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Am I Missing Something?
Angela is horrified at what the Cullens depature has done to Bella. Furious, she decides to confront Edward herself...
1. Puzzle Pieces
Word Count 1459
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I slammed the car door, uncharacteristic anger flooding through me. It wasn’t fair, for him to charm us all and hoodwink my friend, and then run off to Los Angeles without giving Bella a second thought. I fumed as I sped down the highway. “Not fair, not fair, not fair.”
I’d been so terrified when Bella hadn’t come back to school. The rumors were awful; people talked about a thing more corpse than girl…
And then a zombie had arrived at Forks High. That thing didn’t even resemble Bella! Edward Cullen destroyed her, poor girl; she had been so in love! Anyone with the least bit of compassion in them couldn’t have done that to their girlfriend. I, unlike him, have a share of compassion. I was horrified at what my friend had become, and every time I looked at Bella I wanted to give the Cullens a piece of her mind.
It was this shred of support that finally filled me with rage, rare in my pacifist demeanor. I went through old school newsletters, determined to find an email address, a cell phone number, anything!
The Cullen family was good at hiding secrets. The only thing I had to go on was a fine-print announcement telling of new students from Denali…
Which was why I was in a car at midnight, heading towards Alaska at sixty miles an hour. A bit extreme, perhaps, but when I get angry, something in me ignites. I have to do whatever I can to fix things. The Denali route could have been a dead end, of course, if the Cullens had disappeared there as they had in Forks. Still, I had to try…maybe Edward had a pen pal or something…
One mental image of Bella, eyes glazed over with numbness and pain, silenced any resolve to turn around. I kept on driving…and driving…
“Welcome to Denali.” Yes! I did it! Now where to begin looking…I figured I might as well ask around. I searched, but there weren’t many people in Denali that I could see. Then again, I wouldn’t spend my leisure time outdoors here, anyway. It was frigid!
Hands numb with cold, I turned down a forest path which, at close inspection, was quite deserted. I was about to turn around when, out of the corner of my eye, I saw something.
A pixie head bobbing up and down near the road... I grinned simultaneously while slitting my eyes. Why had the Cullens come here when they said they were going to…?
There was a house at the end of the road. With a deep breath of sub-zero air (it was somehow more refreshing than the Forks variety) I knocked on the door.
A beautiful blond entered. Her skin was as pale as Alice’s, they were definitely related. “What do you want?” she asked curtly, her voice like music.
“Erm…are the Cullens here?”
“What do you want with the Cullens?” Her guarded expression was slightly hostile; I wondered what I had done to upset this woman.
“Umm…see, I went to school with them, and…” my stuttered reply, coarse when compared to the blonde’s golden instrument, was cut off abruptly by a familiar voice.
“Angela! I just knew you would come!” Alice exclaimed. The blond relaxed when Alice emphasized “knew”.
“How had she known I would come? And wasn’t Alice in the woods a second ago?” I thought, flummoxed.
The tiny beauty tugged me into the living room with surprising strength. I gasped; there was a collection of icy-skinned youth with gold eyes gathered here. Somehow, all together, they had never seemed less human.
Alice stared at me meaningfully. “Edward’s upstairs. Give him a piece of your mind, for me, will you?” I nodded, still dazed from my revelation, and headed up the steps.
With shaking fingers I opened the first door I came to. Bathroom. I continued down the hall until I came to what should have been a bedroom – were there any beds in this house? – with a bronze-haired figure sprawled across the couch.
“Edward Cullen?” My sudden formality surprised me, as well as the instinct to run, which I suppressed. I felt as though I was so close to solving a puzzle, with the Cullens at the forefront, but was missing the most important piece. He grinned as I thought this – where was the joke – and sat up to stare at me, confusion in his eyes.
For the second time in as many minutes, I took a sharp intake of breath.
He looked…crippled. Haggard and gaunt, more so than usual for his species (Species? Why did I think that? He was human, wasn’t he?) as though he had lost a limb. As though he had cut off his own limb.
At this thought, he flinched.
Pain crossed his face. It was glorious pain, the type most people never felt. Those who did never should have, it was too terrible. It was scary to watch, but fit in with his flawless features effortlessly. He should have been a sculpture. An ice sculpture. How could I harm someone so afflicted?
An image of Bella sprang to my mind. I let my friend’s torture give me strength, and Edward’s expression twisted in horror. This time, I could not let it move me.
“Edward Cullen?” My voice gained strength, “How could you just get up and leave Forks like you did? How could leave my friend so quickly, sever all ties like that? Didn’t you see that she loved you?” He flinched. “Didn’t you see how much you would hurt her? You hurt her, Edward Cullen, and it isn’t fair. Why couldn’t you at least call her? For crying out loud, can’t you spare one second of your precious time to stop Bella from aching? You made her some kind of …zombie! Some kind of monster from beyond the grave, the type that spend too much time falling at the feet of other monsters to feel anything for themselves anymore!!” The pain in his eyes was unconcealed now. He was shaking slightly, but didn’t shed a tear for the pain of his “love”. “She is dying inside, Edward, and you are sitting on your butt in Alaska when you should be in L.A.! Didn’t Bella mean anything to you? Or is she just some kind of toy that you can throw away…”
A quiet plea interrupted my near-hysterical rant. Quickly, I cooled off. Instinct could never be defied for long, and my instinct was peaceful. I should let things off my chest more often, though. It felt good.
“Please…you don’t understand. I…had…to leave. It’s what’s best, and…” He trailed off. I was taken aback by the pain in his eyes; surely, he couldn’t be hurting anywhere near as much as Bella was.
He spoke each word slowly, like a dying man would. “Bella will…forget about me. Bella deserves better, Bella should live…”
I had no idea what he was talking about. An image of a pain-filled Bella flashed in to my head. When I had asked, she’d said some pretty weird stuff too…
“Please…I just need to be left alone. And I don’t need to keep seeing that!” He spat the last bit, and I started. Was he talking about…Bella! But I was just thinking about her, nobody could see into my head!
“Think again,” he whispered bitterly. MY eyes widened, and I knew the conversation was over. Edward shrunk back into recesses of agony, and I was certain he was just as distraught as Bella was. Why didn’t he just go back…?
I knew I’d never find out. My heart ached to comfort him, to ease the agony that assaulted both him and Bella, but I knew I couldn’t. “I should go” I whispered, my voice sounding far away. He nodded. I silently turned and left the room, ghosting down the stairs, through the astonished living room crowd, and into my car.
His agony still cut into me as I pulled back on to the freeway. He needed her; she needed him. Why couldn’t they be together? I was not so certain, at this point, that there was anything unusual about the Cullens. Was my mind playing tricks? Could Edward really see my thoughts? Why were the Cullens in Alaska, not California? And why, oh why, wasn’t Bella here too? Why did Edward insist on causing them both horific pain?
I drove home in silence, and had never been more confused.