Being Mrs. Black
Edward/Bella, Implied Jacob/Bella. Imagine that the Cullens were late in returning to Forks. Bella arrived on schedule, but her life proceeded normally. She and Jacob become the best of friends and with no vampires to awaken them, the wolves don't mature. When he turns 18, Jake and his friends enlist, going to look for adventure in Iraq. He proposes, and Bella can't imagine ever loving someone more than she does her best friend. They quickly marry and he leaves for war. Two months later she gets some news that will turn her life upside down. And on that same day, a beautiful, dangerous stranger appears. From the moment their eyes meet, Bella begins to question those solemn vows she made. Will Bella Black do the right thing? Banner art and banner by Seisei
4. An Impossible Distance
Rating 5/5 Word Count 1413 Review this Chapter
PART FOUR: An Impossible Distance
Going by the clock on the microwave, I'd been sitting at the kitchen table, staring at my cellphone for the past fifteen minutes. In our email exchange I had said that I'd call him between 6:30 and 7:00pm his time. Another fifteen minutes and the window would close. Maybe that was what I wanted.
I'm a coward, I can freely admit that. I wanted to hear his voice, I needed to know he was okay; of course I did. But if we spoke, I'd have to tell him, and telling him would make it real. I was still on the fence about whether or not I could handle that. Although I'm not sure it could be anymore real than the bout of morning sickness I'd had about an hour ago. Pretty hard to dispute the reality of being on your knees, praying to the porcelain god.
I sighed, took another sip of ginger ale and finally reached for the phone. Flipping it open, I held down the number 3 and watched a long parade of numbers march across the screen as it dialed. He only let it ring once, he'd been waiting.
"Hello?" His deep voice was reassuringly strong, but slightly anxious. Immediately I felt bad for making him wait.
"Hey pretty lady, I was about to give up on you." The warmth in his voice buoyed me up, and suddenly I longed to be there with him, to be held while I had a little meltdown over this whole impossible thing. But I didn't have that luxury. All I had was his voice on the phone, the slight undertone of static punctuating the distance between us. "Everything okay, Bells?"
"Oh. Yeah," I scrubbed at my eyes, trying to deny the existence of the tears in them. Stupid hormones. "Just... really glad to hear your voice."
"I know baby. Me too." I imagined his easy smile and I was rubbing at my eyes again, hopelessly falling apart.
"I miss you so much." Man, I sounded like a blubbering idiot. This was totally not going the way I'd planned.
"Don't cry, honey. It's okay." He was worried, probably sensing already that something was up. "You have no idea how much I've been thinking about you. It's driving the guys in my unit nuts." He chuckled. "It's 'Bella this' and 'Bella that'. If they don't believe you hung the moon yet, they will by the time I'm done."
"Really?" My voice broke on the word.
"Bella..." He hesitated. "I know you miss me, I miss you too. But I can't quite shake the feeling that something's wrong." He sounded frustrated, not with me, but with the distance. "Please tell me? Please? I need to be sure you're okay."
You left me here by myself, pregnant and surrounded by people I barely know and you're worried that I'm okay? I didn't say it, but a small and petty part of me wanted to. Instead, I swallowed hard and dragged the scattered pieces of myself together. "There's something I need to tell you."
"Whatever it is, we'll figure it out. I love you, Bella. That's never going to change."
"I know." Dammit, the tears were trying to come back. "I don't know how to say this."
For a long moment he was silent, and when he spoke his voice was soft but wary. "Just be honest with me, Bella."
There really was nothing else to do but just spit it out. Otherwise I might never say it. "I'm pregnant."
Again, silence. "That's it?"
"What do you mean 'that's it'?" My voice had jumped an octave. "Isn't that enough?"
"Well yeah," he said hastily, "but the way you were acting, I was expecting something awful. You know, like you were leaving me for another chick or something."
"What?" Leaving him for a... what? "What the hell are you talking about, Jacob Black?"
He spoke away from the phone, addressing someone else. "Uhoh, she just called me by my full name, I think I'm in trouble." I ground my teeth together, working on a good fury. "Honey, that's amazing news. When did you find out?"
"It's amazing that I have to do this by myself while you work on getting yourself killed?"
"That's not what I meant!"
Too late, I was mad. "I don't care what you meant, Jake! I'm absolutely terrified and you're making jokes!" Great, now I was crying again, but this time it was from anger.
"Bella... I'm sorry. I'm sorry, sweetheart." He meant it, I could tell that much, and it helped to know that. "I know you've got to be scared. I wish I was there with you." For a moment there was silence, and when he spoke again, he sounded a little shaken. "I guess it's just hitting me, really... Bella, you've got our baby inside you."
"I know." Even to my ears, it sounded depressed.
"There's a little life there, part you and part me... Wow..." He paused, and then apparently the tears became contagious as his voice went hoarse and soft. "I am so sorry that I can't take you in my arms right now and show you... But I love you so much."
"It's nice to know that," I said softly, "but I'd still rather have you here."
"I know." At least we were both depressed. Although that really wasn't all that helpful.
"I found out two days ago," I said finally. "I'm due in December. Haven't told anyone yet, really. Just Leah." I sighed, leaning back in my chair.
"That's good. Leah's been through this, she can help you." He was trying to think of positive things to say beyond 'wow, oh my god', I knew the way his mind worked. "You probably ought to tell the dads soon." Charlie, mine, and Billy, his. "I'm sure they'll help you as much as they can."
"Yeah, I'm sure you're right." That didn't make the prospect of telling them any more appealing. Particularly since their version of 'help' usually meant trying to tell me what to do.
"I will move heaven and earth, if it's at all possible for me to be there when the baby's born, Bella."
"You promise?" Maybe I wouldn't have to be alone for that much at least. As though summoned by that thought, suddenly I could see Edward Cullen again in my mind's eye. He was coldly beautiful, his dark eyes staring through me as though they could see into my soul. It didn't make sense, there was no reason for me to be thinking of him right now. But I was so caught up in that moment that I barely heard Jake's response.
"Promise. We've got time, we'll make it work."
"I need for us to do this together, Jake." I needed his presence in my life, so that my memories of one brief meeting with Edward Cullen would stop haunting me at random.
"We will, Bells. I swear." In the background, I could hear someone call his name. "I need to run, baby. But we'll talk again, soon. You have to keep me updated on how both of you are doing." The smile was in his voice again, and it warmed me as nothing else could. "I love you, sweetheart."
"I love you, too." We didn't say goodbye, it was kind of traditional. Mostly it was just too hard for me to say. I closed the phone and set it back on the table, biting my lip as I tried not to cry again. I'd told him. It was real now.
Taking a deep breath, I got to my feet and smoothed my hands over my pajama pants. I wasn't particularly hungry, so best to move on to the rest of the day. Laundry needed to be done, and at some point I needed to check on Leah. As of when we'd spoken the night before, Sam still hadn't come home. Maybe if I was ready for food by then we could go get lunch somewhere. Maybe...
Maybe I just wanted to lean on the kitchen counter and sob for while.
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