A/N: Welcome to the Double Bind! We do have to warm you that this story isn't for the faint of heart. We've had to rate this story as M because of the violence, language, sex, and situations that this story holds. Please don't take the rating lightly.

Thanks for taking the journey with us into a Twilight fiction that reaches through to more than Twilight. We have not only Edward, but all of the characters that Robert Pattinson has played to date (with the exception of Eric Maddox from Mission Blacklist). Each chapter's title is a quote spoken by the character in the respective movie.

This chapter holds not only Edward Anthony Masen(Jr. - Twilight), Rawdy Crawley (Vanity Fair), and Giselher (Ring of the Nibelungs, or Curse of the Ring) . For more info on our story and the characters within, and/or Rob's characters and movies, please check our profile page for links to our blogs (story and fan).

We want to let you know, that this story is finished. We intend on posting one chapter a week until the end (real life not getting in the way, we hope).

And before we start, we'd like to thank our wonderful, braTTy beTTa, kiTT (Tongue Twied). Without her guidance and editing skills, this story would not have come together as well as it did. Thank you!

~ItsJustMe1217 & RPfangirlJR

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We do not own Twilight. Sadly. That Belongs totally to S. Meyer. We do not own Rob's movie characters. They are of his bringing to life, and the screenwriters' imaginations. And lastly, we do not own ROB. We wish. ROB is a man who totally rules our worlds, and we do our best to obey.

This story, the images for it are entirely ours.

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*~*I HOPE YOU'LL GRANT ME YOUR INDULGENCE. -Rawdy Crawley, Vanity Fair*~*

You mustn't read and yet you have to read.

This is the double bind.

It's wrong to act and it's wrong not to. There's no escape and whatever happens it's your fault. When Daddy tells you that he loves you, that you are special, but then hurts you horribly; when you're told that you'll go to Hell if you tell your secret; when you are instructed to honor your father and mother despite their betrayal and when you know that you are responsible for making these horrors happen, you're in a double bind. The double bind, repeated over and over, is a living contradiction that simply blows your mind.

*~*Anthony*~*

My head is pounding. I try to open my eyes but with every crushing blow my eyes automatically blink closed again. Damn thing feels like it weighs fifty pounds. The smell. What is that smell? I lie completely still and close my eyes again tightly, trying to will away the blinding pain. After a few long, excruciating minutes, I realize I can't just lay here. I have to get up and do...whatever it is I am supposed to be doing. I feel that there is something I need to finish but I have no idea what it is. The thought nags me, digging at the back of my subconscious, making my head pound harder.

Pussy, you've had headaches before.

It's true. I often have headaches, some more debilitating than this one. I've got to get up, my mind tells me the consequences could be severe if I don't. I slowly open my other eye and try to gain my bearings. What is that smell? Nothing else on my body seems to hurt but the pounding of my head is so severe that I may not notice any other pains for a while. That's good-different, but good. A great deal of the time, my unexplained and sudden headaches are accompanied by other bodily aches and pains, sometimes gashes and bruises too. The most troubling part is that I can never remember how I got the wounds. I tend to black out and when I wake up, I have lost hours, sometimes days, of time. It's disconcerting, but what can I do?

Time is an elusive son-of-a-bitch; it flies, it crawls, and sometimes, it disappears.

I don't want to cause any more trouble for my family. Money has been tight and I have noticed that things are steadily getting worse. The water was shut off two weeks ago and I don't reckon I have had a shower since then. I feel disgusting but it's not that different from the repelling feeling emanating from the inside of me that no amount of water could possibly rinse away. It's normal right? That's how all people feel? It must be because that's how I feel all the time. My dad's been laid off for a couple of years now and with no prospects in sight, my parents have enough to deal with.

Upon remembering my parents, I sit up so quickly that my head spins.

I feel like I might vomit but I don't think I have anything to expel. I hang my head in hands and try to breathe in through my nose and out through my mouth to steady myself. My hands, against my face, feel wet and sticky. What the hell?

I remove my hands and look down. Blood. My hands are covered in blood. I stare at the congealing liquid drying into the creases of my hands and fingers in some places but still trickling down my arms in others. The smell, I now recognize as the metallic scent of blood, fills the room and the need to vomit is an overpowering reaction. I dry heave and my stomach contracts violently. I wrap my arms around my middle, trying to hold myself together.

I can see tiny nicks and cuts up and down my arms and, on my hands. I look down my body and see that my pants are ripped down one leg from my thigh to my shin. My shirt is hanging in tatters and I only have on one shoe.

The blood, it's everywhere. My clothes are soaked and suddenly I can't breathe. What the hell happened here? I look around me and see that I am in the kitchen floor of my home. There is blood all around me on the floor and red hand prints on the faded white walls.

Red.

I rack my brain for any tiny piece of information that I can conjure to explain this but come up empty. The last thing I can remember is standing in front of the refrigerator with my stomach growling. An urge to run hits me so hard that I am on my feet before the thought is even complete in my mind. The kitchen is a total disaster. There are broken dishes on the countertops and floor. The window above the sink is broken. The refrigerator door stands open and askew. Jugs filled with water are overturned, and some of the water is leaking out onto the floor, mingling with the blood and spreading it further.

I walk around the island in the middle of the space and slip in a puddle of blood, hitting my chin on the counter and letting out a yelp of pain as I go down hard. I wince as my hands reach out in front of me to break my fall and broken glass pierces my already bloody skin. I sit up rapidly, scooting out of the puddle and come face to face with my mother's form sprawled in front of the open fridge.

Her eyes are open but she doesn't move when I call out to her. Slowly, I reach my hand out and touch her shoulder. I give a little push but she doesn't move. Bracing myself, I reach out further and feel along her neck for a pulse. Nothing. My legs kick out in front of me and I scramble away from her, my feet leaving trails in the puddled blood.

"Oh God," my anguished scream echoes through the house.

Deep breaths, in and out, in and out. I have no idea how long I sit with my back to the wall, breathing and trying to make sense of the utter fuckery around me.

Deep breaths quickly give way to sobs and my heart feels torn in two-like part of me is dead as well.

"Your heart can't possibly break when it was never really whole to begin with," a voice in my head growls.

"I loved her. She...she was my mother," I desperately reason with myself aloud.

'Is love supposed to bleed?" another voice asks quietly.

I shake my head to rid myself of the confusion and anguish I feel.

Where do I go?

What do I do?

Where is my dad?

I don't want to think about that. I push it away. Way in the back of my mind, up the staircase and behind a brick wall is a steel file cabinet where I keep the things that I cannot deal with. I lock the scary and horrible truths of life there where no one can find them-not even me.

"Get up. Get up. Get up," I hear it growing louder and louder and realize it is my own voice. In a panic, I leap from the floor and run for the bathroom. The blood on my skin is drying rapidly and feels too constricting. I throw off my shirt and kick off my other shoe as I race down the hall, intent on getting this blood off of me. My throat feels tight and it's getting harder and harder to breathe.

I make it to the bathroom, throw open the door and twist the knobs on the sink. Nothing. I forgot about the water being shut off. I can't rinse the blood off and I'm suffocating.

"Suffer. Suffocate. Suffer. Suffocate," I find myself chanting these words, over and over. It relaxes me somewhat, although I'm not sure why.

I place my hands on the grimy vanity and look down at them. Blood. I jerk my head up and look in the mirror. My face and neck are caked in it. Red. As I watch, a few drops drip down my forehead and into my left eye. Suddenly, red is all I see. I scan the room for something to wipe my eyes out with but all that's here is the faded yellow shower curtain surrounding the tub. It's pulled open slightly and half of the curtain is swept inside while the rest hangs over the lip of the tub. Dread fills my stomach as I step closer and see a foot dangling over the edge.

"Dad?"

I don't want to see but I have to look. My feet move of their own accord, propelling me nearer.

The naked body of my father is sprawled in the empty tub, his left arm bent at an unnatural angle behind him. A bucket with water is between his legs and empty milk jugs litter the floor.

"At least, he got to clean up," I say out loud, and then I hear myself laughing. The sound seems to come from far away, hysterical and wild.

I see the tattoo on his right bicep and it causes me to laugh harder, clutching at my stomach. Most people have the names of the people they love tattooed on their bodies; my father has his own name, Edward, scrawled on the muscle in flowing black script.

My eyes travel higher and the laughter dies in my throat. The part of the shower curtain that is pulled in the stall is wrapped around his face so tightly, I can see the outline of his features, his eyes cold and lifeless and his mouth agape. Vomit erupts from my mouth and all over his cold body.

"Oh Dear God," I pray, "I can't handle this. I can't. I'm strong on the surface but not all the way through."

Backing out of the room, I keep going, through the house and out the door. Faster and faster, I move, around the house and into the woods. I run until, my feet my won't carry me any further and I sink to the ground under a maple tree.

My chest hurts, my stomach is sick, and my head is thumping. My body is a road map of pain.

"King of pain," a voice whispers.

I lean my head back against the trunk of the tree and watch the snow pepper lazily from the sky and through the branches. On one limb, above my face, hangs a single red leaf.

Red.

The color makes me feel ill again.

No, it makes me feel like a sinner.

My head hurts so bad, I can't keep my eyes open. I allow them to drift closed but I can still feel my left eye twitching wildly. The spasm spreads through my body, racking me with tremors, that causes me to slump over and curl into myself. There is only one place to go. One place I can escape.

In my mind, I climb the stairway and step behind the brick wall, making sure to stay well away from the padlocked cabinet.

*~*Sam Uley*~*

A quiet night. I am thankful for it. Not like there's ever much going on in our small town, but it seems that lately, business has been picking up. Not a good thing when you are in 'the protect and serve' business like I am.

I pull the squad car outside of the Forks Café and order Paul to run in and get our coffees and sandwiches. He grumbles but does as he's told. I pick up the newest issue of Fisherman Magazine from the center console and flip through the pages, stopping on a full page ad for the Olympic Peninsula Steelhead fishing competition. Two more weeks, and I would be on vacation and praying to win the grand prize of ten thousand dollars.

"What are you smiling about?" Paul asks as he sits in the car and pulls out my coffee, handing it to me.

"Just thinking of my vacation in a few weeks," I answer, taking my coffee and sipping it slowly.

Paul hands me my sandwich, and as I take it from him, he tells me, "Emily says hello."

I set my coffee into the cup holder and take my sandwich from Paul. As I take a bite, I give him a 'Hmmmm.'

"So when are you going to ask her out?"

I shrug and take another bite, savoring the delightful club sandwich made especially for me by Emily with her own mayonnaise recipe. As I move the sandwich to my mouth for another bite, a call interrupts my peaceful meal.

"Deputy Chief Uley… we have a 415-B, " the dispatcher notifies us.

I pick up the handheld unit of the police radio. "This is Uley. Proceed."

"Sorry to interrupt your quiet night, Sam, but there's a domestic disturbance call that just came into the station a moment ago," the dispatcher replies. "I thought you'd like to take it."

"Location?" I ask as Paul packs up our sandwiches and fastens his seat belt.

"I'm sure you already know, Chief. The Masen place."

I glance to Paul and roll my eyes. "Thanks. We got it."

I replace the handset and fasten my seatbelt as Paul says, "I can't believe it. Third fucking night in a row!"

I start the car up, put it into drive and turn on the lights but no siren. I don't want them to know I'm coming. I was just hoping that I could get there and find that man in the act, something that would allow me to take him down once and for all.

It's something we have been dealing with for years now in our small town. It's like our fucking small town secret. Everyone knows but no one speaks of it.

Edward Masen beats his kid.

I have been trying for years to help out Mrs. Masen – Elizabeth – and her son, Anthony, but they never say a word against him. They act as though I'm the crazy one. It's frustrating as hell, because without their word, I have nothing concrete to arrest the bastard on.

It's not long before I am pulling into Red Alder Heights, a newer, upper middle class suburb of Forks. Most of the houses here are two–story and fairly grand, although they are not mansions. The cars in the driveways are lower-end BMWs and Volvos with a sprinkling of some Jeeps and larger SUVs. The neighborhood is decorated for Christmas with lights on almost every house. The lawns are nicely manicured, but this night they are covered with snow as we experience the first snowy days of the winter season.

Turning on Juniper Circle, I make my way to the last house on the street, at the apex of the circle. The large, sprawling one-story stone house has a few lights on as we pull into the driveway. The clouds are hanging low, almost touching the tree tops of the forest of tall trees behind the house. Eerie.

Paul and I get out of the squad car. As I slide my baton into my belt, Paul remarks, "This is fucking giving me the creeps. It's too quiet."

I nod in agreement. Something wasn't feeling right. Usually on a call, we hear yelling, screaming, crying… something that gives their secret away. But not tonight… Tonight, the silence is deafening. I take a deep breath and begin crunching through the snow towards the front door. I look around then knock.

Paul and I wait…

No answer.

I ring the bell and yell, "Mr. Masen, it's Deputy Chief Sam Uley with the Forks Police Department. We had a disturbance call come in."

A few more moments pass, and there is still no answer. I look at Paul and tell him that we're going in. He draws his weapon, as do I, and on the count of three we ram our shoulders into the right door of the double-door entry. The door flies open with no resistance and we stop dead cold in the foyer.

"The door wasn't even locked," I say, making a mental note of the odd fact.

I point to the dining room behind Paul and tell him, "You check that way, I'll start in the room behind me. If you see anything, call for me."

Paul nods and starts walking slowly through the dining room, his weapon is by his head, ready to use, if need be.

"Mr. Edward Masen, this is Deputy Chief Uley. There are currently two officers in your home. Please stay where you are until we come across you!" I yell as I slowly step into the formal living room. I check around the curtains, the unlit Christmas tree, and around the furniture to find no one at all.

The second I step back into the foyer, I hear Paul scream, "Sam! We have a woman down!"

I put my gun into the holster and run the same direction that Paul walked moments before. I turn the corner, almost running into Paul who had the kitchen blocked with his arm.

I stop and he points to the woman on the floor in front of him. Elizabeth Masen. Her eyes are open, but dilated. She is covered in lacerations and blood, with blood drying and puddled on the floor below her.

"Pulse?" I ask and Paul shakes his head sadly.

"What's with the streaks?" I asked, nodding towards the long tracks made from someone sliding in the red pool that extended from Elizabeth's lifeless body.

I tell Paul not to touch anything and to call for backup as I walk back around to get to the other side of the kitchen. I make my way through the dining room, then the foyer and into the family room, where I see a trail of bloodied footprints going from the kitchen to the hall on the opposite side of the room.

"Fuck! Paul, I need you to close off the house! I'm going to follow this trail!" I instruct him, redrawing my weapon. I carefully enter the hallway, trying not to disturb the prints on the carpeting.

"Mr. Masen! Anthony!" I call out, hoping to get an answer but only receiving silence in return.

I slowly walk down the hall, passing a shoe and a discarded, blood-soaked shirt, and see the trail turn into a bathroom on the right side. I carefully step inside and am horrifically shocked at what I am seeing. There are bloody handprints all over the counter and the sink. Blood is smeared on the mirror, as well as splattered across the floor.

I hear a gurgle and turn my attention to the bathtub. My mind isn't processing as fast as it normally does, and it takes me a moment to realize that it is Mr. Masen wrapped in that dingy yellow shower curtain in the tub and covered with vomit. I try not to step on the blood as I make my way to the tub, carefully reach my hand down to check him, and pull it back in surprise as another gurgle escapes him. I reach for his neck and feel the slightest pulse beating beneath the curtain.

Half of me wants him to die there for everything he has done. He didn't deserve to live. He was an asshole who beat his son and had him so fucking terrified that he couldn't… he wouldn't ask for help. His wife was so afraid to say anything herself that she virtually withdrew from the world. I don't think I saw her in town once over the past few years. God only knows what he did to them in this house behind these closed doors.

And no matter how fucking much I want him to die, I can't do it. It goes against my core… my internal promise to protect and serve the citizens of Forks. Saying a quick prayer, I pull my pocketknife from my belt and cut a slit into the shower curtain and loosen what was wrapped around his neck to help him breathe.

Embry shows up in the doorway and reports, "Jared is outside lining the police tape around the front perimeter. The investigation unit is on the way."

"Call the medics and tell them we need another ambulance. Mr. Masen is still with us. You stay with him. I need to find Anthony… I pray to God that he's still alive."

Embry nods and takes my place at Masen's side. I look back into the hallway, looking for a hint or clue as to where to go next. Then I notice something a few doors down on the jamb along the left hand side of the hallway – a small streak of blood about shoulder height.

I go into the room – their office – and look around. There are blood covered papers on the desk that are being blown by the light, icy breeze blowing in through the back door. I notice that the handle and curtain on the glass door is covered with blood as well. I look out into the backyard and see droplets and footprints that are being covered as another round of snow begins.

"Anthony!" I call out into the large yard. "Anthony, are you out here?"

I receive no answer, but my gut is telling me to follow the prints. I order into the walkie and say, "Close off the entire area. I'm following the prints that run through the back yard. Still no sign of Anthony."

"Yes, Chief," Jared's voice replies.

Keeping my weapon ready, I slowly make my way through the backyard. My feet are crunching in the snow with every step I take. My breath is coming out in cold, smoky billows as my breathing picks up speed. I quickly follow the prints that are leading me through the yard and into the dense forest that extends beyond.

I can't tell how long I've been following the trail before I got within earshot of the stream, but it's not long after the trail stops cold, buried under the blanket of the new snow.

I mumble an expletive, and the curse floats in a cold haze from my mouth. I lean against a tree for a moment, thinking of where to go from here. Where should I look? Did I miss a turn back there?

Just as I'm about to continue, I hear a small breath hitch from behind me. I turn and notice Anthony Masen; he's curled into a small half-naked ball against a large maple tree. I approach him slowly. "Anthony, are you alright, son? What happened? Is there someone out here with you?"

He looks at me blankly. I have never seen him look so empty… so disconnected before.

I click the button on the walkie that's attached to my jacket. "Paul, I found Anthony Masen. We're out beyond the property line in the forest about thirty feet away from the stream. Oh God, he's covered in blood. He seems to be in shock. His arms and hands are covered in contusions and lacerations. I need you to get the medics out here ASAP. That son of a bitch Masen finally did it. Once he leaves, make sure Embry notifies the Chief of all of this. He'll want to know. I'm staying with Anthony until he is on that gurney."

"Yes, Chief. The second ambulance is pulling away with Mr. Masen right now. I'll radio for a third."

I pull Anthony towards me and I notice that he feels sweaty and cold. I look closely and see that the area around his lips have a bluish tone; he is pale white otherwise. His breathing is rapid and I fear that he may be starting to suffer from the cold as well as being in shock.

I start to wrap him in my jacket and I see a sight that would put me into shock. There are all sorts of bruises along his ribs and abdomen that I had never seen before. He leans against me, and as I start to wrap my jacket around him, I see the same bruising all over his back.

I finally wrap him snugly in my jacket and keep him close to me to help keep him warm.

As we sit there, I wonder how many more bruises are being masked by blood, how many bones are broken this time, and how much pain he endured at his father's hands. I want Masen dead.

"Help is coming, Anthony. It's almost here," I tell him quietly, although I'm not sure he can hear or understand one word I am saying.

*~*Anthony*~*

The red flashing lights of the ambulance terrified me but I was so cold and so tired as I slouch and allow Officer Uley to help me into the back of the truck. He's climbed in behind me and holds my hand, telling me everything would be okay. I have no idea what he means but I am calmed by his voice.

The hospital was bright-too bright and I had to squint my eyes. They put me in a room alone and for that I was thankful. A small, balding man who said I could call him Dr. Marcus takes x-rays. He speaks softly to me, explaining what he is doing, and I allow myself to drift off while he did his job. When he is finished, he dims the lights in the room and says I can take a shower if I want.

The hot water felt so good. I stood under the spray and watched as the dirt and redness from my body swirled down the drain. The small bar of soap they have allowed me smells clean and and I wanted to be like that-fresh and sweet. The cuts on my hands and arms stung when the pulsing water hits them and I'm a sick bastard because I like the way it hurts. I don't want to anger anyone by taking too long so I finish quickly, put on the gown they've given me, and exit the small bathroom.

As I sit on the edge of the bed, an elderly, grey-haired woman in pink stripes carries in a tray of food. The smell is delicious, my stomach rumbling. The woman laughs heartily and uncovers meatloaf, mashed potatoes, green beans, a small roll, and green jello on the tray and my eyes well with tears at the sight.

"Awww sweetie," she coos and reaches to ruffle my hair.

Her voice is loud, startling me, and I flinch from her touch. Her eyes become very sad and I feel bad for making her feel that way. I hadn't meant to and I smile slightly letting her know how sorry I am. After that, she sits by my bed while I eat and seems to make an effort to keep her voice muted. She encourages me not to eat too quickly but I can't help it. I shovel the food in my mouth, barely chewing before I swallow.

"When was the last time you ate sweetie?" she asks. I think about it for a moment but I can't remember, and it hurts my head when I try, so I just shrug my shoulders.

I am still hungry when the food is gone but I don't want to seem ungrateful by asking for more. She removes the tray and I recline back into the pillows, suddenly so overwhelmed with exhaustion. I hold very still and let the lady cover me up with the thin, white blanket, feeling a strange tugging in my chest at the action as tears trickle down my cheeks.

"Close your eyes sweetie. You're safe. I promise," the lady says with conviction.

I vaguely remember hearing that before.

It was a lie. It was always a lie.

The light is streaming through the windows when I hear a noise that wakes me from a terrible dream in which huge flocks of sparrows were sweeping down from the sky, hitting windows and bouncing off cars hard enough to leave dents. I open my eyes and realize it is a knock at the door but pull the covers closer to my chin, feeling exposed and disoriented from the dream.

The door opened a fraction and Officer Uley poked his head in. Noticing that I am awake, he strolls calmly into the room.

I smile when he nears me, he has always been nice to me and I like him.

"He's a cop, not your friend. Don't trust him," a voice whispers assuredly.

My smile falters and I scoot down in the bed farther, shrinking away from him.

The officer didn't seem to notice my hesitance and continues to foot of my bed. "Did you sleep well Anthony?" he asks with honest concern in his voice.

"Lie," the voice sneered.

I nod, not knowing what to say. My head is begins to hurt again.

Officer Uley nods too, looking guiltily away for a moment. "Son, I need to ask you some questions. I think you know that," he says, raising his arm to rub at the back of neck.

"Lie better," sneers the voice.

Officer Uley pulls up a chair from against the wall to my bedside and takes out his pen and paper. He sighs heavily and returns his gaze to me, "Can you tell me what happened last night, Anthony?"

"I-I-don't know...I..." I concentrate, trying to think of the best way to respond but before I can pick out any words Officer Uley speaks again, "Was there someone else in your home? Did your father have someone over? A business associate maybe?"

"Ummm..." He seems to want me to say something, expects it almost, but I'm not sure what. I search my mind, through the shelves of stored memories. On the floor, in the section referenced as 'folklore,' I find a Polaroid photo. The photo shows no subject. Instead, overexposure had turned the square photo completely red.

"Something bad happened...," I sputter out, feeling my legs and arms begin to shake violently.

"Bring on the shackles...," the voice speaks sarcastically.

"Well, we noticed that the front door was unlocked, but there is no physical evidence that someone other than your father, your mother, and you had been in your home," the officer leads, watching me wearily.

"Anthony, just calm down son. I only need you to tell me the truth." He considers a moment, looks me pointedly in the eye and adds, "No matter what that truth is, okay?"

I agree wearily with a nod.

"Look, let's start with your mother. Do you know what happened to her?"

"No," I moan out, covering my eyes with my hands as rocked, trying to control the tremors.

"She was found in the kitchen in front of the refrigerator. Do you know what state she was found in?"

"No," I said loudly, "I don't know. I can't...can't...r-rrremember."

"Anthony...," Officer Uley speaks hesitantly.

"No, no, no, no," I chant.

The door pushes open and Dr. Marcus barges in, demanding, "Officer, what do you think you're doing? My patient requires quiet." The doctor pauses then speaks more softly, "This boy has been through a lot."

"I know that doctor. I'm only doing my job," Officer Uley says, suddenly sounding unsure. "I want to help him," he adds conspiratorially.

I clear my throat, easily feeling in charge now that I have relinquished control. Another voice speaks now. His voice will be just like my own but more authoritative. The door to the memories is open but I bypass it and instead retreat up the stairs, thankful to be able to breathe better with every stair I climb.

"Anthony...," both men ask tentatively, stepping toward the bed.

"My name, Sir, is Lord Rawdy Crawley, and I'll thank you both to exit my chambers immediately."

The two men stare at me in awe, then exchange a sad, knowing look before turning to leave.

"Punishment for your rudeness will be swift! Send in my guards!" I call after them.

Days have passed as I sit in this wretched place. There is no peace to be had as they refuse to leave me alone. I have tried to be patient, as a gentleman, I hold my tongue, but the restraint on my temper is wearing thin.

A knock at the door causes me to grit my teeth in annoyance. Dr. Marcus and Officer Uley, as they have introduced themselves, enter. They hesitate by the door, increasing my frustration.

"What say you?" I beckon, ready to put the preamble behind us and move forward from the dread of these chambers.

"We'd like to ask you a few more questions Ant...er...Rawdy," the doctor speaks first.

Officer Uley speaks up then, stepping closer. "Just please tell me the truth, Anthony. There is no need to lie or pretend. I know what you've been through Anthony, and I will help you, I swear to you I will."

"I make no false pretenses. What are these accusations?" I demand.

"We know that you were the only one in the house Anthony," the officer says sadly. "I understand. I do. I just need you to tell me the truth."

"I do not know what you are speaking of. And my name is not Anthony, it would bode well for you to remember that," I reply harshly.

The officer and the doctor convene, whispering amongst themselves. My eyes begins to spasm as I take in the display of brazen discourtesies.

When Officer Uley turns back to me, his face is a mask of anger, marching toward my bedside.

"I know you Anthony Masen and I have tried to help you but I will not be played for a fool. Now, tell me the truth," he spits out.

"I don't..." my voice quells in my throat, my muscles seizing abruptly.

"Tell me Anthony. Tell me right now," he yells.

The sound of his angry voice focuses on me, sending shivers up my spine. Suddenly I am wracked with trembling. Tighter and tighter, my body clenches as I fade away from this ambivalent tribulation.

-oOo-OoO-oOo-OoO-oOo-

The man standing over me is frightening, but I am a warrior and therefore show no weakness.

"Your stance suggests war. Shall we draw swords?" I challenge, moving to stand from the bed.

The doctor moves to stop me, asking, "Are you alright Anthony?"

"You, my good sir, may call me Giselher."

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*POST A/N:

**The inside of Anthony's mind, as described, is a tribute to Stephen King's 'Dreamcatcher' which, of course, refers back to Twilight.

Thanks for reading and [hopefully] reviewing the first chapter of The Double Bind. Chapter two will be posted next week.