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lisaerin

Title: Epiphany

Author: Lisaerin

Fandom: Twilight Series

Rating: PG for some language, and mentions of abuse

Word Count: 2,000

Inspiration: Chapter Six of New Moon, when Alice kidnaps Bella

Summary: Bella realizes that the Cullens don’t care about what she wants, and confronts them.

 

 

I felt drained as I leaned against Alice’s new Porsche. Alice was babbling on about how much fun we were going to have and I thought that it was a good thing that she didn’t need to breathe; otherwise she would have run out of oxygen. I resigned myself to a day full of Bella Barbie. But as I was walking towards the  Cullens’ house, I had an epiphany. I shouldn’t have to resign myself to anything. Ever since Edward and I had started dating my life was no longer my own. I wasn’t allowed to spend time with my friends, and all my decisions were made for me. Memories of Edward and I together flashed through my mind. Edward threatening to drag me back to his car, Edward bullying me into eating dinner with him, Edward removing my engine so I couldn’t see Jacob, and Edward following me in his Volvo were the most vivid memories. Edward may have been a controlling douchebag, but not once did I say anything. I was going to say something now.

     “Alice, I don’t want to sleep over. Jacob and I have plans,” I said. Alice frowned for a moment. “Edward told me to keep you here until he got back by any means necessary. He even bought me this Porsche as a reward. Isn’t it great? Besides, you shouldn’t be hanging out with those dogs, anyway.”  Alice giggled like a brainless little Barbie, and I wanted to smash her face in. I tried my best to rein in the anger that was boiling in me. Alice would no doubt think that it was adorable that I was trying to assert myself, pat me on the head condescendingly, and then drag me off to do whatever she wanted, my wishes be damned. Maybe she would see reason if I spoke calmly.

    “What do you mean ‘keep me here by any means necessary?” I asked.  Fear shot through me. The Cullens were stronger than I was and I had no doubt that Alice could convince Jasper into using his powers to make me compliant.  I glared at Alice and waited for a response. After a moment’s pause, she answered. “He just wants me to keep you entertained.”  I nodded and a wry smile worked its way across my face. “And if I decide that I don’t want to have a sleepover and want to see my friend instead, what then?” I asked. “Look, let’s cut the bullshit. Edward bribed you to kidnap me because he’s jealous of Jacob and doesn’t trust me enough when he’s not around to monitor me, so he has his family do his dirty work for him.”

   Alice let out an indignant squeak. “How dare you? Edward is just trying to keep you safe! You don’t seem to understand how dangerous werewolves can be!” 

  “You don’t know how dangerous they can be, either! You’ve never met them before, and Jacob and his friends have never done anything to hurt you!”  I yelled. The dam broke.  All the resentment and anger I held came flooding out. “I am so sick of you controlling, psychotic, white trash, and pretentious assholes!” Alice opened her mouth to say something, but I cut her off.

   “Shut up! I am going inside, and I am going to call my father and ask him to come and get me.”

  As I stormed towards the house, Alice suddenly appeared in front of me. I nearly crashed into her. Her hand was suddenly gripping my wrist. “Bella, don’t be ridiculous,” she ordered. “Just calm down. We’ll have so much fun! It’s been such a long time since you let me give you a makeover. I’ll give you a pedicure. I don’t know why you insist on wearing those ratty shirts and jeans when one of us can just buy you the best designer clothes.” I just boggled at her. Did she hear anything I just said? Why was it that everything I said went right over these vampires’ heads? All they ever heard is what they thought I should be saying.

    “Let go of me, Alice,” I demanded. “You can’t keep me here forever without Charlie investigating.”  Alice released my wrist and I darted inside, casting glances over my shoulder. My heart was thundering and I knew for a fact that the Cullens could hear it. Suppose they tried to stop me? But there was no way they could hold me hostage forever. I was so sick of having to justify my decisions and constantly look over my shoulder in case Edward didn’t approve.  With trembling fingers I picked up the phone and dialed Charlie’s number. The phone rang shrilly in my ears.  Please pick up, I pleaded. My prayers were answered when I heard Charlie’s voice. 

   “Hello?”

“Dad!” I cried. The relief was evident in my voice. “Dad, I need help.”

  “What’s wrong?” His voice was alarmed. “I thought you were sleeping over at the Cullens?”

“Alice kidnapped me. Edward bribed her to and she’s supposed to keep me here by any means necessary because Edward doesn’t want me seeing Jacob while he’s not here and-”  

   Charlie put an end to my babbling. “It’s alright, Bella. I’m coming to get you.” The relief made me sag and I barely managed to choke out a thanks.  Charlie was coming. It would all be okay. My heart was still racing, though whether it was from fear or adrenaline I couldn’t say. I’d stood up to the Cullens. A little laugh escaped me. I had no idea it could feel so good. Then I remembered Jacob. It was only fair that he knew that our plans might have to be delayed. I dialed his number. He answered on the first ring. “Jake, it’s Bella. Alice kidnapped me.”

   “What? Quill, Embry and I will come and get you.”

“No, don’t.”

“Bella, this is treaty business. The Cullens kidnapped a human!”

“I know,” I told Jacob. But Charlie’s coming to get me and I think it might freak him out if he saw three gigantic wolves. I’ll call you when I get home and sort everything out with Charlie. There’s some stuff about the Cullens that may violate the treaty.”

  “Why didn’t you say anything?

“Because I was stupid,” I admitted sheepishly. “I’ll let you know how it turns out.”

“Okay.” We hung up and I made my way outside to wait for Charlie. I was sure that Alice would come and try to convince me to be a good little girl. No doubt my yelling at her would be interpreted as a fit of human irrationality. Sure enough, Alice was next to me a moment later.

  “I hope you’re happy, Bella. I’m going to lose the Porsche because of you. I thought that you were my best friend and that it would be fun to spend time with you. But if you want to spend time with that filthy mutt, then that’s okay. I don’t know what Edward is going to say when he finds out, though.”

   Alice’s little guilt trip wasn’t going to work on me. I was done feeling bad about my choices. I picked at a nail, trying to work out what to say. This speech had to be perfect. “You say Edward wants me to be happy. That’s what he says, too.” I wasn’t looking at Alice as I spoke. “The problem is, he doesn’t care what makes me happy, and neither do you. Every time I tell you what I want, you both laugh at me like I’m a silly little child who doesn’t know what’s good for her. You guys force what you think I ought to want on me, not what I really want. I’m sick of it. I’m sick of my opinions not being taken into consideration. I’m sick of having to sneak around and lie because Edward will follow me to keep me in line. I’m sick of being abused.”

   “You aren’t being abused. Edward is just trying to protect you,” Alice insisted.

“Then what do you call him having you use your powers to stalk me and removing my engine so that I couldn’t see Jacob? What do you call him forcing me to apply to Dartmouth even though that’s not what I want? What do you call him constantly insulting me and telling me how stupid I am whenever I tell him what I want? Do you think that just because Edward doesn’t hit me it’s not abuse? Emotional abuse exists, and just because the person isn’t being hit doesn’t make it any less horrible than physical abuse.”

   I took a deep breath and held up a hand to stop Alice’s protests. “Don’t talk, Alice. I know you’re not going to hear a word I say, and neither is Edward once you tell him what happened. You’ll just think I’m being a silly little human and I’ll come back to apologize. Then you’ll patronizingly forgive me. That’s not going to happen. I know what I want, and for once you guys aren’t going to bully me out of going after it because you think I shouldn’t want it. I want to break up with Edward. I want him and the rest of you to get the fuck of my life. I will be filing a restraining order.” I paused to let out a little laugh. “Of course we both know that vampires think they are above the law, so the restraining order probably won’t do much good, but I told Jake and I’m sure the pack can handle everything.”

   The speech went better than I thought. I waited for Alice to say something, but for once she didn’t. Maybe the shock of me standing up for myself had left her speechless. Charlie would definitely have me file a restraining order against Edward once I told him about everything else he’d done. The problem was that Edward could easily manipulate people and would probably get off with a slap on the wrist. Even if he couldn’t manipulate the police, he would have no trouble kidnapping me. I wondered what the pack was going to do about it and promised myself to ask Jacob.

    Charlie’s cruiser pulled up and he stepped out of the car. I dashed towards it and threw myself at him. He hugged me and I buried my face in his chest. How had I taken my father for granted all these years?  Alice was watching us with an unreadable expression on her face. Then her obnoxious smile appeared and she skipped over to Charlie. “Charlie, I’m so happy to see you!” She squealed. “It’s too bad Bella doesn’t want to sleep over, but maybe we could-”

    “Be quiet, Ms. Cullen. I’ve had enough of your family trying to manipulate my daughter. We will be pressing charges. Good bye.” I could tell Charlie was itching to say more, but he held back.  We got in the car and I turned around to watch Alice. There was no doubt Alice would call Edward, and then he would come rushing back and try to manipulate me. This time I wasn’t going to give in.

   “I can’t believe the nerve of that little prick,” Charlie seethed. “Trying to have you kidnapped so you can’t see your best friend! Who the hell does he think he is?”

   “That’s not all he’s done,” I said. “Just let me finish before you start yelling, okay?” Charlie nodded, frowning. I took a deep breath and began to tell him everything.  By the time I was finished, Charlie’s face was purple. “We’re getting a restraining order,” he growled. “You are never seeing that son of a bitch again. I know you think you love him, but you’re in high school. You’ll find someone else. I’ve seen so many things happen to women with boyfriends like Edward, and I’m not going to let it happen to you.”

    I smiled. “You don’t have to worry, Dad. I told Alice that she and Edward could piss off. I got sick of them controlling me and treating me like a child.” Charlie patted my hand and smiled at me. “I’m glad you’ve finally woken up, Bella,” he said.

    “So am I, Dad,” I replied.


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