Alright, sorry sorry sorry for not updating sooner. But I finally managed to whip this up today (lucky me, I had very little homework, so I actually had some time). This one's a wedding one, so hopefully those of you who asked for something like this will be at least a little pleased.
The Morning of the First Wedding
"You do realize that if you run away right now, Rose'd just kill you and then make you do this all again at a later date." I scowled, but ignored Edward, my pacing not slowing in the slightest. "And if you honestly think that I'm getting into another stupid tux for you again, forget it."
Kid just couldn't stay out and mind his own business. And the one thought I'd had of making a bolt for it had only been about half a second long. Still, he just couldn't help but jump up at the chance of whining a bit more and digging through my head.
"I didn't even consider that, so would you please just drop it for once?"
He snorted, pretending to somehow not hear me. "I suppose it is better than some of the other idea's you've had though in the past." I tuned him out as he kept talking, listing my imperfections, gritting my teeth. God, if I had known it was this annoying to have little brothers, I would've been sending my siblings gift baskets each week.
Then again, I couldn't read minds.
"Yes, well, you still managed to be worse than me, so don't hate everyone else so much."
Can't leave me alone for even five seconds. "I don't hate everyone else," I responded dryly, pausing in my steps to glare at him. "I just hate you." Alright, so maybe I was being a jerk. Still, can you blame me? Apart from being stuck in a room with the most annoying person on the planet for 5 hours, my brimming insanity was running sky high, too.
"If you're this annoyed with me, then I can't wait to see how you deal with Rosalie." He smiled as if he had just told a good joke.
"I will not 'deal' with Rosalie," I fumed, my hands clenching and unclenching. "I will happily spend the rest of my life with her in a united bliss, thanks for the concern." Deal with. Okay, now I knew it wasn't me anymore. Any normal person with even half the manners of a Parana wouldn't be insulting someone's fiancé on their wedding day.
I caught the roll of his eyes that he sent me, and my jaw clamped tighter.
"Whatever. I still say it's true. You're going to be crying yourself to sleep for the rest of your life."
"Oh, I already do that. Only Rose isn't the cause." You are, pretty boy. You and that stupid all-knowing smirk.
Sighing, he ran a hand through his hair. "Whatever. And will you please stop walking; you haven't stopped for the past hour."
I unconsciously smiled. Good. I was glad I could now find something to annoy him. No matter how small it was, at least it made him a little less arrogant. Well, maybe it didn't, but it irritated him, which really did make me feel a little better.
"Glad to be of some help," he muttered when I didn't stop.
"Well I'm glad you've finally found something else to do besides complain every five seconds about how you don't want to be here." Which he had been doing, may I point out. And I know, because I had been timing it whenever he began talking for long periods of time.
"I'm just so happy that I'm finally pleasing you," he sneered. "Makes me feel a little more worthwhile to have your approval."
There was a knock at the door, and a second later Carlisle slipped in, shutting it quickly behind him and glancing at the two of us. He sent Edward a disapproving look that had my lips turning up in satisfaction. "Edward, would you please leave him alone. Honestly, I highly doubt he appreciates your attempts to make this day worse than it has to be. And Emmett, ignore him. You know he's just trying to annoy you." I frowned as he sent me the same look, and I turned my stare to the ground once more, leaning up against the wall as I shoved my hands into my pants pockets.
"Sorry," he mumbled, but I wasn't sure at that point which one of us he was talking to. Either way, the great Edward Cullen was lowered from his pedestal just a little bit more, making my day a little brighter.
Actually a lot better, seeing as those miracles don't really happen all that often.
He glared at me. "Yes, well if you could only hear his thoughts, then you wouldn't be blaming me so much."
I glared right back. "Well maybe if you stayed out of my mind, then you wouldn't have to hear any of it, therefore you wouldn't be bothered."
"Well if you'd—"
"Maybe you should go outside and help Esme finish setting up." Carlisle interrupted, stopping us both before we began throwing punches. I'd be throwing the punches, anyway, since I'm the only one who fights fair. He'd just duck them and claim that it wasn't cheating.
Edward stared at him for a long moment, looking just a bit put-off that no one was defending him. Finally, though, he gave one short nod, and quickly left the room, looking way too eager to get out and be free than I really thought was polite.
Carlisle turned to me as soon as he was gone, carefully smiling. "You look good. You should wear suits more often; it works."
"I feel ridiculous," I mumbled, not really caring what I was admitting anymore. I really did feel stupid in these clothes though. I had grown up in a family that was constantly on a tight budget, and was usually stuck with dirty, ripped hand-me-downs more than anything else. Even after years of being with my new family, I was still trying to get used to having the luxury of getting actual outfits that didn't make me look like I was a teenage runaway. But the whole tuxedo thing…I guess it was supposed to be fancy, but all it made me feel like was a stiff brat.
"Yes, well, I'm wearing the same exact thing as you, so don't go insulting your clothes too much."
I grinned. "Yeah, but it'd be insulting Edward too, so I'm sure that you'd be able to suck it up just a little bit for me." I wasn't entirely joking at this point.
Rolling his eyes, he crossed his arms and leaned against the wall. "I see. Well, I suppose I could just a little." He stared at me for a long moment. "If it's any consolation, it won't be too terribly long now before you'll be able to change again."
I rubbed a hand over my face, dropping down into the spot on the couch the little twerp had just been in. "Is that a promise or a threat?"
He chuckled, coming to sit down beside me. "I suppose it could qualify as both, depending on exactly how you looked at it." I could feel his eyes on me; evaluating me. "How are you holding up?"
His eyebrows rose. "Impossible."
I gave one quick, humorless laugh, and began ringing my hands together for about the twenty-fifth time today. "Is it always this…nerve wracking?"
He sent me a small, sympathetic smile. "Sorry," he apologized, shrugging. "But yes. From what I've seen and experienced, anyway."
I cleared my throat. "Right." I looked up at him. "Thanks for kicking Eddie out, anyway."
He seemed to be fighting his own laugh. "No problem. I know how he can get." There. I really wasn't the only one. What wonderful news. Now I had something to wave in his face for at least the next decade.
"Yeah, well, I guess that's him." The very snotty stuffy him, but the real one, nonetheless. "You sure you don't want to trade him for a dog or something?"
"You do realize he can hear you," he pointed out, amused.
As if that's reason enough to stop.
As if it's reason at all.
"Fine, but I deserve my say once in a while, don't I?"
"I see. So, in your opinion, it should be your choice on whether or not to throw you brother out on to the street, is that it."
I gave him a nod and broad smile. "We're communicating now."
He shook his head at me. "Patience and understanding towards one another are both virtues," he pointed out quietly.
"So's being humble once in a while. Would it really kill him all that much?" We both knew the answer.
I ran my hands across my pants once more, out of habit more than anything; if I was human, I'd have been sweating by now. "How much longer?" It came out as more than a whine than I had aimed for. "It feels like we've been waiting forever." I rubbed angrily at the back of my neck, glancing around the room for the millionth time, hoping that somewhere in between the last I had checked and now, a clock had magically appeared. Alas, just like every other moment I had looked for one, there was nothing but a mocking blank.
Putting a reassuring hand on my shoulder, he gripped it gently, holding me down to earth. "Half an hour, Em. You're strong; you can hold out a little while longer."
"Don't be so sure," I muttered.
I could feel him watching me again, but chose to ignore his gaze. The last thing I wanted right now was more attention. "Do you need anything?"
Yeah, could you please kill me? I'll pay you. Hell, I'll kiss your shoe if you ask me to. "No. I'm good." I suppose 'good' had several different definitions, so technically, it wasn't really a lie. There. I didn't have to feel guilty.
Nope. Lying through my teeth right now, but don't mind me. "Yeah. I just—" I gave a nervous laugh, unsure of how to explain it; unsure if I really even needed to. "Are last minute second thoughts natural?"
He smiled slightly in understanding. "The day I married Esme was the day I pushed Edward to the brink of insanity. I couldn't concentrate on really anything for more than two seconds, but the one thing that was constantly in the back of my mind was if I would regret getting married later. I just…wasn't sure I had what it would take to be a good husband. Even when I was walking up to the altar, seeing her standing there…" He closed his eyes for a moment, getting lost in the memory. "Actually seeing her in that wedding dress made me realize how much responsibility I was gaining over her. It would be my job to take care of her; to protect her; to make sure she was happy.
"And I was scared to death that I was going to fail that task. The only thing even more horrifying was the fact that she had complete faith in me, and trusted that I was completely capable of doing that." He looked back over to me. "It took years for it to finally dawn on me that it wasn't as hard as I had originally thought it would be."
I huffed out a loud gust of air, leaning back against the couch. "But what if I mess up? What if I do everything wrong and end up completely destroying her future."
He nudged me. "To be nice, I'll play along with your fictional story, and say the worst that could happen is that Edward would mock you for a while. Of course, you're going to be a wonderful husband, and yes, I know that for a fact, so there's nothing to be concerned about."
I leaned forward and buried my face in my hands. "What makes you so sure?"
I could tell that he was happy I was at least listening to him. "Because you were bleeding to death and unconscious and you still managed to make Rosalie glow brighter than I've ever seen her before. If you really think that it's possible you could ruin her life, then I highly suggest you do a little reevaluating of the situation."
Not having an answer, I decided to change the subject. Anything really to get my mind off of the present time and place would make me deliriously content. "Did you need something, or did you just want to make fun of me, too?" Wouldn't blame him. Even I was beginning to think it must be fun.
He rolled his eyes, but smiled. "Yes, actually. I had something to give you."
I sent him a questioning look. "I thought presents were for the reception or something."
Shrugging, he reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out a neatly wrapped box. It was small; rectangular, something that would probably pass as the packaging for a pen. The black paper shined brightly against the contrast of the light atmosphere of the room, and he eagerly passed it to me.
"I would have waited to give it to you with everything else later," he said as I weighed it in my hands. "Only, it probably would have attracted far too much attention and suspicion than what's really acceptable. Way too old to really be waving around a crowd of people." He paused. "Open it."
I glanced up at him, and then slowly began undoing the careful wrapping. It fell to the ground easily, leaving an old, browning white box in its' place. Taking the lid off, I looked down at the contents, smiling softly.
"I had planned on giving it to Edward, if he ever got married," he began softly. "Then I met you. It seemed like it would be a better fitting gift for your personality than for his."
I ran my hand across the blade of the small, thin but strong dagger. It was hardly bigger than a letter opener, and yet the small golden plates encrusted into the gray marble handle made it impossible to not realize that it was meant for purposes much more important. The crossguard gleamed silver, a barely visible diamond fit perfectly into the top. The fact that it was handmade—clearly not something that had been a product of a factory—only perfected it.
He started talking again as I stared down at it. "My mother's great grandfather had served in the English Armada, around 1589. This had been made specifically for him by Sir John Norreys, after he had become one of the higher ranking officers on his ship. It had been passed on through my family, until my mother left it in my possession when she died." His voice grew more somber. "My father told me that it was a symbol of protection; something that would remind me of the duty I had to protect my family, and that I was to pass it on to my oldest son when he started a family of his own. Technically, I suppose you were born the latest, but I highly doubt that my ancestors would mind too terribly much if I changed the tradition a bit."
I looked up at him then, only to find him looking intently back. I pushed the box back towards him, careful not to hold onto it too hard. "Carlisle…I can't—"
"And if you try to give it back, then you can just stop now, because it's not about to happen." He moved it back towards me, his hands lingering on my wrists before he sighed and dropped them quickly. "After the first three or so hours I had known you, I already knew that you were the one who I wanted to give this to. I want you to have it," he said firmly, right before I had the chance to deny it again.
I gave one quick, humorless laugh, running a hand through my hair once more. "Look, I really do appreciate it, more than you could ever know, but this…this should be Edward's, not mine. Honestly, I'm hardly even a member of your family, just a…kid you picked up in Appalachia, I guess, who happens to live with you. You shouldn't be giving—"
"Emmett," he interrupted me, his eyes flaming when I caught sight of them again. "If you dare say that you're less a member of this family than anyone else, then so help me I'll make this the most painful day of your life."
All I could do was stare at him. Was he really this insane?
"But…I…" How do I make him see that this didn't belong to me? A family heirloom that had been passed down for over four hundred years. I come in and in the blink of an eye he's trying to hand it over to me.
He took the box from my hands, setting it on the small coffee table beside his side of the sofa, and then turned back to me, giving me a hard look. "Ever since the second Rosalie asked me to change you for her, I knew that I'd never see you as anything other than my son. And ever since the first time I heard you speak until today, that fact has only been proved time and time again. This belongs to you," he said, pointing back to the dagger, "because you're the next in line in the family. You're my son. You're starting a family of your own. You've obviously got the rights to it."
I stared at him for another long moment, disbelieving any of this. "But Edward—"
"Isn't getting married today."
My body felt dead as he kept mentally pushing it towards me more and more. He didn't understand; this didn't belong to me. "But you've known him longer. He's more your son than I'm ever going to be."
He sighed in frustration, clearly disagreeing. "Just because I've known him longer doesn't mean I think any more of him than I do you; that I love him any more. You're as much my son as he is, whether you believe that or not. You deserve this just as much as him."
I nodded numbly, not in acceptance, but in dull incredulity. "Sure," I whispered, more to myself than him. "If that's what you want to think, then I suppose that's your choice, not mine."
He ran a hand over his face, suddenly weary, and all thoughts of the wedding had vanished from my mind. "I don't think you grasp just how important you are to our family. Our family, Em, not mine."
I remained silent, staring down at the couch. What did he want me to say, though? 'Oh, I agree.' That was hardly the truth. I was still a McCarty, plain and simple. Edward was a Cullen. It made me feel like a selfish bastard, knowing I was taking something that should have been given to him.
A moment later, I felt his hand on my shoulder once again, and he leaned forward, trying to meet my gaze. I let it rise slowly, the soft gold I was greeted by nearly making me flinch.
He honestly thought I deserved something like this.
"Maybe someday you'll realize how much you really are a part of us," he murmured. "But until that day, if you're really so stubborn as to not admit that you are Esme's and my child just as much as the other two, then there's always the fact that you're legally about to become our son-in-law anyway, so I'd still be giving you that dagger."
I groaned, pulling away from his gentle touch. "Fine. You know what, I give up. But if something bad happens to it, don't blame me," I said through gritted teeth, the guilt firing through me in waves.
Smiling in satisfaction, he stood up, brushing off his clothes. "You wouldn't do that, no matter what threats you come up with. You care too much about making everyone else content."
That made me angry.
I knew he was right.
I chose to pretend not to hear as he looked back at me, pulling me up by the back of the collar and quickly combed through my hair with his fingers. "I suppose we had better get you out there, shouldn't we?"
The reminder cruelly hit me in the face like a wrecking ball, and I flinched away from it as he straightened my jacket out for me and then stepped back, his eyes quickly scanning my figure for any imperfections.
Well, any that would make Rosalie mad, anyway.
Amidst our little argument, I had almost forgotten for the real reason behind it. But now, as I was reminded exactly why we were here in the first place, all the peace I had just been experiencing shattered on me.
I was getting married.
Oh fuck, I was getting married.
When he seemed pleased with what he saw, his lips pulled up reassuringly in a sad attempt to calm my suddenly quickening breathing. "Just relax, would you? There are thousands of husbands out there, so it's obviously not too fatal. Just forget everything else but her and you'll do fine."
I let him drag me out of the room, though I held him back as much as possible. It apparently wasn't much of a barrier for him, because he kept an even pace down the hallway.
To say the least, by the time he managed to get me successfully up and standing at the front of the white rose decorated sanctuary, my hands were shaking. He gave me one last look as he came to stand behind me, because that was the spot he had been told to go to or because he wanted to catch me if I tried to inconspicuously sneak out, I wasn't sure. Either way, a moment later he breathed a quick sentence as the minister caught sight of us and began making his way up to where we were. "Remember what I told you; just think of Rosalie. Nothing else. You'll be fine, trust me."
"Yeah, well, I know one thing," I said quickly, my voice about to break.
"I'm never going through this again."
Well, that's it! Sorry it's not the best, but nothing ever really is when it comes to my writing, and this was as good as I could get it. Please please please tell me if you've got any more ideas! You guys have been awesome with that so far. Oh, and there's a poll on my profile, so if any of you have a second, please cast a vote. It'd really help me with future stories. Many many thanks!