Bella seems to attract every queer person within a ten mile radius. Vampires, werewolves... She's seen it all. But what she's missing is a human friend. And of course, Bella wouldn't be Bella unless that person was strange and possibly dangerous, too. Mythical creature expertise doesn't always help with humans.
There are a few things to say about this story : Amelia often thinks about drugs, drinking, suicide, etc. Although the actual act is never shown in my story, I suggest you don't read on if those topics make you uneasy. It's nothing major, though. I would like to thank my beta, bloodredskies for editing my work. She went through each chapter for me, and has been a great help. And lastly, I'd like to remind everyone to review. It's honestly the best gift you can give to any author, and how else could I improve if I don't know what you're thinking? Just spare me a minute once you're done.
2. Underage & Hating it
Rating 5/5 Word Count 3524 Review this Chapter
It was still raining in the morning.
I remembered Mom saying something about how the rain never stopped in Forks. I now realized that she was, unlike usual, right. Why anyone would want to go out in that wetness, I couldn't understand.
As Jack had predicted, it really was easy to find the school. Not only was it on the main road, but it was also one of the only buildings in that area. Whoa. That's two correct statements made by your parents. Must be a new record.
The red brick houses greeted me as I parked my rental car on the school parking lot. The students passing my car stopped to stare at me in curiosity, but soon scurried away when I gave them my killer glare. Strike one…
I pulled my black hood over my head, and braced myself for another pointless day.
School itself wasn't that bad. The teachers were the same kind of idiots as those at home and were easily frightened. Making them hate me was no trouble at all; walking into the classroom with a frown on my face mostly did the trick. I sat myself at the very back of class in each lesson, signaling the teachers not to bother me with their ridiculous questions. Only one fool, my biology teacher Mr. Banner, didn't take the hint and dared to call on me during his lecture. The problem of his stupidity was soon fixed, however, as I answered the question with a lift of my middle finger. He was too bewildered to even send me to the principle's office.
Only a few half-witted kids had the nerve to talk to me during the day. When an unnaturally blond, revoltingly cheerful girl offered to walk me to my next class, I smiled my smile that was often mistaken for a grimace and answered in my most repellent tone: "Sure, Blondie. Is your babysitter sick today? Of course I'll escort you to your next class. We wouldn't want Daddy to miss his daughter, hm?"
The girl only blinked and quickly scuttled away with her girlfriends. By the look on her face – and the disgusting color of her hair – I knew the gossip would spread in no time. Strike two. Hah, this is easier than I imagined!
Lunch break was almost amusing. The children were clearly trying to avoid me, and I cheerfully let them cast fearful glances at me every now and then. Sometimes I would lift my eyes to meet theirs; causing a look of near panic every time I narrowed my eyes. Not one idiot had tried to talk to me after the blond girl's attempt, and I took it as a sign that the news truly had spread. Even the seniors would not come anywhere near me. Well, well. Labels aren't that bad, after all. 'Goth' equals 'dangerous' in most peoples' books. Spares you the trouble.
But my minor amusement soon faded as the long day dragged on. Being in a school full of useless teenagers, every one of them a pretender and an oh-the-world-is-so-perfect person, was tiring. I resented the endless, adolescent giggles, the supposedly 'unnoticed' whispers behind my back, the sound of high heels on the wet stone… If I wasn't insane already, this place would surely do the job. At this rate you'll turn catatonic…
The kids disliked and feared me, but true panic was still to be achieved. I wanted everyone to know how much, or rather less, I cared for them. I had to come up with something. Now you're talking!
What could be mindless enough to catch everyone's attention?
If there's one thing adults fear, then underage drinking…
I smiled at my devious thoughts. Alcohol was the perfect medicine for the obligatory waste of time some liked to call 'school'. Thankfully, I always had an emergency reserve, ready for my times of need. I walked over to my car during one of the breaks in the afternoon, and fetched my bottle of Vodka. Look, the kids are staring already… hey; it's the same blond one over there!
The girl, who had already earned the title of 'idiot blond of the month' in the record time of half a day, was staring at me wide eyed. Her jaw dropped open when she saw the item I was holding, and I very nearly had to snicker at her dumbfounded expression. "Hey, want some? There's plenty to share." I called out to her. The idiot cringed away from me, and all but ran back to the school house.
I pretended not to notice all the incredulous stares as I walked to Spanish class. The distance between me and the other students was entertaining. Eventually, I stopped in front of the Spanish room, and took a long sip from the bottle, leaning casually against the wall as I did. The students passed by, wide eyed and unbelieving, not daring to interrupt my drinking. I could hear the scandal already: 'Have you heard? Amelia was drinking before Spanish class! Real Vodka!'
The bitter taste of alcohol on my tongue was a welcomed change from the dull school day. I didn't drink much (You'll still have work to get through. You'll want to be sober when you see their faces.), but still came late for class when I finally lowered the bottle from my lips.
I walked into the classroom, unashamed and proud, the bottle clenched tightly between my fingers.
The room fell silent at my entrance.
The effect was perfect. All students in the room, including the I'm-so-pretty-and-you-are-not, blond girl from my earlier 'experiments', were paralyzed. Even the teacher, a young, timid dimwit who wouldn't hurt a fly if her life depended on it, didn't dare to lecture me. I smugly sat at the empty table at the back of the room. I met the intruding eyes with venomous glares.
Eventually, the teacher seemed to have chosen not to mention me, and continued her lesson. Not a single kid looked at me after that.
When the bell finally rang, I knew I would only have a couple of minutes to get away before Mr. Greene got a tip from some naïve teenager and came looking for me. So I gathered my things and hurried out of the room, shoving some kids to the side when they got in my way.
The fact that I didn't get any angry glares only supported my thesis that I was, indeed, hated and feared by the entire school. Not bad for my first day.
But the torture wasn't over yet. That torture is never over, sweetie. Life is torture- You can't seriously have forgotten? I still had to face another three hours of working at the store. And then another day of this. Had I cared, I'd have definitely groaned.
I could only drop my school bag at home before I had to hurry to the Newtons'. In fact, I was late already. First impressions are important, Amelia. Let's not disappoint your father- After all, he's expecting you to be kicked out before you even start!
When I arrived at the store, yet another bothersome teenager (Have I not suffered enough?) was waiting for me in front of the shop. The boy, or should I say youngman, was wearing a tight t-shirt and a pair of fashionable jeans. I hated him already. He almost glared at me as I got out of my car.
"You're late." I merely shrugged, not really bothered to explain anything to the fool standing before me. He let out an exasperated sigh.
"Ok, look, I know you're new here and everything, but please try to be punctual next time, ok?" I shrugged again, not entirely convinced that there would be a next time.
"I'm Mike, by the way. My parents own this place." He offered to shake my hand, but was only met with a raised eye brow on my part. Mike seemed to be resisting the urge to roll his eyes as he led me to the store, eyeing my outfit skeptically.
Once we were inside, he directed me to the counter and handed me a hideous, bright orange vest. I would have to do something about that. The Newtons surely wouldn't mind me prepping the uniform up a little? "I'll have to leave early today, but I'm sure you'll get the hang of this soon. For now, you'll just be the cashier, ok? Let Bella do all the talking." – He said this as if he didn't really believe I could talk – "She'll take care of the customers. And if you have any questions, you can always ask her. Got everything?"
I only shrugged again, not even having to fake my lack of concern. Mike left reluctantly, probably thinking I would demolish the place if he left me alone. Not a bad idea at all, my friend…
But before I had time to do any planning, a young woman walked in from the backroom of the store. This girl had brown, long hair, chocolate eyes and pale skin, almost able to compete with my pallor. She, too, was wearing the revolting vest that couldn't really be called a decent piece of clothing, and smiled at the sight of me.
That was the first thing that shocked me. She smiled at me.
Great. So Chief Swan's daughter really was one of those I-don't-hate-anyone-because-I'm-such-an-angel types. Well, I would break through her shell fast enough.
"Hi! You must be Amelia. I'm Bella. Nice to meet you." She didn't offer her hand, which only irritated me further. Patience. You'll have plenty of time to be rude later on.
I didn't answer, but she continued nevertheless, unbothered by my unfriendliness. "So Mike already said you'd be the cashier. We don't get many customers this time of year, especially not on week days, so I think we'll have a pretty quiet evening. Just the two of us. My shift ends before yours, though, but I think Mike should be back by then. The Newtons are running short on staff, now that both he and I are leaving for college."
A quiet evening with her. Perfect. I'd get to concentrate fully on earning the wrath of Isabella Swan.
I didn't say anything, again, this time finally receiving some reaction. Bella's eyes widened a little and her brows furrowed, making me wonder what she was thinking. Obviously, her first feeling towards me was pity. I returned her stare with an icy one of my own.
To my great surprise, the girl did not cringe away from my glare, but turned her head away in embarrassment. A blush stained her otherwise pale cheeks.
Why was she embarrassed? That was not the desired reaction.
But who cared. Maybe this girl was a freak. Like me. I would get to her, sooner or later. No doubt in that.
I stood behind the counter, shifting from foot to foot in my usual, uninterested manner. I crossed my arms over my chest, a gesture that clearly stated 'Do not bother me'.
But Isabella Swan was obviously blind. Without turning her head from the shelf she was arranging, she spoke to me in a quiet, tentative voice. Tentative, but not in the way I was used to. Not like I might do something to her, but like her words would harm me. I nearly snorted at that thought.
"Amelia, I… I just wanted to tell you that I know how you feel. When I moved here two years ago, I hated the town at first, too. I hated everything. The people, the landscape, the rain… I was determined to just get through school and then leave to some place exotic and warm. I was sure I'd never like it in Forks. But I was horribly wrong."
I raised my eyebrows at her attempt on chivalry. Shouldn't it be pretty apparent that I was not interested in school? I'd never get out of Forks, not unless I got arrested. Tempting idea…
Bella remained oblivious to my uncaring manner.
"I'm leaving… for college… in a few weeks, and I feel like I'm going to miss Forks terribly. This place isn't just a prison for me now. It's my home. I actually learned to like the green scenery. And the people are not that bad. Heck, even the rain is bearable once you get used to it! I don't want to leave, not ever."
I surprised myself – and Bella, for sure – by answering, "Then why are you leaving?"
Yep, this girl was just another holier-than-thou person who cared about nothing but school. College, college, college. Blah, blah, blah. When would these kids grasp that college was voluntary? There was no reason to complain about something you chose to do.
But her answer confounded me. It wasn't so much the words that made the statement puzzling, but her tone of voice. "I have to."
She spoke so quietly, that I wasn't completely sure if I was really meant to hear that last bit.
Rare curiosity flared up inside me. This girl was hiding something, and that something was big. I actually felt like asking her for more information. Almost like I cared.
Pfft! What is she hiding? A kidnapped kitten that she has to smuggle out of town before the cops get her? Or… the horror! The rain might soak her hair!
So I didn't pry for more answers.
Why was I suddenly so… stupid? Isabella Swan was just another piece of a mass production, another prototype of 'the perfect teenager'. There was nothing special whatsoever about her. Not her clothes – unusually dull, even for a teenager –, not her appearance, not her name. Nothing was interesting about her. She probably had no real talents at all.
Yet I couldn't help but feel intrigued. I brought my thoughts to a secret place in my mind, a place I went if I wanted to keep the thoughts from my other self when I didn't want to argue. A place I hardly used.
It wasn't just the fact that I was sure Bella was hiding something. There was something else that mystified me about her- Her eyes. Their color wasn't special at all- There was nothing remarkable about chocolate brown eyes. Half of the population had brown eyes. No, it wasn't their color that captivated me. It was their depth. When I gazed into those puddles of… well, mud, really, I felt like I was staring right into the girl's soul. Her every emotion was on display in them. I wondered if she was capable of lying, when such clear windows leading to the truth were plastered on her face. And then there was their wisdom. I couldn't find another word to describe it, the knowledge no eighteen-year-old should ever have.
So this Bella Swan is smart. So what.
Crap. My other ego had found my thoughts too quickly.
I quickly turned my train of thought away from such ridiculous speculation. It was official- The dreary school day really had affected my sharp mind. It was already turning to jelly.
Bella's assumption from earlier had been right – Not one customer walked in through the door during our shift. We didn't talk much – Again, I couldn't help but feel Bella actually sensed I didn't want to do so – and I continued my nonchalant fashion throughout the evening.
In my boredom, I decided to watch Bella do her job. To my great enjoyment, I noticed she was quite clumsy, spending me some good laughs during the afternoon. The first three falls made me snort, causing her face to glow crimson, but after the fourth one, she started laughing with me. I was perplexed by her reaction, and stopped laughing myself – I didn't want her to think I was on her side.
Another thing I noticed while watching her was that she kept glancing at the clock repeatedly towards the end of her shift. She grew restless, and didn't seem to be able to keep her eyes away from the clock for any more than a few seconds at a time. Like she was waiting for her shift to end, so she could go home. Really! Have the idiots here already softened your mind? Of course she's eager to go home. Aren't you?
But there was more to her agitation than that. She wasn't only glancing at the clock, but also kept stealing peeks at the door, like she was waiting for someone to come through them. Stop it already! Why are you wasting your thoughts on someone this insignificant? You should be working on the plan. She still doesn't hate you, and that means you'll be spending another dull afternoon at the store. Great job, kiddo!
It wasn't until the end of Bella's shift that I realized why she had been so fidgety.
At 6 o'clock sharp, the most striking man I had ever seen in my life entered the shop.
Not many men caught my attention, but this one was simply outstanding. Not only was his body stunning – the perfect proportions and muscles at the right places – but his face also made it extremely difficult to notice anything else. His skin was pale – I might even go as far as to call it white – and made me wonder if my pallor was that unhealthy after all. His irises were a brilliant gold, a color I had never seen before, and the dark shadows under his eyes only added to his handsome complexion. I searched as hard as I could, but came out empty – there were no faults in his face. He was perfect. Flawless.
And Bella ran right into his arms.
"Edward!" She all but squealed the name, standing on her tiptoes to give the man a passionate kiss.
Oh. So this was Edward Cullen, the man she was supposed to be marrying in a few weeks. Hadn't Jack said something like that?
Edward chuckled when he pulled back from their feverish kiss. Bella looked frustrated, and pouted her lips when he released her, and I wondered how he managed to hold the girl back. She was practically having jitters. Ew, another teenage love story. How does this soap opera end? "Oh, Edward, how could you cheat on me? It's over!"
And indeed, I came to the conclusion that this astounding man must be cheating on her. No normal human being, at least not one that looked like Bella, could be able to hold his interest for long. Alone the fact that they were engaged sounded unbelievable in my ears.
Even I wouldn't mind kissing someone like that. If only he was a cheater.
I couldn't be entirely sure, but the brief look he gave me resembled a glower.
"Good evening, Bella. How was work?" His voice did not fail his appearance. It was velvet. I almost, but only almost, envied the way he said the girl's name.
"Boring. The usual." She turned to me, truly looking at me for the first time in hours. "Amelia, I want you to meet my fiancé, Edward."
I could have been imagining it, but Bella seemed to wince at the word 'fiancé'.
Loyal to my persona, I just rolled my eyes at her introduction. Any idiot with eyes could tell who the handsome man was.
Bella turned back to her husband-to-be, beaming while she looked into his eyes. "Let's go home, ok? Is Alice very enthusiastic today?"
"I should probably warn you. She seems to think a chocolate fountain would be perfect for the wedding reception."
Bella groaned, and Edward laughed quietly at her obvious dislike. It was a musical laugh.
Bella quickly hopped over to the counter, and stuffed her vest into one of the drawers. She gave me a timid, little wave, earning a general frown from me, and walked off with her gorgeous fiancé.
So that was it. I was alone. You want to get fired? Then DO something! Steal money! Devastate the shop! Anything! You've been acting lame enough all afternoon!
The situation was tempting. I could have easily crammed my pockets with money, or burned down the entire house had I wanted to. But some odd sensation was piling up in my stomach.
I didn't want to get fired. I wanted to see Bella Swan and her beautiful fiancé again.
Softie! You're turning weak, dearest. You really are. In a week's time you'll be watching the Teletubbies and wearing diapers. Get destroying, already!
For the first time in a very, very long time, I ignored the screaming in my head. I could be stubborn if I wanted to be, and right now, all I wanted was to see the strange couple again. To stare into Bella's deep eyes again. To drool over her absurdly handsome fiancé. To find out what she was possibly hiding.
Ridiculous. I really was turning into a softie.
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