Returning to Chicago
Following their Honeymoon, Edward and Bella return to Chicago to live in his family's home. Yet Edward and Bella aren't the only ones residing in 254 Cherry Lane--Elizabeth Masen's resides in the home and is not just welcoming Edward home, but a mysterious girl who seems to have captured her sons heart. Sequel to 1918, pre-Breaking Dawn. Now Complete. only adult for profanity when appropriate, and used sparingly.
Following their Honeymoon, Edward and Bella move into his former home in Chicago where their are more than vampires wandering the halls, Told from the Point of View of Elizabeth Masen, with Bella in Italics. Chapter Nine, Walking Two Worlds, now updated!
10. Coming Home, Again.
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A cool gust of wind brushes the roses in the faint moonlight. I set them down and see my son slowing down, walking normally past the houses he grew up in. Like clockwork, he pats the top of the stone lion's head on the steps of the Johnson's old home, he fingers the autumn leaves from the Davidsons' bush and pauses outside 254 Cherry Lane, just as he had done years and years ago.
"Are you up there mother?" my Edward would call, walking backwards a few steps in hopes of catching my eye, "Mother, are you there?"
"I'll be down in a minute," I would reply, "Sherries in the kitchen, I'll meet you down there."
My Edward would then start whistling some little tune, and disappear through the front doors and race me to the kitchen. I'd hear all his adventures, and after a quarter of an hour, Quincy Whitiker would show up to steal him a way for an hour or so.
But time had been set and these conversations are locked in 1918. I look down, Edward Looks up, but his eyes don't meet my own. He stares t the stars as though he's attempting a riddle that can never fully be answered because he has forgotten what was asked. He knows he should see something more than the night sky, but the memory of what, or who he should see is clouded under his topaz eyes.
What could I have done? I think as his gaze breaks and the whistle of a bird call echoes through the air. If I could rush down and talk to him as I did before would he understand why I had made my final request to Carlisle?
I leave the roses and rush down the stars back to the main floor. I'm in the kitchen and watching Edward pour a drink of water; it's as though time is mocking me with his shadow routine.
"Hasn't aged a day has he Mrs. Masen?" a boyish voice chuckles from my side. In his tan suit jacket, sandy hair flopping as it always had stood Quincy Whitiker, hands in his pockets as his eyes search Edward, now admiring that dreadful watercolor Edna gave me for Christmas in 1907—he used to swear that if Eddie forgot the firewood in winter, that painting would make excellent kindling…
"What are you doing here Quince?" I ask.
"Sherrie figured you would be in want of company," he answered turning his attentive gaze on Edward, "And I had to see for myself if the rumors were true and Edward had found himself a lady friend."
"He has. Quite charming girl. We were chatting in the garden a few hours ago," I reply.
Quincy blushes and for a moment I wonder if Sherrie or his mother has sent him, "Well, Ed owes me a box of cigars then. Said I'd marry before he did—still counts even if I'm dead. He's not exactly living and he can get a bride…"
"Eddie will settle the debt, " I joke, putting my hand on his shoulder, " Us, here in the kitchen. It's like old times."
Quincy smiled " I was sitting in my room next door. An elderly couple own the house now and have my room set up as a guest room—anyway, I heard the blue jay call Mr. Masen taught us when we were boys. I half expected him to see me when I came in just now."
"He can't see us Quincy," I whisper gently knowing this tares him down just as it does me.
"He can't but his wife can," Quincy answers harshly, resembling his mother in a flight of hidden jealously bubbling to the surface.
"You keep trying your type writer Mrs. Masen—Mr. Masen was telling me about it, and I think we could easily deliver a letter to Edward," he says, the light extinguishing as Edward returns upstairs, "I'll see if I can reach—"
"Isabella?' I suggest, "his wife?"
A coy little smile turns on his face, as though he's a little boy whose just learned a new word. "Yes, Isabella."
I wake the next morning to find the perfect roses of the garden arranged in a vase across the room. Its in that moment I realize that I did meet Edward's mother last night. The dead one anyway. Edward is out picking up somethings while I get ready; looking on the vanity, my eyes catch a portrait of Elizabeth Masen and her husband and I wonder how I can make Edward remember.
Its still early morning. I hear a knock on the door downstairs and I'm glad I've thrown on some street clothes. Hesitantly, I run down the stairs, nearly tripping on the umbrella holder in the process and look through the cloudy glass to see whose there.
"Delivery for Mrs. Edward Masen," a boyish voice says. Emmett I smirk must want to harass us cross country, dear brother-in-law of mine.
I open the door and smile welcomingly at first but feel my face freeze in an instant. The delivery boy looks familiar but I know I've never seen him face to face before. He's not wearing a FedEx uniform, but a tan blazer and white slacks, as though he's going to go to a boardwalk set in 1920's America. The package in his hand is a small wrapped rectangle tied up in white string, just as neat in appearance as the person carrying it.
He cracks a hesitant smile. "Good Morning Mrs. Bella."
"Quincy?" I whisper, hugging the door as though I'm counting on it to support me. Three dead people in less than three days. This was getting ridiculous. I felt as though I was slowly becoming the Doctor Doolittle of the undead and dead alike.
"May I come in?" he asks and I realize my hold on the door has been leaning it closed. I budge it open and he leads the way in to the sitting room and takes a large leather chair by the empty fire.
"This is Edward's spot, never got to sit here," he's smirking again like a little boy in a toy store.
"My husband will be home soon" I lie, although it has to be somewhat true. And when he returns I'd rather he not see his young wife talking to herself in the study.
"He looks me over and nods, "And I don't have much time either. I'm dead by 10," he looks at his pocket watch. "Humph—Quarter to nine already…."
"But Elizabeth says its sunset when you all—"
"Sherrie, Mr and Mrs Masen all had relatively peaceful passing's," he says and I notice his voice sounds a little harder. "I didn't have a good death day. Went in and out of delirium towards the end, my mother was having a fit and pouring every medicine she had down my brother and I's throat—thrashed around in fits. 10 am I unraveled. Ms. Masen figures 10 am's when my connection time with you will break. I'll be with her till sundown but probably not with you. If I do it'll be on and off."
He pauses a moment, "Of course, neither of us understand your gift, we're all trying to use you as our mouth piece."
"More like your carrier pigeon," I roll my eyes and then stop realizing Elizabeth could be near. "Don't tell her I said that, I really don't mind passing her messages along—it's just."
He's laughing so I assume he's not offended, "You have wit and look good in bloomers, all I could ever have hoped for Edward."
"Don't make me see If I can slap a ghost," I warn looking at my blue jeans and then at him again.
"Well pigeon, I have something I've been meaning to give to Edward," he explained lifting the package. "Back when we were living, that September He and I went to the lake where I nicked his journal. It was revenge for something or other—I think I was trying to blackmail into joining up with me in the army, " his eyes fade as though he's still debating the idea. " Anyway, I meant to return it but neither of us made it out of that month. If you could give that to him—"
"Of course," I take the package holding Edward's journal. "His moms' hoping I'll help him remember?"
"I also have a request from Mrs. Masen," he stands up as though he knows Edward will return soon and he doesn't want to be found in his chair.
" She and Mr Masen are buried in St. Henry's off of Devon and Ridge," he said as though he was giving their new address rather than revealing a grave. "Mrs. Masen—while forward thinking as she was, tends to be a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to her death days; always walks past her grave as the sun sets on her third day. She was hoping Edward would come and see her off?"
The front door opens before I can answer. In comes Edward with a bag of groceries Just the bare essentials for me. He wants to be on the road and headed for Ashland Wisconsin tonight—
Quincy gives a wink and then disappears as sunlight streams though the windows.
"Good morning Bella," Edward smiles entering the room. He looks at me, and then the package.
An eyebrow goes up. "What's this?"
I subdue a smile, "A gift from an old friend of yours."
"I was wandering through the house and found it. It has your mom's name on it—I suppose it's yours now."
He sets down the groceries and unties the string, letting it fall as he opens the paper. A leather brown journal with yellowed pages, along with a paper note folded on top.
"Quince," Edward smirks for a moment and despite the morning sun, the sound of a morning blue jay echoes the room as Quincy Whitiker smiles at my husband before he walks through the exterior wall and on to the streets of Chicago.
I sit next to a weeping angel as the church bell marks the half hour. Four Thirty. Thirty minutes till I disappear for another year. Half an hour for Edward and Bella to still come and find me here—to let me see my boy one more time.
I spent the better part of the day working on a letter. Each one more complex and ridiculous than the one before. I had wished I'd just added something to the journal before Quincy returned it. Edward had been fixed on that old book all day, calling Bella over to read things he'd written to her. Laughing at old memories about he and Quincy, some Jimmy Swan, Sherrie and Eddie and I.
Instead of the letter that was meant to rival an epistle from Paul, I wrote a simple note. Typed and signed, my signature in ink rather than typed—and left it in care taker's office. Quincy had tucked it into one of the old books that recorded who was buried where and had written his own little note that should anyone come to call on the late Mr. and Mrs Masen of Cherry lane, the letter was to be given to them.
Quincy sat at my right wearing the dark mourning clothes that had been worn to our funerals. Between the two of us, we looked like two companions that had slipped through time. He in his dark jacket, a mourner's ribbon tied about his arm, while I wore a black mourning dress, with a parasol, leather gloves and a black lace veil draped down from my hat.
I remembered that at my funeral, Carlisle had forced Edward to come. That had terrified me. I'd only been dead three days and my son needed to be dragged to my funeral. As though he'd already forgotten me. The time when I lived, we were humans aspiring to compete with the Gods, completing feats that would secure our place in memory—and not even a son could remember his mother.
"Look," Quincy nudged, pulling me up on my feet, "It seems we have company."
A handsome couple strolled our way. She wore a sapphire dress, he a light shirt and khaki colored slacks. In his hand was a bouquet of daises and the familiar roses of Cherry Lane.
They strolled to the marker where Eddie and I remained. If Edward looked to his right, he'd see his grandparents marker. Bella's eyes showed more Memory than Edward as they gazed at the names etched in stone. Bella showed grief where Edward appeared unaffected at the least.
An old care taker hobbled over and began talking with them. He was folding and unfolding a letter in his hands, looking nervous as he explained himself.
"My note wad dated 1922," Quincy confessed over the man's babbling. "Old man's probably having a hard time explaining himself."
Lifting my veil, I watch as Edward takes the note. He is right in front of me again. If he reached his hand out he'd touch my cheek. But rather, he scans the paper. His mouth moves over my final words to him. My darling boy—I prayed you'd live and now you have and always will. A mother is an angel without wings, and yet, I am still yours, and I always always will be.
He looks at the note one last time and then walks to the grave marker to set down the flowers. I follow him and kneel down kissing his forehead, as though he was still the little boy dying of influenza.
He looks up and his eyes meet mine. For a moment, I'm convinced he sees me. Sees Quincy. Perhaps he sees all of Chicago who walks the streets as the clock strikes five.
"Mother—" he whispers and I know he sees me. "Mother."
The years have come and gone. Cherry Lane was quiet and empty in the years after we hosted Bella and Edward. I had hoped Bella would have remembered he promise to visit, but as Eddie reminds me, "It's not the job of the living to keep up with the dead, even if she is married to a vampire."
But now I sit on the garden roof with dear Eddie, wearing my yellow lace gown, the sun setting my hair ablaze as it begins its descent across the Chicago skyline. A cab has stopped outside Cherry Lane and I find myself catching my breath.
First exits Edward who pauses to help Bella out of the cab. They're laughing about something or another, still smiling. Both look unchanged since our last meeting and I assume that she's joined Edward in every possible way, a slight sparkle reflecting on her skin as she brings out the luggage.
But Edward remains there, with his hand outstretched helping another girl with long curls out of the car. Long auburn curls that seem so new and yet so familiar.
Bella takes the girl by the shoulders and whispers something in her ear. The Girl looks up and finds my eyes with a blazing smile, her hand offering a hesitant wave as though she's still not sure of herself.
"Looks like the hippies reproduced, "Eddie chuckles looking down at the scene below. "She has her grandmother's hair, doesn't she?"
Though our pathways were never easy, in life or in death, and our lives are stitched together in a frayed quilt attempting to close the gaps of time, the Masens of 254 Cherry Lane are proud. Are loved. And at long last, are finally Home.
AN: In many ways, I feel as though I rushed the ending of this story. I'm sorry about that, but this is how I more or less planned to complete the story. It felt weird writing this as I am not longer a Twilight fan, but as I have said before and will say again, this has been Elizabeth Masen's story more than it ever was Edward and Bella. (If there are errors (and I can promise you there are,) please excuse them as this was a spur of the moment, missed the beta, update.)
This will be my last Twilight Fan Fiction. I will truly missing writing Eddie, Elizabeth, Quincy and Sherrie, and all our friends on Cherry Lane, but I know where I can find them. I'm not done with fan fiction all together, and if you prefer longer chapters and a trilogy, check out my "Dried Lilies" story [A James and Lily Potter love story] avaliable on fan fiction . net under my pen name.
Thanks again guys! Cheers,
- Kait Hobbit
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