Twilight to Dawn
Disclaimer: All Characters are the property of Stephenie Meyer unless otherwise stated.
As Edward pulled me onto his back I thought about how we would tell Charlie. I wasn't sure how he would handle the news we were about to share with him.
"Hold on tight, and don't forget to close your eyes" Edward said.
"I didn't close my eyes the last time, and I was just fine" I said, a little disgruntled as the memory of the first time Edward shared his favorite way to travel with me, from this very same place almost a year and a half ago.
Edwards's soft laughter sounded like the gentle tinkling of wind chimes. "Just hold on. Charlie will never let you marry me if I bring you home with a concussion." We started the trip that would only take a few minutes compared the few hours hike by a normal person.
Edward was anything but normal. Edward Cullen and his family were paler than any other person in the tiny town of Forks, WA. They had beautiful tawny eyes set in faces so perfectly beautiful, even the old world master artists could not do them justice. The Cullen's had a secret, they were vampires. But unlike others of their kind, they did not feed on humans. They were vegetarians, feeding only from animals. And I was about to become one of them.
Edward and I rode in silence on the way to Charlie's. He had been in such a wonderful mood since I had agreed to become his wife, his only demand in exchange for changing me to be like him, immortal. He didn't even complain about the speed, or lack there of, of my old truck.
I had decided to fix something special for dinner, hoping that would put Charlie in a good enough mood to deal with the announcement Edward and I were about to make. I had Grandma Swans Stroganoff simmering on the stove when Charlie pulled up in the cruiser.
"Bella?" he called as he came through the door.
"I'm in here Dad" I called. Id used to bother me the way he would call out, questioning if it were me in the house, but that feeling had long since passed.
"Smells great Bells. Do I have time enough to check the scores?"
"Sure Dad" I replied. Edward got up from the table, coming to wrap his arms around me and placed a soft kiss on the side of my neck. "I think I will go keep Charlie company," he said as he let go, walking into the living room.
I was just finishing setting the table when Charlie screamed "BELLA MARIE SWAN you get in here this instant!" Shocked, I stumbled into the living room. Charlie sat in the only chair, his face the color of a beet. He was breathing so fast and hard I was afraid he would pass out at any minute. Edward sat calmly on the couch.
"Edward, just . . . too young . . . absolutely not!" he stammered at the top of his lungs. If he kept this up, he was going to have a stroke.
"Ed-waaaard?" I asked, guessing what he had done.
"I asked Charlie's permission for your hand in marriage," Edward said matter-of-factly with a huge grin on his face.
This was the reaction I had been trying to avoid. I absentmindedly reached up to rub my head that had just started to pound when a look of shock crossed Charlie's face. He grabbed my left hand pulling it up into the light. "You knew he was planning to do this?" he spat.
"Dad, I had planned on us telling you together, after dinner," I glared at Edward as I spoke. Charlie opened his mouth to spew a list of reasons he would not approve I'm sure when I took my hand away, holding it up to stop him immediately. "Yes, I knew. It's important to us that we have your approval, but our minds are made up. We will get married, with or without your blessing!"
Charlie looked as though I had just slapped him. "What about college? You have your whole life ahead of you!"
"My whole life is with Edward, Dad. You know that. You asked me to tell you the next time I did anything so you would have a chance to say goodbye. Well, I'm telling you. Nothing would make me happier than for you to walk me down the aisle, to approve, and to give me away to Edward."
"When?" Charlie asked in defeat.
"I thought that went well," Edward said as he helped me finish the dishes after dinner.
"Couldn't you have waited for me to talk Charlie?"
"Bella, darling, ever since you agreed to be my wife, I have wanted to tell everyone. In the time I was raised in, it was proper for the young man to ask his true love's father for her hand in marriage. You only get married for the first time once. I want to do it right."
"You're just lucky he didn't shoot you," I said, handing him the last plate to dry as I pulled the plug for the sink to drain. I would not miss doing dishes in my new life.
"Indeed. How would we have explained when the bullet ricocheted off me?" Edward chuckled as he placed the plate in the cabinet and hung the towel to dry.
I sighed as I went to pick up the phone to call Renee. My mother would be even harder to tell than Charlie. She did not approve of getting married before your 30s. Charlie's reaction would seem calm compared to how I knew Renee would react to the news.
Edward gently took the phone from my hand as I started to dial, "You don't have to tell Renee right now. Why don't we wait until tomorrow? You'll feel better then, having survived telling Charlie." The thought of post phoning the hardest conversation of my life appealed to me greatly. "You could take me home. I'm sure Alice has all kinds of things to show you by now," he chuckled.
"UGH! I don't know what's worse, facing the wrath of Renee or Alice and wedding planning." I grabbed Edward by the hand and pulled him into the living room behind me. "I'm going to take Edward home now, Dad. I'm trying to figure out the best way to tell mom. Please don't say anything to her."
"I'd rather face that pack of huge wolves than have that discussion with your mother! No problem," Charlie scowled. His statement stabbed my heart like a double edged knife. Wolves. Jacob. I had hurt him, irreparably. Would he ever speak to me again? Could we still be friends? I knew it was impossible. I was about to become his mortal enemy, the reason for his packs existence. What would happen when the treaty was broken? I had made my choice. I hoped that Jacob and the pack would accept that and not start a war.
Edward drove on our way home. It surprised me that I could tell, no more than that, I could feel the sun setting, twilight, another day coming to its end. "Will you tell me something?" Edward asked, raising our intertwined fingers to his lips.
"Yes," I replied, instantly regretting my response. What if he was about to ask about Jacob?
"Truthfully, why the sudden change about marriage? I meant what I said; we can do this your way."
I had wondered when this topic would come up again. "Carlisle once asked me if I would be willing to risk your soul. The answer is no. No, I would not. And if you believe that being together before matrimony endangers your soul, I'm willing to wait. You are the most important part of my life."
"Ah. Do you believe when I have made you one of us, when I have killed you, that you will still have a soul?"
I paused to think about the question he asked. "I don't know Edward. I don't believe that someone as good as Carlisle would go to hell. After all the lives he has saved, including yours. I held my hand up to hold the response I knew he was about to give. "I know you are not breathing with a heartbeat, but if you had not been taken from this world, countless innocent people would have died, I would have died. And the good things they did would not have happened. The evil that took them would have continued making the world a worse place. I will not believe that you were not intended to be here, as you are, or that if you ceased to exist that either of you would be punished after all the good you have done."
We were turning into the drive. "Bella how can you believe that?"
"Edward. I have to believe this. You are my life. I love your family and I want to become like you. Whether it damns me or not, I have to be with you."
"You cannot have a life if you are not alive, Bella," Edward stated sarcastically.
"Alright, existence then. It's a moot point anyway, or are you trying to back out of our agreement?" I asked starting to panic, afraid that he had changed his mind.
"Bella, I just want you to be sure. This can't be undone. You are the most important part of me. I want only for your happiness." He put the truck in park and leaned over placing his cold lips to mine. I lost my train of thought, sure there was something important I was about to say, but for the life of me I could not remember what it was. Edward Cullen did not fight fair. I wondered if I would ever get any better at this. Surely once my heart stopped beating, and I no longer needed to breathe, he wouldn't be able to sidetrack me so easily. He chuckled a low throaty laugh, "I'm going to miss that. Breathe, Bella."
He got out of the truck and was opening my door before I could take in enough air to stop my head from spinning. We crossed the yard and entered the house that should I would call my home. Jasper and Emmett were on the sofa watching TV.
"Hey Bella. Alice told us the news! Congratulations! You know until you came along we thought Edward was gay," Emmett joked. From beside me a deep growl started.
Jasper's face straightened from his laughter, immediately tasting the tension and trying to fix the situation a moment too late. Edward had launched himself at his bear of a brother, both of them crashing to the floor.
"Both of you stop that right now!" Esme cried as she came in from the dining room. "You'll scare Bella," she smiled at me as she crossed the room. The growls had already quickly become laughter as Edward and Emmett wrestled in the floor. "As I said before, just like they were raised by a pack of wolves," she winked at me.
"Will you join us in the dining room dear? We've done our best to keep Alice reined in," she said as she put her arm around me, keeping herself between me and the wrestling brothers.
Every surface of the dining room table was covered in catalogs, printouts, samples, and fabric swatches. I wondered just how long Alice had been planning when I noticed, seated in the middle of the table was Rosalie. She looked up and gave me a sheepish grin. "You didn't think we were going to let Alice have all the fun did you? Her tone and sincerity surprised me. Rosalie had made no secret that she did not approve of my choice to join her family. I did not expect her to join in the planning.
"Would it be ok if I helped with your wedding?" she asked quietly.
"Of course, Rosalie" I replied unsure what brought this on. I would have to ask Edward what he knew.
"Bella, I have so much to show you!" Alice bubbled. "There are the invitations and all the associated stationary, fabric, tuxedos, cake styles and flower choices I need you to approve. We need to discuss the menu for the reception and . . ."
"Alice," Edward called over her ramblings, "are you trying to drive her insane?"
"We only have a short amount of time, Edward, and there is so much that has to be done."
"Like you haven't seen it all already," he smiled.
"Allow us some girl time Edward, it's what women do," Esme said beaming at me.
"At least let us tell Renee before you scare her out of marrying me," he chuckled, taking my hand and gently guiding me toward the stairs.
"You can't hide her all the time," Alice called after us.
Once in Edward room, he put on a jazz CD and pulled me down onto the couch with him. I was trying to figure out the best way to ask him about Rosalie's participation. "You looked surprised to see Rose in the planning."
"Well, yes. I – thought she didn't like me, and the choice I've made," I whispered timidly.
"She has accepted our choices and though she my not agree, she wants us to be happy. She wants our wedding to be perfect. Be patient with her, Bella, she's trying, and that's saying a lot for Rose. She's trying very hard to be supportive and help you to enjoy your last human experiences. She looked so forward to her own wedding, and she can finish that through you. Believe it or not, she is hoping you will consider asking her to be one of your bridesmaids."
But be gentle with the old lady please, this is my first attempt.