Bella Swan sat down on the far side of the piano bench, her fingers poised above the ivory keys, ready to play.

Suddenly, she froze.

She couldn't think anymore, and she could hardly breathe. It was as if all the air had been sucked out of her lungs and a tiny devil danced around her, mocking her.

Remember the piano? it taunted.

She remembered it all too well.

Tuesday.

September 13th.

The night of her 18th birthday party.

Bella had almost died.

Not just then, either. Her life was put in danger countless times over the course of those months. And yet she still stayed with that…creature.

Why?

She knew the answer, and she dared to admit it now as her index finger trembled against note C.

She had thought it was love.

But love would not repeatedly put her in harm's way on purpose.

Love was not the reckless, constantly dangerous road she thought it was back then.

That could be the journey toward it, but in the long run, love was thoughtful and considerate.

Protective.

Strong.

She realized it now, and she thought she might have even received this sort of love recently.

Bella flinched as her fingers pressed against the cool surface of the keys. She inhaled with a sharp gasp, and began to play the most beautiful melody.

Her song of new beginnings.