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The Story of Esme

Summary:
How it began. How it happened. How it ended and how it was revived. A look into the life of Esme Cullen.


Notes:
This is my first attempt at writing more than just a short story. I have always loved Esme and she is one of my favorite characters in Twilight so i jus thad to tell her story the way I've imagined it.


19. Chapter 19

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It was easy for me to blend in with the other women of Ashland. There were plenty of war widows and seeing as I needed an excuse to be a pregnant un-married woman, I posed as one as well. I know it was a bit disrespectful to the real widows of the war but I had to do what I had to do in order for my unborn child and I to survive. That was what my life revolved around: survival. I had survived enough already so this was nothing new to me. Nothing I couldn’t handle. I played the part well, making up a back-story on the train ride so that I would have an explanation for my single mother-to-be status. After all, if I were going to settle down in Ashland, I would need to be seen in a good light rather than a bad one.

I spent my first few nights in a small inn until I was able to get a house with some of the money I’d taken from Charles. It was small, only having one bedroom, but I loved it. The exterior was a soft pale yellow with light blue shutters and a big blue front door. The window above the sink in my kitchen looked out on a garden that the previous tenant had grown. It was filled with fragrant flowers and there were several rose bushes as well. And as my belly became more swollen and round, I began imagining my life there with my child. I could picture us playing in the back yard or picking snapdragons from the garden. It gave me hope and made it so that my ugly past felt more like a dream than reality.

I assumed that no one knew where I was because no one ever came for me. Of course, when I first got there, I was a bit nervous. But once I had lived in Ashland for a few months, my paranoia dissipated and I was left feeling safe and at peace. At night, I would sing to my child that lullabies I had been sung by my mother. Sometimes it would kick and move around, as if dancing to the music I was making. And when this happened, though I was the only person in the house, I never felt alone. I was a going to be mother and I was going to be a good one. That was the promise I made not only to my child but also to myself. I swore I would never do what my mother had done; I would learn from how my mother did it wrong so that I could do it right.

I mainly kept to myself in town with the exception of the woman who would be my midwife. I didn’t want to have my baby in a hospital and anyways, it was too far away to go. So for the sole purpose that I could give birth at home, I hired Susannahh Foster. She was an older woman, probably in her early sixties. But she was the feistiest woman I’d ever met, which is why I liked her. She told me the truth no matter what the situation was and became something of a motherly figure in my life. God knows I needed someone to guide me through it all and Susannah was the best of the best. I respected her and her advice thoroughly. I never snapped at her even thought she could be as stubborn as a mule and could strike you with words like a snake going in for the kill. And though she had a tough exterior, deep down I knew she loved me like the daughter she never had.

By the time I was nine months pregnant, I couldn’t even clean my own house because of how huge I was. So I convinced her to help me out until I gave birth. Needless to say she was a bit reluctant but I knew she had a soft spot for me that made it so she simply couldn’t turn me down.

“Thank you again for helping me out, Susannah,” I said genuinely. “I don’t know how to thank you.”

“Just have that baby so you can start cleaning your own house again, that’s how you can thank me,” she mumbled as she swept the floors around the table I was sitting at.

Rather than getting defensive, I laughed.

“Well, I’m going to need your help with that as well,” I reminded her, still smiling from my laughing fit.

“Of course you will,” Susannah replied, tucking a stray lock of her graying blonde hair behind her ear. “If it weren’t for me, you’d never have that baby. For all I know you might end up giving birth backwards.”

Then she added, “I’m not going anywhere.”

Though she was severely sarcastic, I appreciated Susannah more than anyone else in the world. I would have been lost without her. I mean, she was bringing my baby into the world so if I didn’t trust her, who would I? And anyways, she had over forty years of experience so I was satisfied that she knew what she was doing. She had projected that I would be due around the 9th of October, though it wasn’t necessarily set in stone. It was less than a month to go before the day of my child’s birth would come.

The day I went into labor, I had been tending to the garden and hanging herbs up on the front porch to dry. The weather was exceptionally warm for that time of year and there was a light breeze blowing in from the north. I had a simple, white dress with a blue sash on and I wore a sun hat to shade my face from the sunlight. The dress was made especially by Susannah so that it fit over my belly. It was the early version of maternity wear. I had nothing covering my feet since I happened to like the feel of grass on my soles. My basket was almost full of the last blossoms of tulips when I felt a sharp stab-like feeling in my womb and a liquid coming out of me. I collapsed, falling to my knees and yelping in pain, my hand releasing the basket from its grasp. I knew it was time. It was time for me to give birth.

“Susannah!” I screamed to the house though my midwife was already outside on her way across the lawn having seen me crumple. “It’s time!”

She ushered me quickly but gently into the house, setting gently down on the bed before rushing to get towels, a basin of hot water, and a wooden spoon for me to bite down on as I pushed. Now, I’ll admit it. I was scared. I had been so sure I was ready to be a mother and that I would never fail but at that moment, my head was swimming with doubts. What if I couldn’t support my baby? What if I couldn’t handle the stress? Would I become abusive to my child like Charles was to me? And the most important and troubling doubt that went through my head stayed in there, flashing like a traffic light: what if Charles found us and, if he did, how would I protect my child?

“Esme!” Susannah said sternly, already sweating. “You have to push. Pay attention.”

I hadn’t realized that it was possible to zone out during labor but I guess it was because I was living proof. I began pushing and had to stop immediately before I could make any headway. It was simply too painful. I had never felt such agony in my life.

“I…can’t,,,”I said in between exhausted breaths. “It’s just…too…painful…”

“Oh yes you can! You can do it,” she urged. “Now get back to work. Just breathe nice and deep and you’ll be fine.”

So I pushed, feeling more pain while I did this than when I didn’t. But throughout the discomfort, if you can call it that, I kept it up, pushing whenever Susannah told me to and doing everything she said until finally, after ten hours of labor, my child was born. My son was born. I was a mother to a beautiful baby boy. And as I held him in my arms, he started crying and coughing at the same time yet I didn’t care. He was mine and I was his. Forever. The room fell away as tears streamed down my face, my lips curving into a whimsical smile. I had never known it was possible to love something so new, so much. But I did. He was my life now and we belonged to each other.

I was tired but I chose to stay up all night with him, caressing his soft skin and counting all of his little, chubby fingers and toes just top make sure that they were all there. He had the light brown hair and oval-shaped face of a Platt man but in his eyes, I saw something different. I saw the look of a love whose memory, while had not been forgotten completely, had put into a sort of dormant state. In the long-lashed, soft eyes of my son, I saw the one man who had captured my heart and never given it back. I saw Carlisle Cullen.