Chapter One: Drama
“Bella, will you just sit down already? You are wasting time acting like such a child.”
I sighed as I looked at my favorite sister. To me this whole thing was completely pointless, why should I have to get all dressed up for school? No one was going to be looking at our clothes; they would be too mesmerized by our beauty. I decided, yet again, to voice this opinion, though I knew it wasn’t going to help me much.
“Alice, why can’t I wear jeans and a tee-shirt like the rest of the students? I thought we were supposed to be fitting in, not wearing clothes that shriek ‘look at me, look at me!” I sighed again and rested my chin on my fist.
“I found this great blue outfit for you when I went shopping yesterday,” she continued as if she hadn’t heard me at all, “You know how much Edward likes it when you wear blue.”
“Are you going to dress Renesmee up like a little doll too?” I griped. I really hated it when Alice dressed me, I didn’t think that was ever going to change. In the ten years that I had been a Cullen I had fought Alice at every turn. Unfortunately my sister is just as stubborn as I am.
“Unlike you, your daughter has exquisite taste in clothes. I firmly believe she got that from me,” Alice sniffed as she held up the beautiful blue blouse and designer jeans she was about to force me into.
“She isn’t even your blood relative,” I pointed out. Not that we ever really thought about that, the Cullen’s (though none blood related) were the closest, most loving family I had ever met. I really was blessed to be one of them.
“Mom, stop fighting with Aunt Alice.” My daughter strolled into Alice’s bathroom and perched herself on the counter in front of me. I could tell she had just awoken because her eyes were still heavy with sleep and her hair was in a tousled mess around her shoulders. Even first thing in the morning she was still the most beautiful person I had ever seen in my life.
“Is Jacob up yet?” I asked her as Alice started to curl my hair.
“No, he was up late last night wrestling with Uncle Emmett. I figured I would let him sleep for a little while longer,” she said with a wide grin, showing off her beautiful, milky white teeth.
“He does know that it’s your first official day of school doesn’t he?” Alice asked.
Renesmee nodded and grabbed one of the many brushes off the counter and began to straighten herself up a bit. “He thinks it’s funny that I’m small enough to pass for a freshman in high school. I guess that way I get to be in a lot of the same classes as you and dad, right?”
For once I was grateful that my daughter took after me with her slight build. It made it a lot easier for us to pass as younger than we were. “Your father told me that he made sure you had every class with someone, whether it is us or Alice. I’m sure everything will work out just fine.” Honestly I was more worried about myself than my daughter. She had grown up knowing what she was and how she would have to act. She had never known a different life. I, on the other hand, had been part of this mythical world for only a third of my life. I was a terrible liar and didn’t have much practice with being a young member of this incredibly odd family.
“Everything is going to be fine, Bella,” Alice reassured me. I guessed that she could feel the sudden tension in my body. She pulled my curls into a loose ponytail at the back of my neck, letting them cascade over my shoulder and down my back like a mahogany waterfall. She pulled a few tendrils free and curled them around my face, letting it frame my face softly.
“Thanks, it looks great,” I admitted and pulled her into a hug. She chuckled and tugged gently on my ponytail.
“Go on and get dressed, make sure Edward doesn’t mess up your hair,” she said knowingly. “I mean it; I can see exactly what will happen when you walk back into your room.”
If I could have blushed I would have, because I knew exactly what Alice was referring to. I also knew she was absolutely right. It wasn’t only her special talent of seeing into the future that let her know, it was also a very acute knowledge of Edward and my relationship. Even after ten years of marriage we still had a hard time being in the same room together and not embarrassing everyone in it.
“Mom, what are those kids at school going to think if you jump dad in the middle of class?” my daughter asked with knowing eyes. I hung my head and groaned as Alice chuckled again.
“They will behave themselves at school,” Alice said her silvery laughter still ringing in the air. “Edward has enough discipline to make sure Bella behaves herself.”
Right, it was always my fault.
“All right, if you two are done teasing me I’m going to spend some time with my husband,” I said and walked out of the room, laughter following behind me.
I flew down the hall, not wanting to waste a second of my precious time with Edward. He must have heard my steps because he threw the door open and caught me in his arms before I could reach for the knob. “Hello beautiful,” he whispered into my hair.
I wrapped my arms as tight about him as I could. I never got tired of being in his arms; it was the only heaven I had ever wanted. “Hey,” I replied, pressing my lips to his neck. “Alice wants me to remind you…”
“… not to muss your hair, I know, I can hear her thoughts from here. She is practically screaming at me,” Edward laughed and I joined in. I couldn’t read minds like my husband, but I knew that he was probably right. Alice tended to get a little upset when her wishes were disobeyed. “I will be very, very careful,” he promised.
He pulled me into our room and closed the door behind us, not that it would help much in a house where everyone had super sensitive hearing. Before I could say a word to him he was kissing me earnestly, as though hinting at things to come. He was careful to leave my hair untouched, though I knew if we kept this up Alice would be bursting into our room and kidnapping me.
I pushed Edward away from me gently but firmly. “We can’t get carried away, Alice will kill us,” I whispered against his lips. He laughed, his sweet breath blowing in my face.
“Okay, but after we get home from school all bets are off,” he said and winked at me.
I grabbed his hand and led him to the black leather couch in the corner of our room. “Speaking of school, you never told me what story we are using here. It’s got to be more complex than when you were in Forks. There are seven of us now.” I was curious; their story had been relatively simple when I met them, though I had quickly discovered their ruse. Edward was so sincere and intelligent that anyone listening to him couldn’t help but believe him.
He draped his arm over the back of the sofa and let his hand rest lightly on my shoulder. “Carlisle and Esme have been married since they were very young, high school sweethearts. They both wanted to have a big family but Esme was unable to have children, so they adopted Emmett, Alice, Renesmee and I. They didn’t mind adopting older children. Renesmee and I are twins; we look too much alike not to be. Rosalie and Jasper is Carlisle’s niece and nephew, his sister and her husband were in a terrible car accident when they were younger so Carlisle and Esme took them in. Your father is Esme’s cousin and you are living with us because your parents moved out of the country and you would rather experience High School in the states. Rosalie, Emmett and Jasper are going to be sophomores and Alice, Nessie, you and I are going to be freshman.”
I stared at Edward in amazement. Only he could tell a story like that and have it sound completely believable. “I’m impressed,” I admitted. “It does sound plausible.”
“Of course it does, it was my idea,” he teased. I laughed and kissed him lightly.
“Do we really have all of our classes together?” I asked him curiously. I knew it would be easier on me if we did, I still didn’t know how well I was going to play my part.
He took my hand in his and entwined our fingers together. “Bella, love, I wouldn’t make you do this if I wasn’t positive that I could keep an eye on you every second we are there. You know how I worry about you the moment you leave me,” he reminded me and brought my hand to his lips, kissing the skin gently.
“Nessie asked about that too, if she had classes with us,” I breathed. His lips were now trailing up my arm, slow and seductive; it was enough to drive every thought from my head. Lucky for me I now had the capacity to concentrate on numerous things at once.
“She will fit in so much easier than the rest of us. She may be the most beautiful, but she is also the most human. The children at this school won’t even think twice about accepting her into their groups. However, I am almost as protective of our daughter as I am of you. She won’t have a single class without one of the family there. Besides, Jacob might appreciate if we keep the young men away from his wife,” Edward laughed at the thought.
I grimaced a bit. It was still hard to believe that my best friend was also my son-in-law. As a mother though I could imagine how protective I was going to be of Renesmee all day. Edward was going to be worse, he already had the tendency to over react, but throw in a daughter and he was a nightmare. I felt sorry for any boy who got near Nessie. They would be facing her father, her uncles and if they got too friendly, an enraged husband. All the boys would see were a group of incredibly scary brothers, but hopefully that would be enough to deter them.
“What are you thinking about?” Edward asked as his lips grazed the skin of my throat. His breath was cool against my skin and I shivered.
“You really are too good at this,” I whispered. “You scare me sometimes.”
“After a dozen years together, I would hope I’m good at seducing you,” he said with a chuckle. Before I could explain what I really meant his lips brushed mine, soft at first and then more demanding. I gave in opening my mouth to his, letting our tongues touch and caress the other. I felt a familiar tug in the pit of my stomach and knew that if I let him have his way Alice would murder both of us. Honestly, I didn’t think I would mind her fury as long as I got what I wanted… and what I wanted was to make love to my husband until we were forced to go to school.
Edward’s thoughts seemed to be headed in that same direction. Very carefully he shifted us until I was straddling him on the sofa. It was an awkward position but I didn’t care. My body was burning and the only thing on my mind was the delectable body under mine. His fingers slid through the belt loops of my jeans and used them to pull our bodies even closer together. I moaned into his mouth, unable to help my body’s reaction to him. There was a loud knock on the door and I gasped, jumping away from him. Edward cursed and strode to the door, frustration etched into every marble inch of his face.
Alice stood in our doorway, her arms folded across her chest. “I thought I asked you both to make sure not to mess up your hair.”
I automatically reached up to touch the curls and loose pony that Alice had put in my hair a short while ago and found everything perfectly in order. I glared at her. “Look, my hair is fine, can you leave now?”
“Do you forget that I can see exactly what would happen if I left the two of you alone together?” she asked, arching one perfect eyebrow. “No, I think it’s safer if I escort the two of you into the living room with the rest of the family to chaperone.”
I snorted at the word and Edward grinned at me. It was so absurd, being chaperoned when we were married and had an adult child. Alice didn’t seem to be joking, the look in her eyes said she was deadly serious. I sighed, “Yes, warden.”
Edward laughed and took my hand. “She seems that way at times, doesn’t she?”
Alice didn’t think we were very funny. “Bella, you haven’t dressed for school yet! Edward, go downstairs and we will meet you there in a few minutes.”
“I’ve watched my wife undress before,” he reminded her. Alice snarled at him, baring her razor sharp teeth. Edward lifted his hands in mock surrender. “All right, I’ll be downstairs.”
He sprinted from the room gracefully and Alice turned her keen eyes on me. “I should have known better than to let you be alone with Edward. I thought you cared for me enough to do what I asked.”
I shrugged, ignoring the guilt trip she was trying to place on me. “You know I can’t help myself, Alice. He didn’t touch my hair did he?”
“He would have,” she said knowingly and dragged me to the mirror. “Get dressed and then let me have a look at you.”
I couldn’t argue with her when she got like this. When it came to clothing, style and parties, Alice had to have her way. I knew it, but I didn’t have to like it. I stripped and changed into the jeans and bright blue blouse that she had picked for me. I looked longingly at the ratty jeans lying discarded on the floor and sighed. I did have to admit that my blouse looked great on me. It had a ruffled scooped neckline, showing the barest hint of a cleavage, clinging to my breasts and falling in loose folds around my flat stomach. I loved the blouse; Alice had a knack for knowing who would look good in any given outfit.
“All right Alice, you win. I look great; can I see my husband now?” I asked, turning to let her see the whole effect.
“You look better than great, you look stunning,” she reprimanded me gently. She took my hand and led me from the room and down the stairs to the living room.
Apparently Edward and I had been immersed in each other for longer than I had thought. Jacob was awake and attempting to get Nessie to eat breakfast while my daughter wrinkled her nose at it. “Come on, Nessie. You know you want a bite of my muffin,” he said in his husky voice.
“I’d rather take down a mountain lion any day,” she replied and bit his ear in a playful way.
“You know Nessie, I don’t think he would taste very good, even in his wolf form,” Edward said eyeing our daughter and my best friend with an exasperated look. Obviously Jake and Ness were being very playful this morning. The only thing that really bothered Edward anymore was our daughter’s recent marriage. Not that we could have done anything to stop the two of them, it had been inevitable, just like us. I had more or less gotten used to seeing them together and it didn’t bother me anymore. I would rather see her with someone I also loved than with someone I didn’t know or trust.
“His flavor is actually rather intriguing. You know, once you get past the woodsy scent…” Renesmee began but she was cut off by Edward.
“I don’t think I want to know,” he responded, holding his hands up in surrender. She laughed and flopped herself across Jacob’s lap. She looked like a tiny porcelain doll next to her hulk of a husband.
Edward heard my muffled laughter from the doorway and immediately looked up at me. The moment our eyes locked I felt the familiar burst of lust wash through me. I heard a sigh behind me and Alice pushed me aside so she could enter our living room. “I swear, if we didn’t make you and Edward get out of bed you never would,” she grumbled.
Our family chuckled and I grinned sheepishly, walking across the room to sit with Edward. He pulled me onto his lap and kissed me enthusiastically. “I was beginning to wonder if Alice was going to keep you locked up until we left for school,” he told me and winked at his sister. Alice rolled her eyes and tucked her short spiky hair behind her ear.
“Are you trying to tell me that those sounds coming from you and Jasper’s room last night weren’t what I think it was?” Renesmee asked curiously. I grinned at my daughter and she winked at me. I loved how she always came to our defense. She had been raised to see the two of us never hide our affection for each other, she thought it was romantic.
Jasper gave a strangled cough and Emmett shot him a wicked look. “Wow, I thought you were just telling me last week that you and Alice have a very mature relationship. Didn’t you say that when you really love someone it doesn’t have to be physical?”
Alice glared daggers at Jasper while he spluttered his excuses. “I guess I’ll have to remember that in the future…”
“All right, that’s enough children,” Esme said in a soft but firm voice. When she spoke everyone listened, we couldn’t help it. She had a commanding presence and we loved her so we always wanted to please her.
“Fine, we can take it outside,” Alice said curtly and grabbed Jasper’s hand, dragging him out the door and outside so we couldn’t listen to them.
“You knew that was going to upset her,” Rosalie said angrily and smacked Emmett in the back of the head. “Why do you always have to be so obnoxious? I bet he never said that.”
“Okay, so that isn’t exactly what he said…” Emmett said sheepishly and giving Rosalie the look of a wounded puppy.
“You might want to apologize to her, she is really upset,” Esme said softly. Emmett nodded and ran out the door to head up the fight we all knew was coming.
Edward shook his head and looked down at me, still wrapped in his arms on his lap. “You wanted to be a part of this family, why? You’ll have to remind me what motivated you to make such an insane decision.”
I looked over at Renesmee and then back up at him. “If I hadn’t married you then we wouldn’t have Nessie… and I would have ended up with Jacob. Think about that for a minute,” I prompted him. Edward, Renesmee and Jacob all had the same look on their faces, abject horror and disgust.
“All right, never repeat that again, mom. I can’t believe you almost married my husband,” Renesmee shuddered and Jacob gave me an odd sort of grin.
“Well, you weren’t exactly in the picture yet, Nessie,” Jacob explained and she elbowed him in the side. “You really are a lot like your mom, stubborn and just a little bit crazy.”
She rolled her eyes and walked off to the kitchen. “I’m going to get you another muffin. It must be a lack of sugar or something that’s making you act like an idiot.”
Jacob shook his head with silent laughter as she stalked off. “I really am glad she has your personality, Bella. I would have killed myself if I had imprinted on a female Edward.”
“If she hadn’t been exactly who she is, you would never have imprinted on her, Jacob,” I reminded him. He nodded thoughtfully and then grinned again.
“What are you grinning at?” Edward asked curiously.
“I just realized that with you guys heading to school and Carlisle going to work, I get the television all to myself for once,” he explained. I burst out laughing, and Edward shook his head exasperatedly.
“I should have known there was a reason you decided not to go to school with us,” I teased. Edward chuckled in my ear and the sound brought heat to my stomach again. Damn, this was going to be a very long day.
“Oh yeah, the fact that I look like I’m in my twenties doesn’t give me away,” Jacob said rolling his eyes. “I’m bigger than Emmett and I can’t exactly pull off sixteen the way you guys can. I wasn’t gifted with freezing at the exact age when my body changed.”
“I like the way you look,” Renesmee said, handing Jacob another muffin and curling up at his side. She stroked his cheek and he bent down and kissed her softly. My heart may have been frozen and dead, but it burned in my chest as I watched my daughter with the love of her life. My purpose in life always felt complete when I saw them together, they were like corresponding puzzle pieces, a perfect match. It was almost as wonderful as the way I felt every time Edward looked at me, his eyes glowing with love for me. How did I get lucky enough to have so much love in my life?
Alice and Jasper walked back into the living room, Emmett trailing behind them with a sour look on his face. The moment he stepped through the doorway Alice turned on him. “Now, you are going to tell everyone what Jasper really said. I don’t want everyone to think he is really that insensitive,” Alice demanded, pointing a finger in Emmett’s chest.
“Geez, you little monster,” he grumbled. Alice smacked him on the arm and continued glaring at him. “He said that he was lucky to have you and even if there wasn’t a physical side to your relationship he would still be the luckiest man in the world because you love him.” Alice grinned up at Jasper and he smiled adoringly down at her.
“Well, I think that’s enough drama for one morning. If we stand around here bickering any longer we will be late for school,” Edward announced, motioning to the clock. It was a quarter to eight, school started in half an hour and we still had to visit the office to get our school schedules.
There was a sudden flurry of activity as everyone gathered their school things together. Renesmee said goodbye to Jacob and took a bite of his muffin, making a face as she did so. “Have a good day at school, Nessie,” he said and squeezed her tight. He gave a slightly worried glance down at her head that was pressed against his chest. He caught Edward’s eye and Edward nodded. I figured Jacob was asking Edward to look out for her today.
“Love you, Jake,” she told him and pressed a quick peck to his lips. She tried to move away but he pulled her back into his arms and kissed her thoroughly.
“Love you, Ness,” he whispered in her ear and we all pretended not to hear him. I knew how worried he was about her being out of his reach for the next few hours. Edward and I would watch out for her, she was our daughter after all.
When he let her go I walked over to give him a hug. “Don’t worry, we won’t let anything happen to her,” I promised him. He gave me a quick squeeze and released me just as fast.
“Please,” he mouthed and I nodded.
“No worries,” I mouthed back and then took Edward’s hand and walked out the door, ready for my first day of school as a vampire.
Made for me by the amazing m81170 (on twilighted.net)