I do not own Twilight. Thanks to my Beta Kyra Renee for her help and guidance.
Running back from my hunt with Eleazar, we heard an ear-splitting scream "NO!" coming from the Denali's house one mile out and our discussion over how best to handle Edward and his stubbornness regarding Bella ended abruptly as a result and we sprinted to the house.
I was immediately met with a sobbing Esme "Alice had a vision of Bella. She jumped, Carlisle. She jumped."
I sought Alice out, who was frantically packing a suitcase. "I have to go to Charlie. I have to see if there's anything I can do to help," she said to me. "God dammit, Edward! Why couldn't you listen? Stupid ass," she muttered to herself. Alice turned to me and went on "I saw her jump off a cliff into the Ocean, but I didn't see her come back up. Why did we leave? Why did we listen to him? What is this going to do to him? He's already a wreck. Oh God, Bella," she cried. I've never seen Alice so distraught and upset over anything. In the background we could hear Rosalie speaking with Irina. "I don't understand what the big deal is. She's human and we're not. The problem is now solved and we can go back and be normal again. No more hiding out. She was nice and all, but…"
I had to physically restrain Alice from flying out to Rosalie. I said in as commanding a voice I could without betraying my own anger and worry: "Show some respect, Rose. She was Edward's mate and Alice's best friend." I looked Alice in the eyes and saw all her hurt and sadness these last few months have caused. I could the depths of her grief over losing Bella and the obvious truth that she won't soon recover.
"Carlisle, Jasper won't forgive himself for this. What if Edward never recovers?" I held her tightly and tried to comfort her, but she was inconsolable.
"Go. I'll tell the others that no one is to tell Edward of this news – at least until after the funeral. We don't want him going to Forks and lighting himself on fire. Esme and I will go to him in Rio to tell him. We'll bring him to Isle Esme so that he can grieve in privacy. Call us when you get there. Here, take my car – the gas tank is full," I said to her as I handed her the keys.
In a flash, she was gone. I found Esme hugging herself. As I got closer to her, I could see she was holding a framed picture of Edward and Bella. She turned to look at me before speaking: "We failed them both, Carlisle. We should've made him see reason. He'll be lost to us forever, won't he?"
I could only hold my wife as I had no words of comfort for her. We held each other for a long time before Esme spoke again: "We need to go to Edward now. We can't wait. What if he calls one of us and hears our thoughts? Let's go."
"Yes, we need to leave soon. But I need to tell everyone what's happened. I hear Emmett and Jasper back from their hunt. Let's go tell them." I said as I took Esme's hand and walked to the Denali's living room.
I called all of their names and those of our hosts and beckoned them to the living room. "Jasper, Emmett I have news, though I'm sure Alice called you," I said while looking at Jasper.
"Yes, she did. Carlisle, I can't express how sorry –," Jasper began but I cut him off.
"Jasper, it's no one's fault. It is what it is, and nothing more. I don't want anyone blaming you or anyone else for that matter for the events that have taken place. Now, Esme and I are going to fly to Rio and tell Edward ourselves. I don't want any of you to call him and tell him by phone. Is that clear?" I was met with nods from almost everyone. I stared Rosalie down, wiping off the look of hesitation from her face, daring her to defy me. I was not in the mood to give them a dressing down, but I would. I could only hope Jasper and Rosalie would stop arguing for now.
"Carlisle? I overheard you speaking with Alice earlier, about how you and Esme would go to him and I took the liberty of booking your flights," Tanya said, sounding on the brink of tears. While I don't have my son's ability to read minds, I can plainly see Tanya's worry and concern for him. "Unfortunately, the earliest flight I could get is the last flight out from Seattle tonight and there are numerous connections. You can take my car if you need to as there are no available flights from Anchorage to Seattle."
As everything was settled, all we could do was be on our way and hope Edward would come out of this someday.
On our way to Seattle, few words were spoken between Esme and me. What could we say? We wished things were different, but they were not. Hours passed in silence with nothing but my fervent hope that we can somehow help Edward recover from his loss. Hours for me to worry if Alice will forgive him or herself for Bella's demise. Hours for me to worry about Rosalie: would she and Alice be able to salvage their relationship? On and on my mind worked on itself.
We were just turning into the Airport parking lot when I received Alice's call. "I'm here. I am on the road leading to Bella's waiting for Charlie to come home. I'm not sure what's going on Carlisle. I keep seeing all kinds of different futures. I keep seeing Edward climb into Bella's window and beg her for forgiveness. I guess it means he doesn't know yet, huh. It is confusing because I can't shake it. Wait a minute… Holy Crowe!"
"Alice, what is going on? Alice? ALICE!" I shouted into the phone in an effort to get her attention again.
"Carlisle! It's her! She's alive! I don't understand this, but Bella is alive. She's walking towards the car. I'll call you back. Bye"
I looked at Esme utterly confused. "Well, it appears Alice isn't infallible after all. What do you want to do?"
Esme beamed a smile: "Bella's alive?" I nod. "Oh thank God! Let's go home to Forks. I want to see her and give her a big hug. Maybe give her a talking to for scaring us."
"Es, I don't think that's a good idea. I agree with you about not going back to Denali, but I think it's best if we go home to Ithaca and form a plan to get Edward back. I think the idea of having Alice, Emmett and I talk to him is still the best."
Esme looked crestfallen "I just miss them both so much."
We changed our flight plans and made our way home to Ithaca, New York. We both felt the need for calm after this exhausting day.
We finally arrived in Ithaca and were in our home. Esme and I really wanted to speak with Edward, but we also agreed he'd likely hear our thoughts of what has transpired these last twenty-four hours and thought better of it. Both of us needed to calm down from the emotional roller coaster of the last few weeks of watching Edward lose his grip with reality. We hadn't really spoken in weeks; whenever we'd call he would answer and hang up without breathing a word.
It was late afternoon when my phone rang.
"Carlisle, I need you to sit down now," Jasper said in a tone that was far too calm, even for him.
"What's going on, Jasper?"
"Alice told me you are aware that Bella is alive. She decided to spend the night with Bella and catch up with how Bella's been doing. Well, thing is, Alice didn't call me to tell me Bella was fine until early this morning. Um, and I guess I should have let the others know immediately…"
I suddenly realized what he was telling me.
"Who told Edward? Who told him she jumped off a cliff? Who defied my order?" I roared in to the receiver.
"Carlisle, Edward called Rosalie, and…"
"That woman knows no bounds!" I yelled. I took a deep breath in an effort to calm myself. "Esme and I will go to Rio and bring him back by force if we have to."
"That's not the whole story, Carlisle." I could hear the hesitation in his voice and I was quickly losing my patience.
"Out with it!" I demanded as I felt I knew what he was about to tell me.
"Edward is on his way to Italy. He is seeking an Audience with the Volturi. Emmett and Rosalie were to follow and try to stop him, but after speaking with Alice we all realize there is only one person who can stop him. Only one person he can't hear. He'd hear us a mile away and do something stupid, but he can't hear…"
"Bella." I cut him off. "Jasper, they'll kill her, and then they'll kill him."
"Alice doesn't know that for sure. We're all counting on her visions right now; they're all we've got. She told me to prepare you for the worst. It's not fifty-fifty here. There is a very good chance none of them make it out of there." I heard his worry and desperation. His mate was at risk too.
After a pregnant pause I found my voice: "Everyone flies back to Forks immediately. We'll have to do a massive cleanup if this goes south and Bella deserves a memorial by her loved ones if this is unsuccessful."
"Ok. I'll take care of it. Carlisle, I…"
"I know. I know. Hopefully we won't have to know if we can live without them."
We said our goodbyes and I just stood there for a long time thinking about Edward. My mind froze with fear so deep it was painful and paralyzing. I wasn't even aware that Esme was shouting at me and pulling at my arms to gain my attention.
I looked into my wife's eyes and without a word she knew. We collapsed in each other's arms and tearlessly wept. I had to accept the possibility of never seeing my first son again. I had all kinds of scenarios in my mind. I briefly wondered if Aro would accept a phone call from me. Would he listen to my pleas? Would he overlook our exposure to a human and grant me a favor? No. I knew he wouldn't and he'd likely seek us to met out our punishment for this crime.
Esme stood and pulled me to her. As she caressed my face she whispered "Let's go."
Time is standing still. What's left of my family is here is Forks, Washington, waiting for news. We are all obsessively looking at our phones, willing them to ring. Jasper has had to leave the house as our anxieties were crippling him.
I found myself pacing and remembering Edward and I felt much like a Parent remembering their child's infancy. I remembered his first feed. I had brought him a horse a Chicago Police officer had left unattended. I laughed to myself as I recalled his face once the horse was drained asking me for another. How I loved, love, this boy. We became a family, single Parent mind you, but still a family. I could only hope and pray Bella would find him before he got to Volterra. I was so proud of her for having this courage. She's so brave, and I can't shake my profound guilt and sadness at not being able to protect her.
The doorbell ringing brought me out of my musings. I decided to answer, as we decided the cover story would be that Alice and Edward had wanted to come back and visit Bella for Spring Break.
"Delivery for Carlisle Cullen. Sign here, please."
I signed for the package, confused as to what it might be and from whom. I looked down and saw the writing. The package is from Edward. He sent it overnight from the airport in Rio.
I froze, suddenly terrified of what I might find within the box.
I walked into the living room where everyone had gathered and I opened the package. I found an envelope and a diary wrapped in a blue tank top. I recognized it as Bella's, and the diary was Edward's. I opened the envelope and began to read the letter aloud.
I've no doubt you are reading this to everyone. I always appreciated your openness with us all, especially in difficult moments.
I want to apologize for all the worry and concern I've brought on the family in recent months. I've enclosed my Diary for you to read, alone or to all, in the hopes that it may help you understand why it is I am seeking to end my existence.
I want to thank you for giving me a family, and for your guidance. If I have any chance at heaven it is because of your leadership.
Please tell Esme that I do think of her as my Mother. I know she hasn't always felt like I do. You'll find the composition of the many songs I've written for her in the safe located in my closet in my bedroom. Please have Rosalie play them for her from time to time.
Please do not be cross with Rosalie. I called her looking for her to strengthen my resolve at keeping away from my Bella. She could not lie to me on the subject. I am grateful she did not attempt to deceive me.
Please tell Jasper he is not at fault either. I failed Bella, and you, by coveting what should never have been mine. Jasper merely reminded of the reality of who and what I am. I've always enjoyed our camaraderie and our ability to understand each other without words. Thank him for trying to help me come out of this.
Tell Emmett that without him, I would have never known what having a brother was like. I love him for being able to make me laugh when little else could.
Please apologize to Alice for me. I'm so sorry for taking Bella away from her. I'm glad that she found it within herself to forgive me over the last few months. She has always been my kindred spirit, and I know she understands why I feel I can't go on without my other, better, half.
My flight is boarding and I still need to send this off. Lastly, please give bury Bella with her tank top. I took it from her room before my exile and it has kept me company these last months. If you can, please convey my sincere condolences to Chief Swan. Please have Jenks set up a fund for him. Disguise it as his retirement fund if you will. He shouldn't have to worry about money ever again.
I must go now. Thank you and I'm sorry.
A.N. I know of several good versions of New Moon from EPOV. I'll post some recs in the author notes but I have not read many as I didn't want to be influenced. No posting schedule yet, but will try to keep it regular. Thanks for reading and please leave me a review.