The Story of Esme
How it began. How it happened. How it ended and how it was revived. A look into the life of Esme Cullen.
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.
4. Chapter 4
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It’s funny how things could change so quickly you don’t really have time to react. Things can go from absolutely amazing to the worst of the worst in what seems like the blink of an eye. I guess it is the way life is; turning the tables on you just when you think everything in your life is great, making you feel alone and hopeless at the same time. I had thought that things were going perfectly, despite the whole telling my parents about my plans thing. I thought that Emma and I were set, that our plans were foolproof and carved in stone. But how wrong I was.
When Emma came to my house only one day before we were going to break the news to our parents, I knew something was wrong just by looking at her face. Her eyes had lost their spark and her smile was too big, like she was hiding a frown behind it. And, she never came to my house seeing as it was over five miles in the opposite direction. I opened the screen door and stepped onto the front porch, more nervous than a man on death row.
“Emma. What are you doing here?” I asked, though not in a rude manner; it was more of a concerned manner than anything else.
“I needed to talk to you about something and it was kind of important,” she replied, fidgeting with the gloves on her hands. Why is she wearing gloves in the middle of a heat wave? I wondered, considering I had pinned up my hair to keep from getting too hot.
“So you walked five miles in this weather just to talk to me about something?”
She gave me a look of desperation. “It’s important.”
I motioned for her to walk with me and we began making our way along the edge of the wheat fields, hidden by them and bathed in their welcomed shade. I waited for her to speak since she had come to me but when we walked for over three minutes in silence, I knew she wasn’t going to begin without encouragement.
“What’s going on, Em? Did something bad happen to you?” I prompted, looking at her bowed head, her face concealed by a wall of her flaxen hair.
“You could say that,” she murmured so softly I could barely hear her. “I need to tell you something but I want you to promise you won’t get angry with me, okay?”
I nodded in agreement. Emma took a deep breath and started to speak.
“My parents received a notice that the bank is going to foreclose on our house. We’ve been having trouble paying the bills and we needed money badly,” she explained, her face now visible as she lifted her head to face me. She was crying.
I was about to ask if there was anything my family could do to help with the Kulenski’s financial difficulties when I realized something.
“What do you mean you needed money?” I inquired.
She said nothing as she turned her back to me. She was doing something with her hands. Taking off her gloves I thought. I could hear that she was still crying by the muffles sniffles and hiccups. I couldn’t see what she was doing though, until she turned back around, holding her up her left hand so that back of it was facing me. There was something bright and sparkling that was on her ring finger.
An engagement ring.
I backed up, leaning against the same tree I had fallen out of only a few years before. I couldn’t speak I was so shocked. This girl, who had not only believed that marriage was more like a death sentence than a celebration but had also made plans with me to move away and live together, was now engaged. After realizing I couldn’t yet speak, she spoke instead.
“You know how George Nelson has liked me since I was like twelve? Well, my mother invited the Nelson’s over for supper last week. Since then he had been sending me flowers and even wrote me a poem. Can you believe that?” she laughed, trying her hardest to smile without looking sad at the same time. I was still speechless so she went on.
“Well, last night, he came over again to ask my father’s permission to marry me and proposed right there in front of my whole family in the kitchen and I said yes,” she said, holding up her hand. “This ring was his grandmother’s. Isn’t it pretty?”
I didn’t respond.
I knew who George Nelson was. The son of a wealthy banker in Columbus, he was one of the rich boys who lived in the lap of luxury and married us beautiful country girls who were basically trained from birth everything that a husband wants in a wife. But not only was he rich beyond belief, he was known to use his status to get what he wanted. He was also, what in my opinion is the worst kind of man. He was the kind of man who thinks women were here on this earth to serve men like slaves and to bear their children as if they were machines. And now my best friend, who I’d known since we were born, the one who I had been as thick as thieves with all our lives, the one who would never have submitted to any boy like him, had actually gone and gotten herself engaged to the worst of them all.
After taking a deep breath and regaining composure, I glared at her for the first time ever.
“So let me make sure I’m hearing you correctly. You and I have made plans to leave Ohio to make our own lives, made promises to achieve our dreams, and now you are not only betraying me but throwing all that away to get married to a man who thinks women are things to be owned and put on display just so you can have his money, diamonds, and flowers?” I snapped, never taking my glare off of her. By then, she was squirming and putting her gloves back on.
She looked at me with helpless eyes, as if trying to implore me to understand and forgive her.
“It’s not like that, Esme and you know it,” she retorted, glowering back at me. “If I don’t marry someone with money and influence, my family could lose everything they have worked so hard for. They came to this country from Poland with nothing and they made a life for themselves through hard work and hope. Everything that means something to us could be taken away. I can’t let that happen and you would do the same thing if you were in my shoes so don’t patronize me.”
She had stopped yelling and was back to looking back down at the ground in shame.
“I have to do this. I don’t have a choice,” she whispered in a barely audible voice. “And if you can’t understand that then, what do we have left?”
When she had been shouting at me, she had been saying things that should have hurt me. But it was this last question that made my heart feel like a knife had been driven into it. She was saying that if I couldn’t understand her motives, then we couldn’t be friends anymore. All those years of tree climbing and playing and laughing, down the drain. Gone. Done. Over with. And though I would have loved to be able to understand her reasons, I simply couldn’t. Not only that, but I couldn’t be there for her in her situation because, to be honest, I didn’t have a clue what I would have done if I were in her shoes. Not a clue at all.
I didn’t even have to respond. Emma could read my thoughts in the now diminishing blue of my eyes.
As she walked away, she didn’t say a thing. All I heard as the first tears fell was the sound of her shoes on the dew-covered grass, the thud getting fainter and fainter as she got further and further away. By the time the sound was gone, I had collapsed onto the grass sobbing.
The last thing I had heard was that she and George had moved into the city to be closer to his work. I never got a wedding invitation. I never got a letter. I never got anything. And I never saw her again.
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