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If Only I Was Immortal

Summary:
Starting from when Bella jumps off the cliff... Edward returns, but there is no telling if he will stay. DISCLAIMER: Don't sue me.


Notes:
Only Edward can make Bella feel this way...


2. Chapter 2

Rating 5/5   Word Count 2070   Review this Chapter

“Maybe. I don’t know.” Edward answered, his words, each one a nail, driving deep into my heart. I knew he did not want me anymore. The tears didn’t come though, to my surprise. He continued to stare up at the ceiling. “You seem a lot better off without me.” He said absentmindedly. I gaped at him. How could he be so blind? There would’ve been no reason for me to jump off that damn cliff if he hadn’t left, and I wasn’t hearing his voice whenever I was in danger. I kept my mouth shut, knowing that it was him who was better off without me.

“Yeah. Sure.” I answered, biting back words.

“So maybe I should leave.” Edward said. I looked away, not wanting him to see the pain that was so clearly stated across my face. “Do you want that?”

“Why are you asking me?” He didn’t ask me the first time he left, so why was he asking me now?

“Because I value your opinion.” Edward answered. It was as if he was asking for my opinion on pizza toppings, not the actions that would eventually drive me to the brink of insanity. “Do you want me to leave?” I turned so I could see his beautiful face. It held no expression, but I felt compelled to keep looking at him. Finally, my favourite smile crept across his face, but something was wrong. The expression did not touch his eyes. There was something else… Something I couldn’t identify.

“I don’t know,” I answered mechanically, not knowing whether or not I wanted him to leave. On one hand, I could not bear being without my angel… And on the other, I wanted him to be happy… And it seemed to me that, if he stayed with me, it would be him who would be unhappy. I cared about Edward far too much to wager his happiness on my own selfish needs. “You can leave if you want.” A trace of inexplicable pain touched his perfect features. I did my best to look like I did not care either way. But it was all a lie. I cared greatly if he was going to leave me again. The pain reached my face, and the tears began to fall.

“I guess it’s settled then.” Edward sighed, not bothering to tell me what decision he had reached.

“What’s settled?”

“I’m leaving.” The words were like a knife to my chest, salt to the gaping hole. “You’re clearly better off since I left you. With the exception of the cliff diving expedition earlier.” I was not better off since Edward left me. Every night, regardless of how hard I tried to avoid it, the nightmares of him leaving me in the forest would return to haunt me. “I’m glad you’re still alive, Bella.” The vision of him, drenched in seawater flashed through my mind. He had fished me out of my water grave. I bit my tongue against the words that would follow.

I couldn’t speak as he pressed his lips against my forehead for the briefest second, and then ducked out my window, out of my life forever. “Goodbye, Edward…” I whispered, as he took himself, and his magnificent scent that had filled the entire room, away with him. The hole in my chest seemed to be on fire, pain rippling through every muscle in my body. I lay, curling my legs against my chest, crying for hours. What was I going to do now? For months, the sound of my hallucinations had been the light of my life. Now I was without it and blind. I knew his voice would not return, much like himself. I welcomed misery like a lost dog.

“Bella…” Jacob said, touching his hot fingertips to my arm.

“Yes?” It had been a year since I last saw Edward. Every time I closed my eyes, it was his face that I saw behind my lids. It burned to see him, but at the same time, a feeling of relief washed over me. So my memory had not let a bit of his image go. I still remembered every last one of Edward’s features. He was so beautiful. The pain came when I remembered how abruptly he had returned and left. It tore the hole in my chest wide open, regardless of the amount of healing Jacob had done to it.

“You missed the red light.” Jacob said; a second tone to his voice. I knew there was more to that sentence than he allowed himself to say.

“Oh.” I hadn’t noticed I was driving. Lost in my thoughts, I continued to speed through several red lights. Jacob did not mention it again. Then a thought washed over me. I had not heard his voice in the longest time. I wanted to hear it more than anything, but no matter how difficult a situation was that I put myself in, not a whisper would sound in my ears. I sighed, remembering how marvelous his voice was. Maybe I would go cliff diving again. Then I pushed the subject to the back of my mind. Jacob was supposed to be my world now… So why was I still thinking of Edward?

“Are you okay? You seem a bit distracted.” Jacob said as we pulled into the gas station. I was home for the holidays, back from college. Although college presented less of a distraction for me than Forks did, I was determined to receive my degree and maybe go off to other parts of the world, to see if seeing other parts of the world would free my mind from other, painful things. Maybe I would take Jacob with me. I looked to him now. He was staring out the window, watching the forest go by. When he realized my eyes were on him, Jacob turned my head and put his hand on the back of my headrest.

Jacob’s eyes met mine. How I missed those gold eyes… like molten lava on a freezing cold day. I shook my head and tried to think of Jacob. His eyes were brown, like mine, but his had so much depth to them… It captivated me. I could feel the heat radiating from his hand where it rested on the back of my seat… Relief washed over me as I realized that now, I did have a claim on Jacob. He was mine for as long as I wanted him, and I knew since he would never come back, I would want Jacob forever. The relationship must’ve meant something if it survived long distance.

Jacob continued to hold my gaze as the cars drove into the gas station behind us, honking their horns. The bond between us felt almost as strong as the one between Edward and me… Maybe I was meant for Jacob after all. A strong wave of remorse rippled through my chest. This could not go on for much longer… I was dying inside, dying for his touch. How could I kid myself? He was all I needed, all I ever wanted. I was playing with Jacob’s emotions here, and I felt conceited for letting it go this far. Maybe I deserved to be without him. Surely I did not deserve Jacob.

“Bells? Is there something wrong?” Jake’s voice sounded in my ear. I could tell he was not sitting on his side of the truck anymore.

“No, I’m fine.” I slid out of my seat and went to fill up the gas tank.

“Bella… Tell me what’s wrong… You seem distant.” Damn it. Jacob saw through my phoniness.

“I just have a lot on my mind lately. That’s all.” I said, telling him the partial truth. The whole, ugly truth, threatening to poke its ugly head out of its hiding place, was that I was not giving Jacob one hundred percent of my heart. Hell, I wasn’t even giving him half of it. The majority of my devotion was to him, and that, I could not take back. I would always be in love with him. I wanted to cry, to tell Jacob I was sorry. But now was too late. I was in too deep.

So I just shrugged off his light accusations and we went to dinner. It was awkward, sitting only inches away from Jacob in silence. He didn’t seem to mind it, so I did not make an effort at creating conversation. In a few days I would be gone again. Now was the first time in months that I actually wished for the safe resort that was my college dorm. Maybe there, I would be able to sort out my feelings. I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life alone, but at this point it seemed like that was what I was going to be doing for the rest of my life unless I chose to be with Jacob.

“I’m the lookout tonight. I won’t be coming over later.” Jacob said when we finished. It was the first thing he had said throughout the meal. I hadn’t said anything.

“Are you still looking for her?” I asked, remembering the fiery red hair.

“Yes. It’s strange. Why hasn’t she made a move?” Jacob said, shaking his head. “Whatever.” He shrugged off the thoughts. “It doesn’t matter. I just have to kill her.”

“Well, be careful, Jake.” I said; my voice saturated with genuine concern for my friend. Jacob was just a friend. No need to convince myself that he was something more.

Jacob smiled smugly. “Just promise me that you won’t go into the forest alone, okay?”

I nodded, as if I needed to promise that. I would not go into the forest - it was a painful reminder of what had left me.

The light shone in from my window. I stretched, wondering what I had done to deserve the good weather. Surely, playing with my best friend’s emotions deserved something far, far worse. I was lying diagonally across my bed, covering in the least by my old quilt. I shuddered and pulled it around me tightly, the house was still drafty despite the warm weather. Finally, I got up off my bed and went to throw on some clothes. Maybe today was the day I would sort out my feelings.

As I walked out of the house to my truck to make my way to La Push, I myself humming. It had been the first time in months that I had actually started humming to myself out of the blue. There was certainly something different about this day… Was something pleasant going to happen? I braced myself against the disappointment that was sure to follow afterward. The truck started up its deafening roar as I started down the driveway and down the street.

La Push was as sunny as Forks, the wind from the ocean blowing around my face in a pleasant manner. Billy announced that Jacob was not yet home, so I made my way to my favourite place on the beach. I sat down on the driftwood, and breathed in the heavy scent of the ocean, letting it fill my lungs. The hole in my chest felt a little smaller, the pain decreasing slowly. Maybe the pleasant thing about this day was that I would not suffer any longer. Maybe it was even a sign that I should be with Jacob. I dismissed these feelings… Not really wanting them to go.

It was probably the least painful day I had had in a year and a half. The most painful moment, I remembered, was when he returned and left so abruptly… The pain had almost taken over… I was sure that if he had left just a second later, I would be locked in a padded cell right now. Of course, a padded cell might’ve been a lot less unpleasant than the dilemma I was going through now.

There were footsteps in the still-wet sand. Then I heard a voice. “Hello, Bella.”