To anyone who has previously read this, Yes, I've redone it and I've changed my pen-name. It was previously DreamofRob10. No, I am not copying this from anywhere but my own computer. This is my work that I reworked and wanted a fresh start with. I wasn't happy with the other postings.

I have used characters from SM...all rights to them are hers; I just borrowed them.

No copyright infringement was intended at all.

All mistakes are my own. I take any and all responsibility for any mistakes that are found within this writing.

If you want to leave a negative comment, please go somewhere else. I post this for fun, not negative feedback. If you want to be a critic, go to where it counts, NOT HERE! I don't get paid to write this, so if you leave a review, a smiling face would be perfect.

This story will contain descriptions of physical abuse. If that bothers you, I apologize.

10/30/16


Chapter 1

BPOV

I'm not one to place judgement on any one person, considering the way I grew up. My life, as a child, was something I would never wish upon anyone. Living with an alcoholic father who beat their mother constantly, was something any child or adult would consider a nightmare.

Up until I turned 12 years old, I was always subjected to witness these beatings. There were times when my father made me sit and watch him beat my mother. He always said he was trying to teach me how to be the right house wife for my future husband.

He also told me I'd be lucky to ever find anyone who would love me enough to marry me.

On the eve of my 12th birthday, my mother was being beat, yet again. I wasn't sure what forced his hand this time, but I knew it didn't matter what she did. She could have put too much jelly on a sandwich and he would beat her because it dripped out on his shirt. All I knew was, I was over it; done with watching my mother being treated like a slave.

When I snuck out the window of the downstairs bathroom, there was only once place I could go.

The closest neighbor was about half a mile away from where we lived in Florida. We were in a very rural, quiet area of Jacksonville.

It was about two in the morning when I arrived at our closest neighbor's house. The home of Mr. and Mrs. Landers.


They had always treated my mother as their own child and I looked up to them as grandparents. They were always checking on my mom and me.

About once a week, Mrs. Landers would come by the house and visit. She would only come when she knew my father wasn't home. I enjoyed her visits. She always brought goodies for us, but we would have to hide them so my father wouldn't know anyone had been to the house.


When I was on their porch and out of breath from running, I banged on their door like my life depended on it.

Mr. Landers answered the door. "Isabella, what's wrong?" He asked, looking at me quizzically in search of an answer.

"My mom… needs help," I said. I was out of breath; gasping for air between words.

"Isn't your dad home, sweetie?" Mr. Landers asked. It was obvious he didn't know what went on in my home. Not all of it, of course.

"He's beating her," I replied, bent over gasping. Mr. Landers looked at me with shock.

Without any more questions, he took my hand, "Come with me," he said, leading me into the living room and stopped at the bottom of the stairs.

"Camille, I need you please," he called up to his wife. She immediately appeared at that top of the stairs and gasped when she spotted me.

"What going on?" she asked, holding the lapels of her robe together.

"There's a situation. I need you to stay with Isabella; it's her mother," he explained. Mrs. Landers made her way downstairs and guided me into the kitchen where she proceeded to get me a drink.

I later found out that they knew something was amiss at our house, but they never stuck their nose in others peoples business. They had offered help numerous times, but mom declined.

After that night, I didn't know exactly what went on at my house. Mr. Landers had called the police before he left to go to mine. He insisted that I stay with his wife until I could go home. That didn't happen until the next day when Mr. and Mrs. Landers drove me to the hospital where my mother was being treated to injuries caused by my father. They drove us home the moment my mom was released from the hospital. They were a God send to us.

Also, that night, was the last night I saw my father alive.


I'm 24 now, and from the day I turned 12 years old, I would say life has been great and eventful. My whole world completely changed that day. All for the better, I might add. I couldn't be more happy for the way it's gone in the last 12 years. And after that one horrifying night in Florida, mom packed us up and moved us across the country to Forks, Washington where my grandparents live.

She eventually got reacquainted with an old high school friend. Charlie has treated her like a queen from day one.

Even though they've only been married for 10 years, they still act as if they were still newlyweds. It made me happy to think of the smile on my mother's face, especially since the birth of my baby brother, Alex.

He was a honeymoon baby.

After we moved to Washington, mom had her IUD taken out. She wasn't planning on more children. Well, until she Charlie, of course. He told her he would love her either way. She could give him all the children she could bear or just her, and he would be happy.

From the moment I met Charlie, I knew he was meant to be in our lives. As far as I was concerned, Charlie is my father and was meant to be.

On the day he purposed, down on one knee, in front of mom and me, he asked her to marry him and asked me to be his daughter. We both said yes immediately. He said he had always wanted children, and they day they made it official, he was an instant dad.

Now, he has me, Alex and Gracie. Gracie, of course, is the baby. She arrived 16 months after Alex. Mom knew she wasn't getting younger and they started to try for another baby right after Alex. It took a little time, but it finally happened.

Mom had to have a hysterectomy due to complications during Gracie's birth; she started hemorrhaging. The doctors couldn't get the bleeding to stop without taking her uterus out. She went through a hard time for a while when she thought of not giving my dad anymore children; it broke her heart. Dad finally convinced her he had three healthy children and a wife, whom he loved more than anything. We made his life complete.

Mom said it was for the best anyway because she didn't want to be old and decrepit running around the yard with her kids. She also wanted to keep some of her energy for when I decided to give her grandchildren.

I knew mom loved children, but pushing for grandchildren before I found my one and only, was pushing it.

Having a baby brother and sister, not only taught me tons of things about babies, but also made me look forward to my future. I loved helping her with them when they were small.

Before mom reconnected with Charlie, my views on children and marriage were nonexistent. I couldn't see bringing a child into a world with so much violence, but seeing my parents together changed my mind and I know now, that happiness could be found. It could find you when you least expected it. My mom was proof of that. I wasn't settling, though. I'm sure my one and only is out there somewhere.

After seeing how something so horrible turn into something so beautiful, as long as it's with the right person, life can be the best thing to experience. And now, marriage and children were something to look forward to.

Thinking of being happy always made me think of my parents, and my dad had told me about how he had always wanted to be a part of my mom's life. He never had the chance because of Phil.

As soon as my mom turned 18, Phil made her pack their things and they moved to Florida. After that, she wasn't allowed to have much contact with my grandparents because Phil felt that they were trying to control them. That's why I didn't know much of my grandparents until we moved to Forks when I was 12. And the only reason Phil was in Forks was for one reason and one reason only. He had gotten into trouble, so he was forced to live with his aunt. After knowing his parents, especially Phil's mother, I eventually knew where all his trouble came from.

My mom told me the story of when Phil started Forks High School during their second semester. He was the new, handsome baseball player that my mom met during her junior year. He was a senior and all the girls swooned over him.

They had been inseparable from the moment they said hello to each other. That was the main reason why Charlie never told mom his true feelings for her. They remained acquaintances because Phil kept her on a short leash.

Nearly six months after they became boyfriend and girlfriend, Phil had graduated, but spent most of his time at the batting cages to practice for his career. He'd some home frustrated and take it out on her. He would punch her on the arm or leg and slap her across the face. He told her women needed to know their place in this world, so he was going to teach her.

The more violent abuse came later.

He had also told her that women were created to bear children. That's why my mom ended up pregnant with me at the age of 17. Mom was so in love with him that she didn't care if she got pregnant, so when he told her he was going to get her pregnant, she agreed.

And being from an Italian Catholic family, my Grandpa Georgino insisted that they be married, so four months before graduation, they married. My mom wasn't quite 18 yet, so as per my grandfather's rule, Phil had to live with my mother, as her husband, in their home until she turned 18. After that, they were free to live where they wanted.

That's why mom ended up giving birth to me in Florida 5 weeks before her due date.

Phil had backhanded her causing her to fall down a flight of stairs. She went into premature labor with me even though I was supposed to be born sometime around Halloween.

Once I was born, my Grandma and Grandpa Georgino flew to Florida to meet me and to make sure Phil was properly providing for us. Phil had since began his baseball career. He bought a house a few miles from his parents, staying close to his mothers rule. With a cleanly kept home and food in our pantry, there wasn't much my grandparents could do.

So, as I got older, I often wondered why my mom never had more children with PHil. She told me that she secretly had an IUD implanted. After she had me, she requested, in private, from her doctor, to have the implant put in upon her six week check-up. Her doctor wholeheartedly agreed after she witnessed the type of person my father was.

My mom thought Phil didn't deserve to have any more children. Not that she didn't love me, but if she could have done things over, she would have made sure she was on birth control before her first time. Phil would try numerous times to get her pregnant and wondered why it wasn't happening. Mom simply told him it wasn't in God's plan for them.

She had always told me that I was meant to be her daughter no matter who my father was.

If it wasn't for Phil making good money and providing a nice, clean home for us, I was pretty sure my grandparents would have made my mom go back to Forks with them. Phil made sure they saw what they needed to see.

Now that I thought about it, I wished Phil's career would have never gotten started. Only because my Grandparents would have dragged my mom and me back to Forks, but I suppose things happen the way they do, for a reason.


This brings me back to the present time, where I was sitting at my desk, in my corner office, with the best view that anyone could ask for.

That's the perks of being a senior book editor at Whitlock & Kerns Publishing.

My degree in literature was a shoe in for the company. I was already working here as an intern and upon my graduation, I was offered a position as a general editor.

That was a year and a half ago.

Believe it or not, I had earned my position at W&K Publishing. A year and a half seemed like a very short time to become a Senior Editor. It was, but I worked my fingers to the bone, night and day, to accomplish what I had, in such a small amount of time.

The former Senior Editor retired and that's where my promotion came in. I proved myself relentlessly for my position. Other people assumed otherwise. It didn't matter where you worked, there were always rumors.

Being best friends with the boss' son would make anyone gossip.

Jasper and I had met one dreary day at the U-Dub library. He was doing research for a paper in his world history class and I was gathering information on Dante's Inferno. We were sitting at the same table when I accidently knocked one of my books into the floor. He smiled and picked it up for me.

He was such a gentleman.

After a couple of months of getting to know each other, Jasper informed me that his parents owned a publishing company and there was a position opening for an intern.

I took a chance and was accepted. I've been with the company ever since. That was a little over two years ago.

As far as Jasper and me, we have become the best of friends. We've gone out a few times but it never went any further than that. My schooling and job took up a majority of my time, so dating hadn't really been my scene. A lot of my time was spent volunteering, also.

From the time I turned 16 and got my driver license, I volunteered at the local battered women's shelter in Forks. In Seattle, there were three that I volunteered at on the weekends. So needless to say, I always kept myself busy.

Being a child that grew up in a domestic violence situation, I had learned the different signs of abuse. At least I hoped I could see the signs. That could also be the cause of my lack of boyfriends and dates. I was putting too much thought into wondering who I could give my heart to.

Don't get me wrong, I dated here and there and I even had a couple of boyfriends when I was in high school. I kind of think Charlie being a United States Marshal and an ex-marine was the main cause of most of the boys in town staying clear of me. It didn't matter, though. I still thought my dad was and will always be my number one guy. He is definitely a bad-ass.

Also, once I turned 16, I got involved in taking kick boxing lessons and self defense classes. I recently received my third degree black belt in Tae-Kwan-Do. I also knew Jiu-Jitsu.

After mom gave birth to Gracie and healed from her surgery, she started taking classes with me and over time, Charlie taught her quite a few self-defense moves.

I was so proud of how far mom has come since we moved to Washington. I knew Grandma and Grandpa Georgino were happy that she came home. Especially, since their grandbabies were close by and she finally went to college. She was now an elementary school teacher at Forks Primary where Alex and Gracie attended.


"Swan?" Jasper called to me as he poked his head into my office.

"Whitlock?" I asked, being sarcastic and quirking a brow. I already knew what he was going to ask me.

"Wanna grab some grub?" He smiled his signature toothy grin at me.

Jasper worked just down the hall from me and was also a Senior Editor. He mainly editing anything that pertained to history. He was the biggest history buff I knew.

I was more into romance, mystery, science fiction and anything erotica. Being a Senior Editor though, I had to take anything given to me, but I would have to say that erotica was by far my favorite. I lived vicariously through them; it protected my virtue.

"Sure. You just wanna hit the cafeteria downstairs? I have a bunch of shit to catch up on." I had only taken the position of Senior Editor two weeks prior and I was trying to get caught up on what was left from the previous editor.

"Sounds good to me." He held his arm out so I could loop mine with his and we made our way downstairs.

After we purchased our lunch and settled into our normal booth, we were approached by none other than Jessica Stanley.

Jasper and I rolled our eyes at each other.

She sighed, leaning against our table. "Hi, Jasper." She crossed her arms over her chest. "Rumor has it your cousin is coming into town; is that true?" she asked. I looked at Jasper with and open mouth. I knew of Jasper's cousins. I've seen pictures and seen them on TV. I've also heard stories from Jasper and his parents.

His cousins were the infamous Cullen brothers. They were the other Peyton and Eli Manning of football. Except these two were Emmett and Edward.

Emmett played for Green Bay and Edward played for the Patriots although he had sustained a knee injury last season.

"Well, Jessica, if you have to know, yes, my cousin is coming into town," he retorted snidely, returning to his food.

Jessica perked up, hopped from the table and clapped her hands. "Oh, WOW! I can't wait." I wasn't sure she could sound any more enthusiastic. "Maybe this time I can get that date he promised me a couple of years ago." Jasper rolled his eyes and said something under his breath. It sounded like he was telling her not to count on it.

Jessica was one of those people that always assumed and opened their mouth when it needed to be shut.

"We'll see, Jessica; thanks for stopping by." He smiled at her, waving his hand, hoping she'd go away.

She didn't leave right away, so he spoke up. "Bella and I don't have much time for lunch. Was there anything else you needed?" Jasper asked. He maintained his annoyance the best he could. I was so proud of him.

"Oh, I'm sorry. It was nice to see you Jasper." She turned, giving me a fake smile. "Bella," she said, sneering through my name. There was definitely no love lost between her and me.

Jessica walked away swaying her hips seductively. Jasper and I chuckled at her actions.

"So, WOW, this is news to me." I said mocking Jessica and clapping my hands like an airhead. I finally composed myself, "When were you gonna tell me?" I asked, seriously. I really wanted to know; more out of curiosity than anything.

"I was about to tell you before Jessica interrupted," he replied, placing his napkin on the table.

"Oh, um... which cousin?" I was trying not to sound too eager. I picked up my glass of tea, hoping to hide my own anxiousness.

"Edward. My parents wanted me to invite you to dinner on Saturday. He gets into town on Friday and he'll be staying with them until he gets settled," he explained.

My curiosity was turning into a crazed fan situation. "What do you mean settled?" I really wanted to know, now. I had always thought both, Emmett and Edward, were absolutely gorgeous, but Edward was the one that bedazzled me. There was just something about him that screamed seduction. Well that, and just looking at him kind of did a little somethin', somethin' to my lady bits.

Emmett was off the market, though. He married his high school sweetheart, Rosalie Hale. Even until this day, they were still so in love. Momma Whitlock always croons over how proud she is of both Emmett and Edward. More of Emmett because he was still going strong with the love of his life.

She always used him as an example when she lectured Jasper and I on our love lives. We just agreed with her and pretended like we listened to her, again. Jasper wandered if they were her children and not him.

"Edward's the new coach over at U-Dub." He explained, smiling. "He took early retirement because of his knee injury last season. You remember him getting hurt, right?"

I nodded. "Yeah, I remember. I didn't think it was that serious, though?"

Jasper shrugged, "Yeah, his orthopedic doctor said that even with the surgery, he would always have problems," he explained. "He walks with a little limp but nothing too bad. He still has to do physical therapy for it."

I nodded, letting him know I was listening. "So, what's the real reason your mom wants me at dinner on Saturday? No bullshit, either," I warned, already knowing where all this was going.

He shook his head and looked down at the table. I knew Momma Whitlock was up to something by inviting me over. We usually did family dinners once a month and we just had dinner a couple of weeks ago.

"Speak up, Whitlock. What aren't you telling me?" I asked, giving him a stern look.

"Nothing," he said, shrugging, trying to play innocent.

"I call bullshit on you. I know you better than you know yourself so spill!" I demanded. I knew anyone could hear me, but I didn't care.

It was the way Jasper looked up at me that gave it away. I knew his mom was up to something and there was definitely more to this than just having dinner with family.

"You know how mom is, Bella. She seems to think you would be perfect for Edward," he said. I loved his mother like she was my own mother, but she hadn't exactly lived up to her matchmaking skills.

I chuckled at what he said. "Oh, good grief, Jasper. Your mom scares me, sometimes. Remember the last guy she tried to fix me up with? He asked me to marry him when he dropped me off at home. He even had a ring and got down on one knee."

The look on Jasper's face was priceless. "No fuckin' way!" He let out a boisterous laugh. "You didn't tell me he had a ring, too."

I laughed and continued with my story. "Oh, yeah. And when I politely turned him down, he started crying, and grabbed me around my legs. He started begging me, and if Mr. Watson hadn't been leaving the building, he would have never left. He had to physically remove him from me. My doorman, Walter, was ready to call the police if Mr. Watson couldn't get him to leave."

"That's the funniest shit I've ever heard," Jasper said in between breaths from laughing so hard.

"Laugh it up, Whitlock. I can't wait until your mom finds a fruit loop for you. You've been lucky so far," I said. That just made him laugh harder.

I knew there was a reason why Jasper was my best friend. He was the only person I would let pick on me the way he did. Thank goodness I had such a good sense of humor and finding humor in my botched dates, was quite the comedic experience.


Thank you for reading. I hope to update each Sunday during the commercial breaks of TWD.

I look forward to any reviews.

~Stephanie~