This is it, folks. The end.
I’m not going to lie, part of me really wants to keep going and write this EPOV all the way to the end end end. I’ve thought a lot about OBward’s story and if I had all the time in the world, I’d tell it. But I don’t have time to take a dump or tie my shoes these days (which is why this took so long to complete, and sorry for that), and I have things I want to write that aren’t fic that right now, as I live and breathe and type this here, aren’t being written. And that just won’t do. Not anymore.
Reckoner was brought to you by Fandom Gives Back and I’d like to once again thank all of the generous contributors who helped FGB raise over $235k for Alex’s Lemonade Stand to fight children’s cancer. Nothing makes me more proud of the Twilight fandom than this.
If you have sent me your FGB receipt, over the weekend you will receive the .pdf and .epub files of the complete Reckoner story. If you haven’t sent me that but want these complete files, make a donation and then email me at mygdala (at) gmail and I’ll be happy to add you to the list. (Any donation amount is fine--no minimum.) You can distribute these files however you like, just please don’t give them to anyone under 18 and please don’t ask me for them if you’re not over 18. Thanks.
Extra special thanks to Snarkier Than You, Hollelujah, and of course, Mr. Myg for reading, editing, and general hand holding through this project.
Maybe some of you know this and maybe some of you don’t, but I have always wanted to be a writer. Ever since I was in kindergarten, I have been obsessed with books and reading and writing. For whatever reason, once I got out of undergrad (where I majored in English with an emphasis on creative writing), I pursued everything BUT writing. It wasn’t until Snarkier Than You read that very first (awful) draft of Osa Bella that I ever believed I could write something that someone else would want to read. Because of that, and because of you all, not only am I back on the path of pursuing a lifelong dream of mine, I’ve already achieved it. I wrote Osa Bella and you all read it, and as far as I can tell, that makes me a writer.
Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for that.
But now, if you catch me writing anymore fic or in general just fucking around and not writing the original story that’s been buried in my soul for ten years, please kick my ass. I mean it. I know I can count on you.
One last request: if you’re reading Reckoner can you please let me know? It really helps to hear what you like or what doesn’t make sense or what you don’t like. These things help make me a better writer and maybe I’ve been spoiled by the Osa Bella experience (okay, most definitely I have been), but when it’s all crickets on a post here it’s pretty, well, you know. Your comments mean the world to me. But if captcha is a pain in the ass and you’re on your phone, Twitter works too and so does email. You know me, I’m your old pal, @myg.
Those two words, lettered in flaking gold and black paint across the stern of the most tired looking boat I’d ever seen, called across the marina to me. They cried like a lost dog howling after its owner’s scent.
“That one,” I said, pointing to the weather-beaten Hinckley Sou’Wester, a 50-foot sloop with a red and blue undercoat. She sat there, all forgotten and lonely in a corner of the overcrowded yard, looking like no one had touched her since hauling her out of the water, never even bothered to hose her down, let alone fix the broken railing, reseal the cabin windows or replace the damaged rigging, which now clanged bitterly against the mast in the wind.
“How much?” I asked.
“Not that one.”
The old man had white stubble on his chin and cheeks that covered deep wrinkles worn in by too much wind and sun. He smelled like axle grease and seawater. He pulled the wool cap off his head and ran a gnarled hand through the nest of his wiry, white hair. He gave Reckoner a quick glance and then turned away, gesturing for me to follow. “I’ve got another sloop in the water here you can take out for a sail. Much better boat for a guy like you.”
“I asked how much.”
The man rubbed his lower back like it ached, which it probably did from the pained look on his face. Then he leaned in close, like whatever he was about to say was not for the general public, even though we were the only ones there. “That boat is cursed,” he said in a low voice as he looked back in the direction of Reckoner from the corner of his eye, like he was convinced she was listening and might look back. “I wouldn’t wish that boat on any man.”
“What kind of curse is that?”
“She won’t sail,” he said. “Plain and simple. I’ve seen some of the best captains I know wrestle that boat under sail, but it’s like she’s got a mind all her own. Her last captain was a guy named Ron Hanson. I’d trust that old salt to sail my grandkids through a cyclone, but last year the sonofabitch got caught out in a little squall right out here in the Gulf, and the Coast Guard said they saw them get rolled, go under and then come back up, and then spin like a top on the surface. Hanson abandoned her, said if he ever saw her again he’d set her on fire.”
“I’ll take her,” I said. “Whatever the price.”
Forks, Washington 2009
Alice, Jasper, Rosalie, Emmett and I all sat in the suffocating conference room, a bland, windowless space decorated with embarrassingly trite posters attempting to inspire what, I don’t know. Positivity? Sarcasm? The moment we’d entered the building I felt like I’d fallen into the ironic punishment circle of hell and if not for Alice’s relentless… positivity, I would have walked right back out again. But a deal was a deal.
Over the summer when the eight of us sailed Reckoner from Maine to Seattle—right through hurricane season, eight thirsty, pissed-off vampires on a small wooden boat for what felt like interminable weeks—I made a promise. And as stupid and as small as the promise sounded at the time, now I was completely regretting it.
The promise was to go to high school. For an entire year.
“Are you serious?” I said, laughing after Alice tentatively raised the idea.
“Please, Edward?” she said. “I know it sounds silly, but I’ve always wanted to go to high school.”
“You’ve been watching too much Glee,” I said.
“You all have memories of your human lives and I don’t,” she pointed out. “I just want to do something that feels completely normal for once.”
“High schools are nothing like what they were when we were human,” I argued. “They’re like social gladiator rings now.”
“Don’t be so dramatic,” Rosalie said, re-plaiting her long, blonde hair for the seventh time that day. “I’ll go with you, Alice.”
“I think it’s a good idea,” Carlisle said. “Edward, it will be good for you to re-integrate into human population. It’s been awhile since you’ve had to maintain that kind of self-control.”
“I’ll work in the pediatrics unit in Port Angeles,” I said. “That will accomplish the same thing.”
“Come on, Edward,” Alice said. “It won’t be any fun without you.”
“Yes it will,” Rosalie said. “Though it will be pretty fun watching him suffer through senior prom.”
“Now that I’d like to see,“ Emmett said. “Count me in, too.”
“So you’ll do it, Edward!” Alice’s eyes were full of mischief and for the first time in many many months, hope. Her broad smile confirmed that she knew the answer before I did.
“Alice, if—and I mean if—I do this…” I said, my guts churning, despite the delighted look on Alice’s face.
“I know,” she said. “I will stop reading your future. I swear.”
“But there is no way I am going to senior prom,” I said. “Mark my words.””
Then, like a sledgehammer through glass, Alice’s vision shattered me. There I was again, holding the most beautiful woman I’d never seen, the only woman I’d ever truly wanted, as she gazed shyly, longingly up at me. Her wide brown eyes, the soft touch of that lace dress, the feel of her in my arms would forever remain an intangible fantasy, an agonizing failure of timing I could never rectify.
The light mood and the laughing were over. Alice looked at me, mortified, but I was so stunned I couldn’t look back. I handed the wheel to Emmett and climbed up onto the deck. Behind me I heard Mercy ask, “What just happened?” but before I had to listen to Alice explain it, I stripped down to my shorts and dove into the water.
Once I got far enough down where their worried eyes and thoughts couldn’t follow, I stopped swimming and started sinking. Down, down, down as far as I could sink. Down to where I could hardly see, deep enough to imagine staying under all the rest of my days in the cold, oblivious dark. Every time, every fucking time I thought I was beginning to move forward, something put me right back to that night in Boston, and I relived the horror of that discovery—that I had not found her in time to save her life.
I wanted to kill someone all over again. I wondered if I’d ever stop wanting to kill.
It felt good to be alone, to be spared the constant bombardment of my family’s thoughts, their own tedium, their horrific replays of the death we’d all just escaped together. Hours passed but I lost track of how many. If I stayed out much longer they would come looking for me, so I began to swim the course Reckoner was on, and then faster and faster and it felt good to move and not think, to move and not feel anything but the sun warming the surface of the water, the skin of my back, the water as it moved around me. Reckoner’s stern came into view and I caught up and we fell into a rhythm as she cruised swiftly along a hard northerly breeze, slicing into the waves, every hour closer to Seattle and the start of our new lives.
Mercy caught sight of me first from the stern, looking worried but relieved that I’d come back. She was always such a mess on the water. “All that endless sky,” she would say. “It’s so empty.” Mercy never understood how comforted I was by the sea, how I could live on the boat the rest of my days as a single, surly vampire, if my family hadn’t insisted otherwise.
Glad you came back, she said as I climbed the ladder and hopped into the cockpit.
“You don’t think I’d leave Reckoner in Emmett’s hands for long, do you?” I took a towel from her and started to dry off. “She’d sink him within a week’s time.”
“Thanks a lot,” Emmett said as he set to uncleating the lines and putting us back on course.
“You and this boat,” Mercy said, her hands on her hips. “You act like it’s human.”
“She’s better than that,” I said. “She’s home.”
Mercy followed me down into the cabin where I pulled some old clothing out of a trunk in the stateroom.
Alice told us what happened. Are you all right now?
“I’m fine. I just needed to hunt.”
You’re still fixating on that destiny girl, aren’t you?
“I asked you not to call her that,” I said, bristling.
“I don’t know what else to call her,” she said, her tone surprisingly sharp.
“Something less bitchy will do just fine.”
I pulled on a t-shirt and a pair of pants as Mercy hovered. All movement, all voices above ceased as everyone trained their attention on the conversation Mercy and I were about to have.
Honestly, Edward? she thought at me, I’m not convinced she ever existed at all. Think about it - what evidence do you really have that she ever did?
“I have evidence that she was murdered,” I seethed. “As far as I know, you can’t be killed unless you exist.”
“Everybody off the boat,” Carlisle announced from the cockpit. I held my tongue and listened as the others stripped down and dove into the water, relieved, no doubt, to be spared the awkward silence that signaled the rash of shit Mercy was giving me in her mind. I climbed back up the companionway into the cockpit and hove-to again.
You can’t always trust what you see in someone else’s head, Mercy continued, following close behind. You don’t know, for a fact, that the man you killed in Boston murdered her or anyone else for that matter. And if he did, then why is Alice still seeing that vision? One or both of them are wrong. You treat Alice’s visions like they are absolutes, but obviously they’re not or you would have found and married this woman by now.
“Elle Moreau said…”
“Elle Moreau? You—of all people—are going to put stock in something a witch told you? Next you’ll be telling me you’re consulting the psychic friends hotline.”
“We’re done here.” I went to climb back down to the cabin, but Mercy grabbed my arm and clenched her hand around my wrist like a handcuff.
No, I don’t think we are, she said.
Ever since that day at the Kaine’s, I’d suspected it, but now there was no denying it. Mercy was in love with me. Despite everything, all our history, her very own insistence that she’d never fall in love with anyone, she’d fallen in love with me.
When she said she loved me back in the Kaine’s basement, I believed she was only saying it because she thought I was about to be killed. When I told her I loved her too I meant it, but I suppose not the way she did. I loved her spirit, her loyalty, her friendship, but would I ever fall in love with Mercy? I didn’t know. If I was going to fall in love with anyone besides the dead woman in my vision, it would be her, I was sure of it. But I wasn’t there yet and I couldn’t promise I ever would be.
In our desperate escape and with all of us tripping over one another on the boat all those weeks since, I hadn’t been able to talk to her about any of it. And if I was being totally honest, I didn’t really want to talk to her about it because the disappointed look on her face right then was killing me.
“What do you want from me, Mercy?” I asked. “Just tell me.”
I was going to ask you the same thing, she thought. But I guess I already know.
“Every day I still think about her, I don’t care if you think it’s stupid, I can’t help it. How can I be with you when I am still dealing with that? It’s not fair to you.”
“You know there is someone who can take care of that for you. The kahuna I know in Maui,” Mercy said. “She could exorcise the vision.”
“You mean erase it, and any memory of it.”
“So what? What good has the vision ever done you, Edward?”
Ever since Mercy first mentioned the kahuna months ago, I thought about getting the vision erased. Every day, in fact. In light of the woman’s death, in the absence of any hope of ever finding her, why was I still holding on? I really didn’t know. I just knew the memory was all I had left of her, whoever she was, and I wasn’t ready to let go.
You won’t do it. I know you won’t.
What could I say? She was right.
“All right then,” she said with a sigh, and then plunked down on the bench. “I’m going to leave once we get to Seattle.”
“No, you’re not,” I said. “That’s sheer stupidity. If you’re alone you’ll be an easy target for any surviving Kaine or the Volturi, if they decide to get involved. You’ll be safe in Forks with us.”
Who, exactly, do you think you are? Her eyes were determined as she stared me down. “I’ve managed to take care of myself for 134 years without you. I’ll do just fine, thanks very much.”
“Come on, Mercy,” I said, my tone softening. I sat down next to her and put my arm around her shoulders, pulling her close. Mercy was stiff, awkward, and hurt. Just plain hurt, but what could I do about it? “Don’t do this,” I said, nicely this time, but she just turned her face away. Then I whispered into the top of her head, “I just want to make sure you’re safe.”
“Edward Cullen,” she said, her eyes distant, staring straight out over the water. “There is nothing I wouldn’t do for you, I hope after all these years you know that. But don’t ask me to stay and be your second choice, okay? Please don’t ask me to do that.”
Mercy stood up and straightened out her skirt and then went to the companionway, wanting to put all the physical space she could find on a small boat between us.
“We’re not done discussing this,” I said.
“Is that what you think?” she said with a sad smile, and then disappeared down below.
If Mercy could see me now, an official member of the Forks High School senior class, she would probably laugh her ass off and say it served me right. I would have laughed too, but the closer we got to that first period bell the more I couldn’t shake the feeling that something was very, very wrong.
Here we go, senior year! Alice thought at me, beaming her enthusiasm, practically lighting the room with it. I looked down at the floor and tried to think, sort through any and all cues that were causing me to feel so worried. I went stone-still with concentration.
Edward? What is it? Alice asked again.
Come on, high school won’t be that bad, Jasper thought. Will it? He smirked, the wiseass, and then hit me with a high dose of his soothing vibe, but it didn’t seem to do much.
The light footsteps of a woman made their uncertain way to the conference room door. They stopped just outside, pausing, like she was hesitant. But why she was hesitant, I didn’t know because there were no thoughts.
No random musings about the day, no stray “Where did I leave my keys again” or “I need to remember to call that guy back” or even “Oh God, I need more coffee …”
Her mind was completely blank. How could that even be? Was she a witch? Another god damned witch, here? In the Forks High School?
Yes, had to be a witch because who else could conjure such a ridiculously delicious scent? It was like vampire bait.
We were in serious, serious trouble.
“Do you smell that?” I whispered to Emmett, but he shrugged his shoulders.
“Smells like a human,” he said. “Pretty nice, though. You’re right.”
“Pretty nice? That’s it?”
Nobody else reacted at all.
“What is wrong with you?” Alice whispered.
“You don’t smell that?” I said again.
Rosalie shook her head, dismissively. Emmett went back to obliviously thumbing through a playlist on his phone. Jasper and Alice retreated back to their own little world. It was just me freaking out. I was the only one losing it over this incredibly delicious, mouth-watering scent.
Something was very, very wrong here.
Oh my God, Edward, it’s her! Now Alice sounded panicked, too. She was so panicked and I was so confused, I had no idea who she was talking about. The witch from Portland?
The door finally opened and I saw the heels, the long legs in tailored pants, the soft curve of her slender hips, and as I took in the details of her strangely familiar face, I thought I was going to die all over again, right there in the Forks High School conference room.
“I’m Miss Swan, the school counselor,” the woman said with a sweet smile, her voice soft and beguiling like a favorite song that you’ve got your best memory attached to.
Oh my God, Edward! Alice’s mind was spinning and reeling like a madwoman as she shouted at me in her head. It’s your mate!”
It was a very good thing I wasn’t physically capable of passing out, though at that moment it might have been preferable to the uncontrollable urge I had to pounce and suck the woman dry. I gripped the bottom of my chair and avoided Alice’s wild-eyed stare. If she didn’t give us all away within thirty seconds I’d be shocked.
Miss Swan took a seat and asked our names and I could barely pay attention because of the bombardment of imagery Alice was seeing, completely ignoring her promise not to look at my future. Right then I didn’t care, because I really wanted to see what the hell was going to happen and if it involved this magical creature in front of me, whatever it was.
And my God, what Alice saw.
The old vision of the dance was blown away by a new one of me kissing Miss Swan in Reckoner’s galley and carrying her to the berth. I was simultaneously disappointed and relieved Alice didn’t see whatever was coming next. Now how the hell was I supposed to keep it together after that?
There was an awkward silence and I realized Miss Swan was waiting for me to tell her my name. I somehow managed to speak, but as soon as my eyes met hers, really met hers that first time, I felt like someone had thrown a knife at the back of my head and it had lodged itself deep in my hardened cortex. Miss Swan looked at me with grave concern and there was still nothing behind that look but silence. I looked back at the floor and felt my brain shatter right inside my skull. I stared again at the woman before me, sensing her great discomfort but I couldn’t stop myself. I strained to glean something, anything, any small crumb of her thoughts, but there was only silence.
She couldn’t be real. She had to be a ghost. Or a witch. Or something else entirely. But she wasn’t the woman from my vision, because that person was dead.
Whatever she was, I wasn’t sticking around to find out.
“I know you’re here in Boston looking for a woman, a very special woman, but I can tell you she isn’t here.”
That was what the witch had said, and that was what I had believed. “I beg you to rid the world of one more devil,” she’d said. It had been so easy to kill him, too, since I thought he’d killed the woman of my dreams. I now found myself in the very awkward position of hoping he really had been a murderer after all, and not some poor sonofabitch that had been set up by Elle Moreau. But Elle was dead so I’d never know. And if he had really killed the woman from my vision, then who was this vision at the Forks High School?
Isabella Marie Swan was her name, and she lived on K Street. She was 29 years old, born on September 13th 1979. She had brown hair and brown eyes. She was 5’7” and weighed 136 pounds.
This I learned from her driver’s license, which I’d easily lifted from her purse, which she’d left open on the chair of her office, which was also left open and easily accessed and appraised in the short time Miss Swan sat chatting with Alice and the others after I’d walked out.
I left school and went straight to her house, a small, robin’s egg blue one-story cottage on the edge of town with a patch of wildflowers in the front and a porch in dire need of fresh paint. This door wasn’t locked either, which annoyed me, as well as the fact that the house looked like it had already been ransacked. Shoes were strewn on the floor near the front door, and what the hell was that awful stench?
Shit. Bear shit, of all things. I looked down and saw it stuck to a green shoe, sitting on an old newspaper by the front door. There was spilled coffee on the counter by the sink and a lack of breakfast dishes. Not even a dishwasher. I went through her kitchen cabinets, looking for odd ingredients, any traces of someone who maybe did magic, but the most exotic things she had on hand were an old bottle of bitters and an ancient jar of pimentos.
The living room was also small and cramped with an over-sized bookcase packed with psychology and human behavior texts, classic novels and trashy paperback romances. There was an old sofa that looked like someone lived on it, a well-stocked liquor cabinet and a small television, too.
I went through all of her books looking for something incriminating, but other than an old unread copy of the Bible and the I Ching, there wasn’t much to indicate she was much of a witch. More of a sap and a geek, from all of the drugstore romances and Isaac Asimov she’d obviously read. Then I found her wedding album on the bottom shelf. I hadn’t expected that.
The cover stuck to the first page a little, like it hadn’t been opened in years. I gently pried it open. Isabella Swan was a whole other kind of vision in those photos with her young soldier husband. She looked so happy and so beautiful and so perfect I almost felt bad for suspecting her of anything at all. But there was no trace of a husband in this house—in this life. Then I found the folded American flag in a box on top of the bookcase and an unexpected wave of sadness washed over me.
A Macbook sat open on the coffee table and it wasn’t even password protected. Did this woman care nothing about personal security? I went through her email and saw that she called herself Bella, not Isabella, and she didn’t seem to have a lot of friends she kept in touch with, and that made me feel annoyed, too. Most of her email was junk, except several from a woman in Port Angeles named Illeana Rogers and a few from Jacob Black.
So she hung out with the fiercest vampire hunter in all of the Pacific Northwest. Now I was getting somewhere.
While most of the Quileute elders had accepted that we were back on the peninsula, Jacob had been beyond pissed about our return to Forks. He had agreed to honor our existing treaty—he would have been stupid not to—but he was a real dick about it.
So was Bella Swan a Quileute plant? We hadn’t mentioned to the Quileute our plan to enroll in the high school, and the town of Forks was well within our territory. What was their problem?
I scoured her iPhoto and found several pictures of her with Jacob from the summer. He had his arm draped possessively around her shoulders, hanging out on the beach at La Push. There was another where he was kissing her on the cheek and she was in a bikini with a raised Rainier can held out to the camera in salutation. I stared at that photo quite a while. Enlarged it, studied it for clues to who or what she was but then realized I’d been staring for half an hour straight, just at her. Her, in a blue bikini and all that exposed, soft skin with that damned dog hanging all over her.
So she was Jacob Black’s girlfriend. Fine. But that still didn’t explain what she was doing at Forks High School, how the Quileute knew about our plans to enroll there, why they would put a plant there anyway, and why, most maddening of all, I could not read her mind. And these were things I had to know.
A trip to her bathroom medicine cabinet revealed that she had problems with reflux, seasonal allergies and, from the looks of it, significant psychiatric problems. Bottles of Klonopin, Ritalin, and Xanax, all prescribed by this Illeana Rogers person—the one from her email. Now what kind of a witch has ADHD and Anxiety? That made no sense at all.
As interesting as I found the bathroom, I have to say Bella’s bedroom was the most fascinating room in the house. A simple, unmade bed stood against the far, stark wall. No art or pictures, just flat off-white paint that hadn’t been retouched in probably a decade. A high stack of books stood in for a bedside table, comprised of an unlikely assortment of young adult best sellers, thrillers, modern and classic erotica, Jung, Thoreau and Heidegger texts. Many had dog-eared pages with favorite passages underlined, like this one from Jung’s Modern Man in Search of a Soul:
The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.
I sat in the middle of her bed staring at that for about 15 minutes, and then I lay back and stared at her ceiling, practically high from the scent of her slept-in sheets. La tua cantante, I thought, lazily, closing my eyes and inhaling deep breaths of that room, all apple blossoms and fresh air. But, she couldn’t really be my singer, could she?
I had to keep searching. I had to find answers.
Why I thought I’d find them in her lingerie drawer I can’t say, but at the time it seemed like a necessary part of the investigation. It took everything I had not to pocket the black lace thong, if only to keep her from wearing it for Jacob Black. Then, way at the back of the drawer, I found Bella’s journal.
Maybe it was wrong, but I didn’t care. Reconnaissance, I told myself. This woman was significant in one way or another. Either she was another witch, or a ghost, or some other creature I couldn’t name. Or maybe—just maybe she really was going to be the love of my life.
And if that was the case, I was going to feel like a total asshole for going through all of her things and reading her diary.
But I’d get over it.
I read the journal from start to finish, only to learn that whoever Bella was, she was no witch and she was no spy. Those pages, sometimes scrawled in what looked like drunken handwriting, sometimes carefully penned with diagrams or ticket stubs and printed photos of flowers or favorite trees or her father taped to the page, revealed a woman who was struggling plenty on her own without the added pressures of covert espionage. She worried that she drank too much, that she wasn’t kind enough or appreciative enough of her father, that she should get out more, that she was desperately lonely most of the time, and that she should go back to school and get her Ph.D. Every page seemed to highlight something she was unhappy about, and though I searched, I couldn’t find any direct mention of the husband she’d obviously loved and lost. There was only one entry where she even came close to mentioning it:
Memorial Day weekend again, and again I just can’t deal. I’ve been on the couch since I got out of work on Friday and I know any minute Charlie is going to call to pester me about the picnic today. Wish he’d just let me wallow alone. I hate bringing him down and I hate how I make him worry about me. That reminds me, I’m running low on Klonopin. Making a mental note to call Illeana tomorrow at the office.
Reading that depressed the hell out of me.
The last entry in her diary was from several weeks before, and in it she admitted to herself that Jacob Black wasn’t interested in her and that she should just give up on him. I think I re-read that entry about sixteen times, I was so relieved.
Finally, I went into her closet and looked through her clothes, looking for anything that would be some sort of clue as to who she really was. There were many blouses and pairs of pants, the closet was bursting with too many pairs of shoes piled on top of one another. There were a few casual dresses, two with the tags still on. A sexy little black thing that I was keenly interested in seeing on her. And then.
All the way in the back, against the wall, there was a dress. Maybe it was the thing I’d been looking for all along and hadn’t realized it, because I never, ever expected to find it. It was an antique, Edwardian era lace thing. Champaign-colored with embroidered roses. I knew the dress, every inch of it, because it was the very same dress she wore in my vision daily for fifty-two years. I pulled it from the hanger and immediately drew it to my face, inhaling the glorious scent of her, feeling the material on my fingers, exactly how I would have imagined it to feel should I ever be so lucky to touch it.
I slumped down the wall to the floor, too stunned to think, still holding onto that dress like it was magic itself. So many things raced through my mind as I tried to put it all together, but in the end, all I could focus on was Bella’s face as she looked so concerned back at the high school. Those brown eyes, those perfect lips, now matched with the soft, melodic voice as she said to me, “I’m Miss Swan.”
Bella Swan—that’s who she was. And whatever else she was, she’d be home in a few hours.
And I’d be waiting.
Never change, Twitards. You are among the best humanity has to offer.