The blood rushed to my head and I caught myself as I swayed. I meant nothing to him, I realised that now. I was just a body, any body. There was no love involved. Or, if there was, it remained trapped in my breaking heart.
The volume of my heartbeat increased with every pump. Its loudness drowned out the speech that Esme was giving but curiously no one else seemed to hear the loud thumps.
My eyes stayed fixed on Edward. My beautiful Edward…. No, I had to remind myself quietly, not my Edward…not anymore.
Slowly the room began to spin. In an attempt to focus, I grabbed a glass of champagne from the staff's tray of drinks as they passed by and outwardly went through the motions of toasting the happy couple. Our family and friends cheered.
Of course they should. Not only had their friend, brother, grandson and CEO Edward Cullen recently successfully negotiated a business merger for Cullen Swan Enterprises but he was also marrying his long time, high profile girlfriend.
The share buyout from Tanya's family was good news for future expansion plans for the Consulting Division of Cullen Swan but if the publicity was to be believed, this had nothing to do with the engagement. They were deeply in love.
His actions bore this out publicly. I watched as he bent down and pulled Tanya into his body, giving her a gentle, affectionate kiss. He treated her like she was the most precious thing in the world to him.
The tears welled up in my eyes.
I blinked them away furiously.
I felt sick.
What had I done?
I had to get out of here.
Quietly I turned away, through the open French doors and stepped out on to the balcony. The warm evening breeze bathed me in temporary consolation. But it was only temporary. The feeling of wanting to vomit suddenly swelled. I ran to the edge of the balcony and hurled into the garden beds below.
After the heaving finished, I straightened up and made my way slowly around the sweeping balcony to the French doors closest to the wing of the house that contained my room. As I climbed up the stairs, my heart hardened as I resolved the actions I had to take. For my self -respect and sanity.
Sitting down at the writing desk near the bay windows, I grabbed a leaf of my signature writing paper and began to write.
Finishing, I sealed the envelope and placed it on my bed, propped against the pillows to be easily seen. I called on the housemaid to pack my clothes. In the half hour it took for me to gather my belongings and have them placed in my car, my mind wandered back to the evening before.
I had thought that Edward had finally admitted to himself that he also had feelings for me.
I thought what happened meant something.
But now, I could not believe the path that lay out before me.
I could not stay and watch the man whom I had adored since I was a child, who guided me through new schools and new friends, with whom I had fallen in love with on my 17th birthday wrap his arms around another woman and declare his intention to marry her.
I took a deep breath to ease the pain inside of me. The timing of the law internship with Bartlett Weise in New Hampshire was a godsend. It would occupy my time before I had to be back at Dartmouth for my final year as a law graduate. I would drive to SeaTac and leave my car there for Alice to collect and then board the plane to Manchester.
I needed to stop the pain I was feeling. I prayed for numbness but instead, the heart ache that swept my body threatened to break me into a million little pieces from which I would never recover.
As I pulled away from the house, I looked back in the rear-view mirror. My mind lurched to wondering what Edward would think of my note. Would he even care?
Because twenty four hours after Edward had made love to me in the library… no I told myself...not love…after he had fucked me in the library ……. he was celebrating his engagement to another woman.
And I was leaving.
A/N: This is a Bella/Edward story but it will be slow burn for the first few chapters. Pls bear with me and tell me what you think.
Just so ppl know where i am coming from i believe in a B/E HEA
Thank you to R, T and D for encouraging me to take the plunge. I am not sure I can really write but I have a story I want to tell. If you like angst with a lot of hot lemons, this is the story for you!
Please review and read. This is my first attempt to write so please be gentle.