Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. Twilight character names belong to Stephanie Meyer. No copyright infringement is intended.
This is my first FanFan so let me know what you think.
Thanks to all my sisters for proding me to get this out. If it wasn't for you they'd still be kicking around in my head.
Chapter 1 - Hallucinations!
There are those damn eyes again.
What is this guy's problem? Hasn't he ever seen a girl before? I swear, if I didn't want to stay out of the Dean's office I'd kick him in the nuts.
I have purposefully intentionally ignored him all week hoping he would get the hint that I'm not interested. I have "my plan" and I'm not going to fail so close to accomplishing it.
Pulling me from my thoughts, Matt's kick to my stool brings me back to class. I glare at him in my best what the fuck stare. He just grins and gestures to the front of the class where Professor Grey is looking pointedly at me.
"Miss Sanford, your answer?"
"Um, c-could you r-repeat the question, please?" I stutter. Caught. Damn, now this guy is getting me in trouble with my professors.
"What are the six stages of Mitosis?" he repeats.
"Yes, sorry, um, interphase, prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase, and cytokinasis. At interphase, there is only one cell, but after cytokinasis there are two identical cells," I recite.
I give Matt a smug grin. The gods were smiling down on me when I got paired with Matt in microbiology; he is probably the best partner I have ever had. We are so in sync with our study habits and goals. I get the "two thumbs up" from him as Mr. Grey goes on with the breakdown of each phase.
I sneak a peek back over my shoulder and, sure enough, he is still staring at me, like he is seeing a ghost; he is so pale maybe he is, and I scare the crap out of him.
Okay, something is going to have to give with this guy; he is taking up entirely too much of my thought processes. If he doesn't stop staring at me, I'm going to kick him in the nuts just on principle.
I return my attention back to the front in time to see Mr. Grey posting our homework assignment for the next class. I look at Matt and shrug. Looks like a couple of intense nights of studying. I finish writing up my notes and pack up all my books as Matt starts asking me when I want to meet up to go over our next assignment.
"How does your afternoon look? We can start the mold cultures and start the observation log," he suggests.
I smirk. That's my Matt; always looking towards that next assignment. Just then, I feel a breeze ghost past me and see the blur of copper and green move out the classroom door.
Oh, thank God he is gone. Now I don't have to worry about being sent to the Dean's office for kicking him in the nuts. What is his problem! He really needs to get a life and stop staring at me.
I'm going crazy. I know I am though it's impossible. Vampires can't go crazy. But I am… I see her every day.
Can I hallucinate? No, vampires can't hallucinate! Why is this happening to me? Each day I see her, my dead heart breaks into more and more pieces.
I thought moving back to the East Coast would help me get through this pain, but now I'm not sure I will ever get through it. I can understand seeing her presence back in Forks; everywhere I'd look, I would see her. It was inevitable. But, here in Pennsylvania, there is no connection to make. So I must be going crazy. I wonder if anything can be done for a crazy vampire.
I thought my hallucinations would wane as I settle into my new life, but as I walk around campus and attend classes, I just see her more and more. I'm insane and it's getting progressively worse. Not only am I seeing her everywhere, but she is talking to people around her. I must be losing my mind.
Now I know I have to tell Carlisle. What will he do with me? I can't be medicated. Will he send me away? Is there an institution for insane vampires? Why didn't Alice let me know this was going to happen? Surely she had seen me going crazy and hallucinating like this. Why didn't she say something?
I move as slowly as I possibly can so I won't draw too much attention to myself, but I have to get out of here. Her presence is tearing me apart, and the images of her accident are coming back to me in perfect vampire clarity.
I make it to the woods along the edge of campus and take off at vampire speed, my thoughts taking me back to that tragic day…the day my life ended.
5 month(s) ago…
The vibrating of my phone wouldn't stop, but I was in full hunting mode, so I was not inclined to answer it at the moment. I had just picked up the scent of a mountain lion and was tracking him from the trees. I hadn't feed in almost a week. Bella and I were in the advanced stages of planning our wedding, and the details of planning even a modest wedding were staggering. Bella was at the reservation, so this was a good time for me to go for a quick hunt.
I was just coming in the back door, from what was a very satisfying hunt, when the cacophony of thoughts hit me. Bella. Everyone was thinking of Bella. The images and thoughts were so scattered I was having trouble hearing anyone clearly, until I honed in on Carlisle as his thoughts cleared the rest away, I crumpled to the ground in agony at what I saw. BELLA! MY SWEET BELLA! GONE! NO, IT COULDN'T BE!
In an instant, my family was around me. Worry, fear, and sorrow) the emotions were so overwhelming. I was trying to run for the door when strong arms surrounded me and held me still.
"No, Edward," Emmett said, "you can't leave. It will crush Esme."
I saw Alice and Jazz slide out the door and I felt the lift of some of the emotional turmoil leaving.
"Carlisle?" I whispered, "How, What?" I was at a loss for words. Was it true? Was she gone?
"Yes, Edward. She is gone. It was a car accident as she was coming home from the reservation. That's why Alice didn't see it."
"She died instantly, Edward. She didn't feel any pain," he soothed.
I must have blacked out, because when I next became conscious of my surroundings, I was on my bed with my family in my room, whispering about arrangements and memorials. How was I going to continue when my purpose for living was gone?
I let my legs carry me as I tried to clear my vampire memory of those dark days after I learned of her death. My family kept a constant vigil on me. I was never left alone for fear I would doing something drastic. They were right; given the opportunity, I would have. Then, one night, Carlisle came and asked, "What would Bella want you to do, son?"
He was right, of course. Bella would want me to continue on. She always saw the good in me. For Bella, I would try, but the reminders in Forks were too much for me. After talking with my family, we decided to move to the East Coast to help us move forward.
A fresh start in a new town was just what I needed, or so I thought, until I saw her again...and again.
I find myself beside a now familiar river, and I sit on a nearby log. I pull out my phone and dial Carlisle's number. The first ring doesn't even get a chance to finish when I hear his voice.
"Carlisle, I'm going insane. Help me!"
The afternoon sun is warming against the beginning autumn wind. I need a break, and a walk in the woods is just what the doctor ordered. I always feel better after a good hike in the woods. It helps me clear my mind and concentrate.
The trail to the river is about 3 miles; a good walk before it gets too dark.
The breeze blowing through the trees helps my mind quiet as I settle into an easy pace that brings a hint of color to my cheeks. I love this time of year; the color of autumn, bright and cheerful against the somber winter skies.
The image of copper hair and golden eyes keeps coming back to my mind. Damn, now he is intruding on my hike. What is it with this guy? Why can't I keep him out of my mind? I mean, yeah, he is a good looking guy, well, great looking, if I'm going to be honest with myself, but now is not the time to start noticing boys. I mentally kick myself. Keep focused Sanford. You have a plan, stick to it.
I can hear the rush of the river as I near the end of the trail. As I make my way around the bend, I see him sitting on a log talking on a cell phone, his back to me. Yeah, he would bring a cell into the woods…wuss. Well, there goes my good mood. Why does he have to intrude in my life like this?
I see him stiffen and stop talking. I'm about to tell him off when he glances around at me and our eyes lock. The depth of pain I see just about brings me to my knees. I know this look. I see it so many mornings as I stare at myself in the mirror; it is the pain of great loss.
I want to reach out and comfort him, but before I realize what's happening, he's disappeared into the woods. What the fuck? Where did he go? Geez! Now I'm hallucinating again. I thought I was done with this shit. The doctor said I was good. She said I was cured. Fuck!
PTSD, Post Tramatic Stress Disorder, that's what it's classified as. I just call it "this fucked up shit." I was told I was the lucky one, that there must be a purpose if I survived. I just called it plain bad luck. Surviving wasn't lucky. It was shit. Every day by myself. That's not lucky, it's shitty. The nightmares were the worst. I'd wake myself up screaming, my body covered in sweat. But I was the lucky one. Bullshit.
The "accident" had taken my family and left me alone. The case workers/foster homes were there to help me get through, but no one truly understood how alone I was. My parents were everything to me. I started acting out with aggressive tendencies and my case worker thought I should see someone to help me through my "episodes". It wasn't until I was seeing my third doctor, that the suggestion of sports came up. I was enrolled in every sport imaginable until I found high school cross country. It was my way out. I would run the miles, just letting my mind sync into the pounding of my steps as the miles melted away. I loved the feel of the wind on my face as the sweat poured out. My mind would clear and I wasn't angry anymore. That's how I ended up in Pennsylvania. A scholarship, not that I needed the money. My parents made sure I was provided for, but it was nice to know that my efforts were rewarded.
I want to help others who've been through the same thing. I want them to know I understand what they're going through. I've been there…my master plan.
That scent. That sweet, heavenly scent. Now I know for sure I'm insane. That scent died with Bella, and now it's all around me, like a warm blanket. How I've missed that scent. It used to bring the monster in me out, but then it was like home. A haven where the monster didn't exist.
The rustle of leaves and the snapping of twigs brings me out of my reverie. I'm not alone. I freeze. Slowly, I turn my head and there she stands. My Bella. My hallucination. Those brown eyes; how I've missed drowning in them. The hole that was my heart widens as I am reminded I will never hold her again. The pain is unbearable.
At vampire speed, I run into the woods, run from the pain, the memory, that scent. Then I remember I had been talking to Carlisle. The phone is still in my hand. I stop.
"Edward, son. What happened? You just stopped talking mid-sentence?" he asks.
"I was hallucinating again, but this time her scent came with it. Carlisle, it was so real. What am I going to do?"
"Come home, Edward, so we can discuss exactly what's been happening. I'll be waiting in my office for you."
As I enter our house, I can tell everyone left so Carlisle and I could talk. I head straight to his office on the second floor. His door is open as I approach.
"Come, sit down, Edward. Tell me everything you've seen."
"The first time I saw her was in biology class, just like back in Forks. But this time she was sitting with someone else. Carlisle, she walked in, set her backpack down, all smiles, talking and laughing with some guy named Matt. They were talking back and forth. I thought for sure I was dreaming, but since we don't sleep, I figured I was hallucinating again."
"That doesn't sound like a hallucination. That sounds more like someone who looks similar to Bella. Are you sure this girl doesn't just look a bit like Bella? You are still getting over losing her. Maybe you are wanting to see her in this girl's similarity."
"She is Bella. Everything about her is Bella. Right down to that same sweet scent. It can't be Bella, because we both know she's gone, so the only logical explanation is I'm hallucinating."
"Well, Edward, they say everyone has a twin somewhere in the world. Maybe she is Bella's twin. A doppelganger of sorts. There must be some things that are different."
"There has to be an explanation. Even her scent is the same. A doppelganger wouldn't have the same scent, would they?"
"Anything is possible. In my many years, I have seen some truly amazing things. Let me do some research and see what I can find out. In the mean time, I don't think you are going crazy, but I do think you should try talking to this person to let yourself begin to see that this is a real person and not a hallucination."
As we get up to move downstairs, I hear the stirrings of my family returning from their hunt. Jasper and Emmett are arguing over a bet made and, of course, Rose is trying to ignore both of them, upset that she ruined her newest blouse. I (an hear Esme's worried thoughts. She's afraid I'm going to run off to the Volturi again. The one voice I don't hear is Alice's.
"Jasper, where is Alice?" I call.
"She's upset, man. She can't see you in the future anywhere, with anyone, and is worried you're going to pull another vanishing act," he replies.
I sigh, "I know. I'm trying hard not to take off, but I have to fight it everyday, Jazz.'
"She is so worried that she can't see you. What are you planning?"
"Nothing. I don't have any concrete plans. Maybe that's why she isn't seeing me in the future, because I don't have any plans or I haven't made any decisions. It's just so difficult. Can you imagine living your life without Alice?"
"It's hard enough to be separated from her for a few days, man. I can't imagine what you are going through. Just know that your family is here for you, and don't make any rash decisions," he says.
I nod as I wander into the kitchen where Esme is sitting at the counter, reading through some of her magazines. I can hear the sadness in her thoughts as she turns a bright smile to me. She's always trying to keep the family together. For her, I have to keep myself together. For her and the family, I must find a way to make it through this. I have to remember I'm not the only one who lost a loved one. We all did. Bella was part of the family.
The sweat flows freely now as my pace keeps time to Pink and I belt out her newest song:
Right right, turn off the lights,
We're gonna lose our minds tonight
What's the dealio?
I love when it's all too much
5 a.m. turn the radio up
Where's the rock and roll?
Party crasher, panty snatcher
Call me up if you want gangsta
Don't be fancy, just get dancey
Why so serious?
So raise your glass if you are wrong
In all the right ways, all my underdogs
We will never be never be anything but loud
And nitty gritty dirty little freaks
Won't you come on and come on and raise your glass
Just come on and come on and raise your glass
Slam slam, oh hot damn
What part of party don't you understand
Wish you'd just freak out (freak out already)
Can't stop, coming in hot
I should be locked up right on the spot
It's so on right now (it's so fuckin on right now)
The sun is just coming up over the mountains and warming up the day. This is my favorite part of the day. It lets me shed my deamons from the night and focus on my assignments for the day… Ugh, Biology today, which means I'll see him again. I made up my mind to confront him today and find out what the fuck his deal is and why he keeps staring at me. Hopefully, by confronting him, I will stop thinking about him and hopefully put an end to the hallucinations. Although I only had that one by the river, so maybe it was just a small slip up. I haven't said anything to Dr. Pierce, yet. I want to wait and see if it happens again.
I turn the corner into my development and head to my house, slowing as I approach my driveway. I love my little house, tucked back in the corner of this development. It gives me access to the mountains for my runs, and it's close to campus so I don't have to fight traffic.
Stopping to pick up the morning paper, I stretch my legs and back as I start to cool down, loving the feeling of my muscles after a good run. I walk around the side, opening the gate to the back yard, and duck in the side door to the garage, smiling as I walk by my car. A red 2011 Peugeot rcz sport coupe. My reflection staring back at me as I pass by. I run up the stairs, shower, and eat breakfast in record time. Before I know it, I'm on my way to school.
I'm going to resolve this guy's issues one way or the other. I just hope I don't end up in the Dean's office again. I put my foot down on the gas pedal and feel my car surge forward as I whip through traffic.
Campus is fairly quiet as I pull up and park in my usual spot. I usually get to school early so I can get some study time in with Matt, but today I have a different agenda. First, stop by the Admissions Office. I need this guy's class schedule so I can find him.
I luck out when Jenny comes to the counter, she's one of my running partners. I explain what I'm looking for. It only takes her a few minutes to get his class schedule.
Hmm...so that's his name. Well, Cullen, it's time to face the music.
He has English this morning, so I head over to the Language Arts building to wait for his class to end. I have about an hour, so I pull out my psych book to finish reading for my term paper due next week.
I'm really not concentrating on my reading. I'm trying to work on my plan of attack, so to speak. Whatever his problem is, he needs to quit staring at me. The shuffling of feet brings me back to the present and I start scanning the faces coming out of the building. He's one of the last people to leave, which gives me the perfect opportunity to confront him. He's looking at some paper in his hand when I stop in front of him.
"What is your problem, Cullen?" I demand.