Forbidden to Remember
Forbidden to remember, terrified to forget; my life after Edward Cullen.Forbidden to remember; my life after the accident. Bella happily immerses herself in her hallucinations of Edward until her lack of concentration results in her riding off a cliff. Three weeks later she finds herself in hospital with amnesia. Bella can't remember who she is, who her friends are, why she looks so ill or who this Edward Cullen guy is. All she can recall is her life starting after her regaining consciousness in hospital three weeks after the accident. She knows Charlie is hiding something about her old life, but what she can't put her finger on... B/J and B/E. A story about destiny: Will a change of events affect Bella's final decision of who she should choose? 21.06.11 CHAPTER 12 "CONFLICT" IS UP!! I'M SO SORRY FOR THE DELAY, I CAME ON TODAY TO SEE WHAT WAS TAKING SO LONG TO VALIDATE AND NOT ONLY HAD THE CHAPTER GONE THROUGH, IT WAS MISSING THE STORY TEXT -.-" I AM SO SORRY BUT THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE ~ SparklyCullen
Edward gets his wish; Bella living her life like he had never existed. But when he drops in to find Bella happy with Jacob, should he walk away or make his presence known? Will Bella ever regain her memory?
Rating 3/5 Word Count 4333 Review this Chapter
I am lost in a forest, just wandering around aimlessly. I have no purpose; no destination, just me, lost in the forest as a dense fog begins to shroud my surroundings. I look up through the leaves, but there is no light shining through. The night sky is black; no stars and no moon. A new moon. Thick woollen clouds begin to invade the sky, muffling everything so I cannot see what I could before. I try to look around the clouds, but they cover everything. I drop my gaze and see light coming from between the trees. I stumble forward, through the fog and land against the chocolate torso of a boy that looks like a man. He laughs huskily and embraces me, his long ebony hair merging with my wavy coffee hair.
“Bella,” murmurs Jacob, as he brushes a loose strand out of my eyes. “At last...”
I opened my eyes, the bright light invading the gap between my eyelids again. I groaned.
“Bella?” The voice sounded unsure of himself, as though he didn’t know what to expect.
“Charlie?” I moaned, squinting in the direction of the voice.
“Yes,” Charlie sighed, his voice now saturated with relief. “Hey, Bells, how’re you feeling?”
“Tired,” I replied, trying to discreetly disguise my huge yawn.
I paused thoughtfully. “Only yesterday... It was yesterday, right? That I woke up?”
Charlie smiled, relaxing visibly. “Yes, Bella.”
I yawned again and stretched, resulting in the loud cracks of my joints. “What time is it?”
“Half ten,” answered Charlie, yawning with me. “I’ve got to go and pick your mom up from the airport, think you’ll be ok?”
“Sure,” I shrugged. “Maybe I could have that shower I was promised.”
“Good idea,” said Charlie as he rose grudgingly to his feet, shrugging on his thick jacket. He hesitated, not moving away from my side.
“Go!” I encouraged; the unnecessary worrying made me feel uncomfortable. “You don’t want to be late, Dad.”
Charlie smiled gladly, startling me. “I didn’t think the same you would be there, Bells, but here you are, saying exactly what you would normally.”
I frowned, confused. “Well, I’m still me, Dad. Just without the memories of before, that’s all.”
Charlie sighed and made to leave the room before turning back. “Oh, Bella, I nearly forgot. Billy and Jacob were going to visit at eleven to keep you company ‘till me and your mom get back.”
“Oh,” I said, making to get out of bed. “I’d better hurry up with that shower...”
“I’ll ask a nurse to help you, Bells, don’t strain yourself,” interrupted Charlie in a slight panic. I sighed and sat back reluctantly. I wanted to stretch my muscles that were stiff with four weeks of non-activity. “Billy’s bringing your photo album with him,” he added as he opened the door. “To see if that helps to jog your memory.”
“’Kay,” I moaned, as Charlie left the room. “Bye.”
I stared up at the plain white ceiling as I waited for the nurse to come. A feeling of impatience had me drumming my fingers against the plain sheets of my bed. I rolled my head over to the left and noticed a dozen get well cards sitting on the boring, sanitary bedside cabinet. I pulled myself up and reached over to have a closer look, but something tugged on the back of my hand. I had to look away, breathing shallowly, my heart race picking up slightly. There was a needle sticking out of my hand. Gross.
Before I could yank it out with my good hand, Dr. Gerandy entered the room.
“Bella?” He asked as I froze, mid-tug. “What are you doing?”
I winced. “I was trying to get rid of this thing in my hand-”
“Don’t do that, Bella!” the doctor cried, startling me as he scurried over to me and shoved my hand away. “You need that for the drugs!”
“I do drugs?!” I screeched. “No wonder I’m so ill! Why didn’t anyone try to stop me?”
“Bella, calm down,” he said, glancing worriedly at the heart rate monitor. “It’s for us to administer the drugs, not to help you with an addiction problem! Although if you have memories of dealing with drugs, it’s best if you tell me now - I won’t tell Charlie if you want to stay anonymous-”
I heaved a heavy sigh of relief. Thank goodness! Charlie was so pleased when I said something like I would have before the accident. I didn’t want to disappoint him, but, as I mentioned to the doctor, I certainly didn’t feel like a rebel; too risky. I couldn’t hurt Charlie that way.
“That’s good,” smiled the doctor as he checked the machines by my bed. “I’m not sure if he’d be too happy with you riding another motorcycle...” He chuckled to himself and straightened up as a different nurse to last night entered my room.
“Ah, Lucy,” he said pleasantly. “Could you help Bella out of bed? We’ll do some quick tests and then you can clean up, Bella, alright?”
I nodded as Lucy pulled back the sheets to reveal my pale, thin, (and quite hairy) legs and gently supported me as I swung my feet off the mattress and stood up unsteadily. I looked at the doctor, horror began to constrict my throat but he made no reaction. I wondered if this was expected for my condition, or whether I was ridiculously clumsy regardless of head trauma.
The nurse guided me around the bed and I caught my knee on the corner of the frame. I cursed, stooping to clutch my knee. Dr. Gerandy sighed.
“Charlie did say you were naturally uncoordinated,” he reassured me. “But this really takes the biscuit,” he muttered under his breath as he made notes on the clipboard.
I bit my lip self-consciously, but everyone seemed to ignore me. The tests were mostly based around my coordination, although the doctor noted it may prove more informative if Charlie was present to observe the presence of unusual clumsiness.
“You’re free to go now, Bella,” he grinned as the nurse walked slightly ahead of me to open the door. “Go, clean up and we’ll have the cleaners clean up in here for you as well.”
I thanked him and stumbled out of the room. It was nice to be able to walk and stretch my legs after being tucked up in bed for so long.
I enjoyed my shower. I relished the sense of hygiene the soap and shampoo introduced, the warm water soothing my aching muscles as it swept over my skin, however, after I was dry I began to feel weary. Fortunately, the nurse noticed and produced a wheelchair from the corridor so I could ride my way gracefully back to bed.
“Bella!” The tall lanky man was back with his father. I noticed I was level with his father, who winked and smiled triumphantly as though he’d successfully predicted that I would be up and about. The lanky man who pushed his father’s chair appeared hesitant when he acknowledged my mode of transport, but within a heartbeat his grin returned twice as bright as before.
“Hello again, Bella,” growled the man in the wheelchair, his victorious grin lightening his features as well as casting an invisible dim aura around his being. “Remember us?”
“Of course I do!” I laughed. “Jacob and Billy Black! From La Push, right?”
“Yeah,” Jacob seemed to sigh in elated relief, his gratified aura shining brightly in the plain corridor, causing me to smile with him. The atmosphere he created was much stronger than his father’s, though I suspected he could light the whole of Washington on a good day. He rolled Billy alongside me as we travelled down the corridor to my room.
“We brought you some presents today, Bella,” smiled Billy amicably as Jacob pulled him back slightly so I could enter the ward first.
“You didn’t have to do that,” I mumbled self consciously looking into my lap when the nurse pulled me backwards to my bed and Jacob expertly manoeuvred Billy inside.
“It’s no problem, Bella,” Jacob shrugged. “We’ve already told you what most of them are.”
The nurse cut in sleekly, asking me to press the call button if I wanted assistance to get back into my bed before leaving discreetly to provide us some privacy.
“Did you?” I tried to recall. “The wheelchair? It’s the wheelchair, right?”
Jake laughed. “Yeah, but we haven’t got it with us. We dropped it off at yours; it’s round the back out of the way since Charlie wasn’t there to open the door for us. But we brought you some other stuff too.”
“That chair’s great, I don’t need anything else,” I blushed, embarrassed that they had gone out of their way for me, especially when Billy was in a similar position to me.
They laughed loudly. “You haven’t seen the state that old chair’s in yet, Bella,” chuckled Billy, his ancient eyes crinkling good humouredly. “Jake tried to smarten it up for you; it’s been sitting in the shed gathering dust for the past six months but even then, there’s only so much you can do.”
“I have racing stripe stencils in the garage if you want them, Bells,” winked Jacob, a discreet flush intensifying the russet colour of his skin.
I laughed with them. I really liked Jacob. Already, within minutes of us being together, the room couldn’t have been brighter if the sun was burning in the middle of it.
“So what’re my other presents?” I asked curiously, as I shifted in my seat trying to get comfy. “Sit down, Jake,” I added, nodding towards my mattress. “You’re making my legs ache watching you stand!”
He laughed, but sat in the small plastic chair besides my bed. Strangely the chair appeared several sizes too small to support Jake, but I could recall it looking fine when Charlie was seated this morning. I mentally shook my head. The fatigue must be beginning to affect my judgement.
Jacob unhooked a plastic bag from the handles of Billy’s wheelchair and plopped it on my bed, pushing it towards me. They both watched me as I picked the bag up and set it in my lap and began to rustle through it. There was a smooth, almost new, photo album, some tattered books that I noted to be classics such as Wuthering Heights, Sense and Sensibility and Jane Eyre, and a small brown box tied shut with a soft green ribbon. I retrieved the box and dropped the bag on the bed. I shook it gently, listening for a clue as to what’s inside whilst also watching Jacob bow his head sheepishly.
“Go on,” urged Billy impatiently. “Open it up, Bella. Jake made it himself.”
Jacob scowled at his father before looking shyly back at me and ducking his head. I untied the ribbon smoothly and carefully removed the lid. I gasped.
They observed my reaction as I lifted it delicately from its wrappings; Billy seemed completely at ease whereas Jake fidgeted tensely. From the long, thin, bronze chain hung a small, rough, bleached heart.
“Hand carved out of driftwood, wasn’t it Jake?” asked Billy casually, a hint of mischief glinting in his black eyes.
I sighed, dragging my astonished eyes from the necklace to Jacob’s nervous face. “You made this?” I whispered.
“Yeah,” growled Jacob, his face glowing with heat.
“What do you think, Bella?”
“It’s beautiful...” I answered, returning my gaze to the impossible art in my hand. “It’s so... beautiful, I... I don’t know how to thank you!”
Billy laughed, triumphant again, and this time even Jake smiled proudly. “You like it?”
“I love it, Jake! I love it!” I beamed, tears welling in my eyes. “Help me put it on?” Jake squeezed guardedly about my bed and tenderly lifted his gift from my fingertips. He brushed my wet hair from the back of my neck, his smooth hands caressing the back of my neck as he fastened it securely and swept my hair back in place, leaving his hands hovering in my hair for a second too long. We both sighed, content. Billy watched approvingly as Jake and I admired his handiwork hanging around my neck.
We talked, for what seemed like ten minutes, but turned out to be a couple of hours. After unsuccessfully trying to prevent my yawns for the fifth time in a row, Billy suggested I climb into bed and have a nap before Charlie came back. I tried to get to my feet, but I had no strength left.
“Jacob, help her out. There’s a good lad.” Jake glanced at his father, trying to see his motive, but Billy closed his eyes and began to hum quietly. Jacob sighed and smiled repentantly in my direction as he wrapped one arm around my ribs and the other under my knees.
“Sorry,” he muttered as he set me caringly in the middle of my bed.
“No problem,” I yawned, letting my left arm slide off his shoulders as he moved away, twisting the heart pendant between my fingers with my right hand. “You’ll come back soon, right?”
Jake opened his mouth to answer, but Billy beat him to it. “We’ll see you when you’re out of hospital, Bella. Your mom’s going to be here in the next couple of hours and you don’t see her as often as you’ll see us, so we’ll keep out of the way for a bit.”
Both of our faces fell at the news. Billy laughed. “We’ll see you after you start school again. Maybe you could drive down after your first day unless you have something else to do.”
“No, it’s ok,” I answered quickly. “I don’t have anything planned!”
Billy smiled, accomplishment smouldering under his poker face. “See you then.”
“Bye, Bells,” mumbled Jacob unhappily.
“Bye, Jake,” I murmured, squeezing his hand, feeling the pain of his departure like we were Siamese twins being separated as he left waving solemnly.
I slept for a while, but woke to find my room empty. No longer fatigued, I decided to look through the photo album the Blacks had left. The smooth cover wasn’t familiar and the pictures inside stirred no memories, only curiosity.
On the first page, there was a space for a photograph, but, even though there wasn’t one there, there was a caption regardless.
Edward Cullen, Charlie’s Kitchen, Sept. 13th.
Edward Cullen? Who was he? I flipped over a few more pages; there were pictures of my rusty red, Chevrolet truck, my white panelled home I shared with Charlie, my untidy bedroom and dozens of pictures of people my age with their mouths full or hands in front of their faces, with captions telling me what the photo contained. Mike Newton, Jessica Stanley, Angela Weber, Eric Yorkie, Lauren Mallory, Ben Cheney; I presumed these must be my friends. In one of the pictures, the camera had slipped at an angle and in the background you could see a brown and pale cream blur that looked like me with my head down, next to another blur. I squinted at the page. The second blur seemed to be white as A4 paper and bronze as an English penny. Strange. I reread the caption, but it seemed when I’d written the caption, I hadn’t noticed the unfocused blobs.
I continued through the photo album, hoping to find enlightenment on the bronze blur, but I soon became distracted by another couple of empty spaces with captions.
Charlie Swan and Edward Cullen, Charlie’s living room watching ESPN, Sept. 13th.
Edward Cullen, Charlie’s living room, Sept. 13th.
Where were the missing photos? And who was this Edward Cullen? I scanned through the book again. Only three photos were missing and they all claimed to contain Edward Cullen. Strange. I’d have to ask Charlie about it later; maybe they’d fallen out or something.
I picked up a battered copy of Wuthering Heights and began to read. Two and a half hours later I realised, rather than remembered, why this book was so battered. I began to read it again, desperate to relive the story line, when I heard a slight knock at the door.
“Come in,” I called, keeping my index finger between the pages like a bookmark.
A woman with short, ruffled blonde hair peeked her head around the door, like a young child unsure of what she’d find.
“Bella!” she squealed, rushing up to me and embracing me where I sat, causing me to lose my page. My wide, surprised eyes searched over her shoulder and my body relaxed slightly when Charlie followed her through, his short, receding brown hair looking as though it had been combed through once hours ago. He smiled quietly at the scene before him.
“Do you know me, Bella?” asked the woman after she pulled away and wiped her streaming eyes on her sleeve.
“You are...” I glanced at Charlie for confirmation. “My... mom?”
“She remembers me!” she cried, hugging me again. I smiled weakly, timidly, unwilling to correct her if believing I remembered her made her happy.
“Do you, Bells?” asked Charlie wonderingly. A glimmer of hope was stirring behind his eyes, but although it pained me to extinguish the small, inconsequential glow, I realised I would have to correctly “remember” my past to keep it fuelled.
I hesitated. “You said you were going to come back with Mom...” I answered vaguely. Charlie took the hint and nodded.
“Renée?” I asked warily, wondering if I had her name right.
“Yes?” Renée answered her eyes as bright as a child with a sugar rush.
Her face melted like butter at the mention of his name. I smiled proudly. She was obviously in love with Phil, but as she answered, I noticed Charlie grimace slightly. Did Charlie still love my mom?
“Phil was away with the team when Charlie phoned to say what had happened - he’s doing so well! Moving to Jacksonville has really boosted his career!” she said, excitement burning with happiness in her bright blue eyes. “Anyway, Phil was due home for a week the next day, so rather than distract him from work and have him worrying on the bus home, I waited till the next morning. I fell asleep on the sofa with the TV on,” she smiled sheepishly, before stroking my face gently. “I was so worried, Bella. Who was going to keep me in check without you, honey? I know you weren’t well anyway, but you seemed so much better the couple of weeks before the accident.” I frowned, what had been wrong with me? Everyone I’d spoken to about it closed up.
“Phil got home to find me with an empty box of tissues and three big Hershey’s chocolate bar wrappers.” She laughed. “I told him what had happened and he booked the tickets straight away, but the team called and said one of the other players was down and could he play the big game on Saturday? We talked about it a bit; he wanted to take me to you, but I wanted him to get the promotion. We ended up missing the flight so Phil booked me another ticket to see you today! I’ve missed you, honey!”
She squeezed me tightly, whispering breathlessly in my ear. “And I haven’t told you the best thing yet!”
“What’s that?” I asked, I bit bewildered with the offload of animated babble.
“You can come home tomorrow!” She squealed loudly, pulling away to see my reaction. “They’ll do a couple of tests tonight and some tomorrow morning, and if everything’s fine, you’ll be released!”
“Great!” The sooner I was released, the sooner I could back to school. The sooner I got back to school, the sooner I could see Jacob Black again.
Renée embraced me again, and even Charlie shuffled nearer to rest his hand on my shoulder. It didn’t feel like a family. It felt awkward, but acceptably so. Renée was hugging me like a small child who was worried about her mother whereas Charlie was standing nearby, unsure of what to do.
That night Dr. Gerandy returned and undertook the necessary tests with my parents’ supervision. With their help, the conclusion of me being naturally incurably clumsy was reached, hence alternative tests which couldn’t be affected by orientation-lacking subjects were carried out, and the next morning I was given the all clear to go home.
It was a good job Renée was bubbly. The drive home would have been quiet and reserved without her stories about Jacksonville and how much she’d missed me. I sat in the back, watching the heavy rain pour from the sky, replying often, listening carefully to learn more about whom I was, but the majority I heard I already knew. I used to live with my mother in Phoenix; Billy had told me that much. But Billy didn’t mention the heat, how it rarely rained, and the effects of the humid dust and how Jacksonville was more pleasant to live in permanently.
When we arrived at the white house, which I remembered to be labelled as Charlie’s in my photo album, Charlie insisted I stay while he fetched the chair from round the back. I tried futilely to travel up the drive independently, but I caved after recognising it made Charlie a little less distressed to have me incapable of injuring myself further.
Renée pushed me whilst Charlie carried our small cases. I climbed out when we reached the stairs and after folding the wheelchair untidily and storing it in my pick-up truck, I entered the house for the first time in my memory.
I was not the only observing the change in scenery. Renée was also looking around curiously.
“Go on in,” invited Charlie locking the door for the night. I stepped out of the cramped hallway into the living room. There was a faded sofa with a matching armchair sitting in front of a flat screen television. Around the room, framed photographs of me at different ages hung from the wallpapered walls.
I suddenly noticed there was silence. I turned around, searching for my parents and found them observing me from the doorway; Renée watched curiously, frowning in thought as she noted my reaction to the house I had supposedly been living in for the past year. Charlie stood sadly, surrounded by dumped luggage. A wave of guilt swept away my inquisitiveness. They had been hoping Charlie’s house, my home, would prove a trigger for my memory, but there was nothing to fire from the barrel and so they were left disappointed.
“Let me take my bag, Charlie,” I offered, reaching out to pick up the small black travel case I had packed hours earlier. “Where am I taking it to?”
Charlie shook his head and grunted as he picked up a case in each hand: one mine, the other Renée’s.
“Follow me,” he growled. I sighed in defeat as Renée picked up her back pack and ushered me in front of her.
We climbed the stairs and Charlie dropped Renée’s case outside a closed door. Using his free hand he pushed open another and motioned for me to enter. I walked in and looked around. It was my bedroom. Again, I remembered it only from the photos Billy had brought.
It was pale blue with clean curtains hanging either side of the window. My bed was made and everything was perfectly tidy with nothing out of place. I heard the gentle thud of my case on the floorboards as Charlie talked quietly to Renée about her accommodations.
“If you want to put your stuff in here-” The creak of a door as it was opened. “-You can stay as long as you like.”
“Are you sure, Charlie? I can book a hotel...”
“It’s fine. We both need to be near Bella at the moment and at least this way you don’t have to drive down every day.”
“If you’re sure...”
“Where are you going to sleep?”
“I’ll be fine on the sofa for now.”
“It’s fine, really.”
I ignored the awkward chat and began to explore, hoping to find my identity, but something seemed unusual. I had no memories except the hospital to compare with yet the room seemed to be frustratingly familiar.
The hospital rooms I had been in had been scrubbed clean of identity. The room couldn’t tell you anything its guest; gender, religion, likes, dislikes, hobbies, friends, family – there wasn’t anything to suggest anyone was living there.
It was the same here. The only things on show were my school books, scattered over the desk next to an aged computer. It was like someone had sanitized my room, physically bleaching out my personality and memories to match the inside of my head. I began to root through drawers and search shelves, looking for something to prove I existed before now, but to no avail.
I looked up and noticed I had yet to investigate the wardrobe. I sighed, expecting to find nothing and dragged myself over to check. At first glance, my wardrobe was just filled with thick jumpers and jeans, but as I bowed in dismay I noticed a bulging bin bag poorly hidden under fallen clothes. I dragged it out into the middle of the room and slit the side, allowing its contents to pour freely from its cell.
I sucked in my breath as questions exploded in my head.
A new car stereo with destroyed wires; a CD player with dozens of CDs; a library worth of books; a blue designer jumper that looked hardly worn; plane tickets – the list was endless!
Why had I taken everything and forced it into a bin bag? I liked to read. I liked music. I was not a mechanic by the state of the stereo. What inspired such a drastic clearout? Who was I?