I wrote it on a Sunday.
I had been up before the sun rose, again.
It had been two months since Edward's hasty departure, and my life had completely changed. I no longer awoke in the morning with the expectation of cold arms wrapped around me, or a Greek God rocking in my rocking chair. No, those hopes quickly faded as the two week mark passed. I was certain that he would come back when he realized that I couldn't survive without him. I was certain, but I was wrong. He never returned, and with every passing day, I began to wonder if there was any truth in the world at all. What purpose was there in an existence when even the three words that were created to hold the most truth… turned out to be completely worthless.
I love you.
He had said it to me so many times, and even though I knew it couldn't possibly be true, I believed him. Looking into his golden eyes, how could I not have? But the distance and time that had separated us had made me realize how thoroughly naïve I had been. Who could want me? There were no redeeming factors to my ordinary appearance and less than attractive personality. No one could possibly see any potential in someone as klutzy and dangerous as I, especially someone as flawless as Edward.
The week before, Charlie had tried to get me to leave. He had called Renee and she flew up from Jacksonville to try to talk me into leaving with her. She had arrived with every intention of bringing me back with her, but I quickly changed their plans. I was not leaving, and I made that very clear. Screaming my blatant protests of fury at my parents had been the most involved and vocal I had been in a conversation since Charlie had questioned me for hours after Sam found me about whether or not Edward had hurt me. In retrospect, It would have been in my better interest to leave forks. Everything, everywhere would remind me of Edward, but this place especially held the most memories. But at the time, all I could think about was him coming back for me to find me gone. I couldn't leave, even though I knew he would never come back for me. He never wanted me to begin with.
After Charlie's failed attempt to remove me from my self sentenced house arrest, he began highly endorsing a multitude of friends I could hang out with. Top of the list, of course, was Jacob Black. Charlie was convinced that I needed to find someone to talk to about all of my problems. He had even suggested a shrink. I couldn't hold it against him, he really was trying to help me… he was just unaware of the situation. It's not like I could have just ran over to Jessica's house and talked to her all about my ex-boyfriend who happened to be a vampire and left me because he didn't want me, I had no one that I could talk about this with. It was a heavy burden to bear, and I knew I would carry it with me forever.
I lid in bed, then, considering the same things I had considered every morning for the past two months. I thought of running away and never returning to anyone I knew. I thought of pooling my bank account and searching for him across the country. I even entertained notions of suicide on occasion. All efforts to find refuge were in vain, however. I knew I couldn't hurt Charlie like that, and I knew that going to look for Edward would only result in more heartbreak, even if I found him. He didn't want me here, and he definitely wouldn't want me halfway across the world.
My thoughts had run wild. I needed to tell Edward how much he had hurt me. I needed to let him know. I stood from the bed and crossed to the desk where I tore out a piece of paper and a pencil and sat down, intending to write a long, expressive letter which would later find its way indefinitely to the garbage.
Instead of writing his name, I pressed the pen to the paper forcibly, creating an angry ink blot that reminded me of the picture associations psychologists would often use in their studies. I didn't know what to write, and my pen remained pressed aimlessly to the paper as my thoughts flew wild again.
How could he have done this to me? How could he have come into my life with the altering force of a hurricane and then leave just like that after he had turned my world upside down. He had made himself my life and then ripped it all away from me with the simple words, "I don't want you.". How in the world could I have been expected to take care of myself, as per his request. He was supposed to take care of me. I had no one left, now. Who was going to save me?
Before I knew what I was doing, my pen began scratching across the paper.
Grey skies have never seemed so dark
The rain's never been so loud
Magnified without distraction
Now I don't have you around.
"Be Safe" is what you said to me
Just before you turned to leave
But how can I focus on my life
When death's what I want to achieve
The preservation of my life
Was never an easy feat
But you were all that saved me
It was you who made me complete
Your absence now has left me with
No sense of worth or verve
I wait for death to catch up to me -
What you no longer preserve
Without even looking at the words I had written, I closed my eyes and leaned my head against the desk. There was so much that I wanted to be able to say, but I couldn't find the proper words.
Often times, I would feel the hole inside of me that was now void of all the love it had once contained begin to refill with anger and hurt. I never had a release for any of these emotions, so I would just let them fill the empty space that had caused their presence. As unhealthy as it was, I couldn't decide any other way to cope with my emotions. I had been able to find no outlet until now.
Without you here there's nothing left
My life's worse than before
Instead of opening the window now
I'm constantly slamming the door.
You were my life, the air I'd breathe
The words that kept me sane
I'm not like you, I can't survive
Without oxygen in my veins.
I still cannot quite understand
What happened to the magic
Our "once upon a time", "fairytale end"
Became so unfairly tragic
I stopped there, reading over what I had written and scowling in disgust at the pitiful mess I had become. I crumpled the paper up in my palm and turned towards the garbage can. Crap, I had forgotten to bring it back upstairs the previous night after I had emptied it. Oh well. I opened the drawer quickly and shoved it in the back along with an assortment of other forgotten papers. Out of sight, out of mind.
When my eyes opened on this day, it was with much different expectations.
Three months had passed since my dreamlike visit to Volterra, and since then, Edward had regained his position as my life's most important constant. Little by little he was regaining my faith in those three words that had caused me so much grief all those weeks ago, and I knew that he would be there in the morning waiting for me with open arms.
The first thing I noticed was that his arms were not around me. The only other place he would be was in the rocking chair. The second thing I noticed, was not that he was in the chair, but was that he was not happy. His grin was not present and the sparkle in his eyes was not there to wish me a good morning. He was sitting, rigid, on the rocking chair with a smoothed out piece of notebook paper in his hands.
"Where did you get that?" I whispered., knowing immediately what it was.
"I got bored." He whispered back. The pain, evident in his voice. "You weren't very talkative last night."
"You shouldn't have read that." I breathed.
"I know I shouldn't have." He agreed quietly, his eyes still fixed on the poem.
I slowly stood up and crossed to where he sat. I placed my comparatively small hand upon his and forced him to lower the letter to his lap before cautiously snuggling up to his chest.
"None of that matters now, you know." I promised him.
"It does, Bella. I'm so sorry that I did that to you… I feel terrible."
"I don't want you to feel terrible, Edward. I don't want you to hurt."
He finally chanced a glance into my eyes and held my gaze for an immeasurable moment before speaking.
"You're too good to me, Bella. Here I am, reading about how much pain my actions put you in, reading that you had considered suicide to escape from the agony I had inflicted on you, and you are worried about my feelings and keeping me guilt free… you're far too good to me. I don't know what I could have ever done to deserve the first chance you gave me, let alone the second."
"Easy," I shrugged, "You gave my life a purpose and taught me what it was to live."
"And you, my Bella, have done the same for me. I'm so sorry that I ever hurt you." His voice was tortured, weak, barely above a whisper.
"Don't." I pleaded, placing a finger on his marble lips, "I don't want you to feel that way. I don't want you to feel guilty."
He raised his hand and brushed the back of it along my jaw line and into my hair before leaning forward slightly to press his lips to mine.
"I love you, Bella. I'm so sorry that I ever made you doubt that."
"And I'm sorry that I was stupid enough to doubt it. Now can we please forget this?" As I spoke, I let my hand slide down his arm and pry the paper out of his fingers. I crumpled it up to its previous shape and held it tightly in my fist as I rotated in his arms so that my back was pressed up to his chest. He rested his chin on my shoulder and rocked me for a moment before I lifted the paper in my fingers and lobbed it in an imperfect arc towards the garbage can. To my shock and great pleasure, it banked off the wall behind it and fell into the can with a thump of finality.
"I love you too." I sighed.