Chapter 13

Balancing

As I sped down the winding road I knew what lay ahead for me. My home. As the woods thinned out I knew what I had to face. My family. I'm sure Rosalie had informed them all in her own colourful words of my recent revelations to this human girl. The human girl that she could never be. The human girl that had been materialised out of my own personal hell. The human girl that was my punishment for being a monster. The human girl who's delectable scent still lingered with me. The human girl… Bella that actually had accepted the fiend beside her for the entire day. Bella who's touch had not been a mistake on my ice cold hands. Bella…

As I parked in the garage I shot a side glance at the red car next to me. Any happiness from the day had gone. I had left it on Bella's doorstep as I drove away only a short while ago. In hope she'd keep it safe, and welcome just as she had today.

NO! I growled to myself. No. I hope she doesn't welcome it into her home. For her own good. She deserves better than me.

I locked the car and just as I thought everyone, except Alice, was waiting for me. Their thoughts reached me before I had even walked through the door. The loudest was the string of profanities from Rosalie. Then Jasper's quiet laughter. My father had a confused sense of relief in his eyes but his thoughts were worried.

I mirrored his worries. About my sanity. Maybe Emmett's right. I thought Maybe I am losing it.

Esme looked like she would have tears of joy if she could. Her thoughts were a buzzing humming song. A dance of happiness and the only words I could catch were She's special, son.

''Oh crap, common ref'' Emmett boomed from next to the TV before silently adding; You started this so you deal with Rose now.

''Did you want to talk, Edward?'' Carlisle asked me in a tone that would be used on someone who'd just recently lost his mind. I stared blankly at him, ignoring Rosalie's glare, trying to concentrate on his thoughts. The same ones he had on the night I had taken him back to Port Angeles to show him those… I felt anger seep into me… those brutes. My fury trickled down my arms and to my hands. I clenched them into fists as if to stop it from leaking further. Causing any more damage. Justifying the fact I was not good enough for her.

I tried to see through the haze and listen again to Carlisle's thoughts.

Edward, she's special. Esme thinks so too. Look at the effect she's having on you. I loosened my firsts slightly. The change that we all see in you is absolute. Turning back from this now would only hinder everything you are and everything you have worked to be. Unexpectedly lost focus on his thoughts and snapped my head up at Rose. My fury hadn't completely waned yet and she had just ignited it higher. I growled at her unsaid words and her smug smile told me that this is the reaction she had wanted from her sick thoughts. Thoughts of taking a pure innocent life of a girl who was only a danger to herself.

''How typically Rose. You should…''

My words fell short as I dropped to my knees and cried out

''NO! No. Not, Bella, No.''

Blood soak through her clothes, from her still, now lifeless cold body. Turning whiter. I couldn't stand to look. I threw my hands over my eyes but vision still plagued me and I let another cry of agony slip from my mouth. The pain was unbearable. As if my heart was trying to rip through my chest. Like it had come alive and started to beat only so I could feel it breaking inside me. The ache was almost too much… Another cry left my mouth as I saw myself beside her. Bloody hands and lips. A smile on my monster's face

''STOP THAT, ROSE'' I heard Alice say in a final tone.

''Pathetic'' Rosalie answered and the visions ceased and I heard her footsteps going out the door. I got up in a quick, lithe movement and before I could follow her I felt Emmett's heavy hand was on my shoulder.

''Cool down, kid. I'll talk to her'' his voice was low and concluding.

''I wasn't going to talk to her'' I murmured to him.

Alice was at Emmett's side now and she gave a indifferent look. I scoffed at her but Emmett was already following Rosalie's footsteps out the door without another response. Alice slowly turned to look up at me '' I don't have to guess what she was thinking'' she whispered to me ''But Edward if you only could…''

''Not now Alice'' I cut her off abruptly still trying to control my irritation. I turned on my heel and as I darted towards the stairs I gave Carlisle and Esme a small, discarded look. Within a second I was inside my room hearing the door close behind me as I went to stand by the grand window. I tried to block out all thoughts but instead was greeted by an unwelcome intruder

Almost tasted that blood, her sent the ruby pouring from her the brute whispered from within. At that moment my throat was set aflame and I closed my eyes imagining, welcoming the venom filling my mouth.

I shot open my eyes and reached in my pocket for the bottle cap and as I touched it I felt the flames from my throat subside and move to where she had touched my hand. A fire that I could stand. The heat still unchanged

Without a seconds thought I went to turn on my music system in hope to drown out the bloody thoughts completely. As music filled the room I mindlessly started to hum out of tune. No, not out of tune… The quiet lullaby of the beautiful sleeping girl drowned out the music in my own head.

Not long before I could see her again. Of course she didn't know this. I could imagine her face if she found out that I watched her sleep. She would go running and leave Forks for good. Part of me hoped for that. For her sake. Only for her sake.

There was a quiet knock on the door and before I could tell her to go away Alice let herself in. I turned to gaze at her as I slid the bottle cap back into my pocket.

''You're going to see her again tonight aren't you'' she said morosely.

I sighed ''What do you want, Alice?''

She smiled at my failed attempt to sound aloof.

''Well…'' She started walking towards me

''I think it's very unfair that you're keeping my future best friend all to yourself'' She whined.

I rolled my eyes and turned back to looking out of the window.

''Your future is becoming more solid, Edward'' She continued ''Every time I have a flash of Bella Sawn being hurt, that hazy image is quickly replaced by a much more solid one of her… with you. Always with you''

Of course she would be with me. I was her protector. For now. For as long as it was justifiable. In my head.

Or until she runs from me, screaming as she goes I thought less hopefully.

''What do you want, Alice?'' I repeated for lack new of words.

''Nothing right now'' She began in a mischievous tone ''I can see you're aren't ready for that yet.'' Then her voice became serious ''But the more you try and run from her, the more you can't. So why not just stop, Edward. Stop and just accept…''

''…that I might kill her one day'' I finished for her.

''No'' She said is a louder more sarcastic tone.

I saw her eyes narrow in the reflection of the window and I let my head drop. She was standing next to me now.

'' You won't do that. And you know it. You would have done it already if that was the to be, Edward. And I was going to say that you need to accept her as part of your life now.''

I said nothing.

''And mine'' She added quietly

'I have to go'' I said abruptly. I didn't even wait for her response as I ran out of the house. Racing through the woods as fast as possible. I was halfway to her house when I realised the irony of it all. I should be running away from Bella Swan. Not towards her. Running far far away from her. Leaving her to a life she was worthy of. Not obliterating it with every stride I took. It's as if I had no control over myself. Right and wrong. It was all a chaotic blur. Completely tangled with one other. Just like Bella and I. Two opposites that were being thrown together. She was right, beautiful and pure. I was wrong, monstrous and tainted.

I stopped my thoughts in front of her house. My mind was telling my body that each step I was taking was wrong and I should turn back. But that voice was fading the closer I got to her room. I quietly slipped through the window and just as if she knew, she welcomed me through her slumber with a light mummer of my name. All the happiness was back. She bought it inside with her. It was here in her room.

I stood very still and waited for her stirring to ease while saying my name over and over. It felt like I was home.

This is wrong. So wrong. I growled.

I waited another moment before I heard her steady breathing. Relaxed now I was conflicted between walking towards her or going to take my usual place on the rocking chair.

No more mistakes I reminded myself

The rocking chair won. As I sat there her scent swirled all around me. Encroaching me all over again. But it was getting a lot easier, even the monster was quiet. I wanted to go over and stroke her cheek. Just to feel her soft, warm skin for one last time.

And then again for the last time. And again… I was weak and greedy when it came to Bella. I just wanted more and I knew I wouldn't… Couldn't stop myself.

Before I knew it I was walking over to her bed slowly and was about to reach over to caress the side of her face when she stirred again. This time much more than before.

She was awake!

I threw myself on the floor and lay very still.

Oh no! Did I wake her? Not only was interfering with her everyday life I was disrupting her sleep as well now. Yes I was greedy.

Happy now? I thought to myself angrily

Bella sat up in her bed and rubbed her eyes. I tried to slide under bed discreetly in case she got out. At that moment I remembered what Rose had said. ''Pathetic''

This truly was pathetic. I shouldn't even be here.

I heard her slump back down and I very quickly and quietly shifted to a shadow near the corner of the room. I should have gone out the window. But all logic, all reason was beyond me now. Bella could wake up and see me right here and I wasn't even thinking about leaving anytime soon.

I shook my head. And I thought she needed to be in a facility for her health?

She tossed around some more. She really wasn't peaceful this night. I wanted very much to lay next to her. To hold her. To ease whatever agitation that wasn't allowing her to sleep. But I would probably just make it worse. Throw her dreams of me into nightmares.

As right they should be. A monster like me had no place in the dreams of an angel's creation. I had to leave her room right this moment. I looked at the window.

''Edward?'' She said in a questioning tone. I froze. Had she really seen me? Was I really being so careless? She whispered my name again and threw her arm over her covers and encircled them with a small smile on her face.

I was undone.

Sleep my sweet Bella. Sleep. I thought. And I let my back slide down the edge of the wall as I made preparations to watch her sleep until the sun disturbed me.