DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OWN ANY OF THE CHARACTERS FROM TWILIGHT. THEY ALL BELONG TO STEPHENIE MEYER. I'M JUST MANIPULATING THEM TO DO MY BIDDING!
Synopsis: Edward Cullen is the only son of billionaire Carlisle Cullen. He has always been surrounded by fake, money-hungry people. That is the way of life he has always known. But when Edward's life is threatened, Carlisle has no choice but to send him away to the barely noticeable, out of the way town of Forks, Washington. While there, Edward meets some new friends that, even though he is wary to get to know in the beginning, finds that the change his life in ways that he never imagined possible. But is he safe. Has the threat to his life been quelled or is the danger closer than both Edward and his father realise?
"It's not safe for you here at the moment, Edward. You know that!" My father, Carlisle, snapped at me, as he paced back and forth behind his desk.
"But I don't want-" I started, but he cut me off.
"I'm afraid that it's not about what you wany anymore, Edward." He said, stopping at his desk and leaning his hands on the edge, looking extremely worn. "This is about your safety. You really think that I'm going to let my only son sit here, being threatened and not do about it?" He sighed and sat down in his chair. "The only problem is, I can't do anything about it while you're here. It's too dangerous." He looked at me, his eyes pleading. "I won't risk you, Edward. You mean too much to me."
"To you, or to the company?" I countered and he looked at me, shocked.
"How can you ask me that?" He asked, his voice full of sorrow and pain. "You're my only son. I hate to have to send you away, but it's the best and really the only option I have if I want you to be safe." He sighed and looked at me again. "I really am sorry Edward. You're leaving tonight. I'm not going to tell you where you're going, the walls have ears you see, but Jason knows, so you'll be safe with him. I hate that you have to go Edward, I really do. If I had it my way, I would keep you here under lock and key until we found this maniac. But things rarely go the way we want them to in life."
"As I'm beginning to find out." I muttered standing up. "Can I at least say goodbye to my friends?"
My father looked at me a grave expression on his face. "I'm afraid not, son. It's too risky. Go and gather up some things. You'll be leaving in an hour." He looked down at his papers and it was clear that there was going to be no more discussion on the topic.
I couldn't stay in Chicago.
I was leaving.
Most of the time, being me was great. And then there were times like these, when it sucked.
I'm the only son of billionaire businessman Carlisle Cullen. Something that generally worked in my favour. I was popular, athletic, smart and I got what I wanted. I was spoilt. I knew it. But Carlisle never gave me anything without my having to prove myself first. For example, when I had become old enough to drive and got my liscence, he had bought me a brand new Volvo, but I wasn't allowed it until I proved myself academically. I knew I had an average of 4.0 but only he knew my exact score and he wanted me to prove that even though my average was damn near perfect, I could still improve. I guess I did that, because at the end of the semester he handed me the keys to the Volvo. I was ecstatic. I think that knowing that my father had tested and proved me worthy of having it made it even better. There were other tests that he used for me to prove myself when I wanted or needed something from him. Even though millions were like pennies to him, he always ensured that I appreciated what I had. And I did. I knew that Carlisle had taken a huge chunk out of his life making his company a success. He always made sure that I knew what he had given up. And I did.
I knew that even though we had a lot of money now, it wasn't always that way. And it made me appreciate the small stuff even more.
At first the company had begun as a way for Carlisle to support himself and my mother Esme, who, by the time the company was launched, was expecting me. That knowledge drove him even harder to make the business succeed. Who knew that seventeen years later he would be one of the wealthiest men on the planet? He certainly didn't. And he knows that it could have gone the other way just as easily. I knew that he thanked whatever power it was, everyday, for causing his company to become this huge. It operated on every continent and had offices in almost every single country. It was huge.
The only problem with this situation now was that someone had decided they wanted in on the business.
And they were using me to do it.
Over the past couple of weeks there had been emails from an untraceable address, letters from an unknown source, phone calls that were too short to be traced, and all of them had one main subject.
For some reason, someone had decided to terrorize my family, taunting that they were watching me, that they would get what they wanted or my family would never see me again. My safety was on the line.
The worst thing was, we knew that they were telling the truth. Because with every email there was an attachment that held photographs, with every letter there were photographs included and with every phone call, photographs would be faxed through at the same time. And they were all of me. Nobody else was ever in the picture with me, which made my parents worry even more, as obviously this person could see me when I was on my own. They were recent pictures as well. There were pictures of me around the house, at basketball games, even in school. The ones of me sleeping were the most worrying ones. As they were close ups. When my mother had seen them she wasn't able to hold back her worry.
Then the threats to my life had begun.
The threatening letters, emails and phonecalls had become less frequent but they were all the more disturbing for it. Carlisle told me that he didn't want me or my mother to read them. That they were just too graphic for either of us to handle. I managed to sneak a look at one that was laid on Carlisle's desk after he had read it. It had gotten him pretty distraught, and in his panic I had managed to glimpse at a sentence or two.
I wished I hadn't.
The thought that someone was out there, probably watching me right now, reading this, and for all I knew writing another sickening letter or email made me nauseous.
I couldn't fathom why anyone would threaten me other than for Carlisle's money. But they hadn't asked for anything. That was the strangest thing. They hadn't asked for anything at all. Not a penny. Not that Carlisle hadn't offered it. He had offered thousands, millions, to get this sicko away from me, but nothing he offered seemed to appease this guy. He only said that he was going to make Carlisle pay for past mistakes and that he would claim his prize when he was ready.
It was that that broke Carlisle.
He knew that I couldn't stay here anymore. Hell, I knew that I couldn't stay here anymore. It didn't mean that I was happy about going. Carlisle and Esme couldn't go with me, which was the one thing that upset me. I was being separated from my parents, because some psycho had some kind of vendetta against my Dad. Something that I had been dragged into. I hated that I was something that someone thought they could use against my father, as a form of blackmail as it were.
My father had enlisted the help of everyone he could think of to try to get rid of this lunatic. He had called the FBI, the CIA and various other organisations that I had never heard of. My mother and the house staff had heard of them, so I knew that they weren't underground mafia type organisations. And yet, it was all to no avail. He was still out there, he still managed to get close to me, and slip through the cracks.
So we come to my father's decision to send me away. He knew that the person stalking me knew when I was here, when I was at school and where I was pretty much every minute of the day. The pictures proved that much to us at least.
The plan was for me to leave tonight. We had received the latest phonecall this morning. The one that broke my father. He had been unrecognisable this morning. This wasn't the father that I was used to. This was a broken man, at his wit's end, trying to think of ways to protect his only son. And coming up short, save sending him away. I would be leaving in around forty-five minutes. There were three or four identical cars that would be leaving the garage of the mansion that we lived in at the same time. All of them heading towards different airports. One would be holding me and the others would be holding decoys. My father was hoping to confuse the stalker long enough so that he would go after the wrong car, giving me some time to get through the airport and onto the plane safely. I hoped that it would work. It had to. My father was at his wits end, and not to mention I was going to go insane if I had to spend much longer wondering if I was being photographed, if my movements were being documented. I think I would always have that fear, but if I was in some other place, I might actually be able to relax somewhat. At least, I hoped so.
Everything was being piled into cars. Decoy bags and people were milling around. The decoy men that would be used were actually members of the security team that were coming with me. Even though they were members of the security team none of them really knew what was going on. My father didn't want to divulge to anyone what was happening, save it getting back to the stalker. The only ones who knew the plan were my father, my mother, Jason, our head of security, who would be accompanying me to wherever it was I was going and myself. Nobody else needed to know. At least not in Carlisle's eyes anyway. All they knew was that they had orders to meet in a certain place and that was that. They knew not to ask questions, just do as they were told.
Nobody knew of the threats. The only ones to know about that were the ones who knew about the plan and the various law enforcing organisations that Carlisle had employed. They were all still working, but it seemed that nothing was coming up for them.
I climbed into the back of one of the cars, Jason following me closely, making sure that I never left his sight. I couldn't say goodbye to my mother and father, lest the stalker become suspicious as to what was happening. So far, there had been no phonecalls or anything to mention that he did know what was going on. I had my doubts that it would work, but I had to trust my father. He knew what was right.
"You okay, Edward?" Jason asked me quietly, as I began gazing out of the window, watching everyone getting everything sorted.
"Honestly, no, I'm not." I admitted turning to look at him. "I'm being forced out of my home by some psycho who seems to want nothing more than to destroy my father, using me as the bait. I hate this. I want to be able to stay. I want to be able to do things without worrying that I'm being watched all the time. I just...." I took a deep breath, pinching the bridge of my nose with my thumb and index finger. "I just want things back the way they were."
"I know you do." He sighed. "We all do. This is all so fucked up."
"Yeah, well." I sighed and resumed looking out of the window, waiting for everything to be set up. People had stopped moving around now, and everyone was getting into cars, three people to a car. One to represent the driver, Mitch, that had just got into the front of my car, one to represent Jason and one to represent me.
Looking out the window, I saw the huge garage door open and all four cars pulled out at the same time, travelling down the driveway in single file, splitting off in different directions when we reached the road. Two cars went each way before splitting at the closest crossroads. I didn't know where the other cars were going, all I knew is that they were going to different airports. Each decoy and myself would be boarding a plane and landing in Nowheresville, in whatever state. I wasn't happy about this arrangement but I knew that it was necessary.
A little while later we pulled up at the airport. I didn't see which one it was, because we pulled into an enclosed area, so that I wouldn't be exposed outside. If the maniac watching me hadn't taken the bait and had followed me then it was all over and they didn't want there to be a chance that I could be seen outside.
I got out of the car and was rushed through boarding, Jason taking care of everything that needed to be done. Yes I was flying on a regular passenger aircraft, but only because taking the jet to wherever it was I was going would be too obvious and lead this guy straight to us. I sat next to the window in first class and sat there impatiently while the other passengers boarded the plane. I hated sitting here. I was a sitting duck. Jason seemed to be a little anxious as well, as if he knew the same thing that I did. The longer we sat here, the more dangerous it was for me.
"It's alright Edward." He mumbled to me. "We'll be in the air soon enough. It'll be fine."
"Right." I mumbled. I looked down at my right wrist and ran a finger over the crest that lay there. The Cullen Crest. Sacred symbol of my family for centuries. It was also the icon for my father's company. He reasoned that seeing as it was a Cullen business the crest symbol was perfect. I agreed. It certainly was individual. With the lion standing on the arrow that held three clovers, a hand at its head. It certainly was an individual crest. There was no other like it. And it made sure that no one attempted to plagarise it as well. Something like this, the mistakes are easy to spot.
After a little while of waiting we were in the air, and part of me relaxed. I knew that we were away from this manic, for the time being that is. Who knew where he was, what he was doing, if he had figured us out from the beginning. I keep thinking that theres no way he could have worked it out, seeing as my father only put the plans in place this morning after that last phone call, but then again, another part of my brain argues that this guy has managed to get unthinkably close to me for god knows how long. Who knows when he started watching me. Might have been years ago, but he only just been able to act in the last couple of weeks.
I shook my head, trying to rid myself of these thoughts. They always left me freaked out. I concentrated on watching the clouds beneath me. They have it easy. I thought. Nothing to worry about. No cares in the world. Was I seriously just comparing myself to a cloud? I must be going insane. I leaned my head back against the head rest and closed my eyes, content in listening to what was going on around me.
I must have fallen asleep because the next thing I knew, Jason was nudging me awake. We were on the ground. How I hadn't woken up when we made contact I had no idea. It always woke me up. All the stress of the day must be getting to me, making me more out of it than I already was. I rubbed my eyes, clearing the sleep from them and we disembarked from the plane.
It was the same process at this end, only in the opposite direction. Instead of going in, I was going out. Jason, again, took care of all the formalities at the airport, while I was being ushered into a car similar to that which I had made the trip to the airport in at the other end. Even though I knew it was necessary, and they were only doing as they had been told, I felt the need to tell all of the security members around me to shove off. That I could walk myself. Just show me the direction and I can take myself there. I wasn't a baby. I didn't need to be mollycoddled. Only, because of the situation, I did. Another thing I hated this maniac for. Taking away my freedom. Moments after I got in the car, the door opened and Jason slid in across from me and the car pulled out. I looked at the driver before putting up the glass divide that separated the driver from Jason and myself. I was relieved to see that it was Mitch in the drivers seat. He had obviously been on another flight, or somewhere else on the same flight as Jason and I. Either that or I hadn't been observant enough to notice that he was on the same flight. Personally I was going with the latter.
Pulling out of the airport, I saw that we were in another city. Not as large or the buildings as tall but it was a city nonetheless. For some reason cities fascinated me while I was in the car. They didn't any other time. I guessed it was the way the buildings looked through the glass of the window. My mother and father told me that this was something that had followed me through since childhood.
I snorted. Childhood. My childhood had ended at aged thirteen, when I was to be "groomed" as it were, to take over the company. I hadn't really been allowed to spend a lot of time with my friends at that time. I had to go straight from school, which had been a private school, obviously, home to take direction from Carlisle or one of the many teachers that he had employed to direct me in the ways of the business.
Now at seventeen, I knew pretty much all the workings of Cullen Inc. There wasn't much I didn't know, and Carlisle had told me that there were some things I wouldn't know until I took over the business myself, so he wasn't too worried about that. Hell, he was more worried about whether or not I was going to be alive tomorrow rather than did I know what the estimated budget for the next quarter would be by looking at the various tables and charts sent up from accounting. Hell, I was more interested in would I be alive tomorrow or not.
I hoped so, to say they least.
"Jason where are we?" I asked, looking over to him. The buildings were spreading out and I knew from experience in different cities that we were leaving it and probably making our way towards one of the little towns that surrounded it. I had never been to this city before though. This was a new one for me.
He too was looking out the window at the buildings that we were passing. "Seattle."
"We're in Washington?" I asked, my mouth dropping open. Why the hell Washington? I asked myself. Of course I knew why Washington. It was dreary and wet, it was full of small towns that were miles away from anywhere. It was the perfect place for someone, say me, to hide. I wished it wasn't as I noticed that the further away from the city we got, the wetter and darker the sky became. I was not going to enjoy myself here. Hopefully I wouldn't need to spend too much time here. Hopefully this guy would be caught, or give up soon. But somewhere deep inside of me knew that that wasn't going to happen and that I should get used to the weather.
We were in the car for at least a couple of hours before I saw any kind of civilisation. It was a town. I looked out the window and saw the sign Welcome to Port Angeles plastered on it. We didn't stop. Of course we didn't. We would be heading to an even more, out of the way, tiny town that the one we had just been through.
And I was right.
About an hour later we passed a sign that said Welcome to Forks on it and I held back a groan. Trust my father to send me to live in a place that was named after a piece of cutlery. We drove through most of the town, and I could easily say that there was nothing to it. The biggest building there was the front building to the high school, and even that paled in comparison to the smallest building at my old school in Chicago. That is where I would be going to school, starting tomorrow. Joy, I thought, rolling my eyes at the size of the place.
We drove a little way out of the town and turned off onto a long winding road. I discovered that this road was actually my driveway. We pulled up to a large three storey, white house. One of the sides of the house was made entirely of glass. I smiled. It was perfect. It was surrounded by woods as well, giving me all the privacy I needed. Also perfect for maniac stalkers to creep up on you. That nagging voice in the back of my mind reminded me. I shook it off. He wasn't here. He couldn't get me here.
I walked into the house and saw a list of things that I needed to know about the daily running of the house. Even though most of the time there was no one here, there were still maids kept on staff, for cleaning purposes and restocking the fridge in case someone in the family made an unexpected visit. Like me for example.
"Master Edward." I heard someone call my name and I looked up. Standing there smiling at me was a maid. She probably wasn't any older than forty at the most. She was attractive, and I could tell that when she had been my age she must have been very pretty. SHe had long blonde hair, that I could tell was natural, and I figured that before she got older there was a chance that she could have been a model. I'm not looking at ther in that way, that's just gross, but she did have that "model" stance and demeanor. Hell, I should know I've had enough of them throw themselves at me. I hated when they did that. Call me old fashioned but I prefer a girl with natural beauty and brains. I had resigned a long time ago that I wouldn't find that girl. Girls like that didn't exist. "My name is Tess, sir. If you'll allow me to I will gladly show you to your room."
"That would be most welcome, thank you, Tess." She smiled at me and motioned for me to follow her. She seemed friendly enough and she was polite as well. Whether or not that was because she was being paid to be remained to be seen, and it didn't really matter. As long as she did her job and was polite it didn't matter to me what she did.
She led me up two flights of stairs and stopped in front of the only door on the top floor. "Here we are sir." She opened the door and moved aside so I could walk in. The room was large. Around the same size as the one I had had in Chicago, so I wasn't disappointed. "There's a connecting bathroom just through this door." She showed me which door. "Is there anything else you need sir?"
"No, thank you." I said looking around. My bags had already been brought up here and were ready and waiting for me to unpack in the way I wished.
"I was told to inform you that your car will be arriving tomorrow afternoon." My car!! I was going to get to keep my Volvo. This made it all seem that bit better. At least I wouldn't have to be driven around everywhere. I would have some semblence of freedom. "Would you like me to call you for dinner sir?"
"No, no thank you." I told her, walking over to the bed. "It's been a long day, and I think I'd rather just sleep for now."
"Yes, sir." She made to leave.
"Tess." I called her and she turned back to me with a smile on her face. The nice thing to see was that it didn't look like a fake smile either. "Enough with the "sir". My father is "sir", call me Edward."
"Yes s-Edward." She caught herself and smiled at me sheepishly. I grinned at her and her smile grew more confident. If this was the first meeting and we were as relaxed as this with each other I knew that living here would be slightly easier. "I'll make sure breakfast ready for you at the time Master Carlisle sent through to us."
"Thank you. Goodnight Tess." She bobbed a small bow-thing and I turned around to my bed. I opened up one of my bags and fished out the pair of old sweats and t-shirt that I wore to bed. Hey, I may be a billionaire's son, but I don't see the point in wearing anything fancy to bed. There's no point.
I crawled into bed and buried my head in the pillow. They smelled wrong. They smelled too new. Eveything in this place was new, other than the town itself it seems. Nothing was familiar. I wanted to be able to wake up and realise that the last couple of weeks were a dream. There was no delusioned stalker person after me because he had something against my father. I was in Chicago, wrapped in my own bed, with all of my things around me. But even as I drifted off into an uneasy sleep I knew that that wasn't about to come true any time soon.
My whole life had changed.
And there was nothing I could do about it.
Well, what do you think?
Keep or delete?
It's up to you....but then again, I've had this story going around in my head for a couple of weeks now, so I'll probably keep writing, just to get it out. If anyone wants to read, its up to them.
Lemme know what you think.