Chapter Song: Silhouettes by Of Monsters & Men
Out of clutter, find simplicity.
From discord, find harmony.
In the middle of difficulty, lies opportunity.
We sat in Dr. Crowley's waiting room a week later since that was the only time he could squeeze us in. The room was filled with three big, comfortable couches. Nothing like what I was used to when it came to waiting rooms. The seats were there on purpose to relax us, but it wasn't working. We sat on the edge with our backbones straight as all get out, hands tightly gripped together.
I saw Dr. Crowley pass with the patient before us, chatting quietly.
Way too soon, he appeared before us. "Edward, are you ready?"
I wanted to say, Do I have to go first? but nodded instead.
I kissed Bella's cheek before standing and waiting for her to slowly release my hand. With another nod, I followed him down a narrow hall to the back. He opened the last door and waited for me to step in first. I didn't know what I expected, but this wasn't it. Again there were couches, two of them, with one chair in the corner.
"Sit wherever you want."
I looked at the man I'd been seeing at church for years as sudden panic took hold. What was I thinking? I should've found someone else, not a person I was likely to see on a weekly basis.
He smiled, looking as if he knew exactly what I was thinking. "Relax. It's okay. When you see me in public, it will be like it was before. No one will know you see me unless you want them to."
I nodded, sitting on the leather couch that squeaked when I moved.
He rattled off that he was subject to report anything illegal or concerning. I nodded again, knowing that. Which was fine, because I had nothing incriminating to say and I sure wasn't planning on offing myself. I was too big of a puss for that.
After positioning himself in a comfortable position on the chair across from me, he leaned in a little. I wanted to ask him where his notepad was, but kept it to myself. This wasn't anything like I thought it would be. It was kind of better actually. Not nearly as bad as I thought it would be. It was almost like I could pretend I was talking to a friend or family member, just an unbiased one...sort of. I wasn't sure how loyal he was to my father. Here's hoping he didn't kick my ass out after I told him all my daddy issues.
"So, Edward, why did you come to me today?" He asked this because we refused to give the receptionist any information. Truthfully, the only reason I think we were in here was because of who my father was. Finally, being his son had some perks.
I took fucking forever to get my words out as I thought them through, then restarted over and over again.
Dr. Crowley clapped his hands together softly. "Let's try something different. Close your eyes and pretend your with someone you trust and care about." Bella instantly came to mind. "Got it?"
"For now on, you're talking to that person, not me, okay?"
"Okay," I answered as Bella smiled at me.
"What do you need to talk about, Edward?"
"What about him?"
"I'm pissed off at him."
"What causes you're anger?"
I opened my eyes for a second and closed them right back, because I needed to see Bella. I couldn't pretend she was talking because it was just weird to hear a male voice coming out of her mouth, but I could pretend that she was the only person hearing me talk. "I never thought I'd ever tell anyone about it. I always assumed I'd handle it until I could leave then never think about it again."
"What did he do, Edward?" The doctor's voice grew panicked.
"He never actually did anything. That's the annoying part. I should let it go, since he never went through with hitting me..."
"Did he threaten to?" Now I heard a little shock. He was trying to hide it, but he was failing epically.
"Not so much with words, but he's eyes and body language said it all."
"What kind of body language?" All he seemed to do was ask questions. Did people really shell out big bucks for this?
I sighed, rubbing my face roughly as Bella made a monkey face by puffing out her cheeks and pulling her ears out. The only reason why I could conjure that image was because she actually did that more often than was considered normal. Her almost second nature peculiarity was one of the best things about her. It also scared her to be different. She was constantly at war with herself.
"Balling up his fist, screaming in my face, looking at me like he did his boxing components, just to name a few."
I shrugged. "After so long of one thing, you almost get used to it."
"What made you leave?"
"She finally walked in on him loosing his shit." I leaned my head back, slouching. "If she wouldn't have walked in, he would've gone through with it that time."
"That's why you moved out."
I didn't answer since it wasn't a question. Now the questions made sense to me, without them I wouldn't know where to begin or what to say. I nodded when he didn't continue.
"So are you looking to resolve things with your father?"
"Don't apologize. Say what you feel in here."
I nodded. "No, I'm here because I'm afraid I'll end up just like him."
"Open your eyes, please."
I pried them open, not wanting to see the man. When he came into focus, his face showed nothing but polite concern and attention.
"That's a perfectly normal fear, Edward."
He nodded. "It's both an issue of nature and nurture."
"Sometimes it's a genetic thing, other times it a learned thing, and on some occasions, it can be both."
"Do you think it's a both thing for me?"
"I can't answer that now."
"When can you?"
I frowned, looking down.
"Don't become discouraged, we'll figure it out together."
I looked at him. "Does it surprise you to hear all this?"
"Honestly, yes and no."
"You got me."
He smiled, his straight teeth were white as fuck compared to his tan face. "I'm surprised because outwardly, Carlisle looks like a pillar of tranquility. I'm also not because I know that people are rarely how they appear to be."
I nodded. "True that."
"So, back to you being like him. What brings on that fear?"
The answer seemed obvious to me, but I indulged him anyway. "I get very angry in situation that I shouldn't."
"Can you give an example?"
I nodded. "Me and Bella were arguing about coming here, and she was being stubborn about it so I snapped."
"What did you do?"
"I walked away."
This answer surprised the shit out of him. "That's impressive, Edward."
"Bella said the same thing."
"Because it is. More than you can understand."
"Care to explain?"
He smiled at me. "Sure. How long have you been dealing with your father's anger issues?"
"Half a decade give or take a year."
He nodded. "And in that time, have you ever seen him walk away right when he started to get angry?"
I thought about it for a second, shaking my head. "No, it was usually because I got away or he heard my mom come in."
"The fact that you have enough self control to walk away is a very good sign."
"What kind of sign?"
"I believe with the right amount of arsenal, you can control your temper."
"Will I need medicine?"
He shook his head. "Only if things progress for the worse."
I nodded. "What kind of arsenal are we talking?"
"Things like walking away, having someone in your life that will let you walk away. I don't like to tell people what to do, but it would be in your best interest not to be with someone who can't let an argument go."
"Bella's nothing like that."
We talked more about how I can control my anger, breathing being a key point. He even showed me how; in, out, in, out, in, out. And doing math in my head or anything that takes my mind of the anger.
"You have to remember that you have control over everything you feel and do. Don't let things overwhelm you."
We talked a bit more, different things about anger and how likely it was that if I kept ignoring it the worse it would get.
One thing he said stuck with me, "Don't fight it. It would be like pushing against a wall when all you have to do is walk around it."
Even though Bella's session was just as long as mine, it seemed to take forever. She probably felt the same way as me when it was my turn. Time flew when all you were doing was talking about yourself. I never talked about myself so much before or talked that much about anything period. It was strange, but not the worst thing ever. The term therapy made sense to me now. I felt less weighed down. The problems were still there, but they didn't feel like all mighty, indestructible monsters. For the first time in a long time, I felt like I actually had a chance at a semi-normal life.
I hoped Bella felt the same afterwards too.
A/N: Jansails brought the fact that Edward called her Esme instead of mom to be out of character. From time to time he'll think of her as Esme instead of mom, but I'll try to always have him say mom in quotations. It's not a disrespect thing, I just wasn't paying attention.