AN: The title comes from a Garbage song and each chapter name will as well. Thank you, thank you, thank you Project Team Beta and my two betas poo235 and justaskalice. Y'all are fabulous. Characters are SMeyer's. Lyrics are SManson and Co.'s


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Prologue: Temptation Waits

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You come on like a drug
I just can't get enough
I'm like an addict coming at you for a little more
And there's so much at stake
I can't afford to waste
I never needed anybody like this before

I'll tell you something
I am a demon
Some say my biggest weakness
I have my reasons
Call it my defense
Be careful what you're wishing

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My Beautiful Bella,

I don't know if you will ever find this, but I wanted you to have some small piece of me with you, whether you are ever aware of it or not. I'm too much of a coward to leave you entirely; hence this letter, the lullaby and the photographs hidden together underneath your bed. Part of me wishes that they are never discovered and the other part, God help me, really wants you to uncover them.

This letter is to explain why I am removing myself from your life as best and cleanly as I can. I hope that one day you will understand why I must do this and be able to forgive me.

On our walk today, I will lie to you, tell you a falsehood that is meant to protect you, but will undoubtedly cause you pain, and thus break my frozen, still heart. I am sorry, I am sorry, I am sorry, infinitely. I will be apologizing to you forever, which isn't nearly long enough.

That this final betrayal of mine will hurt you causes me more anguish than I ever thought possible. And still, I cannot take your life, your very soul, for my own selfish purposes, no matter how much you think you are willing for me to do so. Your existence is my raison d'être, and if you were to meet your end by my own hand then I fear that I would as well.

We cannot continue to hurtle along at the rate we are going, or else you will be underground or go mad like Ophelia and I do not want to be capable of that kind of destruction. Self-destruction, yes, I am more than capable of that, as my brothers would gladly tell you, but I could not bear it if you were caused irreparable harm by my own dark desires. Part of me fears that this is already a possibility, though Alice promises me that it is not so.

Unlikely as it is, you believe that I am not a soulless monster, but to stop your beautiful beating heart would be a monstrous act indeed. I cannot allow this to happen and the more time we spend together, the more intimate we become, I feel my greedy will beginning to dominate my slipping virtue. This is through no fault of your own, darling, please do not blame yourself, but it is solely my cursed weakness revealing itself. I am sorry that I was not strong enough to stay by your side, where I never belonged in the first place.

My heroine, my heroin, you have never seen yourself clearly; please allow me one final time to tell you how perfect you are. Bella, everything you do is exquisite; when you trip over the dust motes in the air or blush in embarrassment over your "human moments" or bite your lower lip in frustration. Whenever you would do that, I'd wish that I were a man again and could suck that lip into my mouth and salve it with my tongue, God help me.

If only that were a possibility, my love, I would give up everything I have to make that happen. And your scent, your delicious, tempting, totally unique fragrance. With every flip of your hair, I could breathe in great gulps of it, as many as my worthless lungs could hold. It made me want to do entirely unseemly things to you: things that no gentleman would ever do. That desire was almost my undoing, though, thankfully, never yours.

The happiest moments I have ever spent, will ever spend, were with you: in this very bedroom, in our meadow, and you may laugh- oh, I wish I could hear your ringing laugh one more time- even in my car. For once I am glad of my unnatural abilities so that those memories of you will never fade. They are now my most prized possessions. Your sweet scent will stay with me for eternity, and even though I cannot hold onto you or share your sweet, precious life, I will hold onto that.

It was always and only you, Bella, even before I knew of you and your blessed existence. Please know that there will never be, could never be, anyone else for me. When I'm not sure what I'm living for, I see a flash of your brown irises across my mind's eye and I am tied to this existence once more. What I wouldn't give to get lost in the depths of your eyes again.

For the last time, I love you, more than my own life. You may forget everything else but please, never forget that.

I am yours always,

Edward

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AN: I included links to the songs in my profile if you're unfamiliar with them. Thanks for reading!