Valentine's Day

The following two weeks passed almost in a blur. Time didn't seem to behave the way it usually did when I was with Edward. Sometimes it would jump ahead – big chunks of time seemed to be just disappearing – and sometimes it would pass द्वारा almost impossibly slowly.

He picked me up in the morning and walked me to English before heading off for his own classes. Then he'd usually meet me after Math and we'd go to the cafeteria together – Angela and I had become a regular fixture at the Cullen/Hale table. After lunch, we'd head to Biology where we would spend the entire घंटा not touching, which was extremely difficult, at least for me, considering the waves of electricity that seemed to be flowing between us. When the self-control trying period was over, he'd walk me my Computer Science class, and then he met me after the period and we would head over to the gym along with Alice.

I was, of course, still excused from P.E., so I would spend the घंटा watching him play basketball, which was what we had moved on to after वालीबाल, वॉलीबॉल was finished. I marveled at the way he moved across the floor; it was almost like he knew what the other players were thinking before they actually did anything, because he always managed to out-maneuver them somehow.

"You've got a little drool, right there." Alice's voice almost made me jump out of my skin. I hadn't heard her come up to the bleachers where I was sitting.

"Funny." I discretely ran my hand over the corner of my mouth, just in case.

"Not that I want to interrupt आप ogling my brother या anything, but I wanted to talk plans with you." She sat down अगला to me.

"Plans?" I repeated incredulously.

"Tomorrow's Valentine's Day." She pointed out.

"It is?" I knew today was Thursday, but what date... no clue.

"Yes, it is. Where has your head been these past few weeks?" She frowned at me. "On सेकंड thought, don't answer that. Ogling I can deal with, but I do not need any details."

To which I of course blushed thoroughly. Not that anything had really happened. There had been a lot of make-out sessions on Charlie's couch, after our now daily homework dates. Edward would drive me घर and we'd spend an घंटा या two doing school work, and then we'd usually turn on the TV and ignore whatever was on until I had to start dinner. Edward always left before Charlie came home. He hadn't actually कहा that Edward couldn't be at the house when I was घर alone, but we didn't want to risk any restrictions.

The पूर्व weekend had passed much as the one before; we went to Port Angeles on Friday night, had रात का खाना at Bella Italia again and then went to the movies. The difference was that this time I didn't even remember the beginning of the movie. I had a vague memory that Matthew McConaughey had been in it, but couldn't be completely sure. Saturday night had been spent with Alice, Jasper, Emmett and Rosalie watching फिल्में and ordering Chinese खाना from South North Garden.

And both nights had ended in Edward's car outside Charlie's house.

"So, plans?" I wondered what she had in mind, willing myself out of my rather pleasant walk down memory lane.

"Well, I thought we could do something all six of us, other than just hang out at the house and watch movies."

"Oh." I had kind of been looking आगे to being alone with Edward on Valentine's Day. Since I had never actually had a boyfriend before, I hadn't had the spending-Valentine's-Day-with-my-boyfriend experience either.

"Don't sound so disappointed." She elbowed be teasingly in the ribs. "You'll get him all to yourself on Saturday."

"No, it sounds great Alice. Really. What did आप have in mind?"

"I was thinking we could go to the restaurant at the Kalaloch Lodge. The खाना is great, and the view is just amazing."

I had heard of that place.

"You don't think they're all booked? It is tomorrow." She got a slightly sheepish look on her face. I had already learned what that meant. "What did आप do?" I asked sternly.

"We kind of already have a reservation."

"Oh really?" I wondered why I was not surprised. "And when did आप make that reservation?"

"Aboutamonthago." She spoke so fast, I almost didn't hear what she said.

"A month?" I hadn't even been in Forks a महीना ago. "And who had आप been planning on bringing?"

"Oh, no, not like that!" She hurried to assure me. "I only made a reservation for five. See, last साल we did this whole anti-Valentine's-Day thing, all of us going out so Edward wouldn't feel left out. But now we don't have to do that!"


"So I called them the other day, and it was no problem changing the reservation to six instead of five. What do आप say?" She gave me her best कुत्ते का बच्चा, पिल्ला eyes, so there wasn't really anything I could do.

"Sure, Alice, it sounds great." I also knew there was no point in arguing with her. She would win in the end anyway, so I might as well give up right away.

"Great!" She jumped up. "Now I just have to convince that stubborn brother of mine."

"Wait, Edward hasn't agreed to this?"

"Not yet!" She got a mischievous look in her eyes and bounced off towards the बास्केटबाल, बास्केटबॉल, बास्केट बॉल court

"I'm so sorry I got us into going out with the others tomorrow." I apologized – again – as Edward drove me घर half an घंटा later. "I really thought आप were already in on it, या I wouldn't have agreed."

"It's OK." He assured me. "Like Alice so kindly informed me, I didn't have any great plans anyway, and I don't want आप to be disappointed."

"I wouldn't have been disappointed no matter what we would have done." He gave me that crooked smile I already loved.

"How did I manage to find such a low maintenance girlfriend?"

"It's just that I've never done the whole Valentine's दिन thing before, so I don't have any high expectations." I shrugged.

"You've never had a Valentine's date?" He frowned. "Seriously?"

"Of course I'm serious."

We hadn't broached the subject of past relationships before. I remembered what Lauren had कहा that first दिन in the cafeteria, and I wondered if it was true. That I had a non-existing relationship history didn't mean that he did.

"I just thought आप would have had all the guys after आप in Phoenix, like आप do here."

"All the guys? What guys?" OK, there had been Mike those first couple of days, but he was happily dating Jessica now.

"Mike? Eric? Those are the most obvious, but I can keep going if आप want."

I had forgotten about Eric. But other guys?

"That was just because I was new. Change of scenery." And, of course, I blushed.

"I doubt that." He turned the engine off, and I realized we were already at the house. "You're telling me you've never had a boyfriend before?"

"Yes, that's exactly what I'm saying." I was starting to feel a little uncomfortable, so I opened the door and got out of the car.

"I'm sorry, I just find that hard to believe." He came around the car and took my hand. "I mean, have आप seen you?"

I chose to not answer that सवाल as we entered the house.


"Alice?" I कहा quietly in Computer class the अगला day. Mrs. Gordon was across the room, but she didn't like it when people talked in her class.

"Yeah?" She leaned in closer to me, pretending to be looking at my screen to help me out with the problem we were supposed to be working on.

"How does this whole Valentine's thing work?" I had been pondering this all night. "I mean, do आप give each other presents?"

"Well, I got something for Jasper." She thought for a moment. "But you're still in the just-started-dating phase, so I think it's a little early for that."

"Good." Since I hadn't realized the proximity to Valentine's Day, I hadn't even thought about getting Edward something.

"But then again, I know my brother." She giggled. "And it wouldn't surprise me if he did get आप something. But don't worry, he won't expect anything in return."

I groaned.

"Did आप have to say that?"

I had a feeling she knew something I didn't. This of course had me wondering what he might have gotten me for the rest of the class.


Halfway through P.E., Jessica joined me at the side of the court, having tripped and hit her knee.

"Are आप OK?" I asked as she sat down.

She glanced over at सोफ़ा, सोफे Clapp, who was demonstrating some हटाइए to a couple of guys near one of the hoops.

"It's fine, it didn't really hurt, I just wanted to get out of playing."

"Ah, the old trip-and-fall routine. I've used it many times." I frowned. "Of course, I usually don't have to fake tripping." She laughed at that.

"So what are आप guys doing tonight?"

"We're going to the Kalaloch Lodge restaurant." I replied.

"Really? That place is great; I went there with my parents once. Oh, I bet it'll be sooo romantic."

"I doubt it. We're triple dating with Alice, Jasper, Emmett and Rosalie."

"On Valentine's Day?" Jessica frowned.

"Alice already had reservations, so I thought why not." I shrugged. "I mean, we're all friends."

"I guess." She didn't sound convince, so I decided to distract her.

"What are आप and Mike doing?"

"I don't know!" Her face lit up. "He कहा he wants it to be a surprise."

She spent the rest of the period talking about potential scenarios for her evening with Mike.

"You ready to take off?" I gratefully looked up from her rambling at Edward's voice.

"Sure." I got up and grabbed my bag. "Have fun tonight, Jess. See आप on Monday."

"Bye, आप guys have fun too." She waved as we walked out of the gym.

"So, what are Jessica and Boy Wonder doing tonight?" I laughed at his nickname for Mike.

"He's surprising her, so I don't know." I noticed a frown forming on his face. Did he worry that I had wanted him to surprise me? I hurried to continue. "I mean, personally I hate surprises, but she's over the moon about it." He visibly relaxed.

"Imagine the disappointment if he just takes her to the फिल्में या something." He opened the car door for me. "I hope, for Mike's sake, that he has something amazing planned."

"Probably best for everybody's peace of mind." I agreed.

"Are आप looking आगे to tonight?" He asked after a moment.

"I get to spend the evening with you, don't I?" I hoped that didn't sound too pathetic, but he just smiled.

"I think you've got that backwards."

"What's this place like, anyway? I've never been there."

"It's nice. Not evening gown, tuxedo nice, but आप might want to skip the jeans."

"Duly noted."

He dropped me off at home, with the promise of being back to pick me up at six thirty. The reservation was for seven, and since we wouldn't all fit in one car, we were driving there separately.

I spent two hours trying to decide what to wear. In the end, I settled for the first outfit I had tried on; a comfortable, हाकी, खाकी स्कर्ट – the only one I owned – and the blue चोटी, शीर्ष I had worn on our first date. I topped it off with a सोना हार I had gotten from mom on my birthday, and was done just as there was a knock on the door.

"Dad? Can आप get it? I'll be right down." I called down the stairs

I heard Charlie grumble as he went to open the door.

"Hello Edward."

"Hi Chief Swan. Is Bella ready?"

"I'm here." I tripped on the last step in my hurry to get downstairs, and Edward immediately reached out to stop me from falling. But I got a hold of the railing with my right hand. "Hi." I greeted when I had regained my balance.

"Hey." He smiled at me. "You look nice."

"You too." I gave him a once over. He was wearing black trousers and a light blue कमीज, शर्ट under the jacket.

"Midnight, Bells." Charlie कहा before we left. He had been pretty set about my brand new curfew the past couple of weeks, but allowed me to come घर later if the movie we went to – I won't call it watched, because there really was no watching – ended later than that.

Sticking with our 'tradition' I picked out a CD from the दस्ताना, दस्ताने compartment as Edward got into the driver's seat. I found Green Day's Nimrod and was about to put it into the CD-player when Edward stopped me.


"I've got something for you." He pulled a CD-case out of the inner pocket of his जैकेट and handed it to me. "I thought we could listen to it on the way."

"I didn't get anything for you, I didn't know if…" He cut me off द्वारा pulling me closer and चुंबन me.

"That's all I want." He said, pulling back, and I smiled goofily.

"Now who's low maintenance?"

"Guilty as charged." He chuckled.

I popped the CD into the stereo, and Regina Spektor's Samson started playing.

"I hope I got all of your favorites."

"Thank you." I gave him another kiss, which he returned thoroughly. After a few मिनटों he pulled away, both of us gasping for breath.

"We should get going." He reluctantly started the car and pulled out of the driveway.

The impromptu make-out session in the car meant that we got to the restaurant a little late, something that Emmett, of course, immediately picked up on.

"What have आप two been up to then?" He wagged his eyebrows suggestively, and I blushed. Rosalie slapped him over the head.

"Behave!" Alice told him, coming over and looping her arm with mine. "Let's go."

The waiter showed us to a तालिका, टेबल right द्वारा the windows, overlooking the water, and the view really was amazing.

"Wow." I mumbled, taking it all in.

"I told you." Alice said, sitting down at the table.

Edward pulled out the chair अगला to Alice and I sat down, giving him a grateful smile.

"My brother, ever the gentleman." Emmett snickered.

"I wouldn't hurt आप to be a bit और like him every now and then." Rosalie noted pointedly.

"I swear, bro, sometimes I wonder if आप were born in the wrong century." Emmett glared at Edward. "And can आप keep that to a minimum around Rose? I don't want her getting a bunch of ideas." Rosalie slapped him over the head again, and the rest of us laughed.

"Would आप like to order drinks right away?" The waited wondered.

"Cokes all around?" Emmett suggested, and everyone but Rosalie nodded.

"Diet for me, please." She smiled sweetly at the waiter.

"Coming right up." The waiter blinked, looked away from Rose and walked off towards the kitchen, shaking his head in what looked like an attempt to gather his thoughts.

"You shouldn't dazzle people like that." Edward looked at Rosalie pointedly, but she only raised an eyebrow at him.

Dazzle… that was a good word. It was exactly what he did to me every now and then himself.

"Oh, please, bro." Emmett huffed. "Like आप don't use the fact that girls fall all over you. Like when आप got us backstage at that संगीत कार्यक्रम last year, I felt sorry for the poor girl, really… ow!" Rosalie had elbowed him in the ribs. "What?"

She just rolled her eyes at him and then looked over at me. Emmett seemed to finally get the hint.

"Oh, I didn't mean it like that." He quickly assured me. "He just convinced her to let us backstage, it's not like he did anything…"

"Emmett." Edward interrupted. "I'm begging आप not to help me."

"Really, आप don't need to." I piped in. "I mean, come on." I looked at Edward, who seemed और than a little uncomfortable. "I get that आप had a life before I came along. It's fine."

"It's just Emmett." Alice rolled her eyes at her brother. "I'm not sure he's ever actually heard of tact."

"Tact's overrated." Emmett brushed off. "I'd rather be honest."

Luckily, the waiter brought our drinks at that moment, and the topic was dropped.

The खाना turned out to be almost as amazing as the view, and when we had finished eating, everyone agreed that deserts were in order.

It was almost ten द्वारा the time we left the restaurant. We कहा goodbye to the others and Edward drove me home.

Charlie had gotten a lot better at not calling to ask where I was when I was out with Edward. Still, we parked a couple of blocks from the house, just in case he'd look out the window.

"I'm sorry about Emmett." Edward started, but I shook my head.

"Like I said, I get that आप had a life before we met."

"But there's no need for Emmett to bring it up, especially today. It's like whatever pops into his head immediately makes it out his mouth."

"I kind of like that, actually." I said. "You don't have to wonder where he stands."

"I guess that's true." He agreed. "Still, I'm sorry."

"Stop apologizing! या I'm going घर right now." I reached for the door handle, but he stopped me.

"Don't go." He pulled me closer, tilting my head up so he could place a किस on my nose.

"You missed." I reached up to किस him properly.


"Morning Bells." Charlie greeted as I came down into the रसोई, रसोईघर the अगला day. "Have a good night?"

"Yeah, the Kalaloch Lodge is really nice."

"It is, and that view."

"You're not going fishing today?" I poured some cereal into a bowl as I spoke. Charlie had been fishing with Billy या some other friend every Saturday since I had moved to Forks, so it was quite a surprise to find him in the रसोई, रसोईघर this morning.

"I am, I'm leaving in a little while. I was waiting for आप to get up first."

"Why?" I asked suspiciously.

"Just to tell आप that I'll be going straight over to Billy's tonight after we're done fishing, there's a game on." I started wondering where he was going with this. "And I thought that आप might want to have Edward over, since you've got the house all to yourself."

"Oh." We hadn't talked about what we were doing tonight, but he had promised that it would be just the two of us, and that would be difficult at the Cullens'. "I guess. We might watch a movie या something." या something.

"Well, I just wanted to set some ground rules if he's coming over." He was starting to blush as he कहा this, and I began to dread what was coming. "I don't want him in your bedroom when I'm not in the house. या when I am, for that matter."

"Dad." I felt the color in my face start to match his. "We'll just watch TV and order take-out."

"Yeah, well, I know teenage boys." He gave me a pointed look. "I used to be one."

"Come on, dad, we've only dated for a few weeks. It's not like that."

He pondered my words for a moment, and seemed to be assured.

"If आप say so, Bells. Just… be careful, will you?"

Was that Charlie's version of The Sex Talk? If it was, it wasn't a very good one. I decided that it was best to just go with it, and keep us both from any further embarrassment.

"Sure dad."

He left shortly after that, still looking uncomfortable.

As soon as I had finished breakfast and cleaned up in the kitchen, I called Edward.


"Good morning." I smiled at the sleepy undertone in his voice. "Did I wake you?"

"Nah, just haven't had my morning shot of caffeine yet."


"Did आप sleep well?"

"Very." I remembered the dream I'd had just before I woke up. It hadn't been anything special; we had just been walking hand-in-hand through the woods द्वारा his house. "Turns out Charlie's off to Billy's place for a game tonight, so I've got the whole house to myself."

"Do आप now?"

"Yep. Thought आप might want to come over. Watch a movie या something."

"Sounds like a plan." I heard Emmett yell something in the background. "I've promised Emm and Jazz that I would go with them to Newton's to get some stuff for our camping trip अगला weekend though, so how about I come over in a couple of hours, after lunch?"

Great. I had almost managed to forget that camping trip. For some reason, unfathomable to me, the Cullen men had a tradition of going camping in the middle of winter. Alice had, however, promised to keep me occupied. We were going to Seattle with Rosalie on Saturday to get them both dresses for the Sadie Hawkins dance that was only three weeks away now, and then we were doing a girls-night-slumber-party with फिल्में and manicures. Which I still needed to talk to Charlie about.

"That'll be great." I'd have plenty of time to clean up the place.

"OK. I've got to go, Emmett's breathing down my neck. See आप in a while."


I hung up the phone and headed upstairs to throw on some sweats for my cleaning spree.

Despite the fact that my cast still made me a little slower than usual, I'd had time to clean the house, do a couple of loads of laundry, शावर, शॉवर and finish my homework द्वारा the time the doorbell rang. I shot a look in the mirror before heading downstairs to open.

"Hey." I stood up on my tip-toes to get a किस hello, and he happily obliged.

"Quite the welcoming committee." He chuckled when I pulled away, stepping aside so he could come inside.

"A girl can't be happy to see her boyfriend?" He pulled me close as we went into the living room.

"Missed आप too." He mumbled into my hair, and the sincerity in his voice almost made me shiver. I had already surrendered to the idea that I was falling completely, unequivocally and helplessly in प्यार with him, and the thought that he might be feeling only a fraction of what I felt was comforting.

We spent a couple of hours half-watching Animal Planet before we ordered Mexican खाना from Plaza Jalisco. When we had eaten, I put The House of the Spirits into the DVD-player. I loved the book, and had borrowed the DVD from Angela the पूर्व week.

"I actually want to see this movie, so no funny business, mister." I tried to put on a stern look, but he only laughed at me.

"I'll try to behave." He promised, patting the सीट अगला to him on the couch. "I can't guarantee anything on your part, though." I playfully slapped his arm before pulling my legs up underneath me and cuddling into his side.

At some point during the movie, we lay down on the सोफ़ा, सोफे to get और comfortable. I didn't realize I had fallen asleep until I felt Edward gently shake me awake.

"Charlie's home." He mumbled, and I quickly rubbed the sleep from my eyes.

"How long have I been asleep?"

"It's almost midnight." We had turned the movie on at nine, but I wasn't sure how long I had managed to stay awake. "About two hours."

"You should have woken me up." I struggled to free myself from the blanket Edward must have gotten off the back of the सोफ़ा, सोफे while I slept.

"You looked so cute, I couldn't." He chuckled a little. "Has anyone ever told आप that आप talk in your sleep?"


"What did I say?" I didn't remember what I'd dreamt.

"Not much that was coherent. But आप कहा my name a couple of times."

Great. Just great. I felt a blush rising on my cheeks. I swung my legs over the side of the सोफ़ा, सोफे and sat up.

"Hey, don't be embarrassed." He sat up अगला to me and ran a finger down the side of my cheek. "I dream about you."


"All the time." He kissed me lightly.

I had forgotten that Charlie was outside until the front door opened. I quickly got to my feet, Edward following my lead.


We went into the hallway to meet him.

"Hey dad." He looked at me, then glared at Edward.

"You still here?"

"I was just leaving, sir."

I got a look at myself in the mirror, and realized I had बिस्तर hair.

"I fell asleep on the सोफ़ा, सोफे when we were watching a movie." I said, running my hand through my hair to straighten it out a little.

"Uh-huh." Charlie passed us and headed into the kitchen. Apparently, he had decided that he didn't want to know.

"I think I'd better head out." Edward said, having picked up on the tension from Charlie.

"That might be best." I agreed grudgingly.

He kissed me goodnight and promised to call the अगला day.

I decided that I didn't want to deal with Charlie just then, so I just popped my head into the रसोई, रसोईघर and कहा goodnight before heading upstairs. He only grumbled in response.

Just as I had turned the lights off, my phone chirped with a message.

I hope I didn't get आप in trouble with Charlie. Sleep tight, and dream about me – E

I did just that.