"Lizzy, are you ready? Breakfast is nearly done!" Edward exclaimed, turning over the grilled-cheese sandwich he was preparing on his stove.
His six-year-old daughter walked out of her room and into the hallway on the second floor. She leaned against the banister which led to a stairway, and said, "Almost, I'll be down in a second."
Edward finished preparing Lizzy's sandwich and put it on a plate; he took it and set it on her place mat along with a glass of milk.
Just then, she walked into the kitchen with her backpack in hand and sat at the table.
"Did you pack all your stuff, sweetheart?" he asked, taking her backpack while looking at a satchel she draped over her chair.
"Yup," she replied. "I even packed my toothbrush 'cause I don't like the one I have at Mom's."
"Elizabeth, how many times have I told you not to take things with you when you visit your mother over the weekend?" he scolded her. "You always forget to bring them back on Monday."
She rolled her eyes behind her black, thick-rimmed glasses and said, "You could always go get my toothbrush if I forget it, you know?"
Edward smirked crookedly as he became aware of his daughter's intentions: she was trying to get him and Bella back together.
Sometimes he forgot that he was the father of a precocious child, therefore, he underestimated her. Lizzy's attempts to reconcile her parents were futile, though, since Edward couldn't forgive Bella for leaving him and Lizzy when she was just two years old.
He was conscious that it was because their economic situation was deplorable, but it still didn't justify her departure. They both knew it would be difficult to sustain a family when Bella got pregnant during their first year in college, but they agreed to try and moved in together.
Edward began working part time at a tattoo shop, and after Lizzy was born, Bella worked as a waitress at a local diner. They made enough money to go to school, pay their bills and Lizzy's childcare, so Bella's departure was unexpected.
She just left one day and didn't fight for Lizzy's custody when Edward's attorney summoned her a year later, but she did ask to have visitation rights during the weekend. Edward didn't want to see her, so he allowed Bella to pick Lizzy up from day care and drop her off there after the weekend.
They continued the same routine to this day, yet so much had changed. Edward was a different man compared to the one that Bella had fallen in love with; not only was he marked by the ink he wore on his skin, but also by the scars that had tainted his heart.
As for Bella, he didn't know much about her, only that she graduated and worked at an art gallery as a fine art marketer. Although he knew that she loved their daughter, and that's what really mattered to him.
Lizzy finished her breakfast and stood from the table, grabbing her dishes and placing them on the sink. She looked out the window and noticed that a few of her classmates were at the bus stop already.
"I need to get going or I'm going to miss the bus, Dad," she told Edward.
"Okay, let's get your stuff," he said, walking over to the table to grab her satchel and her backpack. They stood at their doorway as Edward leaned down in front of Lizzy and put her satchel and her backpack on.
After placing a kiss on her forehead, he said, "Call me if you need anything, okay? Love you, baby girl."
"Okay, Daddy. Love you, too," she replied, lifting up on her tiptoes and placing a smoochy kiss on his cheek before walking out the door.