I really haven't written much, so this was kind of big for me. I know it's short, but I liked it, so maybe you will too. :)
All is quiet.
It reminds him of the forest before a storm. Nothing stirs, for they are afraid.
It's not fear that grips him now, nor any other tangible feeling. In fact, the only thing he feels is…nothing. He's absolutely hollow.
He doesn't know whether to run, or crumple onto the ground and die, so for now, he's rooted in place. He'd know later that running nor crumpling would do any good, because there is no escape. No escape from the pain. Only blackness.
He wants to run into his father's arms, act like a child, and cry his eyes out on his father's shirt. However, none of these things are possible. He has to stay strong for his wife, his daughter, his mother, his family, because although he is not the oldest, it is he who must fill the place of leader.
He feels suddenly a vice-like grip around his waist, and looks down to see his mother's sodden hair, her face buried in his chest. Her thoughts shock him. They're completely devoid of anything.
He realizes then, that that's how his thoughts probably are. How most everyone's thoughts are. Well, almost everyone, except for Emmett, whose string of balling curses almost scare him.
Almost, because he feels little now.
A shrill vibrating sound makes everybody jump; they're wound so tight. He looks up, only just now realizing his eyes were closed. Jasper has a phone in hand.
In a voice that sounds so unlike his, Jasper says, "It's time."
Everybody rises, except for he, who cannot move.
He watches as his daughter trudges out the door, with none of her usual brightness. His son-in-law, Jacob, follows her, his arm around Bella.
Even his mother gets up and leaves, in a stupor, it seems. She stumbles into Seth, who holds onto her as support.
Rosalie comes over to him. Her eyes are pitch black, her expression is one of someone who is in unimaginable pain.
He wonders briefly, what he looks like, but then she speaks, so kindly.
"Edward, come on. You need to do this. If you don't, you'll regret it for the rest of your existence."
He can't find any trace of anything other than dripping sincerity in her thoughts. He takes her hand, and together they walk out the door, into what looks to Edward as impending doom.
He insists on driving, but Leah, her face sober, insists otherwise. He has nothing left in him to argue.
He closes his eyes the whole way there, as if willing himself to forget where they're going. But his mind doesn't work like that, it will always remember.
They approach their destination, and the thoughts around him take Edward out of his reverie. He opens his eyes, and dimly registers surprise, as it seems the entire town had turned out to share in this misery.
He hears the unmistakable thoughts of his brother, Emmett, who opens the door for Rosalie. Rosalie, who still grips his hand, pulls him with her.
It's a sea of black surrounding them. Edward smells the salt of tears, hears the grieving thoughts, and his own pain is amplified. He struggles with all his remaining strength to keep his face impassive, but he feels that it's not working. Warm arms wrap themselves around him, and he replies to all the sympathies and condolences with only fraction of his mind.
He finds himself seated in a chair at the very front of the mass of people. The day is gray, like every other day, and rain trickles down. His hair is wet now, but he makes no effort to do anything about it. His Bella sits to his right, his mother, Esme, to his left.
Hi eyes bare into the closed casket sitting not ten feet from him. He blocks out all the thoughts around him, especially his mother's most disturbing ones. He just wants to be alone. He wants to talk to his father one last time.
The door creaked open, not inaudible to him. He heard Carlisle's favorite band playing, Creed…One Last Breath, he recognized. Carlisle's voice sung along with it. He poked his head around the corner, and found a pair of feet propped up on a mahogany desk.
He knew his father had heard him, but he didn't look up from the novel he was reading. By the obvious distraction of Carlisle's thoughts, it was Frankenstein. Again.
He smiled vaguely. "That's—what? The thousandth time you've read that?"
Carlisle answered without looking up. "Five-hundred, seventy-eighth."
Edward nodded, "Ah."
They sat there, in incomparable silence, while, it seemed to Edward—though Carlisle had a pretty good block on his thoughts—ordered them.
Finally, Carlisle set the book down. His face was lined with ancient sadness.
"Sorry, Edward. I was finishing the chapter." He smiled a sad smile.
Edward knew it was a lie; he breathed a tiny laugh. Carlisle looked at the papers on his desk, shuffling them, and turned off the music, with the remote held in his hands.
Edward examined his shoes carefully. Carlisle's thoughts were unguarded now; he knew what was coming.
Edward begins, "Bella…" referring to Bella's vote on immortality, earlier that night.
Carlisle interrupted him. "Edward, in 60 years, when Bella passes on, what are you going to do? Are you going to run off to Italy again?" The pain in his voice was evident. Edward knew he had caused it.
Edward didn't answer.
"Edward…I couldn't bear that again. Even when I can see you here now, clearly okay, I cannot and will not forget that. How could you do that to me?"
The patronizing tone Carlisle used was not shy of that used for discipline. When Edward didn't respond, Carlisle continued.
"Do you have any idea what you put Esme and me through? You think you're the only that's been in pain before? Even if Bella had been dead, how could you—"
Edward held up his hand to stop him. Though Carlisle's words could've conveyed anger, they instead were laced with the pain that Carlisle had felt. Despite it all, Carlisle kept his voice down.
"I know, Carlisle, and you have no idea how sorry I am. I know what I did was wrong, and there's nothing I can do to make it better. I hate myself for it. Even more, than I already did. I just wish—"
Carlisle was in his face in an instant, their eyes on the same level. "You think I want more hatred? That's what got us here in the first place, isn't it?"
Edward swallowed hard. He couldn't respond, because he knew he could never not hate himself.
Carlisle slumped down into the chair behind him.
"Son, you're a real pain in the ass sometimes. But I love you. And you will never pull that again." Carlisle's black eyes bore into him. "Understood?"
Edward was shocked by the intensity of Carlisle words. How could he have ever hurt his father like this? His answer was more solid then he thought it would be. "Yes."
Carlisle sighed. "Thank you." He hugged Edward hard, and Edward let go of eight months of hell.
Edward opens his eyes. It's not a happy memory, but his father's unconditional love is there with him now. He clings to that memory with all the frayed fibers of his being.
The crowd is silent, as the priest finishes his words. Bella gives his hand a gentle squeeze.
He stands up in a daze. He has no idea how he's going to do this. Words are beyond his intellectual grasp at the moment.
He gets up to the podium. The wind picks up, and he feels his untidy hair whip around. He looks around at the crowd. His black haired, dark-skinned family sits interspersed throughout his pale, tearless family. It makes him smile. It's peaceful. Even in death, Carlisle still remains among them.
He closes his eyes, and pictures Carlisle's smiling face, and he begins.
"You don't fully realize a person's greatness, until you step back and admire..."
So there you go...I love Carlisle but I've been thinking about this for quite some time now...I felt it was time for it to finally come to paper. :)
Please review!! Thanks for reading.