What's Love? Ch 5

Chapter 5
Bella POV

Present

It only takes a few hours to complete my packing.  Deciding for everything to be shipped out to Forks is more stressful than I anticipated. It has been a considerable amount of time since I have been to Forks, much less to my parents’ home. It was hard to give them instructions on what to do when they got everything there, leading to conference calls with Jasper to get everything situated.

Going to sleep is nearly impossible, as all the feelings I've been running from bubble to the surface.
I never said good-bye to Renee, never saw the headstone for her resting place.

I hear James come home, and I let out a frustrated sigh. He wasn’t supposed to be back. I get up from the comforts of the bed and walk toward the living room, where I hear some classical music playing. My bare feet are quiet against the wood floors, and I lean against the wall, seeing James with his back to me.  He has a laptop open, which is where it appears that the music is coming from.

“What are you doing, James?” I sigh, tapping my fingers on the wall.

He turns quickly towards me with a startled expression. “Bella, shit, I didn’t think you’d be up. I was just going to crash in the guest bedroom and be gone by the time you got up.” He stands up from our too expensive couch and takes a few steps toward me.

“I couldn’t sleep, I have too much on my mind. I would feel more comfortable if you went to a hotel.” I wrap my arms around myself but keep my eyes connected to his, trying to gauge his reaction.

“Really, Bella, there isn’t a hotel that’s going to give me a room this late.” He runs his hands down his face sounding tired and annoyed.

“Not my fault, you should have thought about that earlier. We agreed that you wouldn’t be here while I was moving out.” I push myself off the wall, raising my brow at him. I don’t know what game he’s trying to play at, but I’m not in the mood.

“I know what we agreed. I was in meetings all day, it got late before I even realized what time it was. I just wanted to come home and sleep. Please, just let me sleep in the guest room. I won’t disturb you.” He puts his hands together and closes his eyes in a begging manner.

I roll my eyes at his demeanor. “Fine, but I swear to God, if you come back to where I’m sleeping I will cut your fucking balls off and feed them to you.”

He smiles his sinister smile. “I love it when you talk dirty.”

I can feel my skin crawl, so I walk back to the master bedroom and lock the door. Just a few more days and I’ll be away from him. How I thought I could have settled for him is seriously making me question my sanity.

10 Years Ago

Not being able to sleep due to anxiety, I decided to work on coding for the Charlie program. Before I knew it, it was 2 A.M. The knob on the door of my shared room began to shake. I felt relieved that I took Jasper’s advice and locked the door earlier in the evening. It shook more, and I heard a frustrated growl come from the other side of it, then footsteps leading away from the door.

“It’ll be worse tomorrow ” Irina’s said, voice small and full of fear.

“How often does he do that?” I demanded, turning my body toward her.

“Every night since I got here.” She rolled over, ending any further conversation.

I stared at her backside, stupefied at her answer.

When morning arrived, I still hadn't been able to keep my eyes closed long enough to get any kind of sleep. I heard someone knock on the door.

“Hey chicas, they’re at work. I have to get to the bus, see you guys later.” Jasper’s voice sounded through the door.

“Thanks, Jasper,” Irina called back to him. She glanced over to me, probably seeing the dark circles under my eyes, but
she didn't say anything about my appearance. Irina got up and unlocked the door, grabbed some clean clothes and headed to where I assumed the bathroom would be located.
I sighed, rubbing my face. I looked in my bag, finding my clean clothes for the day. I waited in the bedroom until I heard Irina walking around, indicating that she was done with the bathroom.

I found it just a door down and across from Jasper’s room. It wasn’t decorated, looking much like our room. I looked at myself in the mirror. My eyes were dull with dark circles. I looked like the living dead. I started the shower, washing the last couple of days off me and my tears mixed with the water.

When I got out, I brushed my hair and pulled it up, walking into the living room.  Irina was already working, so I followed her lead and got my own things out.

I began with a new code and my calculus assignment, then I moved on to looking up patient laws. Before I knew it, the front door opened and slammed closed, scaring me out of my trance.

“Shit!” I held my chest and closed my eyes to calm my heart. Jasper chuckled a little bit.

“Sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you. Get a little too focused, I take it.”

I nodded my head, still not opening my eyes. I felt his presence near me and peeked through one eye at him. I could see the concern in his deep-sea-colored eyes.

“I’m fine, Jasper.”

“Okay.” He sat near me and got out his own work.

I wanted to see if I could hold a conversation with him. “How did you get here to Port Angeles from Texas?” I asked, before I even thought about it.

“How did you know I came from Texas?” His eyes widened in shock.

“Your accent is still noticeable. I concluded that your particular accent is from Central Texas.” I shrugged, not taking my eyes off him.

“My dad got a job here, but after they died there wasn’t any relative for me to go stay with so...” He waved his hands around.

“Okay.” I went back to my screen.

“That looks very complicated.” Jasper sat behind me on the floor, pointing to my screen.

“Yes, this one I am working one allows you to sync through the electrical systems in your home and be able to work from a device like a cellphone or laptop. And a tablet which is like a laptop, only no keyboard; it's completely touch based.”


“Shit, how smart are you?”

“I have an eidetic memory, and my IQ test was 190. I suppose that means I am super smart.” I don't make eye contact. For some unknown reason, I felt ashamed relaying this information to him.

“Wow, that’s pretty amazing. So, if I need help I can count on you?” He gave me a cheeky smile that I couldn't help return and then I nodded my head.

Jasper sprawled out next to me. I felt invaded; no one had gotten this close to me other than my dad. I felt the panic begin to take over.

“Why are you so close, I am not interested in sexual contact with you. Renee told me that boys your age are only interested in one thing, which would be having sexual intercourse,” I stated matter of factly.

“What!” he yelped and pushed himself up and away from me. “You’re very beautiful for a 14-year-old, but one, you’re 14, two, I’m not interested in that and Renee is batshit. Three, I’m just trying to be your friend. I don’t know what you went through before coming here, but I just want you to feel safe with someone. I know what it’s like not to have anyone that you can trust and feel safe with.” His deep blue eyes were very sincere with his words.

I stared at him wide-eyed. Other than the teenagers at Forks High, not many people my age have ever spoken to me. I know logically that Renee is, as Jasper put it, batshit. I just couldn't help the irrational part of my brain, the side trying to keep me from being hurt. That side wanted to keep him at arm’s length, to believe what Renee said.

I didn’t respond, but turned away and went back to my work. Jasper stayed nearby, but moved a few feet from where he was. He gave me the space I needed to feel comfortable.

It wasn’t long before a woman who I deduced was Samantha came barreling through the door.

“Hi, kids!” Her face was flushed, her blue eyes sparkling. She was carrying so many bags that both arms were full. “I have gotten so many amazing gifts for you guys. Don’t worry Isabella, I got you some too! I wouldn’t want you to miss out on Christmas. I know the world probably feels cold and lonely, but you are not alone, and I am going to make you feel part of this family!” She was gone before I had any kind of response. I looked over to Jasper for an explanation.

“She’s eccentric, really sweet, complete opposite of John.” Jasper explained to my puzzled face. I watched him and Irina move to clean up their papers, but I didn’t feel like following their lead. I was very in depth in my work, and almost done with a prototype code that I wanted to run at least once.

Samantha came back down, calling, “It’s family time, Isabella, off that now.” Her face was smiling, but I could read her, and she was not happy that I was still on my laptop.

Keeping the eye contact I had with her, I saved what I was working on and closed the laptop. I was angry that she was so fake. Fake with that smile, and with body language that spoke volumes to what she was really feeling.

In the kitchen, she had us participate in making dinner and setting the table, and John walked in not too long after that.

“Hello, Darling.” He kissed Samantha in greeting. It was all domesticated and wrong, everything was wrong here.

That was the rest of the night; pretending to be an all-American family, in which Jasper and Irina fit perfectly. I, on the other hand, fought it every step of the way. I was rewarded with attempted grounding, threatening of taking my computer away, and finally, they were going to take back the gifts for Christmas.

But the worst I got was sent to my room.

Exhaustion took over and I fell asleep. I woke when a hand covered my mouth, and my eyes flew open to meet John's glassy ones.
“You scream, I’ll bury you in the backyard and tell Paul you ran away.”


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