C/N: This is the introduction and background to Edward, before he heads back to school. He is hurting and broken, give him a little love. He needs it.
Thanks to the PTB Beta Team who reviewed this chapter for me: MrsDazzled and BellaDean
Chapter 1 ~ Broken Heart
Two weeks before the start of the semester, I was actually looking forward to returning to school which was kind of amazing considering the fucked up year I'd had. I had originally not wanted to attend college, but I kind of agreed to it for my parents' sake. I was a sophomore at the University of Washington majoring in pre-med with a minor in music. The music bit was my idea. It had always been part of my life since I was little. I played the guitar - well, used to play is more like it. I hadn't touched my baby in more than six months, but more on that later. I was hoping that getting away from Forks for another year would help me get over some of the lingering issues I have because of her.
Something happened during my freshman year at college, on Valentine's Day, no less. It totally blind-sided me. I never imagined in a million years that it would go down like it did. Looking back on it, I never saw any signs. As they say, love is blind. Fuck that cliché, but it rang true. I thought that we were in love; at least I knew I was in love, but I guess I was too naive. Because of what happened, my trust in women other than my mother and sister had gone to hell in a hand basket. I still had issues with my sister, but that was for other reasons. One thing was for sure - I would never give my heart to anyone like that again. I would not put myself in the position again to get hurt like that. Fuck them all!
My girlfriend was Tanya Denali - a bitch, and I'm being generous with that description now, and I was hoping she was going to become my fiancé and then after I graduated, we'd maybe even get married. That was my dream of course, but that went to shit when she told me she was having an affair with a friend of mine and that she was pregnant with his baby. I had been with her since my junior year of high school and at the time, I was more than halfway into my freshman year of college. I honestly thought she was my everything. She was supposed to become my wife, be the mother of my children. I could see my future with her when I looked into her crystal-blue eyes every time we made love. What a crock of shit!
I was going to propose to her during an incredibly romantic evening that I had planned for over a month. I reserved a room at one of the most sought-after restaurants in Seattle. I had it decorated with roses and candles everywhere. I wanted it to be special for her. I was there when she walked through the door, wearing the most beautiful red dress I have ever seen. It was a strapless, empire waist satin gown. It flowed openly with a slit up to her thigh. She was beautiful. Her strawberry colored hair was pinned up with loose strands falling around her face, and she was wearing just a touch of make-up. She was naturally beautiful. My heart skipped a few beats as she walked toward me, and my breathing became erratic.
She didn't come up to kiss me when she got to the table; which was unusual for her. The waiter helped her with her chair. Once she sat, I followed in my chair. My mouth was dry and my hands were shaking. I was so fucking nervous. I couldn't stop running my hands through my hair every thirty seconds. The waiter took our order, and when he left, I just began to stare at her. I moved my hand over to grasp hers, but she moved her hand back before I could take it. That should have gotten my attention, but no, of course not. I didn't think anything of it. Now Is just a good a time as any, I thought.
"Tanya?" My mouth felt parched.
"Yeah, Edward." She answered as she took a sip of water; fidgeting in her chair.
"You know how much I love you right?" I asked as I looked right into her eyes. She met my gaze and then suddenly looked away. Signs, right?
"Sure," she said nonchalantly.
"I was hoping to take our relationship to the next level. I know that I just started college, and I have a few years ahead of me before I graduate, but I wanted to let you know that I will love you for the rest of my life and you are the one for me. I want you to be in my life forever." She didn't look at me. Her gaze was focused somewhere in the distance. I started getting even more nervous; if that was even possible. I pulled the little black box out of my pocket and opened it.
"Tanya... honey," I said, causing her to finally look back over to me, and then look down at the box where her eyes grew wide. "I wanted to ask you something." I smiled at her.
"Edward, what are you doing?" she gasped as her breath got caught in her throat.
"Will you marry me? Make me the happiest man on this earth…" I trailed off as she quickly stood up from her chair and started pacing behind it.
"Tanya, are you okay?" I asked. I was getting concerned.
What was she thinking? She couldn't stop shaking her head. I heard a noise coming from her. I thought that maybe she was crying. Boy was I wrong. She didn't say anything at first, but out of nowhere she started laughing, and my heart shattered into about a million little pieces. What the fuck is going on? Where did this come from? What did I miss? I was about to find out what kind of fucked up relationship I really had with her.
When she finally stopped laughing, about two minutes later, she began to tell me why she couldn't marry me. First, she told me she never thought our relationship was that serious. I was just some sort of play thing to her. Second, she told me about James, the fucker and my friend, who she had been sleeping with before I graduated from high school. Thirdly, she found out the week before that she was four weeks pregnant with his bastard child. Of course it wasn't mine, and my heart was torn to shreds again. She was supposed to be mine, and we were supposed to have a family together. I knew the baby wasn't mine because we hadn't been together since Thanksgiving when I had made it home for the holidays. I had to pull myself together from sobbing out loud, her confession weighting on me heavily, nearly crushing me.
I went home to Forks that night. I needed to be close to my family, but I wasn't ready to talk. The next day when I told Alice and Emmett what had happened, After some serious provoking from my dear little evil pixie of a sister, they were out for blood.
Alice was worried about me when I didn't get out of bed that morning. She knocked on my door, but of course, I wasn't up for company. My heart had been ripped from my chest, trampled on and torn to pieces. Alice, being Alice, wasn't having that. She just walked right into my room. Damn, I knew I should have locked my door last night. I had my covers up over my entire body, with my pillow over my head. Alice came and sat the end of my bed and shook me.
"Edward," she said lowly. I ignored her, which was a bad move.
"Edward!" she yelled and at the same time she tried to pull the cover off of me. I had a death grip on it. "What is your problem?"
"Alice, get out of my room!" I growled from underneath the covers.
"Not happening, Edward. Come on, what's the deal?" she asked in an annoyed tone.
"FUCK OFF, ALICE!" I yelled at her.
"DON'T YOU YELL AT ME, BROTHER! I didn't do a damn thing to you, you prick!" she shouted. She was getting pissed. I should have known better. She knew me better than I knew myself sometimes.
My voice was softer this time. "I'm sorry sis, but I don't want to talk about what happened, please."
"Uh uh, get from underneath the covers, Edward. What happened to you last night? You came home so late. We weren't expecting you home until next weekend. I thought you had a special night planned with Tanya," she asked with concern.
My heart clenched at the mention of her name. I didn't ever want to hear her name again. I could feel the anger building in my body and I immediately tensed. Alice felt the shift in my body.
"Edward, come on, you're starting to scare me." Her voice was cracking at the end of the sentence and I knew what would come next. Oh no, please don't. Then I heard it, the sniffle. SHIT! I'm in trouble now. I couldn't stand the thought of my sister crying. It broke my heart. I tossed the pillow off to the side of my bed, and I threw the cover off of me. I looked up at Alice and I could see the tears threatening to spill over. FUCK!
"I'm sorry, Alice. Don't cry. I'm fine, see," I said sitting up and placing my hand under her chin angling her head up to look into her eyes. "I just had a really fucked up night last night and I needed to get away from Seattle to be close to my family." She nodded, but of course it didn't stop there.
"What happened?" She moved closer to me. I sighed and rolled my eyes. She was pouting. Ugh! Damn it!
"I proposed to Tanya last night," I whispered.
She gasped and Emmett coughed in surprise. I looked over to where the noise came from. I didn't even know he was in there. I should have known she would have brought back up. If she couldn't get me out of bed, all he would have needed to do was toss my mattress, while I was still on it. I'm so not ready for this.
"W-Wh-What? I knew you had a special night planned, but I didn't think it was anything like that? How did I not see this coming?" She asked, as her eyebrows furrowed in confusion. My wannabe psychic sister thought she could see things that were supposed to happen in the future. She wasn't always one hundred percent accurate, but I still wouldn't bet against her. I snorted at her comment.
"Maybe it wasn't supposed to happen, obviously, because she didn't say yes," I said sarcastically.
All of a sudden all the emotions I was holding in wanted a release, but I fought to keep them back. I was not going to cry in front of my sister and brother, but I couldn't keep my voice from cracking.
"She laughed at me after I proposed. She told me that she had been fucking James for over a year and, to top it off, that she was pregnant with that fucker's kid," I said, still fighting back the tears, but also growing angrier by the second.
"SAY WHAT?" they both cried in unison.
I'm so not going to repeat that shit again. "Please don't make me say it again. It was hard enough to say it the first time," I said, pleading with them.
"I'm going to go kick her ass!" Alice growled, spitting mad. She was red with fury.
"I'm going to fuck him up, Edward. How could James do this to you? He has been your friend since high school." Emmett was marching around the room, beating his balled up hand into his other for emphasis. That man was always looking for a fight. I had to laugh inwardly just thinking about it. I told them both to just let it go. It wasn't worth it. She wasn't worth it, and I definitely wasn't worth it. It was my fault that it happened; I never saw the signs.
"SERIOUSLY!" Alice screamed at me. I cringed at her anger. It wasn't worth them getting involved. Tanya wasn't worth seeing my family get hurt, or arrested for that matter.
"NO WAY, BRO! They can't do that shit to you and get away with it," Emmett jumped up still pounding his fist into his hand. He wanted to hit something really badly. His face was beet red in anger.
"Come on guys," I said. "I can't handle this right now."
I sat back against the headboard of my bed, running my hands through my hair. It probably looked like shit. I'd been pulling it for hours out of frustration…and I was ready to pull it all out.
"Please, promise me that you won't tell mom and dad," I pleaded.
They both nodded, but I knew that wasn't going to last very long. As a matter of fact, my parents came up later that evening to see if there was anything they could do. Damn them! I told my parents no, but I asked them if they would mind if I stayed home for the week. I wasn't ready to go back to school yet. They understood, but I knew they were worried about me.
During the week at home, I shut myself off from my family. They tried to help me, but I locked myself in my own personal hell. I actually made it back to school the next week, but my classes suffered over the following weeks. I didn't want to concentrate on anything. After letting my grades slip and my professors threatening to fail me if I didn't turn in my work and participate in class, I decided to at least get my shit together in the one aspect of my life I could control.
I'd let my personal life go down the toilet, but my educational career I needed to manage. I was able to do some extra credit to make up for the assignments, quizzes and tests that I had missed during those few weeks, and I finished my freshman year with a three point eight GPA, surprisingly. I left in May to return home after the semester ended. I was glad to be going home to my family, but I didn't want to run into her.
I still didn't talk to my family when I returned home. I was so used to being by myself, in my self-enforced seclusion. I stopped being social at school, so I was used to being alienated from everyone. All I did was focus on my classes. Even my music suffered. I stopped playing my guitar the day she blew my proposal off and strangled my heart. Good thing I didn't have any practicals for my minor yet. I didn't think I could have handled having to play.
I think God was playing with me the day I decided to venture out of the house for the first time in a month. I took a drive in my car to go into the city. I didn't know where I was going, but I figured I would know when I got there. Just for the hell of it, I decided to go to the music shop on the strip, and when I got out of my car, I turned around.
FUCK MY LIFE! ROYALLY!
I'll be damned if I didn't run into that bitch. I looked up into the sky and mouthed 'Seriously?' She was walking towards her car with bags in her hands. She was wearing jeans and a loose fitting shirt. Not loose enough, though, because I eyed the baby bump underneath. This was like a dagger to the heart! I pounded my fist on top of my car and growled under my breath. Fuck this shit! I got back in my car and headed home.
I continued to distance myself from everyone and everything in my life for the next couple of months. Poor Jasper. He had been my best friend since elementary school. Even he tried to help me out, to cheer me up, but I wasn't having it. I was a dick to everyone, including my parents. The more everyone tried to help, the more I pushed them all away and basically, in not so subtle words, told them to 'fuck off'. After awhile they let me be, and I fell back into myself, into my self-imposed hell of a universe. I couldn't believe I let a woman affect my life that way, but I thought I was in love with her. I was in love with her and that was what made it all suck so much. I thought she was 'the one'. Looking back, I truly didn't know shit! Argh!
My band was suffering as well as a result of my breakdown. Music had been my life before. It always soothed every fiber of my being, but after that night, I didn't believe I deserved it. I missed playing. I truly did. I couldn't even look at my guitar without wanting to break it against the wall. I hoped getting back to school would help me get away and deal with all the shit, or I was truly going to be fucked for the rest of my life. One damn thing was for sure, I would never trust another woman.
Now that the summer was ending, I needed to get ready to leave for school. I started packing my room up again. I was throwing away everything that had to do with Tanya. Even thinking her name made me want to puke. I tossed all that shit into a pile near my door. I will burn every last bit of it until it is nothing but ash!
When I finished packing what I felt like packing that time around, I stood against the wall and slowly slid down until I was on the floor. I was sitting across from my bed, and I glanced over at the pile of Tanya's stuff from the corner of my eye. I moved my head to just stare at it. After about five minutes, I put my head in my hands and began to cry.
WHAT THE FUCK!
I honestly thought I was going crazy. Before I felt the tears, I heard the sob escape my chest. I am fucking crying over a girl. How much more of a pansy can I become? Oh my God, I need to get a life! I closed myself off in my room again that night. I didn't have an appetite for food. I hadn't really eaten much those last few months. I knew I had lost some weight because my already baggy clothes had gotten even baggier over the summer. My mom and dad were seriously worried. The tried to talk to me sometimes, but when they would try, I'd just give them the death stare that told them to just drop it and leave me the fuck alone. My mother came up to my room the next day to check on me. When she walked into my room, I pulled the cover over my head and tried to ignore her.
"Edward?" She called my name and it was etched with concern. God I hate hurting her. I loved her, but she just didn't understand.
"Go away, mom," I whispered back to her calmly, not wanting to hurt her anymore with my words.
"Are you okay?" she asked, either not hearing what I had said or she's choosing to ignore me. I hoped it was the former.
"Mom, please go away!" I said with a little more force in my words. I didn't want to talk. I just wanted to crawl into myself and let my sanity go out the window.
"Edward, I'm not going anywhere until we talk. You are scaring your father and me." Her voice broke at the end, but being the dick that I was, I just rolled my eyes.
"JUST LEAVE ME ALONE!" I growled. Seriously! Why can't anyone take the hint?
"NO!" she exclaimed. Now, my mother very rarely raised her voice and the thought of this made me cringe, but I still didn't care. I brought the cover just below my chin so I could look at her and hopefully she would hear what I had to say.
"Mom, I don't want to talk. I just want to be left alone," I said my eyes pleading with her to understand, but when I finally looked into her eyes and saw all the hurt and confusion, my heart sank. I hated being the reason why it was there and she was hurting, but damn it, my heart was broken. I just wanted to wallow in self-pity. I didn't want to burden anyone with my issues, but I could see how this was affecting her.
"I'm sorry, Mom. I don't mean to make you upset. I just don't want to talk it," I said, my voice cracking.
"Oh, Edward, I'm just really worried about you honey," she cooed.
"I know you are. I'll be fine. I just need time to figure all this out. Maybe getting back to school will help me get over some of this. I just need to be away from here for a while," I explained to her.
"I hope so honey. I hate seeing you in pain knowing I can't do anything to fix it," she said, only that time it was her voice that was cracking. She looked like she was going to cry. Oh God! No! I can't stand this. This is a million times worse than my sister crying of course. Who the fuck wants to make their mother cry?
"I know. I'm so sorry Mom," I said, looking into her eyes. I saw the wetness threatening to fall. I couldn't stand it.
"Why are you sorry? You did nothing wrong," she asked incredulously as she ran her hand through my hair. I used to love when she did that when I was younger and right then, it actually felt good.
"It's all my fault!" I sobbed. She moved closer to me on the bed. She wrapped her arm around me and pulled me to her chest. She continued to run her hand through my hair, and I felt like I was five again. Wow, how I have missed my mother. She put her finger under my chin and pulled it up to meet her eyes.
"Why do you feel this is your fault?" she looked at me quizzically.
I sat up. "How could it not be? Tanya was cheating on me for over a year mom! How could I not see it?" The tears were still falling down my cheeks. "I never thought she could do this me," I cried as I reached up and clutched handfuls of hair and sobbed into my chest.
"Oh baby!" she cried out as she pulled my hands out of my hair and pulled me back into her chest. She wrapped her arms around me and just held me, rocking back a forth a little. About a minute later, I pulled away from her. I was so disgusted with myself and, I didn't want to impose on her.
"Stop, please!" I croaked. She looked at me with such concern and love. I didn't want or deserve any of it. I lay back down and pulled the cover back over my head. "Just leave me alone right now, please!" I begged.
"If you need anything, please let me know," she said as she emphasized anything. "I love you, Edward." She left and closed the door.
"I love you too, Mom," I whispered, but it was too late. Sighing, I rolled over and went to sleep.
The next week passed pretty much like the one before it. I locked myself away in my room, only coming out to eat and when I did, it was like I was a walking zombie. My family tried and tried to get me to talk, but I just pushed them away. Every time I looked at my mother, the hurt was emanating from her eyes. They always looked like they were on the verge of spilling over with tears, but I never saw them fall. That would have been my undoing. Alice tried everything to get me to talk. I loved her for trying, but even her hyper, cheery self couldn't bring me out of the hell I had put myself into.
My room was completely packed up, and I was finally ready to go. The pile of crap that was everything Tanya had been burned to ashes. I wasn't joking about watching it burn - it felt good, though I didn't let myself enjoy it for long. My heart that was shattered six months prior was still dead and cold. How can one person cause so much misery and distrust in another? How is someone supposed to recover from the hurt, the loss and the shock to their mind, body and soul? Thank God I leave for school tomorrow. I need to get away from all the fucking pain.