Everything Twilight belongs to Stephenie Meyer, this story line is all ours.
Song inspiration belongs to Lady Antebellum.
This was our entry for the FWAR Musical Cues II Contest
A huge thanks to darcysmom for beta'ing and being our biggest cheerleader.
Song and Artist: Dancing Away With My Heart by Lady Antebellum www . youtube watch?v=0qK0A3Tj88o
**If you have NOT heard this song before, we highly recommend giving it a listen before reading! Just remember to remove the spaces.**
I was never one for dancing, but when I met Isabella Swan my senior year of high school; I knew I'd be willing to learn … if I could work up the nerve to talk to her.
Bella, as she liked to be called, was beautiful. Long, mahogany hair, big brown eyes framed by long lashes, a button nose and rosy cheeks with a smattering of freckles across them. She didn't wear makeup – she didn't need it. When she smiled it was like a ray of sunshine onto my otherwise dreary life. I wish I could say that she saved those warm smiles for me – the truth was that she didn't even know I existed.
Every now and then I'd glance over at Bella from across the cafeteria and I'd catch her looking in my direction. When she saw me she'd smile shyly and look down as a blush overtook her lovely features.
"You should ask her to homecoming," my best friend, Jasper, suggested.
"Just because she's your sister doesn't mean that she knows I'm alive."
Up until our senior year, Bella had lived with her mother in Arizona while Jasper stayed behind with their dad, Charlie. Bella and Jasper were fraternal twins – Bella took after her mom but looked like her dad while Jasper took after Charlie but looked like his mom.
I moved to Forks with my parents when I was twelve – well after the Swan's had divorced. I met Bella a couple times over the years but I never spent any real time with her.
"She knows you're alive dude. Trust me. Just ask her." He smiled.
I went to the homecoming dance, but I went by myself. I stood beside Jasper and his girlfriend, Alice, watching Bella as she talked animatedly to her friend, Angela.
"She's so beautiful …" I whispered to no one in particular.
"Bella?" Alice asked.
"Why don't you ask her to dance?"
"I'd love to, but just … yeah, no."
"I know her, Ed. She's a sweetheart, don't let her intimidate you. I promise she's just as shy as you are."
"She'd never go for a guy like me – not in a million years."
"How do you know that, Ed? Have you talked to her at all?"
"Then how do you know she wouldn't go for a guy like you if you don't try to talk to her? You'll never know if you don't try."
"You sound like Jazz," I chuckled.
"Did you ever stop to think that maybe we know what we're talking about?"
"Ed, man, if you don't ask her now you may lose your chance."
He slapped me on my back as a sign of encouragement and I watched as Jasper led Alice out to the dance floor and I stood there, just watching all the happy couples dancing closely together.
Unbeknownst to me, Bella had made her way across the room. The soft scent of her perfume wafted around me and when I turned to see where the lovely smell was coming from, I was face to face with her. She smiled warmly and I smiled shyly in return.
"Hi … I'm Bella," she offered.
"I'm … Ed … Edward," I stuttered.
Before either of us could manage another word the deejay announced that the next song would be the last slow song of the night.
"Wo … would you like to dance?" I asked Bella softly.
"I'd love to, Edward."
I offered my hand like I'd seen Jasper do to Ali and Bella placed her hand in mine and I nervously led her out to the dance floor.
I wrapped my arm around her waist as she rested one hand on my shoulder and the other one in my hand.
"Is this okay?" I asked shyly.
Bella nodded with a sweet smile.
We swayed to the music as it enveloped us. Bella seemed to melt into me as she laid her head on my shoulder. With our joined hands resting on my chest we fell into our own little bubble. I don't remember my feet moving, but somehow they were. The soft glow of the disco ball above us made me think of what it would be like to dance with Bella in my favorite meadow; the moon above us instead of a mirrored ball.
I never wanted the song to end. I'd have been happy to hold Bella in my arms forever – she just fit. Bella pulled away slightly and looked up at me beneath her thick lashes.
"Thank you for asking me to dance, Edward. I noticed you my very first day here. You seemed so shy, but it was your beautiful green eyes and your crooked smile that made me want to know more about you."
"You're welcome, Bella. I noticed you that day too. You were smiling and beautiful. I d … didn't know how to approach you or what to say. Jasper told me tonight that if I didn't take a chance I might not get another one."
"I'm so glad you did, Edward. I hope we'll see each other again after tonight."
Bella nodded. "Yeah. Maybe we can talk more and have lunch together?"
"I'd like that."
For the next few months that's exactly what we did. We ate lunch together, did our homework together and hung out more. We talked and laughed, learning more about the other then we ever knew. We found out that we had more in common than we thought having the same taste in music and books.
By spring we were inseparable and I was irrevocably in love with Bella. She consumed every waking moment of my thoughts making me want to be near her always. After months of getting to know each other as friends with friendly kisses and playful flirting, I finally got the nerve to ask her to be my girlfriend.
She jumped into my arms, kissing my lips, and asking me what took me so long. I laughed and chalked it up to shyness and nerves.
"Oh, Edward, you silly boy. Sometimes you are so oblivious. How could you not know I cared for you as more than a friend?"
I just shrugged.
"You don't see yourself as clearly as I do. I see a boy who is handsome, smart and oh so caring. He wears his heart on his sleeve and would do anything for anybody. Edward, I see a boy I'm falling in love with."
I gasped. "You do?"
Bella nodded. "I do."
"I'm not falling, Bella, I'm already there. I love you, Isabella Swan."
I lowered my lips to hers capturing her gasp of surprise. There was no way I could hold back the moan that escaped me as she swiped her tongue along my bottom lip. She traced it back and forth before silently asking for permission. Instinctively I opened my mouth as her tongue slid in to swirl with mine.
Another masculine moan left my lips as my hands played with the edge of her shirt at Bella's waist. Her hands were playing with the hair at my neck making me shiver. Boys don't shiver do they? Our lips moved in sync with the other as we explored the other's mouth— all lips, tongues and teeth.
Slowly our kiss became less desperate and more loving and I nipped her lower lip. I kissed Bella's lips once, twice before I pulled back to rest my forehead to hers. We both tried to catch our breath after the best kiss I'd ever had.
"Umm, yeah … wow."
From that moment on we couldn't keep our hands or mouths to ourselves. There were gentle touches, slow kisses, soft caresses, sensual kisses, hand holding and some hot make out sessions, but nothing more. It seemed really cliché for us to say we were waiting for prom night but as it turned out I guess that's what we were waiting for.
It was a warm Friday night in June and I was standing in Bella's living room next to Jasper, waiting for Alice and her to emerge from her bedroom. I nervously shifted my weight from one foot to the other while holding a corsage of orchids in my hand. I had no idea why I was so nervous.
"Ed, man, you need to sit down. You're gonna put a hole in my parent's rug if you don't stop pacing. You know Alice, they'll be a while."
"I'm just nervous."
"I can see that. But why?"
"I don't know. Maybe it's because it's prom or maybe because it's the first dance I'm taking Bella to as my girlfriend."
Jasper slapped a hand to my back. "You'll be fine. You'll see everything will work out."
Twenty minutes later the girls made their way down the stairs. Alice came first but I only had eyes for the beauty behind her who looked gorgeous as ever. Bella was wearing a royal blue strapless dress that had an empire line band just below her chest with a flowing skirt that landed just above the knee. The side of her hair was pulled back away from her face as curls spilled down her back. She walked ever so slowly in the black heels that accentuated her long legs. She looked exquisite and she was all mine.
When she reached the bottom step I offered her my hand to help her down and pulled her into my arms to give her a chaste kiss on the lips.
"Bella, there are no words for how beautiful you look tonight."
"You don't look half bad yourself."
Bella and Jasper's parents, Alice's parents and mine all took turns gushing over us taking a million and one pictures. When pictures were done we said our goodbyes and climbed into the waiting limo.
It was so surreal to have thought that just a month after school started, I would be going to prom, let alone going with Bella. I had finally gotten the girl and then I got to show her off to everyone.
When the limo finally pulled up at the hotel I felt the knots twist in my stomach. I was nervous and excited all in the same moment. One of Alice's friends, Emmett, was having an after prom party so we booked a suite with separate bedrooms so that we could go and not have to worry about getting home that night. The only reason Bella was allowed to go was because her brother was going too and for that I was thankful.
Bella slipped her hand in mine as we walked toward the loud music coming from the ballroom. It was decorated with streamers and balloons in our prom colors of black and white. With my hand on the small of her back I guided her following Alice and Jasper as we made our way in.
"Would you like to dance, baby?"
"I thought you'd never ask."
I took Bella's hand leading her out to the dance floor. Her one arm wrapped around my neck as the other was placed in mine resting against my heart and I placed my other on her waist. We swayed to the music enjoying the closeness of our bodies which was only an interlude of things to come later.
The night was filled with laughter and fun, gentle kisses and touches, everything a prom should be. I took any opportunity to pull Bella into my arms for every slow song played that night. The night was beautiful and romantic and I never wanted it to end.
Once the festivities wound down we headed to Emmett's party where it was wild with loud music and hidden alcohol.
"Bella, do you want a drink?"
After getting each of us a beer we socialized for a bit with our friends, but it was clear that we wanted to spend the rest of the night together, just the two of us.
"Jazz, Bella and I are heading back to the room, okay?"
"That's fine," he said before pulling me closer for only my ears. "I know you would never do anything to hurt my sister and I'm holding you to it. Make sure you keep Bella safe."
Like I wasn't nervous enough my best friend had to go all big brother on me putting even more pressure on me.
"I will. I promise."
I wrapped my arm around Bella pulling her close to my side as we walked back to our room. Earlier that day Jasper and I had checked in and brought all our bags up. Otherwise we'd have only our prom clothes.
Once the door closed to our bedroom I felt the tension between us and it was so thick you could have cut it with a knife. My nerves kicked in once again and I was at a loss at what to do. I didn't have to think long because Bella quietly turned to me, looped her arms around my neck and gently lowered her mouth to mine. My hands rested against her hips as warm, soft lips moved against mine.
"I love you, Bella," I whispered against her lips as I pulled her flush against me.
"I love you, too."
I lowered my head and took her lips gently in mine as our lips caressed each other's. I slowly added more pressure, gliding my tongue over her plump bottom lip, asking for entrance. Bella didn't hesitate.
A soft moan escaped her lips as my tongue touched hers and I could feel her nipples harden. Our tongues did an erotic dance, taking what we wanted while I could feel my cock harden against my tux trousers.
I kissed her until we were both panting and breathless. I rested my forehead against hers.
"Baby, you have no idea how much I want you right now. But, Bella, I won't force you to do anything you don't want to."
Bella placed her hands on my cheeks looking deeply into my eyes. "Edward, I want you just as much. Make love to me, please."
"Love, you never have to beg."
Ever so gently I turned Bella so her back was to my front, kissing her shoulder as I lowered the zipper to her dress revealing inch upon inch of creamy skin. Bella shivered as I pushed the material from her shoulders to pool at her feet leaving her in a black bra and lace panties.
I walked around her to take in the sight before me. She had to be the most beautiful girl I had ever seen.
I picked her up bridal style, carrying her to the bed, and gently placing her in the middle. I removed my jacket, shirt, and pants leaving my boxers on. I slipped my iPod into the dock on the bedside table and pressed play before crawling on the bed to lie beside her. Leaning over her I cupped her face in my hands and kissed her sweetly. Her warm, wet tongue traced my lip as my own tongue met hers in the middle and tangled with hers.
My fingers caressed every inch of flesh I could reach before landing on the swell of Bella's breast. My thumb rubbed along the hardened peak through her bra making her moan wantonly. I looked up into her chocolate eyes asking for further permission to undo her bra.
Bella slowly nodded and with a flick of my wrist the front clasp was done revealing two perfect mounds with rosy nipples. I lowered my head to take a nipple in my mouth while Bella's back arched bringing her breast closer.
After paying the same attention to her other breast, I shimmied down her body leaving a trail of hot, wet kisses. I stopped at her belly, tracing my tongue around her belly button, then along the waistband of those sexy panties. I looked up again at Bella to see her to see half lidded eyes filled with so much passion staring back at me. That was all the reassurance I needed. I hooked my thumbs in the side of her panties and slid them down exposing her perfect pussy. I never thought before of going down on a girl but now that Bella was open and waiting before me I needed to taste her. I swiped my tongue along her wet folds and I was lost to all these new sensations. She tasted like nothing I ever tasted before, like sweet honey nectar. I needed more than just another taste. Bella gasped as I latched onto her clit sucking and licking and tasting.
"Edward please …"
"Baby, tell me what you want."
"I want you."
I stood, lowering my boxers letting my cock spring free while watching Bella's eyes widen with surprise. Her eyes softened as I crawled up the bed to hover over her center. I kissed her lips gently before grabbing the condom and ripping the foil packet open. Once the condom was on I lowered myself aligning my cock with her wet folds. I balanced myself placing my hands on either side of her head and kissed her once.
"I love you, Bella. Please let me show you how much."
Bella nodded and I pushed in sheathing myself in her warmth inch by inch. When I felt restriction I stopped knowing this part would be painful for her.
"I'm so sorry, love. This part may hurt for a bit."
"It's okay, Edward."
I took her lips in mine as I pushed past her barrier to fill her completely. A few tears slipped from her eyes and my heart broke at her pain.
"Bella, I'm so sorry. I never wanted to hurt you."
"Shh … Edward, you have nothing to be sorry for. Just give me a minute to adjust."
I wiped the few tears away that had escaped then kissed her lips once more. Bella started to move below me making me groan.
"Move, Edward. Make me yours."
She wrapped her legs around my waist as I started to move. Meeting me thrust for thrust I could feel my balls tighten and my orgasm build. I wasn't sure how long I would last.
"Bella, you feel so good."
I slipped my fingers between us to her clit trying to bring her closer to the edge with me. My thrusts became frantic as I drove faster and more urgently, bringing my orgasm right to the brink. "Oh, Edward … you feel soo good."
"Bella, I'm not gonna last."
With one more thrust of my hips, I was crumbling and she was following right behind.
I wrapped Bella up in my arms and rolled us to the side so I wasn't pressing down on her. I ghosted feather light kisses against her sticky skin as she burrowed further into my embrace. I closed my eyes and listened to the soft music as it wafted around us; the words holding more meaning than I could ever imagine.
So lay here beside me just hold me and don't let go …
This feelin' I'm feelin' I've never known
It was true, I'd never known any feeling like this; the feeling of having the girl I loved in my arms and knowing that she loved me just as much in return. We'd given ourselves to each other – the most perfect gifts.
"Edward?" Bella whispered.
"Thank you … for tonight. It was amazing. You were amazing."
"You're welcome, Bella, but you don't have to thank me. You deserved every moment of this evening. I love you so very much, baby."
"I love you too, Edward."
We drifted off into a peaceful slumber; Bella's head on my chest and my arms wrapped around her.
When I woke, I found wide, brown eyes peering at me.
"Good morning, handsome."
"Good morning, beautiful." I smiled.
"We have to be out of here soon," Bella said softly, a frown taking over her soft smile from only moments earlier.
"I know. But I thought we could spend the day down at the beach. It's supposed to be warm today."
"Edward … graduation is only a couple weeks away. I'd love to hang out at the beach with you but I have to decide where I'm going to college. I have to mail my acceptance letter back this week, and you do too."
"I already know where I'm going," I smiled as I reached out in an attempt to tickle her.
"UDub?" Bella asked sadly.
"Yeah," I replied, running my fingers through my already unruly hair. "My entire family went there. It's a great school."
"But you got into Yale too, right?"
"Yale is a lot closer to Dartmouth than UDub, Edward."
Bella had her heart set on going to Dartmouth. She'd never been to the east coast before, but she'd read so much about it she fell in love with it sight unseen. The full ride scholarship she was offered was also very enticing.
"I'll meet you in the middle since we've both been accepted to NorthWestern," I grinned, trying to bargain with her.
"Edward …" She whined. "Why does this have to be so hard?"
"It doesn't have to be," I said softly.
"Bella, if you want to go to Dartmouth, go. We can always do the long distance thing. We can talk on the phone, email, text and Skype. We'll make it work, and I'll be here waiting when you come home."
Tears began to fall down her beautiful face as she took in every word I'd said.
Four months later, I watched with a heavy heart as the love of my existence walked through security at Sea-Tac on her way to New Hampshire. We'd spent an incredible summer together – one I knew we'd never forget. Saying goodbye to Bella was the hardest thing I'd ever done but because I loved her and wanted her to be happy – I'd encouraged her to go. I'd never tell her how much it hurt.
She called as soon as her plane touched the ground; her voice a mixture of excitement and sadness.
"I miss you already, Edward."
"I miss you too, baby, but you'll be great. Just remember I love you and you can call whenever you need to."
My heart ached for her; the sound of her voice, the touch of her skin against mine. When it got to be too much I'd send her a simple text just to let her know I was thinking about her.
I found that losing myself in my classes and work at school helped with the pain of missing Bella. I'd spend hours in the library studying only to find myself in Bella's favorite section. I'd find myself wondering what Bella was doing at that very moment and where she was.
As time wore on, our communications became few and far between. She'd made some friends and rushed a sorority with them. Instead of coming home at Christmas, she went skiing with her friends. Bella had become so different from the sweet, shy girl I'd fallen in love with. We'd argued over the ski trip of course and that was just the beginning of the end. A few weeks after Christmas break, I received an honest to God letter from Bella – a first.
I want to say that I'm sorry about the words we exchanged before Christmas but I just can't bring myself to do it. I'm not sorry. For the first time in my life I'm doing something that I want to do instead of what other people want me to do. I won't apologize for that and if it makes me a selfish person, I won't apologize for that either.
I think that I've done a great deal of growing up in the past few months since we've been apart and while I look back at us and the incredible time we've had together; I think I've outgrown that too. I want more and I don't mean marriage. I want other things, I want to explore and not be attached to any one thing. I love you … I'll always love you. You will always hold a special place in my heart, but I think you should move on because you deserve someone who can give you their entire soul, but that person isn't me, for that I am sorry.
I couldn't stop the tears that fell from my eyes. My chest felt like it had been blown wide open and that the gaping hole left there could never be repaired. I loved Bella – the words that she had written had wounded me deeply, but I couldn't bring myself to hate her.
I didn't attend class that day, nor in the days after. I cut off all communication with everyone I knew. Thankfully I was in a single dorm room but Jasper was my suitemate and because he was Bella's brother just seeing him would be painful. On the fourth day of my self-imposed exile, I heard a soft knock at my door.
"Edward? Honey, it's mom. Open the door if you can. Jasper said he hasn't seen you in days."
I dragged my love weary body out of bed and unlocked the door. My mother gasped when she saw me and she quickly pulled me into her arms.
"Edward … what's wrong, honey? Jazz said you haven't been going to class and that you never come out of your room when he's home. Honey, that's not normal."
I didn't know what to say to her. I couldn't bring myself to say out loud what had happened. I reached over to my desk and handed my mother the letter that Bella had sent. By the time she'd finished reading it she was in tears just like me.
"Oh, God, baby. I'm so sorry."
My mom embraced me again and this time I sobbed in her arms. I was completely heartbroken and I didn't know what else to do.
"I love her so much, Mom. I miss her," I sobbed.
"I know, baby. You gave her your heart and I hate that you'll never get it back."
My mom had no idea how much truth there was to that statement. She stayed with me for a while and we talked for a long time. There was more crying involved from both sides. It was really the first time in my life I'd ever cried. It was like a part of me had died, and for that I had to mourn.
I eventually sat down and talked to Jazz. He felt awful about the way things went down and he didn't really understand what was going on with Bella either – nor did Alice for that matter. They were both a bit angry with Bella's decisions and concerned about the effect they'd had on me but I tried my best to move on from the situation.
I dove into the baseball season that spring and was excited to be playing for the Huskies. Baseball would be the only respite I'd have. I couldn't bring myself to listen to music – there were too many songs that I associated with Bella and the library was out unless it was absolutely necessary. I found myself avoiding all her favorite foods, clothes of mine that she'd told me she'd loved.
I went home to visit for a few days but I couldn't bring myself to stay more than one night. Bella was everywhere; in my meadow, my room, on the beach laughing as I tickled her relentlessly.
Time moved on. I missed Bella every day, and every day it hurt a little less. She never did return home. She spent summers and holidays with her sorority sisters. Jasper and his parents flew out to see her and the look on Jasper's face when he returned home told me that I didn't want to know.
After the letter, I wouldn't hear from Bella again for a few years. Jasper told me it was because I didn't write her back. She assumed that I hated her and wanted nothing more to do with her.
"Edward, man, just remember that things aren't always as they seem. The girl that we sent off to Dartmouth is still in there somewhere – she just needs to be reminded of that."
"I can't be the one to remind her, Jazz. Yes, I love her … but the gaping hole she left behind? It's too much."
Jasper nodded sadly.
Four years. Four years and many struggles later I was finally getting my bachelors from UDub and I'd been accepted into Medical School. My parents hugged me and told me how proud they were of me. Alice hugged me and told me that I better stay in touch. Jasper made me promise that I'd come back and be his best man when he finally got the nerve to marry Alice.
I was on my way to New York – Columbia Medical School.
I received a graduation announcement from Bella. She was graduating from Dartmouth and then she'd be moving to California to work on her doctorate at Berkeley. I hadn't planned on accepting Columbia's offer but wanting to be as far from my heartache as possible, I made the decision to go to New York.
About eight months after I moved to New York, Jazz came to visit.
"I'm finally going to propose to Ali," he grinned.
"Yeah? That's great news, man! I'm happy for you."
"Yeah? How are you doing these days? Have you found anyone you're happy with?"
"Kinda. I've been seeing a woman named Kate. She's a nurse."
"But … she's not Bella." I sighed.
"Edward … I hate to tell you this man. I know you love her but you've got to move on. Allow yourself to fall for someone else."
Anger raged inside of me.
"I don't want to fall for someone else, dammit! I want her. I'm waiting and I'm trying to be patient. Ali said if I really loved her to let her go and if she was really mine to begin with, she'd come back to me."
"Don't wait for her, Ed. She's not coming back."
"How the fuck do you know that?" I hollered.
Everyone in the bar we were sitting in turned their eyes to see the commotion.
"She got married, Ed. Two months ago."
Jasper kept talking but I couldn't hear a word he was saying. The words "she got married" kept ringing in my ears.
"Why … why didn't you tell me? Sooner, I mean."
"Ed, Ali and I just wanted to protect you from it. I knew it would hurt you … hell it hurt me. I kept hoping that Bella would tell you herself. She owes you that much. Man, I'm sorry you had to find out this way."
"Me too," I admitted sadly.
My whole world had been turned on its ear. It finally hit me that Bella never really loved me as much as I loved her. The mere thought brought me to my knees.
I threw myself into my relationship with Kate with renewed vigor. I tried to open myself up to her as much as possible, but I had thoughts nagging my mind constantly. What if Kate hurt me as badly as Bella?
Kate was honest from the beginning. She wasn't looking for anything too serious. She knew it was hard to have a relationship with a Med student. She promised that what we had would be monogamous and when it got to be too much she'd let me know. It worked for us for about two and a half years when she realized that she wanted a husband, a white picket fence and 2.5 kids. She knew that wasn't something I could give her so she kissed me chastely and moved all her things out of my apartment.
About six months before Kate moved out, Ali came to New York to visit me for the weekend. I knew when she called to see if I could make some time for her that whatever she was coming for was serious. I knew it wasn't to tell me about her and Jazz. They'd gotten engaged a couple years before but wanted to wait to get married until they were in a good place financially. I cleared my schedule for the entire weekend just to spend some quality time with my friend. Sure, I'd spent time emailing Ali and Jazz and talking on the phone – I refused to let my relationship with them fall to the wayside just because of Bella.
I met Alice at one of my favorite café's in SoHo. It was a clear, crisp fall day and I couldn't imagine a better time to catch up with a good friend. We sipped lattes as we chatted. Alice was always easy to get along with and I had learned to value her advice.
"Edward … I won't beat around the bush. I think you should call Bella."
"And why is that, Ali? She's made no attempt to contact me except for sending me an announcement that she was graduating and that was five years ago."
"She's going through a rough time. She could really use a friend. Someone who really knows her."
"I don't know her anymore, Ali. I haven't known her in a long time," I said sadly.
"Just make an attempt to reach out to her Edward," Alice urged.
"Alice … I can't open myself up to that again. I'm in a good place finally. I'm not perfectly happy, but I'm getting there."
Alice's lip began to tremble and tears fell silently down her face.
"What is it Alice?"
"She asks about you. She always has. Even after she sent that awful letter and she thought you hated her – she still asked. Sometimes she asks Jazz and sometimes she asks me, but she always asks. Her heart knows you, Edward, and right now it needs you."
"Why are you telling me all of this now? Do you and Jazz get some sick enjoyment out of knowing how much it hurts me every time you mention Bella?"
"No! No, Edward. That's not it at all. Jazz and me both – we hate what's happened between the two of you. We can't stand seeing two people that we love so very much in obvious pain. I know it's not your fault and that you didn't ask for it, but it's still there, Edward."
"Enlighten me, Alice. Tell me why does Bella need me and why isn't Bella telling me this herself?"
"Brandon … her husband, he died, Edward."
"He had a brain aneurism. Bella had gone out to the grocery store and when she came home she found him dead in their living room."
"Alice, that's awful. How is she?"
"She's not so good. She really needs you, Edward."
Although I had sympathy for what Bella was going through the old wounds were still there. My heart was not whole and hadn't been since Bella left for college. She was my one true love and I didn't know if I would ever be able to heal this ache in my heart.
"She hasn't needed me for ten years. What makes you think she even wants to hear from me?"
"Edward, I know deep down you know the answer to that. She still loves you."
"And that's supposed to make everything better?"
"I'm not justifying what she did, Edward. She wasn't ready for that commitment and needed to grow up before she gave you herself completely. She may have gone about it the wrong way but I really feel she thought she was doing the right thing. I also know that neither of you will be truly happy until you find your way back to each other."
"I don't know if I can open my heart up like that again."
"Oh, sweetie. You've never closed your heart off where Bella's concerned."
For the next few days I let everything that Alice had said sink in. 'She still loves you' kept playing over and over again in my head. I knew without a doubt I never stopped loving Bella even when I tried to move on. I knew that night I pulled her into my arms and we swayed to the music that she was my forever. But, I wasn't sure if we reconnected and she left again that I would survive. I don't think my heart was strong enough to take another loss like that again.
Eventually I gave in and decided that if I didn't take another chance then I would regret it for the rest of my life.
I decided to start off slow and send Bella a short email sending my condolences for her husband and telling her I was there for her if she needed a friend. I only hesitated a second before hitting the send button.
Bella had returned an email that day which is how we started talking again. We were getting to know each and reconnect as friends. It started out as emails, which turned into phone calls and eventually Skype. Our communication wasn't frequent but when we did talk we never talked about past lovers. It was like some kind of unspoken agreement to never speak about our previous relationships, although I knew the time would come that we'd have to face them.
I was surprised when Bella sent me a lengthy email apologizing for how she had treated me. She went on to say she never meant to hurt me that she was only trying to be happy which is something that I had always wanted for her. She had wanted to stand on her own two feet and make her own decisions which may have been wrong in the long run but she was trying to learn from her mistakes. She hoped that I understood but not once in the email did she say she still loved me or never stopped loving me, but I still had hope.
It didn't take long for days to become weeks and weeks to become months. Jasper and Alice's wedding seemed to creep up on us. It would be the first time in ten years that I would see Bella. I was Jasper's best man and Bella was Alice's maid of honor so it was inevitable that we would see each other.
I pulled my rental car up in front of my parent's house noticing Alice's car in the driveway. I was showered with hugs and kisses as I made my way in the door and Alice ever so slyly pulled me aside.
"How are you?"
"I'm good, Ali, thanks but I should be asking you that question not the other way around."
"I'm fine, Edward. Don't worry about me. We had the rehearsal dinner last night but I just had a few things to go over with you and I want to make sure you're really okay with this."
"Alice … everything will be fine," I promised her.
Because of my schedule at work I had to take a red-eye the night before the wedding and I arrived in Forks just hours before the ceremony. I had time to shower and dress before heading over to the church.
I met Jasper outside the church where he was standing talking to his dad, Charlie. I could tell as I walked toward them, their conversation was about Bella.
"Edward, how are ya, son?" Charlie asked.
"I'm good Charlie. Staying out of trouble, anyway. How are you doing?"
"I'll be good as long as this nice weather holds out through tomorrow – I'd like to get some fishing in."
I chuckled. Charlie always did like to fish.
"How are you?" I asked as I turned to Jasper.
"I'm ready to do this thing." he smiled crookedly.
"I bet. This wedding has been years in the making."
Standing up at the front of the church beside Jasper, we watched as the procession began. First the ring bearer and flower girls then the couple bridesmaids followed finally by Bella. My eyes met hers as she walked down the aisle. A deep blush graced her features and it took my breath away. My foggy memories of her beautiful blushes didn't do the real thing justice. Our eyes only left each other long enough to watch Alice float down the aisle.
Bella was still as beautiful as the first day I met her in high school. She still took my breath away and after all this time she still captured my heart. It was going to be torture all over if she left me again.
We watched as Jasper and Alice recited their vows and were pronounced man and wife. They kissed sweetly before turning to their friends and family and everyone cheered for the happy couple. I walked the short distance to Bella and extended my arm for her to take so we could follow the bride and groom up the aisle. Neither of us said a word we just smiled at each other as Bella wrapped her arm around mine and we walked to the back of the church.
Smiles were bright on everyone's faces as photos were taken of the bridal party. Pulled in different directions we never had a chance to talk or even say hello to each other before we arrived at the reception.
The smell of her lavender shampoo wafted around me while I was standing at the bar ordering a drink. No amount of time would ever dissipate the feeling I got when she was close. I could tell you the exact moment she entered a room - it was that intoxicating.
I placed a tip on the bar and turned to see those deep chocolate eyes I loved. All at once I was bombarded by so many memories. I couldn't believe after ten years she was actually standing in front of me. I wanted to cry and jump up for joy all in the same moment.
"It's really good to see you, Edward."
"Would you like to dance?"
"I'd love to."
Bella placed her soft, warm hand in mine and I nervously led her out to the dance floor. She wrapped her arms around my neck and I wrapped mine around her waist. When she rested her head on my shoulder I let out the breath I hadn't realized I was holding.
No words were spoken as we swayed to the music as one slow song turned into another. I never wanted the song to end. If Bella could stay in my arms forever I would die a happy man.
Bella sighed and I barely heard her when she quietly said, "I was never happy with him, Edward."
I pulled back a little to look in her eyes. "Then why'd you marry him?"
"I thought you were happy with someone else."
"He seemed to take away the hurt of missing you but then it really didn't matter. He wasn't you."
"I feel like I'm eighteen again, confused and unsure."
"I'm still the same Edward that you fell in love with ten years ago, Bella. I haven't changed and I'm still hopelessly in love with you."
"I didn't know …" Bella whispered.
"We were young. I knew what I wanted then, but it took time for you to figure it out."
"Did you wait for me?" Bella asked.
"I knew in my heart you'd figure it out eventually."
"I'm sorry it took my mind so long to catch up to something my heart already knew."
"I've missed you so much, baby."
"I've missed you too."
I lowered my mouth to hers and was lost to all the familiar sensations. Bella's warm, soft lips felt incredible against my own. Our lips continued to move against each other's, coaxing and tasting the other. It was like we put all our feelings in to that one kiss. It had been ten years since I had tasted her lips on mine but I never forgot the power she held over me. There was no way we could deny we belonged together.
I pulled back slowly, resting my forehead to hers. "Bella … I love you so much."
"I love you too, Edward."
I hummed along with the song that was softly playing – it was ironic how true the words were.
"I haven't seen you in ages … sometimes I find myself wondering where you are. For me you'll always be eighteen and beautiful … and dancing away with my heart."
A/N: We want to mention that there were a few lines from another Lady Antebellum song in there - Can't Take My Eyes Off You.
Thank you for reading and we'd love to hear what you think of it! =)