Friday, November 24, 2017
Long Way to Christmas
One chapter of this fic will be posted daily, along with teasers until it is completed. Starting 11/25/17
Long Way to Christmas
Pentwater is a very small tourist town on the Lakeshore of Western Michigan, and only a fifteen-minute drive from her home in Hart. She had lived here for the last three years in her Uncle Charlie's house. She grew up visiting him every summer and knew the area well even before she moved to Michigan, intent on getting away from the constant heat and loneliness in Arizona.
Looking up, she saw the small convenience center that had been put in earlier that year. She had heard great things about the homemade pastries, chocolates, and house roasted coffees that were sold inside, and as she had yet to eat, decided she would take a look-see. After pumping the gas, she went inside to pay and was greeted with the most mouth-watering aromas she had smelled since her childhood—back when her Aunt Sue was still alive and would bake for her.
Thinking of Aunt Sue made her heart sad for a moment, and loneliness wrapped itself around her like a shroud. Aunt Sue and Uncle Charlie were the closest things she knew to stability growing up. She never had grandparents, as they passed on in her infancy, and she never knew who her father was.
She had moved back not only to get away from the heat of Arizona, but to find a sense of home, and Uncle Charlie had always provided that. At least he had been there for her graduation from Medical school and had celebrated with her when she finally reached her goal to become a Cardiothoracic Surgeon. Now she worked at Mercy Medical Center in Muskegon and was gaining respect from her peers and the medical community in general.
It was difficult looking at her life sometimes, realizing she was now thirty-five years old, and all alone. She had no family. She had no boyfriend. She didn't even have a pet because she didn't think it was fair to leave an animal alone for fourteen hours a day, four days a week.
She shook herself free of her lonesome thoughts, and looked around. The small store was homey feeling, and clean. As she approached the glass enclosure to look at the treats on display, her stomach grumbled. She heard a soft, deep chuckle from behind the counter at the coffee machine.
As Bella turned to ascertain to whom the laugh belonged, she was rooted in place by sea-green eyes. Utterly mesmerized, she didn't even hear the words being spoken to her until that same chuckle reverberated through her ears once again.
"Are you okay," said a soft baritone voice "is there something I can get for you?"
Bella blinked, and cleared her throat as she tried to pull herself together, and stop gaping.
Those eyes, Gah!
"Oh, yes. Yes, I'm fine." Bella blushed. "I-I was just looking at your display case, trying to figure out what I want to treat myself to."
"From the sounds of it, you haven't eaten yet," said the man with the gentle timbre and the beautiful green eyes. "How 'bout you let me fix you something substantial, and a cup of coffee before you dive into the sugar?" There was a twinkle in those verdant orbs.
She looked back up to take in the whole of the man behind the counter, reminding herself to show no expression at her perusal. She failed. Her lips parted and a small gasp escaped her as she beheld a wild crop of hair the color of a well-used penny, high cheekbones, sharp-angular jaw, and a beautifully anfractuous smile. He was quite tall—she estimated six foot two or three—with an athletic build. He was very handsome, and had a piercing gaze. She sucked in a deep breath, hoping that an influx of oxygen might help clear her head so that she could speak coherently.
"If I say yes, will I regret it?" Her face morphed into an impish smirk with one eyebrow raised.
"I'd like to think not." That crooked grin just grew as he drank in the view of her. He swept his eyes over her curvaceous figure, and fought to keep his thoughts in line. The last thing he wanted to do was to have to adjust himself in front of this stunningly beautiful stranger who had just breezed her way into his little store. He'd never seen her before, and hoped that she was not just a tourist. It was, after all the end of May, and beginning this weekend—Memorial Day weekend—the tourists would be out in force. He just hoped he would see this vision of loveliness again. In fact, he hoped he could keep her around for a while today.
"Why don't you go move your car from the pumps to a parking spot, then come back and relax at a table while I get you squared away?"
"I didn't place an order yet." Bella reminded him.
"Are you a vegetarian?" He grinned as Bella's face twisted into a grimace.
"Are you a vegetarian?" He laughed. "It's a straightforward question."
"Um, no." She began to wonder if staying for breakfast was truly a wise idea.
"Are you lactose intolerant?"
"What is this, twenty questions?" Bella rolled her eyes playfully.
"No, but that's a great game to play over brunch. Are. You. Lactose. Intolerant? I promise this is not a trick question."
"No, I'm not a vegan, or intolerant." She blew out an amused breath. "I'm moving my vehicle now."
"Okay, see you in a second."
Bella looked at her reflection against the paint job of her Durango, and grimaced, wondering why the handsome man inside wanted to cook for her. At five foot three, and one hundred and seventy-five pounds, she was certainly nothing spectacular to look at in her opinion. She supposed that she had nice eyes, and a pretty enough face but she was no great catch. She reminded herself to just accept the friendly gestures. Friendship was all she could expect in her own mind. She never would have pictured a man such as that looking at her with desire in his eyes. She shrugged to herself, just knowing that she had misread his lingering gaze.
After the door closed behind her, Edward watched the beautiful woman walk to her large black SUV. As she approached it, she seemed to slow momentarily, and he saw her shoulders slump slightly. He was determined to brighten her day as she just had his.
There was something about her that was refreshing. She was gorgeous, and had a sense of humor. That was plain, but there was something more that drew him.
Wednesday, November 22, 2017
What’s more fun than receiving holiday cards from friends and family? Especially the photo ones. Lordy!
Sometimes they can be so adorable, the ones where the little kids are all dressed in their finery ...
We thought we might be able to have some fun with the idea. So, this is our way of presenting our very first, Pay It Forward, Decemberward Contest.
Submit to us a photo you think depicts the way our very own Edward Cullen would be celebrating the December holidays. He could be single, with a date or with his family and friends. Inside, outside, home or away. Use your imagination and make him the best you can.
He can be Winterward, Holidayward, Decemberward, etc.
Let’s have fun.
Entries submitted no later than Dec 20th.
Winners announced December 25th
There will be 3 Amazon Gift Cards awarded to 3 winners.
Judges to be announced in the group.
Each entry must have a photo on the front along with a caption or short story tying it together.
Sharp Left Turn (Sharp Turn Saga) By our very own April Salter
Available on AMAZON.COM
Follow Bella and Edward from childhood into adulthood. A story about learning to be friends, first love, second chances, and compassion. A bit drama and bit sweet, revolving around the holidays over a fifteen-year span.
Since they’re still so young, people think they exaggerate when Bella and Edward say they’ve known each other for decades. Edward always used to tell the story, but she would need to try this time.
Christmas 1998 – Frosty the Snowman
Their parents were great friends in the small town of Forks, a small dot on the Washington State map that only appeared on Google MapsTM once you zoomed in. Esme and Carlisle Cullen were the reputable doctors in the area. They had achieved their two point five kids and ‘white-picket fence’ dream and were now living an entertaining life, or as much as you could be in that little town. Bella’s parents, Renee and Charlie Swan, were the quintessential average American family, with barbecues and burgers, beer and television shows.
Even at the young age of ten, it was amazing for Bella to observe the interaction between Dr. Cullen, who was currently sipping a canned beer, and Charlie, who was listening intently to the former’s dialogue regarding his extensive stamp collection, simply nodding from time to time. In the kitchen, Esme was putting the last touches to her Christmas pudding while Renee was loudly praising her in the background.
The actual dinner, was, for all intents and purposes, a disaster. The reason why was the presence of the two monsters (or at least that’s how they appeared in Bella’s mind) - Emmett and Edward Cullen. In comparison, their younger sister, Alice, was kind of cute, and maybe in a parallel universe, they would be friends. But Bella had to keep up her guard. The younger boy, Edward, who was about her age, was shooting daggers at her.
“Oh, boys, Esme started, “I’d like to introduce you to some very good friends of ours, and their lovely daughter, Bella.”
“It’s actually Isa … bella,” she stuttered through her name.
“Mom, she doesn’t even know her own name!” Edward was smirking.
He was arrogant, conceited and much too pretty for his own good.
She was painfully shy, soft-spoken and clumsy, in action and speech.
“Edward, don’t be rude! Especially since you are going to be classmates soon.” Esme interfered. “I’d love for Edward and Bella to get better acquainted.”
While the news seemed to excite Emmett and Alice, Edward became confrontational and was fighting it. “I can’t believe you want me to be friends with this church mouse!”
All eyes were on her now.
They were all taken aback by the remark and gasped until Emmett started laughing, then Charlie, and eventually they all joined in.
Bella was the only one standing there with her beet-red cheeks, holding her breath and murmuring, “Well; I guess now I know what the Grinch looks like…”
This story will begin posting on Dec 15.
By: zeeseesChildhood sweethearts Edward and Bella are the picture of perfect love. When he suddenly leaves, Bella is forced to move on. 4 years later and living a successful life, the Cullens force their way back into her life.
He paced around the room as I sat on our couch. He kept muttering to himself, his cheeks flushed, his chest heaving.
"I can't keep doing this."
He stood in front of me and gestured at the space between us. His eyes blazing with pain and guilt.
From my chest, a cold, tight feeling began spreading—through my fingers, my stomach, my legs—everywhere. This. He couldn't keep doing this.
"You're not happy." My mouth was dry.
He shook his head, ever so slightly.
I nodded. "I see."
He fell to his knees, at my feet, in anguish and I gazed at his beautiful form. Even now, even as he broke my heart, he still captivated me fully.
"I am so, so sorry. You don't deserve this. I would give anything to not feel this way because you deserve the world, but I can't be the one to give it to you. I'm sorry."
My breath was shaky, and I feared my voice would break if I spoke.
"Please, Bells, say something."
I shook my head as my eyes began to water.
"Don't call me that—not now."
"I'm sorry," he began.
"There's nothing to apologize for," I interrupted, a small sad smile on my lips. "You're being honest with me. I can't blame you for not loving me."
He looked down as his face crumpled in anguish and the voice in my head wanted to scream—cry that he didn't deny it. If it had been a different situation, such a display of pain would have caused me to pull him to my arms, smooth the lines of his forehead with my thumb, and comfort him.
Instead, I rose from my couch, walked stiffly into the bathroom, and wept. I wept for lost love. I wept for a whole future that we had planned. I wept until there were no more tears and I was sobbing dry, painful sobs. A part of me hoped he could hear me. I hoped he could hear the pain I felt. But I knew that he wasn't to blame. He had done nothing wrong.
By the time I splashed cold water on my face and pulled myself together, ready to face him again, he was gone.
Killa Saves the Beeby Ceceprincess1217
My heart beats wildly in my chest, but I know I have no time to freak the fuck out. I have to make sure Ma and Emmett are safe.
Leaving the room as quickly and as quietly as possible, I make my way to Da's office. I'm alert as I enter and go over to his safe, putting in the code before taking out the two Beretta 96A1 he has in there and the key to the gun cabinet in case I need more firepower.
Da has been training me for situations like this for two years. We were ambushed on a family vacation to the Cape. Ma was hit and lost the baby she was carrying.
I was so fucking mad at my dad for not protecting my mother like he always promised he would. He's taught my brother and me to always protect the women we marry, and he fucking failed.
The image of me hitting and punching him until I ran out of strength runs through my mind. Big bad Carlisle Masen couldn't even fight his twelve-year-old son back he was so full of grief.
Checking the chambers to make sure both guns are locked and loaded, I put the box of ammo in my pajama pocket and leave the room.
With the gun pointed out in front of me, my hands are sure and steady. Once I round the corner, my finger is on the trigger when I come face to face with my terrified mother and brother.
"Go and lock yourselves in the safe room," I whisper.
I press my finger against my lips, signaling for them to be quiet.
My mother lets out a high pitch cry, but I'm too on alert to care. "Take Ma to the safe room now!" I yell at my brother who looks like he's going to piss himself.
My heart is beating out of my chest as I crawl to the banister just in time to see two armed men coming up the stairs.
They're locked and loaded, and I know if they get up here we're all dead.
I aim; my hand steady like I was born to kill.
The first guy is down, and the other one looks around frantically, not seeing me. My finger is on the trigger before his eyes lock on mine.
Deciding this is the best spot for me, I set the second gun next to me ready for when they come.
And come they do.
Four more gunmen open fire, but they’re shooting blindly as they can't find me behind the large pillar that connects to the staircase.
A few seconds pass before I’m hitting one of the greasy-haired motherfuckers in the knee and another in the head. But I'm too slow as the last two run up the stairs.
Steadying my breath, I quickly turn just as he's reaching the top stair and fires. He stumbles back from the two chest shots I deliver and falls on the last guy. He's looking around wildly, trying to find the shooter.
Standing, I point and shoot in one swift motion. His eyes go wide before the life leaves them altogether.
Before moving, my ears perk up searching for more footsteps. I'm at attention as I creep down the stairs, the only sound is a grunt coming from the kitchen.
My gun is locked and loaded when I ease in, only to find Felix, our head bodyguard bleeding out on Ma’s kitchen floor.
"Christ, Kid! I thought they killed you all," he says, grimacing in pain.
He's bleeding from his chest and his leg, the body of a dead Italian at his feet.
"No. I killed them," I say coldly.
Our eyes lock, and he nods in understanding, pressing his hand against his wound as best he can.
Before I can move. the door opens, and I point my gun, once again prepared to defend my family.
"Whoa! Whoa! It's me!" my da yells, coming into the kitchen with his gun ready and armed men surrounding him.
I lower my weapon but don't say a word because I'm too upset with him for leaving us vulnerable like this.
The gunmen separate and leave the kitchen while my father and I stare at each other.
"What happened, Felix?" my father asks.
"Killa over there took out all the men except that one." He nods to me as two of the guys help him up.
"Killa? You a killa, Edward? Is that why you’re glaring at me like you have a fucking problem?" Da eyes the gun still firmly in my grasp. "Put down the damn gun," he commands.
"Where were you?" I ask, my teeth clenched.
"I don't fucking answer to you. I'm the father!" he yells.
I lift the gun and holds it to his head. "Where. The. Fuck. Were. You?" My hand is wicked steady as I look into his cold blue eyes.
"Oh! You're a killa now, so you're going to kill me too? Do it," he says, no fear in his eyes.
"You leave Ma vulnerable like this again while you go fuck one of your whores and I'll kill you my fucking self," I say before dropping my hand and turning away from him.
"Whatever you say. Killa."
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