One year, six months, and three days ago
It wasn't a long note. It really wasn't anything at all. It was just two little words. It was all I could really say to her at the time.
I wrote it on a stray piece of paper. It wasn't all that important. Just a little half-sheet left over from someone else's life. I didn't care that it was 'used'. Better to be 'green', I thought sarcastically.
I slipped into her car, using the key I had stolen out of her pocket. I placed the paper, folded in half, on her seat. It would be the first thing she saw as she opened her door. I smiled to myself as I closed the door behind me. Her mouthwatering smell lingered in the air as I hurried away.
I would miss her. True, we would be apart for less than twenty-four hours, and it was for her safety, but it would still be twenty-three hours and fifty-five minutes too long to be away from her.
With one last glance in the direction I knew she stayed, I ran to meet up with Alice. If I was spending the whole day with Bella tomorrow, I might as well keep my end of the promise.
One year, six months, and two days ago.
It was the middle of the night. The stupid cold medicine had worn off, leaving me wide awake and wondering what Edward was up to.
I sighed and rolled over, pounding my pillow into a lump. Only three more hours until morning. Three more hours until he would be back. It seemed way too long.
My hand slipped under the pillow. In the dark, my fumbling fingers caught the edge of a paper. I pulled it out and stared at it.
It was my only real reminder that he would be back. The only thing that kept me from thinking that all of this wasn't just some crazy dream from back in Phoenix. It was an old piece of paper, with two words printed on it in careful letters.
I didn't need to read it. It was too dark, and I had already memorized it anyway. I slipped the paper back under the pillow with a sigh. I rolled over and squeezed my eyes shut, hoping for sleep.
Somehow, I succeeded. My last thought was of that note from Edward.
Ten Months and 16 days ago.
I ran as fast as I could back to Bella's house. I couldn't bear the horrified look I had seen on her face. The image filled my vision as I darted up the steps and into her room.
I scanned the room for everything that was from me. Here was the CD I had given her only a few days ago. Over there, a few scattered pictures from right before the party. I gathered the things in my arms and looked around helplessly. What to do with it?
I had to get rid of it somehow. Yet, I didn't want to just take it all away. For some twisted reason, the things had to stay here. My eyes rested on the wooden floor. Of course.
I knelt down and pulled hard on the first floorboard I saw. It came up with a creak, but I didn't stop to be careful. Charlie wouldn't be home for over an hour, and Bella was bound to take at least a few minutes to get back here.
I set the things in the tiny space underneath, more carefully this time. Within a minute or two almost all the evidence that I'd ever existed was gone.
I hesitated on the last thing. A piece of paper that had come to mean so much to both of us. Please, Bella. I begged silently. Please. For me. I set the paper on the very top of the pile and closed up the floor once more.
The next thing I knew I was running, unable to bear the pain anymore. The only things I could see was Bella's tortured face… and the note.
Please, Bella. Please. For me. Be Safe.
Ten Months and two days ago.
He was gone. He was gone, and he wasn't coming back.
Renee came up to try to persuade me to come home. I think I threw a fit. Maybe I didn't. I can't really remember. Either way, she gave up. I was going to stay here.
I lay in my bed, screaming. The nightmare had begun a week ago tonight. Wandering around in the forest for forever and ever. Until I realized that there was nothing to look for.
Why, Edward? I thought as I stared at the ceiling. Then I remembered; he didn't love me.
Why, than? Why had he stayed around for so long, just to leave when I couldn't live without him.
I rolled over onto my side and cried. Maybe tomorrow I would jump off a cliff. That might shake me out of my numbness.
But no. I would remember what he had told me to do countless times. He said it for my protection. Now it seemed to be exactly what kept me from feeling happy.
Six months ago.
It was time that we fixed everything.
I bent down beside Bella and pulled up the wooden floorboard. I did it slowly, so she could see that everything was true. I wasn't normally one for theatrics –except for when it came to my death- but this was important.
Nothing had changed in the months I had been gone. True, the pile had shifted a bit, but everything was still there.
We took out the items one by one. There was the CD, which Bella promptly stuck in the CD player. I hummed along as she continued to take things out and put them in their rightful place.
And then there was only one thing left. I took out the note with trembling fingers. Bella took it equally cautiously. I turned to her. She made a face.
"Where are you going to put it?" Bella blushed, and shoved the note in her pocket. I grinned at her. I wasn't worried. I would figure it out eventually.
As it turned out, I found out later that night. It was under her pillow. I sat in the rocking chair, gazing at the sleeping beauty. She had kept her promise. Her promise to love me. Her promise to…
Her promise to Be Safe.
Two months and seventeen days ago.
All of the Cullens were gone, preparing for the newborns that they would face in just a few days. It was just me and Edward, Edward and I. All alone, in the big, huge house. I couldn't wait.
I scrambled around packing things for the next few days. As a last-minute thing, I snatched the 'Be Safe' note from under my bed and shoved it into my pocket. It was like a good-luck charm.
With a last glance toward my room, I slid into the car next to Edward. We soon were both lost in our thoughts. Edward was obviously worried about the battle that was about to take place, while I was nervous about tonight. I wanted to try something…
I was also worried about my family. I didn't want any of them to get hurt. I fingered the note in my pocket as Edward drove up the driveway.
As Edward carried me up to his room, I had time for one last thought.
Please. Let them be okay. Make sure they're careful. Make sure they're safe. Please.
Today. Right here, right now.
I stared at Bella. Her face was twisted, and her stomach ballooned into the air. My heart wrenched each time I saw her. I refused to forgive myself for doing this to her. This… thing was killing her. She was dying. And still she wouldn't let us help her.
Alice's head was on my shoulder. Her eyes were closed, and her forehead was lined. Her thoughts were sluggish, and her visions were cloudy. The creature was blocking her sight.
"Stop." I said quietly. "There's no need." Alice's visions slowly faded, until she was sitting in utter stillness, allowing herself to relax for a moment.
"She's going to be alright, you know. I can't see it, but I can tell." She whispered. I glanced down, where my hand was clenched around a tattered piece of paper. Alice opened her eyes and stared down at the paper.
"You still have that?" She asked quietly. I shook my head.
"Bella's suitcase." I answered equally quietly. Alice giggled.
"She's never going to give up. She's not going to keep her promise this time." I shook my head sadly. Nothing I could say would convince her. And now Alice…it was pretty much a sure thing. I could only hope that Bella would stay strong enough.
I switched my gaze from the paper back to Bella. Alice stiffened, and her head twisted toward the door.
"Black." She breathed. "Stupid dog. Hang on." Then she was gone. I didn't follow her. I was still busy.
If there's any god out there, please help me. I pleaded in my head. Please save Bella. Please let her promise be kept. Please make her be safe.
Be Safe, Bella, because Edward loves you. Be safe, Edward, because Bella needs you.
Be safe while he is gone hunting, and while she is missing you. Be safe while you are leaving, and safe when you are returning home. Be safe when you are going off to fight, and when you are fighting for your life. Be safe.