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This story is dedicated to Delphiusfanfic
As I walked into the hospital, the stench of death was heavy in the air. So many people were dying daily and there was nothing I could do to stop it. I had become a doctor to save people, and to save myself from becoming a monster. I wanted to help people, not to stand by watching as they died. Spanish influenza had gripped the city, families decimated by the disease. I wanted to work non-stop. It couldn't for the fear it would alert my colleagues to the fact there was something wrong with me. I wasn't like them; appearances had to be upheld to protect my secret.
I made my way toward the ward where the patients I was most concerned about were being cared for. Elizabeth Masen was weak. She cared for her husband at home, trying many natural remedies, but never really knew what she was up against. Her beloved son Edward had, despite her best efforts, caught the disease. His father Anthony had died, and Elizabeth was wracked with her grief.
I fully expected to come in today and hear the worst. I approached one of the nurses, catching her elbow and feeling her shudder at the coldness of my touch.
"Nurse James, how are the Masens?" I could hear her heart skip a beat. I made her uneasy, but she tried to compose herself.
"Mrs. Masen is not well, she is barely hanging on. We expected her to pass during the day, but she has managed to make it through." Her voice dropped to a whisper. "She asked for you. But I think she was just rambling, delusional with fever."
I nodded slowly, daring to ask my next question, but at the same time, afraid of the answer.
"How is her son? I forget his name... Edmund?" I, of course, had not forgotten his name, I just needed to divert attention away from the fact I knew, or that he was anything to me other than a patient. I had a professional persona to maintain.
Nurse James corrected me. "Edward, his name is Edward." A smile lit up her face as she spoke his name. I could hear her heart fluttering and I knew she liked him, even if he was slightly younger than her.
"AH yes, Edward. How is he today?"
The smile soon left her lips. Had my heart been capable of beating, it would have stopped in that moment. Her eyes met mine. "He's okay, no sign of improvement though. He had a fever all night. I stayed with him, tried to keep him cool." She dropped her voice low so only I would be able to hear. "I have seen the signs Dr. Cullen, we all have. It's just a matter of time."
I knew this already. He was fated to die from the disease, become just another number to be carved into the realms of history. When people talked about this in the future, no one would care for the people, who they were. Only how many died in the 1918 Spanish Influenza outbreak. From the first moment I had seen him on the ward, I had been drawn to him. There wasn't any way I could describe how I felt toward him. I was concerned and had an ache in my heart as he was hurting, knowing there was nothing I could do to save him. Of course, there was a way I could save him, and the decision had plagued me. I wanted him so badly to be with me, to be mine, forever. However, it was not my decision to make.
I had only felt like this once before in my life. It had been seven long years since I worked as a doctor in Columbus. There, I treated a young lady by the name of Esme Platt. Had things been different then and I not been condemned to this life, I would have wanted to court her. But it could not be, and so I left.
My feelings toward this young man scared me; for me to feel this way was not normal. Then again, my existence was an abomination in the eyes of god, so why not add another strike to my list of perceived sins.
Making my way to the female ward, I found Mrs. Masen laying on the small cot which passed for a bed in the hospital. She was barely conscious, drifting in and out. I knelt at her side, and it was as if she knew I was there as she turned toward me. I could see the immense effort it took for her to do this, and I placed my hand over hers. If she noticed the difference in temperature between us, she never let it show. Maybe she found some relief in the chill only my touch could bring.
I sat at her side for some time, knowing this act of kindness would bring her some comfort in her final moments. Her next action surprised me. She opened her mouth to speak, but the words caught in her dry throat.
I leaned forward, a gentle smile playing on my lips as I tried to show her kindness and compassion. "Don't speak if it hurts," I whispered. Even without my exceptionally good hearing, I could tell the breaths were growing shallower as she fought to hold onto her tenuous grip on life. Her eyes widened as she seemed to be internally accepting what was to come.
"I know," she whispered. "About you, what you are"
I stared at her, not sure what she meant, but also not wanting to confirm or deny anything to her. "Mrs. Masen, I'm a doctor, I am here to help you."
She managed a weak smile, shaking her head slightly. "No, I know the truth." She said, pausing for a moment to try and get her breath. "You can save him, my son. Please?"
Her eyes beseeched me. How could I refuse a dying woman's last wish? I nodded slowly before I uttered the words, hoping they would allow her peace. "If it's what you want, then I will do it. I just wish I could save you."
With a slow shake of her head, she let out a sigh which seemed to reverberate through her entire body. "Thank you, Dr. Cullen."
Her eyes fluttered closed, and I could hear her heart begin to slow as her body gave up its fight. I held her hand, offering her what little comfort I could in her final moments. With her dying breath, she uttered, "Look after him."
My heart sank. Edward was now truly alone in the world. I sat staring at Elizabeth's lifeless body, and I mourned her in my own quiet way. Another victim, another statistic. I couldn't let anything happen to Edward, especially now I had made my solemn promise to his mother.
I stood quickly, almost too quickly, but it was not as if anyone paid any attention to me. I made my way quickly to the ward where Edward was, only pausing as I reached his bed. To my horror, I noticed the beds around him were empty. The patients who had been here when I worked last had obviously died, the beds ready for the next influx of patients.
I sat by his bed wrestling with my conscience, knowing the promise I had made not minutes before to his mother. There was no way I could go back on my word. The decision was one I had made without truly thinking it through fully. How was I to do this? There was no way I could allow the transformation to begin here. I remembered it clear as day. Despite the fact it had been almost 300 years since I underwent those days of seemingly endless burning, praying it would end , only to find the true misery for me had only just begun.
I swore to myself I would be there for him.I would not leave him to suffer as I did, wishing I had been killed by the monster I had hunted at my father's behest, only to lose my mortal life and become frozen in time at the age of twenty three.
As I shook these thoughts from my mind, the words of Mrs. Masen rang in my ears. She knew what I was, yet she still begged me to save her son. Reaching forward, I brushed the hair from his brow. He reacted to my touch with a low moan, one which sent longing rushing through my body. His face contorted, and how I longed to see those beautiful features come to life once again. Only next time, those movements would be through the pleasure only I could undoubtedly give him. Shaking my head of these thoughts, I removed my hand. The instant I did, his eyes flickered open and his green eyes met mine.
Smiling weakly at me, he tried to speak, but had no strength. I told him not to speak, to conserve his energy. However he had other ideas.
"My...m..mom?" he croaked.
I knew I had to tell him she was gone, but yet the words would not form in my mouth. Instead, I shook my head slowly. He got my meaning as a low sound came from him; it looked like his will to live was gone, too. I had to act, fast.
Quickly, I formulated a plan. I could take him to my house. It was remote enough so I didn't have to worry about people wondering who he was if they saw him. But I would only have to be worried about those details if he survived his transformation. With my decision made and a plan in place, all I had to do was carry it out.
I waited until the early hours of the morning, knowing there would be less people around. I couldn't risk being seen doing this it would undo all my years of hard work. Once the nurses were occupied, I made my way to where Edward lay. Sitting next to him, I brushed the hair from his brow, my mouth ghosting along his jawline en route to his ear. It took every last morsel of self control I'd taught myself through the many years of my new life not to sink my teeth into him right then, or to place soft, gentle kisses on this beautiful young man that I had grown to care so much about. I wanted him badly, and hoped he would feel the same way about me once his transformation was complete.
"Edward, I need you to do something for me," I whispered into his ear as he slept, knowing he wouldn't be able to resist my voice. "You need to remain as still as possible. I am going to take you from here, and save you. Do you understand me?"
Pulling back I saw his head move slightly, and it was all I needed to know. I pulled the blanket that was covering him over his face, as was common with deaths during the night. I waited to make sure he wouldn't stir, alerting people to the lie I was about to tell.
Walking out toward the nurses, I grabbed the trolley we used to transport the dead to the mortuary. No one paid me any attention, so I continued with my plan. Aligning the trolley with the bed, I moved Edward onto it before I made the journey toward to basement level. There was no way I was actually taking him to the mortuary. I couldn't do it to him. I wheeled the trolley into one of the storage rooms. I didn't want to leave him for long, but I knew I couldn't stay here, as much as I wanted to. Neither could I leave the hospital mid shift; again, too many questions would be raised. All I wanted was for him to know I would be back soon.
I pulled the sheet back from over his face. "I'm sorry, it is necessary. I can't risk them suspecting anything. Stay quiet, I will be back."
There was still light in his eyes. While it continued to shine, there was the hope I wouldn't be too late to save him.
Making my way back to the ward all I could think about was figuring out a way to get him safely out of the hospital. Knowing all the while Edward could breathe his last breath while I was here and I could lose him forever. There was no way I could sneak out too often, but I found whatever excuse I could to check on him. Thankfully, the time came for me to leave. We had lost more patients through the day, and With each person that died, I felt flashes of guilt because I couldn't save them.
I lived on the outskirts of town in a large house within its own expansive gardens. Those who questioned how I afforded this were told the same story. It was a family property handed down through the generations, and now it was mine. The house was beautiful but it always lacked something that I could never put my finger on. Now I wanted to make it home, our home. The truth was that I had bought it many years ago and had lived there whenever I returned to Chicago. It afforded me the room I would need and more importantly the privacy Edward's transformation would require.
From my memory of the process, though hazy, I knew he would be in agony. If he managed to survive the initial shock in his severely weakened state. I hoped he would survive. It would be such a waste if he didn't. The potential for him was limitless. In my eyes it would be such a waste if this wonderful boy's life were cut so short.
Luckily, it was dark when I stepped out of the hospital with Edward in my arms. He was still breathing, and I knew there was little time to spare. The night was cold, and I feared it would harm him further.
He groaned in my arms, causing me to pull him closer to me. I whispered, "It's okay. I'm taking you home." Listening as he mumbled incoherently, I then set off at a pace much too fast for the human eye to see. The streets were deserted, so I only had to pause a couple of times while I waited for people to move away. Once I was back in the safety of my own home, I let out a sigh, relieved we were now safe, away from prying eyes.
After running up the stairs, I decided he would need to be comfortable, though I was sure he would not notice his surroundings once the venom took hold. I ran from room to room, debating which would be best suited for him, before I entered what I used as my own bedroom. My bed was large and comfortable, with a large four poster style frame, all purely for show. Not that I needed sleep, but it was somewhere to keep up the pretence for when visitors called. This was where he needed to be, or in all honesty, this was where I wanted him to be when he awoke into his new life.
Once he was settled in the bed, I sat down next to him, stroking his hair back off his face. He truly was beautiful, his features enhanced by the moonlight as it shone through the window, illuminating the space.
Leaning into him, I spoke gently into his ear. "You're safe here, I promise you. There will be some pain, but there is nothing I can do to ease it. Please remember what I do today was your mother's dying wish. She didn't want you to perish. She wanted you to live, and you shall. For all eternity."
His head turned toward me and his eyes rolled in their sockets. I knew the time was close; either I did this now or I would lose him forever. Looking toward the sky, I muttered a prayer to whoever might be listening to a soul as damned as mine truly was.
With those two words, I closed my eyes and bent into Edward's neck and bit down, piercing the jugular, which in turn allowed his warm blood to flow down my throat and into me. The pleasure this gave me was immense and I drank greedily from him. A garbled scream fell from his lips, but his lack of strength caused it to die before it could fully form and take flight. Stopping was the hardest thing I think I had ever had to do. The sensation of his blood flowing through my dead body was making my head swim and threatened to overwhelm me. I felt his hand go limp in mine, and heard his heart begin to slow. It took every last morsel of control I had within me to pull my lips away, but somehow I did the impossible. I stopped.
Watching as this beautiful boy writhed in pain was heartbreaking. I truly felt like a monster for doing this to him, but there was no way I could be without him. After that all I had to do was wait.
My venom ran rampant through his body for three seemingly endless days and nights. He thrashed about in my bed as the changes took effect. I believed his body was too weak for him to be able to show the full extent of the agony he was enduring. As I sat by his side, stroking his hair out of his face or holding his hand was the most comfort I could offer him. Occasionally, our eyes would meet, and his glassy stare was all I saw. Knowing he could be cursing me for putting him through this unimaginable pain, I spoke to him, telling him repeatedly his burning agony wouldn't last forever, although I was never sure that he heard my words of comfort.
When I could bear to leave him, I never ventured far, just into the hallway. There I paced the floor back and forth, my mind racing with the possibilities of what could happen. What if he didn't want me, if he despised me and wanted to leave? Managing to push these thoughts out of my head, I turned my attention back to him. He needed me.
On the final day of his transformation, he seemed calmer. I watched as the dark circles vanished from under his eyes, and his skin changed color from the washed out look of someone who was dying, to the color of alabaster. Of course, I could hear his heart as it began to beat slower and slower, knowing it was a matter of time before it stopped completely and he opened his eyes to the new world awaiting him. I couldn't wait to be his guide in the journey through his new life. I had no one when I woke in the stinking cellar in London so many years ago. No one deserved to wake in such a manner.
I wouldn't leave him, despite the fact I needed to hunt. It had been too long, but I knew it was the first thing I would need to do with him once his transformation was complete. He would need to satisfy the burning thirst which would threaten to consume him. I had to keep him away from humans until he was able to be around them, as he fought his control. Deep down, I hoped it would not take too long, but then again, the thought of having his company exclusively appealed to me more than I cared to admit.
His heart beat slower and slower, and the time was drawing near when it would cease to beat and his mortal life would be over. Sitting on the edge of the bed, I took his hand in mine and waited. It couldn't be much longer.
The daylight faded, bathing the room in the evening twilight. Naturally I didn't need light to see, but I worried it might scare him. Lighting a candle quickly, I was back at his side in seconds. My return was not a moment too soon, as his heart beat stuttered before finally stopping. The silence was deafening. All I could do was stare at him, praying for the moment his eyes would open.
The wait felt like an eternity, but then it happened. His eyelids fluttered like the wings of a butterfly before opening. I saw the bright crimson tone signifying his new born vampire status. Edward was now a vampire.
*Sings* Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday Delphiusfanfic, Happy Birthday to you. This was written for my wonderful, amazing friend. She told me that she'd love to read this, so how could I resist? I have to thank the ultra amazing Harrytwifan for beta'ing this for me. Loves ya babes! Please do leave me a review and tell me what you think, I have more in mind but only if you want it.