Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight.

The music thumped loudly from down stairs as our classmates all drank in celebration of our graduation but not me and Bella. We were hiding up in my bedroom like the antisocial oddballs we were, but instead of laughing at the townies that surrounded us, our moods were somber. This was it for us. I was leaving tomorrow morning to begin my adventure at Northwestern with summer classes that I never wanted to attend while leaving my best friend, my only friend really, Bella Swan, to fend for herself alone in Muscatine before going off to the University of Iowa in Iowa City.

"You won't forget me, right?" she asked me as she half crawled on top of me with a worried look on her face that made me smile. She was too cute for words with her chocolate colored eyes and red cheeks from her constant blushing. She had a cute snort for a laugh and a pretty face that made her look younger than her eighteen years. She was small and unafraid of everything while on the other hand was terrified of my own shadow.

"I could never forget about you. You know that, Pigeon," I replied as I shoulder bumped her while watching how the heavy breasts that she tried to hide with too large of t-shirts bounced from that movement, but I knew they were there. I had seen them. I had felt them one drunken night when Bella had decided to kiss me. They were heavy, soft and so perfect that they made all other girls seem inadequate in comparison, not that other girls let me touch them like Bella did.

I grabbed my beer bottle and took a long drink from it as I tried to clear my memory of Bella in the damn yellow bikini she wore on my family's vacation to Cancun that she tagged along for. It was thoughts of her on the beach, half naked and lying next to me on a towel while I laid next to her, thinking of every great line I could say to her while not doing a damn thing like the pussy I was with her.

"You promise?" she asked me as she looked at me with the same worried look that had me fighting back laughter as she came to lie next to me on my bed causing my dick to twitch with awareness of how close she was to me as she draped her leg over mine casually.

"Of course, I do," I said as I smiled at her, earning myself a hard swat against my chest as she rolled her eyes at me.

"But what if you met someone amazing…" she started to say in a worried tone, but I cut her off. I didn't want to hear her nonsense since it would be her that would forget me, not the other way around.

"As if there could be anyone cooler than you," I said as she barked out a laugh at me. She had no idea how amazing she was, but that was fine since it meant that she never realized how much better she could do than me.

"What if I need you?" she asked me in a nervous tone that made me laugh since Bella was never nervous. She was adventurous. She was courageous. Fear was not something that she knew.

"Then you call me, and I will be there as soon as I can," I said soothingly even though we both knew it would be me that would be lost without her. I had always been lost without her, and this separation would prove to be no different.

"But what if…" she began again in a high-pitched tone that was followed by a deep intake of air as if she was building up for some paranoid tirade about me leaving her. She was known for such over reactions. It was kinda adorable, not that I would ever tell her that since such a comment would only serve to piss her off.

"No what ifs," I said as I covered her mouth my hand. I could feel her chewing on her bottom lip beneath my hand. It was her go to move every time she was nervous, which was rarely.

"There is nothing that could ever separate us. Do you understand me?" I asked her while giving her a slight shake to make her understand the pledge I was making to her while looking into her dark eyes so she could see that I was serious before offering up my pinky as a solemn promise just like we would do when we were five. It was a move that we had done countless times over the years, but never was I as serious as I was now.

Bella looked at me with a concerned look as my hand still covered her mouth to silence her. It took the space of a heartbeat before she raised her hand to hook her pinky around mine to validate the pledge I was making to her.

"A promise is a promise," I heard her mutter as she moved away from me while I watched her go.

"But a contract is forever," she said with a laugh quoting my grandfather and the reason behind my three hour move to attend his Alma Mata. He wanted the best for me, and the best was Northwestern, according to him. I reluctantly agreed to attend as he assured me that a good education would bring me a good life when all I really wanted was the girl who was half-drunk at my side.

I watched with curiosity as Bella moved off of me and towards my computer that sat upon my battered desk that had been in my room for as far back as I could remember. I watched as she moved a stack of clothes off of it to have better access to the last thing I had refused to pack. Her hips swayed to the rhythm of the music that played beneath us. It was mesmerizing and called to me to touch her as I leaned upon my elbows to get a better glimpse of her ass.

"Bella, are you still a virgin?" I asked her, letting the liquid courage that I had been drinking take charge as my eyes followed the curves of her ass back up to her hips that moved in time to the music.

"You know I am," she laughed at me as if it was the dumbest question that I had ever asked her, and maybe it was, but as I laid back upon my bed watching the girl who had been my world since I was five giggle in a drunken manner while opening a word document, I could not stop the images of her bent over the desk as I fucked her hard. It had been an ongoing fantasy of mine since we were sixteen, and this night was no different.

"Do you still want to be?" I asked her, letting that courage take hold once more as I propositioned the one girl I had ever loved like the epic loser I was. My question seemed to catch her off guard as her fingers stumbled over the key board, pausing for a moment after I bluntly asked her to forfeit her virginity to a guy who didn't have enough game to even try to talk her out of it.

"What are you doing?" I asked her, curious and kind of worried over what she was doing since she gave no response to my lame ass attempt at seducing her, while she typed like the fiend she was while snorting through her laughter.

"Sealing our fate, Edward Cullen," she said as she typed with a hiccupping giggle. I moved to look over her shoulder and laughed out loud over her flowery words that described us while feeling the burn of missing her already even though she was sitting in front of me. I hated that burn since I knew it wasn't going to get better.

"Two kindred spirits bound by destiny?" I questioned her with a laugh as she continue to type, only pausing for a long drink off the fruity vodka mix that my sister had made for her. My focusing on her ridiculous words was better than the horrible silence that followed me asking her to bed.

"You shut up, Edward, since one day this may save your life," she teased as I poked her side in response. I laughed at her words, but I should have taken heed of them as well since Bella Swan always had a knack of being right.

I watched as she finished up the document with smile before printing it with a determined look upon her cute face as she turned to look at me, pushing a pen towards me to sign the papers she had printed, which I signed happily. She was so damn adorable like this, half drunk and so pleased with herself. It was better than the half-assed happiness she had been portraying the last couple of days leading up to our last night together.

"Give me your hand," she demanded as she looked at me with eyes that were a little too hazy from the vodka she had drunk. It was too serious, and I found myself laughing at her.

"I'm serious, Edward," she whined as I laughed at her, moving closer just so I could be close to her once more.

"This is important. Don't you want to be together?" she half whined to me, startling me with her question since she had no idea that was all I had ever wanted.

"You know I do," I whispered to her, confessing my secret to her. She had no idea how much I hated leaving her or this place behind. If it wasn't my grandfather asking me, pushing me to be the man he needed to run his business since everyone knew my father was worthless in that matter, I would be in Iowa City with her instead.

Just like always, I gave Bella what she wanted, presenting my hand to her. She took hold of it with an unwavering look, and before I could question what she was doing, I felt the sharp sting of a needle jabbing me.

"What the fuck?' I exclaimed in surprise as I tried to jerk my hand away, but she held my finger tight, refusing to let me go.

"Stop being a baby, Cullen," she mocked as she smeared some of my blood on one of the papers and then the other.

"You stabbed me," I whined like the baby she always accused me of being as she laughed at my dramatics. I watched her wrap my finger up with a tissue. She held the tissue in place, putting the proper pressure to the wound she had created before letting go of my hand. I immediately missed her warm touch.

"We had to make it official," she reasoned as I held my hand, feeling the warmth where her hand had been.

"Make what official? The fact that you're fucking drunk?" I teased as she rolled her eyes at me.

"No, our contract," she scoffed as she waved the paper in my face as if I was fucking stupid.

"You can't get out of a blood oath, Edward. You just can't," she babbled on excitedly as she waved the paper in my face as if all of what she said made sense while continuing to side step the awkward offer I had made to relieve her of her virginity before skipping town.

Bella stopped suddenly, tossing the papers that she had just gloated over to the side. She scrambled off the desk chair and back on to the bed so that she was she was top me, knocking me over in the process, not that I cared. I wanted her on top of me, beneath me, beside me and every other way I could I have her.

"Edward," she whispered to me with innocent looking eye that were soft and glazed over from the vodka she had been drinking. Her legs straddled my hips as she sat upon me. It was amazing to me how such a simple act could make me so painfully hard and horribly embarrassed all at once since there was no doubt that she could feel me against her thighs. Bella leaned over me, letting her dark hair fall around us like a curtain, creating a sense of secretiveness that only added to the awkward moment in the most wonderful of ways as I shifted my focus from her dark amber colored eyes to her rose colored lips that were mere inches away from mine.

This was the closest she had ever been to me in all the years of the strange friendship that we had shared, and all I could think of was how badly I wanted to kiss her. I had chances over the years we spent together only to let those moments pass me by, leaving me to kick myself for being such a pussy when it came to Bella, but the truth was, I was always a damn pussy when it came to that girl.

"Don't leave me," she pleaded to me in a low voice that was flavored with irrational fear. It was adorable and heartbreaking to see her like this since this was not the Bella I knew. The girl I knew and secretly loved was bold. She knew I had to leave and wanted nothing but the best for me even if it meant that I had to leave her. We had discussed me leaving countless times before this moment and each time she was the one who encouraged me to go. She was the one who assured me that everything would be fine so to hear her so pleading for me not to go amazed me while breaking my heart just a little since I never wanted to leave her in the first place.

"Bella, you know I have to. I promised Grandpa," I reasoned with her while feeling like a dick for telling her no.

"But if you go everything will change," she whined to me with wide eyes and a scowl that made me want to smile while breaking my heart.

"Things are supposed to change," I countered back with a smile that was supposed to be reassuring, but even I knew that there was nothing reassuring about my rational words.

"Yeah, but Edward…" she half cried as I slipped a hand over her thigh to take hold of her hip. It was the most intimate I had ever been with her, and Bella barely noticed my touch.

"The change… there will be other people. You'll have your life in Chicago, and I'll have mine," she babbled like only drunken girls can on as I watched tears fill her eyes.

"What if your girlfriend hates me? What if she doesn't want you to talk to me anymore?" she rambled on, causing me laugh at her and her ridiculous statement.

"What girlfriend?" I laughed loudly in her face as she rolled her eyes at me.

"You'll have one," she retorted with a sad shake of her head causing her tears to fall warm upon my face.

"Yeah, because I'm such a ladies' man," I said mocking the fact that I never dated, and she knew that all too well before continuing on. "Besides, all the girls I like never seem to notice me."

"Then they're fucking imbeciles, Edward, because you are the best guy I know," she cried in a drunken manner, completely missing what I was trying to tell her. Her tears were hot on my skin as she leaned over me before pressing her face into the crook of my neck to hide her face as she cried.

"You're being crazy, you know?" I soothed as I rubbed her back with soft strokes before tracing her spine.

"No one could ever take your place, but you… you will have guys lining up to be with you, and I… I just don't know if I can take that, Bee. I mean, I know this weird, but…but I've always loved you. I mean, you know that I've always loved you, but I mean I love you, love you," I confessed stupidly in a rush of words as I held her, knowing that it was truly was now or never when it came to the girl. I had no doubt she would go to Iowa City and find some boy that would never be good enough while I was forced to watch some asshole get the one girl I had always wanted. It fucking sucked, and this was the only chance I had to correct what was turning out to be my future with the girl.

"Do you hear me? I love you. I think always have, and while I know this will be hard with being three hours apart, but I know we can do this, so what do you say?" I asked her as I felt my heart pounding my chest so hard I knew she could feel it as she rested upon me. I waited for her response, trying to remember to breathe, as she remained silent on top of me. When I could not take another second of her indecision I moved beneath her, shifting her over so that she was on side. It was only then that I discovered that she was asleep. She had slept through my declaration of love, and I had missed the more one opportunity to tell her what was in my heart.

Slowly I moved Bella off of me before wrapping her up in what had always been my blanket. I would leave it for her to have since she had always loved it and claimed it as hers. Maybe when she had moved on from me, like I had no doubt she would. She would be able to curl up in my blanket and remember me with a smile. It was fucked up, but it was all I had left when it came to Bella Swan.

"Take care of you, Pigeon," I whispered before pressing one last kiss on her cheek. I walked out; leaving her in my bed to sleep off the vodka that had wrecked what could have been our night.


Thanks for reading and thank you for taking a chance on this. A special thanks to Tracy for beta'ing this hot mess. Luv ya girl…

This story The Pledge is a short little prequel to a new fic that I am working on as Playing for Keeps wraps up. It will be called Terms of Enticement, so if you are interested in what ten years apart does to this Edward and Bella place me on alert or come join my face book group Mamasutra Moments.

And yes, for all you wusspervs this is a promised HEA.