I gawked down at Bella as she pinned herself to me, practically pushing Charlie away.
"You bet I will be," Charlie snapped at Bella. I tore my eyes away from her weary eyes to study her father's infuriated demeanor.
I resisted the impulse to carry Bella inside of her house, but I knew that Charlie wouldn't allow me to go inside. His brain was still burdened by thousands of unanswered questions. He shot another bitter glance my way and then roamed his blurry eyes all over Bella's weak body.
'If she's hurt I won't be able to control myself….' Charlie's booming thoughts impaled me. I hated hearing his thoughts, though they were muddled a bit. As if I was only getting partial of what he was thinking.
They were still potent though, no doubt.
I flinched. My eyes took in Bella's stunning features, her delicate face and her petrified stare as she watched Charlie wanly. Her heart was thrumming faster. It was inevitable that she was equally angry at her father for treating me in this rude fashion, though I deserved worse.
Charlie wanted to snatch his gun up at that moment, as Bella took the hint that her father's stern glare penetrated her. I noticed Charlie's eyes held a measure of sadness in them. He would not be outraged at Bella for much longer, for relief would wipe away his anger at her.
As for me, Charlie would not forgive me for that was exactly what he was thinking when Bella mumbled, "Kay. Let me down."
It took every fiber of my willpower to do as she commanded, but it was for the best all around. I couldn't hold onto her forever. This was the finish line.
I held onto her shoulders, gentle enough not to hurt her. The way she stumbled to get her bearings, her thin frame, and her overpowering numbness due to the lack of sleep made me nervous.
I couldn't leave tonight, I knew it already. I had already given in to that battle.
I would watch her as I had done before from her window, and hopefully she would awake with forgiveness in her heart for me.
The real obstacle with Bella was that I was uncertain that she would understand why I had left her in the first place. I vowed to give her my every effort because she deserved to know every aspect of why I had hurt her the cold-blooded way that I had.
Instantly, Bella began to tilt forward towards the sidewalk. I caught her in my arms, winding my hand under her stomach. My other arm held the front of her chest to serve as support that she could no longer sustain.
Charlie leapt in front of us also to hopefully catch his unsteady daughter.
I let out a sharp breath, cursing myself. If it weren't for me, she would not be going through a near death experience. I swallowed back the urge to pick her up again and hold her. I frowned at Charlie's explosion of horrible accusations, directed at me.
Bella wobbled on her feet as I stood her up once more, not letting go this time.
I loosened my grip on her and again she nearly collapsed. She was like a young infant, not skilled enough to stand on her own two feet. I constricted my hold on her.
I forced myself to speak to an irate Charlie. "Just let me get her upstairs." I said simply, working to keep the soft pleading in my tone.
'That's it. I've had enough of this.' He thought to himself, almost losing his rational behavior. "Then I'll leave." I added to pacify Charlie's fuming vibes. He was breathing hard now, his face staining with the blood that rushed to his mad face.
'How dare you!' he was thinking but then he slid his eyes back to Bella and he softened slightly.
Bella gasped, "No!" her horror filled eyes shot up at me. Her mouth hung open in panic. I wanted so badly to explain to her just how much I did not intend on leaving her side.
I had to quell the penetrating nerve to simply run my fingers through her hair and hush her with a gentle kiss, but that would not be happening.
I shook my head partially, her expression cutting me deep. This was unbearable. "I won't be far," I murmured earnestly in her ear so quietly so that her father wouldn't know my plan to visit her in her bedroom. I nodded once, promising that she would see me again.
My life and probably hers depended on my presence.
She needed me. I was convinced now more than ever. The unsatisfied way that Bella beheld my eyes, searching my face told me that she had not had enough of me yet.
There was hope.
I walked her into the front door. Charlie glowered a look of sheer hatred. I cowered back, and reverted my attention back on the only thing worth living for.
She sucked in a deep breath, and then another, as if petrified at the thought of me going anywhere. I had been her anchor the entire time in Italy, and she mine.
This was going to be difficult, though it would not last forever. Only a mere eight hours or so until she had recuperated.
I gulped at the longing way that she stared at me. Her hands held onto my arms. She was blanched as if she had just lost a lot of blood. I had seen her like this before, and it was disturbing.
I was afraid she may faint. I would not let her. I concentrated on her eyes, for they told me everything I needed to know. She wanted me still, and this fueled my hopes.
Charlie rasped out a string of curse words, followed by a rather low and gruff sentence: "Get away from my daughter and off of our property. Now. I mean it." He spoke so quietly yet firmly that Bella probably didn't catch his command.
I has to obey his wishes. He was a cop after all, and he could do whatever he wanted to since I was on his property. His daughter had gone missing for longer than a day, so he could have arrested me easily. Actually, it didn't shock me when Charlie's next stream of thoughts were exactly that. Handcuffs.
I had no choice. No hope to explain because Charlie would not listen to me, I could hear it in his disdained mind.
I squeezed my eyes closed and began to untangle her fingers. She reluctantly forced her hands on my shirt. To my disappointment, I had to let her go.
But only for now.
This was the only notion that kept me from allowing us to be torn apart again. I felt a heavy pain encumber my heart inside. My chest throbbed.
Her eyes were blurry now, as she lost her strength and her fingertips loosened. I bit back a grunt as I finished unclasping them from their hold on my shirt.
I watched Charlie take Bella's drained form in his arms, stopping her fall to the wooden floor beneath her. He threw one more agonizingly sour glance over his shoulder, warning me to get out while the getting was good because he would definitely shoot me if he found me still here after he carried a sleeping Bella to her bed.
I pursed my lips, biting back the whim to follow him upstairs to ensure that she was safely in her bed, though I knew that she would be in good hands now.
I retracted my steps back and turned my back on Bella for the last time that I ever would.
I would wait in her window until Charlie cleared out, and then we would be together again.