Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended. Edited by Sjdavis84 and StillDreaming85.
Banner by StillDreaming85.
Warning: This story contains mention of rape,graphic violence and mention of human trafficking.
This is the sequel to Danger In New York. If you have not read DINY, I recommend doing that first.
Ragusa, Sicilia, Italia.
MARIE CULLEN (ISABELLA.)
No, this wasn't real. He could not be here. I wasn't prepared for this. I wasn't ready to see him again, to stand this close to him again.
No matter how many times I opened and closed my eyes, he was still standing right there, right in front of me, staring intensely, making me uncomfortable with how vulnerable and desperate he looked right now. It was a look that didn't suit him, the look of a desperate man.
I had so many questions I wanted to ask him. There were so many things I wanted to say, but nothing came out of my mouth, nothing but silent shock.
"Dolcezza, say something, please," he said, his fingers still lingering there on my cheek. His simple touch made both my mind and body fuzzy.
Right now I didn't know what to do or what to say, so I did the only thing I could think of, I ran. I ran away from him and towards the two men who have been keeping track of me over the past years. They breathed a sigh of relief when I came running towards them. I cannot begin to imagine the threat Carlisle had put on them to watch over me. Still, I wondered why they hadn't approached Edward? Why they had let him get close to me?
"Stai bene?" One of them asked. This was the first time in three years that we had even spoken to each other.
"Sì," I said, climbing into the back of the car letting them drive me away from there, taking me back home and away from him.
I glanced out the window at him as the car pulled out. He was hurt and angry, that was evident. There was something about him though, now that there was distance between us I could see it more clearly. He was almost unrecognizable. It was as if he was the same person, and yet he wasn't. He was different, in our few minutes together, I noticed that. He was more gentle yet a million degrees colder at the same time.
This wasn't fair. Carlisle and Esme had promised me that Edward would never know where I was located. They promised me that I would never have to see him again, or go back, not until I was ready, not unless I wanted to.
I didn't want this, not now.
I didn't want to see him, not yet.
For three years I had pushed my feelings aside. Yes, I had thought about him. I wondered what he was doing and if he was okay. But I wasn't ready for this yet. It wasn't fair, it was cruel for him to take that decision away from me.
It had been hours. I could hear them downstairs. Carlisle and Esme were both here when I arrived back. I walked straight past them and had locked myself in my room. I had nothing to say to either of them. They had lied to me, they had made me a promise and they had failed. I heard the car outside shortly after I locked my door. I watched him out the window as he stormed towards the house. I knew he would follow us, I knew he would come for me.
They had been downstairs for hours now. I can hear them yelling at one another and I cannot take it anymore. Their voices were so loud and all together, it was near impossible to make out a clear sentence from any of them.
I opened my door and tiptoed out into the hall, sitting on the top step. No one would see me up here.
"Get out of my way, padre," Edward yelled, his loud voice echoing up the stairs.
"No," Carlisle said in his usual calm tone.
"I am not asking you as a son, I am telling you as your don, move out of my way."
"Calm down," his father said.
"I am calm," Edward continued to yell.
"No, you are not."
"Three years. Three fucking years I have let you get away with this," Edward said. "You kept my own wife away from me and for what? What have you accomplished, what?"
"Edward, your father did what was right," Esme said.
"Eavesdropping?" Carmen whispered, sitting down beside me.
"I guess," I shrugged. "What are you doing up here?"
"Do you know how many men are down there in my living room trying to stop your husband from coming up here? They are all very uncomfortable, it is not pleasant to see," she said, as she straightened out her skirt.
"Why are they uncomfortable?" I asked.
"I know you know what it is they do, who our family is." Carmen smiled. "My brother was their Don and now Edward is. They are loyal to my brother, to our family. Carlisle has ordered those men to stop Edward from coming to you at any cost. Those poor men, they are in a bit of, how do you say, predicament, si."
"Why is he here?" Why? Why bother? Why show up after three years?
"That is a silly question, Marie." She chuckled.
"All of you have avoided talking about him, every time I asked, you pretended as if I had said nothing," I said.
"We thought it would be best for you. My brother sent you to me to help you rebuild your life, to forget about your past and that included my nipote."
Many times I had wondered why Carlisle had chosen to help me. It seemed like he had only created more problems with his family by sending me here and keeping me alive.
Why didn't he kill me? What did he get out of helping me? Out of all the girls, the women, that had been trafficked through him, why help me? What made me different? I was a traitor's daughter, the daughter of the man that helped take him down. Carlisle had spent eighteen months in a federal prison because of him, and he was supposed to spend another thirteen years. Was it because his son had decided to make me his wife? Did he consider me family because of it?
No, I couldn't accept that. There had to be more to it than that.
"Carmen, did he know all this time where I was?" I asked.
"I do not believe so. If he did know, he would have been here a lot sooner. My nipote, he loves you very much," she said.
"He doesn't love me, Carmen. He doesn't know the real me to love me," I laughed.
"You are very wrong, cara. My nipoti, Anthony was always from a small baby, he was wild, a little reckless and...cold. But Edward, he was calm and patient, and he always took care of the things and the people he holds dear. When he is passionate about something, someone, when he loves that person, he fights for them at every turn, no matter the cost," Carmen said, as she moved a stray piece of hair out of my eyes. "For three years, my nipote has fought my brother at every turn."
"Why?" I asked. Why would Edward fight his father?
"Because of you, Marie. Because my brother stole his son's wife and kept her away from him. I think the only thing that stopped Edward from killing his father, he knew he would not find you without him and Esme would never tell him where you were without my brother's permission."
That didn't mean Edward loved me. He couldn't. The thought alone made me nauseous, it made my stomach jump back and forth. Love? What did Edward know of love? Was he even capable of such an emotion or was he only continuing on with the game?
"Carmen…" My words were lost when the sound of one precise gunshot rang out followed by an echoing thud.
Without giving it any thought, I jumped to my feet and ran down the stairs with Carmen hot on my trail.
As we reached the bottom of the stairs, ten pairs of eyes turned towards us.
Ten men staring at us along with Esme, but my eyes were glued to the eleventh man laying on the floor. The blood oozing out of his head and onto Carmen's pristine rug.
"Cazzo, mio tappeto," Carmen cursed from behind me. She pushed her way around to get a closer look and inspect the damage done to her rug. "Nipote, idiota."
"I'll make sure you will have another rug delivered tomorrow," Edward said, although he never took his eyes off of me. The gun in his hand lowered, but he did not put it away.
"Move him off of my tappeto," Carmen said, motioning for the men to move the dead body off of her rug. Of course, it was just like Carmen to be more concerned with her rug rather than the dead body in her living room. But these people had to have seen more dead bodies in their lives than I have fingers on my hands. This was probably nothing. This was probably just another day to them.
"Dolcezza," Edward said. He took one step towards me and I took one back, bumping into Carlisle's chest. He wrapped his arm around me, holding me against him, trying to get me away from his son, but his son looked like a madman on a mission.
"I'm sorry, sweetheart. He should not be here," Carlisle said.
"Isabella, please," Edward pleaded. His eyes softened almost on the verge of tears. It appeared as if it was taking everything in him to fight them back.
But something inside of me snapped at this one moment. That name, it had been a very long time since anyone had called me Isab...That. I had put that person behind me, she was dead.
I closed my eyes, willing myself not to let it happen, but I was too weak. With one word, with one name, he had opened the floodgates of memories. Everything came flooding back, things that I never wanted to see again, voices I didn't want to hear, everything that I had worked so hard to keep locked away, now came rushing out, with one name.
"I am not Isabella," I yelled. "She's dead. You killed her."