October 8, 2010
Bella and her shield …
Apparently Edward only agreed to return under the condition that Bella would protect his mind. So, “The Song That Never Ends” was out unless we sang it aloud, and that would annoy more than just Edward, which was not our intent. (At least, not mine – but I can’t speak for Emmett!)
ETW was nowhere near over yet, so we had to get more creative, and work with this new advantage of him not being able to hear our thoughts. After a quick huddle in the backyard (whispering quietly enough that nobody else could her us), we agreed on a few different ideas.
First, we all wandered nonchalantly into the living room and flopped down in a rough circle around Edward, facing him but not looking at him yet. Every 35 seconds, we each scooted a few millimeters closer to where he was relaxing on the couch with Bella and Ness. Soon, he noticed that we were a lot nearer to him, but after eying us suspiciously, he just rolled his eyes and ignored us.
After a few more minutes, Rose, Emmett, Jasper, Jacob and I were all clustered around the couch, staring into Edward’s eyes as he shifted uncomfortably and sighed. We kept inching closer and closer. Finally, when he had five noses pressing against his face, Bella had been shoved (gently) out of the way and Ness was rolling with laughter, he gave up and cracked a smile.
“All right, you’ve made your point,” he said with some difficulty, as he was talking around my chin. “You got me. Now, can I please just enjoy a day at home with my family?”
“Of course you can, Edward,” I assented, not backing away.
“Yeah, man, we’re not gonna stop you,” Emmett added innocently, almost biting Edward’s ear in the process.
Jacob said nothing, just let out a long, deep sigh directly into Edward’s face (I held my breath to keep out the stench).
Rosalie, whose cheekbones were smushed against my temple, laughed mockingly and then grimaced as Jacob’s scent assaulted her. Jasper’s smile was about a mile wide as he felt the emotions in the room.
“Guys, come on,” Bella protested, unable to hold back her own laughter. “You can’t just stay there all day …”
“Oh yes we can,” we all responded in unison, making Edward flinch slightly. He frowned, and then decided to ignore us.
We had planned for that, of course. As he attempted to make idle conversation with Bella, we began a round-robin of evil laughter, almost inaudible at first but then louder, and louder, and louder, until we were shouting our best malicious laughs right into Edward’s face.
He finally lost his cool and shoved Emmett (who, admittedly, was much louder than anyone else) off the back of the couch, then jumped over it himself and crouched in a defensive position as if daring any of us to come nearer. Instead of doing that, I gave the signal and we all shut up at once.
“There,” Edward sighed with relief. “That’s much better.”
One by one, my co-conspirators and I filed out of the room without so much as a backward glance, leaving two giggling females and one very annoyed brother in the living room. We gave him about 20 minutes to lull himself into a false sense of security, and then the next game began.
Since I still have so much work to do on the upcoming birthday party (gifts don’t wrap themselves, you know!), I had come up with a game that only involved one of us at a time. It was pretty simple. The way it worked was that we would all go about our business, except for the one who was “it.” That person would stand or sit three inches behind and three inches to the right of Edward, and copy everything he said and did. I called it the Clone Game.
Whenever Edward acknowledged the clone’s presence by begging them to stop, it was the next person’s turn. So, for example, when I heard Edward telling Rosalie off, I jumped over the banister, walked over to Rose and tapped her shoulder. She immediately left the room, and I took her place, sitting cross-legged behind and to the right of Edward, who was playing Clue with Bella and Renesmee.
It only took him seven and a half minutes to get sick of me, probably because I do an extremely accurate impression of his voice. So Jacob sauntered into the room and tagged me, and I left to stack all my gifts and cross them off the list as I went.
There had been a sale at Tiffany … okay, there are never any sales at Tiffany. Whatever, I was there, and they had a ton of cute things I wanted to give Ness, and since I didn’t have to pay for shipping it was kind of like a sale. So anyway, I counted each of the little robin’s-egg blue boxes to make sure they were all there, and then moved on to the larger items, pausing to straighten ribbons and fluff bows as I worked.
I had all of her birthday gifts accounted for, and was having a hard time trying to convince myself not to add her Christmas gifts to round things out, when I heard Edward totally lose it. Oops, was it really that late already? Time flies when you’re blah blah blah …
We all converged in the living room, arranging ourselves into a V-shaped line, our arms crossed and our best glares leveled at Edward. He was still flailing his arms about and shouting things like, “Even a moment’s peace!”
As our appointed leader (because she wouldn’t let anyone else do it), Rosalie interrupted him. “We have demands,” she told him bluntly. That shut him up; he stopped mid-sentence with his mouth open and stared incredulously at her, then all of us.
“What the – what? Demands?” he demanded (tee-hee), pulling himself together.
“Our demands are threefold,” Rose informed him in her best threatening voice. She held up her hand and began to count them off. “Firstly, you admit to having been a total pain in the ah – err – neck lately. Secondly,” she continued, raising her voice to talk over his protests, “you apologize for having been a pain in the neck. Thirdly, you agree that if in future you should return to your deviant behavior, we all have the right to punish you accordingly. Like this,” she clarified, waving her hand vaguely to indicate the ETW crew.
Well, he sputtered and fumed, but we all stood our ground and glared menacingly, following him with our eyes as he paced back and forth, until he gave in.
“Fine!” he cried in exasperation, throwing his hands in the air. “You win. I agree to your infantile demands.”
Silently, we waited for his penance. The silence grew until Renesmee, of all people, pointed out, “But you didn’t do what they said, Daddy.”
“That’s okay,” Bella soothed, squeezing his hand comfortingly.
“No, it’s not,” Rosalie snapped. “Those are our terms, and until he says the words – no deal.”
Edward’s jaw tightened, as he scanned each of our faces to read our determination. When he got to me, he shot me a pleading look, but instead of giving in, I just grinned widely at him. I was having such fun!
“Arg!” he shouted to the ceiling, clutching his head in both hands. “Fine! I admit to having been a pain in the neck! I apologize for being a pain in the neck! I agree that if I act like a pain in the neck again you can follow me around singing stupid songs in your head and imitating me all day!”
Our side of the room burst into applause, and Edward, shaking his head, finally started to laugh with us.
“You were way more annoying than I could ever be,” I heard him telling Emmett as they did mock-punches at each other.
Anyway, so there was no torture today, only party prep – Esme and Bella are the designated cake-bakers, and boy, do they have their work cut out for them. I’m the decorator (duh) so I’d better go and check on them! I’ll write all about the party when it’s over, I promise.
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