Chapter 1 - Who's He?
It was a Thursday night and I was driving home after at long day at work. I had hoped for an easy day when I left home this morning, but it seems it just wasn't meant to be. There had been a major traffic accident on the 101 and I spent all day in surgery treating the injured.
As I pulled into my driveway, I saw my lovely wife waiting for me on the porch. I didn't waste any time grabbing my bag; I just ran to embrace her. I kissed her gingerly, as she led me into the house. She had called me earlier and knew how hectic today had been for me, but was concerned how I was dealing with ‘this' day in particular.
As we entered the living room, we could hear the children were playing some video game. Mario Karts maybe? Emmett seemed to be in the lead- typical. I sat down on the couch, pulling Esme down with me to watch them as they bantered back and forth about who was and wasn't cheating.
I was determined not to be too depressed today. At least, that is what I had told myself this morning as I left for work. I didn't need to go and hide in my study crying over what had happened like I had every year prior. I shouldn't need to. I could be strong, but I couldn't get over the fact that I had lost him.
I remember him. My little baby. During his first hunt he actually ran into a TREE! He was so scared and upset; afraid he had hurt the tree. He always loved nature, even if he couldn't.... I was instantly filled with joy when he called me ‘Dad' for the first time. He had this thing about not calling me ‘Father'. When I had asked, he said that he loved me and that he still loved his birth father, as well, but didn't want to get the both of us mixed up. So, I would live with ‘Dad' and his father would keep his title. I couldn't help but think it was cute. I wondered if he were alive would he call Esme... Mom?
I miss my baby.
My body started start to shake, and my eyes stung with the faint memory of tears, but they would never come. They had dried up a long time ago. I nestled my face into Esme's embrace trying to control myself, as she ran her fingers soothingly though my hair. I didn't immediately look up once I was able to control myself, as I could feel the focused stares of my children. I needed a moment to collect my thoughts before they confronted me.
They had never asked about what happened and I had never brought the subject up with them - because I never wanted my children to see me weak. I didn't want them to feel afraid because I couldn't do everything. That I had failed in keeping my child safe from harm. Esme tried her best to ease my pain, but I missed my baby too much. My beautiful baby.
When I'd finally gathered enough courage to look up I saw my eldest, Jasper, staring at me with shimmering eyes. He was there when it happened. He loved his brother, and missed him as much as I had all these years.
"Oh, Jasper, are your okay, son?
He felt my sorrow and was force to bare both his and mine. In an effort to help the both of us he calmed me. Looking into his eyes I knew he was just as hurt as I was. If I remember correctly Jasper and Alice usually took a vacation during this mouth. I guess, he desisted; he also needed to be with the family for once. I couldn't help but notice now there was an intense question in his eyes.
"Do you think... he... he would have liked this? Us? The family, I mean." Jasper dropped his game remote and sat on the floor next to me.
I thought about the question for a minute, answering only when I was sure of my answer. "He would, yes. He would love everyone. He would fight for all your attention." I smiled at the thought.
"Even-" He pointed to Rosalie, trying to be discreetly sarcastic. I nodded my head, "Yes, Jasper, everyone."
"I don't think so," he countered. "They'd fight over the piano. I could just see it... both of them in the middle of a completely smashed up room, only the piano intact." He took to explaining, indicating with his hands to where everything was demolished and telling us how it was all destroyed.
We all laughed at the scene he had laid out. I knew they were trying to cheer me up. I could hear it in their halfhearted laughs and see it in their forced smiles. And then right when my self-pity was about to reclaim me, I was brought out of my self-wallowing by Emmett.