A/N Just a reminder I don't own these beautiful characters, they belong to the amazing Stephenie Meyer!
Thanks again to my beautiful Beta @SparklingWand, I luv u doesn't quite cover how grateful I am to u for you friendship!!
@TwiMoments and @mamaeve you guys are my heart and I will also be forever indebted to u!!
To the readers... I promised you some answers to your questions in this chapter. I hope that I covered some things you had questions on. Thank you all for sticking by me through this, and as always PLEASE leave me some love or hate whichever as long as you leave some feedback xoxoxoxox.
EPOV coming up next chapter so stay tuned:))
I didn’t want to say goodbye,
I turned so you wouldn’t see me cry,
I don’t want our friendship to die,
When you said you were leaving, I thought it was a lie.
I waved goodbye, though my heart was with pain,
What if I never see you again?
My tears were falling like mid-summer rain
The fact that you left is such a shame.
The way you spoke was like you had no care,
When I had a problem, you were the one who was there,
You said goodbye, it just isn’t fair,
Watching you leave was a nightmare.
I walked away; you didn’t know it was true,
You are the best and I’m going to miss you.
Right now the sky is grey but soon it will be blue,
One day, somehow, you’ll know the truth.
My poem is a scar; it made my tears flow,
I just thought you needed to know.
I didn’t want you to leave; I wish you didn’t go,
I have no more to say, I won’t let my pain show.
By: Black Rose Poetry
Chapter 4 (Goodbye)
As I stood here in the shower trying to wash away the stress of the day, I tried to come to terms with the fact that in a few short hours I was going to be confronted with the past that I had worked so hard to let go of. Through all of this, my mind couldn’t help but once again wander back to Edward.
Alice said that we needed to talk, and that it was about Edward. Instantly I had become concerned that something had happened to him. I knew she sensed my concern immediately. I couldn't even try to hide it from her.
Her reassurance that he was fine did little to ease my mind, however. If he was fine, what could possibly be so important that she would have to fly here and talk to me about it in person?
The fact that I was going to have to explain about Alice and her visit to Jacob wasn't making things any easier either.
Not that I really gave a shit if he knew about Alice, but telling him about her would inevitably lead to further questions. Questions I wasn’t quite sure I was ready to answer. A piece of my past was coming into my future and I knew Jacob would get nosey about it.
I was sure he would ask why I had never mentioned her before, or why I had lost touch with her in the first place.
I couldn't give him those answers, because I knew the minute I tried, the pain of the past and those last days in Forks would show clearly on my face.
"So what do I do?" I asked myself.
The only answer that would come to mind was, "Lie my ass off!"
After all, I had learned from the best when it came to putting a wall up around the truth. Edward had taught me well.
But oh, how I missed him and would be lying if I didn’t hold on to some hope that Alice was going to tell me he had never been able to move on. How I longed to hear that he still thought of me as I did him.
I leaned against the shower wall, while the hot stream ran down my naked body, and remembered what his touch did to me. How it sent chills through me every time he was near. I had never felt that kind of passion with anyone, especially not with Jacob.
Don't get me wrong, Jacob was a good fuck and I am a woman with needs just like any other, but a fuck is exactly what it was. There were no emotions involved… ever. Not just for me but with him as well.
Jacob had never been that type of guy. He basically informed me from day one he wasn’t a romantic, and if I expected that, then I needed to get the fuck out now. He always looked out for himself in the bedroom, and his pleasure came first. That was fine by me, fast and hard with no emotions. I couldn’t take it any other way.
Edward, on the other hand, was the one I wanted to feel that closeness with always. More than anything, I had wanted him to be my first. Unfortunately, that wasn’t in the cards for us.
He had constantly pushed me away when it came to sex. I probably could have accepted his noble refusals, had it not been the reasons he was pushing me away were all lies. I mean he always said, “Bella, I’m not good enough to be your first.” Or “Bella, you’re just not ready.”
All those lies came to surface though, when I found him that night with his dick in Jessica Stanley. Everything, all the lies, came crashing down on me in that moment. It was never that he wasn't good enough for me. No, it had always been that I wasn't good enough for him.
I felt sick suddenly with the memory of it all. I wanted to get even with him, but I knew it would never be possible. I was fooling myself if I believed he ever loved me the way I loved him.
It all seemed so unfair, I felt so trapped in the memories.
"Why couldn't I just move on and try to be happy with what I had?" I cried to myself.
Of course I knew the answer to that question. I’m not an idiot. Jacob was never the person I was intended for.
I often wonder if maybe Edward was slightly right. What would my life be like if I had held off and not jumped into bed with the first guy who had shown me any real interest? Maybe if I had just waited, someone else would have come along and shown me again what love was supposed to really feel like.
I sighed, bent over and turned the water off. It was running cold now, no longer serving its purpose. I dried off with the towel and stepped out of the shower.
Looking in the bathroom mirror I suddenly felt terrified at the thought of seeing Alice tomorrow.
I had changed so much in the last twelve years. Would she even recognize me? Let’s face it. I am no longer that youthful girl with the whole world in front of her that Alice once knew.
As I was leaning against the bathroom sink, counting the wrinkles on my face in the mirror, I felt Jacob approach me from behind. He was dressed only in his boxer briefs, and he slowly reached up to pull my towel from around my body causing it to fall to the floor.
He leaned in towards me pushing his mouth to my ear and his hard cock against my ass. As much as the thought of sex tonight with him repulsed me, I couldn't push him away. Like I said before, I am still a woman with needs and that relief had to come from somewhere.
He reached his hands around to the front of me and down between my legs. He used his long fingers to force my legs apart as he roughly pushed not one but two fingers inside of me.
I nearly gagged when he whispered in my ear, "So wet for me, baby."
He skimmed his tongue down my neck, sending a cold chill down my spine. I fought with my natural reaction to push him off me, but my body had suffered the past twenty-fours with the erotic images of Edward taking me this way. I needed the relief, and Jacob was willing to give it to me.
Of course I'm wet, you idiot, I thought to myself. But if you only knew who I was really wet for. I cringed at the thought.
His tongue continued to lap its way down the center of my back. He continued to thrust his fingers hard inside me, while reaching up to my pebbled nipple and pinching it hard. I cried out, not in pleasure, but with the momentary pain of his ministrations.
His thick tongue continued its journey down my spine. Just when I thought for once he might actually drop to his knees and think of pleasuring the sweet spot between my legs with that tongue of his, he pulled back and pushed me face down on the cold hard marble countertop.
In normal Jacob fashion, he was going to take me doggy-style. It was by far his favorite position and I couldn’t lie, it was mine as well. This way I didn’t have to look him in the face, so he could see how much fucking him really disgusted me.
He reached down in between us and grabbed his hard dick, positioning it at my entrance. He rubbed the head of his cock along my slit, gathering my wetness.
"So ready for me baby," he groaned," while leaning over me once again drooling in my ear. In one hard push he was completely sheathed in me. He began thrusting in and out hard, banging me against the counter until it hurt.
"Fuck, baby, you are so tight," he moaned against my neck.
Thrusting harder, I began to feel that tingling sensation in the pit of my stomach and I knew that I was close. Thank God, I wanted this over with as fast as possible.
“Oh, God,” he screamed as he pumped faster and harder, in and out of me.
“I’m almost there, baby, cum with me,” he begged. He wrapped his hand around my waist, finding my center and pushing hard against my clit. I cried out at the feel of his hand forcibly flicking my clit, in an attempt to get my body to react the way he wanted.
I couldn't help but comply, as he felt my walls tighten around him with my orgasm. He, too, came hard inside of me, my pussy milking him of every last drop.
We both stood there, him still inside of me. Catching our breath as he moaned in pleasure, I too moaned, but not in pleasure. No, it was pure pain, as a lone tear escaped down my cheek.
This is not what love is supposed to be like.
I silently cried to myself, as he pulled out of me and smacked me on the ass climbing into the shower, with a shit-eating grin on his face. He had gotten what he came for, but in the end I was left feeling no better than when he started. I may have come, but there was no pleasure in it, no relief. I was left with only heartache and the immense feeling of being dirty and used.
I reached down to grab the towel from the floor, wrapped it around me as tight as possible, and made a hasty exit out of the bathroom.
Once in the bedroom I plopped down on the bed and couldn't stop the tears from free flowing now.
"This is just wrong!" I cried.
"God, where had things gone so wrong in my life?" I thought angrily.
Suddenly my anger was directed at Edward.
"This is all your fault," I moaned. “What have you done to me? I feel as though a spell was cast all those years ago that I just can't escape now.”
I sat there for I don't know how long cringing at every thought of Edward and all that he had put me through. I was so angry at myself for allowing him in my life still, after all this time.
When I heard the water shut off from the bathroom, I quickly jumped up, grabbed a t-shirt and my p j bottoms, dressed, and wiped the tears from my eyes.
I started to panic. It was now or never that I needed to give him some explanation of Alice and her visit tomorrow.
The bathroom door opened and he strolled into the bedroom with that shit-eating grin still on his face. At least he appeared to be in a good mood. Maybe this wouldn't be as difficult as I thought. Who was I kidding? Nothing was ever easy with Jacob.
He climbed into the bed where I had already laid down. As he leaned over me to turn the light off, I reached up and grabbed his hand saying that we needed to talk.
He sighed, "Can't it wait till tomorrow Bella?
"I'm tired, and I have to get up early tomorrow. I have to be at work early to make up for being late today," he said acting irritated. "You need to get to work on time tomorrow too."
"I'm not going in tomorrow, Jacob," I sighed. I've already told them I won't be there.
"What, Why?" he asked.
Jacob, I have this friend from Forks, Alice is her name. Actually, she's not just a friend, but my best friend. Anyway, she's coming for a visit tomorrow.
"Best friend? You've never even mentioned anyone named Alice." He looked at me bewildered.
"I know," I said. “It's never been worth mentioning before. We had a sort of falling out before I left Forks, and I haven't spoken to her since.”
"So let me get this straight. You have this best friend whom you haven't spoken with in twelve years, suddenly coming for a visit?"
I nodded my head, indicating that he had all the key points correct. His eyes narrowed, boring into me as if he were trying to extract something directly from my mind.
“Why?” he questioned again.
“I'm not really sure, Jake. She called me today and said she had some things going on in her life that she really needed my help with.”
"Okay,” he scrutinized, “but what caused the fallout in the first place? I mean if you two were so close, then how could the two of you just lose touch like that?"
And there it was. The question that I had dreaded the most. Just like that I started to panic. I scanned my brain for an answer that wouldn't raise more questions, coming up short for a quick plausible answer.
“It just happened, Jake. We were friends growing up and after high school we just wanted different things. So I left, never really saying good bye or telling her where I was going. That made her angry, hence the lack of communication over the years.”
I held my breath, hoping that answer would suffice.
Suddenly he rolled over towards me once again raising his hand over me to turn the light off. I felt my breath finally come back to me as he rolled over and faced away from me.
"Okay, Bella, whatever. It just seems kind of strange to me that you're the one she contacted after all this time to help her with whatever problem she's having," he smarted-off.
“Look, Jake,” I said, becoming angry at his attitude towards the situation, but not really wanting to provoke him any further, “maybe she just doesn't have anyone else to turn to.”
"Whatever you say, Bells," he said closing his eyes.
I rolled away from him facing the wall. "Good night, Jacob," I said sarcastically.
"Night," he muttered as though he really didn't give a shit anyway.
Sleep was the last thing on my mind as I laid there, tossing and turning frantically. I longed for morning to come, to finally have the answers to all these questions that had been haunting me for so long.
Before I knew it the alarm clock was blaring in my ear, and Jacob was rolling out of bed. Not wanting to have any more conversations about Alice, I pretended to be asleep while he rustled around for his clothes.
He went into the bathroom and closed the door. I heard the water turn on in the shower and rolled over and looked up at the ceiling.
I wondered what time Alice's flight would arrive, and with each passing moment, became more and more anxious to see her.
Jake finished getting ready for work and left the house soon after, without even so much as a goodbye.
Nothing new, I thought to myself.
I don't know why I had worried so much about telling him about Alice. It wasn't as though he really ever gave a shit about what was going on with me. He only ever really cared about my existence when it directly affected him and his plans.
It hadn't always been that way between us. In fact, in the beginning, I couldn't have asked for a more attentive boyfriend and husband.
Maybe a lot of it had been my fault. I had pushed him away emotionally so many times in our marriage that eventually he just gave up, much like I had done with Edward. Funny, how the roles in life reverse like that.
I looked at the clock on the bedside table and noticed it was almost seven. I decided to shower and get dressed for the day, for all I knew she could show up any second now.
Once I was in the bathroom, a sick feeling came over me remembering the events from last night that had taken place in there. I showered quickly, wanting to be out of there.
Dressed for the day, I walked into the kitchen to make my morning coffee. As I was pouring the water into the coffee pot, the doorbell rang and my heart suddenly plummeted to the pit of my stomach.
This was it, with every step towards the door, my heart started to beat faster and faster. Once I reached for the door handle I had to stop to make myself regain my composure.
Then I took a deep breath and flung the door open.
What I saw standing before me nearly caused me to collapse. My friend, my Alice, looked so frail before me. She was so pale and thin, her skin was taut against her body, signs of obvious weight loss. I noticed it looked like she had recently lost her hair, and it was just starting to grow back.
As I stood there staring at her head, she spoke up.
"Bella, it’s just hair. It was hard for me at first, too, but I think it's coming back nicely, don't you?" she asked, clearly uncomfortable with my scrutinizing.
I looked away quickly, trying to hide the tears that were now streaming down my cheeks. It was so clear now why she was here. She was sick, very sick.
"Are you going to invite me in?" she whispered.
"Of course, Alice, I'm so sorry," I said stepping to the side so she could enter.
I closed the door behind her and escorted her to the kitchen, telling her to have a seat at the table. Before she could turn though, I suddenly felt the urge to hold her in my arms. I grabbed her, threw my arms around her and squeezed her as tightly as I could without hurting her. She really was so small.
"I've missed you so much. I'm really so glad you’re here," I cried.
"I've missed you too, Bells. I don't think I realized how much until I saw you," she croaked, tears streaming down her face.
Letting her go, so she could sit down, I asked her if she would like some coffee.
She wiped her eyes with the back of her hand and weakly smiled at me. "No, she replied. I really can't drink coffee anymore although I miss it terribly.
"Do you have any juice?" she asked with a timid smile.
"Yes, of course," I replied, setting my coffee cup back in the cabinet. If she couldn't drink coffee because of her illness, then I'd be damned if I were going to drink it in front of her.
So instead I poured us both a glass of orange juice, and sat down across from her at the table.
An uncomfortable silence plagued the air around us, until finally I cleared my throat and began to speak.
"Alice,” I said, “What's happened to you?" I inhaled sharply, forcing the tears that still threatened to escape from my eyes back.
She took a deep breath and finally choked out, " I was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia three months ago."
"Leukemia!" I gasped. “Oh, my God, Alice.” The tears were now escaping down my cheeks.
"There are treatments, right?" I questioned.
"Bella, the type of Leukemia I have is too far advanced, and although Edward has insisted that I try everything possible to beat this cancer, there isn’t any doubt for me or my doctors that I am going to die from this disease," Alice stated with an eerie confidence.
It didn't slip by me that she had said Edward insisted she try everything.
"Then you still talk to Edward?" I couldn't help but ask. My mind whirled around what his life must be like now and here sitting in front of me was someone who had all the answers.
“Yes,” she replied looking away from me.
"What is it, Alice? What's wrong? Is there something else you’re not telling me?"
She rubbed her hands over her eyes, with a haggard expression on her little face. She inhaled and sat up straight, looking me directly in the eye. "Bella, I'm not quite sure how to tell you this, even though I have had it planned out in my head for weeks. Now that I am here facing you, it is more difficult than I imagined."
“Just say it. I mean, what on earth could be worse than finding out my best friend may be dying of cancer?”
She chuckled weakly. "You would be surprised," she said with a frown on her face.
"Bella, I'll just come out with it, but I will completely understand if you want to throw me out after this, and never speak to me again. I’ve done something that no woman should ever do to her best friend, but please understand at the time I was in a lot of pain and I thought I had lost you forever. Things happened that were unexpected and what I am about to tell you will probably make you hate me for the rest of your life. Quite honestly, I wouldn’t blame you if you did. I would if I were in your shoes."
"Okay,” I said bewildered. I couldn’t imagine anything on earth that would make me hate Alice?
"Bells, Edward and I are married," she cringed, huge tears forming in her eyes.
“No,” inaudibly escaped my lips.
What else could I say? I stood and exited the kitchen as quickly as possible. Opening the French doors off the living area, I made my way to the back patio. I needed some serious air. I felt like I was hyperventilating. This was too much information to take in at once.
My best friend was dying of a disease that there was no cure for, and she was married to the love of my life.
I wanted to scream, I wanted to cry, I wanted to run as far away from all of this as I possibly could, and pretend it was all a nightmare. Most of all, though I longed to be high like the old days, that beautiful numbness that would take away my pain. I needed it right now like I needed air to breath.
As I was standing there contemplating doing just that, I felt a small frail hand on my shoulder.
"Look at me, Bella!" she begged.
I slowly turned around, still not looking her in the eye. No, I wasn't ready for that yet.
"How?" I asked. "How could you do this to me, Alice?"
I didn't want to hurt her, considering her sickly state, but I needed answers. Let’s face it, she had committed the most cardinal of all sins in the girl code, and I needed to understand why she would do such a thing.
"You left,” she whispered angrily. “You left without even an explanation to me. I was lost without you, and Edward, well to say he was devastated is an understatement."
Slowly I looked into her eyes, bile rising in my throat. “I am going to assume you understand now why I had to leave. Has Edward not told you what happened?"
"Yes, of course I know, now, but when you left, Edward nor I had anyone else to turn to. He went off the deep end, almost killing himself of an overdose. Luckily I was there to call Carlisle when it happened, otherwise I really don't think he would have made it through that first night.
“After that night things changed for us. A friendship ensued, a very close friendship. He was there for me when I needed him and vice versa. We were there for each other when no one else was. No one understood his feelings of loss the way I did because you left us both that day, not just him.
“It took a long time, but a love developed out of that friendship. Not an all consuming love, but a love none-the-less. One that we both were willing to settle for, it was better than the reality of being alone.”
“I don't know what to say to that, Alice. I guess congratulations are in order, but why have you come to tell me this now?” I knew my voice was laced with venom, but at the moment I didn’t care. Sure I left. I left because Edward had destroyed me, but that gave her no right to swoop in and marry him. Be his friend, sure that was fair, but his wife? That hit below the belt.
"Look, Bells, the reality is I'm dying. Edward has already been through so much loss in his life, and this is just one more blow that he doesn't deserve.”
“Alice, I hope that you are not trying to imply that I dealt a blow that wasn't deserved. Considering what he put me through, I did the only thing I thought possible at the time.”
“Of course I understand that, Bella. I really do, but you had no idea what Edward had been through up until that point, so you couldn't have known what led him to do the things he did either.”
My anger levels shot through the roof. How dare she defend him after what he did to me? He toyed with me, played with my emotions for fun, and now my best friend was defending his actions.
“You’re right,” I spat, “I had no idea what he'd been through, because he never loved me enough to let me in, to share his past with me. I was never good enough for him to want to share that with me.”
Tears flowed down Alice’s cheeks. “Oh, Bella, it was never that he didn't love you enough. That is what is so sad about this whole situation. He always loved you. Christ, he still loves you more than anything to this day.”
“Obviously, Alice, that is not true. He married you, didn’t he? He clearly loved you enough to share his past with you,” I scoffed.
“That's not exactly true either.” She diverted her eyes from me, wringing her hands together, shuffling her feet. “I went to Carlisle and got the truth from him about Edward and Jasper's past. After that, Edward had no choice but to come clean with it.”
She looked up, staring me in the eye. “Tell me; are you happy in your marriage? Can you honestly stand here and tell me that you don't still love Edward?”
“Why does that matter Alice? Edward is with you now. So even if I were unhappy in my marriage, it makes no difference.
“Besides, I don't even know Edward. I didn't then, and I sure as hell don't now. Frankly, after what he put me through back then, I am not sure I want to know him anymore.”
“That's funny, you could have fooled me.” Her eyes danced, and for a moment I thought I saw a hint of jealousy in them. I shrugged it off, knowing that it had to be my imagination playing tricks on me. The only person standing on this patio that was jealous was me. She had the intimacy with Edward I had longed for, but was never good enough to receive.
“What the hell does that mean, Alice?” I demanded
“From the moment I mentioned Edward's name on the phone, you have proved to me that you still have feelings for him. Otherwise, you would not have freaked when I told you that we were married.”
A nearly evil grin crossed her frail face, and I knew she had me. There was no denying my feelings for Edward still ran deep. I did the only thing I could think of to keep from admitting to the love my life’s wife that I still had feelings for her husband. I diverted the conversation back to her.
“I'm still not sure where all of this leading, Alice. You still haven't made it clear why you're here,” I insisted.
“Look, Bella, I didn't come here to upset you, that's for sure. I simply came here because I don't know how much time I have left, and it would mean the world to me to have my best friend back in my life for as long as I can have you.”
She took my hands in hers, and I felt a sudden fear of breaking her. My anger dissipated in that moment.
“How can I refuse that, but at what capacity can I possibly be there for you? We live different lives now. I only just told Jake, my husband, about you last night.”
“So then I'm guessing, he has no clue about Edward? Do you ever plan on telling him about Edward, Bella?”
“No, I hadn't planned on it. I never saw the need. Honestly, Jake and I have enough problems as it is,” I admitted.
"Then you’re not happy with him?" she insisted.
“Alice, Jake was there for me when no one else was also. He accepts me the way I am. Broken and flawed. Sure our marriage isn’t what I dreamed of as a girl, but it works for the most part,” I white-lied.
“Do you love him, Bella?” she asked.
My throat constricted. There was simply no way I could tell my friend that I basically despised my husband, but being with him was better than being alone. “I can't answer that, Alice, not now. This is all very confusing.”
She nodded her head, as if silently understanding what I meant. “Well, Bella, here is what I'm asking. Well, what I came here to ask you in the first place. Edward, being the doctor that he is, has insisted that I go through with yet another experimental surgery.
“I'm terrified of this operation. I am much weaker now than I have been for my past surgeries, I'm not sure how things will turn out, and it would really help me if I could have you by my side.”
“So you want me to be there in Forks for your surgery? I don't know, Alice, I'm not sure that is possible.
"Why?" she asked.
“Well, for one, I haven't been back to Forks since I left. Too many bad memories, and not just with Edward and I. I'm sure you haven't forgotten all the shit my dad put me through back then either.”
“But your dad has changed Bella. He is not the same man he was then,” Alice declared.
“I know that, Ali, it's just always been easier for him to visit here.”
“Okay, so what are some other reasons you would turn down a dying friend’s wish to have you with her during a scary operation like this, Bells?”
“Alice, I don't think I can face Edward. Can't you understand that? All the feelings are still there for me. They have never went away. The anger, the resentment, the pain that he caused, they are all still there.”
“I really believe that if you gave Edward a chance to explain things you may see things differently,” she sadly whispered.
“No, Ali, I don't think so.”
“Bells, did Edward ever tell you anything at all about what happened with his real family?
“No, never. I begged him to so many times, but he just kept saying he wasn't ready.”
“Well, then. I am begging you, to give him that chance now. I'm not asking you to forgive what he did to you, I'm simply asking you to allow him to explain why he did it.”
“Does Edward even know that you’re here with me now?”
“No, of course not,” she stated matter-of-factly. “He would have never allowed me to come if he did.”
“I rest my case. “How am I just supposed to magically show up back in Forks for your operation that I am supposed to know nothing about?”
“Simple, Bells, you'll just say you heard from your father that I was sick and that I was going in for surgery.”
“Well, you certainly have this planned out, don’t you?” I chuckled.
“I have no choice but to be prepared,” she murmured.
I nodded. I understood exactly what she meant. “I still don't know though. I don’t even have a clue on how I would get away. How would I explain to Jake where I am going?”
“Tell him the truth. Tell him that I need you.”
“I need to think this through. Do I have to give you an answer right now? When is your surgery?” I really hoped for time to come up with a good excuse to give Jacob about going home.
Alice turned her head looking over the yard. “Next week, I’m afraid. I’m sorry to throw this all on you so abruptly but there isn't much time.”
Tears started to fall down my face again. “Ali, I really am so sorry that this is happening to you.
I've only just got you back in my life and already I feel like I'm losing you again.”
“Bella,” she said, as she pulled me into her arms, “No matter what happens from here on out, at least I know we made our peace. I can leave today in peace, if that's what's meant to be, and I would be happy for it because I have my best friend back.”
She squeezed me tightly, and then released me. “I really have to be going now. I have to catch a flight back home. No one knows I've left for the day and Jasper will be stopping by tonight to check on me.”
“How is Jasper?” I asked as we walked back in the house towards the front door.
"He's the same old Jasper. I'm not sure he'll ever change.”
“It's kind of ironic, that you ended up with Edward. I always thought that Jasper would come around one day. I remember clearly the crush you had on him back then.”
The sadness in her eyes broke my heart. I could see from that simple look that she still felt for Jasper the same way I felt for Edward.
"Yes, well that was just never meant to be. Jasper never cared for me the way I did for him.”
“Oh, I don't believe that Ali, he was crazy about you. He just didn't know how to show it.”
"Yes, well none of that matters now, does it? We can't change the past, only redirect the paths we're on now,” she said opening the front door.
"Promise, Bells, promise me, you'll be there?" she begged.
“Okay, Alice I'll be there.” How could I say no to her? I can’t deny, however, that the thought of seeing Edward again literally made me want to throw up, but I couldn't refuse her this last request of sorts. It just wasn't in my nature to do that.
“When should I be there, Ali?” I asked.
“My operation is on Thursday of next week. That’s the fourteenth, the day after your birthday, actually. So, I would really appreciate it if you could be there on Wednesday, if at all possible. I'd like to throw you a little party.
“I don't think so,” I shook my head fervently. Thoughts of the last birthday I spent with Edward flood through my head, and I could feel my stomach knot immediately. “There is nothing to celebrate right now. We need to worry about you and getting you better.”
“That isn't going to happen, Bella, and I would like nothing more than to celebrate your birthday with you one last time.”
She did it again, how could I say no when she kept assuring me that she wasn't going to be around much longer.
I owed her this, even though she had married my only reason for existing. I now understood what brought them together. It was the same thing that brought Jake and I together, that fear of being alone, never having anyone to share your life with.
“Okay, just this once will I allow you to throw me a party, but don't get used to it.” I smiled.
"I don't think you have anything to worry about in that department," she said with a sad smile on her face.
“I'll be there, I promise.” I reached out and hugged her again. “I love you, Ali. I'm sorry I haven't been there for you when you needed me most, but I will be from here on out. You can be assured of that.”
Just then her taxi pulled up to the curb in front of the house.
“That's my ride. I've got to go now, but I'll see you real soon.” She hugged me one last time and exited the front door. I waved to her as she climbed into the taxi and then closed the door when it pulled away from the house.
With the door shut, I rested my back against it and slid down the door into a sitting position. Crying again, all I could think about was that my friend is dying, I have her back now only to say goodbye to her all over again and there isn't a damn thing I can do about it. God, life was so fucking unfair.