Renee seems different. She’s always been a ‘different’ person in general – eccentric – but she seems to have deviated from the person she used to be. Her eyes no longer hold that curious, vibrant spark they once did. She’s unusually calm, too. Renee is suffering, and it hurts to watch. I can already tell that her split from Phil is going to have a larger impact on her than she knows. Alice had some visions already, too, and one of them came true when Renee came back for another visit – in an attempt to escape her imperfect home life.
Charlie braced himself for another couple of days of having to endure the flames that burst their way up through his throat – the raw, scorching temptation. Renee didn’t seem quite as blown away by Charlie’s newly polished exterior this time, though. She didn’t really seem interested in anything, actually.
Although my human life is very blurry to me, vague, I still somehow remember the hole that formed in my chest when my entire life walked away from me, and promised I would never see him again. I wish everyday that those memories would have died in the fire that burned through my body as I was being turned, becoming a vampire. They didn’t, though, and I guess it’s a good thing in a way, because now I can understand what Renee is going through. Why the life in her eyes is fogged over with an obvious sadness. Her divorce from Phil won’t be anything like when my entire life, Edward, left me – to protect me – because Renee gets over things easier than I do. But it will be hard.
Sue decided to make a surprise visit while Renee was visiting. Charlie was sitting at the small dinner table pretending to eat something Renee had made for him when we all heard the soft knock at he door. Edward knew it was Sue and shot me a sharp glance to warn me. The door was opening and Charlie was welcoming Sue in before anyone had the chance to say anything.
It got even better when Renee introduced herself as, “Renee . . . Charlie’s ex-wife. As in Bella’s Mother.” Her voice was somewhat pretentious. Sue smiled and told Renee she was a friend of Charlie’s, then asked to speak to him, alone.
Of course when Sue and charlie went outside, Renee drilled Edward and I with questions. She has a bit of a jealous streak, but Edward and I did a good job of ensuring her that Sue was just a friend. The longer Charlie took outside, though, the more Renee questioned that. I couldn’t take the suspense anymore so I asked to speak with Edward alone, upstairs. I needed some clarity, to know what Renee, Charlie and Sue were thinking. Not being able to read minds is a frustrating thing sometimes.
Edward confirmed Renee’s jealousy. It wouldn’t have taken a genius, or a mind reader, to figure that out. What I wanted to know was why Sue came to visit, and why she was talking to Charlie for such a long time. Edward answered that, too. “Sue misses Charlie, a lot. She wanted to know if he was more adapted to his new lifestyle.” Edward paused and quickly ran his long fingers through his hair. “Last time they spoke, she told him she would stay away until he was more adjusted to what he is now. She explained that she has feelings for him that are on a level far beyond friendship. She asked about Renee, too. It seems as though Charlie really cares for Sue.”
I bit my lip, worried about Renee; how this would make her feel. I thought about how it made Charlie feel when Renee started dating Phil. He wasn’t thrilled – but this is all part of life. You separate, then you eventually find someone new.
“I think we should stay out of this, love,” Edward began. “Let their lives fall where they’re supposed to.” He half smiled, though it didn’t touch his eyes. I realized he was right. This has nothing to do with me, and although I don’t want to see Renee hurt, I do want to see Charlie happy, based on his own decisions.
When we came back downstairs, Renee was engrossed in what seemed to be some vampire TV show. The actors sported fangs, but otherwise looked quite normal, human. Renee noticed us out of the corner of her eye and jumped a little. “Hey Bella . . . Edward, check this out,” she said, half laughing. “These guys are vampires, and there’s a big love triangle going on.” She pointed to the screen at the actors with the ridiculous looking fangs and continued, excitement filling her eyes. “The blonde girl used to be a human, but she became a vampire so she could live forever with that really good-looking vampire on the right.”
Edward laughed under his breath and looked at me, his hypnotic eyes almost making me forget about the awkward conversation we were having. Thankfully Charlie and Sue walked in the door just then. Charlie’s eyes were a bright crimson red and he bolted up the stairs, obviously aware of the fact that his contacts had dissolved. Sue must have told him.
“Well, I have to get going now. It was nice to meet you Renee. See you soon Bella . . . Edward.” Sue smiled and didn’t seem to care that Renee completely ignored her. “Bye, Charlie. I’ll see you again soon!” Sue yelled up the stairs before opening the door to slip outside. But Charlie was back down the stairs so fast it would have looked like a blur to any human. I gave him a look that said, “Can you at least try to be a little less obvious in front of Renee!”
His eyes were brown again. “Let me walk you to your car, Sue.” Charlie’s face was serious, as if he was offended that she was going to go without a proper goodbye. Renee’s head spun back to look at them, and it almost looked painful for her to hold her head in that position. Sue welcomed the invite to have Charlie walk her to her car and they stepped out together, again.
Renee turned the TV off and thudded up the stairs to what used to be my bedroom. Suddenly it felt like I was her Mother. I felt like I should have been consoling her, but I didn’t. She needs time, and I know it’s hard for her, but Charlie doesn’t owe Renee anything. Besides, her scent is too much for Charlie to handle. Her entire visit has been torture for him. I can see the scorching iron burning him, turning his throat to ashes. Sue doesn’t smell good to Charlie, at all, but that might be a good thing. Easier.
Alice was right, Renee did get hurt, but Charlie didn’t do anything intentionally. He had felt his share of hurt from their relationship already, and can’t undo the damage. I know Renee will be fine, and I know Charlie will find happiness, too. For now, I think Charlie got the closure he needed after all these years. And he might not be human, and he might not completely remember the pain he felt from his human life when Renee left, but he still craved closure.
After Renee left to go back to Phoenix and close the sale on her and Phil’s house, Charlie finally took down their wedding photo. I didn’t say anything to Charlie about it, but Edward, of course read his mind. He took it down because he finally realized what happened years ago between Renee and him wasn’t his fault. He kept the photo up out of guilt and unwillingness to fail at something. He thought he failed with Renee, but he didn’t. He knows that now, thankfully. And I’m sure Sue will do a great job at reminding him just how great he really is.
I’m sure Renee won’t want to come back to visit again anytime soon after that, so before school starts we’re going to get everything together and move. I’m scared, but I’m excited, too. We’re keeping Charlie’s house and the huge white Cullen house in Forks, and of course we’re keeping the cottage in the woods. At least I’ll still feel like I have a home in Forks. If we ever want to come back, we can do so discreetly.
I decided to post another entry from Edward’s diary next time. You’re probably getting a little sick of me now anyway. I know you all love getting to see life through his eyes sometimes, too. For now, I’m going to go play baseball in the clearing one last time before we leave Forks. It’s thundering. Perfect.
EDIT: Looking for a new dark love story to read? I have written a novella called, ‘My Darrling.’ (This is not the Willow series I’ve been working on, rather it’s a small side project.). You can read a preview and purchase ‘My Darrling’ here!