Long ago and far away, I worked at a bookstore. It was there where I met the man who is now my husband. But this isn't a story about that.
This is a story about a guy I'm going to call Edward, even though his name isn't Edward in real life. Those of you who have ever heard of TWILIGHT might see some parallels. Or not. I mean, my guy wasn't actually a vampire --except in the metaphorical Joss Whedon sense.
So, Edward. I met him my first night on the job. One of my coworkers was showing me around. He took me over to Edward, the stockroom manager, and introduced us. I said, "Hi!"
Edward muttered, "Hi."
The guy who was showing me around laughed and said, "Don't feel bad. Edward just doesn't like new people."
Edward said, "You're right. I hate 'em!"
I kept my distance from him for months. Because he hated me, right? I'd never done anything to him, but he hated me! Good thing his shift always ended right as mine was starting. But then, he was switched to my shift. Talk about stressful. Ugh. Somehow, someway, I came to realize that whole hating-new-people conversation hadn't been about me at all, but about Edward's annoyance at the guy who'd done the introducing. We started talking. We became friends. Then, as time went on, somehow, someway, I decided I was in desperately in love with him.
He was a "bad" guy. A promiscuous, drug using klepto. But those things didn't matter. I loved him because he was so beautiful, so amazing, so perfect. I mean, he was a guitarist in, like, a grunge-type band, but he read lots of books and was smart when he wasn't too stoned. And he'd buy me french fries and I'd eat them even though I didn't like french fries! And he'd steal gifts for me sometimes and let me take breaks whenever I wanted. It was obvious that we belonged together. Why didn't he just hurry up and love me back????
And then, after two years of waiting (and never having told him how I felt), he totally wanted to be my boyfriend! I then admitted that after I'd stopped thinking that he hated me, he'd been the only one I'd wanted. That I wanted to be with him more than I'd ever wanted anything. He was The One For Me. He was a little blown away at the intensity of my feelings at first. In a good way, though. I think he felt like kind of a loser after his previous girlfriend left him, so this was a very welcome change.
Our epic love affair was good. Great, even. Crazy-intense and wonderful in every way.
Until three weeks later when it wasn't. Edward's daily marijuana habit didn't bother me. But the cocaine kind of did. Especially when he decided he wanted me use it with him. I can't say I wasn't curious, that I didn't maybe a little tiny bit want to try it. I couldn't, though. You see, at age thirteen, I'd read a SWEET VALLEY HIGH book where a girl named Regina died after snorting two lines of coke.
So, I told him "no." Repeatedly. Meanwhile, he was high and crying and pleading and telling me he loved me and he was scared that I was going to leave him. If I snorted the coke, he'd know I really loved him like I claimed. (I am not making this up! Yes, truth is more ridiculous than fiction.) I said if he really loved me, he wouldn't try to pressure me into doing something I kept saying I didn't want to do. Neither of us would bend on this.
And that's when it was over. I wasn't willing to die Regina Morrow style for him and I was furious that he'd expected me to. And he felt betrayed because I'd told him I'd been so in love with him for so long, but I wouldn't do this small thing to prove it.
Maybe that's why the Edward in TWILIGHT isn't all that for me. I mean, I never read on in the series, and I highly doubt there's a scene where Edward begs Bella to do coke with him to prove her love. But from what I did see in the first book, there were similarities in the relationship. Especially the way Bella was so enamoured with Edward and thought he was so beautiful, amazing, perfect, etc.
I actually got the chance to be with my "beautiful, amazing, perfect" guy, once upon a time for those three weeks. I don't regret any of it, but I would never want to experience it again. Not in real life and not vicariously through Bella Swan/Stephenie Meyer.