Disclaimer: I do not own any of the Twilight characters, and I will not be earning income from using these materials. I do, however, own the storyline and any original characters. Thank you.
A/N: So, it was not until I was reading through all of the lovely reviews by KimiD that I realized I had never finished posting the last mini-moment to this story! Bad author ... *slaps self on hand* :( I hope posting it now is good enough that you can all forgive me for being such a blunder-brained new momma.
Thank you all for sticking with me, and I hope you enjoy this last little bit of our story. Much love, and many happy readings.
This mini-moment is a Trevor POV which takes place right after Chapter Eighteen: Lighting The Dark
Mini-Moments with Treward #5
"Learning to Be"
I wanted to say something, before she left.
A hundred words, a dozen thank yous, couldn't pass the lump of brick wedged between my lungs while I struggled to breathe. It all blurred together, wall bleeding into window, bleeding into more wall, and I didn't even know she was gone until the door closed behind her, a faded thump that stilled my heart and left a hollow hole inside of all of me.
It was too late. I would somehow have to fix it later. If I could even figure out how to fix myself.
But then … who was 'myself'?
An 'I' is what I searched for, behind closed doors. That 'I', the special self of existence is said to be defined by what you feel. What you feel, who you are – all determined by our memories, our lives, our past and our present. People … humans, we are the sum of our experiences … so who do you become when you have none?
You become the sum of what you do have.
"They never told you, Edward. They let you … believe - the lies."
There was so much clarity in her words.
One mother here, one mother there; two contrasting faces in memories I couldn't reconcile. All of it was unbelievable, but only because to not believe would be even more impossible to accept.
I didn't look. I knew the voice, from two weeks hearing it while she brushed her fingers against mine. The woman … my mother … so she claimed. More recent things, playing with my past, collided in my head. They had cared for me. She … her green eyes had leaked for me, desperate tears, when I couldn't remember.
Again, I reminded myself.
But they lied. They were selfish. Anyone can take.
But take to give so much?
"What's my name?"
Silence – a thick, heavy, inescapable and all-consuming confirmation.
When she spoke, her words cracked, and I wanted to comfort and condemn in the same breath.
"The name we gave you … is Trevor."
Astonishing, the power of one word, which released equal parts anger and anguish for the ones who deserved to address me this way. The ones I might never truly know.
"Don't call me what I'm not." I struggled not to grind my teeth. Fingers clenched into fists. "You lost that right when you lied. And she gained it when she didn't."
I longed for Bella … my truth. Why had I asked her to leave?
"We haven't –"
"Then show me what rights you do have. Bring me my birth certificate … adoption papers … anything. Prove her wrong."
Her expression turned faint, fear creeping into her eyes like spidery wires, crawling down her face, ready to devour. I couldn't find him, only her, the woman I was certain had shown me love. Even Bella had said so. But I locked the comfort of my hands in place.
No one spoke, so I did.
"You can't. You never could, never had to, because you hold too much sway."
"And you believe her, over us, for nothing?"
I tried to watch her, but everything about her broke me. He was an easier target; calm, cool collectedness which gave me an object to face, to chip away with my questions. He made me brittle.
"She holds proof in something she could never fake." I tapped my temple. "Every memory she helps me find, up here."
He watched me, unflinching, but his blue eyes, crystal clear, suffering, faded in defeat.
"We only wanted to help you. To give you a home –"
"To love you, Edward." Her fingers, soft and barely there, hovering ghost-like above mine, intensified the whisper I wasn't sure she made. Her eyes lifted to mine, glittering green. A small, hushed piece of me drifted to her. I spoke to her alone.
"You couldn't love me with the truth, Esme?"
"It was too easy. Every step, it all fell into place, and one day I found myself believing … that nothing could shatter my lies. A perfect house made of glass." She shook her head. "And a little girl, with a pocket full of rocks."
"That girl … she rescued me. From the greatest mistake I could have made. She saved me from who I wasn't."
"And for that, I will always be thankful, Edward." Her head tilted, hair scattering over her shoulders. "You know, though. I can see it … in your eyes. He's a part of you, too. We are. You can't go back to either life … without loosing the other."
It was a rock, inside of me. Another truth, another judgment, another consequence I would keep for actions which were never mine.
Bella was right … but so was Esme.
We are the sum of our past. My past was twined in two.
"Where will you go?"
I looked around to watch them, his arm around her, united again, waiting to be accepted or denied. She had said the same thing, not so long ago. The girl who saved me by giving me a choice.
Another word, so sudden, and yet so sure the moment it appeared from behind smoke and mirrors.
"I'll find a place." No, I won't commit to you again.
"We could help, you know." Her words were meek, but I couldn't take them for what they were. I may not have been fully Edward, and I may not have been fully Trevor … but from this moment on, I had to be fully me. I would do the rest on my own.
"You've paid my hospital bills, and for that, I can't say thank you enough. But I won't ask or take any more." He began to protest. I looked away. "I know you can. But I won't take it."
"Okay … Edward." Acceptance. Hard pressed, but it lingered in his words, and I respected him for it.
"We still love you. Whatever name you go by, whoever you decide to be, just know … you brought us both back to life. We owe you our marriage. I owe you my happiness. And I'll always consider you," she sniffed, smiling, sad, "my son."
With two bold steps, she laid her hands on my head, pressed her lips against my temple, and then stepped back to him.
"We'll always be here. No matter what."
His words lingered behind him. They accepted defeat … and still loved, with no anger.
Experience defined another moment, another portion of who I would be, and the forgiveness I would work to find, eventually, for them.
Now, it was time to ask for my own forgiveness and pray she didn't turn me away.
I wriggled across starched sheets, and stretched for the phone, hefting its weight in my palm – before putting it down again. I didn't know her number. How was I supposed to call her back?
Three knocks and squeaking hinges.
"Hello? Anybody conscious in here?"
I needed someone to run my plan by anyhow.
"Only if you have what I need."
Curly brown hair peeked around the door.
"Hell, I got that in spades."
The gentle giant who apparently still considered me, apart from Bella, his best friend, pulled the only other chair across the floor and slipped between its armrests.
"And … a certain girl's number."
"Oh, I'm sure I've got plenty of those, too."
"Well, then," I sat up a little straighter and held my hand out, "It looks like you may just be the best man for the job."
My hands were large; his engulfed mine.
"Welcome back, then."
I suspected a slight glisten in his eyes, but he smirked, regardless.
"You've been well missed, man."