Hello! This is the last chapter. I think, my favorite.
Thank you to all who took the time to read, to favorite it, to leave a review! It all counts.
for this chapter I enlisted the help of some webpage that has all the facts of small things like Edward's parents and things like that. Some of the things Edward said, are based on what Carlisle told Bella on new moon, aside from his own memories.
I hope you liked it. This final chapter is different from the endings I'm used to writing. This doesn't detail their ahppily ever after in centuries after they got married. It starts with Forever, just like they said in the original saga.
Three new fics are comming soon. One Paul/Bella in an alternate plot twist in Eclipse, one Jake/Bella in new moon, and one Sam/Bella, also in new moon. Perhaps I'll start with Paul/Bella but that is still to be decided.
CHAPTER 13: FOREVER.
There was a pressing question in Bella's mind. It had been there since the family talked about Victoria and Laurent. She decided to breach the subject to Edward whenever she had the chance, or the courage, whichever happened first.
She brew the subject for a few months. Each time she decided to bring it up she would coward out and ask an entirely different thing. This situation continued for the first moths of their new life in England, until one day, she decided to blurt it out. Rip the band aid off. The answer could not be that bad.
"What is a mate?" She asked one day, when the chance and the courage met.
They were lying on a river inside the property they owned, far away from prying eyes. Which was good because they were shining like disco balls.
Edward smiled amusedly. He would always love how unpredictable she was. It still bothered him the fact that he couldn't read her. It was like something was itching in his brain, but he ignored it. There was nothing he could do about it. And she loved the fact that he could not hear her.
"It's the same as saying soulmates. People who are meant to be together. It's a strong bond, basically unbreakable by everything, but death." He simplified. It was complicated to put into words what a mate was.
Bella thought about it. She imagined that the Cullens were bound together to their significant others by bonds stronger than love, but she never thought about soulmates. She had never been a religious person. Her mother changed religions as she changed hats, and the only thing that stayed with Bella was free will and that people believe in whatever they find comfort. Be it religion, mysticism or other things. She didn't want to oversimplify the bond someone could have with the religion they professed, but she couldn't appreciate the bond as she had never experienced it. So, she had never stopped to think in soulmates. Didn't the Japanese used to think that people that were meant to be together were tied with an invisible red thread?
She sighed in her mind. It was so complex trying to think about religion. Was religion and the believe of soulmates even related? She shook her head. She was not going down that path. She focused on the most pressing question that had popped in her mind at Edward's answer.
"So, Victoria and James were really in love?" She could afford to feel sympathy for the woman. They had killed her soulmate.
Bella knew that if someone ever harmed Edward, she would be lost forever. She was lucky. She was sitting here with the love of her life, enjoying a summer day in England, basking in the sunlight and the stretching of eternity. She felt bad for Victoria. How could she function enough without her soulmate? Alice hadn't seen anything yet. Was she as lost, as Bella would be?
James had been the love of her life. Her one and only. It was very sad. But she wasn't to blame there. In her defense, her mate had tried to kill her. It wasn't her fault he was bat shit crazy.
Edward nodded slowly. His mind unknowingly following the same path as Bella's thoughts. It must be horrible having to live without your soulmate. The love of your life. It had been extremely hard for Edward those few months where Bella didn't remember the time they had spent together, the love they shared, the experiences they had had. It made him extremely grateful of the time he had with her now.
However, he still answered out loud. "Despite how bat shit crazy they both were, or are for that matter, they were it for one another."
That was the confirmation that Bella didn't really need. Her heart shrugged at the thought of being separated that permanently from him.
"Oh, wow. I kinda feel bad for her." She mused, as if speaking louder would be a disrespect for love eternal.
If Victoria ever decided to seek revenge, Bella wouldn't blame her precisely. She would fight her, of course, she valued her life, and again, it wasn't her fault that her mate had been more interested in killing an innocent person than in her. She must be devastated. To lose the one you were going to spend eternity together. It wasn't pity she felt for her. But at the same time, it was.
Edward shrugged. He didn't agree. But he could see her point. "She doesn't deserve your pity." He pointed out.
"But why not?" She wondered. "So far, the only one who chased me was James, the one who acted was him. He was the one seeking blood. What did she actually do until now? And doesn't everyone make mistakes? What if being with James despite how much she loved him, was her mistake? Alice hasn't seen her do anything. Perhaps she was not as crazy as you thought. She's mourning the one she loved. Why not feel bad for her?" Edward would never understand how after everything she had seen, she could still remain so pure, so naïve at times.
"I love how you see good in everyone. But Victoria was as enthralled with the chase as James. He just did it first. She is more…conniving. She plans first, attacks later. That's what makes her so dangerous. And she's heartbroken. She's angry."
"Yes, to all that, but does a person is evil If she thinks of doing evil or if she actually commits evil?" She asked.
"It's all in the intention, Bella." Victoria had the intention of hurting her, she just didn't have the opportunity. "Don't mistake her absence for weakness. Laurent told us not underestimate her. She would have hurt you the same or worse if she had had the time." He shuddered just thinking about it. "Trust me. I know." He tapped his temple making her roll her eyes.
She did agree with him on the intention part. Still, that didn't change how she felt towards Victoria.
"Do you ask for any other reason?" he fished.
She nodded. "Are you and I, soulmates? Meant to be?" She wanted to believe they were.
He caressed her cheek and smiled tenderly at her. "Absolutely." He dropped his hand and grabbed her left one. There was a reason he had given her his mother's ring. The only physical proof he had that she had existed. His memories of her were blurry at best, and it pained him. "That's why I gave you her ring." He admitted.
Judging by the emotion on his face, she understood what it actually meant to him for her to have Elizabeth's ring. "Oh" She blurted eloquently. She smacked herself internally. She wanted to say so much more than just a plain stupid 'oh'. She wanted to tell him she believed they were meant to be. That they were tied with that crazy Asian believe of the red thread. That she was bound to him in every sense of the word. That she believed in every cultural tradition around the world that spoke about soulmates, because he was hers. Hers forever. Hers from the very moment she saw him across the cafeteria at school. Hers the moment of their first kiss. Of their first time.
"You are the only woman I have ever thought about romantically. The only I have ever or will ever love. And the only one worthy of it." He looked down again and a different soft smile appeared on his face. "She would have loved you. And my dad would have as well." It was the first time he mentioned his father in such…detail. The memory of his mother was fresher and clearer than his father's. She loved these small moments where he opened up more about his human life. It made her happy and proud of him. She looked forward to the day where he shared his whole story.
"From what you've told me, I know I would have loved her too. She sounds like a wonderful woman. And your father as well." She grabbed his hands offering some comfort. Her memories of her parents were clear as day, and she hoped they remained so. Rosalie told her that she remembered her human life with detail because she always thought about it. Bella started to actively think about her parents every day, as some sort of exercise. She didn't know what she would do if those memories would fade and blur.
"From what I remember, and from what Carlisle told me, my father was a lawyer, a very successful one, apparently. But I don't remember being too close to him. I don't deny that he loved me or my mother. But that's all I can remember of him. That, and certain things, like the fact that he liked gin, even if there was trouble with alcohol in that time." She thought about the period known as the prohibition and how it had started in the late 19th century, extending itself into the first three decades of the twentieth century. "I know he would have liked you. You're smart, intelligent and ambitious." Those were the traits he knew for certain his biological father would have enjoyed in her. Her mother, on the other hand, would have seen her sweetness, her love, her passion for the world. Her eagerness to reach into every world imaginable. Be it through her reading or through her writing.
Bella caressed his arm up and down, not liking that distant look he had on his eyes. Carlisle had confided once, telling her that he thought of Edward as his own biological son. He had been not only the first of his adoptive children, but his first companion into this life. From the moment he woke up, through his training in not hurting humans, even through his 'rebellious years', Carlisle never lost faith in Edward.
"What else do you remember about your mother?" She asked, wanting him to look happy again, even if it made him nostalgic to think about her.
"She was wonderful." He smiled at her. "Brave as hell. Strong. Stubborn too, at times. I have her coloring, and she had green eyes." She imagined Edward with green eyes. She bet she would have been as handsome as he is now. "Carlisle told me that she nursed me to health. She begged him to take care of me. 'You must do everything in your power. What others cannot do, that is what you must do for my Edward.' Those were the words my mother told Carlisle before weakening again." His eyes were full of sorrow. It was clear he missed his mother a hole deal. A shudder ran down her spine, and had she been human, she was certain she would have goosebumps in all her body. "We were close. She smelled like cinnamon all the time. I don't know why, but that is the strongest memory of her. That and her smile."
It was beautiful the way Edward spoke about his mother. The love shining in his eyes. If she could, if she had the ability of giving Edward one last look, and one last talk with his mother, that would be her wedding gift.
"I inherited her jewelry. But I only kept the ring. Most of her other things, I gave to Esme and Alice." She smiled. It seemed fit. The sister and the mother this life gave him. It was a different relationship than the one he had with Rosalie. "My parents were very wealthy for the moment. I also inherited that." It didn't faze Bella anymore. Having seen the absurd amount of money the Cullens had, it was no surprise to her that the Masens were also wealthy. A lawyer normally made good money, no matter the time.
"Do you still have the property you lived in?"
"I do. I rent it from time to time. But I have some people on the payroll that maintain the house when it is not being used. I had to do some renovations because the original structure was weak, but most of the things that really mattered are gone." He shrugged.
"Not gone, Edward. They're in here." She palmed his chest, where his heart rested. "And they're you."
He looked down to her, she had sat up at some point and was clinging delicately to his arm, hugging it while she held his hand with both of hers. He kissed her forehead. "I don't know what I would do without you." They both closed their eyes.
"You don't have to, luckily." He chuckled.
"Yes, I'm very lucky to have you with me."
"Forever." She emphasized making him laugh louder.
"Forever." He vowed, sealing the promise with a sweet kiss.