You are cordially invited to the annual LA Push Extravaganza. If you plan to attend please respond no later than two weeks from today.
Bella saw the invitation on Jacob's kitchen table.
‘He should definitely go. But, who will be his date?’ Bella couldn't help thinking.
Jacob walked through his kitchen door with a wide and brilliant smile. Shirtless and cutoffs as always, even when he isn't on patrol. He didn't stop his thoughts.
‘She looks beautiful in my house. If only she saw what I and everyone else sees…’ “Hey Bells! What's up?”
“Oh, nothing.” Bella responded and snapping out of her thoughts. “I saw the invitation for something called “Suit and Tie” on the table when I was tidying up.”
“Bells, don’t worry about it. Its nothing.”
“Don't Bells me! Why won't you tell me what that invitation is and what it's for!?”
“Fine! It's our version of a prom, except its open to anyone. Have you ever heard the song “Suit and Tie” by Justin Timberlake?”
“Yes… so why haven't you sent your invitation back letting them know that you're going?”
“That's because I'm not going.”
“What?!” Bella exclaims.
I don't have a tux or a date. I can't just go with the Pack!”
“Be serious Jake! I hear the gossip and rumors about you and the Pack. Why not put them to rest and clear you guys name?”
“Ok, ok. I am being serious. I don't care what is being said behind our backs. The tribe can't know the truth, so why bother?”
“I understand. However, I still think that something can be done. You all are a Pack of protectors… Warriors. You should get some glory from this! Look, don't worry about the suits and ties. Or the dates. I will handle that. Just get the guys and Leah to come.”
“I don't know Bells. They're not going to like this and will be adamant about not going.”
“Look Alpha! Use your command and make them…”
“You know I hate doing that! It'll be their choice to go. No persuading or forcing anyone. Alright?”
“Yes, sir! I'm curious about this affair.” Bella wondered out loud as she turned back to making her casserole for Billy and Jacob.
‘What did I just let this girl do? I swear she has me right where she wants me’ Jacob thought to himself and shook his head. “What are you making?”
“A new recipe. I hope that you and Billy will like it. Plus, maybe Billy could actually get two servings. Lol.”
“Yeah, you and Dad laugh it up while you can.”
Bella arrives home and goes to her room. She decided to check her closet for something to wear for Jacobs dressy affair. Especially, if she wanted the Pack to attend. As she kept going through her closet, Bella was alerted by a little noise coming from her window.
“Hello, love! I'm glad that your back. Safe and sound.” Edward says with a smile.
“I've told you before… “
“Let's not rehash this again, Bella. You know how I feel about them and that ragtag piece of land. It would be easier if you stopped going.”
“Edward, I'm going to say this one last time. I'm not in danger with Jake or the Pack. If I'm not with you and Alice, then with him and I am completely safe. End of discussion. I'm not going to give up on him. “
“Fine. I see that there's no point in arguing, even if it's for your own good. Nevertheless, please at least let me send you off…?”
“That'll be fine. Thank you for understanding.” Bella tells Edward.
“You're welcome, love. Anything for you.” Edward replied.
Bella moved back to her closet and was glad that Alice couldn't see what she had picked out for the Extravaganza. She got dressed and a few calls later…
“Bells, you look amazing! I'm not even going to say anything about our matching, but you do look good in black.”
Bella says nothing and just smiles. She looks down at her dress and thinks ‘there isn't anything special about wearing all black.’
Bella picked a black dress that was sleeveless, a black lace print front, and reached down to her knees. She paired it with some black pumps with kitten heels. Her hair was down in the waves Jacob loved, even though she was glad that he didn't notice. Along with wearing nothing but some foundation, mascara, and nude lip gloss, thanks Alice, Bella was set.
Jacob wore all black as well. His pants, dress shoes, dress shirt and jacket were paired with a slim black tie. While it fit his shape, Jacob could still move flexibly. He had done his hair before arriving hoping that Bella would like the effort he put into not having bed hair. It was combed and styled like the old school Superman's hairstyle from the eighties just without the curly que hair in front.
Before they could leave and Bella tell him that Edward was seeing them off, Jacob scrunched his nose and beat her in saying that Edward was there. Bella was hoping that two of the most important men in her life could get along for just a little bit. Jacob looked at Bella and could tell that she was dreading things between her fiance, blegh, and him. So he decided to stay her best friend and hope for the best.
“Chica, I don't know what you did, but you certainly got our Alpha to let us be “normal” for a change.” Leah says.
“Don't thank me, thank Billy and my casserole. All of you need this.” Bella tells Leah while standing near the drink table.
Both girls stood on the outside watching the men of the Pack parade around ignoring the steamy looks and catcalls from some of the girls and even a few guys. Leah knew that if she went out there she would be able to stop everything, but she decided not to. It was time to help her Alpha and his imprint along.
As one the guys moved out to dance with their girls.
“You better get him before someone else does.” Leah says with a smirk as Embry comes and grabs her hand to pull her away and out to the dancefloor.
Bella decides that Leah was right and that maybe just maybe she could have fun tonight.
“Bells...would you like to dance? We won't do anything that will embarrass you. Can you trust me?”
“Always have trusted you, Jake. Plus, you need to have fun too.” Bella said while taking his outstretched hand.
The look in Jacob's eyes made Bella feel like the only girl in the world. But she stopped that train of thought. Jacob was meant to imprint on someone else and she was going to marry Edward. End of story…or so she thought.
Bella and Jacob danced the night away. They both had more fun and a laidback time, than either could remember. In this moment they were just 'Jake and Bells’ nothing more or less. A slow song came on and Jacob held Bella away from him. Leah and Embry smirked and danced closer to Jake and Bella. Leah “accidentally” bumped into Bella pushing her into Jacob's arms before flashing Jacob a grin as she twirled away with Embry.
After stumbling and Jacob catching her Bella looked up. Here was a man, for all intents and purposes, who have never let her down. Even when she was too clumsy to stand on her own. Jacob just smiles her smile, pulls her close and begins to imagine.
Behind his eyes he could see how their lfe was meant to be. Marriage, kids, their dads, and the Pack. Life. She was always meant for that, but she didn't see it that way. He still hoped to persuade Bella into thinking beyond today and into the future they should have.
“Bella! You and Jake look so good together! Both of you compliment each other!” Angela exclaims before Quil pulls her away.
Neither Jacob nor Bella could argue with what Angela said. They took it with a grain of salt and walked away. They both knew that it was almost time for Bella to go. The pair walked to Jacob's car.
“Angela was right you know.” Jacob began after they were seated and buckled in his car.
“And how is that?’
“I know that I've said this before, but... I am the natural path your life would have taken. It's easy as breathing between us.”
“Jacob. We've been through this..”
“I know! But, this might be my last time to say it. I love you! I'm in love with you! I love the way you're confident in the kitchen and clumsy everywhere else. How your pure heart shines even when you don't want it to. How you try to play naive just to boost others egos. There are so many things, Bella. I would never change things!”
“I'm no good for you! I'm already engaged! Save who you are for your imprint!”
“You are my imprint Bells!” Jacob says in frustration.
Jacob just sighs. ‘I had to tell her eventually.’ “It happened on the mountain after I kissed you. It was confirmed after I had gotten hurt.”
'That explains things.’ “Why didn't you say something before! You had so many times…”
“Oh, yeah I did. Right in front of our dads and your popsicle. Always an opportunity, Bella.”
“Oh, Bella is it?! Why are you mad at me? You're the one keeping this huge secret! No wonder I couldn't let you go!” Bella says to Jacob until she really thought about what she said.
“So you can't let me go, huh?? I wonder why…”
“Ugh! You still never explained about why you never said anything, Jake!”
“Because all you wanted and needed was a friend out of me. That's why! I told you that the imprint will be whatever you need. What you always needed was a friend from me! What I've always been! I just didn't notice the difference. Things haven't changed for me.”
“Sam. He is the one who noticed and helped me understand.”
“Not that I'm ungrateful, but how did Sam help?”
“He noticed the difference in how I thought. About you, patrols, the Cullens, the Pack, tribe and our dads. I was thinking as the Alpha with an imprint to protect should.”
“Yeah, I know. So now that you know. What are you going to do about it?”
“I don't know.” Bella says as she turns to look out the passenger window to think. Jacob doesn't interrupt her.
Later that night Bella still thought about what Jake said. She understood everything. She was just mad at Edward, Alice, and especially herself. She didn't know what to say anymore.
Edward came through Bella's open window. He shrugged off what Alice had told him
He had to see Bella for himself.
“My love! I'm glad that you're back!”
“How long? I greatly missed you! Bella what's wrong?”
“Everything is wrong! Tell me the truth. How long have you known about Jacob's imprint on me?”
“Oh, that silly thing. It doesn't matter. You'll be one of us soon and I can't wait.”
“It's not silly and you know it. When Edward?”
“Since the fight with Victoria and her army.”
Bella gasped as she realized why Edward was so adamant that she revealed that they were engaged. Edward knew! Alice probably did too. Now things became even more clear for Bella.
“What's wrong, love? Certainly you don't believe whatever Jacob Black has told you?”
“I do believe him and I understand a lot of things now too.”
“What, what are you saying?”
“It's over Edward. I don't want anything to do with vampires anymore. Leave and take your family with you. Do as you said and act like you never existed.”
Edward could say no more. Alice tried to tell him, but he wouldn't listen. Now he feels like he really has lost the love of his undead life. Saying no more Edward leaps out of Bella's window.
The next morning Bella calls Jacob. Thinking that something was wrong he hurridly goes to her. He could tell that something wasn't right...had changed. Jacob just didn't know what to expect.
Jacob knocks and waits for Bella to open her door. With one look Bella pulls Jacob in. Silently they walk into the kitchen. Jacob sits while Bella paces the floor.
Bella starts to speak. “No matter what you're going to be around me? Right?”
Jacob looks at Bella and hopes that she can see the truth in his eyes. “I will. Even when your heart stops beating. Even after that…”
“Well, my heart beats now. I...I want to give us a try. I could never break off from you and now I know why. Will you be my friend again?” Bella says to Jacob.
“Always. What about the Cullens? I'm sure that they won't like this.”
“It doesn't matter what they think. I told Edward to leave my life and Forks.” Bella says.
Just then a knock was heard and Jacob rushes to the door. Embry stands there trying to keep his smile away because Bella answered the door. Not willing to wait anymore Jacob asks Bella to go back while he talks with Embry. He also said that he would fill her in if he can.
Watching all of this Embry couldn't be more happy for his best friend. At Jacob's insistence Embry explained it all. There wasn't any doubt in their minds. Bella was finally a Wolf Girl and nothing will change that now.