Disclaimer: Stephenie owns their names, I own the rest.
Killerlashes betas, ThatIsRiddik promised to hold my hand.
I don't know how updates will be so I apologize in advance.
This is going to hurt a little.
PS - This is in no way associated with Accidental Atonement, just FYI.
All the King's Horses – Prologue
When an unexpected tragedy threatens to tear their family apart, Leah and Edward must find the strength to put the pieces back together.
The house was dark as I pulled up, my first clue that she was pissed. Not even the porch light had been left on. I groaned as I dragged myself out of the car and up the front steps, not wanting to face her wrath but knowing I would have to do it eventually.
I slipped off my coat and let it fall to the floor by the front door. My keys clanged loudly as I dropped them on the dining room table, but I didn't notice. The alcohol had made me numb in more ways than one. As I made my way down the hall to our bedroom I started to shrug out of my shirt, too eager for the solace of a soft bed and a warm body beside me, no matter how mad my wife would be.
All thoughts of sleep left me, however, when I tried and failed to open the door.
It was locked.
I knocked loudly.
"Open the door," I called, and then waited to no avail. I knocked again, with a closed fist this time. The sound of it echoed through the house.
"Come on, Leah." I pressed my forehead to the wood and sighed. "Open the goddamned door!" I hit the door with an open palm knowing that even if she were dead asleep it would wake her up.
"Are you fucking kidding me right now, Edward?" The door finally swung open and I sighed with relief. My relief was short-lived however when I caught sight of her eyes, bright with anger directed solely at me.
"Finally," I grumbled and tried to side-step her into the bedroom. She held her arm against the door jamb and glared.
"I just got Caroline to sleep. Will you keep your voice down?" she said through clenched teeth.
"I just want to sleep. Can't we argue about this tomorrow?" I rolled my eyes and leaned against the wall.
"Of course we can. We always do, don't we?" Leah said softly, and I swear I heard her voice crack. Before I could answer she'd closed the door again, closing me out of my own bedroom.
I swore and made my way down the hall to Caroline's room, wondering whether the couch or her little twin bed would leave me worse for wear in the morning. I stopped at the door before Caroline's, though; there was something off about it. The door had hardly been opened in six months, but now it was, cracked just enough to let the faint light from the streetlamp spill into the hallway.
With shaking hands I traced the stenciled E on the door with my finger before pushing the door open further and stepping inside. I felt my breath leave me as I did. It was a study in green, his favorite color. Toys were scattered on the floor and the bed was unmade. There was an empty glass on the nightstand and a pair of tennis shoes at my feet. All part of the everyday detritus of little-boydom, looking as though its owner would walk back in here any second.
It smelled like him, too. Like little boy: dirt and books and laundry detergent.
I felt my eyes fill with tears and before I knew what was happening I was on my knees with my head in my hands.
Six months ago we'd lost him.
Six months ago our lives, our family– everything– had started to unravel.
After a moment I picked myself off the floor and fell into his bed, not caring about dust or dirt or anything else. I buried myself in his pillow and breathed deeply, wishing he were still with us– with me.
I wished I could hold him one last time. That I could kiss him goodnight or read him one last bedtime story.
But I couldn't.
He was gone and I couldn't do anything about it.
All I could do was let the pain consume me each and every day because if it didn't hurt then it felt like he hadn't been real.
And I had to believe he was real.