Disclaimer: The characters of Twilight are owned by Stephenie Meyer. All other characters, settings, lyrics, etc. are the property of their respective owners. I am in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise or automotive company. The original content, ideas and intellectual property of this story are owned by Virginia May, 2010. No copyright infringement is intended.
A/N: Welcome to the first "extra" from my story What Drives Her. This alternate POV scene takes place between chapters 2 & 3 of WDH. Edward has just returned home after encountering Bella's scent in his new Volvo the day before. His behavior causes Emmett and the rest of the Cullens to struggle with how they should react. I really hope you enjoy and thank you for reading.
Hugs, Ginnie :-)
"Angst Ain't My Thing"
"Rosie? Baby?" I called out for my sexy, but very pissed off wife as I reached the arched double doorway of our second-floor room. I knew she was in her closet from the sound of shoes moving against the shelves, but I wasn't sure if she wanted any company right now.
"In here, Em."
The tone of her voice told me a lot. For now at least, she sounded done with being angry. The rest of her feelings I could likely determine from what she was doing in the closet. I peeked inside, knocking lightly against the cedar door frame.
"Can I come in?"
All I got was a nod from my wife who sat in the dark organizing her shoes.
"You okay?" I asked.
"What do you think?" she answered, flatly.
"Ah, babe... What can I do?"
She laughed lightly. "Well... I'd say you could go knock some sense into your brother, but we both know it won't work. Stubborn ass..." she mumbled, looking back at her shoes.
"I'd give it a try for you, you know?" I said, sitting down beside her.
She looked over at me and sighed. "I know."
We were both quiet for a few minutes. I was silently cursing Edward for upsetting Rosalie, and at the same time, I was more interested in cursing whatever God or fate it was that decided to play this cruel excuse for a joke on my brother. He'd actually seemed okay yesterday –before he picked up that damn car.
"Is he still sitting in there?" Rosalie asked finally.
I nodded. "Yep."
"This is ridiculous. Isn't it? I mean... I'm not wrong about this am I, Em?"
"Well, he's in shock I guess. And the situation is pretty messed up. In fact, it downright sucks."
My girl tilted her head to one side and cocked a pretty eyebrow at me. "You didn't answer my question."
I sighed and prepared myself for the inevitable, but not before pulling Rosie into my lap and wrapped my arms around her. I really hated telling my wife crap she didn't want to hear. It wasn't that she was totally wrong about everything; she just wasn't 100% right about it either.
"Look, babe... He fell in love with the girl. I know you think it's impossible, or that he doesn't know what he's talking about, but you may need to consider the idea that it's how he feels –right or wrong."
Rosalie went rigid upon hearing my words. "I thought we were past all of this, Emmett."
"Yeah, well..." I shrugged. "Maybe the fact that Edward's not past it should give all of us a pause to re-consider the issue."
Rose huffed and looked at me for a long moment. "Okay..." she said slowly. "So let's just say for argument's sake that it was possible that he's not just being a selfish ass and making up stuff to brood about..."
"Rosie, I know you and Edward don't always see eye to eye, but do you really believe that?"
She rolled her eyes. "Does it matter what I believe? It's not like he listens to anyone but himself anyway."
"That's not true. He hears everything we say and most of the stuff we don't."
"He hears, but he doesn't listen. He never changes!"
I placed my palm to her cheek and turned her face to meet my eyes. "That's where you're wrong."
Not surprisingly, I got the death-stare for my efforts.
"Oh, really?" she snapped.
"Rose... he's different. He's been different since Forks. It's been five years, and while he's tried really hard during that time to be the old Edward, he's just not. For over eighty years he was fine, maybe not perfect, but he was happy in his own way. Now all of that's changed for him. He's changed."
"Vampires don't change, Emmett."
"That's not true. I may not have been around to know what you were like before me, or what Carlisle was like without Esme, but I know there is one thing that can change us."
"Em..." Her tone held a warning.
"Look, babe, I'm just laying it out there. Edward has changed and try as you might, you can't deny that. I'm willing to accept that it's this girl, Bella. I know that's hard for you, but just try to imagine what it would be like for you if we couldn't be together. Or try to think about what Jasper would be like if he couldn't be with Alice. Eddie-boy has been alone all this time and now that love exists for him at all, he's stuck in an impossible situation. What if you'd come across me in the woods and I hadn't been mauled by a bear, Rosie? What if I hadn't been on death's door when you found me?"
She looked away. "I wouldn't have given you a second look. It was your blood that got my attention. You know that."
"Rosalie..." I said, sitting there watching her and waiting for her to make the connection. I could almost see the gears turning in her precious little head.
"Don't say it, Emmett."
"Alright... I won't. As long as you see the similarity."
"Em..." she warned. "It's not the same situation- at all."
"Oh, no?" I challenged her.
"No," she insisted.
"So Edward didn't notice Bella Swan because of her blood? I guess he didn't somehow miraculously resist killing her the same way you did with me either? Never mind the fact that her blood actually is like a drug to him-"
Rosalie stood abruptly and took off. I could hear her footfalls land on the lawn before I even had the chance to get up and follow her.
When I made it to the hallway, Alice was sitting on the top step of the stairs with a sympathetic smile.
"Come sit. She needs a minute."
I sighed and sat down. "I know."
"You may have gotten through to her this time."
I frowned. "Yeah, but she'll hate herself all over again when she realizes I'm right."
"I can't tell how she'll respond just yet," Alice sighed pressing her fingers to her temples.
"That's okay," I said, my gut instinct telling me it would all work out anyway. "I do have one question for you though. What are we going to do about Edward?"
Alice shook her head. "Nothing right now. I can't really help him if he doesn't trust me."
Poor Alice. I could hear the amount of hurt in her voice. Eddie-boy had unloaded on her somethin' fierce. Of course, in his defense, I'd thought Alice had had something to do with this too. When Rosie and I got home last night and heard that somehow, someway, Bella Swan had recently been inside Edward's new car, I just assumed that this was the mysterious reason Alice had insisted we move back to Washington.
"How did you not see this one, Pipsqueak?"
"I wish I knew..." she sighed. "I keep trying to see Bella and all I get is fuzz. I've tried just watching Edward too, but he's all over the place and I can't tell what happens next."
"Has that ever happened before, the fuzz thing?" I asked.
"No, never." Alice hung her head and tucked herself into a little ball.
"Oh, hey now... Not you too." I moved over and put my arm around her shoulders to comfort her. "Come on, kiddo. This house can't take anymore angst. Edward's locked in his car, Rosie's brooding in the woods, Esme's in bed –and not for fun-times either. Now you're all curled up here with the sad eyes."
Jasper appeared in front of us suddenly, kneeling down to pull Alice into his arms. "I got it from here, Emmett," he said softly, standing and giving me a sympathetic look. I didn't have to be a mind reader to know he was telling me to go look after my own wife.
"Alright you guys. I'll see you later." Jasper nodded once and gave me a little boost of confidence as we went our separate ways.
On my way across the yard, I heard the door of Edward's new car open and then close. Moments later, he was running away from the garage at nearly top speed. I darted after him without thinking, fearful of where he was going and what he was doing. Having been exposed to the kind of temptation my brother had been faced with, I was still amazed that he'd been able to stop himself from killing Bella Swan the instant he met her. He'd never forgive himself if he had a moment of weakness now.
"I'm just going for a run. You can stop following me," Edward's voice called from far ahead.
Are you sure? I thought, staying behind him just in case.
"Yes. Please just leave me alone, Emmett."
I slowed a bit and listened to the direction his feet were taking him. Northeast. Away from Seattle. Away from the girl. I slowed some more and stopped running after him. As long as he wasn't off to kill her, it didn't really matter where he was going. It would never be far enough away to leave her memory behind.
"Damn it, Emmett!" Edward's voice was followed by a loud crash and the sound of at least one tree snapping in half.
"Shit... sorry, Edward." I knew my apology was in vain, but as I listened to him continue to destroy a good chunk of the national forest that surrounded us, it was all I could do.
I turned my back on my brother and ran home, hoping all the while that he wouldn't freak out again or run away again for good. I must not have been the only one with those thoughts, because as soon as I emerged from the trees lining the front lawn of our house, I found my wife waiting.
"Where did he go?" she asked as I approached her.
"I don't know."
"Will he be back?"
"I don't know, babe. I hope so."
"He'll be back," Alice called from the house.
"Good," Rosalie said, raising her chin. "Maybe he'll get it out of his system."
For some reason her cavalier attitude fell short with me and I laughed humorlessly. "Yeah, and maybe he'll sprout wings and a sense of humor too."
I could tell by her stunned silence that I'd surprised my wife with what I'd said. I apologized, but it was half-hearted. For once I was right and we both knew it. Edward wasn't getting Bella out of his system anytime soon. The North American continent would be treeless before that happened.
Rose looked at me with a perplexed expression. "Alright, wise guy... so what? We're not allowed to hope that Edward will start acting like himself again... ever?"
"I don't know, Rosie," I grumbled. "All I do know is that our brother is miserable and the only one who can do a damn thing about it apparently works at the Volvo dealership in Seattle."
Rosalie scoffed. "What could that girl possibly do to get Edward's head out of his ass? If anything, she'll make things worse."
"Maybe, maybe not."
"How do you figure that? You don't honestly think it would be a good idea to drag her into our world, do you?" Rosalie snapped.
"I don't know! Maybe!" I growled in frustration.
"So what? Do you want to set them up on a date, Emmett? Or maybe better yet... kidnap her and bring her here? I can just see it now... 'Hey, Bella... Remember our brother? The moody guy who stopped a van from running over your ass once upon a time? Yeah, well he's in love with you and he's completely miserable because the scent of your blood has him bewitched, so would you mind giving up your entire life just to make him happy? Oh yeah, and he's a vampire so we're talking all of eternity here. Do you mind?'"
I stared at her for a full three seconds.
"I was being facetious you idiot!"
I smirked. "Yeah, but you might be on to something, babe."
"Emmett McCarty Cullen! Don't even think about it!" she yelled, stalking towards me with eyes flashing. "I swear on all that is Holy... If you go near her... If you set one toe within fifty miles of her and I find out about it, I will make you regret it! Do you understand me?"
I could see quite clearly that she was completely and utterly serious. She was my wife and I loved her. But I also knew that she was a force to be reckoned with. She may not have it in her to physically harm me, but she would make good on her threat one way or another if I crossed her.
"Fine," I said in surrender. "I won't go near her. I promise."
She narrowed her eyes at me and crossed her arms over her chest.
"Jeez, babe... I swear. I will not set foot within fifty miles of Bella Swan." I put my hand up like a gall-dang Boy-Scout and all I got was another raised eyebrow and a finger pointed in my face.
"I'm holding you to that, Emmett Cullen, and I'll be watching you. Got it?"
"I got it," I sighed. "And I'm not an idiot, you know. I just want our brother to be okay. No matter what it takes."
Rosalie's expression softened. "I want him to be okay too, Emmett. I'm not a heartless bitch, you know."
"I do know that, babe." I pulled her into my arms and held her close. "I know why you feel the way you feel and I'm not judging you. I just don't feel as strongly. So he loves a human, so what... it doesn't have to be the end of the world. Unless he kills her," I frowned. "That would be... really bad."
Rosalie sighed. "We'd lose him, Emmett. It's not worth the risk."
"They could always have a long distance thing you know. Maybe an online love affair? Email, Skype, text messages. He could e-woo her."
"Yeah, electronic wooing. Maybe I should trademark that one."
"You're an idiot," Rose scoffed.
I laughed. "Hey, at least that way he could find out if she's even worth all the drama."
"Worth it or not, she's human, Emmett. She can't have anything to do with us. Edward knows that. Hence the drama. Well, that and it's Edward we're talking about here." She shook her head, irritated, slightly disgusted, but also concerned. "Look, maybe I was wrong to be so hard on him. Maybe he can't help how he feels about this little human, but either way you need to let all these crazy ideas go before he gets back and hears you. It will only make it harder for him to do what he knows is right and stay away from her."
I nodded and smiled agreeably, but didn't say anything to my wife. Was staying away from Bella the right thing? Edward had tried that already and look where it led him –right back to square one.
It occurred to me that five years had gone by and the girl was probably married, engaged, or otherwise attached. If she was available then she was probably enjoying the college life and depending on how much she had embraced the collegiate spirit, she may not even be desirable to Edward anymore. He'd always had a superior sense of morality. Would it be easier for him to live without the girl he loved if he knew she was either lacking in virtue or taken? And what if she wasn't taken? What if she was still looking for Mr. Right? What if there really was such a thing as soul mates and Edward was hers? What if Edward was her Rosalie? Her angel?
I really needed to think about this some more, but Rosalie was right. Eddie-boy would lose it again if he had to endure my inner monologue. I sighed and scratched my head.
"You know, Rosie... maybe we should get out of here for a little while until things blow over. Maybe it would be easier for Edward if we weren't around worrying about him."
"I don't know, baby," she answered. "What if he takes off again for good, or flips out and goes after the girl, or he and Jasper get into it over this thing with Alice? I think we should stay."
Crap. She was right. We really needed to be here for the family. I knew it would be difficult to avoid thinking about the Bella situation around Edward, but I'd have to do it. He also deserved a chance to work things out for himself first. I mean, a man can only resist for so long, right? Maybe he'd decide to go see Bella all on his own. Of course there was always the risk that he might end up killing her in that scenario.
Still, I wasn't quite ready to give up on helping my brother just yet. I could wait and see if things improved in the next week or so, and if they didn't, if Edward was still suffering, try to come up with some kind a plan. My long-distance idea had some merit. For better or worse, there had to be some way to convince Edward to at least find out more about Bella Swan –to talk to her or something.
I smiled at Rose and shook my head. "You know what? You're right. We should stay here," I said, keeping the truth of my thoughts to myself.
"Of course, I'm right," Rosalie smirked.
I laughed, "You always are."
"You know it."
We walked back to the house hand in hand. I felt a little bad for keeping the true nature of my thoughts from Rosie, but there had to be a way to save everyone from all this drama and angst. I didn't know about the rest of them, but angst definitely wasn't my thing. And maybe if I was sneaky enough, I could pull one over on Edward and Alice. That alone was reason enough to try.
End Notes: If you've been following WDH for a while now, you may remember way back this summer when I offered an outtake for some reviews. My readers were gracious enough to oblige, but sadly I am just now posting this six months later. Please forgive the fail. :-( I was very determined not to let the extras take away from completing the main story. As for the main story, I am having some problems with writer's block but I really hope to have a new chapter out soon. I wish I could give you a date, but as luck would have it my laptop is out for repairs right now as well so I am severely limited. I AM trying however so please hang in there!
"Angst Ain't My Thing" tied with "The Evolution of Love", (a bonus chapter about how Bella and Jessica's friendship grew into what it was at the start of WDH), as the outtake the readers most wanted to see. I haven't forgotten that one either and I will get it up here as soon as I can. There will also be a bonus chapter of back-story regarding the nature of Bella and Jacob's relationship that will post when it won't spoil anything coming up in future chapters of WDH.
Thank you as always for reading and don't forget to put this on alert if you're interested in future extras from the story. Lastly, HUGE thanks go to the wonderful betas and pre-readers who support me and make my writing worth reading. You know who you are and I am humbled as always. :-)