Too many missed opportunities and lost chances had led me to where I stood today. The chances I'd had in the past to end my awakened nightmare ran through my mind, taunting me endlessly.
The past didn't matter though, as Jasper frequently reminded me as I internally chided myself, only the future could be changed. That was the shred of hope that kept me moving forward, motivated and ready. Charles had tormented the latter part of my human life, to the extent that I had killed myself. The small part of my vampire existence he had taken already was all he was having; this nightmare would be put to bed just as soon as he came too close.
Jasper had been training me for a while, and he wasn't a soothing teacher. A slight movement out of place and he'd simply utter the words "You're dead," and push me to starting all over again. He was always my target. Although Charles didn't have the amount of fighting skills that my newest son possessed, we both agreed if I could fight Jasper flawlessly then I could take down Charles.
The others were reserved with their thoughts and feelings, all but Carlisle. He voiced every evening when we retired to our room, me mentally drained from fighting, and him to try to talk me out of my plan, that he didn't relish the idea of me fighting that monster.
"I just think it'd be easier if we faced this as a family," He said softly, his pale fingers running gently up my arm as I read, lying next to him on our bed. His touch was getting easier to accept, only a few times did I have to remind myself that it wasn't the rough talons of Charles uncaring hands tormenting me. Those few times I felt angry at myself, how could I mistake his cold touch to my blonde angels embrace?
I turned the page in my book, only half reading the words that were embedded on the soft material. "You don't understand; if you all help me fight this, then it won't be me fighting this."
"Forgive me for my lack of understanding, darling," He chuckled lightly, a hint of sarcasm hidden in his tone.
Putting my book to one side, I propped myself up on one elbow so I could look at him properly, "If I let you, or one of the others, fight Charles for me then the nightmare that is his existence won't really be over. Not for me," I placed my hand, palm up, against Carlisle's and entwined our fingers, "This isn't over until I throw his head on the fire myself."
Carlisle's response was a small sigh, just the slight parting of his lips as a small crease formed between his eyebrows. We had this same fight nearly every night since Jasper and I began practising, over a week ago. I knew that Carlisle was grateful for the break from Charles' advances as it gave him more time to plead with me to 'think reasonably' but I was growing weary. Each passing day meant I became more anxious on the matter of his arrival. Would he be alone? Was that what he was doing, gathering more vampires? Or what if he was waiting, so he could pick my family off one by one until I was left alone?
Facing him alone didn't frighten me as much anymore, I'd forced myself to take Jasper's words seriously and thrust myself into the mind of a fighter rather than the target he intended to take down. It was my family's wellbeing I was concerned for. Sure, the latter plan meant that I could face Charles alone, which I intended to do, but it meant I wouldn't have a family to come back to; and that was not an option.
"You can throw his head in the fire," Carlisle told me, his darkening eyes transfixed on our entangled fingers, "You can even be the one to take it from his shoulders. Just, please, allow me to remove his other limbs. If only so he has nothing left to hurt you with."
"Would you like to take out his teeth so he can't bite me, too?" I asked, raising an eyebrow at him.
The crease came back as his eyes flicked to one of the bites on my wrist, "If only I could have done that sooner. You would not have been bitten in the first place."
I sat up properly and unwound our fingers, tracing the mark of my former husbands teeth rooted in my granite skin, "They're a reminder of what I'm fighting towards."
"You can't do this all on your own, Esme," His hand came down on top of the bite, wrapping around my wrist and shielding it from view, "It's not a weakness to ask for the help of those who care enough to desire to help you."
"I know," I whispered, "But it's also not a weakness to allow your wife to fight her own battles."
I lifted my hand and touched his cheek lightly, my ice cold hand splaying out against his pale skin, "I couldn't live with myself if the monster that hurt me got anywhere near you. I almost lost you once before, Carlisle, but fate was kind enough to bring me back to you. I'm not risking it again, who knows where we'll end up."
"I know exactly where I'll end up if anything happens to you," As I closed my eyes, I could feel his forehead pressing gently against mine, and I knew his eyes would be fixed directly into mine if I should open them.
My darkened eyes fluttered open and, just as I knew they were, his eyes were staring directly into mine; pleading with me to allow him to help. There was nothing Carlisle hated more than being powerless to stop something he knew was hurting a member of his family.
"I want… No, I need you to promise me that you're not going to step in during that battle," I told him, my own eyes begging just as much as his, "No matter how weak or defenceless you think I look at any point, you need to promise me you'll let me do this on my own."
"You know I can't make that promise, Esme," He responded, "But I can promise you that when I stood in front of you, and Edward, and promised to love and protect you forever, I wasn't lying. I'm always going to protect you, and it's not because I think you're weak because I know how strong you are. It's because I won't be able to live with myself if any harm comes to you, especially not by someone who has caused you so much pain before."
Before allowing me to respond, and argue like he knew I wanted to, he pressed his lips against mine; pushing back any retaliation I had in my head. As his lips curved perfectly around mine, and his tongue moved sweetly with mine, his hand went to my waist to pull us closer together.
We rarely had sweet moments together since my arrival home. If it wasn't my fear of being touched, it was worry over Charles or Jasper's intense training regime.
This moment in time wouldn't last long; soon we'd be back downstairs to strategies with the family, I would be questioned by Jasper on how to fight and asked to demonstrate, and we'd spend our precious moments with our family.
I was determined that this wouldn't be the last chance I had to spend the night with Carlisle. That the next time he whispered sweet nothings in my ear and his hands glided over my body, we'd be alone and we would feel safe again.
Charles' head would roll, but I would be the one kicking it.
Right, I've accepted that I am one of those authors previously mentioned in my last AN. Words simply cannot express my sorrow and regret for not updating sooner, but, to be completely honest, I lost faith in this story for a while. In the whole saga, in fact.
I was in one of those places where you can't work and can't write. What's that called? I think its "Exam Season"
My GCSE exams were a couple of weeks ago, and once those were over it was coursework for BTEC subjects, then prom. The list is endless; trust me, so I won't bore you with it.
I'm fortunate enough that, recently, certain aspects of the Twilight saga became my forte again. While updating my biography and reading past reviews I came to accept that I don't deserve reviewers and readers like you.
I have reviews begging for more and asking what happens. I can't believe that I've managed to write something that you guys love so much. That's really all you, believe me. Without you guys this story would not be where it is today. So, for that, I thank you.
Forgotten Forever's isn't over, as you may have guessed, but I believe the next chapter could be the end of our tale, or the next one, depending on how long it is. Before I update, which won't be next year this time I swear, I have a question to ask;
Do you guys think Esme really should end her waking nightmare, or will watching his true love fight become too much for Carlisle and he'll be forced to join in?
Tell me your ideas, where you think the battle should be, who should end it, what should happen. Tell me your thoughts and criticism; I love criticism because it makes me a better writer.
If you've managed to read this far, all three hundred and thirteen words into this amazingly long AN then kudos to you, my friend. These things can be long, and it can be tedious to read them, but they do hold some vital information.
I couldn't put into words the gratitude and pure love I feel towards each of you, readers and reviewers alike. You have brought this story, which I thought was just going to be a rubbishy little one-shot or maybe three chapters before I gave up with the lack of reviews, to an amazing sequel with nearly two hundred reviews. You're all so amazing, beautifully wonderful. Each and every one of you.