The Black Balloon Contest

Title: "Eternity`s Frozen Embrace"

Pen name: Marie0912

Characters: Edward and Isabella.

Disclaimer: Twilight character names belong to Stephanie Meyer. All characterizations, plot lines, backgrounds and details belong to the respective author. No copying or reproduction of this work is permitted without express written authorization.©2010 Marie0912 (Marie .L.A.). All rights reserved worldwide.

To my beta, Romanticvamp11: thank you so much for your hard work.

"Eternity`s Frozen Embrace"

On this earth there is only one world accepted and truly known.

It is the place where feet wander across hardwood floors, sand between their toes, and the feeling of ultimate ecstasy only can be reached through touch and taste.

We have a measured amount of time and a will to live on. Not forever, but just long enough.

To die before you are forgotten and rotting in your own urine, but not before you have seen your children happy and married and reproduced.

It is a fine line we walk. No one wants to die, but who on this earth would want to live on forever?

Who wants to stand at the gates of hell or heaven on the final day, the day when it all has ended, when no one remains to hold and comfort, to speak with and keep you company? When there is nothing left but ashes and fire, nothing to eat, nothing to drink, no air to breathe and no tears to shed?

Who in their right mind, he thought, would want eternity?

She was standing, consumed by shadows as he said his goodbyes.

"Your heart was never mine to keep. Your love is not something I have rightfully earned. You are human, soft . . . weak," he growled at her, each syllable shooting through her like a nail in a coffin. "You are warm where I am cold, you shed tears where I spit venom, your mind is closed, your bones break, your lips bruise when I kiss them."

His voice was barely above a whisper.

"Your feet stumble, your heart stutters, your blood flows. You need a crutch, not a man. You need a backbone. You have to start taking responsibility for yourself. You need to be safe, for all that is good and holy, you need to be safe and you need to try. You never try! Harm and danger find you easier than I am able to locate your pathetic, beating heart!"

He watched with stony features as her face crumpled, listened to her breathing catch and falter. He felt as her every nerve stood on end, how her body chilled an octave, and how the scent of her delicious liquid life mingled with the warm salt of her damp tears.

"But…" she tried, her voice breaking and tearing through his stony heart like a knife through butter. "You said . . . You promised . . ."

Her brown eyes searched for hope in his golden ones, but found nothing except the ice that usually could be felt on his frigid skin. The wonderful ice that would melt under the touch of her tentative fingers and pillowy lips.

"I am leaving you now. We are all leaving. I cannot be your crutch, you cannot be my life, and we cannot have our love. Your quiet mind has soothed and silenced the noise in my head, your scent has appealed to every human and inhuman desire within me. You were a delight to keep around, amusing to watch fall and boring to try and catch."

She might have recovered if he hadn't uttered those words. She might have kept hope. But what she took for cruel honesty also undid every single action, every word of kindness, and unsealed every promise.

He didn't want her anymore.

Realization hit her like lightning. The roaring thunder in her ears left her deaf and gasping.

"Try and stay on your feet, Isabella. Try. I may not be worth the effort, but someone else might," he taunted her, guilted her. It appealed to her stubbornness and, of course, her need to please him.

And then, with a sudden rush of anguish, he ran towards her. The speed his predatory nature had cursed him with made him seem like nothing but a blur of colors until he had her pinned forcefully with her back against a tall and weather-worn tree. The air was knocked out of her along with a new gush of tears. She trembled in his ruthless, forceful hands and let out an agonized, broken scream of pain as her heart broke. He covered her soft, warm lips with his mouth made of ice and stone.

He forced her mouth open and pushed what felt like his final breath inside her until he had nothing more to give.

And just as suddenly, he retreated, leaving her shaking body and broken heart behind him.

His heightened senses felt the slight tremble in the ground as she fell to her knees. His desire and animalistic senses awoken as the skin on her fair legs tore and broke under pressure from pebbles and twigs.

And as she screamed out in pain, not from her injury but from everything Edward Cullen had stolen, he screamed too.

It carried across the woods, barely drowned by mist and rain as it reached the faraway mountains and rang back for all of God's creatures to hear.

As the Cullens sealed up their mansion, packed up their expensive cars and left their home for the last time, the sun set in the east. They took comfort in the shelter that darkness provided and knew it would rise again in the morning, but for two lovers with destiny and forever between them, it never rose again.

And as Charlie Swan searched in vain for his daughter who was still kneeling in the woods, Edward tore through his almost-lover's room and removed every single memory he had left behind, effectively erasing himself.

The only evidence of his existence was her bleeding, broken heart.

Then, with photos and CDs, with little trinkets and torn out pages from random notebooks where they had scribbled notes to each other during class, with a coke bottle he had treated her to when they visited Port Angeles that summer, he left her house, the town and Isabella Swan's life.

When she was found, she was cold like ice.

When they placed her on her bed and left her to sleep and cry, she searched desperately for signs of his presence outside the window.

The days passed, added to her human age as she raced towards mortality and the end of her life.

She had taken to praying for his return. He had taken to praying for her health and healing.

Neither knew they prayed in vain.

The blood he drank tasted like acid and pain, the food she consumed was sand and defeat. And if he could cry, he would be crumpled on the floor and draining his body of moisture until there was nothing left to keep him walking, lucid or sane.

Isabella would dream of him every night, dream they were still together, and find her breath leaving her body at the painful realization that she was alone when she woke. He didn't want her. He didn't love her. He had left. Edward was gone and she could no longer see a reason for anything anymore.

In the dead of night in the middle of January, there came a vampire through her open bedroom window, a predator with vengeance on her mind and the blood of innocents on her tongue.

Victoria stood over her broken prey and watched as every breath Isabella drew seemed to take effort.

When the human woke and found hateful, red eyes staring down into her own brown irises, she didn't recoil, didn't scream, didn't even try to attempt to flee for the door.

No, she sighed. Sighed as if the creature towering above her was salvation.

Victoria saw the girl's suffering, the heartbreak and the lack of will to go on. She saw what the loss of her love had done to Isabella. Murder would be mercy, she knew.

And that was why she fled back through the window, going against every single instinct her vampire nature had ingrained.

She left her prey unharmed because that was the best way to make her suffer.

It was the last drop. It was too much.

In that moment, Isabella had been sure peace would come once that horrific creature had bled her dry. But she was still breathing and every breath of air hurt like a knife in her heart.

And she missed him so much it was beyond pain at this point.


A sob, a prayer, a plea in the darkness as the snow fell from the dark sky that remained above the town of Forks .

In that moment of complete and unhinged despair, Isabella had never longed so much for his embrace to keep her together. His icy arms and relentless strength and sweet smell and eternity.

She wanted to be numb, to be frozen and his again, she wanted it more than anything. She wanted him to want her. But he didn't and his frozen arms would never hold her again.

Without putting on her shoes, she walked across the silent hallway and downstairs, barely noting that her father was snoring. She unlocked the deadbolt and pushed the door open gently. She walked across the porch and out into the white, dark garden with her bare feet.

As Isabella Swan lay down in the snow, letting the white powder envelope her in a way that Edward Cullen never would again, she had the strangest vision before she closed her eyes.

It was of a man that glimmered in the light of the sun; he looked to be in so much agony, so broken and desperate, it was hardly contained. He was kneeling before beautiful Italian royalty on ancient marble floors, begging for death and relief.

As Bella's slowing heart skipped a beat at the sheer horror, the agonized vampire was refused and sent on his way.

And just as Edward was about to unbutton his shirt and allow all of Volterra to witness him sparkling in the sun, an achingly familiar friend, a sister with eyes that saw beyond the present, found him and pulled him back into the dark.


He was safe.

Isabella smiled as she watched him keep his immortality and closed her eyes in comfort; the cold had turned to warmth. It was almost burning her skin, just like Edward had.

His ice and kiss and love had felt like fire.

A father found his eighteen-year-old daughter frozen in the snow as he went out to fetch the newspaper just after daylight had reached their house. He carried the best part of him, the jewel of his eye, in trembling arms to his police cruiser, rushing through the small town with deadly speed to reach the hospital.

At the entrance, he was met by a blond, handsome doctor who Charlie hated with every irrational bone in his body.

He had left her. He was the reason he had left her.

But as Carlisle reached out to take Isabella's limp body from her father's arms, he didn't object.

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Her tears tasted sweet and salty, always cold when they reached his lips.

Even now.

Her mouth was like warm velvet, green apples and his own breath.

Even now.

He kissed her like his next breath depended on it. And pain ripped through him like electricity, traveling through his veins like poison from the very root of him: his heart.

"Let her go." A plea.

"No." Defiance .

"Please!" Tearless sobs.

"No…" Broken.

"Edward…" Unsteady.

"She could heal..." A lie.

"I love her too…" a whisper.

"I hate…" he stopped himself.

"Me…" she finished his thought.

"No. Never." Fierce like fire.

"Yes. Always. Now." shattered.

A long silence.

"I'm sorry." And she was.

"I know." He truly did.

Because Alice had been too busy stopping her brother from committing the same sin that Isabella had, she had made a choice to save him and not her.

"Bite her," she begged. "Or let me."

But, as the family of icy cold stone watched their almost daughter, almost sister and almost lover take her final breath, they knew he would never, ever make her stay.

Bending over her sweet face one final time, he put his marble lips to her soft ear and took back every lie he had spoken to break her heart.

Her eyes fluttered open as his mouth pressed gently to hers once more, sealing their fate.

Isabella's eyes glassed over with tears as she realized she was the one leaving him this time.

"Please…" Her voice so weak in her final moment.

Don't let me leave, her mind too frail to keep him out.

"I love you. I will love you until the day it all ends, until it all turns to ashes and there is nothing but sulfur to taste." He kissed her forehead gently. "Until my final breath, angel."

As Isabella's spirit left her body, the room grew impossibly cold.

For a moment, the close-knitted family feared they were about to lose a son as well as the wonderful girl they had thought of as a daughter, and looked to Alice for advice.

But their sister shook her head, giving Edward's mother and father and siblings peace.

She knew Edward thought he had no soul.

Only souls end in hell. Only souls reach Heaven's gates.

His atonement was eternity.

His punishment was forever without her.

If you are crying, cursing or hating me, I would say I was sorry, but I`m not;)
It is sort of the goal with this contest.
This was my alternate New Moon, the way I view the curse of vampirism.
To stand, next to indestructible, and witness the end of the world terrifies me for some reason.

Please leave a review since I love them hard.