Author's Note: Okay, I know it doesn't say so, but this story takes place 2 years after Twilight so Bella is 19. I tried to put that information in but it just didn't work out.

Disclaimer: I WISH I owned Edward and everyone else in Twilight, but alas, they belong to Stephenie Meyer.

Enjoy. . .


Ch. 1: The Accident

I never did see the semi coming my way. Perhaps I was distracted, or it wasn't even in my control.

The 18 wheeler slammed into my truck with a force that crushed my entire vehicle inwards, pinning me against the steering wheel. I screamed, but no one would have heard me under the squealing of tires, the smash of metal, and the final, sickening snap of my legs and spine as I was crushed against the car.

It took 18 firemen and the Jaws of Life to pry me from the crumpled remains of my car, and by then I knew it was too late. I was loaded into the ambulance, the sires whining loudly above me, the world a twisted haze as I tried to collect my thoughts. A woman asked me my name, but I could not answer, my body numb and cold. I closed my eyes and whispered the only words that seemed to form in my frozen mouth.

"Edward," The woman wiped blood away from my mouth with a piece of gauze, and assured me "Edward" would be contacted, although I knew that she hadn't the slightest idea who he was. It is that way, when you are dealing with the dying.

At the hospital it was Carlisle that saw me first. I stared up at him, his face twisting back and forth as he ran beside my bed, his lips set in a hard line.

"It's all right, Bella." He told me firmly, even though we both knew it wasn't.

"Edward," I whispered to him. He nodded.

"He knows." From the way he said it, I could tell that Edward wasn't taking it well. "Don't worry, he's coming."

I'm not even sure if they tried to operate on me—but at that point I blacked out. When I awoke I was lying in a white room, my arm hooked up to an IV with clear liquid. There was a monitor on my heart, but the beats were slow, irregular, sluggish. I turned my head, the room spinning back and forth, bright shapes sparkling in front of my eyes. My brain seemed to slip in and out of focus as my eyes flicked around the room.

"Edward," I gasped softly as I suddenly saw him, sitting beside me in a plastic chair, his hand gripping mine tightly.

"Bella, oh, Bella," He whispered, his face folded with grief. I tried to move, to hug him, but my body didn't respond.

"I can't move my legs." I told him blankly. Fear flickered in his eyes, but he pushed a damp lock of hair away from my face, smiling softly.

"It's all right." He said, his eyes avoiding mine.

"Edward," Carlisle called from the doorway, and I slowly turned my head to look at him. He kept his eyes on Edward, who slowly stood, dropping my hand only when he had moved too far away.

"I'll be right back, Bella." He told me, his voice filled with pain.

The world spun, but when he returned, I saw the horror reflecting in his eyes, and I knew what Carlisle had said. Slowly, he walked back to the chair and sat down, this time heavily. Carlisle followed, standing behind him.

"I'm dying." I said. It wasn't a question. Carlisle looked up at me, his eyes filled with distant compassion.

"Yes." He said after a moment. The lights in the room suddenly became glaringly bright, and the heart monitor skipped suddenly, my heartbeat becoming erratic.

"Bella," Edward whispered, his voice a controlled moan. His hand gripped mine tightly, and he looked at the sheet, refusing to meet my eyes.

"Bella," It was Carlisle now that spoke, his voice filled with authority. "What if you had another chance—"

"Carlisle," Edward whimpered, his eyes closing as he gripped my hand even tighter. I was frightened to see him so out of his usual control.

"How long do I have to live?" I asked, surprised at how brave my voice sounded. Carlisle looked away for a moment.

"Not long."

"Carlisle," Edward's voice was now a plead, his hand almost squeezing mine to the point that it would break. I took a deep breath, the lights suddenly flashing, swirling above me. The monitor slowed.

"Edward," I whispered, my voice suddenly weak, soft. Edward looked up at me, his eyes grief-stricken. "Edward, I'm not going to recover this time."

"Bella," He whispered, shaking his hand. "No." His hands shook slightly, terror in his eyes. "It's not supposed to be like this."

"But it is." My voice was growing weaker, and my eyes closed briefly, fluttering. My mind seemed to squeeze, then un-squeeze, then expand so much that I could barely breathe.

"Edward, there's not much time." Carlisle warned.

"No." His voice was firmer than before.

"Edward, this is my choice." I wheezed, my eyes closed.


"I'm going to die." The words squeezed out of my mouth with effort. Despite my efforts, tears began rolling down my cheeks, the liquid burning my chilled skin.

"No, Bella, oh, Bella. . ." Edward suddenly sank against my hand and shook silently with tearless sobs. I gasped softly, white shadows passing before my eyes as I tried to open them. My breath grew short.

"Edward." Carlisle's voice was a bark. "It's time."

"No, Bella, no!" Edward sobbed, but I could no longer feel his hand on mine. My whole being was going numb, my body shutting down. I felt peace begin to cover me like a dark, heavy blanket.

"Edward," I whispered, no longer able to finish a complete sentence. The heart monitor was ringing in my ears, but I could no longer hear how fast or slow it was going. I was going to die, with Edward beside me. A sense of satisfaction filled me. What more could I ask for?

And then, amidst a foreign whimper that sounded more like a dog's whine, I felt soft, cool lips press up against my neck, rubbing my numb skin, a tiny electric tingle running down my arm.

"Edward," I sighed, my mind swirling to comprehend these final moments.

"Now," I heard Carlisle whisper, although he may have shouted.

"Bella," Edward's voice, pained but suddenly calm, whispered in my ear. I felt a moment of peace, and I managed to tug my lips slightly upwards. "I love you."

"I love—" I began, but suddenly gasped as pain surged in my neck, an icy pierce against my hot, sweating skin. I felt cold, hard teeth sink deeply into my neck, and then the sudden, fervent pull as I felt blood rushing from my veins, numbness replacing it. My eyes opened, seeing nothing, as my skin was pulled into Edward's mouth, his hands suddenly on either side of me as he sucked deeply from my wound.

I felt his hands on the bed press deeply into the mattress, and then, suddenly, with a loud, painful gasp, my skin was released. It fell back against my neck wetly as Edward lifted his head, panting. The stars in front of my eyes cleared a little and I saw Edward clamp his hand over his mouth, his eyes hungry, ravenous. He stared at the aching gash in my neck, and then, eyes filling with horror, turned wordlessly, his body tensing as he looked down at the faded white linoleum. I opened my mouth to speak, but suddenly the pain was back, only bigger, stronger, fiercer, fiery. I gasped harshly as it began to spread down my neck, into my chest, up to my ears, down my arms. It was everywhere, a fire burning my veins, scorching my skin.

"Edward," I gasped, my arm flinging out towards where he stood, his shoulders arched high. The pain grew worse and I began to toss my head back and forth. "Edward!" I shrieked, the pain suddenly rushing at me with hot, scalding reality. I blinked my wavering eyes at Edward's form, seeing his shoulders shake, his head bent. He seemed to mentally collapse into himself, and as I called to him again, this time louder, he turned and walked farther away.

A shriek rose from me and I twisted on the bed, gasping in horror, in pain, in blind agony. I felt as if my whole body was being burned—I was burning alive! Sweat trickled down my forehead and I called to Edward again, my voice choked with tears.

I blinked as I heard a scuffle, and suddenly Edward was facing me, his eyes wild. Carlisle had him in a restraining embrace as he tried to run to me, his voice a roar, snarls ripping from his throat as he twisted against Carlisle.

"Let me go!"

"It's too late!" Carlisle growled, his voice darker than I had ever heard. "The venom is too deep. It's too late Edward! You cannot suck it out!" Edward struggled against him again, then suddenly, his face collapsing into accepting grief, fell against Carlisle, sobs choking from him as he slid to the ground.

"Bella!" I heard him cry out my name, his fists balled up.

"Edward," I answered him weakly, my vision fizzing out as the fire reached my scalp. My last sight was Carlisle, clutching Edward in a paternal manner, Edward sobbing and covering his face with his hands. I felt tears fall against my burning skin, and I reached my hand out towards him, wishing that I could somehow make the pain stop for him. I gave a weak cry as I realized that it was I that was causing the pain.

All right, there's the 1st chapter. THIS IS NOT OVER YET! Hope you enjoyed it. Ch. 2 is on it's way. Feedback is sooo welcome. Even if you HATED it, I'd love to hear from you! -CP