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Mystery

Summary:
A concerned father only has so much to worry about. Carlisle's thoughts upon meeting Bella at the house. Cullen Oneshot Challenge


Notes:
Oh my goodness gracious, hey! I missed ya'll! *hugs* I was itching to write another one-shot, so here is my submission for the Cullen Challenge. I did use some direct quotes from Twilight, which can be found on pages 322-324. So, without further ado, here it is! Enjoy! I own nothing. All hail Stephenie Meyer. © Edward's Rose 2008


1. Chapter 1

Rating 5/5   Word Count 1259   Review this Chapter

Mystery

By Edward’s Rose

A gentle wind swayed between the grasses as I stared out the window. My fingers rested lightly on the pane, as if to calm the racing thoughts which spun around my head. No matter how hard I tried to suppress them, they came back…taunting me like the cruel depictions of hell which used to hang in my father’s church.

They all pointed towards my son, Edward, and Isabella Swan.

He was bringing her here, to the house. A houseful of vampires. A mirthless smile tugged at the corners of my lips as I detected the irony of the situation. The prey being led straight to its predators.

“No, you mustn’t think like that, Carlisle,” I told myself.

With a small sigh, I retreated from the depths of my study. The harsh words which had recently been thrown at random throughout the house surfaced in my mind:

“She’s not one of us, Edward!”

“Would you betray us like that?”

“You could kill her!”

“Are you mad?”

And then, Edward’s words. The syllables which had silenced us all…

“I love her.”

I closed my eyes painfully, listening as the familiar cadence of his voice faded away. He loved her. Our Edward had fallen in love with a human girl. And a strange one at that. I’d met her only once, watching in amusement as she stubbornly dismissed all of my medical concerns. She had large, soulful, brown eyes, filled with vast mysteries like a bottomless glass. Her skin was unhealthily-pale, so pale that she could almost pass for one of us.

Almost.

But she wasn’t! Damn it, what had Edward been thinking…? Anger coursed through me, bitter and sweet. He said we could trust her, that she was different. Different from the countless humans who had persecuted those who were even slightly suspicious…? I had been of that number once, fighting for a cause I didn’t believe in.

Then, like the tide, my anger evaporated. I had promised Edward…promised to give Bella a chance. For his, all, our happiness. Then, a loud, wheezing sound rose to my ears. My gaze flickered over the driveway, where a worn, red truck pulled up. I could make out the bronze of Edward’s hair as he opened the door for her…

“Carlisle, it’s time,” a soft voice said from the door.

I turned slowly to see Esme, her expression serene as she held a hand out. Together, we descended the stairs.

“They’re here!” I called.

“I saw that,” Alice said in exasperation, her voice floating down the staircase.

I managed a tight smile, trying to keep my thoughts blank as Esme and I stood poised near the piano. We watched as the door slowly began to open…

Her scent greeted me first.

After years of self-control in the hospital, it did not take me savagely. I still took note of the interesting aroma, though. Like lilacs, perhaps…? Her small, fragile hand was gripping Edward’s, and her eyes roamed briefly before settling on Esme and I. Bella’s agitation and nervousness radiated even more then her scent, and a fierce sense of pity and protectiveness washed over me. I knew Esme felt the same way. A gentle smile took form on my lips.

Silence.

“Carlisle, Esme,” Edward began. “This is Bella.” I could detect the tautness in his voice.

“You’re very welcome,” I said quickly, warily taking a step towards her.

I was waiting for her to leap away, to shrink into Edward. She didn’t. Relief flooding through me, I extended a hand…unsure if this was a proper way to greet her.

She took it. “It’s nice to see you again, Dr. Cullen.” Her tone was sweet, without a trace of a stutter.

“Please, call me Carlisle.”

“Carlisle.” She smiled radiantly at me, exposing her pearly-white teeth.

This was going well.

I watched my wife step forward to take Bella’s hand, and I exchanged a silent glance with Edward. He was still tense, as if he were waiting for something.

“It’s very nice to know you,” I heard Esme say. Her words echoed dimly, though. My mind was racing with thoughts, trying to convey my emotions to Edward…

“She seems lovely. We won’t do anything sudden, though. This must be…traumatizing enough for her.”

Traumatizing, was that the right word…?

My mind snapped back to reality, only to hear Edward gently inquire as to where Jasper and Alice were.

“Hey, Edward!” a chirping voice declared. All eyes were trained on Alice as she sashayed down the staircase.

Her natural optimism was not in the least bit contained, which could prove damaging. I gave her a warning glance, telling her to slow down, but she ignored me.

“Hi, Bella!” she gushed, kissing her on the cheek.

I felt like shaking Alice. Bella’s face registered surprise, her eyes widened to the size of saucers. Edward had tensed at her side, holding onto her as if to restrain her from bolting. Esme stood rigid at my side, waiting for the next event.

“You do smell nice, I never noticed before,” Alice continued breezily.

Bella’s cheeks turned a fair shade of crimson, and I felt sorry for the poor girl. Jasper walked up lazily behind Alice, extending a cordial greeting towards Bella. We were all waiting for her reaction, our stances taut like a bow-string.

Gathering her composure, she spoke…fixing us all with a tentative smile. “Hello, Jasper. It’s nice to meet you all-you have a very beautiful home.”

The worst was over.

****

I listened detachedly to the notes of Edward’s masterpiece, which he was playing for Bella in the next room. I sat tensely on the sofa, staring pensively at the coffee-table. She’d recovered quite well. I felt as if I could put my trust in this strange girl…knowing she would not betray us. And, to my happiness, she seemed to truly care for Edward. We’d all accepted her. All save for Rosalie. But she would see reason; I could only imagine her thoughts on the situation.

One thing still puzzled me, though.

Custom to my practice, I liked to read the faces of my patients. Before mechanically announcing their diagnosis, I tried to get a feel of who they were and what they were like. I was good at reading faces; just like Edward could read their minds. But, I could not read Isabella Swan’s.

I could only detect the top layers of emotion, but not the ones raging beneath her porcelain skin. This irked me only to some degree, for I knew that she was not some patient I encountered in passing. She was here to stay in our lives. And, as Edward had told me, he could not read her mind. A small smile reached my lips as I thought of her serene and timeless expression…

She would always be a mystery to us.