I don't own Twilight, if I did I would be on some remote island instead of freezing my ass off up here in Canada.
4 months later.
Carlisle and I have been together for 5 months now.
I couldn't be happier.
We have a great balance between our working relationship and our personal one. That's not to say that we don't steal kisses or even have make out sessions in the on call rooms, because we definitely do.
It wasn't long after the first night we stayed together before I was confessing my love for him. It may have seemed like it was all happening so fast, especially after what I had gone through with Edward, but when it's right… it's right.
About a month ago, I moved into Carlisle's apartment with him. Again, it may have seemed fast, but to us, it was perfect. It also worked out that Rosalie and Emmett were discussing moving in together, so it was rather good timing. I moved out of Rose and I's apartment, and Emmett moved in.
It was bittersweet moving out of the apartment. It was like the ends of an era, as Emmett kept saying, leave it to him to quote from "Friends." As much as I loved Emmett, he really could be a goof sometimes.
Living with Carlisle is like a dream. He is the exception to all the typical male stories you hear other women saying about their partners. I have nothing to complain about. He cleans up after himself, helps with the housework, the cooking and the toilet seat is always put back down. Waking up in his arms every morning is amazing and I'm not going to lie, the sex is phenomenal. We have a great routine going and I don't remember feeling this happy before ever!
We ride into work together, and come home together. We work together on making dinner and on nights when neither of us feels up to cooking, we go out. The nurses have given up on the jealous glances when we arrive at work together hand in hand.
Unfortunately, because things are so great I am still waiting for the other shoe to drop, I guess that is the one insecurity that will never go away. Carlisle keeps reassuring me that nothing is going to happen and that we are going to live happily ever after.
So, here I am, sitting at home, waiting for Carlisle to get back from the hospital. He is currently on call and got called in to check on a patient whose condition is worsening. We are supposed to be going out to dinner this evening, and here I am, ready and waiting.
He calls to say he is on his way home; he should be about fifteen minutes. That leaves us with just enough time to be able to make it for our reservations on time. He says that he just needs to change when he gets home and then we can leave.
After waiting another five minutes, he was finally home, I hear the door open and I get up and walk over to the entrance to greet him.
He sees me heading towards him and smiles.
"You look great sweetheart," he says. I lean up and kiss him on the lips. "Just give me five minutes and I will be dressed and ready to go!"
I let go of my hold on him so he can get ready. I gather my shoes and purse while I wait for him.
Five minutes later Carlisle comes out of the bedroom looking amazing. I put my shoes on and Carlisle wraps his arm around my waist, leading me to the door. He locks up the apartment and we head to the elevator.
I love when we have these date nights. It is always nice to get out and do stuff together and Carlisle always makes sure we do it often enough.
The ride to the restaurant is filled with conversation about his afternoon at the hospital. He tells me about the patient that is getting worse. It is a man that has been with us for a while now and he has slipped into unconsciousness. That is one of the downfalls of our job, we lose more patients than ones we help get better. I can see the sadness in Carlisle's eyes when he explains what happened today; that is what makes him a great doctor – his compassion for others is incredible.
We pull into the parking lot for one of the nicer restaurants in the city. Every once in a while he likes to take us to these places, but most of the time, he sticks with simplicity, just the way I like it.
"Have you been here before?" I ask him.
"A couple times actually. The food is great." His hand reaches for mine to help me out of the car. He is always such a gentleman. We walk into the restaurant and the hostess asks us for the name of the reservation. Our table is ready and we are seated right away.
We each order a glass of wine and Carlisle orders us an appetizer.
Unfortunately, our nice evening out is about to get ruined.
I look up and see the hostess sitting a party of three a couple tables away. It's the Masens.
"Oh, lovely," I say to Carlisle. He has not seen them yet, so he has no idea what I am talking about.
I nod my head in the direction of their table and I can immediately see the concern on his face.
"If you want we can order our food to go Bella. We don't have to stay here."
"No. I don't want Edward to ruin our evening. Hasn't he done enough?"
"Are you sure baby?" The love he has for me still overwhelms me sometimes.
"It's fine. Actually, seeing him right now, for the first time since the wedding, does not even affect me. I feel nothing." He grabs my hand on top of the table and his thumbs stroke my knuckles in a comforting gesture.
"Your strength is amazing, Bella, and I love you, so much."
Along with his confession, he brings one of my hands up to his mouth and kisses it.
"I love you too."
I look away from Carlisle and over to Edward. I am still rather surprised that I have no feelings on seeing him.
No anger, hurt or resentment. I am so happy now with Carlisle that the past means nothing to me anymore.
Edward looks up and for the first time in a year we make eye contact. A small smile graces his lips until he looks over and sees that I am not alone. He sees that I am with Carlisle and he looks hurt. I scoff because what reason does he have to be hurt. Our whole relationship was all based on lies.
Edward also looks surprised to see me here with Carlisle, meaning his parents have not told him. Liz does still call to check in, not as frequently as the first 6 months mind you, but she knows about Carlisle and my relationship.
Carlisle still talks to them as well. They hold no grudge over what Carlisle did. Actually, they are grateful that he was able to make them see the way their son was behaving.
Liz notices that Edward's attention is elsewhere and she follows his gaze over to my and Carlisle's table. She smiles hello at me, and then again at Carlisle. I can see Edward noticing that his mother is not at all surprised to see Carlisle and me here together the way he is.
I break my gaze from the Masen's table and focus on Carlisle sitting in front of me, looking at me with such loving eyes. I realize that I am actually thankful that I did not end up married to Edward. Even if he had been honest and not out for money and sleeping around, I am happier now, with Carlisle, than I ever was with Edward, even before I found out about the lies.
"I am just going to use the bathroom before our food arrives," I tell Carlisle.
I look around the restaurant trying to locate the bathroom before I get up. I make my way there and do my business, wash and dry my hands and then open the door to head back to our table.
As soon as I am out the door I bump into someone in the hallway, of course, it is just my luck that it is Edward.
"Hi, Edward." I really have nothing more to say to him than that, but he apparently does.
"So…." He pauses for about thirty seconds before he finishes what he wants to say. "Look, I am really sorry about everything and I mean it. This last year has been hell, but I deserved it. I was horrible to you Bella and you deserve better than that."
I nod my head because really I don't want to fight with him. I have moved on and I am happy. He, however, does not look like he has moved on; he looks like crap, actually. I didn't notice it from the dining room, but up close, his eyes have dark circles under them and he is much skinnier than before. He has lost a lot of weight and his cheek bones are very poking tight against his skin. His eyes are even worse. There is not life to them and I almost feel sorry for him. Almost. Then I remember what he did and it fades away.
"I lied to you when I asked you to marry me, but if you are going to believe anything, believe this Bella. I may have proposed for selfish reasons in the beginning, but I really fell in love you, for real, Bella. In the end, that part was not a lie, I just wish I had realized that before it was too late."
I am not sure what he wants me to say to that. I hope he is not expecting me to forgive him and take him back.
"You hurt me, Edward. You hurt me so bad that I had to seek out therapy to help me move on. I was a mess. For two weeks I was a zombie, and if it wasn't for Rosalie I don't know what would have happened to me. You know what though, Edward, I made it. I got help and I have moved on from this and I am happier now that I have ever been. I am not saying this to hurt you, but to tell you that you need to move on as well."
"You look happy. I am glad that you are doing well. I don't think my guilt could handle knowing that you are still broken from what I did. You know this is the first time I have seen my parents since a few days after the wedding. They kicked me out. I have had a few conversations with my mother since, but only over the phone."
Just as I am about to open my mouth to apologize to him about not seeing his parents for a year Carlisle comes walking down the hallway.
He comes and stands to my left and wraps his arm around my waist.
"Everything okay here?" he asks.
Edward is the one to answer. "Yeah, everything is fine. We were just finishing here." He reaches his hand out to Carlisle waiting for a handshake in return. Carlisle looks at him sceptically at first but then reaches out his own hand and shakes Edwards. "Take good care of her man, she deserves it." And then he is gone.
Carlisle looks down at me and asks if I am alright.
"I'm okay. He basically apologized and that was it. Let's go finish the rest of our evening." He leans down and his mouth is on mine. I slowly start to deepen the kiss but pull back when I remember where we are.
We head back to our seats, our dinner and more importantly our lives. I know that I have moved on and I now feel like that little talk with Edward is the last piece of the puzzle.
If I had to make a list of words to describe myself, it would go something like this: foolish, immature, thoughtless, reckless, irresponsible, and lastly an idiot.
What I did to Bella was so horrible and I am truly ashamed of myself for it. I cannot believe that I let money and greed take over my life, but I was a spoiled brat.
I just hit a point in my life where my parents were starting to let go of always paying for everything. I had graduated from university and it was time to find a job and start making money of my own. I had gotten part of my trust fund at the age of 18. I bought a car and my condo and my parents made me use the rest to pay for my education. They still supported me while in school, but once I graduated, I was on my own.
When my grandfather set up my trust fund, he set the terms so that I would get a decent amount at my eighteenth birthday and the rest when I got married. I was under the impression that I would get the remainder when I graduated, then my father informed me otherwise.
That night I had gone out with James and a couple other buddies; we decided to crash his girlfriend's girls night out. That was the night I met Bella. She was hot and I knew I wanted her instantly. I started working my charm, hoping I would be taking her home that evening. That was when the idea struck me, so I changed my approach; instead of taking her home with me that night, I asked her on a date.
As much as I was attracted to her, I was not ready to give up my playboy lifestyle. I continued to "date" her and still went out with James and hooked up with random girls.
I think about that now and I am actually disgusted with myself.
Of course, I went on with my plan and proposed and it was after I proposed that I actually started to fall for Bella. Sadly, I never wanted to admit it, so I still went along with my friends when they joked about my upcoming wedding.
By the time the wedding came I was starting to fall for Bella. I guess I was starting to realize how great of a girl she was compared to the skanks that my buddies would go out with. Sadly, that still didn't stop me from being an asshole.
As hurt as I was about what went down on our wedding day, I knew I deserved it. She found out the truth and it was no one's fault but my own. I was naïve to think that she would never find out the real reason I asked her to marry me, or about the other girls.
After the wedding was called off, my parents absolutely freaked out. There was screaming and yelling and they kicked me out of the house. I ended up staying with James, which was a really bad idea. My mom called every once in a while to check on me but I never heard from my father. Eventually I had to get a job and get my own place. The only money I had was what I made from my job, there was nothing coming from my parents anymore.
That year without my parents really helped me open my eyes. As awful as it was not speaking to them for a whole year, it really changed me and deep down I needed it. When my parents called me to have dinner with them, I was nervous as hell about what they wanted. That night was the first time I had seen Bella in a year, since our wedding day.
She was beautiful and she was happy, and it was all because of Carlisle Cullen.
I was upset at first and a little angry, but the way she was looking at him… well she never looked at me that way. She had moved on and told me that I needed to do so as well, but it wasn't as easy as it sounded.
The relationship with my parents started to mend from that night on and I was happy to have them back. I had taken for granted the people in my life, and I didn't know it until they were gone, and it was too late.
After that night I tried to do what Bella said and move on with my own life. I started dating a little bit but nothing serious. Then a few months later, I was at my parent's house for brunch. I saw something that caught my attention; an engagement party invite.
Bella and Carlisle were getting married.
Even though I was happy that Bella was happy, it still hurt a little. So, like the creep that I can be, I ended up watching their wedding from a distance. I had snuck in and sat at the back of the church where no one could see me.
She looked even more beautiful than she did on our wedding day, probably because she was not storming down the aisle to kick the groom's ass; no, here, she was completely happy. When everyone cleared out of the church I snuck away. I wasn't invited and probably shouldn't have even been at the church but what can I say? I can be a real sucker for punishment sometimes. I could have had that with her if I wasn't such an idiot, blinded by money.
Showing up at their wedding was the closure that I needed to move on and I have. It has been two years since I sat in the back of that church, but I have finally done something with my life and I am happy.
I ran into Bella last week and we actually talked. I told her about what has been going on in my life and she really didn't have to tell me about hers, the rounding belly was explanation enough.
They are expecting their first baby in six weeks. It's a boy and I know that Bella is going to make a fantastic mother. I am always going to have my regrets where Bella is concerned. She is amazingly happy with Carlisle and I have accepted it, but she will always be the one who got away.
A/N: I saved all the big "Thank Yous" for the end. There are lots. So here it goes!
So first, Thank you for reading!
Big Hugs for Tanya, aka AcrossTheSkyInStars for making the awesome banner for this story!
Big thanks to Cynthia Chan for the beta job!
HUGE HUGE thanks with hugs and kisses to Mezz…you know why! AND Rose Masen Cullen, because without her, I wouldn't have had a plot! I heart you ladies HARD!
And finally all the ladies that I had the honour of doing WC's with, Rose, Mezz, Sky, Des, Zen, FFR, Mich, TGB, Indie and Feral…and anyone else I forgot because there were so many WC sessions! Without them I would not have finished nor had a great time doing it! AND Bex for your creative help!