When I was sitting in Alice‘s room, I thought I had to wait at least three days before she had found something suitable from the mass of clothes she got there. But apparently Alice did already have such a precise idea of her “final result“ - a dolled up version of mine - that she managed to collect everything necessary within a few minutes.
I could see a whole bunch of cosmetics, from countless eyeliners to a smorgasbord of eyeshadows, to various jewelry, hairstyling-accessories and of course my actual clothes.
Almost an hour before eight she was finally satisfied with my appearance and I could barely wait to look at myself in the mirror, although I somehow felt stupid. Actually I hadn‘t planned to go completely tarted up to my first date.
I had to do a double take before I recognized that I was the pretty girl in the mirror. Well, I had grown up with the knowledge of being extraordinary beautiful, but this was crowning it all again. Alice was a true artist when it came to this.
My curls had disappeared, instead I saw long, fluent, bronze hair which did just curl at the hair-ends elaborately. She had set off my eyes perfectly and my pale complexion wasn‘t as pale anymore but did now have skillful accents in just the right places. All in all my make-up was visible but not too obtrusive.
In addition she gave me a nice light blue satin dress which matched my hair perfectly. It wasn‘t so extremely form-fitting, however it underlined my body perfectly. At my feet, I wore silver shoes with light heels.
“And?“ Apparently Alice was waiting for an audible reaction. Until now I had just looked at myself in the mirror speechlessly.
“Eh… wow… You‘re wonderful, Alice. That‘s just gorgeous.“
Alice was beaming. “Really? Oh, I knew you would like it. Now this guy won‘t be able to resist you at all.“
I tried to keep up my smile. Did I really want that?
“Come on, let‘s go downstairs.“
I nodded timidly.
Together with Alice I went downstairs into the living room again where my family was already waiting expectantly. Their gazes gave away that they all were as sold on my outfit as I was.
Just Jacob was leaning against the wall and was staring at the floor grimly.
I had barely time to really look at him, as my mom stood already in front of me and handed me a small silver bag.
“Here,“ she said softly. “It‘s everything inside there what a woman needs for a date.“
“Thanks,“ I answered. I wasn‘t really in the mood to find out what my mother had put into it beside hankies and rather kept the purse close.
A glance to our big clock told me that there was barely half an hour left till eight .
“It is about time.“ My father seemed very confident.
“Yeah, I‘ll go then. Wish me luck.“
Rosalie hugged me briefly. “Rubbish, a pretty thing like you doesn‘t need luck. The only lucky one is this guy.“
Now I had to chuckle. “Thanks.“
Slowly and a bit nervous I stepped to the door, the gazes of my family on my back.
I thought they wouldn‘t say anything anymore now, then I heard a familiar rough voice. “Wait. I‘ll drive you.“
I nodded but didn‘t turn around and went out by the front door.
Also when I got into the car and during the ride I didn‘t dare to look at him. When we finally stopped at the school grounds, he broke the silence.
“You look beautiful.“
I looked at him cautiously. It was dark, the rare street lamps hardly lighten up the car und I couldn‘t really see the expression on his face. However I felt that he was very glum.
“Thank you, Jake.“
I got off the car and closed the door behind me. He looked after me for a few moments, then he drove away wordlessly.
Uncertain I strode over the cobbles. My shoes made a clattering noise with every step and soon I recognized a silhouette at the entrance of our school. On closer inspection I saw that it was Dave who stood on the lowest step and smiled. His hands were hidden behind his back.
As I came closer, his smile turned into an amazed expression.
“Wow. Ren, you look breathtaking.“
I felt myself blushing a little, although I was already told this multiple times today. “Thanks.“
“You‘re welcome,“ he replied and handed me a bunch of flowers, which he had hidden behind his back. “Here you go, beauty.“
He grinned. “Yup. I thought red ones would probably make you feel uncomfortable, so I chose the yellow ones.“
I just smiled and was glad that he had chosen them.
Beaming, he handed me his arm to link arms with him, then we walked together through the city for a few minutes.
There was little going on in the streets for a saturday evening. I just saw a few teenagers and a couple of older people cross our paths.
“Is it always so empty here?
“On Saturdays, indeed. A few weeks ago a disco has been opened. The first for years. The last was burned down a long time ago. Arson. It‘s called “Just4you“ and is the place to be at the moment. Well, actually there has never really been much you could do as a young person and this disco had arrived opportunely for the most people…
There we are.“
We stopped in front of a small white building. It had squiggly ornaments on the walls and smooth marble steps.
“Here? Are you crazy, this has to be expensive, isn‘t it?“
He laughed. “Nonsense. For a special woman like you, just the best.“
I didn‘t know what to say anymore and let myself be led into the noble restaurant. We were welcomed immediately, our jackets were taken away and we were led to a table for two in a quiet corner, where our waitress handed us the menu and asked for our drinks.
When she was gone, I began to study the bill of fare observantly. Beside lobster and venison there was luckily also “normal“ food and I was wondering if it would probably be awkward to order some ordinary pasta in a posh restaurant like this. Dave already snapped his menu shut after a few minutes and thanked for the drinks which were placed on our table.
“Do you have already decided?“
The waitress had a very pleasant, friendly voice and gave us a bright smile. Her blond hair was fixed elaborately on the back of her head with many little hair slides and she was wearing a black and white costume with an apron, which even seemed to be made of satin and had the logo of the restaurant on it.
Dave nodded towards me and indicated like that, that I should order first. Perplex as I was and unsure whether my choice was ridiculous, I gave him the precedence.
“I‘ll take the spaghetti bolognaise.“
Surprised I looked at him.
The waitress didn‘t give the rise to the feeling that the order was strange and now I dared to name mine as well.
“Lasagne Al Forno, please.“
She nodded and typed our order into her small computer. “Do you have another wish?“
He darted a questioning glance at me. I shook my head. “No, thank you.“
While we were waiting for our meal we talked about ordinary topics like school, teachers and classmates. I was surprised that I was able to speak to him so easily and very relieved that he didn‘t bring up serious topics.
When we were finally eating our pasta, there was barely a chance to talk about more complex topics anyways.
The lasagne was delicious. Of course it couldn‘t match up to animal blood by far and in three hundred years not up to the incomparable taste of human blood, but for ordinary food it tasted really good to me. And it also seemed to be to Dave‘s liking. By the time when the waitress got her tip, he stressed repeatedly how wonderful the food had been, then he helped me to get up and handed my jacket over to me gentlemanlike.
When we stepped outside I just wanted to head to the school grounds as Dave took my hand. “Wait, Ren. Not that way.“
I furrowed my brow.
“Come.“ With these words he lead me further up the road. As he pressed the button of his car key, a silver car flashed on the side of the street.
“Oh, I see, you have parked here.“
I climbed into the car and closed the door.
“Yes,“ he answered while he fastened his seat belt and inserted the key into the ignition lock. “I couldn‘t lead you through the alley when it is that cold.“
He burst out laughing and I joined in a little quieter.
Since he didn‘t know where I lived exactly I had to show him the way from a certain point of the route, then we stopped in our driveway.
“The evening with you was very nice.“
And I meant what I said.
“Yeah, wonderful,“ he responded softly.
Then I pecked him on the cheek, got out and entered the house.
I was sure, that even with a normal family everyone would have stayed awake curiously to see how my first date had turned out.
In a family with barely anyone who needed to sleep at all it was all the more likely to get a reception committee.
“Hello everyone,“ I greeted the rubbernecks as I came through the door.
My whole family stood there, smiled at me and seemed to want to bombard me with questions. Fortunately they kept them to themselves, however. It attracted my attention that someone was missing.
“He went to bed relatively early,“ my father answered.
I just nodded shortly, then I went into the kitchen where I put my roses into a little vase. Probably they wouldn‘t stay there for long anyway because I had chosen the wrong shape or color and they, for Alice‘s standards, were not matching the rest of the decoration.
“I‘m going too now, it was a long eventful evening. Good night.“
As I went upstairs I heard several “Good night, Nessie“s and two “Good night sweetheart“s.
Although it was already one o‘clock in the morning, I decided to take a shower. When I had dressed into my pajama and wrapped my hair into a towel, I walked into the hallway as quiet as possible. As usual I could hear the TV and some animated conversations from downstairs. For once I didn‘t care, if it was about me at the moment.
I walked directly down the stairs and wanted to get to the ground floor of our mansion without attracting too much attention. It was clear to me that I would be noticed but nobody said something and I wasn‘t in the mood to say anything, therefore I was once again grateful for their silence. We hadn‘t much discarded and useless lumber so there was just a single little room in the huge basement where old things were stored. My family was in the habit of disposing their furniture regularly and to sell it so they could gain new pieces. Nobody felt like storing many stuff. Next to the “junk room“ as Rosalie called it, we even had a small whirl pool and a sauna. Both mostly unused. They had already been there, when we had moved in here. Once there had also been a fitness room but it hadn‘t survived its very first Cullen-utilization. Unfortunately the weights hadn‘t been set up for vampire strengths and so Emmett had managed to scrap all the gym equipment within less than five minute. Now we only stored smoked food, cans and in a separate cupboard my favorite blood.
As I approached the wooden door at the end of the corridor I got a bit nervous. Carefully I opened it slightly and peeked inside. It was pitch-dark but I was prepared for this case.
I pulled a small candle and a lighter out of my bathrobe. I simply could have taken a flashlight instead but I loved the old fashioned methods. Eventually I got that from my father.
The little candle did just lighten the room sparsely but I could tell that the bed was empty.
At first I thought he wasn‘t even here, when I heard the snoring.
Jake laid curled up in a corner of the room. He was a wolf.
With a slow fluent movement, I knelt down beside him on the floor and put down the candle, the I stroked his reddish brown fur. The snoring had stopped now, therefore I knew he was awake, however his eyes were closed and he didn‘t make a sound or get ready to move.
“Oh, Jake,“ I said softly and stroke his big muzzle in the process. “Now don‘t be insulted, please.“
He grumbled short and silent.
“Come on… you know how much I like you.“
A short whimper was the answer.
“Yes… I even like you very much.“
Then I bent down to him and gave him a kiss on his wet nose.
“Good night, Jake.“