This is a one-shot!
Watch out, major ANGST up ahead!
Please review (: It'd be appreciated.
All in Edward's POV.
Earth shattering news.
I look at my best friend who sat down in a chair next to the door, emotionless. She doesn't move, she doesn't speak and she doesn't even look at me.
I am numb. I can't move, I can't breath properly either. A soft breathe escapes my lips before I look up at the doctor, who stares back at me with sympathy.
"You have three weeks." The doctor says.
I open my mouth to speak, but Bella stands up quickly. "Thank you, Doc." She mutters. "Let's go, Edward."
I follow her automatically. I didn't thank the doctor, I didn't look back. I desperately followed Bella out of the building.
We don't speak for two hours. Even when I take her back to my house, where she lives, as her parents are no longer alive. She's not in the living room, as I notice, but I hear footsteps above me. She's in her room.
I climb the stairs and make my way to her bedroom. The door is open, and I see her shuffling papers and putting things into her school binder.
She is eighteen years old.
"Bella, what are you doing?" I inquire, observing with wide eyes at her rapid movements back and forth her bedroom.
She looks at me, blinks, and goes back to shuffling papers. "What does it look like?"
I let out a sigh. "You're doing homework."
She lets out a small laugh. "You are correct."
I watch her for a few minutes, her swift movements as she takes binders off her shelves, puts papers into them, then puts them back. I watch as she bookmarks one of her favorite books with a tattered, torn bookmark she bought at the Port Angeles book store.
She notices my presence, and her eyes look worn out and tired. "If you want to discuss my feelings, then I'm refusing to do so. I presume that is your objective."
"Yes, it's something that we should talk about." I suggest, taking one footstep into her paper-covered room.
She slaps a binder shut before turning her back towards me. "It's something you want to talk about."
I run my fingers through my hair. "Yes, it is-"
"Then take my plead, Edward." She begs, her brown eyes pleadingly staring into mine. "Don't tell anyone. Don't tell your parents, don't tell your siblings and don't tell your friends. I want to live my last minutes on Earth in peace. Alone. No disturbances."
I stare at her in disbelief. I have no words, I am speechless. I can't disobey her request, it is her request. She has three weeks, and then she is gone. She ceases to exist into this world.
"I intend to spend my moments with my routinely life." She mutters, seriously.
My lips part and she feels the shift of feeling in the air. She turns and holds a bony fingered hand to her hip. Her wavy hair falls to the right side of her face.
Her face is pale, her lips are drained of color and she looks fragile. She looks underweight. She does not look healthy for her age.
All the more symptoms to count.
"Tell me what is really on your mind." She requests, her eyes endearing.
I sigh, looking at the floor. I do not know how to approach a conversation like this. This is my best friend I'm dealing with! She's not going to live longer than a month. What is there to say?
I take a deep breathe. "Your condition will only worsen. You'll get migraines, your equilibrium will throw you off and then you won't even be able to walk. You'll feel nauseated all the time, you'll feel intense pain and in a week, you won't be able to do anything by yourself."
A small smile appears on her face. "But I won't be alone." She states. "I can't do this alone." At that moment, I really stare at my best friend. She looks vulnerable. Vulnerable and terrified. I know right then that she is no more concerned than I am. But she is brave. She has a courageous smile on her face.
"You're right." I agree, stepping forward and wrapping my arms around her. I feel her small arms wrap around my waist. "You're not alone."
I run across campus, dodging the incoming students that seem to walk slower than before. I nearly bump into another freshman student, who wildly flicks her hair at me and batters her eyes. But I am not paying attention, I run.
The reality of this hasn't sunken into my mind yet. Bella will be leaving this Earth in two weeks, now. She refuses to go on last minute trips to Cuba and she detests the idea of leaving her education unfinished. Bella, my best friend in the world, will no longer be alive in two weeks.
I'm happy that I'm running, that I am outside. I run to get away from my problems, but this problem follows me and always seems to catch up.
There is an aching feeling in my chest, it felt like someone had dug a hole there, as I remember the memories I hold with Bella.
I've known her since our freshman year in high school. She was shy and introverted but by her second year, she opened up and that is when I met her - next to her in Biology class; exchanging our opinions on Anaphase and Telophase onion roots. From then on, our friendship grew.
We introduce ourselves to others as best friends, but everyone always pointed out that it seemed like so much more. Sometimes I wish that our friendship was more than just a friendship. But I saw that Bella was comfortable with where we were, so I never pushed any further.
Now here we are, seven years later, and she goes to the same college as I and she lives under the same roof, as well.
She has lived with my family for the past five years.
I enjoy her company, more so than the company of my guy friends. I enjoy her company more than my own siblings. My siblings do not live with us anymore, neither do my parents. My parents moved a year ago to somewhere in London, England. Emmett and Alice, my siblings, are both older than I and they have moved away three years ago. Emmett moved to Austin, Texas. Alice moved to Brooklyn, New York.
I don't dare tell my siblings about Bella's condition, and I do not dare tell my parents either. It seems like a selfish request, but it is rational and reasonable. If I were to break the news to my parents, they would suffocate Bella will gifts, tickets to places across the world and never ending conversations. If I were to tell my siblings, they would do the same.
Bella still had a reason not to tell them besides that - she was never one for goodbyes.
I stop running and catch my breath. Only to see the brown eyed girl with a blue binder propped in her left arm, with wavy hair, smile at me and wave.
I step out of the car that I have parked outside the office, where I am required to work four days a week. I do not start shift for another hour, but I couldn't seem to get any sleep the previous night, so I ended up starting my day an hour earlier.
The last time I checked, Bella wanted me to leave her alone as she was writing something on a lined piece of paper. I obeyed her wish.
Thinking about her made me feel shaky. I sit down on one of the steps, my face probably pink and my eyes probably teary.
"Edward?" A small voice calls out. I lift my head to see the familiar crow black hair that belonged to Angela Weber - one of Bella's friends. "What's the matter?"
By now, I'm trembling erratically. "It's Bella." I say, through a tight throat. My eyes begin to produce tears, and uncontrollably, I let out a sob.
"What did she do?"
"She's got cancer."
I sob into the arms of Angela Weber, who quietly sits next to me with an arm wrapped around my shoulders. She takes off her glasses and puts them next to her feet. Her eyes were red, too, from the constant rubbing and the salty tears.
Bella has not cried since she had heard the news. She had been keeping it in, from my point of view. I've become two people for the both of us as she is resistant to let any of her true emotions show. I'm crying for the both of us.
"How long does she have?" Angela queries, her small voice even weaker now as her throat is raspy.
I swallow, which hurt due to the lump in my throat. I let out a needed whimper.
"No more than a week and a half." I mutter. "Time flies by so fast and she is treating this like it is nothing. She refuses to go back to the hospital for help. She keeps taking pills and refuses any anesthesia for her constant insomnia." I sob. "Oh god, she's going to die."
"Why does this exist?" Angela weeps, the question lingering in the air like a deadly call.
"She's so weak now but still doesn't want help. Her headaches and body aches are constant now. I hear her weep at night, and it takes everything in me not to burst open the door and hold her. She doesn't want that. " I explain, both my hands covering my eyes now, as I roughly wipe away the tears. "She might need help and I might not even be there."
I have half an hour.
"It's okay to say it." Angela states, her dark eyes soft.
"Say what?" I inquire, truly confused.
"That you want to be with her until she's gone." Until she's gone. God, why must it be her? Why?
"I swear I thought life went on longer than this." I confess, my voice still shaky.
"I know how you feel about her." Angela says, and I don't question her knowledge.
Without another word, I sob. I sobbed like I never had before. It isn't loud or irritating, but it was silent and full of despair.
I let Angela embrace me.
As soon as I get home to Bella, I'm not going to leave her.
The following day, Bella nearly stumbles going down the stairs and into the living her. I catch her before she falls and she lets out a sharp breath.
"I'm fine." She exhales, grabbing onto the railing. I let her go and she stumbles again, this time clinging onto the back of the couch.
I sit her down and she lets me, her courageous facade crumbling down around her. I can see the alarming fear in her eyes. She looks up at me, clearly fighting back the tears.
In the past couple of days, her equilibrium has gotten worse and she was barely capable of holding up a plate of food on her own. Not to mention, eat the entire plate of food, either.
"Edward." She whimpers, and I wince at the tone of her voice - shaky and afraid, soft but edgy.
I know what is to come.
"Not yet, Bella." I plead. "Please."
She lets out an exasperated sigh. "It's been two and a half weeks since I've been diagnosed." She claims, it is not a question.
I look at her, not knowing what to say.
"I don't have much time left."
I lay down with Bella at ten thirty at night. She lays on her back and stares out the window. In her eyes, I see she is looking at the full moon. Her eyelids are droopy and I know she is drowsy.
She's slim, too slim. She looks awfully skinny and pale. Her cheeks are hollowed out and her collar bones are protruding through her light cotton shirt.
She looks sick.
"Sunday." She croaks.
"What?" I ask, barely able to make out the word she had spoken.
"Sunday." She repeats, louder.
I look down, my eyes wide and my heart beating fast. The tears burn in my eyes, but I force myself not to cry.
Sunday is in three days.
"Sunday." She says slowly, before drifting off to sleep.
She is quiet.
I take her bony hand in mine and lace my fingers between hers. I do not know what to think. I just know that with every waking moment next to her, is a minute well used.
Every minute I'm away from her, life takes her away from me.
I didn't keep my promise to Bella.
Bella is sitting in the living room, a notebook in hand with a pencil in another. She is sketching a picture of a forest, the moon big on the top left corner of the page. It looks like Forks.
My phone vibrates and I run across the room to the living room coffee table where my phone is. I pick it up and look at the text message. It is from Angela.
I'll be there in five.
I smile slightly. Angela wanted to see Bella one last time. She has set up a charade, saying that she is going on a voyage across the country for two months and couldn't bare to not say goodbye. It was a good front.
No more than five minutes later, there was a knock on the door.
"I got it!" Bella calls, and I smile at her effort.
"I'm closer." I say, opening the front door. "Oh hey!"
There stood Angela with a small gift in hand. I did not know about the gift, but I was hoping it wouldn't be too obvious of a gift to give away her charade.
"Angela!" Bella smiles widely, pleasantly opening her arms to hug her. Angela reluctantly hugs her and widens her eyes as she notices Bella's small shape. I put a finger to my lips. Angela nods small.
"Hey Bella, hey Edward. Sorry I came so unexpected! But I had to see you before I leave." Angela says, her smile nearly falling from her face at the last word.
"Where are you going?" Bella inquires. I could see Bella try and make an effort to sit up, but she doesn't move, she wriggles instead and tries to hide her flushing cheeks. Angela pretends not to notice.
"Just across the country on an extended vacation. It's a two month span near New Jersey where I'm visiting a cousin. I had to say bye before I left!" Angela smiles, holding the white box with the blue ribbon.
Bella's eyes widened in surprise. "What's this?"
"I found this, actually, deep inside my closet. Open it!" Angela all but squeals. I could see a sadness and sympathy in her eyes, but the fake smile never left her face.
Bella unwrapped the gift, and gasped. I leaned over the couch to take a look.
"I can't believe you found this!" Bella joyfully says.
It was a picture of her and Angela when they were twelve years old. They were standing in front of Angela's house with their friendship bracelets on - the same ones they are still wearing to this day. Bella and Angela look youthful and short in this picture. I watch as Bella's face curves into a smile.
"I love it!" Bella gratefully thanks Angela, with another hug.
Angela leaves an hour later, and I watch out the kitchen window as Angela makes her way to her car, fresh tears streaking down her face.
The rest of the day has been like that. Friends and co-workers coming over nonchalantly, asking for homework help or to borrow something, the usual excuses just to see someone.
Bella was pleased to see everyone, and I let her have her alone time with each of them. After all, I did have tomorrow with her.
I wanted to tell her that I loved her - something that I never had the chance to say. Tomorrow seemed alright, as today was overwhelming and a handful for her.
She receives paper work from her co-worker who was never really fond of Bella. They even had a little argument about it. As soon as the co-worker, Jessica, left, I quietly thanked her before she left.
"Take care of her." Jessica replies, regret and sorrow inevitably obvious on her face.
"I will." I promised.
But the promise seemed empty.
I sit alone in the living with Bella, my arm draped around her.
It is Saturday evening, and with every passing second, my heart leaps and begins to beat faster. I fight back all the threatening tears that wanted to expose my sullen face. At one point, the point where Bella started coughing involuntarily, I wanted to. But I tend to her needs instead.
Bella and I talk for a long time and at one point, she just stays quiet and watches the new episode of One Upon A Time.
At six thirty, there was a knock on the door. Frowning, I left the couch and opened the door.
There stood Angela again.
"Hey, Angela!" Bella waves, and I am confused. "Edward, can you make me something to eat? I am starved."
I nod. She wants to talk to Angela alone. I stay in the kitchen, preparing some tomato soup for Bella. I remark that Bella and Angela do not speak for long. I pour the soup into a bowl the exact time Angela joins me in the kitchen. I pass Bella the bowl of tomato soup first.
I turn back into the kitchen. "What did she need?" I ask. Angela turns to me, her eyes wet and she biting her thumb nail.
She looks at me incredulously. "What do you expect?" She crosses her arms. "She wanted me to make sure that I'll take care of you. She knows you'll take this really hard. And she wants to make sure there is someone around to make sure that you are taking care of yourself; that you are sleeping right, eating right and going to school."
I don't speak. There are no words. I am speechless. Utterly.
"Don't tell me that you won't need help." Angela begins. "I'm going to tell you that she's dying, Edward. And you're the only thing on her mind."
Angela hugs Bella one last time and I thank her. She leaves and I sit next to Bella, putting my arm around her once more. Bella watches the TV screen blankly.
"It's eight thirty, are you sleepy?" I inquire, watching as her eyes blink slowly.
"No." She shakes her head. For a moment, everything is quiet.
I hate it.
"Can I ask you something?" She says suddenly, and I stare at her with intensity that it surprises me.
"Anything." I say.
"Will you miss me?" The question takes me aback. There is no question I have ever been more sure of in my entire life.
"Always, Bella, always."
The next day Bella seems worse, but that doesn't stop her from getting up.
Today, she decides to wear her favorite blue dress, and suddenly, it hits me hard. She knows her hours are limited.
She knows today's the day.
My heart felt like it had been stabbed. A tear trickles down my face my I quickly wipe it away.
I join her as she stands in front of the window, a small smile set on her face as she watches the sun rise elegantly between the trees. Bella has always loves the sun rise and the sun set. Dusk and dawn were her favorite parts of the day.
"I want to go out today." She announces. Her footing is a little bit wobbly and she holds onto the window frame.
"Where to?" I inquire, not questioning her reason.
"Everywhere." She beams, and I nod.
The rest of the day, I bring her to all her favorite places. Port Angeles, the beach and into our meadow. We spent most of our time in our meadow, picking the purple flowers and just laying there, looking up at the somewhat clear sky.
It has never been a clear sky in Forks, but today, there was an exception. There were clouds, but not as many as usual. You could see blue. And that was miracle to see in our little town.
"You're beautiful." I commented, propping myself up on one elbow as I stare down at Bella. She smiles up at me, her brown eyes sparkling as they never had before.
She doesn't say anything, she lifts her hand up in the air and places it on my cheek, her thumb caressing my cheekbone.
"I'll miss you." She says, mesmerizing my eyes.
This broke my heart. "I'll miss you, too."
At this point, Bella's breathing is rapid and heaving. She has a hard time even sitting upright. She is on the couch with tears streaming down her face. She knows it's her time, but she's hanging on a little longer.
"Edward." She shakily slurs. The tears were not stopping at this point from her nor I. I cry, too, feeling so helpless as I watch the one I deeply love whisk away. "I'm scared."
"Me too." I confess, desperately reaching for her hand. I squeeze it tightly enough for her to feel immense pain but she just looks at me, as if she couldn't feel the pain. And I knew it wouldn't be long.
"I want you to be the last thing I see." She says, her brown eyes pleading.
I nod, and I stare into her brown eyes as I watch pain break through her features. She shrieks and thrashes but she is okay, she calms down and grabs hold of my hand again. She lets out a small laugh and I look at her in confusion.
"What's so funny?" I inquire, and my question reminds me of times when she would tease me. When all was well.
"Nothing, I'm just glad." She chuckles, weakly but you can hear her.
"What?" I inquire, completely abashed.
She notices my confusion and her face evens out, a gentleness returning into her features.
"I get to spend the rest of my life with you." She says, and a grin creeps into her face.
With those words, I break. Completely. I'm done.
Bella coughs uncontrollably again, and I am desperate to get her a glass of water.
"No!" She shrieks, straining her voice. "Don't go!"
I walk back to my original spot, taking her hand and letting tears fall down my face and stain my shirt. But I don't care.
Terror flutters through me, like a thousand needles going through my blood stream and making millimeter pricks every step of the way. My heart breaks as I watch her let out a loud sob and I hug her. She trembles and she tries to say something, but it doesn't come to her. "Bella?" I cry out. "Bella, don't worry. Don't worry about anything. Just relax, relax into my arms." And she does. Her eyes dart to mine.
"I love you." She says, and my heart stops entirely. "I've always loved you." Without a moment's hesitation, I leaned down and I kissed her gently on her lips. She returns it, with all her strength that is left. She pulls away.
She takes another deep breath before sagging, her breaths cut short now. She looks at me one last time, and I savor the moment, holding on to her for dear life. Her eyes close.
And she's sleeping. She's gone. She's not with me. And I let her go, I take my arms away from her and I stand up, barely able to stand up on my own, I grab onto the bed's post.
I look up at the door and see Angela. When did she get here? I didn't care. I feel so numb, so numb with pain that I couldn't care less. My best friend's gone. And I can't get her back.
Following Angela in the room, were two men. By the way that they dressed, I assumed they were morticians. Angela drags me out of the room and leaves the morticians to their work.
Halfway down the steps, I run back up, leaving an incredulous, tear-streaked Angela alone at the bottom of the staircase.
I run into the room. "Stop!" I say, and the morticians freeze.
I open my mouth to say something to my best friend but nothing comes out. I can't speak, my heart grieves as I watch the lifeless Bella being taken care of by these two morticians.
Angela comes to my side, whimpering softly as she dabs her eyes with a tissue. She takes hold of my hand as comfort and she takes me out of the room. I stand in the living room, and I saw the sketch pad with Bella's sketch of Forks on it.
I watch as Bella is being taken out of the house.
And I feel empty.