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Forbidden to Remember

Summary:
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


Notes:
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?


4. Guilt

Rating 4/5   Word Count 3984   Review this Chapter

“Turn here,” said Jake, pointing out of his window. I followed his instructions onto a dirt track.

“How far down?” I asked, glancing at him curiously. His face was thoughtful.

“About here is good,” he said, unbuckling his belt as I pulled up and cut the engine. Jacob was out like a flash, leaving me to struggle with my belt. I could hear the metallic scrape of the bikes against the truck bed as I fought against the jammed button that should have released me.

“Gah!” I cried frustrated as I shook the clip in irritation.

“Bella?” Jacob opened the cab door frowning as I looked up, haggard with my jaw set.

“My belt’s jammed,” I growled, giving another vain tug. Jacob sighed and as he reached over to sort it out, his burning torso pressed against my legs. I could feel his heart pumping steadily, forcefully, as he freed me from my confines. “Thanks,” I breathed as he stepped back. I swung my legs out and jumped. As I hit the ground, I staggered slightly from the impact. Fortunately Jacob caught me and held me up.

“Thanks,” I repeated, laughing at my inelegance.

“No problem,” said Jake before he let go of me and walked away.

I followed him slowly, trying not to trip again as I took in my surroundings. The last patch of blue disappeared as the grey stretched itself out; if I had not just witnessed it, I wouldn’t have believed there was any sky behind the cloud.

We were on a sandy stretch of road which was enclosed in a border of green trees. I could hear the sea raging it’s never ending war against the cliff face and smell the wet moss and salt combined. I stepped back instinctively as I walked into Jacob, apologising again.

“It’s fine,” shrugged Jacob with one of his wild grins. “You’re naturally uncoordinated, Bella, and you always have been.” We laughed for a moment before serious Jacob returned. There was a long pause as Jacob stared unrelentingly at me.

“Ring any bells?” I looked at him, completely confused.

“Bells?” I repeated.

“Are you... I mean, can you remember anything... new?”

I sifted through my head. “No, I’m sorry, Jacob.”

He nodded, looking at the ground for a moment before glancing at the bikes. “Maybe these will help.”

I hesitated. “I don’t know, Jake,” I wavered. “I mean, what if I’m not so lucky next time? I’ve lost my life once, is it worth risking my second chance? What would it do to Charlie?”

Jacob stared longingly at the bikes. “I suppose not,” he sighed. “I just wanted to know if you were still in there, Bella...” He trailed off, looking into the trees to his left. I wished I could tell him that I was still me, but I realised that my words could never ring true because I didn’t know who I was supposed to be. I was a new person, a rebirth of the old me. Like a melted chocolate bar, I was still made of the same stuff, I just didn’t know whether I was an Easter egg, chocolate drops or chocolate coated strawberries. I reached out and took his hand gently, the tips of my fingers holding his palm feebly. The contrast was beautiful, a natural collage like rain clouds against the sky or moss across a tree trunk. His glowing russet skin made my already pale complexion appear bleached in comparison, like bone on dirt or paper on bark.

He looked down, taking in the sight of our contact. Slowly, delicately, he opened his hand and moved it towards me so he had hold of my hand. It felt nice, warm, comforting. I squeezed it gently and he squeezed back. I caught his gaze and smiled. He grimaced before looking away.

“What is it, Jake?” I murmured, bringing up my other hand so his right was caged between both of mine.

“I’m sorry, Bella,” he whispered, avoiding my gaze. “It’s all my fault.”

“What’s your fault?”

He shook his head. “Everything.”

“I don’t know what you mean.”

After a long pause Jacob met my gaze. His dark eyes were full of sorrow, his face so tortured, that I automatically took a step forward. Our torsos touched and I pulled back slightly, but Jacob pulled me into an embrace.

“I’m sorry,” he repeated into my hair. “I shouldn’t have brought you here. I shouldn’t have fixed those bikes.”

“Why not? It doesn’t bother me being here, honest.” I was trying to console him with the truth. I needed to relieve his distress because it affected me. It was like we were one and the same person; his distress was my distress.

“It’s my fault you can’t remember who you are,” murmured Jacob. I could feel the heat of his breath saturating into my hair, warming my scalp. “I brought you here, I fixed the damn bikes, I couldn’t get to you in time, and I’m sorry, Bella.”

I was completely baffled. “I don’t know what you mean.”

“It’s my fault,” Jacob repeated slowly for the third time. He sighed and released my body, but kept a loose hold on my hand as he walked me through the border of trees surrounding us.

“Jacob-”

“Do you have any idea what happened the day of the accident?” he asked simply, mutedly, as though talking about a loved one’s passing. “Any at all?”

“Yes,” I answered. “It was a motorcycle accident. I was with you in La Push and I used the back brake, which made me come off the bike and over the cliffs. Someone heard you yelling for help, and so he and the others came running. One ran to phone an ambulance while a couple of them climbed down to get me and another stayed with you. And here we are!” I quoted Jake, trying to cheer him up, but he ignored it, his eyes tightening slightly.

“That’s the basics I guess,” noted Jake, stopping us at the roadside which existed on the other side of the trees. “There’s more to it than that, though.

“You turned up one day with a couple of bikes in the back of your truck, saying you wanted them fixed no matter how much it cost. I’m an idiotic teenage boy who doesn’t think twice about the dangers of bikes, so obviously I agreed to do it.

“Within a couple of weeks we had two clean, working bikes - the same ones you found in the garage before – and part of the deal was I had one of the two in exchange for fixing them up and giving you riding lessons. So I brought you here,” he gestured to the sandy stretch of land we’d just left behind. “And told you what to do. You were doing great, so we decided to come back down the next day.

“I don’t know what happened to you. I made sure you were alright and you decided you were going to go for a test run down the track, so I didn’t think anything of it. I watched you go down so far and I figured you were going to stop when you reached the trees, so I climbed onto my bike. I looked up barely a second later and you were disappearing into the woodland. I yelled for you to brake but you kept going. I started up my bike and drove after you but you had too big of a headstart.

“When I made it out of the trees, you were at the edge of the cliff: I had to brake! I had no choice! I would’ve flown off with you if I hadn’t braked.” Jacob’s face darkened with shame. I grasped his hand tighter.

“I understand, Jake,” I muttered. “Really. I don’t blame you at all for what happened.”

“You braked eventually, but it was too late and the wrong brake. You just catapulted into the air.” Jake was staring out at the sky where it merged with the sea. Slowly he pulled me forward and across the road, stopping near the edge of the cliff. He pointed to a jutting piece of rock about the height of Charlie’s house away from us. “When I caught you up you were lying there. You weren’t moving at all; I thought you’d died.”

I stared absently at the rock that took my life. This was where my old life had ended, leaving me lost and confused as to who I was supposed to be. We stood silently, brooding, listening to the sea crash below us as the salty wind blew through our hair.

“Charlie pointed out after that we should’ve had helmets at the very least, but it never crossed my mind even after the accident. I was yelling my head off, trying to get you to wake up as I made my way down, but instead I gained Sam Uley and his disciples’ attention.” I could hear the bitterness under his thin appreciative tone. I wanted to ask him about it, but he continued like it was a relief to get the details of his horror off his chest. “Sam looked over the cliff to see who had gone over and then ordered me to climb back up. I tried to argue but he and Jared jumped down and lifted me up to Embry and Paul. Those guys are freakishly strong: I’ve filled out a bit now, but they threw me up like I was a loaf of bread, even though I was trying to kick ‘em in the groin. Sam told Embry to run into town to phone an ambulance – even though the nearest phone’s two miles away! – while he and Jared got you. Paul stayed with me so we could help pull you up. It was frustrating waiting for them. I was certain you were dying, and that I should be with you if you did. I thought Sam and Jared would waste time trying to talk to you instead of getting you up to me.

“Paul was questioning me the whole two minutes they were down there. Who were you, what had happened, et cetera, et cetera and it drove me insane! As Sam called for me and Paul to pull you up, we could hear the ambulance siren blaring.” He shook his head. “Crazy. That’s what it was. Embry shouldn’t have been a tenth of the way there and an ambulance was on its way!

“Sam resumed the interrogation as soon as he climbed back up, but I’d given up playing his stupid games.” I heard a staggered breath and looked up to see tears building up in Jacob’s eyes. I pulled my hand free and he let me go lamely, before I wrapped my arms around him and stroked his arm comfortingly.

“You were just laying there, your hair swept over your face carelessly, blood matting in your fringe. They didn’t care. If I hadn’t been there, you would have been dumped sloppily on the roadside like road kill; like you weren’t human.” Jacob’s grip tightened in obvious dislike for my rescuers. “I just knelt by you, watching you die slowly. The seconds dragged out but flew by. It was confusing; I wanted it to be over, for you to be safe again, but then what if you never recovered? What if they were the last seconds of your life? I was wishing you’re life away to sober my own suffering... so stupid and inconsequential considering the cost. I moved your hair out of your face and used my t-shirt to stem the bleeding but I couldn’t see where you’d been cut. I stroked your hand, but I was so scared that I was going to break you, Bella. That the wind could blow the lightest of breezes and take away the last shred of life you had. You do not understand how grateful I am that you are here with me now, that you are still breathing.”

A warm wetness began to seep through my hair and dampen my scalp. I shuddered at the irony and tried to rub away the goose bumps that Jacob’s monologue had delivered.

We sat in silence for a long while and as the sun shot its bloody light across the sky, we sighed simultaneously before laughing quietly.

“Beautiful, isn’t it?” asked Jacob, hesitantly stroking my brunette locks that were damp from the sea air.

“Yes,” I answered to his comment on the sunset rather than the hidden remark about my hair. I didn’t try to stop his stroking though: it felt nice, pleasant, comforting. It was cosily warm against Jacob and it had been a long day. I felt my eyes begin to droop and absentmindedly sighed in content, wondering idly what Charlie would say when he found out I had a blossoming bruise on my leg due to dodge ball. Would he be surprised or worried? Somehow, I doubted either. The only thing preventing my sleep was an irritating feeling that I’d forgotten something important other than the first eighteen and a half years of my life.

“Oh no!” I cried suddenly, sitting up away from Jacob’s chest as my eyes flew open and despairingly noticed the height of the sun above the sea.

“What is it?” His eyes were confused as his arm fell limply to the floor. It seemed he had been similarly satisfied by the tranquillity of the ocean and was disappointed by the interruption.

“It’s so late!” I cried, glancing wildly around me. I felt disorientated: it felt like only seconds ago the sun was high in the air, but darkness had fallen and crickets could be heard chirping in the grass around us. “What time is it? Charlie’s expecting me home!”

Jacob took his eyes off my face and gazed expertly at the horizon. “I make it about eight o’clock, give or take half an hour.”

“We need to go!” I tried to scramble to my feet, but my legs were like dead weights.

“It isn’t really that late, Bella,” Jacob assured me, but stood up regardless. He stretched out a smooth russet hand towards me, and I accepted the additional help. I made it up, but as Jacob let go and walked away, my knees buckled and I dropped like a ragdoll onto the grass.

“Jacob!” Jake turned casually and watched me in concern as I tried uselessly to get up.

“What’s wrong?” he asked, striding back and kneeling beside me.

“I don’t know,” I mumbled. “My legs won’t support me.”

“Is it serious?” A wave of panic flooded Jacob’s face.

“I don’t know,” I repeated, chewing my lip stressfully. I thought back and shrugged indifferently. “The doctor said I might get tired from time to time; that’s why I needed your dad’s chair...”

“Are you tired now?”

“Yes,” I admitted. “I’m exhausted. Gym drained my energy and I didn’t even manage to get out of the way in time...”

He chuckled distractedly before coming over serious again. “’Kay, but if you get up tomorrow morning like this, you’re going back for a check-up, right?” I nodded. “Here,” he whispered gently, sliding his arms under my knees and around my ribs before lifting me into his arms like he had in the hospital.

As he slowly walked over to the truck, I noticed my weight didn’t seem to bother him. When I mentioned it, he shrugged. “You weigh next to nothing, Bella; even a six year old could lift you clean off the ground!” I frowned, offended, but my sulking didn’t last long. It was too difficult to stay mad with Jake.

He opened up the passenger door of my truck and set me inside. “But how are we going to get home?” I objected. “I can’t drive like this! Do you have a cell phone with you?”

Jake laughed. “You’re forgetting I’m a Frankenstein mechanic. Do you really believe I could’ve built cars without knowing what does what and how to drive one? Billy can’t move them around for me, Bella.”

“Oh, right, of course.” I felt stupid for not acknowledging this. Jake shut my door and walked around the front of the truck.

“This used to be my dad’s old truck,” explained Jacob as he buckled himself in and started the engine. “I rebuilt the engine and good old Charlie bought it from us. Good thing too. Billy wouldn’t let me start a new project with a functioning car in the drive.” Jake flashed a grin at me. “Don’t go over sixty, Bella.”

“Why not?” I asked, puzzled.

“Because if it does sixty, it means something’s gone wrong: it’s impossible to do in this truck, trust me.”

The curtain twitched as we pulled into the drive and within seconds Charlie had thrown himself out of the front door. Jake cut the engine and got out casually. Charlie’s horrified eyes rested on me as I sat uselessly in the car. I began to fidget tensely as Jake opened my door and lifted me from the car.

“Where to?” he asked me as we unceremoniously walked up to the front door.

“Sofa,” I replied, still distracted by Charlie’s distress. “Hi, Dad, where’s Billy’s old chair?”

“It’s under the stairs,” he answered, stepping forward, reaching for me unconsciously. “Bella what happened?”

“Oh, maybe you should take me upstairs, Jake, else I won’t be able to get up after,” I added as an afterthought while Jacob continued moving forward, nodding in Charlie’s direction.

“I’ll stay for a bit,” smiled Jake as he settled me tenderly on the sofa and stepped back so Charlie could get to me.

“Bella, what happened?!” repeated Charlie.

“Nothing, Dad, really,” I assured him. “We were sitting on the cliffs at La Push and lost track of time. I think my legs have given up because I’m so tired.”

Charlie looked between us. “’You sure?” asked Charlie. “I can drive you to A&E if you need me to, Bells.”

“I’m fine, Dad. It’s getting late-”

“It doesn’t matter how late it is,” said Charlie, frown lines furrowing across his forehead. “If you want to go it’s better to be safe than sorry.”

“I’ll be fine,” I repeated before shifting the subject away from me. “Can you give Jake a lift home, Dad? I couldn’t drive back so Jake had to instead.”

“Sure,” said Charlie, his face still scarred with worry as he turned to Jacob. “You ok to go now?”

“Wait!” I interrupted. “Can you take me upstairs first, Jake? I need a- oh, crap.”

Jake snorted. I blushed, backtracking. “No! I was going to say I needed a shower, but how am I supposed to shower without standing up?”

I wasn’t the only one flushing now; Jake and Charlie had both turned a similar shade of crimson. “Where the hell is your mum when we need her?” mumbled Charlie awkwardly.

I sighed heavily. “I’ll manage. Maybe if I sleep on the sofa, I’ll be ok tomorrow and I can have a shower then...”

“Are you going to be alright on a sofa all night?” asked Charlie. “It isn’t all that comfortable.”

“Yes,” I said. “Just for tonight. Can someone fetch my duvet and pillow from upstairs? And my pyjamas? I’ll change when you take Jake home, Dad.”

“Sure,” agreed Charlie before going upstairs, leaving me and Jacob alone.

“Sorry, Jake.” Jacob looked at me, pulling a face.

“What the hell for?”

“Not being able to remember anything today. I did try, but there doesn’t seem to be anything there to remember. So... I’m sorry.”

“Don’t worry ‘bout it, Bells,” Jake said, waving his hand in a gesture of dismissal. “It was my fault you lost your memory in the first place.”

“Don’t blame yourself, Jake,” I said heatedly. “I drove into the trees and I hit the back brake at the wrong moment. You told me not to use it, and I’m sorry I ignored you.”

Jake smiled sadly. “Really, Jake, don’t beat yourself up about it - promise me you won’t.” He hesitated. “Jake!”

“Fine,” he moaned in defeat.

“Thanks,” I smiled at him until he returned it with his brilliant white grin. “So, what’re we doing tomorrow?”

“Whatever you want,” beamed Jake excitedly.

“Not motorbikes.” We both started as Charlie re-entered the room, his face deadly serious as he passed me my stuff.

“I told you, Charlie, they’ve just sold to a couple out in Canada; they’re getting picked up tomorrow.” I frowned, regretful of the loss of Jake’s hard work.

“Good.” Charlie nodded at me before exiting with Jake. “See you in about an hour, Bells.”

“Bye Bella, see you tomorrow.”

“Bye Jake, thanks for today!” I cried. “See you in a bit, Dad.”

I dreamed strange dreams that night. Jacob’s story of my forgotten past was the theme of my dream, but that was what it was: a dream not a memory.

I was riding a bright red bike through Forks with Jacob riding a blue one next to me. We were laughing as we cut efficiently through the air, out onto the highway. We glided swiftly over tarmac before taking a right onto a smaller track. Without hesitation, we dived between the trees with incredible speed.

Bella.” The wind whispered like velvet in my ear. “Be careful.”

Jake whooped loudly. I could see him ten feet away from me, punching the air in exhilaration. I returned my gaze forward and noticed I was approaching the edge of the cliff at La Push. I jerked my foot into contact with back brake. The bike halted as momentum threw me into the air. I rose up gradually and dipped back down in slow motion into the most beautiful meadow I had ever seen.

Soft green grass and a light breeze licked my skin. White, yellow and violet flowers were scattered amongst the gentle blades of green. I sat up slowly looking around. Something slid down the side of my face and I automatically reached up to wipe it away. I looked at my fingers and saw they were stained with the deep red of my blood. Something moved ahead of me, hiding behind the trees. I focused my gaze and could make out a faint glistening silver silhouette disguised by a thin mist.

Bella.” The shadow looked up sharply. I sensed its unrelenting stare as I regarded it warily. It stepped forward into the sunlight, towards me. My breathing grew heavy in anticipation. As the light touched its skin it sparkled blindingly and evaporated like a shallow pool of water.

“Bella! Wake up!” I opened my eyes and realised I was sobbing hard. I sat up, choking on the mysterious trauma.

“Bella!” Charlie squeezed my shoulders, his face devastated. “Bella, what’s wrong?”

“Bad dream,” I sniffed, wiping my eyes and looking blearily around the bright living room. The curtains were closed against the darkness of outside so I realised it must be late. “What time is it?”

“About ten,” admitted Charlie guiltily. “Sorry, I thought you would be alright. Billy’s bought new bait from a new store that’s opened down the reservation and we were talking about trying it out.”

“I’m fine, Dad, really.” I rubbed my eyes and stood up. I was a little more wobbly than normal, but at least I’d be able to make it to bed. I picked up my bedding and started for the stairs.

“Here, Bells,” Charlie offered, confiscating my load.

“Thanks, Dad.” I walked up first, paranoid he wanted an excuse to follow me up in case I fell. Charlie followed me into my room and fluffed up my pillow. I lay down and he draped the quilt over me.

“Goodnight, Bells,” muttered Charlie huskily before hesitantly pecking me dryly on my forehead.

“’Night, Dad,” I murmured as Charlie retreated from the room, closing my door behind him.