Two Wrongs Don't Equal a Right
Despite her efforts to keep the visions of Bella at bay, one slips through and then they assault her with a fury. So when she decides to act, it's just for self-protection, because a few more of these and she may go crazy... At least that's what she'll tell Edward in her defense. I CHANGED SOMETHINGS RECENTLY PLEASE RE-READ CHAPTERS 6&7 AND NOTE THAT THEY HAVE SWITCHED; ALONG WITH THE ADDITION TO CHPTER 7!!
2. A Set of Stairs and a Door
Rating 5/5 Word Count 1401 Review this Chapter
The scent of the blood raced through my long empty veins in something akin to a human's adrenaline. The sweet aroma had my sharpened senses tingling and my nerves humming with anticipation. I was vaguely aware of Jasper crouched beside me, his lips pulled back in a feral snarl. I was barely aware as my own lips pulled back in a similar gesture. The vicious noise echoed through the valley, ricocheting off the moss covered tree trunks and causing the deer to tense, their heads shooting up.
I crouched, like a coiled spring, ready to launched myself into my feast when Bella stepped onto the porch. She shifted her weight in microscopic increments, as though the stair was made of spun sugar. The stair moaned, an eerie sound that echoed across our overgrown lawn and sent chills racing down my spine as she stepped on it. In the back of my mind I felt my butt hit the frozen earth. Pain, flashed across her face, so quickly it was hard to convince myself I hadn't imagined her mouth pulling down into a grimace and the corners of her eyes tightening.
I studied her face as she crept up the stairs, the blank mask that was once again flawless. I noticed, for the first time, the dark purple circles that underlined her numb eyes, standing out in a frightening contrast against her sallow face. My eyes traced the curve of her cheek, slowly becoming aware of how her cheekbones protruded, due to the obvious weight loss. I was, inevitably, drawn back to her empty eyes, eyes much more eerie than any creaking step.
It was so easy to conjure, in my mind an image of what those eyes had looked like before, full of a glow that she seemed to emanate and twinkling with restrained laughter. I was, in a sick way, glad for the brief flash of pain I had seen, glad to know that there was still something in there. That some fragments of Bella still existed.
The porch itself may as well have the Saharan Desert for the way she regarded it, like some huge challenge. As though the ability, the strength to cross it could define her. The trip across it was tentative and focused, she didn't spare a glance for the wicker porch swing where she had spent numerous afternoons, enfolded in Edward's arms. Somehow she was capable of avoiding this reminder, but I was not.
My eyes were pulled to the swing as though by a magnetic force. I watched as the ghosts of Edward and Bella that my memory had conjured laughed in the swing, a weak afternoon sun that wasn't really there reflecting off Bella's lustrous mahogany locks. Edwards regarded a blushing Bella with a soft smile and glowing eyes before kissing her forehead. Bella looking up at him with a smile lingering around the edges of her lips murmuring something which led to him laughing openly. A laugh I hadn't heard until that point and had only heard since then when he was in Bella's presence.
The memory switched, as Bella reached the door, her fingers gently touching it surface, delicately following the grain. Edward was leading her up the same steps she had just traversed by her hand, anticipation lighting his eyes. Bella trailed behind him, nervous. He stopped directly in front of the door, his eyes catching hers reassuring, His hand giving hers a gentle squeeze before he opened the door and led her through to introduce her to us for the first time.
Bella had reached the door handle, her fingers were circling the worn bronze, clutching gently at the knob. And she froze once again. My frustration at her indecisiveness was almost unbearable. I took a deep breath to calm myself. I felt Jasper's fingers, infinitesimally warmer due to his recent hunt, touching my face, cupping my cheek in his palm.
“Alice?” I opened my eyes slowly to look at him. “What was it? Is everything alright?” He was asking simply out of courtesy, he knew that something was wrong, he could feel my pain, the deep sadness Bella had conjured in me.
“No, it's not alright. It's Bella.” I didn't need to be an empathetic to feel his guilt, he thought this was all his fault, but I was fairly certain it would have happened no matter what. Jasper just acted as the catalyst for the break in Bella and Edward's impasse.
“Alice, there's nothing you can do-”
“You think that helps? Knowing that I've let this go too far to be stopped by any of my actions. Knowing that solving this problem is in the hands of our masochistic brother and broken Bella?” My tone was not accusatory but rather hopeless, resigned.
“Bella's broken?” His tone was dubious, but I couldn't imagine why, he had the felt the depth of her feelings for Edward. He shouldn't be surprised by the depth of her hurt when he left.
“Not just broken, shattered. Jasper we basically killed her.” I could feel tears that would never fall welling up in my eyes.
“She will survive Alice, as will Edward. You know as well as I that.....” But his voice was fading, his reassuring words losing their pronunciation and melding into a quiet background murmur.
Bella was turning the door knob. Her breathing was ragged, and I was astonished to see unrestrained pain blooming in her dark eyes. Her facade had fallen away abruptly, leaving only pure, unbridled agony. She crumpled to her knees on the hardwood floor of the entrance way that Esme had polished numerous times. A choked sob working it's way out of her throat as she wrapped her arms around her torso.
It changed, she was once again at the door, she wretched her fingers off the handle. Spun around and ran across the porch in an unrestrained show of panic and pain. Her features twisted and wild. She trips on the first step and then she's tumbling, limbs limp like a doll down the wooden stairs. Hollow thumps sound. I cry out, as though I can cease Bella's descent. Pain laces my voice, and all I can do is watch as Bella's head slams against the wood with a loud bang that enforces it's finality.
Bella's hand is frozen on the door knob, she slowly pulls it back towards her body. She takes three slow steps to the left, and begins to rub a circle on thw indow free of the thick layer of dust. She leans forwards and loosed her balance as a board in the porch gives way, leaving one foot encased. She wheels around in a wild panic, trying to escape.
She's back in the living room, tears rolling down cheeks that have long been leeched of all color. She staggers to her feet.
She's continuing to fall down the steps her face contorted in a pain less fierce than her pain in the previous vision. Than the pain Edward caused.
She's desperatly trying to get out, she pulls, pulls. Her foot breaks free as she's pulling and she goes tumbling backwards through the window.
She's crying in the living room, murmuring his name.
She's laying on the final step, blood pooling around her head.
She was changing her mind so rapidly that so I was simply getting flashes, none of them positive. Then she decided.
She turned away from the door, and my breath caught in my throat, waiting for the tumble to ensue. But with tears silently cascading down her alabaster cheeks she slowly, hunched over and weakened like an old woman aged by an unbearable grief that no person her age should be forced to know, descended the stairs. She trudged through the grass, the tears still fall down her blank face, and climbed back into her truck. Turned the key and drove away.
I was once again in Alaska, though I had been transferred into Jasper's arms and from the swift breeze I could assume we were running. I turned my face into his chest, cried so fiercely I though tears might actually come out.
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