Similar to Bring me to Life, this is a sort of stylised dream-sequence, hence the reason I posted this as a sort of second chapter. This was written very quickly, and I have this terrible habit of not proofing my own work very carefully. There are probably mistakes. Sorry.

The lyrics are Taylor Swift, from Breathe, and Cold as You, both of which are amazing songs. Some of the quotes care copyright Stephenie Meyer - there are a few direct lifts, there. Mostly, though, this is my own imagination, thank you very much.

Enjoy!


You slam the door behind you, lean against the wall, and slide to the floor. There's nothing to hold you up, now. You wrap your arms around yourself, and the ripping sound that's become so familiar starts again – your sobs.

I can't breathe without you – but I have to.

Breath comes in strangled gasps and strange lurches. Sometimes, you can't find enough oxygen to fill your lungs, and then you choke and struggle for breath until you find enough to keep your organs functioning. And then the pain hits you again, and you wonder why you bothered.

Somewhere along the line, reality turns into a dream, and then you're running. You're running as fast as you can, but you know it will never be fast enough. You keep running, though, because what else can you do? You struggle, trying to take in enough oxygen to sate your need for it. Your mind throws useless facts at you: this is anaerobic respiration. Your body is producing Lactic acid, and it starts to burn your muscles. You're working too hard. You need to slow down.

But you can't.

You run, and run. You don't know what you're running towards or –and it's an ominous thought – what you're running away from.

You put on an extra burst of speed, and suddenly it seems like you're flying. Or perhaps falling. Below you, waves crash and slowly tear into the rocks behind you. It feels like you're falling forever, and the sickening feeling as your stomach meets your throat makes you retch, mid-fall. Then you crash into the waves – hard enough that they might as well be solid – and all of the breath is punched from your lungs, making you gasp wildly. You inhale water.

Suddenly, the nightmare turns sweeter. He's there, in front of you. He's taunting you, but it doesn't matter, because you can see his face. And oh – your memory doesn't do him justice.

And then you hit rock bottom. You lie there, on the ocean floor being ravaged by the waves of pain, and you wait there to die.

I can't breathe without you – but I have to.

There's too much water in your lungs now, and it's weighing you down, forcing you away, and effectively halting any escape from the clutches of death. There's a sense of peace that you don't understand, but welcome anyway, because it's the only peace you can ever seem to find.

And then the sun is shining. You're still drenched, but somehow you're in a meadow – the meadow.

The pain sets in again, and you wish you'd stayed on the ocean floor, because there he is. He's lying there, watching you, that same taunting smile on his face.

And even as the throbbing threatens to overwhelm you, you choke out his name. "Edward..."

"I saved your life – I don't owe you anything."

"You owe me an explanation."

"Don't hold your breath."

Not like you have much choice in the matter.

I can't breathe without you – but I have to.

"You don't want me?"

"No. You're no good for me. I never wanted you. Can't you see it was a lie? It was always a lie. I never loved you, Bella. I never loved you, you stupid human girl."

You would have died for him, once. What does that make you? A mess of a dreamer, with the nerve to adore him.

You cried for him. You still cry for him, every night. Every time you're alone. Every time you think that no-one can see. Every smile, every touch, every kiss, every caress was a lie. So condescending.

I hate you. I hate you. I hate you.

I love you.

You wake up screaming.