Title: Telephone Gift
Disclaimer: I do not own these characters.
Summary: Bella receives a wedding present from Jake.
The rays of sunlight beamed through the open window, old with wear and the brown paint chipped from the numerous fingers that had pushed it open every morning. Bella and Edward were staying in a cottage of sorts, next to a light river and a thick forest for hunting. The scent of nature and animal filtered through the rooms, swinging open cabinet doors and starched linen draperies. A marriage, if one could call it so, was scheduled in two days. Small, quiet and anonymous -- it symbolized the start of Bella's new life and the end of her old one.
They lay on the couch at the moment, Edward's strong arms wrapped around her and shimmering from the sunlight, warmer than normal but still forcing small goose bumps to form on her upper arms. Her head rested on his chest, her ear pressed to his breast; she realized that she would never hear a faint heartbeat -- and soon her own heart would crease to beat. Life from her face and eyes would dimmed, only for a second -- until she turned into the creature she was destined to become.
Sighing, she pulled away up to look Edward in the eyes, smiling lazily to show her happiness. "Hi," she whispered, a light blush forming against her cheeks. He smiled back, the tips of his sharp teeth poking through his lip, and raising a long finger, caressed her redden cheek lightly. She leaned into the touch and yearned for more, moving closer so his own hand cupped her face, his fingers icy cold but right and comfortable.
Leaning in, she kissed his lips softly, then moved her head to the side and kissed him again, repeating the action until the fragrance of his breath left her dizzy and content. His arms tightened their hold around her waist and his eyes began to darken slightly, the pale slits of his nostrils flaring. His lips were swollen from her kisses.
Edward knew if he had to breath, his throat would have surely tightened the moment she looked at him in that way. He wished faintly that he could feel his heart beat, just so he could feel what Bella did to him. A protectiveness washed over him -- Bella was his, no one else could have her -- not even Jake. Sighing quietly, he knew it was time to tell her something he had been putting off for days now. He just couldn't bring himself to mention that werewolf, and even if he said it didn't affect him, he still felt deep jealousy when that expression of delight formed across her features.
"Bella," Edward said, his voice rough even to his own ears, "there's something I must tell you."
Her eyes widened and he heard her heart began to beat faster. He disliked it when he made her anxious.
"What? What is it?"
Unwrapping her arms from his neck, he stood and walked over to table. Shifting through the drawer, he pulled out a small box wrapped in discreet white paper. As he watched her face dissolve into curiosity, he couldn't help but feel incredible jealousy wash over him. His fingers shook as he handed Bella the gift.
"What is it?" she asked breathlessly, her cheeks coloring from the emotions.
"It's --" he paused and cursed himself silently, "from Jake. I suppose it's a wedding gift."
Deep sadness filled her eyes, and unrestrained anger coursed through Edward. How dare that animal hurt her!
"Why," Bella asked, her voice small and filled with tears, "would he send me a wedding gift?"
"Because he's still your friend."
With trembling fingers, she pulled off the wrapping and cradled the small box in her hand. She opened it and what she saw made large tears run down her face.
"Oh, he shouldn't have," she whispered, more to herself than Edward. "I - need to call him."
Edward saw that it was a silver bracelet, dotted with small pearls on each chain. He nodded and pulled out his cell phone. "Here, use this."
She took the phone and walked into the other room, sitting down quietly at the kitchen table and dialing the numbers with unstable fingers. Her throat tightened as it rang, and her stomach twisted violently.
"Hello?" The voice was distance and rough. It electrified her.
"Jake, it's me," Bella whispered, aware of Edward's ability to hear her conversation.
Jake's voice was full of surprised, but it was also sad. "Hey, Bella. Did you get my gift?"
She nodded as if he could see her. "Yes," she answered, then stopped, trying to refrain from crying. "It's very beautiful. You shouldn't have."
There was silence. "Well, you are getting married. How could I not give my friend a wedding gift?"
"It's too much. I can't accept it."
Jake scoffed on the phone. "Whatever, just take it. Something to remember me by."
Bella raised a hand to cover her face. "Jake, please. Stop, please."
His voice was cold. "Fine, fine. Have a good wedding day."
Bella couldn't help but laugh, her nerves numb. "T-thanks."
"So. . . I guess this is goodbye?"
"For now," Bella responded quickly.
"Sure. Bye." There was a click on the other line.
Edward was by her side before she had hung up the phone. He raised her up into his arms and pressed his face into her hair. "Shh, it'll be fine," he said, as she began to cry, her whole body shaking from her sobs.