I'm going to say it now; this story is not for the faint of heart.

It may not have a HEA. There will be loads of heartbreak and you will hate Bella at some point and Edward at some point – OR maybe just hate them the whole time!

I've always wanted to do a love story (love stories don't always have happy endings), the kind of love story that lasts literally a life time between two people. That love, when it actually hurts, when you wonder, why are you even in love? Twilight was sort of like that in the sense that it literally hurt Bella killed her when she was away from Edward.

I also really like the idea of a young girl with an older (not in a creepy way) man.

OKAY to break down, heartache, abuse – both mental and sexual, longing, not liking Bella/Edward/his father.

I think it will be good though if you like all that – I hope you like it!

I'm pretty meticulous with my dates, ages and times etc so I keep a separate word doc with all that information on it.

But sit back and enjoy if you want!

AND that was long!

Disclaimer: I own nothing...still, certainly not Twilight or Edward, Bella and co. Just wanted to say that!

Manner of Life

Chapter 1

July 1991

Bella is 7 ½

Edward is 13

Bella sits next to her father; his mustache is twitching which means he is thinking really hard about something. She knows what he is thinking. He is nervous and worried about this trip, and new job. Bella leans in close and whispers. "Don't worry Daddy it will be fine." She kisses his arm and rests her head on his warm body.

Today was exciting neither had ever been on a plane before this morning. The flight was long, Bella was good. She is always such a good girl. Always has been.

Charlie smiles at her downy brown hair and leans down and kisses the top of her head.

"I'm really excited." She grins up at him. She can't contain her excitement even though she knows this is a big step for both of them.

"I know you are Bells, but we need to remember that I am here for work, it is a job." He reminds her because this is such a great chance, for himself and of course for his Bella. He would do anything for her. When his beautiful amazing wife, Renee was killed two years ago he wasn't sure either of them would make it. But Bella, she is such a sprit and a light; she pulled both of them through. This door opened and he took a chance and is now walking through it with his little girl by his side.

Forks' is amazing, was amazing for them, at the time but they needed a change. They needed more. He needed to give Bella more. He knows this is the step in the right direction for the pair of them. She will go to a better school, live in a beautiful home, and grow up with greater opportunities than what he could offer her back in Forks. New York State was the right choice for her. Taking this job was the right choice for her. Everything is about his little girl.

She wakes up and moans softly, her eyes becoming adjusted to the bright sky outside. Even in the sleek back car with the tinted windows it is really bright. "Are we there yet?"

Before Charlie can answer, Felix the driver does so. "Almost little lady."

Bella covers her mouth and giggles before looking up at her father.

"Felix here doesn't know you yet Bells; my Bella is not even close to a little lady." Charlie grins when Bella frowns next to him.

"Am too!" She argues jutting her lower lip in a pout.

Charlie smiles and flicks her jutting lip adding a wink for good measure.

"Edward, Edward?"

Looking up from the piano, his fingers freeze. "In here mother" He calls out.

Esme sweeps into the large music room. "I thought I heard you" She smiles, walking over Esme brushes the wild hair from her son's brow. "The new handyman will be here shortly dear, why don't you go get cleaned up and meet them with your father and me?"

Nodding he stares up at his mother. She is stunning, youthful, but sad behind her eyes. She is Esme Elizabeth Anne Platt-Masen. A real life socialite, she came from money and married more money. So many women not in her social circle envy her. If they really knew how life is for her they wouldn't be so envious.

Esme is no longer married to the love of her life; years ago she thought Edward Charles Evenson Masen was the real live love of her life. He just isn't, she was wrong.

Edward knows that his mother is only with his father for appearances. Her parents would most likely disown her if she divorced the wonder Edward Masen Sr. He knows she is only with his father because of him, to give him any and everything he needs. Unfortunately money can only buy things, neither of them really live; they just exist in what appears to be a perfect world.

"I'm excited are you?" Charlie Swan has a daughter. She has longed for another child for years. Edward just turned 13, she is not yet 35, yet she can't seem to get pregnant again.

"I guess." He shrugs.

"Well, your father will be home soon to meet the new family" Esme informs her son. "And you know how he likes your hair" Esme whispers the end, she hates comments like that. Edward's life is riddled with them mostly coming from Edward Sr.

"I'll fix myself up" He stands and moves around the bench. Leaning in he kisses her cheeks.

Esme stares after her son. He is such an old soul. His eyes look as heavy as hers feel, the mask that she has to wear daily is wearing her down. It is taking a toll on Edward as well. Esme drops her face in her palms and holds her sobs at bay…she has perfected her perfect life.

Edward slicks his hair back like his father likes. He is going to walk in his father's footsteps one day; he doesn't really have a choice in the matter. He will be a savvy business man in a smart suit, with smart hair. Edward pulls his locks because they refuse to cooperate. They never cooperate. He feels completely bound when his hair is like this.

He does it because it keeps his father happy, which makes his mother happy. Edward stares at himself in the mirror. Dropping his head he looks at his hands. There are still a few stains from his paints on there. He smiles because the piano and paints are his escape. Even when his hair is binding him, he can see the paint stains and feel free.

"Oh my gosh, Daddy do you see it?" Bella presses her forehead to the glass as her eyes widen. Her small hands are pressed on the glass making finger marks there. She watches the green land race by her as they fly down the drive towards the house…no the mansion.

"Welcome to Platt Manor" Felix smiles.

Bella's eyes widen. "It's so big." She licks her lips.

"60 acres" Felix says with a nod. His eyes meet Charlie's wide ones in the back seat. "Not to worry Charlie, Mrs. Masen is a reasonable woman she will just expect it to be 80 percent perfect."

Charlie frowns at Felix who gives him a winning smile. He can see Felix becoming a good friend in the future.

The sleek car slows to a stop in front of the Manor. Bella is out before Felix has a chance to open the door.

She skips around the car and stands before the house looking up. "It is so big"

Charlie clears his throat and scoops her into his arms. "Bella listen to me," He says his voice soft yet firm. He wants to be clear. He wants her to understand.

Bella's large brown eyes widen as she sits in her father's arms and waits for him to continue.

"This job is very important Bella; I want you to be on your best behavior sweetie,"

"I will" Bella nods quickly. Her tiny hand lightly rubs her father's ear lobe giving him comfort.

Charlie smiles and turns his face into her palm, but he gets her forearm. "I love you,"

Bella smiles and hugs him tightly around his neck. "I'll be a good girl." She promises.

"I know you will, I know." He holds her even more tightly back. He is so lucky the Masen's have pulled strings to get Bella into the private school their own child attends. Mrs. Masen was insistent that they do this for his little daughter. The woman seemed very eager to meet little Isabella Swan. He wants Bella to make a good impression, they are both getting a great opportunity with this move and job, and of course Bella getting a better start in a top school.

"Oh my goodness, you must be Charlie" Esme smiles sweeping into the drive of her home.

Charlie smiles and nods his head; he bows a bit unsure of what to do. The woman is young and graceful, completely elegant. "Yes, lovely to finally meet you"

"It feels like we know each other" Esme smiles. "We have spoken over the phone for what seems like ages" She is speaking to Charlie Swan but her eyes are on the little beauty in his arms. "Isabella"

Bella looks down at the woman. "Are you a princess?"

"No" Esme laughs and shakes her head; she reaches out and touches the little girl's arm. "I'm not, but you certainly look like one."

Bella smiles showing off a few missing teeth. "Are there any kids around here?" Bella questions, she would love to make some friends in her new home.

Esme beams. "I have a son, and Sue well…"

"Oh" Bella interrupts as she struggles to get down. "And we are going to school together right; we can play together and read together, right?"

Esme touches her cheek. Her skin is not sun kissed at all. The little girl is full of life and sweet energy.

"Bells" Charlie says in 'that' tone.

Bella humpfs a bit and scowls, giving her father the side eye.

Laughing lightly she shrugs at Charlie. Fully understanding the little girls' eagerness. "He is a bit older I don't think 'playing' is on his list of things to do unfortunately"

"Oh" Her little mouth puckers in an 'o' shape as she thinks. "But maybe…"

"Maybe he will" Esme nods firmly. "He will be down shortly, or should be. Felix the bags please to the cottage."

"Right away Ma'ma." Felix gets back into the car and drives towards the cottage.

Charlie looks confused.

"He will deliver your bags and things to the cottage, it is on the other side of the property" Esme explains. "It is a bit of a distance to walk" She turns. "Join me in the house."

Charlie takes Bella's hand and follows Mrs. Masen.

Edward sits in the library reading his favorite book of all time. His hair was just playing up so he gave up. If his father sees it he won't hear the end of it. Hiding away is for the best.

"I don't know where my son got off too, Sue, this is Charles Swan and his lovely daughter Isabella."

Sue smiles at the pair. "Tea is ready in the drawing room Mrs. Masen"

"Wonderful, thank you Sue, Sue can you please give little Isabella some milk and cookies while I speak to Charlie about, well everything?"

"Of course, Isabella?" Sue bends a bit and offers her hand to the little girl.

Bella looks up at her father for reassurance, when she gets the nod she skips away from her father and over to Sue. "Are they chocolate chip cookies?"

"No but shall we make some?"

Esme smiles brightly. "She will be fine." She says to Charlie as he stares at his little girl heading off with Sue.

Edward Masen Sr parks his car in the garage and gets out. He heads into his home.

"Good evening Mr. Masen" Patricia greets holding the small silver tray with his scotch on the rocks.

"Is it?" He wonders aloud. His voice calm but full of another tone, it makes people uneasy. He uses it as power.

The unknown tone makes the servants shiver. Patricia says nothing and turns heading to the kitchen, her job done for the night.

Edward Sr. sips his scotch as he stands in the grand entrance hall for a moment. He looks around at this home, this very stately home. He has built such a life for himself. This is Platt Manor in name but when people come here to be entertained it is all Masen.

"He is home and in a mood" Patricia hisses to Sue as she continues to make cookies with the new care takers daughter.

"Isn't he always?" Sue rolls her eyes.

"Yes, but if he comes in here and sees her and this mess and his steak not done it will be worse"

Sue sighs and looks at Bella, she insisted on being called Bella as 'ALL her friends do'. But then she remembered she doesn't have any friends here in New York. But she will make some at school, so until then Sue and Patricia will be her friends.

Bella is using two spoons to drop the cookie dough on the tray while her little pink tongue sticking out with concentration.

"Bella sweetie, shall I finish up and we can get you cleaned up and head to your daddy?"

"Okay Sue." Bella drops the cookie dough before looking up and smiling brightly.

"It will be good Mr. Masen." Charlie confirms.

"It better be, I'm paying out the ass for you and your little girl to be here, so it better be."

Charlie clears his throat and nods his head quickly.

Esme's cheeks fill with colour from embarrassment at her husband's tone and words. "Darling, I think Charlie should take Isabella to the cottage so they can get settled in for the night, it has been a long trip for them."

Edward Sr nods in agreement. "Where is the little girl?"

"Isabella" Esme says her name purposely. "Is making cookies with Sue in the kitchen."

Edward looks at his wife. "Call them in; I would like to meet the little girl whose education I will be funding"

Esme keeps her jaw tight and her face free of emotions. "Of course." She glances at Charlie who looks as though he is ready to take his daughter and run far away from her husband.

Sue holds Bella's hand as they enter the drawing room together. "Good evening Mr. Masen." Sue greets with a smile.

Bella looks wide eyed.

Edward Sr. frowns at Sue. "Is my steak ready?"

"Of course sir, the table is ready." Sue smiles, she touches Bella's head before glancing at Mrs. Masen and heading out.

"Isabella dear," Esme starts. "This is my husband Mr. Masen"

Bella looks at her father. She is not a shy child but she knows her father has final say in what she does. She respects him and wants him to guide her.

Charlie nods lightly watching his daughter.

"Hello Mr. Masen, your home is so pretty,"

Edward Sr. smiles. "Do you really think so?"

"Oh yes, the garden, and trees," Her eyes widen as she speaks. "I love it so much already."

Charlie smiles with pride, his Bells can work a room. All the comments and the tone of Edward Masen Sr. his dispersed from his mind currently, but not forgotten. But his little girl is in the room is all that matters now.

"Are you smart then?"

"Of course I'm smart,"

"You know the school you are going to is hard,"

"I'm smart."

Edward Sr. smiles. "Good to hear."

I've not forgotten my other stories, this one has just been weighing on my mind. AND I'm off for four days so lets see if I can move my butt on the others eh?!

Originally the title was/is Manor of Life...I liked the 'play' on words I guess. But I changed it because I'm not sure others would really appreciate it. ANYWAYs it is saved as Manor of Life :) So I still kept it...sort of!