AN: I've been reading a lot of all-human Twilight fanfiction lately, and for some reason I've found I really love it (favourite: "Welcome to the Drama Academy", it's amazing). After reading "Passion Fish", I was listening to my new Damien Rice album, and the song "Accidental Babies" had me thinking. And this is what I came up with.
The title is from Damien Rice, too. I didn't want to use the title Accidental Babies, since that wouldn't be an accurate description, but in the song it makes reference to another of his songs, Delicate, which is about the same thing, if not as sad. Also for inspiration: 9 Crimes.
I know it's not original, and I almost groan every time I see Jacob as Bella's alternative and Tanya as Edwards, but Jacob's character in Twilight fits so well with what I'm going to do with this. He'd never hurt her and he loves her, and that's who he is in here.
Disclaimer: Stephenie Meyer owns this. I am not Stephenie Meyer. 'Nuff said.
Chapter One: A New Home
I worked best in the mornings if I gave myself the time to wake up slowly, so that was exactly what I was doing. For some reason I was more alert during the day and I felt less tired, but it also had the added bonus of forcing me to think of things honestly. I was awake enough for the realities of my life to be apparent to me, but still asleep enough that I couldn't lie to myself about them. The first hour in the morning was sometimes that hardest for me, but it was something I needed.
Several things occurred to me slowly over the first few minutes of my musing. The first was that the bed that I lay in was a lot more comfortable than I was used to. The following conclusion that sprung to my mind was that, oh, right, I wasn't waking up at my own house, in my own room.
Well, this room was mine, now. As of yesterday.
The second thought, which was inspired by the first one, was that I was alone in the bed. That wasn't something uncommon, but it was slightly unusual. I reached out clumsily to be sure, letting my arm sweep across the other side of the bed without opening my eyes. What time was it if he was up already?
Through the haze of my partially asleep state, I noticed the quiet tinkling of water coming from the bathroom. Right, he was in the shower. Not too late, then? Or had he slept in, too? Not that it was a problem, since he worked from home in the mornings, going into his office only in the afternoon.
The buzzing vibration of my mobile on the bedside table interrupted my thoughts, and I let it ring a few times before I answered it. 'Hello?'
'Morning Bella! Hope I didn't wake you up.'
'No, I was just about to get up,' I half-lied.
Alice had been my best friend since high school. We'd shared a flat together since then until yesterday. She'd said that she was disappointed that I was moving out and leaving her alone, but I knew that she was trying to dig up the nerve to ask her boyfriend Jasper to move in with her now she had the flat to herself.
Alice was most definitely a morning person. In fact, she was an all-the-time person.
'Well since you're getting up now we're going out for lunch. I've already called Rose, so you have no say in the matter.'
Rolling onto my back, I rolled my eyes. 'Right. Let's forget about the fact that this is the first morning at Jacob's place.'
'Bella, you've had heaps of mornings at Jacob's place. This is hardly the first.'
She had a point. 'Well it's the first proper morning!' It was a token argument; I knew better than to try and seriously change Alice's mind about something.
After she gave me the name of the place we were meeting at and the time we were to meet, we hung up and I forced myself out of bed. Since it was only half an hour until I was going to meet Alice and Rosalie for lunch I poured myself a glass of orange juice despite the protests my stomach made. As I was rinsing the glass out and placing it in the dishwasher I felt a pair of warm arms wrap around my stomach.
'Morning,' Jacob murmured against my shoulder. 'Just,' he added, chuckling. 'I thought you were never going to wake up.'
Turning to face him, I kissed him quickly. 'Not all of us have cushy jobs where we sit in a suit behind a desk,' I pointed out. My job kept me up until two every night, and those were the good nights. I found it extremely hard to get to sleep after working a long shift, so sometimes it was almost dawn before I was properly asleep. I thought it was only fair that I had the chance to sleep in a little. 'I'm meeting Alice and Rose for lunch,' I told him, grimacing in apology. 'She wouldn't let me say no.'
Instead of being upset he smiled down at me and kissed me again. 'That's okay. We'll get lunch tomorrow. I have a fair bit of work to get done before I go into the office today, anyway.'
Now that the bathroom was free I grabbed some clothes out of the box that I hadn't unpacked yet and quickly got changed. After brushing my teeth and my hair I threw my phone, purse and keys into a handbag and kissed Jacob goodbye. 'I'll see you tonight if you're still awake when I get home,' I said.
'I'll be up,' he promised.
The place we were going to was only a few streets away and it was an unnaturally nice day in Forks, so I decided to walk it. Walking was another past time of mine that forced me to think, but now, with my mind awake and alert, I could be selective in what I chose to admit to myself.
I was almost sweating by the time I got to the restaurant, and I was glad I had chosen to wear a light tank top. I briefly regretted my inability to wear shorts, but immediately pushed the thought from my mind. It didn't matter; I didn't need shorts, I told myself. It wasn't that hot.
Alice and Rosalie were already there and seated when I got there, so I made my way over to join them. After ordering drinks I looked down at my menu. 'So Alice, how's home without me?' I asked.
The only reply I got was a snickering from Rosalie, so I looked up at them, curious. 'What? Did Jasper move in already?'
Alice's usually bubbly demeanour was replaced with a scowl. 'I haven't even asked him yet, but there's no point now anyway. Shut up Rose!' she snapped, cutting off Rosalie's open laughter.
I half-smiled, unsure and curious. 'How do you know he can't move in if you haven't asked him yet?'
The look on Alice's face started Rosalie up again, and I had to fight not to laugh myself, even though I still didn't know what the trouble was. Alice crossed her arms over her chest angrily and her scowl deepened. 'Carlisle, my cousin's husband, got a job at the hospital here in Forks, so he and Esme had to move at late-notice. They don't have a place so they asked if they can stay with me until they do. My other cousin Edward's coming too, to help them find a house.'
I laughed. 'So let me get this right. Just as I move out and make an opening for Jasper, you have your two cousins and Esme's husband come to stay for who knows how long?' It was classic.
We ordered our meals and ate slowly, talking. It had been Rosalie who had introduced us to Jasper, her twin brother, in a hilarious effort to set them up. In a bizarre twist Alice had noticed her older brother Emmett with his eyes on Rosalie, and had decided to do the same thing. Oblivious to the other friend's plans, they had observed the other couple proudly while falling hopelessly in love with the two men who were now their boyfriends.
Since then the five of us had become strong friends, almost as close as siblings. Jacob had fit in easily with the other four, but there was a distance between them that I was sure he was oblivious to. He'd come along a few years after the rest of them, so there were of course things that they knew about me that he didn't. That was normal in any relationship, but it was the extent of what he didn't know that was the cause of the barrier. There were things I couldn't tell him that my friends knew.
There were perfectly good reasons why I couldn't be as close to Jacob as he wanted us to be. As close as I wanted us to be. My friends knew all my reasons, but it wasn't something we ever spoke of. And Jacob would never know. What would he think of me if he did?
'Who's up for dessert?' Rosalie asked once we were done. 'My shout!'
Halfway through our chocolate sundaes I looked up to see Rosalie looking at me cautiously. Seeing that I had noticed her, she cleared her throat awkwardly, glanced at Alice and then back at me. 'Bella, I was just wondering… Well, we were both wondering how things with Jacob were going.'
'We're fine,' I told her. 'We're having lunch tomorrow before he has to go into work.'
The two of them exchanged a look.
'Rose and I were thinking that maybe now that you've moved in with Jacob, that you've thought about talking to him about everything,' Alice said slowly.
'Jacob and I talk about everything that is important in my life right now,' I said, careful of my phrasing and knowing that they would catch it.
Rosalie let out an angry sigh. 'Bella, I know you're still upset about what happened, and you have every right to be. And you have every right to want to take it slow with Jacob because of it. But do you really think you should be living with him if you can't trust him?'
I stared at her blankly, unable to reply. We hadn't openly talked about it in over a year, although I had become used to them asking me without really asking me. Alice reached out immediately and grabbed my arm. 'Bella, what really matters is whether you love him,' she said quickly. 'If you do I know you'll have the courage to tell him eventually. And you do love him, yes?'
Nodding silently, I pulled my arm from her grasp. 'He doesn't know it, but he's the reason I'm still here.' My voice broke at the end and I felt two pairs of arms around me.
'We love you, Bella,' Rosalie said quietly against my shoulder.
'Never forget that,' Alice added.
The girls both offered to drop me off on the way home, but I told them that I needed the exercise to work off the food I'd just eaten. But truly I needed the time to think.
Jacob knew that my parents were dead, that they had been murdered, but that was all. He didn't know about what happened to me when our house was attacked. He didn't know about Amy. Jacob had come into my life around the time that we had stopped talking about it.
I knew that more than anything, I needed Jacob by my side. He'd kept me strong enough to hold onto life in the past year. And so I knew before really considering it that I couldn't tell him anything, in case it turned him away.
Because I wasn't the sweet little innocent girl that Jacob thought I was. The only thing I could say in my defence was that none of it was my fault, but that didn't change the facts.
I couldn't tell Jacob about the scars on my thighs, some new and some old.
I couldn't tell Jacob about the medication that I didn't take for my depression.
And I couldn't tell Jacob, ever, about my daughter.
After saying goodbye to Esme I hung up the phone and sat on the couch in my apartment, staring at it. I knew who I had to call, I knew what I had to say. I didn't know how to say it, or how she'd react. Tanya was unpredictable, and that was why I was about to do this.
I dialled the familiar number and held the phone to my ear, listening to the ringing as I waited for her to pick up the phone.
Tanya answered after the fifth ring, her voice breathless. 'Hello?'
'Oh Edward! Sorry I took so long to answer, I was just getting out the shower…' She paused, and I wondered if she thought that inappropriate considering what she knew I was calling for.
I suppressed a sigh. The only way to go about this was to go straight to the point, and I knew she wouldn't be happy. 'I've considered what we talked about yesterday,' I told her. Now I hesitated, and the only sound I could hear was her soft breathing on her end of the line.
'I don't think we're ready. It's too big of a commitment for where we are right now.'
She was silent for a few more seconds. 'What do you mean, "for where we are right now"?'
'I mean, we've only been together for a year. We don't live together. If we haven't even discussed things like this then how do you think we're ready to have a baby?'
'Easy,' she said, and her voice was cheerful. 'Let's move in together. We can sell my apartment and live in yours.'
I sighed again and leaned back on my couch, running my hands through my hair before I realised I was doing it. 'Tanya, we're not ready to have a kid.'
When she spoke again her voice shook. 'Edward, you know how much I want children. You know my history.'
I did, but part of me thought that it was a ruse to make me get her pregnant quicker. All of the women in her family had a low fertility rate, and she was terrified of waiting too long and not being able to have children. She was only twenty one, but she was a worrier.
'I do,' I told her. 'So I'm willing to think about it some more. Tanya, I think we need some… space, to figure out if this is really what we want.'
'Edward, I know this is what I want.'
'Yes, but do you really want this with me? And do I really want this with you? That's what I mean.'
I realised only after I'd said it how the words would have sounded to her. Her sharp little intake of breath didn't surprise me. 'You don't want to be with me anymore?'
'I didn't mean that. I love you, but bringing a child into the world is a different matter. I just want to be sure, okay? Esme and Carlisle are moving to Washington, and I'm going to go with them to help them find a house. I just spoke to Esme, we're staying at my cousin's house. I'll be gone for maybe a month. We'll talk about it then. Is that okay?'
'A month,' she whispered. 'It's too long. I'll miss you.'
'I'll miss you too, Tanya, but I need this time. And I want you to be sure, too. Please just let me do this.'
Reluctantly she agreed, and after a quick goodbye I hung up the phone. Placing it on its stand, I got up to make a cup of coffee.
A baby. I knew I wasn't ready to have children yet, especially not with Tanya. It wasn't that I didn't love her, but she was so inconsistent that I had never bothered with hoping too much for a future with her. The was a lovely girl, but I knew she was extremely whimsical, and there was every chance that one day she'd just wake up and decide she didn't love me anymore. I was strong enough for that, but I didn't want a child to be the recipient of something like that. What if, halfway through her pregnancy she decided she didn't want to be a mother right now? What if she decided she didn't want me? What would happen to the child then?
I wanted her to live this month without me so that she could see what it was like, living without me. And I wanted to see life without her. I did love her, I didn't doubt that, but I didn't know if I loved her enough for something this big.
A child. Hmm.
Taking my coffee with me, I went into my bedroom, pulled out my suitcase, and began to pack.
AN: I'm still going to be writing "Sweetest Sunrise", but I'm lacking inspiration. It's not getting much feedback, so I'll see how this goes.
Hope this is okay. Not much is happening yet but I can promise that it's going to be an emotional roller coaster for our favourite characters. If you like it please, please, please review or I won't know and I might not keep writing.