A/N: This is the sequel to my story Darkest Before Dawn. See my profile for a detailed summary of this fi

I am dedicating the first chapter of this story to Sopranoandbass, because she always brings a smile to my face. :D

A huge thanks goes to be new and awesome beta, Starchii.


Have you guys ever heard of the word 'repression'?

I always knew what it was, as most of us do. I knew what I had read, the basics.

That your mind, to protect it's self, would force all memory of something painful away from you. Sounds simple, right?


It has been almost four entire months since a certain someone left me. I didn't want to let go of the memories, I wanted to keep them.

I tried to cling onto them with every fiber of my being.

But the mind must protect it's self. Every time I began to sob, every time I woke up screaming, a little bit more of him slipped away from me.

For two weeks that was how things went. When thinking about him made my body began to throb, made me feel like I was falling apart where I stood, anything connected to him started being stuffed away in a little black box.

First, it was the little moments we had spent together, the ones I had treasured so much. The ones that were the most important- therefore the most painful- faded away.

Then it was him. The sharp features of his face started to blur. The exact shade of his hair became harder to remember. The sound of his voice became so jumbled and distorted I couldn't recognize it.

Now, the name 'Jasper' is just that to me, a name and nothing more.

When I tried to think about him, everything came up black. Missing patches of my mind that I was completely and totally unable to recollect. They were gone. I couldn't even, honestly, tell you if that bothered me or not.

That was how tightly my Jasper Box was sealed.

Bowl. Mouth. Swallow.

Bowl. Mouth. Swallow.

Have you ever had one of those days where you have to mentally will yourself to do something terribly simple and mundane?

Something like remembering how to feed yourself cereal?

I was having one of those days.

Actually, this was the 125th day that's been like this.

That's how long it's been since September 16th. The day my heart was broken, the day I became such a lifeless shell.

"Mama?" Silas's voice entered my ears and I snapped my eyes up, looking at him from where he sat across the table.

My little Silas had been my anchor. If I didn't have him depending on me, I think I might have actually cracked. I would have lost complete control of my mental functions and just broke down.

But I knew that he needed a mother; now more then ever. He needed me to be sensible, he needed me to be able to function.

I needed him to maintain some shred of sanity, so the pair of us had quite the wonderful system going on.

Silas smiled at me, "Guess what, mama?"

I forced a smile, trying to make it as convincing as possible. It was a pathetic attempt, but at least it was enough to fool a little kid.

I asked with mock-cheer, "What, baby?"

He pointed to the calendar, "It's the eighteenth!"

Oh, yes, I remembered. Now that he reminded me, that is.

Today, we were all going over to the Clearwaters' for dinner. 'All' being us Swans'and the Blacks'.

One hundred and twenty four days ago, Jacob took on the challenge of a lifetime. He proposed that he would fix me. For 124 days, I refused to let him.

I had wanted the pain, I had needed the pain, because if I let it go away I wouldn't be able to feel anything anymore. I feared the numbness, so I had to hold onto whatever I could to assure myself I was still alive.

I'm tired of the pain.

If I could just remember bowl, mouth, swallow, then I knew I was alive. As long as I gave myself the three things that I needed, I couldn't die.

Those things were food, sleep, and oxygen.

I didn't like any of it. Eating upset my stomach, sleeping brought the nightmares, and every single time I breathed my heart jolted me- reminding me that it's still broken and

begging me to get it fixed.

Today, I planned on seeking the help it needs. I knew quite the mechanic, and I knew that I was first on his list of things to repair.

I smiled again, a small but genuine smile, and answered Silas, "I'm looking forward to it just as much as you are."

After a few seconds he asked, "Can we go there early?"

Seth Clearwater, a boy of fourteen years, was my babysitter. He was very gentle and kind, and becoming very attached to Silas. I supposed you could say he's taken on the older brother role.

Silas needed some male influence in his life. Charlie didn't have the first clue on what to do with a little boy. Jacob was now my default first choice, but until I could start getting them together, I would settle for it being Seth.

I decided, "We can get there a little early, sure."

He perked up and asked, "Can I bring Morris so Seth can meet him?"

For Christmas, I had bought Silas a little half-gallon tank so he could take Morris places every now and then.

I laughed heartlessly, "Sure we can. Are you done?"

I gestured to his bowl and he nodded. Taking his, and my own, I walked over to the sink and poured the extra milk out.

Silas bounced over to me and hugged my leg, "I love you, mama."

Love was such a foreign word to me now. It used to have such a powerful and meaningful place in my heart. But now there was only one love I could physically accept, and that was the one between mother and son.

That was it.

The friendly love I used to have with Mike, Eric, Angela, Jessica, and sometimes Tyler was not important to me anymore.

The love I had for my mother and even Phil was not important.

Even the very close bond I had developed with Charlie was useless to me.

The sole thing in life that I wanted to care about was Silas.

I knew it was not healthy, but I couldn't help it, could I?

I picked Silas up and hugged him, kissing his cheek. "Mama loves you too, baby. More then anything."

He pulled a folded picture out of his shirt pocket and opened it up. "More than him?"

Turning the paper around he confronted me with a photograph of Jasper and me, the day of his senior graduation.

Well, was it worth the wait? I told you guys I would try to get it before March. I'm very excited about this fic, I hope the rest of you are as well.

I'm going to be doing something new here, too. At the end of each chapter, starting tomarrow, I will recommend a story or one-shot I think everyone should go and read. I have no problem with advertising other works if they are enjoyable!

Anyway, I am getting long winded. So... Review!