I come from a tiny town in Washington where my dad's a cop, so I may be a little paranoid. He would tell me that it was a good thing, paranoia would keep me safe. In all honesty, it's made me kind of crazy and skittish.
I don't trust anyone.
Some mornings I can feel eyes dissect me. Hell, I can't tell for sure if it's a man or a woman in there. But each weekday morning they're in the booth—have been for the past six months.
I came to Chicago for college, Northwestern University to be precise. I'm studying nursing. The unholy hour of my commute began with summer classes and continues now with my rotation at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. I'm seriously hating my roommate for getting the choice placement of Evanston-Northwestern Hospital for her practicum. Annoying little pixie whore, that one is.
She's banging Whitlock, our TA. They were shameless during clinicals. She gets to sleep until a respectable hour and walk—walk I say—the few blocks to the hospital. Better yet, the school shuttle comes just a few steps from our apartment.
Pushy little tramp, I don't know why I agreed to move out of the dorms and into off-campus housing with her this year. I really can't stand the materialistic, narcissistic midget.
She's a spoiled rich kid, a true southern belle. We shared a dorm room for two years, and then her folks offered her an apartment on the condition that I move in too. I sense that they don't trust Little Miss Mary Alice. Or maybe I'm the live in help, because that's how I feel most days anyway. That little slut acts like she has never seen a dishwasher before, so I'm left loading and unloading it daily, not to mention all the other tedious, mundane, bullshit tasks that I do because the princess can't be bothered.
Have I said how much I hate my roommate?
Alice must suck a mean cock to pull ENH because she is a terrible student. She'll never use her degree because she'll never have to work. Mommy and Daddy will take care of everything. This college thing is just what you do to catch a husband. Fucking Alice is always on my ass to go to some stupid party or trying to hook me up with some frat boy. Uh, no thank you!
So here I am—alone—on a crisp September morning. It's my birthday and this crazy Chicago weather has me chilled to bone. At 48 degrees you'd think I'd be used to it coming from Washington and all, but this schizophrenic Midwest weather is giving me whiplash. A couple of days ago I was in shorts.
Wrapping my jacket tighter around myself, I take a long sip of my coffee cursing under my breath that I didn't dry my hair before I went out this morning. The icy moisture dripping along my scalp and around my ears greatly enhances the chill in the air.
A click and a creak behind me set me on high alert. Quickly, I tuck my keys between my knuckles like my dad taught me, turning my fist into a pointy jagged weapon. My adrenaline is pumping overtime; I really don't want to have to put the CTA attendant's eye out this morning.
I straighten my back and stand erect, ready for them to make a move.
"Um, excuse me, miss," a voice calls out from behind me. It's like the richest liquid chocolate coating my eardrums and oozing into my brain. I think I audibly moan. "I was just notified that the train is delayed, there's a switching problem at the depot."
Just then a disembodied female voice comes over the loud speaker giving the same information. "Well, there you have it. Confirmation," he says.
A soft smile plays on my lips, contradicting my defensive stance. Turning to face him, I slip my keys back into my pocket.
My breath stops at the sight before me. I must be dreaming. This man. Oh, this man!
There is no way all of that could have been hidden behind the fucked up glass. He's so beautiful—too gorgeous to be contained in some musty booth. Why isn't he on billboards, in magazines and the movies or something? His likeness deserves to be on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, not hidden away at some nasty old "L" station.
"Thanks for the heads up," I manage to squeak out.
Damn, I soak my scrubs as I drool all over myself. Don't even get me started on my panties...
I don't think I say this in the text yet, but CTA stand for Chicago Transit Authority, in case you were wondering.
So...what do you think?
Edward's up next.