Sunday, January 22, 2012

Chapter 11: Torn

WARNING: This chapter has disturbing subject matter. Please don't read if you can't handle it.

Please read the information on this blog to better understand bipolar disorder and what Edward and Bella are going through.

 Nothing's fine
I'm torn
I'm all out of faith
This is how I feel
I'm cold and I am shamed
Lying naked on the floor
Illusion never changed
Into something real
I'm wide awake and I can see
The perfect sky is torn
You're a little late, I'm already torn

Torn-Natalie Imbruglia

BPOV

Denial and Isolation

I woke up naked and in some type of underground dungeon. It was dark, but when my eyes adjusted to the light, I could see that I was chained to a wall—my legs spread apart and shackled. My arms were placed over my head, effectively making it impossible for me to find any comfort.

A loud creak alerted me to the presence of another person. “I've got you just where I want you.”

“Edward, what are we doing here?” I asked, looking up into his frighteningly dark eyes.

Smirking, he took off the black hooded robe which left him completely nude. Long, supple muscles stretched out to form the perfection of a pale Adonis who drew my eyes like a moth to a flame. If beauty could kill, he would have left nothing but perfumed ashes in his wake.

“My, my, Isabella, I can smell you from here,” he murmured, baring his canines.

I was so afraid all I could do was stutter, “D-Don’t h-hurt me.”

One of Edward’s large smooth hands connected painfully with my right cheek. “You’re not in a position to give me orders, slave. I fucking own you!”

I whimpered and begged while he knelt down beside me on the cold cement floor. It was then I noticed several black snake tattoos across his chest. As beautiful as I’d thought him before, I could now see nothing but those ruthless reptiles.

“You’re very afraid, aren't you? Show me,” Edward growled, using a key to unlock my wrists.

Once I was free, I began pushing at his chest. I had to get out of here and find my baby or someone who could help me. If I stayed I knew something truly awful would happen, and I’d never be the same.

“You’re a monster,” I screeched, while Edward’s eyes turned blood red.

His answering smile was sinister. “A few minutes ago, you thought I was handsome. I could see it in your eyes. What has changed, Isabella?”

“I see the real you,” I sighed, rubbing my sore wrists.

Edward said a word in another language and several nude women appeared. He winked at me before standing up and walking over to them. When he got there, a dark-haired female with slanted eyes laid her lower body on a stone altar. She was to be his sacrifice.

“Look at me while I fuck their bodies. Did you think you were special, Isabella?” Edward asked quizzically.

I turned away. “You’re disgusting.”

He was at my side in less than a second, punching my face and leaving me covered in blood. “The only thing disgusting in this room is you! You let the monster get inside of you thinking you could change him into something good. You were a fool. I’m going to show you just how wrong you've been.”

While I sobbed, Edward buried his shaft inside the woman. Their grunts and sex noises echoed in the dank room making me want to curl up and die. The copulation seemed to go on forever, and eventually the woman stopped moving.

“Watch,” Edward demanded as he began eating his conquest’s flesh. Horror struck, I realized he was also drinking her blood.

I turned to the side and puked until there was nothing left. The show went on in much the same way until Edward had fucked and consumed every woman in the room…except me. With renewed strength, I struggled to break free from the chains.

“Let me go!”

Calmer than before, Edward walked over, unshackled my legs, and brought me to the filthy altar. I fought but it was no use. Instead of bending me over like the others, he laid me down on my back. Blindly, I clawed at his alabaster face.

“Tsk, Tsk, Bella. You don’t want to anger the beast. It will all be over very quickly.”

The tattoo snakes became real, falling from his skin and landing on my bare stomach. Then the organ between Edward’s legs grew in size, making it physically impossible for him to fit inside me. Still, he began pushing into my entrance as the snakes hissed and bit various parts of my body.

“No. It hurts. Please, Edward,” I begged, squirming to get away.

He stopped to look down at me, his eyes turning fully black. “You’re no different than the others. I must make you see. Come, Isabella, it’s time for you to die.”

~~LAMTAF~~

“Bella…Bella. Wake up. It’s Jasper. Come on, baby sister. Wake up!”

Shivering and frightened, I slowly opened my eyes. It seemed to take all the energy in my body to do something so simple. The minute my senses registered, I began to feel sick. Gagging, I pointed to the wastebasket. Jasper handed it to me, holding my hair as I vomited nothing but liquid.

It had been over a week since I’d walked in on Edward’s betrayal. My appetite had become non existent, and I threw up almost everything. If it hadn't been for Dante still drinking my breast milk, I would never have touched food at all.

Groggily, I protested as Jasper raised a glass to my lips which I soon discovered was ginger ale. He looked helpless and lost, so I managed to swallow and even eat some crackers. I hated that my brother was once again forced to pick me up after an Edward-induced fall.

“You can’t go on like this,” Jasper stated, his blue eyes seemingly fathomless. “I won’t sit here and watch you waste away over that bastard! He’s never been worth it, Bella. How many times are you going to let him treat you like dirt?”

I winced at his harsh words. “I tried…I tried to save my marriage and give Dante the family he needs. Is that so wrong?”

My brother stretched and stood up. “What’s wrong is thinking that you’re not worthy to be loved and treated with respect. I’m pissed at Edward, but I’m also mad at you. He only treated you like trash because you allowed it. Now, look, you've been in bed for a week falling into depression—again.”

I sighed and wiped my watery eyes. “I love him, Jaz. I thought he loved me, but maybe I was wrong.”

“Maybe you were wrong? He’s fucking anything that moves and making you look like an idiot. If he loved you, he would get take the help the family is offering. Edward always does what he wants—damn the consequences. I can’t believe how naive you are acting. You’re always going to be his doormat!” Jasper yelled, stomping the floor for emphasis.

“I want you to go. I have a headache and you’re making it worse. Just…Just, let me sleep,” I begged.

Jaz nodded and walked towards the door. “You have a baby who needs you, a family who misses you, and a fulfilling career, Bella. Edward isn't your life. The sooner you wake up and realize just how badly he’s treated you, the better. I love you, darlin’, but you need to come out of this funk.”

After he left, I cried until my eyes went dry. I wanted to go find Dante and hug him, but I was in no state to take care of a baby. In fact, I was lucky Carlisle and Emmett hadn’t had me committed after the breakdown. From what I remembered, I’d been practically lethargic when Rose had brought me home from the Fairmont.

Each time I closed my eyes, I saw a scene from my history with Edward. For example, the first time we made love. It had been pain, pleasure, and bliss. He’d barely been able to control his animal nature, and as a result he'd thought I hated his guts. When he came back to me the next day, I’d wanted to weep with joy.

“Stupid Bella,” I mumbled, trying to force the memory from my head.

                                                                   ~~LAMTAF~~

The days passed quickly. I ate the bare minimum and spent most of my time staring at the walls. Jasper didn't come back, but Alice sat with me for hours on end. I was too broken to do much except occasionally squeeze her hand.

One morning, Angela came to my room. She gasped and sat beside me. I knew I probably looked a mess, but I refused to get out of bed. What did it matter if I had clean clothes or pretty hair when my soul was dying?

“Bella,” she said, touching my cheek gently, “it hurts me to see you this way.”

I turned over to face her. “I feel like I’m dying inside, Ang. I don’t want to be this way. My little lamb is suffering because I can’t function.”

She stood up and held out her hand. “Come on, sweets.”

“Just let me sleep.”

Angela shook her head vehemently, causing strands of black hair to fall in her face. “No. Everyone is indulging you, but I know the old Bella. Remember when you didn’t want to skate because you were scared you’d fall?”

“I did fall.”

She giggled. “Yeah, but you tried and even got pretty good at it over time. You’re stronger than this, sweets. I know it hurts. I can’t even imagine how I’d cope if Ben… Listen, we’re here for you, but you need to meet us halfway.”

Because I was tired of my self-imposed exile, I let Angela run me a bath. All I could do was watch as she added jasmine bubble bath to the steaming water. By the time I lowered myself into the frothy tub, I was feeling a little excited about the prospect of a clean body.

“This feels sooo good,” I moaned loudly, submerging myself.

Ang laughed and handed me a bottle of almond milk shampoo. “I’m going to leave you alone, but I’ll be back after you finish. We can eat dinner…if you want.”

Since the fallout my days ran together, so I had no idea that it was evening. “That sounds perfect, but I don’t want to keep you from Ben.”

“It’s not a problem, Bella. He understands.”

“Are you sure?” I asked, gnawing on my sore lip.

She nodded. “Yes. Now don’t forget to wash behind your ears.”

As I rubbed a Dove bar over my skin, it all began to make sense. Edward had cheated on me. No matter what happened in the future, we would never be the same.  Lying in bed and letting my life waste away wasn't the solution, though.

By the time Ang returned, I’d dressed in a new pajamas and changed the sheets and comforter. Technically, housework was Hilda’s job, but I hadn't quite gotten used to having servants. I felt bad asking someone else to do what I could do myself.

“I’m starving,” I confessed, plopping down on the bed.

Angela left and came back with William. The butler smiled at me as he placed plates and glasses on the table. Thankfully my bedroom was large enough to have a sitting area. I wasn't sure I was ready to venture outside of the nest just yet.

“Steak and Parmesan risotto, Miss,” William announced, giving an unnecessary flourish to the delicious-looking meal.

“Thank you,” I said politely as he poured us each glass of wine.

“Do you need me to stay late? Hilda and I were planning to leave, but if you need us…”

I held up my hand. “No, you've stayed late as it is. I’ll make sure you both get overtime.”

After telling us that dessert was on the stove, William exited the room.

Ang and I talked about our old lives and how much our world had changed. She and Ben were busy handling my book dealings and taking on other literary clients. Ang had never been much for writing, but she was an avid reader and usually the first to spy a would-be-popular author.

Days of not eating had left me weaker than I’d thought. I ate ravenously, barely taking time to swallow before shoveling more into my mouth. Pretty soon, I’d consumed three helpings and a half loaf of garlic bread.

“Slow down, Bella,” Angela admonished. “I don’t want you to get sick again.”

I giggled and poured another glass of wine. “It feels so good to be full. Um, Ang, do you think I’ll ever be okay?”

She put down her fork and reached across the table to touch my hand. “You’ll be fine. I can’t tell you that it’ll stop hurting, but I know you can get through this heartbreak.”

~~LAMTAF~~

Bargaining

The next Monday, I returned to work. The colleges were back in session, so my business had been super busy. Bree and Maggie practically squeezed me to death as I walked through the front door with my little lamb. Apparently, they had missed me more than I'd missed them.

“We were so worried about you,” Maggie said as she kissed my cheek. I knew she could understand a little of my pain because of what Demetri had done to her.

Bree hugged me tightly, too. “Onyx wants to see you. She just sits on the chair and stares out at the rain. Riley says cats’ moods match their owners.”

I ran my fingers through my hair and tried to smile. “You can bring her home anytime. Thank you both for taking on so much responsibility. The store looks great.”

We ate breakfast and went over inventory while Dante took a nap. I was happy the girls didn’t ask me anything about Edward. The pain was still too fresh. I needed to get back into my normal routine before I handled all of that drama.

“So, how are you and Riley coming along?” I asked Bree.

She blushed crimson. “He…did something.”

Maggie giggled loudly. “Awww, she’s so innocent.”

I stifled a laugh because my friend looked so forlorn. “What did he do?”

Bree sighed. “I don’t know what he wants from me anymore! He touches me like husband.” She said a word in Russian before figuring it out in her head. “I am tainted.”

I shook my head. ‘No you’re not, sweetheart. Have you even had sex?”

“No, but we do other stuff.” I assumed she meant oral and fingering, but since she was so shy I wasn't about to ask for clarification.

Maggie patted her friend’s hand. “I told you that it’s perfectly natural. If Riley knew you were uncomfortable, he’d stop. He loves you.”

Bree sniffled and blew her nose on a tissue. “It is other thing, too. Riley’s uncles say I am bad for him. They do not want me in family. I love him, but my wish has always been to be wife someday. I am scared.”

It made me angry that anyone would hurt Bree. She was one of the gentlest and kindest people on Earth. Silently I vowed to have a talk with Riley and see what the Volturi could do to help matters. My marriage may not have worked out, but Bree deserved her chance at a happy life and all that it entailed.

Around one, Dante woke up screaming. I changed a particularly toxic diaper and then fed him a bottle. His eyes never left mine as he suckled greedily. Looking down at his cherubic face, I felt guilty about the days we’d spent apart while I wallowed in bed.

“You’re so perfect,” I cooed, kissing his chubby little hands. “I’m sorry I was selfish. I’m never going to abandon you again.”

My little lamb made a happy noise and burped.

“Good boy!”

There was a knock on the door just as I finished putting Dante in his playpen. “Come in.”

Giles walked into the room carrying a beautiful edible bouquet. “Hello, love,” he said, holding the gift out to me.

I began to tear up. “This is beautiful, Giles. I love fresh fruits and chocolates. Thank you.”

He smiled, making his clear blue eyes sparkle. “I know it’s none of my business, but you sounded melancholy the last time we spoke over the mobile. I want you to know that I’m here if you need me.”

Warily, I studied Giles for a minute. He wore his Burberry suit like a male model and his silky black hair only added to his remarkable looks. He also had very nice lips and a strong jaw. I let myself fantasize about what it would be like to kiss him, even though I knew he would push me away.

“Bella?” he asked, drawing my attention back to the conversation. “Where did you go?”

Blushing, I looked down at my nails. “I… Edward and I are separating. I’m having a hard time with everything. We've only been married a year and…”

He passed me a silk handkerchief. “Don’t cry. I reckon it will all get sorted. Pardon me for being blunt, but you deserve better. You’re a smart and alluring woman, Bella.”

“Giles…”

“Don’t. I meant every word I just said.”

Despite the elephant in the room, Giles and I remained professional as we discussed what cities I’d be traveling to in the next few months. A few times, I caught him staring, but he’d always look away quickly. I found it hard to believe a man like him could have any interest in a soon-to-be divorced single mother.

When it was over I found myself dreading the idea of not seeing Giles again for a few days, so I invited him over for dinner. He gladly accepted my offer and asked if he could bring anything. Biting my lip, I told him to just bring himself. I was pretty sure I didn't have any romantic feelings for my publisher, but I liked his company.

“What am I doing?” I muttered while thinking of who else I could invite for dinner. I felt like it was inappropriate to be alone with Giles when I had all these strange feelings and thoughts. Plus, technically I was still a married woman.

~~LAMTAF~~

I fiddled with my napkin as Leah grilled Giles about his travels. She’d just been given a job covering the news on a local station and was eager to make powerful friends in Seattle. Jake, however, seemed weary of Giles and kept his arm protectively around Leah’s shoulders.

“Zurich is a beautiful city. I've been trying to talk Bella into doing an international tour, and one of our stops would be Switzerland,” Giles confessed, bringing me back into the conversation.

“I would love to do it, but Dante is too young.”

Giles nodded pensively. “Of course, love. Perhaps we can arrange it for your second tour.”

Leah squealed and leaned across the table. “Are you writing another book?”

“It’s in very early stages,” I replied, smiling coyly at Giles.

The rest of dinner was filled with pleasant conversation. Jake relaxed after he found out Giles had season tickets to the Seahawks and didn't enjoy football. Before the end of the night, Jake had negotiated a deal. Leah and I laughed as they argued about whether or not soccer was a real sport.

Around nine, Giles thanked me for a lovely evening and left. We made plans to have lunch next week. I found myself looking forward to spending more time with my publisher. For a little while, he made me smile and forget my problems.

“Be careful, Bella. You’re in a vulnerable place. I do like Giles, though,” Leah whispered, kissing me on the cheek.

Jake put on his jacket and turned around to give me a hug. “He’s okay, but you come first. Never take old problems into a new relationship. Don’t lead the guy on if you’re not ready.”

I blanched at the absurdity. “He doesn't like me that way. We’re just friends!”

Jake and Leah shared a smug look before wishing me goodnight.

I thought it was weird they could even think… Giles could have any woman. He was one of the hottest bachelors in Seattle. Men weren't looking for single mothers with baggage like mine. If Giles knew about the Mafia stuff and all the rest, he wouldn't even want to see me again.

After taking a quick shower, the baby monitor alerted me to the fact that Dante was awake. He was whimpering and struggling to stand up when I got to the nursery. Smiling, I lifted his tiny body from the bed and snuggled him to my chest.

We walked to my room and laid down. Dante kept crawling to Edward’s pillows and looking at me. It was like he was asking me, ‘where is my daddy?’ or something. I tried to hold it in, but his innocent little face broke me.

Sighing, I pulled out my old Iphone and dialed the number. His phone rang for several minutes before he picked up.

“Bella?” His voice sounded extremely gruff, but at least he wasn't high.

“I’m going to hold the phone up to Dante’s ear. He misses you. Tell him you love him,” I commanded acidly.

My little lamb tried to chew the phone a few times before I was able to settle him in my lap. His eyes lit up as Edward talked. I had no idea what he said, but I trusted him not to be mean to our son.

Five minutes later, I pulled the phone away. “You know, you could come see him. I have no problems with it as long as you’re supervised. Just because we’re over doesn't mean you get to stop being a father.” After that statement, I hung up.

Dante kicked his fat legs and slobbered on my cheek. I told him Onyx would be home tomorrow, which made him smile. He loved using her for a prop so he could stand. I just hoped that he wouldn't crush my cat. My little lamb was by no means a small baby.

“You’re going to grow up to be handsome and strong. I want you to be a good man,” I murmured, caressing my baby boy’s chubby cheeks.

He pulled my hair and rubbed his little nose against mine. “Bah-baw-dah,” he squealed happily. In baby speak that meant, ‘I love you’, or at least that’s what I told myself.

By midnight, my bambino was worn out. He drank from his bottle until sleep claimed him again. While watching his eyes close, I worried that I wouldn't be enough. Dante deserved so much more—all the studies said that kids from two-parent households had better lives. I’d already failed as a mother.

Since I couldn't sleep, I took out my Kindle and read some of the books I’d bought about bipolar disorder. The disease really affected relationships and many ended in divorce. From reading, I’d learned all of Edward’s mood swings and outbursts were common for people with bipolar disorder.

“What if I could save him?” I asked myself aloud.

Emmett told me Edward was going through a manic phase, that the drugs and alcohol only made it worse. I just wished there was something that I could have done. The guilt I felt over my husband’s condition was almost as bad as the pain I felt because of his cheating.

Have I really been helpful or just made him worse? 

Pretty soon, the answer came to me. I did everything I could for Edward. He hurt and pushed me away until there was nothing left. The fact that I’d had to ask Carlisle, my father-in-law, to test me for sexually transmitted diseases was a testament to how much I’d suffered. Edward obviously didn't care about me, so why was I so worried about him?

“I have you, and that’s all I need. Mommy loves you,” I whispered, pulling my little lamb close.

~~LAMTAF~~

Anger

“You’re clean. All the tests came back negative. I’m so sorry  you had to go through this, sweetheart. It makes me want to beat my son’s ass,” Carlisle hissed, handing me a bunch of medical papers and pamphlets.

I sighed and put everything in my messenger bag. “Thank you for being discreet. Does this mean I can feed Dante now?”

He nodded. “You can resume breastfeeding at any time, but I do advise we up your caloric intake. You’re wasting away to skin and bones.”

I looked down at my thighs. They were thinner than normal. My clothes practically hung off of my body, and sometimes I got winded from carrying Dante up and down the stairs. I was trying to eat more, but it was hard.

I've been vomiting almost every day. I know it’s the stress, because my body had the same reaction after Charlie’s death. I lost a lot of weight back then, too. Um, I guess I need to start taking the nausea pills you gave me.”

Carlisle patted my shoulder. “You’re my daughter, Bella, and I’m worried. After my first wife died, I wanted to join her. If it wasn't for Emmett, I’m not sure I would have made it. There were days when I just wanted to take an overdose of pills and leave it all behind.”

I plucked a Kleenex from the box on his desk to wipe my eyes. “How did you make it through? Some days, I don’t even want to get out of bed. Edward is still alive, but it’s like he’s dead.”

My father-in-law smiled. “I took it one day at a time. There are still times when I miss my deceased wife, but she’d want me to be happy.  The best thing you can do is take care of yourself and be a good mother. Dante needs the stability right now. We’re all trying to make Edward get help, but it’s up to him.”

After I left the hospital, I called Alice and asked her to meet me for lunch. Esme had Dante and Sasha for the day. I knew my little lamb needed some time with his friend. Dante’s whole face had lit up when he saw Sasha sitting in the play yard. I wanted him to be happy.

When I got to the sushi place, Alice was already waiting in the booth. I let the waiter lead me to her table and pour a cup of green tea. The restaurant was packed with the lunch crowd, and I noticed a few single guys giving us hopeful looks. I rolled my eyes.

“I should have suggested Italian. You need carbs, girl,” Alice nagged, pointing at me.

“No, this place is fine.”

She sipped her Sake quietly before speaking again. “He looks worse than you. I…I know it’s hard, and I wish I could do more to help you.”

Snarling, I threw down my menu. “Look, I’m here to eat. I’m tired of everyone treating me like a victim! I just want to have one meal where I don’t have to think or talk about it.”

When the waiter returned, we both ordered Chicken Katsu and sushi rolls. Two guys at a table close to ours sent us each a glass of wine. I declined, but Alice drank while showing the admirers her wedding ring. She also pointed to my finger and shouted, “She’s married, too!” The guys pouted and toasted us.

Usually, I would have been embarrassed at such a display, but I really just didn’t care. In my limited experience, men were only out for one thing—sex. Once they got what they wanted, a woman was easily discarded. I wasn’t interested in being someone else’s trash.

“My first couture pieces just arrived from Paris. There is one gown I designed specifically for you. You can come by the boutique and try it on anytime,” Alice informed me.

I shrugged and stuffed a California roll into my mouth. Thankfully, the nausea pill I’d taken seemed to work. I was able to finish most of my meal and didn’t feel the need to vomit. In fact, I felt so good I decided to order dessert. It was a small step but a step nonetheless.

I was eating a slice of New York cheesecake when I noticed Edward’s face on one of the plasma televisions lining the wall. The news station was talking about the State Senate elections in February and Edward’s lead in the polls. I was just glad the televisions were programmed to caption-only so that I didn’t have to hear his voice.

Before I could look away, the whore Gina came on the screen. She looked so damn professional in her smart black business suit. Some people would never have suspected the bitch was a whore and cokehead. She was just like Edward in her ability to deceive the public.

“Cunt,” I muttered, dropping my fork. I no longer had an appetite.

Alice looked worried. “We should probably go. Lunch is on me.”

I didn’t argue as she paid the check and ushered us out the door. It was another cool, rainy day in Seattle. I didn’t even remember the last time we’d seen the sun. It was fitting weather for my dark mood.

Jane had driven me, so she was waiting with my BMW. I waved goodbye to Alice and walked over to the car. My bodyguard eyed me warily as I slammed the passenger door. She knew me well enough by now.

“Where to, boss?”

~~LAMTAF~~

“This is a bad idea, Bella,” Jane yelled, trying to make me stay in the car.

“Let me go!”

I was pulling out my supplies when Alice pulled up in her yellow Lamborghini. HADES was closed for the week, even the underground activities had been halted. It was perfect timing to do what I had planned.

“Call Edward and you’re fired,” I barked, pointing at Jane.

She sighed. “I won’t be a part of this, but I am calling him. Fire me if you want.”

I gathered my supplies and marched past Jane and Alice screaming, “Traitors,” over my shoulder. They were useless to me.

Somehow, Alice caught up to me when I got inside the building. I was so angry I could barely see straight. All I wanted to do was take something away from Edward. He’d broken my heart and left me a shell of a woman. It was only fair!

Alice clawed at my arm as I tried to get out of the elevator. It was strange to see HADES without people milling around. Being in the place where I first fell in love would be torture, but I needed to release some of the pain I felt inside.

“Let go!” I screamed, pushing my sister-in-law back against the wall.

Tears welled up in her childlike eyes. “I can’t be here for this, Bella. I’ll wait for you down in Jaz’s office.”

Angrily, I watched the steel doors close. Then I went into Edward’s office and locked the door. Thankfully, he hadn’t removed my thumbprint from the lair’s security panel. He’d probably been fucking too many women to find the time for such frivolous things.

Inside, everything was just as I remembered. My stomach clenched painfully as I passed the piano where our little lamb was conceived. Nothing we had was real; it was all a charade. Armed with a can of gasoline, a knife, and a lighter, I marched to the bedroom.

Hell hath no fury.

The bedding was rumbled, so I knew Edward had been here recently. I stripped off the sheets and comforters, throwing them on the floor. Fighting back tears, I went to the closet and took down a bunch of Edward’s silk shirts and expensive pants. I added everything plus shoes to the pile.

Crouching down on my knees, I retrieved the knife and began cutting it all into little scraps. I cut, tore, and screamed as tears blurred my vision. Why should Edward look nice when seducing his whores? He deserved rags and soot.

Soon, I began carrying everything to the Jacuzzi tub. I briefly wondered how many whores Edward had fucked in the bathtub, before filling it with strips of fabric. Scowling, I poured gasoline over everything and set it on fire. It wasn’t enough, though.

“What the hell? Bella, get away from there,” he shouted, lifting me into his arms.

I fought and scratched at his bare forearms. “Get your hands off of me, you bastard!”

Edward set me down in a chair, grabbed the fire extinguisher, and fled back to the bathroom. I heard the sounds of foam leaving the nozzle and water running. It was then I realized that the fire alarm was going off. The whole room was smoky, but I’d barely noticed in my rage.

“Shit,” Edward murmured while getting a stepladder so he could turn off the alarm. He eyed me warily as he made a call to tell Caius everything was fine. Besides me, only Edward’s Godfathers knew about the lair.

“Thank fuck Jane called me. She’s going to get her ass chewed out for letting you get this far. She should have…”

I took off my heel and threw it as his head. “You don’t get to give orders! I’m the boss now.”

Edward rubbed his forehead where the shoe had hit him and sat down in a nearby chair. “You could have been hurt or even died.”

I scoffed. “Like you would care. I’m surprised you’re even here. I guess even your dick needs a break now and again.”

Growling, he stood up and reached for my hand. “Come on. I’m having Jane take you home. You’re not in the right frame of mind.”

I stood up and began taking off my clothes. “I’m not ready to go yet.”

His eyes darkened considerably. “S-Stop. I’m not worthy, and I won’t use you again.”

I laughed humorlessly. “As if I’d let you touch me again, asshole.”

He followed me as I walked back to the bedroom. When I got there, I took out my favorite flesh-colored dildo from my bag. Then I laid down on the bed and spread my legs. Edward groaned and covered his crotch.

I licked my lips seductively. “Once upon a time, there was a cocky king named Edward. All the girls in the land wanted to be his princess, but he was most adamant about not getting married.”

I began swirling the dildo around in my wetness slowly. Anger was as much of an aphrodisiac as anything else, so I was more than ready. I kept my eyes glued to Edward’s as I pushed the head of the toy inside my body.

“One day, a naive girl was brought to the king’s palace. He played games with her until she agreed to be his wife,” I said, moaning as the first orgasm hit.

Edward sat on the floor and began rocking. He looked like shit. “Please, Bella.”

I ignored him and positioned myself on my hands and knees, which left my ass directly in his face. “The girl was happy that she was chosen. They married and had a beautiful baby. Soon after, the king decided he…he didn’t want the family life. The girl caught him with his cock buried inside a bar wench.”

By this time, I was riding the dildo hard. I looked over my shoulder to see Edward staring straight at me. He looked sadder than I’d ever seen him... I didn't care. He was good at putting on an act, but the minute I left he’d have some whore under him again.

“The girl’s heart broke that day and was never healed again. The baby kept her going, but she was never whole. The king went on to have many conquests because it was easy for him to pretend the girl and the baby never existed. The end,” I roared, finding my final release.

Panting, I dropped the dildo on the bare mattress and turned over on to my back. For a long time, I just stared at the ceiling. I felt boneless and light after my multiple orgasms, but I didn't feel better at all.

“I hope you enjoyed the show, dear husband. You’ll never be inside of me again. I would have never—never hurt you. I loved you so much…so much,” I whimpered, curling into the fetal position.

Edward howled and ran to the bathroom. I heard loud retching and then his body collapsing on the tiles. I hated that a part of me felt bad. I'd thought what happened didn’t affect him, but maybe I had been wrong.

Sniffling, I put on my clothes and left. Jane and Ali were waiting for me outside of Edward’s office door. I let them lead me to the car. All the fight and anger was gone leaving numbness in its place. As we pulled away from the club, I felt a heavy weight in the center of my chest. It was then I fully realized Edward still had my heart.

~~LAMTAF~~

Depression

A week after the lair incident, Edward won the State Senate seat by a landslide. The family and I decided we’d tell the media I was sick; therefore sparing me from the parties and events. Because I was a young mother, the public was very understanding.

“I can’t believe Marcus and Caius got that elderly couple to sell us our old family home. I’m not even sure I can handle being there right now,” I confessed as Jasper filled up the gas tank.

We were on our way to Forks for two weeks of rest and relaxation. Jaz’s relationship with Alice was on the rocks. They often argued about Edward, but the real problem was Jaz didn’t want to try to have a baby. He’d even threated to have a vasectomy, because he didn’t trust Alice.

My brother leaned through the window and kissed my cheek. “If you can’t handle it, we’ll stay at the Inn. Let’s try to have a good time.”

I nodded and watched him walk away. Hopefully, the trip would be good for both of us. I knew Felix and Jane were somewhere close, but they were nice enough to give us some distance. Despite my problems, I was determined to be the old Bella Swan for a little while.

Babbling in the back seat pulled me out of the darkness. “Don’t fret, little lamb. We’re almost there.”

My baby boy picked up his bottle full of apple juice and began chewing on the nipple. It had been a while since he’d seen his father in person, but he seemed to be doing okay. Fortunately Edward did occasionally call our son, but it was clear that he’d given up his fatherly duties—which made me hate him even more.

Jasper returned with a bag full of king-size chocolate candy and bags of chips. I unwrapped a Snickers bar, taking a healthy bite. Carlisle and Esme were adamant I return from this trip with extra pounds or they would force me to speak to one of Alice’s old eating disorder counselors. I didn’t want or need more therapy, so I planned to eat.

The white clapboard house looked exactly the same but with a newer paintjob. When I closed my eyes, I could see my dad up on a ladder patching up the roof while Jaz and I played. It was all overwhelming, and I began to sob.

“I miss him so much, Jas.”

My brother squeezed my hand. “Me too, Bells. We had some good times here. You and Charlie gave me my first real home.”

Jasper unloaded the car and carried our bags inside. As a gift to us, Esme had had one of her friends pick out furniture and also our old stuff was brought out of storage. The desk where Charlie had taught me to write in cursive sat prominently in our old work and hobby room.

“This is where mommy grew up,” I acknowledged, tickling Dante’s belly.

He looked around, his big vibrant eyes glowing excitedly. “Bah-baw-da.”

“I love you, too.”

Jaz and I spent the rest of the night reminiscing and telling Dante stories. My little lamb was sweet, but he was happiest when crawling the hardwood floors. I watched him try to stand, knowing it wouldn’t be long before he took his first step. It was too bad Edward had chosen to miss out on our son’s milestones.

The next morning, we went to the diner. Sue Clearwater instantly fell in love with Dante and showed him off to almost the whole population of Forks. Several townspeople came up to congratulate me on Edward’s win and to gossip. The weight loss and bags under my eyes made it easy for everyone to believe I had indeed been ill.

“Old Mrs. Watson is still frisky. She grabbed my butt when I went to the bathroom,” Jas confessed, smiling at me.

I giggled. “Angela once saw her going down on Mike when we were in high school.”

The days passed leisurely. I put on a brave and happy front, but inside I was depressed. It had been so long since I spontaneously laughed or really felt anything. Dante was as sweet and funny as ever, which only made me feel guiltier.

The family called, emailed, and texted daily. Edward was on the news giving speeches and lying about how much he loved his family, so I avoided television and the internet. I only watched cartoons with Dante and action films with Jaz—no dramas or romances.

On the fourth day, I decided I wanted to plant a garden. I took Dante into town and bought a bunch of seeds and stuff. Charlie had had a black thumb, but I’d managed to grow a few vegetables and flowers when I was younger.

Felix helped me load everything. When Caius and Marcus bought our house, they also bought the only house next to us, which meant our bodyguards were right next door. The old Bella definitely hadn’t needed that much protection.

It was a rare sunny day, so I’d set up my little lamb’s Play Yard outside so he could keep me company while I planted. He kept throwing his favorite toys out over the edge and crying. It was one of those annoying things babies and little kids did to get attention.

“Dante Cullen, do not throw your toys. If you do it again, they are staying on the ground.”

My little lamb gave me the middle finger and scrunched up his face. I lifted him out of the Play Yard and hugged him tightly. He’d been having more temper tantrums lately and it scared me. What if my baby was bipolar like Edward? I’d read it was sometimes genetic.

Sighing, I kissed the palm of his hand. “You have to learn the difference between good and bad, okay? I love you.” 

He laid his head on my shoulder and cooed softly.

I was just about to take him in for some lunch when I felt a tingling sensation. Startled, I turned around. Edward was parked across watching us from his Rolls Royce. I was glad  the neighbors were inside or at work, because I didn’t want to create a scene.

Soon Jasper joined me. “I told that jerk to stay away,” he snarled, wrapping his arm protectively around my waist.

It was as if I was under a spell and couldn’t take my eyes off of my soon-to-be-ex husband. “Edward is the one who got the couple to sell us the house, isn’t he?”

My brother sighed and lifted Dante from my trembling arms. “Yeah, but we thought it’d be better if you didn’t know. It doesn’t change anything. Let’s go inside.”

I chanced one more look at Edward as I stood in the foyer. For a moment, I thought that he would get out of the car, but he just blew me a kiss and drove off into the sunset. 

Bella was all over the place, because she's grieving. Check out the post I made about grief for better understanding. I know some of you don't think Edward can be redeemed and maybe he can't, but he has to try. Please leave me a review to let me know what you think. *Huggles* I'll be with the Stoli

13 comments:

  1. Reading these chapters always make me so sad. I really hope there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Good job working with the stages of grief.

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  2. This story is beautifully tragic and I like to believe that anyone can be redeemed. Obviously it will take a lot of hard work and sacrifice on Edward's part as well as Bella's. But I am very interested to see where you take this.

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  3. bb you did some epic work here :D keep up the awesome job :D Luv ya!!

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  4. WOW, that's some crazy shit that is going on in bella's world. i thought she would try to burn the whole lair but i hope she doesn't lose her mind dealing with edward.

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  5. she needs to get herself strong for her baby. she is responsible for him too?

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  6. I totally understand, bipolar and the stages of grief. However, I'm usually a fan of B & E HEA's, I truly don't think it would be the best decision. E's gone too far & I don't think B should lower herself to his level anymore.

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  7. Edward is turning into a creeper. He needs to go to rehab and allow Bella to heal from all the pain he's given her. Great chapter!

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  8. Oh how I can truly understand all the levels she pass through, depression, anger, denial and others. It speaks directly to my heart. I can feel those feelings through Bella. I keep faith for a HEA. Dante is an amazing BB. And Bella is not alone, but Edward is alone. Hopefully, he will have an epiphanie, and will ask for help. Bella is not blind about Bipolar Disorder. Maybe later, much more later, she could forgive him, if he is really contrite. You write a wonderful and very sensitive fiction with a lot of talent.

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  9. I am really enjoying it so far. I hope to see Bella with Giles but I have to be honest and say that I want a HEA with Bella and a healthy Edward. I look forward to an update!

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  11. I hope she does not forgive him. He is scum! What he did in the last chapter is unforgiving. Bella deserves a man who wil love, hinor and tresure her. Edward is a piss of crap that deserves nothing, not Bella not Dante and not his loving family. He chose the devil and he deserves hell.

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  12. Hi, okay so i have been reading your story and the first one was amazing and i loved it.... I also love your sequel and its rare cause i don't like to read about cheating Edward cause he and Bella are destine to be together. Its in there make up of life. Anyhoo, i just finished ch. 11 torn and i have been crying ever since Bella and Edward broke it off and what Bella has been going through with Edward...Bi polar is serious , i am a teacher an i have taught children that are 4 & 5 yrs with this disorder and it is sad to see children like this. I hope that Edward gets help cause Bella is his soul mate an needs to win back his babydoll, Bella yea, i know it will take time for her to forgive him and trust him , but like she said he still has her heart... i am so hoping this story ends happily..a HEA!!! I am the avid reader (sandym)

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  13. Very upsetting but I'm not giving up on this story I still have faith.

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