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Playing his piano always did help Edward think. Oneshot.

Thought I'd post some good old Edwardian angst. :D

1. Selfish

Rating 4.5/5   Word Count 1030   Review this Chapter



"I don't want you to leave," I mumbled pathetically, staring down again.

"... Don't worry. I'm essentially a selfish creature. I crave your company too much to do what I should."

-- Twilight, page 233


‘Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live; it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.'

-- Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900)

x x x

‘Why did you do it? Why didn't you just let the venom spread? By now I would be just like you...'

He was furious.

‘It just seems logical...a man and a woman have to be equal...as in, one of them can't always be swooping in to save the other one.'

He felt desperate.

You don't know what you're asking.'

He felt intoxicated.

‘I may not die now...but I'm going to die sometime. Every minute of the day I get closer...and I'm going to get old.'

He was trapped.

‘That's how it's supposed to happen. How it should happen. How it would happen if I didn't exist-and I shouldn't exist.'

He tormented himself.

All of this and more he poured onto the smooth ivory keys, his long fingers fluttering rapidly over the length of the piano. The result was a heart-breaking tune that echoed sharply off the crème walls, allowing his family to see a vividly painted portrait that all too well displayed his tortured state of mind. No one had the courage to approach him; he was lost to a dilemma that was as intricately woven as the composition that was playing out underneath his strong hands.

‘I can't always be Lois Lane. I want to be Superman too.'

The song was soon completely wild; the tempo rising rapidly as he practically bashed the keys. He couldn't stop...he had to keep going. He had to reach the end. Any other alternative seemed inconceivable.

‘And the pain?'

The moonlight poured through the room, bathing him in its eerie glow, his skin's marble texture merely enhanced in the spotlight. The topaz shade of his eyes contrasted wickedly with that of the moon, giving him a rather sinister appearance-an appearance that perfectly matched his current mood.

‘Three days. Big deal.'

He just...couldn't do it. The familiar sound of her screaming his name in agony as James slowly drained her still remained fresh in his mind. But, as ridiculous as it may of sounded, that wasn't what really concerned him...it was numerous things, actually. It was the thought of her tingly and warm skin going cold; the thought that he could never see her rosy cheeks flush when she was embarrassed or uneasy ever again. It was the possibility of crippling her emotionally by ripping her from her parents and friends forever, only to her torture herself for the remainder of eternity with the ‘what ifs' had she remained a part of their lives. It was the thought of destroying her soul...of destroying his beautiful, clumsy, stubborn, kind Bella and depriving her of the heaven he knew she so richly deserved when her natural time came.

But the more self-centered monstrosity buried deep within his subconscious reminded him that all those worries, even combined, paled in comparison to another plaguing issue-one that he himself wanted to burn in hell for even considering...

‘No-the very worst feeling...knowing that I couldn't stop. Believing that I was going to kill you myself.'

What if her scent changed?

Or even worse...disappeared completely?

The thought was so unbearable, that his nimble fingers seemed to stumble, delaying the flow of the melody a few seconds, but not enough to snap him out of his trance. The song soon regained its chaotic and frenzied pace as he inwardly chastised himself once again for letting his thoughts wonder to such a shallow level. He loved her. Truly he did. But that horrible devilinside of him that craved her blood...that found that perfume embedded in her skin so mouth-watering and irresistible...he knew that it would be outraged if it were to happen. And he hated it.

‘So where does that leave us?'

But that only brought him back to square one...and his so-called "solution" couldn't even piece itself together in his head, let alone into a coherent, spoken sentence. It was far too painful to think that he could expect Bella to give up so much. But he knew...he had known all along, actually-that, in the end, he would be the one to take her life from her. He would take away every, single, one of her human minutes and replace them with an eternity. He lamented, suffered and tortured himself over it but still he...

‘An impasse.'

Eventually, it would happen. The barriers that only seemed to prevent him from having her for the rest of forever were of his own creation and would be removed as soon as he wanted them to be. He knew though...the monster knew that he couldn't resist for much longer, but like hell he was going down without a fight. He'd be kicking and screaming until the very end.

‘Even if in the end it's a pointless fight...'

He was so stupid! Stupid, stupid, stupid...

But he really, really wanted her...

No. No. No. No!

He was startled when a pair of slender, marble arms wrapped themselves around his waist and drew him into a gentle embrace. He fumbled his song, pressing too many keys at once and the harsh clash of the chords finally snapped him out of his miserable reverie.

"Hush now, Edward," Esme soothed gently in his ear. ‘You need to stop being so hard on yourself. It'll all work out in time.'

"I don't have time!" he hissed anxiously, rubbing his temples in a familiar sign of frustration.

His adoptive mother only smiled sadly. ‘It's dawn. Bella will be waking up soon, you should go. And don't worry so much because when the time comes, you'll know what to do.'

He gave no verbal reply. He simply nodded. Without another word, she left him alone again with his thoughts.

"I'm so selfish..." he murmured, his voice bounding off the walls angrily.

Just like the song before it.