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The Future of History

Summary:
Ten years after Edward leaves Bella, she has grown into a stronger yet cautious person. When the Cullens come back into Bella's life she finds herself in situations that are unpredictable and finds herself struggling to let the Cullens back in.


Notes:


1. Prologue

Rating 1.5/5   Word Count 1136   Review this Chapter

Prologue

Walking to work this morning, I let my mind wonder ahead to the activities waiting for me. Unlike most people, I absolutely love my job. The anticipation of getting to work quickened my pace slightly. Taking in my surrounding I felt the wind glide through my hair causing a frown to appear on my face. I didn’t particularly like the wind because of its unpredictability. Grimacing, I reached up and tightened the bun in my hair so the wind wouldn’t cause anymore stray pieces of hair to float over my face. After another block I watched as the city library came into my peripheral.

No matter how many days I came here for work, the building never ceased to amaze me by its beautiful architecture. I slowed my pace so I could allow my eyes to roam over the building taking in every small detail. The grand presence that the building emitted made the surrounding buildings look somewhat shabby. The irony was that the library was quite easily the oldest building on this block however; it outshone every building around it. An involuntary smile appeared on my lips as I pulled back the grand doors and slowly entered the building.

Taking a deep breath I smiled even wider as I smelled my favorite smell of old books and dust. Releasing my breath I turned toward the enormous staircase so I could go up to my office. As I lifted my foot for the first step, someone cleared their throat loudly behind me. Already knowing who it was I felt a genuine smile making its way to my face as I tried to scowl before turning around.

“You know, I think you should just move into your office so you don’t have to even leave for the three hours that you do manage to make it home,” said a gruff voice.

“Oh Arnie,” I said with my pretend scowl, “Are you trying to subtly tell me that I’m a workaholic?”

“I didn’t think I was being too subtle,” he grinned.

Arnie is my favorite person in this entire building. He is a 64 year old security guard who has one of the kindest hearts I’ve been around in a long time. Smiling, I take in Arnie’s appearance as I do every morning. He’s about 5’10 with curly, mostly grey hair with a few stubborn black hairs thrown in. His eyes are the color of golden toffee while his skin is only a few shades darker than his eyes. His face is lined with laughter, wisdom and love.

“You know you manage to get here even earlier than I do,” I said with a smile already knowing what his response would be.

“It’s my job to be here this early, you on the other hand have the luxury of another four or five hours before you have to come in,” he said with twinkling eyes.

“Well you caught me, I came here solely for your company,” I laughed while taking in his reaction.

His eyes shone bright with fierce appreciation for my words. I would say anything to bring that smile on his face.

“I’ll see you in a while Arnie,” I said with a smile as I turned and started back up the stairs.

“Have a good one,” he called after me.

Once I reached the top of the stair case I allowed my eyes to wonder to the paintings that lined the hallway, every morning I made sure to look at each picture to see if I could pick up details that I hadn’t seen before.

“Good morning,” said a curt voice.

I wanted to roll my eyes as I plastered a polite smile on my face and turned to greet one of the people that I tried to avoid.

Karen has worked here about 7 years longer than I have. Once I became a member of this staff I quickly excelled because of my passion and endurance for our massive historical collection. Once I proved my dedication to my job I quickly got promoted and was now in a position higher than Karen. She has always resented me for it. Not that I really blame her but I just don’t feel like making small talk with a woman who obviously does not like me.

“Good morning Karen,” I replied in a tone matching hers.

As she did every morning she allowed her eyes to roam over my appearance as if she were a predator. I quickly came to the conclusion that this tactic was meant for me to feel intimidated by her presence. I sighed; no one can intimidate me anymore.

“You’re here early,” she said in a cutting tone “Trying to get that promotion? I heard that Betty is finally retiring and I know you’re trying to make sure you’re considered,” she said with malice.

I took a deep breath, trying to hold in a flash of anger that I felt, then quickly smoothed my face clean of any type of emotion.

“I don’t have an ulterior motive for coming to work early, I simply enjoy my job,” I replied in a bored tone.

As she opened her mouth to retort I quickly cut her off saying that I had to get to my office. I knew she wouldn’t be happy about not getting the last word but I really didn’t feel like soothing her bruised ego.

Once I got to my office my smile reappeared on my face. I absolutely loved my office. It wasn’t anything necessarily fancy but it was my own personal space. I took in a deep breath smelling the wood from my desk and the papers and books that were on my shelves. Sinking into the soft leather chair I felt relieved to get back to my research.

My job basically entailed me finding out anything I can about basically anything historical. I loved history for many reasons. I find history to be soothing. I hungrily read books, the older the better, looking forward to the endings that I know are inevitable. There are no surprises when it comes to history. No spontaneity. It has already happened; it’s already set in stone. I get a sense of completion every time I find out something new about history.

Hours past as I worked at my steady tempo and I was so engrossed in my work that I barely noticed the light tap at my door.

“Come in,” I mumbled, slightly annoyed at whoever was interrupting. Keeping my eyes down on my book I heard the door slowly open.

Even before I looked up and heard the small intake of breath I knew who was standing there.

“Bella?” a soft, beautiful soprano voice spoke hesitantly.

I raised my gaze slowly into the pair of beautiful topaz eyes and watched as several emotions appeared in those eyes. Shock, hurt, disbelief, more shock and finally confusion.

“Hello Alice,” I said quietly, attempting to put a smile on my face.