((Disclaimer: I don't own anything... And now a note: Becoming Edward Cullen
encompasses events that surround the first week of my time playing on The Other Path.))

Becoming Edward Cullen
by Corrupted Desires aka Edward Cullen

     It seems like it has been over a century, but in a way I only became Edward Cullen a week ago. Because it was a week ago that I returned to my home in Forks, Washington to find that the woman I love was now mated to my brother. A week ago, my old life shattered into a million pieces once and for all. A week ago I was left to try and find myself out of what shards I could locate... I had to become Edward Cullen.

      I guess you could say it started when Bella told me 'no.' No she didn't want to marry me. No she didn't want me protecting her. No she didn't want anything to do with me. I was heartbroken, confused, lost... I ran. It's what I'm good at, after all. Running. I'm the fastest for a reason. It seems running is my destiny.

      I went to South America again, absently tracking down tales I had heard bits and pieces of during my previous stay in Rio de Janeiro. I was good at tracking down information. Sometimes it seems like I was good for little else. My leads proved profitable and I ended up meeting Nahuel and his aunt during the course of my expedition. A scary thought was solidified in my head; a thought that felt like it had always been there... How long had I been hearing tales of incubi through the minds of others? How much of that had stuck just under my conscious awareness?

      The thoughts in my head frightened me and I left South America, drifting as a nomad until the world made sense. But I wasn't with Bella. Without her there was nothing worth making sense. I caved and started for home as soon as the thought registered.

      Arriving in Forks was like taking a breath of air that I hadn't been needed for more than ninety years and was now necessary for my very existence. I went home, ready to wash up, hunt, and see if I could beg my way back into Bella's good graces.

      But something was wrong.

      Bella wasn't away. She was in my house... Alone. I could not fathom why she was there when she was completely alone. I lurked; I'll admit to this. She seemed to sense that I was there, feeling a disturbance in the house while I struggled to hold my breath. Her scent was always a wrecking ball to me after I had been gone for a while and this time was no different. But she never had any sense of self-preservation and, despite feeling that something was off, she decided to shower instead...

      And for some reason, she went to his room. I couldn't understand it. Why would she go there of all places? But before I could fully form the idea to investigate the matter, I was not alone. Jasper's brother Peter was there, speaking to me. But I didn't want to hear what he had to say. I didn't want to hear what he had to think. I didn't want him to exist. He was beneath me...

      Before I could fully form what was bothering me, the truth was being forced into my ears. The truth was slammed into my brain from more than one mind. The truth was bitter, and ugly, and hated the fact that I existed.

      She did not love me anymore.

      And soon I learned how much she did not love me. She outright hated me, spewing vile words and hateful comments designed to hurt, wanting to claw my eyes out and tear out my throat with her fragile human teeth. She wanted me dead.

      She shattered me.

      Edward Cullen died.

      I was left to grasp at shards of my self, the first one I clutched in fingers that should have bled on the sharp edges of who I had been, was anger. I lashed out as well, saying comments designed to hurt, returning hate for hate with the best I knew how...

      A mini-bar...Even as much as I thought she had whored herself out to the first one she could latch onto, I still couldn't outright exclaim my anger in a way that would properly express what I was feeling. I felt that he was using her in some sort of convenient late night drink method... A mini-bar. It's laughable now.

      The only thing that home felt like it still had for me was my mother. No one else wished to speak to me. No one else wanted anything to do with me, except Esme. What had I done to deserve the hatred of everyone I knew? What had I done? I will tell you what I did...

      I spent my human life watching a man protect his wife and family. I spent my human life watching a man's family love and obey him.

      I spent my vampire years watching men protect their mates. I spent my vampire years watching the women protect their mates, love their mates, and obey as long as the commands were worthwhile.

      I spent my entire existence looking for someone to love. I spent my entire existence looking for Bella. I tried to love and protect and cherish her as best as I knew from all of my experience.

      And in return for all this, I earned her rebellion. In return I earn her hatred. In return, I get to see the only one I have ever loved in the arms of, in the bed of, in the heart of, my brother. In return, I am shattered.

      That is what I did to deserve the hatred of all, save for my mother.

      I try to give her peace and space, I really do. I grind my teeth until they all but shatter, and still everyone does their best to hurt me. And it's a hurt I deserve, because I do not know how to love.

      She aims to hurt, getting Peter and his mate Charlotte to go along with her plans, taking them to places and doing things that even Peter does not want at first. But he is helpless in the wake of the devastating power she wields over our kind. Thankfully I was wise and left before I could hear or see something that would hurt me worse. But it does not help.

      When I finally return home, Peter is quick to think of all that I had missed, reminding me of a deformity that already sets me apart and questioning what little I have left to give anyone.

      I really do hate Peter.

      And then my brother returns from a hunting trip. Oh how I've come to hate him since he aided in shattering my existence. Because he is all she wants and she delights in using it to grind venom into my wounds. Jasper... The thought of him sickens me.

      Yet I cannot hate him.

      Instead I flee into the night where I run across a young friend, one that is so true that it seems as if I have known him longer than he has been alive. He helps me with a rash decision, ever one to not care about proprieties or rules; he could definitely be counted as a true friend. And best of all, he seems to understand that without her there is nothing left of me...

      Shape shifter teeth and claws are really much more talented at piercing and carving vampire skin than anyone has ever given them credit for. I do not regret my new piercing or venom sealed tattoo, they are signs of friendship and trust.

      Alice and Charlotte are the ones that take me home after finding me with Seth...

      What many people may not realize is that there is still a human alive that I knew when I was human as well. I met her one-day long ago while walking in Port Angeles before Bella moved to Forks. Her name is Anna and she had had a moment where her mind was lost in the past. Being near her returned some of my human memories to my vampire brain. It didn't take long for me to convince her that I was my own great grandson but that I could send Grandpa Eddie to see her the next day. That night I designed a costume to make me look closer to the age I should have been and visiting Anna became a regular occurrence.

      Anna had only been fifteen when the Spanish Influenza hit Chicago. Our mothers had been best friends and had spent most of our childhoods subtly pushing us toward each other. But Anna and I were too different. We were close enough to be friends, but at that time in history men and women could not be friends. She had thought I had died of the Influenza; I had not been a free human to attempt to look up old friends...

      She was a link to my humanity and, given the prospect of another evening of hearing the woman I love in the arms of my brother, I decided to put on my Edward A. Masen III costume and went to visit Anna. The Port Angeles Retirement Community really is a friendly place and I wasn't questioned for my late arrival. I regularly play checkers with Anna, letting her defeat me while we teased each other about our human lives. Sometimes I wonder what life would have been like had I not died at the age of seventeen and Anna helps me form pictures of what may have been.

      I checked Anna's chart before I left that night. They don't expect her to last until Christmas. The idea leaves me feeling hollow in a way I have never experienced before...

      Going home presents me with another problem. My love is still in the arms of my brother, only they have moved into his room.

      I am torn.

      On one hand I don't want to see this. I don't want to see her happy with someone else. I don't want to see her experiencing pleasure at the hands of someone else.

      On the other hand, I love seeing her happy and I've always wanted to see her experiencing pleasure...

      I lounge on the couch, unable to resist sliding into the mind of my brother and watching my love in a way that truly puts me among the creepy, stalkers of the world.

      But what really kicks me is that I enjoy seeing her pleasure and I can't help it when my hand moves to touch my torso in a way I would never have dared without being prompted... And even worse, I groan a name I had never expected to groan... I fled the house.

      Thankfully they are too involved in each other to ever know what had occurred. Only Alice would ever bare witness to my shame. For it was not Bella's name I had moaned.

      As a result, I was not in the house when Jasper asked Bella to marry him...

      I am closer to my sire than most vampires. There is a reason for this. Not only is he like a father to me, but he has also done something I am forever grateful for. He would never admit it, but when I think back on what makes our relationship so strong, this is a definite starting point... It is also the reason I am deformed among vampires, as Peter likes to constantly remind me.

      In my entire human life, and I remember more of it now than I have ever told anyone, I never once had, to the best of my knowledge, any kind of sexual exploration. Times were more strict back then and I had no desire to explore that portion of my anatomy until I had a wife to assist my endeavors. Therefore, when the fires of my transformation hit that portion of my body, I was wholly unprepared to experience anything even close to simulating fire in that organ...

      I panicked. I couldn't help it, I was ignorant of everything in regards to my body and it hurt. So with my transforming self, I did something entirely unique to deal with the situation. My developing newborn strength allowed me to easily rip off the pained part of my anatomy!

      Carlisle was, quite understandably so, horrified.

      It took quite some time for Carlisle to discover how to reattach so vital a part of a male's anatomy and, in the end, he resorted to spending a large portion of my transformation literally holding it back in place until the parts had changed enough to reattach firmly. The temporary detachment didn't really affect me, though it did prevent the venom from working it's magic fully on that part of my anatomy. I'm perfectly average sized... for a human. But as Peter enjoys reminding me, I'm shamefully underdeveloped for a vampire.

      I have a whole hell of a lot of respect for a man who is willing to hold another man's member while it heals and then still honestly call him 'son' and never once mention the shameful event to anyone. No, he did not even tell Peter. Peter, irritatingly enough, just knows.

      That is why my bond with my sire is so close. Some things leave permanent marks, as permanent as rings of vampire venom, on the body and the soul.

      Thus, when Carlisle and I finally met again after my departure, he very easily crushed my spirit over my shameful behavior since my return. But it went beyond that. I felt that not only was he punishing me, but that he was expressing true hatred for what I had done...

      And as previously discussed, I deserved the hatred for what I had done.

      I can never call Carlisle father again. Not because he is not worthy of being my father, but because I am not worthy of being his son. If someone as peace loving, kind and compassionate as Carlisle can hate me, I am not worthy of love...

      I will tell you right now, that is more than enough to fuck with anyone's sense of self worth. Added to the fact that I was already shattered and trying to find myself...

      Before I could settle too deeply into daydreams of flickering flames, I was up and heading for the door. I don't know what came over me, but my sudden urge for something Spandex to wear was enough to have Alice horrified and following to keep an eye on me. She went so far as to go with me into the dreaded 'Wal-Mart' on this excursion. I don't recall what she tried to convey to me during the course of that trip, but I do recall that my mind was set on wanting the tight, slippery feeling material that is Spandex. Thankfully Alice managed to prevent me from actually purchasing anything.

      But then something horrid happened out of the store.

      Alice had a vision. A vision that filled me with such unmitigated horror that I was in the car and racing home almost before Alice could get into the passenger seat. It seemed that no matter how quickly I drove, the house was just further and further away. And somewhere along the line there was a cow in the road! Seriously?! A cow in the middle of a Washington road late at night?! Alice got a snack, but we were delayed and by then it was too late for even Alice's text messages to work. Alice's visions revealed that my shame had been discovered... By Bella!

      I will never know why she decided to go snooping that night. Nor will I understand why she went snooping in my room. Aside from rearranging clothing, nothing had changed in my room since long before I had left. In any event, she went poking around in my closet and found things that I hadn't wanted to admit I still kept.

      A shrine.

      It wasn't large, a small wooden shelf that held trinkets Bella had unknowingly gifted to me during the time when we were on good terms. The shelf was hidden behind my clothing, I can only blame the misplacement of a shirt in my carefully color coordinated closet for her discover. It held our prom picture, the little bottle cap from her lemonade bottle, what appeared to be a piece of dark cloth in a plastic bag which was, in actuality, a piece of the shirt she had bled on during James' attack on her... I kept that one as a reminder that I needed to be more protective of her. The shelf also held a dried flower, one she had playfully placed in my hair during one of our many trips to the meadow. They were small things, a variety of items that looked silly to anyone else but were parts of my entire world... And she found them.

      Perhaps it wouldn't have ended as badly if that was all she found.

      But no, before she could leave my closet, she found the edge of a picture frame behind the clothing near the shelf. A frame the size of a movie poster... And when she moved aside the clothing, she found what my thoughts really were.

      It was a hand drawn portrait, penciled on a large sheet of sketch paper, an image I had kept secret within my mind and heart for a long time... It was Bella and I in a way no one had ever thought would enter my mind...

      In the portrait I was lying face down on a bed. My clothing was gone and my back was lined with stripes. Bella was standing to the side of the bed, in the background of the picture. She was wearing what could only be described as dominatrix attire, her hair pulled back from her face and a cat-o-nine tails wielded in her hand... She was beautiful.

((The rest of the story remains untold... If you would like to review this, please
send an email to firedrakess@yahoo.com with the subject line BEC Review. Thank you.))