In the blink of an eye, your world can change. You can experience the greatest happiness … or succumb to the world’s worst pain, losing someone that had no reason to die …
Edward Cullen, a decorated fireman, after losing a woman in a deadly apartment fire, left his life and family in Seattle, trying to escape the ghost of the beautiful woman, the concert mistress of Seattle Symphony. He stayed away from Seattle, living in Boston, working as an arson investigator until his mother called him, informing him that she had cancer. Without a second thought, Edward moved home to help his family.
Dr. Isabella Swan, a renowned oncologist, specializing in women’s cancers, went through the paces of life. Her mother, an ovarian cancer survivor, was her impetus to become a doctor. However, she was closed-off and had been for many years … since the death of her twin sister, Angela, in an apartment fire. Bella focused on her job, working to forget the empty pain of losing her soul mate. Even eight years after her death, Bella was profoundly broken because of it. She never let anyone in … Until … a handsome, sexy man and a son of one of her patients … Edward Cullen …
Everything in her mind told her it was wrong, but in the blink of an eye, your world can change. You can experience the greatest happiness. Your life can come back to life, especially when you find your new soul mate … the Fire of your Soul.
Fire of your Soul
A/N: None of this is ours … we’re both just pervy women who like to play in the land that Stephenie Meyer created, making Edward and Bella have a realistic sex life (none of this fade to black shit). No copyright infringement is intended. Thanks for reading!
Pulling up to his fire station, Edward sat in his vehicle enjoying the last few moments of air conditioning before stepping out in the oppressive heat. Unlike the cool, rainy weather that he had been accustomed to living in Seattle all his life, it had been hot, low humidity, and extremely dry. The forecasters predicted that they wouldn’t see rain for at least another week, possibly two and the daytime highs would be reaching into the nineties, which was an oddity in the Pacific Northwest.
The arid conditions had been the catalyst for several fires throughout the city. Edward’s fire station had been out on so many fires that all the men were exhausted and this was very dangerous. The reality of making mistakes could be life-threatening. Firemen needed to be refreshed and alert when fighting fires because a moment of distraction could lead to a disastrous outcome and that is why Tyler was out of action for at least six to eight weeks. They were fighting a house fire, when he stepped through a hole, breaking his ankle. Being down one man on the team, meant that everyone had to pick up the slack.
Stepping out of his 1969 Ford Bronco, Edward was hit by the oppressive heat, along with a strong hot breeze.
Fuck, this was going to make the dry conditions even more dangerous, he thought, shouldering his duffel bag. The only thing he was thankful for was that he was called in the evening, covering for another man on his crew and he wouldn’t have to be out in the blistering sun for a majority of his time at the station. Walking in, he saw the crew was putting away the equipment after they had returned from a call. They were covered in thick black film, mixed with sweat and water, that came from fighting a fire in a closed in place.
“Damn, you all look like hell,” Edward said. “Where was this fire?”
“House fire on Lake Washington and it was insane. The winds picked up and the flames were lapping in all different directions,” Mike explained.
“Were there any injuries?” Edward asked.
“No, thankfully the family had smoke detectors.”
“Now if everyone in the city would have them, it would make our jobs a little easier,” Edward said wryly as he walked to his locker, placing his duffel, car keys and wallet inside. When he turned, he saw Chief Fire Investigator Charlie Swan, coming out of the office. Charlie walked up to Edward and slapped him on the arm.
“Edward, good to see you,” Charlie boomed.
“Same here. Are you working a case?”
“No, just checking in with the Commander. I am off to get my monkey suit on. Angela has her concert tonight,” Charlie bragged, a proud grin spreading over his face. “She’s got a solo with the Seattle Symphony. Some German composer. Mendelblah? Renee knows the piece, but all classical music sounds the same to me. I don’t know that shit.”
“Mom and Dad are going tonight. They like that same German composer, but I agree with you – it all sounds the same,” Edward joked, grinning crookedly. “I’m partial to alternative music … guitars, drums, barely understandable singing. Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Collective Soul, Muse … I love them.”
“You sound like Bella with the music, Edward. She’s into the same bands.” Edward shrugged, knowing he was product of his home town, the birthplace of grunge. Charlie sighed, thinking about what Edward had said. “Damn, with the Mayor there, it will be a madhouse,” Charlie grumbled, scrubbing his face. He hated crowds, but would do anything for his girls, who were his pride and joy. When the doctor had told them they were having twins, he almost fainted, but when he found out that they were girls, he nearly had a heart attack. The thought of one girl and what it meant to be a father to protect her from the world and dick-head boys. However, to have two of them was damn scary. However, he wouldn’t trade his girls for anything in the world, because they both were his world.
“My dad has heard about this amazing soloist and he used his mayoral pull to get tickets,” Edward smirked. “While you are enjoying a very expensive nap, I’ll be here, trying not to sweat my balls off.”
“Can’t nap, this time around, I am responsible for the camera to record the concert, so Bella can see it in New York.”
“New York?” Edward asked.
“Bella’s a doctor. She’s a second-year resident at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center,” Charlie explained. “Angela is a brilliant musician, playing the violin and is the concert mistress at the Seattle Symphony. She studied at Juilliard, offered any number of spots in world-renowned symphony orchestras, but she was homesick. She came back to Seattle. Bella tried with the musician thing, but she didn’t have the patience. She’s my analytical child, becoming a doctor, an oncologist.”
“Damn, I keep forgetting you have two daughters. How many guns do you own?” Edward snickered, knowing that if he was the father of girls that he would chase all those pecker heads as far away as he could. Boys think of sex ninety percent of the time and no zit face fucker was getting his dick anywhere near a daughter of his, well if he ever found someone that would put up with him.
“Not nearly enough. My girls deserve nothing but the best. I lucked out with my ambitious girls. Bella doesn’t really date and Angela has had a long-term boyfriend, Ben, since she started playing for the Seattle Symphony. He’s in charge of the business end of the concert hall and he loves her very much,” Charlie said, his smile wistful. However, his cell phone ringing on his hip broke his reverie. “Shit!”
“Mrs. Swan?” Edward asked, wriggling his brows.
Charlie scowled at Edward as he tugged out his cell phone. Blinking down he saw it was Renee, a much sought-after interior designer in the Seattle area. Grimacing, he answered. “Yes, dear?”
“Don’t you ‘yes, dear’ me! You were supposed to be home by now, Charlie! Did you pick up the spare battery for the camera?” she asked.
“Damn it!” Charlie grumbled. “I had to stop at a fire station, discussing something with the commander on duty. I’m on my way, though. I just need to change, sweetie. I think you’re more nervous than Angela.”
“I am! This is her first solo performance as a professional,” Renee said. “I love you, hon, but you’ve got to skedaddle!”
Charlie put his phone back in his pocket. “Damn, I have got to run.” Charlie rushed out of the station, making sure he stopped at the store to get the battery. He didn’t want to disappoint Bella by not being able to film the entire concert.
Arriving home, Charlie ran into the house and up the stairs. When he came into the room, he saw the love of his life, his soulmate, his wife, Renee. She always look stunning, but tonight she glow in her long purple gown, but for his taste the neckline was too low. Those tits were only for his enjoyment and for no one else. Then, the horrible memory of when Renee found that lump in her breast and the scary aftermath of her battling and beating breast cancer twelve years ago. Renee had mastectomy and reconstruction, with her nipple tattooed onto her recreated breast. It was Renee’s battle with breast cancer that led Bella into becoming a doctor, focusing her attention on women’s cancers – breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and cervical cancer.
Stepping up to Renee, Charlie wrapped his arm around her and pulled her close. Loving the fact that she was wearing her hair up, so he could have access to her neck, where he placed kisses from her smooth shoulder up to the back of her ear. Fuck there was nothing like the taste of her skin on lips. Even after almost thirty years of marriage, he yearned for his wife in more ways than one.
“Charlie, we don’t have time to do this,” Renee moaned, leaning back against him.
“I know, but I wanted a little taste and I will get the full menu when we return home,” he said. “Is that so bad?”
“Never, Charlie. I love you,” she said, turning around and brushing her lips against his. “Now, we’ve got a nervous baby girl who’s about to make her debut as a soloist for the Seattle Symphony Orchestra. We need to pick up flowers on our way to the concert hall.”
“I’m so proud of her,” Charlie breathed. He grinned, patting Renee’s ass. “And I love you, too, Renee. Be ready for some celebrating tonight. I want to hear you scream my name, love.”
“Charlie,” Renee whimpered.
“That works, too,” Charlie laughed, his fingers gliding down her arm and twining his hand with hers. Bringing her hand to his mouth he places a kiss on the back of her hand and pulled it to his chest. She and their daughters was his life, his world.
After Charlie quickly changed into his tux, they were on their way to the Benaroya Hall, the concert hall for the Seattle Symphony Orchestra. They made one quick stop at the florist to pick up a bouquet of blue hydrangeas.
Angela hated roses of any color, but loved the look and smell of hydrangeas. Pulling up to the front of Benaroya Hall, Charlie quickly exited the car and walked around to help Renee out. Handing the keys to the valet, he offered his arm to Renee and proceeded up the red carpeted steps.
Charlie was surprised to see the amount of people who was entering the hall. He had no clue that so many people came to things like this. Walking past several people, they happened to come upon Carlisle and Esme Cullen as they made their way up to the reserved seats in a private box, courtesy of their talented daughter.
Carlisle Cullen’s family had been residents of Seattle since the foundation of the city in eighteen-hundred and fifty-one. Having the charisma of a Kennedy, he was a man that everyone wanted to be around. Deciding to run for public office the first time, he won by a landslide and also the subsequent elections, culminating in being elected as the mayor of Seattle three years ago. The city of Seattle loved having Carlisle Cullen as their Mayor and it didn’t look like he would be losing any elections any time soon.
Carlisle’s wife, Esme, was also well known in the city. She chaired many charities and foundations. Her heart was in helping children to achieve their dreams, no matter their social standing. She was also known for her beauty, grace, and sophistication, but she was down-to-earth and ready with a warm grin or a smart comment. Women wanted to be her and men wanted to have her, however she was a devoted wife to Carlisle and a loving mother to her three boys, Emmett, Jasper and Edward.
“Good evening, Mayor and Mrs. Cullen,” Charlie said, as he placed out his hand and shook Carlisle’s.
“Charlie, how many times do I have to tell you to call me Carlisle, when not in the office,” Carlisle joked, shaking Charlie’s hand. Turning to Renee, he hugged her and kissed her cheek. “Renee, you must be extremely proud this evening.”
“I am, well we both are, Angela has worked so hard to get to this point,” Renee answered. “We were also blessed with a strong musical history. My mother was a classically trained singer before she had children and my brother also played violin, acting as Angela’s first teacher.”
“Oh Renee, I have only wonderful things about her and we can’t wait to hear her play,” Esme gushed, laying her hand on Renee arm and patting it.
“Shit, sorry, I almost forgot, Edward wanted to me to tell you hello if I saw you this evening,” Charlie said.
“Damn boy lives five miles from the house, has a damn cell phone, but can’t pick it up to call us,” Carlisle grumbled.
“Now, Carlisle you know that his work schedule has been really rough lately with this dry weather,” Esme interceded.
“Is it that bad out there Charlie?” Carlisle asked. He had seen some reports of the amount of fires, but didn’t know if this was something he should be even more concerned about.
“Carlisle, it is extremely dangerous right now. The conditions are ripe for a continuation of these fires and also even bigger fires, if we don’t see rain soon,” Charlie explained. “And with the amount of fires, the crews are not getting the rest they need. They’re exhausted. Exhausted firefighters could equate more fatalities, civilians and firefighters alike.”
“Damn, never thought I would be wishing for rain,” Carlisle said. “Call me tomorrow and we will discuss this more.”
“Certainly. Have a good evening, Carlisle,” Charlie said, shaking his hand again. Esme and Renee hugged and they went their separate ways into their boxes. Ushers handed them programs and they settled into their seats. “Holy shit!”
“Language,” Renee hissed, smacking his arm.
“Look at the crowd, Renee,” Charlie said, his eyes bugging out. “There’s not an empty seat in the house!”
“Well, they’re playing popular pieces tonight,” Renee said.
“I’ve never heard of any of these pieces,” Charlie snorted. “Okay, maybe I heard of the music of John Williams, but the rest of this shit?”
“Do I need to wash your mouth out with soap, Charles?” Renee asked, arching a dangerous brow. He blanched, shaking his head. “Angela’s performing in the first portion of the concert. She’s the soloist for Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E Minor, Opus 64. After that, we’ve got the New World Symphony by Dvorak. You’ll like that one. It sounds like music from Pocahontas.”
“Oh, okay,” Charlie said, rolling his eyes.
“And the final portion of the concert is a tribute to John Williams, which is a medley of all his music,” Renee said, turning to the page in the program with the biographies of the soloists. “Take a picture of this and send it to Bella. Angela looks so beautiful in her photo. My baby girls are both growing up too quickly.”
“I know,” Charlie sighed, taking a photo of Angela’s biography. He sent a text to his other daughter, who was buried, head-long, in her residency.
Check out your sister’s debut as a soloist! You’re in there, too! Love you, baby girl ~ Dad
Why would I be in Ang’s biography? I just shared a womb with her. LOL. She looks great … so elegant. Love you, too, Daddy. Send my love to Mom and Ang. You better send me that damn video ~ Bells
As soon as I get home, I’ll send it to you, Bells. The lights are going down. I’ll talk to you soon. Save lives! ~ Dad
You, too, Daddy ~ Bells
He slid his cell phone into his tuxedo pocket and took out the camera. Technically, it was against the rules to record performances, but Angela had asked the conductor and music director to bend the rules so her twin could hear her debut. He begrudgingly agreed to the recording. So, Charlie began recording as Angela walked out on stage, bowing to the audience. She was dressed in a black, lacy gown and pearl earrings. With a confident smirk, she nodded to the oboe player who played an A for the orchestra to tune. Once Angela felt the orchestra was tuned, she sat down and the conductor, an older man named Alistair Meyers, strode out onto the stage. He bowed and stepped onto the podium.
Angela stood back up, lifting her violin and gazing at Alistair. With a sharp downbeat and a flick of Alistair Meyers’ baton, music filled Benaroya Hall. The sweeping sounds of the orchestra danced around the audience members and Angela’s fingers danced along the neck of the violin, moving gracefully and creating a gorgeous line as she introduced the first theme of the concerto. Her eyes were closed as she lost herself in the music, moving with each caress of her bow on the strings of her violin.
“Charlie,” Renee whispered, tears welling in her eyes. “Can you believe this? She looks so beautiful, so mature. And I’ve never heard her sound so amazing.” Charlie reached over, taking Renee’s hand in hers and kissing her wrist.
“Pride doesn’t even begin to describe what I’m feeling, Renee,” Charlie whispered back, blinking back to his daughter.
He never understood instrumental music, but with Angela performing, moving as gracefully as a dancer, he knew the love she felt for her music. She caressed the strings with a lover’s touch. The violin was truly an extension of her body. It was never just an instrument, but another way for her to convey her emotions, her joy, her anger, her sadness. It was no doubt why they made her the concert mistress of the Seattle Symphony – the youngest one in history.
On top of being a stellar musician, she was also a consummate professional, treating her responsibilities as concert mistress with the utmost care. She respected her coworkers and was respected in kind, save for the older man who was skipped over for the concertmaster job when the previous one had retired. He felt that Angela had no right to be concert mistress. She didn’t have the experience or talent, but as she stood in front of a packed house, her violin creating the most elegant and beautiful sounds, there was no doubt she deserved her position.
As one movement transitioned to the next and then to the final movement, it seemed like a blink of an eye that the concerto began. With a flurry of fingers and a gradual crescendo as the orchestra grew to the end, Angela ran her bow over the strings with surprising speed and accuracy. Her chocolate-colored curls moved with each stroke until she slowed down, looking up at Alistair, following him like a stellar musician she is. Confidently, she pressed down her fingers for the double stops prior to the ending of the concerto, holding out the final note triumphantly. Alistair lowered his hands indicating the end of the concerto, Angela pulled the bow away from the strings, tucking her violin under her arm, blinking out to the audience with a shy smile.
Charlie and Renee stood on their feet, applauding fervently as the rest of the crowd joined them. Angela reached over to Alistair and shook his hand. He stepped off the podium, kissing both of her cheeks and they took a shared bow. Alistair gestured to Angela and she took a step forward, bowing deeply before leaving the stage with Alistair on her heels. The orchestra got up as the lights went up for the first intermission.
“Renee, our baby … can you believe that?” Charlie asked, tears streaming down his cheeks. Yeah, I need my man-card revoked. But, he couldn’t find it in his heart to care. His daughter performed a flawless performance in front of thousands of people, making them feel what she felt. “I … I’m speechless!”
Renee nodded, moving over to Charlie and sitting in his lap. They hugged each other, talking about Angela’s stellar performance and sending her a text, expressing their pride and happiness. She didn’t respond since she kept her phone off during performances, but she would when she checked her phone after the show.
The rest of the performance went by in a blur. Angela, who had changed into a simple black dress after her solo, sat confidently in the first chair closest to Alistair. The symphony was beautiful and it did remind Charlie of the movie, Pocahontas. The final piece was pure fun, featuring several soloists from the orchestra. The concert ended with a flourish and the lights came up.
“I can’t believe our baby girl,” Charlie whispered. “Both of our baby girls. We are so lucky, Renee.”
“We are, Charlie,” Renee smiled, kissing him gently. “Now, let’s meet our baby girl. She said that she would be down in the lobby after the concert.”
“She probably wants her ice cream,” Charlie snickered.
“You started that tradition,” Renee laughed as Charlie packed away the camera. Looping the camera bag over his shoulder, they left the box and ran right into Carlisle and Esme. The latter had tears in her eyes. She hugged Renee tightly. “I take it you loved the concert?”
“Very much so,” Esme sang. “Your daughter is exquisite! So much feeling in her performance. You must be so proud!”
“We are,” Charlie answered.
“We’d love to meet Angela,” Carlisle said, sliding his arm around Esme’s waist.
“Of course,” Charlie smiled. “We’re meeting her in the lobby and then going to get some ice cream.”
“Ice cream?” Esme asked, laughing quietly.
“After Angela’s first concert, we went for ice cream. It was essentially a bribe for our other daughter to come to the concert. So, we went to a local ice cream shop and after that, it became tradition,” Charlie answered. “Angela wanted it more than Bella.”
“Does Bella play any instruments?” Carlisle questioned as they made their way to the lobby.
“No,” Renee replied. “Bella appreciates music, but she’s into more alternative music. She thinks all this music sounds the same.”
“I’m with Bella,” Charlie snickered. “But, she’s a resident in New York, training to become an oncologist. We had to record the concert for her. I’ll send it to her once I get home.”
They made their way down the lobby, which was packed. Angela was standing in the center of the lobby, surrounded by people and exclaiming how wonderful she did. She smiled and accepted her praise, along with numerous bouquets of flowers. When she saw her father, she graciously made her way toward her parents. “Daddy!” she breathed, hugging him closely. “Did you like it?”
“Like is an understatement, Angela,” he smiled, kissing her cheek. “You were phenomenal. I’ve never been so proud.” He handed her the floral bouquet of blue hydrangeas. “For you, sweetheart.”
“Thank you, Daddy,” Angela breathed.
“I’d like you to meet someone,” Charlie said.
“After I give my child some loving,” Renee chided, kissing Angela’s cheeks before hugging her tightly. “Okay, now you can introduce her.”
“Angela Swan, this is Mayor Carlisle Cullen,” Charlie smiled, guiding her toward Carlisle. “Carlisle, this is my younger daughter, Angela Swan.”
“Mr. Mayor, it’s an honor to meet you,” Angela breathed, shaking his hand.
“Nonsense about this Mr. Mayor thing. Call me Carlisle,” he grinned, kissing her cheek. “You were marvelous. I’ve heard great things about you and I had to come see you.”
“Thank you, Mr. Mayor … um, Carlisle,” Angela replied. “I’m so glad you were able to hear us. We’ve never sounded so good. I think it was the magic of the audience.” With a coy grin to her father, “But, all that playing has made me hungry. Ice cream, Daddy?”
“Come on, kiddo,” Charlie laughed. “Would you care to join us, Carlisle? Esme?”
“Not tonight,” Carlisle said. “I’ve got a budget meeting early.”
“It’s past his bedtime,” Esme quipped. “You sounded beautiful, Angela.”
Angela blushed, burying her nose into the hydrangeas in her arms. She quietly murmured her thanks. With hugs and handshakes, Carlisle and Esme left Benaroya Hall. Angela handed the flowers to her parents before she ducked back to the rehearsal space to grab her violin and say goodbye to Alistair. Heading back to the lobby, Angela, Charlie and Renee made their way out to the car, a sleek black Lincoln MKZ, driving to a nearby ice cream shop, to get Angela’s favorite ice cream cone, which was vanilla.
They chattered about the concert and about Angela’s new apartment. She’d recently moved into a two-bedroom apartment and was finally settled. She loved her new home and the freedom of living on her own. It was, at Charlie’s insistence, a secured building, with a doorman and close to a fire station, in case something happened. They finished their ice cream and drove Angela back to her apartment. Angela rode to the concert hall with Ben that day.
In her apartment, Angela changed out of her dress and hung it up in her closet. She showered, settling onto her couch and relaxing as the television played quietly. She was watching one of the late-night shows when her computer rang. It was a Skype call. Angela recognized the caller and answered it. “Bells,” Angela breathed. “You look like shit, girl.”
“I haven’t slept in thirty-six hours, Ang. Of course I look like shit,” Bella snickered. “You look great. And you fucking sounded amazing! Dad just sent me your video. I haven’t heard all of it, but Ang … I have no words!”
“Really?” Angela asked. “The second movement was such a struggle for me. I flubbed several parts in that.”
“Seriously? It sounded so good, Ang. I wish I could play like you,” Bella laughed, sipping some coffee and yawning. “Anyway, I wanted to call you before I went to sleep. I’m back on at the hospital tomorrow afternoon.”
“And yet, you’re drinking coffee,” Angela deadpanned.
“It’s herbal tea, smartass,” Bella snorted. “Some sleepy-time blend.”
“Good. You need to take care of yourself, Bells. You work too hard,” Angela said, frowning at her twin. “You need to have fun.”
“I have fun,” Bella scoffed indignantly. “I had fun with that new resident three times last week.”
“Not fucking, Bells,” Angela chided. “You need a relationship, sweetie. When was the last time you had a relationship? Jake?”
“Fucker,” Bella growled. “But, yes. I’m sorry, Ang, but he raked me over the coals with his cheating bullshit. It’s going to take time before I trust someone again. For now, I’ll enjoy fucking the new resident. His cock is small, but he makes up for it with his tongue.” She yawned again. “Okay, Ang, I’m off to bed. I love you … to the moon and back.”
“I love you, too, Bells, until the end of time,” Angela smiled. She pressed her fingers to her lips and touched the screen. Bella did the same and she ended the call. Angela shut her laptop, making her way to the kitchen. She sipped some water before padding to her bedroom. Slipping into her queen-sized bed, she set her alarm clock and snuggled into the comforter. Her eyes fluttered and she drifted asleep.
“Engine 17, Engine 437, Wagon 12, Ladder 6, Ladder 17, Battalion 42A: Respond to an automatic fire alarm, 17328 Boysenberry Drive off of Kettleson Road ….” the dispatcher said after the sounding of the alarm.
Edward jumped from his bed in the bunkroom of the fire station. As he swung his legs over the bed, he placed his feet into the boots and pulling up his turnout pants by their suspenders over his broad shoulders. Running to his cubby, where his jacket, gloves, and helmet were stored, he quickly finished getting dressed, before rushing to his engine.
Climbing in the truck, he turned on his portable radio and listened for the details from dispatch. It was a structure fire at a five-story apartment building on the west side of the city. Fire and smoke were billowing from the top two stories. Next, the dispatcher gave the weather update, which concerned Edward the most. The winds were picking up from the east and the relative humidity was in the low teens with a temperature still hovering in the low eighties. Fuck, this was a combination that all firemen hated to hear. His engine roared down the street, with lights and sirens blaring through the dark streets of Seattle. As they turned the corner, the night sky glowed in bright orange and reds from the fire that was slipping out of the top of the apartment.
Other fire stations and crews were on scene and as soon as the engine stopped, Edward was out the door and picked up his ax. He went over to the chief in charge and listened to the game plan for fighting the fire. After telling different crews to handle different parts of the fire, he turned to Edward and the team from Station 17. “Station 17, we need to you to go to the top two floors and look for anyone who may be trapped there. We don’t have a lot of time men, so get in and get out as soon as possible,” the chief said.
Edward looked at Marcus. “Let’s get in there.”
Putting on their self-contained breathing apparatus, which only holds thirty minutes of air, they walked up the steps and through the doors. Stepping into the thick black smoke, they went to the stairs and headed up. They would go to the fifth floor and work their way down.
Edward placed his hand on the door before opening it and even though it was warm, it was not hot, which indicated that a fire was on the other side, but not enough to cause a backdraft. Pushing open the door, Edward and Marcus walked into the hallway.
“You take the left and I will take the right. Keep in contact,” Edward commanded.
Edward and Marcus made quick, but safe checks of the apartment, yelling out that they were firemen and to scream if they trapped. It was hard to hear anything over the roar of the fire, but that didn’t stop them from trying. Edward had reached the end of the hall, he tested the door and busted it in. The room was engulfed in flames, lapping up the walls to the ceiling, dancing in a glowing, deadly dance.
“Fire department! Call out! I’m here to help you,” Edward yelled. Listening carefully, he heard a faint cry coming from the back corner of the building. He took off towards the sound and when he got there, the doorway was fully engulfed in fire. Looking into the room, he saw a young woman standing by the window, trying to pull it open.
“Miss, don’t do that,” Edward yelled, but it was too late.
The woman got the window open, which allowed the wind and oxygenated air to rush into the room, causing the fire to become an inferno. The wind blew around the room and the fire blasted around the room towards her, pushing her out the window by its force.
Edward barged through the fire, not even thinking about himself, only the woman who needed his help and ran to the window, catching her hand before she fell. “I’ve got you,” he yelled.
“Don’t let me die, please,” she cried hysterically, scrambling and trying to pull herself up.
“I am not letting you go, but you need to give me your other hand.”
The young woman tried to reach up with her other arm, but she didn’t have the strength to do so. Suddenly, there was a violent explosion on the floor below causing the building to shake. Edward lost his firm grip on her hand and was only hanging on by her fingers. No matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t regain the stronghold he had before, but she began to slip, inch by inch. “Please! Please!” she screamed.
Edward looked into the tear-filled eyes of the young woman, his grip failed and she began to fall through the smoke and fire. Her cries and scream echoed above all the noise of the fire and her shrieks of terror burned onto Edward’s heart with their pain. He turned, running back through the blazing doorway, and through the apartment to the hall wanting to get out of the building to find the young woman. Maybe, just maybe she survived.
Marcus had just finished his side of the floor when the explosion happened. Fuck, they needed to hurry this up and get out of this building. When he looked down the hall, he saw Edward come running towards him.
“A girl fell out the window, we have got to go help her!” Edward yelled.
Rushing down the stairs and out of the building, which at this point was totally engulfed in flames, Edward tore off his breathing apparatus as he ran around the side of the building where the young woman would have landed. When he got there, he found the body lying over a pile of rubble from the explosion. Blood was coming from a gash on her head, her legs were in unusual position with blood pouring out where the bones were protruding out, marring her pale skin.
Edward crawled up the rubble, ripping off his gloves, he began to take her pulse and access her condition. Not getting anything from her wrist, he placed his fingers on her cardiac artery on the neck and once again he felt nothing.
“GET THE EMT OVER HERE NOW!!” Edward screamed, as he picked her up and took her off the pieces of the sharp concrete, to a flat surface where he could begin CPR. Normally, he wouldn’t move a person without securing their neck, but with her not breathing or no pulse, there was no time for it. Edward was as careful as he could with her neck while he carried her away from the building. Gently, he lay her down on the grass, beginning chest compressions. With each compression, he prayed that this would work and that she would open up those beautiful eyes and look at him once again. Stopping to feel her pulse, checking if her heart had begun again, but finding that it hadn’t, he once again started back with the life-saving CPR.
“Cullen, move! We’ll take over now,” the EMT said placing his hand on Edward’s shoulder.
Edward looked up and reluctantly stood up, stepping to the side. He wanted the best for the young woman and the EMTs were that. He listened as they began to work on the young woman for any chance that they could bring her back. After what felt like an eternity, the EMT looked away from the young woman and towards Edward.
“I’m sorry, but there is nothing we can do.”
“NOOO!” Edward cried. “You must try harder.”
“She is gone, Edward. According to the EKG, her heartbeat is asystole. There’s no pulse. You can’t bring that back,” the EMT said, his eyes swirling with concern.
Edward closed his eyes, willing the tears not to fall. Lowering his head in utter defeat, he trudged away from the woman and back towards his crew. Each step heavier and than the one before.
The chief had been informed what was happening, so when he saw the defeated Edward walking towards him, he knew. “Edward, go get checked out at the hospital,” the chief commanded.
“I am fine, Chief.”
“I don’t care if you think you are fine, go get checked out. That is an order,” he barked.
Edward nodded and proceeded to the nearest ambulance. As he sat down on the edge of the back of the ambulance, heard a voice that he knew so well.
“Has anyone seen my daughter?” Charlie cried out. He was still wearing his tuxedo from the performance. His eyes were crazed.
Edward watched as Charlie ran up to the chief, who at first shook his head, but then the EMTs brought the body of the young woman around the side of the building, covered with a white sheet. Charlie ran over to the cloth covered body and pulled it down from the face and let out a horrific cry, falling to the ground.
“MY DAUGHTER, MY BEAUTIFUL ANGELA! NO! NO! NO! Not my baby girl,” he sobbed, falling to his knees. The EMTs helped Charlie to his feet, whispering in his ear. Woodenly, Charlie stayed by Angela’s body, holding her hand in his and clambered into another waiting ambulance. The doors closed, with a sharp click and it pulled away.
Edward watched in shock. As Casey, another EMT put an oxygen mask on his face, his heart shattered seeing the anguish of Charlie sobbing brokenly over the body of his daughter. “Cullen, you’ve got smoke inhalation and deep cuts on your hands. You need to get those stitched up,” said Casey. “Cullen?”
“Whatever,” he whispered, looking down at his torn up hands. “They couldn’t save her, Casey. I couldn’t save her. What’s the point?”
“Don’t, man,” Casey muttered. “You did everything you could.”
“Did I?” Edward snarled. “I couldn’t save her …”
AN: As the curtain falls on this first chapter, we hope you love the connection between the characters, but also our writing style together. We are not writing separate sections, but writing the chapter together. This first chapter is a monster with over 6000 words, but we wanted to lay the firm foundation for the story. Our characters are energetic, loving, caring, and surprisingly funny in parts.
You can find us both on Facebook … Tufano79’s Twilight Fanfiction, HeartforTwilight Book Group, and HeartforTwilight Productions for manips made for the story. Come join our groups for exclusive teasers. We both also have blogs, too. Tufano79 is on twitter, as well … tufano79. Come find us! We’re fun!
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Lots of Love
Tufano79 & HeartforTwilight