Chapter 3

Chapter 3 (Danielle’s Point of View)
Wow, this summer was off to an awesome start. It really had started out great. My friend Jessica Whitlock and I had finally graduated from the hell that we called Spencer High School and gotten our own place. Well, kinda. Her older brother Jasper insisted on moving in with us and my older brother Dean was totally in favor of that. He didn’t want us living on our own after Jess broke up with her totally psycho boyfriend, James. James is a sick, scary son of a bitch. He beat the hell out of Jessica once. He broke two of her rib, gave her a black eye and split her lip. I almost killed him then, and I was surprised that Jasper and Dean let her talk them out of doing it. She had been in such bad shape that we had been afraid to leave her. She couldn’t breath, and could barely talk or see. She broke up with him the next day and got the restraining order a week after that. He violated it very so often and she had him arrested every time.
When he showed up at Twilight at the beginning of the summer, I knew that things were only going to get worse. He had a tire iron in his hand and was advancing on where Jessica and I were standing with her new coworker, Emmett Cullen. I called the cops and she called our boss. The next thing I knew, Dean had showed up and so had Emmett’s younger brother Edward and Edward’s twin sister, Alice. James, of course tried to run as soon as the cops showed up. Edward caught him and James was arrested.
The only bright spot that day had been meeting the Cullens. Emmett Cullen was as close to the man of my dreams as I was ever going to get. He was tall, six foot four to be exact, and broad. He had short black hair, and oh-so gorgeous blue eyes. He plays football for Dartmouth. I couldn’t even speak the first moment I met him. Jessica literally had to close my mouth and remind me to breath. It would have been funnier if I hadn’t spotted James getting out of his piece of crap truck at that moment. Emmett was smart and funny and I was falling hard but I’d die before I admitted it. I spent sometime stalking him at Twilight and I’m pretty sure he knew I wasn’t there to see Jess. He kept flashing his dimples at me. I flirted back and spent as much time around him as I could.
Unfortunately, I also had to watch his brother shred my best friends heart. Edward had been so sweet to her after that first encounter with James. He held her while she cried and sang her favorite song in her ear. She fell hard from the very first. I thought that maybe she’d found a decent guy this time but he was completely distant after like three days. He wouldn’t spend anymore time around her. Emmett gave me the basic run down of what happened to Edward before they’d left Washington at the end of May. Edward had been engaged to his high school sweetheart, Bella Swan. Six days before they were supposed to get married, Bella left him for his best friend, Mike Newton. Edward and Mike had been friends since like the fourth or fifth grade. Emmett said that the whole thing had made Edward skittish and mistrustful. I told him that Jessica had a much, much better reason to never trust Edward. I told him about the night that James had beat her. Emmett was appropriately horrified and he understood why we had reacted the way we did.
Emmett and I were getting closer and closer when the worst happened. Stupid James set our house on fire. Well, he set Jessica’s bedroom on fire and it spread to the rest of our house. Dean and Jasper are going to kill him they ever get their hands on him. As it stands right now, James is looking at a nice long stay in jail, four counts of attempted murder and one of felony arson. After the horror of the fire, Jessica and I went to hide out in her sister Rosalie’s cottage. It was beautifully secluded, right in the middle of a forested clearing on their Aunt Esme’s property. It was walled in on three sides with a wrought iron gate in the front. It as the kind of place I liked to go because it gave me amazing photo ops. We hid out for five days before Alice and Jasper decided that we were off to New York for a couple of weeks.
Jessica and I needed to replace our wardrobes since everything we owned had been destroyed in the fire. I hate shopping in New York. Those sales people are so rude. I hate shopping for clothes in general. I’m a jeans and t-shirts kind of girl. Seventy-five percent of my wardrobe came from Disney Land. Jess isn’t a big fan either. She mostly wears black dress slacks or jeans with silky tops or vintage concert tees.
Needless to say, we were terrified of shopping with Alice, the queen of fashion. Add to that the fact that Edward and Emmett had decided to tag along and we were looking at one very tense trip. Jessica and I decided to drive separately by ourselves in my Chevy Silverado. God I love that truck. It’s a glittered powder blue and has a five inch lift. Emmett was jealous when he saw it for the first time. Everyone else drove to Concord and flew.
I didn’t think that it was a good idea for Jess to spend that much time in a confined space with Edward after things he said to her the night of the fire. That jack ass actually told her that he didn’t think it was a good idea for them to be friends because he would inevitably break her heart. What kind of asshole says shit like that to a girl whose house has just been set on fire by her crazy ex? I have to give her credit, she didn’t take any of his shit. She told him that no one decides what’s for her but her.
Needless to say though, it was going to make for an interesting trip.
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We got to New York in six hours. It was a great car trip. We sang classic rock songs and eighties pop all the way there. It took us another hour to get to our hotel. Traffic in New York City sucks. Those people drive like crazy people, or they drive way too slow for me. We got to the hotel and checked into the room we were staying in. We had decided to split into three rooms. Jasper and Alice in one room because no one wanted to listen to them complain about not being together. Dean, Emmett, and Edward in one because there was no way Dean was letting me share a room with a boy, and Jess and I in our own.
I was shocked that Dean had even agreed to come on this trip. He hates New York. Says it makes him claustrophobic. I think he just didn’t want to see us go by ourselves. He’s worried about Jess. He heard every word of Edward’s little speech. He was pissed. It didn’t help that he was already jonesin’ to beat the living snot out of James. Edward’s words were just the icing on the cake.
Once we got settled in our room and changed, we went to find everyone else so that we could go eat. We found the boys first. They were standing in the hallway, arguing. Dean was in Edward’s face and Emmett was right next to him. They were giving Edward what for about something, but I wasn’t sure what. Jess froze for a second but then walked over to them and tapped Dean on the shoulder. She hi to Emmett and to Dean, but ignored Edward. Dean told her that Jasper and Alice were a floor up in room seventeen-oh-eight. She nodded and walked right down to the elevator and got on.
I walked over to them and gave Dean a raised eyebrow. He just shook his head. I hugged Emmett and said a cool hello to Edward. He looked dejected and pissed all at the same time. “What the fuck is her problem?” He asked me with just the slightest hint of acid to his tone.
I stared at him for a moment before I slapped the hell out of him. “You Stupid. Fucking. Douche. Bag! You know damn well what her problem is. Its you. You don’t get to talk to someone the way to spoke to her and then expect them to like you. It doesn’t work that way.” I was on the verge of slapping him again when Dean grabbed me from behind.
“That’s enough Danielle. You’ve made your point. Go upstairs and find her. She’s probably on the stairs crying.”
“I’ll go with you. We’re done here anyways.” Emmett offered. I nodded and started walking, still too mad to speak. We were a good ten yards away before he stopped me and spoke again. “That was awesome. I’ve never seen a girl besides my sister stand up to Eddie that way. Bella never did.” He grinned at me and hugged me again. “It was kinda hot.”
I blushed and looked down. “Thanks. He deserved every word of that and I think he knows it. He’s already hurt her more than he’ll ever know. She trusted him to be different. While his method’s were different, the results were the same. She’s broken again.” I had to take a deep breath and count to ten, I was in danger of losing my temper again.
“I know, I can see it. I hope he has enough sense to figure out how to fix it or things are going to get tough what with his sister dating her brother and his brother trying to get close to her best friend.” He winked at me.
“Really?”
“Really. I’d love to take you out while we’re here, just me and you. Dinner, maybe a show?” he looked a little nervous and adorably shy. There was no way I could resist that.
“I’d love too, although I’m not too sure how keen Dean’s going to be about it. He’s a little bit over protective.”
“I already asked him. It’ll be fine. He seems to like me.”
I giggled and nodded “He does like you. You jumped to defend two girls that didn’t even know that day.” I pushed him and we started walking towards the stairs again. I knew we needed to find her quickly, before Alice and Jasper did or Edward would end up with more than a hand print on his face. Jasper did not like boys who made his sister cry and Edward was already on the shit list.
“Yeah. Now, what can we do to get Eddie back in Jess’s good graces? He really does like her but I think he‘s just as much afraid of hurting her as he is of getting hurt himself. He doesn‘t know what to do.”
I snorted, “Did you just call him Eddie?” I asked him curiously, pointedly ignoring the rest of his statement. It was clear to me that they were perfect for each other, I just hoped they wouldn’t have to totally break each other to figure it out.
He grinned. “Yep. He hates when I do that, but he deserves to be a little annoyed. So is there anything we can do?”
“I don’t think we’ll have to do much to get him back on her good side. She forgives pretty easily. He just needs to sincerely apologize and give her some flowers or something. She really likes him too and she’ll put up with a lot of his bull because of that. Getting Jasper to forgive him will be another matter.”
He kissed my cheek. “That’s excellent. He can do it tonight before we leave. I’ll call him and tell him now. Don’t worry about Jasper, Dean said he’d take care of it. We had a heart to heart about it. He wanted to know what Edward’s problem was, so I told him. When you found us in the hallway, Dean was telling him not to fuck this up or Dean would have to beat his ass.”
I had to smile. Edward had no idea how much danger he was actually in of getting his ass kicked. By me. If he made her cry one more time this trip I was going to strangle him. Fucking Douche Bag. I opened the door to the stairway with Emmett hot on my heels. Sure enough, Jess was sitting in the middle of the stairs, halfway up, with her head on her knees and her hair over her face, a sure sign that she’d been crying.
I knew better than to sneak up on her. “Jess? Dean sent us to find you”
“Us?” came her muffled question. She didn’t move an inch.
“Emmett and I. He’s not here honey. Dean isn’t going to let him anywhere near you right now.” I went and sat sown next to her. Mimicking my actions from the night of the fire, she leaned over and put her head on my shoulder, keeping her hair over her face. It was her last defense, the one thing she always does when she’s close to breaking and wants to hide it.
“Hi.” She whispered.
“Hi.” I chuckled “Do you want to talk about it?”
“Not really.” She sat up and pushed her hair out of her face. “I’m just mad at myself for letting him get to me like that. Otherwise, I’m okay.” She didn’t look ok. Her eyes were all red and puffy, she had mascara and eyeliner streaked down her face. There was no way that I could let Jasper see her looking like this. He’d flip his lid.
“I know my brother is being an ass,” Emmett finally spoke. He sat down on her other side and put his arm around her shoulder. “He’s scared. I know that’s not an excuse for making pretty girls cry, but it’s the truth. He’s terrified of getting close to you.” He started laughing. “You missed it though. Danielle slapped the shit out of him and called him a stupid fucking douche bag. It was awesome.”
That got a smile and a laugh from her. “Those are Danielle’s favorite words.” She turned at looked at me. “You actually hit him?”
“Yeah. I slapped him, bitched him out and I was on the verge of slapping him again when Dean stopped me.” I made a face :Stupid interfering older brothers.”
She started laughing again. “How bad to I look?” She asked after she’d calmed down.
“Bad. Like I can’t let Jasper see you like this bad.” I had an idea. “Emmett, do me a favor?” He raised an eyebrow. “Go get Alice and have her bring her make up. Tell her it a fashion emergency.” He stood up and walked up a couple of steps. “oh, and have her bring a wet washcloth. We need to wash her face.”
“Sure, but she’s gonna ask questions. I don’t know that she’ll be able to keep it from Jasper either. Alice can’t keep a secret to save her life.”
“Well, she’s going to have to. Jasper does not like boys who make his sister cry and we can’t have him killing Edward. It will be difficult to explain to your father when he comes back from Europe.”
“Fair enough.” He bounded up the steps .
I leaned over and gave Jess a hug. “Things will get better, I promise.”
She sighed. “I know. I hate boys. Its times like this that almost make me wish for the days when Eric Yorkie was the only boy we had to worry about chasing us.”
I laughed. “Yeah. I’m sure that Jasper wishes you could go back to the Eric Yorkie era also. Life was so much simpler back then.” I laughed again. “Remember when he chased you up the tree and you hid in the tree house until Dean came home from work because Eric was trying to get you to kiss him?”
She started laughing too. “Yeah. That sucked. He was way more in love you though. His plan was to kiss me to make you jealous so that you’d realize that you two were meant to be. That afternoon ended great though” she finished with a sigh.
“Who is Eric Yorkie? And why did he think you guys were meant to be?” Alice trilled from the top of the stairs. “And why am I jut now hearing about him?” She sat down on the step next to Jessica and took the wet washcloth from Emmett and began to wash the tear tracks and make-up off of Jessica’s face.
“Who is this Eric guy?” Emmett demanded from the step above me, crossing his arms over his chest. He was so totally jealous it was endearing.
Jess and I both burst out laughing. “Eric Yorkie is a friend from high school. Have you seen ‘Pretty in Pink’?” They both nodded. “Eric was our Ducky, although he could have been anyone of the nerds from anyone of those movies. The first time she met him, Jessica thought he was going to ask to borrow her panties for five minutes.” The both started laughing. Alice was busy applying make-up to Jessica’s face, but she had to stop for a minute.
“Seriously though,” Jess cut in. “He was super into Dungeons and Dragons, Zelda, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Star Trek. He’s into World of War craft, speaks fluent Elvish and Klingon, and thinks he should have gone to Hogwarts.”
“So he not someone I ever have to worry about?” Emmett asked through his laughter. He was laughing so hard he couldn’t breath.
“Yeah. Not so much. He’ll get all jealous because he thinks Danielle is the Eowyn to his Aragorn as he puts it, but its not like he could or ever would hurt you. Tell him she’s the Princess Leia to your Hans Solo and he’ll leave quietly.” She started laughing so hard she had to bend over to breathe.
“Alright. Alright. Sit up. I have to finish this.” Alice snapped. We all got very quiet and she finished quickly. When she was done, Jess had a more glamorized version of her usual natural look, with smoky green eye shadow that brought out her blue eyes perfectly.
She stood up and dusted her hands off. ‘Ok. You are now presentable. I don’t think Jasper will ask too many questions so we should be able to keep this little episode from him.” She reached down and pulled Jess to her feet and Emmett helped me up. He kept hold of my hand as we finished climbing the stairs and went out into the hallway.
Jasper was pacing like a caged animal. Edward was sitting on the floor, banging the back of his head against the wall and Dean was standing by the windows, looking at the skyline. “Dude, Edward!” Emmett yelled “Knock it off, you are going to kill what little brain cells you have left.” Edward stopped immediately. He got up as soon as he saw her and started walking towards her. Emmett stopped him. “Dude, you’ve already caused enough damage tonight. Let her be, I have an idea on how you’re going to fix this but you’re going to have to trust me, ok?” He told Edward quietly.
Edward nodded. He went over and stood against the wall, and watched Jess’ every move. I turned my attention back over that way also. “There is something that the three of you aren’t telling me” He was looking from Jess to Alice to Dean accusingly. “I don’t like it.” He was standing with his arms crossed and his hair falling into his eyes.
Jess went over and hugged him. “I know you don’t like it, but I’m still not telling you. Its better this way and besides, you can’t protect my heart forever, Jasper.” He opened his mouth to say something but changed his mind when he caught Alice’s calm gaze. He just hugged her back. “Do you mind if we all split up tonight? I know Alice was talking about Sushi and you know how I feel about that” She faked a gagging noise and then smiled. “You two can go have sushi and do something fun, Dean and I can go get a burger and take a walk through Central Park, and Danielle can take Emmett and Dean to her favorite Pizza place, k?” She looked at all of us in turn and we all nodded. I knew what she was doing. Besides, This would give me a chance to set my plans for Edward into motion.

Chapter 4

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