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War of the Heart

Summary:
Lieutenant General Charlie Swan moves his family to Forks while he and his sons our deployed to Iraq. Can the Cullens & the Hales help Bella survive while her whole family is on tour overseas? What happens when the only family member she can rely on runs away? Or when a brother is injured in a road side explosion? Thanks to XxBleedingSoulxX for the amazing banner :) NOTE!! I'VE GIVEN UP UPDATING ON THIS SITE, IF YOU WISH TO KEEP READING YOU CAN FIND THE STORY AT FANFICTION. THANKS FOR ALL THE LOVE.


Notes:
Everything belongs to the one and only Stephanie Meyer.


20. Two Black Eyes

Rating 5/5   Word Count 3615   Review this Chapter

Chapter Twenty – Two Black Eyes

Flashback – end of Chapter 19

“Okay, love.” He sighed, standing up. “But before I go, there’s something I need to do first.”

“What?” I asked.

“This.” He whispered as he leaned down closer to me. My eyes grew wide with nervousness when his face was mere inches from mine. He closed the small gap between us and pressed his lips softly against mine. His warmth radiated through my body, filling me with life.

As soon as he backed away, I stood there shocked. Raising my fingers, I touched my lips as I looked over at him. “You kissed me.”

“Yea, um, I think I did.”

---

I bit my lip as I remembered the feel of his lips against mine. I had never been kissed by anyone other than my family before, and that was purely family affection, this was something different all together. Edward’s lips were so warm and soft against mine. I could only imagine what it would be like to run my fingers through his hair, curling it around my fingers...

“Bella?”

I shook my head against the images and looked at him. “What did you say?”

“I said I'm sorry if you think I kissed you out of the blue, and I probably could’ve picked a better moment to declare my love for you then in the middle of our first fight, but I’ve been harbouring these feelings for you for quite a while and I can’t just ignore them anymore.”

“Declare your love for me?” I asked astonished, stepping back so I could search his face for some sort of reaction telling me that he was indeed telling the truth. That this revelation wasn’t just some spur of the moment thing.

“Yes Bella I love you. I can’t just be your best friend anymore. I want what Alice & Jasper, and Rosalie & Emmett have, I want a relationship Bella.” He breathed.

“I want it too” I whispered, revealing my sudden epiphany over the feelings of my best friend. Edward’s face lit up with relief and love as he stepped closer and once again captured my lips with his own.

It didn't surprise me that he continued to kiss me, what surprised me was my reaction. It was like a wave of lust had overcome me as I intertwined my fingers into his hair, gripping tighter and pulling him closer to me until our chests were pressed together.

Our lips began to fight for dominance over one another; nipping, biting, and sucking. This was totally new to me. I had never done this before. Never in my life had I ever been this close to a boy, I could only imagine how my brothers would react if they saw me now. Before we moved to Forks, boys were naturally repelled from me thanks to my overbearing brothers. But Edward wasn’t so easily intimated by them, that or he had yet to realize just how much danger he would be in once my brothers found out.

Yet here we were, Edward and I, making out in the middle of my bedroom like the two hormonal teenagers we were.

After minutes, hours or days, I eventually had to pull back. The need for air had finally become too much and had forced me to take a step back. I took slow, steady breaths as I closed my eyes and tried to control my now raging hormones that were running a mile a minute. Edward was still a couple of inches away and I could feel him panting, as his warm, cinnamon scented breath hit my face. After the oxygen had finally returned to my brain realization of what was happening hit me. A minute ago we were fighting over something as ridiculous as riding a bike, and somehow that had transferred into us making out. This was all happening way to fast!

“Bella”, he whispered, snapping me from my thoughts. His voice came out as a moan, an erotic sound that I wanted to hear over and over again. I didn’t open my eyes. I stayed completely still, trying to deal with explanations later. I felt his hand cup my face as he rubbed soothing circles on my flushed cheek.

I lifted up my head and opened my eyes. His big green orbs were staring right back at me. At that moment I felt like he could see into my soul. “Edward?” I whispered, giving him a pleading look. “We need to slow down; this is all happening way too fast.”

“I know Bella but you do this to me, love. No one’s ever made me feel like this before,” he breathed, this time taking my lips into a gentle and innocent kiss.

But just when I was about to pull him in closer and lose myself to him again, Edward was violently ripped off me.

“What the hell do you think you’re doing?!” Jack’s voice boomed, as he threw Edward up against my bedroom wall.

“Jack!” I hissed, kneeling down beside Edward to place his head on my lap. “What the hell was that for?!”

“You said I could trust you. You said all you would be doing is talking. That didn't look like talking to me!” he shouted, lunging at Edward again.

“Hey, what’s with all the-” Jasper said before noticing an angered Jack getting ready to attack Edward. Without thinking Jasper grabbed hold of Jack, pinning his arms securely behind his back.

“What’s going on Bells?” Jasper asked, confused as he looked at the beaten Edward lying in my lap.

“Jack walked in on Edward and I kissing....” I mumbled embarrassedly, my cheeks blushing.

“Dude!” Jasper smirked, giving Edward an approving look.

“Agh!” Jack groaned, squirming around in Jasper’s hold. “That’s my baby sister you’re talking about!”

“Come on Jack, we don't we head out so you can cool down,” Jasper suggested, directing Jack out of the room.

“Oh god Edward, it looks like you caught the wall with your eye,” I cried.

“It’s fine love, it barely hurts.” He said

“Come on,” I said, standing him up. “Let’s go get some ice for that eye.”

“Yes ma’am” he laughed, scooping me up and carrying me bridal style towards the kitchen.

“Edward!” I shrieked, slapping his chest. But he just laughed at me and continued to carry me the rest of the way to the kitchen.

When he finally let me down, I started searching for something for his eye. “We don't have ice so frozen peas will have to suffice” I said, rummaging around the freezer, producing a bag of frozen peas and carrots.

“That’s fine, love” he said as I gently pressed the bag to his eye as to not cause him anymore pain.

“I'm sorry about Jack; I don't want to cause any animosity between the two of you.”

“Don't worry about it Edward, he’ll calm down and accept it, just give it time” I assured him.

*****

Edward left shortly after Jasper returned home with Jack in hopes of avoiding another encounter with him. After he left I scolded my brother for overreacting, but in the end ended up forgiving him because I never could stay mad at him for long, especially when he had my best interests at heart.

After I had worked things through with Jack, I started getting ready for bed. Just before I called it a night, I checked my phone and discovered I had a new text from Edward.

Drive u to school in the morning?-E

This wouldn’t be a way to ensure I don't drive the bike tmrw, would it?-B

Maybe ;)-E

Pick me up @ 8 –B, I replied before falling into a much needed sleep.

*****

I was awoken from my slumber by the mouth-watering smell of bacon and eggs coming from downstairs. I hadn’t really had much of an appetite the day before, so I found myself to be especially hungry this morning. I threw the blankets off me, being sure be extra careful as to not awaken a still sleeping Riley who was lying in a ball at the bottom of the bed. I threw on some faded jeans and a sweatshirt before venturing downstairs.

When I arrived in the kitchen to investigate the glorious smell, I noticed an overly exuberant Edward standing over the stove, cooking. When he saw me, he gave me a crocked grin.

“Hungry?” he asked with a chuckle. I rubbed my eyes and walked over to him.

“Starving,” I admitted with a grin, taking a seat at the table next to Jasper who was shoving the food into him like there was no tomorrow.

“Good,” Edward said, bringing me a plate of food before giving me a sweet chaste kiss “Because I made breakfast, lots of it.”

“Looks great,” I said, taking a bite of the eggs and letting out an appreciative groan. “Taste great too!”

“Good,” he chuckled. “Coffee, Ms. Swan?”

“Yes please,” I replied, as he filled up my empty cup. “Not that I'm complaining, but what exactly are you doing here so early? I thought you were dropping by around eight?” I asked, taking a sip of my coffee.

“Well Jasper texted me this morning and gave me a heads up that Jack took off early for Port Angelas, so I thought I’d come over and do something nice for you.”

“Well it’s much appreciated Mr. Cullen,” I sighed taking another bite of my eggs.

Edward, Jasper and I made mindless conversation as we enjoyed the wonderful breakfast Edward had prepared for us. I was used to being the one who took care of others but I admit that it was nice to have someone take care of me for once.

When we had finished breakfast, Jasper helped Edward clear the table and throw the dishes in the dishwasher, while I darted upstairs and ran the straighter through my hair a couple of times. As soon as my hair looked somewhat presentable, I made my way back downstairs to meet up with the boys.

Edward looked down at me, beaming, when I met up with him in the entryway. I reached my arms up and gently took him in an embrace before tenderly bringing him in closer to me and giving him a sweet and tender kiss, listening to him sigh in delight as I released him. “Thank you very much for breakfast Edward, it was very kind of you.”

“Anything for you, love” he murmured, kissing me again.

Jasper groaned from somewhere behind us, “Come on you two, we’re going to be late.”

I laughed a little, as I reluctantly broke apart from Edward. “He’s right we better get going” I sighed, taking his hand as we made our way out of the house towards Edward’s awaiting Volvo.

*****

I’m going to go find Alice; I’ll meet up with you two love birds later” Jasper said when we arrived at school.

“Just so I know, what exactly are we?” I asked.

“What would you like us to be?”

“I agree with what you said last night, I want what Alice & Jasper have too. I want a relationship.”

“So I guess that would make you my girlfriend than, Ms. Swan” he grinned.

“I guess so” I smiled, as we walked towards our friends hand in hand.

“Welcome to the family Bellsy” Emmett boomed as he swung me around.

“I always knew we were going to be sisters” Alice gushed when she saw us.

“Yeesh, the way you’re all talking, you’d think me and Edward got engaged or something,” I laughed.

“Come love, class awaits.” He said, taking my hand and leading the way towards the school.

*****

All day, I couldn't focus on anything other than the fact that Austin was finally coming home. After being overseas for three months, surviving an explosion, and lasting two months in the hospital; he was finally coming home.

“Want anything?” Jasper asked, sticking his head into the fridge. He pulled out three cans of Pepsi and slid them on the table towards me and Edward. I grabbed mine and opened it, taking a sip. Edward had decided to stick around after dropping us back home to help Jasper in his attempt to distract me until Jack returned home with Austin.

“Get some ice cream from the freezer”, I instructed him, “I’ll grab the spoons.”

We got the ice cream and went into the living room, the three of us sitting on the couch eating the ice cream straight from the carton. I was busy distracting myself with the latest Oprah, when I heard the truck pull into the drive way and honk.

“Austin’s home!” I screamed, jumping off the couch and sailing out the front door.

“Welcome home!” I exclaimed, throwing open the passenger side door to the truck. “I'm so excited you’re finally home.”

“Take it easy there, baby sis’. We just got him home; we don't want him broken again.” Jack laughed. Jack and Austin had been making quite the progress with their relationship. Slowly, there was less and less animosity between the two.

As soon as he was safely in his chair, I attacked him in a hug. “Hey Squirt, nice to see you too!” he laughed, hugging me back.

Jack went over and hoisted Austin out of the truck and into his wheelchair. Stepping away, and letting me have free range of the reigns. “Come along big brother, I’ll show you what we’ve done with the place.” I said, wheeling him up the newly acquired ramp that Jack and Jasper had built him one afternoon.

Slowly, but surely, the Austin we know and love was finally returning, coming out of his broken shell. He had been making great progress with Mrs. Brideau. He had been meeting with Mrs. Brideau twice a week and Jack and I had joined him on Wednesday evenings, after we were both finished school, we’d up with both of them and have a family session. Austin acknowledged that he was taking out his pain and anger about his leg on Jack, using him as an outlet for his pain and anger.

“What happened to you?” Austin asked as he appraised Edwards’s newly bruised eye, courtesy of Jack.

“A run-in with your brother” Edward groaned.

“Good.” Austin laughed, sending a snickering Jack an approving look.

“Behave” I warned, shooting a threatening look to both Jack and Austin. Austin had just returned home and I wasn’t in to the mood for any of their overly protective big brother antics today.

“Hey man, it’s nice to finally meet you.” Jasper said, shaking my brother’s hand. “Bella has said nothing but good things about you.”

“Yea you too. Bella explained how you were living here and says you already fit right in to the family. It’ll be nice to have another brother around. He laughed, patting Jasper on the shoulder. “And since your friends with the kid over there, we can pick your brain to see if he really is well suited for our baby sister.”

“Sure thing,” Jasper laughed.

“How is he?” I quickly whispered to Jack, while Jasper was talking up Austin. Jack and I often exchanged secret information about Austin’s mood to give each other a heads up if he was having a good or bad day.

“He seems to be having a good day. He didn't say one negative thing to me on the drive over. I think he’s just genuinely happy to be rid of the hospital.” Jack replied softly, as not to draw Austin’s attention.

I was astonished; Austin was actually being on his best behaviour. Maybe getting him out of the hospital was all he really needed. Being around some new people, fresh faces would help him put a foot in the right direction. He wasn’t used to being so dependent on people, so getting him out of the hospital and mobile would be able to give him a new sense of independence and hopefully help ease his PTSD. Carlisle had informed me the other day that Austin’s harsh mood swings were giving the doctors and nurses and Forks General a run for their money. He had a trouble keeping his temper in check and had a tendency of lashing out at people.

“I'm glad your home Austin,” Edward said.

“Home is wherever Bella is. She’s the heart and soul of this family and keeps us all grounded. She’s carried the worry of this family on her shoulders for far too long, so I won’t disapprove of this. But that doesn’t mean I suddenly like you kid. I'm doing this for Bella, not for you.”

‘Definitely a good day’ I beamed to myself.

“Thank you Austin, I appreciate this. I won’t hurt her. I could never hurt Bella, she means too much to me. I know how important she is to you guys, but don't you think it’s time to let her do something for herself for once? I can make her happy. I will make her happy. Just give me the chance.”

“Yea, yea. Just don't mess it up kid!” Austin bellowed.

I don't think I could’ve been happier. Little by little my brothers were starting to accept Edward and things were finally returning back to normal. Slowly but surely my boys were returning home to me.

*****

The night had been pretty good. We ordered a couple pizzas and Edward joined Jasper and our family for supper. I was pleasantly surprised to see my brothers behaving themselves.

It was shortly after midnight, and I was lying in my bed, trying to force myself to sleep, when a distressed cry broke through the house. I immediately jumped out of bed and flew down the stairs towards Austin’s room.

I stood in the doorway stunned, listening to my brother’s helpless cries. He was having such a good day and now he was writhing in pain.

“What’s going on?” Jasper asked as he appeared beside me wrapped up in his comforter, still half asleep.

“He’s having a night terror, Carlisle and his therapist said this could happen when he starts reliving what’s happened.” I explained.

“Where Jack?” I asked, not taking my eyes of my distressed brother.

“He’s still asleep. Do you want me to go wake him?” he asked.

“No he has to get up early to go to school, I can handle this.” I replied. “Why don't you go back to bed, Jazz? I’ll sit with him for a while until he settles down.”

“Are you sure Bella?” he asked warily.

“Yea, I don't think it’ll do him good if he woke up to a crowd. It’ll be better if it’s just me.”

“Okay Bells,” he sighed, kissing my forehead before leaving the room.

I slowly made my way into the room. Austin’s anxiety and fear were very prominent as he was shaking. Not taking my eyes from him I crawled into the bed beside him. He let out an agonizing whimper and began tossing, his fear and panic becoming more and more evident. He was having a night terror. Dr. Brideau had explained to us in our sessions that due to the PTSD, night terrors could start becoming a regular occurrence in Austin’s life.

I began to cry as I helplessly watched the tears start running down my brothers pale cheeks and his whimpers increase. He was pushing the blanket away from his body as if he was unconsciously fighting an invisible enemy. Finally he let out a distressed scream and began thrashing around.

No longer able to watch him suffer like this, I reached out and grabbed his shoulders forcefully to keep him from moving. His body was struggling against mine and in the struggle his arm ended up swinging out and made contact with my eye.

“Austin!” I shouted, nursing my now sore eye. Thankfully he started coming to, as his thrashing started to cease. His eyes flew open and he looked around disoriented before breaking out in sobs. “Austin” I said again, this time in a more soothing tone. Austin’s panicked gaze found me and he drew in a shaky breath. I cupped his cheek with my hand whipping away his tears, and he slightly relaxed at my touch, but another round of sobs soon took over.

I pulled his head into my lap as I sat beside him on the bed. He immediately wrapped his arms around my torso, desperately clinging to my pyjamas, muffling cries into my lap. I didn't know what to do so I just pulled him closer to me. My giant, brawny brother seemed so helpless and delicate as I held him, running my fingers through his short, brown hair. “Shh, you’re okay. I'm not going anywhere, and I'm not going to let anything bad happen to you.” I whispered soothingly.

After a while, his tears started to slowly subside and he gazed up at my face. His whole face turned into a guilty grimace when he noticed my now bruised eye. “Oh Bella, I'm so sorry!” he cried.

“It’s okay Austin,” I soothed. “At least Edward and I will match now” I laughed feebly, trying to break the tension. But Austin didn't find it particularly amusing as he broke out into tears again.

“I'm so, so sorry Bella! I never meant to hurt you. The dream was just so real! I was like I was back there again, watching everyone die all over!” he cried.

“It’s okay Austin; you’re never going back there. You’ll never have to live it again.” I promised, holding on to my brother as he cried himself back to sleep.