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Edward never came back after he left Bella in New Moon. Bella went to college, married Jacob, had a daughter. When Bella's grandaughter and Edward find each other in Forks, can Edward overcome his memories and devote himself to a new love?
It's a tired old plot, but this is the first time I've ever written Twilight fanfiction, so please indulge me.
5. Chapter 5
Word Count 2118
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A week passes, and I fall more and more in love with Izzie Nye. Everything she does is somehow perfect, somehow wonderful. I never tire of watching her, graceful for a human, walk, toss her hair, play volleyball, apply lip gloss – everything. Does she feel the same? We’ve never had a Bella-esque confession of our true feelings. I have never yet told her I love her. I don’t want to scare her off. After all, what kind of man tells you he loves you after knowing you for a month? The answer is: the vampire kind, but she doesn’t know that, and I can’t bring myself to tell her. I’m careful to give her no clues, no reason to suspect I hear thoughts. But I know it can’t go on. Our kisses stay gentle and cautious; even so, she must wonder what is wrong with me that I’m always so cold. The rest of the school considers that we’re in a relationship, but she never introduces me to her father, and I certainly don’t take her to meet my family.
But today, Izzie’s not in school. I’m panicky – what if she’s sick? What if she’s hurt herself? What if she’s had a fight with her father and is moving to France with her mother? I know I’m being absurd, but I can’t stop myself. I call her after school, asking if I can go over.
“Izzie? It’s Edward. Are you okay?”
“Oh, yes. Just fine.” There’s something in her tone that I can’t quite decipher. Something bad.
“Are you sick? Can I come see you?”
“Well, I think you could definitely say I’m not feeling well. And yes, I think it would be a very good idea for you to come over here.”
“All right. See you in a minute.”
“Bye.” She hangs up without waiting for me to respond. Now I’m really worried – what is going on?
I drive to Izzie’s house, leap out of the car, and am pressing the doorbell in seconds. The door opens quickly. Izzie stands in the threshold, arms tightly folded. She looks upset, confused, something else I can’t name.
“Good afternoon,” I say, brushing her cheek with a kiss.
“Follow me,” she says, her voice taught with restrained emotion. She turns on her heel and leads me up the stairs to her bedroom, a place I have never, to her knowledge, visted.
She sits on the edge of her bed and picks several pieces of paper scattered on the sheet.
“Can you explain these?” she asks, her voice so hoarse with emotion it’s like a whisper. She hands them to me and I nearly faint when I see what they are.
How could I be so stupid? How? How could I have forgotten something so fundamentally important?
One of the floorboards in my room had been weak ever since we moved in. Every time I stepped on in the wrong place there were horrible creaks and I could feel the board wobbling and loose beneath my feet. Still, it had been quite a shock this morning when my foot had gone right through the wood – it must have been termite-infested in addition to being loose. I hadn’t hurt myself, but I was surprised to see several objects beneath the broken board. Curious, I had fished them out and looked through them.
The first thing I pulled out was a picture of Edward. It couldn’t be anyone but him – he was unmistakable. The second was another picture of Edward – and me? But I had never taken a picture with Edward! After my first shock, I realized that the girl in the picture had straight hair, and I hadn’t bothered with straightening mine since coming to Forks. A few more pictures of Edward, of the straight-haired girl. A pair of plane vouchers, dated – I nearly fell off the chair – 2006. A CD in a clear jewelcase. I couldn’t understand it, couldn’t wrap my head around these long-forgotten objects, hidden beneath my floorboard. Of one thing I was certain: these objects were clues to the mystery that was Edward Cullen, and it was time he explained himself.
When I handed him the photographs and vouchers, his eyes, a golden topaz when he arrived, darkened to pure onyx, like a light had been turned off behind them. He looked up at me, and his face was enough to tell me that he knew. He was upset and panicked, but he could explain those pictures and I was going to make him do it if it killed me.
“Well?” I asked. “And don’t try to tell me you don’t understand. I can see it in your eyes. Don’t lie to me.”
“I can’t tell you,” he said quietly.
“Excuse me?” I said.
“It’s not allowed,” he said miserably. “I’m probably supposed to kill you to protect the secret.”
“Who isn’t allowing you?” I persisted. He gave me an unhappy look, with some slow anger beneath the unhappiness.
“You can’t tell me that either?”
“No,” he said. “But can’t you guess?”
“Guess? All I have to go one is the fact that you have apparently been the same age since 2006!”
“Long before that, actually,” he said. “Think 1918.” His mouth drooped.
“I can’t believe this,” I murmured. “And please tell me that’s not me,” I pointed to the picture of Edward and the girl. A spasm of pain crossed his face.
“No,” he said quietly. “That’s not you.”
“Then who is she?”
“Was,” he said. “She’s dead. Her name was Bella. Bella Swan.”
In a heart-stopping moment, I understand. “My…grandmother?” I breathed.
“She was seventeen when I met her,” he said dreamily. “I’d never been in love before. Neither had she. We said we’d love each other forever. Then I left her.”
“Why?” I asked, not quite able to believe all this, but not able to disbelieve it either.
He looked directly into my eyes.
“For many reasons,” he said slowly. “All of them, perhaps, wrong. She aged, you see, as I do not. For her to stay with me, she would have had to become one of us.” He smiled, but there was no mirth, no joy behind it. “One of the eternally damned. How could I do that to her? And besides – it was dangerous for her to be around us. There was one incident that made up my mind that I could put her in danger no longer. That we all had to go, because I could not bear to hurt her.”
“What danger do you mean?” I demanded.
“The danger that we would…slip.” I realized that he was not going to tell me anything more specific.
“I put those things beneath the floorboards, the night we left. I knew I couldn’t leave anything as I reminder of my existence, but I couldn’t bear to take them away entirely. So I left them beneath the floorboards.”
“This was her room,” I said quietly. “She looked very much like me, in that picture at least.”
“Yes,” Edward said. “There are other similarities as well, though you cannot sense them.”
I didn’t know what to think. It was all so…ridiculous? Impossible? Neither of those two, but something related. But there was something I was determined to get to the bottom of.
“You’re immortal,” I said. He confirmed this with a nod. “And you can make humans like you. Which you call making them eternally damned. You say that just being around you is a danger to humans.” To all of this he nodded. “Your eyes change color, your never in school when it’s sunny, – do you really sparkle in the sunlight? – you never eat, you’re impossibly pale and frigidly cold. Any other symptoms?”
“Yes.” He hesitated. “It won’t help, but I need to tell you anyway…Some of us have additional gifts. I can read minds.”
I screamed. Edward in my head, reading my thoughts! My worst nightmare!
“But not yours, for some reason,” he continued. “I couldn’t read Bella’s, either. It must be genetic.”
I didn’t entirely believe him; he could just be trying to placate me. Very clearly, I thought: I AM GOING TO COMMIT SUICIDE. I thought that ought to startle a reaction out of him. However, if he heard it, he didn’t show it. Since there was nothing I could do about this, I returned to me analysis.
“Well, getting back to figuring out what you are, all of those symptoms plus the ability to read minds,” I said. “Adds up to…” I fell silent. I wasn’t sure what it added up to. Mentally, I reviewed the symptoms. Something was telling me that the question I needed to ask him was “what sort of danger?” but I doubted he’d answer.
“What kind of danger?” I asked. “Danger for our lives, our wits, what?”
“Lives, certainly. Although some of us will drive you crazy as well.” That sounded like a joke, but I regarded it cautiously. Who knew what was possible?
Down in the murk of my subconscious, something was stirring. What was it? The name – or idea, or whatever – was hovering just out my mental reach. I racked my brains, and came up with the image of a pale, black-cloaked man, mouth stained with blood, standing above the drained corpse of a young girl. Or, the same man, but the girl was still, well, not alive, but still animated, standing beside him, her skin as pale as his. I knew what the word was too: vampire. It fit the danger, the ability to make humans like themselves, and the eternal damnation, but nor much else. Vampires were supposed to sleep in coffins and disintegrate into a pile of dust in the sunlight (although, who knows, maybe he did disintegrate in the sunlight). They were supposed to have fangs. None of the other symptoms fit. However, literature has been known to get things wrong.
I looked at the striking boy lounging on my carpet. The room looked dull in comparison too him, like his very presence leached it of beauty. I could believe he wasn’t human, that he was immortal, but a vampire? Impossible. More like an angel.
“You can’t be,” I said aloud.
“Can’t be what?” He asked. His eyes searched my face, looking for a clue to my cryptic statement. Maybe he couldn’t read my mind after all. I looked deep into his eyes and tried to find the answer there.
The sound of a car coming down the street broke my reverie. I rushed to the window and recognized me dad’s car. Yikes. Dad probably wouldn’t be too pleased to find me and Edward alone in my room.
“Shit,” I said. Then, grabbing my notebook and the closest textbook, I seized Edward’s wrist and pulled him towards the door.
It was like pulling a boulder. He didn’t move the slightest millimeter.
“What are we doing?” He asked, getting up in response another fruitless tug.
“We are going downstairs to study in the kitchen before my father gets here,” I said, going down the stairs two at a time. We burst into the kitchen. I threw Edward into a chair and myself into another, flipped open the notebook and textbook and began to take notes on the page it opened to.
The front door opened and I took a few deep breaths to calm my racing heart. I didn’t want to look weird when Dad got here.
“Izz?” he called. “You want to go out tonight? I was thinking – oh, hello.”
“This is Edward,” I said. “We’re doing a chemistry project together.”
“Oh. Not due tomorrow, is it?” He smiled gently. He knew how I procrastinated.
“No. It’s due – next week.”
“Good.” He gave Edward a long look. “Will you two be working long?”
“Well, I think we’ve made pretty good start,” he said, standing up. “Izzie?”
“Yeah. We can get the rest done later,” I said.
“Alright. See you tomorrow. Bye, Mr. Nye.”
“Bye,” I said. Edward was out the front door in a snap, leaving only a lingering sweet smell.
My father turned to me and gave me an odd look. He opened his mouth, hesitated a second, then said, “Well, how about going out?”
“Let me get my purse,” I said wearily