I was in a black mood. That day had not gone well at all, and I couldn't even find any solace in plugging into my beloved iPod. I looked at the trees surrounding my house and sighed loudly.
It all started when I woke to see the sun shining in my window. That meant Edward wouldn't be at school, so I wouldn't see him until it was dark outside. My clock read 6:50, so that would be about twelve hours and ten minutes from now. That depressed me.
I had dragged my feet getting ready, the silence driving me insane. Charlie had already left for work, and I couldn't stand being in a house by myself with no noise at all. I wished the TV were on or something.
I finished getting ready, and my truck wouldn't start. Normally I loved my old rusted Chevy. This morning it had been a stupid piece of junk. And I knew my favorite mechanic – the one person I would have trusted to fix my beast of a vehicle – would never speak to me, even if I begged.
Thinking of the pain on Jacob's face last time we spoke, I had gone from being aggravated to being depressed again. After turning the key in the ignition several times, I finally got the truck to start. But only in time for me to get to school ten minutes late.
Mr. Varner gave me lunch-detention for being tardy, something that had never happened to me before. I didn't relish the thought of spending my lunchtime sitting at a table normally occupied by actual delinquents.
It didn't help when I got a paper back from my English teacher – a quiz with a big, red 62 scrawled on the front. Oh, joy.
With the sun still beaming infuriatingly at me, I trudged my way to lunch detention, paying very little attention to Mike, who was trying to flirt with me. That only irritated me more, and made me long, yet again, to see Edward.
"Mike, don't touch me!" I yelled when he had put his arm around my shoulders. His face had fallen, and it looked as though he might like to cry. I added contrite to my list of negative emotions. Now I wish Jasper were here, I thought to myself.
I put food on my tray at random, not really hungry and not really planning to eat whatever I got. I took the only open seat next to a guy in tattered cargo shorts and greasy tee shirt. He had bright red hair, and he gave me a puzzled look when I sat there.
"Tardy," I had mumbled at him. He just shrugged his shoulders and said nothing. An aide sat with us at the table, making sure we weren't talking to one another. When our designated amount of time to eat was over, the aide motioned for us to get up, and we followed her to a sparsely furnished classroom.
I spent the remainder of my lunch hour spraying chemical cleaner on desks and windows, developing a headache in the process from the smell. It burned my nose. Then I had gone to biology, only to discover we had a quiz I hadn't studied for. I felt another D coming my way.
Gym was probably the worst. I usually managed to earn one or two bruises during the period, but today I had been at an all-time high of clumsiness. We were playing kickball, and a ball had rolled right under my feet. I flailed all over the place, trying regain my balance, only to land flat on my back. I couldn't breathe; the air had been completely knocked out of my lungs, and I had to put up with everyone's stares as I was hyperventilating on the dirty gym floor.
I drove home after school, only to remember at that moment that was supposed to mail something for Charlie. I glanced at the clock on the truck's radio. It blinked 4:12 at me. The post office was already closed.
Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap on a stick.
I got home, and there was a message on the machine from Charlie saying he would be home really late. Great, I would have the empty, too-quiet house all to myself for the next several hours. I decided I would call Charlie and tell him to order pizza. I didn't feel like cooking at all.
I called his work number, and no one picked up. I left a short message and hung up, banging the cordless phone on the dock harder than was necessary.
Flopping down on the couch, I turned on the TV, only to be sickened by the shows that were on. "Hannah Montana" was on Disney. No way was I watching anything about that schizophrenic pre-teen. "Spongebob" was on Nick. Um, no. I could only handle so much of a little kiddie show with nothing but a pink starfish drooling and going "Duuuuuuuhhh." "Days of Our Lives" was on ABC. I groaned and wrinkled my nose. Soap operas were never on my A-list. Under normal circumstances, I was irritated by the melodrama of soaps. And I was irritated already.
After making the rounds of the channels, I realized that everything would sound stupid or aggravating in the mood I was in.
So I had turned off the TV and nabbed the iPod Edward had loaned me recently. He only loaned it to me (indefinitely) since I refused to let him buy me one. I had gone out the back door and stood in the yard, facing the trees, just looking into the forest, flaming mad and incredibly depressed.
I tried listening to the recording of my lullaby, but it only increased my depression about tenfold. Edward had been gone the whole day, and the sun was still shining happily at me. I could kill it.
I turned the iPod to shuffle, so it would come up to something random. I hoped it would be something loud, hard, and angry to match my mood. Instead I got "Gotta Be Somebody" by Nickelback. The song echoed my yearning and desperation so much that I started cry from missing Edward. Unable to stand the pain of longing anymore, I sunk to my knees and wept, still facing the forest, and blinded by the blur of tears.
I was so distraught that I didn't even see the blanket of clouds that had come to cover the sun. Or the pale figure that stepped out of the trees.
Edward rushed forward to me, and picked me up off the ground. His lovely golden eyes locked onto mine, and a crease appeared between his eyebrows. I could tell he wanted to comfort me, but I had wanted to see him so badly, and everything had gone wrong today, and I was so depressed… I couldn't stop crying. I flung my arms around his neck and sobbed into his shoulder.
He pulled me close into him and swayed me back and forth, holding me tight around the waist with one hand and stroking my hair with the other. I just wept, the sobs of frustration at the day choking me; and my tears were rolling down my face in hot waves and soaking his shirt.
While he rocked me there in my backyard, a new song came on. As Miranda Lambert started singing "Bring Me Down," he took one of the earphones out of my ear and placed it in his own. He kept one hand securely around my waist so I wouldn't slip farther away from him, and he took my hand with his other one.
Then he slowly started dancing, taking small steps to the left and right in time with the music. Though my feet still touched the ground, he supported my entire weight so I wouldn't have to worry about falling again. With tears still streaming down my face, I lifted my head from his shoulder and stared into his molten eyes, which were so much brighter than the sun to me, and so much warmer.
When the song reached its climax, he gently spun me around the backyard like I was in a dream. I could see nothing but his face, feel nothing but his touch, and hear nothing but the music as he led me around the yard.
The song ended, and Edward stopped. I was motionless in his arms as he pulled the earphone from his ear, then from mine. He let them fall to the ground. For what felt like an eternity, we stared at each other, and Edward tenderly rubbed his thumb across my cheeks, wiping my tears away while still holding me around the waist.
"Edward, I… I… today…" I quietly tried to explain, but wound up only quietly blubbering.
"Ssh," he murmured softly, stroking my hair again. I buried my face in his chest again, trying to rein in the tears that were threatening to escape again.
Holding me tighter than ever, Edward leaned his lips down to my ear and whispered, "I'm so sorry."