Memories - Edward's Story
Edward Masen was dying. His last few days were spent in a hospital bed, awaiting his death. Dr. Cullen rescued the young boy and gave him new life. When mysteries in Edward's old life arise, he sets out to find out the truth. Will Edward's visit back to Chicago reveal any missing pieces to his past?
I plan on this being about Edward's life both before and after he was changed. I plan on going further than the Sylvia situation and moving on to include Edward's first impressions of the other vampires as they are welcomed into the Cullen family, as well as the Cullen's treaty with the werewolves in Forks. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy it!
3. The Influenza Epidemic
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I arrived at the hospital at seven-thirty; I had run clear across town in only five minutes.
I burst through the door and urgently addressed the young lady at the counter.
“Where are Edward and Elizabeth Masen? I must see them at once.”
She stared at me for a moment and then responded.
“They are just through there,” she pointed a finger.
“They’re with Dr. Cullen-”
Before she could finish speaking, I had flown through the door and charged down the hall toward my parents.
“Sir- wait! Sir! You can’t go in there!” I heard her call after me. I didn’t care; I had to see my parents.
I walked down the long hallway, pausing at each of the three doorways to make sure I didn’t pass their room.
I came to the large room at the end of the hall and gasped. There were almost a hundred beds, nearly all full of sick, invalid victims of this Spanish flu.
I cursed under my breath.
How could so many people have fallen prey to this sickness? The beds were full of children, some as young as two, lying there, crying out for help, but receiving no attention.
The air was heavy as I made the transition from the hallway to the room. I needed to find my mother and father. I didn’t know who this Dr. Cullen was, I had never met him.
I received quite a few stares and looks of disgust as I walked through the rows of beds, searching for my parents.
I looked for several minutes and finally found them lying on cots in the corner. I walked to them and saw a man hunched over my mother.
Upon my approach, he turned and outstretched his right hand.
I shook his hand. He had a very firm grip; like clutching stone.
“I’m Dr. Carlisle Cullen.”
I was absolutely stunned. This man looked like he belonged on the throne in palace or a castle in some distant country. His voice had a velvet, silky tone to it. His features were absolutely perfect, they looked strangely angelic. His golden eyes were mesmerizing, and his pale skin tone complemented the golden blonde color in his hair perfectly. He almost didn’t seem human in a way. I found it strange to think, but this man was … beautiful.
I shook off my thoughts and listened to his diagnosis.
“Mr. Masen, I am not going to lie to you. Your parents are not well. I would give them another month to live, if we can keep them here and give them access to all the medicine they will need. There is a small chance they will survive the flu, but without the medicine, they will be dead by the end of the week. I will do all I can to help them. Do I have your trust?”
He stuck his hand out and I shook it again, once again noting the resemblance to a stone sculpture.
“Would you like me to bed you down here to be close to them? Or will you be spending your nights at home?”
“Here,” I mumbled almost inaudibly. I was surprised he heard me.
He turned and dashed away to make preparations for me to stay somewhere in the hospital.
I walked over to the bedside and grasped my mother’s hand; her eyes fluttered open.
“How long?” My voiced sounded hard compared to hers. I knew she couldn’t have caught the flu in an hour.
“One week. F-forgive me for not telling you; I didn’t want you worrying about me. I am in Dr. Cullen’s care now.”
Why would she have kept her health from me? I was angry, not only at her, but at this entire flu epidemic. It was claiming the lives of so many people, even children. My parents could have been its next victims.
“Did you ask Sylvia?”
I shook my head and mumbled that I had not. I was too preoccupied to think of anything about my own future.
I looked up and saw that my mother had drifted off to sleep as we spoke. I stood up and moved to my father’s cot.
He looked up at me and smiled a weak smile.
“Why did you not ask Sylvia? Were you nervous?”
I shook my head again and proceeded to explain that I was in the middle of asking her when Billy interrupted to give me the terrible news.
He chuckled a laugh that was just a shadow of what it would have been a week ago.
His expression changed in a moment, he appeared very serious. I could tell by the look on his face that the next thing he was going to say was very important.
“Edward, when I go, you inherit everything. The house, the furniture, everything.”
I tried interrupting him, but he spoke over me.
“Edward.” His voice and face were stern.
“It is important that I tell you this now, before it’s too late.”
I nodded and he continued to tell me of all the responsibilities I would have when they were dead. He eventually grew tired and stopped talking.
I stayed by his bedside for another few moments. Then I began looking around and taking in some of the horrible scenes of agony.
I glanced toward the door and my eyes widened as I saw Billy Cooper step through it. I ran to him and longed to flood him with a thousand questions, but only one slipped out.
“Did Sylvia make it home alright?”
He stared at me for a half a moment and then he answered me.
“Yep. I walked her all the way to her door. That sure is a sweet young lady you’ve got there. She was talkin’ about that Romeo guy who loved that Juliet. Kept on tellin’ me how romantic he was and that I should read the book.”
He leaned in closer to me and dropped his voice to a whisper.
“Truth is, Ed, I can’t read. I never learned. I couldn’t bring myself to tell that darlin’ young lady that I’s unschooled.”
He hung his head in shame. I actually felt sorry for him.
I patted his back and he went on his way. He’d taken to running errands for Dr. Cullen as a second job.
For the next several days, I stayed with my parents every waking moment; talking to them whenever they were awake. I was amazed by how much trust I was willing to put into this Dr. Cullen. I still hadn’t spoken to him. He would occasionally speak to me, and I would usually just mumble or nod in response. It had been three days before I realized I hadn’t said a word to anyone. I was too lost in thought most of the time.
By the beginning of the next week, I could feel the effect of the flu starting to take me. I tried to fight it, but I slowly developed a fever and had to be moved to a medical cot.
Over the next few weeks I proceeded to become very ill. When I would lie still, I could feel my body beginning to shut down.
In early September, the Influenza Epidemic claimed the lives of both my parents. I knew I would follow them shortly after; there seemed little hope left for me. I was certain that all those things I’d wished, and everything I had visualized from the moment I met Sylvia would soon be gone.
On what I believed to be one of the final days of my life, I decided to compose a letter containing everything I thought of her, and everything I had planned to do since the day I met her. I quickly jotted down the words; my shaky handwriting just a shadow of what it used to be.
I poured my whole heart into that letter. It took every ounce of pride left in me to smile when I sealed the envelope. I glanced across the room to make sure no doctors were around to catch me out of bed. I located nobody, and so I gently set my legs off the bunk. I was going to mail this letter, even if it was the last thing I did.
I slowly started to stand up. I took a couple of steps before I felt my legs giving out underneath me; I was falling.
Before I could feel my body hit the floor, Dr. Cullen was there; I hadn’t even seen him come in.
As he laid me back in my bed, I looked up at him and saw his concerned expression.
“Mr. Masen, you are in no condition to be wandering around the hospital. What is it that you need?”
He was not angry; I could see his eyes were filled with pity. He genuinely cared for me and desired my healing. I could tell all this from my quick glance into his golden eyes.
“Is it Sylvia?”
I glanced up at him in awe. How did he know?
“You have been repeating her name in your sleep for the past six days.”
I stuttered momentarily.
Dr. Cullen chuckled.
“Yes, you have. Now, who is this Sylvia you have been dreaming of? Could it be the lovely Sylvia Forrester?”
My eyes opened wide. It was amazing how much this Carlisle Cullen knew about me and my life. All I knew about him was that he was the one who cared for my parents, all the way up until their death. I also knew he was the last one who spoke to my mother before she died. I heard he made some sort of promise to her, but I had no idea what it was.
Just then I felt another feverish chill coming on. This was one of the worst and most physically draining symptoms of the flu.
Dr. Cullen saw that I was in pain and ran to get me another dose of medicine. I blinked once and he was standing before me again; the pain killer in his right hand. How could he come and go so quickly?
I stopped thinking about it and drank down my medicine in one gulp.
“Dr. Cullen?” I spoke in a very weak, raspy voice.
“Yes, Edward?” His eyes were smiling, though his face was not.
“What is it that you promised my mother before she-” The words were still too painful.
“Passed?” Dr. Cullen helped.
“I promised to keep you alive,” he admitted shamelessly.
“Is that a promise you intend to keep? Sir- I’m dying!” I had no idea how he could possibly keep me alive now.
Dr. Cullen glanced around the room and down the hall quickly. He seemed to be preparing for something. He stopped and glanced at the floor, he appeared to be fighting something internally.
“Edward,” he brought his voice down to a whisper, “I’m taking you out of here tonight. You are going to be living with me from now on. For the next three days, you are going to know nothing but the most excruciating, horrible kind of pain. It will be almost unbearable.”
I had fallen into a state of unconsciousness before he finished speaking. The last thing I remember of my human life was the feeling of being carried out of the hospital in the stone arms of Dr. Cullen, my fist still clenched tight around my hand written letter.