Times Have Changed
Edward is completely miserable. He’s alone, he hates himself, and he’s frustrated. Just when it seems a miracle has saved him, it turns his world upside down. An AU.
2. You're a Monster
Rating 0/5 Word Count 2578 Review this Chapter
“Bella…are you…mad at me?” I hated hearing her bell-like voice marred by anger. I took a step towards her, and she hissed at me, her hair appearing liquid in the wind.
“Really Edward, are you that dense? I’d expect this from Emmett, but not you,” she crossed her arms and positively glared.
Ah, of course. She was angry I’d left her. “But…you’re not dead,” I whispered. “You were supposed to die…” Realizing how that must have sounded, I stepped closer to her still and reached out to her.
What I was least expecting was an attack. “So I was supposed to die then? So you and your fake family could protect your perfect backsides? So I’d no longer be a liability?” She narrowed her eyes in sheer malice, and growled as she pinned me down. “Well, as much as a shock to you as it is, I’m not dead, and I could rip your throat out in a matter of seconds. In fact,” she pondered as I lay frozen and she stared at my exposed neck, “I might do so right now-,”
“Now, now Bella, I thought I told you not to kill him yet,” a male’s voice broke through my shocked state of mind and brought Bella to her feet, allowing me to stand hastily as well.
“Mark, I told you not to follow me,” she sighed and dusted snow off her slim legs, bared in places by slashed holes in her dark washed jeans.
“Which is exactly why I did,” the black haired male wrapped his arm around her shoulders and chuckled as I growled. “I knew you’d want to dispose of that,” – he pointed to me – “sooner rather than later.”
“Sometimes I hate you,” she told him, but the look in her eyes told a different story.
That hit me somewhere right around where my dead heart was located, and I ended up yelling. “Bella, how could you?” Pain filled my eyes and she smiled malevolently as she watched me fall apart.
“Ask yourself that before you ask me, you monster,” she spat, throwing – in my opinion – the ultimate insult at me. She did think I was a monster.
“But Bella,” I protested, trying to ease my pain, “You’re a vampire too!”
“Yeah, she’s a goddamn good one, unlike you, you lowlife,” Mark supplied, and I stared at him with unseeing eyes. Every time I’d told her that I was something to be feared and repulsed by, and she’d told me that it would never matter, was flashing before my eyes.
“You’ve changed,” I whispered, attempting to make her feel sorry, “I loved you, no matter what. I still do.”
“Get with the times, Edward Cullen,” she told me with no remorse in her voice. “They’ve changed too. It’s you who’s stayed the same: old-fashioned, prudent, and boring. Mark, I’m tired of looking at him, and I’m thirsty. Let’s hunt.”
“Fine with me,” he replied, releasing his hold on her shoulders and opting to take her hand instead as they began to turn away from me. “Where did you want to hit tonight?”
“I was thinking we could just head on up to Fairbanks – easy pickings there at the University.” She laughed coldly and I stared after her black tank-top clad back as her and Mark ran away from me, stunned.
I was so shocked that the full impact of her words didn’t sink in until I was on my way home. …at the University…surely she’d not meant animals, unless they were going for someone’s pet cat. What color had her eyes been? Black with thirst… But Mark’s…Mark’s had been…red. He flashed through my mind repeatedly, grinning evilly as he slung his arm around Bella, almost like a nightmare I couldn’t forget. Why hadn’t I noticed it before? Because you were too busy being jealous, that’s why, I told myself, shaking my head as I ran through the driving snow. The sun was due to come up in a few hours now, but it would be cloudy today – no sparkling for me.
Humans: they were hunting humans. How could Bella do that? To herself? To me? Sweet, innocent, caring Bella… If I hadn’t seen her with my own eyes, or heard her with my own ears, I wouldn’t have believed it at all. I needed to speak to Carlisle about this, and sooner rather than later. Oh but it would break poor Esme’s heart… And Alice, well it would mean the complete ruin of Alice’s forever jovial air, tattered as it was already by Bella’s absence.
As I ran towards our house, I replayed her attack in my mind: she was clearly much more offensively minded than she used to be. But still, as I replayed the scene of her on top of me, holding me down, I couldn’t help but feel the colossal attraction towards her I had always felt. True, she had been growling and angry, but my body reacted as if she were kissing me, or looking at me affectionately. My breathing sped up like a human’s did, and my eyes felt as if they were staring deep into her liquid coal ones alone. Did she not feel that anymore? Did Mark fill the void my absence had left for her, while I was left with no one to fill mine? Was I just incredibly sexually repressed, just as Emmett always teased me to be? Still, Tanya had done nothing for me at all, and yet Bella had merely looked at me as if I was a piece of garbage and I still felt a gravitational pull towards her. Clearly, I hadn’t yet moved on, and she had. I had been right when I’d said I loved her more, since apparently she no longer returned the sentiment.
I could hear all my family’s thoughts as I approached our property, shrouded in trees, just as we liked.
Where is that idiot? Alice came back almost in tears, running off to Jasper…
I hope my son isn’t doing anything he’ll regret later… Alice wouldn’t tell me anything, but she looked worried before rushing Jasper up to their room.
Ughh I want Jasper back down here so we can play some games! Maybe I can convince Edward to play when he gets back…
Oh Edward, where are you? The poor boy needs a hug; he’s been through so much… I’ll be there whenever he needs me.
I tuned out Jasper and Alice’s thoughts hurriedly and smiled at Esme’s as I strode through the door. Maybe I did need a hug. She was the first to see me, and, true to her thoughts, held her arms open to receive me.
I gladly obliged, muttering, “Thanks Mom,” as I hugged her close, not caring that Emmett was teasing me in his head.
Oh Edward! I miss her too, truly I do. It’s so sad she’s gone… She pulled back then to look at me and added sternly, “You never should have let her get away, you know.”
I scowled at being reprimanded for something I already felt heavily guilty for and sauntered off to my room, wishing for Death to rear its ugly head and strike me down. No such luck was bestowed upon me, and I threw myself onto my black sofa with a loud sigh. The legs of it creaked under the force I had put behind launching myself onto it, and I growled at the poorly made – well for a vampire – furniture.
Getting angry at inanimate objects now bro? That’s a sign of insanity you know. Emmett’s laugh echoed throughout the house and I snarled. Maybe I was insane.
No one knew Bella was still alive except me. Not even Alice knew for sure, though she had been positive she was. I had yelled at her because I believed the opposite, and yet here I was, stunned by the very truth of her vision. I didn’t blame Alice for not seeing more, however, now that I knew there was another vampire with her, one we didn’t know. He had probably found Bella somewhere and changed her… Alice would never have seen it.
So had Bella found a mate then? I flipped over onto my stomach and pounded the leather with my fist repeatedly, attempting to beat the memories of him with her out of my mind. I must have pounded too hard, as my fist went right through the couch and made a dent in the floor. I roared in indignation, got up off the couch and picked it up with one hand, throwing a window open and chucking it at a snow-covered tree nearby. The couch broke into pieces, and the tree shook violently and threatened to snap. I didn’t care.
Edward! Come down to my office right now please. Carlisle’s office was directly underneath my room, and if he hadn’t seen the couch hit the tree, he had most definitely heard it.
I was quickly berated by Esme as well, but I attempted to ignore her as I made my way down the stairs. Edward Anthony Masen Cullen! No Volvo for a week! Great, now I had no way of driving to nowhere. I hardly went anywhere nowadays, so what the hell was the point?
“You wanted to see me Carlisle?” I paused in the doorway and leant against the frame idly, attempting to appear calm. Jasper couldn’t help me at the moment; I was attempting to block the emotions he was emitting presently.
“Edward, I know you’re upset, but the destruction of personal belongings is not going to help,” he began, folding his hands across his desk. I could see the broken sofa clearly through the window behind him, and fixed my gaze on that instead of his concerned eyes.
“She isn’t dead,” I mused, almost to myself. “She’s been alive all this time and I never knew…”
Who? Bella? Surely not… “Who is, son?” Snow was covering the broken pieces of my furniture effectively, creating oddly shaped lumps once bits and pieces were fully covered.
“Bella. I didn’t believe Alice, but Bella came to see me, and…” …and she hates me. My fists clenched against my sides, and I took a glance at Carlisle, who was staring at my foot.
“Edward, your foot…” That’s hardwood cedar he’s desecrating…
Indeed, the sole of my black loafer was creating a loafer-shaped hole in the wooden doorframe, I was pushing on it so hard. Any second now I would fall over…
“Edward!” Carlisle looked shocked that I would lose my balance, and he was over to my side in a second, gripping my arm, but I managed to steady myself before I could do any more damage to the cedar. Maybe he does have some form of depression…
“Carlisle, I’m not depressed,” I lied. I was torn up inside, to tell the truth.
“Hold on son, let’s go back to that point about you not believing Alice,” he suggested as he made his way back to the chair behind his desk. I opted to stand in between the two chairs situated in front of the desk, fearing for the furniture. I locked my hands behind my back, scorning my father’s perfect vampire recall. “What did Alice run off to tell you?”
I sighed, rocking back and forth on my toes, careful not to touch anything. “She had a vision of Bella. Just Bella’s face, with snow in the background. Her eyes were closed…” Her lustrous hair whipping in the wind, her lips curved perfectly upwards in a smile, calling my own marble lips to them… I shook my head to clear it. “I didn’t believe her, thinking she had made it up, so she left me to myself, hurt.”
And did Bella…? He prompted me silently, leaning forward eagerly, paying perfect attention.
“Show up? Yes, she did. And Carlisle, her eyes were black-,” a sharp intake of breath from him startled me, and I stopped talking for a second.
“You mean to say, she was a vampire? And thirsty? How old did she appear?” Does she still love him…? He smiled marginally and I bit my lip with fervency and impatience.
“Yes, she is a vampire. Yes, she was thirsty. She looked…not much older than twenty-five. No, she doesn’t love me anymore,” I hung my head and swept my hair back from my face, but it only flopped down over my eyes once more anyways. “She has a mate,” I announced, and I heard a gasp come from somewhere upstairs, followed by a sob, then a quick distraction from Jasper. From downstairs I heard something snap, and hoped that Emmett wouldn’t regret crushing his game controller.
Esme’s thoughts were stunned into silence, and Rosalie was mutinous. There goes your happiness for good, kid. Not like it was looking too good for you lately anyways.
“She also…feeds off of humans,” I admitted, my voice a sad whisper.
This time Carlisle did something very out of character: he sank his head down onto his desk slowly, repeating, “No, no, no, no, no,” over and over again. His carefully swept back blonde hair fell over his arms onto the book currently open on his desk, covering the words entirely.
A loud yell broke through the silence as Emmett launched himself out the back door, running for the tree my couch had broken against. I watched as he uprooted the spruce with one hand and hurled it into the hazy light of dawn, his face enraged. Rosalie ran out to try and stop his madness, but he quickly evaded her by following the tree into the horizon. She sped after him, growling and cursing as he ran away.
“Edward,” Esme appeared in the doorway, her kind face twisted with grief, “How could she…after all that happened…?” I just can’t fathom how…
“I know Esme, I know,” I went to her and brought her in close, stroking her soft, caramel hair with one hand as Carlisle looked on. She sobbed without tears, gripping my shirt until it nearly ripped with one small hand.
I was surprised Alice hadn’t yet cracked, and assumed Jasper was trying to hold her together… “Oh Bella! My Bella, evil! A monster!” I flinched. “Oh however could it have happened? Edward! I’m blaming you, you terrible person!” Loud crashes and bangs were heard from their room and I caught an image of Jasper from her mind. He was frantically trying to stop her tirade of ripping the sheets to threads, but she was ruthless.
I released Esme and pried her hand off of my shirt gingerly, afraid of causing any damage to my clothing – Alice would surely kill me. Carlisle stood and wrapped his arms around her waist now, and I sank down into one of the chairs I had been so quick to ignore earlier, staring dejectedly at my lap. Could a vampire ever tire? It felt like I was dead on my feet… How ironic.
Suddenly Esme laughed after another loud noise issued from upstairs, and I looked up in surprise. “We’re a mess without her,” she chuckled to break the sadness of it all, but I hardly saw the humor. I glared at the spot where my sofa was now completely covered, hating myself for ever letting her go.
I will get her back, I vowed. If I had to kill that ridiculous mate of hers, if I had to start killing humans again to make her happy… I would have her in my arms once again.