Knowing that I would have more privacy, I drove to the hospital at the closing of Carlisle's shift. He faithfully stayed for half an hour after his shift to finish his notations on patient charts. With perfect recall memory, Carlisle could remember every detail of every patient he ever had. However, having a paper trail of that information was crucial in case another doctor would pick up the case. It was just another way that Carlisle cared for each of his patients.
I found Carlisle's mental voice from the parking lot and entered the hospital knowing he was, indeed, in his office. I knocked on his door, more for the people's benefit who were in the hallway with me rather than Carlisle's. He bid me to come in, and I entered his office, leaving the human facade in the hallway.
Edward, what brings you in? It's a pleasant surprise.
"Thanks. I remember when we first moved to Forks, I would stop in here more often so we could chat. We seem to have more privacy here than at home."
Yes, those were nice visits. You've been a bit more distracted the past year or so.
"Yes, I have. Which is actually why I came to talk to you."
Oh? Bella? Is she hurt?
I chuckled. "No, she is fine, although you have done your fair share of patching her up for me."
You would think that with your medical experience and the way you've learned to control your thirst around her, you could produce a suture now and then. The humor in his thoughts did not overshadow the pride and love. However, it has been my pleasure to help you and Bella any way that I can.
"She really loves you. As do I. Which leads me to why I am here. Alice is taking care of all of the wedding plans, but Bella and I have a few things we need to attend to ourselves. I was remembering you and Esme's wedding. I remember standing up with the two of you as you declared your vows—vows you both have upheld beautifully since then. I've watched you treat Esme with respect and love, guiding her and teaching her, but always treating her as a partner. No matter what our family was facing, you have treated Esme—and all of the rest of us—with dignity and compassion. I hope to be half of the husband that you have been. I could not have asked for a better role model."
Edward, I am humbled. Thank you for your kind words.
"Carlisle, I would be honored if you would be my best man when I marry Bella in August."
"Edward, It would be my pleasure. I would be honored to stand up for you."
I crossed the room and shook his hand, our grip firm and steady.
Speaking of the wedding, have you decided on your honeymoon destination?
The thought of the honeymoon sent dread and anticipation running throughout my body. I sat and put my head in my hands.
"Carlisle…I don't know about the honeymoon. I promised Bella that we would…try…but…"
Son, I am not going to burden you with more advice—I know your brothers will take care of that. And your knowledge of the human body is just as complete as mine. However, I will tell you that I have faith in you. If anyone could do it, you could.
"'IF'," I repeated. "Bella's life is not something that I want to gamble with!" I slammed my fist on the chair, splintering the wood on the arm. I took a deep breath and apologized. "I am sorry, Carlisle, but this is where my conundrum lies."
Well, Tanya and her sisters have successfully entered into…relations…with humans. While admittedly it took them a while to be able to do so without causing injury to the human male, their success may give you some encouragement.
"I usually try not to think of Tanya, Kate, and Irina that way," I responded wryly. "However, I do see your point."
If you would like me to speak with Tanya about it, I would be willing to do that for you.
"Carlisle, that would go above and beyond what I would ask from my best man." I was not entirely sure if he was being serious or not. "However, I will keep your offer in the back of my mind."
As for your honeymoon, Esme and I would love to offer our Island to you two. While going to your parents' romantic hide-a-way might not sound like the ideal honeymoon spot, it may have some important aspects that you are looking for. For one, seclusion. It will give you the privacy you are seeking. Also, the warm climate may help Bella's body withstand your cold skin.
The genuine smile on his face was all that kept the conversation from turning uncomfortable.
"I am conflicted between going somewhere deserted for privacy and wanting to be near you in case…something goes wrong."
Edward…you are just as capable as I am at fixing anything that could go wrong. If you chose to go to Isle Esme, we will make sure it is stocked with any medical supplies you may need. However, Edward, the only thing you should need is…your venom. If something goes wrong that I would have to be there to fix, it would probably be too late anyway, and it would be time to change her.
This was something I did not want to think about, but I knew I needed to. There was so much I still wanted to give her, to show her…and yet, there was a selfish part of me that wanted to ensure that she would be with me for all of eternity.
"Thank you, Carlisle. I will certainly keep that in mind, and I will officially ask Esme if we may borrow her island if Alice foresees that being a good choice. I think Bella would enjoy it, and she deserves some warm weather after the last couple of years in Forks."
You are very welcome.
"I will leave you to finish your work. Thank you…and, even though we rarely celebrate the passing holidays…Happy Father's Day."
Carlisle's eyes flitted to the calendar on the desk and his eyes lit up. Thank you Edward. My first son. His thoughts drifted to Chicago, almost a century ago, when I became forever his son. The memories of Father's Days past swirled through his mind and contemplated the changes our family had experienced the past couple of years. I wonder where Father's Day next year will find our family.
I laughed. "Hopefully a boring a calm weekend with the eight of us."
I can't think of a better Father's Day.
While I do not own Twilight or any of their characters, I would like to use them to tell all of the TwiDad's (including my husband) Happy Father's Day!
The conclusion of "Snapshot" and the next chapter of "Little Sister" should be coming by the end of the weekend! :o)