Chapter 26 - An Empty House

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Esme decidedly hated Alaska. She used to love the peaceful quiet expanse, but now it just felt like an empty vast wasteland. The silence was deafening. Vampires didn't need to make noise. No one was bothering to try to act human. They were completely alone. Occasionally, they would spend a night or two in empty vacation lodges, but they didn't need shelter.

That's not to say there was complete silence. They talked, just less than normal. A tense undercurrent flowed under each interaction filled with emotions and things left unsaid.

Esme took a moment along their walk to really look at her family. She could tell they were fractured. Her boy Emmett, who was usually so exuberant and lighthearted, seemed to carry a new weight with him. He used to seem untouchable, but he had always worn his heart on his sleeve. It hurt Esme to see the change in him. She wasn't blind, she knew Emmett occasionally reached out to the girl. She didn't think he could stop himself. Esme never called him out on it. She hated how relieved she was when he got a response. She knew Lily and Emmett had always been close. She was his little sister. He had missed that the most after leaving his human life. He always had a soft spot for family. Esme knew that Lily reminded him of his first family and she had hoped he would never have to leave another family behind. He would occasionally get a spark in his eye and whip around to tell some sort of joke only to stop himself and grow somber again. She didn't know if he was simply reading the room or if the intended recipient wasn't present.

She knew Alice had tried desperately to have visions of Lily the first couple of weeks after they left. She had hoped that her sister would change her mind and try to find them. She wanted to be the first person to know so she could break the good news to the rest of the coven. However, it became glaringly obvious that this was not going to happen. Esme knew she blamed herself for not seeing the aftermath of Bella's birthday. Their powers did not work on Bella and the coven never really felt the need to check up on Lily. They had taken her presence for granted. Alice had always assumed she would know if anything would happen to Lily, even if she was harder to see. She was proven incorrectly. She needed to make up for her ignorance now. She exhausted herself day after day and was only rewarded with a vision of her eating dinner with Micheal's family and another one of her driving to Port Angeles. Nothing concerning, but nothing that made her believe that Lily was trying to get back to them. It wasn't long after this that Alice and Jasper had left for a while. They both said the other needed time away, but it was obvious that they were both hurting.

If anyone asked her opinion, Esme would tell them that Jasper had the most difficult ability out of the coven. Any emotion they felt, he was forced to feel as well. Most of the time, it was manageable. They all had separate lives and had a pretty distinct emotional signature. Currently, however, this was not the case. The loss and sadness were emitted by every member of the coven. It was like an oppressive blanket pressed on his shoulders at all times. He did have the ability to try to manipulate anyone else's feelings. However, in order for it to work he needed to be able to embody the feeling himself. He couldn't. Esme knew he blamed himself partly for what happened. He confided in them after he left that he knew something was bothering the girl. He told them about the time she broke down in the car and how often her emotions seemed to be all over the place. Rosalie did not take to the news too kindly. He assured the family that he thought Edward would notice if there was anything seriously wrong. He made sure to leave out the fact he thought Alice would see something as well, she blamed herself as much as it was already. He didn't need to add to his wife's pain. He couldn't blame Edward all that much either, he was only guilty of being too forced on his mate. Now, his mate was gone and he was filled with pain. He sometimes looks at Rosalie and thinks the same thing happened to her.

Edward hurt. Hurt in a way he thought he couldn't escape. It was dark, black and overwhelming. Esme could tell he was in pain. He couldn't bring himself to regret his decision. He wished things were different, but they weren't. Bella was safer now. So was Lily, but she was never part of the equation when he made his choice. He guessed it was kind of naive to assume that she would also follow them. He knew he should have pressed more when he caught a stray thought. He should have been more attentive, but it's not as if Lily displayed visible signs of distress. Looking back, he could remember some red flags in her behavior, but he had waved them off. If he thought too long, he could also pick up on some of the visual signs but this line of thinking helped no one. She'll be fine and so will Bella. He missed Bella. Missed her a lot. Missed her like a piece of himself. He burned to be near her, but this will all be worth it if she was safe. He had to do this for Bella.

A Certain Metamorphosis || Rosalie HaleWhere stories live. Discover now