So sorry for the delay you guys! It's been crazy but hopefully I can get back to posting more frequently now. Thank you all for reading x
So I find me in your garden now
A sad smile for the scene
And all the flowers that we planted now
Taken by the weeds
But in my minds eye, you know they still bloom for me
They stand tall there, in that summer breeze
Leave the Memories Alone - by Fuel
The next morning when I walked into the kitchen Edward was showered, reading a newspaper. There were dark circles under his eyes and it wasn't surprising as I knew he hadn't slept. He was tossing and turning all night and must have left and come back smelling of Lites at least three times. Once he even said my name and I wasn't sure if he was awake or asleep. I pretended I didn't hear him.
My phone started to ring somewhere on the countertop and neither of us made a move to pick it up. I was so exhausted, even the thought of answering was an effort.
"That's your phone," Edward said in a monotone voice. I knew it was my phone and he knew I knew it was my phone, so I still didn't pick up. I watched Alice's picture appear on the screen and then disappear.
There was silence as Edward finished his toast, and I switched the kettle on.
He put his newspaper down and started to talk casually to me. He was either scared that I was going to lose it, or he was keeping it light because he was going to lose it.
Either was a possibility.
"Do you want to do something today?"
Edward walked around to my side, placing his empty plate in the sink beside me. "We could … I don't know, go see the others if you want—"
I didn't want company.
"Right," he said, reprimanded. "We could go the movies... or just go for a drive; I don't have to go to work until late today so I'm all yours."
I looked up at him, at his final words.
I'm all yours.
I know, Edward. Damn it, I know.
It both revived and killed me to hear that.
"I don't want to watch anything at the cinema," I answered stubbornly. "Plus I have lunch with Lauren."
He sighed in aggravation, holding onto the side of the sink tightly with one hand. "Give me something here, B."
I twirled the dark granules of coffee around with my spoon.
My eyes travelled to his ring-less finger and then to where I'd hidden the wedding ring, in the bookcase just behind him.
I managed a smile. I know it looked as fake as it felt. "You should go. You should go see the others."
After what had happened at Rosalie's yesterday, I felt raw and festered, as if my baby's funeral has just happened yesterday. I didn't see why he was always around me. I was sucking the life out of him.
"I don't want to."
"You just said—"
His eyes flashed. "Don't you get it? I don't want to...alone. Without you."
Didn't he get that's what he was? That's what I was?
"We're not glued together," I said, pouring the steaming water into the cup.
"You are my wife," he said obstinately. One word at a time like I didn't get it.
Maybe I didn't anymore.
"Am I?" I said, watching the coffee turn a melded, hideous dark brown.
He was giving me a mild what the fuck look.
"I just …"—I sighed—"it's starting to feel like it's in name only, Edward …. We're living like this—like zombies. You should go have fun with your friends. You should reclaim your life."
You should move on.
"Are we really going to do this again?"
"We don't have to. It's easy; you go out and spend time with others. Have fun."
"What about you?"
"I'm okay as I am." There was silence as I stood opposite him, sipping my coffee. It burnt my tongue but I kept going.
Edward moved even closer, so close that I could see the tiny nick above his upper lip from shaving.
"Look at me, B. Look here. Into my eyes." He sounded young, not like the strong, healthy man that stood in front of me. "You've given up. Try. Look, can you please try here?"
He wasn't asking. He was begging.
A desperate man. When I didn't move, or look at him Edward pressed more.
"Did you take your meds today?"
It wasn't entirely truthful. Not today. I hadn't in a while. Why cover up the hurt with medication? It was still inside me...it would always be there. I wasn't going to pretend to be happy while my daughter lay buried. It would be a lie if I did that.
His hand came around me and touched the bare elbow of my arm that wasn't holding the mug.
"Please try to be okay, Bella. Maybe if you try, it'll make you believe and then eventually you will be. We're more than this. We're way more than a name."
I missed his touch so it left me a little breathless.
"I am okay." I whispered. It was a lie.
Edward's eyes were downcast and then he spoke so softly that I barely heard him. "I miss you."
I wasn't sure where to look so I ended up looking at him. I missed him more than he could know.
But I was no longer her—I was too wounded to be the me that Edward had fallen in love with.
I watched Edward as he took the mug out of my hand and put it on the counter. I didn't move away when he curled his fingers around my hot hand and pressed into the fleshy skin underneath my fingers, a little too hard.
I looked at his weary eyes.
I looked at his too-red lips, parted and so soft.
"Let me hold you."
For a second I remembered what it was like to be her, and be held by him, loved by him.
He placed my hand, intertwined with his hand, on my hip and slowly, like a magnet, I moved forward to him. "It's been so long. Let me love you."
"It's not that easy," I whispered as he squeezed my hip, with his hand still interlinked with mine. The angle was awkward and intimate; my breasts brushed the hard muscles of his forearm that was holding me.
"Just… try." His whispering in my ear and his heated breaths drew me even closer.
I hadn't tried in a long time.
I couldn't try anymore.
I was so tired…
My chin was on his shoulder and I felt him automatically stir against my stomach. It was nice that, despite all the distance between us, I could still make him react like that without doing anything at all.
He didn't need to say. He loved. He felt. He showed me.
God, how much I wanted him to love me. Why couldn't we go back to the time when it was this easy? When I would let him love me because I had just as much to give back. And I did—I gave him everything.
But now things were different.
I had nothing to give.
Somehow minutes went past, with my chin on his shoulder, his hand clasped with mine, even though it wasn't quite a hug. It was a question.
Then I said it, the thing that ruined everything. "You ... it's just ... you remind me of her so much."
Edward's whole body stiffened against me and slowly he pulled his face back to look at me. There was curiosity in his eyes, but most of all there was hurt.
It hurt me too.
My eyes watered but words still flowed from my mouth and I kept going because my grief was worse than the bitch that I had become.
"I can't - she looked like you. You are her, everything about you reminds me of her. You are her, she was you. The way you sleep, your smile, the way you mess up your hair, your great addiction to apricot marmalade and that silly way you break up and eat Oreos… Everything. Every goddamn stupid thing about you reminds me of her."
It was true. Every day with Edward was a reminder of my baby girl.
Tears squeezed from my eyes and dropped down my cheeks.
"It breaks. Every time I look at you, I see her and my heart breaks all over again. It won't stop."
Edward let out a long breath and our hands unclasped because he had let me go.
"I don't know what to say that. For everything else, I can try. I can be patient. I can have more faith for the two of us, but I can't change the way I look. Or those little things I do without even knowing I do them..."
"I know you can't."
We looked at each other and there was only desolation and sadness.
It was so unfair that this had happened to us.
"We'll find a way, baby. I promise. Trust me." I looked up and Edward had moved closer again, the coals of black in the pine sending my heart beating into my mouth.
I wanted to believe him. I wanted to believe him - but no. "I'm not even sure we can."
"Of course we can. It's us ..."
I shook my head. How could it go back to the way it had been? The perfect that we once were?
"Believe it," Edward demanded.
"No." I started to hyperventilate holding him tighter. I wanted to believe... I really did. But how?
I was going to keep it together.
I wasn't going to lose it.
The door swinging open pulled us both back to reality. I turned my head and wiped my eyes as Lauren bounded in.
"Bella… oh, sorry. Did I interrupt something?" She asked curiously, taking in our intimate stance.
"Yes." Edward said through gritted teeth.
"Bella and I had lunch plans."
"Come in," I said, forcing a smile and stepping away from the awkward embrace we were in. My player face was back on, and all the hurt pushed back into the deep recesses somewhere within me. It was easier this way.
God, so much easier.
Edward sighed. "We're not finished."
I walked away, to Lauren, ignoring the way the front door slammed too loudly, seconds later.
He had left.
And I was going to have to get used to it.
I'd never forget the way he looked at me on our wedding day, how comforting and solid his grip was, like no matter how difficult things got, or whatever came our way, he would hold me firmly like this for the rest of my life. He had looked handsome of course; I felt like that giddy girl who had found him standing outside her dorm room, and those words…. his words made me feel like I was the lone winner in this universe.
"When I first saw you, I was knocked for breath by your beauty. Not just the way you looked, but how fierce and fiery and real you were. It's true. I was a goner from the moment you snatched that bottle of Grey Goose from my fingers, and everyone knew it.
Many told me that I was too besotted, that they coined the term 'love-drunk' for me, that this was too soon. After all, it's always important to be cautious about these things, right? But here's the thing. When it comes to trust, and love, and forever, and you …. sometimes you have to take this leap of faith and just believe.
I will say this... in my life, I have never believed in anything as much as I believe in you Bella, this love-drunk boy loves you. I do. I do. I do."
Lots of Hadley and Astro love! These two ladies are amazing x