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Dusk Descending

New Moon from Edward's POV. So far I'm up to the end of Chapter 2 - Stitches.


2. Chapter 2

Rating 0/5   Word Count 1590   Review this Chapter

Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

Last Chapter: Alice lost it. She was going to have this party whether Bella wanted to go or whether Alice had to tie her to a chair and drag her there personally. Angry plans flashed across her mind. I struggled to hide my bemused expression. Glaring fiercely at Bella, Alice threatened, “This can be easy or this can be hard, Bella, but one way or the other -”

Time to intervene. “Relax, Alice. If Bella wants to watch a movie, then she can. It’s her birthday,” I interrupted. As she saw what I was planning, Alice’s thoughts turned from black irritation to contented mirth.

“So there,” Bella added unhelpfully. As if she was actually going to get out of this. After all, I had spent my entire evening pricking my fingers trying to remove the thorns from the rose stems in a futile attempt to protect Bella from one of her frequent accidents.

“I’ll bring her over around seven,” I resumed. “That will give you more time to set up.” The heat radiating from Bella’s angry glare scalded my frigid skin.

Alice laughed, the sound of a wind chime in a soft breeze. “Sounds good. See you tonight, Bella! It’ll be fun, you’ll see,” she said grinning. An uncontrollably broad smile still on her face, Alice pecked Bella lightly on the cheek and lithely skipped across the parking lot towards her first period class.

Bella was not prepared to go down without a fight. “Edward, please -” she began to wheedle, but placing my wintry finger upon her lips, I managed to halt her plea.

“Let’s discuss it later,” I soothed. “We’re going to be late to class.”

We walked to our first class (me listening to Bella’s angry muttering the whole way) and sat down in our usual seats at the back. Our entrance was at last failing to be an item of interest - having six classes together had garnered a fair bit of interest (and gossip). I had even convinced that pathetic Mike Newton to stop staring at Bella with that awful look by letting him know that it upset Bella. He smiled as best as he could but he was unable to control the stream of angry thoughts that he flung in my direction. Several murder plots - starring me as the victim - flashed across my mind. Thank you Mike. It was too bad that most of them hadn’t taken into account the fact that I was a vampire.

As the day slipped slowly by, I pondered Bella’s request - well demand really - to not celebrate her birthday. After all the age gap between us was only a year, and I certainly wasn’t going anywhere soon. I could sort of understand her aversion to gifts - she had always hated even the thought of anybody spending money on her. She would just have to get used to it. Maybe it was the years of living with Renee and Charlie. They weren’t exactly millionaires; just a kindergarten teacher and the police chief of a tiny town in Washington.

Somehow though, I always felt the need to lavish Bella with gifts. After all, what else could I give her? Love? Unfortunately, that was heavily outweighed by the ever-present threat of death that I thrust upon her whenever we were together. Sadly, the only thing she wanted was the one thing I would never give her. Her humanity was so precious - I didn’t have anything of worth I could give her and yet she wanted to give me something that was worth more than life itself. Literally.

After slogging through the morning’s classes, we headed to the cafeteria for lunch. What a useless waste of an hour (well at least for me). But at least it was a chance to talk to Bella.

We sat at our usual table in the corner. An awkward arrangement existed there - rather like countries that dislike each other but know better than to express their feelings. Emmett, Rosalie and Jasper had graduated last year - again - and so it was just me and Alice who took our seats at the southern end of the table. At the opposite end of the table, Bella’s human friends sat nervously, apparently still not completely comfortable with our presence. And of course, in the middle of this strained geographic territory was Bella. She sat, not altogether oblivious of the tension between the two halves of the table, but doing her best to act as though she hadn’t noticed. At least she couldn’t hear the thoughts emanating from certain hostile minds across the invisible boundary line.

I can’t believe Bella is actually dating one of those freaks. Jessica’s repugnant thoughts filtered into my brain, grating inside my head. Sighing, I stood up, threw away my shredded but uneaten turkey sandwich and did my best to block out the irksome thoughts of the surrounding students. Lunch - what a pointless portion of time.

The afternoon passed slowly, as usual. Finally, the piercing bell shrieked its final reminder of the day and the class slowly emptied. I walked Bella to her truck (if you could even call that red, rusty monster a vehicle), and fervently hoped that Alice had had the foresight to take off with my car before we could reach the parking lot. I nonchalantly held open the passenger door of the Chevy open to Bella, and pretended not to notice her fury as she realized that there was no escape from the impending festivities.

“It’s my birthday, don’t I get to drive?” she inquired heatedly, folding her arms across her chest and ignoring the chilling rain that threatened to soak through her sweater.

“I’m pretending it’s not your birthday, just as you wished,” I responded. I wished she would just get in the car. I might be unable to save her from me, but at least I could save her from pneumonia.

“If it’s not my birthday, then I don’t have to go to your house tonight…” she retorted.

“All right. Happy Birthday,” I surrendered. She looked cold. I opened the driver’s side for her and reluctantly helped her into the cab. At least she’ll be warm now, I reminded myself. Not to mention I could always grab the wheel if she decided to take a detour.

“Shh,” she admonished me, but her heart wasn’t in the rebuttal. I guessed her thoughts and fought to contain my smirk. She had been hoping I would take the other offer. Her fault for arguing with me in the first place.

Once inside, I twiddled the ancient knobs on the stereo. Frankly, I was rather surprised that one didn’t break off into my hands as I fiddled with them. Good thing I had arranged to have it replaced today. Somewhere not too far away, Alice laughed inside her mind. I shook my head at the decrepit radio and tried to pick up a station not affected by the static that seemed to linger perpetually in the airwaves surrounding Forks. “Your radio has horrible reception,” I remarked.

The soft edges of her smile curled downwards. She was quite sensitive about her truck and did not appreciate my suggestions to replace - or at least renovate - her dilapidated vehicle. “You want a nice stereo? Drive your own car,” she rejoined. The harsh tenor of her voice amused me. She was certainly not looking forward to the afternoon. I pressed my lips together tightly and tried not to smile.

Bella finally managed to drag her truck to Charlie’s house (very slowly I might add). I carefully took her delicate face between my cold fingers, lightly stroking her elegant features. I waited patiently for her forlorn expression to lighten as I soothed the angry creases in her forehead, being especially cautious not to press too hard. “You should be in a good mood, today of all days,” I whispered softly, leaning closer.

“And if I don’t want to be in a good mood?” she responded. I could hear her heart quickening and even without my refined hearing I would have been able to hear the alteration of her heavy breathing.

“Too bad,” I smiled, immersing myself in her soft, liquid gaze. I bent down to where her silky lips awaited my touch. Our mouths connected, and a thrill of electricity sizzled down my spine. I heard Bella’s shuddering breath and reminded myself not to get too carried away. If only…. No.

My granite lips remained on her smooth skin until Bella reached up and fastened her arms around my neck, searching for a stronger grip on me. Reluctantly, I gently pulled away, unclasping her frantic hold. I wished she wouldn’t do that. It made it so much harder to resist the succulent scent that emanated from her blood. But she always insisted on pushing my limits. I don’t think she ever realized how dangerous this already was, never mind that I constantly had to resist her advances - although I longed to give in to them. Just one slip of the lips and my blade-like teeth could pierce her flesh like butter. I could never let my guard down.

“Be good, please,” I pleaded. I leaned down and put my mouth to hers again, but more tenderly than before. Pulling back, I folded her stubborn arms across her chest, attempting to draw a gentle but firm line.