After that day, I had to endure being constantly watched by a group of vampires with golden eyes. They kept at it whenever I was within their range of vision. I felt a little bit annoyed being under surveillance when I'm in school. I had Cullens attending half of my classes, Edward in Biology, Rosalie and Alice in Art, Jasper in History, and Emmett in P.E.
They didn't outright bother me but I'm beginning to think that's better than them keeping an eye on me like some sort of criminal. Then again, I couldn't exactly come out and say 'Please stop staring.' because that's going to create all sorts of rumors in this school. Nope. Don't want any of that drama.
Alice kept talking to me, ignoring her other siblings' warnings. I couldn't help but raise a brow at how this tiny vampire could stand up against her siblings who towered over her. It was amusing to say the least, to watch her arguing with animated gestures towards her siblings and make a dramatic exit afterwards. I was beginning to think about what sort of arguments we'll be having in the future, sighing knowing she'll most probably get her way in the end.
I found myself liking her more and more even though we couldn't be more opposite from each other. Her energy is a fine contrast to my own laidback energy. It shocked Eric and his friends, Jessica the most, when they saw me casually talking with Alice in school my second day in Forks High School. I shrugged it off and told them we just happened to meet and talk.
My newfound friendship with Alice has made me the center of attention, not that I wasn't before, but now I have them all really curious about me. I could only suck it up and endure my popularity. I couldn't be bothered keeping a low profile anymore because that plan was a bust since the day I got to Forks apparently. Thanks, Charlie.
It's been a week since I started school and entering my second week with not much of a problem, except for what I mentioned previously. I've adjusted well living with Charlie and I've made new friends. Well...can't really be sure about the others but I certainly liked Angela and Eric so far aside from Alice.
I saw Alice waving as I drove my truck into the school parking lot. This is our new morning routine now. We'd wait on each other in the parking lot depending on who arrives first, then I'd walk her to class or vice versa.
"Good morning, Tiny," I greeted her as she came to meet me halfway.
Alice seemed to take offense at my greeting.
"I am not tiny!" Alice replied indignantly.
"Hmmm? What was that? We can't hear you from all the way down there," Emmett suddenly interjected.
I was a little surprised when I saw him walking behind Alice when she approached me.
"Haha very original of you," Alice shot back as she crossed her arms.
Emmett and I both looked at each other and shared a laugh. It was nice. I found Emmett to be particularly friendly towards me as well. At first I was intimidated by his large build, but he was actually quite the jokester based on the conversations I happen to overhear from their table.
"I know what can fix that," Emmett said.
He picked up Alice effortlessly and threw her over his shoulder.
"Put me down you big troll!" Alice squealed as she struggled to get free.
"What? Too high for you?" Emmett replied. He then turned to me, "Wanna feel tall too?"
I immediately took a few steps back.
"No, thanks, Brother Bear."
"Brother Bear, huh. I like it," he chuckled. "Walk with me?"
I nodded and followed them inside. As we left the parking lot, I sneaked a glance at the other Cullens who were watching a few meters away where they were parked. Edward and Rosalie didn't seem too happy about it and Jasper looked longingly at Alice.
I caught Rosalie's gaze by chance and waved at her, mouthing a 'Good morning'. As expected, she scowled at me. She huffed and quickly walked towards the school, leaving Edward and Jasper. The two followed her shortly, sparing one more glance in our direction as they left.
I caught Alice and Emmett looking at me strangely. I guess they saw the whole exchange between us.
"Oh Bella. Has no one ever told you not to poke the lion?" Alice tsked.
"Isn't it supposed to be 'don't poke the bear'?" I asked confused.
"Nope. Bear's already taken," Emmett said, pointing at himself.
"Okay," I drawled. "But I really have no idea what you're talking about."
[You liar hahahahaha.]
After that encounter on my first day, I made it a mission to get on Rosalie's good side. Did I think it was a ridiculous idea? Yes. But so is choosing to be friends with a vampire. And yet, here we are.
My main motivation is to make her laugh or at least smile again. That scene has been stuck in my head ever since.
Maybe I also lowkey like it that it annoys her. That I annoy her. Even just the act of smiling and waving at her seemed to tick her off. I never thought acting all friendly could be used in such a taunting way. At the same time, it kinda hurt how my being friendly would be received badly. After all, I really meant no harm to the Cullens. That would just bring me more trouble.
[Hahahaha aren't you too desperate for her attention, lass?]
What?! No! I just like that I piss her off.
[Because you want her attention.]
Of course not.
[Hahahahahaha whatever you say, lass.]
It irked me how he said it. Of course I'm not desperate for her attention. That would be crazy! Why would I even want her - a vampire's - attention? That's the last thing I want right now.
Anyways, I matched Emmett's pace as we walked along the halls. Alice had given up and resorted to pouting and glaring at me for not helping her. We were certainly a sight to behold for the other students.
I was definitely not looking forward to lunch today.
Ever since I became friends with Alice, Jessica made a total 180 from her glaring at me to personally inviting me to their table as if the events from my first day didn't happen. She made it hard to decline as she would pull me by my arm and lead me to their table.
She asked me multiple questions like how I was friends with Alice; if I'm friends with the other Cullens too; and how I got close to them. She wouldn't believe me when I told her we happened to meet by chance and talked and that I was only friendly with Alice. She wasn't satisfied with any of my answers much to her frustration and to my delight.
Lauren was still her snobby self and acted like I didn't exist which was fine by me. She would only acknowledge my presence whenever Tyler would start talking to me. She would suddenly speak to him or randomly ask me a question whose answer she wasn't even interested in. Well, that certainly wasn't hard to figure out. It was obvious, even to me, that Lauren had a thing for Tyler. And, it might be a bit presumptuous of me, but I think she doesn't like me because of the attention everyone was giving me, Tyler included. She might be jealous because she likes to bask in people's attention, unlike me.
By all means, take all the attention away from me.
I can't say Jessica was any better since she seems to hang around me for the same thing. That's the only explanation I could come up with her sudden change of attitude towards me after what I said to her my first day.
I didn't have any problems with Tyler in particular but at the same time, I didn't see myself getting close with him either. Too much of a jock and he had a bit of a superiority complex going on.
As for Mike, I can barely stand him. He's nice. A little bit too nice and I didn't like the way he looked at me. Angela laughed in my face when I mentioned it to her.
"He obviously likes you, Bella."
My eyes widened.
"And it seems to be one-sided," Angela added as she saw my reaction. "You can't honestly tell me you haven't noticed?"
"I didn't think it was like that. I thought he was just a weirdly nice guy."
"Oh, Bella. Most of the time, boys are 'weirdly nice' for a reason," Angela said with a shake of her head. "They want in your pants," she pointed out, gesturing to my pants.
My jaw dropped. I couldn't see her but I could hear Alice laughing just around the corner.
"Is it so wrong to believe he's just being a good friend?"
"How nice to be this oblivious," Angela teased. "Remember that teens at this age are all just running on hormones."
"So what do I do?" I asked with exasperation.
"That's up to you."
"But...it's not like I can just go up and reject him without him actually confessing. People might say I think too highly of myself."
"Ignorance is bliss, Bella. You can just ignore it for now and wait until he outright tells you and then you can reject him."
I raised a brow at her.
"Are you really his friend? Shouldn't you be like setting us up like his wingman or something?"
"You're my friend too," she told me, placing a hand on my shoulder.
I felt touched and I don't mean just in the physical sense.
"Mike is an overall good guy. But, I also want what's best for you and he ain't it, girl."
I decided right then that Angela was my best person in Forks (after Alice of course or else she'll throw a fit).
I valued Angela's presence during lunch. I felt like I had a comrade. We were similar in terms of how we were the type to just listen, occasionally adding to the conversation.
Eric was also nice. A bit nosy at times but not as much as Jessica. I appreciated his efforts to always make sure to add me to the conversation. In return, I answered additional questions he could put in the newspaper.
The day went by in a flash, not that I minded, as I finally found myself in my favorite class.
"Today, we're gonna pause with my information dump about the various periods and art styles. Today I just want you to freely draw or paint whatever you want. It can be anything you want - yes, even nude - as long as it's not offensive," Ms. Keller sternly warned. "And at the end of the school year, we'll see how much you've improved."
A student raised his hand.
"What if we're not good at drawing?"
Ms. Keller smiled.
"That's alright. I just want to see you how much you'll improve," she kindly replied.
"What if we don't improve?"
Ms. Keller chuckled at that.
"There's more to art than simply being good at it. It's more of a medium for us to convey ideas and feelings," Ms. Keller explained. "Did you ever see a portrait by Picasso and not go 'that's not what people look in real life'? An abstract painting and think 'it's just random splashes of color'?"
The class nodded.
"And yet somehow they are still able to capture people's attention," Ms. Keller shrug. "I'm sure you're already stressed with your other classes so I want you all to think of this class as some sort of therapy. Express your joy, grief, and anger through art and I assure you it's quite cathartic. A less violent approach."
"Now then, take out your supplies and you may start anytime. You'll have to submit to me your work, finished or not."
And with that, Ms. Keller sat behind her desk and left us to work.
I saw Alice enthusiastically start drawing, clothes I assume. I sneaked a glance at Rosalie and saw her sketching what seemed like a forest.
Turning to my own canvas, I stared blankly at it, having no idea what I wanted to draw. I always had a problem coming up with a subject on my own. That's why I usually looked or waited for inspiration to hit me first.
After a few minutes, I still had nothing.
Sighing, I closed my eyes and began thinking. I racked my brain for any inspiration. Anything at all that has spiked intrigue in me as of late.
Opening my eyes, my hand picked up a pencil and started sketching on my canvas. I was in a trance like state, my eyes locked onto my canvas and just letting my hand move on its own accord.
Slowly it formed a familiar face. It was far from perfect compared to real life.
It had to be perfect.
A groan escaped my lips as I felt my frustration.
[I've been trying to call you for a while now but it seems you've blocked me.]
[Anyways, it's too late to hide it now, lass.]
"Well well well. It seems like you've found your muse, Ms. Swan," I heard Ms. Keller say behind me.
I twisted my head around to look up at her. She was smirking at me then her gaze fell onto my drawing.
"What?" I let out, turning around as well to look at my drawing.
[You did. You were so focused too.]
It was a good thing I was seated at the back of the class so my classmates could only look back from their seats and watch with curiosity. However…
I glanced sideways.
Alice was visibly amused at the situation as she met my gaze with a grin. Behind her, I saw Rosalie looking at me...well looking at me. I couldn't really get a read on her.
Is she creeped out?! I bet she's creeped out.
Looking at my work, it was just a rough sketch but it was detailed enough that you could obviously tell it was a portrait of Rosalie. There was no mistaking it no matter how you look at my drawing.
I felt my face turning bright red. I just wanted the ground to swallow me whole at that moment.
What the hell was I doing?!
After complimenting me, Ms. Keller then left and went to check on the other students' work. Meanwhile, I quickly ripped out my drawing, desperately trying to hide it, even though I was already caught. As I was just about to crumple it up, Alice quickly - a little bit too fast for a 'human' - took it from my hands.
"I'll take it if you don't want it," Alice told me. "It's such a waste if you're just gonna throw it away."
I didn't think she'd let me take it back even if I fought for it so I just let her have it and wait for an opportunity. But, I watched her roll it up and placed it in her bag then move her bag some distance away from me so I couldn't reach for it. Alice smiled at me as if knowing that I'd take the chance to steal it back if I could.
Huffing a sigh, I gave up.
I quickly began sketching another one, ignoring the burning gaze shot my way by the other vampire. Unlike my first sketch, my second one was that of the city landscape of Phoenix. When I submitted my work, Ms. Keller shot me a curious glance. I shrugged awkwardly smiled at her and left without a word.
I needed to get out of there.
"Bella! Wait up!"
Shit. I forgot about, Alice .
"Sorry, Ali. I really need to go somewhere!" I shouted back.
"You aren't trying to run away because you're embarrassed right?"
I stopped in my tracks. I looked back and saw her standing a few feet from me with her arms crossed in front of her chest. Just then, I saw Rosalie walk out of the room and approach in our direction.
"Of course not," I quickly denied. "See you tomorrow, Tiny!"
I waved her goodbye and ran the fuck out of there.
[I don't think there's anything to be embarrassed about, lass. I would think people would even find it romantic.]
Romantic? No way. They would definitely think it's creepy. Shit. How am I supposed to face her ever again? She must think I'm weird on top of hating me.
[Hahahahahaha I doubt that's the most creepy thing she's ever seen, lass.]
That did not make me feel any better.
She must think I have a crush on her like all the other kids in school.
No! I was having trouble thinking what to draw earlier. I mean, I guess I unconsciously drew her because I think she'd be a beautiful subject. Yeah. That's probably it. She piqued my interest so I drew her.
[Oh, lass. I do pity you.]
I wouldn't hear any of what he had to say as I just focused on driving away from school.