Set after the Second Fateful Day - Edward tries to get a certain forbidden human out of his mind, with Rosalie and Alice just too happy to interrupt him.
1. Rebellious Mind
Rating 5/5 Word Count 1195 Review this Chapter
“Edward?” I didn’t look up. I didn’t look at all – using music to drown out my thoughts and those of others while trying to relax was the closest thing I could ever get to sleep. Whatever Rosalie needed, it would wait. She probably just wanted me to help her with something on the car that Emmett just couldn’t do for some reason, and while we all loved our cars, she didn’t need hers right this moment.
“Edward.” Her voice came again, but not as faintly. I was very seldom surprised anymore at what my hearing could pick up, even through incredibly loud piano solos. I wondered how much longer it would take for Rosalie to understand that I would not respond. It would probably be a long time. She was very persistent.
“EDWARD! Darn it!” She finally unplugged my headphones, effectively stopping the blaring sounds short. Damn the modern convenience of CD players. I mused for a moment that whoever had thought up the idea of unplugging the headphones shorting the sound should be both applauded and slapped. I sat up and removed the comfortable speakers from my ears, irritated. Apparently, Rosalie felt the same way. Her thoughts were a raging mess that I didn’t feel like sorting through at the moment. They felt as if she were truly shouting into my ears. It would probably stop as soon as she walked out of the room. She had a tendency to be flighty with her emotions – I didn’t know if I would ever understand her mood swings or the rationale behind them.
“Do you need something?” I asked. I still didn’t want to dig through her shifting thoughts to find the answer. It wouldn’t have taken very long, but I had reservations about invading my siblings’ minds and I was more grumpy than impatient with Rosalie at the moment.
She sighed, sounding agitated. “Would you please start acting normally?” I was silent, though her thoughts had finally settled. I don’t know what’s wrong, since you’re still being too stubborn to tell the rest of us, but you’re worrying Carlisle and Esme. A few more angry mutterings trailed through her mind. A hundred years of listening to people think had dulled the fascination at being able to hear peoples’ voices in the echoes of their cogitations.
“Could you please leave me alone if you have nothing for me to do?” I asked. I normally wasn’t this rude, even to Rosalie, but my patience and emotion had been worn to the breaking point over the past few weeks.
She frowned. You have been absolutely insufferable lately, she steamed mentally. Verbally, she replied, “Would you at least turn the music down? I could hear it from downstairs.” This revelation didn’t surprise me, considering the enhanced hearing that we had.
I murmured, “I’ll try.” Not for her, but for Carlisle. He couldn’t fully understand me at the moment – only Emmett came close to it, and he still wondered at how long I had held off – but I didn’t want to make him feel that his concern was reasonable. He would be right no matter what, but I did not want to admit it yet.
Rosalie tried to get more than monosyllabic answers from me for a while more, and finally stormed off, slamming my door so hard that it immediately bounced back out of its frame, shaking on its hinges. I winced, making a mental note to repair – or possibly replace – the door. I couldn’t figure out why she was so angry, or acting so immaturely; at least she had retained enough control not to completely rip the door down. I chalked it up to Rosalie being Rosalie and turned off my CD player.
I still wanted to listen to music, and loudly, but the interruption gave me a reason to stand up and find something a bit more grating to concentrate on. The piano had not worked so well, anyways. It was hard to block something from my mind, and it usually took all my focus to do so. I walked to my music collection on the walls. So much to choose from, and plenty of time to listen to it. I started with 70s punk rock – no romance involved, and plenty of thrashing guitars to drown out my mind. However, I couldn’t find a single album that appealed to me.
Need some help? I heard Alice’s mind call from my doorway. I nodded, giving up my own search. Alice already knew what I would pick, of that I was sure. There was no reason to prolong it by fiddling about on my own. She walked up beside me, easily skimming her hand to the rack of current CDs and tapes. I tried to see her mental image of what record it was, but she blocked me by thinking of reciting the alphabet backwards. Alice could still stun me at times with her clever ways to stop my seeing her mind. “Here.” She handed me a CD case of American Idiot by Green Day.
“This?” I asked. She took the album from me and placed it in my stereo, adjusting the volume so I couldn’t entirely blow my ears out with the sounds. At first the choice seemed odd, but after a while, I realized I hadn’t listened to this in quite a while and it was soothing in its own ironic way. We both slumped on the couch for the first few songs, she much more relaxed than I. I appreciated our special bond. She didn’t often understand me any more than I did her, but she was much more in tune with me than any of the others. (Well, Carlisle and Esme excepted.)
As “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” started, I reached over to the stereo and skipped through the next few songs. I remembered not liking them. Plus, “Boulevard” moved very slowly, not enough to grind my mind away, and “St. Jimmy” was altogether too long. After skipping one more, a nice punk guitar line started, and I settled back, satisfied.
“She’s a rebel/She’s a saint/She’s the salt of the earth/and she’s dangerous!”
My eyes snapped open. This was not what I had planned on. Nothing alike and yet nothing different. Would I never get this image of Isabella Swan away from my mind? I angrily flicked the sound to the lowest it could go while we could still hear it, groaning. No matter how hard I attempted to wipe my thoughts clean, even the smallest things reminded me of her. Thinking of her was risky. Alice looked at me with concern, mentally asking, What’s wrong? I thought of Bella once again, of her possible death at my hands… at what we could have together could I control myself and never have her know our secrets. What we could have had if I was not part of that secret. I growled again, curling into a ball. I could tell Alice had left by hearing her thoughts grow fainter, but still, I had been glad for the slight comfort she had brought. It had been a very long few weeks.