Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Chapter 14: Don't Speak


 A/N: I finally updated. This is the chapter that leads up to the end of the Prologue. The next chapter will be EPOV and contain the rest of the Prologue where she faints. I will tie it together. Thanks for all the love and patience. Please review.


You and me
We used to be together
Everyday together always
I really feel
That I'm losing my best friend
I can't believe
This could be the end
It looks as though you're letting go
And if it's real
Well I don't want to know
Don't speak
I know just what you're saying
So please stop explaining
Don't tell me cause it hurts
Don't speak
I know what you're thinking
I don't need your reasons
Don't tell me cause it hurts

Don’t Speak - No Doubt

BPOV

“You look like shit warmed over,” Rose said as she helped me up from the bathtub.

I scrunched up my face and stuck out my tongue. “There goes my self-esteem.”

Alice sighed. “Bella, we were just worried about you. Jane and Felix didn’t want to risk going against you, and you were being stubborn.”

I slipped on a robe. “Come here,” I begged, holding my arms out. “I know I messed up. Thanks for going out with me. I was stupid, and I learned my lesson.” They both hugged me tightly.

I fell asleep again a little after we ate lunch and didn’t wake up until after four. Yawning loudly, I stood up and stretched. Then I threw on a pair of cutoff shorts and an old baseball t-shirt I’d had since I was a teenager.

When I got to the kitchen, I was shocked at what I saw. “Wh-what are you doing here?”

He just smirked and pointed to something on the stove. I hated that he looked so good in his gray slacks and V-neck white tee. He’d let his hair grow out soit was more wild than ever, and his eyes were like emeralds on fire. My body’s natural response was embarrassing.

“I’ve only been here for ten minutes. Jasper is in the living room. I just brought you something to eat and… I wanted to see how you’re doing.”

I walked over and glanced at the seafood and steak plate. “I’m not really hungry.” Unfortunately, my stomach chose the moment to let out an angry growl.

Edward chuckled. “Sit down at the breakfast bar, and I’ll get it ready. I know just the way you like it.” The double entendre didn’t escape me.

I wanted to run out of the room and get Jasper to handle my problems, but I needed to stand my ground. Edward was no longer my husband, but maybe we could forge a friendship. It would be easier for Dante if he had two parents who didn’t fight like angry cats all the time.

Edward made polite conversation while I just gave one word answers and played with my Iphone. I didn’t want him to bring up what had happened in the club alley. I’d been stupid and reckless. We hadn’t even used a condom!

He placed some dishes in front of me. I had to admit Edward did make a nice plate of food. “Thanks. Um, this looks good.”

He sat on the leather stool next to me and began drinking from a huge bottle of water. “Babydoll, we need to talk.”

I dropped my fork. “First of all, I’m not your babydoll anymore. Secondly, there’s nothing to discuss. I just want to forget it ever happened.”

He leaned over and placed his large hand on my thigh. I noticed his usually buffed and manicured nails were broken and uneven. An electric jolt shot up my leg and landed right at the wet place between my thighs. I felt like he had me under a spell.

“I can’t forget. I told my new therapist, and he thinks we need to talk. Lack of communication was always one of our biggest problems.”

I scoffed.  “You come back and act like everything is okay. It’s almost like you don’t remember fucking all those whores and breaking my heart. Where were you when Dante was crying his eyes out from teething or when his first tooth finally broke through? I’d rather you have stayed the ruthless prick you were than to become this holier-than-thou reformed asshole.”

“I can’t go back and change the past, Bella. I’m trying here. I want to do right by you and DC. Please,” he begged, holding out his hand.

“Last night was a mistake. I was drunk and in a bad place. It won’t ever happen again. Besides, weren’t you the one who once said ‘dress like a dirty whore and they’ll fuck you like a dirty whore’? I should have listened.”

He began tugging on his hair and pacing the gleaming floor. “Fuck! It wasn’t like that, babydoll. I just needed to be close to you. I know it was too soon…”

“Too soon? Edward, you left me with separation papers last night. We will never be a couple again. The only reason I’m not filing for divorce yet is because I want to give you a little more time to get your head together. But in my eyes, we are through!” I yelled, walking away.

I only made it a few steps before his arm encircled my waist. My body went rigid. Part of me was scared he was going to lash out and hurt me, the other part was scared that he would be tender and touch me intimately. Both scenarios would have been equally jarring.

He pulled me flush against his body, my back to his front. “You don’t know what you do to me,” he whispered, using his fingers to find the exposed flesh at my midriff.  “I miss you so much.”

I wiggled, trying to break free and gasped when I felt his hardness. “Let me go, Edward. W-we can’t keep going down this road.”

He loosed his hold so I could turn around. For several minutes, we just stared as if we were having a silent conversation. Ever so often, Edward’s fingers would twitch but he didn’t make a move to touch me. We were close enough that I could smell the mint on his breath.

“I don’t regret last night, especially if it’s the last time we’ll ever have together. I know I fucking don’t deserve you. I’m a bastard, but I do love you. I will spend the rest of my life proving it, even if you never take me back in your life. I guess I’ll go now.”

I nodded, breaking the spell. “That would be best. Give Dante a kiss for me. I’ll be by to pick him up tomorrow afternoon. Oh, and don’t let him have too much sugar. Esme can’t say no.”

“Last week, he ate all the cream off of my cannoli while I was watching the game. He looked so innocent... it was like he didn’t even do it.” I liked the way Edward’s face lit up when he talked about our little lamb.

Suddenly, I remembered the company he’d been keeping and felt sick. “Listen, I still don’t want Gina or any of your other bimbos around my baby boy. If you can promise me that and pass all your drug tests, he can stay overnight with you sometimes.”

Edward looked like I’d just scratched his precious Phantom. “Gina is just a fucking employee. I’m not having sex with anyone else besides you.” My cheeks turned pink. “I would like to keep him over at the Penthouse, or if it’s easier I can stay here a few nights.”

I shook my head. “I don’t trust us in the same house together for a whole night. We have too many memories. The flesh is weak.”

He sighed. “Well, you’re welcome to stay at the Penthouse whenever you want. You pretty much own it and everything else now.”

I put my hands on my hips, narrowing my eyes. “Is that supposed to be some put down of how I was just with you for money. I never wanted a cent! I only took over the accounts because your Godfathers…”

I didn’t get a chance to finish the sentence because his lips were on mine. I moaned and pushed my tongue between his teeth. He tasted fresh and slightly tangy, like lemon. I moved my body closer trying to create some much needed friction. Edward’s hands grabbed my butt and pressed our hips together. We both cried out.

“What the hell is going on in here?” Jasper asked loudly. Edward and I separated like teenagers caught necking in a supply closet.

 “We were just talking…” Edward mumbled

Jasper’s hair was in a ponytail and his blond curls flew as he yelled. “Haven’t you fucked with her enough? My god, she barely got through James and all your shit from the past few months.  I guess you won’t be happy until you put her in the graveyard with Charlie and Renee!”

I whimpered and wiped fresh tears from my eyes. “I want you both to leave me alone.” Edward started to argue, but I give him a pleading look.

 “Call me if you need me. I’m sorry.”

After he left, Jasper grabbed my arm. “What the hell are you doing? He’s the same man that OD’d on drugs and cheated on you with numerous women. Where is your head?”

I pushed my brother away. “I can take care of myself.”

He snorted, pointing to the button on my shorts which had somehow become undone. “You’re doing such a great job!” Sarcasm laced his every word. “Pretty soon you’ll be pregnant again, and he’ll be off fucking another group of sluts. You used to be such a smart woman, Bella. Now I’m ashamed of you.”

“Get out! Instead of lecturing me, why don’t you go home and fix your problems with Alice? I know about your meetings with Maria. You aren’t so different from Edward. All you men care about is yourselves and who can wet your dicks the most. Well I’m done with all of you.” I was loud enough to wake the dead.

“If you want to let that prick ruin you again, it’s not on my shoulders. Just remember things like Herpes and HIV are real. I wouldn’t want Dante to grow up an orphan because his mother couldn’t keep her underwear on!”

I slapped him across his left cheek hard enough to leave a mark. “I said get out! I don’t want you here. You don’t know anything.”

After he stormed out, I sat on the floor and cried. In some ways, Jasper was right. If he hadn’t of walked in on us, I might have let Edward fuck me again. It was like I forgot all the bad things when I was with him and it just became as all consuming need to possess his body as he possessed mine. It wasn’t normal or healthy, but I was addicted to his touch.

~~LAMTAF~~

Soon after my breakdown, I made an appointment to see Dr. A. She wanted both Edward and I to keep coming in for couple’s sessions, but he had a lot of therapy and honestly, I didn’t think I was ready to handle all the emotional baggage. Thankfully, she'd agreed to see me alone.

“I can’t control my body when I’m with him. He’s dangerous, but I can’t seem to stay away,” I confessed sadly as I watched her write something down in a notebook.

“Edward is the one who calls to your body. We all have one person who does, but sometimes they aren’t good for us. It’s hard to maintain control when all you want is to feel good.”

“How can I stop myself?”

She took off her glasses and looked into my eyes. “You have to decide what you want and stick to it, Bella. From what you’ve told me, it sounds like you’re sending Edward mixed signals. He should know that he isn’t allowed to touch or kiss you. If you don’t set boundaries, neither of you will get better.”

I sniffled and dug out a Kleenex. “I’m just as messed up as him, aren’t I?”

Dr. A. clucked her tongue. “Neither of you is 'messed' up. Part of our journey as humans is always growing and changing. Some people give up and stay where they are, but others long to improve themselves. I think you want to be better.”

I nodded. “I just want to be a good mother and be able to stay in a room with Edward so we can have a real adult conversation. The lust complicates everything.”

“I always knew you two had a very strong attraction. It won’t die just because the marriage is over. It will take time. You may always feel a need for Edward. He was your first lover and husband. I think there were moments when you felt safest with him. Now things have changed. It takes time to transition.”

Soon, my hour was up. I hugged Dr. A. and invited her and Penny over to the house for dinner. Caius was still back and forth to Naples, and she needed to be around friends and family. She agreed to come as long as I let her bring the dessert.

Jane was waiting for me downstairs in the lobby. Two young guys were checking her out and practically drooling. She was wearing a green skirt that showed off her endless legs with a sleeveless black top cut low in the cleavage area.

“Hey, baby,” I said, pulling her in for a hug. The guys’ eyes bugged out of their heads.

Jane easily played along. “I missed you, hot stuff. Let’s go home so I can lay you down and bury my face between your smooth thighs.”

There was a strangled noise, and then we watched as the two guys rushed to the nearest restroom. I reached up and accepted the high-five Jane sent my way. Sometimes it was fun to make men suffer.

“I love it when you play dirty,” Jane said, winking at me.

Giggling, we walked to my SUV and climbed inside. Jane told me about her and Jessica’s plan for a much needed romantic dinner while I checked my phone. There were several emails from Giles about my upcoming book tour. We’d begun staying up late talking to each other. It was really easy to be myself with him.

Do you want to meet me for lunch at Garrett’s? – Bella

A few minutes later, I got his text reply: Sure. I’ll be there at one if that works for you. – Giles

I sent him a smiley emoticon. Perfect. Don’t forget to bring that copy of Tennyson you told me about. – Bella

We were at a red light and Jane was staring at me. “What did Edward text to madke you smile so big?”

“Oh, um, that was Giles. We’re having lunch at Garrett’s restaurant. You can drop me off and go see Jess if you want. I’ll be safe with Garrett and Giles there.”

Jane looked worried. “I’ll stay with you.”

A few minutes later, we arrived at our destination. Garrett kissed us both on the cheek and led us to a table by the window. The restaurant was crowded with business people and socialite moms. I knew a few from the Senate parties and stopped to make small talk. Even though I was now wealthy, I still didn’t feel at home with those kinds of people. I preferred the simple lifestyle.

“You look beautiful, darling,” Giles declared as he sat down across from me.

Jane made a face. “I’ll be in the back. Call me if you need anything,” she said before disappearing.

I blushed and hunched my shoulders. “Thanks. Did you bring it?”

He reached in his fancy leather briefcase and pulled out a first edition copy of Idylls of the King. I squealed like a little girl and yanked it out of his hand. The linen cloth was still in good shape and all of the pages were crisp.

“Thanks! You don’t know how long I’ve been looking for this. It will have a very prominent place on my library shelf,” I promised, beaming at him.

He laughed at my enthusiasm. “It’s not often that you find a woman who gets excited about old books. We are kindred, Bella.”

Suddenly, Giles' eyes changed. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up. It couldn’t be… I turned around just in time to see Edward and an older looking man walk into the restaurant. He stopped and talked to a few people, but it was obvious he was making a beeline to our table. I internally cursed my bad luck.

“Bella,” he said, lightly touching my upper arm. “I didn’t know you were having lunch here today.” I prayed the Lord would forgive him for the lie.

Giles held out his hand. “Hello, Mr. Cullen. Bella and I were just talking about Tennyson. Care to join us?” 

Et tu, Giles?

Edward pointedly ignored him and looked at me. “The place is crowded.  We can just add our chairs. Do you mind?”

I shrugged. “Whatever.”

An eager waiter brought out two chairs and menus. Giles and I had ordered a lobster appetizer to share, and it arrived soon after Edward sat down. I felt his eyes on me as I reached over to put food on my small white plate. Giles and the other man seemed afraid to speak.

Seeing that he wasn’t going to be introduced, Edward’s dining partner held out his hand. “My name is Austin Meriwether. I work for Polaris and our company is doing some business with Edward's corporation. It’s nice to meet you.”

I gave his hand a quick shake before excusing myself. All the testosterone at the table was giving me a slight headache. While I did my business, I heard women in the bathroom talking about my table. They wanted to know if the guys were single and assumed I was just someone’s secretary. To stay calm, I took out my Prada bag and applied more rouge lipstick.

“Is that a Hermes belt?” someone next to me asked enthusiastically.

“Yes. It was a gift from my sister-in-law.” The woman went on to gush over my sleeveless navy dress and matching heels. She was like an encyclopedia on clothes. I decided that I preferred the men’s company over a fashion lesson.

When I returned, all three men stood up. Giles was the first to pull my chair out. I smiled, thanked him, and sat down. Edward picked up his knife and began angrily cutting his meat. I didn’t care about his tantrum because he had invited himself onto my lunch date, not the other way around.

Later, the waiter returned with our entree. I was starving and quickly started eating my gambas ajillo also known as garlic prawns. Eleazar had been renowned for this dish, but Garrett had done a great job of making it his own. It hurt to think about Carmen and Eleazar but their spirit lived on in the recipes they’d left behind.

“I’ll trade you a little of my spicy sausage dish for one of your prawns,” Giles said, holding out his plate.

I giggled and gave him what he wanted. “Keep the sausage. I’m eating light today.”

Edward pointed at us and glared. “Is this a business meeting or a date?”

“Bella and I… I would never,” Giles sputtered, his blue eyes widening with panic.

I put my napkin aside. “Unlike some people, we have a professional relationship. Giles is my publisher and we’ll be traveling together this summer. I would appreciate it if you refrained from these baseless accusations.”

The Polaris guy choked on his food. Edward gave him a hard pat on the back which seemed to make it better. The rest of lunch went well. I ignored my ex and focused on Giles. We had a fun debate about what we thought was Tennyson’s best book and finalized our hotel plans for the book tour.

Jane joined us after Giles paid the check. Edward had been rude and insisted on paying the whole bill, but I sided with my publisher. Austin did let Edward cover his lunch. Fortunately Garrett made my dessert to go because I couldn’t spend another minute at the table.

Giles waved and shouted, "Have a great day, love!" before driving away.

 “You told on me,” I said accusingly as Jane pulled out on to the road.

“Well… he asked…”

I put my hand up. “You work for me, Jane. I’m the one who signs your paycheck now. I don’t want Edward to know all of my business. We are legally separated. He has his life, and I have mine. Capisce?”

She sighed. “You really sounded like a Don just then. Okay, okay, I’ll stop being a tattle tale.”

Unfortunately, Edward was waiting for me in my office when we got to the bookstore. I closed the door and turned to him. He looked like he’d been pulling his hair out again, and his clothes were slightly wrinkled.

“Bella…”

"What do you want from me? I gave you everything I had and you betrayed my trust. I'm not an angel, and I can't save you," I whispered softly.

He held his hand up, as if he was reaching out to touch my cheek. "Please, babydoll. I'm trying to be a better man. Please."

It would have been so easy to believe his lies again. My whole body physically craved the comfort he could give in his strong arms, but it would never last. Edward and I sparked fast and burned out even quicker. The only good thing that came from our union was Dante.

"You can let yourself out. I'm tired," I stated, turning my back to him. 

I heard him mumble, "Mi Dispiace," and then the door closed.

~~LAMTAF~~

Carlisle cleared his throat to get Riley and Bree’s attention. They had arrived glued together and barely stopped making out long enough to eat. I thought it was cute the way Riley played with Bree's ponytail and kissed the few freckles on her nose.

“I am sorry,” Bree said, turning ten shades of crimson.

Riley squeezed her hand and winked at Carlisle. “I’m not.”

We all laughed as Riley got the fatherly stink eye from Carlisle. Riley and Bree were close to taking a big step in their relationship. Bree had already asked me and my sisters about sex and what to expect. She was nervous but loved Riley very much. I knew he would make her first time special.

“You’re mighty quiet, Edward. What’s going on with you?” Garrett asked, making small talk.

I looked up to see my ex was staring right at me. “Work and shit. I’m just tired.”

Halfway through dinner, the babies began crying from the other room. I went to get Dante and Kate grabbed Sasha. They were both wide away and hungry. I made my little lamb a small bowl of mashed potatoes and cheese, and then Edward took over to feed him.

“They’re so sweet together. It’s like a living picture of past and current Edward,” Esme said, smiling at them.

My little lamb was still fussy and uneasy with his daddy; but the more time they spent together, the more he began to calm down. It didn’t take long before the bowl was empty. Edward kissed the top of Dante's head and gave him a bottle.

“Where did you get Sasha’s outfit?” I asked Kate. “It’s so cute!”

“Oh, this new baby boutique opened downtown. They have a few boys items, but it’s mostly girls things like ribbons and silk dresses. I’ve spent a small fortune already.”

“Don’t I know it,” Garrett mumbled, kissing her on the cheek.

Sasha squealed and held out her arms to Riley. He immediately stood up and took his sister. Bree beamed as he held the baby like a professional. I was so happy to see the families were happy to share baby Sasha. She was truly loved.

“I always wanted a little girl whom I could dress up. Don’t get me wrong, Dante is great but baby girl clothes always make me melt,” I confessed.

“I wanted a daughter, too.” All eyes turned to Edward. “It would be nice for our son to have some siblings.”

I smiled brightly at him. “Well, don’t give up. Maybe you and your next wife or girlfriend will have a daughter.”

Edward frowned and went back to feeding my little lamb. Everyone else at the table started private conversations or began eating again. I’d been feeling sick the last few days, so Esme had made me a hearty soup. Honestly, it was getting hard to keep anything down.

After dinner, Felix drove us home. I almost fell asleep in the car but managed to put it off until we made it in the house. I changed Dante’s diaper, put on my jammies, and crawled into bed. My little lamb curled up next to my breast and suckled himself to sleep.

“Goodnight,” I whispered, kissing his forehead.

The next day, I still felt bad so I decided to have a sick day. Dante and I played games and slept off and on. I vomited almost all morning, but by the time lunch came around I felt fine. I made us hoagies and cut some small enough for Dante to eat, though, most of it ended up in his hair.

The illness had also found a way to seep into my dreams. I had a recurring one where I was running in the sunflowers chasing Dante. I would finally find him and he’d be with two little girls without faces. I only knew they were girls because I could see the clothes clearly.

“Mommy is going crazy,” I sighed, setting my little lamb in his playpen.

I tried to get some work done but my body was too tired and my mind too restless. Finally, I decided to call and make an appointment with Carlisle. I had been eating healthy and exercising, so there was no reason I should have been feeling so run-down.

~~LAMTAF~~

“Pregnant? I can’t be pregnant!” I screamed, eyeing Carlisle warily.

He put his hand on my shoulder. “The blood work we did confirmed it. You were due in to get your shot six weeks ago but you kept missing appointments.”

“That’s because I didn’t think I needed it. I can’t be pregnant again. Dante is still a baby. Edward and I… Oh my god!” I began sobbing uncontrollably.

“There, there,” Esme cooed, wrapping her arms around me. “It will be alright in the end. Don’t cry, sweetheart.”

I sniffled and wiped my nose with the handkerchief Carlisle gave me. “We’re in the middle of a divorce, though. Edward just started getting better. He’s not ready to handle more kids, and I’m not so sure I am either.”

“There are other options.” I knew what he meant, but I could never abort a baby or give it away.

“No. I just… I’m just in shock right now. We weren’t careful, so now we are reaping the consequences. I don’t even know how I’m going to tell him. Will it be as awful as the last time?”

Esme shushed me. “Edward is a work in progress, but he’s doing much better. We can be there when you tell him if you want.”

“That’s okay. I need to do this alone. Can you, uh, not say anything until I tell him?” They both agreed to keep quiet.

The next few weeks passed by in a blur. Dante began walking, which made it a million times harder to keep up with his little tush. Jasper and I were still not talking--I hated the distance. My brother had always been my rock, and I really needed him. I was also worried that Jas would gloat when he found out his prediction had come true.

I avoided Edward at all costs. He invited me to Senate dinners and lunches, but I always had an excuse. The voters liked Edward and didn’t really question why I didn’t attend. While he’d been in his rehab center, his team had told the media he was recovering from an emergency appendectomy. The lie had earned him a lot of sympathy. I’d donated all the wreaths and gift baskets they sent us to charity.

Rose and Emmett were still trying to get pregnant, and I’d done it on accident. Emmett was so good to her and she’d been working extra hard on an upcoming car show. They were the ones in love and happy. They deserved a baby more than me and Edward. Life was never fair.

“Colin and Brady are driving me nuts,” Rose said, sitting down on the damask sofa. I poured her a glass of sparkling water.

“They’re so excited about school. They told me all about their class last time.”

She smiled. “Yeah, but they’re both so keyed up by the time they get home. Emmett is not a good disciplinarian, and I hate being the bad guy. Edward was nice enough to take them off our hands for a few hours last week.”

I hummed and played with the hem of my dress. “That’s nice.”

Rose looked up at me. “He’s been really great lately. Emmett is glad to have his brother back.”

“Can we not talk about him? I’m here to pick out new tires, remember? Oh, and you were going to tell me about the cars you’re restoring.”

Later that night, I was in bed watching Edward and that bitch Gina on the news. The sight of them made me feel sick and I barely made it to the bathroom before tossing my cookies. When I got back, Dante held out his arms and called for ma ma. At least one person still loved me.

Suddenly, my phone vibrated—the screen showed Edward’s picture. I groaned and turned it off. While he called me, he probably had his dick shoved in Gina or someone else’s ass. I didn’t want to hear more of his lies. Edward would never change, and it was time that I moved on and accepted our fate. We just weren’t meant to be together. 

These two are so frustrating. The next chapter will be up very soon. Leave me love.

4 comments:

  1. They are so stubborn love your story!!!

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  2. I do understand how Bella feels and that they are getting a divorce. However, Edward is really trying and going to rehab and seeing a shrink. I think Bella should give him the chance....i mean go slow and take the time to get to know him again for her to let Edward regain the trust and honesty. Yea,, she needs to see that he is trying. I don't want them to jump back to haveing sex and the relationship but to take time learn to trust , respect, be honest with eachother again,,,,,,to start over..fresh an free of all the shit that made them both crash and burn...... i want to see them happy again, with there family. the children need that!!!! I so can not wait for the next ch. love this fic.

    the avid reader(sandym)

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  3. I am glad that Edward is trying to change, but it seems weird to be that he is touchy feely (as I think Bella saw him put his arm around her on TV, etc.) with Gina in public as that would not be good for his public image at all since she is not his wife and would seem pretty scandalous since Bella is never around. I hope they can try to make it work but take things slowly. I am eager for more.

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  4. Loved all that jazz bb :D loved how they are both working things out.. at least Edward is.. as for Bella and her new pregnancy, I wonder what's gonna happen with her.. just bracing myself for what's coming. All the love to this talent :) luv ya bb :D

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