“You must do everything in your power. What others cannot do, that is what you must do for my Edward.” -Elizabeth Masen
Edward pulled two tickets out of his coat pocket with an unusually questionable grin on his face. I hadn’t seen this expression before. His eyes were bigger than normal, and black. I could see that he needed to hunt. His head tilted slightly downwards, and while one side of his lips curled up, the other side seemed to curl down. Edward looked as though he didn’t know if he wanted to smile, or frown.
“Are those plane tickets?” It sounded more eager out loud than it did in my head.
Edward shifted his dark gaze down at the two tickets he held between his long, porcelain-like fingers, his body stiff, statuesque. His smooth lips looked flat now, and his eyebrows knitted together like they always do when he’s thinking of the right thing to say.
“Yes. One is for you, of course, Bella.” He reached his hand out and handed me one of the tickets, watching me intently. “I would like for you to take a trip to Chicago with me, if that’s okay.”
Edward reminded me of a boy asking a girl to be his date for a school dance. I thought about it for half a second–not because I didn’t want to go, but because I was waiting for the catch. I could tell by Edward’s expression that there was more than just taking a trip to Chicago involved.
“Well, you already got the plane tickets. . . ” I bit my lower lip, stalling, in hopes that he would interrupt and give me a little more information. He didn’t. Instead he grinned, a more familiar looking grin this time, then placed his ticket back in his pocket and mumbled a quick, “Great. We leave soon.”
Our flight was in almost exactly three hours, and although Edward didn’t give me many details, he did let me know that I wouldn’t need to pack anything. It was Christmas Eve, and we would be back by early Christmas morning to celebrate with Renesmee and the rest of our family. The Denali’s were expected to come by during the evening on Christmas, too.
I went hunting with Edward before we left. My eyes were starting to darken, like Edward’s, and my throat was turning into a dry, blistering, fire every time I caught even the slightest scent of warm, sweet-smelling human blood. We were going to be on an airplane, too, and that is the last place thirsty vampires want to be. Accidents do happen.
The flight was short, just over an hour and a half, but seemed much quicker than that. Edward and I got caught up in a debate about Romeo and Juliet. He gets short with me when I compare our relationship to Romeo and Juliet. He doesn’t like being compared to “fickle” Romeo. I get that. But our relationship as a whole does have a few similarities.
Romeo attends the ball at the Capulet house in hopes of meeting Rosaline, but meets and falls in love with Juliet. Edward was supposed to be with Rosalie–and that didn’t work out, for obvious reasons. He then eventually met and fell in love with me.
During the “balcony scene,” Romeo sneaks into the Capulet courtyard and overhears Juliet vowing her love to him, despite the fact that their families are feuding. Edward used to surreptitiously watch me sleep–and overheard me say his name as I dreamt of him.
Paris is like my Jacob; he tried to woo and attract Juliet–similar to how Jacob tried to attract me. Of course, I picked Edward, despite our differences and the fact that our love was almost forbidden . . . dangerous.
I couldn’t leave out how Romeo thought Juliet was dead, and killed himself –just like Edward was about to have himself killed when he thought that “arranging a funeral” meant my funeral. He thought I was dead and was about to have himself destroyed.
I could have debated for hours with Edward, but he’s stubborn, and unwilling to be compared to Romeo, who he believes thoroughly destroyed his own happiness by making countless mistakes.
Right before the plane landed, Edward looked at me with his beautiful golden eyes, and concluded our debate with words so smooth they stopped my train of thought completely. “Besides, Romeo and Juliet had a tragic ending. You and I are a forever thing. We’re eternal. There will be no tragedy, no ending. Romeo lost his Juliet, but I’ll never lose my Bella.” He looked down at me lovingly, and reiterated the word never in a factual tone.
I wondered for a second if a vampire’s cold, granite-like body could turn to mush and melt into the seat? I had to look down to make sure my body was intact, thanks to Edward and his ability to send my mind into a complete haze and make my body feel like melting snow.
When we got off the plane, we picked up the rental car–which surprisingly wasn’t fancy, shiny, or insanely expensive. It looked like the type of car you would see a busy mother driving her children to soccer practice in. I laughed to myself at the image of Edward behind the wheel of such an effeminate car.
We didn’t drive far, just outside the city limits on the north side of Chicago. Edward parked the car and we ran for a short time until we reached the most gorgeous cemetery I have ever seen. It was huge, and full of architectural masterpieces. The cemeteries I have seen were usually row-after-row of tomb stones, some larger than others–but these were capacious monuments.
Edward took my hand and we slowly, almost glidingly, walked over the perfectly landscaped grass. I knew exactly where we were, and what we were doing here, but I didn’t know what emotion to feel. I wasn’t sure how Edward felt, either. Mind reading would have come in handy right about now.
When we reached the gravestone of Elizabeth Masen, I felt honored to be this close to the woman who created the love of my life. And the woman responsible for demanding that Carlisle save him.
My memory is vague, but I do recall certain parts of Carlisle’s story. Elizabeth demanded that he do everything in his power to save Edward during the 1918 Spanish influenza pandemic. He described her eyes as, “hard, like stones, like emeralds.” Carlisle believes that Elizabeth knew that he was different, somehow. Edward’s life was slipping away with each tick of the clock, but because of his mother’s demand, he was here with me, standing beside me, looking down at the ground of her grave.
“I haven’t been here in a while,” Edward began, his face now expressionless. “I wanted you to come with me so I could have the chance to introduce you to my mother in the best way I can. I have never been more grateful for her telling Carlisle to save me than I am now. Because of her, I get to live an eternity with you, Bella. I get to be happy every day. The type of happiness that will never end.” His eyes darted back towards the beautiful gravestone.
I thanked Edward, countless times, for bringing me somewhere that meant so much to him. For letting me have the chance to get so close to a part of his life from before he became an immortal. He doesn’t remember Elizabeth very well, but he will forever have a connection to her. Although he may have resented the fact that he never got to make the choice to be turned, he is now gratified.
We didn’t stay long. It was just long enough to pay our respects. I left the cemetery feeling closer to Edward than I ever thought possible. Honored. Maybe even a little shocked. I didn’t see this coming. He really did surprise me this time.
The next day was Christmas and we couldn’t wait to give Renesmee her present. Edward picked it out. It wasn’t something she could actually use, but Edward didn’t care, he couldn’t wait to buy his daughter her first car. Although the 2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet isn’t available to buy until May, 2010, Edward worked his magic and got one in ‘frosty blue’ for Renesmee. Her eyes lit up . . . with confusion. She loved the color, and the fact that it was sparkly, but in her sweet, soft voice she whispered, “I can’t use this. I don’t have a license Daddy.” Luckily I stocked up on real presents. Things she can actually use. And Alice, of course, got her a lot of pretty things to wear.
We all called Jacob, who was in La Push with his family, and wished them all a Merry Christmas. We wanted Jake to know that, even though he was gone for the day, we were still thinking of him.
The Denali’s were fun. They adore Nessie, and although it’s gross for me to think about, Tanya had fun flirting with Charlie. They got along really well, and it’s great to see Charlie’s face light up. After all, he is a terminal bachelor . . . famous ladies man, as he calls himself.
Tanya remembered Charlie from the wedding, and of course asked about his change. He told her the entire story and she nearly melted when he explained that he became a vampire to save me. Great. Now he’s using the story of how he became a vampire to save his vampire daughter from being killed by a coven of vampires to impress women. Vampire women. I still believe that there are things about my new life that I will never get used to.
I have to go for now; Seth is visiting and I want to spend as much time as possible with him before he goes back to La Push. I will write again soon, like I always do.
♥ EDIT: Looking for a new 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. The first book in the Willow series will be up in the early portion of this year). For now, I’m so excited for you to check out the novella I’ve written:
You can read a preview and purchase ‘My Darrling’ HERE. I can’t thank you all enough for your endless support, and I promise to run contests to give back as soon as my books get off the ground!
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Lots of love,